CONSEJO MUNDIAL DE LUCHA LIBRE
SIN PIEDAD 2020
JANUARY 1, 2020
MEXICO CITY, MÉXICO
After a horrible, forgettable and even offensive 2019, CMLL is trying to start 2020 hot with two Lucha de Apuestas matches and an interesting card that could end up surprising us. You can read luchablog’s preview of the action here.
BLACK PANTHER, GUERRERO MAYA JR. & DRONE DEF. UNIVERSO 2000 JR., EL SAGRADO & TIGER
A mediocre match with bad pace and zero flow in its execution. The third fall was chaotic and salvageable, but nothing to be proud of. Drone hit a double knee strike on the corner to Sagrado and Guerrero Maya hit a springboard elbow to give técnicos the win. **
HECHICERO, MEPHISTO & FELINO DEF. REY COMETA, AUDAZ & STAR JR.
I didn’t watch the opener live so technically this was the first match I saw in 2020. Ugh, what a depressing way to start my year in wrestling. This was a generic, bland, forgettable, useless CMLL trios match with a bunch of misused talent. The first fall was passable even though Rey Cometa almost died. The second (and final) fall, however, was a mess with barely any redeeming quality in it. Audaz did some flips and Hechicero reminded me what an utter waste of talent he is. Mephisto got the win for the rudos team with an Avalanche Alas del Infierno on Rey Cometa. **
NEGRO CASAS, BÁRBARO CAVERNARIO & HIJO DEL VILLANO III DEF. SOBERANO JR., KRANEO & ATLANTIS JR.
A fun match that had full crowd support and a nice pace to keep you on your toes. Bárbaro Cavernario was great, Hijo del Villano III perfectly played his villain role and Kraneo worked hard, getting some great pops for his babyface efforts. Atlantis Jr. keeps getting better and is looking more confident with every match: I enjoyed his short performance here. At the end, we saw Negro making Atlantis Jr. tap out with a Sharpshooter and Bárbaro lifting Kraneo to then finish him off with the Cavernaria Splash. ***½
Gotta say that the guys in the announce desk were very bad and even made some sexist comments, reminding us all that CMLL is still stuck in the 70’s.
MASK VS. MASK
PRÍNCIPE DIAMANTE DEF. ESPÍRITU NEGRO
Despite some sloppiness, Diamante and Espíritu worked hard to give us a decent Apuestas match that got the Arena Mexico crowd going. Espíritu won the first fall with a botched Canadian Destroyer attempt, then Diamante tied the match with a Spanish Fly. The third fall had a bunch of kickouts that were completely average… however, the crowd kept roaring through it all. I mean, a dude going for the cover after his opponent missed a Swanton Bomb isn’t exactly thrilling, but somehow the fans in attendance were eating it up. I guess there’s not much excitement in their lives. The camera showing Diamante’s mom suffering with every two-count was more effective as a drama-building device that anything the wrestlers were doing in the ring. Finally, Príncipe Diamante locked in a Juji Gatame arm lock and Espíritu Negro gave up despite the fact that his leg was millimeters away from the ropes. It looked extremely dumb. Looking back, it was just a basic match but maybe my expectations were so low that I ended up appreciating the effort. **
Espíritu Negro is Juan Manuel González Olalde, 38 years old and 20 years as a professional wrestler.
CAMPEONATO MUNDIAL EN PAREJAS CMLL
CARÍSTICO & MÍSTICO (C) DEF. CUATRERO & FORASTERO
The best match of this show was still very underwhelming. We got to see some fast tag team action, nice diving sequences and a lot of Canadian destroyers, but I don’t think I will remember much from this in a couple of days. While I’ve been enjoying the Carístico/Místico team, I feel like they’re missing something: their chemistry doesn’t always work and they definitely need to work on synchronizing their moves. For the finish of this bout, we got some cool huracarranas that popped the crowd and both Místico and Carístico using la Mística to submit the challengers. I feel like I should say more about this, but there’s nothing. This was a slightly entertaining match that had nothing new, just another random tag team CMLL match. ***¼
HAIR VS. HAIR
DULCE GARDENIA DEF. KAWATO-SAN
I was a fan of Kawato’s young lion run in Japan and I naively thought that he could do some fun stuff in CMLL. Boy, was I wrong. Kawato’s time in Mexico has been a nightmare and besides a match with Audaz, he’s done absolutely nothing important and in fact, it seems like the charisma he displayed in Japan is now gone. Some of the fault is – of course – in CMLL’s shoulders: their booking has been atrocious and Kawato hasn’t had that much of a chance to grow.
Dulce Gardenia is CMLL’s top project right now. They are pushing him to become a big deal in the company and what better way to do it than making him vanquish an evil foreigner on New Year’s Day. Of course, this was built as Mexico vs. Japan because CMLL loves to remind us about their xenophobic booking and their pathetic urge to try to prove that their Mexican luchadores are better than everybody in the world. So, yeah… the result of this match was completely obvious.
The first two falls were pointless: a couple of dumb submissions for each wrestler in the first minutes. Then… well, the third fall happened. Nobody is going to remember it tomorrow because it was dull. There was no drama, no intensity, no heat, just two guys trading holds and diving outside the ring. To be fair, Gardenia’s high flying action did look good but that’s it. Meanwhile, Kawato needed Okumura’s help to catch his opponent. (Kawato’s kryptonite is catching luchadores). Dulce made Kawato submit with a campana invertida in the most unimpressive way possible.
I also want to note that one of CMLL’s commentators didn’t have a clue of what is Kamaitachi’s name in New Japan Pro Wrestling. We all know that no one in CMLL cares about the outside world, but it’s always fun to have the commentators remind us how ignorant they are.
Anyway, this match was okay and it served its purpose of pushing Dulce Gardenia. To be honest, if this hadn’t been an Apuestas match, I would’ve been fine with it, but I was quite angry at the lack of energy displayed by both men. **
CMLL Sin Piedad 2020 was a mediocre show that did one thing right (push Dulce) and nothing more. Watching this promotion has become a chore: it’s not fun. You might get a cool match here and there, but before reaching that precious quality, you have to go through lots of excrement. And, to be honest, there’s nothing new with this terribly outdated product: bad booking, bad announcing, wasted talent, but you get fantastic matches every couple of weeks. That won’t change anytime soon. Talking about change in CMLL it’s like trying to argue with your racist relative at the dinner table. It’s a waste of time.