2016 may be the year that Batman vs Superman delivered me the visual definition of the word mid but it’s also the year that the cruiserweight division made its return to WWE after a 9-year hiatus via a competitive tournament called the cruiserweight classic or the CWC.
Now, it was a great tournament with a ton of highlights. But, there was one highlight that I kept an interest in ever since. A promising young wrestler with a lot to showcase who he really was and that pro wrestler is, of course, Mustafa Ali.
Unfortunately, my G didn’t do much after the tournament was over (and so did the rest of the cruiserweights the moment they moved to Monday Night RAW as an exclusive attraction for the brand) but my man definitely shined the moment WWE created a show based on that division called 205 Live (yea, no sh*t, Omar).
Just straight BANGER after BANGER after BANGER after BANGER. His match with Cedric Alexander at Wrestlemania 34 for the vacated cruiserweight championship? BANGER! His match with Drew Gulak on the July 17th, 2017 episode of 205 Live? BANGER! His match with Hideo Itami on the 23rd October 2018 episode of 205 Live? BANGER! His series of matches with Buddy Matthews? ABSOLUTE BANGERS!
Now, you’re probably reading this, “why are you hyping Ali up? Don’t get me wrong, he’s great and all but why though?” Well, It’s because of the fact that he’s the PERFECT babyface that hasn’t been seen and written that way by WWE. Let’s get the one positive thing out of the way.
For one, we all can agree that it’s so refreshing to see that a guy with an Arabic name isn’t portrayed as a terrorist (unless you’re that guy that pitched Mansoor to be behind the 9/11 attacks), especially as a Muslim that watches this product on a daily basis
Ali has BOTH the in-ring and the promo game ON LOCK which is a rare thing in not only WWE but also in professional wrestling as a whole. It’s really sad to say that since his eye injury in early 2019 (aka a bad year for Rusev/Miro), his talent hasn’t been maximized to its fullest potential.
His intercontinental championship with Gunther tomorrow at Night Of Champions could be, to quote Curtis Axel, the moment for WWE to finally build some momentum for Mustafa Ali even if he loses the bout.
It’s not always the outcome but how the outcome came about is what matters in this case.
Ironically enough, Kofimania was born in a gauntlet match that while he did lose in the end, he came out of that as a worthy challenger to a LOT of us just because of the way the match was produced.
If anyone deserves that kind of rare magic being presented on television, it’s a man that will go hard (okay, I know it sounded weird but I was just quoting his old theme song, OKAY?).