COMMENTATORS: Vic Joseph & Nigel McGuinness
Two weeks after earning a future NXT Cruiserweight Championship match, Curt Stallion is put to the test this week as he faces off against Raul Mendoza, one of the members of Legado del Fantasma led by Santos Escobar. Also on the show August Grey looks to pick up his first singles win on the show against nemesis Ariya Daivari.
- NXT CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPION: Santos Escobar
- August Grey vs. Ariya Daivari (***)
- Curt Stallion vs. Raul Mendoza (***)
August Grey vs. Ariya Daivari
Grey made his 205 Live debut as Anthony Greene in a Daivari Dinero Division match, losing to Daivari in a short amount of time. He reemerged a few weeks later with a new name and as Curt Stallion’s backup in the war against “205 Live Veterans” Daivari & Tony Nese. Nese accompanies Daivari on the stage and lets him box against his many abs, but then leaves to the back as Daivari thinks he can handle this on his own this week.
Daivari messes with Grey early, grabbing an armbar and slapping him in the back of the head dismissively. Daivari ducks for a superkick attempt, Grey pulls back and slaps him around for revenge. Grey takes Daivari to the mat with a hurricanrana followed by a slam for a two-count. Daivari goes for a corner whip, Grey counters into a bulldog for another two-count. Daivari rolls to the apron, drops Grey across the top rope and rams his left knee into the post. Grey sends Daivari to the floor, Daivari sweeps the legs but gets sent into the guardrail/plexiglass. Back in the ring Daivari goes back to the knee and locks in a Figure Four in the center of the ring. Grey kicks Daivari back to the floor to get a few moments to breathe, Daivari rolls back in and gets planted with a belly-to-back suplex. Grey connects with a neckbreaker, once again Daivari rolls to the floor. He goes for his chain, Grey flattens him with a tope suicida. Grey rolls Daivari in and hits a ropewalk crossbody followed by a superkick for the 1…2…Daivari kicks out. Daivari rolls through a sunset flip and goes back to the Figure Four, Grey rolls to the ropes for a break. Grey kicks Daivari off and connects with an Unprettier into a twisting slam for the 1…2…Daivari kicks out once more. Daivari blocks a superplex attempt and connects with a Persian Splash for the 1…2…Grey kicks out! Daivari with a urinage for the 1…2…Grey kicks out again. Grey ducks the Hammerlock Lariat, connects with a tornado Unprettier (kinda like an Acid Drop) for the 1…2…3!
August Grey defeated Ariya Daivari via pinfall (9:45)
- Match got a lot more time than I was expecting honestly, what a nice surprise. Very good match between the two, Grey picking up his first big singles win in 205 Live while also showing off his cool finishing move and Daivari once again let his ego get the better of him. (***)
-EARLIER TODAY: Jaoquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza enter the arena and get accosted for a promo. Wilde says they will be teaching Curt Stallion a lesson, Mendoza says he’s going to prove that Stallion doesn’t deserve to say Legado del Fantasma’s name or even challenge Santos Escobar.
–The Bollywood Boyz (Samir & Sunil Singh) are feeling good about their win over Ever-Rise last week. The Boyz want to be friends with Daivari & Nese and eat samosas but they apparently don’t want to be their friends so they’ll fight them instead.
- I guess The Bollywood Boyz are sorta becoming babyfaces? Also who WOULDN’T want a Samosa? I’ll take one if Daivari & Nese don’t want it, y’all.
Curt Stallion vs. Raul Mendoza [w/ Jaoquin Wilde]
Mendoza makes first content, sending Stallion to the mat with a waistlock. Stallion grabs an armbar into a wristlock, Mendoza grabs the hair to counter into a side headlock. Stallion sends Mendoza to the apron, Mendoza drops the back of his neck across the top rope and follows up with a gunshot of a springboard missile dropkick. Mendoza chokes Stallion with his knee, Wilde talks trash at ringside. Mendoza slows it down with a cobra clutch in the center of the ring. Mendoza clotheslines Stallion in the corner, connects with a snapmare, and hits another big dropkick fo the 1…2…Mendoza PICKS STALLION UP to keep it going. Mendoza talks trash with Stallion, Stallion responds with a series of right hands and a rolling forearm that sends Mendoza to the floor. Stallion follows up with a tope, back in the ring Stallion connects with a big boot in the corner, running knee, basement dropkick, and pull-up DDT for the 1…2…Mendoza kicks out. Stallion is surprised the move that has never gotten him a win didn’t get him the win. Stallion double stomps Mendoza, hooks both legs for the 1…2…Mendoza kicks out again. Stallion and Mendoza fight on the buckles, Mendoza gets knocked off but comes right back with a cartwheel spinkick and a sorta hurricanrana for the 1…2..Stallion kicks out. Mendoza connects with another kick, Stallion surprises him with a roll-up for the 1…2…3!
Curt Stallion defeated Raul Mendoza via pinfall (7:08)
- I’ve missed most of Raul Mendoza’s WWE work and this match made me instantly regret it once I saw that explosive springboard missile dropkick. Almost took Stallion’s head off there. Good match, loved that Escobar “doesn’t care” about Stallion but sent his henchmen to 205 Live anyway to try and beat some sense into him, and Stallion picking up the win over Mendoza was a good step in proving he deserves the title shot he’s earned. Only thing that makes me feel iffy is the constant reminder that Stallion’s title shot is TBD; I know Escobar/Stallion is going to happen at some point but it just makes me nervous that it’ll somehow just end up forgotten if someone in the writer’s room gets bored with the idea or something. VERY irrational of me, I know. (***)
Wilde attacks Stallion from behind, Stallion tries to fight them off but THE DAMNED NUMBERS GAME and all that. Legado finish Stallion off with a Side Russian legsweep/running kick combo. Wilde and Mendoza survey the damage from the stage, Santos Escobar coming out to join his Legado teammates to stand tall and show off his Cruiserweight Championship.
- …maybe I take back what I said in the match comments, I’m legitimately surprised Santos Escobar actually showed up on 205 Live even if it was just to stand and gloat at the end. Awesome. THE CHAMPIONSHIP RETURNS HOME.
FINAL THOUGHTS: 205 Live is pretty great this week, with both matches delivering and some movement on the Stallion/Legado del Fantasma front as they (potentially slowly) build Stallion’s challenge for the Cruiserweight Championship. Worth your time.