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WWE 205 Live – November 29, 2016

by Scrooge McSuck

Rich Swann

- Last week on 205 Live, Rich Swann defeated THE Brian Kendrick to become the 3rd Cruiserweight Champion (since it was reactivated as the prize to the winner of the Cruiserweight Classic)... Jack Gallagher is an extraordinary gentleman with a unique wrestling style, while his victim, Ariya Daivari, didn't show much of anything... The Bollywood Boyz won the first match in 205 Live history, receiving zero reactions from the crowd over Drew Gulak and Tony Nese (the latter blaming inferior ring conditions for the loss).

- Presented on the WWE Network from Houston, TX, with Mauro Ranallo, Corey Graves and Austin Aries calling the action from ringside, unless otherwise noted. "The Outlandish" Rich Swann will defend his newly won Cruiserweight Title against Brian Kendrick in a rematch from last week's Main Event.

Cedric Alexander vs. Noam Dar

Mauro immediately pushes that Dar is the youngest Superstar on 205 Live, born in Israel and raised in Scotland. Before the match, ALICIA F'N FOX gives Alexander a good luck kiss. Oh God, it's only Week 2 and I already hate myself for watching these old episodes. Graves has it on good authority that Fox and Alexander are dating. Handshake before the bell. Lockup into the ropes and a clean break. Crisscross and Dar takes Alexander over with a side headlock. They fight over a wrist-lock, with Dar maintaining control. Alexander with a handspring into a head scissors, followed by a dropkick. Dar bails and hides from a dive. Alexander puts the breaks on and hits a wrecking ball dropkick. Back inside, Dar hangs up Alexander across the top rope and cranks the arm, driving Alexander into the canvas. He continues to work the arm, driving his knuckles into the joints. Dar with a headbutt to the midsection and a European uppercut for two. Dar blocks a sunset flip attempt and keeps working the arm. Alexander finally rallies, knocking Dar into next week with an elbow. He charges into the corner with a shoulder to the midsection, followed by an enzuigiri and springboard body press for two. The arm is still bothering him and Dar cradles him for two. Dar counters the handspring with a kick to the arm and locks on the Fujiwara Armbar. Dar sends Alexander shoulder-first into the post and hits a running enzuigiri for three at 10:17. I can say with 100% confidence that this was a wrestling match, a very boring one by standards set in 2016. The last few minutes were solid, but the rest was a snoozer. **1/4

- Post-match interview with Noam Dar. He tries to heel it up, talking about signing a big money contract with WWE. He dedicates his victory to a special person... Alicia Fox. I swear to God, Vince McMahon found how funny Dar pronounced "Fox" a little too much and decided that was the direction to go creatively. (Hint: Replace the "o" with a "u" and that's how Dar pronounced it)

- Coming soon to 205 Live, Mustafa Ali. He says because of his name fans will boo him, and he's here to make changes. 18 months later, and the 205 Live Reset hasn't changed much with him, still pushing the same character. As mentioned last week, he's pushed as being from Pakistan, and there's no mention of serving several years as a police officer outside Chicago.

- TJ Perkins wants to wish Rich Swann some luck later tonight but warns Swann he's not good enough to beat him... except when he lost the #1 contenders match two weeks ago.

Jack Gallagher vs. Ariya Daivari

Week 2, and we're already repeating matches? Last night on Raw, Gallagher once again defeated Daivari, but Daivari didn't take kindly to the loss and took a cheap shot at him after the match, targeting his left knee. Gallagher comes out with the knee taped up. Daivari mockingly offers and follows through with a handshake. Daivari with a takedown, quickly targeting the leg. Gallagher spins free and cranks on the ankle. He traps both legs of Daivari and drives his knees into the canvas. Gallagher with the head-stand in the corner, and you'd think someone would learn from it sooner than later. Daivari with elbows across the knee for two. That dastardly heel rips the magic tape off Gallagher's knee. If I'm Gallagher, I'd just submit right then and there. Daivari with repeated pin attempts for near falls. Gallagher with a small package (outta nowhere) for two. Rolling crucifix for two. Gallagher with the big headbutt for two. Daivari with a rake of the eyes and rolling elbow. He clips the knee and comes off the top with a frog splash for three at 6:13. 50/50 booking, ladies and gentlemen. No better and no worse than the opener with Dar and Alexander.

- Coming soon to 205 Live, Lince Dorado. Didn't we see a hype video for him last week?

- Tom Phillips catches up with Brian Kendrick on his way to the ring, asking if he feels Swann has his number. He's still blaming his loss last week on the stress of being the face of 205 Live, and he took his eye off the prize.

WWE Cruiserweight Championship Match: Rich Swann (c) vs. The Brian Kendrick

You don't think they'd swap the title right back a week later, do you? TJ Perkins comes out to join the commentary team to keep him part of the ongoing story surrounding the Cruiserweight Title. Perkins is a great heel, but he's TERRIBLE at trying to carry a storyline through commentary, especially as a babyface. Yes, Swann and Kendrick shake hands before the bell. 6 for 6! They trade wrist-locks early. Swann transitions into a hammerlock and counters a back suplex with a body press. Crisscross and Kendrick side-steps the dropkick. Kendrick misses the knee, and Swann hits a dropkick on attempt #2 for a two-count. That was a nice sequence playing off their match from last week. Swann follows Kendrick to the floor and gets hits with Sliced Bread #2 for his uncharacteristic aggressive behavior. Back inside, Kendrick covers for a near fall. Kendrick with clubbing rights before hooking a chin-lock. Swann escapes with blows to the midsection but runs into a boot. Kendrick with a Dragon Suplex into the Captain's Hook, but Swann makes it to the bottom rope. Swann hits Kendrick with a spinning heel kick, or that's what was supposed to happen. Crowd chants for Austin Aries, which is never a good sign (chanting for a non-participant). Swann with a corkscrew body press to the floor.

Back inside, Swann with a Tiger Bomb for a near fall. Kendrick counters the standing 450 with a victory roll for two. Swann rocks him with a rolling roundhouse and hits a modified Michinoku Driver for two. Kendrick ducks the spinning super-kick but takes a normal one instead. Kendrick counters the Tiger Bomb with a hurricanrana, and Swann hits him with a roundhouse kick. Swann with a series of rights. Kendrick with a tilted side suplex into another Captain's Hook. Swann slowly reaches for the ropes, but Kendrick rolls him back to the center of the ring with the hold still applied. Swann tries to get cover stacking Kendrick up before making another grasp for the ropes, forcing the break. Swann dumps Kendrick over the top rope and sends him into the post. Kendrick returns the favor, leaving both men hurt on the outside. Swann shoves off Kendrick, knocking him into TJ Perkins. No punches thrown, but Kendrick walks right into the spinning super-kick, and Swann retains at 12:39. That was weak sauce for a finish to cap off what was a pretty good match. I enjoyed this one much more than their match last week, with a better blend of styles rather than the methodical pace Kendrick set last time. ***3/4

- Post-match, Kendrick dives over the announcers' table to get into a brawl with Perkins. Rich Swann returns to ringside to make the save, unloading on Kendrick with rights. Perkins returns from the dead, accidentally hitting Swann with a Super-Kick, and Kendrick dumps Perkins into the security wall to stand tall at the end.

Final Thoughts: Not much to be excited about this week other than a good Main Event, and hopefully move on to a more exciting challenger than Brian Kendrick. Alicia Fox is already leaving her scent on 205 Live was thankfully relegated to a 10-second backstage appearance. The two undercard matches were average outings, following the same basic script with a heel targeting a limb and working it over like it's 1986.

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