Welcome back to MLW and to the grand final of the Opera Cup. TJP and Davey Richards have seen off all competition (some through devious means) and now are set to slug it out again with higher stakes than ever. The last time they met, Davey Richards won, could he go two for two? Alongside that, we’d see the debut of the Top Dogs, Davienne and Skylar, as they took on the Sea Stars, and to open the show, WARHORSE and KC Navarro go to… WAR. Plus, as this is MLW, there’s bound to be some twists and turns along the way as Cesar Duran has been plotting behind the scenes. Let’s get into the action.

KC Navarro defeated WARHORSE via Jesus Piece

The show’s opening match was about to be a blessed affair. After their interview brawl, WARHORSE and KC Navarro were about to settle the score in the ring. It would be size vs strength as these two looked to blow some minds in the ring, through velocity or headbanging. Navarro wasted no time in picking up the pace and nailed WARHORSE with a Suicide Dive and a Missile Dropkick. WARHORSE started headbanging and put Navarro down with a headbutt and a powerslam. He kept firing away on Navarro even reversing a Sunset Flip into a wind-up headbutt. The power of metal was ruling all the ass right now. The Blackfoot Deathlock followed and WARHORSE looked to clip Navarro’s wings with it. Navarro reached the ropes and burst back to life with explosive strikes and a jumping Tornado DDT. WARHORSE dodged a Frog Splash and took a Superkick on the chin to rebound into a lariat and KO Navarro once again. He nailed Navarro with a running knee and prepared to stab through him with a double stomp but Navarro countered it into a Code Red. Navarro quickly followed up with the Jesus Piece and put the final nail in WARHORSE’s coffin. The Blessed One had taken the beating and turned the tide in his favour to pick up the win over Parts Unknown’s most interesting wrestling in a short and snappy wrestling classic.

The Sea Stars (Delmi Exo & Ashley Vox) defeated Top Dogs (Davienne & Skylar) via Tidal Wave on Skylar

Up next was some Women’s Featherweight Division action as The Sea Stars were about to welcome another tag team into the fold. The Top Dogs, consisting of Davienne and the Hot Scoop Skylar were looking to leave a lasting impression on the company, what better way to do that than to beat the Sea Stars? Willow Nightingale had joined commentary and was going to help call the action. The Top Dogs struck instantly and hammered down the Sea Stars before introductions. Exo and Vox made the pair pay with double back-crackers and followed the pair to the floor with dual dives. The momentum shifted again as Skylar floored Vox with a lariat and Davienne slammed Exo into the canvas. From there, it was all Top Dogs as Davienne and Skylar trapped and tortured Exo. Top Dogs kept bringing the pain and had Exo cut off from her teammate utilising rule-breaks, Suplexes, and more nasty strikes. They almost had it with Davienne’s ring-post dropkick but Vox made the save. Exo was able to leap over the pair and make a tag, Vox instantly taking advantage with a double dropkick. She teed off on both with strikes and fish-hooked Skylar into a lariat. Skylar kicked out and rocked Vox with a jawbreaker. Davienne rushed in and the pair hit Vox with a double-team bomb but Exo was ready to break up the pin. Exo got rid of Davienne with a swinging cutter and launched Skylar with an Exploder. The Tidal Wave followed and that was that. The Sea Stars withstood that early assault to bring the fight back and prove why they’re the top team of the MLW Women’s Featherweight Division. They couldn’t bask in that victory though as Holidead came out to murder Nightingale again Nightingale was prepared this time and brought the fight back to Holidead, disappearing backstage in a flurry of punches.

Between the Matches:

  • Emilio Sparks caught up with Myron Reed and tried to instigate that Reed was stirring the pot. As expected, Reed wasn’t answering those types of questions. Sparks would also catch Cesar Duran leaving with his brother’s key and mask alongside a whole ton of cash. Something was up. Duran looked prepared to unleash Matanza Duran once again.
  • Los Parks and 5150 will clash for the MLW World Tag Team Titles next week in a Philadelphia Street Fight. The challengers were beyond happy with this.
  • Alex Kane gave his first speech as Openweight Champion. He was taking control of the gritty fighters of the wrestling world. The Bomaye Fight Club was alive and recruiting the strongest around. He was setting up his own gym and was going to finish off any opponent with ruthless efficiency.
  • nZo debuts next week against Matt Cross. Plus, Alexander Hammerstone will be in action against a mystery foe.

Opera Cup final: Davey Richards defeated TJP via Ankle Lock

Last but not least, the main event. It was time to crown the winner of the 2021 Opera Cup. Davey Richards and TJP had fought through a stacked bracket of MLW favourites and wrestling darlings to get here. We’d seen them fight before and now, they were about to kill each other again for the cup. They opened with high-intensity chain wrestling as Richards went right for TJP’s arm, trying to create a weak spot. They kept scrambling through holds and pin attempts as both tried to secure victory early. TJP tried to pop out of a head-scissor but in my favourite counter ever, Richards turned it into a spike piledriver, spiking TJP each time he tried to escape. TJP finally got free and tied up Richards’ legs, working the toes. Things got nastier as Richards escaped, the strikes came out and TJP kicked out Richards’ knee, forcing him outside. TJP got even nastier with hand stomps and faceplanted Richards onto the apron. It seems that earlier embarrassment had pissed him off. They battled around the outside, Richards’ knee preventing him from cracking off kicks. TJP knew he had the advantage and kept cockily trying to break down Richards, again giving special attention to that knee. That pissed Richards off and the pair started unleashing nightmarish forearms and kicks on each other. Richards answered TJP’s kicks with a lethal lariat and both ended up staying down. They found their feet for another round of shots and Richards trapped TJP with a Trailer Hitch. TJP managed to drag himself to the ropes and the pair countered the other’s attacks until TJP landed the Detonation Kick.

Richards kicked out and threw out more kicks on the apron, pummelling TJP until he was stopped and silenced with a Fisherman Buster onto the hardest part of the ring. The Mamba Splash followed but Richards kicked out at two. He wasn’t done yet. TJP went back to the face washes and Richards caved his chest in with a pop-up kick. TJP tried to roll out to the apron but Richards went top rope and impaled him to it with a double stomp. A second double stomp followed and somehow, TJP kicked out. Richards ignored the shock and dropped TJP on his head with a Brainbuster. TJP still kicked out. With two killing blows down, Richards grabbed the ankle and almost tapped out TJP. He avoided a TJP Clutch, reapplied the Ankle Lock and took the win. Davey Richards is the 2021 Opera Cup winner. He’d taken so much abuse to that knee but when the chips were down, he found a spark and murdered TJP, bringing a smile to so many faces. Cheaters never prosper and TJP found that out as Richards snuffed out his Opera Cup dream. This was an incredible match. Say what you want about the fighters but they brought it all here and put on a high-stakes, high-impact main-event calibre match. Congratulations Davey Richards, you deserve this.

All images courtesy of MLW, video courtesy of MLW YouTube

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