LLB NOBA (WED) 07/12/2017Arena Naucalpan [+LuchaTV, Black Terry Jr. (Flickr), SuperLuchas]
1) Toxin Boy b Fly Star, Tromba
2) Fandango, Kronoz, Shadow, Yoruba b Atomic Star, Chico Che, Hijo del Alebrije, Ojo De Halcón Kronos & Ojo de Halcon were added to the match. Chico Che was hurt during the match but left on his own power.
3) Fantasma de la Ópera b Fresero Jr., Ángel o Demonio, Cerebro Negro, Ovett, Herodes, Carta Brava Jr. (IWRG) Fantasma fouled Fresero for the win.
4) Arez, Belial, Freelance, Mr. Águila, Suicida b Aspirantito, Emperador Azteca, Eterno, Golden Magic, Imposible LLB vs IWRG. Mr. Aguila replaced Aspirantito, who moved to the other team to replace Baxter.
5) Pirata Morgan & Sharlie Rockstar b Garza Jr. & Zorro Garza & Zorro didn’t get along.
6) La Máscara & Máximo DQ Daga & Penta 0M and Hijo de LA Park & LA Park Hijo de LA Park was LA Park’s mystery partner. Lots of fouls, with Penta being DQed for one on Maximo. They challenged for a cage match with those six with hair and mask on the line (which is not happening)
Good crowd, bad main event finish. The usual!
This week’s Keepin it 100 with Konnan includes a discussion about how it came to be that Octagoncito was in Impact. Konnan says Impact originally wanted to do Torito/Hornswaggle, but Konnna pushed them in the direction of Torito/Demus as a much better match. Demus was up for it, but Torito (Mascarita Dorada) had knee surgery two months ago and it was taking longer to recover than expected. Torito told Konnna a few days ahead of time that he was out and Konnan isn’t using many minis, so he suggested Impact ask AAA for one, suggesting Mascarita Sagrada or Octagoncito. (Konnan says now he should’ve thought about Dinastia.) Konnan figures AAA picked Octagoncito as a way to try and get him back to working with them, and believes AAA may bring in Torito in the future. Konnan also talked a little bit about The Crash, saying they’ve made money on every show except the Mexico City one (which is blamed on being a Wednesday.)
Also on that podcast, it’s explained that the AAA storyline is Johnny Mundo brought in Kevin Kross to watch his back, but then also brought in Hernandez because he was concerned Kross might turn on him. None of that has been explained on TV, as noted on the podcast – they instead asked Kevin Kross, who explained it. Maybe I need to get Kevin Kross to write the AAA recaps.
CMLL’s sending out pieces about how important women’s wrestling has been to them, which feels a little hollow when they gloss over how they didn’t fight the ban of women wrestling for 30 years and all. The women disappearing again in the last 90s and early 00s is treated as an unnamed promoter (AAA) lying to the women about how much better they were going to have it with them but not actually supporting them. CMLL didn’t have women’s matches because CMLL wasn’t interested in having women’s matches until the popularity of Dark Angel caused them to give it another try. Sarah Stock gets a throwaway mention, as if Dian La Cazadora was a bigger deal.
Negro Casas says he tries to pass on everything he was taught to younger generations. He has no thought of retiring.
CaraLucha & Kamicazes del Ring are copromoting a show in Arena San Juan on 07/21, a benefit show for Danger King. Bandido (Elite) versus Flyer (KDR) versus Templario (Caralucha) will be the three way, three champions main event
AAA’s show on Front Runner TV is already showing repeats. The success of the NJPW English show on AXS show has been based on having a hot product with buzz, but also because there’s a new hour (and now two) just about every single Friday. Both the CMLL and AAA English language shows have failed at the simple task of airing a new episode each week, and it can’t be simply The Fight Network’s fault if it’s happening elsewhere too.
Fuego, Johnny Idol, Stigmabeat Cancerbero, Raziel, Universo 2000 Jr. (12:27 [6:03, 3:29, 2:55], 1/3, ok, via VideosOficialesCMLL)
Dronebeat Pumain a lightning match (8:31, headstand double knee smash, good, via VideosOficialesCMLL)
Ángel de Oro, Blue Panther Jr., The Pantherbeat Cuatrero, Forastero, Sansón (11:23 [5:19, 2:46, 3:18], 1/3, ok, via VideosOficialesCMLL)
Diamante Azul, Marco Corleone, Volador Jr.beat Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Negro Casas (6:58 [2:05, 1:23, 3:30], 2/3, ok, via VideosOficialesCMLL)
Universo 2000 hurt is wrist on his second fall finish on Fuego. He can’t hold him down right for a pin, but Tirantes won’t count because Fuego’s shoulders aren’t down. Universo and Tirantes have words as Universo leaves the ring to check with the doctor and then go to the back. It’s a sudden injury that not obvious about what happened, but CMLL is aware enough not to replay it.
Misterioso replaced Arkangel in the second and feuded with Flyer, including Flyer getting the surprise pinfall when Misterioso wasn’t paying attention in the second fall and Misterioso taking Flyer’s mask after the third fall. Flyer had a new (at least to me) tattoo down his spine.
Pequeño Nitro unmasked Fantasy out of nowhere. No one saw it coming, especially not the producer who gave us a clean shot of Fantasy’s unmasked face.
The ending visual was cool but there’s nothing else to really watch in the main event. I’m not sure if Volador had a new look gear or just wrestled the entire match in his entrance gear, but it was about the effort you’d expect in a Tuesday main event. Diamante Azul looked worse here than his other match and his tope to the floor is oddly bad.
The semimain easily the most fun trios match of the card, but noticeably less than their usual matches and it’s hard not to downgrade it from there. The NGD are still such a good trio that they should never ever break them up; they get the idea of being a team and working together on stuff. Not sure Panther Jr. landed one of his many quebradoras clean, and his STF at the end was so slow that I was wondering if he was hurt somehow. His brother just randomly flying thru the ring to get in an extra tope was wonderful.
The lightning match was a total action match, though maybe too much action – the first half felt definitely like it was scenes from a 15 minute match being cut down to 8. They were just going for the big spots with not as much in between. It showed signs they could they have a real great match in them, but made this felt a bit disjointed. Still a lot here to like, they mesh well with each other and did some creative stuff in the fake finishing sequence.
I have no notes about the tercera, but don’t remember it being all that much outside the injury.
Misterioso, subbing in lower then his usual position, looked that much better than everyone else. He’s pretty much wrestling the same match every time out, but he’s not screwing up things like Principe Diamante and Sangre Azteca in this. Sensei & Metálico had a rough third fall exchange for guys who work together all the time. The finish here made the técnicos look like chumps, as normal.
The opener was typically unmemorable. The rudos played a little stronger rudos than usual and Fantasy was a bit more fired up, maybe because he’s getting an actual feud. Stukita remains much better than he should be for his spot.
The Cueto Cup moved onto the second round, but it didn’t really move on in content. There were only three matches this week, but it remains purely on this the tournament. The tradeoff is having one less match meant everything got time; two matches went about ten minutes and they still had time left to let the main event angle fully play out.
The first two matches went as mostly expected. Jeremiah Crane defeated Taya in the opener, with a little interference from Sexy Star. Her appearance didn’t cause Taya to immediately lose, but things went downhill for her soon after and Crane moved on with a win. Sexy Star has not moved on from her tournament loss, waking Taya up here to knock her right back out with a brass kuncks aided punch. Crane has a fantastic chance of winning this if he can keep fighting people who have other issues. Unfortunately for him, the guy he faces next round has a big issue with him.
Mil Muertes showed absolutely no affect from Crane’s attack to him a couple weeks back. Paul London’s silliy antics and randomness didn’t affect him much either. Paul London spamming the superkick button did seem to work for a moment, and Mala Suerte running into a Mil Muertes punch did open the door for a London shooting star press. That only got two, a follow up SSP still got two, and Mil finished taking care of business soon after. Mil faces Crane in the quarterfinals.
The main event got a bit more serious. Beforehand, Aerostar and Fenix chatted for a moment, with Aerostar’s encouragement being meant by a well meaning wisecrack – “It’s not really fair to let a time traveler gamble!” Aerostar tried to diffuse any notion he actually traveled time, but that ability to see the future is making him a bit pessimistic about freeing Drago from the Reptile Tribe. The good news for Drago is Aerostar probably can’t see the future that welll, or he would’ve warned Fenix about his match with Marty.
Marty was putting himself in Melissa Santos personal space from the get go, bringing a lunch box and trying to force a sandwich in her mouth pre-match. Melissa escaped and cheered Fenix strongly during the match. Mariposa tried to pass the lunchbox to Marty late in it, but Melissa got involved for the first time to stop it. Fenix won soon after (don’t get distracted!) and will be in the quarterfinals against the winner of Cage & Pindar. Fenix might be still hurting when that match comes around: Marty smacked him with the lunchbox post match, pulled out a metal fork from inside, and repeatedly stabbed Fenix with it. LU stuck with this bit for a while, as Marty licked Fenix’s head and the fork for good measure. Mariposa forced Melissa to helplessly watch the entire attack. That ended the show, but this issue is clearly not over.
The announcers revealed next week will have three more second round matches: Cage versus Pindar, PJ Black versus Prince Puma and Dante Fox versus Son of Havoc. That leaves Pentagon versus Drago and the Mack versus Texano for two weeks from now. We saw a bit of the last man in a bar. Brenda showed up to flirt with Texano (when she wasn’t calling him boring), and a gleeful Famous B watched from afar. Maybe they’ll have made a deal by the time we see Texano next.
Everything felt good on this show and it was an enjoyable hour, even if nothing felt specifically great. If this is generally the pacing of show we’re going to get the next two weeks, it’s going to be a better round.
Still, the show being so totally on the Cueto Cup has caused so many other things to just disappear off the side. The two skits didn’t really advance anything, but just seemed to exist to remind you the Drago mindwashed slave plot and Famous B recruiting Texano plots are still active plots even if they haven’t been seen in a month. There’s stuff like Cage’s murder of Delgado and whatever happened to Matanza which have just not gotten the attention they needed. (Conversely, there was no Mundo/Rey bit this week and I didn’t even notice until I got to writing this.)
The opener felt disappointing, but only because I had heard it was a really noteworthy match and it was just a good match. It was more the story of the match, of Taya coming back after being squashed for the first couple minutes, that made it work even more than the moves. The crowd reacted to it a lot stronger than we were seeing on screen, so maybe it got lost in the editing a bit. That crowd reaction did help Taya come off as a big star, and also kind of turned her face in the process. Which made the Sexy Star thing come off more vindictive than it probably was meant to be – like, congrats for knocking out someone who was already semiconscious, great accomplishment.
London/Mil got there in the end, but it took a long bit of London playing his character and getting occasionally beat up to get to that point. The checklist seemed something like Mil being a monster, London being weird, and getting the one convincing near fall off a shooting star press, and they hit everything on the list, but it felt like it was wasting my time for a bit. Maybe if London doesn’t fool around for seven minutes and doesn’t seem to get his hope comeback with infinite superkick spot then the first shooting star press doesn’t have that feeling of a maybe shocking win, but I spend a fair chunk of this time wondering why it wasn’t going to the opener instead.
I had no such reservations about the main event. My perspective is colored by other events, but Fenix & Marty have surprisingly good chemistry for being very different wrestlers, and Marty doing the frustrated for not being able beat anyone bit everyone does actually works a lot better with the story they’re telling. I wasn’t looking for forks in my lucha libre, but they did get 100% out of this one, giving it time for Marty to make the attack count instead of rushing to something else, and even having the announcers quiet down when the visuals were all we needed. The distraction finishes are still coming too often, though they were self conscious enough in this set to make sure the finishes didn’t come exactly after, and this story needed Melissa to get involved for the first time to actually advance the story.