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WWE 205 Live Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from December 2

The Doctor Chris Mueller@@BR_DoctorFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2019

Kalisto and Lio Rush
Kalisto and Lio RushCredit: WWE.com

WWE has been touting how 2019 is going to be a fresh start for Raw and SmackDown, but the McMahon family seems to have forgotten 205 Live for the most part.

Other than Mustafa Ali's recent move to the blue brand, there have been no major changes to the cruiserweight division. In fact, Drake Maverick was the one general manager to keep his job after the recent changes put in place by the McMahons and Triple H.

However, anyone who watches 205 Live regularly knows the Superstars on the roster never let anything stop them from putting on an incredible show for the fans.

Ali's move to SmackDown is a sign we may see more stars switch to one of the major brands in the future, but for now, let's take a look at everything that happened on this week's show.

                       

Lio Rush vs. Kalisto

205Live @WWE205Live

.@KalistoWWE isn't done QUITE yet. #205Live https://t.co/mkNbSu6akN

Lio Rush has been spending most of his time annoying fans while managing Bobby Lashley on Raw, but his return to the regular rotation on 205 Live is something everyone should be excited about.

His promos might be grating to some, but nobody can deny how much fun he can be inside the ring. His speed and agility are on par with the best cruiserweights in the industry, and his precision allows him to make everything he does look easy.

Putting the 24-year-old in the ring with someone such as Kalisto was only going to lead to a spot fest, but sometimes that is better than a technical clinic.

For someone so young, Rush's ring IQ is unusually high. Combine that with the lucha libre pedigree of Kalisto, and you have the recipe for an entertaining contest.

Rush used his high-flying skills just as much as Kalisto, but The Man of the Hour was the more aggressive of the two. Both men came close to winning several times, but it was the leader of Lucha House Party who scored the win with his signature Salida del Sol.

The victory earned Kalisto a spot in the cruiserweight title Fatal 4-Way match at the Royal Rumble on January 27, but Rush likely earned the respect of a lot of fans as a consolation prize for his stellar performance.

WWE @WWE

Speed + accuracy = @itsLioRush #205Live https://t.co/iIYOqN6NbC

                       

Grade: A

                      

Notes and Highlights

  • Rush and Kalisto's opening exchange was reminiscent of the cruiserweight matches we used to see in WCW.
  • The suicide dive Rush hit looked awesome, and Kalisto caught him and sold the move like a pro.
  • It was nice to see The Man of the Hour use a few submissions. He is not normally known for his ground game.
  • If we don't get Kalisto vs. Rey Mysterio at some point, WWE is not keeping its promise to listen to the fans.
  • The Brian Kendrick shaved and cut his hair. He looks almost exactly like he did before he left WWE at the end of his first run. He has barely aged a day.

                          

Drew Gulak vs. Akira Tozawa

WWE Network @WWENetwork

.@DrewGulak's plans for @TozawaAkira? Making him tap out. #205Live https://t.co/nbjY6xJImF

While Akira Tozawa and Drew Gulak have put on some great matches over the course of the past two years, it feels like they have faced each other more than any two Superstars in WWE during that time.

This is the biggest problem with 205 Live. The locker room is filled with talented wrestlers, but there are only so many of them. The roster looks almost exactly as it did when the show launched two years ago, so repetition is bound to become an issue.

Still, Gulak and Tozawa have the benefit of having time to build up a lot of chemistry as opponents. Unlike Rush and Kalisto, these two focused on telling a story instead of packing as many high spots into the match as possible.

While some people may prefer the kind of frenetic wrestling we saw in the first bout of the evening, being able to put on two completely different kinds of matches is what makes 205 Live special.

The self-proclaimed "greatest technical wrestler in WWE" looked poised to win, but Tozawa was able to counter a superplex and hit a senton from the top turnbuckle to get the victory and earn a spot in the Royal Rumble Fatal 4-Way alongside Buddy Murphy and Kalisto.

WWE Universe @WWEUniverse

GOT HIM! @TozawaAkira #205Live https://t.co/XTKINZthp3

                      

Grade: A

                        

Notes and Highlights

  • Maverick said some new faces would be coming to 205 Live in 2019, but unlike Raw and SmackDown, he did not reveal any names.
  • If you compare pictures from two years ago to today, Gulak is significantly more muscular. Are we sure he is still under the 205-pound limit?
  • Gulak is such an underrated performer. He is just as technically sound as guys like Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles.
  • Tozawa did a little face plant when he rolled out of the ring to break the Gulock.
  • Somehow, Gulak's slaps look more painful than his punches.
  • Putting on two long matches with a few backstage segments seems to be the best formula for 205 Live.
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