The aforementioned announcement from Triple H and British legend William Regal saw the pair flanked by 18 men, none of whom appeared at ITV's flawed upstart weeks earlier. WWE wanted the market before WOS got to it, but took a completely different route. The strategy was as sharp as most of the wrestlers looked, but the profound lack of longterm strategy from ITV would ironically mirror WWE's own eventual abandonment of a brand new title they attempted to use as leverage over a thriving market.
The Blackpool coronation of inaugural Champion Tyler Bate had all the accoutrements of a WWE launch with the added flair of unique locale. His youth made him a record breaker, but their presentation of his talent made him a star. Pete Dunne shone over the weekend, brushing past the pageantry as a pr*ck heel keen only on making an impact and taking home the title. Their tournament final was one of several outstanding encounters over two nights as WWE seemed desperate to imply that this wasn't just a flash in the pan. Even if one of their primary motivations for starting it in the first place was.
Jim Smallman (PROGRESS) and Mark Dallas (ICW) smiled and waved from their front row seats as WWE presented them as architects of a building they were suddenly taking hostile ownership of. Reports confirmed that the bulk of the performers from the two-night tournament were signed to low-paying retainers that kept them at WWE's beck and call whilst allowing them to work for most (though not all) independent promoters in their free time. It was, rather morbidly, quite a progressive approach for the ordinarily stubborn organisation. But the new avenue of approach was on a road to nowhere.