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The Wrestling Insider #30: Cruiserweight Showcase 2- TJ Perkins

TJ+Perkins+scratched+and+clawed+his+way+to+the+WWE+and+now+is+featured+as+a+prominent+member+of+the+Cruiserweight+division.
TJ Perkins scratched and clawed his way to the WWE and now is featured as a prominent member of the Cruiserweight division.

TJ Perkins scratched and clawed his way to the WWE and now is featured as a prominent member of the Cruiserweight division.

Courtesy of wwe.com

Courtesy of wwe.com

TJ Perkins scratched and clawed his way to the WWE and now is featured as a prominent member of the Cruiserweight division.

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Hey everyone! Today’s Cruiserweight Showcase highlights former WWE Cruiserweight Champion TJ Perkins.

When it was announced that TJ Perkins would compete in the Cruiserweight Classic, I was beyond ecstatic. TJ was someone I watched for years now, since he competed in TNA under the ring name of Manik. TJ is typically very active on Twitter, and I remember exchanging tweets with him about his status in TNA. TNA eventually gave up on Manik, and he was out of the company in January of 2016.

Soon later, TJ Perkins turned into WWE’s top Cruiserweight star. Perkins has been scratching and clawing for an opportunity in the WWE for 18 long years. And it finally came to him on September 14th, as he defeated Gran Metalik in the finals of the Cruiserweight Classic and became the inaugural Cruiserweight Champion. When the Cruiserweight division was announced to appear on Monday Night Raw, TJ Perkins was the star Cruiserweight. His entrance is awesome, as it pays tribute to the Nintendo Entertainment System. He truly does live the life of a video game character.

Perkins started a rivalry with former friend Brian Kendrick and had a couple of great matches together, two of which were featured on pay-per-view (Clash of Champions and Hell in a Cell). Although he lost the title to Brian Kendrick, TJ Perkins established himself as a top face in the Cruiserweight division. After his feud with Brian Kendrick, TJ Perkins didn’t really have an angle going for him. While he did have a few opportunities at regaining the Cruiserweight Title, he came up short. After Rich Swann dethroned Brian Kendrick on the first episode of 205 Live, TJ Perkins slowly came creeping back into the title picture.

At Roadblock: End of the Line, Rich Swann defended his Cruiserweight Championship against both Brian Kendrick and TJ Perkins. Swann retained, but what happened after the match really established how things would go for TJ Perkins after. Neville made his return to television, and proceeded to attack both TJ Perkins and Rich Swann, turning heel in the process.

Perkins still is a foe of Neville’s, and they had great matches against each other, one of which that stands out is a tag team match with Perkins and Swann against Neville and Kendrick.

TJ Perkins really stands out for me because he is someone who I’d want my kids to be. Perkins always respects the fans and appreciates every single one of them for their support. He never hesitates to take photos with fans or sign autographs. Perkins’s popularity eventually grew to the point that he became the first Cruiserweight to have merchandise released (his t-shirt sold out relatively quickly too).

What I like the most about TJ Perkins, however, is his individuality. His entrance really stands out, like I mentioned before. His tights have super bright colors, and he is the only wrestler in WWE that dabs during his entrance and his matches. Perkins is an expert in the ring, and combines submission wrestling with high-flying. I’m always a sucker for a double underhook gutbuster. Nobody does it better than TJP himself.

Long-term though, I really want to see Perkins have more opportunities on the microphone. Critics bash Perkins for his mic skills, but he’s actually pretty good on the mic. He cut a promo about Neville that was only featured on wwe.com, when it should be featured on the episode that he was about to do battle with Neville on. If TJ had more time to establish his character on the mic, people would realize that he is great on the microphone. Hopefully within the near future TJ Perkins becomes the first ever two-time Cruiserweight Champion.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned tomorrow for the next Cruiserweight Showcase.

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The Wrestling Insider #30: Cruiserweight Showcase 2- TJ Perkins