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Live From the 205 (3/6/18): Everything Is Falling Into Place


I'm honestly running out of positive things to say about the Drake Maverick 205 Live.

I mean, yes, I understand we're still in the middle of a tournament, but we're about to wrap it up soon. Assuming they'll have both semifinals matchups happen on next week's episode, we're pretty much done here, using the last three weeks before WrestleMania to build up the finals. With the way things are going under the Drake/Triple H regime, that's probably what's going to happen.

I'm definitely happy that those who truly deserved an opportunity to be showcased are getting their due. We've got a final four, and for longtime 205 Live viewers, they're exactly who we wanted them to be: aside from Roddy Strong (who I'm still pulling for to reach the finals), we've got Cedric Alexander, Mustafa Ali, and Drew Gulak, all of whom played a big part in holding the show down while Enzo Amore was on top. You know a pro wrestling tournament is being booked well when it's really, really hard to pick a final two; what more the actual winner?


Much more than who's advancing in the tournament, I really can't wait to see what else is in store when we finally crown a new Cruiserweight Champion. I'll take this time to also talk about a huge rumor regarding the cruiserweight division after WrestleMania: the creation of a tag team championship for 205 Live.

Granted, I personally believe the women of the main roster need a tag title more, but hey, if a tag team championship for the cruiserweights net more people in the division some exposure, then I'm all for it. It's going to mean that the show is a step closer to being a fully realized brand instead of just a minor secondary show to RAW

The teams we're already seeing are loaded with potential: the Lucha House Party is already a natural choice to compete in the division, and the team of Hideo Itami and Akira Tozawa is a great way to utilize two mishandled Japanese talents. Throw in the British hard style of Jack Gallagher and Brian Kendrick, as well as the Singh Brothers (who were part of the very first 205 Live episode) and one more team from the roster and we'll be all set.

I never expected to see any of this happen when we began 2018, but I'm so glad things are falling where they should after a rough second half of 2017. 205 Live is slowly turning into the actual place to be on the main roster.

205 Live 3/6/18 Grade: A terrible crowd drags down what's pretty much the B-side of the Cruiserweight Championship Tournament, but developments on the cruiserweight tag team division make up for it. Still a solid episode, but one you'd probably want to watch on mute to avoid how painful it was. B+

Short stops

  • Seriously, this crowd is the worst. You could hear some douchebag in the crowd scream "jobber!" during the Drake/Hideo/Tozawa segment, and the same dude trying to get a "boring" chant going.
  • I felt really, really sad when Drew Gulak said he hadn't opened his Microsoft Office in weeks. Really? Not even Microsoft Word?
  • So good to see Gulak kill guys with the Dragon Sleeper.
  • What kind of dude names himself Nemeth? Also, why would you name yourself using Dolph Ziggler's shoot surname?
  • I haven't seen Hideo Itami move as naturally as he did with Tozawa, or any other tag team that's more organic than them. This might be low-key the best idea the show's done ever.
  • I'm currently enjoying Buddy Murphy's gimmick of getting weighed before every match. They don't tell you overtly, but through Murphy they're telling us that the cruiserweight division is a big deal, and some guys will jump through hoops to be a part of it. Buddy friggin' Murphy cut weight and wants to prove to Drake Maverick that he's well within the 205-lb. limit. Eventually he's going to have to find something new, but it's a great introduction of an NXT guy to the cruiserweight division.
  • You know Mustafa Ali is legit when he's the only guy on the entire show who could get the crowd to chant for him.
  • Great, great roll-up finish that helps keep Murphy looking good. WWE has done a good job with roll-up finishes lately, and the variety of surprise pinfalls among the company's talented wrestlers helps keep the plot device fresh.
  • AND HOW ABOUT THAT 450 ON MURPHY'S LEFT ARM? JESUS, MUSTAFA, YOU A SAVAGE. SERIOUSLY, WATCH THIS FUCKIN THING:
Photo from WWE

*****

Romeo Moran (@roiswaris the Editor in Chief of Smark Henry, one of the three hosts of the Smark Gilas-Pilipinas Podcast, and is associated with Philippine Wrestling Revolution. He gets by in this hard knock life through working in publishing. Smark Henry was his and Stan Sy's original vision of a watering hole for local wrestling fans. He roots for the undersized guys who hit hard, but really hates Davey Richards with his entire soul. He likes taking your wrestling questions over on his Curiouscat account.

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