All images courtesy of the WWE Network streaming service
- Akira Tozawa VS TJ Perkins; TJP wins.
- Hideo Itami VS Jack Gallagher; no contest.
- Cedric Alexander & Goldust VS The ‘Zo Train; wins.
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Cruiserweight Champion, Enzo Amore, is sadly out with the flu.
Therefore, he was not able to defend his Cruiserweight Championship against the #1 Contender on the first Raw of the New Year. However, Cedric Alexander still wanted a match against someone from The ‘Zo Train. Drew Gulak & Ariya Daivari agreed to give Alexander a match, but a tag team match. Gulak & Daivari thought there would be no one willing to team with the Carolina Kid, but it turns out that the Bizarre One, Goldust, was more than willing! The two defeated The ‘Zo Train with a bit of teamwork, likely not to Enzo’s liking. The Certified G will still have to face Alexander once he’s healthy, how much momentum will Alexander gather in the absence of the Realest Champ in the Room?
Akira Tozawa VS TJ Perkins!
205 Live starts 2018 off with a match-up of two former Cruiserweight Champions! Can the Stamina Monster spoil the FilAm Flash’s return after he’s been gone for three months?
The bell rings, TJP puts Tozawa right in a corner. The ref backs him off, the two tie up, TJP gets the waistlock but Tozawa gets the standing switch. TJP backs Tozawa into another corner and grabs hair, the ref calls for a break. TJP slaps Tozawa’s head, Tozawa chases him to the other corner! The referee keeps Tozawa back when TJP uses ropes for safety. Tozawa waits for TJP to come out, they tie up and TJP knees low before putting on a wristlock. Tozawa rolls and reverses, TJP pulls hair in order to whip Tozawa. Things speed up, Tozawa holds the ropes to stop himself, and now grabs TJP’s hair to throw him down. Tozawa fakes the chop, to give the jab!
TJP drops, Tozawa chuckles as he follows TJP to a corner. Tozawa starts the “AH! AH!” as he stomps a mudhole into TJP. The ref has Tozawa back off, he returns and TJP sticks a boot out but Tozawa blocks it. TJP goes to enziguri but Tozawa ducks it to Penalty Kick and back senton onto him. Tozawa is fired up as he sees TJP go out. Fans echo the “AH! AH!” while Tozawa builds speed, only to run into TJP’s swing kick!
Tozawa tumbles down to the outside and clutches his shoulder. TJP drags him back up and throws him into barriers. He puts that bad arm into a hammerlock before throwing Tozawa into a post, then throwing him back into the ring. TJP stomps Tozawa then rains down rights. He stands and stomps on Tozawa’s bad arm, then scoop slams him for the slingshot senton. TJP swaggers about already before covering, ONE. TJP puts the bad arm in an armlock, fans build to a rally for Tozawa. Tozawa stands up and fights back, but TJP throws him down by that bad arm to rain down more rights. TJP wraps the good arm around to a hammerlock, then stretches and tortures the bad arm.
TJP then snaps back to torque that shoulder! He doesn’t let up on Tozawa, he scrapes his shoe on Tozawa’s face. Fans rally while TJP brings Tozawa up. TJP puts that bad arm in another hammerlock before throwing Tozawa into buckles. TJP wrenches Tozawa’s arm around a rope and pulls on it. The referee counts, TJP lets go at 4. TJP whips Tozawa corner to corner, but Tozawa fires out for a roll-up, TWO, armbar DDT from TJP! He gives Tozawa a hammerlock saido suplex to damage the arm more, cover, TWO. TJP puts Tozawa in a hammerlock chinlock combination to again grind him down. Tozawa starts the “AH! AH!” and the fans echo it. Tozawa feeds off the fighting spirit but TJP adjusts to put him into a half-surfboard. Fans still rally for Tozawa, he gets up and fights back again. Tozawa runs, but into the leaping lariat from TJP, cover, TWO! TJP goes back after the arms with his modified butterfly stretch. Fans and Tozawa “AH! AH!” one more time, Tozawa slips out of the hammerlock, and boots TJP down! Both men are on the mat from exhaustion, Tozawa sits up and clutches his bad arm. TJP stands up, swings a kick but misses. Tozawa swinsg a kick, misses, slips under, saido suplex! TJP gets to the apron, Tozawa knocks him down. Tozawa fires up with “AH! AH!” and the fans echo him. He builds speed, and finally hits the Tozawa Torpedo!
Tozawa lands on that bad arm but he ignores it as he puts TJP into the ring. Cover, TWO! Tozawa brings TJP up but TJP kicks the bad arm, then fireman’s carry but Tozawa slips down to hit a spinning roundhouse! TJP ends up in position, Tozawa climbs up top. Tozawa takes aim but TJP slips to the outside. Even so, Tozawa drags TJP up by his hair. TJP pokes Tozawa in the eye, then bangs his head off the top of the post! Tozawa is dazed, TJP brings him down, fireman’s carry to the Detonation Kick!
TJP wins his return! Can the “Cruiser-Great” become Cruiserweight Champion in 2018?
Cedric Alexander and Goldust meet in the locker room.
They have a lot to accomplish tonight in their rematch with The ‘Zo Train. Alexander never thought a legend would want to team with him. Especially more than once. But, he has to point something out: Goldust is not under 205lbs. What?! Goldust is kidding, he knows he’s not. But perhaps with a nip and a tuck, he could be a “slim-fit” Goldust. That’s besides the point. Alexander and Goldust are friends, and when friends need his help, he sees “the whole thing through.” The whole thing? Yes! Alexander is a rising star, and Goldust is going to help him on his “Quest for Gold.” They’re like Thelma & Louise, Tango & Cash, Turner & Hooch! Hooch was a dog, though… Yes, they’re dawgs! Alexander feels this is the start of a beautiful friendship. It sure is! Can these new friends sweep The ‘Zo Train in the same week?
Hideo Itami VS Jack Gallagher!
The Ungentle Gentleman speaks on the way to the ring. “Ladies and gentlemen, last week we learned something new.” Everyone thought the Innovator of the GTS was simply here to compete, but no. Itami is here to “maim and disfigure”, which THE Brian Kendrick knows first hand. Gallagher asks the “fellows in the truck” play the footage. The fans in Orlando get to see the GTS hit but break Kendrick’s nose and orbital socket. Gallagher’s pal is now out for two months, and it all happened on Christmas. It is a gift that keeps on giving because it is possibly irreparable damage. Gallagher watches it again in slow motion so that everyone can see the exact moment Itami’s knee crushes Kendrick’s nose. “Can you imagine ending your holiday half-blind?” It upsets Gallagher, but also inspires him. Gallagher is inspired to dissect Itami, and vows to make Itami suffer. Will Gallagher come through for his compatriot? Or will he just #GoToSleep?
The moment Itami hits the ring, Gallagher wields William III the umbrella and swings at him! Itami ducks the strikes, then strikes bakc with forearms and kicks. The bell has NOT rung so this isn’t a match, but fans still like what they see as Itami gives Gallagher a strike fest. Gallagher falls backward into a corner, Itami runs in but Gallagher finally connects with the umbrella!
But wait! William III was simply concealing a lead pipe within his folds! And Gallagher doesn’t stop with such chicanery, he furiously rains down rights on Itami! Gallagher goes back to his pipe, and SMACKS Itami in the back with it!
Itami writhes in pain, the ref demands Gallagher stop here, but he won’t. Gallagher smacks Itami again with the pipe! He also stomps Itami out, and even threatens the referee with that pipe. More referees come in to stop Gallagher, so Gallagher simply takes his leave, pipe in hand. Fans boo and jeer what Gallagher did while he tucks the pipe back inside William III, will Itami even be able to seek his revenge?
Backstage interview with The ‘Zo Train.
What motivated Ariya Daivari & Drew Gulak to want this rematch? They asked for it because they weren’t ready for that “gold freak” who isn’t even a Cruiserweight! Gulak translates into a more professional tone by saying it was a “major injustice” that not only is their leader out with the flu, but they were challenged by that “depraved individual” Goldust. “That’s just a bridge too far”, for they weren’t ready for someone of Goldust’s… “stature”. When they said Alexander could team with “anyone”, they meant anyone in Cruiserweight Division! Even so, the ‘Zo Train is ready for any challenge, big or small. They may not have their Conductor with them, but they will dedicate this win to “the one man that represents the Cruiserweight Division and everything that’s right with it”, Gulak’s “best friend”–
Gulak won’t let himself be intimidated by Goldust’s eccentricity, he returns the deep breath and “HRAR!” in kind. “God your breath stinks!” Oddities and awkwardness aside, which side will come out the winners on the first 205 Live of 2018?
Cedric Alexander & Goldust VS The ‘Zo Train!
For the first time, a non-Cruiserweight (male) superstar competes on 205 Live, can Goldust make his debut on the Purple Show a win?
The bell rings, “Daivari Dinero” starts against the Carolina Kid. The two circle, fans are already rallying as they tie up. Daivari powers Alexander back but it’s Alexander who puts Daivari in the corner. Alexander honors the clean break, and grins as Daivari comes out to circle with him. They tie up again, Alexander gets the armlock and wristlock, Daivari rolls to reverse. Alexander rolls and spins but Daivari yanks him down by his hair. Daivari runs, things speed up, handspring headscissors leads to a dropkick from Alexander! He handsprings and covers, ONE, but Alexander won’t let Daivari get away. He gives Daivari an arm-wringer and puts on an armlock. Daivari endures, Alexander points to Goldust and the fans cheer “We want Goldust!” Alexander obliges, he brings Daivari over and tags in the Bizarre One! Goldust kicks and wrenches Daivari but Daivari knees low. Daivari tags Gulak, Gulak runs into an arm-drag. Goldust brings Gulak up and snapmares him before feeling him up.
Gulak is a bit weirded out, he stands right up and swings on Goldust. Goldust dodges and gives Gulak a “HRAR!” that sends Gulak scurrying away. The ‘Zo Train tells Goldust to back off, then Daivari tags in. Daivari dares the “freak” to come at him, fans chant “You Still Got It!” as they rally for Goldust. Goldust and Daivari tie up, Daivari powers out of a headlock but Goldust keeps moving to run Daivari over and run the ropes. “Hold on!” Goldust has to catch his breath.
Alexander fans him, Gulak protests that “there are no time-outs!” Goldust catches his breath, and “HRAR” for Daivari. Daivari kick slow and brings Goldy into the ‘Zo Train corner. He stomps a mudhole into Goldust, then tags Gulak in. Gulak clubs Goldust before wrenching the arm. Fans rally for Goldust more, he fights back against The ‘Zo Train, but Gulak slows him down with a headbutt to the stomach. Daivari tags in again, the ‘Zo Train mugs Goldust before Daivari gives him a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO, Daivari puts Goldust in a chinlock. Fans rally for Goldust, Gulak protests, Goldust stands up and fights back. He slips out of Daivari’s scoop and tags Alexander in! Alexander rallies on Daivari, his whip is reversed but he dropkicks out Daivari’s knee to send him into a buckle. Alexander slips out to the apron, to kick Daivari in the head! Daivari falls back, Gulak runs in but is knocked away. Alexander jumps up but Daivari trips him up, Alexander crashes into the buckles!
The referee checks on Alexander, who is dazed from that impact. Fans rally as he stirs and crawls for his corner, but Daivari is up and drags him to the ‘Zo Train corner. Tag to Gulak, who runs to stomp Alexander in the ribs. Gulak trash talks Goldust as he continues to stomp Alexander. Cover, TWO, Gulak grabs Alexander again for crossface punches. Cover again, Goldust scares Gulak off the cover. Gulak gets Alexander to his corner and stomps away before tagging Daivari. Daivari adds onto the mudhole, the referee backs him off, and Daivari trash talks Goldust. Alexander fights back but Daivari snapmares him down and puts the chinlock back on. Fans rally while Daivari trash talks in Farsi. Alexander gets up and fights back again but Daivari throws him right out of the ring. Daivari fetches Alexander and throws him into steel steps. Goldust checks on his teammate, Daivari tells the “freak” to back off. They return inside the ring, cover, TWO. Daivari returns to the chinlock, fans rally again. Alexander gets up one more time and uses a jawbreaker to break the hold. He and Daivari stagger, Alexander elbows Daivari away. Daivari whips, Alexander uses that to hit the Neuralizer!
Both men are down, but Alexander is stirring. Fans rally as both men crawl for their corners, hot tags to Gulak and Goldust! Goldust rallies, his whip is reversed but he uses that to hit the bulldog! He gives Daivari an uppercut, then a few for Gulak. He whips Gulak corner to corner but is reversed, still hits the powerslam! And one for Daivari! Goldust is all fired up, as is Orlando. Goldust climbs up, but then realizes that’s too high. In fact, second rope and bottom rope are still too high. Goldust hops down and gives both Gulak & Daivari uppercuts. He hears the fans getting loud, brings Gulak up, but Daivari saves him. Another uppercut for Daivari, Gulak hits back, Alexander tags in! Springboard flying clothesline!
Gulak rolls out, Daivari runs in, Goldust sends him out. Wait, this isn’t going to happen is it? It is (not)! Goldust holds the ropes down so Alexander can FLY!
He wipes out The ‘Zo Train, and then gets Gulak in the ring. Alexander grabs Gulak, for the Lumbar Check!
Alexander & Goldust win again! They’ve swept the ‘Zo Train, two nights in a row. If Enzo didn’t feel good before the flu, he definitely doesn’t feel good now. Will the #1 contender take that Cruiserweight Championship away from the Certified G once he’s Bonafide Healthy?
A great night for the Cruiserweights here. Great to see TJP is back from injury, he put on a great match with Tozawa and looks in equally great shape. Like everyone else, he’ll have to wait a bit before returning to the Cruiserweight Championship scene, but his return can freshen up some things. Maybe he can be a major proponent of Tony Nese’s rise in individuality or even have encounters with The ‘Zo Train. I actually like Gallagher beating down Itami with the pipe-loaded umbrella. Gallagher needs to back up his (and Kendrick’s) claims of being cruel, and this was a good start. Hopefully this all leads to the two of them having a No Disqualification type match in the near future. And of course, Goldust was a treasure this entire episode. The Cruiserweight Division should’ve intermingled with non-Cruiserweight superstars this entire time, but having Goldust show up tonight was fun. The tag team match was also great, and more polished than the one on Raw. No idea how long this friendship of Goldust and Alexander is going to last, but it’s going to be fun while it lasts. I just hope it won’t end the way The Golden Truth did.
My Score: 8/10