On this week’s episode of 205 Live, Noam Dar and Tony Nese took their feud to another level as they went one on one in a no-disqualification match. Jack Gallagher and Drew Gulak’s attempt at recruiting Humberto Carrillo continued, and also a contract signing for Buddy Murphy and Akira Tozawa’s Cruiserweight title match at Elimination Chamber took place.
One thing that stood out on this week’s show is the simplicity, and effectiveness in the storytelling. Whether it was from great in-ring action, promos, or even commentary, storylines were elevated and continued in a logical way. There was not a great deal of flash, but there was a keen eye for detail, which makes you wonder why RAW cannot take a similar approach.
Jack Gallagher vs. Lince Dorado
Jack Gallagher started off by successfully neutralising Lince Dorado’s high flying offence, controlling the early portions of the bout. However, Dorado eventually found some momentum and began showing his athleticism. The story of the match was Jack trying to prove his grounded, technical style of wrestling was superior to the classic cruiserweight style, and if that was not clear, Drew Gulak did an excellent job on commentary hitting that point home.
Similar to last week’s Mike Kanellis/Brian Kendrick match, the commentary work was what stood out in Gallagher vs. Dorado. Gulak did a great job pointing out how the high flying style was not effective every time Dorado failed attempting a high-risk move, while Aiden English would counter that argument every time Dorado had some success. The argument also was also transferred to Humberto Carrillo, where Drew Gulak explained how he and Jack want to mentor Humberto by guiding him away from this risky style.
The commentary worked not only because it gave us more information on the Humberto Carrillo storyline, but the debate about whether Gallagher’s style was superior to Dorado’s meshed perfectly with the actual match. Gallagher wound up picking up the win when he reversed Dorado’s hurricanrana and rolled him up for the one, two, and three.
Gulak and Gallagher’s over the top celebration was also a nice touch, as was Gulak telling Humberto that this could be him if decides to join them. It perfectly set up a backstage segment where Kayla Braxton asked Humberto what he was planning on doing, and he did a good job playing up his character of a young upstart, by claiming the idea of learning from two great wrestlers is a proposal he’d have to consider.
We then a got another promo from Ariya Daivari, this time, he was not backstage but in a completely different location. He brought up how he had to be a wannabe wrestler’s sidekick (that’s Enzo Amore, just in case you did not know), and a manager for a man who could not even speak English. But now his main focus is becoming the new cruiserweight champion. The video felt like a throwback to when WWE used to do vignettes for new superstars, it felt different and a little refreshing to be honest.
Then Mike Kanellis and Maria Kanellis addressed Mike’s recent string of bad luck. Mike was furious, almost at a loss for words trying to explain his recent losses. However, Maria then calmed her man down. She told us that they have been successful wherever they have gone, and everyone experiences a loss, but when it matters most, Mike will rise to the occasion. Maria did a good job building Mike back up, while also giving us that old sports analogy that everyone experiences defeat. Not having him wrestle was also a good move on WWE’s part because losing three weeks in a row would not have been helpful.
No-DQ Match: Noam Dar vs. Tony Nese
This episode opened with a video recapping the history between Nese and Dar, and how intense their rivalry has become. And to do the video justice, the no-disqualification match started off perfectly with Dar attacking Nese before he could even enter the ring. It made sense for Dar not to wait as Nese attacked him in a parking lot two weeks ago, and this fast start is a tool wrestler’s need to remember when they’re involved in rivalries that try to portray a lot of anger.
It was an incredibly physical match, with some great spots such as Dar applying a submission hold on Nese’s injured arm using a chair, and this also led to a great table spot where Nese lifted Dar onto the steel steps in front of the announcer’s table. Then when the ‘Supernova’ attacked the injured arm again, Nese lifted him up and put him through the announce table. The use of weapons and the transitions to big spots made sense. It was great storytelling from both men.
Nigel McGuinness also chimed in with a great line explaining how a match like this reminds him about the injuries one can suffer. It was another great example of Nigel incorporating his own experiences to make the situation feel very real. Nese ended up with the win in this pay-per-view worthy bout. Both superstars came away looking better after this, and fortunately, the crowd gave them their due with a “this is awesome” chant.
The 205 Road to Elimination Chamber
The show ended with Buddy Murphy and Akira Tozawa’s contract signing. It was a nice touch because the Cruiserweight title is the most important part of the show. The signing took place in the office of Drake Maverick who did a good job bringing up Tozawa’s impressive win/loss record, justifying his spot as the number one contender.
But without a doubt, the Champion stole the segment by showing great arrogance throughout the contract signing. Also, his claim that his competition is not with the rest of the roster, it’s with history was a fantastic line. However, it ended with Tozawa reminding him that he’s beaten someone who used to call himself “The King of the Cruiserweights.”
Overall it was another solid show which did an excellent job advancing a lot of storylines, and finishing off with a face-off between Murphy and Tozawa.
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