Gran Apache vs. Oscar Sevilla
March 31, 2000
Hair vs. Hair
This is the hair match that resulted from the wet and wild super libre that Apache and Sevilla had a couple of weeks earlier in Veracruz. I thought the blow off was as good as the setup, entirely on the strength of a dramatic third fall.
The first two falls are barely worth mentioning – they were that short and that forgettable. They do nothing to set up anything for the decisive fall at all.
The final period is interesting because Sevilla spends a decent chunk of it beating up on Apache and getting his revenge. In fact, it is worked a tiny bit like the roles are reversed with Apache hitting a tope suicida and Sevilla posting Apache to draw blood. It definitely works in the context of the two matches but is maybe less effective if you are watching the hair match in isolation. That’s where the useless first two falls hurt because they could have (should have?) been used to re-establish what the super libre did so well – cement Sevilla as sympathetic and Apache as the callous rudo. I don’t think you are going to be confused by Apache’s or Sevilla’s role in this match it is just different. The match does not have the traditional late match tecnico comeback you might expect from an apuesta match. Sevilla gets his revenge without really having to fight from behind.
Instead, they attempt to draw heat by having Tirantes do his rudo shtick. It didn’t detract from the match but it would be a stretch to write that added any real value. I get using Tirantes to draw heat in a mismatch (like the 2010 Negro Casas vs. Charly Manson hair match) or when there is an ineffective rudo but that was not the case here. Tirantes is consistent in his partisan behavior towards Apache, so at least that is something. Tirantes is a non-factor in the finish and that is very much appreciated. Sevilla locks Apache in a really great fully body stretch on the mat. Apache has nowhere to go and Tirantes has no choice but to call for the bell.
I also loved how Sevilla kept the hold on for a few extra seconds after Tirantes stopped the bout. He continues to rock back and forth, tightening the hold intensely. Even if the layout of the match failed to put Sevilla behind and provide him something to fight back from, his moments of intense anger during the match are an effective substitute. Aside from holding onto the final submission, there are a couple of other moments where Sevilla lets all of his anger out against Apache and you cannot help but rally behind him as a result.
Between his feud with Oscar Sevilla and his long, complicated feud with Billy Boy later the same decade, Apache is the unquestioned king of mid-card AAA blood feuds.