CMLL (TUE) 05/02/2023 Arena México [CMLL]
1) Fantasy, Shockercito, Último Dragóncito b Pequeño Olímpico, Pequeño Polvora, Pequeño Violencia
2) Oro Jr. & Sangre Imperial b Dr. Karonte I & Dr. Karonte II
3) Amapola, Hera, Olympia b La Magnifica, La Vaquerita, Sanely
Amapola replaced Zeuxis earlier in the day.
4) Fuego b Felino Jr. [lightning]
5) El Audaz, Panterita del Ring, Volcano b Felino, Hijo del Villano III, Rey Bucanero
6) Titán, Valiente, Volador Jr. b Mephisto, Niebla Roja, Último Guerrero
Mephisto wore a special 35th-anniversary mask.
Nothing much here. The Dr. Karontes are the worst male wrestlers on the CMLL roster. Sangre Imperial and Oro Jr. aren’t highly rated and they were much better in that match
CMLL (TUE) 05/02/2023 Arena Coliseo Guadalajara
1) Astro Oriental, Eclipse Jr., Mágico b Black Boy, Mortis, Ponzoña Jr.
2) Atilus, Maximus, Minotauro b Gran Kenut, Jabalí, Mr. Trueno
3) Barboza, Draego, Persa b Carlo Roggi, Destello, Destructor
4) Ángel Negro (Laguna), Brillante Jr., Hijo de Stuka Jr., Stuka Jr. b Ángel Rebelde, Halcón Negro Jr., Optimus, Trono
debut of Angel Negro here
5) Magia Blanca, Magnus, Rugido b Arlequín, Furia Roja, Guerrero de la Muerte
6) Euforia, Hijo del Soberano, Soberano Jr. b Blue Panther, Cachorro, Dark Panther
Also nothing much here. I couldn’t even figure out what the challenges were about (the Occidente tag titles?) because the announcers were sort of talking over them.
CMLL (SAT) 05/06/2023 Arena Coliseo
1) Acero, Angelito, Pequeño Magía vs Mercurio, Pequeño Violencia, Pierrothito
2) Enfermero Jr. vs Raider [lightning]
3) Maligna & Skadi vs Amapola & Tiffany [lightning]
4) Difunto, Kráneo, Zandokan Jr. vs El Coyote, Okumura, Pólvora
5) Guerrero Maya Jr., Soberano Jr., Star Black vs Ángel de Oro, Dragón Rojo Jr., Niebla Roja
6) Volador Jr. vs Euforia
The singles match was set up last week.
CMLL (SUN) 05/07/2023 Arena México
1) Retro vs Cachorro [lightning]
2) La Guerrera & La Magnifica vs Hera & Tiffany
3) Diamond, Flyer, Sangre Imperial vs Grako, Inquisidor, Nitro
4) Pegasso, Rey Samuray, Stigma vs Futuro, Max Star, Vegas
5) Blue Panther, Panterita del Ring, Valiente vs Euforia, Hechicero, Mephisto
6) Gran Guerrero, Stuka Jr., Volador Jr. vs Bárbaro Cavernario, Titán, Yota [Relevos Increíbles]
Yota may not be making that booking. Earlier this morning, Yota Tsuji returned to NJPW, took out wrestlers, and issued a challenge for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship. He also appears to be joining LIJ. It would be very funny if he came back to Mexico to team with fellow LIJ member Titan but usually this means the wrestler is done in CMLL.
The 2v2 tag matches are becoming a regular feature.
Informa has Averno (facing Soberano), Dragon Rojo (Universal), Volcano (Kid’s Day), Hijo del Villano III (Copa Junior), Polvora/Okumura/Coyote (maybe they have a team name?), Dark Soul, Hijo de Centella Roja, Multy, Espiritu Maligno (random Puebla guys???)
Box y Lucha 3549 has Dragon Rojo’s big win on the cover.
Titan’s BOSJ schedule:
- 05/12 (match 8 of 10) vs TJP
- 05/13 (7) vs Taiji Ishimori
- 05/14 (6) vs KUSHIDA
- 05/16 (2) vs Ryusuke Taguchi
- 05/17 (7) vs Mike Bailey
- 05/18 (7) vs Lio Rush
- 05/19 (4) vs SHO
- 05/21 (1) vs DOUKI
- 05/23 (TBD) vs Hiromu Takahashi
- 05/24 – non-tournemnt match
This year’s tournament is the top 2 from each block advancing to a semi-final. It’s unlikely Titan will be among the top 2, but his last group being against Hiromu Takahashi suggests he’ll have an important final night. (If you want to dream, dream about Titan getting a win to knock Takahashi out of the semifinals, and then Takahashi coming to Mexico to defend the IWGP Junior Heavyweight championship sometime this summer.)
The Business of the Business podcast had Dorian Roldan as a guest this week. They covered a lot in about an hour. The really solid piece of new info is Verano de Escandalo will take place in Aguascalientes ‘one week’ after TripleMania Tijuana. That’s just a few weeks before Mexico City, so it will be a very busy stretch of AAA.
Roldan talked a lot about LuchaTitlan. He expects it to be immediately successful; they’re figuring on strong turnouts as tourism picks up. The pieces on LuchaTitlan this weekend better explained a part of the business concept to me: malls are struggling post-pandemic, the idea is to change some of the retail space over to entertainment options to motivate people to visit, and a nightly wrestling show fits that bill. Luchatitlan also fills a gap in the market. There are lot of tourist activities in Cancun, but few of them are open at night and even fewer of them are child friendly. Luchatitlan can be both. Roldan repeats the comments from other investors this weekend about wanting to open Luchatitlan in more cities. Cozumel would be the next spot, based on the many cruise ships visiting there. Cabo San Lucas would be third. After that, the ideal scenario would be putting a franchise in the US – Roldan throws out Phoenix or Chicago as possibilities. Roldan notes this is a way for AAA to market themselves that WWE couldn’t do.
(I’ve got mixed feelings about this – it seems a reduction of the art of lucha libre to turn into a nightly Medieval Times-like show. It also seems to be employing 20 wrestlers in Cancun. Opening more of them would give steady work to a bunch of people who might not otherwise fine it.)
There’s a lot of talk about AAA and the US. Roldan, as he has in another recent interview, acknowledged AAA’s attempts in the US has not worked out as they’ve hoped so far. He said the AAA show in Phoenix last December was successful in terms of attendance and reception but not economically. Roldan confirmed there were plans with Conrad Thompson to run an AAA show in Los Angeles during WrestleMania weekend and said AAA was responsible for it not coming together. Their focus was getting Luchatitlan up and running (and it opened during that same weekend.) They were also colder on running the US after the Phoenix show didn’t work out. Roldan mentioned AAA was trying to get Hijo del Vikingo vs Will Ospreay on that Los Angeles show, also noting ‘it wasn’t possible.’ I don’t think NJPW would’ve allowed to that happen (and maybe that’s what Roldan meant) but Ospreay ended up missing all of that weekend due to injury so it was never destined to be.
Roldan believes AAA next push in the US needs to come with an event promoter who’s knowledgable and successful at promoting to the Mexican audience. He believes only a few fit, and they’re talking with them to see if they can form a partnership. Roldan would also to see AAA get a US media presence, AAA isn’t big enough to get real money, but AAA is too big to settle for a small deal just to be on TV. Yet, they can’t get a bigger deal with already having a bigger imprint in the US, and they’re stuck in a cycle. Roldan mentions AAA was in discussions for almost a year and a half with Univision, but “we were not able to close a deal with them.” He suggested pretty much any idea you can think of as a possibility: a docu-series, working with a OTT company (think Netflix), setting up a FAST network (like the one they have with Pluto), or going back to live-streaming with YouTube or Twitch. Don’t get your hopes up for any of it, they’re all just in the idea stage. Roldan says AAA’s focused on Luchatitlan the first half of the year and hopes to focus on US ideas the second half of the year.
In more general bits, Roldan mentioned a goal of TripleMania is trying to appeal to as many different segments as possible. The Omega/Vikingo specifically exists to reach out to US fans. AAA is reaching out to a couple of influencers to bring them in on a TripleMania to bring in a different audience. (Adrian Marcelo specifically didn’t work out, but they will keep trying.) Marvel Lucha Libre also is something that AAA will keep trying: Roldan says they’re talking to Disney about running Marvel Lucha Libre-specific shows at mall venues – he references the mall show AAA ran last year; so think of the TV tapings in Puebla.
In light of WWE, Roldan was asked if AAA would ever consider a sale. He said they’re a business so they would consider any deal that would be good for the business – a sale, an investment, a partnership, whatever if it made sense. He points out everyone assumed WWE was going to be sold and it ended up being part of a merger, as if to say not to put limits on what could happen.
In non-podcast news, remember the AAA/FMV lawsuit? Well, don’t. Court records show the plaintiff (other investors in the Lucha Underground projected) dismissed the case back on April 13th. That points to some sort of out-of-court settlement. AAA’s been operating as if the lawsuit didn’t affect them for quite some time, resuming airing their content in the US. It may have taken some time to get it all done on paper.
AAA is posting some of what’s normally the extra content on the TV shows as social media videos. In one, Komander and Vikingo talk about their TripleMania Monterrey match and suggest having a singles match in Mexico. In another, Antifaz del Norte vows to keep the feud with Laredo Kid going.
Laredo Kid wrestles Thursday on Impact’s Before the Impact. That streams on their YouTube channel.
IWRG (THU) 05/04/2023 Arena Naucalpan
1) Baby Star vs Ei Bi Ci
2) Gannicus & John Tito vs Mr. Mike & Rey Halcón
3) Asterboy & Puma de Oro vs León Dorado & Mr. Leo and Cerebro Negro & Cerebro Negro Jr.
4) Hijo del Pirata Morgan, Lolita, Super Mario AK47 vs Miss Kath, Nishikawa, Nosaki
5) Hell Boy © vs Gianna Valetta [IWRG MEXICO]
Hell Boy as Canek, protector of Mexico against all foreigners, continues. That’s a weird collection of people in the semi-main.
NOAH on 05/04 (early Thursday morning) has
- Hijo de Dr. Wagner Jr. vs Hideki Suzuki for the GHC National Championship
- Dralistico vs Rey Escorpion
- Yoshinari Ogawa & Chris Ridgeway vs Daga & EITA
- Sean Legacy, Stallion Rogers, Dragon Bane, Alpha Wolf vs Jack Morris, Anthony Green, Yo-HEY, Tadasuke
- Atsushi Kotoge & Seiki Yoshioka vs Extreme Tiger & Lanzelot
- Mohammed Yone & Super Crazy vs Akitoshi Saito & Daishi Ozawa
This show streams on the Wrestle-Universe service.
GCW announced Hijo del Vikingo vs Ninja Mack for their 06/04 show in Atlantic City.
A story about the state of lucha libre Morelos recovering from COVID.