I have no idea how many parts this is going to be. Lots and lots of parts, but six matches at a time.
Trauma I & Trauma II vs Diluvio Negro I & Silver Star (02-03 Monterrey) – so many rope breaks. Standard technical Traumas match, which includes a lot of holds being put on, held on for about 10 seconds, then the person putting on the hold lets go of it or the other guy gets the ropes. It’s a great collection of interesting holds, but I’m looking for (maybe preoccupied by this point) getting series of moves and that’s not what this match is about at all. It’s also slower than usual. Match was well executed – until they got to the finish and it one of the Monterrey guys fell down trying to apply a reinera. Only worth watching if you’re looking for the specific style.
Negro Casas vs Valiente for the NWA World Welterweight Championship (02-04 Puebla) – EXCELLENT. A superb back and forth title match in a variety of styles; they did mat wrestling early before picking up to the bigger moves late, and everything looked good and looked like a battle. Both guys were pulling out ideas they don’t normally use. The second fall finish was so good, Valiente doing a variation of the Dorada corner spin escape only for Negro to immediately connect on the dropkick and casita – it was flashy but the timing and smoothness was there as well. This match definitely still used the usual CMLL singles match template – there was a dive followed by a cavernaria – but getting far more out of it than usual. That clichéd spot was followed by a superb back and forth battle to set up a superplex, with much more to it than the usual climb up the ropes and get hit bit. There’s one bad slip right before the end, but they use it to make the end work better. Negro Casas had an outstanding run with this title.
Dragón Rojo Jr. vs Titán for the CMLL World Middleweight Championship (02-05 Guadalajara) – So weird to see Thin Dragon Rojo. So weird to have Dragon Rojo on a list of matches to go back and rewatch. This match shouldn’t have been on the list – it’s completely unwatchable because of a giant CMLL graphic which covers up the screen during many of the big spots in the match. It’s random and annoying. There’s probably a very good version of this match in CMLL’s video vault, and it’s possibly Dragon Rojo’s best match of the year, but you should skip this version of it.
Centvrión, Dinamic Black, Golden Magic vs Apolo Estrada Jr., Canis Lupus, Eita (02-14 IWRG) – Turned out to be just a normal midcard trios match, which was fine for the situation but jarring personally because of it following some other crazy matches – and then, in the end, Apolo Estrada takes a Golden Magic 450 kneedrop to the face and is knocked out in a ugly way. Match is fine but you don’t want to see that.
Cerebro Negro vs Carta Brava Jr. for the World Wrestling Stars Welterweight Championship (02-14 IWRG) – Very good title match just missing something to make it stick out among all the other matches this year. Cerebro and Carta Brava were rudos at this point but both worked essentially a straight técnico title match and it was all solidly done. Nice surprise finish and nice tease ending with the knee submission prior to that. Both guys are good and were good here and I’ve got nothing bad to say about it, but I’m also missing anything to write about it here.
Chico Che, Freelance, Hijo del Pantera vs Apolo Estrada Jr., Avisman, Eita (02-17 IWRG) – GREAT. Fun IWRG trios with a lot of good matchups and parts of dives we could actually see. (This is no-panning AYM.) There was a point where a blur ran across the ring and apparently did a tope con giro into the crowd, and before I could wonder how far Freelance had landed, I noticed Freelance was still in the ring – it was Hijo del Pantera being suicidal. I hope Hijo del Pantera makes some video in his return to Mexico in 2014 because he looked really good in the little stuff I’ve see of him in Japan and this is probably my favorite match he’s been involved in Mexico.