12/12 Moore’s WWE 205 Live Review: Cedric Alexander vs. Tony Nese, Buddy Murphy vs. Gran Metalik in a non-title match

By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)

WWE 205 Live on the WWE Network
Taped December 11, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada at The T-Mobile Arena

205 Live started off with the usual Drake Maverick recap and analysis. Drake Maverick noted that Noam Dar wasn’t cleared to compete on this episode so whe was being replaced by Gran Metalik to face off against Buddy Murphy. The 205 Live theme aired…

Vic Joseph, Nigel McGuinness, and Percy Watson were on commentary…

The Cruiserweight Champion, Buddy Murphy, made his entrance first. Out next was Lucha House Party because of course 205 Live always starts off with Lucha House Party matches. Lince Dorado and Kalisto escorted Gran Metalik to the ring but then went to the back as to not interfere (since this isn’t Raw where LHP are handicap cheaters for some reason)…

1. Buddy Murphy vs. Gran Metalik in a non-title match. Vic Joseph noted that Gran Metalik teamed up with Rey Mysterio recently on a WWE live event tour. Metalik evaded a few of Murphy’s opening moves until Murphy wrenched him to the ground and worked on the shoulderblades of Metalik. Metalik escaped and utilized his quick movements to evade Murphy. Metalik taunted Murphy a bit with Kalisto’s lucha thing. Metalik landed a huracanrana on Murphy to send him outside. Metalik hit Murphy with a Tope Con Hilo. Metalik did a tightrope on the hard camera side barricade and caught Murphy with an impressive huracanrana.

Murphy went for a couple of Superplexes but Metalik pushed him off. Metalik went for a senton but Murphy caught him and hit him with a vertical suplex from the seamless catch. Murphy sent Metalik outside for a countout attmpt. Metalik beat Charles Robinson’s count. Murphy got Metalik in an arm trap shoulder strech. Murphy added more punishment with some elbow clubs. Metalik got to a vertical base and then tackled Murphy into the corner to escape Murphy’s grasp. Murphy tossed Metalik to the apron.

Metalik came back with a shoulder block and enzuigiri. Metalik caught Murphy with a high slingshot crossbody. Metalik hit a few kicks and a springboard back elbow on Murphy. Metalik hit Murphy with a tightrope missile dropkick. Murphy escaped the Metalik driver and started his CQC sequence but Metalik came back with a superkick. Murphy escaped another Metalik Driver attempt and hit Metalik with standing high knee. Metalik didn’t relent and he caught a running Murphy with the Metalik Driver. Murphy kicked out at two.

Murphy rolled to the apron to dodge a Metalik high risk move. Murphy hit Metalik with a backbreaker on the apron. Murphy hit Metalik with a top rope Meteora for the two count. Metalik surprised Murphy with an inside cradle for a two count. Murphy was kicked to the ground. Metalik went for a moonsault but Murphy got the boots up. Murphy hit Metalik with a sitout power bomb for a two count. Murphy hit Metalik with a shortarm high knee. Metalik reversed Murphy’s Law with a rollup for a two count. Murphy then landed Murphy’s Law for the victory.

Buddy Murphy defeated Gran Metalik via pinfall in 12:02.

John’s Thoughts: Gran Metalik hasn’t really stood out since the Cruiserweight Classic two years ago, but he put in a good performance against the champ. Buddy Murphy continues to shine as WWE’s most improved player in the ring. The finish wasn’t in question here, but both men managed to make the false finishes compelling enough.

Vic Joseph, Nigel McGuinness, and Percy Watson checked in from the commentary table. The commentators recaped Drew Gulak vs. The Brian Kendrick from last week which ended in a DQ…

The Brian Kendrick and Akira Tozawa were shown standing around at the 205 Live set. Kendrick looked depressed while Tozawa acted quirky while fixing Kendrick’s collar. Drake Maverick showed up wearing what looked like a suit jacket over his Authors of Pain gear. Maverick informed Kendrick and Tozawa that their match next week against Jack Gallagher and Drew Gulak is a street fight. Maverick brought up how it’s ironic that Tozawa wrestled Kendrick in a street fight before and now they are teammates.Kendrick acted depressed and said he has changed. Kendrick said he came back to WWE and manipulated people because his dreams wre taken away from him. Kendrick said the person he manipulated the most was Akira Tozawa.

Kendrick said he thanks Gulak and Gallagher for beating some sense into him and changing him. Kendrick said he dosen’t need to manipulate people anymore and instead Kendrick needs to elevate the division. Kendrick claimed he’s a changed man. Tozawa said Kendrick may be changed but the problem is he still has the same look. Tozawa said “I have an idea” as he walked Kendrick off the set. Tozawa walked back and thanked Maverick for his time. Tozawa then reminded Maverick that Maverick lost the Raw Tag Team titles and “You’re Fired!!!” (to play into his running Vince McMahon impersonation joke). Tozawa left and Maverick yelled that Tozawa technically can’t fire Maverick because Maverick is the GM.

Drew Gulak and Jack Gallagher cut a selfie promo. Gulak pointed out that Kendrick was fired twice from WWE and that maybe WWE just isn’t for Kendrick. Gallagher said the beauty of the street fight is that it allows Gulak and Gallagher to go further. Gulak said anything is legal in a street fight. Gulak noted that it will be the final time and Kendrick will tap out…

Percy Watson announced that Lio Rush was returning to 205 Live next week…[c]

John’s Thoughts: The moment Kendrick showed up on the screen, I was about to give up on this segment, but it ended up being pretty fun all things considered. This segment addressed a lot of the problems I had with Kendrick in that he never explained his face turn. This is very similar ot the KM turn from Impact Wrestling that included KM wearing matching gear with Fallah Bahh, so I’m assuiming Kendrick will show up in Tozawa shorts next week. As much as I don’t like some of the things they’re doing with Drake Maverick on Raw, this was a nice jab and Maverick has done a good job noselling the AOPeePee jokes on 205 Live where he’s a serious babyface instead of cornball goof Raw Spud.

Percy Watson thanked the band The Struts for provinding the song “Body Talks” for TLC…

Vic Joseph cut to highlights from Ariya Daivari’s squash victory from last week. That match ended in ref stoppage…

Kayla Braxton interviewed Ariya Daivari about assaulting local talent the last two weeks. Daivari said back in the day wrestling was simple, a fight between two men in the ring for a victory. Daivari said it’s not meant to be flashy or pretty. Daivari said all wrestlers care about these days is dressing up as superheroes (Cedric Alexander?) or retweeting fan complements. Daivari said he’s been on the shelf with an injured neck for seven months. He said he watched 205 Live and saw all flash and no fight. Daivari said he’s here to change that. Hideo Itami walked in and told Daivari “good job” for his match last week. Itami gave Daivari a handshake. Itami left and Daivari called Itami one of the “last real men” around here and said that someone like that deserves respect…

John’s Thoughts: Well the one true “Last real man of professional” wrestling is of course Silas Young. I kid, but we’re seeing a lot of angry traditional pro wrestler gimmicks around these days with Daivari (205) and Eli Drake (in Imapct) running around having similar complaints about today’s wrestlers. Daivari did sound a bit like he was reading a script, but I like this type of promo as opposed to him trying to do a imitation of his brother’s “Rich Persian” gimmick which Shawn was way better at playing. Because I also share a love for the smash mouth over flash in my pro wrestling, this pairing really intrigues me. It also helps that Hideo Itami not only has returned to his brutal form of old, but he’s cut some decent promos as a heel. But what babyface do they feed to these two? Noam Dar? I wouldn’t mind seeing Humberto Carrillo show up to be a sympathetic babyface here.

Tony Nese made his usual inaudible entrance where he’s probably making ab puns (but they never mic what he’s saying). Cedric Alexander made his entrance wearing his usual superhero themed gear. I’m usually good at figuring out his gear, but this one as stumped me? It’s not Captain Marvel (he’s worn that before). It does kinda remind me of All Might?

2. Cedric Alexander vs. Tony Nese. Alexander overpowered Nese into the corner and showed off his biceps. A “let’s go Cedric” chant ensued. Nese won the next exchanged and then returned the favor by showing off his biceps. Nese got a hold of Ceric’s foot but Cedric countered with his signature headscissors. Nese landed on his feet and then dodged Cedric’s offense until Cedric landed a clean dropkick on Nese. Nese came back at Alexander with a back kick. Alexander blocked a backslide and backdropped Nese to ringside.

Nese got out of the way from a Cedric Tope attempt and then caught Cedric with a rising palm strike when Cedric went for a slingshot. Nese hit Cedric with a power Irish Whip to lead to a two count. Nese staggered Cedric with a throat punch and then slam dunked Cedric’s face on the top rope. Nese hit Cedric with a reverse triangle moonsault for a two count. Nese locked Cedric in a body scissors. Nese clubbed at Cedric’s chest during the body scissors. Cedric came back with clubbing blows of his own to reverse the guard. Nese turned Cedric inside out with a clothesline.

Cedric caught Nese with a boot. Cedric feigned a slingshot to cause Nese to miss wildly on the rising palm. Cedric caught Nese with a slingshot paydirt. Cedric tripped Tony with a basement dropkick and then followed up with a knee. Alexander caught Nese with a flying lariat for a two count. Nese came back with a foot CQC combo but Cedric came back with his own kicks for a two count. Nese grabbed the ropes to block a lumbar check. Nese hit Alexander with a gutbuster for a two count. Nese had a rally of strikes on Alexander. Nese and Alexander traded stiff slaps. Alexander went for a neuralizer, but Nese caught Alexander and botched a Samoan Drop (but it still looked effective).

Nese sent Alexander outside and hit Alexander with a Fosbury Flop. Nese went for a 450 but he crashed and burned. Nese almost surprised Alexander with a rollup. Alexander hit Nese with a quick tilt a whirl driver for a two count. Nese blocked a Lumbar Check with a side headlock. Nese blocked another attempt with a flip. Alexander nailed Nese with a Neuralizer and Lumbar Check for the win.

Cedric Alexander defeated Tony Nese via pinfall in 13:52.

After the replay, Buddy Murphy made his entrance to taunt Cedric from the stage. Cedric dared Buddy to brawl in the ring. Buddy entered the ring and right into a takedown form Cedric. Both men traded guards. Buddy escaped but Cedric hit Buddy with a Tope Con Hilo. Instead of entering the ring, Buddy decided to backtrack. Vic Jospeh said the pendulum of momentum has shifted to Cedric Alexander…

John’s Thoughts: This was a very predictable outcome, but Nese has been great in the ring since the 205 reboot and Cedric has the uncanny ability to tell good stories in the ring. The guy’s bland on the live microphone but he really manages to turn a quiet crowd into an engaged one. I have this sneaking suspicion that they might put the belt on Cedric at TLC which I think would be a total disservice to Buddy Murphy who deserves an actual title run. All Buddy has had since winning in his home town was an impromptu feud with Mustafa Ali and a rush redemption arc for Cedric. The only way I see Buddy gaining from losing the belt is if we get a Cedric and Buddy double turn on Sunday. Part of me wants to see Cedric turn heel because he showed promise during a short lived heel turn when he beat the undefeated Quinn “Moose” Ojinaka in Ring of Honor. Sadly, ROH did nothing with Moose’s undefeated streak or Cedric so I would like to see what WWE could do with a heel Cedric.

A paint-by-numbers 205 Live meant to tune up Cedric Alexander and Buddy Murphy for their upcoming Cruiserweight Championship match this Sunday in San Jose. Hopefully they give them time. While there wasn’t a mid show enhancement match, the middle of the show did a good job forwarding one feud while also building intrigue between Ariya Daivari and Hideo Itami. I’ll be by later today with my 205 Live Hit list and Members Exclusive Audio Review.

Check below for the new Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Konnan, who discusses his return to the ring for MLW in Miami on Friday and shares the crazy story of how he started in pro wrestling.

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