Welcome back to MLW and another star-studded edition of FUSION. It was legends night tonight as a whole host of famous faces, new and old, made their way to the fight. Cesar Duran has been booking big fights and big names and tonight was no exception. We’d see TJP getting his title shot against Myron Reed, Richard Holliday was going one-on-one with Matt Cross after an incident with a legendary guest and in the main event, we had two of wrestling’s top families going to war for Duran’s merriment. He was pitting the Von Erichs against the debuting Morton family in a cross-generational super bout. Let’s get into the action.

MLW Middleweight Title: Myron Reed defeated TJP via Counter Cutter

The first match of the night was the one with the highest stakes. TJP has been talking trash and kicking ass on route to a Middleweight Title shot. After weeks of matches and mouthing off, he was finally getting his one-on-one with the champ, Myron Reed. It was going to be a clash of styles in this clash for gold. This became a chess game of a match. It started fast and competitive with Reed being able to keep his speed up and work around the technical trappings and faux respect of TJP. That fell apart as TJP began targeting the shoulder and breaking down Reed’s limb. That intelligent but arrogant style came out and TJP kept finding different ways to lock up and put the hurt on Reed. That didn’t stop Reed from powering up and the Young G.O.A.T. flew into action again, fighting through the pain to put the hurt on TJP. He kept throwing himself into his offence and kept finding ways to down TJP but a failed Flame On saw him get dropped on the hardest part of the ring. He had the will to kick out of the Mamba Splash and kept the games going with TJP, countering pins and delivering kicks. He missed the No Cap Splash and TJP once again tried to break the shoulder but Reed found the ropes. TJP planned to end things with a second Mamba Splash after another slugging contest and more power but Reed popped up and took the win with a Counter Cutter. It was a swift end to a very methodical match. This was awesome. TJP knows how to deliver in big matches and the heart of Reed carried him through, along with his clever kicks and cutters. It was an excellent defence for the champion and yet another thing to make TJP bitter. What a contest.

Richard Holliday (w/Alicia Atout) defeated Matt Cross via 2008

Don’t piss off the matchmaker. That was what Holliday was learning as his sneaky attempt to snag the title or a title shot had failed. Steamboat had instead put him in a match with the indie veteran sensation, Matt Cross. He was far from happy about this match-up but he’d better not take MDogg 2020 lightly or he could get knocked further down the totem pole. It started hot for Holliday as he went right after Cross with hard shots. He was tossed outside and dived on but he was able to find another opening and continued to torture Cross with Atout jumping in to do extra damage when the ref wasn’t watching. Cross made an inevitable comeback but Holliday kept kicking out of his signatures and blasted him out of the Shooting Star Press to nail 2008. Holliday had won the match and bested Steamboat’s hand-picked opponent. This might not have been what Holliday wanted but it definitely helped him prove his point and should have pushed him up the rankings. It also made for a fun little match too. Of course, they had to gloat about the victory when they were done and make everyone as uncomfortable as possible.

Between the matches:

  • Cesar Duran opened the show with a scathing tirade against Charlotte North Carolina and threatened to kill the fans and the town. Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat came out in retaliation and revealed that he was being made interim matchmaker for the company as Duran was being tossed out whilst he was being investigated. He was going to give the fans some good news when Richard Holliday interrupted. The Clout Couple needed to give him their brand of welcome. After some verbal jabs, Holliday tried to weasel his title shot out of Steamboat. The Dragon wasn’t buying it and put him against Matt Cross instead. Holliday was less than thrilled.
  • Hustle and Power, Calvin Tankman and EJ Nduka, gave their first words after winning the titles. They dedicated the win to their families and fans. Myron Reed joined them and promised he’d try not to flop tonight. They all left together as Reed went into his match.
  • Next week is the return of the Women’s Featherweight division as Steamboat had just signed Shazza McKenzie vs Holidead. That was sure to be an international super fight.
  • EJ Nduka gave another in-depth interview about his journey to wrestling, his Nigerian heritage, and the sports he’d gone through. The company talked to him and his journey about being a monster athlete with a monster work rate. He also talked about how MLW and specifically Court Bauer approached him.
  • Alex Kane and Mr. Thomas were ambushed by Emilio Sparks who wanted answers on who was bank-rolling the Bomaye Fight club. He got no answers as they were too busy getting their bag sorted with Steamboat.

The Von Erichs (Ross & Marshall Von Erich) defeated The Mortons (Ricky & Kerry Morton) via Iron Claw-Plex on Ricky

Last but not least, the main event. It was time for a cross-generational, family vs family tag match. The Von Erichs and The Mortons had been becoming fast friends over the past few weeks so, of course, Cesar Duran wanted to ruin that. When The Von Erichs had demanded their title shot, he’d made this match instead. These were legendary names, let’s hope they put on a legendary fight. It played out pretty much like a classic style match with Kerry showing off his grappling with Ross and Ricky jumping in to help. There was mutual respect shown early on but that sportsmanship melted away as tempers flared and survival instinct kicked in. Kerry was singled-out and once Ricky had seen enough, he busted out the Destroyer on Ross. Marshall quickly came to his brother’s aid with the claw and refused to relinquish the hold until long after the bell had rung and the Von Erichs had won with their Claw-Plex. Kerry was furious with the liberties taken but at the end of the day, a win is a win and the Von Erichs need those if they’re ever going to see the Tag Titles again. I’d have liked to see a bit more from this match but it was fun for what it was and I’ll always pop for Ricky Morton, especially when he’s throwing out Destroyers.

That didn’t end it though. Calmer heads prevailed and the two teams tried to cool off when Dr. Julius Smokes cut off the heartfelt moment to run down everyone and anyone in his way. He proclaimed death on everyone but he was just the messenger for the action to come as Slice Boogie and Rivera attacked from behind. They were quickly knocked back out to the mat as both teams came together to send them packing with clotheslines and double dropkicks. Tradition had won the day but it served as a warning that 5150 had not forgotten about the Von Erichs. It’s still in sight between these two teams. Who knows when that is going to explode?

All images courtesy of MLW, Video courtesy of MLW YouTube

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