Akira Tozawa faced a formidable challenge in the form of “The Premier Athlete” Tony Nese on WWE 205 Live. However, what should have been an edge-of-your-seat clash of unique in-ring styles was cut short by the appearance of The Brian Kendrick, who was attempting to aid Tony Nese.
With the contest underway, Nese used his power and physical presence to keep Tozawa on the ropes. However, The Stamina Monster relied on his speed and agility to turn the tide. Unfortunately for Tozawa, “The Premier Athlete” again asserted his strength, as The Brian Kendrick made his way to ringside to cheer on Nese.
Battling back and forth, Nese unleashed a flurry of strikes against the ropes and was warned by referee Charles Robinson. Attempting to help “The Premier Athlete” by striking Tozawa, Kendrick was caught by the official, distracting Nese and allowing The Japanese Superstar to secure victory.
Following Kendrick's failed attempt to help Nese, “The Premier Athlete” unleashed his anger on The Man with a Plan. Delighted with Kendrick's folly, Tozawa offered a new lesson: “You need to have eyes in the back of your head.”
A heated exchange between Rich Swann and Noam Dar regarding the gifts Swann has been giving Dar's girlfriend Alicia Fox took a wild turn when the former Divas Champion herself confronted both Superstars. Although she showered Dar with compliments, the WWE Universe was left stunned when she proceeded to dump The Scottish Supernova, claiming she was using him the entire time.
Kicking Dar out of the ring, Fox then turned her attention to Swann, seemingly ready to pursue a new romance. However, before the former Divas Champion could put the moves on her prospective new beau, Swann rejected her. Citing his close friend – and Alica Fox's ex – Cedric Alexander, Swann informed Fox that in defending the injured Alexander's honor, he exposed what kind of person Fox really is to the rest of the world.
Mustafa Ali has undoubtedly made a name for himself with his incredible agility and acrobatic in-ring arsenal, impressing the WWE Universe on WWE 205 Live and Monday Night Raw. However, Drew Gulak remains unimpressed by Ali and would prefer the Cruiserweight division tone down the fast-paced and high-risk style of competition.
Despite displaying his personal preference for fast cars, gold chains and a more luxurious wardrobe, Ariya Daivari still brought the same aggressive in-ring style that measured up well against Ali's agile abilities. Though Ali used his speed to his advantage, Daivari targeted his opponents back, unleashing as much pain and punishment as possible. Battling through the visible agony, Ali showed the same resilience that gave WWE Cruiserweight Champion Neville a run for his money in recent weeks.
Just as Ali prepared to execute his patented Inverted 450 Splash, however, Gulak suddenly emerged with a megaphone, chanting “I’m not lying, no high-flying!” With Ali distracted by Gulak, Daivari knocked his opponent off the top rope and executed a hammerlock lariat to secure the win.
In an attempt to get inside Austin Aries’ head, TJ Perkins spit in his own hand before the customary Cruiserweight handshake. Unfazed – and with the WWE Universe behind him – Aries slapped Perkins hand away and the bitter contest was underway. Immediately employing his newfound aggression, TJP struck hard and fast, but Aries – the No. 1 contender to the WWE Cruiserweight Championship – quickly battled back and took control of the match.
With laser focus on taking out Perkins, Aries had an answer for much of The Duke of Dab's flashy in-ring style in the early moments of the battle. Nevertheless, the Superstars battled back and forth, with Perkins enjoying an extended advantage, keeping Aries grounded and enraging him with his patented dab.
As Aries built momentum and looked to move toward victory, a miscalculation off the top rope led A-Double to tweak his knee. Perkins capitalized, targeting the knee and nearly securing victory with a Knee Bar, barely broken by Aries reaching the ropes.
Once again taking control, Aries attempted a 450 Splash and the Last Chancery, but TJP showed his incredible resilience reaching the ropes to break a pinfall and the submission hold, respectively. Playing possum on the outside, Perkins surprised his opponent back inside the ring and nearly executed the Detonation Kick. Unfortunately for The Duke of Dab, Aries countered and nailed the Discus Fivearm for the win.
The celebration was cut short when WWE Cruiserweight Champion Neville attacked his WWE Payback challenger. As The King of the Cruiserweights struck, Aries was ready and locked the champion in the Last Chancery. However, showing that the new Neville/Perkins alliance was strong – The Duke of Dab joined in the assault, allowing Neville to lay waste to Aries and send a clear message to both A-Double and the entire Cruiserweight division.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Akira Tozawa defeated Tony Nese (6:16)
- Ariya Daivari defeated Mustafa Ali (9:21)
- Austin Aries defeated TJ Perkins (12:19)
Other on-screen talent