2018 WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament

There are spoilers all over the place, but what’s the fun in that?  Last week, the opening matches from the United Kingdom Championship tournament went live on WWE Social Media pages.  Tomorrow we’ll get the conclusion with all the title defenses from last week’s UK event, but let’s see who will challenge Pete Dunne as the 2018 UK Championship Tournament winner.

Round 1 – (Not so) Live from the Download Festival

  • Zack Gibson defeated Amir Jordan.
  • Gentleman Jack Gallagher defeated Drew Gulak
  • Flash Morgan Webster defeated James Drake.
  • Jordan Devlin defeated Tyson T-Bone.
  • Joe Coffey defeated Tucker.
  • Dave Mastiff defeated Kenny Williams.
  • Travis Banks defeated Ligero.
  • Ashton Smith defeated Joseph Conners.

Round 2 – From the Hallowed Ground of the Royal Albert Hall – The Quarterfinals

  • Zack Gibson defeated Gentleman Jack Gallagher via submission.  The crowd was behind Gallagher, as Gibson is a fairly notorious Brit heel, but it was a good match from two highly talented technicians and the Grizzled Young Veteran picked up the win.
  • Flash Morgan Webster defeated Jordan Devlin by pinfall.  I’m quietly becoming a Flash Morgan Webster mark.  Ok, maybe not so quiet.
  • Joe Coffey pinned Dave Mastiff.  It was a boss fight.  Mastiff is pretty damn agile for a big guy.  Has moves like Hanson and Rowe, not quite a Braun Strowman, but he’s damn impressive for a guy of 5’10”, 315 lbs.  Coffey got the better of him as the match lingered on.
  • The Kiwi Buzzsaw Travis Banks defeated Ashton Smith via pinfall.  Travis Banks is the f***ing man.

Let’s Get a Number One Contender for Shayna Bazler’s NXT Women’s Championship

  • Toni Storm defeated Killer Kelly and Isla Dawn.  The two who’s names you haven’t necessarily ever heard teamed up on Toni Storm, but you had to know she was going to get a piece of Shayna.  Of note:  This was originally going to be a Fatal Four Way match featuring current Progress Women’s Champion Jinny, but Jinny was injured and not cleared to compete in the match.  This was a quicker match than expected, but Storm landed Storm Zero on Isla Dawn and got the win via pinfall.

Bow Down to the King

  • Triple H made his way to the ring to announce that WWE is bringing us an NXT UK and introduce new General Manager Johnny Saint.
  • He actually used the phrase Professional Wrestler instead of Sports Entertainer.  Good things are coming, we’ve just got to be patient.

Round 3 – The Semifinals

  • Zack Gibson picks up another submission victory, this time over Flash Morgan Webster.  Let’s be real, I don’t know that an American audience is ever really going to lock on to FMW.  Mod is an extremely British gimmick, with rather limited mass appeal for an American audience.  This match ended when Flash barely beat the 10 count to avoid a count out and was immediately put into the submission hold.  I kind of wish he’d just lost by count out after the wicked suplex on the wooden sounding entrance ramp.
  • Travis Banks brought down the big man, winning by pinfall over Joe Coffey.  No one should be terribly surprised.  Banks has already beaten Walter, and Walter is a freaking monster.  Banks sounds like he’s going to eat your first born when he’s in the ring.  After the match, Joe Coffey flipped his shit, sort of like Dunne did last year, brutally attacking Travis Banks.  Foreshadowing!!!!

The Tournament Participants get another Breather:

  • British Strong Style (Dunne, Bate, Seven) picks up a win in 6-man tag action against The Undisputed Era (Strong, O’Reilly, Cole).  This crowd loved every bit of this.  British Strong Style had to get the win, but this place went nuts for “ADAM COLE BAY BAY!”  Trent Seven no selling chops from Adam Cole might have been the highlight for me here.  He’s awesome.

Round 4 – Finals – Damn, that’s a long night for these guys…..

  • Zack Gibson defeats Travis Banks with his third submission victory to become the 2018 United Kingdom Championship Tournament winner and will get a shot at Pete Dunne on Day 2 from the Royal Albert Hall.  Does this mean Gibson should get a shot at the Progress title now too?  Congrats.  At least with NXT UK starting, James Drake doesn’t have to worry that his tag team partner is abandoning him.