British Night canceled; CMLL’s show still to go on

The British Embassy and Fundación John Langdon Down have issues a press release withdrawing support for tonight’s scheduled British Night themed show at Arena Mexico. The foundation helps children with special needs, and the show was supposed to be British themed, but all of those themed bits will not be happening. The specfic paragraph

El Comité de Caridad de la Embajada Británica entiende que la Fundación John Langdon Down A.C ha retirado su apoyo debido a lo que la Fundación considera una la falta de seriedad y cumplimiento por parte del Consejo Mundial de la Lucha Libre de beneficiar a la Fundación John Langdon Down A.C. con un porcentaje específico del total de la venta de boletos de la función.

The foundation pulled out because they wanted to know the specific percentage of the tickets they would be given, and CMLL was either evasive about the answer or it wasn’t the answer they wanted to hear. The press release ends with a guilt line of “it’s up to CMLL to decide if they will donate any money or none at all”, and then saying they’ll have nothing more to say about this. You may notice the press release includes a “fail” tag, and the original twitter message uses #CMLLFail tag, not seen since CMLL’s last dumb booking move. Safe to say there are harsh feelings from the charity to CMLL on this one.

A charity organization saying they’d rather withdraw support for you than take any money makes anyone look horrible. Still, we don’t know the actual details here and maybe shouldn’t be in a hurry to assign blame until we do. Both sides probably share some blame. We can assume they thought they agreed to some amount of money being donated prior to this event being announced (or it wouldn’t have got this far), but we don’t know if they mistakenly agreed to different things, or which side tried to change the agreement after that fact. It really could be either.

The bottom line is a fun theme night is out the window (maybe with whatever trophy Sombra or Ultimo Guerrero was going to win) and a charity has decided it’d rather get no money rather than whatever it was being offered. The actual CMLL Friday night show at Arena Mexico will still go on, but with a lot less pomp and circumstances.

We’re still getting a Sombra vs Ultimo Guerrero match CMLL probably wouldn’t have bothered to do otherwise. If you were going to spend money on a ticket and you”d still like to thank the Foundacion for it, you can donate directly on their website.

CMLL hasn’t responded yet. I hope they do, but there’s no guarantee they will.

5 thoughts to “British Night canceled; CMLL’s show still to go on”

  1. Obviously someone screwed something up along the way here, but from experience setting up events as fundraisers, the blame doesn’t necessarily lie with the wrestling end of things.
    Often, charities will be put in contact with wrestling promotions, and the idea in their head is “Wow, this is easy money, because these wrestling shows draw huge crowds”. The promotion takes the view of “we should get a huge house for this event, because the charity will be pushing tickets”. BOTH parties put the onus of selling tickets on the OTHER party, and thus neither does anything.
    It wouldn’t surprise me at all if the British group behind the charity thought that CMLL was just donating a portion of the proceeds from that show, while CMLL thought that this group would be pushing tickets as a fundraiser, and thus bumping up the house. So, maybe on Wed or Thursday, someone from CMLL approaches the charity and says “We need your advance ticket information” and the charity says “What? This is YOUR show?”.

    I am not saying this is what happened, but I have seen it happen enough on many different levels of wrestling business that I assume this is usually the case when cancellations like his happen. It’s the same cliche as the name wrestler getting his pay in advance and then no-showing… It is that common.

  2. Yea, I agree it could be all on the charity’s side for trying to change the agreement of the deal, but CMLL still could’ve easily handled this in so much better.

    – Do the meet and greet anyway or refund those prices
    – offer refunds for anyone who came just because it was British Night
    – send out a press release (FRIDAY) along the lines of ”

    We regret to announce British Night will not take place due to disagreements with JLD/British Embassay

    CMLL has a long history of working with reputable charitable foundations, such as the Make a Wish Organization and the Children’s Rehab Hospital of Neza, and will continue to work those organization in the future. We have decided to donate a percentage of tonight’s gate to those causes.

    Tonight’s show will go on as scheduled and we will continue to present the best lucha libre in the world”

    and that’s it. It sounds like they’re doing something – it doesn’t matter if the actual percentage they’re donating is 0.0001% – which is better than doing nothing at all.

  3. I have two theories of what went down:

    1) CMLL/JLD agreed a certain % of the tickets would go towards the foundation. CMLL gets the publicity of being associated with the charity and likely gets a larger crowd. Perhaps as the show came closer CMLL realized ticket sales were nothing special and/or were just their usual selfish selves and tried to change the agreement as to how much the charity receives. JLD balked and tried to embarass CMLL in the public as revenge.

    2) As I’ve heard/seen happen in the past a charity approached a person/company about doing some sort of benefit show and made sure to get a ton of publicity out about it. Then a day or two before the show they decided to hold up the person/company for more money. JLD could have done this knowing it’s a no-lose situation. Either CMLL balks and takes all the negative publicity or CMLL gives in. What JLD didn’t take into account possibly is the fact CMLL has never cared about their public perception.

    For me the two questions that we need answers for are:

    1) Who approached who about this? CMLL tends to live in their own bubble and aside from sold shows to sponsors they are not in the business of doing theme nights. This leads me to believe JLD approached CMLL and I’d be very suspicious of JLD’s intentions if that was the case.

    2) Was there any pre-setup going on? One would think with the promise of double decker buses, soldiers and a British theme the setup would have started at least a day ahead of time as those things don’t all magically appear 2 hours before the show. Once the deal fell apart JLD could have parked a double decker bus outside Arena Mexico at least as a sign they were ready to go ahead with the show had CMLL honored their agreement but as far as I’m aware no such thing happened.

    It’s such a weird situation. CMLL has handled it horribly thus far but such is to be expected with a company that lives in a bubble and is run by 60+ year old men who just don’t care what others think of them.

    I hope Cubs doesn’t mind me sharing this but he had the brilliant idea yesterday that AAA should have stepped in and donated to the JLD foundation. I think that was a huge missed opportunity by AAA as CMLL could care less about Dorian Roldan’s public challenges or “El Consejo” invading AAA but getting publicity for helping a charity that CMLL ?abandoned? would have majorly pissed off CMLL.

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