By John Moore
WWE 205 Live on the WWE Network
Taped November 7, 2017 in Manchester, England at the Manchester Arena
The trailer voiceover guy narrated the teaser where they showed highlights from Enzo Amore vs. Pete Dunne from the night before…
Vic Joseph and Nigel McGuinness checked in on commentary. Joseph and McGuinness hyped up AJ Styles vs. Brock Lesnar being a dream match. Nigel then hyped up Enzo Amore’s new talk show, the Zo Show. Joseph talked about Kalisto facing UK’s Jack Gallagher…
Enzo Amore made his entrance. Enzo did his certified G entrance routine. The ring had a all-black carpet with leopard pattern tablecloths over the turnbuckles. Enzo talked about the UK Crossover happening the same time as the debut of the Zo Show. He then said he was like all the famous late-night talk show hosts plus Frank Sinatra all put together. Enzo said the Zo Show is a ratings draw. Zo said money does draw happiness. The crowd cut Enzo off with a boring chant. Enzo said he’s the opposite of boring since he’s a G. Enzo went for cheap heat by calling the UK a dump. He complained about the rain. He called the women “bland” and men “ugly and bland”. Enzo said Manchester should be called “Blandchester”.
Enzo joked about Kalisto being a cheerleader for Pete Dunne the prior night. Enzo said he doesn’t even know Dunne’s name. The crowd chanted “bruiserweight”, Enzo agreed and said he hears “loserweight”. Enzo said he was bamboozled. Enzo said he’s been with a lot of women who he didn’t know the name of but he’s never lost to a man he didn’t know the name of. Enzo said there’s a conspiracy against him. The crowd went back to chanting “boring”. Enzo talked about how the UK division is about to be handed an opportunity of a lifetime. Enzo said to hit their terrible music so they can come out. The WWE UK Tournament theme played as members of the “WWE UK Division” came out.
John’s Thoughts: To give Enzo credit, I liked that he went for heat this time and targeted the crowd. Aside from that complement, the rest of his promo dragged. This is a weakness of Enzo sometimes in that he is so witty and talented on the mic that he does go through burnout slumps. He’s burnt out now since that promo dragged and was sporadic. Also, I’m not a huge fan of the WWE UK Division being homogenized. It reminds me of the “TNA X Division” something Mark Andrews is all too familiar with.
They all came out together led by Jordan Devlin. There was also “Tucker”, James Drake, Joseph Conners, Mark Andrews, Tyler Bate, and Joseph Conners. Enzo apologized about his show being boring. He then called the guys in front of him “potential”. Enzo had note cards with him. The crowd sung their Tyler Bate song. Enzo told all the guys to say “how you doin'”. They all said it in their own way (oh god!). Joseph Conners said “I’m real good” instead for some reason. Enzo attacked the UK again by saying UK pizza sucks.
Enzo then talked to Jordan Devlin about being trained by Finn Balor. Devlin said the comparison ends there. Devlin said he’s here for money and fame. He gave Enzo a dap handshake which Enzo liked. He then talked to Tucker who said that Devlin and Enzo aren’t half the man Balor is. He then ran through everyone else. James Drake’s got a laugh out of me because he kinda looks purposely pathetic. He then said “choo choo” for no good reason (James Drake is a guilty pleasure of mine, as I’ve talked with Haydn Gleed about on the PROGRESS reviews. This guy tries soooo hard to look emo that it’s hilarious). Enzo called Mark Andrews fat (what? Andrews is a toothpick!). The worse was the interaction between Enzo and Tyler Bate as Bate even stumbled on his words. Enzo tried to make a masturbate joke. In what I think might have been a shoot moment, Tyler Bate held up his hand to distract Enzo and then laid a punch on his face. This led to Enzo retreating and Kalisto doing his lucha thing on the top of the ramp. Kalisto entered the ring wearing a mask that reminds me of El Dragon Azteca Jr’s in that it looks very watermelon-y. Tucker and Mark Andrews joined Kalisto in doing his lucha thing heading into commercial… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Wow! Talk about burnout, that thing crash, burned, and fizzled. You can’t blame any of the talent completely. They had Enzo fill 20 minutes with no substance. Then, “The Zo Show” with the “UK Division” just dragged to the point where the crowd was rightfully chanting “boring”. The homogenization of the UK guys reminds me of “The TNA X Division”, but that segment reminded me of the old school WWE NXT Game Show back in the day where they told these guys to go out there and do stupid things. This was a stupid and I feel bad for the UK guys being put in this position.
Vic Joseph said there was “Breaking News” and Tyler Bate would face Enzo Amore later on in this show. Nigel cut to a James Drake video package…
Jack Gallagher received new heel theme music that sounded epic. Gallagher wrestled in his suit as usual. Jack grabbed a mic for a promo. He talked about it being great being home. Gallagher said it was great remembering what he left behind like annoying UK children. Gallagher called some people lazy. Gallagher talked about how they tried to make him into a clown and said they are making Cedric Alexander into a clown. Gallagher said he’s a man’s man who doesn’t need Manchester…
1. Kalisto vs. Gentleman Jack Gallagher. Kalisto gave Gallagher a shoulder tackle. Gallagher and Kalisto traded headlocks. Kalisto dominated the subsequent chain wrestling. Kalisto tried to lead the crowd in a lucha chant. Kalisto woke up the crowd with an innovative somersault senton to the outside. Gallagher tripped Kalisto outside. Gallagher mounted ground and pound offense and joint manipulation. Kalisto kicked his way out and hit a headscissors takedown.
Gallagher came back with a shoulder tackle and went back to the joint manipulation. Kalisto grounded Gallagher with a huracanrana. Kalisto then hit a frankendriver on Gallagher for a nearfall. Kalisto caught Gallagher with a back roundhouse. Gallagher caught a flying Kalisto with a fujiwara armbar. Kalisto countered into the Salida Del Sol for the win.
Kalisto defeated Jack Gallagher via pinfall in 5:10.
Kalisto tried to lead the crowd in his Lucha thing to little success post-match…
John’s Thoughts: Not the best work between two men who are capable of so much more. Some of the moves were fine but nothing really stood out and there was no good story being told. It was essentially a prolonged enhancement match for Kalisto. As for Gallagher, I feel bad for the guy. They are giving him zero heat since turning heel. The heel turn was done pretty well and had so much potential but instead he’s just taking so many non-competitive loses that he and Kendrick are the ones made out to look like clowns so early on.
Dasha Fuentes tried to interview Enzo Amore. Enzo Amore talked about being cheap shotted by Tyler Bate. Enzo bragged about being rich and said he was closing Bate’s tab… [C]
Mark Andrews came out to entrance music provided by himself and his band. They ran a Mark Andrews video package. Joseph Conners and James Drake both came out to jobber music. I’m not making a joke with that one, it’s the music they used to give to jobbers on Velocity or to the WWE Create a Character on the video games…
2. Cedric Alexander and Mark Andrews vs. James Drake and Joseph Conners. Andrews started off against Conners. Andrews escaped out of an armbar with his lucha libre moves. He gave Conners an armdrag. Conners went for a sunset flip but Andrews turned the sunset flip into a flip and basement dropkick. Alexander tagged in which allowed Conners to sneak in a strike and tag in Drake. Drake locked in a armbar. Cedric flipped out and did some of his signature moves. Andrews tagged in. Andrews and Alexander did a legdrop and standing shooting star in stereo on Drake. Drake flipped to the apron and tagged Conners.
The tag wasn’t legal but it allowed for Andrews to be distracted. After punching Andrews, Drake made the legal tag. Drake and Conners isolated Andrews from his corner. Andrews tried to get to his corner after a jawbreaker on Drake. Mark Andrews went for La Mistica but Drake blocked it into a wheelbarrow facebuster. Conners tagged in. Andrews fought his way out of the corner with kicks. Andrews flipped over Conners and tagged in Alexander for the hot tag. Alexander dominated Conners and hit him with a springboard clothesline. Drake broke up the pin attempt. Andrews blind tagged himself in. Alexander took out both opponents with a flying back elbow as Andrews hit Conners with an impressive Shooting Star Press for the victory.
Cedric Alexander and Mark Andrews defeated Joseph Conners and James Drake via pinfall in 4:34.
Alexander and Andrews did the Mark Andrews dance after the match to the Junior “Fall to pieces” song. They showed replays of Andrews getting a lot of air in his shooting star. Vic Joseph and Nigel McGuinness then cut to a Tyler Bate video package…
John’s Thoughts: That was a really fun match. An enhancement of sorts because you knew Conners and Drake had no chance after coming out to jobber music. Drake and Conners weren’t bad, but of course Alexander and Andrews are so much more popular and unique. The story in the tag match was told well. I wouldn’t mind seeing Andrews and Alexander tag down the road since they had good chemistry, but that said it would be cool to see WWE offer Mark Andrews a contract since his offense is so fun to watch. He’s a UK Luchador! I would also prefer Andrews be sent to NXT because no one wants to willingly be on 205 Live hell. Back to the match, the only detractor here was the crowd who was pretty much dead. I can’t blame them. They had to sit to that marathon Enzo segment that went too long.
There’s about 10 minutes left in this show before it’s over, thank god!
3. WWE Cruiserweight Champion Enzo Amore vs. Tyler Bate in a non-title match. Bate locked in a unique test of strength. Bate and Enzo then had a very unorthodox chain wrestling sequence between each other. It was good. Amore rolled outside when Bate went for a rollup. Bate held open the ropes for Enzo. Enzo tried to get a cheap shot in the next test of strength. Bate countered into a shortarm forearm. Bate hit an exploder Suplex on Enzo. Enzo retreated again.
Bate went after Enzo. Enzo flapjacked Bate on the barricade. Enzo then tossed Bate into the barricade several times. Enzo tossed Bate’s ribs into the barricade. Enzo dragged Bate into the ring and put the boots to Bate. Enzo mocked the crowd with his Enzo dance. Enzo mounted punches on Bate and locked in a Front Chancery on Bate. Enzo maintained a headlock. Bate fought out with a Back Suplex. Bate hit a rebound lariat on Enzo. Enzo caught Bate with a boot which drove Bate in to the ground.
Bate fought Enzo out of a superplex. Bate hit a few shortarm European Uppercuts on Enzo. Enzo pushed Bate off the top rope. Bate started selling the knee. Nigel pointed out in the replay that Bate’s right knee was buckled by the top rope on Bate’s way down. Enzo hit a shortarm lariat on Bate. Enzo won the match after hitting Bate with Gail Kim’s Eat Defeat.
Enzo Amore defeated Tyler Bate via pinfall in 8:14.
John’s Thoughts: I’m not going to crap all over the match. It was fine. Both men did okay. It was serviceable. This was just such a huge step down from Bate’s match of the year contender from the NXT Takeover show he wrestled a few months ago. Enzo is getting better but I think his in-ring confidence is getting in the way. It’s like he’s afraid to wrestle for sequences in fear of botching. Enzo relies too much on stall tactics without making things compelling on his end. Bate tried, and got a decent TV match out of Enzo. Not a standout.
This episode was fine, but overall it was a waste of time. I wouldn’t mind giving this an anti-recommendation because this was not the best light to put the UK talent under. Even Drake and Conners got to stand out a bit more in the better setting of the WWE UK Tournament. The first 20 minutes dragged and the crowd let you know that this show was a drag. The only thing worth watching of any value was the Cedric Alexander and Mark Andrews showcase. That and the facial expressions of James Drake, who always looks like he just lost his puppy.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features ProWrestling.net staffer John Moore returning for an in-depth discussion on NXT, AEW, Impact Wrestling, MLW, and the NWA, and more...