This week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter lucha notes, and specifically the AAA section, has a lot of interesting information. It’s not all information I take totally serious, but it’s interesting nonetheless. This line caught my eye:
The plan, and we’ll see how this turns out, is to start elevating the Air Force, Tigre Cota, Decnis and Billy Boy.
This echos a list from February from the WON (referenced in this post) where AAA was then talking about building around Zorro, Jack Evans, Marco Corleone and Laredo Kid. Marco left because he wasn’t being built around, Zorro & Jack are in the same exact positions they were six months ago, and Laredo’s elevation went so well that he’s back on the list again. That wasn’t the first list, either. It’s interesting Super Fly is back on a list, after previously being blamed for his ‘elevation’ not working due to his poor promos. At least on TV, his (rare) promos don’t seem to have changed. Rob has a great breakdown of the current guys on the list and the previous failures in following thru.
My first response to the list was to laugh. I thought about it more sense, and thought about something Konnan’s said on past interviews on Figure Four Daily. Last time he was on an audio interview was around the time the Invaders were debuting in CMLL, and Konnan was down on their prospects – he didn’t feel Psicosis, Alebrije and Histeria were stars and didn’t know Maniaco. CMLL hasn’t completely proven him wrong – Psicosis never reached the Averno/Ultimo Guerrereo level of creating a slight doubt about who might win in a mask match with Mistico (1). Still, I think we could agree the core Invaders are at a near top level in CMLL, and better off than they all were in AAA. And yet, if Konnan is asked about those guys again (2), he’d say those guys are still not stars. I believe the difference is about what different mean by the idea of a “star” and how you create one.
My philosophy (3) is stars are created by the promotion, via storylines and feuds and increased amounts of focus. Guys like Ultimo Guerrero, Averno, Valiente, Sangre Azteca were talented midcarders are below who only became stars after CMLL got behind them and gave them important victories. In Konnan’s view (4), being a star is a god given gift. You either prove yourself as a star quickly and everyone knows, or you’ll never be one. Psicosis II didn’t have those star qualities in AAA, and so it’s impossible for CMLL to ever make him one. Konnan himself is a fine example of a guy who was seen as a star from the moment he turned up, just based on his intrinsic star power qualities.
If you take the “a star is born a star” view, then “elevation” means something totally different. If you can’t make a star who isn’t already one, then elevation simply moves putting guys in higher positions. It doesn’t mean they’ll be built into being bigger stars, because that is impossible. They’ll simply being used to showcase the actual stars, and I can totally believe that to be the fate of those six guys on this latest list.
I think this list has a better chance of being followed out, just because AAA’s roster has shrunk and they’re not bringing in foreigners, so these guys will have to be more visible by default. And I think if the February list was “Hernandez, Electroshock, Silver King and Joe Lider”, people might take these lists a bit more seriously.
1 – and so we have a 14 man cage match
2 – perhaps as soon as Wednesday
3 – I’m using absolutes for simplicity, but there are no absolutes; the truth is definitely a combination of both views, we’re just arguing percentages and rare cases
4 – which is almost certainly shared by those who’ve had similar experiences, and I’m not even sure is actually Konnan’s view
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