Rushonrock’s King Of The Ring Andy Spoors is Cardiff bound as the NXT UK Takeover takes centre stage. Here’s the lowdown on the late summer action:
NXT UK: Takeover Cardiff
With NXT making global headlines in the last week, the UK roster has become somewhat overshadowed in the build up to one of its biggest events to date.
Venturing to Cardiff for the first time to present only the second NXT UK Takeover in the company’s history, WWE is going up against some stern competition in the wrestling field. Announced after both NJPW’s London show, that will take place on the same night, and followed in the early hours of Sunday by AEW’s All Out, it was, to put it mildly, a ballsy choice of dates.
Unlike their American counterparts, NXT UK doesn’t appear to have a structured Takeover schedule. The seemingly snap announcements of their headline shows can have fans scrambling for tickets but it does achieve a more natural arc to storylines and the opportunity to flesh out rivalries.
Some tantalising match ups with a theme of bone-rattling, British Strong Style wrestling are evident throughout the night’s card.
A last man standing match between Dave Mastiff and Joe Coffey could bring the house crumbling down before the night fully gets into full swing. Following a brutal match that resulted in a double count out, there may be no championships on the line, but the title of best big man is at stake.
Some potential refinement and finesse should be brought to proceedings in the shape of The Scottish Supernova, Noam Dar, when he takes on The Kiwi Buzzsaw, Travis Banks. After losing out on a match on the debut Takeover, Banks will be looking to put his name firmly on the map for future title shots. Dar has undoubted talent and the chance to deliver a clinic on the biggest UK stage is surely one he won’t pass up.
Welsh fans are likely to create an impressively vocal atmosphere but should the team of Flash Morgan Webster and Mark Andrews capture the UK Tag Championships, expect the volume to increase tenfold. When NXT UK performed at the Royal Albert Hall, Moustache Mountain overcame the odds and beat Undisputed Era for the NXT Tag Championships and the noise that night has lived long in the memory. But the stoic patriotism on constant display by the Welsh should push that celebration close.
If they are to walk away as champs, they will have their work cut out. Scottish pair Wolfgang and Mark Coffey and current champions Grizzled Young Veterans (James Drake and Zack Gibson) stand in their way in what we think could be the match of the night.
Two huge NXT UK Championship matches round off the night with Kay Lee Ray taking on NXT UK Women’s Champion Toni Storm and Tyler Bate challenging current UK Champion Walter.
An astonishingly personal promo on Toni Storm, Kay Lee Ray has done everything in her power to unsettle the Aussie. Sneak attacks, targeting friends and the aforementioned verbal assault has injected some venom into the pair’s feud. With inaugural women’s champ, Rhea Ripley seemingly on the move to NXT the winner here is likely to find themselves up against Piper Niven. The thought of a heel Niven vs Storm is too good to pass up, but the Mötley Crüe fan can’t look past her match in Cardiff just yet.
The main event of the night sees the current champion face off against the original champion. Most won’t give Bate a chance here, but taking out Walter’s Imperium allies, gives him at the very least a fighting chance. There are some that are yet to be impressed by Walter in a WWE ring, so the chance to tie up against one of Britain’s best young stars on the biggest platform, presents the perfect opportunity.
Wince inducing chest chops and feats of strength will no doubt feature prominently, but the big question will be how much of an impact outside forces will have on the outcome.
A confirmed appearance by main roster star Cesaro adds some intrigue to proceedings, rather than a quick spot with former team mate Kasdius Ohno, we are hoping for the Swiss Cyborg to elevate one of the upcoming NXT UK stars. A match against Ilja Dragunov would be a match of the year contender…
Full Card and rushonrock.com Predictions:
WWE United Kingdom Championship Match:
Walter (C) vs. Tyler Bate
NXT UK Women’s Championship Match:
Toni Storm (C) vs. Kay Lee Ray
Andy: Toni Storm
NXT UK Tag Team Championship Match:
Grizzled Young Veterans (C) vs. Gallus vs. South Wales Sub Culture
Last Man Standing Match:
Dave Mastiff vs. Joe Coffey
Andy: Joe Coffey
Travis Banks vs Noam Dar
Andy: Travis Banks