Dragon Lee & Mistico wins battle of families, AAA debuts in the Pepsi Center, The Crash

I can’t remember what GIFs I’ve used at this point

Nothing but results tonight.

AAA TV (SAT) 01/19/2019 Pepsi Center WTC, Benito Juárez, Distrito Federal [AAALucha CentralR de Rudothecubsfan]
1) Dinastía, Lady Shani, Niño Hamburguesa b Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot, Villano III Jr.  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
10:27. Nino Hamburguesa splashed Villano III Junior. Keyra & Maravilla attacked Shani to get a title shot.
2) Carta Brava Jr., Mocho Cota Jr., Tito Santana b Hijo Del Vikingo, Laredo Kid, Myzteziz Jr.  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
7:15. Carta Brava pulled Laredo Kid’s mask (after Laredo Kid already has a mask pulled off) and speared him to get the pin.
3) Máximo, Murder Clown, Taya b Chessman, Faby Apache, La Máscara  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
8:37. Maximo kissed La Mascara three times and pinned him. They fought to the back after the match. Chessman, Averno and Faby Apache attacked Murder Clown.
4) Killer Kross b Dave The ClownParka Negra  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
6:13. Kross choked out Dave the Cown.
5) Brian Cage & Pagano b Joe Lider & Texano Jr.  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
10:22. Pagano beat Texano with a legdrop. Lider & Texano had minor issues. Cage seemed to either suffer a leg injury or come in with one.
6) Dr. Wagner Jr., La Parka, Psycho Clown b Blue Demon Jr., Hijo del Fantasma, Rey Escorpión  (posted by Lucha Libre AAA (Twitch))
13:08. Earlier, Demon & Wagner brawled and Los Mercanarios and Konnan helped him out. Konnan put Fantasma in charge of getting the mega title from Fenix. Also, La Parka introduced his son Hijo de La Parka as training to join AAA. Vampiro welcomed him, while also repeating his challenge to Konnan for a loser leaves town match and promising a surprise for Los Mercenarios. In the match, Fantasma hit Hijo de La Parka, then beat Parka after a foul and a martinete. The rudo left Psycho & Hijo de La Parka unmasked.

Nothing you have to see here beyond the second match. The opener had some moments. AAA continues to tease the idea of a Demon/Wagner match while not outright saying it is happening. This has gone on for a while now, enough to wonder if there’s another switch coming or if they’re still holding out that LA Park will come back into the fold. Speaking of, La Parka got the usual LA Park chant treatment when he came out to introduce his son only for the AAA fans to drown those chants out with Parka chants of his own. Must’ve been nice for a change. His son looks nowhere close to debuting; it came off more they just wanted him out there to get heat for an angle that may or may not be going anywhere. Like everything else on this show.

There was no sign of the Televisa announcers nor any mention of their network. The TV listings I can find say the AAA show if now off Televisa and TDN entirely. Maybe they get back together at some point in the near future but they’re done right now. It was a very strange sight to see only one announce table and have it be the Space announcers. Jesus Zuniga and Arturo Rivera were always technically Televisa employees, but more or less were also AAA employees at the same time in the way that your favorite sports team local announcers work for both the network they’re on and the team they cover. The CMLL announcers who were working for Televisa (and other networks) seemed to all migrate to being CMLL employes once that relationship ended. I assume that’ll happen with the Televisa announcers. Neither has said anything about the situation on Twitter as far as I’ve seen.

The new venue came off better than Gimnasio Juan de la Barrera and appeared to have sold out. It looks like AAA made a good move switch venues. No return date has been mentioned. AAA’s back on Twitch Saturday night at 8 pm CT.

There is a rumor that AAA may be holding TripleMania in Monterrey this year. I do not put a lot of stock in this rumor the moment, but it would follow the idea that being on Multimedios will make a stronger product in their home market. AAA has previously announced they’d be running this year’s show in Mexico City, though that was also the same moment they said they were running LA Park versus Dr. Wagner and that part doesn’t seem to be happening.

The Crash (SAT) 01/19/2019 Auditorio de Tijuana, Tijuana, Baja California [El Sol de Tijuana, The Crash, Zona Ruda]
1) Talban & Terror Azteca b Rayo Star & Unicornio
2) Deluxe, Mr. Iguana, Savage b Star Boy, Viento, Zarco The Crash Mr Iguana, Savage & Delux vs Viento, Zarco & Starboy (posted by MegaKakashi619)
3) Oráculo b Jake Atlas The Crash Oraculo vs Jake Atlas (posted by MegaKakashi619)
4) Penta Zero M & The King b Trauma I & Trauma II Facebook video (posted by zonarudaluchalibre) The Crash Hermanos Trauma (Trauma I & Trauma II) vs Lucha Brothers ( Penta 0M & Fenjx) (posted by MegaKakashi619)
a brawl, the best match of the night
5) Swoggle b El BandidoJeff CobbSam AdonisWillie Mack Sam Adonis vs Willie Mack vs Bandido vs Jeff Cobb vs Swoggle (posted by MegaKakashi619)
Swoggle beat Sam Adonis.
6) Rey Horus, Último Dragón, Xperia DQ Bestia 666, Garza Jr., Mecha Wolf 450 The Crash Rebelion Amarilla (Bestia 666,Mecha Wolf & Garza jr) Vs Ultimo Dragon, Rey Horus & Xperia (posted by MegaKakashi619)
Xperia replaced Extreme Tiger (appeared to explain he was out after shoulder surgery.) Post match set up Bestia versus Damian in a hardcore cage match for next month

The building looked close to full, either due to a long break between shows or the drawing power of Swoggle. (He was very over.) Lady Flammer, Christi Jaynes and Reyna Isis were advertised for the 02/09 show; I’d think there would be more CMLL people coming if Isis is booked. (Then again, we haven’t seen Isis in CMLL since early December.)

CMLL (SAT) 01/19/2019 Arena Coliseo [CMLL]
1) Mercurio & Pierrothito b Kaligua & Último Dragóncito
rudos took 1/3.
2) Cancerbero, Grako, Raziel b Astral, Halcón Suriano Jr., Príncipe Diamante
Rudos took 1/3. Halcon Suriano’s first loss in CMLL since getting the new name.
3) Sagrado, Tiger, Virus b Star Jr., Stigma, Súper Astro Jr.
Rudos took 1/3.
4) Kawato San b Pegasso [lightning]
Kawato won with his crucifix driver. Pegasso was stretchered out.
5) Esfinge, Stuka Jr., Tritón b Dragón Rojo Jr., Pólvora, Robin
Robin replaced Felino (moved up). Tecnicos took 2/3.
6) Diamante Azul, Kráneo, Niebla Roja b Felino, Máscara Año 2000, Rey Bucanero
Felino replaced Shocker. Tecnicos took 1/3.

CMLL posted a video statement from the doctor on hand saying Pegasso would be out 3-4 days after being hurt in the Kawato match. Video of the finish suggests that was a worked injury to get over Kawato’s move (a lot like Rush’s move on Friday.)

CMLL , NJPW (SUN) 01/20/2019 Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan [CMLLLucha CentralNJPWthecubsfan]
Fantastica Mania, 2019 Toyko Day 2
Attendance: 1560
1) Gedo & Taiji Ishimori b Flyer & Ryusuke Taguchi
8:20. Ishimori submitted Flyer to the anklelock
2) Ángel de Oro & Titán b Cuatrero & Templario
11:30. Angel de Oro submitted Cuatrero to the campana.
3) Bushi, Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito b Fujin, Raijin, Toa Henare
11:17. BUSHI beat FUJIN with an assisted frontcracker.
4) Forastero, Okumura, Sansón b Atlantis, Atlantis Jr., Jushin Liger
10:12. Okumura beat Atlantis with his spinning reverse DDT.
5) Carístico, Cavernario, Namajague b Audaz, Soberano Jr., Volador Jr. [Relevos Increíbles]
11:11. Caristico beat Audaz with a Mistica
6) Terrible b Satoshi Kojima
11:28. Terrible beat Kojima with a Styles Clash
7) Dragón Lee & Místico b Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero
17:11. Mistico won via La Mistica on Gran Guerrero

Main event was good but not great. The fifth match might have been the best match if not for one odd sequence. Angel de Oro & Titan continue to do well as a tag team. I can’t believe Terrible beat Kojima and guess they’re making it clear it’s over for Kojima.

Dragon Lee & Mistico, exuberant about the win, both said they had a goal of winning a mask this year. Mistico specifically challenged Mephisto, a match CMLL’s teased at times thru the years but never committed towards. Dragon Lee also said he wanted to win an IWGP title this year (captioning said the singles junior title but he didn’t seem that specific) and said he was waiting for Hiromu Takahashi’s return. Takahashi showing up on the final night would be an amazing moment, but any time he returns is going to be a huge moment.

Somewhere among my way too many posts on Twitter, there’s a bit where I volunteer to help out anyone who might call a lucha libre show with their research. And then there’s a reply where I point out how the original Twitter post makes me look like a generous person without actually having to do anything because no one ever asks for help. My luck ran out this past week when the NJPW English announcers calling these shows reached out to ask questions as part of their preparation. I can’t give you an unbiased take on how they did, but I think they did a good job. They got names right and got them with the right people, which sounds like asking nothing but is actually so much better than we usually get – and they were much better than that, knowing some history and background. Mavs Gills and Chris Charlton handled the announcing for this show; it’ll be Gillis and a surprise partner tonight.

The tour wraps up in a few hours with that second show. Caristico versus Volador is the big match, billed as determining the best wrestler in Mexico. Caristico offered Volador a shot the belt he wears prominently in ever interview (perhaps forgetting that Volador has the same exact belt for a different weight division, or perhaps not.) Atlantis Jr. versus Okumura and NGD versus Titan/Angel de Oro/Atlantis are the two other hyped CMLL matches. Forastero better get monkey flipped by one of his cousins tonight or I don’t know why he made the trip. Audaz & Flyer versus Barbaro Cavernario & Templario is better than your average opener, the fifth match looks fun, and there’s something with a Hiroshi Tanahashi movie which should be weird. The show starts at 3:30 AM Monday morning.

NJPW World is now listing the 12/30 CMLL show as airing this Friday. There’s also another CMLL show listed as airing on 01/31, though they have not revealed which show it will be. Could be Reyes del Aire, could be Hechicero/Stuka.

CMLL (SUN) 01/20/2019 Arena México [CMLL]
1) El Coyote & Príncipe Odín Jr. b Bengala & Sonic
2) Angelito, Fantasy, Shockercito b Pequeño Nitro, Pequeño Olímpico, Pequeño Universo 2000
tecnicos took 2/3
3) Disturbio, Misterioso Jr., Virus b Drone, Robin, Súper Astro Jr.
straight falls
4) Tritón b Universo 2000 Jr. [lightning]
5) Hijo del Villano III, Vangellys, Villano IV b Black Panther, Blue Panther, Blue Panther Jr.
rudos too 1/3
6) La Bestia Del Ring, Rush, Shocker b Diamante Azul, Niebla Roja, Valiente [Relevos Increíbles]
Rudos took 2/3.

Shocker has a promo to confirm he’s still in CMLL. Shocker looks rough in that video. There are also promos from Super Astro and Super Astro Jr., Triton, and Hijo del Villano III.

CMLL Fantastica Mania in Tokyo Day 2: 2019-01-20

make way for Mistico

Recapped: 01/20/2019

Matches: 

Gedo & Taiji Ishimori beat Flyer & Ryusuke Taguchi
(8:32, Ishimori anklelock Flyer, ok)

Ángel de Oro & Titán beat Cuatrero & Templario
(11:02, Angel de Oro campana Cuatrero, good)

Bushi, Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito beat Fujin, Raijin, Toa Henare
(11:22, BUSHI frontrcracker FUJIN, ok)

Forastero, Okumura, Sansón beat Atlantis, Atlantis Jr., Jushin Liger
(10:13, Okumura reverse DDT Atlantis Jr., ok)

Carístico, Cavernario, Namajague beat Audaz, Soberano Jr., Volador Jr. in a relevos increíbles match
(11:11, Carístico Mistica Audaz, good)

Terrible beat Satoshi Kojima
(11:32, Terrible Styles Clash, ok)

Dragón Lee & Místico beat Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero
(17:56, La Mistica on Gran Guerrero, good)

What happened: 

Carístico and Volador had a standoff and a handshake after their match.

Thoughts: 

can’t touch Audaz

The main event was fun, though it was just kind of missing a little more energy. I thought the NGD match was a little bit better as far as building excitement, but this was still had some great spots. Dragon Lee & Último Guerrero meshed well and it was weird to see them completely disappear for the finish. They played to the crowd a lot early and the crowd loved it, but the match didn’t kind of stayed at the easy crowd-pleasing level for as long as it went, even though it had so much time.

I can’t believe Terrible won. Match was alright, hard-hitting if slow-paced match it figured to be. Terrible probably could’ve sped it up a little more on his part, but that seemed part of a story of him being overconfident leading to a loss. Only he didn’t lose, so Terrible was exactly the right level of confident. This was exactly as good as you’d think a match between Kojima and Terrible in 2019 would be.

The Volador/Caristico trios match was very good for the most part. There was an incredibly weird sequence where Volador & Carístico might have messed up a Destroyer, then did a mask pull, then everyone seemed to panic, and then Carístico got his mask back on and everyone just went back to their match. They should not do whatever that was again. Everything else should be done again. Audaz continues to have a strong tour, stealing the show in the opening seconds with a great sequence with Namajague and getting the highlight comeback headscissors. Soberano did well and Audaz still totally outshined him. Namajague has been a great part of his matches, I’m going to miss him when he’s not back around. Volador & Carístico were fine but the show here was the other four guys.

back and forth

Atlantis Jr. struggled a little bit early in this match. He got better in the ending run with Okumura, but I think this was his last complete performance of the ones we’ve seen so far. Forastero had a bad moment he covered for well, but he really hasn’t shined here as he in Mexico. I thought they’d finally do the monkey flip spot here to give him something. Guess they’re saving it for tomorrow. This is an easy skip.

The LIJ match seemed fine. I’m over the LIJ matches. Henare going after Naito to the determent of the match was good storytelling. That’s all I got.

The Titan/Angel de Oro match on this show was even a bit better than their match back on Friday. Titan & Angel de Oro are getting to show a lot more in Tokyo, and they got tons of time here to just to run thru everything in fine fashion. Templario’s power spots get over easily with this crowd, to the point the teasing the gutwrench powerbomb (before it got reversed) got over. He and Cuatrero did well as the improvised team for the night. Including Atlantis in this is going to be a challenge tomorrow, but Titan & Angel de Oro might be able to carry it on their own.

Flyer got in a good dive, got hit by a Taguchi dive, then stood in the corner for about five minutes. Flyer did his usual hesitation for a springboard headscissors, which didn’t land too well. He got the big moment against Ishimori in the end and ran thru a kick that looked like he was supposed to sell and didn’t? It was not the greatest Flyer performance once again. I think the other Taguchi matches on this tour have been better.

takeoff

AAA on Twitch: 2019-01-19 

Vikingo

Recapped: 01/19/2019

Matches:

Dinastía, Lady Shani, Niño Hamburguesa beat Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot, Villano III Jr.
(10:27, Niño Hamburguesa splash Villano III Jr., ok, 00:33:25)

Carta Brava Jr., Mocho Cota Jr., Tito Santana beat Hijo Del Vikingo, Laredo Kid, Myzteziz Jr.
(7:15, Carta Brava mask pull→spear Laredo Kid, good, 00:56:43)

Máximo, Murder Clown, Taya beat Chessman, Faby Apache, La Máscara
(8:37, Máximo triple kiss→cradle Máximo, ok, 01:17:12)

Killer Kross beat Dave The Clown and Parka Negra
(6:13, Kross choke Dave The Clown, ok, 01:36:51)

Brian Cage & Pagano beat Joe Lider & Texano Jr.
(10:22, Pagano super legdrop Texano Jr., below average, 01:50:28)

Blue Demon Jr., Hijo del Fantasma, Rey Escorpión beat Dr. Wagner Jr., La Parka, Psycho Clown
(13:08, Fantasma foul → martinete La Parka, below average, 02:08:10)

What happened: 

whoops

Hijo de LA Park came out to do commentary in the main event, and of course got attacked in the process. Fantasma got to do the honors. After a long ref bump, Fantasma fouled Parka and gave him a martiente for the win. Parka was stretchered out and the rudos unmasked the younger Parka and Psycho. No one made the save.

Keyra and Lady Maravilla attacked Lady Shani after the opener match, wanting a title shot. Lady Shani shrugged off the attack and said she wouldn’t give up the title that easily. Shani attacked both women and got the worse of it.

La Parka introduced Hijo de La Parka after the second match. Vampiro interrupted to say he had a surprise for Los Mercenarios and to reiterate his challenge for a loser leaves AAA match with Konnan. There was no surprise for Los Mercanarios or response to Vampiro’s challenge.

Brazo de Platino seconded Máximo, interfered in the match randomly, and got taken out by a chair to the head by La Mascara. Mascara and Máximo brawled to the back after their match, passing Averno on the way. Averno was set up on beating up Murder Clown for some reason. It didn’t work until the combined efforts of Averno, Chessman and Faby Apache was able to get it done and unmask him. Taya tried to help out her Murder Clown but it didn’t work.

welcome back to the land of spinning DDTs

The show started out with Demon calling out Wagner, and Demon criticizing Wagner (in a lot of the criticism that could be thrown at Demon.) They brawled until Konnan and Los Mercenarios attacked Wagner. Konnan threatened Fenix and assigned Fantasma to get the title back. Fantasma blew off the loss to Drago as insignificant and was talking about becoming chocolate champ when Psycho Clown made a save. It was going well until, as always, they went after Konnan and got attacked from behind.

Hugo & Jose Manuel seemed to have a new emphasis on explaining the backstory to each match in English and sometimes explaining what happened early. If you were a curious English speaking fan watching, you’d at least have some understanding now.

There was no Televisa commentary booth. Televisa wasn’t mentioned among the outlets where AAA airs.

Thoughts: 

Dinastia and Lanzelot

AAA is back and back with the same meandering main events. I think the semi-main was actually worse, but they didn’t have a referee die about 30 seconds too soon in that one. One of the goals of the night appeared to be to rehab Hijo del Fantasma, and he did end up strongly taking out both Parkas at the end. Demon/Wagner as a feud still looks important on a poster and fails to translate in the ring. I have no idea if Escorpión & Psycho are really feuding. The camera work was a struggle all night long, but there was a chop fight between Demon & Wagner where it seemed like they were doing their most to miss every chop and coming really close. They missed Fantasma fouling Parka too.

The first about 30 seconds of the semi-main was good fun of Cage throwing people around. It was a lot from there. Pagano hits the Volador Spiral correctly about half the time, and this was not the good half. Cage struggling with his reg leg might have affected the match, but it was just the usual Pagano randomness. Pagano taking a chair shot in the head and standing up so he could catch the chair for the next spot was pure Pagano. Cage & Lider seemed to be confused that the finish was happening while they were still doing things.

Kross should’ve cleaned Dave the Clown & Parka Negra’s clocks. Instead, they had sequences where Kross got beat up and sent out so Parka Negra & Dave the Clown could do sequences not a single person cared about except for them. They tried to make it up for it by having Kross take out both guys at the end but it was a bit too late. I guess I can’t say Kross is pushed much harder than he’s over because this wasn’t much of a push. This was a fine enough match in execution but it was a dumb idea.

cage is strong

Maximo/Mascara had another match. It was whatever. Taya’s offense went well. Crowd was less into her old rivalry with Faby than I thought; they reacted a bit for the dives and kisses at the end but weren’t into the match. Murder remains more fun as a técnico at this point but you don’t need to go out of your way to see Murder Clown matches.

The second match was another all-action match between the two teams, though a bit hurried. They blew through everything, including Laredo Kid getting a mask pulled off to have another one underneath, so quick that it was tough for any of it to sink it. They could’ve used a couple more minutes here to let something settle or to let Poder del Norte show more before the finish. Vikingo came back out of the holiday break with new crazy ideas and pulled them off well. This was a lot of fun, just wanted it more.

The opener had some good action but didn’t totally come together. Villano III Jr. shows some flashy moves and seems to be the guy keeping these matches together, but also seems to exist just to the pins. Dinastia & Lanzelot had one of their usual good sequences during the match and not a whole lot the rest of the time. Camera work couldn’t keep up with the match, which hurt the big spots. The crowd seemed to like it, as they do with anything Niño Hamburguesa. At least this isn’t CMLL, where Piero screwing up the three count would’ve ended the match after about two minutes.

doom!

Rush breaks Euforia, AAA back tonight on Twitch, Fantastica Mania tomorrow morning

Rush is leaving

CMLL (FRI) 01/18/2019 Arena México [CMLL, Lost in LuchaLucha CentralMarcaRecordThe Gladiatoresthecubsfan]
1) Akuma, Espanto Jr., Metálico b Arkalis, Astral, Magnus LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
14:05. Rudos took 1/3. Akuma debuted a new facepaint look.
2) La Jarochita, Marcela, Princesa Sugehit b Amapola, Dalys, Metálica LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
13:44. Tecnicos took 1/3.
3) Esfinge, Guerrero Maya Jr., Rey Cometa b Dragón Rojo Jr., Pólvora, Virus LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
14:46. Tecnicos took 2/3.
4) Kráneo, Stuka Jr., Volcano DQ Hechicero, Rey Bucanero, Vangellys LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
10:30. Vangellys replaced Shocker. Tecnicos took 1/2, the last by DQ when Bucanero unmasked Stuka (on a second attempt.)
5) Diamante Azul, Niebla Roja, Valiente b Ephesto, Gilbert el Boricua, Mephisto LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
14:14. Tecnicos took 2/3.
6) Rush b Euforia LUCHA LIBRE VIERNES ESPECTACULAR DE ARENA MEXICO 18 DE ENERO  DE 2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
17:10. Rush took 1/3, only losing the second by mask pull DQ. Rush gave Euforia the Rush Driver for the win. Rush attacked Euforia after he was put on a stretcher and until Edgar tackled him.

CMLL Promos: Rush, Gilbert, Akuma. The Gladiatores interviews: Rush, Gilbert.

The main event was pretty good and really the only thing worth watching on that show. The stuff with Bucanero & Stuka was transparently just a way to end a not good match early. Announcers seemed to think the crowd was up but it didn’t feel that way. Gilbert looks as immobile after his knee surgery as before it; I hope he makes his money and gets a hair match payoff but he’s going to be tough to watch.

CMLL, who barely can ever be bothered to promote their TV shows, made a point of saying they’re on MVS (52MX) on Saturdays and Sundays over the air. Maybe this is some response to the AAA/Televisa/Multimedios situation?

For no real great reason, I found the old Rush Knows Many Moves post. It’s still great.

AAA has their first TV taping in 25 days tonight, live from Mexico City on Twitch. Just a reminder: you’ll be getting ads during the show and probably during matches unless you pay the $5/month fee or get it free thru Amazon. There are less ads sometimes if you login, but there probably still will be ads.

AAA left off teasing a Demon/Wagner apuesta match while being careful to avoid saying it was replacing the announced Park/Wagner match. There wasn’t a lot else going on.

  • Maximo and La Mascara continue to have a boring feud that may or may not lead to a hair match someday.
  • Aerostar & Monsther Clown are feuding, based on Aerostar wanting to be a top guy and Monsther Clown appointing himself gatekepper (and also a top guy?!?)
  • Vikingo, Laredo Kid and Myzteziz formed a team and won the trios titles.
  • Laredo Kid is owed a title shot – both from asking Fenix for one and from winning Lucha Capital – and will be getting it (sorta)
  • Hijo del Fantasma made his own challenge for a title match, but also then lost to Drago and hasn’t really accomplished anything since losing his mask.
  • Brian Cage randomly turned tecnico in Juarez and then disappeared the rest for the rest of the year, missing his one scheduled match due to illness.
  • Killer Kross continues to beat up people, as he has for two years now, with no purpose or end point in sight.
  • Taya returned on the Lucha Capital shows to set up a match with Lady Shani which doesn’t appear to be happening, but appears to have somehow turned her tecnica in the process.
    • Lady Maravilla & Star Fire also have challenged Lady Shani
    • Faby Apache seemed to turn tecnica herself, but that appears to have now not happened.
  • Rey Escorpion & Psycho Clown are either feuding or Rey Escorpion is working his own angles with the most popular guy in the promotion who has nothing to do.
  • Joe Lider & Pagano and Miedo Extremo & Ciclope are still occasionally feuding.

Wagner & Deon meet again in the main event tonight. Wagner teams with former rivals La Parka & Psycho Clown against Demon, Fantasma, and Escorpion. Brian Cage forms an incredible team with Pagano, against Pagano’s usual tag partner Joe Lider & Texano. The Maximo/Mascara feud continues with old enemies Taya & Faby on opposite sides and Murder Clown & Chessman fill out the match.

Killer Kross was flown all the way to Mexico City to have a match with Dave the Clown & Parka Negra, excellent use of everyone’s time and jet fuel. The new trios champions Los Jinetes del Aire (VIkingo, Laredo and Myzteziz) have a rematch of the title change against Carta Brava, Mocho Cota, and Tito Santana in what should easily be the best match of the night. The opener should be fun too, with Dinastia, Lady Shani and Nino Hamburguesa taking on Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot and Villano III Jr.

AAA is insistent this show is starting at 8:00 pm. Maybe the stream will, but I still think you’re safe to wait until 8:30-ish to tune in.

La Parka’s Record column mentions the AAA TV deal on Multimedios. AAA’s not really mentioned it much. Perhaps they will tonight. Multimedios has a press release announcing AAA as running 3-5 every Sunday.

The Crash is back from an even longer hiatus, not having run a show since the start of December. Their show is very The Crash randomness: Lucha Bros versus Traumas, Ultimo Dragon versus Rebelion Amarilla, Swoggle for some reason – but there’s no indication they’re going to stream it or make it available later.

In an interview about the new OWE relationship, The Crash says they’re going to run 17 events this year. They mention getting approval from the commission, so that might be 17 events just in Tijuana. The Crash seems to do their best when they run once a month, so I hope it’s not just 17 events in Tijuana.

The second night of Fantastica Mania in Korakeun Hall takes place early Sunday morning. It’s a 3:30 AM start in the Central Time. It’s the only card on a weekend morning, but it’s also the weakest looking of the three. The highlight match should be Hermanos Lee (Dragon Lee & Mistico) taking on Los Guerreros (Ultimo & Gran). The spotlight singles match is Kojima versus Terrible, which Kojima has built up as a big personal goal for him but isn’t that interesting otherwise. The rest is tag matches. There’s somehope with Angel de Oro & Titan versus Cuatrero & Templario, since those same tecnicos did well with a seemingly lesser Okumura & Forastero team. Audaz gets a big chance in the fifth match, teaming with Soberano & Volador against Caristico, Cavernario, and Namajague. It should be a fine enough show, but nothing but that match I’m excited about.

This will be the first of two shows with English commentary. I don’t think this is as much a CMLL thing as NJPW World deciding to do commentary on every show they can. English language announcing for lucha libre show – or even lucha libre matches in other promotions – is rarely that good so I don’t have high expectations. I do know the announcers were reaching out for help and information before the shows. Hopefully, the preparation pays off. I think I’ll probably check it out just to see.

Juventud Guerrera and Fuerza Guerrera are teasing doing a match. It is weird that teasing the possibility of fighting each other suggests an improved relationship but there we are.

El Hijo del Santo’s column today is presented as an anecdote about a young man who he thought highly of and used as a last minute fill in for one of his trips to London. It really is El Hijo del Santo saying he knew Bandido was going to be great before most anyone else. And he’s right.

Puma King has another video from Japan.

Lady Flammer says she wanted to be a luchadora from the age of 4. She was a luchador almost from the age of 4.

Lineup

CMLL (FRI) 01/25/2019 Arena México
1) Eléctrico & Oro Jr. vs El Coyote & Grako
2) Black Panther, Blue Panther Jr., Rey Cometa vs Misterioso Jr., Sagrado, Universo 2000 Jr.
3) Audaz, Flyer, Titán vs Felino, Shocker, Vangellys
4) Soberano Jr. vs Templario [lightning]
5) Atlantis, Carístico, Volador Jr. vs Cavernario, Gran Guerrero, Último Guerrero
6) Diamante Azul, King Phoenix, Penta 0M vs La Bestia Del Ring, Rush, Terrible [Relevos Increíbles]

Fenix & Penta are back for real this time. I feel like Diamante Azul was being a jerk towards them last time and doesn’t make sense as a partner to anyone but CMLL. It’d also be nice if Atlantis got a nice long vacation after Fantastica Mania instead of being thrown into a semimain. Soberano & Templario should be great and should’ve happened in Japan. The tercera will be better when Shocker is inevitably replaced but it’s still not that good.

CMLL on Marca: 2019-01-18

Rush

Recapped: 01/18/2019. Video links will be added later.

Matches:

Akuma, Espanto Jr., Metálico beat Arkalis, Astral, Magnus  
(14:04 [5:15, 3:50, 4:59], 1/3, ok, )

La Jarochita, Marcela, Princesa Sugehit beat Amapola, Dalys, Metálica
(13:55 [5:55, 3:21, 4:39], 1/3, ok, )

Esfinge, Guerrero Maya Jr., Rey Cometa beat Dragón Rojo Jr., Pólvora, Virus
(14:46 [6:30, 3:48, 4:28], 2/3, ok, )

Kráneo, Stuka Jr., Volcano beat Hechicero, Rey Bucanero, Vangellys
(10:20 [6:40, 3:40],
1/2 DQ, ok, )

Diamante Azul, Niebla Roja, Valiente beat Ephesto, Gilbert el Boricua, Mephisto
(14:14 [4:41, 3:25, 6:09], 2/3, ok,
)

Rush beat Euforia
(17:10, 1/3, good, 
)

  1. Rush corner dropkick (4:15)

  2. DQ Rush unmasking Euforia (2:7)

  3. Rush Driver (10:48)

What happened: 

Virus at work

Rush so destroyed Euforia’s mask that he had to leave to get a new one before the third fall. He also destroyed the second fall card over Euforia’s head. Euforia was stretchered out after taking the Rush Driver, only Rush attacked him on the stretcher and threatened to do more until Edgar tackled him.

Hechicero & Kraneo were pinned at the same time in the second fall. Stuka and Rey Bucanero were left to finish it. Stuka tried the splash, Rey Bucanero stood up to and tried to pull off Stuka’s mask as he fell to the mat, but missed. He got it after Stuka was on the mat.

Akuma, in his first unmasked match, had white face paint on resembling his brother Demus.

Thoughts: 

The third fall of the main event turned into a really fun match, with Euforia keeping up with Rush’s brawling and more moves in the ring than you’d normally get from Rush. Rush gave it more effort than he has in some of these other singles matches, and Euforia did well enough to survive the corner dropkick even though he never actually won a fall. Everyone seemed to like this much more than me, so don’t let my grade stop you from watching. I think it might play even better if you haven’t watched a largely boring two-hour show prior to it.

haven’t seen this one before

Gilbert isn’t moving any better than the last time we saw him, so having him battle Diamante Azul all match wasn’t ideal from an excitement standpoint. Both men would’ve been better off throwing around the smaller wrestlers and only got to do in the third fall. The finish, Azul pinning Gilbert clean with a German suplex, suggests there’s no great plans for this going forward.

The fourth match was boring, as expected with this rudo side. Hechicero trying to do mat work with Volcano was at least a little funny, though I wish he had better things to do this night. The messed up finish was enough to knock this down a level.

I could not get into the tercera at all, though there were moments where the técnicos were doing some impressive things in the third fall. Maybe it’s been too long of a day for me because the crowd seemed to appreciate it after the match. Cometa’s Brillo Cometa looked good, Virus had a nice submission at the end of the first fall, Esfinge’s timing seemed off a lot, cameras didn’t do a great job of catching Maya’s dive at the end.

brillo cometa

The women’s match was quiet even by their standards. They weren’t messing things up, but it wasn’t interesting.The ruda section felt like it went on forever, then the tecnicas were back in control for about 30 seconds before Dalys tries a double suplex that didn’t really fit. They gave Metalica a second fall pinfall over Marcela that normally would go to Dalys, the though tradeoff was Dalys not taking a pin at the end.

Opener had good moments and trouble keeping the pace up between them. Metálico works a lot faster dancing then he does in the ring nowadays. Akuma & Espanto seem motivated to make an impression as a team, which seems unlikely to go anywhere but at least thought is nice. The técnicos all did a couple things well without having a completely impressive match.

CMLL Fantastica Mania in Tokyo Day 1: 2019-01-18

he lived

Recapped: 1/18/2019

Matches: 

Audaz, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi beat Gedo, Taiji Ishimori, Templario
(6:32, Audaz tornado armbar Templario, ok)

Ángel de Oro & Titán beat Forastero & Okumura
(8:41, Titan figure four leg underhook pin Forastero, good)

Fujin, Raijin, Satoshi Kojima, Toa Henare beat Bushi, Shingo Takagi, Terrible, Tetsuya Naito
(11:48, Kojima Western Lariat Terrible, ok)

Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero beat Atlantis & Atlantis Jr.
(11:47, Gran Guerrero package piledriver into a powerbomb, ok)

Carístico & Namajague beat Flyer & Volador Jr. in a relevos increíbles match
(9:49, La Mistica on Flyer, ok)

Bárbaro Cavernario beat Soberano Jr.  
(15:40, cavernaria, excellent)

Dragón Lee & Místico beat Cuatrero & Sansón in the finals of the 2019 CMLL Family Tournament
(14:07, Dragon Lee powerbomb Sansón, great)

What happened: 

Lee teamwork

Dragon Lee & Místico advance to face Último Guerrero & Gran Guerrero on Sunday.

The tercera was the annual Black Cat memorial. Black Cat’s widow took a photo with the técnico side before the match.

Thoughts: 

The main event would’ve been the standout match on most any other CMLL show. It was closer in experience than those grades really indicate, and it’d be understandable if people saw it better. This match had great coordination between two teams, with a lot of four men interacting at about the same time. It was leaning towards a Mistico/Dragon Lee showcase, with NGD being able to fight off the loss for a while but only rarely coming close to winning. Still, they handled the big match spotlight in a foreign country exceedingly well and showed off a lot of what people have come to like about them in Mexico. This came off like a big match, not just the final of a random tournament, and the win felt like it was big deal. I would’ve liked them to give Dragon Lee & Místico more than a few seconds to celebrate it before sending the Guerreros out, but I guess they had time issues. This is well worth watching.

Cavernario & Soberano were young men interested in doing crazy things for about fifteen minutes. It was a match where Cavernario’s splash to the floor wasn’t even the most insane spot. That spike whatever move was and looked incredibly painful. Soberano’s had some shaky moments in Japan when wrestling on NJPW shows, but did well here in something under the CMLL manner. The differences between him and a guy like Flyer were stark watching them back to back, with Soberano smoothly hitting his moves, keeping the pace high after taking a great beating. Cavernario always delivers in big matches and did it again, coming off as dangerous even while playing to the crowd. (He’s learned a lot from hanging around Negro Casas all these years.) There is a limitation that the only way these guys can seem to have an outstanding match is one of all crazy moves and we’ve seen how that can cause diminishing returns for other CMLL wrestlers over the long term. For now, Cavernario’s had two memorable matches already this year and this was the better one.

flying Japanese demon

Flyer’s gotten bigger name opponents than he has in Mexico this tour and it hasn’t worked out great. He looked nervous again here, coming close to a bad accident on his first dive, crawling to make a tag when he wasn’t supposed to later, and not landing his near fall cleanly. It wasn’t a terrible performance but one that showed his flaws more than what he did well. Volador & Carístico faceoffs were fun, both during and after the match when Volador refused to look at him. I think they’ll have no problem getting the crowd into that main event.

A bad thing for Atlantis teaming with his son is he looks even older every time they do stereo moves together. Atlantis Jr. going full speed on a tope and Atlantis going something less was not a beneficial comparison. Maybe Papa Atlantis was just going full speed for him, he’s looked slower as this tour has gone on. Eight matches in eleven days is a schedule he might not do the rest of the year, and for good reason. Atlantis Jr. was fine and the Guerreros did well in this match. I can’t recall ever seeing Gran Guerrero pull off a package piledriver into a powerbomb before.

Audaz

I can’t blame the wrestlers for being disinterested in the LIJ tags if I am also disinterested in the LIJ tags. This served its purpose, though Kojima getting his win over Terrible before the singles match was a bit of a surprise. Fujin & Raijin have worn open eye masks since the opener; I wonder if they were having trouble seeing thru the mesh. If only that could’ve been fixed years ago, maybe that might have been the missing factor in CMLL.

Fantastica Mania got to Tokyo and Titan woke up. Being in a straight lucha match instead of a luchador added to a NJPW focused match definitely helped; he and Forastero seemed to get most of the match instead of being relegated to bit players. Titan looked energized getting to show more than he had in those previous matches and stood out over everyone else here. Okumura and Angel de Oro had one off sequence, but otherwise Oro went thru his usual trios offense fine.

The opener followed the usual “early dive + ending sequence” minimal participation for the CMLL wrestlers. The ending sequence even seemed shorter less than past matches. Templario & Audaz looked good in what they got to do, but this isn’t a match to see them. A lot of focus on Taguchi and Ishimori instead.

double dive

great first day of Fantastica Mania in Tokyo, Rush/Euforia tonight, OWE/The Crash

Cavernario & Soberano

CMLL , NJPW (FRI) 01/18/2019 Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan [CMLL, NJPW, Lucha Central]
Fantastica Mania, 2019 Toyko Day 1
Attendance: 1526
1) Audaz, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi b Gedo, Taiji Ishimori, Templario
6:31. Audaz tornado armabr Templario
2) Ángel de Oro & Titán b Forastero & Okumura
8:41. Titan pinned Forastero with his new entanglement cradle, which NJPW called Titanica.
3) Fujin, Raijin, Satoshi Kojima, Toa Henare b Bushi, Shingo Takagi, Terrible, Tetsuya Naito
11:43. Kojima pinned Terrible after a Western Lariat, finally picking up a win on the tour. Black Cat Memorial match. Black Cat’s widow posed for a photo with the tecnicos before the match.
4) Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero b Atlantis & Atlantis Jr.
11:44. Gran Guerrero pinned Atlantis after a package powerbomb.
5) Carístico & Namajague b Flyer & Volador Jr. [Relevos Increíbles]
9:49. La Mistica on Flyer.
6) Bárbaro Cavernario b Soberano Jr.
15:40. Barbaro Cavernario submitted Soberano Jr. to the Cavernaria after evertyhing.
7) Dragón Lee & Místico b Cuatrero & Sansón [CMLL FAMILY, final]
14:05. Dragon Lee beat Sanson with his suplex powerbomb. Los Guerreros came out to talk up their match on Sunday.

Top two matches lived up to the hype and a bit more. Cavernario/Soberano was Soberano’s best match in Japan and up there will the strong matches Cavernario has had on this tour in the past years. The main event felt different enough, taking advantage of the tag format for a lot of team moves and saves. It was going to be really hard to follow a singles match that had everything, and they built enough excitement to make it work.

The rest of the show was fine. Flyer’s nerves hurt his match. I think Atlantis is moving slower as the tournament is going along. Angel de Oro & Titan versus Okumura & Forastero was the best match of this tour for many of those wrestlers.

The next CMLL show is Sunday morning Mexico Time. (Korakuen Hall has boxing Saturday.) The show will include Kojima versus Terrible, Los Guerreros versus Hermanos Lee, and a lot of matches which won’t be announced until late tonight.

I’ll likely have a recap of this show sometime this evening.

For what it’s worth, Dragon Lee & Mistico didn’t do a post match interview, so no one got to ask him about Rush signing with ROH or about the possibilities of Dragon Lee doing the same. They didn’t appear to be ducking the media, they just had an autograph signing right after the show. Also, no intermission – does NJPW not do intermissions any more?

CMLL continues on tonight in Arena Mexico. It’s the first match for Rush since he’s signed with Ring of Honor. Don’t expect many changes. CMLL’s message is nothing has changed with Rush’s participation in their promotion, and they’re not going to contradict that by having him lose to someone he probably wouldn’t lose to under normal circumstances. Euforia’s best matches have come in team situations against high flyers. This is a drastically different setup, so maybe we’ll get to see a different side of him. It’s an interesting match in a time where CMLL’s Mexico shows haven’t been interesting, at least not for the right reasons.

The semi-main includes the returns of both Gilbert el Boricua and Diamante Azul. Ephesto, Mephisto, Valiente, and Niebla Roja will orbit around that heavyweight battle. Hechicero & Stuka have had recent issues and are together again in the fourth match, with Kraneo, Volcano, Shocker, and Rey Bucanero scheduled to be in the match. Shocker doesn’t seem a sure bet for any match right now though.

Los Revolucionarios (Dragon Rojo & Polvora) team up with Virus against Esfinge, Guerrero Maya and Rey Cometa in what has the potential to be a good match. Amapola, Dalys and new champion Metalica face Princesa Sugehit, Marcela and La Jarochita in a match that seems familiar but hasn’t happened exactly in that configuration before. Switching around the junior members on each side creates a lot of ‘new’ matches. Akuma wrestles in CMLL for the first time since losing his mask – he’s teasing a Demus like facepaint in a recent Instagram Story – teaming with Espanto Jr. & Metalico against Arkalis, Astral and Magnus (who hasn’t been on a Friday since September.)

The show will air at 8:30 pm on Marca (Mexico only right now) & Facebook (no link yet). I’ll be streaming on YouTube if my internet connection sustains in the blizzard about to hit.

AAA debuts in the Mexico City’s Pepsi Center Saturday. They’re expecting a full house. MedioTiempo talks to the promoter of the event, Daniel Morales, who says the building will be set up for 4,800 people. He’s happy to have sold out about 60% of those tickets already. Usually, they sell 50-60% on the day of the show, so they’re ahead of pace for a sell out. Morales says AAA’s given him a return date for 2019. They’d like to run a third time, but there may not be room for it on AAA’s schedule depending on their international plans (and if they actually happen.)

AAA’s Toluca promoter says they’ll have a TV taping soon. No date announced. Toluca is a usual February AAA start. Earlier this week, the government officials who run Gimnasio Agustin Millan in Toluca (my favorite AAA venue for the sound) say they expect to have wrestling back this year. AAA’s been running Salon Rojo instead the last couple of years; the Gimnasio got remodeled and they weren’t in a hurry to have wrestling rings scuffing their floors.

OWE & The Crash announced their current alliance has been formalized after a meeting in Shanghai. The Crash will send wrestlers and TV content to OWE as part of the deal. The Crash doesn’t have a dedicated roster as it is, but they do have contacts into the Mexico indie world and have been using those as a pipeline to send interested luchadors to China. Arez, Latigo, Tiago, and Torito Negro have gone over to help train and wrestle on OWE shows so far, and Skayde has quietly been helping with training. TV content probably means taping matches featuring OWE talent, and The Crash taping matches is good news for the rest of us.

There’s no mention of AEW & OWE’s alliance. AWE’s said nothing about Mexico in their plans; even when they’re talking about looking for talent in different countries around the world, Mexico seems to be skipped. AWE’s top priority seems to be an alliance with NJPW, which makes The Crash probably the company they’d make the most sense working with. There’s exciting luchadors in AAA and more of them, but it’d be tough working with AAA & NJPW at the same time given the politics. There wouldn’t be the same political issues with The Crash and the Crash’s less informal setup probably would make it easier to get out of down the line if they had to for CMLL reasons. The one thing we know is you’re not getting out of a deal with AAA easy.

MDA has a show in Mexico City on 02/17 with Juventud Guerrera’s Super X promotion .

Juventud Guerrera will be bringing a MAD group to this show. Guerrera is no longer working with AAA, so he’s going back to where he (and Konnan and others) started that group to do it again. My impression is AAA is still going to have their own MAD group. I’m not sure anyone really cares in either place, and even less sure about who owns the right.

Speaking of group names being brought back for maybe ownership reasons, Kaoz Lucha Libre seems to be introducing a new Klan Kaoz. The old Klan Kaoz was the Zorro/Ciber/Sharly/Gilbert group, who switch to CL4N when Zorro fell out with the people behind Kaoz Lucha Libre. The new group will likely be revealed on their 02/17 show, which has a lot of people and maybe a couple of good matches. The main event has a very rare La Bestia del Ring booking on a show his sons aren’t working.

Mexa Wrestling on 02/23 (“New Idols” in Arena San Juan)

Diamante Azul told Marca that his biggest win was defeating Pierroth for his mask.

Lucha Libre London appears to be running on May 11th in London. This is the group that’s brought in Hijo del Santo and Casandro in the past, though no one is specifically announced at this point. It does fit with Hijo del Santo saying he was going to do something with Todo x el Todo this summer.

LuchaWorld has the latest Lucha Report.

Lineups

CMLL (TUE) 01/22/2019 Arena México
1) Acero & Aéreo vs Pequeño Olímpico & Pequeño Violencia
2) Arkalis, Magnus, Retro vs Cancerbero, Espíritu Negro, Raziel
3) Robin, Star Jr., Súper Astro Jr. vs Disturbio, Kawato San, Virus
4) Drone, Guerrero Maya Jr., Pegasso vs Dragón Rojo Jr., Hechicero, Pólvora
5) Euforia, Rey Bucanero, Shocker vs Kráneo, Rey Cometa, Volcano
6) Niebla Roja vs Mephisto

No title on the line either way. That seems to clinch CMLL is going to have 18 champions for 16 spots, since the Universal field would seem to be locked after this show. (They’ll start announcing people for it on 01/25.) This is also the last night before the Fantastica Mania people start to get added.

CMLL (TUE) 01/22/2019 Arena Coliseo Guadalajara
1) Explosivo, Luminoso, Metatrón vs Demonio Maya, Paymon, Sádico
2) Astral, Príncipe Diamante, Vaquero Jr. vs Guerrero de la Muerte, Inquisidor, Metálico
3) Avispa Dorada, La Jarochita, Lluvia vs Dalys, La Metálica, Tiffany
4) Blue Panther, Esfinge, Tritón vs Ephesto, Felino, Luciferno
5) Diamante Azul, Stuka Jr., Valiente vs La Bestia Del Ring, Máscara Año 2000, Rush [Relevos Increíbles]

We’ve probably been spared a lot more Diamante Azul versus Rush by Azul’s groin injury, but they manage to get in one of those trios matches before things go back to normal. It is a little weird that Blue Panther wrestles in Guadalajara when he no longer seems to wrestle in Puebla. It’s a lot longer bus ride. It’s probably a lot longer even just flying. Maybe he just has plans on Mondays.

lucha TV preview for weekend of January 18, 2019

full size

Remember with this list was small? Those were the times.

AAA is back on Saturday night, and back pretty much every weekend for the foreseeable future. I wish they were back with a better card. The opening two trios matches look fun.

There are three Fantasica Mania shows over the next four days. It probably isn’t a good idea to stay up for all of them. This site is built on bad ideas so. I’m excited for Soberano to have a really good match or die trying (via Cavernario splash.) The show ending one is usually good. I wish the Sunday morning one was one of the weekday shows.

Marca has Rush versus Euforia and I don’t think Rush is losing.

Rush/MLW/ROH, AAA/Televisa negotiating?, Fantastica Mania in Tokyo starts tomorrow

NJPW World using the least CMLL match to promote the Fantastica Mania broadcast, says something about how important they think the CMLL guys are for the njpwworld audience

As usual, things happen, and then there are different sources trying to explain what happened. Sometimes I one of those people, sometimes I’m just reading thru what other people said. This is the latter time.

The Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s lead story is about Rush’s deal with Ring of Honor. The key points

  • MLW says they were negotiating with Rush & Paco Alonso directly.
  • MLW would give Rush the world title and less dates than Ring of Honor
  • MLW would give Rush more money than ROH was offering, a six-digit deal.
  • Rush asked for the rest of his family to get spots with MLW. MLW said OK though Bestia del Ring may not have wrestled
  • Rush asked for MLW to help him get himself, his wife and his son US citizenship so they could move to the US and MLW said OK
  • MLW offered a spot on a BeinSports soccer show for Rush to do soccer analysis
  • MLW would run on Thursdays and Saturdays so Rush could still work any Friday CMLL show
  • Alonso is blamed for pushing Rush to sign with Ring of Honor instead, but later it’s said NJPW pushed Paco to to push Rush.

Those are some amazing enticements by MLW. It’s unbelievable. I mean, they’re literally unbelievable. I can’t think of a recent TV situation where a wrestling promotion has been able to promise it’s talent regular spots on different shows. (WWE and even Lucha Underground wrestlers have gotten guest spots on the same networks, though I don’t think that was part of the talent contract.) There are some things that feel true, like the Munoz family trying to get into a promotion as a package. There are other things, like US citizenship, which seem particularly hard to promise in 2019

It’s incredible MLW would feel the need to reveal contract details and personal information like a plan to change county of residence. For MLW, this seems less specifically about Rush and more about trying to insist they’re a major league promotion capable of offering top-level deals to wrestlers. MLW is making money from tickets and likely from TV rights, but they’re also a company that appears to be funded strongly by venture capitalists on the basis of MLW being competitive and ultimately successful in the wrestling landscape. MLW needs to get and keep top wrestling stars when they’re on the market, or make the case they would be able to if not for factors completely out of their control which wouldn’t come up with other stars. And it helps if they can make that case loudly enough that anyone interested in wrestling would know it. (I feel like I might be part of the problem here, but I’m not sure of any sensible way to get around it.)

Something not touched on in the WON article at all, oddly, is that Konnan works for MLW, CMLL still hates Konnan, and it’s tough to imagine CMLL being thrilled to sign deals with a Konnan affiliated promotion given the history. Maybe it wouldn’t even be the deciding factor, but it’s a factor. Konnan does bring up the situation on his podcast, mentioning the plan was for Rush to be Aro Lucha champion and he recommended Rush to MLW, so Rush might have not been in MLW in the first place if not for Konnan. (Konnan also says Aro Lucha is coming back in March but didn’t seem sure he was remembering the correct month, so take that as a time frame.) Konnan echoes the idea that Paco Alonso steered Rush towards ROH.

It does seem to me that MLW was promoting LA Park versus Rush without having either man locked in. It’s something that probably would’ve worked out fine in 2016 or 2017 and self-evidently won’t work in 2019. I feel bad for the people who made plans to see that match. It does appear MLW has given refunds to those who ask, and I hope there are other shows they’re interested in going to if they’ve already bought travel and accommodations. LA Park is mentioned as being a free agent and specifically being unwilling to sign contracts with anyone. It is not impossible ROH could contact LA Park, though there’s no hint of it happening. That also makes it unclear to me what will happen to LA Park & MLW going forward, since it doesn’t seem like there’s anything MLW could offer LA Park to prevent him from showing up elsewhere if he felt like it.

MLW says they’re no longer bringing in CMLL talents, fearing they’ll all end up in ROH anyway. Besides Aerostar being advertised for their upcoming show in Philadelphia, MLW’s contacted Flamita about coming in.

The sidebar here is the WON says La Sombra/Andrade talked to Rush & Dragon Lee about the possibilities of them coming to WWE and apparently warned them against it after how his run has gone. Most people expect Dragon Lee will announce a deal with Ring of Honor rather soon, though this week shows that nothing is for sure until it’s announced. Rush hinted news with Dragon Lee coming soon on Informa.

The WON also a bit about the Penta/Fenix WrestleMania weekend situation, where they’re booked for both MLW & WrestleCon. The plan stated is for them to work WrestleCon early on 04/04 (Thursday) and go to MLW early, then reverse that for the Friday show. They’re also booked for Impact and no one’s quite figured out how that is going to work. The problems people in Mexico have had trying to do this lately – luchadors missing shows, matches not going as well as they would normally – make me skeptical this is going to go well.

This is way too much from the WON as it is. So borrowing from a different source, El Planchitas has useful stuff for the first time in a while. The column says AAA and Televisa are still negotiating a deal going forward. AAA is looking for the rights to use whoever they’d like for production (at least sometimes required to be Televisa now), a reduced fee for being on the channel and a better timeslot.

The reduced fee is interesting because it’s been said before that AAA wasn’t getting any more from Televisa for the show though it’s never been suggested AAA was paying to be on the channel. It would make sense if AAA wasn’t saying anything about the situation when a final decision has not been made, but also AAA generally doesn’t say anything about situations anyway. AAA is still on Televisa Deportes, so I don’t think we’ll see anything differently on Saturday no matter what is happening.

The column also updates Garza Jr.’s status, saying he’s expected to talk with WWE either the end of this month or early next month.

Garza’s cousin Humberto Carillo (Ultimo Ninja) debuted on WWE’s 205 Live this week. Garza was expected to sign at the same time as Carillo but WWE delayed signing him due to Garza having a shoulder injury. Garza took time off to get it fixed and has been wrestling infrequently the last couple of months. He’ll probably have to go thru an exam to prove the shoulder is now fine and would be expected to sign with WWE if he does.

Fantastica Mania is back on NJPW World early tomorrow morning. The show starts at 3:30 AM CT. The full lineup was announced last night.

CMLL , NJPW (FRI) 01/18/2019 Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
Fantastica Mania, 2019 Toyko Day 1
1) Audaz, Jushin Liger, Ryusuke Taguchi vs Gedo, Taiji Ishimori, Templario
2) Ángel de Oro & Titán vs Forastero & Okumura
3) Fujin, Raijin, Satoshi Kojima, Toa Henare vs Bushi, Shingo Takagi, Terrible, Tetsuya Naito
Black Cat Memorial match
4) Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero vs Atlantis & Atlantis Jr.
5) Flyer & Volador Jr. vs Carístico & Namajague [Relevos Increíbles]
6) Soberano Jr. vs Bárbaro Cavernario
7) Cuatrero & Sansón vs Dragón Lee & Místico [CMLL FAMILY, final]
winner of the matches in Chiba

Most of the card is still build up matches. Despite losing in the tournament, the Atlantis family still gets the same match they would’ve for winning the whole thing, facing Los Guerreros. They probably do not get trophies. Soberano and Cavernario are capable of having an outstanding match and both have looked good on the previous two streaming shows. The Dinamtias getting and Dragon Lee & Mistico getting to headline this show is a big deal for them – I’m not sure CMLL would allow them to do this without Rush in Mexico – and they should make the most of it. I think the top two matches on this show could end up being the best of this weekend.

I think I may be watching this live. There will be a recap up Friday at some point. This’ll probably be a little longer show than the last one because Korakuen Hall shows tend to have an intermission; if you’re thinking of just watching the last two, they should start around 5 to 5:30 AM. It’ll of course be able to watch on VOD.

AAA’s saying their show Saturday night will start at 8 pm CT, which is the same time as on the poster. The only time AAA started a show close to when it was listed on the poster was TripleMania and an outdoor show where they were trying to beat a rainstorm (and did not beat a rainstorm.) The first two matches on the AAA show look the best but I wouldn’t trust them to start on time.

Diamante Azul was doing press for CMLL yesterday, which suggests he really is ready to return on Friday and CMLL isn’t just listing him optimistically.

Lost in Lucha ranks the top 100 CMLL matches of 2018.

LuchaTalk has a new episode.

Lineups

AAA TV (SUN) 02/10/2019 Auditorio Amado Nervo, Tepic, Nayarit
1) Dinastía, Lady Shani, Niño Hamburguesa vs Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot, Villano III Jr.
2) Hijo Del Vikingo & Sammy Guevara vs Jack Evans & Taurus
3) Aerostar, Máximo, Taya vs Faby Apache, La Máscara, Monsther Clown
4) Fénix © vs Laredo KidFlamita [AAA HEAVY]
second defense
5) Dr. Wagner Jr. vs Blue Demon Jr. [street]
6) La Parka, Psycho Clown, Puma King vs Hijo del Fantasma, Killer Kross, Rey Escorpión

Laredo Kid won a challenging 8-week tournament to earn a shot at the biggest prize in AAA. Flamita, uh, hasn’t been in AAA since October and has won only one match since his return to AAA. The match is going to be outstanding, but no one should be surprised if the fans give it the Aguascalientes reaction from the Fenix/Flamita/Bandido match.

IN THEORY, Flamita could be both AAA Cruiserweight champion and AAA Heavyweight Champion by the end of the weekend. Also in theory, he could’ve been added to two different three ways as a good worker they don’t care about who can eat some pins while AAA put off doing the real singles matches until they get around to it.

It’s also fourth from the top. Maybe the street fight is more important if that’s now the TripleMania main event, but no idea what’s supposed to be going on in that main event. Perhaps something is happening with Psycho & Fantasma or Escorpion since they’re paired up a lot on these cards, but there’s no reason to count on a storyline existing (much less having any consistency.) The undercard matches look good and there’s no reason to think much more about this promotion beyond the matches look good.

Rush signs with Ring of Honor, NGD vs Dragon Lee/Mistico in NJPW final, AAA TV lineups

Audaz and Namajague

Rush has signed with Ring of Honor in a deal announced yesterday on Twitter. Ring of Honor announced it as an exclusive deal. CMLL posted a statement saying this was part of the interchange of talents between the promotions and Rush would continue to belong to their promotion. Rush responded to that statement saying it was not part of the interchange of talent, and ROH was his new home.

This is what I know: Rush is signed to Ring of Honor and that will be his first priority however long that contract lasts. (No one’s stated a contract length – on this or any other ROH deal I’ve seen.) The “exclusive” is more referring to US dates and the Canada locations Ring of Honor runs. As mentioned previously with Bandido, Ring of Honor contracts don’t cover Mexico, so Rush would free to continue working in CMLL whenever he wants. ROH and CMLL’s relationship means they’ll probably try to work together on Rush’s schedule as well, but ROH has the top priority.

The immediate fallout is Rush was pulled from his match with LA Park on WrestleMania weekend. (Pentagon versus LA Park is mentioned instead, but doesn’t seem a sure thing as long as Penta is likely expected to work WrestleCon & Impact at the same time.) Any other Rush bookings, like the upcoming Mucha Lucha Atlanta date, are up in the air. ROH has not announced when Rush will start, but it’s a safe bet he’s working most shows going forward. Ring of Honor had previously filmed a segment teasing the Matt Taven/Rush feud as coming to their promotion which was already scheduled to air this week, and that seems like something that could lead to a match on the 04/06 ROH/NJPW Madison Square Garden show.

One of the factors mentioned in Rush signing with Ring of Honor is getting more NJPW bookings out of it. That suggests, even while a profitable Fantastica Mania tour is going on, the CMLL/NJPW relationship isn’t as strong as it suggests if Rush has to go to the US to get booked in Japan. It’s a strange situation.

Rush being signed is part of a wave of signings, with ROH, AEW, and WWE all seemingly operating out of fear of the others signing talent before they can. Between Bandido & Rush, this competition has reached Mexico. Fenix & Penta can’t be signed by someone else until their Lucha Underground commitments cease. That seems to leave Dragon Lee as the most valuable luchador at the moment (though I’d have to guess plenty more people have been contacted.) Dragon Lee might be behind everyone else because he was on an island and out of contact for months, and now he’s another hemisphere away from everyone else. I think we might hear more about his situation soon.

I’m think it’s likely there are going to be more signings. I think there’s also going to be people being locked in to more concrete deals than before, so no one gets the same egg on their face MLW is getting over Rush/LA Park. I’m really curious about where this leaves LA Park and MLW, since both big matches they were leading to (PCO & Rush) are no longer options. It’s also not a great situation for CMLL that anyone who becomes a draw in CMLL can easily get plucked to work elsewhere.

I’m not convinced Rush & Ring of Honor is a great fit over the long term – Rush has been in an environment with the freedom to do whatever he’d like, and he still manages to get suspended periodically – but it seems sure to be fascinating mix.

I may watch Informa today just to see Julio Cesar Rivera to give one of those straight to the camera CMLL statements on this. Those are always fun. Not always true, but that’s what makes them fun. The last time there was one of those was he and Rush stating that the Rush/Park still would happen, just not at the Aniverasrio, and that seems less likely with this announcement.

CMLL (TUE) 01/15/2019 Arena México [CMLL, Lucha CentralThe Gladiatores]
1) Acero & Aéreo b Pequeño Nitro & Pequeño Violencia LUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
tecnicos took 2/3.
2) Metálico, Nitro, Sangre Azteca b Oro Jr., Retro, Star Jr. LUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
rudos took 2/3.
3) Drone, Pegasso, Stigma b Disturbio, Kawato San, Universo 2000 Jr. LUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
Tecnicos took 2/3. Disturbio replaced Misterioso.
4) Sagrado b Tiger [lightningLUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
Sagrado won via La Casita
5) Black Panther, Blue Panther, Blue Panther Jr. b El Coyote, Felino, Pólvora LUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
Coyote replaced Luciferno. Tecnicos took 1/3, the last when Felino & Polvora had problems. Felino unmasked Polvora after the match.
6) Kráneo, Niebla Roja, Volcano DQ Luciferno, Mephisto, Rey Bucanero LUCHA LIBRE MARTES DE NUEVOS VALORES EN LA ARENA MEXICO 15 DE ENERO DE  2019 FUNCION COMPLETA (posted by VideosOficialesCMLL)
Mephisto fouled Niebla Roja and challenged to a title match. Luciferno replaced Shocker.

CMLL promos: Pegasso & Stigma, Sagrado, Niebla Roja & Mephisto. No Felino or Polvora interview seems a solid indicator they were working their own feud and CMLL doesn’t have plans for it at the moment. I wouldn’t be too excited for a big Felino/Povlora match but it is better than the usual nothing.

Mephisto & Niebla Roja just has a singles match in Guadalajara. (It didn’t end well.) They teased mask/hair. A title match would make more sense. Either guy winning a title would fix the CMLL Universal math. If they announce a title match, expect a title change.

CMLL (TUE) 01/15/2019 Arena Coliseo Guadalajara [CMLL]
1) El Alteño, Fantástico, Tigre Blanco b Mr. Trueno, Paymon, Rey Trueno
2) Difunto, Hijo del Signo, Ráfaga b Magnum, Sangre Imperial, Star Black
rudos took 2/3.
3) La Comandante, La Seductora, Tiffany b Avispa Dorada, La Vaquerita, Sanely
Rudas took 2/3.
4) Dragón Rojo Jr., Máscara Año 2000, Vangellys b Esfinge, Rey Cometa, Tritón
Dragon Rojo & Vangellys replaced Ephesto & Hechicero. Rudos took 1/3.
5) Ephesto, La Bestia Del Ring, Rush b Euforia, Stuka Jr., Valiente [Relevos Increíbles]
Ephesto replaced Vangellys. Rush was DQed in the first unmasking Euforia, then took two and three (foul on Euforia) to win.

Switching people around on a show like that is strange, especially when there’s no feud they need to build up.

CMLL , NJPW (WED) 01/16/2019 Makuhari Messe, Chiba, Japan [CMLLNJPWthecubsfan]
Fantastica Mania, 2019 Day 5
Attendance: 1015
1) Forastero, Gedo, Taiji Ishimori b Kushida, Ryusuke Taguchi, Titán
7:41. Forastero beat Titan with the armbar again.
2) Fujin & Raijin b Bushi & Shingo Takagi
10:21. Raijin surprised BUSHI with a casita.
3) Ángel de Oro, Audaz, Soberano Jr. b Bárbaro Cavernario, Namajague, Okumura
12:10. Soberano pinned Okumura after the guillotine moonsault.
4) Terrible & Tetsuya Naito b Satoshi Kojima & Toa Henare
12:02. Terrible Clash on Henare.
5) Carístico, Jyushin Thunder Liger, Tiger Mask b Gran Guerrero, Templario, Último Guerrero
11:21. Misitca on Templario.
6) Cuatrero & Sansón b Atlantis & Atlantis Jr. [CMLL FAMILY, semifinal]
9:52. Sanson beat Atlantis Jr. with a torture rack powerbomb on Sanson
7) Dragón Lee & Místico b Flyer & Volador Jr. [CMLL FAMILY, semifinal]
14:35. Dragon Lee defeated Flyer with a powerbomb. Sanson & Cuatrero came out to hype up the tournament final on Friday.

NGD & Hermanos Lee have promos to hype up the final. CMLL is shooting their promos separate from the ones NJPW does, which is a little odd but whatever works. Nothing out of note from a CMLL standpoint outside of the tournament. Main event was the best match on the tour so far. The other tournament and the Soberano trios are the most worth your time.

The off/on schedule continues. They’re back on Friday night with Dragon Lee & Mistico vs Cuatrero & Sanson and Soberano vs Cavernario. Most of the card is to be announced – maybe sometime later today.

Lucha Underground came up in the news a lot yesterday. It started with Shane Strickland announced he was a free agent. I know some people thought that was an MLW deal, but I’m convinced that was his Lucha Underground contract lapsing. Ivelisse seemed to think the same and took to Twitter to complain that Lucha Underground had not granted her own request for release. (The technical difference appears to be Strickland had asked for his release before the season 4 and Ivelisse sounds like she was talked into staying but now wants out.) Joey Ryan backed Ivelisse and, without outright saying it, appears to also be looking for his own LU release. ProWrestlingSheet got a quote from Eric Van Wagenen, who says those decisions are not his or MGM’s, but Dorian Roldan and John Fogelman (Factory Made Ventures). The Joey Ryan article even more specifically blames Dorian Roldan. Roldan, as usual, has said nothing. This has generated a lot of anger at Lucha Underground and not much of any solution.

SoCalUncensored wrote that, from what he’s seen, the LU contracts give “at most 9 months from when the season ends to renew them for another.” That would put everyone under a Lucha Underground contract on ice until at August 7th. The guess for when a decision might be made about another season has been “April?”, but that decision took a lot longer than anyone expected for Season 4. I’m still thinking the most likely outcome is MGM does not get the money they want to produce a fifth season and the whole thing goes away, but it’s a long wait until then and a hope that the offers that are being made now still are there when these wrestlers are finally free to take them.

Do you remember Dark Magic? Maybe? He hasn’t been seen since November 23rd and there’s been no mention of him, which made me think he might have just returned home. That turns out not the be case. Dark Magic doesn’t use a lot of social media (at least that I know of), but he did mention recovering from surgery on his Facebook. In a comment, he says he “tore all the ligaments in my right ankle and have a fracture about the foot.” The timing of the surgery suggests it was an injury in that last match, and he did look hurt at the end, though it didn’t seem this serious. Not sure when Dark Magic would be back if he’s going to be back.

Diaro Basta interviews Mystique and Malgina about their trip to Japan. They both liked the experience, though Mystique felt the Japanese women wrestled too strong and dangerous and that’s why many of them have short careers.

The Ciudad Juarez lucha libre commission says everyone locally needs a new license and the luchadors have been slow at getting them. The license costs 250 pesos for 2019, plus urine and blood tests. (Getting an extra year is 150 pesos more.) The commission says 330 wrestlers had the old license from 2016 to 2018.

LuchaWorld has the Lucha Report.

@anotherspammer has a GIF list of the best lucha spots of the year.

Lineups

IWRG (SUN) 01/20/2019 Arena Naucalpan
1) Atomic Star & Shaolin vs Guero Palma & Neza Kid
2) Black Dragón, Black Terry, Gato De Ecatepec vs Death Metal, Ra-Zhata, Shil-Kah
3) Liderk, Rayan, Spector vs Demonio Infernal, Eterno, Lunatic Xtreme [super libre]
4) Multifacetico 2.0 vs Multifacetico (Puebla)
5) Cerebro Negro, Oficial 911, Oficial AK47, Oficial Fierro vs Dragón Bane, Hijo de Canis Lupus, Séptimo Rayo, Último Gladiador and Aramis, Dinamic Black, Imposible, Internacional Pantera and Demasiado, Óscar El Hermoso, Pasion Kristal, Soy Raymunda [Zona de Ejecucion]

Zona de Ejecution is a four team match with one person from each team in the ring at the same time. No tags, just the next team member in once their partner is eliminated until no one is left.

CMLL (MON) 01/21/2019 Arena Puebla
1) Centella Roja & Meyer vs Espíritu Maligno & Policeman
2) Halcón Suriano Jr. & Tigre Rojo Jr. vs El Malayo & Toro Bill Jr.
3) Marcela & Princesa Sugehit vs Amapola & La Comandante
4) Guerrero Maya Jr., Stigma, Stuka Jr. vs Rey Bucanero, Shocker, Tyson La Bestia
5) Niebla Roja vs Luciferno [lightning]
6) Rush, Vangellys, Villano IV vs Euforia, Kráneo, Valiente [Relevos Increíbles]

I think there’s a CMLL depth issue where there’s a rudo side of Rey Bucanero, Shocker (if he shows up) and Tyson la Besita. The big problem, which maybe I’m pointing out too often, is the lack of depth on the rudo side. Los Guerreros and NGD are the best on that side, there’s not much left with them in Japan, and that’s where all the veterans who have jobs for life get dumped.

Halcon Suriano & Tigre Rojo had matching gear last week and are teamed up again. If there were still promos in Puebla, we might find out why. Alas!

AAA TV (SAT) 01/26/2019 Centro de Convenciones, Ciudad Madero, Tamaulipas
1) Máscara de Bronce, Raptor, Vanilla vs Australian Suicide, Jack Evans, La Hiedra
2) Hijo Del Vikingo, Myzteziz Jr., Niño Hamburguesa vs Carta Brava Jr., Mocho Cota Jr., Tito Santana
3) Drago © vs ArgenisParka NegraGolden Magic [AAA LA]
first defense
4) Joe Lider & Pagano vs Cíclope & Miedo Extremo
5) Drago, Laredo Kid, Murder Clown vs Averno, Chessman, Súper Fly
6) Aerostar, Dr. Wagner Jr., Psycho Clown vs Hijo del Fantasma, Monsther Clown, Rey Escorpión

Everything happened and then there were also AAA lineups also announced. AAA seems serious (or as serious as they are about anything) about going somewhere with Laredo Kid, which apparently means he can’t team with his teammates for the moment. He can team with Drago, who’s also somehow defending his title. This was pointed out to AAA on Twitter (not just by annoying me, other annoying people too), but AAA reposted the lineup as is and has Drago working twice on their lineup page. They’re sticking to the story, at least for now.

Even if that changes, this is a show where the main event focus appears to be on the Aerostar/Monsther Clown feud (!?!?!). Mascara de Bronce makes a real TV taping for the first time since April, and Raptor does the same for the first time since February. Joe Lider & Pagano are apparently going to friends again after one show.

AAA TV (FRI) 02/08/2019 Centro de Usos Múltiples, Mazatlán, Sinaloa
1) Dinastía, Lady Shani, Niño Hamburguesa vs Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot, Villano III Jr.
2) Sammy Guevara vs Flamita vs Hijo Del Vikingo [AAA CRUISER]
will be second defense (1st on TV) assuming Guevera keeps title in Tijuana
3) Aerostar, Máximo, Taya vs Faby Apache, Monsther Clown, Taurus
4) Drago vs Jack Evans
5) Dr. Wagner Jr., Laredo Kid, Puma King vs Blue Demon Jr., Hijo del Fantasma, La Máscara
6) La Parka & Psycho Clown vs Killer Kross & Rey Escorpión

A Sammy Guevera title defense on TV! I guess his chances of beating Laredo Kid on 02/01 in Tijuana are strong. I make fun of Sammy Guevera because it’s fish in a barrel but I’m fairly sure the issues with the Cruiserweight title not being defend in AAA aren’t his issues. I’d also guess Hijo del Vikingo might end up champion when that’s all said and done.

Wagner/Demon is still going on. Drago versus Jack Evans is good though any reason for it to be happening in AAA is still a mystery. This is the the first show of a two taping weekend, so people like Taya & Faby are probably around for Tepic and maybe in a bigger role. That lineup is probably coming five minutes after I finish this post.