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Live From the 205 (2/26/19): Tournament Fever


The WrestleMania Cruiserweight Championship tournament has officially begun!

The bracket kicks off with two matches on this week's episode of 205 Live, which strangely sees two heels advancing to the second round. If you're wondering where the bracket is, look no further for I have found it for you:


That's right, poor Mike Kanellis doesn't even get a tournament match. To be fair, with all the losses he's accrued, why would he get one? The field has been whittled down to seven cruiserweights who have actually won things, based on performance in previous weeks, plus Oney Lorcan.

The toughest bracket in the first round has to be Cedric Alexander versus Akira Tozawa. These guys have both been #1 contenders in recent memory, and the matchup is basically guaranteed to reduce saturation in the title picture.

The other thing is I don't see a clear winner to go on to WrestleMania just yet. I'm counting out Humberto Carrillo, Oney Lorcan, Akira Tozawa, and Cedric Alexander as the overall winners—yes, even though they're the only faces left in the brackets to deal with the heel champion. No, my gut tells me that either Tony Nese or Drew Gulak will be turning babyface on the road to the title match: with the way Nese is being built up as a dark horse and his skillset that's better suited for a face, this may be the moment he gets his due.



Of course, I want it to be Gulak, because Gulak has been overlooked for the longest time. I still think there's a reign for him later this year, but given his and Jack Gallagher's current association with Humberto Carillo, I doubt he'll be turning anytime soon. The Nese/Gulak matchup in a couple of weeks will be the perfect time to test Tony out as a good guy again.

I'll need a few more weeks—and the actual execution of the idea—to grasp the thought of Nese going up against his buddy Murphy. But I've got one foot in the door.

205 Live 2/26/19 Final Grade: Tournaments on 205 Live are always a good thing, because you know they'll be giving out prime minutes to the contenders. This week's episode is no different. It's lean, it's mean, and it gets an A.

Short stops

  • I actually want to see Buddy Murphy—who's on vacation at the moment—personally address the possibility of Nese winning the tournament and going on to Mania to challenge him. I feel like they're skirting around the issue a bit.
  • Poor Jack Gallagher can't get on this tournament, but they were able to make space for Oney Lorcan?
  • Gran Metalik is suspiciously absent. Someone find him before he asks for his release.
  • Mike Kanellis gets a match next week, but he won't be part of the tournament. Has someone told him yet?
  • This terrible crowd is still not doing them any favors. Please, please tape the show before SmackDown again.

205 Live Rankings as of 2/25/19

Because we're currently in a tournament and tournaments are straightforward affairs, the 205 Live Rankings will take a quick vacation and be back next week, when we have non-tournament matches again. Thanks for understanding.

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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