Word broke recently that several NXT UK talents were given new contracts that will see much more applied control from their WWE overseer. Essentially, the wrestlers will allegedly be unable to work for other promotions in the United Kingdom, giving WWE exclusivity over the performers. The restrictions will reportedly only allow for the talents to work for WWE-partner companies, such as PROGRESS, ICW, and wXw in Germany.
This has caused something of an uproar among a group of fans, those who don’t like the idea that WWE’s telescopic reach can interfere with the wrestling they like, asserting such substantial control. Others are taking a more positive view of the situation, believing that with most of the NXT UK roster now confined to only working for a handful of organizations, that opportunities will only increase for other UK-based talents to shine, much in the same way that the top US indies replenish themselves with fresh talent once WWE scoops up their stars.
After conferring a bit with my Cultaholic cohorts (they have the home field advantage), we’ve together determined 10 wrestlers whose array of talents and dynamic personalities ensure that the UK wrestling scene is far from deceased. There are many to choose from, but these 10 immediately come to mind.
(To clear up any confusion, we’ve left off names such as Will Ospreay, Marty Scurll, and Zack Sabre Jr. – talented wrestlers that certainly still make up a vital part of the UK scene, but are predominantly seen as international stars these days.)
10. Jackie Polo
I’ve never been to Glasgow, but I reckon that there aren’t too many fellows walking the streets over there that look and talk like Texas oilmen. Polo not only nails the accent, but also complements that nuance with the sort of “insincere sincerity” that it takes to add authenticity to such a caricature.
The character work of Polo is so on-point that you sometimes overlook his in-ring performances. His rivalry with Lionheart (that extends back well before 2018) provided a number of highlights, particularly their match at BarraMania 4. A confident speaker with the ability to blend absurdity effectively with seriousness, Polo will only continue to epitomize the wrestler that fans love to hate, as he courses through month three as Insane Championship Wrestling’s top titleholder.