Training harder than ever, former NXT Tag Team Champion Buddy Murphy officially weighed in at 202 pounds, cutting 20 pounds in order to compete in the WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament. However, his opponent, Ariya Daivari, believed that he was entitled to the championship opportunity. As soon as the match got underway, Murphy charged forward, displaying his determination to make a statement in his WWE 205 Live debut.
The Persian Lion struggled to counter Murphy's advance before managing to grab his opponent's hair and drop him on the ring apron. After tossing the Australian Superstar into the steel steps, Daivari maintained the advantage with aggressive strikes and fast-paced counters.
However, with the WWE Universe in his corner, Murphy regained his composure and showed off his impressive strength and agility. Despite Daivari targeting his opponent's lower back earlier in the contest, Murphy showed no signs of slowing down – even taking to the air to continue to build momentum.
A fierce competitor, Daivari swung momentum back in his favor but was unable to secure victory, even after successfully executing a Persian Lion Splash and his patented hammerlock lariat. Shocked, Daivari again advanced, but his Australian opponent was prepared, and Murphy broke out a wicked maneuver to secure a pinfall victory and advance to the quarterfinals.
With the first round of the WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament coming to a close, WWE 205 Live General Manager Drake Maverick announced the quarterfinal matches, beginning next week.
One of the bouts was Cedric Alexander facing inaugural WWE Cruiserweight Champion TJP. Alexander and TJP appeared opposite Maverick and exchanged heated words before going their separate ways.
Accompanied by their lucha brother Kalisto, Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik – two Superstars previously eliminated from the WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament – teamed up to battle Evan Daniels and Corazon Delgado.
The lucha house party was in full effect, as The Golden Lynx and Gran Metalik displayed their incredible ability while former WWE Cruiserweight Champion Kalisto cheered them on from ringside. Despite defeating Lince Dorado in the tournament, Kalisto proved that the lucha bond was stronger than ever.
Metalik and Dorado used their jaw-dropping speed to their advantage. Despite a brief offensive advantage from their opponents, the combination of uncanny agility and the lucha brotherhood proved to be too much, as the lucha sensations flattened their opponents on the outside before Dorado executed the breathtaking Shooting Star Press for the win.
Heeding the advice of WWE 205 Live GM Drake Maverick, Gentleman Jack Gallagher entered the final first-round match of the WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament without his suit, sporting more traditional ring gear. The British Superstar was focused on the task at hand, and once the match got under way, Gallagher began implementing his unique technical prowess to keep the high-flying Mustafa Ali grounded.
With the winner of this bout set to face the formidable Buddy Murphy in the second round, Gallagher focused his offense on Ali's arms, trying to force his opponent into submission. The former Chicago police officer struggled to find the right formula to counter Gallagher's unorthodox in-ring style. Regardless, Ali managed to hold his own, engaging in an impressive sequence of countered pinfalls with his opponent.
With the bout at a stalemate, the tension mounted, and the technical showcase briefly turned into an exchange of aggressive strikes. However, with Gallagher on the outside of the ring, Ali charged forward and slid under the ropes, only to be ingeniously caught in the ring apron by Gallagher.
Attempting to prepare his patented 0-5-4, Ali was met on the top rope by Gallagher, who once again targeted his opponent's arm. First using the ropes and then driving Ali shoulder-first into the ring post, Gallagher began to show his familiar brand of cruelty, relentlessly targeting Ali's limb.
With one good arm, Ali tried to fight back, pulling out all the stops with a high-flying maneuver to the outside. Unfortunately, Gallagher moved out of the way, and Ali crashed to the arena floor. Gallagher took advantage and again brutally targeted Ali's arm. The Chicago native refused to give in, even after being dropkicked off the top rope into the barricade and being driven shoulder-first into the corner of the barricade. Gallagher continued to assault his opponent's arm, but Ali remained resilient, refusing to give in.
Finally, Ali countered a high-risk move from the top rope, landing on his feet. Even with an injured arm, Ali found the determination to charge forward, stunning Gallagher with two fast-paced strikes before executing the 0-5-4 for the incredible victory.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Buddy Murphy defeated Ariya Daivari in a WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament First Round Match (7:46)
- Lince Dorado & Gran Metalik (w/ Kalisto) defeated Evan Daniels & Corazon Delgado
- Mustafa Ali defeated Jack Gallagher in a WWE Cruiserweight Championship Tournament First Round Match (17:08)
- Dark Match: Bobby Roode & Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
Other on-screen talent