The twentieth episode of 205 Live is here! This week’s episode comes from the TD Garden in Boston Massachusetts.
The opening video package highlights last week’s main event Fatal 4-Way match that determined the number one contender to Neville’s Cruiserweight Championship. Austin Aries was victorious and will be taking on Neville at the Raw exclusive pay-per-view Payback on Sunday, April 30.
We get a nice opening pyro display as the commentary team of Tom Phillips and Corey Graves welcome us to the show. They let us know that tonight’s main event will be “Gentleman” Jack Gallagher vs. TJ Perkins who turned heel on this week’s Raw.
Neville spoke with Perkins backstage during this week’s Raw. Neville tells Perkins that although Perkins was the inaugural Cruiserweight Champion, his career has become a joke. Neville told Perkins that opportunities that should’ve been awarded to Perkins, were awarded to Austin Aries instead. Neville said that he’s the only person around here that has any respect for Perkins. Later in the night, Perkins took on Aries in a one-on-one match. Perkins played possum which helped him pin Aries and pick up the victory. After the match, Perkins attacked Aries, signifying the heel turn.
Evaluation: I really like how Perkins has turned heel. I feel like he’s better suited as a heel since his babyface character was already quite cocky and tough to like at times. The crowd was already booing him from time to time and he has been feeling stale, so good move to turn him heel. Perkins’ mannerisms when he sneaked out the win against Aries was great and his facial expressions after the attack were great too in that he realizes what he’s done and there’s no turning back. Hopefully this could help add interest to the cruiserweight division and make Perkins a more compelling character, leading to more match time for him and a more interesting show in and out of the ring.
Brian Kendrick vs. Mustafa Ali
Both men slowly trade holds for the first two minutes of the match until Ali gets the upper hand and hits Kendrick with a head scissors takedown that forces Kendrick to ringside. Ali follows this up by nailing Kendrick at ringside with a flying cross body off the second turnbuckle. Drew Gulak is shown watching this match backstage while talking on the phone. Kendrick crawls under the ring and comes out on the other side. When Ali was looking under the ring for Kendrick, Kendrick yanked on Ali’s arm and pulled him shoulder first into the ring post. Kendrick rolled Ali back in the ring and went for the cover, but Ali kicked out at two. Kendrick tries locking in the Captain’s Hook submission, but Ali blocks it so it’s turned into a modified Cobra Clutch. Ali fights out of it and rolls up Kendrick for a pin which Kendrick kicks out of. Ali then hits Kendrick with a big kick to the face which lays out both competitors.
Ali picks up the pace with a dropkick, clothesline, kick to the face and his signature rolling neckbreaker. Ali goes for the cover, but Kendrick kicks out at two. Ali goes for a flying cross body off the second turnbuckle, but he misses as Kendrick dodged it and follows it up with a big heel kick. Kendrick goes for the cover, but Ali kicks out. Kendrick runs at Ali in the corner, but Ali gets his knee up and takes down Kendrick. Ali heads to the top turnbuckle to hit his finishing move, the inverted 450 Splash, but Kendrick knocks Ali off balance and brings him to the mat, locking in the Captain’s Hook submission. Ali was getting close to putting his hand on the rope to break the hold, but he was just short.
The bell started ringing as if the match ended, even though Ali did not tap. Akira Tozawa is shown at ringside dressed in all black with a black hat on. Tozawa rang the bell to mess with Kendrick’s match. The referee ordered the match to continue. Ali capitalizes on a distracted Kendrick by kicking him in the face and winning the match with his finishing move, the inverted 450 Splash, after nine minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Mustafa Ali
Post-match, Tozawa gets on the microphone and asks Kendrick if he remembers this. Tozawa: “This is lesson number two! Appearances can be deceiving.”
Evaluation: Solid match from Kendrick and Ali here. Ali gets the win over a former Cruiserweight Champion in Kendrick, which keeps Ali looking strong, and Tozawa’s involvement helps protect Kendrick and continues their storyline. What’s happening now is Tozawa is using the lessons Kendrick taught him, against him. I feel that Kendrick and Tozawa’s rivalry has gone on too long now and I kind of just want it to end already with a big blowoff match. I thought that match was two weeks ago on the 205 Live before WrestleMania 32, but it wasn’t. Maybe the next time around, whenever this rivalry does end, a stipulation can be added to the match to make the ending more official.
TJ Perkins is interviewed by Dasha Fuentes backstage. She asks Perkins if cares to comment on his post-match attack on Austin Aries from this week’s Raw. Perkins said this isn’t about what he did to Aries, it’s about what Aries did to him (referencing what Neville told Perkins on this week’s Raw, that Aries has taken the opportunities that should’ve been awarded to Perkins). Perkins calls himself the hero of the Cruiserweight Classic and he compared competing in that tournament to playing tennis with the net down. Perkins said for a few long months, he was a gift to the cruiserweights, and in a few short days, Aries took opportunities that belonged to him. Jack Gallagher interrupts the interview and said that he hopes Perkins takes a more gentlemanly approach in their match tonight, a match Gallagher requested. Perkins tells Gallagher that he doesn’t want to hear anything from him, because Aries wasn’t the only one who benefited from Perkins’ bad luck.
Evaluation: Good heel promo from Perkins in talking confidently about how important he initially was to the cruiserweight division. Like a classic heel, he did not take responsibility for being unsuccessful as of late. Perkins just has some quality about him that when he talks confidently, it comes across so annoying. You buy him being a tool. Good job to TJP. I’m hoping this new direction works out for him.
Rich Swann vs. Johnny Ocean
Ocean picks Swann up and throws him in the corner right away. Ocean keeps up the attack with kicks to the gut and then throws Swann hard into another corner. Ocean keeps doing this before he locks in a headlock on Swann on the mat. Swann fights out of it with clotheslines, a kick to the gut, stomp to the back and a standing frog splash. Swann hits Ocean with a big spinning heel kick and finishes off this match with the Phoenix Splash for the win after two minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Rich Swann
Evaluation: Although Ocean was on the offensive for the beginning of the match, there was no question as to whether or not Swann would be victorious. This was just a simple win to keep Swann looking strong. Ocean was pretty dominant early on and was very loud/vocal during the match. I can see Ocean possibly sticking around the cruiserweight division.
Post-match, Swann reminded us that he’s been the one giving Alicia Fox gifts the past few weeks. Swann said he knows this probably raises a lot of questions such as why did he get Fox those gifts and why did he let Noam Dar take the credit. Right as Swann was about to give us an answer, he was interrupted by Dar. “The Scottish Supernova” called Swann a liar and said what kind of man interferes in another man’s relationship. Fox comes out to the ring next and calls Swann a liar too. A delivery man comes to the ring with another box. Dar stopped the delivery man and said this was another gift he got Fox, not Swann. Fox asked what it is. Dar said it’s a surprise. Fox opened the box and what looked to be baby powder sprayed Fox in the face and got all over her outfit. Swann was shown on the ramp laughing at the two of them.
Evaluation: Swann got the gift for Fox knowing Dar would take credit for it and that it would backfire. This is another storyline I’m tired of watching play out. I’m not the least bit interested in it. Swann and Dar deserve better. Hopefully they can deliver on a good blowoff match in the future as a 205 Live main event and end this story for good.
Austin Aries is shown backstage with Dasha Fuentes. She asks Aries for his response to Perkins’ post-match attack on him during this week’s Raw. Aries said it looks like Perkins wants to blame him for Perkins’ recent lack of success. Aries said Perkins is fooled into thinking that becoming Neville’s friend will turn around his career. Aries said Perkins’ is showing severe lack of judgement, which should be expected from someone who still dabs in 2017. Aries said Neville doesn’t want a friend, Neville wants a puppet, which is okay because Aries is the puppet master. Aries said Neville is hoping Perkins could stop him from going to Payback to challenge for the Cruiserweight Title, but that’s not going to happen because he’s done this dance before, and he’s going to do it again until he becomes the Cruiserweight Champion.
It’s main event time.
Jack Gallagher vs. TJ Perkins
Perkins plays with his hair instead of shaking Gallagher’s hand before the match starts. Gallagher and Perkins trade holds to kick off the match, with Gallagher locking Perkins in some unique looking submissions. Gallagher gets the upper hand and forces Perkins to escape to ringside. Gallagher takes out his umbrella and heads to the top turnbuckle, but Perkins notices this and walks up the ramp to avoid Gallagher. Perkins gets back in the ring and throws Gallagher into the corner where he does his signature handstand where he prevents people from running at him by kicking his legs out.
Gallagher looks for the sunset flip, but Perkins DDT’s Gallagher’s left leg. Perkins continues to work on Gallagher’s left leg. Gallagher had a boost of energy for a moment where he traded counters with Perkins, but his left leg gave out. Gallagher tried fighting back with headbutts, but Perkins continued to attack Gallagher’s leg, stopping Gallagher. Perkins locks Gallagher in a butterfly lock, but Gallagher slowly fights out of it and uppercuts Perkins twice before suplexing him. Gallagher hits Perkins with a gutwrench slam and goes for the cover, but Perkins kicks out at two.
Gallagher seats Perkins on the top turnbuckle and hits him with a huge back suplex. Gallagher goes for the pin, but Perkins just kicks out at two. Perkins avoids Gallagher by rolling out of the ring, Gallagher rolls Perkins back in the ring. Once Gallagher got himself in the ring, Perkins locked in a knee bar submission right away. In the middle of the ring, Gallagher rolls his body over and gets to the ropes to break the submission. Gallagher takes out Perkins with a swinging back breaker, but can’t capitalize with a pin attempt due to the fact that his left leg is in such pain.
Perkins slides Gallagher out of the ring and attempts to do the “wrecking ball,” a signature move of Perkins’ where he leaps over the top ropes and dropkicks his opponent. However, Gallagher traps Perkins with the ring apron and plants him with a huge headbutt. Gallagher gets back in the ring and covers Perkins, but Perkins kicks out at two.
Both men make it to their feet at about the same time and the trade blows until Gallagher bounces off the ropes and uses his momentum to hit another headbutt. Gallagher tries walking over to Perkins but he’s having trouble since his left leg hurts so much. Perkins throws Gallagher into the ring post and follows it up with his finishing move, The Detonation Kick, for the win after 16 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: TJ Perkins
Evaluation: That was a very good match and one of Perkins’ best matches since 205 Live began. There were a lot of great counters, submission holds and big spots in this match. Gallagher did a great job working from behind and the announcers were really putting over the fact that Gallagher was fighting on one leg, so that helps keep Gallagher strong. Great effort from Perkins as well. His new attitude showed in his style and mannerisms. I like it a lot.
Post-match, as Perkins is walking up the ramp to exit, Neville comes out. 205 Live goes off the air with Neville raising Perkins’ hand and celebrating the victory with him.
Overall, this was a pretty good episode of 205 Live. The opening match was solid and the main event was great as it always is. I found myself more interested throughout the show than I usually am. This is due to the heel turn of Perkins and me being curious as to where they were going to go with it, so this week’s episode had that going for it.
I included a lot of my detailed thoughts about the show in my evaluations above, so I’ll end this on that note.
That’s it for this week. As always, thanks for reading and if you like this review feel free to share it with your friends.
Picture used above is courtesy of WWE.com.