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82nd CMLL Anniversary Show Preview!
It’s time! It’s time! Its CMLL Anniversary Show prediction time! Yes, tomorrow night, the oldest wrestling promotion in the world will celebrate its 82nd year of existence with their annual Anniversary Show (think Triplemania, Starrcade or Wrestlemania, but just done for a lot longer period of time). And while AAA and Triplemania may appear to be the biggest deal in lucha libre these days, the Anniversary Show is known to have some killer moments as well, whether it be big time title matches, the settling of blood feuds or a high stakes mask vs. mask (or hair) match. This year is no different, as CMLL will present some promising up and coming talent, a final goodbye to one of their most popular female performers, and a mask vs. mask match between a legend and the future. Sounds pretty good to me, right? Thus, I thought I’d give it a preview. Now I’ll warn you right now reader, this isn’t going to be as polished or well done as something you’d see on the luchablog, as my CMLL experience is still growing. That said, I will try the best I can here to provide as good a preview I can, with a few jokes and some actual insight along the way. Get it? Got it? Eh. But enough stalling, let’s get this show on the road. Hit the epic music!
Lucha Libre Rules Six Man Tag
Esfinge, Fuego and The Panther vs. Disturbio, Puma and Virus
What to Expect: First off, let me explain what Lucha Libre rules means, as CMLL does their matches a bit differently than say Lucha Underground or AAA. Basically, a match fought under lucha libre rules is always two out of three falls. Why? I don’t know, ask the people who came up with the rules! In any event, pretty much all of CMLL’s matches are fought under this lucha libre rules set, and all the matches on this card will be as well. So fair warning; if you’re not into the two out of three falls stipulation, turn the ship around now. Somewhere in Stamford, I can hear Vince McMahon frantically clicking the backspace button.
As for this match, to be honest, I’m not sure what to say as the only one I’m semi familiar with is Puma (prior to research of course). What I can tell you is damn, many of these guys are young in this bout. In fact, three of the luchadores participating in this opener are 25 or younger, and The Panther is in fact only seventeen years old. SEVENTEEN YEARS OLD! CMLL must be getting really desperate if they’re going for that young (I kid, I kid guys! Just wanted to use the Han Solo line). Will this have a big effect on the match? If anything, it’ll probably make it crazier. From what little I’ve seen of Panther, he seems to have some serious hops, and I’m willing to bet his partners have them as well. And I know Puma is at least solid, which is good for the rudos side. Look for this to be fast paced, high flying and death defying. Make sure there’s also an oxygen mask nearby. Not just for you, but for Virus as well, seeing as he’s the only one who’s been wrestling over a long period of time.
Winners: When in doubt, always go with the option that’s going to get the crowd into a good mood for the rest of the show. Thus, I’m picking the Youth Brigade of Panther, Esfinge and Fuego to win. By the way, that’s what you should call them CMLL, the Youth Brigade. Or perhaps Brigada de la Juventud, which according to Google Translate is Youth Brigade in Spanish. I’ll leave my email address at the bottom just for you CMLL. Email me!
Six Man Tag
Maximo, Guerrero Maya Jr. and Stuka Jr. vs. Los Revolucionarios del Terror
What to Expect: Interesting one we’ve got here, mainly because the top titleholder in CMLL is involved. Yes, CMLL World Heavyweight Champion Maximo (who is Psycho Clown’s brother by the way. How cool is that?!) finds himself not in the prime spot and instead closer to the beginning of the show in a throwaway six man bout. Granted, it’s not like he could compete with Atlantis-La Sombra, but still. In any event, this should be at least a solid contest. Guerrero Maya and Stuka Jr. (GREAT NAME) have been teaming for awhile now (usually with a dude named Delta in trios matches), so they have chemistry. And I’m pretty sure a group that actually has a name in Los Revolucionarios del Terror (made up of Dragon Rojo Jr., Rey Escorpion and Polvara) has to know how to work well together as well. Expect this to be slower than the opener, but more meaningful due to the champ and the teams involved.
Winners: Going with the rudos here. As it turns out, Rey Escorpion and Maximo have been feuding on in off this year, with Maximo successfully defending his CMLL Heavyweight gold against Escorpion back in July. I say we see a continuance of that, with Escorpion and his fellow Revolucionarios getting a cheap win to set up a big match later on.
Six Man Tag
Dragon Lee, Mistico and Valiente vs. Negro Casas, El Felino and Mr. Niebla
What to Expect: Now we’re starting to get into the meat. There’s some big time talent in this match here. You might be familiar with Negro Casas and Felino, partially because they lucha libre royalty and partially because I just wrote about Casas earlier this week (still going strong that man). Even though they and partner Mr. Niebla aren’t the youngest dudes these days, all three still have at least a little left in the tank. And the technico team is superb. Mistico (CMLL’s replacement for the man you all know as Sin Cara/Myzteziz) and his partner Valiente are two excellent high flyers in their own right, even if they fly under the radar. And then there’s Dragon Lee. I cannot rave enough about how good this dude is. He’s only twenty years old, but he looks like a future star, with Angelico like athleticism and some solid Japanese style in his repertoire (he also has an awesome as hell finisher). If nothing else, you should be excited to see this match just to see him, as he could be a really big star for a long time coming.
Winners: Even though this will be his second Anniversary Show, I’m looking at this to be a coming out party of sorts for one Dragon Lee. Thus, I think we see him get the big win in the third fall for his team, as well as getting revenge on Casas for beating him earlier this year in the Leyenda de Plata tournament. I can’t wait to see how he does here.
Dark Angel vs. Princesa Sugehit
What to Expect: Arguably this is now one of the two biggest matches on the card after the fiasco that hindered the buildup of the last six man tag (more on that in a moment). Why? Well, this bout has meaning on two fronts. One, it’ll be the last match in Mexico for Dark Angel (aka Sarah Stock, who TNA fans will remember as Sarita), who will be joining WWE in a matter of weeks as a trainer. Two, Dark Angel and Sugehit have a lot of history together; as Sugehit is the one who unmasked Angel all the way back in 2004 after a classic 45 minute mask vs. mask match. Basically, you’re looking at the lucha libre equivalent of Trish Stratus’ last WWE match. Combine that sort of feel with the fact that both these women are really, REALLY good, and I think you could see something special here. In fact, dare I say it may be the match of the night for this card?
Winner: Historically, those who are retiring/leaving a promotion go out on their back, which would lead me to believe Angel will do that here. And yet, isn’t there something a little bit poetic about getting revenge for one of the biggest moments of your career? Thus, I think the victory eleven years in the making occurs, and Dark Angel heads towards WWE winning her last match.
Six Man Tag
Shocker, Ultimo Guerrero and Volador Jr. vs. Marco Corleone, Rush and Thunder (Los Ingobernables)
What to Expect: Now this is where the mess begins. Originally, this contest wasn’t supposed to feature Shocker or Marco Corleone; it instead was supposed to feature the legendary Dr. Wagner Jr. teaming with Rush and Thunder and the equally as legendary La Parka (the original one that is) teaming with Volador Jr. and Ultimo Guerrero. That would’ve been a huge bout, perhaps even bigger than the main event. So what happened? Well, La Parka ending up going off script on a post match promo (I believe the term “go f**k your mothers” was used at one point), and CMLL ended up canning him. Wagner, a good friend of La Parka in real life, then left CMLL on his own accord, forcing CMLL to replace them with Shocker and Corleone (who at least made some sense as he’s teammates with Rush and Thunder). On one hand, that’s a huge pile of chaos I don’t want to touch. On the other, isn’t it hysterical that someone actually cut a promo telling fans to go have sex with their moms? This is why we love La Parka. And also why CMLL hates his guts.
Now having said all of that, this match…alright I’ll be honest, who knows how good this will be? There are some positives; Rush is really good, Thunder…is named Thunder, Ultimo Guerrero and Volador Jr. have been dependable hands for CMLL for years, and Marco Corleone is an absolute beast. I’m not sure what I’m more impressed by, how good he became or how he was almost the final member of Evolution back in the Mark Jindrak days. At the same token, it’s very difficult to replace the star power they lost when Wagner and La Parka bolted, especially since the best they could do to replace Parka was Shocker. I expect the match will be fine, but there will likely be a cloud hanging over this one. A shame.
Winners: Due to all the controversy, this is a tough one to call. Let’s flip my Canadian dollar here (heads Team Shocker, moose Los Ingobernables). And…it’s a moose! Rush, Thunder and Corleone will take it. Man, aren’t you glad you came to read me and my expert analysis?
Lucha de Apuestas, mask vs. mask match
Atlantis vs. La Sombra
What to Expect: Here were are girls and boys. The big one, the show stopper, the main event, the icon…wow I’m degenerating into an HBK promo here. The story to this one actually dates back a few years, when Atlantis and Ultimo Guerrero took on La Sombra and Volador Jr. in a tag match at the 80th Anniversary Show. The match paired enemies with each other as teammates (sort of like the Lethal Lottery) with the winning team going on to face each other in the main event of the show. Sombra and Volador won, leading to the main event where Volador was unmasked by La Sombra. No big deal right? Unfortunately yes, as the fans were more heavily invested with the Atlantis-Guerrero rivalry than Sombra-Volador, and voiced their displeasure during the main event. In the end, the disrespected La Sombra turned rudo, joined up with Corleone, Rush and Thunder to form Los Ingoernables and eventually set his sights on Atlantis. And thus, here we are two years later.
The big question here is similar to the questions we all had for Rey Mysterio-Myzteziz a month ago at Triplemania; is this going to be a great match, or a great spectacle? The latter is likely in any event; Sombra is one of the best young stars CMLL has right now, and Atlantis is a legit legend, having wrestled for CMLL for over 30 years (back when they were EMLL!). Combine all that with the build up and the fact that a legendary luchadore could lose his mask (always a huge draw) and this will no doubt be a match the crowd can get hot for. As far as a potential classic/match of the night candidate though, I’m not sure. I just know it’ll be interesting to see how much Atlantis has left in the tank and if La Sombra can carry him to the promise land.
Winner: I’m gonna go different here and say what I would do, and what I think will happen. If CMLL gave me the book for this match (with my admitted learning curve towards the product), I would go with La Sombra. That may be sacrilegious seeing how revered Atlantis is, but the dude is in his fifties now and La Sombra is only twenty five. Unmasking a legend would make his career, a career that already is going pretty good. That would be my choice. In this case though, I think CMLL is going to go with Atlantis. He’s a legend, he’s still drawing for them, and if many other legends could keep their masks, why not him? Did I do a good job of hiding my disdain for that scenario there? Goodness, I’m totally on Team Sombra.
That’ll do it everyone. Hope you enjoyed this, and for those who don’t follow CMLL, hope this provided some insight. I’ll be back tomorrow with some other stuff, and hopefully soon I’ll be able to provide a review for the show. Till then, why not a Lucha Underground plug on a CMLL column? Am I asking for it, or crazy like a fox you’re wondering?
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