The Most Important Open Letter to Paco Alonso that Ever Existed
Dear Paco Alonso,
How’s it going you reclusive old bastard? It’s been awhile since our last correspondence and to your credit that’s because you actually listened to me. I may not deserve all the credit for Valiente’s brief (too brief in my book) return to using pants every other CMLL show, but I think we can both agree the pants usage was much higher after my last letter than it was before. So clearly you’re listening to me. That’s excellent Paco! Except I now need you to listen to me more than ever before because you’re about to make a mistake so bad it makes Valiente’s short Speedo attire look like the greatest thing to ever happen to lucha libre. Actually that’s still a big problem and you need to hammer home that he needs the pants at all times and that is so not the point of this; stay on target Cult!
Alright I’ve collected myself. As I’m sure you know Paco, considering you run CMLL and all, Homenaje a Dos Leyendas 2017 is right around the corner. It’s a big show, and not just because it’s always a big show. For one, Villano III is the legend of honor this year, a luchador who is unquestionably one of the greatest living legends in lucha libre history and a man who was involved in what I consider to be the greatest match in the history of lucha and perhaps the greatest match not named CM Punk vs. John Cena or Kenny Omega vs. Kazuchika Okada. Villano III is kind of a big deal. Not only that but you’ve chosen to honor him, be it by design or pure happenstance, seventeen years to the day after he had that all time great match. This is a really good idea that you could be taking full advantage of. And therein lies the problem; on the day of your second biggest show of the year, on a day when you’re honoring both one of the greatest luchadors of all time and arguably the greatest match to ever happen in Arena Mexico, you’re apparent plan is to headline the show with…Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth.
Paco, Paco, Paco…Paco. What are you doing man? I’m all about trying different things and such but Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth? Headlining your second biggest show of the year, a show that’s honoring so much greatness in your company’s history? The only logical thing I can do in this instance (besides writing this letter I mean) is stand up straight and in a very bad operatic tone sing out “MISTAAAAAAKE!!!!!” Like seriously Paco; I’m one of the biggest defenders of Diamante Azul there is around these parts. He’s not perfect, but he does offer a lot of cool moves when he’s on and with the right person can have a pretty decent match. But him against Pierroth, a man who can’t out wrestle my cat, my Batman bobblehead or the 7-Up bottle I keep forgetting to pick up off the floor? It’s not only a slap in the face to us fans; it’s a slap in the face to gorram Villano III. The poor dude is in rough shape right now as is, and now it seems as though he’ll have to watch Diamante and Pierroth work an abysmal ten minute match to close what should be one of the greatest three hours of his life. It’s not cool and, what do you know, it doesn’t need to happen. Not just because Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth is the worst idea since Coca Cola Inc. decided to discontinue Surge, but because there’s another, better match just waiting to be used for this show.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed Paco, but the last few weeks there’s been a little something going on between Rush and Atlantis. Sure they’re generally involved with many a big angle considering they’re two of the biggest stars you employ right now. But this is different; different because this angle involves them feuding with each other. They brawled almost nonstop two Friday’s ago, with Rush ripping Atlantis’ mask right off, forcing the legend to go back and get a new one before succumbing to Rush’s corner dropkick. It seemed like that would be a onetime incident…until this past Friday’s show when Rush and Atlantis found themselves matched up in the Torneo Nacional de Parejas Increibles tournament. There we saw Rush attack Atlantis on the stage to start the match, Atlantis eventually working his way back to win with La Atlantida and then continuing to attack Rush in the post match. Atlantis, beloved technico and squeaky clean good guy, was driven to attack Rush. Don’t tell me there isn’t anything to that Paco. I’ve seen enough pro wrestling and lucha libre to know when there’s something cooking and something is definitely cooking between those two. And now is the time for you to put it in the pot and turn Rush vs. Atlantis, hair vs. mask, into the headliner you need for Homenaje a Dos Leyendas 2017.
Now I understand that may be problematic to you for one reason and one reason alone; you want that match to headline an Anniversary Show. I can’t say I blame you there. In a perfect world, Atlantis vs. Rush is headlining the 84th Anniversary Show after a long build up, drawing in yet another record gate and delivering yet another legendary match because that’s just what Atlantis (and Rush to a lesser extent) does. That’s ideally what you want. Unfortunately we don’t live in an ideal world, you need a huge match to headline a huge show and this is the match that will do the trick. Why? So glad you asked. For one it’s not Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth. I cannot stress enough how important this is; that match is bad, you should feel bad for booking it and it absolutely, 100% shouldn’t be headlining a show with the pedigree Homenaje a Dos Leyendas has. I get that it does have to happen now and we will all gladly swallow our medicine and get through Diamante-Pierroth if it’s the third or fourth bout. But it cannot close, and Atlantis-Rush is the best candidate to bump it down and make sure it doesn’t close. Secondly, Atlantis-Rush is the biggest option you have right now that actually has momentum. Sure you could try to convince us that Volador vs. Cavernario or Carístico vs. Último Guerrero are white hot feuds that could headline this show (and both are potentially great matches that I wouldn’t mind seeing), but the truth is you’ve done nothing with these feuds in months. An RKO wouldn’t be as out of nowhere as those two matches suddenly headlining. The reality is that the only choice you have for a Homenaje a Dos Leyendas main event that a) isn’t Diamante Azul and Pierroth burning out retinas and b) has somewhat a proper build is Atlantis vs. Rush.
And yet it goes even beyond that. Atlantis vs. Rush isn’t just something that kicked into high gear two weeks ago; this is a rivalry that has been brewing since September 18th, 2015, when Atlantis unmasked Rush’s best pal La Sombra following a classic match. Everything about that night and the immediate aftermath has led us to where we are today with these two, be it Rush accidentally costing Sombra a fall that ultimately cost him the match, Rush having to be contained from attacking Atlantis after the match, even the near disintegration of Sombra and Rush’s onscreen friendship and Sombra’s subsequent departure from CMLL for WWE. Even if CMLL didn’t immediately capitalize on the potential Atlantis-Rush tension as they should’ve, it’s clear every time they lock up that it all goes back to there. It’s why they’re recent battles during FantasticaMania, the highlight of the tour for yours truly, worked so well. Rush, the chaotic monster that he is, wants to humiliate Atlantis the same way Atlantis humiliated and ultimately banished his friend years ago. And when it comes to Atlantis and his mask…well I think you more than anyone Paco understands how much emotion and green comes from that.
That leads us to the final, and most fitting, reason Atlantis and Rush should be closing this show. I’ve brought up how Villano III is the guest of honor for Homenaje a Dos Leyendas and how date of the show is seventeen years to the day of the greatest match of Villano’s career and possibly CMLL’s history. Tell me Paco; who was Villano’s opponent in that match? I’m pretty sure you know but just in case you don’t (and if the rest of this letter isn’t a dead giveaway) it was Atlantis. So you see good Paco, not only is Atlantis vs. Rush a big time match with a big time story, but it also brings us full circle. Atlantis was without a doubt a star in 2000 when he fought Villano III, but he wasn’t Atlantis the way he is today. That match set him on a path from being a really, really great luchador to one of the three greatest luchadors in history. So what better would there be to honor Villano III and the great match he had with Atlantis all those years ago then by having Atlantis defend his mask once more against an opponent who HAS to beat him? An Atlantis mask match is already kind of a big deal in normal circumstances Paco; this isn’t normal circumstances.
So you see Paco, you need to do this match. I get that it may feel too soon to do it, that Diamante Azul or Pierroth may have incriminating photos of you that they’re blackmailing you with, this or that and this or that. Whatever it is it doesn’t matter; Homenaje a Dos Leyendas is a show deserving of a huge audience and Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth not only isn’t bringing in that audience, it’s spitting in the face of the beloved legend you’ve chosen to honor. So when you announce the official card for the show tomorrow, don’t spit in his face. Give him a main event that will include great, unpredictable action, better drama and beautiful storytelling. Give him a main event that draws an audience that he used to draw all the time. But most importantly, give him a main event worthy of March 17th, 2000, a day Villano III, Atlantis and us lucha libre fans will never, ever forget. You’ve been given a rare opportunity here Paco; a chance to make lightning strike twice on the same date seventeen years apart with a match that could create some unforgettable moments. Imagine Atlantis retaining his mask and shaving Rush’s head for the first time. Hell imagine Rush actually unmasking Atlantis seventeen years to the day Atlantis unmasked Villano III, with Villano watching on. You aren’t getting that with Diamante Azul vs. Pierroth; quite frankly, you aren’t getting it with anything else. I have no doubt you’ll do Atlantis vs. Rush someday Paco (unlike Rush vs. L.A. Park, but that’s a letter for another time) and regardless of when it is I’ll be interested and glued to the screen. But even if it doesn’t have the buildup you, I or many others would’ve wanted, there’s no better time for this match than four weeks from Friday on March 17th. Give us Atlantis vs. Rush, mask vs. hair Paco. Give us something we, you, all of the wrestling world and most importantly Villano III will never forget. That’s all I ask.
Oh, and maybe remind Valiente to wear the pants all the time. Other than that though that’s all I ask!
Your bestest buddy,