By John Moore, Prowrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
WWE 205 Live
Aired Live from Toledo, Ohio at The Huntington Center
The 205 Live intro teaser focused on the events that led up to this week’s main event, Mustafa Ali vs. Buddy Murphy vs. Hideo Itami. The 205 Live theme aired…
Tom Phillips and Percy Watson checked in on commentary. Phillips noted that Nigel McGuinness and Vic Joseph were in the UK handling commentary for the WWE UK Tournament. Tom Phillips was also required to say the mandatory line of calling 205 Live “the most exciting hour on television”. Drew Gulak made his entrance with The Brian Kendrick. Jack Gallagher must also be in the UK for tournament duties. Lucha House Party came out next. Philips recapped Lince Dorado winning last week with a hand full of tights and how turnabout was fair play due to Gulak trying to cheat earlier. Kalisto walked his Drew Gulak piñata to the ring. They cut to a backstage promo backstage where Lucha House Party were energetic and trying to get over the Gulak piñata…
1. Drew Gulak (w/The Brian Kendrick) vs. Lince Dorado (w/Kalisto and Gran Metalik). Gulak and Dorado traded wristlocks early on. Kalisto tried to fire up Dorado by doing his Lucha thing at ringside. Dorado prevented pinfall attempts with a bridge. Dorado got a few rollup attempts of his own until Gulak gave Dorado a headbutt to Dorado’s chest. Both men traded armbar attempts. Dorado went for Old School and got crotched on the top rope. Gulak went into some methodical offense. Dorado fought back with fists and forearms. Gulak recovered and tossed Dorado through the second rope.
Gulak locked Dorado in a surfboard and nose hold. Lince Dorado hulked up for a moment with the help of Kalisto’s noisemakers. Dorado gained a rest moment after he knocked down Gulak by running into him. This allowed Dorado go rally a bit. Dorado hit Gulak with a series of dropkicks. Dorado had a methodical rally of offense. Dorado hit Gulak with a High Fly Flow for a nearfall. Dorado caught Gulak with a Lethal Injection. Kendrick put Gulak’s foot on the bottom rope for the rope break. Kendrick yanked Dorado into the bottom rope while the ref was distracted by Kalisto and Metalik. Gulak wins with the Gu-Lock.
Drew Gulak defeated Lince Dorado via submission in 8:06.
John’s Thoughts: This was a decent house show filler match, but nowhere near the quality of match that we’ve been getting on 205 Live since the reboot. Dorado has been a huge standout on the show even before the reboot and Gulak has reinvented himself. Gulak played the character ok enough but he didn’t bring that aggression to the ring that he’s been employing. This feud also hasn’t been clicking. I wonder? Paul Levesque is in the UK and I wonder if Adam Pearce is as well. Then who’s running this show? Vince McMahon, Kevin Dunn, and Brian James?
Drake Maverick was chatting with a referee backstage and told him that the main event must have a winner. Maverick then had a chat with Hideo Itami. Maverick said that the next time he has a problem, then Itami should step in Maverick’s office like a man. Itami said they’ll won’t be a problem in the future if Maverick shows him respect. Maverick said respect has to work two ways. Maverick said that Itami needs to worry about his two opponents and he got what he wanted, a main event match. Maverick told Itami to make the best of his opportunity. Itami said “I will”… [C]
TJP made his entrance. He had a mic in hand. Perkins talked about how “The cruiser-great” is having his talent wasted again. TJP talked about how he carried the division on his back and how he has some simple requests like wanting to be in main events every week. TJP pointed out how he has to face inferior competition yet again this week. Perkins said he didn’t even want this guy’s name on his record and the guy just wants to try to make a name off of TJP. Perkins said Maverick is setting him up to fail. TJP asked for the enhancement guy’s name and instead cut him off by calling him Albert. Perkins also made fun of the town by calling it Tostito. The enhancement guy tried to fight for his pride but he got locked in TJP’s kneebar. The referees pulled TJP away after a minute or two. TJP gloated on the top rope a bit and then left. They showed Mustafa Ali stretching heading into the commercial… [C]
John’s Thoughts: I checked the WWE website for the enhancement wrestler’s name and they called him “local competitor”. Okay? Anyway this was a filler week and I’m already ready to see this story take the next step. Again, the promo wasn’t great or anything but TJP is cutting the best promos of his career so there is an immense amount of improvement on his end. One good thing about the weekly holding pattern is that he’s starting to show consistency on the mic. A good test for him.
Tom Phillips hyped up Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins for the WWE Intercontinental Championship in San Diego next week. Phillips cut to an Instagram post that showed Lio Rush with Drake Maverick signing his 205 Live contract. Phillips said the Rush signing was arguably one of the biggest signings in this brand’s history and that next week it was “Time to feel the rush” when Rush makes his debut next week. Percy Watson advertised Lucha House Party vs. Drew Gulak, Brian Kendrick, and Jack Gallagher in an elimination tag team match…
John’s Thoughts: I hope they don’t have Rush come in as a chickenshiz heel. Hopefully they treat Rush closer to Neville.
The main event wrestlers made their entrance…
2. Mustafa Ali vs. Buddy Murphy vs. Hideo Itami. Phillips talked about how he knows Murphy’s motivation and frustration during his time in NXT. Phillips also talked about how Hideo Itami is highly lauded by the members of the WWE roster due to his legendary status in Japan. The three men teased a three-way test of strength but Ali and Murphy agreed to target Itami first for interrupting their match from two weeks ago. Murphy went after Itami first. Ali hit both men with a flip dive to the outside. Ali and Murphy then forcefully took turns beating up Hideo. Hideo tried to give Murphy a chop which Murphy nosold. Murphy nosold Ali’s chops too. Ali grounded Murphy with a huracanrana.
Ali gave Murphy a high backdrop to the outside. Ali went for another flip dive to the outside but Itami caught Ali with a running knee to the gut. Itami locked in a chinlock on Ali while yelling “Respect me”. Itami backdropped Ali and kept Murphy at bay with a running boot. Murphy took control by punting the back of Itami. Then both men traded snapmares and punts to the back. After a faceoff, both men traded open hand rights. Itami gave Murphy a knee and a few roundhouse kicks to the back. Ali hit an innovative back suplex into a punt. Ali yelled “respect me huh?”. Murphy gave Ali a lariat to get a nearfall.
Ali tried to go for a rollup on Murphy to no success. Murphy locked in a sleeper on Ali in the ring. Itami took advantage of this by giving Murphy a sleeper. Murphy escaped. Ali hit Murphy with a jawbreaker. Ali and Murphy got staggered. In an impressive move, Ali leapfrogged Murphy and hit a very high X-Factor on Itami. Ali then hit Murphy with a reverse Frankendriver. Ali then hit a Tornado DDT on Murphy for a nearfall. That woke up the crowd a bit, but not fully. Itami crotched Ali on the top rope to prevent the inverted 450. Murphy had a rally. Murphy then hit Itami with a modified Burning Hammer II.
All three men were staggered and traded punches. Itami and Murphy traded CQC combos. Wild shots were traded. Ali hit Itami with a Whisper of the Wind. All three men were knocked out and the crowd woke up for once and gave the wrestlers an ovation. Ali tried to go for his signature sequence but it was blocked by Itami. Murphy hit Itami with a power bomb and high knee. Ali gave a high kick to Murphy to set up both opponents for the 450. Ali hit both opponents with a 450 while they were stacked. Murphy rolled outside so he can pull out Ali on the pin attempt. Murphy cleared the announce table.
Ali tripped off Murphy from the table to gain some breathing room. Ali hit Murphy with a Spanish Fly from the announce table to the floor. Phillips yelled “Holy hell!!!”. The crowd chanted “Holy shit”. Ali tried to rest on the turnbuckle but Itami caught Ali with a hesitation dropkick out of nowhere. Itami pulled off the bottom turnbuckle. After a rollup attempt by Ali, Hideo Itami dropkicked Ali’s head into the exposed bottom rope to pick up the win.
Hideo Itami defeated Mustafa Ali and Buddy Murphy via pinfall in 15:55.
Percy Watson said Hideo Itami has earned his respect tonight (wait, what?). I agree more with Tom Philips who pointed out that Itami took advantage of a no-DQ stipulation by taking a shortcut for the win. The commentators talked about the highlights especially that impressive Spanish Fly by Ali. Itami celebrated his win while Murphy sat next to the announce desk with a look of disappointment…
John’s Thoughts: The match started a bit slow and the crowd reacted to it as such. They were a bit dead and I couldn’t blame them. Luckily Ali and Murphy took it upon themselves to showcase come of their impressive moves and managed to wake up the crowd. Itami shows flashes of greatness here and there, but ever since the Brian Kendrick injury, it seems like Itami has lost a bit of his mojo. He’s holding back big time when he really delivered during his final stretch in NXT. Anyway, credit for Ali and Murphy for waking up the crowd and turning that match into an exciting one.
While the main event match was solid, this was on the lower end of 205 Live episodes. Last week’s episode might have been a step down from here, but this wasn’t all that great in progressing any storylines. The main event match had the predictable cheap finish and the prior two segments were holding pattern segments. Hopefully the result of the last two weeks of mediocre shows is a result of Paul Levesque and Adam Pearce being overseas. I’ll be by later today with my 205 Live Audio Review.
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