CMLL Tuesday: Return of Atlantis
If ever there was a CMLL Tuesday show that could pass for being big...alright this one wasn't it, but it was kind of close. Tonight's romp in Arena Mexico featured the return of Atlantis after six months on the shelf, the final appearance of several luchadors for a few weeks while they journey to Japan for FantasticaMania and, if you believe it or not, a match featuring the Grumpy Old Luchadora trio that didn't suck. That would normally constitute as big, except that the rest of the show was mostly filler and even the main event, in setting up a big match, was disappointing in a Abbi loves Jeremy kind of way. Such is life I suppose. But hey, someone has to review this shindig and now that I'm done battling with Gran Metalik truthers on the internet, I can give it to you. Yes, Gran Metalik truthers are real and they think he's boring. BORING! This is why the country sucks right now. Moses, get the meme out; I'm too disgusted to think about anything else.
Magia Blanca & Retro defeated Akuma & Yago two falls to one
I’m a little surprised more people weren’t excited for this match going into the show, considering it only featured two well liked rudos and a technico (Magia Blanca) who was involved in the best CMLL opener in at least a year. It’s all your fault Retro! Ultimately this didn’t come anywhere close to the Friday opener, but it was still pretty solid overall. To no one’s surprise, Magia Blanca carried the match and save for a semi-botch on a springboard rana attempt late in the match looked fluid and confident. Remember when he wrestled like he was auditioning for those Southwest commercials; he’s over that and then some, and the sky should be the limit for him. He wasn’t alone here though; Akuma continued his string of good performances with solid all around work, Yago…well his entrance game remained strong. Even Retro showed improvement! I still think he’s woefully miscast as a technico and I’m not sure his old school style works these days in any role, but he was more confident than usual and seemed to have a bit more oomph with his moves. All in all, you won’t remember this match five minutes from now, but it was better than the usual Tuesday opener and a good sign for Blanca going forward.
Drone, Fuego, Star Jr. defeated Arkángel de la Muerte, Nitro, Sangre Azteca two falls to one
What happens when three really, REALLY good luchadors take on three really, REALLY bad luchadors? As it turns out, they have a very passable match. I know; I couldn’t believe it either. I went from wondering at the start of this match if CMLL was trying to punish Drone, Fuego and Star Jr. for being good enough to get a FantasticaMania booking, only to go a complete 180 by the end. They made a match with Arkángel, Nitro and Sangre Azteca work! I can only reason that happened because someone in the back pulled the Grumpy Old Luchadors aside backstage and made it clear nothing was to go wrong. In fact, I have photographic proof of the conversation.
Having said all that, I still can’t sit here and say the match was necessarily good. No, the accomplishment of this was a) all three rudos looking like professionals (for once) and b) the technicos pulling them to respectability. I have no delusions towards the potential of Arkángel, Nitro and Azteca (at this stage of his career); all three are mediocre at best and that ain’t changing regardless of who’s in there with them. But they were at least on their best behavior tonight, and that allowed Drone, Fuego and Star Jr. to do stuff, with Star Jr. carrying the majority of the load after the rudos dominated falls one and two. For that, I applaud these three men. It’s not every day I make it out of an Arkángel match with my sanity intact, and I did this time thanks to them. Now hopefully they follow it up by doing even cooler stuff in Japan!
Puma defeated Disturbio
Talk about something that just existed. This match saw Disturbio try to roll Puma up at the beginning, followed by the two rudos going back and forth for four minutes before Puma caught Disturbio with La Casita for the win. That’s all that happened and all you need to know, which is both understandable and yet highly disappointing considering how great Puma can be. I guess they’re just saving their stuff for FantasticaMania? In any event, it was fine while it lasted, but there so little to it that I’m not quite sure why CMLL bothered with this match at all. And with that, we now live in a world where I used that last sentence to describe a Puma match after I somewhat praised a Arkángel/Nitro/Sangre Azteca trios match. I’m not sure I like where 2018 is taking me…
Johnny Idol, Okumura, Sam Adonis defeated Ángel de Oro, Rey Cometa, Niebla Roja two falls to one
The moment Sam Adonis walked out wearing a Kurt Angle style headgear wig, I knew this match would fantastic. I wasn’t wrong! Sure this won’t be remembered as a match of the year contender, but that’s quite alright as it was still a lot of fun. Oro, Cometa and Roja all worked a solid pace, and while Idol, Ok and Sam have been working well together, I thought this was by far their most complete performance thus far. I think it was just how they complimented each other; Okumura provides the stability (he won’t wow, but he does everything very well), Idol provided a burst he hasn’t shown in awhile and, in case the headgear didn’t make it obvious, Sam provide the entertainment. If you thought there was going to be a lull after the Negro Casas match, you were mistaken as Sam not only provided laughs with the “hair” (and Roja’s subsequent removal of the “hair”), but his sequences with Cometa were on point and he even found time in between it all to break out the worm. Hey, if I was on a roll, I’d do it too. For what it’s worth, I’m also pleased Sam kept the 450 in his bag and that CMLL didn’t pressure him into doing it; that easily could’ve been the case, and it would’ve been a mistake considering how unique that move is. All in all, a very entertaining match and hopefully just a taste of what Idol, Ok and Sam can do when they get the chance to face a more dynamic trios team.
Dragón Lee, Rush, Soberano Jr. defeated El Cuatrero, Máscara Año 2000, Sansón two falls to one
Poor Forastero; not only does the dude not get to go to Japan with his cousins, but he can’t even get into this match! He doesn’t have it as bad as Universo 2000 Jr., but that’s not saying much because no one has it as bad as Universo 2000 Jr.! In any event, it may have been for the best he wasn’t in this one because, aside from Soberano being unable to turn off his awesomeness, this match was just kind of there. Rush and Máscara Año feuded a bit (an intriguing and yet terrifying idea as I could easily see CMLL sticking those two in the Homenaje a Dos Leyendas main event), Dragón Lee, Cuatrero and Sansón coasted; hell even Soberano wrestled with his shirt on for most of the match! I suppose we can chalk this up to another case of luchadors trying to take it easy before Japan, which is once more understandable and once more disappointing because hey, I kind of have a review to do here dudes! In any event, it wasn’t bad and Soberano at times was very good, but it was also just kind of there.
Atlantis, Carístico, Volador Jr. defeated Euforia, Gran Guerrero, Último Guerrero two falls to none
If no one else is going to say it, I will; hot damn was it good to see Atlantis back. It didn’t matter if he was going to do absolutely nothing or hop right back to doing backbreakers and suicide dives without missing a beat; a lucha libre world without Atlantis is very lame and him being around isn’t a bad thing. So what did he end up doing? Probably wisely, CMLL had him do the bare minimum. He was still moving decently and he had one sequence with the UG and GG that went well, but overall it appeared Atlantis was taking it easy, both because it was his first time back in months and because he was getting on a flight to Japan not long after the show. Thus, I can’t say I blame for taking things so slow. Luckily CMLL had another good excuse for not giving him the spotlight in the form of Carístico and Euforia feuding.
As Diamond Dallas Page would say, and as the gif above indicates, that’s a good thing! Seeing as a whole lot of really good luchadors will be gone for the next few weeks, it would stand to reason CMLL would want to use as many of the good luchadors they have left as possible, and Carístico and Big Euf both fit that mold. Even better, it means Big Euf in a singles match! I will never not understand why Euforia, who is easily the best base in Mexico and a great worker when given the chance, hasn’t been given more singles opportunities. Imagine the magic he could work with Dragón Lee, Volador, Mistico, hell even his own son?! I guess it takes everyone leaving for him to get the shot, and he vs. Carístico should be pretty good in two weeks. Oh yeah, did I forget to mention; it won’t be next week as Carístico offered no challenge, which means we can look forward to another trios match where a few cool things happen before Euforia either low blows Carístico for the DQ or does it behind the ref’s back and picks up the win. Joy. Ultimately that’s the lone downside of this whole shindig. Not a lot happened in this match aside from Carístico and Big Euf beefing, a low blow is hit and instead of going right to the match we’re made to wait one week. Only in CMLL sports fans. And they wonder why so many of their dudes are so happy to hitting Roppongi for the next two weeks.
That’s game! I’m off till tomorrow, where we’ll be talking more hockey (though I haven’t decided what I’ll be covering as of yet). Till then, THIS!