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The Potential Scenario That Makes WOS Wrestling More Mouthwatering Than It Already Is

Saturday Night Wars with WWE NXT UK, anyone?

1.2 million people tuned in to watch the re-debut of World Of Sport Wrestling on Saturday night, and my heart is in the process of flying away with the eagle's nest. What an absolutely corking result that is for everybody involved - congratulations to you all!

Personally, I liked what I saw. Given the fact the show was airing at 5 pm on ITV 1, my expectations for what I was about to see were altered somewhat. I wasn't expecting to see the British version of PWG, I wasn't even expecting to see something comparable to NXT; I was expecting to see some light entertainment littered with tropes that made professional wrestling what it was back in the day, and we certainly got that with aplomb. It was an easy hour to get through, and a wonderful way to start what is going to be a 10-part series. (Give the fans a little - ONE HUGE TITLE CHANGE ASIDE OF COURSE - and leave them wanting to come back for more, kind of thing.)

The only major drawback, for me, was the editing of the show. THE CUTS! They made Kevin Dunn's... energetic work on WWE, shall we say, look lethargic. Hey, maybe they're employing TV people who don't really have a feel for professional wrestling to piece the show together - I don't know the ins and outs of the situation there - but the disjointed nature of the camera shots and fake crowd noises took me out of it at times. I'm sure it'll get better as the weeks go on, the world's not coming to an end just yet.

With the number of rivalries that had their respective seeds sewn inside the hour on Saturday night, it certainly looks like WOS with be all killer with very little filler going forward. Every single segment that we saw, Ospreay and Smith Jr's showcase aside (although you could argue that match established Ospreay as the valiant crowd favourite and Smith a leading killer), had a clear purpose and set the foundations for bigger things to come. I'm certainly interested in how things are going to develop over the next 10 weeks, although, arguably the most enticing thing about World Of Sport wasn't even mentioned on this weekend's show, and more than likely never will be.

ITV


As wrestling fans, we're conditioned to believe that the Attitude Era and Monday Night Wars were the absolute pinnacle of the professional wrestling business. We've had that period of time lauded over in every single aspect of the business until the cows came home... and went to bed... and got up again... and then moved to another home, and so on. Whether it be redone angles on TV, huge returnees from the era making the Superstars of today look like mugs, series on the WWE Network, games, or otherwise, we've seen it all. Essentially, we've been told time and time again that the Attitude Era was the best time in wrestling and because of it, we'll never see anything like it again.

Or will we...

Now, this might be me being a little bit too much of a romantic fella, but we could be on the brink of another rather spectacular time in professional wrestling. And what's more, it could be about to take place in England - which is where I'm from - which means it's better, ok?!

Five letters: NXT UK. You and I both know they were holding their own set of tapings while the first episode of WOS was airing on Saturday night, and because of their mere existence, pose arguably the most intriguing aspect of professional wrestling on Saturday nights in the UK going forward.

Global Localization is a new phrase that Triple H likes to use these days, and that's the main source of my intrigue when it comes to NXT UK. Essentially, WWE want to dominate in every single market they're in - including the United Kingdom. We know the initial UK Championship tournament and the UK division itself was born as a direct response to WOS' initial announcement of a New Year's special, and potential series airing on ITV - even though WWE probably won't admit it - so it's going to be interesting to see how the new British division of WWE pans out going forward.

Will WWE attack WOS? Or will they exist alongside and compete for the greater good that is professional wrestling in the UK? Essentially, this is Hot Fuzz, with NXT UK both the good NWA and bad NWA at this stage. Which way will they go? History tells us they'll reside on the dark side...

At this time, we know absolutely nothing about NXT UK's shows, but it wouldn't surprise me if the weekly series aired at 5 pm on Saturday nights with the sole intention of taking a portion of the 1.2 million who registered their interest in the new wave of WOS over the weekend. (WWE are never going to take all of the audience since WOS is available on EVERY SINGLE WORKING TELEVISION in the United Kingdom! That really blows my mind, that does.)

WWE


Yes, I'm hoping that we're going to be getting some kind of Monday Night Wars-lite, but on a Saturday. Obviously, the fact that both shows are taped doesn't work in their favour compared to their compadres of the 1990s, but that doesn't mean that a war can't take off. That doesn't mean that one camp couldn't find out what the other camp is doing and take appropriate shots, or vice versa. But I guess all of this hype and hyperbole is meaningless until we know what WWE NXT UK's plans are.

I hope they do go for the 5 pm Saturday night slot because as we all know, competition always pushes folks to produce their absolute best. In this era where at the very elite level we have no other option but to watch WWE, professional wrestling in the United Kingdom could give the business a welcomed jolt in the arm by reverting to tactics used during the most fruitful period we've ever seen. We wait with bated breath...

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Ross Tweddell

Written by Ross Tweddell

Editor-in-chief of Cultaholic.com and presenter on the Cultaholic Wrestling YouTube channel. Email: [email protected]