MLW Fusion returned from New York City for episode 93 to crown the Opera Cup winner. Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Brian Pillman Jr. battled tooth and nail for the honor. The show also featured Gino Medina versus Savio Vega in a street fight and Myron Reed defending the Middleweight Championship against El Lindaman of the Stronghearts.
On to a recap and review of the show...
Middleweight Championship: Myron Reed vs El Lindaman
Myron Reed was joined ringside by Injustice. In a backstage promo, Reed didn’t agree with comparisons of him to Cassius Clay. Reed won’t let rich white men control his actions. Reed thinks he is more like Muhammad Ali in that they fight for justice. However, Ali wanted peace, and Reed wants war.
This was a nifty matchup. Top highlights include two somersault dives by Lindaman to the outside onto Injustice, a combo move from Reed of a springboard cutter into a sitdown suplex, and a Kumagoroshi by Lindaman.
For the finish, Reed ran down the entrance ramp and jumped over the ropes for a cutter. Reed finished the match with a 450 splash to win.
Brian Pillman Jr. has a grade 3 AC joint separation in his shoulder. He bypassed surgery, because winning the Opera Cup is too important. Injustice is a pack of hyenas, but Pillman won’t lie down for them. About the Opera Cup final against Davey Boy Smith Jr., Pillman will prove he deserves respect.
King Mo doesn’t care about the Opera Cup final. The winner needs to face him. The Black Leprechaun wants gold, so he’s coming for Jacob Fatu and the Heavyweight Championship.
Lifestyles of the Rich and Dynastic
Gino Medina was taking in the Dynasty’s habits. Chugga, chugga, chugga, champagne sip. Richard Holliday mentioned that Grogan is doing security for their VIP section. Holliday handed Medina a Dynasty card. Medina compared Konnan as the Hulk Hogan of Mexico. That set Alexander Hammerstone off with insults for Konnan. Medina made the right choice in joining the hottest thing in MLW. The scene closed by sealing the deal with a four-man Dynasty pinkie promise.
NYC Street Fight: Gino Medina vs Savio Vega
The Dynasty came out with Gino Medina for a fist pound, then they exited to the back. Savio Vega had a backstage promo about being upset with Medina’s stomping of Konnan. Vega will teach Medina a lesson the hard way in a street fight.
This brawl had a kendo stick, trashcan and lid, stop sign, pizza pans, chairs, and hockey stick. They bashed each other hard. For the finish, Vega was in control, then the Dynasty came out on the entrance ramp. Medina made use of the distraction with a low blow and a tornado kick to win.
The Dynasty danced in celebration.
Promo time, part 2
Rich Bocchini clarified that the Spirit Squad is not part of Team Filthy. They were used by Tom Lawlor as part of a ruse to attack the Von Erich brothers with nunchucks. The New York State Athletic Commission is investigating the use of a weapon illegal in the state. Nunchucks are supposedly outlawed. A suspension may be coming.
Davey Boy Smith Jr. said that being in the Opera Cup final means pride, passion, and glory. His grandfather, Stu Hart, was the last person to win the Opera Cup, back in 1948. Smith will carry on tradition. He was surprised that Brain Pillman Jr. made it to the final, but he sees the passion and desire burning. Yes, they are family, but the big match will be business.
Injustice was kicked out of the building over threats of ruining the Opera Cup final.
MLW announced the Opera Cup will be an annual tournament.
Opera Cup final: Brian Pillman Jr. vs Davey Boy Smith Jr.
Time for the tale of the tape. Ignore the Cincinnati spelling error. Or maybe Pillman is actually from place called Cincinatti.
This bout was close to 20 minutes. As the match wore on, Davey Boy Smith Jr. wore down the body of Brian Pillman Jr. Pillman dug deep for occasional spurts of offense. He was close to winning after a superkick, knee to the face, then a springboard clothesline, but Smith kicked out of the pin at 2.
An errant flying crossbody from Pillman missed the mark and was the first step in sealing his doom. Smith charged forward with a powerslam. Pillman kicked out at 2. Pillman talked smack on a losing exchange of slaps, then he was crushed with a tombstone piledriver then a diving headbutt. Pillman kicked out at 2. Smith continued with a powerbomb. Pillman kicked out again.
Smith wasted no time in applying a crossface submission. Pillman rolled Smith back for a pin attempt, but Smith rolled them right back into the submission. That was it for Pillman as he tapped. Smith is the winner of the 2019 Opera Cup. The two shared a handshake and a hug after the match.
Davey Boy cut a post-show promo about winning the Opera Cup. He is honored and hopes Stu Hart is smiling from up above. Smith did it for the fans and the love of professional wrestling. The Opera Cup is the stepping stone to the top of MLW.
SOCIAL EXCLUSIVE:— MLW FIGHTLAND • PHILLY • FEB 1 (@MLW) January 19, 2020
"2020 is gonna be that much more brighter for Davey Boy Smith Jr." @DBSmithjr reflects on his future plans in MLW and what winning the #OperaCup means to him. pic.twitter.com/rfZyHrq0W7
Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Brian Pillman Jr. closed the Opera Cup out in style. They put on a solid bout matching the high quality of previous rounds. Pillman kicking out of so much offense at the end was a little thick for my liking, but it was a good way to build Pillman for the future. Smith is the right choice to win. I don’t see him dethroning Jacob Fatu as the Heavyweight Champion just yet, so this tournament victory is a nice notch on Smith’s MLW resume. There is also the positive tale with the Hart family connection to the trophy for a true feel-good moment.
Myron Reed and El Lindaman put on a fun little bout. I hope Lindaman gets more matches in MLW. He has an exciting style of suplexes. Even though Injustice was ringside, Reed pretty much won on his own accord. That is a strong step to establishing himself as a legit champion.
As far as I’m concerned, the jury is still out about Gino Medina. He has the MLW hype train behind him, but I haven’t seen enough yet to be convinced. He spoke choppy and mumbly in the Lifestyles of the Rich and Dynastic. He was okay in the street fight. Nothing memorable. I’m sure Medina will get better over time. For now, I’m hoping he shows slight improvement each time he’s on screen.
Shout out to MLW for the little details. They explained that the Spirit Squad is not part of Team Filthy. That opens up future story possibilities and extends Tom Lawlor’s feud with the Von Erich brothers. If nunchucks are illegal in New York, then I never want to live there. It was smart to acknowledge that Injustice was booted from the building prior to the Opera Cup final. That closed loose ends for that story and gave us a clean bout.
My favorite moment of the show was the Dynasty dancing. I could watch that on loop for hours. I’d give Richard Holliday the nod as best of the bunch with his scarf theatrics.
What was your favorite moment from episode 93 of MLW Fusion? What are you final reflections about the Opera Cup? Who is the best dancer in the Dynasty?
MLW Fusion airs on beIN SPORTS and PlayStation Vue Saturday nights at 9 pm ET / 6 pm PT. New episodes are posted on YouTube Saturdays at 6:05 pm ET. Fusion is also broadcast in the UK, Ireland, Israel, and Africa.