Matches from NJPW Presenta CMLL Fantastica Mania 01/20:
1.LIJ(SHINGO,BUSHI,EVIL) vs Tanahashi, Dulce, Yuya ***
2.Mexican National Trios Titles: NGD(Sanson,Cuatrero,Forastero) vs Hermanos Chavez, Titan ***1/4
3.NWA World Middleweight Title: Caristico(c) vs Cavernario ****
Ending the tour on a high note!
CMLL did a lot last year to piss me off while AAA largely continued to rise up the ranks of not only top lucha feds but top global promotions in general. That said, these Fantastica Mania shows remain a personal favorite of mine and I still do have a deep love for the company in general, even if it can be a bit love/hate at times.
There roster is just too stacked and always capable of excellence when properly motivated.
They were exactly that here.
Up first, Los Ingobernables de Japon took on the ace of the universe, CMLL's big new exotico, and...Yuya. SHINGO was, not that long ago, my favorite wrestler in the world. His New Japan run is finally getting off to a stronger phase and I'm loving every second of it. For a throwaway match with comedy aspects like this, this was a good showing. Yuya in particular showed a lot of hear and the lion came off strong. I love seeing these kids rise up. Not a must-see encounter overall, but still enjoyable.
The second pull saw the conclusion of the tour angle pushing the NGD/Hermanos plot, this time with the heel unit's gold on the line. Remember that kid on Malcom in the Middle that rode an imaginary motorcycle? Anyway, this was fairly good but the finish came off a bit flat and it was easily the lesser of the matches of this tour they had together. That's a shame, but make no mistake that it's still good stuff. It just didn't feel like it hit that next level.
Closing things out, the caveman himself, and one of the best workers in the world, challenged the original Mistico for the NWA World Middleweight Championship. It was a move for move, spotfest building to an exciting climax and was, overall, a fantastic exhibition between the two great workers.
While I know the lucha genre isn't for everyone, I love these tours not only because they tend to bring some awesome matches, but they also help win CMLL some new fans and I hope they've done that once again with this tour.
Check out all the recommended matches and enjoy!