MLW Fusion Recap (11/23): Low Ki Defends Against Shane Strickland, What's Next For Tom Lawlor

Flashback to the epic street fight between Tom Lawlor and Sami Callihan from last week's Fusion. Lawlor would submit the Callihan Death Machine, but would be betrayed by Simon Gotch, who led Tom into an ambush with Low Ki, LA Park, and Ricky Martinez.

Salina de la Renta is backstage with Simon Gotch. She kicks him over a tiny briefcase filled with money. Gotch tells Salina that if she ever needs another favor to let him know. Salina doesn't trust Simon, but says that he can earn her trust if he takes out Tom Lawlor in Miami. Gotch says he'll do it for no money, but her trust is something he is willing to earn.

Fusion Intro.

Rich Bocchini and Tony Schiavone welcome us to the show, and hype the evening's main event: an MLW heavyweight title rematch between former champion Shane Strickland, and current title-holder Low Ki.

Tom Lawlor and Simon Gotch is officially announced for MLW Miami. It will be a No Ropes, No Holds Barred match.

Our first matchup of the evening is about to begin, and Trey Miguel is already in the ring. MLW middleweight champion MJF is on commentary with Bocchini and Schiavone. Kotto Brazil comes out to face Miguel.

Kotto Brazil versus Trey Miguel

Miguel taunts Kotto to start things out. Big shoulder block from Miguel but Kotto comes right back with a head-scissor takedown. Kotto hits a standing dropkick, followed up by a springboard attack that knocks Miguel to the outside. Baseball slide avoided by Miguel and he lights up Kotto with a big forearm. Back in the ring, Kotto climbs to the top but Miguel bumps the ring ropes and Kotto lands on his crotch. Miguel takes advantage, stomping Kotto down in the corner. Big basement dropkick and Miguel is now in full control.

Miguel wears Kotto down with a rear-chinlock. Kotto tries to mount a comeback but Miguel cuts him off with a knife-edged chop. Kotto with a sunset flip cover but Miguel rolls through and destroys Kotto with a PK. Kotto finally lands some offense with a modified springboard poison frankensteiner. Kotto lands a series of strikes, including another dropkick that sends Miguel to the outside again. He follows that up with a suicide dive. And another. Tope Con Hilo from Kotto! He tosses Miguel back inside and lands a second rope lariat, and then a sprinboard headbutt. Pinfall attempt but Miguel kicks out.

Big running uppercut from Kotto. He puts Miguel on the top rope for a superplex but Miguel escapes and knocks Kotto down. He climbs up and lands a top rope Meteora with a cover...Kotto kicks out. Sprinboard cutter from Miguel and another cover. AGAIN HE KICKS OUT! Miguel can't believe it. He puts Kotto up on the top ropes and attempts a top rope cutter but Kotto blocks it! Double-stomp from Kotto but Miguel moves! Sliced Bread from Kotto and that keeps Miguel down.

Kotto Brazil wins by pinfall

MJF is screaming on commentary that the ref made a fast count. (It was normal.) Kotto celebrates, and possibly has worked himself into the middleweight championship scene.

Shane Strickland is seen from earlier in the day surrounded by reporters. Like last week...he refuses to answer any questions and walks away.

Promotion for LIJ member Rush, who debuts on MLW in two weeks.

Schiavone sends us over to Matt Striker who promotes more matches for MLW Miami. Night one: The Hart Foundation takes on the Lucha Brothers for the MLW tag team titles. Tom Lawlor versus Simon Gotch in a No Ropes, No Holds Barred. PCO meets LA Park in a Falls Count Anywhere bout. Rush battles MJF, and Andrew Everett makes his MLW debut.

Night two: Tom Lawlor against LA Park, Low Ki versus Konnan for the heavyweight title. MFJ, Jason Cade, Kotto Brazil, and a mystery opponent for the middleweight championship in a ladder match.

Backstage Kotto Brazil says it's about time that he gets a shot at MJF's title, who doesn't represent the middleweight scene very well. MJF blindsides him with an attack!

Teddy Hart and Brian Pillman Jr cut a promo on Tommy Dreamer, who Pillman will face next week. Hart says that there are many legends in this business, but Dreamer is not one of them. Pillman talks trash to Dreamer, and says he'll do to him...what he did to Kevin Sullivan.

The matchup between Dreamer and Pillman is made official for next week. Also announced is the Lucha Brothers defending the MLW tag titles against LA Park and El Hijo de LA Park.

El Gringo Loco is in the ring for the next matchup. His opponent...Marko Stunt!

Marko Stunt versus Gringo Loco

Gringo goes on his knees to taunt Marko. Some nice athleticism from both men to start...Marko hits a rope-assisted frankensteiner, and a very impressive arm-drag. Gringo on the outside...Marko with a suicide dive under the bottom rope. He climbs to the top rope while Gringo is still on the arena floor...JUMPING FRANKENSTEINER. Marko dances to the crowd's delight.

Back in the ring Marko climbs again but Gringo cuts him off. Gorilla press from Gringo, followed by a series of standing moonsaults. Cover attempt but Marko kicks out. Double-underhook piledriver from Gringo with a cover but Marko escapes again. Gringo climbs to the top but misses a corkscrew attack. Powerbomb attempt from Gringo but Marko turns it into another frankensteiner! Off the ropes...Marko hits a tilting codebreaker! Got em!

Marko Stunt wins by pinfall

Low Ki is on his way to the ring. He walks right by Stokely Hathaway.

Shane Strickland comes out and it's main event time. Low Ki, with Salina and Ricky Martinez, is out second.

Low Ki versus Shane Strickland for the MLW Heavyweight championship

Grapple. Low Ki with a takedown attempt but Swerve locks in a headlock. Some back and forth mat-wrestling but neither man can get the advantage. Another grapple...Swerve pushes Low Ki into the corner but the champ escapes to the outside. A third grapple and Low Ki gains the advantage, and locks in a modified STF submission. Swerve escapes, but Low Ki lands the first strike with a big chop. Swerve comes right back with a lariat, which sends Low Ki to the outside. Swerve follows him out and lands some stiff kicks, targeting the champ's chest. He tosses Low Ki into the barricade, before throwing him back in the ring. Butterfly stretch from Swerve and he's got early control.

Swerve wears Low Ki down in the corner with shoulder blocks to Low Ki's midsection. Big backbreaker from Swerve. Suplex attempt but Low Ki reverses it and drops Swerve right onto the top rope. (He hits the camera man too.) Low Ki chases Swerve to the outside and starts hitting his chest with chops of his own. Low Ki smartly breaks the referee count and continues to work over Swerve on the ground floor. He smacks Swerve's head off a nearby table. Back in the ring Low Ki goes for a pinfall...Swerve kicks out easily.

Float over suplex from Low Ki but Swerve kicks out again. The camp with a camel-clutch, tugging at Swerve's head and neck. Swerve uses a jawbreaker to break the hold and unloads chops onto Low Ki's chest again. Low Ki comes right back with a handstand dropkick (using the turnbuckle). Shining Wizard dodged by Swerve, but Low Ki uses his momentum to change direction and nail Swerve with a kick to the back of the head. Octopus stretch from Low Ki in the center of the ring.

Swerve begins to mount a comeback, nailing Low Ki with a big forearm, and a headscissor takedown. Running uppercut in the corner. Running knee in the corner! Big back body drop all from Swerve. Cover but Low Ki kicks out. Kicks from Swerve to Low Ki's chest. Low Ki responds with one of his own but Swerve catches the champ in an elevated reverse DDT. Low Ki counters an armdrag and surprises Swerve with a running dropkick sending Swerve into the corner hard. The champ climbs but Swerve meets him up on the top. He pushes Swerve off and attempts an attack...but hits the ref! swerve takes Low Ki down with a superkick and a punt on the outside. In the ring Swerve hits the Swerve stomp but the referee can't make the count. After clearing having the matchup won...another ref comes out but Low Ki kicks out. Swerve is very upset, and gets distracted by Ricky Martinez. Low Ki comes from behind and rips at Swerve's hair...yanking out some of his locks. Ref doesn't see it. He rolls Swerve up...and he can't kick out.

Low Ki retains the MLW Heavyweight championship

Salina and Low Ki celebrate on their way out. Strickland...who is very upset...grabs a microphone. He says he has sacrificed everything...including his family to become the franchise of MLW, and yet somehow Low Ki is allowed to walk around with his title and constantly cheating to win. Swerve calls out Court Bauer for booking the show poorly. He says he is terminating his MLW contract. His mic gets cut! An irate Strickland leaves through the crowd.

That's the show friends.

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