MLW Fusion Recap Episode 58: Rich Swann vs. Brian Pillman Jr., Callihan & Warner vs. Promociones Dorado

Last week on MLW Fusion: Air Wolf got a surprise win over Rey Fenix. Jacob Fatu ended the two year undefeated streak of Barrington Hughes. Ariel Dominguez won a match. Hammerstone defeated Gringo Loco. I wish I could say more but that episode had so many quick matches.

Cold Open

WE ARE STILL AT THE NEW YORK TAPINGS!! This is two months worth of television at this taping. No wonder the crowd was so dead during portions of these shows.

Promociones Dorado (Hijo De La Park and Ricky Martinez) w/ Salina De La Renta vs. Mance Warner and Sami Callihan

  • As Promociones Dorado come out we get a promo from the street with Mancer and Callihan talking about driving a Bobcat around and like sharing beers?
  • Then when Mance comes out Salina and Ricky are interviewed about when LA Park is cashing in his Battle Riot Golden Ticket.
  • Match starts before the bell rings with an all out brawl. Not sure if this is a tornado tag or what, but it’s MLW where the rules are made up and most of the matches don’t matter.
  • There is a lot of spitting on each other in this match. Hijo gets in a chop battle with Callihan. Sami is wearing a vest so Hijo tries to unzip it, but Callihan wants to be the bad ass so he pushes Hijo away and unzips his own vest, while spitting on Hijo and beggint to be chopped.
  • Mancer is using a fans umbrella to beat up his opponents and now Sami is whipping Promociones with a tv cable. Mancer asks Sami to whip him in the back too and Mancer loves it.
  • Immediately after, Mancer gets whipped by Hijo’s belt and it hurts Warner…
  • Warner and Martinez are finally in the ring, Callihan is taken out by Hijo who joins Ricky in taking Mancer down.
  • Mancer just punches Hijo’s balls and the ref lets it go. NOW they are tagging? So this is a normal tag match… But there are no tag rules at all. #FTR.
  • This match is fun but it’s so chaotic, they are attempting a hot tag spot, even though this match is already eleven minutes long and there has been like two tags.
  • Callihan hits a piledriver on Martinez and wins. Before he can celebrate Hijo jumps in the ring and attacks Sami. Then Mancer makes the save and now the bell is ringing a bunch. As Mancers music plays they continue to battle to the back.

And I’m Like… If MLW didn’t sell the rights to War Games to WWE, I’d assume this is building to a War Games. Which seems like Mancer’s dream match. I don’t know if MLW is still allowed to do War Games or not to be honest. The battle went backstage and LA Park shows up to join the attack. Rich says the whole match was a set up. Salina is able to make it better, but I just was not feeling this at all.

Austin Aries is coming…. that’s too bad.

Daga vs. Minoru Tanaka

  • Rich says Tanaka is making his return after debuting during Battle Riot, even though it’s the same taping.
  • Daga wrestles Mexican strong style, which he describes as “Strong style with a Mexican twist”. Tanaka wrestles Japanese strong style, which is described as strong style!!
  • These two strong style wrestlers start off with some chain wrestling. I wonder how hard it would be to wrestle someone that doesn’t speak your language. Have to be really talented I’d imagine.
  • As Tanaka lands some kicks and head butts and Daga returns with strikes of his own, Cornette tells back story on each man and what they did prior to wrestling this match. Trying to create a story since it’s just wrestling for wrestling’s sake.
  • As Tanaka does a moonsault to the outside on Daga, I find myself checking how much time is left in the episode. I don’t know why but MLW comes in waves for me. Sometimes I am really enjoying the product and other times there isn’t a single thing that hooks me. Watching the show almost feels like a chore. There is almost nothing to get invested in. I don’t know if the taping is so long that the fan energy is down and that bugs me, or if there is not much character development and storyline progression? I don’t know what it is, but this is a down period for me.
  • Tanaka got the win in a match with no consequences.

And I’m Like… Remember for a few weeks when they had the “Top 10” rankings? At least that made SOME matches matter. Like, honestly, why would we be invested in this match? I’ve been burned by MLW too many times by getting into a wrestler and never seeing them again. MJF and Janela had a feud and Joey’s gone, Darby Allin and Jimmy Havoc too. Then Jason Cade and Yuta had this long storyline that got me into those men and then they are gone without anything said.

MJF cuts a cell phone promo about he doesn’t like the new Von Erichs who signed with the company after the “Von Erich Dark Side of the Ring” episode aired.

Contra Unit cuts a promo about how they defeated Barrington Hughes after he was undefeated for two years. Contra Unit is one of the best things about MLW but I don’t get their gimmick. They say they are nihilists and an armada. They attack everyone, but they don’t have any depth to their characters. They just attack people and cut promos about how they attack people.

Tom Lawlor has been cutting promos every week for almost a year. It’s kind of cool to see him get better and better. He cuts a promo about how he has traveled the world, showing his passport, and talking about what he has seen. Then he does an analogy about how avalanches are created and he is the top of the mountain. It’s one of his best promos in MLW.

MLW shows a Twitter poll on who Tom Lawlor should defend his championship against. Davey Boy Smith Jr. won, but in the screen shot you can see that MLW voted for Contra Unit.

National Openweight Championship Tournament Match

Rich Swann w/ Myron Reed vs. Brian Pillman Jr.

  • Rich Swann used to feel like a star. Next to Myron Reed and Brian Pillman Jr. though? No way. Brian and Myron exude charisma when Rich feels like he is trying to exude it.
  • The referee is inspecting Rich Swann for a weapon. Cornette says “they have been known to bring foreign objects in the ring” but I don’t remember it. So Rich and Myron try to walk away. The ref says he will say Brian wins if Rich walks away. Swann enters the ring and the match begins.
  • Pillman is the babyface and Swann is the heel, except the storyline for Reed and Swann is that the authority is treating them unfairly in comparison to all the other wrestlers. They just happen to wrestle all white guys lately and the refs are white. I don’t feel comfortable booing them or rooting against them, cause THEY ARE BEING TREATED UNFAIRLY.
  • Myron interfered and Pillman quickly takes him out.
  • Pillman had like his second or third match ever in MLW, he has really come a long way.
  • Myron involves himself in the match again and I’m like. Do it! Because if they are being treated unfairly, then they should fight fire with fire.
  • MLW feels like Bizarro Impact. Rich Swann is the heel in MLW but the face in Impact. Callihan is the heel in Impact but the face in MLW. There is a huge focus on women’s wrestling in Impact and zero women’s wrestling in MLW. They both use the Lucha Bros. Impact no longer wants Aries but MLW is happy to bring him in. It’s quite the dynamic.
  • Swann and the ref go at it but the ref pushed Swann down. Then the ref gets in it with Myron Reed. Pillman pins Swann and the ref counts the pin with a fast count.

And I’m Like… I like Brian Pillman, but fuck these refs.

Hammerstone cuts a promo on Brian Pillman Jr. because those two are wrestling for the National Openweight Championship. Hammerstone says he is taller and weighs more. He has the genetic advantage.

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