If Mustafa Ali has proven anything since starting with WWE, it's that he has a pretty good mind for the business. Take, for example, his philosophy on how the RETRIBUTION story is being told, and using his own experiences in the wrestling business to shape it.
During the same After The Bell with Corey Graves episode, the mysterious SmackDown hacker discussed his time on 205 Live, and how he would have booked it from the start.
Mustafa Ali on 205 Live having to follow SmackDown originally
When the WWE revived the Cruiserweight division in 2016 and gave it its own program, the aforementioned 205 Live, the company taped episodes of the WWE Network program following SmackDown. In Mustafa Ali's opinion, this had a seriously negative effect on how the live audience would react to the new show.
“205 going on after SmackDown was the equivalent of an opening band going on after Metallica. [Nobody] is there to see them. We were sitting in Gorilla one day. I looked at the monitor and it was Randy Orton vs John Cena... to end SmackDown. The place is going nuts... We looked at each other and thought, ‘what are we going to do?’
So, what were they going to do? If Mustafa Ali had been in charge, they would have added a huge name to the show to draw interest.
"I think the thing that was overlooked was that 205 was new. New Superstars were being presented. If you gave us Rey Mysterio, you could put 205 on his back and he could create this brand because at least there is immediate interest in Rey, therefore interest in the show. Now you can put Buddy Murphy against Rey, now you can build Buddy. Then once Buddy is established, you put me.”
205 Live is still a part of WWE, but the Cruiserweight division has been added to NXT. Rey Mysterio, on the other hand, is currently on—ironically enough—SmackDown with his son, Dominik. He is also coincidentally involved in a major feud with a former member of the 205 Live roster, Murphy.
(H/T to WrestleTalk for the transcription)Published 06 Nov 2020, 01:28 IST