Defiant Wrestling has announced that Ilja Dragunov will no longer be able to work their shows in February. The company has reportedly been placed on a “no fly zone” of sorts for NXT UK talent, which Dragunov has been rumored to join, leading to speculation that Dragunov will join NXT UK. It has been rumored for a while now that the Westside Xtreme Wrestling (wXw) star would be joining NXT UK (following a WWE tryout last year in Germany) to join his former rival WALTER and other wXw alumni Marcel Barthel (known as Axel Dieter Jr in wXw) and Killer Kelly.
Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond our control, Ilja Dragunov is no longer able to compete on his scheduled Defiant dates in February.
As a result we are removing a segment on this week’s Loaded (taped January 5), meaning a slightly shorter episode will air this Sunday. pic.twitter.com/l2cfrGcTtC
— DEFIANT Wrestling (@DEFIANTwres) January 16, 2019
So who is Ilja Dragunov? He is a 25-year-old Russian wrestler who has implemented some interesting characteristics into his wrestling persona. He is an intense man who believes in never giving up and being Unbesigbar! (German for invincible). He made his name in wXw where his story and dedication to his family, which made him miss out on bookings, as well as this intensity made him the most over man in company history. He made headlines with a surprise return at 16 Carat Gold this year which is regarded as one of the biggest pops in decades.
If he is joining NXT UK then they are getting a unique and different performer, who has obvious star potential. A clash with old rival WALTER, a rematch with Pete Dunne and many other first time matches await Dragunov should he join NXT UK.