There has been a lot of wrestling this weekend sports fans, so much so that one could’ve forgotten that the CMLL International Grand Prix was yesterday! Actually you could’ve also forgotten it because CMLL didn’t post the Grand Prix online until a few hours after it happened…but I digress. The point is I didn’t forget about the Grand Prix and managed to watch it throughout the past day in between work stuff and AEW’s All Out. And the verdict is…not bad! It was no All Out or GCW/Black Label Pro’s insane late night show but the Grand Prix delivered its usual dose of fun thanks to a solid undercard and a great main event. It also added a new wrinkle to the Ciber-UG feud which…I mean it’s better, but how much better remains a mystery. But we’ll cross that bridge next week when CMLL FINALLY announces the Aniversario headliner on Wednesday. As for this show, if you missed it with all the other fun, here’s what happened.
La Jarochita & Marcela defeated Dalys & Metálica two falls to one after Marcela pinned Dalys with a Michinoku Driver and Jarochita pinned Metálica with a Gory Bomb variation. This was a dramatic improvement over the Dalys-Metálica match with smooth action, but even still there wasn’t much to this beyond Metálica having a much better performance than a few weeks ago. Everyone else was coasting or just doing the usual, which isn’t much.
Atlantis Jr., Audaz, Flyer defeated Hijo del Villano III, Rey Bucanero, Tiger two falls to one after Audaz pinned Villano with a running Super Hurricanrana and Flyer pinned Tiger with a Top Rope Spanish Fly. A really good match, despite the fact that Rey Bucanero and Hijo del Villano III didn’t do much beyond basing (though Bucanero was trying really hard). Flyer had a solid night despite being paired with the limited Rey Rey Buc and both Audaz and Atlantis Jr. were excellent, with Atlantis Jr. in particular having one of the better performances of his career. Tiger had a strong night as well. It still could’ve used other guys besides Villano and Rey Bucanero but this was still quite good.
Chamuel defeated Microman after Chamuel faked being unmasked by Microman to give him the DQ victory. A very good match with really good heat, though this very clearly felt like a test run to a much bigger match. It wasn’t as clean as I expected either, with Chamuel having a few iffy moments basing for Microman, most notably on a hurricanrana off the barricade spot. Still this was a lot of fun, both guys worked really hard and most importantly there will be more to this as Microman challenged Chamuel to a mask vs. mask match.
Cuatrero, Sansón, Templario defeated Ángel de Oro, Niebla Roja, Valiente two falls to one after Cuatrero pinned Oro with a Sitout Crucifix Powerbomb and Sansón pinned Roja with an Argentine Style Blue Thunder Bomb. This was sort of disappointing. There wasn’t anything wrong with the match per say but it never felt like anyone involved hit extra gear. Valiente had a bit more energy than he would for a regular show but he still didn’t do a whole lot, while Oro, Roja, Cuatrero, Sansón and Templario pretty much gave a second gear version of their usual work. Again it wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t anything you need to go back and see either.
Ciber the Main Man, Gil Muertes, Titán defeated Carístico, Mistico, Último Guerrero two falls to one after Ciber pinned Guerrero following a foul. Good news sports fans; UG vs. Ciber appears to be off. The bad/lukewarm news is that Gil Muertes is now involved after nearly coming to blows with Ciber throughout this match, followed by him challenging Guerrero himself afterwards. So I guess we now either have Gil Muertes-UG, Gil Muertes-Ciber-UG, Gil Muertes-Ciber or some sort of cage match to look forward to now. Hey, anything at this point is better than Ciber vs. UG! The match itself was slightly better than usual though still not strong. It was saved by the Ciber-Gil Muertes antics, as well as Titán playing both a great peacemaker and rudo while Carístico and Mistico had some good moments.
Volador Jr. defeated Negro Casas, Big Daddy Yum Yum, Cavernario, Jay Briscoe, Matt Taven, Dragón Lee, Mecha Wolf 450, Rush, Diamante Azul, Kenny King, Luke Hawx, Soberano Jr., Forastero and Oraculo to win the 2019 CML International Grand Prix for Team CMLL. The finish came when Volador pinned Casas with a Backcracker after a distraction from Big Daddy. I was a little confused as to why they had a finish between two members of Team CMLL when they had technically won the match but it appears to have been the start of an angle so…yay? In any event this was a great match. I’d put it far ahead of last year’s Grand Prix while just a notch below the previous two. There were some flaws; the ending was flat, some of the Rest of the World team were iffy and there were some sloppy moments. Overall though this was a lot of fun and there were moments of brilliance throughout, especially towards the end. Mecha Wolf 450 had an off night by his standards and was still generally terrific, while Matt Taven and Jay Briscoe had very strong nights. Meanwhile Dragón Lee was otherworldly; he had sequences with Briscoe and 450 that made me want to see singles matches between those combinations, and only Rush seemed to equal his electricity from a ring work standpoint. In the end though all of team Mexico (yes even Diamante Azul) was really good and Negro Casas, as expected, was a major force in getting the crowd into it. You’ll see better matches in CMLL this year but this was very much what you’d want from this bout. Very well done.