CMLL (FRI) 02/15/2019 Arena México [CMLL, ESTO, Heraldo de Mexico, Lucha Central, thecubsfan]
1) Cancerbero & Raziel b Pegasso & Stigma
13:53. Rudos took 1/3.
2) Black Panther, Blue Panther Jr., Guerrero Maya Jr. b Okumura, Tiger, Virus
15:39. Tecnicos took 2/3.
3) Esfinge, Titán, Tritón b Pólvora, Templario, Vangellys
13:24. OneAtos Style took 1/3.
4) Ángel de Oro, Soberano Jr., Stuka Jr. b Ephesto, La Bestia Del Ring, Mephisto
6:51. Straight falls, the last when Bestia fouled ANgel de Oro
5) Carístico, Místico, Valiente b Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Último Guerrero
12:21. Tecnicos took 2/3.
6) Terrible b Niebla Roja [CMLL Universal]
21:31. Terrible won the Universal tournament for the second time (tying Ultimo Guerrero) and is the first to have won it in straight falls. Bestia del Ring helped Terrible win both falls, grabbing Niebla Roja’s leg in the first to set up a Terrible German suplex and breaking up the reverse campana in the second to set up Terrible’s Styles Clash. Niebla Roja challenged Terrible to a hair match.
CMLL promos: Los Canceberos make their 1000th challenge for tag titles, OneAtos Style, Valiente, Mistico and Cairsitco challenges for trios titles, Terrible is not scared of any challenges, Niebla Roja wants revenge.
Back when this tournament started, I pointed out CMLL runs the Universal tournament for one of two purposes: to build up an apuesta feud in the near future or to give a win to a top wrestler who had not gotten it. No one saw Niebla Roja versus Terrible coming. It just wasn’t to give Niebla Roja that top guy victory either. The CMLL Universal tournament was held in February because CMLL needed a way to set up a hair match for March.
Last night’s in-ring promos left the fans with the message it would be Terrible versus Niebla Roja in a hair match. Homenaje a Dos Leyendas was never uttered as the time and place. It didn’t really need to be, anyone who pays attention to CMLL figured the timing immediately. The less clear part was the actual match they’re doing. Bestia del Ring got involved a lot in the main event and earlier with Angel de Oro. He also wandered off before the challenges could be raised, so it was a bit hard to be included with them. A 2v2 match still seems the ultimate destination and was brought up in backstage promos.
Should the match be changed to Angel de Oro & Niebla Roja versus Terrible & La Bestia del Ring, it would be the third different apuesta match Bestia del Ring has had in the last two years. A couple months back, Ultimo Guerrero was on Informa burying people (Fuego) who complain about not getting a chance, saying everyone gets the opportunities they’ve earned. It was obvious garbage then and it looks worse now. Fuego is way more over than La Bestia del Ring. Fuego has gotten zero apuesta matches and will be getting zero apuesta matches in CMLL. The only way in which La Bestia del Ring has earned the chances he’s getting is by siring some talented sons. It is not that much of a surprise that effort is down on a lot of CMLL shows when CMLL makes it this obvious that effort is not important.
CMLL announced they’ll have a press conference on Tuesday. It is hyped up more than usual, suggested it may not be just the Homenaje a Dos Leyendas information. Immediate speculation is on a deal with Televisa. That still seems unlikely to me.
The main event is not going to be remembered for the finish. Terrible picked up a bad habit of pulling Niebla Roja for a powerbomb and a Styles Clash by pulling down at the top of Niebla Roja’s trunks. Niebla Roja was left exposed on the finishing Styles Clash of the match. Terrible slowly spun around before dropping him, which mean about 3/4s of the crowd would’ve seen it. It was visible on the stream – except to whoever was directing the show since they showed a replay of it. CMLL delayed putting up their version of the show until they could replace the show with one from overhead and far away that did not expose Niebla Roja and Marca is using the finish of the first fall as their video of the ending. but the image is already everywhere. It is embarrassing for Niebla Roja and didn’t seem to be his fault, and it was potentially costly for CMLL if someone reported their YouTube stream for nudity; a strike could’ve prevented them from streaming for a while. (I realized I had the same potential issue; the stream from last night is now private>)
The show was forgettable outside of the main event. The semi-main was good, but it was very similar to many Sky Team/Guerreros matches of the past with no great effort to respond to it. The tecnicos talked about a trios title challenge in both promos; that’d be the second important match on H2L if it is not simple idle promo talk.
AAA is back on Twitch tonight from Morelia. The show is listed as starting at 8 pm CT, which meant 8:50-ish first match last week. For the first time outside of TripleMania, they’re streaming on both their normal channel in Spanish and in English on the alternate channel. Vampiro & Australian Suicide will be the Shakespeare English announcers. Do not complain to me about how bad they are, you know what you’re getting yourself into, complain to AAA if it is bad. Hopefully it will be funny bad.
In possibly related news, if you think you do a better job (or even just a different interesting job) of commentating on AAA’s Twitch shows, you can now do it. AAA’s allowing people to rebroadcast their live streams starting tonight. There’s a catch or two – you can’t save the broadcast, you need a computer, some software to this, you’re going to be literally talking over the AAA announcers unless you turn their sound off – but it is there if you want to do this.
This card does not look as high match quality as last weekend’s show. AAA has more people on the show, which is not always a good thing. It means that every match has to be a trios match to fit everyone in, following a weekend where the best matches were not trios matches. It also includes people who were not around last weekend who won’t exactly be helping things.
The main event may include someone who may not be around going forward. Jeff Jarrett reportedly took a job with WWE last month, which would seem to mean his days of stalling his way thru AAA main events has come to an end. It is still surprising to me that Jarrett is even working this show, but Jarrett has said he’s on his way to Morelia. Jarrett’s scheduled to team with Rey Escorpion & Texano against Dr. Wagner, Pagano, and Psycho Clown in the main event. WWE rules may prevent Jarrett from taking the pinfall loss in the main event, but Jarrett’s whole deal in AAA was never taking pins
There is better hope in the semi-main, with Poder del Norte against Drago, Hijo del Vikingo and Laredo Kid. There was the setup to a Poder del Norte trios title challenge on the Mexico City taping weeks ago that hasn’t been followed up on. Konnan & Vampiro just saw that match again this week, so maybe it’ll be fresh in AAA’s minds to get going on it again. We’re never so lucky for AAA to forget the Maximo/La Mascara feud. Mamba, Pimpi, Chessman and Taurus surround that mess.
The tercera has Aerostar, Myzteziz and Taya against Faby Apache, Jack Evans and Sammy Guevera scheduled. Hijo del Tirantes will definitely be the referee for any Faby/Taya match but this is where we might see a change. Sammy Guevera is on his way to Morelia., but the promo he did for missing last week’s show suggested he would be making up missed cruiserweight title defense on this show. It is not clear what that match would be; it’d require a lot of changes and either a multi-man match or an extra match. Extra matches may now be something AAA needs anyway with how Lucha Azteca aired.
The second match continues the Lady Maravilla/Nino Hamburguesa drama. Starfire & Keyra are also back in a match with Lady Shani involved and have title match requests pending. Villano III Jr. rounds out the match, will someday get his own plot. Latigo & Dragon Bane make their first AAA appearances of the year in what looks to be a sort of minis match. Dinastia & Parkita team with Bane while Latigo, Mini Monster Clown and Mini Murder Clown are the rudos.
Lucha Azteca AAA debuted yesterday. The most you can say about it is it was a wrestling show that aired on TV. It was fine, they didn’t reinvent the wheel, they didn’t really need to. The presentation was essentially the same as Space/YouTube broadcasts with a different graphics package. They cut down some of the entrances (where AAA has been overdubbing the entrance music with generic songs which won’t give them rights issues), and they may have edited some of the matches. They also edited down some of the in-ring but doing it while adding clips for context to make it play more like a video package. They went commercial free for the first half hour and made up with a lot of advertising breaks in the second hour. Konnan and Vampiro were just about as quality as they were during Lucha Capital, though they were playing tecnico/rudo roles a bit harder (and that appears to be why there were two wrestlers.) The Azteca announcers were very convincing in their roles of needing everything to be explained to them, so Konnan & Vampiro were in the role of introducing each luchador as they first appeared. Konnan was a lot better at it; it’d be funny on occasion when he’d go first and then Vampiro would just repeat the same points when he could think nothing to say. They argued a little bit though it never went more than a few seconds or derailed the show. The comments on saw on Twitter about the show were negative on the announcing, which was not a surprise: the diehard AAA fans want the Televisa guys and the Azteca ones dug themselves a giant hole with their WWE announced that they can never escape. Television and lucha libre companites are largely dismissive of fan opinion of wrestling commentators, which is why I’ll be smashing my head into a wall listening to Vampiro & Suicide tonight.
Azteca aired everything from the Mexico City show except for the Dave the Clown vs Parka Negra vs Killer Kross match. That seemed to be the right match to skip. Knowing everything was going to air, Lider vs Texano vs Cage vs Pagano was an odd pick to get people hooked from the start, but AAA feels like Pagano is one of their bigger stars. They didn’t have much in the way of new content. The Hijo del Tirantes vignette (over confusion with Faby Apache) shown this past weekend on Twitch was moved up to air on this show, likely for the benefit of trying to explain that dynamic to new viewers. The Yo Soy video features which have been airing on Space last year also seem to be airing, starting over with Psycho Clown, which is another play to new viewers. Otherwise, it was basically the same thing you saw on Twitch cut down a little bit.
Azteca should be airing the Ciudad Madero show next week. Space should also be finishing up with that taping next week. Azteca will be ahead of Space by a day, and then increasingly ahead as time goes on as the top priority show. Going two hours on AAA and showing almost all the matches should mean AAA is committing to running an average of one taping per week or running more matches per show. AAA ran 32 tapings (a couple of which were streaming only) in 2018, and 28 in 2017. They’d need to get up 44 this year to cover every week remaining, which seems unlikely. What seems likely is no one’s concerned about far ahead with AAA or Azteca and they’ll end up with a repeat show or two like Elite did.
MexaWrestling announced the mystery women for their initial title match on the 02/23 New Idols show in addition to Sexy Dulce and Diosa Quetzal. They are Reyna Oscura, Lilith Dark and Black Fury, who are all regulars around the Mexico City area. Oscura and Dark are scheduled to be on the Arena San Juan show today, though participation there is up in the air.
Casandro is speaking and being honored in New Orleans this week