This weekend marks the culmination of the WWE 205Live Cruiserweight Championship Tournament, where we will see the two finalists Cedric Alexander and Mustafa Ali face off in what should be an epic finale to the competition.
WWE has announced that the match will take place on the pre-show which begins two hours before the main card and also contains the WrestleMania Women’s Battle Royal and the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
While many believe the match deserved to be on the main card, I think that given the number of matches already announced plus many segments expected to also happen but not yet announced, it came down to a choice of ‘which match gets cut’ and this was the title match that got the pre-show treatment.
I also think that given the fact that the Usos have only just got a main card match after nearly a decade, that the Cruiserweight match’s position on the card is the right decision. Plus naturally, the Raw and SmackDown matches will be the ones with more focus and time dedicated to them as they are the predominant shows.
For those of you who have watched the tournament advance, with such competitors as Roderick Strong, Drew Gulak, the first Cruiserweight Champion TJP. The first-ever United Kingdom Champion Tyler Bate, Mark Andrews, Buddy Murphy and others, I don’t think anyone is disappointed with the two finalists or any of the performances so far. 205Live has taken a different direction lately focusing more on the wrestling than the character-driven aspect when Enzo was champion.
Alexander and Ali have both put on stellar performances throughout the tournament. Ali has been utilizing social media like many other wrestlers now are, to drive his message and build his character and story outside of the ring, complemented by the in-ring efforts he has definitely come out of his shell now that the show has changed direction.
Alexander has been popular for a while already but is now also getting the chance to show more of what he is capable of, I personally thought his match with Roderick Strong in the Semi-Finals was one of his best so far for the brand. I know that they have clashed before outside of WWE and while this match may be tame compared to their pre-WWE matches it was still a great addition to their catalog.
The Cruiserweight Championship has not been the same since Neville lost it and there was all the trouble involving Enzo which led to the belt being vacated for this tournament, the efforts to bring the show from where it was to where it is has restored any respect lost for the title scene or division. The addition of Drake Maverick as General Manager for 205live, Triple H taking a role in setting their course going forward, the usage of NXT talent which also benefits Triple H’s other brand and the feeling of actual pride and dedication towards the division. Has made this match all the more important, especially for the two men involved.
I expect the match to be fast-paced and regardless of the time they are given (the more, the better) I think both men have the capabilities to tell the story required of them. I predict that Ali will walk away with the victory, but I think I would prefer for Alexander to win.
The journeys that both of them have taken have seen them grow greatly, Ali more in my opinion. I hope that this match is all that I expect it to be and more. I also partly expect to see Neville return during the new Cruiserweight Champion’s celebration to challenge for the belt, thus starting the next chapter of 205Live.