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WWE Cruiserweight Classic Reaction for 08/24/16 – The Second Round Comes to a Close with ZSJ vs. Gulak, Dorado vs. Swann, and Gargano vs. TJP

I sat down to watch last week’s Cruiserweight Classic just a couple of days after it aired.  I usually sit down on Fridays, fire up the show, and then after watching it I’ll write these articles and publish them.  Sometimes it doesn’t always work out that way, but that’s always my goal.

This Friday, I sat down to watch the show, and before I could even press play I got a call from my father, who decided to tear apart the bathroom, and repair a rotting floor.  Naturally, he needed help.

So I went to help him, spent the majority of the day there, then came home, watched the CWC, and passed out on the sofa.  And here we are, days later, and I’m finally sitting down to write about it.

So, apologies to all.  Hopefully you didn’t wait for me to recommend the show, though.  Hopefully, you just watched it, because once again, it was great.

The second round has come to a close with this episode, and we had three matches, all a different pace, all very entertaining.

To open the show, Lince Dorado took on Rich Swann.  Swann is over with the crowd in a major way, and his charisma will work wonders for him on Raw.  Dorado took a moment to show some of his own charisma, dancing a bit at the start of the match, mimicking Swann’s routine.  This was a shorter match at around eight minutes.  Nice back and forth action here, with Dorado showing some truly awesome agility.  Early on, Swann bailed to the outside, and Dorado followed him out with a springboard plancha.  Swann countered a suplex attempt for a spike DDT and a near fall.  Dorado managed to counter Swann’s standing 450 splash with his knees, but in the end Swann dodged Dorado’s Shooting Star Press and hit his own Phoenix Splash to pick up the win.

Next up, Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Drew Gulak.  I wasn’t sure what to expect out of this one, to be honest, but I got a nice surprise.  This match also clocked in at around eight minutes, and was a hard-hitting match with a nice mix of stiff strikes and gorgeous technical counters.  I think Gulak wound up being a much better fit for Sabre than his first opponent in the tournament.

It was submission attempt and counter, over and again.  Both men struggling to keep the advantage throughout.  Just as it seemed as if Gulak was about to lock in the Dragon Sleeper, Sabre reversed it into a rolled up leg cradle into a bridge.  It was a very unique way to get a pinfall, but it worked, and Zack Sabre Jr. picks up the win.  

Our main event is Johnny Gargano vs. TJ Perkins.  Throughout the night, the announcers talked about Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa losing at NXT Takeover: Brooklyn II.  They highlighted his leg injury during their match against The Revival, and they made sure to acknowledge it when it became an issue during the match.  Naturally, throughout the match, Perkins would focus on the leg.  Gargano went for a Lawn Dart into the corner, but his leg gave out.  Perkins went for a kneebar, which Gargano countered.

Both men struggled to their feet, but TJP hit a leaping neckbreaker.  Gargano countered and connected with a Lawn Dart for a believable near fall.  Gargano locked in a full nelson, but TJP rolled through into a kneebar.  Gargano couldn’t reach the ropes, and tapped out, giving Perkins the victory.

This was the longest match of the night at over 12 minutes, and definitely felt main-event worthy compared to the other two matches.  Not that it was the craziest or zaniest, but that it was the match that told the best story – something of a pattern that I’m seeing in Gargano’s matches.  And I like it.

So, this Wednesday, we have the quarterfinals.  Kota Ibushi will face off against Brian Kendrick, while Gran Metalik will take on Akira Tozawa.  On paper, both matches look simply incredible, and I can’t wait.  Who do you think will win these matches?

About Drew Koscelek (1122 Articles)
Editor in Chief for, and a lifelong fan of pro-wrestling. Drew is one of the co-founders of Ring Rap, and is the current administrator of the site. Outside of pro-wrestling, he has a passion for all things geeky - reading, science fiction, video games, and music. You can contact him on Twitter @PsionStorm, or via email at

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