Welcome to tonight's coverage of the WWE Cruiserweight Classic. Hit the SHARE buttons on the page to let others know about our coverage.
Mauro Ranallo and Daniel Bryan welcome us to tonight's episode and recap some of the best moments from the second round. We head into the CWC Control Room with Corey Graves. Tonight's main event is Brian Kendrick vs. Kota Ibushi. First up is Akira Tozawa vs. Gran Metalik. Let's head to the ring!
Quick note: These quarterfinals matches will have a 30-minute time limit, raised from the 20-minute time limit we had in the first two rounds.
Gran Metalik vs. Akira Tozawa
Golf clap type reactions from the Full Sail crowd for both men, which is a bit colder than expected. I suppose they need to be woken up if this was the first match of the taping. Friendly handshake gets us started. Tozawa looks for the German Suplex early, but blocked by the luchador. Leg holds traded by both men and we have a stand off. They each get an arm drag on the other and hit simultaneous drop kicks to remain even. A little test of strength as they egg each other on to shoulder tackle the other. Neither budges and Metalik nails a drop kick that pins Tozawa to the ropes. Springboard drop from Metalik and follows it up with a suicide dive that is met with a "C-dub-C" chant from the crowd.
Flying cross body from Metalik for a two count. Tozawa selling a chest/rib injury after the dive and cross body. Leg lock cinched in by Metalik as Tozawa uses his signature yells to psych himself to the ropes to break the hold. Gran Metalik with a thunderous kick to Tozawa. Akira able to counter a jumping back elbow with a drop kick to the back of Metalik. Tozawa hits two suicide dives of his own and both competitors down outside the ring. Tozawa using some power moves and delivers a power slam with a senton. The two trade stiff slaps and chops. Tozawa fakes out Metalik and delivers a big right hand for a two count.
Tozawa gets the crowd riled up with his screams and the crowd responds. In a great heel move, he tells the crowd to be quiet. Cat like agility from Metalik as he hits a springboard splash and and a standing shooting star press for a two. Springboard back elbow hits on the second try after missing earlier. Multiple roll-through's that leads to a swift kick from Tozawa. Saito Suplex from Tozawa for another two. Tozawa goes for a boot in the corner, but is met but a super kick from the luchador. Multiple springboards into a drop kick from Metalik. Tozawa is sent to the outside and Metalik hits a somersault suicide dive that he calls "Brio Metalik." Another airborne assault by Metalik stopped by the heels of Tozawa. Huge rana from Metalik for a two count to everyone's disbelief. Metalik counters Tozawa's first German, and lands right into a snap German. Tozawa hits the deadlift German and Metalik kicks out at two, which was the move that won his first two matches. Out of nowhere, Gran Metalik hits the Metalik Driver for the three and the victory. He's on to the semi's. Extremely fun match.
Winner via Pinfall: Gran Metalik
The crowd chants for Tozawa after the match and both competitors show mutual respect as we head to commercial.
We're back as the announcers preview the next match and head straight into the video packages for tonight's main event. All of these packages have been superb, as per usual for WWE produced video packages.
Brian Kendrick vs. Kota Ibushi
Another random note from yours truly. Both these guys have "WWE-ready" themes, where as some of the CWC guys were given the best and worst of the stock themes for this tournament. Kendrick starts with the mind games early as he hits a slap and retreats to the outside and invites Ibushi with him. Kendrick blows a kiss to Ibushi and the Golden Star doesn't take kindly. Round house kick very early on and sends Kendrick to the outside. Ibushi lands a Golden Triangle Moonsault and Kendrick grabbing his shoulder/trap. Ibushi slings Kendrick back into the ring but the veteran wisely rolls right back out and using the guard rails to his advantage as he tries to trap Ibushi for the count-out win. No such luck as Ibushi wiggles his way out and hits a drop kick on the wiley vet.
Ibushi chopping down Kendrick with flush landing round house kicks. Kendrick lures Ibushi to the outside and lands a neck breaker on the steel cable near the turn buckle. Kendrick covers for a two and locks in a cravat to maintain control. Knee from Ibushi releases the hold. Reversals from both lead to a drop kick from Ibushi. Crowd is 50/50 for these two as Ibushi hits a moonsault off the second rope. Stiff and quick strikes from Ibushi, but Kendrick catches him and rolls him up for a two. The Wizard of Odd hits a super kick to create space. They trade forearms in the middle of the ring, now Kendrick switching to the points of the elbow on the back of Ibushi's injured neck. Sliced Bread from Kendrick for a two! Nice to see that move again. Kendrick drags Ibushi to the top via rear naked choke but Ibushi fights out with a kick.
Ibushi grabs Kendrick from the opposite side of the ropes off the second rope and Ibushi hits a releasing German Suplex over the ropes. Cover for a two. Dueling chants from the crowd showing their appreciation for the match. Bully choke from Kendrick bending Ibushi's neck back but Kota able to power out with elbows. Burning Hammer from Kendrick! Two count for the near fall, my word. Ibushi reverses a roll-up type maneuver and plants Kendrick for a two. A reversal of the bully choke rolls into a series of head kicks. Ibushi lands the Golden Star Power Bomb for the win. Another great match, as we've come to expect from the CWC.
Winner via Pinfall: Kota Ibushi
Quick Note: The finish did not happen on TV as it was reported live. At the taping, William Regal stopped the match after Kendrick hit the neck breaker on the metal rod and initially pinned Ibushi.
We recap the match with Ranallo and Bryan, who sends an emotional message to his good friend Brian Kendrick.
Next week, Zack Sabre, Jr. takes on Noam Dar and Rich Swann faces off against TJ Perkins.
After the match, a big "thank you Brian" chant breaks out and Kendrick becomes emotional. Daniel Bryan comes down from commentary for an embrace with his good buddy and raises Kendrick's hand as we head off the air.
Thanks for joining our coverage of WWE CWC. See you all next week!
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