Last week on 205 Live: It was a recap episode of the year 2018 so we skipped it.

Cold Open

Drake Maverick welcomes us as he narrates what is planned for tonight. He will tell us what will happen to 205 Live in 2019. There will be qualifying matches to advance to a fatal-four way championship match. So right now its Buddy Murphy as champion in the match and we find out two of the challengers tonight. Kalisto vs. Lio Rush and Akira Tozawa vs. Drew Gulak in what Drake calls the most heated rivalry in 205 Live history.

Lio Rush vs. Kalisto w/ Lucha House Party

  • So Mustafa Ali is off of 205 Live and full time Smackdown Live roster member, but Lucha House Party are both on Raw and 205 Live? Or, did LHP get demoted now that Raw has shaken things up?
  • Best thing about Lio Rush is his theme song. Which is funny because Lio is a “rapper” and can’t even record his own theme song. Naomi and The Uso’s recorded their own song. Enzo even recorded his own lyrics, but not Lio. Lio ain’t R-Truth is what I’m saying.
  • Weird editing. The match starts and when Kalisto and Lio both run to the ropes the camera cuts to Metalik and Dorado and we miss everything that happened in the ring.
  • This match has had very little physicality and plays more like an American Ninja Warrior course. Both men are doing hand springs and flippy evasions. It’s definitely different.
  • Finally they both land some offense but it quickly ends with Lio diving to the outside. It’s weird how bad guy wrestlers do flips and dives now. That used to be such a crowd pleaser that heels would never do high spot stuff. I don’t know if it’s a good or a bad thing, it’s just a different thing.
  • The story of the match so far is that both men are equals athletically so it is gonna come down to ruthless aggression and ring generalship.
  • Lio at the beginning of the match got “Lio Sucks” chants but now he can even get boo’s if he begs for them.
  • Rush slowed the match down with a top wristlock. The crowd was clapping in support of Kalisto but he never fought back and the support quickly died as the hold was continuing to be applied.
  • Lio landed two kicks and then went for a top rope frog splash. It took him about fifteen seconds to get to the top rope, so Kalisto met Rush up on the top rope for the obligatory 205 Live top rope fight.
  • The battle ended with Kalisto getting a nearfall on Lio Rush taking the match into the final moments.
  • Kalisto had Salida Del Sol countered with a spinning Unprettier by Lio Rush. That only got a two count. Great nearfall but the crowd is not vocally into it in the slightest.
  • This match feels like it should have ended already. Lio has now thrown Kalisto out of the ring and tells the ref to count. Kalisto gets in the ring at nine while Lio throws a fit.
  • Rush goes to hit his frog splash but is “distracted” by Lucha House Party, for a good minute or so… This. Is. Ridiculous.
  • Lio upsets Metalik. The commentators say that Kalisto could be disqualified. Rush is asking Metalik to hit him but everytime Metalik throws a strike Lio Rush dodges?
  • Kalisto wins with his finish.

And I’m Like… That was ridiculous. It was a good match for the first twelve or so minutes but the ending fell apart. Did not enjoy that at all. The best thing was something I didn’t mention. Earlier Buddy Murphy and Tony Nese were watching backstage and Tony was shaking his protein shake. 20 minutes later the camera gets a reaction shot of Nese and Murphy after Kalisto’s victory and Tony was STILL SHAKING HIS SHAKER. That shit was still full too.

Drake Maverick cuts a backstage promo telling us that 205 Live will be getting new roster members. Maverick says he is talking to all brands and scouring the world. So Smackdown Live, Raw, NXT, NXT:UK or the performance center. No names were dropped or dates of arrivals.

Akira Tozawa vs. Drew Gulak

  • I miss when Akira Tozawa acted like he was Vince McMahon. I wonder how much of a star he would be if he was allowed to talk more. The dude is charismatic as hell.
  • Mu’fuckin Tony Nese is still shaken that shaker. Going on 30 minutes now.
  • Some ground wrestling to start the match. Headlocks and leg scissors, pretty old school and fun.
  • Drew puts a headlock on Tozawa on the ground. Then in a fluid motion positions his body so they both are facing camera side. It is an amazing piece of work that shows just how good these two are.
  • I mean this match is FLUID! Gulak grabs Tozawa mid-leap frog with a sunset flip pin and it was a thing of beauty. This match is technical as hell and really, really fun.
  • This story is Gulak out wrestling Tozawa but Akira having fighting spirit and still being able to hang technically. Every time Tozawa tries to string together some moves, Gulak is able to reverse it. That is until Tozawa hurricanranas Drew over the top rope and Drew lands directly on his ass on the outside.
  • Tozawa knows he has few chances to win the match so he goes for the top rope senton early but Drew rolls to the outside. This is real good stuff. Each move is telling more of the story and nothing is wasted. Selling from previous moves and shifts in momentum that seem to happen logically and organically.
  • Both men are getting to the point where they are hitting moves with all their strength and going for the pin. Nothing too flashy, just lariats and kicks. It’s desperation with urgency. It’s caring to win. Nothing like the ending of the previous match.
  • A yay/boo spot happens and this match has gone from a grappling game to a brawl. Gulak does a beautiful sell of a forearm by shaking his legs and feigning being knocked out. Then Akira runs and locks in the octopus hold. Drew reverses it into a stretch muffler in a way I have never seen before!
  • Akira had the octopus hold on and Drew freed his arm to grab Tozawa’s leg that was already in the muffler position. Beautiful wrestling going on.
  • Akira now is selling his lower back and left knee. Drew is picking Akira apart but Tozawa will not give up. Tozawa is hitting strikes and moves that don’t target a specific body part so Drew is hurt all over.
  • Akira went for his top rope senton but his knee gave out a bit. Tozawa recovered enough to go for the move but Drew caught Tozawa in mid air and applied the Gu-Lock. Tozawa is able to ROLL TO THE ROPES!
  • The crowd is dead but this match is so good. If people with better name value had the same match people would be hot as hell for this.
  • This match even has the fighting on the top rope 205 Live spot. Gulak is still doing shakey legs and ends up falling into a prone position. Tozawa goes for the senton and HITS IT! Tozawa wins.

And I’m Like… WHAT A MATCH. I really thought Drew was gonna win so that finish came as a surprise. This was absolutely fantastic and should be what 205 Live is all about. Not the “cruiserweight” style that most heavyweights do now. This is an hour long show that usually has two matches. They should showcase some got dang wrestling that can tell physical stories. The only downside is Tony Nese is no longer shaking his shaker, he doesn’t even have it anymore.

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