Powell’s MLW Fusion TV Review: Davey Boy Smith Jr. vs. Timothy Thatcher, Low Ki vs. Jimmy Yuta, Spirt Squad members Kenny Doane and Mike Mondo hold an open workout

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

Major League Wrestling Fusion (Episode 69)
Taped July 25, 2019 in New York, New York at Melrose Ballroom
Aired August 3, 2019 on beIN Sports

Fusion opened with a video package that recapped last week’s show with Bestia 666 beating Mance Warner, and The Von Erichs beating Josef Samael and Simon Gotch in an unsanctioned match… The MLW Fusion opening aired… The broadcast team was Rich Bocchini and Tony Schiavone, and Tim Barr was the ring announcer…

1. Low Ki vs. Jimmy Yuta. Bocchini noted that Low Ki has developed more of an “FTW” attitude since leaving Salina de la Renta’s Promociones Dorado. Low Ki caught Yuta with a kick to the head. The referee jumped in to stop the match…

Low Ki defeated Jimmy Yuta.

Cameras picked up Low Ki as he walked backstage. Low Ki said one more in the book. He said right foot to the hospital, left foot to the brain. He said he had more unfinished business and told viewers to stay tuned….

Powell’s POV: Another quick knockout style win for Low Ki. I like the approach. There will come a time when he faces bigger named competition and won’t win this quickly, but these quick matches are establishing that Low Ki can win his matches at any point with a big strike. So even if his bigger matches don’t end in less than a minute, they can condition viewers to watch every move closely because his matches can end out of nowhere.

Footage aired from last week of Tom Lawlor saying he and the Von Erichs would face Contra Unit in the War Chamber…

Contra Unit responded by accepting Lawlor’s challenge. Simon Gotch said the match on September 7 would actually be a four-on-four match…

Bocchini hyped the War Chamber match and noted that Lawlor and the Von Erichs will have a partner of their choosing and then played up a mystery partner for Contra Unit. Bocchini read through the rules of the War Chamber match (it’s a WarGames match using a different name)…

A recap of Konnan finding Salina de la Renta’s phone aired. New footage of Konnan speaking with Salina while Jimmy Havoc stood by. Konnan recalled Salina booking Mance Warner vs. Sami Callihan in a match against one another, then said he wanted her to book Havoc against LA Park so she could see how it feels. She declined, then said that was only the first request. Salina gave in. Havoc wasn’t crazy about the idea, but Salina told him it would be fine…

Powell’s POV: I don’t believe this is a loser leaves MLW match like Warner and Callihan worked, but I could be mistaken.

Footage aired of The Dynasty’s MJF, Alex Hammerstone, and Richard Holliday at a high end car dealership. Holliday was envious of MJF’s watch, and Hammerstone said he’s never owned one before. Holliday was upset about the service they were getting and threatened to write a Yelp review. MJF said Teddy Hart failed a wellness policy test and isn’t eligible to use the rematch clause for the tag titles. Hammerstone asked about the wellness test. MJF and Holliday assured him that they would get him “clean piss”…

Powell’s POV: I don’t know whether to laugh or cry over the way they made light of drug testing in pro wrestling.

A video package touted the MLW and Pro Wrestling Noah working agreement, and Hammerstone working a Noah tournament…

“Spirit Squad” members Kenny Doane and Mike Mondo headed to the ring. Doane cut a promo and the duo got major heat. Doane said they weren’t in MLW because of their last name. He said they earned their spots. Schiavone said Doane may be one of the ugliest men he’s ever seen in his life. Doane vented about the Harts and Von Erichs until he was interrupted by the Von Erichs’ entrance music…

2. Ross Von Erich and Marshall Von Eich vs. “Spirit Squad” Kenny Doane and Mike Mondo. The referee was in the ring and the music continued to play as the teams fought. The Von Erichs cleared the Spirit Squad duo to ringside heading into a break. Coming back from the break, Marshall was in the ring working over both opponents. Marshall dropkicked Mikey to ringside, then powerslammed Doane. Marshall performed a moonsault and had Doane pinned, but Mondo returned to break it up. Marshall applied the Iron Claw on Doane, then he and Ross teamed up for a claw and side suplex combo move. Marshall kept the claw on and scored the pin.

Ross Von Erich and Marshall Von Eich beat “Spirit Squad” Kenny Doane and Mike Mondo.

After the match, Josef Samael and Simon Gotch came out and fought the Von Erichs. A masked man stood on the apron, removed his mask, and sprayed mist into the face of Marshall. Several referees entered the ring along with EMT’s, who tried to flush the eyes of Marshall. Schiavone asked if Marshall was bleeding from his eyes while the EMTs quickly placed a towel over his head. The EMTs helped Marshall to the back…

Powell’s POV: A good angle. I like the idea that the mist was put over as being so punishing rather than just something a guy can shake off moments after a match or angle. They didn’t name the new Contra Unit member yet.

Bocchini set up a match taped in Chicago and noted that they were airing it because the Low Ki match was so brief…

3. Gringo Loco vs. Zenshi. Bocchini and Jim Cornette were on commentary for the match. Myron Reed and Jordan Oliver walked through the crowd with their mouths taped and a “Justice” protest sign. Zenshi performed a cool move while using the ropes as a gymnast would use the uneven bars before splashing down on Loco in the ring. Zenshi performed a 450 splash from the bottom rope for a near fall. Zenshi did a handspring into the ropes, but Loco caught him and performed a leaping tombstone piledriver and pinned him…

Gringo Loco defeated Zenshi.

Powell’s POV: An entertaining match with Zenshi doing some impressive moves before being pinned clean. I like the idea of airing a match from a previous taping as it makes the show feel more realistic in that a short match caused them to call an audible.

Footage aired of Alex Hammerstone and Georgia Smith looking as if they were on the verge of kissing when elevator doors closed…

Kaci Lennox interviewed Davey Boy Smith Jr., who declined to talk about the footage of Hammerstone and his sister. Smith delivered a promo about facing Timothy Thatcher in what he said will be a strong style match. Lennox tried to bring up the footage aired. Brian Pillman Jr. entered the picture and said girls will be girls and boys will be boys. Pillman told Lennox that if she wanted to talk about relationships then she could talk with him… Bocchini hyped the main event…

The broadcast team recapped the Contra Unit and Von Erichs angle, then hyped Alex Hammerstone vs. Savio Vega for the MLW National Openweight Championship, and Rey Horus vs. Bestia 666 for next week’s show…

4. Davey Boy Smith Jr. vs. Timothy Thatcher. The broadcast team put over Thatcher as a throwback wrestler and said he’s had a lot of success in Germany. Thatcher applied an early half crab. Smith kicked him off to break it. Thatcher went to work on Smith’s left leg. Both men got to their feet and Smith threw some leg kicks. Thatcher took him down with a heel hook and continued to target the left leg and ankle. Smith rallied with a Sharpshooter, but Thatcher immediately grabbed the ropes to break it.

The wrestlers got to their feet and traded forearms and uppercuts. Smith sat down on Thatcher for a two count, then they both went for pins. Thatcher rolled up Thatcher and into a bridge, but Thatcher pushed him up to break it. A short time later, Smith performed a pair of German suplexes. Thatcher reached for the ropes, but Smith stopped him, then performed a tiger suplex into a pin for a good near fall. Later, Thatcher applied a submission hold, but Smith powered him up and slammed him down, then applied a crossface and got the submission win…

Davey Both Smith Jr. defeated Timothy Thatcher.

After the match, Georgia Smith interviewed her brother Davey Boy Jr. on the stage. Davey said the fans chanting his name is music to his ears. Davey said he wanted to talk about Alex Hammerstone, then looked at his sister, who looked away. Davey said he understands his sister wants to remain silent. Davey said Hammerstone is trying to to play mind games with him, but it won’t work. Davey said it’s only a matter of time before Hammerstone steps in the ring and he procures the crossface chicken wing. Davey told his sister that he wouldn’t go light on her boyfriend, then shoved the mic at her…

Powell’s POV: The live crowd was quiet throughout most of the match because they weren’t given a real rooting interest. Some fans seemed to warm up to the match as it went on and I suspect a rematch would get a better reaction now that they had a good first outing. I wish they had established Thatcher through enhancement matches first, but I’m not sure how much access MLW has to him. The post match angle was a bit clunky, and I think MLW officials would be wise to record a lot of Davey’s promos rather than have him deliver them in front of the live crowd, because it’s just not his strength.

Overall, it was a good episode that furthered the Contra Unit feud with the Von Erichs, as well as the Hart Foundation and Dynasty feud. I’ll have more to say in my Dot Net Members’ exclusive audio review of this episode, as I’m filling in for John Moore this week and next week while he takes over my Impact audio reviews during that time.


The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Brian Pillman Jr., who discusses his training, following his father's footsteps, his own career aspirations, being part of the Hart Foundation faction, his big match at the MLW Saturday Night SuperFight pay-per-view, working with Jushin Liger, touring the WWE Performance Center, and much more...


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