WWE 205 Live airs immediately after Smackdown on the WWE Network, starting at 10pm Eastern. We will have full coverage of the show as it happens, both here and on Twitter @RingRap.
Austin Aries is once again the #1 Contender, TJ Perkins has seemingly gone bad, and Kalisto is now on the Raw roster, which means we could have a new addition to the Cruiserweight division. What will happen? Tune in and find out tonight!
We see a vignette showing Neville retain his title at Wrestlemania, and Austin Aries winning another opportunity for the title on 205 Live last week.
We go to the arena, and pyro welcomes us to the show. Corey Graves and Tom Phillips welcome us to the show. They hype Jack Gallagher vs. TJ Perkins. But first…
Brian Kendrick vs. Mustafa Ali
The Action: Kendrick goes for an early armlock. Early pacing is slow. Ali flips out of the corner, taunting Kendrick. He rolls Kendrick up for two. Head scissors from Ali, and Kendrick heads outside. Ali follows him out with a springboard cross body to the floor. Ali hits a knee and heads up top for the reverse 450, but Kendrick yanks the leg. He hits a back breaker from the top rope, and rolls it into a Captain’s Hook. The bell rings, but the referee didn’t call for it. It turns out, Akira Tozawa rang the bell!
The match restarts and Ali hits his inverted 450 for the win.
The Winner: Mustafa Ali
Tozawa asks Kendrick if he remembers the hat, and says it’s Lesson #2 – Appearances Can Be Deceiving.
Unfortunately, this match never really got out of first gear. There was some great action, but the two didn’t really kick it to the next level to make it truly exciting. Ali is walking a fine line where he can be incredible if he shows fire and aggression, but if he doesn’t, he’s just there. I feel like tonight, he was just there.
We see a clip of Neville talking to TJ Perkins, convincing Perkins to join the dark side. Backstage, Dasha interviews TJ Perkins, who has a different swagger. He says it isn’t about what he did to Austin Aries, but what Austin Aries did to him. He says Neville was right all along. He went into the Crusierweight Classic, and was a hero, for a month, but then in a few days noone cared. Jack Gallagher breaks in and asks him to take a more Gentlemanly approach. Perkins tells him he can’t hear him from his high horse, since Aries wasn’t the only one to benefit from his bad luck.
Rich Swann vs. Johnny Ocean
The Action: Ocean gets a surprising amount of offense to start. Swann fires back with a series of punches. He hits a stomp and standing splash for two. Hook kick out of nowhere, and Swann goes up top, hitting the Phoenix Splash for the win.
The Winner: Rich Swann
Swann takes the mic and addresses why he sent the gifts to Alicia Fox, why he let Dar take the credit. As he’s about to explain, Noam Dar interrupts. He tells Swann he’s a dirty little liar. He says he’s been sending Fox the gifts. The two start to bicker, until Alicia Fox heads out. She calls Swann a liar. She calls what she and Dar have special, and says she’s noticed Swann looking at her. Right on cue, another package is delivered. Swann smiles from ear to ear. Dar talks it up, saying Swann can’t get between he and Fox. He sends Swann out of the ring and hands the package over. Fox opens the package, and it’s loaded with baby powder, which flings all over Alicia Fox.
Backstage, Dasha Fuentes interview Austin Aries. Aries says Perkins wants to blame someone for his lack of success. He convinced himself that by becoming Neville’s friend it’ll turn things around. Aries says he knows what’s going on, even if Perkins doesn’t. He says Neville wants a puppet, and says he’s a Puppet Master. He says at Payback he’ll become Cruiserweight Champion, and then he dabs his way to finishing his banana.
Jack Gallagher vs. TJ Perkins
The Action: Perkins dodges the handshake to start the match. Gallagher connects with a headlock takedown to start. Gallagher does a handstand to get out of a headlock. He uses his leg to lock in a hammerlock, and processed to twist Perkins into a pretzel for a pin attempt.
Perkins does a head scissors into a dab. Gallagher returns the favor, minus dab. Back and forth, Gallagher sends Perkins to the floor. He gets the umbrella and teases a dive, but Perkins walks off.
Back in the ring, Gallagher does a handstand and keeps TJP away. Perkins catches the ropes and lures Gallagher in. Perkins starts to focus on the knee. He hits a flying senton off the apron for two.
Perkins continues to maintain control, working the knee. He hits a series of suplexes for a near fall. Perkins literally steps on the knee and ties Gallagher up. Gallagher frees his leg and hits two uppercuts, following up with a suplex. Gutwrench slam from Gallagher for two. Perkins hits a flying forearm off the middle rope. Gallagher sets him up in the corner, and he heads up top, He hits a back suplex off the top rope for a near fall.
Perkins rolls out of the ring. Back in the ring Perkins hits a kneebar out of nowhere. Gallagher rolls it over to get to the ropes. Gallagher cinches a headlock and twists it into a back breaker. Perkins misses a wrecking ball dropkick, thanks to Gallagher wrapping him up in the ring apron. He connects with a headbutt, and rolls Perkins in for two.
The two trade uppercuts in the middle of the ring. Perkins unleashes a flurry, takes out the knee and hits a jump kick. Gallagher stumbles into a headbutt. He tries to run for the dropkick but his leg is in rough shape. Perkins sends him head-first into the ring post, and follows it up with a detonation kick for the win.
The Winner: TJ Perkins
After the match, Neville comes out and raises Perkins’ hand from the apron as the show comes to an end.
A fine match that started slow and built up to a frantic pace towards the end. The problem is they lost the audience before that point, and I could swear I heard dueling chants of “This is boring/No it’s not.” If you were in attendance, please confirm or clarify.
On a different episode, this would’ve been a better match, but the crowd was clearly tired regardless, and nothing up to this point got them amped up enough to be excited about this. It was a fine match overall, make no mistake, but I think it lost something due to a number of factors.
Thank you for joining me this evening. Join us tomorrow for Ring Rap Audio!