Welcome to the twenty-seventh episode of 205 Live! This week’s episode comes from the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia.
205 Live kicks off with a video package highlighting the rivalry between Cruiserweight Champion Neville and Austin Aries. This Sunday’s Raw exclusive pay-per-view, Extreme Rules, will see Aries go one-on-one with Neville for the Cruiserweight Title, seemingly for one final time.
We get a nice pyro display as the commentary team of Tom Phillips and Corey Graves welcome us to the show. They let us know that tonight’s main event match will be Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak.
Noam Dar makes his way to the ring with his girlfriend Alicia Fox. They will be facing the team of Rich Swann and “The Boss” Sasha Banks in a mixed tag match this Sunday at Extreme Rules. Dar has a microphone in hand and insults the city of Atlanta, where tonight’s show is taking place. They call each other nicknames and say how they’re going to defeat Swann and Banks this Sunday. Swann and Banks eventually come out and cut them off saying they’ll win this Sunday. Banks and Fox insult each other’s style which leads to Dar and Swann breaking them up.
Noam Dar w/Alicia Fox vs. Rich Swann w/Sasha Banks
Swann takes control early and the action spills outside the ring, which forces Banks and Fox to chirp at each other. Swann rolls Dar back in the ring and takes him down with a dropkick. Dar eventually counters Swann’s attacks by sweeping his legs out from underneath him. Dar puts Swann in a rest hold that works Swann’s left arm. Dar continues to work Swann’s left arm by yanking on it, sitting on it and wrapping it around the top rope and pulling on it.
Dar tries hitting Swann with a back suplex, but Swann counters and hits Dar with a back suplex instead. Swann hurricanrana’s Dar off the top turnbuckle and follows this up by hitting Dar with what looked like a scissors kick, but Swann did a 360 in the air when kicking the back of Dar’s head. That looked cool. Swann and Dar trade punches until Dar catches Swann in an ankle lock. Swann throws Dar out of the ring and it looks like he’s going for a suicide dive, but Fox tugs on Swann’s leg preventing him from doing so. Banks sees this and attacks Fox at ringside. While Swann is semi-distracted from what’s going on, Dar hits Swann with a running knee for the win after about eight minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Noam Dar
Evaluation: That match was okay. The pace in the middle of it was pretty slow with Dar working on an arm as he does every match. The flipping version of the scissors kick looked awesome. That could potentially be another finishing move for Swann. You knew there was going to be shenanigans happening at ringside with Banks and Fox there. The goal of this match was to spark the fire for their mixed tag match this Sunday at Extreme Rules, and it did so.
Dasha Fuentes is backstage with her guest at this time, Cedric Alexander. She asks Cedric his thoughts about what just happened with Noam Dar and Alicia Fox. Cedric said he didn’t come back from injury just to rehash old relationship problems and that as much as he’d love to talk with Dasha some more, he’s got to go make up for lost time.
Evaluation: I love it. Short, sweet and to the point. Purpose was to say he’s done with that terrible love triangle storyline and he’s on to bigger and better things.
Cedric Alexander vs. Corey Hollis
Hollis will clearly be doing the job tonight. Hollis gets a little offense early on, but it’s short lived as Cedric hits Hollis with a kick to the gut and a big back elbow. Cedric follows this up with an enziguri kick and his signature springboard clothesline. Ceeedric finishes off the match with his finishing move, the Lumbar Check for the win after about two minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Cedric Alexander
Evaluation: This was pretty much a squash match. There was never any thought that Hollis would win lol. This purpose of this match was to put over Cedric and “re-introduce” the audience to him and his fighting style.
A video package is shown hyping up Akira Tozawa. It shows clips of his great offense and the crowd doing his war cry chant. I think Tozawa is next in line for a Cruiserweight Title match after Aries, as I assume Neville will hold on to the championship at Extreme Rules this Sunday.
Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak
Gulak makes his entrance with his megaphone and “No Fly Zone” in hand. He briefly talks about how he’s opposed to high flying until Ali dives over the top ropes onto Gulak. Ali throws Gulak into the ring and this match is now officially underway. Ali keeps the match fast paced and continues the attack on Gulak. The action spills outside the ring as Ali inflicts more punishment on Gulak with chops and kicks. Ali thorws Gulak back in the ring and heads to the top turnbuckle, but Gulak pushes Ali off the turnbuckle, forcing Ali to fall to ringside.
Gulak brings Ali back in the ring and keeps the action, as he likes it, grounded. However, this doesn’t last for too long as Ali begins to make a comeback and hits Gulak with his signature rolling neckbreaker. Ali heads to the top turnbuckle and hits Gulak with a flying crossbody. However, as soon as Ali lands the crossbody, Gulak rolls Ali into a pin attempt and gets the victory after five minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Drew Gulak
Evaluation: Well, that wasn’t your typical 205 Live main event. By that I mean that it wasn’t anywhere from good to great. It was just okay and this partially has to do with the time they were given. the match only went five minutes as opposed to most 205 Live main event matches which get anywhere 15 minutes give or take. Ali was on offense for most of this match. It seems like the purpose of this match was for Gulak to luckily pull out a win s this rivalry can continue.
Dasha Fuentes is backstage to interview Gulak about his victory. Gulak said that victory wasn’t for him, it was for those who believe what the future of 205 Live should become. Gulak said he didn’t win with high flying and show boating, he won with efficiency and class. Gulak: “High flying doesn’t pay, staying grounded is the way.”
It’s time for the final segment of the show.
Austin Aries makes his way to the ring, not in wrestling attire, with an unpeeled banana in hand. As he walks down the ramp he extends his banana to people so they can touch it. Writing that out reads weird. It was weird to watch too. Aries plugged his new book, Food Fight, but said he’s really here to talk about “the tap heard around the world.” Aries told the monkeys in the trucks to roll the footage from last night’s Raw where he made Neville tap out to his finishing submission move, the Last Chancery. The match was Aries and Gallagher vs. Neville and TJP. Aries keeps showing the clip of Neville tapping out. The crowd chants “one more time,” so Aries shows Neville tapping out again. It’s the first time Neville’s tapped out since he debuted in the cruiserweight division and became “The King of the Cruiserweights.”
Neville eventually comes out and interrupts Aries. Neville yells at Aries saying that last night he got lucky and that he’s disgusted that this is how Aries chooses to act. The crowd chants “you tapped out” at Neville which visually upsets Neville. Neville said this Sunday, at Extreme Rules, The King of the Cruiserweights is going to eradicate you once and for all. TJP attacks Aris from behind and Neville enters the ring to join in on the attack. Neville locks Aries in the Rings of Saturn submission while TJP kicks at Aries’ knee. Referees comes out to break up the attack. 205 Live goes off the air with Neville and TJP standing over a fallen Aries.
This was a below average episode of 205 Live. This is likely the case because it was really just used to set up matches for this Sunday’s Extreme Rules and further the Gulak/Ali storyline. Gulak vs. Ali was probably the best match of the night, but even that wasn’t anything to go out of your way to watch. Just an okay five minute match.
The final segment with Aries and Neville wasn’t anything special. We’ve seen Neville and TJP attack Aries numerous times and it happened again tonight. It seems like this story has gone just about as far as it’s going to go, so I think it’s a good thing that it’ll end this Sunday. Hopefully the leave us with a memorable match, which they of course are more than capable of.
I included a lot of my thoughts on tonight’s episode in my evaluations throughout this review, so I’ll leave it at that.
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Picture used above is courtesy of WWE.com.