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    Saturday, November 7, 2020

    NXT in the UK (11/5/20): The Heritage Cup Tournament Continues

    Noam Dar in the WWE NXT UK Heritage Cup Tournament

    Welcome, NXT UK regulars and potential new fans after last week's United Kingdom Championship main event! It's another week of NXT UK, the most consistent hour of wrestling on the WWE Network right now. This week, the NXT UK Heritage Cup Tournament resumes, and we finally get updates on the NXT UK Women's and Tag Team Championship scenes.

    My bracket is busted

    After boldly predicting that the Scottish Supernova Noam Dar would be making it to the finals of this tournament (but likely not winning), the tourney upends all that by having the Spaniard A-Kid win. Don't get me wrong—it was a great match, and the first tournament match that actually made it to the sixth round, but I just kind of wanted Dar to get his due especially after toiling in both sides of the Atlantic for, what, four years already?

    Nevertheless, both men made the most of this opportunity and gave us a good match, following the streak of solid main events we've been getting ever since NXT UK came back on the air, and especially after last week's Dragunov/WALTER match. If you're a new fan who's come to check out what the show's all about, you won't be disappointed.

    A Joe Coffey dilemma

    This week's opening match was a six-man tag between the team of Sam Gradwell and Pretty Deadly against the full force of Gallus, as Joe Coffey has come back from what seemed to be a suspension after he was implicated in the #SpeakingOut movement.

    A couple of things here: #SpeakingOut happened while NXT UK was technically off the air and not producing any new in-ring content, plus there wasn't a real announcement for Coffey the same way there were releases for guys like Jack Gallagher, Travis Banks, and Ligero. So it feels like he wasn't quite punished enough, returning to the show only shortly after the show itself came back.

    What's even worse is that Gallus is currently a babyface faction, potentially creating some dissonance among NXT UK fans. It's a good thing that the show is filmed in an empty arena, unlike stateside NXT which is somehow okay with its Velveteen Dream problem by having Dream continue to be a heel. Still, they're going to have to figure out how to rehab Coffey publicly if they won't turn him heel.

    Finally, some action in the women's championship

    After a couple of weeks of rebuilding the young women's division, the finally see some developments with Kay Lee Ray and the Women's Championship. The current storyline focuses on the evolution of Piper Niven, who they're trying to give an edge to, and that's cool. I just wish Kay Lee Ray got some minor interview time in the weeks leading up to this while the spotlight wasn't on her, because I feel like they're wasting momentum that they establish as they rotate the cast.

    That's actually my problem with the one-hour format: it's really easy to forget about your on-paper top guys when you're trying to give everyone time. Take, for example, WALTER: this week, we could've heard from him in a short interview or promo after last week's battle, but they didn't do that. Then when it's time to bring WALTER back to TV, you're going to have to hustle to build some more momentum for him again. 

    Treat your top guys like top guys. That's all I'm saying.

    NXT UK 11/5/20 Final Grade: A-

    Photo from WWE


    Romeo Moran (@roiswaris the Editor-in-Chief of Smark Henry and one of the four 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 (11/5/20): The Heritage Cup Tournament Continues Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Romeo Moran
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