Over the last decade, the British wrestling scene experienced a remarkable boom, with WWE's NXT UK brand playing a significant role in its growth. One of the most popular heels during this period was Zack Gibson, also known as "Liverpool's #1".
Whether he was performing solo or alongside James Drake as part of the Grizzled Young Veterans tags team, fans couldn't help but love to hate him. The duo, who were former NXT UK Tag champions, had appeared on the main U.S.
show before making an official move last summer. This transition occurred as WWE decided to put the London-based program on hiatus. As part of their move to the U.S., Gibson and Drake were given new names—Rip Fowler and Jagger Reid, respectively—and joined Joe Gacy's Schism group.
NXT Tag Team Released
Recently, on Saturday afternoon at NXT's Stand & Deliver premium live event, Gacy, Fowler, Reid, and Ava (aka Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's daughter Simone) faced off against Chase U in a pre-show match, ultimately losing.
Shortly after, on April 3rd, Fightful Select reported that the tag team duo had requested their release from WWE contracts. Wrestling Observer has now confirmed that this request was indeed granted. While Fightful's report suggested that Gibson (Fowler) and Reid (Drake) were expected to announce their request for release themselves, neither of them has made any public statements on the matter as of this writing.
The British wrestling scene has garnered significant attention and success in recent years, mainly due to WWE's NXT UK brand. As part of this growth, Zack Gibson emerged as one of the most captivating heels in his solo performances and as part of the Grizzled Young Veterans tag team with James Drake.
However, following their move to the central U.S. show and subsequent name changes, the duo's time with WWE has seemingly ended. With Gibson and Drake officially released from their WWE contracts, fans eagerly await any updates from the wrestlers.
As the British wrestling scene continues to evolve and expand, what the future holds for these two talented performers remains to be seen.