By John Moore, Prowrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
WWE 205 Live on the WWE Network
Taped September 18, 2018 in Tulsa, Oklahoma at The BOK Center
This week’s 205 Live started off with a more traditional teaser, without the Drake Maverick narration. The teaser was a highlight package hyping the Cedric Alexander vs. Drew Gulak championship match. The 205 Live theme aired…
John’s Thoughts: I’m actually a bit hyped to see how 205 [Not-]Live does with a hot crowd as opposed to a tired crowd because this was taped before Smackdown right?
Vic Joseph, Nigel McGuinness, and Percy Watson checked in on commentary. TJP’s upgraded 16-bit theme played. TJP was followed by Lucha House Party who did their version of The Bar’s Dragon Ball Z entrance…
1. TJP vs. Lince Dorado (w/Kalisto, Gran Metalik). Dorado started off eluding Perkins and doing his Lucha Thing. Dorado locked Perkins in an armbar and tried to do his Lucha Thing to do avail. Only about 30% of the crowd was in house since they either didn’t get to their seats or are in the concourse. TJP reversed Dorado and locked him in the Kimura tangled in the ropes. TJP hit Dorado with a flying fist.
Dorado fought out of the methodical offense of TJP. TJP swatted Dorado out of the air and hit Dorado with the Pentagon Sacrifice Arm Breaker. TJP hit Dorado with a slingshot Senton Bomb. TJP hit Dorado with a front back suplex combo. TJP turned a Rings of Saturn into joint manipulation. TJP countered Dorado’s escape into a judo sweep and butterfly stretch. Perkins caught Dorado with a flying forearm. Dorado hit TJP with a spinning heel kick out of nowhere. Dorado got a rally on TJP after a crossbody and huracanrana. Dorado then hit TJP with a suicide dive (and almost missed TJP).
Dorado caught TJP witha moonsault in the ring for a two count. Dorado and Perkins brawled on the top rope. TJP caught Dorado and went for a Detonation Kick. Dorado reversed TJP’s CQC and put him in the corner with a super kick. Dorado hit the Bronco Buster on TJP. TJP then tried and successfully unmasked Lince Dorado (Dorado quickly covered up the face but Dorado is bald and kinda looked like Braxton Sutter. He isn’t Braxton Sutter). TJP picked up the win over the unmasked Dorado.
TJP defeated Lince Dorado via pinfall in 8:30.
TJP pissed off Dorado by stealing his Puerto Rican noisemaker…
Drake Maverick met with Lio Rush who told Maverick that he couldn’t have his scheduled match with Noam Dar due to his obligations with Bobby Lashley. Rush then sent his jab at Maverick for being a manager of AOP in his own right. Rush then said that Rush looks and smells like money. Maverick went serious and said that Rush will not make money if he doesn’t do his job on 205 Live. Rush agreed to face Noam Dar next week… [c]
John’s Thoughts: One problem was reduced, but a bigger problem offset the benefit. While the crowd was more excited than usual (we heard kids cheering more than usual), there was not much crowd to be cheering in the first place. The match was fine but it also smelled of a WWE Superstars pointless match. At least the match quality was good. I still would rather see TJP in NXT or Smackdown since I feel like he’s done everything he could do on 205 Live. Not to mention, TJP is a really good promo now.
Drake Maverick and Mustafa Ali had a meeting about Ali’s “tune up” match last week. Maverick said he doesn’t want to have seeing Ali fall face first against his own volition is something Drake doesn’t want to remember in his memory banks. Despite that, Maverick said he was finally clearing Ali to wrestle against Hideo Itami and that match will happen next week.
John’s Thoughts: Alexander vs. Gulak should be good, but I’m way more excited to see next week’s 205 Live. Lio Rush is going to wrestle next week. Best of all, Ali vs. Itami! Ali vs. Itami!
Greg Hamilton handled the formal ring introductions…
2. Cedric Alexander vs. Drew Gulak (w/The Brian Kendrick, Jack Gallagher) for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship. Vic Joseph noted how Cedric Alexander was caught off guard by having a championship match scheduled before his title defense in Australia. The crowd started off with a “Let’s go Cedric” chant and the are more people in their seats now. Kendrick distracted Cedric early on which allowed Gulak to get the Gu-Lock on Cedric but Cedric quickly rolled away before the Gu-Lock could be locked in. Alexander locked Gulak in a headlock. Vic Joseph noted Gulak’s undefeated 2018 (he only has one or two official losses in WWE to begin with).
Gulak got to a vertical base to get out of Alexander’s chinlock. Alexander grounded Gulak and got the headlock back in. Gulak got back to a vertical base. The Brian Kendrick tripped Cedric Alexander right in front of the referee. Instead of disqualifying Gulak which the commentators noted the referee could do, the referee instead sent Kendrick and Gallagher to the back. This allowed Alexander to go back into his striking advantage. Gulak made it to the rope for a rope break during an Alexander armbar. Alexander focused his attack on the arms of Gulak. Gulak recovered and turned a Uranage into a T-Bone Suplex. Gulak locked in his own armbar on Cedric. Cedric tried to escape with overhead kicks but Gulak turned the position into an elbow drop.
Gulak hit a few stomps on Cedric. Gulak hit a loud slap on the chest of Alexander. Gulak got a nearfall on Alexander. Alexander dropped his hips to block a Gulak Suplex. Alexander then suplexed Gulak inside the ring to the floor outside, but landed on his feet, so he can hit Gulak with another suplex (I hope Alexander didn’t smash his head on the apron because that looked scary). Both men beat the ten count. Alexander caught Gulak with a drop drunken kick and then a punt. Alexander hit Gulak with a crossbody for a nearfall. Alexander caught Gulak with a neuralizer. Alexander hit Gulak with a Tope Con Hilo. Gulak suprised Alexander in the ring with a Gu-Lock but Alexander was near the bottom rope for the rope break.
Gulak hit Alexander with a series of strong body slams. Gulak went for a submission but Alexander turned it into a pin attempt. Gulak then hit Alexander with a clothesline from hell for a two count. Buddy Murphy was shown watching the match in the back. Gulak tried to lock in the Gu-Lock from the ropes but Alexander escaped. Alexander got back in the ring and counters ensued. Alexander hit Gulak with a Michinoku Driver for a nearfall. Alexander hit Gulak with several strong chops. Gulak hit Alexander with a forearm and went to the top rope. Gulak hit Alexander with a flying forearm, which the announcers noted was unlike him due to his hatred for high flying. This got a two count. Gulak tenderized Alexander with back slaps which allowed him to lock in the Gu-Lock on the champion.
Alexander escaped but Gulak got the Gu-Lock back in. Alexander escaped since the move wasn’t grapevined and then carried Gulak into Fireman Carry for the Death Valley Driver on the turnbuckle. The commentators noted that Gulak might be weaker due to the many Gu-Locks that Gulak got on him. Gulak hit Alexander with his signature stiff slaps on Alexander. Alexander went into Gulak and then landed a snug Lumbar Check on Drew Gulak for the win.
Cedric Alexander defeated Drew Gulak via pinfall in 20:14.
Highlights aired and Buddy Murphy was shown acknowledging the win around the backstage monitor. Vic Joseph then hyped the Cedric Alexander vs. Buddy Murphy in Murphy’s hometown of Memborne…
Kayla Braxton interviewed Buddy Murphy about his title shot in Austraila. Murphy talked about Cedric being good. Murphy said people tune into 205 Live to see Murphy steal the show. Murphy then said when he wins “all of this” (205 Live) will be his…
John’s Thoughts: Way better than their match at SummerSlam because it was allowed to go longer than they were allotted time-wise on main roster PPVs. It’s tough to get a bad match out of Cedric Alexander, which is why I think WWE is so high on him despite his subpar promo ability. I wouldn’t mind seeing Alexander in more pre-tapes because he can cut good promos when it isn’t live. He’s like Brock Lesnar in that sense. Gulak was really good by the end of the match. The only thing I would have changed would have been the first third of the match which was very formulaic. Gulak was good at the end of the match but the beginning of the match reminded me of “Boring” Drew Gulak which was his style before WWE. I like it, and fans obviously like it more, when Gulak brings out the American Minoru Suzuki act. Speaking of such, I hope Gulak uses this loss as an excuse to completely shed the political gimmick. Maybe get rid of Brian Kendrick too so Kendrick can have a fresh babyface run.
This was an interesting episode of 205 not-Live. The first match was random and suffered from the empty crowd. The main event had a better crowd but it was slow to start, but that’s just the style of Drew Gulak. If this were Buddy Murphy or Mustafa Ali in the main event the crowd would have been much more fired up. I’m really excited for next Week’s 205 which should be a must-see show. Lio Rush vs. Noam Dar is going to be fun. Hideo Itami vs. Mustafa Ali is my favorite feud on this show so here’s hoping they don’t disappoint. I’ll be by later today with my 205 Audio Review for the Dot Net Members.