NXT UK Superstar Ilja Dragunov Teases Rematch with UK Champion Walter

Published 04/25/2021, 8:45 AM EDT


If there are any two wrestlers out there hitting harder than Usman and Masvidal, they are Walter and Ilja Dragunov. These European heavyweights destroyed each other in the best WWE match of 2020. Dragunov has now teased a rematch with his opponent of mythic proportions.

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Ilja Dragunov teases rematch with Walter

ERFURT, GERMANY – NOVEMBER 05: Ilja Dragunov performs during wXw Fight Forever Tour 2017 on November 5, 2017 in Erfurt, Germany. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images,)

Walter is not human. At 6’4, weighing nearly 300 pounds, he’s the most legitimate wrestler in the world. His chops split the announcer’s table in half and caved in the meatiest chests. However, one man came exceptionally close to ending his reign as NXT UK Champion.

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On October 29, 2020, Walter and Ilja Dragunov met in the empty BT Sport studio to assemble a modern-day classic. For twenty-five minutes, Walter and Dragunov beat the living daylights out of each other.

While the WWE Thunderdome is a significant feature, the empty arena became the perfect environment for this match, as every chop, kick, uppercut and slam reverberated and echoed across the arena.

On his Twitter, Dragunov teased a rematch with the current NXT UK Champion, especially since he’s had a change of heart. The loss to Walter in October left Dragunov devastated and in need of direction. Upon returning in 2021, he made an example of Jack Starz before moving onto a rivalry with Sam Gradwell.

He shockingly turned heel against Gradwell by elbowing him in the face after the referee awarded him a TKO win. He even picked up a win in the feud-ending No Disqualification match, putting him atop the NXT UK Division once again. Will Walter face Dragunov again, or is it time for a new challenger to step up?

Walter’s record-breaking reign

Despite the NXT UK Championship being four years old, there have only been three champions. Tyler Bate was the inaugural champion, but Pete Dunne took the title from him within five months. Dunne registered a colossal 685-day reign, beating the likes of Bate, Jordan Devlin, Roderick Strong, Zack Gibson, Johnny Gargano and Joe Coffey.

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Then, he met Walter, who destroyed him to take the UK Title away. Walter’s reign surpassed Dunne’s reign in February 2021, and he defended the title twice after that against Rampage Brown and Tomasso Ciampa.

He’s registered two five-star matches during his reign, against Dragunov and a 5.25 star match against Tyler Bate.

With only ten title defenses, Walter might enter the Brock Lesnar category. However, he’s also a regular competitor in other promotions like Progress and wXw in Germany.

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Nathan Fulgado

897 articles

Nathan Fulgado is a WWE and AEW author at EssentiallySports. Having published close to 1000 professional wrestling articles, Nathan is currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier's College. He has previously worked at Free Press Journal as a local journalist.

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