WWE TLC 2018: Star Ratings For All 12 Matches

12. KICKOFF: Buddy Murphy Vs. Cedric Alexander - Cruiserweight Title Match


At the hardest of times, at the far ends of the earth, knowing they have to travel back to the other side and back again, it must be especially tough to appear on 205 Live. It must feel like a curse of some kind, or a time loop. No matter how many painstaking performances, no matter how many towns they win over on the night, everything is reset every day.

The formula is thus: perform in front of a cold crowd suffering content fatigue, win them over with great wrestling that must hurt all the more for how much defiant desire is invoked from within, earn plaudits, perhaps even an ovation - and then start all over again.

The crowd received everything here with much the same pattern. These two high-functioning athletic machines worked so b*stard hard to generate a reaction, and they received only a mild one. As Alexander and Murphy exchanged forearms and knees, so committed in their ferocity, you could literally see the sweat of their labour fly away into the ether to be ignored. The creativity, the painful-looking creativity, was for nought. Cedric countered an aerial with a sick Superkick to the gut, to which Murphy rolled back his eyes in agony.

Devising new ways of hurting one another, in another thankless night, the warriors of 205 Live deserve your respect, even if they can't command your full attention.

Star Rating: ***1/2


Former Power Slam Magazine scribe and author of Development Hell: The NXT Story - available NOW on shop.whatculture.com!