WWE 205 Live airs tonight on the WWE Network, immediately after Smackdown goes off the air, starting at 10pm Eastern. We will have full coverage of the show as it happens. Be sure to tune in here and on Twitter @RingRap for live reaction and commentary throughout the night!
The show starts with Akira Tozawa talking to Rich Swann in Japanese. Swann says tonight’s a big night since he’s facing Neville in the main event. Titus O’Neil “cha-chings” his way into view. Swann tries to walk away, but Titus says he’s got star power, and just needs the Titus Brand. Swann leaves. Titus says last night, Tozawa showed him everything Apollo has been saying is right. He says he’ll take the brand internationally, and will become the next Cruiserweight Champion. Titus offers Tozawa a contract. Tozawa remains silent. Titus thinks he’s playing hard to get and offers him more money. Tozawa still remains silent, so Titus says he’ll draft up a new contract and give him an offer he can’t refuse on Raw.
We go ringside to Corey Graves and Vic Joseph on the call. They plug Rich Swann vs. Neville in the main event, plus Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak. But first…
Gentleman Jack Gallagher vs. Tony Nese
The Action: The two lock up. Nese talks trash, but Gallagher is not afraid. Gallagher does the handstand spot in the corner and gets the better of it. Gallagher rolls himself up in a pretzel, luring Nese in to a flip. Weird.
Backstage, Austin Aries looks on. Nese gains control and hangs Gallagher upside down. He does a dumb spot where he does situps while kicking Gallagher. The crowd is mostly silent and somewhat groaning. This is the kind of dumb shit that gives the cruiserweights a bad taste in people’s mouths.
Nese delays a suplex and flexes. Gallagher takes advantage of it. Gallagher hits a headbutt, dropping both of them. Nese misses a springboard moonsault and goes straight into the ringposts. Nese sells it like he’s really hurt, but lures Gallagher in. He hits a Running Nese for the win.
Winner: Tony Nese
A flat match for a flat crowd. This got too cute for it’s own good.
Backstage, Noam Dar is Facetiming with Alicia Fox. He’s telling her they should move on from Cedric Alexander. Cedric walks in and agrees, saying he’s been trying to end it for weeks. Fox says it’s over when she says it’s over, and Dar says Alexander should just quit 205 Live. Alexander asks him when he’s going to get tired of failing. Dar tells him he’s going to have to fetch his bag out of the bottom of the river, but it turns out he threw away the wrong bag, as Ariya Daivari walks in looking for the bag. His dad gave it to him, only two in the world, $15k, blah blah. Dar backs out of the room.
I’m exhausted and this show, frankly, is not delivering so far. Between the last match and this segment, my intelligence feels insulted. So, we’re gonna take a break and come back to it tomorrow. WWE put all of their eggs into Raw and Smackdown, and 205 Live is clearly an afterthought. I could swear I can even hear the audience walking out as we speak.
Check back tomorrow afternoon for the rest of the details on the show. Sorry folks, and thanks for reading.
Update 06/21/17: And we’re back.
A vignette hypes Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak. The video package highlights their feud up to this point, and includes action from previous matches.
Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak
Drew Gulak walks to the ring with a megaphone, chanting “What do we want? Ground based offense! When do we want it? Now!” The rest of his promo is difficult to understand. He says the fans don’t want a 450 splash, they want a top wrist lock! Funny. He asks Ali to declare their match a “No Fly Zone.”
The Action: Ali doesn’t wait for the bell to ring. He flies out of the ring onto Gulak early on. The ref finally starts the match, and Ali charges immediately. Ali hits a springboard reverse cross body for two. Gulak shoves Ali off the top rope to the floor. He lands hard on his arm. Gulak starts to zero in on that arm. He bodyslams Ali with the arm tied back. Two-count.
Ali fires back and gets some momentum. He backflips out of the corner and hits a dropkick. He catches Gulak with a roundhouse on the apron and follows it with a rolling neckbreaker. Ali goes up top, but takes too long. Gulak catches Ali by the legs. Ali rotates and rolls him up for the win.
Winner: Mustafa Ali
Ali gets in Gulak’s face and talks trash for beating Gulak at his own game. A short match, but fine. This feud doesn’t feel like it’s over yet.
Backstage, Jack Gallagher is approached by Austin Aries. Aries peels his banana and takes a bite. He says he watched his match and says “Tough loss.” Aries says he saw him try to be a gentlemen in the ring, and Aries himself has tried the same. It didn’t work out for Aries, but meanwhile guys like Neville, TJP, and Tony Nese cut corners to do what they have to do. He’s thinking maybe there’s something to that, and maybe they should take a page out of their book. Gallagher starts to protest, but Aries says Gallagher had his back for months, now it’s his turn to return the favor. Gallagher asks if it’s an alliance, but Aries prefers the term “Loose affiliation.” He says they’re different, but they can learn a lot from each other. They shake hands.
Corey Graves and Vic Joseph cue up video footage of Neville attacking Rich Swann last week on Raw. We then see Swann walking backstage. He runs into TJP. Perkins says he doesn’t appreciate Swann telling him how to conduct himself, and he doesn’t appreciate it happening before his match last week. Swann apologizes if TJP thinks he was trying to get into his head – he’s not about that. Perkins says he doesn’t have to explain himself, and tonight it’s not TJP, or TJ Perkins in the main event. Tonight it’s Swann, and he suggests he goes out there and does what Swann told him last week – take care of business.
There’s no way TJP is turning back to face this early.
The announcers hype up Seth Rollins’ cover for WWE 2K18, and cue up a commercial for the game. It involves a lot of fire.
We go back to the ring – Greg Hamilton announces that Akira Tozawa will be watching the main event from ringside, as provided to him by the Titus Brand. Tozawa comes out in a suit. He’ll be sitting behind a purple rope, with a name plate, fancy chair, popcorn, the works.
Neville comes out first, and gets in Tozawa’s face.
Neville vs. Rich Swann in a non-title match
The Action: Neville goes on the offense immediately. He takes Swann to the mat. Swann cartwheels out and hits a dropkick. He follows Neville out of the ring, sending him back in immediately. Swann takes Neville to the mat. Neville fights free. The two dodge each other, with Swann getting the best of the exchange. Once more, he follows Neville out of the ring and rolls him back in. Neville tries to get a time out on the apron. Swann kicks him. Neville cuts him off from flying outside the ring.
Neville climbs up top and tries for a superplex. Swann pushes him. Neville lands on his feet and goes up top, but Swann hits an enzuigiri. He leaps over the top rope to the floor. Swann rolls Neville back in. He takes Neville down with a clothesline and literally runs him over. Neville pulls up the knees on Swann’s rolling thunder attempt. He kicks Swann to the floor and begins his assault, slamming Swann into the barricade. He continues the assault, slamming Swann into another barricade. He soaks up the boos of the fans.
The two trade blows. Neville drops Swann across the announce table. He tosses Swann back into the ring and heads up top, stalking Swann. Swann stands, but falls over before Neville can come at him. Neville drops off the top rope and goes after Swann. Swann gets pissed and hits a superkick to the jaw of Neville. Neville stands up first. Swann fires back with strikes and kicks. Two to the leg and one to the head. Two-count.
Swann hits a flying clothesline and a Michinoku Driver. He goes up top for the Phoenix Splash, but Neville makes it to his feet first. Swann fights him off and goes for it again. Neville moves out of the way and Swann misses. Neville immediately locks in the Rings of Saturn. Swann taps out.
Winner: Neville via submission
As expected, a good match for these two, but they’ve made it pretty apparent that Swann is not the next in line to challenge for the title. I had no reason to believe he would win this match, and nothing invested in it.
This episode of 205 Live really left me disappointed. The beginning of the show literally pissed me off so bad I had to shut it off. Granted, I was exhausted, but a good show could’ve turned me around. It didn’t.
That said, we did get a pair of solid matches from Ali/Gulak and Neville/Swann, but I can’t help but wonder how many tuned out before they could get that far.
Thanks for reading folks. I’ll see you next time.