WWE Mixed Match Challenge and 205 Live Winners, Grades and Reaction for March 13

The Doctor Chris Mueller@@BR_DoctorFeatured ColumnistMarch 14, 2018

WWE Mixed Match Challenge and 205 Live Winners, Grades and Reaction for March 13

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    Lana and Rusev took on Bobby Roode and Charlotte on this week's Mixed Match Challenge.
    Lana and Rusev took on Bobby Roode and Charlotte on this week's Mixed Match Challenge.Credit: WWE.com

    This week's Mixed Match Challenge featured one of the more interesting matchups in the tournament when Lana and Rusev battled Charlotte Flair and Bobby Roode.

    The Queen was victorious at Fastlane, but Rusev and Roode both came up short in their respective matches. The loss was even more painful for the latter since he ended up losing the United States Championship.

    This tournament might not be one of WWE's top priorities, but it has produced some entertaining matches and created some interesting pairings such as Braun Strowman and Alexa Bliss.

    The Cruiserweight Championship tournament is still rolling on, and this week's 205 Live featured the first of two semifinal contests with Cedric Alexander taking on Roderick Strong.

    Let's take a look at everything that happened on this week's episodes of WWE Mixed Match Challenge and 205 Live.

Lana and Rusev vs. Charlotte Flair and Bobby Roode

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    Despite being fresh off a loss to Randy Orton at Fastlane and Jinder Mahal on SmackDown, Roode seemed to be in good spirits during his entrance.

    Things got physical before the bell when Rusev shoved Roode and Charlotte pushed Rusev in retaliation. Lana ended up smacking Roode when she was trying to hit Charlotte, and it led to The Robe Warriors unleashing a flurry of chops to their opponents' chests.

    When the bell finally rang, Lana and Charlotte started for their teams. The Ravishing Russian held her own for a little while, but The Queen used her superior power and skill to dominate the first few minutes.

    Lana showed some real improvement in the ring over her previous performances, and it gives hope that she might be a competent in-ring competitor in the future.

    With the exception of the opening moments before the bell, this match had a lot less comedy than most of the MMC bouts we have seen so far. It was a smart move, with Roode and Charlotte being known more for their technical ability than their comedy chops.

    Charlotte distracted Rusev by chopping him in the chest several times so Roode could get in place to hit the Glorious DDT to score the win. 

    This was a decent match, especially considering Rusev and Roode wrestled on SmackDown and showed no signs of being worn out. 


    Grade: C+


    Notes and Highlights

    • Charlotte had a completely different robe than the one she wore on SmackDown. It matched Roode's, which was the same one he wore on SD. 
    • It was nice to see Lana come out to her own music before Rusev made his entrance. It helps establish her as her own character instead of just being known as Rusev's wife and manager. 
    • Rusev is such a good husband for using his popularity in an attempt to get a chant over for his Lana.
    • Corey Graves tried to push a romantic subplot with Charlotte and Roode throughout the match. 

Akira Tozawa and Hideo Itami vs. Gran Metalik and Lince Dorado

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    Akira Tozawa on 205 Live.
    Akira Tozawa on 205 Live.Credit: WWE.com

    Akira Tozawa and Hideo Itami continued their partnership this week with another tag team match. This time their opponents were a little more talented than the jobbers they faced last week.

    Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik served as their opponents, while Kalisto supported his fellow luchadors from outside the ring.

    Tozawa proved he was just as quick and agile as any practitioner of lucha libre during his initial exchange with Dorado and Metalik.

    Itami used more of a strike-based offense, but Metalik and Dorado kept him on his toes with their signature brand of high-flying wrestling. 

    Metalik and Dorado had the most impressive spots throughout the match, but it was Itami who got the victory for his team in a fun contest between two intriguing tag teams.


    Grade: B-


    Notes and Highlights

    • Is the cruiserweight division still technically part of Raw? Why can't Itami and Tozawa compete for the Raw Tag Team Championships?
    • The announcers almost acted like Dorado, Kalisto and Metalik had a setup like The New Day where they cycle different members into each tag team match. If that is how WWE is going to book them, they need a stable name immediately. 
    • The crowd didn't react loudly enough. This match had some great wrestling, and the fans only cheered when something big happened. 
    • Itami and Dorado almost had an altercation after the match, but it was broken up by Tozawa and Kalisto. Itami may be showing some signs of turning heel already. Maybe he will bring Tozawa to the dark side with him. 

Jack Gallagher vs. Jobber

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    Drake Maverick has taken a special interest in Jack Gallagher.
    Drake Maverick has taken a special interest in Jack Gallagher.Credit: WWE.com

    Jack Gallagher faced an enhancement talent while 205 Live General Manager Drake Maverick watched from the announce table.

    Gallagher showed a much more vicious side than we have seen during his time as a heel up to this point, and it helped him look like someone who could be a serious contender for the title in the near future.

    Maverick seemed pleased with Gentleman Jack's change in attitude, even when he ignored the rules to punish his opponent.

    Gallagher picked up an easy win in less than five minutes. It wasn't long enough to be anything special, but sometimes it's more important to have some character development than a long match with a lot of technical wrestling. 


    Grade: C-

Cedric Alexander vs. Roderick Strong

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    Cedric Alexander and Roderick Strong met in a semifinal match in the cruiserweight title tournament.
    Cedric Alexander and Roderick Strong met in a semifinal match in the cruiserweight title tournament.Credit: WWE.com

    The main event of the evening was one of the most anticipated matches of the entire Cruiserweight Championship Tournament.

    Alexander and Strong are two guys who are both talented and innovative inside the ring. They can work every style of wrestling, and they put all of those skills on display in this bout.

    They started off with some basic chain wrestling, but it didn't take them long to pick up the pace. Alexander hit the first big strike with a beautiful dropkick, and Strong responded with a series of rights and lefts.

    As the match progressed, they both pulled out all the stops to make this one of the most exciting matches of the week. Their styles perfectly complemented each other.

    Both men hit their finishers at different points, and they each resorted to putting their foot on the bottom rope to break the ref's count. 

    This wasn't just a series of well-choreographed spots, thoughAlexander and Strong told a story in this match.

    After a gutsy performance from two incredible competitors, Alexander picked up the win with a roll-up out of nowhere. He seemed genuinely emotional knowing he had earned a match at WrestleMania 34 during his post-match interview.

    You can't help but be happy for a guy who is achieving his dream.


    Grade: A+


    Notes and Highlights

    • It's hard to know what to make of the video packages with Mustafa Ali that WWE has been showing for the past couple of weeks. They are interesting because of how they are shot, but they don't fit with Ali's character. 
    • Alexander took a nasty spill when Strong knocked him off of the top turnbuckle. It's amazing he wasn't hurt and continued the match like he did.
    • He took a crazier bump when Alexander dropped him across the top turnbuckle and he tumbled down to the floor.
    • Strong talked a lot of trash for a guy who is supposed to be a babyface.
    • There was a weird moment when Alexander whipped Strong into the corner. Alexander just fell down afterward for no reason.
    • Both Superstars using modified backbreakers as their finishing moves added an interesting dynamic.