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AAA Lucha Capital Tournament recap and review: Pentagon skinned a cool cat

AAA’s Lucha Capital tournament is underway as week one is complete. If you haven’t heard, AAA is putting on a 24 luchador tournament spanning over eight weeks each Wednesday. Check out the preview for all the information.

Before we get to the recap, you can watch the full one hour and fifty minute show for free on AAA’s Facebook page or skip through to the matches. You won’t be missing anything important if you just want the wrestling. Each bout was more or less ten minutes in duration.

Vanilla Vargas vs La Hiedra (at 13:00) was skippable. It was okay, but nothing riveting. If I had to choose the best, I would go with Pagano vs Taurus (at 32:00). I’m a big Taurus fan, and Pagano dusted off his lucha libre technical skills. Psycho Clown vs Monster Clown (at 59:00) and Pentagon Junior vs Puma King (at 1:25:00) were very solid with plenty of neat moves.

On to the show...

The debut episode of the Lucha Capital tournament was quite interesting as a change of pace from the norm. It took place inside a restaurant/bar (Pinche Gringo BBQ) with a three-piece band (Sin Cara) for live entrance music.

Vampiro and La Griega opened up with an introduction in the ring.

Vampiro y La Griega presentan desde Pinche Gringo BBQ: ¡#LuchaCapital! Sigue el evento EN VIVO por Facebook Live

Posted by Lucha Libre Triple A on Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The crowd was pretty small, but I’ll wait until next week before seeing if it becomes a pattern. AAA only announced the tournament on Tuesday, and Wednesday was Halloween, which is starting to be celebrated in parts of Mexico. I was surprised to see kids in my town collecting candy when was outside in the early evening. The word should spread for next Wednesday and hopefully bring in a larger crowd.

As I watched live, the highest viewer total that I noticed was 3,400. The count mostly fluctuated around the 3,000 mark. At the moment of writing in the middle of the night, there has been 112,000. That is a pretty strong number. It should continue growing tomorrow as more fans become aware.

The luchadores were very interactive with fans. Plenty of photos were taken before and after each match. There were also two competitions (arm-wrestling and dancing) between bouts.

The wrestling action delivered. All four fights were competitive and free-flowing. There were never any boring moments in the ring.

Vanilla Vargas defeated La Hiedra

La Hiedra had the size advantage and used it so. Highlights include a running flip off the apron by Vanilla Vargas, a fisherman suplex by Vanilla, a springboard back corkscrew crossbody by Vanilla, and sitdown front slams by Hiedra.

The finish was Vanilla pulling out a hurricanrana pin for the win. The execution was shaky, but it achieved victory nonetheless.

Pagano defeated Taurus

In a pre-match interview, Taurus answered with loud grunt noises. La Griega humorously provided long-winded translations of said sounds.

This bout had a solid pace. Highlights include a flying crossbody to the outside by Taurus, a suicide senton by Pagano, and a belly to belly suplex toss into the corner by Taurus.

Pagano cleaned Taurus’ clock for victory with a reverse hurricanrana head spike maneuver. That is one way to slay a man-beast.

After the second match, there was some fan fun. La Griega picked out the most handsome man in the audience to receive a surprise. His surprise was... Maximo!

The two commenced with an arm wrestling competition. Maximo was clearly stronger and toyed with him the entire time. Maximo muttered lines like, “Push it, papi. Hard, hard.” Maximo won and left it up to the crowd as to what they wanted. Beso! Beso! Beso! Maximo closed his eyes and puckered his lips but only received a hug and cheek kiss.

Psycho Clown defeated Murder Clown

Murder Clown was another goon in the pre-match interview. He just growled with no words spoken.

Highlights include back to back suicide dives by Psycho Clown, a 619 by Murder Clown, a leap outside by Murder, a third suicide dive by Psycho, and a huge flying splash by Murder.

Psycho prevailed with a Code Red maneuver. After the match, Monster raised Psycho’s hand out of respect.

The band Sin Cara played a full song as the fans danced.

Lucha Libre AAA on Facebook

La Griega was talking to one couple and the girl made sure to correct that they were just friends. That guy ended up being chosen as the winner of the dance portion of the show. His prize was free entrance to next week’s show.

Pentagon Junior defeated Puma King

In perhaps the best moment of the evening, Pentagon made his way through the crowd and taking pictures. A little girl stopped him and flashed the Cero Miedo hand sign.

Lucha Libre AAA on Facebook

Pentagon took some time to get to the ring. The break caused Puma King to fall asleep on the ropes.

Yo todos los lunes... #LuchaCapital

Posted by Lucha Libre Triple A on Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Pentagon pushed Puma King, so Puma did some rope crawling and rope swinging like he was in a hammock. Pentagon immediately charged and dropkicked Puma off the ropes onto the floor.

Highlights include a fancy powerbomb by Puma, a package piledriver by Pentagon onto the apron ledge, and a powerbomb toss by Pentagon onto the apron ledge once again.

For the finish, Puma missed a second rope back splash. Pentagon zipped up the corner and jumped forward to execute a Mexican Destroyer. A package piledriver finished the job.

¡CERO MIEDO! Pentagón Jr. vence a Puma King en la lucha estelar. ¿Qué te pareció este primer evento de #LuchaCapital?

Posted by Lucha Libre Triple A on Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The show closed in the ring with photos of the night’s four winners.

Week 1 of AAA’s Lucha Capital tournament was thumbs up. I enjoyed the vibe. It is a little like the Lucha Underground Temple, except little kid friendly. This felt like the type of show to kick back, relax with friends, and drink a couple beers.

I was impressed by Pagano. I’ve seen him wrestle maybe fifteen or twenty times. Only twice was I giving him praise. Those two times were when he actually did a variety of wrestling moves. In his other matches, they have been mostly brawls and hardcore. Pagano is good at those too, but they are not my preference.

I have to express similar sentiments for Psycho Clown. He is actually entertaining in genuine wrestling matches but can be tedious in street fights and brawls. With both Pagano and Psycho rocking the ring, it was a good evening of lucha libre action.

Vampiro was enjoyable in Spanish commentary. He wasn’t as loony as when he does AAA events in English. That’s not a good thing or a bad thing. One of my favorite lines was Vampiro questioning the referee’s tendency for slow counts. Was the ref slow on purpose of half lazy (medio huevon)? Vampiro also said Murder Clown was going to make hot cakes out of Psycho Clown during the big man’s flying splash. I chuckled at that.

If you are curious about the Lucha Capital tournament, then I say to give the show a chance. The next five weeks will probably be harmless fun watching competitive lucha libre bouts. I have no idea what to expect for week seven. The finale should be a whirlwind of excitement.

If you watched, what did you think of Week 1? If not, do you think you’ll check it out?

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