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    Sunday, May 9, 2021

    NXT in the UK (5/6/21): Amir Jordan's Last Dance

    Amir Jordan on WWE NXT UK

    This week on NXT UK, Amir Jordan gets jobbed out in a that-escalated-quickly moment.

    It's not over until it's actually over

    This week's big story is the (much?) anticipated rematch between former friends Kenny Williams and Amir Jordan, with a huge caveat: the loser must leave NXT UK. That's huge, and also ridiculously gratuitous considering this is only their second post-breakup match.

    First things first: Kenny wins. My initial prediction was Amir winning for two reasons—one, Amir lost the first match, so he's gotta have something back; and two, Kenny was once on 205 Live as the NXT UK representative for the cruiserweight division, so I thought he was actually getting a stateside promotion.

    Knowing what we know now, this booking seems absolutely weird.

    For one, I actually don't think this is the end of their feud. It feels like the banishment is some sort of forced downtime while Amir finds a way, some sort of legal loophole, to get back to the brand for the eventual third and final match of this story. That, and I don't see Amir being a must-have acquisition for US NXT's cruiserweight division, which just restocked its shelves this week. The only reason this might be happening is they're finally starting  NXT India from the US Performance Center, and I haven't heard any of those rumors.

    So if the idea is for Amir to return sometime down the line to exact his revenge, then escalating the second post-breakup match as a loser leaves town bout feels a little silly, as I mentioned. It all just feels rushed to get Kenny somewhere and away from what is admittedly a not very compelling story with Amir. I just thought they'd try a little harder to get from Points A to C, but to everyone else who isn't predicting a third match, it feels like they stopped at B, with Amir looking pretty terrible for not even managing to win one.

    Of course, this could all be totally off-base, and Amir could legitimately be working in a different WWE brand (or company) thanks to the stipulation. I just haven't heard any rumors implying that, but if that is the case, then I'll go ahead and eat shit. In the meantime, it's a legitimate misstep on a brand that's usually good at telling stories at all ends of the card.

    NXT UK 5/6/21 Grade: B

    Bits and pieces

    • I don't know what to feel about the worked shoot finish between Ilja Dragunov and Dave Mastiff. On one hand, it's obviously a work because they made an angle out of it. On the other, it's dangerous, even if Dragunov is an elite athlete—he nailed Mastiff with a forearm strike to the face. That's a legitimate reason to stop the match, but to deliberately do that as part of an angle? That's tempting fate. I would've rather just gone for a TKO finish with worked mounted forearms to the head instead of the anti-climactic non-finish they did.
    • A+ move to highlight the five women joining the gauntlet, but wow does Xia Brookside need to work on delivery.
    • It took them a whole month to explain the real reason why Ben Carter changed his name to Nathan Frazer, but better late than never. Whether it's real or not, it's a good reason, and Sha Samuels's presence in the Supernova Sessions gave me a little hope that they might go into stage names, WWE's preference for them, and Ed Harvey. Alas, it was not to be, but I'm glad Frazer's getting a real story after floating around winning randomly.
    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 (5/6/21): Amir Jordan's Last Dance Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Romeo Moran
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