By Zack Zimmerman
WWE 205 Live on WWE Network
Aired live from St. Paul, Minnesota at Xcel Energy Center
A video package aired recapping the tag team match on Raw last night between Neville and Tony Nese vs. Jack Gallagher and TJ Perkins. It also served to further set up the upcoming Cruiserweight title match between Neville and Gallagher this Sunday…
Backstage, Tom Phillips welcomed Jack Gallagher onto the interview set. Gallagher said that he’s expecting Neville to sit on his throne and declare how his reign will never end, but perhaps this Sunday, the winner won’t be who Neville is expecting… The opening video played…
Inside the arena, Mauro Ranallo, Corey Graves, and Austin Aries checked in from the commentary booth. They hyped up the Cruiserweight title match for this Sunday, and also advertised Neville’s “Fastlane Address” for later in this show.
Noam Dar was the first competitor to make his entrance, and he was accompanied by Alicia Fox. A graphic advertised his match for Fastlane, which is a pre-show tag match pitting Dar and Brian Kendrick against Rich Swann and Akira Tozawa. Lince Dorado was out next.
1. Noam Dar (w/ Alicia Fox) vs. Lince Dorado. Right as the bell rang, a deliveryman came to ringside and delivered a bunch of flowers to Fox, and she seemed flattered. There was some fast stuff happening in the ring, but none of it mattered as the camera cut to Fox eating the flowers at ringside. Rich Swann was shown watching o na monitor backstage. Dorado hit a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, meanwhile a portion of the crowd chanted “we want flowers.” Dorado followed up with a handspring stunner for a near-fall.
Dar found some separation and kicked out Dorado’s leg before connecting on a running kick for the win.
Noam Dar over Lince Dorado in about 4:00.
Replays aired before Dar took a microphone in the ring. He said that his gift of the sweet and beautiful flowers can’t compare to the beauty of Alicia “Foooooooooooox…” [C]
Zim Says: Forgettable match with a silly angle. Lince looked pretty good but Dar still doesn’t stand out in the ring in a positive way.
Back in the arena, Austin Aries was standing in the ring to conduct an interview. He welcomed out Akira Tozawa. out as his guest. He threw to footage of Tozawa refusing Brian Kendrick’s help and asked why. Tozawa, in seemingly perfect english, said that he wanted to make it on hi s own. Aries then threw to more footage, this time of the “lessons” that Kendrick has been “teaching” Tozawa in the last couple of weeks.
Aries simply asked “what do you want to do about it?” and Tozawa firmly answered that he wants to fight right now. Brian Kendrick came out onto the stage to respond. He scoffed off the idea of fighting on Tozawa’s term, and then scoffed off Tozawa’s potential in WWE without his help. Tozawa yelled that he won’t fail. Kendrick said that Tozawa would have to learn to speak English if he wanted any more of his time. Kendrick amped Tozawa up with the idea of them fighting, but promptly said “class dismissed” and walked backstage… [C]
Back in the arena, entrances took place for a six-man tag match.
2. Tony Nese, Ariya Daivari, and Drew Gulak vs. Mustafa Ali, TJ Perkins, and Cedric Alexander. There were frequent tags from the babyfaces while targeting Nese’s arm. TJ Perkins used Pentagon’s hammerlock arm-breaker early in the match and used a nice flying armbar a short time later. It wasn’t long thereafter that Perkins was isolated and began to take damage. The Minnesota crowd reacted positively to Ariya Daivari who is from the area.
Perkins tried to fight back and pick up some momentum, but Daivari put him down hard with a short-range lariat. Gulak and Ali both worked some offense for their teams before things broke down. Alexander hit a huge flip dive onto everyone at ringside, leaving Gulak in the ring to take a big tornado DDT from Ali. Ali went up top and connected with the imploding 450, but Daivari put Gulak’s foot on the ropes from ringside.
The referee admonished Daivari, meanwhile Nese hit a German suplex tossing Ali into the corner. Once again, things broke down and the referee struggled to maintain control. Gulak knocked TJP off the top turnbuckle, allowing Nese to come charging in with a high-impact knee strike in the corner for the win…
Tony Nese, Ariya Daivari, and Drew Gulak beat TJ Perkins, Mustafa Ali, and Cedric Alexander in about 10:20
An Austin Aries video package aired…
Zim Says: That match was the type that is very fun to watch, but a nightmare to do live coverage of. It didn’t start that way, but it never slowed down once it got going. I don’t know what significance the match had, but in a vacuum it was entertaining
Back in the arena, Cruiserweight Champion Neville made his entrance. He took a microphone in the ring, and offered everyone a history lesson. He said 205 Live was created to showcase the best cruiserweight in the world, but they overlooked number-one in him. He said he pulled 205 Live out of mediocrity and got nothing but resentment for it. He said that Jack Gallagher, his challenger this Sunday, is a sideshow freak, not a threat.
Neville vowed to “obliterate Little Jack,” which must’ve been Gallagher’s cue. Jack Gallagher strolled to the ring and said that Neville seems to be having a meltdown. He offered tea and biscuits, which the crowd deemed worthy to chant. Neville threatened that Gallagher won’t make it to Sunday if he pushes Neville tonight. Neville declared the ring to be his. Gallagher took exception to that and said it belongs to all of “them” (the crowd).
Gallagher suggested, on behalf of everyone whose ring it was, that Neville get out. He then took Neville down with a double-leg and the two began to brawl. Neville got the better of Gallagher and began to tee off with kicks before Gallagher fired up with some dropkicks of his own. Gallagher landed his headbutt, but Neville slipped out of the ring. Gallagher went out in pursuit and dropkicked Neville over the barricade. The show closed with Gallagher holding the ring and Neville scathing from the other side of the barricade…
Zim Says: Decent little segment to continue to build Gallagher as the next challenger. Admittedly he doesn’t feel like the biggest threat nor the most buzz-worthy challenger, but having made the decision that he’s challenger of the month I can appreciate them putting effort into him getting the better of Neville. Neville continues to shine. As for the show, it felt pretty inconsequential aside from the final segment. The six-man tag was all action but ultimately unimportant, and the opening match wasn’t all action nor was it important either.
I’m two weeks in and starting to miss aspects NXT coverage a little bit. I’m sure Neville and Gallagher will be solid,and the pre-show cruiser tag match will advance a storyline, but the Cruiserweight show itself still doesn’t feel like it has hit its stride yet. I’ll have more to say in audio when I get the chance to sit down and record it, so be sure to check back sometime tomorrow for that. Thanks for reading.
Throw comments, questions, criticisms, or corrections @DotNetZim or DotNetZim@gmail.com; always happy to discuss.