I keep thinking I’m really far behind and I guess I’m not? I could’ve taken time to watch indie matches but I figured it was better to get this up. TripleMania is next in the list, but there’s no reason in holding this up until I get that written up.
Euforia & Gran Guerrero was a fun little treat. Gran Guerrero wasn’t quite as good with Dragon Lee but it was a good week for him.
I’m writing this after seeing and writing about the Volador/Dragon Lee match. It’s not going to be a nice review. I’m not going to write about Rush/Volador unless I get to praise it, there’s no real point.
CMLL’s luchadora tournament – officially the Universal de Amazonas del CMLL Championship – continues on for a very predictable block. Dalys has been on the winning side of every CMLL Arena Mexico she’s had since May. Dalys isn’t the CMLL Women’s Champion but generally booked like she’s still the best woman in the division. No one else in this block has held a CMLL championship or won a major apuesta match; there are some REINA championship reigns when CMLL was still actively using those championships, but that’s about it. The expectation from the start of this tournament is Dalys would win her block, win the final, and then likely beat Marcela to win back the CMLL Women’s Championship. (That’d be perfectly fine if people were into Dalys.) Dalys losing here would be one of the bigger shocks of the year.
The heavyweight championship also has the creeping feeling of inevitably. Ciber versus Ultimo Guerrero tonight seems like a preview of those same two in the main event the Anniversary show 5 or 6 weeks from now. There are just no other options, so it’s that match or something completely out of nowhere. I’m very ready for something out of nowhere; the last singles match wasn’t good, the trios matches in between haven’t been good and it doesn’t seem like the CMLL crowd (who may have turned over since when Ciber was a top AAA wrestler) care about this as much as the people involved or the people booking it. CMLL has programmed Ciber and the CL4N strongly since coming to CMLL, with a short trios title reign last year. It seems like a coin flip if CMLL will do it again with Ciber winning the heavyweight championship. It’s the thing CMLL would normally do to build up this match, but I’m not sure this match could be built up. My gut feeling is Ciber wins thru dubious means, UG makes the hair match challenge for the Aniversario, and there’s a press conference next week to make it official.
The rest of the show seems fine though nothing stands out as certainly good. Volador & Dragon Lee go from facing each other on Monday to teaming on Friday. Diamante Azul, who did not look ready to return on Monday, is back in the main event. They face the odd combo of Gran Guerrero, Euforia and Forastero. The other NGD members team with Negro Casas against Angel de Oro, Niebla Roja, and Valiente. Dulce Gardenia returns to Friday nights in a trio with Atlantis Jr. & Titan against Ephesto, Okumura, and Mephisto, who seems everywhere right now. Sangre Azteca & Nitro take on Oro Jr. & Magnus, who has promised to be the craziest luchador ever. It’ll be tough to pull off working with those two stationary vets.
The show streams on Marca and on YouTube. I’ll stream it on YouTube as well.
ELITE has been running AAA vs ELITE shows the last month that are advertised as being recorded for television. The television turns out to be AAA’s YouTube channel; the first show went up last night. This was the from July 8th; there are results here. It does seem like it may have been produced for TV, with the Argos match apparently cut for time. (The description for the video has it listing as airing anyway, and doesn’t read like as written the usual social media team.) ELITE tapes TV (?) today in Zumpango and Sunday in Monterrey, so maybe show airing on YouTube was a bit of promotion or maybe those will go up too.
I’m not really following whatever’s going on in Monterrey now with luchadors being blocked from working different promotions, but Fresero Jr. & Sexy Dulce are still working the Kaoz show Sunday. I think this is over those wrestlers working Nacion Lucha Libre, but I also think these promotions put more drama into turf battles than on their shows.
CMLL (MON) 08/12/2019Arena Puebla
1) Asturiano & Retro vs Black Tiger & Policeman
2) Halcón Suriano Jr. & Tigre Rojo Jr. vs El Malayo & El Perverso
3) La Vaquerita, Marcela, Mystique vs Amapola, Dalys, La Comandante
4) Dulce Gardenia, Fuego, Stigma vs Olímpico, Pólvora, Universo 2000 Jr.
5) Cuatrero, Forastero, Místico, Sansón vs Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Soberano Jr., Último Guerrero [Relevos Increíbles]
6) Carístico vs Rush
That atomicos is slightly different than the one they did in Arena Mexico, but it looks as promising.
CMLL (TUE) 08/13/2019Arena México
1) Metatrón & Sonic vs Espanto Jr. & Grako
2) Fuego, Pegasso, Stigma vs Hijo del Signo, Nitro, Sangre Azteca
3) Marcela vs Reyna Isis [lightning]
4) Audaz, Black Panther, Blue Panther Jr. vs Disturbio, Hechicero, Misterioso Jr.
5) Atlantis, Blue Panther, Kráneo vs Felino, Hijo del Villano III, Negro Casas
6) La Bestia Del Ring, Rush, Terrible vs Carístico, Soberano Jr., Stuka Jr.
No feud here at all. maybe the fourth match is the good match? Maybe Hijo del Villano III is way too young to be in that match.
CMLL (TUE) 08/13/2019Arena Coliseo Guadalajara
1) Black Sugar, Fantástico, Rielero vs Carlo Roggi, Mr. Apolo, Paymon
2) Drone, Principe Daniel, Súper Astro Jr. vs Demonio Maya, Tiger, Virus
3) Flyer, Guerrero Maya Jr., Volcano vs Okumura, Rey Bucanero, Vangellys
4) Dragón Lee, Valiente, Volador Jr. vs Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Templario
5) Místico vs Cavernario
Mistico/Cavernario is usually pretty fun.
RIOT (FRI) 08/23/2019Arena Femenil, Monterrey, Nuevo León
1) Fresero Jr. & Mr. Iguana vs Kaientai & Lord Byron
2) Bryan Villa & Willy Banderas vs Kratoz & Prometo
3) Madness vs Iron Kid (Estado de México) [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
4) Erick Ortiz vs Fuego Del Sol [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
5) Dralion vs Tony Rodríguez (Jalisco) [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
6) Douki vs Belial [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
7) Aramis (Estado de México) vs Látigo [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
8) Arez vs Demonio del Aire [RIOT CHAMP, quarterfinal]
RIOT (SAT) 08/24/2019Arena Femenil, Monterrey, Nuevo León
1) Ayako Hamada vs Chik Tormenta
2) ? vs ??, ??? [RIOT CHAMP, semifinal]
3) ? vs ??, ??? [RIOT CHAMP, semifinal]
4) ? vs ?? [RIOT CHAMP, final]
I guess I never posted the full cards? First night is mostly the tournament matches, though we don’t know who faces who until they show up on night two. People who are eliminated will be in other matches on Saturday. Aramis/Latigo sounds like a possible excellent match and Douki & Belial stands out to me too. This should be a fun couple of shows.
(alternate title: “One Lucha Libre AAA ticket, never used.”)
Let’s go over what we know:
AAA sold few tickets to the New York & Los Angeles shows, so few that they turned off the ability to see a seat map so no fan could see a visual representation of unsold tickets in one space. (Though the ticket selection screen still shows no many more tickets have moved.)
one source told me the MSG show had sold much less than 1,000 tickets as of mid-July.
No matches have been announced for either show.
AAA had been posting canned Tweets regularly (and probably automatically) to hype these shows. Those have vanished.
AAA hasn’t tweeted the word “MSG” since June 26th.
I’ve been waving “AAA’s shows look concerning” red flags. AAA’s usually helpful in telling me when I’m way off base. No one’s gotten back to me to say I’m wrong.
None of this is definite proof the shows are canceled. The tickets for New York and Los Angeles remain on-sale as of late Thursday and there were still ads playing for it in the Forum last night. The evidence showing they’re not running theses is getting overwhelming though. We’re waiting for someone on the AAA show to be announced as working somewhere else on September 15 or for AAA to say something. That may still take a while. The social media mentions being dropped in June suggest someone knew to stop pushing it a while ago and yet nothing’s been said. You shouldn’t wait for them to finally change say it to make other plans.
I got a pretty decent ticket: Sec 117, Row 14, Seat 11 in New York City. I don’t think I’m using it. I’m definitely sure I’m not buying a plane ticket and a hotel room for a show that doesn’t seem to exist. More importantly, I don’t want you – a person with an interest enough in lucha libre to be reading this – to have bought tickets to these shows to spend more money on them that you’ll have trouble getting back. I have no doubt the ticket money will be coming back. AAA’s been trustworthy on that in the past. I can’t vouch for airlines or hotel companies or whatever else. I’m sure you can find other things to do in New York if you’ve got no alternative, but I’d like you to have the option to do something else with your time and money.
(LA people: these shows are being fronted by the same investors. Tickets didn’t move much better for LA. If the NY show goes down, they’re not going to run a standalone show in Los Angeles a month later.)
There’s a lot more to say about why these shows didn’t work. I’d like to wait until they get officially canceled to talk about it, but I suspect all the responses to this will be people diagnosing the problem. I think the overarching problem is AAA beliving in taking giant swings and nothing else, and they’re not getting slow pitch machines in the US. There are smaller steps they need to take first – and everyone’s going to list them now – but they seem unwilling to take that approach. It’s a shame because TripleMania seemed to prove there would be a market for a well promoted and positioned AAA show in the US. These plans were not it, but that doesn’t mean AAA should give up. Just don’t start with the level 99 boss of MSG, start a little bit smaller and smarter.