Welcome to the CMLL Roundup. Let’s get caught up on all the news and action from the past week. It is a little behind schedule, but everyday is a good day for some lucha libre. There was a title change, the feud continued between the Chavez brothers and Los Ingobernables, and Tetsuya Naito will be wrestling with Los Ingobernables at Arena Mexico this Friday.
Dragon Lee is the new welterweight champ
The biggest news from last week was Dragon Lee dethroning Mephisto for the CMLL World Welterweight Championship. The bout took place on March 19 from Puebla (starting at 1:50:20 of the show).
Lee entered with two titles. One was the CMLL World Lightweight Championship. I’m not sure what the other was. The seconds for the title bout were Lee’s brother, Mistico, and Mephisto’s father, Kahoz.
Fall 1 was quick with an unexpected pin scored by Mephisto. They had the back and forth feeling out process, then Mephisto ran the ropes. Lee jumped over Mephisto then dropped to the ground and rolled backward, but Mephisto was waiting. Mephisto stacked Lee up for the three count.
Fall 2 was a quick one as well. Mephisto was in control, but Lee escaped a suplex. Both ran the ropes in the same direction. Lee was a step quicker and pumped the brakes in front of Mephisto for a fancy roll-up to tie the score.
Fall 3 was heated as Mephisto came out on top of a chop-fest to start. Highlights include back-to-back suicide dives by Lee, Mephisto shedding a hurricanrana on the apron which in effect was a powerbomb to Lee, a double underhook front suplex by Mephisto, a tope con hilo by Lee, a sitdown powerbomb by Lee, a Mexican Destroyer by Mephisto, and a standing Spanish Fly by Lee.
For the final few minutes, the kick outs were hot. Mephisto connected on a double underhook front suplex off the middle rope out of the corner. Lee kicked out. Lee executed a flying double stomp to Mephisto, who was hung up in the corner. Mephisto kicked out. Lee lowered his knee pad for a running knee and followed up with a vertical suplex powerbomb. Mephisto did not kick out this time.
Dragon Lee is the new holder of the CMLL World Welterweight Championship to become champ champ with his lightweight gold. Mephisto’s reign ended at 1,049 days. That bout against Lee was Mephisto’s 13th defense.
Will the brothers Chavez and Los Ingobernables fight forever?
You would think a hair vs hair match would be the end to a feud. Not so fast, my friend. Fresh off El Terrible and La Bestia del Ring being shaved bald after losing to Angel de Oro and Niebla Roja, the foursome wrestled in trios bouts three times over the next four televised shows.
In the semi-main of the Monday show from Puebla (Mar. 18), the rivalry between the brothers Chavez and Los Ingobernables continued as Angel de Oro, Niebla Roja, and El Valiente wrestled against El Terrible La Bestia del Ring, and Cavernario. I didn’t watch this one, but I zoomed to the finish. Good thing I did. There was a simultaneous double pin on both captains, so the referee called it a draw. There will be a rematch, which you can now watch on the March 25 show.
The brothers Chavez and Los Ingobernables swapped in Titan and Mr. Niebla for last Friday’s show (Mar. 22). Los Ingobernables ended up victorious overall for that bout as Terrible and Bestia picked up double pins on their rivals.
It looks like the March 25 show from Puebla will be their final encounter for at least this week. Who knows about next week. With the feud still in full swing even after hair vs hair, it makes me wonder how they could up the stakes. Is a career match the only bout of graver magnitude than putting a luchador’s hair or mask on the line? I don’t expect CMLL to force any of those four into retirement, so I guess the brothers Chavez and Los Ingobernables will be fighting forever.
Tetsuya Naito is coming to town
In a welcome break from the brothers Chavez vs Los Ingobernables, Tetsuya Naito will be joining Rush and El Terrible to take on Caristico, Volador Jr., and El Valiente for this week’s Super Viernes show.
I’m not familiar with Naito, but I suspect it is a big deal for him to appear in CMLL as a member of Los Ingobernables de Japon. He is the current IWGP Intercontinental Champion and was ranked ninth in PWI’s top 500 wrestlers for 2018.
Naito is already in Mexico taking in the sights.
CMLL’s week in the ring
I watched four matches last week from CMLL’s various programs. Sometimes the bouts will be important. Other times, it will be lower luchadores I haven’t seen before. We already went over Dragon Lee’s welterweight title win, so time to tackle three other bouts.
Monday from Puebla (Mar. 18, 2019)
LA Park, Hijo de LA Park, Volador Jr. vs Ultimo Guerrero, Euforia, Gran Guerrero
Here is a fun fact. Volador Jr. is the nephew of LA Park. Hey, there was only one dancing girl this week. I hope the other one is alright. Lucha libre detectives must get to the bottom of that case.
I wasn’t sure what the rudo/tecnico alignment was for this bout (starting at 1:32:00 of the show), but Los Guerreros Laguneros played dirty early. They attacked before the bell rang. LA Park and Ultimo Guerrero were the captains.
Los Laguneros dismantled Park’s team until Park came alive and hit a suicide dive on Ultimo. Volador got a pin off a backcracker, while Hijo de LA Park got a pin off a frontcracker. Fall 1 went to LA Park’s squad.
Fall 2 began with payback by Park’s team in the form of belt whippings. Hijo and Gran Guerrero did a yeah/boo thing to the crowd. Cheers were strongly in favor of Hijo. I guess that answers that about who was the tecnico team and who was the rudo team in Puebla.
Fall 2 had more of a back and forth feel. It went to Los Laguneros via a triple submission.
Fall 3 opened with brawling outside. Park and Ultimo had a pretty cool exchange inside the ring. Park launched for a springboard crossbody, but Ultimo caught it and Park bounced off. Park then did kind of a Code Red setup but turned it into an arm drag. Power slam by Park for a two count. Ultimo came back with a front suplex slam out of the corner off the middle rope. Eventually, the other four came in to give the seniors a rest break. The captains went back to work. Code Red by Park. Kick out. Octopus submission by Ultimo, but Park did the strong arm into the air on the ref’s third arm check.
The finish involved the referee, Tirantes. He had been a little slow throughout for Park’s family. Ultimo huddled with Tirantes while the other two Laguneros low blow kicked Hijo and Volador. Tirantes turned around for a quick count, but Park kicked him in the ribs. That led to Park doing the fakeroo of pretending Ultimo ripped off his mask. Victory to team Park.
After the match, Ultimo grabbed a mic. He appreciated the rudo tactics and issued a challenge for a super libre without a referee. I’m not sure what a super libre means. Park accepted, because they have big balls (mucho pantalones). Ultimo replied in English, “Alright, no problem with me.” The rematch was set for March 25, which you can now watch for yourself.
If you enjoy LA Park, then you should enjoy this bout. I would say skip it though and go straight for the rematch on March 25. I haven’t watched that bout yet, but it should be better just for the sake of having been built up.
Friday from Mexico City (Mar. 22, 2019)
Lightning match: Cavernario vs Forastero
This bout had a ten minute time limit (starting at 1:04:00 of the show). Highlights of the competitive duel include a spear by Forastero, a tope con hilo by Cavernario, a belly-to-belly suplex variation by Cavernario, and a suicide dive by Forastero.
The match hit the eight minute mark after Forastero’s suicide dive. Cavernario went for a submission, but Forastero grabbed the ropes. After a fireman’s carry drop slam by Forastero, he went high risk with a successful flying swanton. That proved to be the winning maneuver. Forastero was victorious at 9:03.
After the match, Forastero grabbed a mic and told the gasoline thieves in the crowd to shut up. Forastero challenged Cavernario for his Mexican National Light Heavyweight Championship. Despite the crowd’s protestations, Cavernario accepted the fight for next week on Friday, March 29.
Caristico, Volador Jr., Diamante Azul vs Ultimo Guerrero, Euphoria, Gran Guerrero
During Fall 1, Los Laguneros hit their big moves, such as the double team overhead press super slam and Gran Guerrero’s leapfrog smash teamwork maneuver. They closed the fall with a triple submission.
Los Laguneros dominated Fall 2 until Diamante Azul hit his ramp-running flying double clothesline. Caristico pounced on Ultimo Guerrero with a flying crossbody to the floor.
A German suplex by Diamante and a backcracker by Volador Jr. evened the score for the tecnicos.
Fall 3 began with Volador and Caristico using their speed to control the action. For the finish, Volador connected on a slingshot hurricanrana to the outside and Diamante had a running cannonball also on the outside. That left Ultimo Guerrero one-on-one with Caristico. Caristico ran the ropes and locked in his whirling arm bar. Ultimo Guerrero submitted and the tecnicos celebrated with joy.
That was a week of solid action in the ring from the matches I watched. Nothing amazing but nothing lame either. CMLL continues to excel in building two week stories. They have a match one week that fires up enough heat to have a rematch with stakes the very next week. It is simple yet effective. I’m always left wanting to see the rematch to find out who comes out on top.
Which was your favorite match of the week in CMLL? Where does Dragon Lee rank on the champ champ list? Do you want the brothers Chavez vs Los Ingobernables feud to continue? Are you excited to see Tetsuya Naito with Los Ingobernables in CMLL?