MLW Fusion Recap Episode 27: “Filthy” Tom Lawlor vs. Shane “Swerve” Strickland

Last week on MLW Fusion: Brian Pillman Jr. won his debut match. Jimmy Yuta defeated L.A. Park’s son. Stokely Hathaway is coming back. Teddy Hart Teddy Hart’d all over Rich Swann.

Cold Open

Shane Strickland narration of him losing two big matches while Tom Lawlor has been on a winning streak. This is the main event tonight with the tagline “who is the ace?”

Matt Striker is back…. groan. I found when Rich isn’t on and Striker is, I enjoy the product less. Well here we fucking go for the next month or so. This appears to be the Fury Road tapings.

Hijo De L.A. Park w/ Salina De La Renta vs. Sammy Guevara

Sammy gets a loud response when he makes his entrance. Sammy has made headlines as of late for being featured in the NWA National Title hunt. Only eight wrestlers were chosen for the tournament and he is one of them. Story has it that Sammy tried to get Salina to represent him but De La Renta turned Guevara down.

Both men hit dives to the outside on each other at the very beginning of the match. Hijo De L.A. Park ended up in the crowd.

This a very back and forth wrestled match with it’s fare share of dives and flips. Commentary is mainly Striker over explaining Guevara’s career of leaving Texas and winning championships in many companies.

The crowd is behind Sammy after two missed moonsaults and a landed standing 450. Not much selling with these two because right after a nearfall, De L.A. Park hit a top rope Spanish fly that Sammy answered with to a burning hammer/kick to the back of the head. You get some more dives and missed dives. Very lucha styled match that De La Park wins with a tilt a whirl reversal into a piledriver. That match was entertaining and you’ll like it if you like lucha.

Kaci Lennox interviews Tom Lawlor about tonight’s match. Lawlor says tonight determines who is the future of MLW. Tom puts over his win at Battle Riot and asks if Shane Swerve Strickland will swerve himself.

Konnan cuts a promo about Salina and how her team of L.A. Park and El Hijo de L.A. Park won’t win against the Lucha Bros.

Samoan Island Tribe (Lance Anoa’i and Samu) vs. Smash N Dash Connection (Kotto Brazil and Barrington Hughes)

This match is intriguing because both teams have men who can wrestle and men who are attractions that can wrestle but not much.

Samoan Island Tribe or SIT attacked Smash N Dash Connection or SNDC right when the bell rang to take advantage. Kotto and Lance end up one-on-one in the ring which is expected. Barrington doesn’t even stand on the apron, dude is too big. Samu gets tagged in misses a clothesline and backdrop but hits a clothesline and tags out…  This match is.. something else.

Barrington gets up on the apron and then a spot with him and Lance talking stuff happens. Kotto is able to hit a move on Lance that sets up the hot tag attempt but Brazil gets caught in a Samoan drop.

Lance is able to catch Hughes with three straight superkicks to the face/chest that had Barrington tied up in the ropes, then Lance hits an amazing superkick.

Hughes gets tagged in on a hot tag as he is already entering the ring. After some doubleteam moves with Samu out of the way, Hughes hit a splash to pick up the win for Smash and Dash Connection.

Sami Callihan cuts a promo in a staircase. He is very even keel and not screaming like normal. He is angry that Jimmy Havoc thinks he is the most violent wrestler on the planet today, when Callihan believes himself to be the most violent.


Shane Strickland cuts a promo about how Swerve is confidence and Shane is gonna prove that he is still the franchise player of MLW.

Fightland promotion. PCO vs. Brody King in a NO DQ match. Lucha Bros vs. Los Parks for the World Tag Team Championship. Low Ki vs. Shane Strickland for the World Heavyweight Championship. Rush vs. Sammy Guevara. Ace Romero vs. Marko Stunt. Dirty Blondes vs. Size Matters (Joey Ryan and Swoggle). 

Salina De La Renta cuts a prom on Konnan about how she knows a bit about magic. She sees a bright future of Los Parks. 

Next week is the Halloween episode. Jimmy Havoc vs. Sami Callihan.

Havoc cuts a promo in a stairway too. Sami was looking down the stairs, Jimmy is looking up them. I wonder if they ran into each other. 

Shane Strickland vs. Tom Lawlor

Sad to say Strickland has some sort of hip-hop entrance song….. Not “Ain’t Nobody” or a knock off. I know it’s copyrighted music, but damn.

Tom Lawlor comes out without Team Filthy, that’s commendable. Both men wait for the bell to ring before engaging in battle. Low Ki is on commentary too. Whoo boy this is gonna be a rough listen.

I might be wrong though. Both men are wrestling back and forth and Low Ki is actually analyzing the match very well and breaking it down in a way I’ve never really heard before. When Ki isn’t trying to put himself and his toughness over, it’s actually not that bad. Also, Matt Striker seems more subdued in this match. Less snarky.

While Strickland is on the offense, Low Ki says he has already beaten Shane but Lawlor is a different animal. It’s interesting to hear that commentary is only putting over Lawlor. Shane is laying a whooping in on Lawlor while starting to work over Tom’s arm. Striker mentions Tom broke his left arm earlier this year.

Strickland is a savage in this match, relentless on the arm of Lawlor. Shane puts a submission on Lawlor that makes it damn near impossible to get a rope break, so Lawlor does the only thing possible and bites the rope.

Lawlor is able to finally fight back with a forearm to Strickland who was on the top rope. Lawlor hits a superplex transitioned to a front choke. Low Ki explains how that choke works to stop the blood going to the head. Shane is able to fight out of it and hitting a brainbuster to even the match.

Both men crawl to one another and get on their knees. A strike battle is starting, slowly with chops and punches. Building in intensity as both men rise to their feet. Lawlor goes for a flurry but Strickland catches Lawlor’s injured arm. Lawlor fights with all his might, but Shane will not release the left hand of Lawlor. Tom starts throwing knees and that’s what gives him the advantage to hit a falcon arrow for two. These men are telling an emotional story of will.

Lawlor is now fighting back with one armed German suplexes and a death valley driver. Low Ki leaves the commentary position as Salina De La Renta comes down the ramp. Lawlor is trying to choke Shane when Low Ki does some funny shit.

Like, I can’t stop watching it. This is the most meme MLW has gotten.

Low Ki gets involved by attacking Tom Lawlor, showing that Tom is the competitor Low Ki fears. Shane gets the advantage and hits the Swerve Stomp which Matt Striker calls “A Low Ki maneuver”. Shane goes to break the arm of Tom Lawlor.

Tom puts in a rear naked choke but can’t fully apply it with his injured arm. So Lawlor bites his wrist tape and pulls back to add enough pressure for Shane Strickland to tap out. Low Ki looks scared and Tom Lawlor is not only the number one contender to Low Ki’s title, but also The Ace of MLW.

Tom is questioned on when he will cash in his Battle Riot contract. Tom Lawlor challenges Low Ki at MLW Superfight February 2nd, the same time as the Super Bowl.

Good show tonight, some fun moments and a cornucopia of the differences of wrestling.

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