Akira Tozawa vs. Tony Nese
Tony Nese is so completely boring. His gimmick is stale and he doesn’t sell it. Akira Tozawa had a great character but it has been dialed back to the point that he no longer matters either. There was a time when Akira could have gotten the crowd to chant with him but few do it now. He tried a few times but didn’t really get anywhere. They did tell a nice story in the ring and I won’t short-change that. I saw a speed from Nese that I haven’t really seen before. He did a sequence with Tozawa that was just fantastic and Tozawa can fly with the best of them. Still, it’s the overall story that fails. They’re facing each other…just ’cause. Neither character is sufficiently developed that I care who wins or loses. As a result, it’s hard to invest. That’s the issue with just about everyone on the 205 Live roster.
Backstage – Drake Maverick & Cedric Alexander
This was actually slightly better. It started off like it always does but he got more into it as time went on. By his standards, this was exceptional.
Lio Rush vs. Dewey James
Lio is everything that no one else in “205 Live” is. He actually has a character and he drips in charisma. Even more impressive is his speed. It’s just scary. I’m not sure I’ve seen anyone faster. Before you know what he’s going to do, he’s done it. He’s also got a great move set. He’s even got a great dive!
Dewey James goes by Fidel Bravo on the Indies and he’s far better than he was allowed to show here. They were telling a story and he had to job hard. He’s worth checking out and you can do that on YouTube.
He then has the nerve to be great on the mic. The line in the title felt like shooting because of how much truth he spoke. I loved his pacing and the content was good. Quite simply, Lio has everything he needs.
Backstage segment – Cedric Alexander & Hideo Itami
Again, Cedric was pretty good here. When Hideo came out to confront him, there was real emotion there from both of them. Good segment. I can’t believe I just said that about two Cedric Alexander segments.
Lucha House Party (Lince Dorado, Gran Metalik, & Kalisto) vs. The Brian Kendrick, Jack Gallagher, & Drew Gulak (Elimination rules)
Can someone please tell them that Penelope Gulak is really stupid? There’s nothing remotely funny about it. It’s just sad…kinda like this match is. You know, the one we’ve been getting permutations of for what feels like forever.
What I didn’t count on is how they’d freshen this up. Lince’s mask came off with Gulak shoved his head into the ground. I can’t tell if it was planned or not but it was handled well. The only thing we saw of Lince was the top of his head so it was well-played either way. In truth, this was a very good match. The eliminations occurred pretty much as they should and I do enjoy Gulak’s more vicious side. I also have to give it to Kalisto. His Selina del Sol is a thing of beauty – especially when he kicked Drew out of the ring to nail Gallagher with it. The ending was interesting too. Kalisto’s mask ended up coming off when Gulak put on his Gu-lock. No faces were shown so don’t worry if you haven’t seen it.
Lastly, I’m thrilled that Penelope was destroyed.
Please let this be the end of the Lucha House Party/Kendrick, Gallagher, & Gulak thing now. There are only so many times I can see permutations of this. They can make other things happen now. Noam Dar is cleared, Mark Andrews is available, and who knows where Ariya Daivari is. Why are they not being used? Cedric stepped up nicely this week and Lio is the charisma and style “205 Live” has been desperately in need of. Let’s hope they don’t screw Lio up. See you next week for another “Pickup”!