LuchaWorld Weekly Ramblings 12/12/11
TOSCANO LATEST TO LEAVE CMLL! JOINS LOS PERROS DEL MAL!
This past Thursday AAA held their press conference for the upcoming Guerra de Titanes show. They already had plenty on their table what with Guerra de Titanes being their final big event of 2011 and featuring one of the bigger match-ups that a lucha libre aficionado could possibly want to see between L.A. Park and Dr. Wagner Jr. Amid the turmoil going on in CMLL and with Los Perros Del Mal recently mentioning that there would be another surprise at their next show, Toscano was introduced as the newest member of Los Perros Del Mal at the AAA press conference. Also at the press conference was Texano Jr., so we now know that they will definitely be wrestling on AAA shows. Then again, for anyone to jump from CMLL, even if you want to consider yourself an ‘independent’, sooner or later, you’ll have to wrestle on AAA shows to keep your name in the minds of many lucha fans.
Toscano’s departure from CMLL isn’t that big of a surprise. There had been rumors going back to earlier in the year that he was thinking of leaving CMLL. He hasn’t been a major part of the promotion since about 2006. Outside of dropping his hair in 2009, he was there on name alone. In the last several years he’s been a fringe tecnico, who’s been passed over by several of the younger high-flying tecnicos. The biggest problem Toscano had in CMLL was that he was cast on the wrong side. He would have made a far more effective rudo at this stage of his career if he had continued with CMLL. Now with Perros Del Mal he’ll likely be a rudo, but he doesn’t quite fit their style. He’s obviously not a ‘hardcore/garbage’ wrestler and his days as a high-flyer are long gone. However, he did need a change.
While most might make the argument that his departure isn’t seen as a “big deal” there is the issue of how fans perceive Toscano leaving on the heels of seeing Hector Garza (still CMLL World Heavyweight Champion), Mascarita Dorada, and Texano Jr. leaving and amid even more speculation that more disgruntled wrestlers might leave CMLL. In the most recent Wrestling Observer Newsletter there was a lot written about a recent meeting were wrestlers were told if they were unhappy, they could leave. I dunno, to me if I was in the promotion, I would take that to mean that they don’t care if I stay or go and think little of me and the contributions I have made. This is somewhat similar to the old WCW meeting that was once mentioned when Eric Bischoff used the same tactic and it resulted in Raven asking out of his contract. He then returned to ECW. Its amazing that CMLL would even use that tactic. You’d be surprised when money is somewhat comparable, you can get people to ‘go through a wall’ for you if you treat them with some respect and use positive reinforcement with them.
With all these recent departures, many people have questioned if CMLL is in serious trouble. Given that their attendance has dropped tremendously since 2008, you have some who feel the promotion is in serious need of a change. Wrestlers leaving is a part of the business. It happens all the time. The timing for these lately and all the turmoil along with the bad booking by the promotion have many questioning how CMLL will survive in 2012.
MARCO CORLEONE RETURNS TO ARENA MEXICO!
Well amid all the turmoil going on with CMLL, this past Friday an old familiar face made his way back to CMLL. Before the main event, Maximo and Rush came out to announce that they were forming a new trio and that their partner would be the returning Marco Corleone. If I’m not mistaken, I think those two had some type of trio with Toscano. Corleone’s return in many ways helps CMLL not only stop the bleeding as it shows fans that there is incoming talent and not just talent leaving, there’s also the fact Corleone is viewed by fans as a ‘star’ and it also shows the wrestlers leaving that the door is open should things not work out with AAA and Los Perros Del Mal.
It was about 3 years ago when Marco Corleone left CMLL to join AAA. There had been rumors of his departure going back to late 2008 when Alex Koslov and Rocky Romero jumped to AAA and formed De-Generation MEX with Sean Waltman (X-Pac). The rumor at that time was that Waltman, who was with AAA had met with CMLL officials about joining their promotion, but instead Waltman talked Koslov and Romero into joining him in AAA. Rumor was Corleone passed on that idea. He spent several months being asked if he was leaving CMLL, but he kept shooting down the rumors. It wasn’t until the 2009 Rey de Reyes show were Marco Corleone finally made the jump to AAA. He made the save for Vampiro on that show. That same day, Dr. Wagner Jr. made his AAA debut. In many ways, Corleone’s debut date for AAA coinciding with Dr. Wagner Jr’s probably hurt Corleone’s momentum heading into a new promotion. It became pretty apparent that Dr. Wagner Jr. was going to get the big push. Corleone spent most of his time as part of the tecnicos protecting AAA against Konnan’s Foreign Legion. He also teamed with Latin Lover in a feud with La Hermandad 187, which on its owns could have had a bunch of issues given Latin Lover was already at a career crossroads being a TV celebrity/actor/TV host and at that time La Hermandad 187 were mostly known for being in ‘hardcore/garbage’ type wrestling matches (well, that was mostly Joe Lider). The two teams actually had a pretty good match at that year’s Triplemania. By early 2010, Corleone had grown disillusioned with AAA and decided to leave the promotion. He joined the Los Perros del Mal promotion, which basically meant he was wrestling as an independent. He also became a part of the MTV2/Lucha Libre USA “Masked Warriors” show which could be in limbo right now.
Corleone in the past mentioned leaving CMLL was a mistake. I think at that time, it felt like he had reached the peak of what CMLL could or would do with him, so it really wasn’t just him thinking that way. A lot of people thought that. I don’t think anyone expected AAA to mishandle his time there though given AAA is generally viewed as the ‘Americanized’ lucha promotion with a preference to heavyweights at the top of their shows. His return certainly stops some of the bleeding, but it still leaves many questions unanswered for CMLL.
Meanwhile, both promotions have released their full line-ups for the final big events of 2011. Both shows look strong on paper and are headlined by matches that have a good shot of being Match of the Year candidates. Both shows will air in some format in Japan on Samurai TV in January 2012. AAA’s Guerra de Titanes will be on PPV in Mexico. It probably will air in some form on TV in Mexico. CMLL’s show might have some matches airing on either the Fox Sports (in Mexico) or Televisa/Galavision shows.
THOUGHTS ON GUERRA DE TITANES LINEUP
1. Mascarita Divina, Mascarita Dorada, Octagoncito vs Mini Chessman, Mini Histeria, Mini Psicosis
This will be Mascarita Dorada’s in-ring return to AAA. He should breath new life to the minis division. The one big drawback is that the rudo side is much weaker without his long-time rival, Mini Abismo Negro. Match should be a good opener.
2. Pimpinela Escarlata vs Sexy Star [lumberjack, Reina De Reinas]
Konnan and La Braza (El Brazo as an exotico) will be the seconds in this match. Should be way better than some of the women’s matches involving the TNA knockouts. Fun comedy match.
3. Extreme Tiger & Joe Lider vs Nicho el Millonario & X-Fly [Mesas Infernales]
The hardcore match of the show with tables lit on fire. YAY! FIRE! FIRE! FIRE! Not really that excited about this match especially with the tecnico team.
4. Monster Clown, Murder Clown, Psycho Clown vs Chessman, D`Angelo Dinero, Gunner
Here’s were Chessman does a crazy spot and we forget about it a day later. Probably would have meant more if the Psycho Circus was undefeated. TNA guys don’t have that much name value to make this match come off even more interesting and most of the TNA talent that’s gone to Mexico has been rather underwhelming.
5. Cibernético, Electroshock, Zorro vs La Parka, Octagón, Silver King
This is the “Are You Kidding Me?” match of the night. El Zorro has been uninspired for much of 2011. Cibernetico, Electroshock, Octagon, La Parka are all pretty awful. Can’t believe Silver King is the best of the bunch. Probably should have put Chessman in this match. The charm of rudo La Parka is him working with really good tecnicos that take bumps for him. I’d expect this match to have some run-in, but then there’s a lot of matches on this card were I expect run-ins or any type of interference to be involved.
6. El Mesías vs AJ Styles
This should be good. Originally they had mentioned that Jarrett was going to defend the belt against El Mesias at this show. Jarrett’s going to be in India, so instead AAA gets to extend the bounty hunter angle, which I actually think is far better than rushing to Jarrett vs. El Mesias. They could save that match for Rey de Reyes and continue with the bounty angle for a few more months. Styles is a far better worker than most of the TNA guys that have come in. Still there’s the risk that they don’t mesh well and of course this being part of that current storyline, you have to assume there’s going to be interference during this match.
7. Drago, Fenix, Jack Evans vs el Hijo del Perro Aguayo, Halloween, Héctor Garza
This could be the best match on the card, however, there is a lot that could go wrong. For one, which Hijo del Perro Aguayo shows up. If its the one with his working boots on then great! The tecnico side is still more of a AAA mid-card cast, so there’s always the risk that people won’t take them seriously and just assume this is gonna be Perros Del Mal beatdown. That of course leads to the obvious that it could very well be just that. A Perros Del Mal beatdown with other members of their roster joining in.
This match could steal the show and has so much potential as far as leading the promotion into 2012. I don’t think there is anyone in AAA who could match Jack Evans as a ‘sympathetic babyface’ trying to fight against the odds. Him getting the win for his team could make for a fun feud between him and Hijo del Perro Aguayo in 2012. Fenix could be everything that AAA hoped Laredo Kid could have been 4-5 years ago. Drago has also been great. He’s coming off an injury, so don’t know how he’ll be in this match. The key is for this match to elevate the tecnico side no matter how the match ends. This would really go a long way for AAA heading into 2012.
8. Dr. Wagner Jr. vs LA Park [AAA LA]
Mentioned my thoughts on this match in the last ramblings column and still feel the same. Could be a great match, but could also fall apart and be similar to some of their past matches. At the most recent Perros Del Mal show, L.A. Park was attacked by all the Perros del Mal and in AAA’s storyline, he’s been very adament about not trusting them, so this could very well be L.A. Park’s final match in AAA as a rudo. He might be turning soon.
Overall, there should be at least 3 good matches. Possibly 5 good matches with the minis and Pimpi vs. Sexy Star matches. Looks far better than some of AAA’s other big shows previously held this year.
THOUGHTS ON SIN PIEDAD LINEUP
CMLL is running two shows on 12/16. This show will be held at Arena Mexico. They are also running a show at Arena Coliseo de Guadalajara. At the GDL show, the names on that show include Ultimo Guerrero, Averno, La Sombra, La Mascara and Super Porky. All these guys missing and they still have a pretty solid show. Granted you have your usual trios split up like Mephisto & Ephesto teaming with Rey Escorpion instead of just going with the actual trio.
1. Eléctrico & Último Dragoncito vs Demus 3:16 & Pierrothito
Minis opening the match. Fun as always. AAA’s one missing piece in their minis division is a quality rudo like Demus 3:16 or Pierrothito.
2. Dalis la Caribeña, Lady Apache, Marcela vs Princesa Blanca, Princesa Sugheit, Tiffany
Should be a good women’s match. Don’t see Amapola listed on either show.
3. Ángel de Oro, Máscara Dorada, Valiente vs Ephesto, Mephisto, Rey Escorpion
Another match that should be good. A little odd that they didn’t go with Averno and just going with the regular trio in this match. I can’t complain since Rey Escorpion is a very adequate replacement.
4. Olímpico, Psicosis, Volador Jr. vs Atlantis, Delta, Guerrero Maya Jr. [MEX TRIOS]
This is the other match on the card that has been built up in the past few shows. The Invasores trio defends the Mexican National Trios titles against the still unnamed Atlantis trio. This Invasores trio has been quite good since they formed in late August. They just have a good mix. Same can be said of the Atlantis trio. I predict title change.
5. Marco Corleone, Máximo, Rush vs Mr. Niebla, Negro Casas, Rey Bucanero
Marco Corleone’s CMLL return AND his trio is all together for this show. What could possibly go wrong? Maximo’s listed as wrestling on the Guadalajara show as well. Uh-oh! I believe this will be Corleone’s first time facing off against our hero, Zacarias El Perico. The tecnico team also feels like this could be the start of Rush going rudo. Like any other turn in CMLL, I’d expect a slow turn, but the trio does have two guys who would probably end up feuding with Rush at some point. The rudo team reunites Rey Bucanero with his former Peste Negra teammates. No idea why they didn’t replace Bucanero with someone else or perhaps gone with Fuerza TRT. I wouldn’t mind seeing a Corleone/Maximo/Rush vs. Fuerza TRT feud. There is also the issue that Rey Bucanero tossed Zacarias aside when he left La Peste Negra to join Fuerza TRT. I think that will be the rudos downfall.
6. Blue Panther vs Felino [hair]
This initially was going to be Blue Panther vs. Negro Casas, but when Felino asked to be the one in the hair match, it was switched to that singles match. Last week it was believed they had switched to a ‘relevos increibles’ tag team match involving Negro Casas, Felino, Blue Panther and Shocker. Shocker apparently was never going to be a part of the plan and that reportedly led to some problems between Shocker and CMLL. Shocker still hasn’t left, but he’s currently gone due to as he said, “personal problems”.
The build-up of this match still involves Negro Casas, so its most likely that this match sets up Casas vs. Blue Panther possibly in March at the Homenaje a Dos Leyendas show. Last Friday, Blue Panther piledrove both Casas brothers. This past Sunday, the commission had informed Blue Panther that he might be suspended. Guessing they just say he’s been suspended for Tuesday’s show. Probably should have done the suspension angle a week earlier, so he could do some run-in this past Friday in street clothes to cost Felino a match.
I think this match will be a Match of the Year candidate. For one thing, they made the right decision to keep it a singles match. I don’t think fans wanted another cage or multiple-person match headlining a big show.
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