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MLW Fusion recap: Taya Valkyrie cheats to retain featherweight championship

Taya Valkyrie has no problem winning by hook or by crook. That was evident in her title defense against Trish Adora. A little help from Cesar Duran (alias Dario Cueto) went a long way in retaining the MLW World Women’s Featherweight Championship. Episode 164 of Fusion on Pro Wrestling TV also featured the MLW debut of Sam Adonis and Yamato winning the Open the Dream Gate Championship from Shun Skywalker in DragonGate.

Taya Valkyrie and Trish Adora battled in the main event of Fusion with gold on the line. Taya was accompanied by Cesar Duran, who was up to no good. Trish was feisty early securing a hammerlock on the mat then doing pushups on top of Taya as a taunt. Taya had some success, but Trish was in control more often than not. After a backbreaker and bridging suplex from the challenger, Trish was near the ropes plotting her next attack. That’s when Duran hooked her foot from the outside. La Wera Loca went for a running crossbody, but Trish caught her. Duran hooked Trish’s foot again. This time, Trish fell down with Taya on top of her for the winning pin.

This was an okay match with a questionable finish. It was the first time Taya cheated in her reign with the MLW title. The match felt more like a showcase for Trish to set up a possible rematch down the line rather than Taya disposing of challengers as a fighting champion.

In other business from Duran, he introduced Sam Adonis as the newest addition to Azteca Lucha. Duran put over his acquisition as the nastiest, most violent fighter in Mexico. Adonis has beaten the shit out of every luchador in AAA and main-evented for CMLL in Arena Mexico.

Adonis made his debut in MLW with an easy victory over Johnny Patch via Orange Blossom Thunder Driver.

Backstage, Adonis showed why he is El Rudo. Microman was minding his own business with a snack. Duran walked by and tapped a trashcan. Adonis dumped out the garbage on top of Microman and put the trashcan over the luchador. Lince Dorado stepped in to assist Microman. Duran noted Dorado’s success winning the MLW World Middleweight Championship and pitched him to join Azteca Lucha.

The best match of the episode came courtesy of DragonGate. MLW aired Yamato winning the Open the Dream Gate Championship from Shun Skywalker. It was a dynamite bout from start to finish. The story was Yamato’s persistence with the sleeper hold as a counter maneuver. Third time was the charm. He wore Skywalker down to execute the Ragnarok sitout side powerslam for victory.

That contest was a cool surprise. MLW teased in the preview that Yamato would be wrestling. I had no idea that they would be delivering such a primo fight. The action was intense, and the drama was riveting with near falls. The purpose of this footage was to open our minds to the world of Yamato before he wrestles Alexander Hammerstone for the MLW World Heavyweight Championship. Mission accomplished. I’m pumped to see Yamato challenge Hammerstone. (That match has actually taken place already, but it has yet to air on Fusion.)

On the promo tip, Richard Holliday addressed his absence due to cancer. Doctors have been impressed with how Holliday’s body has responded to chemotherapy, but he doesn’t know when he’ll be back in the ring.

Alex Kane has big plans for 2023 by putting the British Bulldogs out of their misery, rebranding the Opera Cup, winning the Opera Cup tournament, winning the Battle Riot, then winning the MLW World Heavyweight Championship to end the year.

Davey Boy Smith Jr. laughed off Kane’s threats. Talk is cheap. But damaging the Opera Cup trophy will have a price for harming the Hart family legacy. Smith will get payback in the ring and hurt Kane.

The Samoan Swat Team busted chops about Jacob Fatu cashing in. At the end of the day, the crew will be dripping in gold.

On the news front, Alexander Hammerstone versus EJ Nduka in Last Man Standing for the MLW World Heavyweight Championship will air for the Reelz debut of MLW Underground Wrestling on February 7. Hammerstone versus Jacob Fatu is announced for the Superfight taping on February 4. Lio Rush is returning soon to MLW television.

Share your thoughts on the latest episode of MLW Fusion.

MLW Fusion streams Thursdays at 8 pm ET on Pro Wrestling TV and hits the cable waves Saturdays at 8 pm ET on beIN SPORTS.

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