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CMLL Puebla: Static Age
You may have noticed that I didn’t preview tonight’s CMLL Puebla show. You may also be wondering why…unless you were one of the unlucky folks that watched tonight’s show. It’s becoming apparent to me that, aside from a few highlights, CMLL’s Monday show isn’t must see TV and tonight further proved that point. There were things to like of course, including an amazing performance in the semi-main event, a good second match and the chance to see a future WWE superstar in the main event. Overall though this show did nothing to make me excited about next week or any of the Puebla shows going forward, which could mean fewer previews and perhaps even less reviews of the show as the weeks go by. But we’ll cross that bridge when we get there. For now, let’s break this bad boy down. Moses; its memin’ time.
El Malayo & Fuerza Chicana defeated Arkalis & París two falls to one
Your everyday mediocre CMLL opener that might’ve been better if not for the presence of Fuerza Chicana. To say this man was awful here would be like saying Spotlight shouldn’t have won the Oscar for Best Picture last year. He was pitiful aside from his finishing sequence (where he hit a nice DDT out of a Suplex), something highlighted even more by his partner Malayo giving a really good effort and actually looking like he belonged. Sadly between him and Arkalis it wasn’t enough, and Fuerza Chicana can now be found on my “never should be allowed to wrestle again” list alongside Arkángel. This of course means CMLL will be teaming Arkángel and Chicana up next week, leading to me scalping myself like I’m in Inglorious Basterds.
Police Man & King Jaguar defeated Tigre Rojo Jr. & Millenium two falls to one
This was one of the two best matches of the night, which pretty much tells you everything you need to know about the rest of this show. In fairness this was efficiently worked the whole way through and the effort was top notch, particularly from a game Tigre Rojo Jr. Much like Hombre Bala Jr. this past Friday, Tigre is a really talented guy who just needed the right opponents to show what he could do. He did just that here and looked as impressive as I’ve seen him in awhile. Frankly that goes for everyone. Millenium was an effective partner for Tigre (though with a little less flash), while the rudos did very well to let the technicos get their stuff in while also cutting a nice pace on offense and defense. The unfortunate thing is King Jaguar and Police Man’s best days are behind them and there’s only so much they can do without having an off moment every once in awhile. Even with that this was a good match that was easy to watch, which is more than I can say for the next match.
Estrellita & Princesa Sugehit defeated Amapola and Tiffany two falls to one
I’ll sum this up in one word; yikes. This was a putrid match that should’ve been a Princesa Sugehit-Amapola singles match. I don’t care if it made no sense because it would’ve been far better than watching Tiffany look like the worst female luchadora in the history of the western hemisphere or Estrellita try her heart out only to look like a shell of her former self. It was a painful match to watch and a glaring spotlight on just how poor the CMLL luchadoras division is without Dalys, Zeuxis, Marcela and Sanely around. They better be hoping that Zeuxis doesn’t get a contract offer from WWE; otherwise CMLL and this division are so screwed it’ll make what happened to Bret Hart look like an amicable split.
Stigma, Titán, Stuka Jr. defeated Misterioso, Sagrado, Skándalo two falls to one
It looked like through fall one that this match had Match of the Evening potential; then Skándalo got more involved, the rudos took control with some sloppy moves and the match descended from good to okay in a matter of seconds. It’s a shame because that first fall was really good, highlighted by a great Stigma suicide dive, Titán and Stuka looking every bit the superstars they are and Sagrado bringing some cool moves to the table. Sadly that was the match peak, even though it never became a bad match and did end with the technicos winning following a Stigma roll up and a great Titán split legged moonsault to the outside. If nothing else this match highlighted the theme of this show; with a little extra it could’ve been so much more.
Sam Adonis, Kráneo, Ripper defeated Máximo, Johnny Idol, Valiente two falls to one
This was the best match of the night and even it was flawed. I don’t know what the guy who booked the show was thinking, but he clearly wasn’t of the right mind as he pretty much neutered Johnny Idol and Valiente from doing any big spots and put far more focus on Ripper and Kráneo. Kráneo worked just fine tonight but Ripper, as per usual, was lifeless and plodding. Somehow he wasn’t even the most lifeless and plodding person in this match; that honor would go to CMLL’s ancient referee, who once again messed stuff up and looked like he should be anywhere but out in the ring keeping track of a bunch of guys forty to fifty years younger than him. Seriously CMLL; can you not afford to bring Edgar in for a Monday show or something?! He’s the best referee you have and yet he’s treated the same way Ross Geller treated marriage.
So why was this match the best of the night? Because of one man; Sam Adonis. This was his best performance that I’ve seen from his CMLL run thus far and it singlehandedly saved this match in almost every way. Everything Adonis did worked. He had his usual display of power throughout the match. He once again played to the crowd with absolute perfection, especially when he was working with Máximo in sequences that further prove these two need to be working together ASAP. But what separated this from his usual performances was that Adonis actually gave us a more thorough glimpse of his most underrated quality; his athleticism. Anyone who’s seen Adonis knows that he’s quite athletic for a big guy, but he really showed it tonight, culminating in an absolutely beautiful over the rope senton onto Johnny Idol. It wasn’t just good; it was Volador Jr. good and something that I didn’t think Adonis had in his arsenal (silly me right?). When you put it all together, from the lucha spots to the charisma to the power game to the interactions with his opponents, Sam Adonis was absolutely brilliant in this match and made it must see, even as the guys around him aside from Máximo were misused or poor. I hope CMLL was watching closely because Adonis has proven he’s ready for bigger things than he’s doing now. I’ll be shocked if they don’t give him a singles program soon. That’s basically all he needs at this point to get everyone talking.
Máscara Dorada, Volador Jr., Mistico defeated Mephisto, Ephesto, Felino two falls to one
On paper this looked like the best match of the night; instead it turned out to be a by the numbers exhibition that you generally only see from main events after they’ve followed an awe inspiring singles match. I was highly disappointed here and I honestly have no idea why these guys didn’t pull out any bigger tricks, especially Dorada, who for the first time seemed to be taking it easy. Has WWE decreed he not go all out in his matches? Were the guys just unmotivated? Whatever the case this was a hum drum match aside from one Volador dive and a couple nice moments from Dorada sprinkled in here and there, with the other guys contributing little (especially Mistico, who was borderline nonexistent here). It’s a little infuriating to be honest; we know that CMLL is capable of having awesome matches on this show as we’ve seen it happen this year several times. Recently though the matches in Arena Puebla, especially the main events, just seem to be playing it safe for whatever reason. It’s a shame, it’s getting old and it’s something CMLL needs to look into changing. Otherwise CMLL is going to become a Tuesday and Friday show exclusively for me.
That’ll do it folks. You’ll see me tomorrow for a CMLL review of the Tuesday show and perhaps a Lucha Underground preview of some sorts. Depends on how much info I get on the matches (though I may just do a rundown of Jack vs. Sexy Star). Till we meet again, Spidey returns again!