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Mustafa Ali & Buddy Murphy: 205 Live’s feud of the year

If you found it hard to give 205 Live a chance after its first year, that’s understandable. Aside from Neville’s title reign, there wasn’t much going on.

Many feuds sprung up out of nowhere and lasted too long, solely for the purpose of padding the runtime. As entertaining as Drew Gulak and Akira Tozawa can be, you can only see them wrestle so many shows in a row before you lose interest. Things like this pretty much killed interest in 205 Live before it could get off the ground, which is sad considering how well the Cruiserweight Classic went.

However, the revival of the brand in 2018 has given wrestling fans many fantastic matches and some highly entertaining feuds. The Cruiserweight Championship Tournament reminded the WWE Universe how talented the 205 Live roster really is, and surprised us with hidden gems like the “Best Kept Secret” Buddy Murphy.

Murphy was someone only known for his less than stellar run as one half of the NXT Tag Team Champions Blake and Murphy. Their manager, and Murphy’s real-life girlfriend, Alexa Bliss went on to bigger and better things while the former tag team sank into obscurity on NXT.

No one would’ve been shocked had Buddy Murphy been released from his contract. However, we were left stunned and a tad confused when it was revealed he would take part in the Championship Tournament on 205 Live. Before his debut, no one was expecting much. I assumed he was just there to fill a spot so he could be taken out by a better star.

How wrong I was, and how happy I was to be wrong. Buddy Murphy has turned out to be one of the greatest wrestlers on 205 Live’s roster. Hell, he’s quickly become one of my favorites in the company, and if you talk to anyone else about the show, you’d be hard-pressed to find one who wasn’t impressed with the Juggernaut.

Murphy’s story up to now has been to prove that he was underestimated. He wanted to show just how good he really is, and how wrong the fans were for doubting his ability. And since his match against Ariya Daivari back on February 20, he’s done just that.

Murphy ran through the competition on the purple brand. Anyone who stepped up to him would end up battered and broken. That is, everyone except for 205 Live’s Heart and Soul, Cruiserweight Champion Cedric Alexander, and Mustafa Ali.

Mustafa Ali was the man who knocked Buddy Murphy out of the tournament, and the man that lit a fire under the Best Kept Secret. Furious after his elimination, he would run through jobbers and established talent alike. Eventually, after Cedric Alexander defeated Ali, Murphy would get a chance at redemption, defeating Ali for a shot at Alexander’s belt.

While he came up short, Ali and Murphy were the two men who took Cedric Alexander to his limit. Both men felt that, while Alexander was #1, for now, they were due another shot at the championship.

Since then, their feud has escalated to something extraordinary and personal. They’ve both pulled off some amazing feats trying to prove which one of them is the best. And unlike the 205 Live of old, these two didn’t fight each other week in and week out. Their matches were spaced out over five months, and each time they stepped into the ring, they performed better than anybody else that week.

On this week’s edition of 205 Live, Ali and Murphy III took place in a No DQ match (technically this is their fourth one-on-one match, but their previous one was interrupted by Hideo Itami).

Needless to say, they put on a classic. When it comes to WWE and stipulations like No DQ, normally it feels underwhelming. Since going PG, the violence has turned down a bit and there’s rarely ever any blood. Normally that can take away from matches like this. However, in instances like this, it worked in their favor.

Without the chance to go over the top with chair shots to the head and any kind of blood, Murphy and Ali had to improvise. Instead, what we got was a match filled with unique spots and quite a bit of innovation that made this match something special.

Ali and Murphy have both taken to Twitter to comment on their bout this past Tuesday night, clearly pleased with how well it was received.

I know it’s hard to give a shot to a show that let you down for so long. I mean, it took me forever to give Impact another shot after the years of terrible booking. That being said, I implore those of you that have left 205 Live off their watchlist to give it another chance. If anything, at least check out the latest episode featuring the Ali/Murphy match. You won’t be disappointed.