It’s finally back. After 7 months of absence, we can finally say welcome back to MLW Fusion. Whilst the show has been on a COVID-caused hiatus, the company has been battling a CONTRA takeover, restocking its roster, and preparing to blow people away with its high-quality hybrid wrestling. On tonight’s big return, we’ll see Myron Reed defend the World Middleweight Championship against Brian Pillman Jr, Alex Hammerstone is in action against a mystery opponent and we get the long-awaited MLW World Heavyweight Title match between CONTRA’s Jacob Fatu and Davey Boy Smith Jr. It’s title fights galore as we dive back into MLW for the Restart!

Alexander Hammerstone defeated Jason Dugan via Nightmare Pendulum

National Openweight Champion Alexander Hammerstone got the first match of the Restart and as he made his entrance, Rich Bocchini and Jared St Laurent broke down his title reign and welcomed St Laurent to the commentary team. They ran down the day’s episode and Hammerstone’s match begun then promptly ended within seconds as Hammerstone wasted Dugan in seconds with a lariat and Nightmare Pendulum for the win. He celebrated his win then demanded that he gets his shot at the World Heavyweight Title shot he is due after being #1 in the rankings for most of 2020. Bloody hell, Hammerstone hasn’t lost his step, he obliterated Dugan like he was a rag-doll. Tonight’s champion, whoever’s left, should be scared if he’s coming after them.

Between the matches:

  • The show opened with a cold open showing CONTRA’s ties with MLW interlaced with Filthy Tom Lawlor’s rise to power. It went through the rise of CONTRA and ended with them getting booted from the MLW headquarters.
  • Los Parks sent CONTRA a warning that they were coming to finish them off and humiliate them for good. They wanted a title shot, be it in singles or tag-team action.
  • CONTRA had a warning ahead of the big title match tonight. Josef Samael was hard at work in Tunisia and Jacob Fatu was going to break the “British Poodle” again.
  • The Opera Cup Bracket was revealed. The competitors and opening-round matches time will be, “Filthy” Tom Lawlor vs Rocky Romero, Laredo Kid vs ACH, Low Ki vs the defending winner Davey Boy Smith Jr, and Richard Holliday vs TJP. The alternates for the Cup will Gino Medina, Jordan Oliver, King Mo, Daga, Dominic Garrini, and El Hijo De LA Park.
  • Calvin Tankman debuts next week for MLW. He is going to destroy someone.
  • Richard Holliday was stuck in the Caribbean and was furious that he couldn’t be there for the Restart.

MLW World Middleweight Title: Myron Reed (w/Jordan Oliver) defeated Brian Pillman Jr via Captain Crunch

After Hammerstone’s dominant win, we went to the blood feud building between the Middleweight Champion Myron Reed and Brian Pillman Jr. Reed has said for months he thinks Pillman is a joke and wouldn’t let him compete until he’d met the weight limit. That all changed after Pillman attacked Injustice during the break. He even stalled during his entrance, MLW playing his music three times and taking an ad-break as they waited for him to appear. Once all the entrances were done, Pillman rushed Reed with Thesz Press and an apron kick when he bailed. They slugged it out on the outside then Pillman made the mistake of going for a chop to the chest protector. He answered back by slamming him face-first on the apron but Reed took flight and sent Pillman flying with a suicide dive. He tried for a second but Pillman uppercut him in the ropes and kneed him in the head. He followed up with a slingshot senton and the pair traded pinfalls. Reed kicked him in the corner but Pillman cut off his momentum with a powerslam. He continued to ground down Reed with submissions and went up to an abdominal stretch using the ropes. Reed struck back and tried to reverse a slam into a sunset flip but Pillman caught him into a surfboard. He used the chest protector for extra leverage and ran into a guillotine leg drop. Reed pushed the advantage with a diving corkscrew uppercut and continued to assail Pillman with forearms.

The chest protector came off and a slugfest broke out. The chops came out and the pair downed each other with a crossbody collision. Reed was first up and blasted Pillman with a series of kicks into a Matrix-escape enzuigiri and slingshot slam. He hit the slingshot leg drop and tried for a second but caught into a backslide. He continued with more strikes to Reed’s chest and chin then ran him down with a clothesline. He slammed Reed down with a spinebuster and leapt onto him with a twisting crossbody. Reed escaped a Suplex with a Stundog Millionaire then hit a Clout Cutter and held on for an Inverted Suplex. That got two so he tried for another lariat and Matrix-escape but Pillman stunned him with a back chop and drove him into the mat with a Michinoku Driver. That also got two and Reed sneakily set up his chest protector in the corner and a pissed Pillman charged with a knee. He hit the chest-protector and Reed took advantage with the Captain Crunch for the win.  After a war of words and sneak attacks, Reed had finally been able to beat Brian Pillman Jr. It might not have been the cleanest win ever but both guys were grudge fighting. Reed called out Lio Rush to end the segment and an excellent match.

MLW World Heavyweight Title: Jacob Fatu defeated Davey Boy Smith Jr via Step-Up Moonsault

Last but not least, we had the main event. CONTRA vs MLW as Davey Boy Smith Jr looked to cripple Jacob Fatu and claim the MLW World Heavyweight Title. This match could change the fate of MLW forever if Smith could rip that title from Fatu’s hands. But as this is CONTRA Unit, anything could happen. The pair fought over lock-ups as Smith used his height advantage to squeeze down on the head of Fatu. Smith fired-up Fatu into a tackle exchange then caught him into a Powerslam. They slugged it out and went into a headbutt trade. So far no one could get an advantage as both giants were pretty evenly-matched. With a train of headbutts, Smith knocked Fatu down and himself dizzy. He brought Fatu crashing down with a stalling Suplex but got charged into the turnbuckle before he could do anything else. He whipped Smith into the other turnbuckle and clawed at Smith’s back. Smith tried to fight from the ground but Fatu just headbutted him and sent him on another trip to the turnbuckle. He slammed Smith into the mat then headbutted his midsection and raked the eyes just to be a dick. He stuck Smith in the Torture Rack so Smith returned kind with kind and escaped by raking at Fatu’s face. He tried to strike back but Fatu downed him with an uppercut. Fatu went for the handspring moonsault but Smith stuck his knees up and Fatu crashed and burned. He collided with the turnbuckle of a failed corner charge and Smith hammered him with forearms; then floored him with a big chest kick and a big boot. He stomped at Fatu’s head and tried to drag him up into a Saito but Fatu headbutted free. After a few more forearms, Smith hit the Saito and Fatu kicked out at two. Smith charged and Fatu caught him into a spinning sidewalk slam. Fatu climbed to the top but Smith stunned him and tried for the running powerslam but his back gave out. Fatu superkicked him in the back and set him up for the Moonsault with a Samoan Drop. A step-up Moonsault later and Fatu had won. The Samoan Smashing Machine had bested Smith and claimed another victory in the name of CONTRA. What a match. It was a nice, drag-out fight between two stiff, agile giants with clever ring psychology and high stakes. What a way to main event the Restart.

CONTRA had won the day and Fatu called out Hammerstone. He claimed Hammerstone wanted none but the man himself appeared and forearmed the head off of a CONTRA goon then got clocked in the back by a chair shot from a masked mystery man. He chokeslammed Hammerstone onto the apron. He raised his hand to show that the Black Hand of CONTRA had arrived. They ended the show with the CONTRA flag high and we were once again left with more questions than answers. Next week, we’ll have the beginning of the Opera Cup as MLW does Thanksgiving. Welcome back MLW and congratulations on having a kick-ass restart episode. Let’s keep that momentum rolling.

All images courtesy of MLW Twitter, Videos courtesy of MLW YouTube