For the last two weeks on SmackDown Live, Buddy Murphy has had incredible matches with main event stars. Roman Reigns and Murphy had what very well could be a match of the year, and then Daniel Bryan and him had a barnstormer. If it wasn’t for some dumb luck, we may not have seen Murphy on television, never mind wrestling in the main event.
It has been something of a meteoric rise in the last year and a half for Murphy, despite the fact that we had not seen him since the draft. There have been some beautiful matches on 205 Live, as well as on the main roster, which put him in high esteem with the main folks backstage.
There were spots of brilliance when Murphy was teaming with Wesley Blake in NXT, where they ended up with a championship rein in 2015. Feuds with the Lucha Dragons, The Vaudevillains as well as Enzo Amore and Big Cass showcased bits and pieces of the arsenal that Murphy had. However, his NXT run was somewhat uneventful. It wasn’t until the Australian decided to drop 25 pounds and move to 205 Live to become the wrestler we know now.
Murphy had been bargaining for a spot on the 205 Live roster for over a year, looking for his break as TV time alluded him in NXT. It took a lot by himself, as he mentioned to Lilian Garcia on her podcast earlier this year to get noticed.
“I just looked in to stuff to do to keep me occupied,” Murphy continued. “Alright, I’m gonna start dieting. I’m gonna start working out more. So then I started to lose weight and then I started to see some results, and I started to drop some weight. Then I pitched 205 again. ‘No!’ ‘Alright.’ So I was doing all this stuff and then they announced the Classic – the tournament – for the Crusierweight Title after it got vacated, and the winners were gonna face each other at WrestleMania. I ended up messaging Adam Pierce, who’s one of the producers of 205, and I was like, ‘Hey Adam, I saw there was this tournament. Not sure if it’s fully booked yet, but if it isn’t, I’d like to put my name in the hat.’Thanks to Chasing Glory, with Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
That saw him debut on 205 Live at the start of 2018; the same Cruiserweight Title tournament that he pitched to Adam Pearce. His debut, against Mustafa Ali, was a match filled with athleticism and technical prowess that started a feud that lasted months. Murphy went back-and-forth between Ali and Cedric Alexander, and his stardom became brighter as the months progressed. On March 27th, Murphy went up against Ali, Alexander and Hideo Itami in a fatal four-way match.
That win started a golden year on 205 Live for Murphy, with him being named in three of the top 10 matches during the first 100 episodes of the show. That match #6, while one of many championship matches against Cedric Alexander ranked #4, and his no-disqualification match sat at #1.
The light that is Buddy Murphy continued to shine brighter, culminating with a match at WWE Super ShowDown in Murphy’s home time of Melbourne, Australia in October of 2018. While it showcased athleticism and passion for the business, the emotion that Murphy exuded from the 50,000+ strong Australian audience when he won the Cruiserweight title was unparalleled that night.
That started a near six-month rein as Cruiserweight Champion, with incredible matches against some of the best wrestlers on the roster. He had arguably the match of the night at TLC to finish 2018 against Cedric Alexander, while his match against Akira Tozawa at the Elimination Chamber event showcased speed and utter strength.
We then move to the WrestleMania match against an old ally in Tony Nese. Stuck on the kickoff show once again, Murphy and Nese arguably had one of the best matches on the card. Dave Meltzer had the match rated at a three and a half star rating. In what probably showcases the rise of Murphy on 205 Live, his lowest known rating from Meltzer during his time on the show was a three and a half.
Barely a month later, Murphy was drafted to Smackdown Live… and that was the last that we saw of him until that fateful moment barely a month ago. It has seen Murphy tossed into the main event after only having a solitary appearance during the town hall meeting on July 17th. What has come of it since?
Backstage segments showed that Murphy can most definitely talk. It resulted with what could very well be the match of the year. If it isn’t, it has the “free-to-air” match of the year sewn up. The internet wrestling community has been abuzz with how impressive Murphy was last week against Reigns, as well as his match against Bryan.
He had been warning us for years, as he told us on 205 Live. For 16 months, the secret was kept under wraps within the Cruiserweight division. Only those who went searching found out what he was capable of. Now, with two match of the year candidates against Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan, the secret is no more. The secret is firmly out in the open: Buddy Murphy is WWE’s next big star.
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