Last night, I wrote that it was a doubleheader of streaming lucha libre shows last night. It’s really a little bit more than two shows on a busy Friday night.
The first show to kickoff is the usual CMLL show in Arena
Puebla Mexico. It’s the second block of a tournament show, which are usually a bit of a struggle. Many times, the winner seems pretty obvious and the drama isn’t there. At least Block A finished strong, to give some hope for good matches out of this block. The hope for the winner isn’t strong. CMLL treats the Universal title like they treat all their titles: either there is a short term idea for a feud, or they’re just giving a top star who doesn’t have anything so they can feel good about it. It’s rarely about someone being the top guy, it’s about spreading the wealth around. In CMLL’s hierarchy, Ultimo Guerrero & Volador are treated as the top guys – UG even called that out this week, noting he’d like to face Voldaor but it really should’ve been in the finals of this tournament – so they would be the favorites to win if this was a tournament to determine the best wrestler. It is a tournament to decide either a Homenaje a Dos Leyendas main event or to reward someone who hasn’t yet won this title. Diamante Azul is the biggest CMLL star who is in this tournament and hasn’t won it, Terrible is the guy Diamante Azul faces all the time in singles matches, that’s a really obvious answer to tonight’s winner. You can make a case for Volador or UG, but only if you want to argue CMLL is interested in one of them facing Terrible in a hair match in a month or so. And there’s been no hint of that.
Volador, Niebla Roja, Diamante Azul, Soberano, Ultimo Guerrero, Sanson, Mephisto, and Cuatrero make up the full field, and there are some interesting matches to be had if things line up. I’d still be surprised if the outcome was anything other than a Diamante Azul win.
The semi-main has Caristico, Angel de Oro and Valiente taking on the heavyweight trio of Gilbert, La Bestia del Ring, and Rush. Gilbert hasn’t had any defined role in his CMLL appearances so far and hasn’t looked great. He seems like a guy who could be good for one big apuesta match in Arena Mexico, but they haven’t had mix up a lot with Ultimo Guerrero, the guy he was teased to face on his way into the promotion. Rush heads off for his first weekend as part of the Ring of Honor roster after this match.
The Villanos/Atlantis feud continues in the tercera, with Mistico & Gran Guerrero along for what might be the best trios match. Villano IV continues to loom as a possibility for H2L, though he only looms – there’s been no great progress since his return and no one’s really brought up the possibility of a mask/mask match in-ring. Drone, Rey Cometa, and Black Panther face Kawato, Misterioso, and Universo in a match legally required to include one Rey Cometa diving off the apron headscissors. Principe Diamante hasn’t been around all that much – this is his first Friday night since November – but he and Robin are stuck facing Metalico and Nitro. Don’t expect much.
Dragon Rojo is undergoing a knee operation today. There’s no mention of which knee or how long he’ll be out. Dragon Rojo has had numerous physical issues the last few years and missed his last couple of matches.
The NWA announced there will be a CMLL team at the 04/27 Crocket Cup, their tag team tournament. The exact team is to be announced.
AAA has a two show weekend, starting tonight in Mazatlan. There are good matches on both shows this weekend, though the focus will likely be on out of the ring. These are the first shows with TV Azteca on board. Nothing is supposed to change except the production team, but it seems fair to wonder until it happens. Commentary on Elite (and WWE) seemed to be done in studio voices after the shows so I don’t know if we’ll even see much of a visual difference.
The Mazatlan show has a couple matches that jump out as being interesting. Sammy Guevera makes his first televised defense of the cruiserweight championship against Flamita (who hasn’t been here since Heroes Inmortales) and Hijo del Vikingo. It’s a match with the potential for a lot of craziness if they can work together. Vikingo struggled a bit in singles match this time last year, then showed improvement during Lucha Capital. Sammy showing up in AEW with the AAA cruiserweight belt seemed like a tease for later on, and a reason he might stay champion, but Vikingo getting the shock win is possible given his current momentum.
Jack Evans versus Drago jumps out too because Jack Evans singles matches in AAA are uncommon: the last one he had in AAA was 2012. AAA seems behind Drago with his recent title win and defense and maybe aren’t thrilled with Evans after missing the last taping. Evans winning to set up a title match seems unlikely, but it still should be fun.
Aerostar, Maximo, and Taya against Faby, Monsther, and Taurus should also be fun. AAA Maximo is perfectly fine when far away from La Mascara. Dinastia, Lady Shani and Nino Hamburguesa versus Lady Maravilla, Lanzelot, and Villano III Jr. should be the same.
The top matches in AAA, as always, look the most questionable. The Wagner/Demon feud trudges on, with Laredo Kid, Puma King, La Mascara and working man’s hero Hijo del Fantasma rounding out the match. The main event continues the greatest non-storyline going on AAA right now, Rey Escorpion trying to build up an apuesta match with Psycho Clown without AAA being involved. La Parka & Killer Kross are also there. This does not appear to be the show where AAA finally comes up with a compelling plan with a beginning and end for Killer Kross, which makes it about 18 TV tapings in a row. If you decide to call it a night before the final two matches, it may not be a bad call.
There’s really not much evident storyline material on this show at all beyond the Demon/Wagner stuff – no one’s bothered to come up with a reason for Flamita & Vikingo to get a title shot (or even have them cut promos to build it up) – but that’s probably for the best with AAA.
AAA is scheduled to start at 9 pm CT on Twitch, but that means around 9:35 at the usual pace. If things continue as they’ve been with AAA’s YouTube, this show would start showing up there around March 9th. If I had brought back the show rating bit from earlier this week, this is definitely the better of two streams on match quality (a 3 or a 3.5 to CMLL 2), though CMLL’s show is more relevant because of the Universal tournament (3 to a no one cares about AAA titles 2)
Oscar Navarro, the AAA’s promoter in Aguascalientes, was murdered Wednesday. He drove home that night and was shot eight times after getting out of his car. There’s a news article on the murder that includes security camera footage. Aguascalientes was the busiest TV destination for AAA last year, with three TV tapings during the year.
Can I interest you in a third option? Over on Impact (and their Twitch) at 9 pm CT, they’ll have a rematch of the PPV match between LAX and the Lucha Brothers. Also, Puma King will wrestle Sami Callihan as lead-up to the AAA/Impact match coming up next week.
Can I interest you in a fourth option? The Impact show is taped (Puma is not a magical cat who can be on two shows at once), so a reason the Lucha Brothers are not on the AAA taping is that they’re in Austin for AAW against AR Fox & Myron Reed. Tickets are still out there, and the show is streaming on the Highspots network.
The Young Bucks teased another surprise appearance somewhere to get revenge on Fenix & Pentagon for attacking them. The boldest thing is saying they know the Lucha Brothers schedule since no one can seem to keep track of it. It’s always the Bucks could pop into an AAA show as a surprise, though it’d be a long trip just to do an unannounced run-in. Penta & Fenix are in PWG next month, which would be the easiest way to accomplish an angle. I’m sure Impact would bend over backwards to have the Bucks show up there to confront the Lucha Brothers (like most any indie), and it could even be something they plan on stretching out to WrestleMania weekend.
Speaking of WrestleMania weekend, MLW has turned the future of the Lucha Brothers in MLW into an angle, with an announcement teased on tonight’s show. Pentagon Jr. versus LA Park is scheduled to be a main event on one of the two MLW shows that weekend and there’s no sign of a replacement. I think MLW wouldn’t be building around an announcement if the announcement was them leaving the promotion. Nothing appears to have changed on paper with Fenix & Penta’s status in the last week: AEW is just another acronym added to the list of places they’re working, but they’re still bound to LU and still unable to sign an exclusive deal with anyone else until that’s settled. (They’re still taking bookings; AIW announced them for May last night.) It was surprising for MLW to write them out and maybe that was all intended to be a strange angle from the start.
Lola Gonzalez, Rocio Urbina, Sergio el Hermoso, El Cobrade, Fishman and Chino Chow will be added to the Ciudad Juarez lucha libre hall of fame on 02/22.
Segunda Caida reviews some CMLL from the last few months.
El Hijo del Santo write about his first match as Korak.
Criterio Hidalgo has an interview with Medics I & III. They turn out to be father and son.
CMLL (TUE) 02/12/2019 Arena México
1) Fantasy & Shockercito vs Pequeño Nitro & Pequeño Olímpico
2) Astral, Eléctrico, Star Jr. vs Difunto, Disturbio, Espanto Jr.
3) Kaho Kobayashi, La Jarochita, Marcela vs Amapola, Dalys, Metálica
4) Flyer vs Pólvora [lightning]
5) Blue Panther, Diamante Azul, Esfinge vs Cavernario, Felino, Luciferno
6) Atlantis, Atlantis Jr., Volador Jr. vs Cuatrero, Forastero, Sansón
Difunto looks to be around all week. I’m not sure it means he’s full time; Black Metal and Barbaro Cavernario were once around for a few days as a tryout before being sent back to Guadalajara. Palacio Negro & Metal Blanco had a similar short preview stint before they came in full time. It still says they’re pretty high on Difunto to keep him busy when he’s in Mexico City. I’d guess we might find more on Informa on Wednesday.
I hope Atlantis Jr. is a nice guy to be around because the other luchadors are surely going to be not thrilled with him jumping the line to the main events and he shouldn’t give them any more reason to dislike him. It’s probably the right move but I can’t imagine it’s a popular one. This is a Mistico level push without him quietly working openers for years beforehand.