SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
WWE 205 LIVE
APRIL 25, 2017
DES MOINES, IOWA AT WELLS FARGO CENTER
REPORT BY JOEY GALIZIA (@RamJam89), PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Tom Philips, Corey Graves
JG here. Sinus infection or not… I’M READY TO DO THIS.
Highlights of this past Monday’s Raw featuring the tag match between Austin Aries & Jack Gallager versus T.J. Perkins and Cruiserweight champion Neville. The video package focuses on the ongoing relationship between Perkins and Neville and the route the former has had to take in order to get noticed by the WWE Universe.
“Hail the Crown.” (I’m too sick to even notice.)
Philips and Graves welcome us to the most exciting hour on all of television. They hype the Raw brand PPV Payback this Sunday. (If only there were a network where you could watch it.) They inform us also that our main event will be a Fastlane rematch between Gentlemen Jack Gallagher and King Neville. (My body is ready.)
Rich Swann’s music hits and we’re ready for our first matchup of the evening. Akira Tozawa comes out next. (TAG TEAM PLAYA.)
Their opponents are the Scottish Super-Nova Noam Dar and The Brian Kendrick. Corey Graves tells all the ladies of Des Moines to get excited because Noam Dar is now free and on the market.
We are reminded via video of Tozawa’s life lesson that he taught Kendrick on last week’s 205 live. (“You have to have eyes in the back of your head.”)
Before the bell rings Kendrick throws his jacket at Tozawa and a brawl ensues. Swann and Tozawa win the exchange sending Kendrick and Dar to the outside. Suicide Dive and a Summersault Plancha in succession!
(1) Brian Kendrick & Noam Dar vs. Akira Tozawa & Rich Swann
Now that the match has officially started, Swann works over Kendrick with chops. Swann goes to the second rope but another attack but Dar sweeps his leg and he falls hard to the mat.
Powerslam by Kendrick. He tags in Dar and the heels work over Swann’s mid-section. Philips and Graves wonder how many more lessons Kendrick and Tozawa have to teach each other. Corey says he doesn’t care, he’s just there to soak in the knowledge.
Kendrick and Dar prevent Swann from making the hot-tag several times, but Swann connects with a stiff crescent kick on Kendrick to tag in the fresh Tozawa.
Tozawa cleans house, running through Kendrick and Dar with running dropkicks. He lands his signature screaming senton onto Dar and gets a two-count. Roll-up by Dar! Another two!
Suplex by Tozawa. He goes to the top, jumps over Dar. Kendrick grabs him for Dar to hit, but the some miscommunication leads to Dar hitting Kendrick! Tozawa hits a shining wizard to net a win for the babyfaces!
WINNERS: Akira Tozawa & Rich Swann at 7:14
After the match, Tozawa gets on the mic and says that choosing a partner is very important. His choice was very poor, thus his loss. This is lesson #4.
Dasha is backstage with the champ. She asks how he’s prepared for Jack Gallagher. Neville says that he’s proven before that Jack doesn’t belong in the same ring as him, and in fact no one even comes close, except maybe T.J. Perkins. His triumph is inevitable. (Or should I say…INEVILLEABLE. Thank you.)
Commercial ad for Payback featuring the House of Horrors match between Wyatt and Orton.
Back from break and my boy Mustafa Ali comes out for the next contest. Highlights of his matchup last week with Ariya Daivari, whom he lost to because of the distraction by Drew Gulak. His opponent tonight: TONY NESE.
Drew Gulak comes out with his “NO FLY ZONE” sign. He tries to start a chant but gets shut down. (EEeeek.)
(2) Mustafa Ali vs. Tony Nese
Tie-up. Nese pose. (That’s one.) Gulak joins the commentary team and preaches his new ideology regarding the safety of the 205 division. In the ring, Nese hit’s a shoulder block and poses YET AGAIN. (That’s two in the first minute.)
Ali dives over nese and hits a standing back tuck and then HE POSES. As things pick up, Ali hits a spinning-wheel kick sending Nese to the outside. Ali chases him but runs right into a vicious clothesline by the premier athlete.
At the table, Gulak says that he’s seen too many young athletes like Mustafa Ali whose careers have been shortened because of high-flying. Nese catches Ali in a stalling vertical suplex. He poses for a third time before throwing Ali onto the ropes. Big hip-toss. ANOTHER POSE. (Seriously this could be a drinking game.)
Ali counters a back-drop with a bulldog and both men are down. Graves reminds us that Gulak isn’t just a cruiserweight buzzkill, but a submission specialist. (He’s the one who came up with the nickname the Human Torture Device.)
Moonsault cross-body by Ali and he gets a two-count. Stiff kick in the corner. Roll-through neckbreaker sends Nese to the outside again. Ali does a tope con hilo over the ring post!
Back in the ring Ali sets up for his inverted 450 but Gulak pulls Nese out of the way. The ref calls for the bell and Nese wins by DQ because he touched Nese first?
WINNER: Tony Nese by DQ at 6:46
An irate Ali goes to the top and gets some HEIGHT on a senton onto Drew Gulak. (Corey also gives him props.) Gulak runs away screaming at Ali that he was trying to help him.
Backstage we see Gallagher preparing for his match with Neville. He’s chatting with Austin Aries who is holding his lucky banana.
Commercial for NXT. Tyler Bate vs. Jack Gallagher for the United Kingdom championship, and Drew McIntyre versus Andrade Cien Almas.
Payback ad hyping Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns. #teamBRAUUUUUUUUUUUUUN
Jack Gallagher’s music hits and it’s time for the main event! Neville comes out looking as focused as ever. (Also I wish that his new heel theme came out before I wrote that top 5 article, because man this one belongs on there.)
No handshake. (No kidding.)
(3) Jack Gallagher vs. Neville
Both men circle each other for a moment and eventually tie-up. Jack locks on a headlock. Irish-whip into the corner andddddddddd headstand spot. (No one has figured out how to handle this yet.) Dropkick and Neville gets sent to the outside.
Neville grabs Jack’s umbrella and tosses it up the runway. Gallagher, NOW PISSED, hits a suicide dive.
Neville catches Jack with a kick to the knee and multiple kicks to the head to take control. Powerslam. He goes to the top and hits a dropkick from one side of the ring to the other. Graves doesn’t know how anyone could prepare for Neville, especially when he dropkicks all the air right out of your chest.
The King continues to wear Jack down. Snap-suplex. Cover and two-count. Neville mouths off to a couple fans allowing Jack to hit a few head-butts to the gut. Neville responds by slamming Jack’s head off the turnbuckle. Another dropkick to the back of Jack’s neck.
Jack works his comeback. Roll-up! Two count. Jack connects with a European uppercut, and then a version of a belly-to-belly suplex. Standing dropkick. Another. Jack goes for the pin but only gets a two. As Jack plays to the crowd he walks into a strike by the champ, and then lands a facecrusher.
Neville mouths off. Jack hits another dropkick but Neville kips up and is HYPED AF. (So awesome.) Jack immediately hits his stiff headbutt and connects with all of it. (Great sequence.) He goes for the pin but Neville JUST kicks out.
Butterfly suplex by Jack. Neville goes to the top but Jack pushes his legs out. Both up on the top and he goes for a superbackdrop. Palm strike to the face by Neville. Running boot to the back of Jack’s head. Neville locks in the rings of Saturn and Jack submits.
WINNER: Neville by submission at 11: 55
Graves says that all should bow to Neville. Neville starts heading to the back, but instead comes back and hits Jack who was being helped by the ref. He goes to lock on the rings of Saturn on the ramp but A.A. comes out! Discus Five-arm! Last Chancery! Aries then goes to the ring to pose. He and Neville have a vicious staredown as the show goes off the air.
JG FINAL ANALYSIS: A much better show than last week. (Not that it would have been hard.) Two solid opening bouts followed by a very crisp main event makes this week’s 205 a proper go-home show. The Tozawa and Kendrick “LIFE LESSONS” angle is running quite long, but both are such charming performers that I’ll continue to buy into it. The Drew Gulak storyline, although tremendously silly, has at least done its job in showcasing Mustafa Ali’s expansive high-risk move-set. The idea was to eventually pit Gulak (and his submission based offense) against Ali, and that was set up nicely tonight. Besides Neville and Austin Aries, Jack Gallagher has been the star of 205. He’s over with the crowd, is a genuinely fantastic talker, and continues to deliver entertaining matches on a weekly basis. Great closing segment (even though we’ve seen it before) to send us to Payback. Overall, an easy, fun, and story enhancing watch.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S REPORT: 4/18 205 LIVE REPORT: One of the worst episodes yet, headlined by sloppy TJP vs. Aries match, plus Nese vs. Tozawa, Ali vs. Daivari