CONSEJO MUNDIAL DE LUCHA LIBRE
SEPTEMBER 27, 2019
MEXICO CITY, MÉXICO
It’s time for the oldest wrestling company in the world to have their most important show of the year: Aniversario. As you can read in thecubsfan’s preview, the expectations are very low for this event and on a personal note, I find myself very annoyed towards the company due to their recent string of lazy and shameless booking.
And… the show started bad for all foreigners. The Fite TV stream never worked so it was impossible to watch Aniversario live. It’s not a big surprise given that CMLL rarely cares about the international market except for the tourists attending Arena Mexico. Let me set this straight: CMLL doesn’t care if you paid money for an iPPV, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t even remember that they were working with Fite.
STIGMA, AUDAZ & REY COMETA DEF. MISTERIOSO JR., VIRUS & TIGER
A forgettable opener that featured some of the most misused talent in the company: Tiger, Audaz and Rey Cometa; all three of them were okay in this match but clearly didn’t have their strongest performances. The action felt a bit disconnected and the crowd was not interested in the result. The finish saw Audaz taking out Virus with a beautiful tope suicida, while Rey Cometa and Tiger awkwardly exchanged moves until the former hit a 450 Splash for the pin. Stigma complemented the win with a Dragonrana on Misterioso. No drama and no sense of escalation in this one. **
TITÁN, DULCE GARDENIA & DIAMANTE AZUL DEF. HECHICERO, HIJO DE VILLANO III & REY BUCANERO
Diamante Azul worked hard to make this a bad match, but luckily Hechicero, Titán and Dulce Gardenia were there to stop him. Every time Hechicero stepped in the ring, he brought quality to the action; Titán didn’t have much time to shine, but he was as good as always. Dulce Gardenia might have been the highlight. He’s still green, but his exótico gimmick is already connecting with the crowd and there was a certain joy in watching him perform. Gardenia felt like a breath of fresh air and his charisma broke the tension of the match.
However, the result was very stupid. Técnicos won the first fall by DQ after Bucanero unmasked Diamante Azul. And in the next fall, the rudos had everything in control to earn a fall, but no… they decided to just stomp Dulce Gardenia into oblivion until the referee disqualified them. Yes, we had a match with TWO STRAIGHT DISQUALIFICATIONS in the company’s biggest show of the year. This is beyond stupid. Unbelievable. **¼
CMLL NATIONAL WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP: LA METÁLICA (C) DEF. DALYS
This was supposed to be Marcela putting the CMLL World Women’s Championship on the line against Dalys, but the former had to pull out of the match due to injury. Dalys is one of the most protected wrestlers in the company and it’s clear she’s not very interested in improving the women’s division around her. Having a National Championship is not enough for Dalys, who did her best to make Metálica look bad. Metálica is not exactly Momo Watanabe, but she has improved a lot this year… too bad Dalys wasn’t going to sell too much for her.
But if Dalys never loses, then what happened here? Well, of course she has to be protected, so in the last 5 minutes we were treated to Dalys completely dominating the match. She destroyed Metálica and constantly attempted pinfalls, but for some reason Metálica didn’t even kick out, it was just Dalys breaking the fall without even acknowledging it. She would just break a 2 count, stand up, do another move, and repeat the cycle. After a while, Metálica suddenly did a HORRENDOUS cover attempt (if you can call that an ‘attempt’) where the shoulders were clearly NOT ON THE MAT. The referee–who was RIGHT IN FRONT OF SAID SHOULDERS–just counted to three while Metálica awkwardly tried to use the ropes as leverage. All of this was done just to protect Dalys, who was never going to allow a clean finish.
This was embarrassing to watch, a full display of the toxic political environment in current CMLL and a perfect exemplification of why their women’s division is in utter shambles. DUD
I can't understood how this was supposed to work, there's no way Metalica could've had her feet on the rope while Dalys had her shoulders down in that position.
if CMLL was firing people for not meeting their standards last night, it should've included whoever approved of this pic.twitter.com/akrxyEKiTp
— luchablog (@luchablog) September 28, 2019
GRAN GUERRERO, EUFORIA & MEPHISTO DEF. NIEBLA ROJA, ÁNGEL DE ORO & SOBERANO JR.
A fine, yet uninspired bout that will not be remembered tomorrow. Soberano worked hard, the Chávez brothers (Niebla & Ángel) were heavily booed by the pro-rudo Aniversario crowd and Gran Guerrero had a nice showing. Euforia & Guerrero are tag team champions and you could see the match was trying to push a tag feud between them and the Chávez Brothers; soon enough, Soberano took out Mephisto with a Fosbury Flop while Ángel & Niebla pinned Guerrero & Euforia with a top rope tag move for the win.
With mic in hand, Ángel de Oro had to fight against a storm of boos to issue a challenge for the tag team belts. This is fine, but that challenge should’ve been issued a month ago in order to have a tag team title match on the company’s biggest show of the year, right? Or am I missing something? Isn’t that how booking works? Why was he challenging on ANIVERSARIO?? **½
MASK VS. MASK APUESTAS MATCH: MICROMAN DEF. CHAMUEL
Now we’re talking. The only anticipated match of the evening delivered big time. Two men hated each other, and after many sneak attacks from Chamuel and even a dirty victory during Grand Prix, Microman had enough and wanted to get revenge by taking Chamuel’s most important thing: his mask. This is such a simple story (it isn’t so hard, CMLL!) and it was executed with care by both sides leading up to the Apuestas Match.
After the match started, the action quickly spilled to the floor where Chamuel hit Microman with a Powerbomb on the barricade. But soon Microman got the upper hand and hit a fantastic dive from the top of the stage! The crowd–that was already red hot–exploded in joy. Right at that moment, Microman was the biggest star in CMLL.
After absorbing more punishment, Chamuel managed to land some offense to control the match, which was perfect because after a while, the crowd was dying to see Microman’s comeback. Finally, after some dramatic kickouts, Microman hit a spectacular Code Red and pinned Chamuel. Arena México exploded.
Chamuel is José Francisco García Cruz from San Juan Tuxco, Puebla, 13 years as a professional wrestler.
This was a great, fun spectacle that delivered drama and was always supported by the crowd. These men busted their butts to create a cool moment and to be honest, I even got a little emotional watching the unmasking of Chamuel. Just thinking about the possibility of Ciber the Main Man and Dalys getting more money for their horrible matches than these gentlemen makes my blood boil. ****
MEXICAN NATIONAL TRIOS CHAMPIONSHIP: NUEVA GENERACIÓN DINAMITA (CUATRERO, FORASTERO & SANSÓN) (C) DEF. CARÍSTICO, MÍSTICO & VALIENTE
Nueva Generación Dinamita always deliver in big occasions and 86th Aniversario was no exception; they showcased their tremendous chemistry and created a bunch of fun sequences that kept the fans on their toes. The match kicked into high gear in a frenetic third fall that had a ton of crazy dives and a nice finishing sequence where Forastero first eliminated Valiente with a Swanton Bomb, but Carístico submitted him with La Mística. Finally, Sansón countered a top rope Místico Frankensteiner to hit an Argentine Powerbomb and get the win. NGD is a guarantee of quality and no matter how random their opposition is, they always find ways to entertain. ***½
HAIR VS. HAIR STEEL CAGE APUESTAS MATCH: NEGRO CASAS WAS DEFEATED BY ÚLTIMO GUERRERO, BIG DADDY, BÁRBARO CAVERNARIO, CIBER THE MAIN MAN, GILBERT EL BORICUA AND VOLADOR JR.
Here was the format of the match: Seven men start inside the cage but they have to wait three minutes before attempting to escape. The last two men remaining face each other, and the one who gets pinned/submitted loses his hair.
And of course, because this is CMLL, we had a bunch of graphics covering at least 30% of the screen during almost the entire match. This abomination started and some competitors tried to escape despite the rules stating ‘you can’t escape until three minutes have passed.’ After that dumb rule expired, Big Daddy quickly escaped as an announcer said ‘He jumped over The Wall!’ Then Gilbert and Bárbaro escaped. Volador and Ciber joined forces against the veterans, but in hilarious fashion Volador tricked The Main Man into thinking he was going to dive from the top rope only to climb and escape. Negro and UG failed on teaming up to take out Ciber, who escaped with little effort. The two CMLL legends wrestled for a bit, Negro attempted La Casita, but Guerrero kicked out. For no logical reason whatsoever, Negro tried escaping the cage, Guerrero caught him and hit the Guerrero Special for the win.
Oh boy. Despite having a cage around it, this match had no structure at all and felt dumb. Yes, this MAIN EVENT match was DUMB. Maybe one of the dumbest main events I’ve seen for a while. No heat, no drama, no reason to exist, no storytelling, no psychology, nothing. Absolutely nothing. This was like watching the CMLL booking committee taking a big, nasty, smelly poo in the lap of each and every lucha fan in the building. I’m not giving this the DUD just because Volador Jr.’s escape was hilarious. ¼*
CMLL 86th Aniversario was a masterclass in ineptitude. You reap what you sow and this show was almost a total failure; Microman and Chamuel saved the night with their fantastic Apuestas Match, but even with that I would say this is a Worst Show of the Year Contender.
Unsurprisingly, the attendance was very good and it seems like everything except the stands was sold out. Aniversario is like a tradition: It doesn’t matter how bad the card is, fans will go to Arena Mexico to see this show, which in turns makes CMLL comfortable in putting on these lackluster matches. It’s a vicious never-ending circle where all the fans lose, even if most of them don’t realize it.
Of course, the most important news to come out on September 27th was not this horrendous Aniversario show, but the exit of both Rush and Dragon Lee from CMLL. If you’ve been paying attention to the scene, there were many red flags leading up to this big announcement/firing. Rumours of a very unhappy CMLL locker room, danger in the continuation of the NJPW/ROH relationship and obvious bad management are piling up on ‘la serie y estable’ company, which will have a troublesome rest of 2019 if they don’t do something soon. Recently, CMLL has lost Tritón, Sangre Azteca, Dragon Lee and Rush; Místico could join their brothers soon; Tiger must be looking at the big success his brother (Puma King) is having all over the world and if he has any brains should be planning his escape; more and more international promotions are looking at Bárbaro Cavernario who could be tempted by juicy offers (he already had to pull out of PWG BOLA due to his boss’ orders); young luchadores like Audaz and Rey Cometa are being completely wasted and could be looking for other options; luchadores like Blue Panther Jr. and Fuego had publicly expressed their unhappiness in the company; and I know of a couple of main eventers that would be happy to leave if the right offer comes their way. This is not looking good, and to be honest I’m glad. CMLL has been mediocre for too long and this situation should light a fire under their butts to actually TRY something… anything!
CMLL is a promotion that doesn’t care about you, the fan. They don’t care about the scene, the evolution of lucha libre or their stars. They are happy as long as tourists keep coming to the shows and they earn just enough money to keep things moving. Why risk it? Why try to develop stars? Why try to keep Rush and Lee? The hardcores keep coming no matter what, so why bother building a great Aniversario card if fans come to the arena anyway? CMLL is not only a disgrace to lucha libre, but one of the main factors why the local scene struggles so much to grow. They are hazardous to the industry and should be seen as one of the worst promotions of 2019.