Hey, kids, it’s the Botching one with another edition of “The Pickup”. So we’ve recently learned something fairly uncomfortable yet unsurprising about how “205 Live” is perceived by the powers-that-be in WWE. Turns out WWE really only views “205 Live” as another hour to fill time on the WWE Network. They seem to figure that since they’ve already got a captive audience for “Smackdown Live!”, they just tack “205 Live” onto the program for the evening and bang! Another show. While it’s regrettable that it’s viewed that way, I kinda get it. With the arrival of Drake Maverick, things seemed to be changing a bit and, overall, the program was feeling fresher. As time has gone on, that’s no longer the case. It’s slipped into somewhat of a same-y kind of presentation week after week and while I absolutely love the ring work each week, I can see why casuals wouldn’t be anywhere near as into it.
Okay, onto the show…
Kalisto vs. Tony Nese
Before the match could even start, Nigel ETHERED poor Aiden. Aiden referred to him as an old fogie for talking down Kalisto as he always does and Nigel just set fire to poor Aiden. I never saw it coming and things got awfully silent for a bit after he did it. I imagine it caught them all by surprise and they probably lost it and needed some time to get it together so that they could continue. Okay, the match.
Nese is coming off an incredible match with the now-NXT UK worker, Noam Dar. He’s really awakened nicely lately and this match continues to show development with him. He’s done away with the stupid “I have amazing abs and you don’t” entrance and he now comes out with purpose. The ring work from him, while never bad, is even better now. This was the speed game vs. the power game. Nese’s particularly nasty german suplex on Kalisto absolutely shook the ring. Moving forward about ¾ of the way through this match and it really picked up in terms of storytelling and work. Nese took this and I’m finally okay with him moving forward now. I really want him to turn on Murphy now. That’ll make a great feud. Perhaps we’ll get it at Mania? Time will tell…
Backstage segment – Humberto Carrillo & Jack Gallagher
Gallagher tutoring poor Humberto. That was funny. I like Gallagher filling the role of the British head master. Dead!
Backstage segment – Drake Maverick, Mike & Marie Kanellis
Fun little segment. Mike was ready to get mad and Drake handled it with professionalism and tact. It moves the story of Mike & Marie being perennial losers a la Curt Hawkins. I don’t mean to hate, I promise, but Mike is without personality, by and large. Marie is the one we really want and he is dragging her down.
Drew Gulak vs. The Brian Kendrick
Gulak is coming off of a really good match with Matt Riddle on NXT. He continued with the grappling that we got so much of during that NXT match too and it’s so much fun to watch. Flying isn’t everything and I, for one, enjoy watching a great grappling match. That’s what quite a bit of this was. I’m pretty sure I was hearing “this is boring” chants and that says far more about the audience than it does about the competitors. This was a really fun match all told. They traded submissions as you’d expect but the Gu-lock ruled the day. Kendrick never did give up and the commentators made that known.
This was a decent episode of “205 Live”. The tournament was heavily focused on, of course, and two men have moved on. Let’s see what happens next week. I’ll have another “Pickup” waiting for you.