CMLL (FRI) 02/03/2023 Arena México [CMLL, Cronistas del Ring, Estrella del Ring, Kaiser Sports, R de Rudo, The Gladiatores, thecubsfan]
1) Angelito, Kaligua, Último Dragóncito b Minos, Pequeño Olímpico, Pierrothito
2) Magnus b Flyer [lightning]
3) Capitán Suicida, Dark Panther, Volcano b Felino, Felino Jr., Kráneo
17:37. Kraneo/Volcano feuded.
4) La Jarochita & Lluvia © b Metálica & Reyna Isis [MEX WOMEN TAG]
12th defense (10th on CMLL shows). 13:44.
5) Guerrero Maya Jr., Panterita del Ring Jr., Titán b Ángel de Oro, Bárbaro Cavernario, Niebla Roja
6) Místico, Soberano Jr., Volador Jr. b Dragón Rojo Jr., Gran Guerrero, Templario
9:03. Dragon Rojo kept stopping Templario from hitting Soberano, so Dragon Rojo could alone hit Soberano. Templario eventually just attacked Dragon Rojo, spelling their team’s doom.
This was a great show. None of the matches individually stood out in a crazy way, but everything was about the best possible version of that match. The main event was the exception, becuase they were just working the Dragon Rojo versus Templario bit. It worked, in that I have less idea of what CMLL is actually going to be doing this year than ever. Both the fourway hair match and Templario/Dragon Rojo are being built up as if they’re the H2L main event. They can’t possibly just do both, can they?
(Kraneo and Volcano was built up too but obviously they’re saving that titanic match for the Aniversario.)
CMLL (SAT) 02/04/2023 Arena Coliseo [CMLL]
1) Dr. Karonte II & Príncipe Odín Jr. b Bengala & Retro
2) Apocalipsis, Cholo, Nitro b Eléctrico, Leono, Robin
Rudos took 1/3.
3) Hombre Bala Jr. b Arkalis [lightning]
4) Cancerbero, Luciferno, Virus DQ El Coyote, Okumura, Pólvora
Cancerberos took 2/3. Polvora was DQed for stopping referee Olimpico from putting his hand down for three. His team complained to the commissioner about the decision post match.
5) Titán, Valiente, Volador Jr. DQ Ángel de Oro, Dragón Rojo Jr., Niebla Roja
Volador replaced Mistico (double booked) a few hours after the lineup was posted. Straight falls, Angel de Oro fouling Volador Jr., making the point that they’re not on the same side post match.
6) Atlantis Jr. b Stuka Jr. © [NWA LH]
Stuka falls on his 7th defense, first in over a year. Atlantis Jr. is the 8th (73rd) champion. Stuka attacked and unmasked Atlantis Jr. after the match.
Box y Lucha has the last minute or so of the title change. It’s a good minute and the crowd reacts strongly to the result. Atlantis & Atlantis Jr. join Dr. Wagner & Dr. Wagner Jr. as father and son to hold this (NWA) World Historic Light Heavyweight championship if you consider this title to be part of the same lineage. (You should.)
Stuka Jr. held this title since 2018, the same year Volador’s most recent NWA Welterweight championship started. Current CMLL champions by title length
|Title||Champion||Date Won||Days Held|
|MEX WOMEN TAG||Chicas Indomables||10/16/2020||842|
|CMLL WOMEN||Princesa Sugehit||10/20/2020||838|
|MEX WOMEN||Dark Silueta||11/16/2021||446|
|MEX LIGHT||Panterita del Ring||12/11/2021||421|
|MEX TAG||Esfinge & Fugaz||3/20/2022||322|
|CMLL MIDDLE||Dragon Rojo Jr.||4/2/2022||309|
|Arena Coliseo TAG||Robin & Hombre Bala||4/2/2022||309|
|MEX WELTER||Magia Blanca||6/24/2022||226|
|MEX TRIOS||Dulce Atrapasuenos||7/25/2022||195|
|CMLL HEAVY||Gran Guerrero||11/7/2022||90|
|NWA WELTER||Rocky Romero||1/20/2023||16|
|NWA LH||Atlantis Jr.||2/4/2023||1|
Stuka Jr. held the NWA LH title for 1,635 days before losing it on Saturday. Volador Jr. most recent reign was for 1,631 days. Stuka, Volador and Mistico won their NWA titles all in August 2018, no NWA/Historic title changed hands for 4.5 years, and then two changed in about fifteen days. Mistico should be very concerned if he gets a title challenge soon.
The Rocky Romero/Yuya Uemura World Historic Welterweight Championship match appears to have taken place on Saturday. I’m filing that as under the Bahamas though it took place on, you know, a boat in the ocean. Romero’s (presumed) title defense is the first time someone besides Volador has successfully defended this title since Mascara Dorada defended over Averno on June 18, 2013. Neither Sombra nor Taven had a successful title defense.
CMLL (SUN) 02/05/2023 Arena México [CMLL]
1) Micro Gemelo Diablo I, Micro Gemelo Diablo II, Micro Sagrado b Átomo, Chamuel, Micro Ángel
One of the Diablos needed medical attention post match.
2) Mercurio b Shockercito [lightning]
3) La Seductora, Reyna Isis, Tiffany b La Magnifica, La Vaquerita, Skadi
Rudas took 2/3
4) Dulce Gardenia, Espíritu Negro, Rey Cometa b Akuma, Dark Magic, Espanto Jr.
Tecnicos took 1/3.
5) Atlantis, Blue Panther, Panterita del Ring b Gemelo Diablo I, Gemelo Diablo II, Sagrado
6) Gran Guerrero, Stuka Jr., Último Guerrero b Atlantis Jr., Titán, Volador Jr.
Guerreros took 1/3.
Nothing notable on this CMLL show, which is actually unusual at this point.
CMLL (SUN) 02/05/2023 Arena Puebla
1) Asturiano, Black Tiger, Hijo de Centella Roja b Dark Soul, Hijo del Perverso, Sombra Diabólika
2) Amapola, Hera, Olympia b La Jarochita, Lluvia, Princesa Sugehit
Amapola used the ropes to pin Sugehit. Challenges followed.
3) Hombre Bala Jr. & Robin © b Perverso & Prayer [Arena Coliseo TAG]
4) Esfinge, Fugaz, Star Black b Cancerbero, Luciferno, Virus
5) Guerrero Maya Jr., Místico, Stigma DQ Averno, Euforia, Hechicero
Mistico had Euforia in La Mistica, Averno unmasked Mistico for the DQ. Challengers followed
CMLL seemed concerned the Puebla fans wouldn’t adjust to the different day/time. The Sunday shift instead worked out great, with a stronger turn out Sunday than the show six days ago.
CMLL (TUE) 02/07/2023 Arena México
1) Angelito, Shockercito, Último Dragóncito vs Mercurio, Pequeño Violencia, Pierrothito
2) Eléctrico, Leono, Oro Jr. vs Dr. Karonte I, Enfermero Jr., Nitro
3) La Vaquerita, Princesa Sugehit, Skadi vs Amapola, Olympia, Tiffany
4) Raider vs Akuma [lightning]
5) Blue Panther, Dark Panther, Dulce Gardenia vs Felino, Felino Jr., Hijo del Villano III
6) Atlantis Jr., Panterita del Ring, Panterita del Ring Jr. vs Gemelo Diablo I, Gemelo Diablo II, Sagrado
Panterita Jr. didn’t get the one big spotlight main event for winning the Gran Alteratnvia but he does seem to have been moved up a lot in the mix. CMLL seems set on keeping teams and pairs together whenever possible of late, so it sticks out that Dr. Karonte I and Dr. Karonte II aren’t on the same shows the last couple of weeks.
CMLL (TUE) 02/07/2023 Arena Coliseo Guadalajara
1) Cosmos, Mágico, Metatrón vs Gran Kenut, Jabalí, Minotauro
2) Brillante Jr. (Laguna), Misterio Blanco, Misterio Negro (Laguna) vs Obelisk, Raven, Temerario
3) Cachorro, El Hijo De Stuka Jr., Insólito vs Estrella de Jalisco I, Estrella de Jalisco II, Último Ángel
4) Adrenalina, Explosivo, Fantástico vs Arlequín, Bestia Negra, Gallero
5) Crixus, Rugido, Vegas vs Dark Magic, Okumura, Zandokan Jr.
6) Ángel de Oro, Niebla Roja, Principe Daniel vs Tonalli, Troyano, Último Guerrero
Guadalajara is bringing in some of the Torneo de Escuelas guys early. (They’re also bringing in people who didn’t make it, like Toryano.)
CMLL (FRI) 02/10/2023 Arena México
1) Halcón Suriano Jr. vs Inquisidor [lightning]
2) Marcela & Princesa Sugehit vs Stephanie Vaquer & Zeuxis
3) Arkalis, Pegasso, Stigma vs Capitán Suicida, Fuego, Hombre Bala Jr.
4) Guerrero Maya Jr. vs Niebla Roja [lightning]
5) Rocky Romero & Volador Jr. vs Averno & Místico and Ángel de Oro & Oráculo and Soberano Jr. & Templario and Atlantis & Último Guerrero and Dragón Rojo Jr. & Titán and Atlantis Jr. & Gran Guerrero and Kráneo & Volcano [Torneo Incredible de Parejas, battle royal]
Your second of three reminders that this show has no final to the tournament; that happens on 02/17. It’s still an 11-match card, and a strange one with two lightning matches. Not sure when that’s happened before. Matches 3/4 look fun if they get time. 11 matches might me
Zeuxis has her first CMLL match in five years in the segunda. It’s sensible for CMLL to announce it ahead of time but the reactions when she just popped up on the lineup would’ve been fun. There’s a lot of talk about her partner too; both fans and wrestlers are heavily gossping that Stephanie Vaquer is headed to AAA. She’s been dating Cuatrero, which they’ve occasionally made public and she seems to be close friends with Dalys. Vaquer appears to have been back home in Chile recently, she didn’t appear at Rey de Reyes, and showing up on this lineup suggests she’s still in CMLL for the time being.
In a post about IWRG connections to Torneo de Escuelas wrestlers, IWRG announcer Marucio Rebollo notes Vegas is the former Akbal and Principe is the former Emperador Brillante. Akbal you can sort of figure out looking back at the Black Warrior run shows. I would’ve never gotten Emperador Brillante. That’s not a great name but it’s a lot better than Principe.
Octagon wants to main event the 90th Anniversario show against Fuerza Guerrera. Seems unlikely. Fuerza Guerrera said, for quite a while, he was going to retire on the 2023 Homenaje a Dos Leyendas. In a recent interview with Mas Lucha, Fuerza Guerrera says a recent operation has pushed back his retirement timeline. It probably should speed it up if you’re getting hurt at his age. (He does say he’s ready to wrestle in March, so we’ll see if he turns up in CMLL’s H2L lineup this week.)
The mother of CMLL announcer Juan Carlos Castellanos, Margarita Martinez Alvarez, passed away on Sunday.
CMLL/Fantastica Mania lineups
These came out late Sunday night. They’re interesting. All shows will air live on NJPW World. These shows are currently listed as Japanese only.
The main thing you’re going to notice is Atlantis Jr. is still a rudo for the purpose of this tour. All the CMLL wrestlers get a spotlight match along the way – except for Cavernario, interestingly.
CMLL , NJPW (WED) 02/22/2023 Takamatsu City General Gynmasium 2, Kagawa, Japan
1) Capitán Suicida & Yuto Nakashima vs Gedo & Taiji Ishimori
2) Magia Blanca & Ryohei Oiwa vs Douki & Yoshinobu Kanemaru
3) Dulce Gardenia, Tiger Mask, YOH vs Bárbaro Cavernario, Hijo del Villano III, Okumura
4) Kosei Fujita, Master Wato, Ryusuke Taguchi, Soberano Jr. vs Bushi, Hiromu Takahashi, Tetsuya Naito, Titán
5) El Desperado, Rey Cometa, Volador Jr. vs Hechicero, SHO, Templario
6) Hiroshi Tanahashi & Místico vs Atlantis Jr. & Último Guerrero [Relevos Increíbles]
These non-Mexico City shows usually are fine, not great, and the tour opens with all tag matches. The main event is a fun novelty. Rey Cometa and Desperado teaming up is an easter egg.
CMLL , NJPW (THU) 02/23/2023 KBS Hall, Kyoto, japan
1) Rey Cometa & Yuto Nakashima vs Douki & Yoshinobu Kanemaru
2) Capitán Suicida & Ryohei Oiwa vs Gedo & Taiji Ishimori
3) Dulce Gardenia, Master Wato, Tiger Mask vs Bárbaro Cavernario, Hijo del Villano III, Okumura
4) Kosei Fujita, Ryusuke Taguchi, Soberano Jr., YOH vs Bushi, Hiromu Takahashi, Tetsuya Naito, Titán
5) El Desperado, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Último Guerrero vs Hechicero, Magia Blanca, SHO
6) Místico & Volador Jr. vs Atlantis Jr. & Templario [Relevos Increíbles]
There are some names getting moved on but these are largely the same shows. Nakashima, Oiwa and Fujita are NJPW young lions and figure to take the loss in any match you see them in.
CMLL , NJPW (FRI) 02/24/2023 Osaka Municipal Central Gymnasium, Osaka, Japan
1) Master Wato, Ryusuke Taguchi, Tiger Mask vs Gedo, Hijo del Villano III, Taiji Ishimori
2) Capitán Suicida & YOH vs Hiromu Takahashi & Tetsuya Naito
3) Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kosei Fujita, Okumura vs Bárbaro Cavernario, SHO, Templario
4) El Desperado, Místico, Soberano Jr. vs Douki, Hechicero, Yoshinobu Kanemaru
5) Dulce Gardenia & Rey Cometa vs Bushi & Titán [semifinal]
6) Magia Blanca & Volador Jr. vs Atlantis Jr. & Último Guerrero [semifinal]
The perennial tag team tournament is faction based this year. Dulce Atrapsuenos versus LIJ in one semifinal, Depredadores versus Guerreros in the other. Capitan Suicida has a lot of challenging match ups. Hechicero might be the only CMLL guy that indie luchador DOUKI likes.
CMLL , NJPW (SUN) 02/26/2023 Mahuhari Messe International Confernece Hall, Chiba, Japan
1) Ryohei Oiwa & Tiger Mask vs Hijo del Villano III & SHO
2) Bárbaro Cavernario, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Ryusuke Taguchi vs Master Wato, Okumura, YOH
3) Capitán Suicida & Kosei Fujita vs Hiromu Takahashi & Tetsuya Naito
4) El Desperado, Místico, Soberano Jr. vs Douki, Hechicero, Templario
5) ? & ?? vs ??? & ???? [3rd place]
6) ? & ?? vs ??? & ???? [final]
I want Dulce Gardenia & Rey Cometa vs Atlantis Jr. & Ultimo Guerrero in the final for the chaos, but guessing it’s Guerreros/LIJ and Atrapsuenos/Depredadores. (This tag tournament passes as Cometa’s big challenge for the tournament.)
CMLL , NJPW (MON) 02/27/2023 Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
1) Kosei Fujita & Rey Cometa vs Douki & Yoshinobu Kanemaru
2) Master Wato & Tiger Mask vs Gedo & Hijo del Villano III
3) Capitán Suicida vs Último Guerrero
4) Bárbaro Cavernario, El Desperado, Ryusuke Taguchi vs Bushi, Hiromu Takahashi, Tetsuya Naito
5) Dulce Gardenia, Magia Blanca, Místico vs Atlantis Jr., Hechicero, Okumura
6) Volador Jr. vs Templario
7) Titán vs Soberano Jr. [CMLL WELTER]
NJPW previously announced this date would air for free. It’s a really good card for $0.00.
Titan/Soberano was really good in 2019. Titan/Sobreano was a MOTYC in 2019. Titan/Soberano was the best match CMLL did in 2020. They have not met since. It might go well again.
Volador Jr. and Templario haven’t had a real singles match since early in the pandemic, so that’s a good heat check to see where Templario is at this point. Ultimo Guerrero and Capitan Suicida have never had a singles match and might never have one in CMLL, so that will be a fun seven or so minutes.
CMLL , NJPW (TUE) 02/28/2023 Korakuen Hall, Tokyo, Japan
1) Kosei Fujita & Magia Blanca vs Capitán Suicida & Yotu Nakashima
2) Tiger Mask vs Hijo del Villano III
3) Hiroshi Tanahashi, Rey Cometa, Ryohei Oiwa, Satoshi Kojima vs Bushi, Hiromu Takahashi, Tetsuya Naito, Titán
4) Dulce Gardenia vs Okumura
5) Soberano Jr. vs Hechicero
6) Bárbaro Cavernario, Master Wato, Último Guerrero vs El Desperado, Templario, Volador Jr. [Relevos Increíbles]
7) Místico vs Atlantis Jr.
Atlantis Jr. beat Mistico in the final of last year’s Copa Junior, Mistico beat Atlantis Jr. in Puebla by DQ months later. Soberano beat Hechicero in En Busca de un Idolo nine years ago and they haven’t crossed paths much since; just one lightning match in 2016 where Hechicero got the win back.
Dulce Gardenia/Okumura is a Fantastica Mania classic. Tiger Mask and Hijo de Villano are opposite tag matches all tour long leading to that singles match.
Noticeably missing is a Black Cat tribute match, usually taking place on the final day of the tour to honor the wrestler who connected Mexico and NJPW. It’s possible that semi-main tag match will honor him in typical fashion.
Volador Jr. will also appear as part of the All Star Junior Festival on 02/05. The match card won’t be announced until 02/25. More CMLL wrestlers could be added; no one knows for sure what this show is or how many people are on it.
AAA TV (SUN) 02/05/2023 Poliforum Zamna, Mérida, Yucatán [AAA, AS, Lucha Libre TM, Record]
***Rey de Reyes, 2023***
1) Ángel Infernal, Halcón Rojo Jr., Impacto, Panther Boy Jr. ?? Eterno Alcander, Fuerza Maya, Persseus, Shangai Kid
Dark match, lineup likely changed.
2) Kuukai, La Parka Negra, Nishikawa b Eterno Alcander, Mr. Iguana, Niño Hamburguesa
Kuukai & Nishikawa replaced Kento & Takuma. Local Eterno Alcander replaced Aerostar.
3) Sam Adonis b Vampiro, Puma King, Arez [Rey de Reyes, semifinal]
Puma King replaced Jack Carthweel. Two masked people helped him and Adonis.
4) Bandido b Psycho Clown, Abismo Negro Jr., Komander [Rey de Reyes, semifinal]
Earlier, La Rebelion and Adonis attacked Psycho Clown. Vampiro tried and failed to make the save. Negro Casas was more successful. Adonis attacked Psycho again during the match. Bandido beat Komander.
5) Pagano b Bestia 666, Flamita, Aramis [Rey de Reyes, semifinal]
6) Hijo Del Vikingo b Mecha Wolf, Myzteziz Jr., Negro Casas [Rey de Reyes, semifinal]
Negro Casas replaced Gringo Loco.
7) Sexy Star b Chik Tormenta, Lady Shani, Dalys, La Hiedra [Reina de Reinas torneo]
Dalys officially added on 01/28.
8) Sam Adonis b Pagano, Hijo Del Vikingo, Bandido [Rey de Reyes]
Adonis won via some cheating, then was attacked by Psycho Clown
This should air on 02/18 and 02/25. Maybe one week of the semifinals and then everything else on the following week? I got no real sense of the quality of matches from the fan recaps. Attendance seemed good for a regular TV taping, which this ended being in effect.
Adonis winning was the chalk pick and that’s the way it went; the priority is whatever they can do to make the possible Adonis/Psycho match seem bigger, and the only surprise was they didn’t just have Adonis beat Psycho one on one. Sexy Star was a more out of a nowhere win. She debuted two Rey de Reyes ago and hadn’t gotten a meaningful win in her AAA run so far; the wrestler is talented but “Sexy Star” has existed to this point only so AAA could have the gimmick back on TV. Adonis winning is part of an ongoing story, Sexy Star winning comes off as if they just picked at random. Maybe it’ll come off stronger on TV or there will be some sort of follow-up. Adonis got a sword, Sexy Star got an ax.
It’s weird AAA announced Dalys was wrestling and not Negro Casas, right? We all figured he’d be there (and figured people would not turn up for an AAA show, as always) so he’d be wrestling, but that seems like an easy thing to advertise. Oh well. Kento & Takuma have finished up in Mexico for now.
Twitter user Dieg0Aerostar11, believed to be an Aerostar family member, posted a video speculating Aerostar had left AAA repeatedly on Twitter on Sunday. AAA’s recap of the opener didn’t mention Eterno Alcander subbing for Aerostar, so many quick result stories still had Aerostar listed as wrestling. I don’t know if Aerostar has actually quit, but he definitely wants it to be a story if Dieg0 is putting that video out there to get attention.
This week’s AAA TV show was the first taped in 2023, and there was a big “new year new me” feel. A new graphics package, a different style for the video package open, and lots of vignettes (in the same room) to explain the matches before they happened. It’s a good start. AAA’s made a lot of these good starts and then dropped off as the year has gone by so we’ll just have to see how it goes.
The show itself was OK at best. They started with a backstage talking segment with Daga & Sam Adonis and then an in-ring with Daga, Adonis, Pentagon and Psycho Clown; both segments contained a lot of the same content and meant it was a half hour before a match happened. The AAA pattern is to open the show with a talking segment if thy’re going to do it at all and it might have been more enjoyable if they slipped in a match between the two promos. Or maybe not – the lumberjack match wasn’t good, and the other two matches were forgettable. The main event was reverse-engineered around Negro Casas & Dalys’s debut at the end. Everything before was only getting to that spot, and hoping that people would forget any nonsense involved once the reveal happened. The actual finish (everyone freezes because music plays) is one of those dumb finishes that get accepted as ‘well, it’s just wrestling.’ No one’s going to remember the rest of match and it’s not a big loss. The fans weren’t reacting much at all to the angle until the unmasking and then there was a huge reaction; you could see people shocked as they caught sight of Casas’ face.
I wasn’t able to stream the full show on Twitch. I do not believe I will be streaming AAA again on Twitch. AAA contacted me to tell me that one of their media partners would be issuing a takedown request if I didn’t stop my stream myself. (It was generous of AAA to do that; it’s something I wish would’ve been done by others in the past.) I’m not going to try streaming AAA again. I may pass on someone else’s AAA stream but I’ve decided I’m out. Even if AAA came back to me and gave me an all clear, I’m throwing in the towel on streaming AAA.
IWRG , RGR (SUN) 02/05/2023 Arena Naucalpan [Mas Lucha, Mas Lucha]
1) Noisy Boy & Spider Fly b Jhon Tito & Rey Halcón
2) Keyra & Lolita b Big Mami & Diosa Quetzal [Copa Femenil RGR]
Lolita replaced Goya Kong.
3) Coronel Vip & Galeno del Mal b Hijo De Canis Lupus & Rey León
Tirnates was special referee. Rey Espectro and Hijo de Fishman asked Lupus & Leon for a tag title match
4) Pimpinela Escarlata b Jessy Ventura, Diva Salvaje, Mamba, Máximo, Paymon, Bugambilia, Zoy Raymunda [RGR EXOTICO]
Pimpi won the new title. Jessy Ventura challenged Pimpinela to a hair match, which Pimpinela accepted.
5) Hijo del Pirata Morgan, Monsther, Pirata Morgan, Pirata Morgan Jr. b Pig Decapitador, Pig Destroyer, Pig Destructor, Pig Pool
Monsther replaced Rey Bucanero. Jack Fancy was with the Piratas. Hijo del Pirata fouled one of the pigs to set up the Pirata Sr. pin. Challenges followed.
6) Diamante Azul (Indie), Hijo del Fishman, Rey Espectro b Hijo de LA Park, LA Park, LA Park Jr.
Pirata interfered, then Jack Fancy hit LA Park with a briefcase to set up a Diamante Azul slam for the win.
I didn’t sense much buzz for this show but it was there – RGR and IWRG filled up Arena Naucalpan with his lineup. Give a lot of credit to LA Park I think. First half of the show aired for free, second half behind the Mas Lucha paywall. I just skimmed though, and they’re about what you’d expect. It was always strange Rey Bucanero was booked for this show and not a surprise he disappeared.
RIOT (SAT) 02/04/2023 Palestino Libanes, San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo Leon [@thekoko666]
1) Mr. Iguana b King Rex
2) Muerte Extrema b Ultra
3) Blake Christian b Baby Xtreme
4) Kaientai & Lord Byron b Lady Flammer & Lady Maravilla
Unmexicans remain undefeated
5) Tromba (Indie) b Belial
6) Willy Banderas b Aramis
7) Black Taurus (AAA), Látigo, Toxin b Komander, Kratoz, Prometeo
8) Erik Ortiz b Arez [RIOT CHAMP]
Ortiz is 2nd champion. Arez falls on 6th defense.
This was their all-surprise matches show. I always forget to put these shows in to the database beforehand where’s no lineup.
Ortiz actually won a #1 contenders match in March, finally got his title match, and won. The top two matches sound like they went very well. The promotion says they set a new attendance record.
The Twitch channel may not be completely dead. As RIOT mentioned back on New Year’s Eve, I’d talked to them about streaming one of their unreleased shows. Streaming lucha libre shows while writing about lucha libre news is an inherent conflict of interest, but I’ve also streamed CMLL (on YouTube back in the geoblock days) and AAA so I crossed that line long ago. I’ve had this idea in the back of my head for years. One of the Guadalajara feds – it might have been GHC? – asked me about doing it at one point too, but I just wasn’t familiar enough with them to do it. RIOT I’ve gotten to know decently well and pitched the idea in person over the summer. Of course, it’s RIOT, so the one show I was going to stream (2022 La Rina night 1 IIRC) still isn’t available and I have no idea when it will be. I’ll let you know when I know.
Arez and Aramis are in contract purgatory with MLW. Rob detailed the situation in a Twitter thread on Monday. Arez hasn’t been used since June, Aramis since April. Both have been available and willing to work MLW tapings, haven’t been brought in, and there appear no plans to use them going forward. They’re not being used at the AAA/EMW/MLW show this Friday in Tijuana. MLW also has refused to release them from their contracts and has recently made legal threats. MLW has released others from contracts, and it’s unclear why they’re not doing the same with Arez and Aramis.
Being under MLW contract and not being used is a problem; they’re not getting paid to sit at home. . They’re also losing out on other opportunities. A contract with another promotion would be great, but even more piecemeal gigs: MLW contract language prohibits working for certain indie promotions, and other groups shy away from using MLW wrestlers due to past issues. It has cost these guys money to be under contract to MLW and not actually wrestle.
Both Mexican wrestlers said they felt pressured to sign these deals in the first place, under a threat of losing work in Mexico if they didn’t. (This is not the only luchador who this has happened to, though not all with MLW.) Aramis & Aramis are now stuck losing work outside of Mexico because of a contract which doesn’t seem to mean anything to either side.
(I’ve seen a misconception that MLW got Arez and Aramis their work visas. That is incorrect; they both got their own. I don’t know everyone’s situation so this is not a blanket statement, but my understanding is the foreign talent in MLW generally are responsible for managing their work visas, and MLW doesn’t get involved in getting those. I’m sure there are exceptions, but the Mexican wrestlers used and not used have largely been dependent on who already could legally come to Mexico. I believe the Dragongate wrestlers who’ve been in are all on work visas procured through Masked Republic, not MLW.)
MLW is not dumb. I didn’t understand at all what they were doing by going to ProWrestling.TV, but it makes sense in the big picture: they got some guaranteed (and surely better than YouTube) money to burn off a few tapings they had in the can, and they’re going to start fresh and new on Reelz this week. They have an idea of the bigger picture. I just don’t see where in that big picture MLW benefits from keeping people under contract who they don’t want to use and are just sitting home unhappily.
Segunda Caida watches some Brazos in Panama and IWRG Retro.
Sunday was the 39th Anniversary of El Santo’s death. El Hijo del Santo has frequently held public events at his father’s statute in the past. This year, Hijo del Santo instead posted a video from a visit to his father’s grave.
Dave Meltzer reported that Dragon Lee was originally supposed to make his NXT debut on Saturday’s show. He did not due to work visa issues. Kenny Omega has missed recent AEW shows due to a visa issue that’s since been resolved, and there are been scattered notes of some of WWE’s foreign (mostly NXT) wrestlers quietly vanishing due to visa issues. I’m under the impression this is not a one wrestler or one promotion problem, but some larger issue with professional wrestlers and US work visas. I bring this up because Death Triangle have similarly vanished from AEW since their ladder match three weeks ago. They were due a break after their recent run of matches, but it may be more than that. (Bandido has similarly disappeared, though there’s not yet been a point where Bandido has been around AEW regularly.) AEW runs El Paso this Wednesday and Laredo next week, great markets for the Lucha Brothers. There’s probably something up if they don’t appear.
Arez was added to the WXW 16 Carat Gold tournament from March 10 to 12. Komander has previously been announced for the same.
Hugo Savinovich and Carlos Cabrera are headlining a “Heroes del Ring” show in Chile on March 25 and March 26th. This has been announced for a while and includes Will Ospreay, Natalia Marakova, and Santino Marella as the foreign talent. Recent articles mention the show will be aired on TNT Sports locally, with a quote from a TNT Sports executive about how the wrestling fits in so well with their programming. TNT Sports is part of the same WBD family as Space (AAA) and US’s TNT/TBS (AEW) and it’s unusual that there are three different wrestling programming in the same family. These shows sound like they’re a one off for now, more if they’re successful, and Savinovich was having some success promoting in South America before the pandemic.
04/01 GCW WRLD on Lucha lineup
- Los Macizos vs Familia de Tijuana (Bestia 666 & Damian 666) for the GCW Tag Team Championship. – first match
El Hijo del Dr. Wagner Jr. successfully defended the GHC National Championship in NOAH. I keep thinking that’s going to be a temporary thing, given the history of Mexicans in Japanese promotions, and he keeps defying expectations by winning. I’d have to dig around to figure out the most successful consecutive defenses by a Mexican wrestler of a major Japanese title in Japan, but I suspect that number isn’t high. Daga made his NOAH debut in the semi-main. It was a 5v5 elimination match, and his team hilariously won 5-0. Daga’s post match promo indicated he plans to stick around for a while.
Rey Espectro had a press conference to announce Espectrito de Ultratumba is now Mini Rey Espectro. Unclear why this needed to be a press conference.
Cibernetico claims he’s going to retire in four years. I’m not sure why I even bothered to type that, it seems unlikely to be accurate.