Current Watch List:
- Pimpinela Escarlata & Mascarita Dorada vs. Cortez Castro & Mr. Cisco
- Pentagon Jr. vs. Super Fly (Lucha Underground)
- King Cuerno vs. Drago in a last man standing match (Lucha Underground)
- Finn Balor vs. Curtis Axel (WWE NXT)
- The Vaudevillians vs. Wesley Blake & Buddy Murphy (WWE NXT)
- Hideo Itami vs. Tyler Breeze (WWE NXT)
Pimpinela Escarlata & Mascarita Dorada vs. Cortez Castro & Mr. Cisco
Lucha Underground is reportedly thinking about trying something “different” for their next championship(s) but if they do decide to crown tag team champions, Pimpinela & Mascatira Dorada should be the first. Pimpinela worked most of the match for his team, getting in a flurry of offense before being isolated and worked over for several minutes. The combo arm drag/head scissors takedown that Pimpinela does frequently is one of those moves I never get enough off and never understand why more people don’t use it. Castro laid in some hard chops. He and Cisco were fine, but not great, working over Pimpinela. Mascarita getting the hot tag might be a bit odd in one sense, but its really a perfect role for him. His offense was great as usual and he took Castro & Cisco’s cut offs well, too. Wish this had gone on a few more minutes but even so, it was a really fun short television tag.
Pentagon Jr. vs. Super Fly
Super Fly has delivered a bunch of strong performances over the past month and a half. He has been good on Lucha Underground, was very good in the mask match with Super Fly from December, was the best guy in the good 1/1 trios match from Cara Lucha, and gave another good performance in this match. Generally speaking, I am not a big super kick guy but Pentagon does have a great looking one. The way he lifts his leg at the start of the kick has more of a real shoot style feel to it. I am not sure that’s the best way to describe it, but in any event it has more of an authentic, stiff feel to it than other super kicks. Super Fly was great eating Pentagon’s offense here and the little offense he got in was good. He’s miscast as a tecnico in LU but has nonetheless made the most of it. Overall, this match wasn’t anything special but it was easy to watch.
King Cuerno vs. Drago
Last Luchador Standing
This match – billed as the final chapter of a feud that has spanned LU’s entire short existence – was set up last week when the two went to a no contest after a balcony dive through a table. The last man standing stipulation works well as a follow up to that ending. The match started off a little weak as last man standing rules have a tendency to through off the flow of a match. They got things together and had a pretty solid match. Cuerno’s tope con hilo is one of the better of that particular move. I am a bigger fan of the straight tope but there is no denying Cuerno’s flip version. Speaking of straight topes, Drago hit an awesome one in this match that looked really good from the over head camera. The table spot was well built too, as well. I thought the ending was creative although I am not sure it was incredibly effective. The crowd didn’t view it as a finish so when the referee hit ten on his count, it was a tad flat. There was nothing wrong with the match but as a blow off it didn’t pack the punch that you would ideally hope for.
Finn Balor vs. Curtis Axel
United States & Canada
It is probably not fair to say Axel wouldn’t have a job with the WWE if not for who is father is, but man, its hard to see what he brings to the table after watching a match like this. A lot of guys get stuck with the “bland” label but Axel is definitely worthy of it. The clothesline to the back of the neck in this match looked decent, but otherwise his offense was sluggish and mundane. Balor’s comeback was decent but he didn’t necessarily standout either. Did he always do the Pelé kick or is that something he added after Styles added the Bloody Sunday? Balor did the sling blade here as well. It is a far, far cry from the Canadian Destroyer in terms of offensiveness and overuse, but its a move I could definitely do without seeing every other match these days. This was very blah overall until Balor’s comeback and that wasn’t nearly enough to get the match over the hump. Balor advances in the number one contender’s tournament.
The Vaudevillians vs. Wesley Blake & Buddy Murphy
United States & Canada
Blake and Murphy sounds like the name of a bad morning drive radio show (“Blake and Murphy in the Morning”). I think the Vaudevillians gimmick is cute and with bigger production as potential as an undercard or c-show gimmick. They’ve never impressed me much in the ring, although I do think they looked worse here than usual. Blake and Murphy had some generic, high energy indie offense but didn’t show much else.
Hideo Itami vs. Tyler Breeze
United States & Canada
In second #1 contender’s tournament match was the best offering on this week’s episode of NXT. Itami got a great reaction by kicking out very late after the Breeze crucifix bomb. The set up for that move was not the cleanest, but it was still kind of neat. I thought Itami’s strikes looked good up until the last kick, which unfortunately, ended up being the finish. Breeze isn’t a good enough bumper to make it in this pretty boy gimmick and I am not sure he has enough quality offense to make it in another role. This was the most comfortable Itami has looked in the WWE. The match itself was just okay.