Cavernario & Volador are an incredible pair, La Llave de la Gloria, The Crash, Volador/Tatsu

team Volador

CMLL (FRI) 02/24/2017 Arena México [CMLL, Culticon, ESTO, Estrellas del Ring, R de Rudo, thecubsfan]
1) Cancerbero & Raziel b Robin & Star Jr.
12:19. Rudos took 1/2.
2) Esfinge, Soberano Jr., Tritón b Bobby Villa, Misterioso Jr., Sagrado
17:07. Rudos took 2/3. Bobby Villa replaced Okumura (cervical injury)
3) Drone, Guerrero Maya Jr., Stuka Jr. b Rey Bucanero, Terrible, Vangellys
14:57. TGR took 1/3.
4) Ángel de Oro b Dragón Rojo Jr. [lightning]
8:08. Angel de Oro won via mecedora
5) Atlantis, Diamante Azul, Marco Corleone DQ Pierroth, Rush, Yoshitatsu
7:29. Rudos took 1/2, the last when Diamante Azul angrily ripped off Pierroth’s mask. Rush attacked Atlantis after everyone else had left.
6) Cavernario & Volador Jr. b Último Guerrero & Valiente [natl pi, final]
21:08. Cavernario & Volador took falls 2/3.

The main event was excellent, and will be on many list of best lucha libre matches of the year. It was a match of giant spots, and an exciting final stretch. The show exceeded expectations overall. The big with Rush & Atlantis after the semifinal looked like a very designed spot (Edgar was holding Atlantis in place to give him a excuse for still being there and not being able to defend himself); at least today, they’re going somewhere with that.

They also announced Homenaje a Dos Leyendas will be available as a pay VOD, but only after it airs. It should be a within a day after, but they tried that for the Anniversary show and had problems with music rights. (CMLL thinks they’ve fixed the problem by taking out the dance numbers, but really any one of their entrance songs could trip YouTube’s content monitoring software in a bad way; don’t be surprised if there’s another delay.) No price was mentioned.  That Anniversary show is still up, though you have to dig to find it, and it cost $3USD. No price was announced for H2L, but it’ll probably be the same.

CMLL says Okumura will be out about 10 days.

CMLL’s press conference yesterday was indeed a sponsor deal, announcing a deal with BOING fruit drinks. The BOING logo had been on the barriers for a month, this was just formalizing it. BOING has been sponsoring AAA, and might still be, and they did the same campign here of imagining the luchadors as fruits. Marco as a pineapple got a commercial last night, my favorite is the Dinamitas as angry grapes. Sofia Alonso was the CMLL representative for this, as she was when Mexico City opened the lucha libre exhibit at Metro Guerrero station. That’s the sort of stuff her father Paco Alonso hasn’t liked to do in the past.

CMLL tonight has Cavernario, Euforia and Mr. Niebla versus Atlantis, Maximo and Mistico in the main event. The big match is the tercera, a title match between Zeuxis and Princesa Sugehit. I think a title match is possible, though far from certain.

The Crash is back tonight in Tijuana, with a Blue Demon, Garza, Zorro vs Brian Cage, Eli Drake and Jeff Jarrett main event. Brian Cage has been talking for weeks about how he feels Sam Adonis ripped him off with the Trump idea, so I suspect he’ll be going all in on that idea tonight. That match doesn’t interest me much, but some of the rest of the show does. Rey Horuz & Ricochet taking on Daga & Fenix could be outstanding. The fourth match, Bestia, Juventud and Laredo Kid against Mascarita Dorada, Willie Mack and Zumbi (in for Jack), could also be pretty good. There’s a barbed wire match with the Compadres (Violento Jack & Aeroboy) against Nicho & Masada, a rematch with the local guys, and Flamita & Septimo Dragon in the opener, provided Flamita hasn’t left for Japan yet. The last show was not streamed, and I suspect we might not be getting streamed shows going forward if they’re saving the footage for their own TV (or YouTube show). I’ll let you know on Twitter if anything turns up. Fancams have been showing up on YouTube pretty quick.

PWR has their first show on FloSlam tonight, with Ultimo Dragon as the guest star. In Mexico, there’s also super indie shows in Puebla and Guadalajara; footage might show up in +LuchaTV or other places.

The first AAA La Llave de la Gloria tryout just wrapped out. They worked out people in the morning, and they broke them into groups for matches later on. There’s a few familiar names, and a lot of people who’s names I’ve seen on indie show posters but have never actually seen. One of the Villano III kids (I think Villano III Jr.) was front and center in one of the tryouts and is the most recognizable names. He’s recognizable to me, in part, because he actually appeared on the dreadful TripleMania I appeared live, coming to the ring after that awful match.

Another person who stuck out is Pentagoncito, in the first class. I believe this is an Mexico State indie guy, but it’s hard to tell because there’s like four or five different Pentagoncitos around. It’s tough to square how AAA can be going after one person for using a Pentagon related gimmick without their authority while giving an opportunity to another person doing exactly the same thing, but there surely must be an answer beyond my knowledge.

The person sticking on in a positive way is Astrolux, who’s been seen a lot in Lucha Memes. AAA showed about half the exhibition matches for the crowd, and the match with Astrolux came off the best in what we saw. Astrolux looked like a star in that match and was interviewed by Record afterwards. He’s young (+LuchaTV said 16, others say 17) and small, but very talented. AAA really just needs a few people who are really good to make this contest work, and he could be that person. The last group included Douki & Hanaoka, the Japanese duo who’ve been around the indies for years and looked as good as ever in their very brief time in.

They had a class of about 10 to start, and then what looked like 40 people (or four classes at once) training later on. It’s gotta be tough to figure out who’s got the most heart when you’ve got 40 people at once, but they gave them more space when they separated them 4v4 matches later on (and maybe those early tests were just to weed out people.) Villano IV was one of the trainers/examiners, so he must still be part of AAA. I did not see El Apache. Hope he’s OK. Vampiro was all over the place, leading everything, with Averno, Chessman, Octagoncito, Mamba, Angelico and Nino Hamburguesa also involved. They did a bit where the AAA luchadors got in the ring with some of the trainees at the end, and then a big group photo at the end. It didn’t seem like they announced winners or people who’d advance, so it may be a while longer before we know about these people (or they may just mention it randomlly.)

AAA’s preview of this week’s episode reveals they’ll air the minis tag match, the Aerostar/Argenis vs Carta Brava/Super Fly tag match, and the Fantasma/Texano vs Mesias/Pagano tag match.

AAA also posted an extended interview with Vampiro about his new job with AAA, La Llava de la Gloria, and more. I suspect sections of this will be this week’s Noti AAA, though probably not the part he mentions CMLL by name. Again, it seems like he goes 12 minutes without actually mentioning a single AAA luchador, which seems like not a great guy for someone who’s in charge of those wrestlers, but he’s selling a dream. He insists he wants your thoughts, positive or negative, to him on Twitter and Facebook. I don’t think he actually wants all of that, but I guess we’ll see.

After I dismissed the March 15th date, AAA and LU’s EVP both said Lucha Underground on Netflix is happening March 15th. I’m just happy to have a date.

Lucha Mexico, the lucha libre documentary available on Netflix that follows around Shocker among others, will be shown for the first time in Mexico City on an upcoming film festival.

Fuego en el Ring has the latest edition of their podcast.

+LuchaTV is back with a top 10 spots of the week.

Lineups

CMLL (FRI) 03/03/2017 Arena México
1) Fantasy & Último Dragóncito vs Demus 3:16 & Pequeño Nitro
2) Fuego, Pegasso, Soberano Jr. vs Disturbio, Misterioso Jr., Sagrado
3) Blue Panther, Blue Panther Jr., The Panther vs Bobby Villa, Dragón Rojo Jr., Pólvora
4) Ángel de Oro, Atlantis, Titán vs Forastero, Máscara Año 2000, Sansón
5) Diamante Azul, Máximo Sexy, Valiente vs La Máscara, Pierroth, Rush
6) Volador Jr. vs Yoshitatsu

It’s the traditional singles farewell match to end a NJPW tour, only CMLL forgot to build it up in this building. So it goes. It’ll be Volador’s third big match as the draw in eight days (last night’s match + facing Euforia in Puebla); CMLL really could use more tecnicos to trust in these positions. It’s also Tatsu’s only booking for the week and his last show in MExico.

 

CMLL on ClaroSports.com: 2017-02-24

Ultimo Guerrero is the strongest

Recapped: 02/24/2017

What happened: Cavernario & Volador Jr. won the Parejas Increible final. After the show, Volador again asked for a hair match. Accounting major Cavernario suggested it should take place on the Anniversary show.

Diamante Azul and Pierroth feuded heavily. After it appeared over, Rush hit Atlantis with a plastic carton. It may be a tease of them having a match, it may be Rush just being a jerk, and it’s possible it’s both.

What was good: So much. The main event is one you need to go out of your way to watch, and the first three matches were all good. The lightning match would’ve stood out more on another show. The Azul/Pierroth didn’t completely stuck.

Where can I watch it: It’s around somewhere. (more…)

Torneo Increible final, do we have a LU Netflix date??? (no), AAA lawsuits

tonight

CMLL’s Torneo Incredible tournament is the worst of the year. The silver lining is the final is often pretty good. Last year’s Mistico & Mephisto versus Cibernetico & Carsitico match exceeded expectations, La Sombra & Volador vs Atlantis & UG was pretty good, as were the two finals won by Mascara Dorada & Atlantis. These matches can work, and tend to work better when there’s no near term match coming soon. I recall Bucanero/Volador vs Maximo/Terrible being fine, but sidetracked because the priorty there was to build up the Homenaje a Dos Leyendas main event rather than this match. We know now, a bit unfortunately, that Volador & Cavernario aren’t going to be in the H2L main event, and neither will Ultimo Guerrero & Valiente. Maybe they might get a match down the line, but this match isn’t built around seeing one or two teams blow up. It’s built around four of the better luchadors in Mexico, trying to have a really good match. Crazy concept but I think it might work.

Volador & Cavernario look like the crowd favorites. Ultimo Guerrero & Valiente are the betting odds favorites, because this is a thing UG hasn’t won yet and CMLL seems to be building Valiente up. I think UG wins, but the outcome still feels in question.

The rest of the show is not all that much. Diamante Azul & Pierroth meet in the semimain, and we’re due for a few more weeks of that before the H2L main event. Atlantis, Marco, Rush & Yoshitatsu round out the match. Angel de Oro and Dragon Rojo in a lightning match will probably be the second best match on the night. Terrible, Rey Bucanero, Vangellys versus Stuka, Drone and Guerrero Maya feels like a match CMLL must’ve run many times but hasn’t actually ever done in exactly that configuration. Soberano, Triton and Esfinge face Okumura, Sagrado and Misterioso, which is not quite as samey but not far off. Robin & Star Jr. face Raziel & Cancerbero to lead off the show.

CultIcon previews the show. It airs at 8:30 pm on ClaroSports.

Apolo mentioned CMLL has a press conference today at 5:30pm, three hours before show. CMLL doesn’t usually have press conferences on Fridays, though I vaguely recall one previously that was focused on sponsors. That’s the most likely news. I really don’t think it has anything to do with Diamante Azul/Pierroth. I have other ideas, but there’s really nothing to go on here.

Lucha Underground will be on Netflix. What day will be on Netflix? I though I knew this morning, now I’m less sure. CNET listed the show as part of the March release schedule, on March 15th. That would be great! However, three other sites I checked, all seemingly working off the same press release, don’t have Lucha Underground listed at all. I suspect CNET was working off the same Twitter news as everyone else. Krudemmon of R de Rudo did have March 15th way back when, so I’m not ruling it out, but don’t make plans for that date or start putting it out there yet. The GLOW series drops at the end of the month, so it’d be great for everyone if LU was on Netflix by then, but we don’t know at this point.

AAA’s (as both AAA & LU as one entity) has been sending cease and desist notices to some promoters to threaten them not to use Fenix or Pentagon. This is not new, but what is new is California’s PCW actually shared the cease and desist and their response to it. (They’re going to keep booking those guys.) What jumped out to me is AAA/LLFMV is not just trying to block those guys over using the names, but over using their (Lucha Underground supplied) visas. AAA may say it’s a name issue, but there’s no name that would make them happy, they’re just trying to block these guys from working in the US at all. The C&D strategy hasn’t seemed to worked much – maybe that’s happened with Penta missing What Culture? – but it’s why everyone’s been quick to adopt the new names. PCW’s documentation makes it clear they believe Penta and Rey Fenix will get the rights to their new names.

This tactic of C&D would seem to harm AAA’s chances of getting their own talent booked in the US. Many of the promotions who are getting legal letters now worked thru AAA to get Pentagon and Fenix on their shows in the first place last year, and now are being threatened by the same company. Some people might just want to book those guys now, and this behavior is going to convince them to stay away from anyone related to AAA, even those currently on good terms. To pick a random name, who’d want to start bringing in AAA’s Dizzy for a few appearances if Dizzy might leave AAA halfway thru? Trying to drag other people in to it is just going to convince them to stay far away. AAA’s trying to convince people to stop using Fenix & Pentagon, but likely at the cost of convincing people to stay far away from AAA. Even if they’re “successful” in costing Fenix & Pentagon US bookings, they’re also probably costing guys like Drago, Fantasma, Aerostar and Psycho Clown US bookings, and costing themselves the money they get for booking those guys out.

+LuchaTV has an interview with the Indystrongibles about their apuesta match on Sunday. LigerFever has translated it. They mention AAA had an idea to bring them in – they had TV tryout matches in 2015 – but then AAA would’ve controlled them and they didn’t like that. I think they probably would’ve had to start at the lowest (Atomic Boy, Lanzeloth) level too, which might mean it’s years before they get to do things like they were doing on the indies (and maybe making the money they were in the indies.) The indie credits don’t seem to transfer over to AAA (or CMLL, for that matter), and the guys near the top of the indie scene would be sacrificing quite a bit just to get some TV time. The WON mentions the idea of the La Llave a la Gloria winners getting big pushes to make people forget those who left but, to me, that would require a big shift in AAA’s mindset in how they handle new wrestlers. The interview is really more about the trio than the AAA digression I just made, so there’s more there worth reading or watching.

That Llave a la Gloria contest starts tomorrow morning, before I’ll bother to do a new post. There still will be plenty of people who show up – even if AAA ticked off 99% of luchadors in Mexico, which they haven’t, there’s so many luchadors that 1% of people showing up would look like a big turnout. Quality is more interesting than quantity.

LuchaWorld has the latest Lucha Report.

 

RobViper has a music video of 05/21/16 ELITE.

Lucha libre shaped tequila bottles.

Kcidis draws the H2L main event.

Lineups

ERLL (SUN) 03/19/2017 Arena Coliseo Monterrey

1) Esqueletor Alcala & Nacho Libre vs El Rudo & El Solovino
2) Alfa 3000, Alfa Azteca, Furia Azteka vs Bochido, Delirio, Poseidón
3) Espartako, Euforia, Nitro vs Heroes Jr., Memo Valles, Trauma I
4) Valiente vs Alberto Dos Rios
5) Blue Panther & Satánico vs Black Terry & Negro Navarro
6) Atlantis & Mistico II vs Gran Guerrero & Último Guerrero

Unlikely to air anywhere, but notable because it’s the Arena Coliseo Monterrey show going up against AAA TV. In past years, we’ve seen the CMLL guys in Arena Jose Sulaiman and the AAA guys in this building or the bull ring, and it’s all turned around this time. Also turned around is Alberto Dos Rios, who retired back on January 22nd and already seems to be back.

CMLL Martes de Glamour: 2017-02-21 

Brillo armdrag (Brillo Enganche?)

Recapped: 02/21/2017

What happened: Volador kept his title over Ephesto, to the surprise of no one. Princes Sugehit defeated Zeuxis again before their title match on Saturday, and Cavernario pulled off Mistico’s mask before their own match on Sunday.

What was good: The fourth match is one of those matches that make going thru all these CMLL b-shows worthwhile. The main event wasn’t bad.

I remembered no one is forcing me to watch this and I am free to zoom through obvious garbage matches. Good times!

Where can I watch it: It’s on CMLL’s channel. (more…)

lucha TV preview for weekend of February 24th

full size

FWIW: WWC aired at the normal time on the national feed. And Lucha Retro is listed back on Fox Sports Deportes on 2AM CT on Saturday/Sunday. It’s listed as a rerun, it’s probably a rerun, but I’m going to get my hopes up anyway. It’s enough for me to not to cancel the champions for one week.

AAA starts the Cuautitlan taping, even though it says Toluca up there. I changed that three times but didn’t hit refresh any of those times, it’s dumb. Anyway, we have no idea what’s going to air until something shows up on AAA’s YouTube channel. Everything should be about the same anyway.

Elite USA has enough episodes to last thru April 20th, FWIW. It’s not worth much.

Lucha Underground is airing four episodes again next week. I have nothing to say about the shows that are actually on this list.

CMLL Puebla: 2017-02-20 

I don’t know.

Recapped: 2017-02-21

What happened: Euforia fouled Volador to set up an insta-feud. Absolutely nothing else happened.

What was good: This show so bored me that I gave up on it for about a day. The break I took was good. The matches, not so much. The best stuff was usual CMLL baseline trios matches, nothing standing out.

Where can I watch it: It’s on CMLL’s channel. (more…)

Exoticos dethrone Ninja Turtles, Rey de Reyes tickets

IWRG (WED) 02/22/2017 Arena Naucalpan [+LuchaTV, The Gladiatores]
1) Fireman b Keiser Drago
2) Shadow Boy b Atomic Star
3) Adrenalina, Araña de Plata, Eterno b Alfa, Black Dragón, Omega
Eterno replaced Hip Hop Man and beat Black Dragon. Dragon wants a rematch.
4) Heddi Karaoui b Cerebro Negro
Karaoui submits Cerebro.
5) Demasiado, Diva Salvaje, Nigma b Leo, Mike, Rafy [EdM Trios]
Title change, Ninja Turtles lose the belts on their fifth defense. Clean match, with the Exoticos offering the Ninja Turtles a rematch.
6) Demonio Infernal, Diablo Jr., Relámpago b Emperador Azteca, Golden Magic, Imposible

CMLL’s recap of yesterday’s press conference doesn’t mention the Hijos del Infierno giving up their trios titles. So they’re still champs.

Lucha Underground Season 3 has turned up on Amazon, though only the episodes which have aired. Season 2 has been up for a while. These are all for buying individual episodes, like iTunes, not the Amazon streaming service. LU hasn’t promoted these and so we have no idea why Season 1 isn’t up. I wonder if it’s a similar things like with Netflix, where they have to add some things to meet Amazon standards, and that’s more work with Season 1 since it’s in two languages. That’s my guess for all video things now, and I suspect we’ll hear more about it once they have all three seasons up.

Lucha Underground also has a new website. They’ve had one for a while, but never mentioned it much and it seemed like it would only get updated during seasons. The site is now updated with videos at least thru the last episodes which have aired, and has a nicer looking store. There’s also an ad for the shirts being at Hot Topic, in case you’re on the show and you want to know.

Mucha Lucha Facebook reposted an interview with Mr. Niebla in El Grafico, where he talks about his battle with alcoholism. He acknowledges that when he’s not around CMLL shows, it’s probably due to him battling those issues instead, but defends himself from critics by says he keeps getting brought back because he generates money for the promotions.

Misterioso Jr. talked about his career with El Siglo de Torreon. He says he got the name when he was working in LA and the original Misterioso thought so highly of him that he gave him the name for free. Misterioso credits Ultimo Guerrero for getting him into CMLL. His story about getting into lucha libre is still the best: he was riding his bike when he was hit by a car. He wasn’t too hurt, and the driver offered to help him out later to make up for it. The driver was Dr. Wagner Sr.

AAA says they’ve sent out appointment information for La Llave a la Gloria for people with appointments this weekend. They must’ve gotten a good number, because they mention others will be having an appointment in March.

Rey de Reyes tickets will run from 100 to 1000 pesos (5 to 51USD). It’s really only the floor seats that are on the high end, everything else is pretty cheap. They should get a good crowd.

Rey de Reyes is in Monterrey. Rey de Reyes has a mystery woman appearing. Sexy Star is from Monterrey, and posted a dramatic photo of herself with a AAA jacket. I’m 99% sure this is a troll and she’s not actually going back to AAA but figured out a clever way to get people to talk about her. I will be very amused if the other 1% happened, so it’s a win either way.

I mentioned it quickly back on the podcast, but I wanted to write that I really like the AAW show (The Art of War) from last Friday. (There’s a highlight video here.) On the lucha note, Hijo del Fatnasma did well in his debut against Low Ki, with the two having a pretty good match before the intermission. Fantasma did well enough to get brought back, and I was told to mention that both he and Rey Fenix were polite gentleman who were really easy to deal with. Fenix won the main event, setting up a title match on March 4th out in LaSalle. I didn’t expect to be going to so many indie shows, but I’m likely going to that one too if I’m free that day. The ones I’ve gone to have been all pretty good.

The other thing I’m way behind on writing about is Powerbomb.TV, which launched just about two weeks ago now. I’ve signed up to that and liked what I’ve seen, though I haven’t had a chance to spend as much time as I’d like. (There was a moment this morning where I saw a notification on my phone that my card got charged for something this morning, spent 10 minutes trying to figure out what it was, and then only realized it must be the Powerbomb subscription when I was thinking about what I was writing about today.) They offer a 10 day free trial if you want to check it out. As far as lucha libre, these are the shows they have up now (all are full shows unless noted, main events listed, links are to my results for full card)

  • XMW: 06/21/2014 (Arez/Pentagon), 06/20/2014 (Pagano four way main event, really good tag match), 08/15/2015 (Pagano vs Nicho), 07/31/2016 (Wotan vs Demoledor, good Puma/Tiger vs Centvrion/Latigo tag match)
  • Kamikazes del Ring: 08/27/2016 (El Bandido vs Mr. Leo vs Latigo), 10/08/2016 (Extreme Tiger & Mr. Leo vs Freelance & Rey Horuz)
  • IAP: 08/07/2016 (Wotan vs As Charro, Mala Hiebra three way), 09/04/2016 (Canek & Hijo del Fishman vs As Charro & Mascara Sagrada Jr., Ninja Turtle four way)
  • CaraLucha: 11/06/2016 (The Best tournament first two rounds)
  • Go! Mask: 12/20/2015 (Argenis & Drago vs Pentagon & Daga)
  • ILLM: 01/17/2016 (Arez vs Fly Warrior vs Sharlie Rockstar)
  • Rudos de Neza: 11/14/2015 (six way with Flamita)

Most everything looks like Carxyus videos at this point. Some, but not all, are posted on his Facebook if you dig. This interface is a lot nicer than that and the video quality is really good. Like all these streaming services, it’ll be a better bargin as more footage is added and more features are added – there’s no Chromecast or Roku, but they’ve said they’re working on those things – but there’s hidden gems. Maybe I’ll find time to write about a few those in a bit.

Lineup

IWRG (SUN) 02/26/2017 Arena Naucalpan
1) Alfa vs Death Rider
2) Shadow Boy vs Atomic Star
3) Black Dragón & Dragón Fly vs Demonio Infernal & Hip Hop Man
4) Relámpago vs Apolo Estrada Jr. [super libre]
5) Chicano & Veneno © vs Black Terry & Diablo Jr. [IWRG IC TAG]
first defense since winning the titles in September
6) Hijo De Dos Caras © vs Herodes Jr. [IWRG JUNIORS]
second defense, first since August
7) Negro Navarro, Pantera, Pirata Morgan, Solar I, Villano IV vs Danny Casas, Imposible, Máscara Año 2000 Jr., Mr. Electro, Trauma I [Copa High Power]

Main event is old old veterans versus slightly less old rivals. IWRG’s not done much with either belt, which means they might want to restart with title changes. Or they might be just fine not doing anything with them. Relampago appears to be alive. Death Rider is a new name to me.

RIOT (SAT) 03/04/2017 Arena Femenil, Monterrey, Nuevo León
1) Psicótico vs Muerte Extrema
2) Dulce Kanela vs Larry Miranda
3) Alas de Acero, Aramis (Estado de México), Iron Kid (Estado de México) vs Erick Ortiz, Kamikaze, Kratoz
4) Kaientai & Lord Byron vs ? & Tony Rodríguez
5) Sammy Guevara vs Jack Evans
6) Low Rider vs Séptimo Dragón

Full card for the show next week. Hijo del Santo hasn’t seemed to get back to Tony Rodriguez about being his partner, there’s still time.

AAA on Televisa: 2017-02-18 

Aerostar

Recapped: 2017-02-21

What happened: Psycho Clown got an actual pin on Dr. Wagner. (He was still beat up to end the show.) Super Fly pinned Aerostar. Dave the Clown got a profile piece and Mesias and Pagano argued a bit. Chessman cost Faby Apache a match.

What was good: I liked the second match, though it could’ve used more time. Nothing was horrible.

Where can I watch it: It’s on AAA’s channel.

Previously: “La Parka, Angelico and Australian Suicide beat Cuervo and Scoria!” And no one else, no one else at all was in that match! Zorro’s back slips through in the highlights sometimes, but he’s now a non-person. Averno’s burn of Joe Lider is left in, so the Perros aren’t meant to be gone. (Nothing is shown of the opener, hope they’re not all gone!)

(more…)

2017 CMLL Homenaje a Dos Leyendas lineup (they’re really doing Diamante Azul vs Pierroth)

Poder Mexica, Comandante Pierroth’s previous identity

CMLL (FRI) 03/17/2017 Arena México
Homenaje a Dos Leyendas, 2017 (Villano III & Salvador Lutteroth)
1) Estrellita, Marcela, Princesa Sugehit vs Amapola, Tiffany, Zeuxis
2) Dragón Lee, Stuka Jr., Titán vs Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Niebla Roja
3) Atlantis, Carístico, Marco Corleone vs Kráneo, La Máscara, Rush
4) Matt Taven vs Último Guerrero © [NWA MIDDLE]
tenth defense
5) Mistico, Valiente, Volador Jr. © vs Ephesto, Luciferno, Mephisto [CMLL TRIOS]
ninth defense
6) Pierroth vs Diamante Azul [mask]

This lineup was the big news from the CMLL press conference today. CMLL picked the Pierroth/Diamante Azul direction a while ago and stuck to it. There’s no drama in the main event – Pierroth is Arturo Muñoz Sánchez, 48 or 49 years old, who lost his mask in this same arena in 2002, and will almost certainly lose his mask again – and it’s probably going to be a poor match. They’re going to try to make it good, but neither man is that good. I think Diamante Azul might be able to have a good match with the right person, but Pierroth is definitely not that person. I don’t think Pierroth can have a good singles match with anyone.

Both men are bulked up bodybuilders who are more focused on their looks than their skills, and choosing to focus on these two over the dozens of more deserving people seems an insult to most everyone else who works in CMLL. I think there’s plenty of people who work in CMLL who know this is a dumb and bad idea, but the priorities of the people in charge appear to be elsewhere. This is one of those shows where a fan is reduced to hoping the show completely fails and everyone responsible is shuffled away from responsibility, but that’s an unlikely event. (Even when a show does fail, like TripleMania 2015, it doesn’t mean the right lessons are learned or that people stop denying the obvious.)

The rest of the show is the alright but CMLL big show stuff. A Sky Team (or equivalent) trios match on a big show is the usual thing, and this is somehow the first time they’re facing the Hijos del Infierno for the trios titles during this reign. The Hijos del Infierno may or may not be Mexico Trios champions at this moment. Volador wanted the title match to be a double title match. The rudos responded that they were so confident, they’d give up the national trios because they were sure they’d get the world ones. Volador re-explained his team wanted both titles, and it was unclear if Mephisto and friends actually gave up the trios titles or not. It’d be a really dumb way of taking the titles off the Hijos del Infierno. It’s also seems very unlikely Puma, Tiger and Negro Casas will ever get that trios title shot, as CMLL appears to have completely forgotten that angle and the only people who bring it up are those of us out here.

Matt Taven is back as part of the CMLL/ROH interchange. CMLL appears to have very limited knowledge of ROH – there’s work being done during WrestleMania weekend to fix that – and Taven did well enough in his appearance last year to come back. This is probably just a showcase match for UG, but there are worse ideas than ROH taking one of CMLL’s two dozen championships. The rest of the show are the usual filler opener trios matches on a big show, or the middle of a card on a regular show.

It’s a Friday show. There will be 52 of them this year. The trios title match will likely be great, and the Taven/UG match and the second match might be, but it doesn’t strongly positively distinguish itself from the 150 other free to internet shows CMLL will run this year. I wouldn’t want to pay $10 for it and there’s nothing that makes me excited to see it. It looks like it’ll cost a lot more: tickets go on sale Thursday, running 304 MXP up to 1849 MXP. (That’s $15 USD to $93 USD.) The low end is even with the bigger recent anniversary shows (Sombra/Atlantis, UG/Atlantis), and the high end is a little bit lower than last year’s Anniversary show (1989 MXP.) CMLL is going to make a lot of money if they can actually get people to come out for this, but those prices seem way too high.

There wasn’t a lot of other actual news on the press conference, just people talking about matches that had already been announced. Volador, Cavernario, Valiente and Ultimo Guerrero talked about Friday’s tournament final. Pierrothito talked about the minis tournament. Zeuxis talked about her title defense on Saturday. Some of those people will talk more in about an hour on Informa.

03/19/2017 AAA TV Lineup (Monterrey, Rey de Reyes)

AAA

AAA (SUN) 03/19/2017 Arena Jose Sulaiman, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon
1) ? & ?? vs ??? & ????
may be a dark match
2) Faby Apache vs Mary Apache, La Hiedra, Lady Shani, ?, Goya Kong, Big Mami [Reina De Reinas, #1 Contenders]
3) Taya © vs ? [Reina De Reinas]
4) Dark Cuervo & Dark Scoria vs El Mesías & Pagano [#1 Contenders, AAA TAG]
5) Aerostar vs Súper Fly [mask, hair]
6) Dr. Wagner Jr. & Psycho Clown vs Monsther Clown & Murder Clown [falls count anywhere]
7) Hijo del Fantasma vs Texano Jr. vs Johnny Mundo [Rey de Reyes]

Air Date: 03/25 and 04/01; perhaps the show could air live, but there’s no indication of that right now.

Remember the story about AAA having everything planned out thru April? I’m not sure about that story now. Maybe just they had the venues planned, or maybe a lot of things went out of the window when people left, because there’s stuff here that are left turns from where they were going before. Lady Shani goes for Taya’s challenger to just one person in a match, Psycho & Wagner are suddenly on the same side, the OGT and the Apaches aren’t in a match, and Fantasma & Texano go from doing nothing to main eventing a show? Super Fly versus Aerostar was set up at Guerra de Titanes, Wagner vs Psycho is the year long program, and the Clowns betraying Wagner will air this week or next, and nothing else that’s airing in these first few months seems to matter all that much.

Maybe the biggest change is the venue. This week’s TV finally announced it, but announced it as Plaza de Toros Monumental (about 11K fans.) The poster has it in Arena Jose Sulaiman, the old Arena Solidaridad. I can’t find a capacity right now, but that’s more in the 6k range, give or take 2K. AAA’s sold out a lot of shows by being wise in which arenas they’re going to, and running the smaller arena is probably a wise move with this lineup. The Aerostar/Super Fly match is the only one that feels like it means anything and they’re usually midcard guys. (They were show opening guys last time AAA was in Monterrey.) There are a couple of matches I’d like to see, but AAA’s still rebuilding star power and there’s no special guest stars here to help outside of the periodic Mundo & Taya appearances. I think they’ll do ok, AAA seems to have a way of filling arenas, but they’re also putting together another big card that just seems like marking time until TripleMania. There’s one show they’re interested in loading up this year and it’s not Rey de Reyes.

If AAA told it, there’s an interesting story to the main event. It’s AAA’s three singles champions (Fantasma is Cruiserweight, Texano is Heavyweight, Mundo is Latin American) having a match to determine who’s the king of the kings. All three guys have no challengers, because of departures or lack of interest on AAA’s part, and this could work as a reset point. AAA’s small roster doesn’t really have a need for three different singles tiles, and if they just treated the winner of this as the guy who was actually The Man, they might be able to make one of the titles mean something. All three guys are generally considered talented luchadors, but have generally had OK to good matches for the longest time. They can fix that, and maybe it’s AAA’s best shot at a non-apuesta MOTYC caliber match this year.

Guerra de Titanes set up title matches for Mundo & Taya at Rey de Reyes. Given how sparingly they’re being used, I’d figured that meant they’d both lose their titles on the same day, and they wouldn’t be around much going forward. (Taya supporting Pentagon and others on Twitter so publicly also makes it seem like she’s not worried about AAA’s feelings going forward.) That doesn’t look to be what’s happening now. Taya will still defend her title, but Mundo isn’t scheduled to defend his and so they both must be sticking around for a while longer.

Psycho Clown is kind of a dummy if he actually teams with one enemy to face two other enemies, but Psycho Clown is always kind of a dummy so it works out I guess. He probably could use some promo time to explain why on earth he’d do such a thing (and why seeing him and Wagner make peace is going to make us want to see them fight for their masks.) That match just doesn’t make any sense to me. Falls count anywhere means they’ll have a big stunt somewhere. I suspect it’s some space filler for whatever the Rebelion guys were going to do.

I don’t think a single person believes Super Fly is winning Aerostar’s mask on this show, but the match itself has the potential to be good. Their TV work has been good, both will try hard in an apuesta match, and the crowd will be into it. The problem, and why my hopes are not as high as they might be, is every AAA singles match is actually a lame two on one handicap match, with the rudo second interfering freely and the tecnico second standing around meekly until they get in their one dive at the end. Carta Brava and Drago are the seconds, and there’s no reason to expect AAA to stop doing this until they actually run one normal. The upside is AAA’s roster turnover has essentially led to Aerostar being pushed as one of the top tecnicos, and who would’ve thought that would’ve ever happened.

AAA’s lost track of their tag team titles or are being confusing or just wanted to put Pagano & Mesias in a tag team match to do their breakup and nothing else matters. There’s already a #1 contenders match in Apizaco with the Piratas, Angelico & Suicide, Bengala & Joe Lider and Cuervo and someone replacing Zorro. I keep checking the AAA website every few days to see if they’ve redone the poster and put Scoria in, and Zorro’s still there every day. AAA rushed to get Pentagon and friends off the lineups, not so much with this one. Anyway, the tag champions are Drago & Aerostar, so it would’ve figured to be a rudo team, and Scoria & Cuervo made more sense than the Piratas. Except, they’re probably not going to get two #1 contender spots, so it’s going to be someone else. Angelico & Suicide would make sense, but Angelico’s got a lot of outside Mexico bookings the next few months. Or maybe La Secta win the shot and put that up against Pagano & Mesias? I dunno. In the long run, I’d suspect Mesias & Pagano are heading to some sort of death match at TripleMania, but it wouldn’t be too big of a stretch for AAA to actually have them win to keep stringing out the breakup. Whenever you think an AAA angle has gone long, they’ll make it go a little big longer.

I suspect Lady Shani is still getting the title shot, and the women’s match is just a way to give her a win before going into the title match. It’s unlikely she’ll get two. There are plenty of luchadors in Monterrey who could fill the mystery spot, which almost has to be a new person given there’s almost no one else left in AAA. (Hechicera is still around, still never on TV.) They could also do the Pimpinela comedy bit, forgetting they’ve already done the Pimpinela wins the women’s title as comedy bit.

I’m cautiously interested in the main event. I want to see whatever crazy thing Aerostar is going to do. Everything else seems not too promising – two different tag team matches where we know a team is going to split up, and the two women’s matches will probably have OGT and other nonsense. AAA hasn’t run an iPPV since TripleMania and there’s no reason to believe this one will be on iPPV either.

Next taping is 03/31 in Tampico.