After thrilling the crowd at York Hall in London, England, Kay Lee Ray found out she would be advancing to the United States portion of the TNA British Boot Camp 2 contest. Despite not getting the win in the 4-way match featuring Nikki Storm as well as Kasey and Leah Owens, the high-flying redhead impressed judges Samoa Joe, Gail Kim and Al Snow enough to be one of six competitors – and the only female – to make it through to the next stage.
The match itself was won by Storm, who pinned KLR with a flash roll-up after her fellow Scot had taken out both twins with a Swanton Bomb. Viewers saw pretty much all of the contest when it was broadcast on the show, though the entrances and pre-match antics were cut. However, I was in attendance at the tapings back in August and can fill you in on what you wouldn’t have seen on TV.
As you could see on the show, there was a lot of love given to Kay Lee’s aerial skills and how she executes them very well. Countering a double backdrop by the Owens into a double dropkick, doing a tope through the ropes onto her three competitors and delivering a gorgeous springboard dropkick, she certainly caught the attention of the crowd and had them rooting for her via her spectacular offence. She certainly got the attention of the judges and it is very understandable as to why she advanced. Plus, when you consider her gear and overall look is very unique, she will likely impress when she wrestles in the US portion of the show.
The Owens Twins billed themselves as a package deal in the competition and it only seems fair to comment on them as one act here. Here’s the short assessment – I haven’t seen them have a better match than in this 4-way. They were sharp, smooth and carried themselves so well. They squabbled during the match as the pair argued who should get the winning pin, but their double-team moves were top-end. Both should be very proud of themselves after a great couple of years which have seen them grow so much. Moving from Belfast to Glasgow and spending time in Japan has really paid off, though the judges may have been accurate to not put them forward at this point – but they’re going to keep getting better, so keep an eye on them.
If Kay Lee Ray had what it took to make it to the next stage, then Nikki Storm must have had a decent shout at it too. What you didn’t see on the show was that after each match, the competitors stood in the ring and head comments from the judges, who were on a platform in the entranceway. Storm played the petulant and cocky heel role the whole time, preening herself when she was being praised and looking bored and irritated whenever something nice was said about her fellow competitors. You got a glimpse of what she was like when she flicked her hair and stomped out of the ring after being told that she wouldn’t be moving on to the US portion. Like with the audition process, she was in character the whole time, and her persona shone through with everything she did. While choosing KLR is by no means a mistake, I feel that they may have made an error by passing on Nikki, as I can’t think of anyone who is more ready for television than her.
Still, all four women excelled in their match. All got to showcase their talents and nobody overshadowed anybody else, and every single one of them should be very proud of themselves. They have done British wrestling and women’s wrestling a great service and all will have seen their stock rise as a result.
So do you think the judges made the right choice? Should Kay Lee Ray have gone through, should it have been someone else and should the judges have picked more than one woman? Have a watch of the whole episode below and sound off in the comments.