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    Sunday, August 8, 2021

    NXT in the UK (8/5/21): A-Kid is the Iron Kid

    A-Kid and Jordan Devlin


    I missed last week's NXT UK due to a small personal matter, but it's okay, you didn't miss that much. If you miss this week's episode, though, you would have missed the brand's FIRST-EVER IRON MAN MATCH!

    A-Kid is the Iron Kid

    Any time you have a 30-minute Iron Man match, you know it's gonna be good. And because it's on NXT UK, you're guaranteed a great outing. There's not much I need to say about that other than it's one hell of a TV main event that they can do because they simply can.


    They told a good longform story in 30 uninterrupted minutes: Devlin gets the advantage early on because he's brutal and he targeted A-Kid's injured knee, but A-Kid manages to power through and leverage his technical skills to make Devlin say "uncle." There were no fancy gimmicks here, no sudden death overtime, no overly cardiac finishes—just NXT UK showing that A-Kid is unequivocally the superior wrestler here after outwrestling Devlin in a grueling half-hour.

    There's no doubt that Triple H and Shawn Michaels really see something in A-Kid, because he's had quite the past 12 months: becoming the inaugural NXT UK Heritage Cup Champion, facing off against WALTER in a UK Championship match, and now taking home a big win in the brand's first-ever Iron Man match. The guy is definitely good and he's got a bright future ahead of him, but I think he still needs one last character tweak to fully ascend to the main event level. 

    I'm sure they'll be able to figure that out soon enough; and I don't doubt that he'll have an even bigger 2022, especially with a new United Kingdom champ on the horizon.

    A note about the NXT releases

    I can't talk about NXT UK without talking about the releases from NXT from last Friday and what this could possibly mean for the regional brand. NXT UK had been safe so far from all the spring cleaning that's gone on in the past few months, but I don't doubt for one moment that they're going to be untouchable.

    If stateside NXT isn't safe because they're not a potential huge revenue earner, then NXT UK is all the more dangerous to keep around. While the roster in the United Kingdom is pretty trim compared to Orlando, one can still make the case for cutting a few guys and girls, and I'm grimly expecting that to happen before the year ends at the rate they're going. But I still hope it doesn't, though. If you're the prayerful type, keep the roster in your prayers.

    NXT UK 8/22/21 Grade: A-


    Bits and pieces

    • Finally, we're getting a new tournament to determine a new #1 contender to Tyler Bate's Heritage Cup Championship. Somebody took my advice.
    • Jack Starz and Dave Mastiff make a pretty good team, and Starz is a nice jobber-to-contender story waiting to happen because he's pretty solid.
    • Sometimes I wonder if Xia Brookside just loses a lot so nobody accuses Robbie Brookside of nepotism.
    Photo from WWE

    *****

    Romeo Moran (@roiswaris the Editor-in-Chief of Smark Henry and one of the three hosts of the Wrestling-Wrestling Podcast. He gets by in this hard-knock life through working in advertising. Smark Henry was his and Stan Sy's original vision of a watering hole for local wrestling fans. He roots for the undersized guys who hit hard, and he likes taking your wrestling questions over on his Curiouscat account. 

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    Item Reviewed: NXT in the UK (8/5/21): A-Kid is the Iron Kid Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Romeo Moran
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