By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
WWE 205 Live on the WWE Network
Aired live from Laredo, Texas at the Laredo Energy Arena
No intro teaser this week. It was right to the 205 Live intro theme…
Vic Joseph and Nigel McGuinness checked in on commentary. Nigel advertised an interview conducted by Cedric Alexander’s new friend, Goldust, with Cedric regarding his “golden opportunity”. The Mega Man 2 esque music played, which meant it was time for a TJP match. The screen showed still shots from last week’s episode as Nigel explained how TJP threw a temper tantrum all across the announce table and ringside. Perkins was getting his rematch against Gran Metalik. Joseph talked about a Perkins Instagram post where he reminded viewers that he defeated Metalik to become the winner of the WWE CWC. Joseph also talked about Kalisto saying that Perkins is living in the past…
1. TJP vs. Gran Metalik. Perkins was the quicker man early on in the match with wristlocks and strong strikes. Metalik fought out with an armdrag. Metalik tripped up Perkins and hit a springboard armdrag on Perkins. The screen showed Kalisto watching the match at a 90-degree angle (I’m not the only person that mocks this unrealistic way of watching TV. Xavier Woods recently mocked this on twitter too). Perkins tried to trip Metalik off the apron but Metalik managed to shake him off and hit Perkins with an Asai Moonsault.
Perkins gained an advantage by catching a flying Metalik with a dropkick. Perkins slowed things down and grounded Metalik. Perkins hit Metalik with a slingshot senton bomb for a nearfall. Metalik fought out of a back suplex but was crotched on the top rope and put in the tree of woe. Metalik dodged a baseball slide to send Perkins’s crotch into the ringpost. Metalik went to the top of the LED ringpsost and hit Perkins with a high crossbody. Metalik dominated Perkins while hyping up the crowd. This started a “lucha libre” chant.
John’s Thoughts: That’s why Kalisto has to stop doing his dumb “Lucha” thing. Sometimes the crowds will just chant for you and you don’t have to force it.
Metalik hit Perkins with an elbow drop for a nearfall. Perkins blocked the Metalik Driver with a thumb to the eye. Perkins went for an underhook backstabber but Metalik countered with a victory roll to pick up the pinfall victory over Perkins.
Gran Metalik defeated TJP via pinfall in 5:18.
Joseph mentioned that this couldn’t be a fluke since Metalik defeated Perkins two weeks in a row. The cameras alternated between the celebrating Metalik and the frustrated TJP. Joseph hyped up “Jack Gallagher’s plan for Hideo Itami”… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Well, by this show’s low standards of storyline creativity, that was actually pretty good all things considered. I would have liked to have seen another Perkins meltdown variation, but at least the camera shots caught the frustrated Perkins. Yes, the heels on this show still suck and lose all of the time, but so does Gran Metalik; and it looks like they are trying to make what seems to be some semblance of a story arc. I hope this leads to an overhaul of the Perkins character. Maybe a darker one as was teased in his feud with Rich Swann…
TJ Perkins was walking backstage as he tossed around food and water bottles. Dasha Fuentes tried to interview TJP about losing two weeks in a row and then changed up (and in some bad acting voice) by asking “are you crying”. Perkins responded by saying “no”…
John’s Thoughts: Not quite the explosive tantrum I was hoping for, but I like that they are moving forward with something and didn’t just let this development go by the wayside.
The commentators recapped Hideo Itami being one step ahead of Jack Gallagher last week causing him to retreat. Jack Gallagher was shown backstage in front of a parking garage door. Gallagher said he’s been tortured the past two weeks with the sound of The Brian Kendrick’s skull cracking. Gallagher said he was also tortured by underestimating Hideo Itami. Gallagher said Kendrick may be at home bandaged with an uncertain future, but his teaching live on through Jack Gallagher and he is now the man with the plan. Gallagher said every piece of armor seems unstoppable until you exploit it’s weakness. Gallagher said Hideo’s may be family or friends but whatever they are Gallagher will discover them. Gallagher said he can come from anywhere. Gallagher said Itami will rue the day he came to 205 Live… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Strong promo from Gallagher, but right now it’s too little too late because he is already established as a heel who loses all of the time since Kendrick was the only one picking up wins for this team while Jack ate the loses. It’s a very similar problem Bray Wyatt suffers. One problem 205 Live has right now is they have not only a damaged roster but also a small active roster with only 12 active wrestlers. It also hurts that all of the heels, Enzo Amore included, are just bumbling losers. Only Neville and his main event level work can save this show and that guy did the right thing by peacing out.
Cedric Alexander and Goldust made their entrance. Vic Joseph talked about Goldust being a mentor to Cedric Alexander. The crowd was super excited for Goldust. Goldust quoted the Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) regarding opportunities. Goldust talked about him and Alexander having a curious relationship. Goldust talked about how Alexander has a Golden Opportunity and is a star. Goldust said Alexander will defeat Enzo Amore for the title at the rumble. Alexander said he wanted to thank Goldust for not only being a good mentor but a better friend (oh my lord). Goldust said Alexander was the DiCaprio to his Scorsese.
Enzo Amore’s theme interrupted the weird lovefest in the ring as Enzo and his bumbling band of loser-ass heels, Drew Gulak, Ariya Daivari, and Tony Nese, The Zo Train, made their entrance. Enzo led the crowd in his certified-G routine. He also looked like a bowling pin for some reason. Enzo said Goldust is crazy for calling himself Scorsese. Enzo said the Zo Train were a group of “Goodfellas”. Enzo said he’s a bigger star than Goldust and Alexander. Enzo said he’s going to make Cedric famous. Goldust cut Enzo off by calling Enzo a clown and Swamp duck. Enzo said Goldust can shut his mouth since he’s not under 205 pounds. Goldust dared Enzo to make him. Enzo teased entering and like every other WWE heel he walked away and said that Goldust has to get through his Zo Train members as an audition to get to him. Goldust agreed to a three on one handicap match…
2. Goldust (w/Cedric Alexander) vs. Drew Gulak, Ariya Daivari, and Tony Nese (w/Enzo Amore). This is actually happening. Gulak slapped Dustin to start off the match. Goldust then just ran through Gulak and nailed him with a hip attack. Daivari tagged in and got destroyed by Goldust. Daivari ate two atomic drops and corner punches. Daivari managed to put the boots to Goldust with distractions from his partners. The heels traded quick tags to keep control over Goldust. Nese locked in a chinlock and the heels started to bicker.
This allowed Goldust to retake control with a spinebuster. Goldust dominated Drew Gulak with his feint punch and bulldog. Goldust hit Gulak with a powerslam. Outside, Nese accidently hit Daivari. Cedric Alexander hit Enzo Amore with a Tope Suicida for some reason. Goldust hit the Final Cut on Drew Gulak to pick up the clean win.
Goldust defeated The Zo Train via pinfall in a handicap match in 3:56.
Vic Joseph reiterated the point that Goldust single-handedly defeated the entire Zo Train. The heels were bickering up the ramp to close out the show…
John’s Thoughts: That was hilarious in all of the wrong ways. This was TNA-Bad/Strange and reminiscent of what TNA did with the X Division maybe four years or so ago where the heavyweight walks in and destroys the cruiserweights with virtual ease. Now let me try to rationalize this. Who decided to sit down and write down on a script that Goldust will walk into 205 Live and destroy 25% of the roster with little to no resistance? Again, as good as TJP and Gallagher have been the past few weeks, can you see why I’m not optimistic about their ceiling as heels? I’m also not sure what to make out of the Cedric Alexander and Goldust pairing. Was this was they had planned for Rich Swann? This comes off very similar to WWE making Titus O’Neil Akira Tozawa’s manager randomly.
Despite that sour ending, this was one of the better episodes of this show for me to review. Not because of the first two segments being solid. They were solid. The best part of this week’s show is that 30 minutes were trimmed off. There we go. One of the best parts of WWE’s Mixed Match Challenge is that 205 Live is now a 25 minute-or-so show. I’ll be by later today with my Members’ Exclusive Audio Review.