clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

MLW Fusion recap: Leather strap match

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Mance Warner was in a fighting mood heading into episode 171 of MLW Fusion. Sam Adonis took Mancer to death’s door by hanging him with a leather strap. Now, it was time for payback in a leather strap match.

On top of the scheduled fight, Ole Mancer was extra ornery since he was out of beer. 1 Called Manders eased the tension by gifting Warner a personal leather strap from the Manders family. Lance Anoa’i and Juicy Finau entered the scene offering cold suds. They were paying respect for Warner watching their back. Warner proposed a tag title shot for the Second Gear Crew, and the Samoan Swat Team agreed to the challenge. SST versus SGC for the MLW World Tag Team Championship goes down next week on Fusion.

Warner brought the strap to the ring to battle Adonis. The four corners rule was in effect to achieve victory. The finish went down to the wire with both men touching three turnbuckles apiece. Warner decided to throw caution to the wind and tackle Adonis through a wooden board in the corner. In the process of falling, Adonis was able to touch his fourth turnbuckle to steal the win.

Warner was not happy. He wanted more of Adonis and demanded a Country Whipping Match. That’s when bar fights are surrounded by patrons with belts to prevent anyone from running. MLW made it official for Never Say Never on July 8, streaming through Fite+.

Alex Kane was the feature attraction for the main event. He held the Big Apple Grapple II: Search For More Hoes open challenge. If the opponent could pin or submit Kane, then that person would win a sack of cash. Shigehiro Irie answered the call. Hoss fight! Irie gave Kane all he could handle with suplexes, cannonballs, and splashes. Kane stayed tough for a southern lights suplex to win.

Business picked up afterward. Kane called out Alexander Hammerstone to get a taste before they square off for the MLW World Heavyweight Championship at Never Say Never. Hammerman answered the call, but officials prevented any physicality.

Speaking of the Bomaye Fight Club, their financial backer remains a mystery. MLW ran an exposé crossing some rumored names off the list. Dan Lambert, Shane Taylor, and Wale are not the secret money man behind Bomaye.

The opening bout saw Mandy Leon defeat Clara Carreras. Leon entered as the newest member of The Calling. Raven was ringside to observe the action. Carreras had a good showing for the short match scoring a frog splash for a near fall. Leon took control for a pumphandle driver. Leon made the cover, but she picked up her opponent on the two-count. Leon finished Carreras with a DDT to honor Raven.

On the promo tip, Jacob Fatu celebrated winning the MLW National Openweight Championship with Lance and Juicy on the rooftop with the New York skyline. Every member of the Samoan Swat Team held a championship.

The Never Say Never control center revealed Fatu’s first title defense. Calvin Tankman is stepping up to challenge for the openweight belt.

Delmi Exo was blindsided by Taya Valkyrie on stage. La Wera Loca is coming for her contractual rematch for the MLW Women’s World Featherweight Championship.

Last but not least, Willie Mack and Microman were in the park chowing on mini donuts. Mister Saint Laurent chastised his meal ticket about watching his weight, then MSL stole the donuts.

This week’s edition of MLW Fusion was okay. The strap match was the main attraction for me coming into the show, but it wasn’t as rowdy as I had hoped. Warner and Adonis didn’t use the strap that much, and the finishing sequence was a head-scratcher trying to figure out the corner count. Anytime commentary has to carefully explain what is going on, you know it’s too complicated. That’s okay though, since Warner and Adonis will be getting it on one more time in a Country Whipping Match. It makes sense not to get too nuts in the strap match to save some violence for the rematch.

Kane versus Irie was the best match on the show. It was two wrecking machines bulldozing each other. Kane picked up a quality win to keep his momentum high heading into the world title fight. Hammerstone has been on the back-burner a little too much in recent weeks. I’d like to see him smash some bodies before Never Say Never to remind the world why he resides atop muscle mountain in MLW.

The Bomaye exposé was pretty cool. I enjoy the effort of running through rumors to build hype for this story. It gets the mind churning about possibilities, and that in turn builds excitement for the eventual reveal. I also like how MLW uses outdoor shots during the show. It adds a personal touch of the city’s vibe.

Share your reactions to the latest episode of MLW Fusion.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Cageside Seats Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your pro wrestling news from Cageside Seats