Tag Archives: ** 3/4

Solar vs. Black Terry (Toryumon Mexico – 01/31/2016)

Solar vs. Black Terry
January 31, 2016
Toryumon Mexico
Domo del Plan Sexenal (Mexico City)
** ¾

This was originally advertised as Black Terry versus Blue Panther which is undeniably the more interesting match on paper. Panther was a no-show, however, and as far as last minute substitutions go Solar is not a bad one. My first inclination was that this is an oft-repeated pairing but that is not really true. This might have been the first singles match between these since a November 2013 Chilanga Mask card and almost definitely the first one available on video since then. Black Terry/Solar is not quite Black Terry/Blue Panther in terms of uniqueness of the match up but it is not Solar/Negro Navarro level of overdone either.

The match itself played out similarly. The early exchanges were far less mundane and uniformed as the Navarro/Solar exchanges have become. Black Terry brings a level of athleticism to his mat work that present day Navarro – and quite frankly, present day Blue Panther – cannot match. Panther is a different style of wrestler than Solar so the early match stuff would have had a different vibe for sure, but I am not convinced it would have been much better. I suppose it is somewhat boring – or at least not unexpected – for a Terry/Solar match review to praise the early hold exchanges but that portion of the match was certainly the highlight. Terry and Solar worked quick and interesting submissions and counters, in a way that did not feel robotic or boilerplate.

The match got away from them a little in the middle. They attempted to transition after the opening stuff by getting into a heated argument on the outside but nobody was buying it as a big deal. This part of the match – in stark contrast to the opening minutes – did feel like standard fare and was below average. The two argued and then did some weak brawling, lowlighted by Solar going into the railing in a particularly careful manner. There was an ultra-brief flurry of strikes on the outside that was neat but it was too brief to mean much.  Once back in the ring, they somewhat quickly went to the double pin finish.

This was not a classic maestro match but still worth a watch. The opening minutes are a lot of fun and the match flies by. Solar and Terry seemingly do not have it in them to take a night off but if they were so inclined, you could certainly imagine a scenario where they have a match much worse than this one. On the flip side, it is easy to imagine them having a better match in 2016 if the middle portion outside the ring was reconfigured but that’s a small complaint.  I’ll take a slightly above average 10 minute match worked in this style almost every time out.

 

Kraneo , Mephisto & Ripper vs. Mistico , Valiente & Volador Jr. (CMLL – 01/04/2016)

Kraneo , Mephisto & Ripper vs. Mistico , Valiente & Volador Jr.
CMLL
January 15, 2016
Arena Puebla
** 3/4 

Leo, Mike & Rafy vs. Hip Hop Man, Imposible & Tony Rivera (IWRG – 01/03/16)

Leo, Mike & Rafy vs. Hip Hop Man, Imposible & Tony Rivera
IWRG
January 3, 2016
Arena Naucalpan
** 3/4

A fun IWRG trios match that was both more streamlined and cleaner than most current IWRG trios.  The ending legitimately made me laugh out loud (in a good way).

Mistico, Valiente, Volador Jr. vs. Kráneo, Mephisto, Ripper (CMLL – 01/04/16)

Mistico, Valiente, Volador Jr. vs. Kráneo, Mephisto, Ripper
CMLL
January 4, 2016
Arena Puebla
** 3/4

Like a great many classic matches throughout history, this one began with the aging, spotlight-hogging referee serenading all of us with a little pre-match mic work.

When Tirantes did put the microphone down, the match that followed ended up being a rather fun – albeit also incredibly short – eight-minute sprint. Eight minutes is not a lot of time to cram three full falls into, but the Sky Team and their rudo challengers did about as good of a job as could be reasonably expected. The falls were rushed although none of the finishes felt premature, which is not always the case for short 3-fall matches.

Kraneo and Valiente handled the obligatory mat wrestling section at the start. That part was a lot of fun mainly because Kraneo is a ton of fun. His look is awesome (so is his leg drop) and his ability to move as fluidly as he does at his size is impressive. There was not anything out of the ordinary here from what you would expect, but it was all executed well. The rudos gained control shortly after the abbreviated opening, the Sky Team followed with a spirited comeback and then the rudos put the match away after triple teaming Mistico. The fall felt like a complete fall even with such a short run time.

The second fall was highlighted by the high-energy stretch run from the Sky Team. There were a couple of great spots in the mix while Kraneo also took a couple of big time bumps. The third fall contained the best segment of the entire match. After Mistico kicked Kraneo off of the apron, Volador hit a rather pedestrian tope that at best stunned the big guy. Valiente followed up with a bullet tope of his own where he nearly flew right through Kraneo. The tope seemed to legitimately knock Kraneo back farther than he anticipated as his backwards stumble looked legitimate and he had to walk back towards the ring several feet to put himself in position to catch Mistico’s dive.

The finish of the final fall was another positive. The rudos unmasked Mistico (we got a rather long and clear look at his face) but the mask pull (which often ends a fall) served only as a false finish. Volador Jr. made the save for is de-masked partner and quickly picked up the fall for his team.

Puebla main events seem to run short as a rule these days. It is unfortunate because some of the matches that have programmed in that slot – this one included – could definitely have reached a higher level with additional time. There is something to be said, however, for an all-action main event that can be watched with a few spare minutes. There are far worse ways to end a show.