By Laurence Gibbons, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@Gibbonsgob)
NXT UK TV
Taped in London, England at BT Sport Studios
Streamed March 17, 2022 on WWE Network and Peacock
The broadcast team was Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness. Shepherd welcomed us to the BT Sport Studios with raucous fans back in attendance…
1. Tyler Bate (w/Trent Seven) vs. Oliver Carter (w/Ashton Smith). Both men looked to apply a wrist lock but the other acrobatically avoided the hold. Bate first cartwheeled away from Carter before Carter performed a front-flip to get away from Bate. It was a fast-paced opening of the match which swung back and forth.
Carter seemed on top after a huracanrana and a leg sweep until Bate dropkicked him out of the ring. Bate slowed things down with a waist lock. Carter stepped over Bate in the corner and hit his Too The Skies crossbody for a close two count. Carter took things back in his favour but missed a springboard dropkick.
Bate hit a suplex and then performed the airplane spin. Bate locked on the octopus stretch and forced his elbow into Carter’s ribs. Bate unleashed a flurry of strikes. Carter hit a superkick out of nowhere, a rolling ax kick and a lungbuster but Bate kicked out of the resulting pin.
Carter missed a springboard moonsault allowing Bate to hit his springboard lariat. Bate went for the Tyler Driver but Carter reversed it into a pinning huracanrana. Bate kicked out. Seven and Smith came to blows on the outside which distracted Bate and allowed Carter to pin Bate for three with the backslide.
Oliver Carter defeated Tyler Bate in 10:07.
Gibbons’ Opinion: Oliver Carter and Ashton Smith are still fuming about the way they lost their NXT UK Tag Team Championship match against Moustache Mountain. Seven and Bate have said they can have a rematch if they beat both of them in singles bouts. This was the first of those two matches so it wasn’t a surprise that Carter got the win. It was a fantastic match that featured acrobatic grappling, big strikes and the story of Seven costing Bate another win. Great opener.
A-Kid approached Saxon Huxley and asked him to be his tag partner for his match against Die Familie. Huxley agreed in his own idiosyncratic way…
A vignette aired for Wild Boar in which he said he was coming for revenge against Eddie Dennis. Dennis kicked him out of his stable almost a year ago…
2. Nina Samuels vs. Emilia McKenzie. Nina Samuels put the side headlock on but McKenzie rolled back to pin her. McKenzie worked the arm but Samuels reversed the hold. Both women jostled to control the wrist of their opponent.
McKenzie took control of the match with a couple of throws and an impressive top-rope huracanrana. Samuels fought back and hit a head toss before forcing her knee into the face of McKenzie. Samuels forced her foot into McKenzie’s face in the corner.
Chants of ‘let’s go Nina’ broke out as Samuels worked the shoulder and then locked on a chin bar. Samuels went for a piledriver but McKenzie reversed it into a backdrop. McKenzie hit a side backdrop. Samuels hit a dropkick sending McKenzie into the ropes. Samuels went for a dragon sleeper but McKenzie reused it into a pin and then hit a suplex.
Samuels retreated to the outside but McKenzie hit the dive through the ropes. McKenzie went up top but Samuels grabbed her hair and threw her off. Samuels missed a moonsault allowing McKenzie to hit the spear for the win.
Emilia McKenzie defeated Nina Samuels in 8:44.
Gibbons’ Opinion: This was an entertaining match that gave both these women a decent showing. Despite being a clear heel, Samuels received a good crowd reception. Probably as a result of her entertaining work as a backstage reporter.
Mark Coffey informed his brother Joe that he had been given a Heritage Cup Championship match against Noam Dar. Joe seemed a little confused but said well done…
Backstage, Kenny Williams found a note on his locker which read ‘you’ve made a lot of enemies. Tick tock.’ Williams laughed…
Sid Scala informed Eddie Dennis that Wild Boar had requested a match with him. Dennis said he was more of a manager these days and said a better idea would be Wild Boar vs. either Primate or Tyson T-Bone…
3. Aleah James vs. Stevie Turner. Turner put on the wrist lock but James cartwheeled and reversed the hold. James leapfrogged over Turner and hit a dropkick. Turner charged at James but she bent backwards into a bridge to avoid her.
Turner struggled to get a hold of James but finally took her off her feet with a kick to the jaw. Turner rained down kicks to keep James on the canvas. Turner put the reverse chin lock on. James finally broke free and came close to a win from a crossbody. Turner hit the side slam for a close fall of her own. Turner missed a flatliner and James rolled her up with the O’Conner roll for the victory.
Aleah James defeated Stevie Turner in 4:10.
Gibbons’ Opinion: Turner defeated James in the summer and a lot was made by the commentators of the improvement she’s made since then. It proves a good victory for James who is continually impressive in the ring. She’s acrobatic and extremely likable so should definitely be pushed hard.
Sha Samuels revealed his betting odds for Noam Dar vs. Mark Coffey in the Heritage Cup Championship match in two weeks’ time…
A hype package aired for Isla Dawn vs. Meiko Satomura for the NXT UK Women’s Championship. Dawn claimed she had changed a lot since she was Satomura’s first opponent in NXT UK and that she was bringing down the fall of the Japanese legend. The match will take place next week…
Wolfgang made his entrance. Roderick Strong entered the BT Sport Studios for his special appearance in the UK to a big reaction. Strong threw his hoodie in the face of Wolfgang which fired the Scot up…
4. Roderick Strong vs. Wolfgang. Wolfgang took Strong to the corner but Strong climbed to the top rope to force the break. Strong did a lap of the ring to further fire up Wolfgang. Strong kicked the thigh of Wolfgang and again went to the outside to stall the match.
Strong worked the arm but Wolfgang tackled him down with a headlock. Wolfgang took Strong down with a dropkick and then put the knuckle lock on. Wolfgang beat away at Strong for a few moments, weakening his arm. Strong grappled Wolfgang to the mat and put the headlock on but Wolfgang stood up and sent him flying across the ring. Wolfgang now sent Strong to the outside. Wolfgang came to get Strong but he rammed his back into the ring apron and dropped him on the barricade.
Strong stayed on top back in the ring for a few minutes with chops, stomps and submissions. Wolfgang rallied with a hip toss, crossbody in the corner and standing powerslam. Wolfgang failed to fully take advantage due to damage to his back. Wolfgang did hit a caber toss but missed the spear. Strong hit the flash knee strike for the win.
Roderick Strong defeated Wolfgang in 9:51.
After the bell, Strong cut a promo and said he was in NXT UK for a good time not a long time and challenged Ilja Dragunov to a match…
Gibbons’ Opinion: This was a fun and brutal contest which left strong bleeding and Wolfgang aching. I think we all suspected Strong would have bigger fish in mind during his time on this side of the pond. Dragunov vs. Strong will be a big money match. I’m glad it will be in front of fans who are now back at the BT Sport Studios. I’d anticipate we will see this during Mania week. That week’s show will include Dar vs. Coffey for the Heritage Cup.
If WWE wants to give us a massive NXT UK show that week I’d predict we see the rematch between Moustache Mountain and Smith and Carter. It would be cool if they included a third match that showed the talents of the women’s roster – perhaps a gauntlet or something.