Tyler Bate def. Joseph Conners
I've made my lack of interest in Conners over the last year and beyond abundantly clear, but to his credit, he put forth his best effort to date here. It's amazing how much more motivated he came across while in the ring with Bate, who is an absolute gem. Conners has taken exception to Bate being all over the NXT UK TakeOver specials since they started while Conners has yet to compete on a single on. He failed to beat Bate here, but at least he had a strong showing in defeat. This was a very entertaining opener.
Jinny Addressed Jazzy Gabert
Although Jinny's entire promo here was about Gabert, she was never mentioned by name. That may be because she has legitimately left WWE and this was done to explain her departure. Their pairing never clicked and they were teasing tension anyway, so it was only inevitable. Jinny is a terrific talker, but she hasn't been given many chances to shine so far in NXT UK. Hopefully this means a hard reboot of her character and a real sense of direction.
Noam Dar def. Josh Morrell
We've seen Morrell on NXT UK before, and for a "jobber," he has a great look and is an incredible athlete. I wouldn't be surprised to see him signed to a contract eventually. This went a little longer than I expected with Morrell scoring a decent amount of offense, but Dar went over in the end as he should have. I believe Dar has been off the show since losing to Tyler Bate a month or two ago, so this was a nice return for him.
Ilja Dragunov def. Joe Coffey
Coffey blamed Dragunov for costing him the NXT UK Championship at TakeOver: Blackpool II and he finally had his chance to seek revenge here. Coffey's matches are very hit or miss to me, but I thought this was an above-average main event. Dragunov's intensity was awesome and he brought the best out of Coffey. Props to both men for their top-notch performances. Coffey's show of respect to Dragunov afterward made for a cool moment and I hope Dragunov's victory takes him to the next level in NXT UK.
The vignettes and video packages made this edition of NXT UK better than most for me. The show-opening promo for Dragunov vs. Coffey in the main event was well done, the hype for Toni Storm vs. Kay Lee Ray in an "I Quit" match for the NXT UK Women's Championship next week was excellent, and we found out it'll be WALTER vs. "Bomber" Dave Mastiff for the NXT UK Championship in two weeks on NXT UK. It helped that Dragunov vs. Coffey and Conners vs. Bate both delivered while the Dar squash was short and sweet and Jinny's promo was solid. This was one of my favorite editions of NXT UK in recent memory.
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