Saturday, June 1, 2019

Wrestling TV Roundup: May 2019

Image result for cavernario vs mistico
So, here are the matches from non-WWE tv that I decided to check out this month. The only show I am watching in full weekly right now is Dragon Gate Cutting Edge, which is reviewed separate. I also will continue to do the weekly WWE matches posts. Most of everything else will appear here.

I figured this format was honestly easier for me and hopefully for you, too. If you'd prefer a weekly roundup instead of monthly I would consider it. Also, if there is a weekly show putting out good stuff that you think I missed, hit me up with some recommendations.

Let me know.

1.Elgin vs Impact vs Pentagon ***1/2
Impact Wrestling 05/03
Elgin is clearly being set up quickly to be a big name on Impact going forward, as he actually gets the pin on Johnny here. This was a pretty fun match, and one worth seeing for those wanting to check out the direction Impact is clearly heading toward.

2.Briscoes vs Soberano, Caristico ***
ROH TV #397
CMLL doesn't get as much love in the states as they should, so I tend to get excited when I see showcase matches like these on ROH television. Soberano still gets shit for his match with Punishment Potato, sadly, so any chance to move past is nice. I always hate how you can tell that the commentary crew basically just read the lucha talent's wiki pages really quickly before matches, but it is what it is. The bad news is this wasn't good enough to kill all the naysayers, but it was still a good tag match, and hopefully enough to get Soberano back again soon.

3.Hermano Chavez vs Team CRASH  ***3/4
CMLL Viernes 05/03
Fuck Mecha Wolf. Now that I've got that out of the way, this was a great match. CMLL has been working with CRASH lately and this is actually a big step in the partnership. Adam Brooks being here is a cool sight, too. While 450 and Brooks lost, they came off looking strong and in effect The CRASH came off looking strong. Hopefully, this builds to something instead of just fizzling out like a lot of CMLL angles. Great match!

4.Rey de Reyes: Aerostar vs Laredo Kid vs Hijo del Vikingo vs Jack Evans vs Guevara vs Vengador vs Taurus vs Golden Magic vs Myzteziz Jr ****
AAA Worldwide: Rey de Reyes Part Two
Starting with two of the Jinetes in the ring was fun, but it remains very frustrating that AAA isn't booking the trio together very much despite being one of the best teams in the business. This is the first time since January that they were all in the same match. Either way, I do owe AAA credit. I tend to dislike battle royals, but this was wildly entertaining. Great use of the rules and a fantastic demolition derby match. Note that Sombra Vengador Jr was played by Lanzelot, and is a character from the show, Por la Mascara. I just wish that winning the Rey de Reyes actually meant something.

5.Low Ki vs Daga ***
MLW Fusion 56
The next chapter in their rivalry, and I appreciated the intensity level on display. After a series of bland episodes, I had stopped watching MLW weekly but I still appreciate many things about their show and the way they've made Low Ki a star again is one of them. Add a minute and a clean finish and this would have been even better, but they are building toward the blowoff which I hope is a fucking war.

6.LA Park vs Pentagon ***
MLW Fusion 56
This one was fun, but there were certainly a few iffy moments. Either way, one of the best things MLW is doing is booking LA Park so strongly. Know that originally I had heard that Impact and MLW were going to have a loose partnership with AEW but the booking of the Lucha Bros of late seems to suggest this might not be accurate. We'll see.

7.Haskins vs Starr vs Cruz ***1/4
Defiant Loaded #22
This was a #1 contender three-way. Admittedly, I don't have any plan on watching any Defiant material outside of select Loaded matches so I doubt I'll see the actual title contest. No big deal. I picked this one because these are three of my favorites in the European scene, not because of a vested interest in their plots. Defiant fails at really hooking me in. At least this was a good match and I am happy to see Haskins win.

8.Ove Rules: OvE vs Swann, Mack, Bahh, Dreamer ***1/2
Impact 05/10
Fun little toy box match, full of entertaining spots. It reminded me a bit of house show WWE main events, but a bit higher in quality. I likely enjoyed this more than most, but check it out and decide for yourself.

9.Rayo Star vs Genio del Aire vs Drake vs Jonathan vs Fantastik vs Black Destiny ***1/2
AAA Worldwide: Conquista Total en Tijuana Part One
One of the best parts of AAA last year after Konnan returned was the use of indie names in spotfest openers. This is one of those high octane clashes and a truly entertaining sprint. Borderline great despite a bit of sloppiness, but even that is easy to forgive given the pace. Don't blink!

10.Air Wolf vs Fenix ***
MLW Fusion 57
Air Wolf continues his slow climb upward. He's a good worker with a nice upside, so I'm happy for him. The fact that he pins Fenix here goes back to what I said above on match six. This was a good showcase contest and I like the continued development with Air Wolf.

11.Fletcher vs Rampage **1/2
Defiant Loaded #23
A mismatch? Yea. But props to Defiant for not booking it as a squash despite Rampage being the champ and having a title match coming up. Kyle actually got a lot of offense in than expected but this still felt uneven and rather average. A shit crowd didn't help.

12.Elgin vs Swann ***1/2
Impact 05/17
Very good match between Impact favorite new toy. The ending, which saw Elgin beating the shit out of Swann until the ref called it off worked perfectly to push Elgin but it's hard seeing it as perfect booking when Rich is holding the X-Division Championship. That is, unless they plan on having Swann beat Elgin later at Destination-X (if they have one this year).

13.Lightning: Negro Casas vs Soberano ***1/4
CMLL Viernes 05/17
Seeing a Lucha legend versus the future of CMLL in a lightning match made me want a full, 3 round rematch really soon. This was good stuff and a fun way to spend 9 minutes. Negro Casas is an ageless wonder.

14.Tanaka vs Daga ***1/2
MLW Fusion 58
Speaking of dudes that are wrestling at a higher level than their age should allow...Minoru Tanaka, one of my favorite NOAH talents, and the underrated Daga put on a really nice match here. The intro video for MLW Fusion mentions several styles of wrestling and the fact that they try to legitimize those genres instead of attempting to Americanize them is one of my favorite things about the show.

15.AAA Latin American Title: Drago(c) vs Vikingo vs Myzteziz vs Aerostar vs Argenis ***1/2
AAA Worldwide: Conquista Total en Tijuana Part Two
Keeping with the theme of older dudes working like 20 year olds, here's the lastest in Drago's run as Latin American Champ. His defenses have all been spotfest multiman matches which works perfect and has created some very entertaining contests. Very good match, and I hope Drago's reign lasts as long as he wants it to before dropping it to Vikingo.

16.Kustom vs Robbie X ***
Defiant Loaded #24
A few minor issues throughout and a big botch held this back a bit, but it was largely enjoyable and a good start to their series of matches.

17.Lightning: Sagrado vs Star Jr ***
CMLL 05/21
Props to Eric from Lucha Central for building this one up to me. Same with the next match, too. A CMLL Tuesday show having two matches recommended to me made me assume he had gone insane(r). So, this has some issues, but for a random lightning match it was still enjoyable enough and Star Jr worked his ass off trying to make it worthwhile. Props to him for that, even if it didn't completely succeed due to Sagrado being average like usual. Verdict is still out on Eric's sanity.

18.Blue Panther, Guerrero Maya Jr, Audaz vs Polvora, Tiger, Universo 2000 Jr ***3/4
 CMLL 05/21
Hey, maybe Mutter's not so crazy after all! A great match on a Tuesday CMLL show is as rare as a great match on Raw, but these overachieving bastards gave us just that. Good matwork and technicality, building at a nice rate with some beautiful aerial lucha due to everyone stepping up. Why they decided to show up in this manner on a Tuesday show I have no idea but I thank them for doing so.

19.Cavernario vs Mistico ****1/4
CMLL Viernes 05/25
Lucha fans were (mostly) expecting this to be a badass, and it certainly lived up to the buzz! Arena Mexico has a long history of high quality performances, many of the recent ones featuring Barbaro, and you can add this to the list. It was nice seeing Mistico get a standout singles match, too. Not only is this one of the best wrestling matches on TV this month, but it's also one of the best matches of the year. If you don't like this one, you likely will never like lucha libre. Check it out now!

20.Impact Tag Titles: LAX(c) vs The North ***1/4
Impact 05/24
I'm glad they've found something to do with Ethan Page. Reviving Monster Mafia was a great choice, and adds a high quality team to the division right after the Lucha Bros left. Smart. This tag match was fun, and a good start. I expect them to build off of this nicely going forward.

21.WWL World Title:BJ(c) vs Mendoza ***
WWL High Voltage 05/25
WWL has been largely forgettable lately, but I had been told to check this one out. If you like overbooked, attitude era style shenanigans than this is your cup of tea. Yea, it was a fucking circus act but you know what...it was entertaining, too. Match quality alone doesn't earn it a score I consider recommendable, but give it a click if you like that kind of insanity.

22.Elimination: Vkingo vs Golden Magic vs Villano III Jr vs Flamita ***1/2
AAA Worldwide: Conquista Total en Mexacali
AAA put out more quality wrestling on TV this month than basically anyone else. This one was listed as a #1 contenders match for the Cruiserweight Championship but they've had a few tapings events since this one with no title defense. Oh well, at least this was a fun spotfest. Villano being stretchered out did hurt the momentum, but I mean what are you going to do. Borderline great contest, especially when it came down to Flamita and Vikingo.

23.Kustom vs Robbie X ***1/4
Defiant Loaded #25
Part two of their series. This one was fairly good, and another enjoyable encounter. It actually got the normally dead Defiant crowd going, though I wish they had added about two more minutes to the action. I hope the rubber match keeps this upward trajectory going.

24.Tyra Fly vs Nikki **1/2
CNL Episode 2
I wanted to check out more of CNL's roster after largely enjoying their debut episode. This was rough around the edges but I see some potential here and I'd love to see how they continue to develop. Decent little sprint.

25.CNL Metro Title: Francis(c) vs Sobre2sis vs Pablo vs Alessandro vs Rocket ***1/2
CNL Episode 2
The main match I wanted to see from this week's CNL, and I'm glad I checked it out. They did well to set up future feuds, the action was good, and the pace worked nicely. I'll check back in on CNL a few times a month, and I hope you consider doing the same.

26.Impact, Elgin vs Swann, Mack ***1/2
Impact 05/31
We end with a very good tag match that was given much more time than most TV matches. Everyone got to look good as a result, and I give Impact props for booking this one. One of the best TV tag matches on the month.

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