check out those positive vibes!
CMLL unexpectedly announced this year’s Anniversary show is Friday, September 2nd. That’s both weeks sooner than anyone had expected it, and not that many weeks away. CMLL has only five Friday nights events, including tonight’s show, before their biggest show of the year.
They also have no match on the level of the Atlantis/Ultimo Guerrero/Volador/Sombra matches from the last three years. It was always going to be tough to follow those with anything, but the effort and the results aren’t close this year. La Mascara will likely be involved, but CMLL’s being meandering in it’s focus on a rivalry, and either Dragon Lee or Rush (or both if Shocker teams with La Mascara) might be the opponent. None of the feuds are particularly compelling; CMLL’s given La Mascara wins, but he hasn’t had an impressing outing, and just feels like a lesser version of rudo Sombra without the quality of wrestling or force of personality.
CMLL’s preview mentions that feud as one of several possibilities. Volador & Ultimo Guerrero are mentioned, and are facing off in the main event tonight, but it seems unlikely they’d be rushed to an Anniversary match after not really feuding much prior. (It does seem a better draw than Rush/Mascara.) The Dragon Rojo/Guerrero Maya feud, that’s mostly been pushed on Informa and dropped in booking, is brought up. Also mentioned is the Rey Bucanero/Super Crazy match, and that actually does seem fairly likely given the timing, but it’d mean nothing as a main event match and would have to be a secondary apuesta match on the show. CMLL mentioning many different rivalries also leaves open the possibility of a cage match, which is what CMLL held last time they ran the Anniversary show this early in September (on the 3rd, back in 2010.) That cage match saw well liked (and recently returned) company solider Olimpico lose his mask; CMLL could do something similar with Pierroth this time along, but maybe I’ve gotten too cynical.
The 2010 show is one of the reasons I have a bad feeling about all of this. That was a cage match for lack of idea, coasting off the end of the last major boom. Announcing the Anniversary show 5 weeks ahead of time suggest CMLL doesn’t have many big plans for this one either. The advantage to running a big show early in September is so CMLL can come back with a second big show later in the month; back in 2010, they ran Volador/Mistico as a tournament final on the 17th. I’d suspect the same is going to happen, you might see something just as good (but a lot cheaper) if you go to show on the 16th or 23rd. The only other known Anniversary show on September 2nd was the 1966. They did two hair matches on that show, and brought the winners back for another hair match on the 30th. There’s almost certainly going to be another big show in CMLL later in September, but we might not know the date until 6 days before.
The September 2nd date makes it less likely wrestling fanatic foreigners will be going to the show. If you’re the type to travel to watch wrestling, you’ve likely already made plans to go to the Battle of Los Angeles or King of Trios. Conversely, if you were free and wanted to attend both major Mexico shows, you could go to Mexico and see both TripleMania & the CMLL Anniversary show in a week’s span. That doesn’t appeal to me, as a jaded type who’s seen both already, but it’s a good deal if you haven’t gone and just want to see AAA & CMLL for the first time at their peak. If I were a real journalist, I think that’s the week I’d have to go to Mexico. As an idiot with a blog, I believe I’m more likely to go around the weekend of the Chairo show, though I’m still not sure I’m going anywhere.
AAA’s TripleMania has a full card, and it’s happening 6 days earlier. There’s no indication of when CMLL might announced their card, although obviously the main event has to be made clear very soon. Like: tonight soon. NJPW World quietly added the last two CMLL Friday nights in August to it’s schedule recently, so they were probably told of the date in the last day or so. CMLL itself decided the best idea to announce this was a press release late on Friday (the worst time to announce anything), which suggest they’re planning on setting up the main event tonight and the date was going to get out after anyway.
The CMLL Anniversary card could still really be good. They certainly have the luchadors to have a really good card, and those luchadors will go full out for the occasion. Almost nothing could follow Atlantis/Sombra anyway. It’s not like the other company’s main event is thrilling the readers of this site either, yet the rest of the show looks good. This will probably be a pretty good show overall, but there’s no way CMLL would run their biggest show of the year like this if they had the confidence in it as past years. It’s a definite red flag.