By Laurence Gibbons, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@Gibbonsgob)
NXT UK TV
Taped in London, England at BT Sport Studios
Streamed August 4, 2022 on WWE Network and Peacock
NXT UK Champion Ilja Dragunov made his way into the BT Sport Studios on crutches to start the show. Dragunov revealed he had suffered an injury during his match with Wolfgang, last week. Dragunov – just shy of a year into being NXT UK Champion – relinquished the title. He said he would be back when he was fit to fight to get his championship back. It was announced an eight-man tournament would take place to crown a new champion…
Gibbons’ Opinion: It is a shame that Dragunov’s reign has to end this way. He has put on constantly great matches in the BT Sport Studios yet never got his big championship match in front of a large crowd. Tyler Bate and Trent Seven will play a major role in deciding who is the next NXT UK Champion. It’ll either be them in the final, or their rivalry will cause them to cost each other their chance at the title. That could lead to a wildcard winning the gold.
1. Rohan Raja (w/Teoman, Charlie Dempsey) vs. Oliver Carter. Carter struggled to get going as Raja seemed to have an answer for all his offense. Raja hit a painful backstabber. Raja sent Carter to the corner and hoisted him on his shoulder. Carter acrobatically turned his body in the air and landed on top of Raja. Carter used kicks and running strikes to gain control.
Carter hit a springboard moonsault. As he went to follow it up, Raja hit a back elbow. Carter charged at Raja who sent him over his back to the outside – but Carter managed to twist his body to take out Teoman and Dempsey on the outside.
Raja went for the baseball slide but Carter wrapped him in the apron and hit a superkick. Carter sent Raja back in the ring and hit the spinning axe kick in the corner for the victory.
Oliver Carter defeated Rohan Raja in 5:25.
After the bell, Dempsey and Teoman attacked Carter. Dempsey locked on a single-leg crab…
Gibbons Opinion: This was a very good match to start the show. Raja and Carter are both fun to walk and the stalking Teoman and Dempsey always adds to the tension. Carter has now defeated 2/3rds of Die Familie. They’ll be desperate not to let him claim a full sweep.
Backstage, Thea Hail was cutting her first NXT UK promo claiming she could’ve gone to any fancy university but that Chase U was the best university in the world. Eliza Alexander arrived and said she was sick of UK exports taking her spot in NXT UK …
Bodhi Hayward made his entrance with Hail and Andre Chase. Sha Samuels made his entrance wearing rags and holding out his hat to beg from the audience …
2. Bodhi Hayward (w/Andre Chase, Thea Hail) vs. Sha Samuels. Hayward seemed to be put off by the smell of Samuels. Hayward and armdrag and taunted Samuels. Hayward stayed on top whilst the NXT UK crowd chanted ‘take a shower’ to Samuels.
Samuels retreated to the outside and was taunted by Hail. Samuels pulled the head of Hayward on to the top rope. Back in the ring, Samuels hit a back elbow and a body slam. Samuels landed a few standing elbow drops and went up top. Hayward caught Samuels as he went for a crossbody and countered with a powerslam. Hayward hit a splash for a close two. He hyped up Chase U before running at Samuels in the corner. Samuels evaded and Hayward came back off the turnbuckle. Samuels hit the spinebuster for the win.
Sha Samuels defeated Bodhi Hayward in 4:45.
Gibbons Opinion: This was a fun match and a good first look at Hayward and Chase U for the UK audience. Hayward does look a bit like the third member of Billy & Chuck with his red headband. Looks like they are doing the down and out gimmick with Samuels. Street urchin beggar vibe does fit his character and is a logical move from his successful bookmaker.
Oliver Carter was confirmed as one of the competitors in the tournament to crown the next NXT UK Champion…
The announcer revealed it was time for the NXT UK Championship match between Meiko Satomura and Sarray. However, Blair Davenport came out to the BT Sport Studios and said she had derailed the Championship match.
Sid Scala came out and tried to remove Davenport from the ring. Davenport claimed she would be the champion if she hadn’t injured her knee when she faced Satomura.
Both Amale and Eliza Alexander came out and claimed that they should get the next shot at the NXT UK Women’s Championship.
Isla Dawn came out and said Davenport had never beaten her. Scala said he needed a main event so said Dawn and Davenport would fight to decide the next person to face Satomura for her title…
3. Blair Davenport vs. Isla Dawn in a NXT UK Women’s Championship No.1 Contenders’ match. Isla Dawn started on top and worked the leg of Davenport. Dawn forced her boot into the face of Davenport. Davenport fought back with clubbing blows and a back elbow.
The match swung back and forth as both women jostled for control. Dawn managed to put on a shoulder and chin lock that kept Davenport rooted to the canvas. Davenport eventually reversed the hold into a roll up for a two count.
But Dawn hit a running knee and a couple of forearms to stay on top. Davenport met Dawn with a shoulder block from the ropes. Davenport now enjoyed some moments on top. But a Dawn kick and German suplex nearly finished it.
Dawn dripped Davenport off the top rope and hit the diving knees from the top turnbuckle. The referee looked set to count to three but Alexander dragged her from the ring. The referee called for the bell.
Blair Davenport and Isla Dawn fought to a no-contest.
Amale came out to the ring and a brawl broke out between all four women to end the show…
Gibbons’ Opinion: I’m not really sure if this storyline was created to cover up an injury or problem with either Satomura or Sarray or if this was always the plan. Looks like we will get Davenport vs. Dawn vs. Amale vs. Alexander next to decide who Satomura faces. This is a clever way to make us wait longer for Davenport vs. Satomura. `As Davenport can lose that shot without being pinned or submitted. This would make sense as Davenport seemed to be the likely candidate to beat Satomura and the more we are made to wait for that match the more likely it is she’ll get a positive reaction when she does win.