The next NXT UK TakeOver sees the brand return to the Empress Ballroom in Blackpool, England on Sunday, January 12th, marking the second TakeOver to take place in the venue. On both of the previous TakeOver events, fans were witness to some truly spectacular matches – Pete Dunne vs Joe Coffey, WALTER vs Tyler Bate, and The Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson and James Drake) and Moustache Mountain (Trent Seven and Tyler Bate) remain some of the most memorable. Judging by the matches that have been announced for Sunday’s event, it looks like we’ll be seeing some additional bouts added to that list. Just look at that Ladder Match. Beautiful.
Eddie Dennis vs Trent Seven
When NXT UK was officially announced in June 2018, one of the biggest additions to their roster was Wales’ Eddie Dennis. The current PROGRESS Wrestling Unified World Champion had been suffering from an injury at that point, so to see him standing at the back of the stage alongside the rest of the locker room was a wonderful sight. While he would compete on the first TakeOver event one year ago, losing a No Disqualifications Match to Dave Mastiff, ‘The Pride of Wales’ would sadly be sidelined again, only resurfacing a few weeks ago on an episode of NXT UK (meaning he missed the TakeOver in his home of Wales). Upon his return, the Welshman immediately set his sights on Trent Seven, wanting to make an impact at the expense of one of the leading figures in NXT UK‘s history. Seven demanded an explanation from Dennis following Dennis ruining the debut of Ireland’s Michael May, receiving a microphone to the head for his troubles, with Eddie stating he would see Trent in Blackpool. His intentions were crystal clear. The path to the top of NXT UK starts in Blackpool for Eddie Dennis.
Prediction: Eddie Dennis
Jordan Devlin vs Tyler Bate
The only other non-title match set for the weekend’s festivities sees Jordan Devlin going one on one with Tyler Bate in a rematch from the inaugural United Kingdom Championship Tournament. Bate, who of course went on to win the tournament to become the first WWE United Kingdom Champion, unsuccessfully challenged WALTER for the strap at TakeOver: Cardiff at the end of August, and has since become the main target of ‘The Irish Ace’. Devlin has become furious at the lack of opportunities he’s received since coming to NXT UK, resulting in him refusing to appear at that show, and then going on to demolish A-Kid on an episode of NXT UK simply because the Spanish sensation had been supported by ‘The Big Strong Boi’. More recently, Devlin attempted to ambush Bate following his match against Noam Dar, eventually backing down after Tyler jolted to his feet. If he can’t get the opportunities he feels he deserves, then he’ll take every chance he possibly can to rise further up the rankings in NXT UK.
Prediction: Jordan Devlin
NXT UK Women’s Championship – Triple Threat Match: Kay Lee Ray (c) vs Piper Niven vs Toni Storm
Since capturing the NXT UK Women’s Championship from Toni Storm at TakeOver: Cardiff, Kay Lee Ray has reigned dominant over the women’s division at NXT UK. The issues between her and Toni are far from over though, with the New Zealand native taking a good chunk of time away from the brand before returning with a vengeance. However, it won’t be those two clashing for the title at TakeOver on Sunday evening, as Piper Niven has also staked her claim to the title. Despite ‘The Vixen of Violence’ being officially announced for the title bout, Toni pleaded for her to remove herself from the match, claiming that she would be first in line for a title opportunity once Storm had regained the title. Obviously, Niven was never going to do such a thing, regardless of whether or not she and Toni were on good terms. When a brawl broke out amongst the two challengers after Piper refused to leave the fray, KLR sauntered out, clearly pleased with what she was seeing. It’s every woman for herself when it comes to the NXT UK Women’s Championship match, no alliances whatsoever.
Prediction: Piper Niven
NXT UK Tag Team Championships – Fatal Four Way Ladder Match: Gallus (Mark Coffey & Wolfgang) (c) vs Imperium (Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel) vs The Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson & James Drake) vs Mark Andrews & Flash Morgan Webster
On paper, this one could undoubtedly steal the entire show. Gallus‘ Mark Coffey and Wolfgang will put their NXT UK Tag Team Championships on the line in a four-team Ladder Match, with Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster, The Grizzled Young Veterans, and Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel of Imperium being the three challenging teams. As part of the negotiations made between Joe Coffey and WALTER a few weeks ago, Aichner and Barthel were granted an opportunity at the Tag Team Championships, only for the inaugural tag champs Zack Gibson and James Drake to try and walk out with the titles while the four lads were scrapping it out. After they were stopped in their tracks by former champs Andrews and Webster, a mass brawl broke out between all eight men, causing general manager Johnny Saint and his assistant Sid Scala to schedule a Fatal Four Way Ladder Match for Blackpool. This one truly is anyone’s game, with the four teams involved each being unique in their style of wrestling, although it would be fair to say the Welsh duo have the advantage in this one given their high-flying nature. In a Ladder Match though, that’s not exactly the best strategy. You want to be climbing up high, not diving off of tall podiums.
WWE United Kingdom Championship: WALTER (c) vs Joe Coffey
At TakeOvers, Joe Coffey is known for putting in stellar performances. He did so when he unsuccessfully challenged Pete Dunne for the United Kingdom Championship in Blackpool last January, and he again put in one hell of an effort this past August in Cardiff, where he defeated Dave Mastiff in an outstanding Last Man Standing Match. As ‘The Iron God’ prepares to challenge WALTER for NXT UK‘s top prize, it looks all but certain that he’ll achieve the same thing, but will that be enough for the Coffey brother to become the fourth United Kingdom Champion in history? In a way, this match is one year in the making, seeing as ‘The Ring General’ made his NXT UK debut following Dunne vs Coffey last year, booting Joe square in the face. Since then, the Austrian behemoth has ran roughshod over everyone who’s stepped in his way – Travis Banks, Tyler Bate, Pete Dunne, no-one has been able to stop WALTER from being the top dog in NXT UK. With the numbers evened out for once though, there’s a high possibility that Joe Coffey could be the one to change that fact at NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool II.
Prediction: Joe Coffey
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. Be sure to catch all of the NXT UK action via the WWE Network.