2017 is here and with it the hopes for another great year in professional wrestling. Wrestlemania rumours are already floating around the internet and Royal Rumble announcements are taking place every Monday on Raw. Not only that but we have the WWE UK Tournament coming soon. But before Wrestlemania and before the Rumble we have to catch up on 205 Live. With Neville’s recent heel turn and Noam Dar’s romance with Alicia Faaaaaaaawks, this show is determined to make something of the cruiserweights, and up until now I would say the show has been doing alright. 205 Live is by no means perfect but they were hitting the major beats right building the show around Swann, Kendrick and TJP before introducing some much needed star power in Neville. Things had been going great, until episode 6.
The first 5 weeks of 205 live were great but once the show hit week six something changed, maybe it was a lazy start to the New Year, I don’t know. What I do know however, is that if the cruiserweights want to make an impact in the WWE, episodes like episode 6 need to be few and far between. It was by a large margin, the worst episode of 205 live thus far. It sounds cruel to start my review off in such a negative way it is because of my high hopes for the cruiserweight division. I absolutely loved the Cruiserweight Classic and the introduction of Neville to 205 Live was an incredible choice. I have hopes that 2017 can be for the cruiserweights what 2016 was for the Women’s division, but not if they keep making non episodes.
When I say non episode it’s because I feel everything that happened lacked any story progression. The matches and angles present were merely reminders that those angles are still happening rather than progressing them in any way. We had Neville beating on TJ Perkins because Rich Swann was absent. It did nothing for either man as Neville has already proven himself against the champion. Sure TJP won the cruiserweight classic but it’s hardly treated as the huge achievement it was so TJP seems like just another guy gunning for the title.
Another aspect to the show was the Jack Gallagher/Daivari feud. Gallagher’s match was intruded on by Daivari yet the intrusion was one attack. It felt a little unfulfilling, if these two men really do hate one another have them brawl, what they did seemed a little off to me. In fact the only segment of the show with something to offer in episode six was the opening match.
205 Live opened with the return of a legend, Tajiri made his return to the WWE. I had wished the crowd would have reacted more to the Buzzsaw but it was nice to see him. His match was fairly short, he hit all of his regular spots, the Buzzsaw Kicks and Tarantula etc. and at the end Kendrick came out to welcome Tajiri back to the WWE. Tajiri spat his green mist igniting the crowd and sparking what I hope is a rivalry between two great wrestlers. It could help fill out the show a little more and keep things fresh.
Speaking of keeping things fresh episode seven really stepped up to the mark after a disappointing week beforehand. With no time wasted the show starts with a Noam Dar segment, something I have really grown to like by this point, if only for the way he says Alicia Faaaaaaaawks. Things are really starting to get tense between Cedric Alexander and Dar which is shown from the off as Alexander refuses to shake Dar’s hand before the start of the match. Cedric quickly took charge and despite Dar working on the arm for a while Cedric used Foxy to regain control, however telling her to back off afterwards. In response to this we got the moment everybody was waiting for when Alicia finally helped Dar out of Cedric’s way setting him up for a kick from Dar for the win. Some real progression in this story line resulted in Alicia Fox and Cedric potentially splitting and Noam Dar closer to his dream girl. Hopefully Dar vs Alexander has a little more left in it as a story as the match was entertaining and it served the story well. If that was the end of the story however we would still have others to fall back on.
A new story had just been set up in episode six showing us a rivalry between Tajiri and Brian Kendrick and I was happy to see it start to take shape after Kendrick’s match this week. After taking on Sean Maluta, much like Tajiri had the week before, Kendrick grabbed a mic to call out the Buzzsaw in hopes of furthering the feud. I’m excited to see where this goes because Kendrick is easily one of the best cruiserweights on the roster right now.
Another cruiserweight near and dear to my heart is the extraordinary gentleman Jack Gallagher. Although I’m concerned about the fact that WWE is trying to turn Jack into a comedy wrestler I am optimistic about his feud with Daivari and after the incident last week the two men met up to discuss their future. After some back and forth banter the men eventually decide and I forfeit match is the best solution. The two men then erupted into a brawl before being separated. Again this was heaps better than the occurrence last week and lets us know that a match with some serious potential is coming up in the near future and is something to look forward to.
Speaking of potential Neville vs Rich Swann has the potential to be an incredible match at the Royal Rumble if the build is done properly and I would say after Swann’s match in the main event they went a long way towards selling the match at the royal rumble as something special . Swann’ match against Tony Nese was fine, both are good workers and put on some entertaining wrestling but the real main event was the promo between Neville and Swann at the end. Neville with the chip on his shoulder complaining about discrimination and Swann playing up the fact that he is the champion and he is the best had these two men seeming larger than life. So to see the champion vs the king of the cruiserweights at the Royale Rumble leads me to believe that after a rocky week 205 live and the cruiserweight division looks to be on the up.