Joe Coffey def. Sha Samuels
Samuels was introduced as Ed Harvey and didn't get a televised entrance. Shortly after the match started, he took the mic and demanded he be called by his actual ring name, Sha Samuels (not to be confused with Samuel Shaw, who is now known as Dexter Lumis in NXT, or Nina Samuels). It was a weird albeit different approach that helped him stand out, so I suppose it worked. He then had a fairly competitive match with Coffey and scored more offense than I was expecting. This was a nice opener and we'll see from Samuels goes from here.
Tyler Bate def. Sam Gradwell
I've made it quite clear in the past that I couldn't care less about Gradwell, but even I can admit that he had a hell of a showing here. This was easily the best bout I've ever seen him have in NXT UK. He brought the intensity and really gave Bate a run for his money. The bigger story here was Bate regaining his confidence following his recent loss to A-Kid, which the commentators brought up more than once. Is this supposed to be leading to Bate turning heel on him?
NXT UK Women's Champion Kay Lee Ray Confronted Jinny
Yes, we're getting a heel vs. heel match for the NXT UK Women's Championship next week, but I'm actually looking forward to it seeing as how Jinny is one of the few people Ray hasn't beaten yet. There's a decent chance Jinny could win now that she has Joseph Conners, who thankfully didn't get involved too much in this segment. It was a very good back-and-forth as both women are skilled on the mic. Despite the heel vs. heel dynamic, it should be a quality contest.
NXT UK Championship WALTER def. NXT UK Heritage Cup Champion A-Kid (NXT UK Heritage Cup Championship Wasn't Defended)
WALTER has been having banger after banger as NXT UK Champion and this was no exception. Holy shit, this was a war. I figured A-Kid wouldn't win, nor should he have, but he put in an absolutely exceptional showing in defeat and sold WALTER's offense was a champ. This was very similar to WALTER vs. Ilja Dragunov from a few months ago and that was one of the best bouts of 2020. I thoroughly enjoyed this from start to finish. Both men are killing it right now and I'm interested to see who will be next to challenge WALTER.
If you haven't already seen the NXT UK Championship main event, you definitely needs to get eyes on it. What's cool is that this isn't a one-match show. I mean, that's the most must-see on the episode of course, but the rest of the show was surprisingly enjoyable as well. I wouldn't have expected it to be on paper, but this was one of the stronger editions of NXT UK all around in a while. The build for the next two weeks of TV was also well done.