NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool
January 12th, 2019 | Empress Ballroom in Blackpool, Lancashire
- NXT Tag Team Championship Match: Zack Gibson and James Drake defeated Trent Seven and Tyler Bate. Mustache Mountain had British Bulldogs-inspired gear. Gibson and Drake hit Trent Seven with Ticket to Mayhem to win the match and become NXT UK’s first Tag Team Champions. After the match, Johnny Saint and Sid Scala congratulated them. An awesome way to start the show. So many great moments throughout, well executed tag formula, and a hot crowd. (****¼)
- Finn Bálor defeated Jordan Devlin. Devlin attacked his original opponent, Travis Banks, before the show. Banks attempted to get revenge, but Devlin attacked him again and injured Banks’ knee. The backup plan: Finn Bálor. Finn picked up the win over his former student with the Coup de Grace. I enjoyed this and the spectacle of seeing Finn here was cool. Good pro wrestling. (***¼)
- No Disqualification Match: Dave Mastiff defeated Eddie Dennis. Mastiff won the match with a cannonball through a table. That was a lot of fun. Eddie Dennis was an absolute wild man and this was just a fun No DQ match where they just threw a lot at each other for a short time. (***½)
- NXT UK Women’s Championship Match: Toni Storm defeated Rhea Ripley (c). Storm countered the Riptide with Storm Zero to win the match and become the new (and second ever) NXT UK Women’s Champion. Another solid match, just one that never got into the gear it needed to be great. Still, a feel good moment for Toni. I suspect Rhea makes a big splash over in NXT now. (***¼)
- Kay Lee Ray and Jazzy Gabert were in the crowd as new signees.
- United Kingdom Championship Match: Pete Dunne (c) defeated Joe Coffey. Despite teasing passing out at one point, Dunne was able to win a grueling, nearly 35-minute match by submission from a sitting triangle with joint manipulation. It felt closer to an hour. This was like the worst kind of NJPW main events, where it just goes on and on for the sake of it. The first 20 or minutes were a bunch of nothing. At 14 or so minutes, this would’ve worked way better. (**¼)
After the match, Dunne was confronted by new arrival WALTER. Huge pop for WALTER! This felt special. He kicked Joe Coffey back to the mid-card where he belongs and had a staredown with Dunne. Finally, someone is here to dethrone Dunne of that NXT UK Championship.