In just a couple of years, Pete Dunne has become one of the most respected wrestlers in WWE, and he is currently the longest-reigning champion in the modern era, holding the United Kingdom Championship for 600-plus days and counting.
Pete Dunne defended the United Kingdom Championship at the first-ever NXT UK TakeOver special in Blackpool on Jan. 12, putting one of WWE‘s most coveted titles on the line against up-and-coming main event heel Joe Coffey.
Since joining WWE in December 2016, Dunne has become one of the most popular wrestlers in the company among diehard fans. His “Bruiserweight” character is widely acclaimed, and he’s put on tremendous matches on NXT, NXT UK, and elsewhere against the likes of Roderick Strong, Tyler Bate, and Mark Andrews.
He isn’t restricting his goals to just the NXT brands, though, as Dunne has his eyes set on some huge dream matches against main roster talents, including some of the biggest stars in the history of this industry. The Bruiserweight named four of his dream matches on the E&C Pod of Awesomeness.
Hat tip to Wrestling Inc.’s William Windsor for the transcription:
“The one that I always say would be sort of a dream match for me would be Brock Lesnar. I think that would be a sort of interesting mix of styles, especially because a lot of guys my size don’t wrestle the style that I do, so I think that would be really interesting for people to watch. AJ Styles is a massive one for me. He’s someone I always wanted to wrestle. Rey Mysterio, he’s up there too. But then, aside from that, even in the NXT brand, there are so many people I haven’t had a chance to work with. I got to do one or two matches with Matt Riddle on the independents, but I’d love to work with Matt Riddle in NXT. I think we’d be able to do some really interesting stuff that people haven’t seen before.”
We’ve seen Rey Mysterio and AJ Styles in the ring with Mustafa Ali and Andrade “Cien” Almas recently, and both Ali and Almas were fixtures on 205 Live and NXT, respectively, before being called up in 2018. So it isn’t out of the question for Dunne to have dream matches against those guys, especially in an “Open Challenge” setting. Vince McMahon and WWE’s upper brass promised “fresh matchups” and changes for fans, perhaps in light of All Elite Wrestling’s creation, and Dunne vs. Styles or Mysterio would certainly fit that bill.
While Dunne vs. Brock Lesnar would be harder to envision, I’m sure many fans, especially fans of NXT UK, would be interesting in seeing this matchup. Dunne doesn’t have the experience or recognition of Styles or Daniel Bryan, but he’s similar in size to them and Lesnar put together believable matches with both men; Dunne’s finger manipulation could help him do the same in a hypothetical dream match against Lesnar.
As for Matt Riddle vs. Pete Dunne, sign me up. That match could easily happen, especially since WWE figures to use their NXT, NXT UK, and 205 Live wrestlers more fluidly in the coming year. That should lead to more unique matchups for all these superstars, and WWE has already taken a step in that direction with the “Worlds Collide Tournament” in a few weeks at Royal Rumble Axxess, which will be taped as a Network Special.