Gran Apache vs. Oscar Sevilla (AAA – 03/19/2000)

Gran Apache vs. Oscar Sevilla
March 19, 2000
Super Libre
*** 1/2

I am not the biggest [American] football fan, but I’ll log at least a little time with any televised game played during a snowstorm. Football is football until it is being played in a couple of inches of snow with below freezing temperatures. Not that the games are necessarily better because most often they aren’t. The pace slows and teams stick to uninventive running games to avoid turning the ball over. But even then I am more likely to watch a snowy football game than a “normal” game just because the weather adds a new and unique element, in addition to making for a neat visual.

There is no snow in Veracruz in March, but there was a lot of rain on this particular night, which had the same positive impact the viewing experience that snow during a football has. The ring was soaked when the match began and the rain continued to fall throughout. Apache and Sevilla slipped on occasion but mainly they managed to navigate the puddles and slick ring just fine. The mere threat of how the water and rain might impact the match made it more interesting to me; it gave the match a feeling of danger that it might have otherwise not had. Sevilla bleeds during the match. The blood mixes with the water in his hair, on his face, and on his matador blouse to the point that the usually damper Sevilla looks outright pathetic by the time the match ends. Considering the idea of this match was to put sympathy on him building to a hair match, the rain proved serendipitous in that regard.

Without the rain, this is a good super libre and a strong setup for the upcoming hair match. Sevilla starts hot by landing a tope suicida without the slick ring impacting his ability to run in the slightest. He adds a second one later one, once again without any ill effects from the rain. Sevilla does not attempt any of the arm drags that were a regular part of his arsenal, which was probably smart. He does slip a couple of times and things get sloppy for a moment just before the finish so it was a wise decision to leave the more high risk top rope stuff at home. It is really impressive just how much they do and how much they do well even with the rain serving as an impediment. A lot of wrestlers would have sat on the mat or brawled at ringside given the conditions but not Apache and Sevilla. They still ran the ropes well and accomplished what they needed to while also making a concerted effort to stay safe. They didn’t just run the ball up the middle but they didn’t stupidly ignore the elements they were dealing with either.

AAA does the super libre rules right by having the official stay out of the ring, only to enter to count pin falls or rule on submissions. Of course, AAA is going to AAA so the referee inexplicably tripped up Sevilla at the finish allowing Apache to pick up the win. There was no indication at all that was coming. The referee did his job the entire match until he decided to cheat for seemingly no good reason. The finish would have been a hundred times more effective if Apache cheated (taking advantage of the super libre rules) but that’s AA for you.

There is no doubt that the visuals provided by the rainstorm and the way the water impacted the match elevates the match somewhat. It is interesting to watch Apache and Sevilla successfully navigate their way through the unkind weather elements. At the same time, there is a very solid work underneath the water that would have led to an above average setup match even if it had been 75 degrees and sunny.

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