SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WWE 205 LIVE
FEBRUARY 14, 2017
ANAHEIM, CALIF. AT HONDA CENTER
REPORT BY JOEY GALICIA (@RamJam89), PWTORCH CORRESPONDENT
Announcers: Mauro Ranallo, Corey Graves, Austin Aries
Joey G here. (In Bane voice.) Let the games begin.
Show begins with highlights of last weeks solid Fatal Five-Way match determining the #1 contender. If you missed it, the bout included Jack Gallagher, Noam Dar, Mustafa Ali, Cedric Alexander, and T.J. Perkins. Gallagher would win the match and earn a shot at King Neville’s Cruiserweight championship at Fastlane.
“Hail the Crown” and we’re off.
Mauro is still astounded by the SD triple threat. AA and Corey Graves welcome us to the show. They hype the main event between T.J. Perkins and Neville, as well as the debut of Gran Metalik. (TOTALLY FORGOT THAT WAS TONIGHT PANTS ARE OFF.)
Noam Dar makes his way down to the ring with ALICIIIIAAAAAAA FOXXXXXXXXX (That’s how Dar says it) for our first match-up of the show. His opponent… former champ Rich Swann.
Swann struts to the ring in a STYLIN AND PROFILIN WHITE LEATHER JACKET AND I CAN’T HANDLE IT. (Very Chic)
Swann grabs a mic and says that tonight is very special night for two reasons: One because he is back, and the other because it’s Valentines day. Rich dedicates the match to Alicia Fox. Corey Graves says that’s disrespectful, before Rich ends the segment by saying Alicia can’t “HANDLE THIS.”
(1) Noam Dar vs. Rich Swann
Tie-up. Dar grounds Swann and works the wrist. Swann makes it to his feet and takes down Dar with an arm-wrench. Things pick up and Swann hits dropkick which sends Dar to the outside.
Back in the ring Swann dances while Dar is on the ground. Corey says that his mocking of Noam Dar is again disrespectful. Dar comes back in but walks into a snapmare and stiff kick to the back of his neck. Swann goes up to the second-rope but Dar kicks his leg out and Swann hits hard.
In control Dar mocks the dance that Swann did to him and that makes Alicia Fox all giddy on the outside. (Adorable) Dar whips Swann into the turnbuckle and goes for the pin but only gets a two. Butterfly-Suplex and another two-count. Austin Aries says that Swann’s time away from the ring has made him a little rusty. Dar locks on a submission and screams at Swann for talking to Alicia. (Is the love triangle getting another layer?) Dar hits some stiff uppercuts before Swann round-house kicks him in the head that ECHOES throughout Anaheim.
On the comeback Swann hits some lariets but gets caught in an ankle lock by Dar. Swann uses his momentum to fling Dar to the outside again. Back in the ring and Dar gets two close nearfalls on a roll-up (he tried to use the ropes) and a rapid-lariet. AA and Corey ask Mauro if he’s making up these move names. He puts them in their place. “THAT’S WHAT IT’S CALLED.” (Book these three in a triple-threat at Mania.) Swann then hits a hurricanrana and a phoenix splash from the second rope for the victory.
WINNER: RICH SWANN at 7:57
That sends us to our first break which is an ad for Wrestlemania/the Network.
Back to the show and the announce team is bickering again. Mauro says there’s still a lot of great action left.
We cut to a backstage segment between T.J. Perkins and Cruiserweight Champ Neville. Corey Graves from ringside interviews them both. Neville congratulates Perkins on winning the CWC, but he only won because Neville wasn’t involved. Perkins says that Neville’s ankle is made of glass and that’s why he didn’t compete. He put the cruiserweights on the map. Neville says it doesn’t matter anymore, he is the champ, and no one is taking the belt away from him. Perkins says he can’t even remember if Neville was on Raw before he brought the attention the Cruiserweights needed. Neville looks f$#king pissed. “You’re going to regret saying that.” Segment ends. (Hide your children, Neville is going to murder TJP.)
Another ad break. When we come back there is a hype package for Gran Metalik. The package shows the highlights of the final Cruiserweight Classic between Metalik and Perkins. He says that TJ was a worthy opponent to lose too, but now he’s on 205 as well and it’s a whole different story. He says that this opportunity is beautiful and he’s going to take advantage of it.
Back to the arena and HERE HE IS FOLKS. Gran Metalik in his goldiest and redest combo ever. (Seriously, he looks like a luchadore Flash.)
The human torture device Drew Gulak will be his first victim…uh…I mean his first opponent because I don’t know who is going to win. (JK I know who is going to win.)
(2) Gran Metalik vs. Drew Gulak
Gulak explodes out the gate and immediately takes Metalik down with a dropkick. Metalik goes for a spring-board but gets caught in the ropes. (Botch) Graves bounces on the opportunity and says maybe Metalik doesn’t belong on the big stage. Metalik makes up for it by hitting some STIFF kicks and chops before he shows off his “king of the ropes” high risk maneuvers with ease. (So awesome that he’s finally on this show.)
Metalik WOWs the crowd with a very elaborate arm-drag that nets Si Si Si chants from the crowd. Gulak reverses another high-risk attempt and gets a two-count. Gulak locks on the gory special submission and even twists him around which looks AWESOME. Another pin-fall but only for a two count.
Back on their feet and Metalik ducks a clothesline with a few forearms and an enziguri which sends Gulak to the outside. He then does a spring-board tope con-giro or “Rio Metalik” as Mauro calls it. Corey calls hit something sillier. Metalik gets Gulak back in the ring and hits the Metalik driver for the three-count victory.
WINNER: GRAN METALIK at 5:27
Backstage Brian Kendrick approaches Akira Tozawa. Kendrick asks Akira if he would like to be his apprentice. He says if he accepts he will find great success like he did. Akira says NO. Kendrick says that he doesn’t understand what he’s offering him. Akira says he understands, he just doesn’t like Brian. That makes Kendrick upset.
Commercial break hyping the Sausage King of Chicago Braun Strowman verses the worlds largest athlete The Big Show. That should be…beefy.
T.J. Perkins music hits and it’s main event time. AA calls him Teddy Joystick Perkins. Corey Graves compliments Aries on his journalism on finding out T.J.’s middle name. Mauro shakes his head.
Neville’s theme (STILL ACES) cuts off T.J.’s before it even finishes. Ref tries to get them to shake hands. (Yeah good luck pal.)
(3) King of the North Neville vs. T.J. Perkins
Tie-up. Some nice counter wrestling from both competitors. Perkins wins the first go around and takes Neville down with an armbar. The commentary team puts over how great the mat-based wrestling is. (It is very smooth.)
After a couple minute of hammerlock reversals Neville hits a kick but then runs into a boot and frankensteiner by Perkins. Spring-board cross-body and Perkins gets a two-count. Perkins dodges several attacks from Neville but THE KING FLAPJACKS PERKINS ONTO THE ROPES AND OUT OF THE RING. (Looked nasty but safe.)
On the outside Neville works over Perkins by slamming his head off the apron. Corey puts over how dangerous Neville is due to his ability to adapt mid-match. Back in the ring Neville hits a flush missile dropkick for a two-count.
An irish-whip into the corner by Neville. He chokes Perkins with a boot to the throat. On the outside of the ring he flapjacks Perkins again this time on the barricade. He throws him back in the ring and covers him but only for a two count.
Neville slowly picks apart Perkins with kicks and a vicious rear chinlock. Graves wonders if Perkins regrets his words to Neville. AA wonders if Perkins regrets the pants he chose to wrestle in. (This match is already over Aries wins.)
But seriously, in the match Neville has complete control. He goes to the top rope but Perkins moves which leads to a neckbreaker from TJ. Neville rolls to the apron and Perkins hits his triangle springboard dropkick. Springboard DDT gets Perkins a close two count.
Neville dead-lifts Perkins from a submission hold and powerbombs him. Both guys are slow to get up. They trade stiff forearms. Perkins goes for the detonation kick, but Neville counters with a spin kick. Perkins with a jumping spin kick. He goes to the top rope but Neville runs up for the Superplex! TJ counters! Back on top and he goes for a jumping frankensteiner but Neville catches him! He goes for his submission finisher but Perkins rolls him up. CLOSE TWO.
Step-up Enziguri by Neville. He locks on his submission again and gets T.J. to tap.
WINNER: NEVILLE at 12:32 via SUBMISSION
Neville barely has time to celebrate because Jack Gallagher runs to the ring with William the 3rd in hand. He gets attacked by Neville and the two trade blows. Jack wins the encounter by using his monstrous headbutt. Jack grabs the belt and poses and Neville looks angry than he’s ever been. (Which is saying something.) Staredown and that’s the show.
(Crowd begins chanting for Austin Aries which is unfortunate because this is a decent bout but I understand. PUT THIS SHOW ON BEFORE SMACKDOWN I; DON’T UNDERSTAND.)
JG FINAL ANALYSIS: A very good show in a sense of moving things forward even though the remaining crowd wasn’t that into it. Rich Swann returned to the ring and picked up a needed victory in his path towards reclaiming the Cruiserweight title. Gran Metalik looked like 999,999 bucks (he loses a dollar for the botch) and popped the 205 lives audience the most during the evening. His presence on the show will certainly pick things in the high-risk area but hopefully they don’t make him do these things all the time because he will be dead before we make it to Mania. Good layer on top of the Tozawa and Kendrick story which should be noted because it happened in a talking segment where Tozawa hasn’t been great. Decent main event in terms of action but unfortunately for T.J. Perkins, no one wants to really get behind him as a babyface. He worked a much more heelish-style the week before and I think that is the path they should push him towards. Neville was spot on again with his character work, and the fact that he isn’t doing his typical high-risk move-set means he’s transitioning that character to his in-ring psychology. And of course, an aces job by the announce team. 6/10 which means it’s worth skipping.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S REPORT: 2/7 205 LIVE REVIEW: Best show yet with Dar vs. Cedric vs. Ali vs. Gallagher vs. T.J.P.