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Recap and Review of 2018 WWE UK Championship Tournament(NXT UK)

Over the last three days I’ve spent watching the United Kingdom Championship Tournament that had culminated at the legendary Royal Albert Hall. I remember WWE having some great shows back in that venue back in the early 90’s. The first day I spent watching the marathon that WWE put out of all the first round matches. The matches were brief but did tell the stories of each competitor. The one things I didn’t like is that Tucker, Joseph Connors, James Drake and Tyson T-Bone all were eliminated in the first round of the tournament. All four men were in the inaugural tournament in 2017 so it’s very illogical to have them lose when in the first round. I also didn’t like the fact that Drew Gulak was in the tournament because he’s not from the United Kingdom. The match-up with Jack Gallagher also made little to no sense due to the fact he and Gallagher are associated with Brian Kendrick on 205 Live. Most of the first round matches took place at the Download Festival which is a British Rock N Roll Festival featuring bands from all over the world. Triple H has taken NXT and has cemented a foundation for the NXT product in the U.K and it didn’t stop at the Download Festival.

On night one of the UK Tournament there was a lot of great action. From the tournament perspective my favorite matchup was between Joe Coffey and Dave Mastiff. Both men are considered super heavyweights and they move around the ring like they are in someone else’s body. I was really impressed with Coffey’s agility and strength. I see a huge future for Joe Coffey in the WWE system. My favorite competitor in the tournament was definitely Flash Morgan Webster. He reminds of a mix between Chuckie T and Marty Scurll with a very unique throwback personality. I think he is someone fans across the worldwide can get behind. We were introduced to some new female which led to the announcements that there would be Women’s and Tag Team Division in the new NXT UK brand. NXT has been the pillar of the WWE Network and their Takeover shows have been the best shows since they started in 2014. One of the hottest things about NXT these days is the Undisputed Era. Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly, Roderick Strong and Bobby Fish have been a thorn in Pete Dunne’s side for months and finally followed them to the United Kingdom. This time Dunne had some help in the form of Trent Seven and Tyler Bate. The Six Man Tag was an awesome sight to see with this electric crowd. The finals concluded with Zack Gibson defeating Travis Banks to face Pete Dunne the next night. I was really hoping that it would have came down to Joe Coffey and Flash Morgan Webster because of the different styles and styles.

The second night started off with a bang as Moustache Mountain took on The Undisputed Era for the NXT Tag Team Championships. This night had a different feeling because American NXT brand was showcased to the UK fans, so it had a mixture of both styles. There was a nice surprise during the show as an advertised Triple Threat Match between Travis Banks, Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster was turned into a Fatal Four Way. The fourth man was Noam Dar who has been out of action for a long time. He definitely made his presence known with a victory and a shot at the U.K. Championship. My favorite match on the second was a dream match from over here in the states. It was Velveteen Dream and EC3 taking on Ricochet and NXT Champion Aleister Balck.  All four of these competitors have unique styles and characters that make NXT so great right now. The Main Event was Zack Gibson taking on U.K. Champion Pete Dunne in a match that was very intriguing to me because of how nasty Gibson is and how Pete Dunne has evolved. This was a pretty phyiscal encounter that concluded the WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament.

The last three days of wrestling action in the U.K. has been a lot of fun to watch. Triple H is building his own empire and I really love the way he’s doing it. It gives him the option to interchange and exchange talent in anyway he sees fit for the betterment of both brands. I am looking forward to watching more wrestling from the U.K. as NXT continue to discover, develop, and showcase new talent on the WWE Network. The United Kingdom can finally say, ” We are NXT.”

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