205 Live: Where the Cruiserweights Are These Days

205 Live
Date: December 26, 2017
Location: Allstate Arena, Chicago, Illinois
Commentators: Vic Joseph, Nigel McGuinness

We’re continuing the slow crawl towards the Cedric Alexander vs. Enzo Amore Cruiserweight Title match, which of course is taking place on Monday Night Raw instead of 205 Live. As has been mentioned, it’s clear that this show is little more than a filler show anymore and that’s not fixing any of its problems. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of Enzo Amore having issues with the Zo Train and having Cedric Alexander pick the members off without much trouble.

Cedric comes up to Drew Gulak, who is waiting on Enzo (his best friend) to call. Drew tells him to mind his own business but Cedric says it’ll be a wonderful life when Enzo is no longer champion. Cedric talks about how much better things will be once Enzo is out of power and Drew seems to entertain the thought.

Opening sequence.

Hideo Itami vs. Jack Gallagher

Before the match, Gallagher promises to avenge his friend in front of these Chicago pillocks. Nigel says he’s faced a lot of opponents in his career but he was always scared of Itami. I love it when wrestlers mention their careers like that as it reminds you that they actually do have a perspective that can matter in a match like this. Itami knees him in the ribs and again demands respect.

The kick to the face keeps Gallagher in trouble and a Fameasser with Gallagher on the middle rope gives us another respect demand. If you have have to shout it three times less than two minutes into the match, it’s time for a better catchphrase. Gallagher ties him up in the ring skirt to take over though and we hit a quickly broken chinlock.

Instead it’s a cravate to keep Itami in trouble and we’re right back to the chinlock. Itami finally grabs a dragon screw legwhip and there’s the tornado DDT across the top rope. Back up and Gallagher pulls him into the Captain’s Hook but Itami makes the rope. The running corner dropkick rocks Gallagher and a Rings of Saturn (with a leg wrapped around Gallagher’s head) is good for the tap at 7:38.

Rating: D+. Itami just doesn’t have the fire that he needs and it’s showing more every time. Throw in the lack of the GTS (which hopefully isn’t permanent) and there’s just not much to look forward to with him. He’s not the biggest guy in the world and he has limited charisma. He’s tailor suited to be the assassin style heel but for some reason he’s stuck in this lame face role. Oh right: Enzo has to be the top heel. What was I thinking?

Video on Tony Nese’s issues with the Zo Train, leading to him getting beaten down by the team.

Nese wants to take the Zo Train out but he understands that Enzo is a global superstar and the money is more than worth it. Akira Tozawa comes up to ask about Nese’s status and gets punched out. To recap: Enzo is the star and everyone else on 205 Live is a worthless nobody. Good to know.

Tony Nese vs. Akira Tozawa

That’s quite the fast turnaround. Tozawa charges in with some right hands at the bell but Nese hammers him down in the corner. The fake out right hand smacks Nese in the jaw though and Tozawa scores with his backsplash. Nese kicks him in the head though and drops some legs for good measure.

We hit the neck crank and then a chinlock with a bodyscissors to really keep Tozawa down. Tozawa finally comes back with a suplex and now the suicide dive connects. Back in and a good looking pumphandle sitout powerslam gives Nese two but he gets kicked in the head over and over. Tozawa’s top rope backsplash is broken up though and the running knee gives Nese the pin at 6:48.

Rating: C. Tozawa is far more charismatic than Itami and it’s no surprise that I liked his match more. Nese on the other hand is in a weird place as he should be teasing a face turn but I think WWE knows that it would be career suicide. He needs a little more development too as you can only go so far with great abs.

We look at Alexa Bliss breaking up Nia Jax and Enzo’s kiss on Monday.

Drew Gulak/Ariya Daivari vs. Cedric Alexander/Mustafa Ali

Before the match, Gulak asks how we are doing. Drew thinks we need a Best Of list and that means a look back at his best slide. What better way to do that than with a POWERPOINT PRESENTATION??? Cedric cuts him off again and Nigel wants to know who is in charge of music.

Alexander points out that we’re in Mustafa’s hometown and Ali has some valid points of his own to make. Ali says these two would never be friends outside of the Zo Train because Daivari is the kind of guy who would look down on a blue collar scrapper like Gulak. All that matters is Enzo would pick Nia Jax over the Zo Train every time, which doesn’t sit well with the villains.

Ali and Daivari start things off with Ariya hammering away with Daivari getting armdragged into an armbar. It’s off to Cedric and Drew, who fight over a wristlock of their own. Ali comes back in with some hard chops but Daivari offers a distraction so Gulak can drop Mustafa from behind. We hit the neck crank and the hometown fans are WAY behind Ali here.

Back up and Ali makes the hot tag for some house cleaning but Alexander gets kneed out to the floor. Alexander gets in a kick to the head though and it’s a hot tag off to Ali, though the fans don’t seem thrilled. A corkscrew flip dive to Daivari wakes them up a bit more and the rolling X Factor gets two. Daivari takes Ali up top but Gulak tells him nothing off the top. That earns Gulak a Lumbar Check and the 054 puts Daivari away at 8:51.

Rating: C. Now stop me if you’ve seen this one before, but odds are you’ve seen this one before. There’s only so much interest to be had in a match (or a show for that matter) when everything of note happens on Raw anymore. The title contenders were crowned on Raw, the #1 contenders match was on Raw and now the title match is going to be on Raw.

Overall Rating: D+. There’s just nothing going on around here and that’s quite the shame. Enzo being gone continues to be a problem whether he’s here or not. When he’s here, he dominates the entire show and nothing else matters. When he’s not here, almost none of the stories goes anywhere because there’s no point to them without Enzo around. Given that your big story is basically “Enzo is awesome and none of us matter”, that’s not the biggest surprise. This was another skippable show, which isn’t going to be made any better when the title match is on Raw, but that’s where 205 is these days.

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  1. Liam Fenech says:

    Don’t worry Kb 205 Live is likely scraped in 2018 as the Facebook mixed tag toreny show seems to be replacing it.


    klunderbunker Reply:

    Actually that’s just a 12 week thing. As in a thing where 205 Live will start at 10:30 and fans are expected to stay until 11:30 for the big post show dark match.

    Yeah this is really something WWE thinks will work.


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