Grizzled Young Veterans to receive new names

Jul 15, 2022 - by Marc Middleton

Former WWE NXT UK Tag Team Champions The Grizzled Young Veterans are reportedly receiving new ring names on the NXT 2.0 brand.

A new report from PWInsider notes that James Drake will be known as Jagger Reid going forward, while Zack Gibson will be called Rip Fowler.

WWE filed to trademark the Fowler name on May 4, and the Reid name was filed on July 11.

There has been speculation on the former Drake and Gibson being added to The Schism with Joe Gacy and The Dyad. Gacy noted on this week’s NXT 2.0 episode that next Tuesday’s show will feature the reveal of The Dyad’s true identities. He promised that there will be a cleansing and a purification in hopes of others understanding that there is plenty of room in the shade under The Schism.

The speculation is that Drake and Gibson will be revealed as the masked men behind The Dyad tag team, but that has not been confirmed.

The Grizzled Young Veterans have not been seen on NXT TV since late April. WWE started referring to them as just Drake and Gibson, but then on the April 19 NXT 2.0 episode, they teased a departure for the veteran tag team. That angle saw Drake and Gibson confront then-NXT Tag Team Champions Pretty Deadly for a title shot, but they were interrupted by Cruz Del Toro and Joaquin Wilde. The two teams brawled while Pretty Deadly watched, and later in the show Cruz and Wilde defeated GYV in a match. McKenzie Mitchell later interviewed Drake and Gibson after the show, where they expressed frustration over how they’ve been promising to win gold for some time after leaving their friends and family during the pandemic, to move across the world to become champions, and to be the team they knew they could be, only to keep coming up short. Gibson then apologized, declared that he’s “done” and going home. Drake then said we won’t be seeing he and Gibson around NXT 2.0 any longer as he walked away, leaving his signature scarf with Mitchell.

Drake began working with WWE in 2017, and Gibson started in 2018. The Grizzled Young Veterans became the inaugural NXT UK Tag Team Champions in 2019, and held the straps for 230 recognized days. They later worked the 2020 NXT Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic but lost in the finals to The BroserWeights. Drake and Gibson have been working the main NXT brand since February 2020.

Drake and Gibson have been quiet on social media since late April, and they have not teased any kind of gimmick or name change. It’s likely that the ring name change will come with a full re-package, but it remains to see if Gacy will be involved.

2 Responses

  1. Mike says:

    All of these new NXT rebranded names are absolutely terrible…

  2. Pisto75666 says:

    Another terrible NXT renaming. Well, at least they’re consistent.

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