AAA TripleMania XXXI: Monterrey
April 16, 2023
We’re in the Estadio de Beisbol, Monterrey, Mexico, as suggested by the title of the show having: Monterrey after it. Commentary comes from Joe Dombrowski and Larry Dallas. They’re clearly in two separate locations and one guy has way more echo.
It’s an interesting setup. In a baseball stadium with the ring facing towards the bleachers. There is limited floor seating
10 Man Cage Match
Antifaz del Norte vs. Laredo Kid vs. Aero Star vs. Taurus vs. Argenis vs. Octagon Jr. vs. Abismo Negro Jr. vs. Villano III Jr. vs. Myzteziz Jr. vs. La Parka Negra
The last two in the cage face each other in a mask vs mask match later tonight. Comms points out Antifaz del Norte was in ECW. Yeah, and he sucked. He’s 51 now. There are a real mixture of abilities and a few beefs between participants. This is a real mess. Too many moving parts. The dynamic, with luchadores climbing out to survive, is bad. Run away from a fight to win is a terrible dynamic. The only thing dumber than having to run away to win is Octagon Jr getting up top and diving onto everyone else, when he’s already escaped. Moron. Villano III Jr nearly falls to the floor from the top of the cage. He may be dead but at least he kept his mask. This feels like a waste of Taurus but at least he gets to beat up a bunch of different people. Myzteziz Jr is also dumb enough to dive off the cage. At least his SSP is pretty if we’re looking for positives. Production shows a replay missing Abismo and Taurus climbing out, leaving Myzteziz Jr vs Argenis for the mask match later on the show. This was a never-ending stream of stupidity. Technically Antifaz never got in there so he should be unmasked too.
Chessman vs Vampiro
Oh come on. Why? Apparently, Chessman was wrestling some Mexican Instagram guy who got accused of bad things and got removed from the card. Vampiro is the replacement.
At least Mr Iguana is out here. Why is he not Senor Iguana? Apparently he’s been at the centre of all of this and is dating La Hiedra, Chessman’s rudo partner in crime. One of those matches where I much prefer the seconds to the actual workers. Vampiro stank in his prime and he’s well past it now. His selling is basically nonexistent here. I have no idea what’s wrong with him. Other than ‘being Vampiro’. Either that or he’s decided that selling needs to be completely changed to something other than selling. Chessman tries to engage in a potato fest to cover for how shit the match is and can’t even get Vampiro to do that. Hiedra turns face, kicks Chessman in the balls and Vampiro pushes him through a table/board thing for the pin. Awful, awful match. Heroes of Wrestling bad. Remarkable.
MINUS FIVE STARS
Copa Triplemania Match
Team Chilango (Arez, Dave the Clown, Latigo, Negro Casas & Nino Hamburguesa) vs. Team Regio (Baby Extreme, El Hijo de LA Park, El Zorro, Flammer & Toscano)
Negro Casas, CMLL 4 Lyfe, turning up in AAA is a surprise. El Hijo del LA Park is dressed as Skeletor from He-Man, which is something I never knew I wanted to see until now. Having Latigo carry a lot of the weight for his team is trouble, frankly. Baby Extreme keeps trying fun things and Latigo isn’t up for it.
Speaking of Latigo doing stupid things; he completely no sells a Canadian Destroyer. Like rolls back up to his feet and hits a spear. Latigo gets thrown over the top and next to irk me is Dave the Clown. He stinks. I knew this already. He can’t take lucha spots, which is not ideal for a luchadore.
The Canadian Destroyer nonsense comes back to hurt us as Arez takes a pin from one. This leaves Negro Casas vs Toscano and Flammer. La Casita gets rid of Flammer. Toscano is supposed to be the “hometown hero” in this but the crowd chants “Negro”. They work in an awful ref bump, Negro Casas runs into a nonsensical rope, getting hit by plunder in the process, and Toscano pins him with La Casita. This was mostly dogshit. The La Casita on Flammer is probably the best spot in the entire match.
POST MATCH: Nicho runs in and hits Negro Casas in the mouth with a club. He’s going to need some dental work after that. Nicho being sloppy though? Whoever would have thunk it? Toscano is all “I am the greatest” and celebrates with the copa while Negro Casas stands in the ring dumbfounded that he has the temerity to celebrate such a cheap victory. It’s full on the guy with the bronze medal meme.
Guerra De Rivalidades Semi Final Match
Alberto El Patron & Pentagon Jr. vs. Psycho Clown & Sam Adonis
This is the semi final of four teams of rivals. The idea being that the losing team advances and whoever loses the final has to face each other in a lucha de apuestas. So, if Psycho Clown and Sam Adonis lose the whole thing, they’ll have a mask vs hair match. It’s an interesting concept as none of the teams will get along.
Penta is the only guy in the match I don’t hate. Psycho Clown can be fun, to be fair, but not in a straight up match. Especially not against Del Rio, who is determined to make his matches look as fake and stupid as possible. I’ve not been watching but he looked finished the last time I saw him, over 3 years ago, and he’s even worse now. He genuinely wrestles like Konnan in ROH that one time. Adonis refuses to tag in and BOTH of the other team dive on him. Why? Just beat Psycho Clown and move on. Psycho Clown and Adonis frequently attack each other, which is the gimmick of the match and they both lose because of it. At least that kinda makes sense. I’ll take it! MOTN so far.
Mask vs Mask
Argenis vs. Myzteziz Jr
Both chaps have thicc ladies as seconds. Triple A? More like thiccle ey! Argenis gets a bit carried away with the opening ‘mask ripping’ bit and literally pulls Myzteziz Jr’s mask off. You can see his entire face! The logic behind the match is that Argenis wanted to be Myzteziz and feels passed over by it being handed to Myzteziz Jr instead. Having had a popular face turn earlier, La Hiedra is simply back to being a heel here. Konnan booking. The match is pretty ugly and revolves around Myzteziz Jr hitting silly spots that involve Argenis running into them. Argenis taps out, with the referee looking right at him, but the seconds run in to ‘distract’ him. Either they fucked up the timing or the ref is incompetent. I think it’s the timing, although lucha referees are more corrupt than referees in Serie A. They spend ages setting up a dumb spot where Argenis gets powerbombed through a wooden board. They have to persist with it though because it’s the finish. The levels of stupidity here were marvellous. Argenis loses his mask, which is ironic because Myzteziz Jr basically isn’t wearing one at the finish.
They run a highlights video after the match and it makes it look better because you don’t see all the shit in between. However, you still see the referee looking right at the tap out. So.
Guerra De Rivalidades Semi Final Match
LA Park & Rush vs. Blue Demon Jr. & DMT Azul
This is other half of the tournament for the lucha de apuestas match later in the year. The losing team will face Psycho Clown & Sam Adonis in June. DMT Azul was a CMLL guy until jumping ship to AAA during Covid. LA Park is now 57 years old and is still elite. Rush and LA Park get into it before the match starts. Being in a tag team with Rush feels like a dangerous thing to do at the best of times. Blue Demon Jr bleeds a gusher, and I can see LA Park blading under the ring. It’s carnage, there’s blood everywhere.
This is one of those matches where slow referee counts are fine because most pinfalls come about because of one guy getting beaten up to the point where they can’t stand. Rush’s dad runs in, which doesn’t make a lot of sense. Rush’s hair would be on the line, which is tragic considering how lush it is but not like a mask loss. Rush punches out the ref, LA Park punts him in the groin and throws Blue Demon Jr on top for the win. DMT Azul then jumps Blue Demon Jr and rips his mask off anyway. Absolute chaos. ***3/4.
AAA Mega Championship
El Hijo del Vikingo (c) vs. Rich Swann vs. Swerve Strickland vs. Komander
Remember when Shane Strickland went to WWE for 2 years and no one cared? Remember when Rich Swann went to WWE for 2 years? The time period where WWE hoovered up everyone was wild. Glad it’s over.
Vikingo’s most obvious flaw, IE spending ages setting spots up, comes back to bite him here as he actually fucks one up despite taking forever. The impact of Vikingo on the viewer reduces every time you see him. I could say the same for Komander and his rope walk gimmick. When they both just wrestle, they’re good. Rich Swann somehow annoys me even more by constantly slapping his thigh. It’s not even subtle. Just stop it.
There’s a lot of this business. It’s very dancey. It gets more forgivable the harder it is so I can overlook a lot of Komander’s rope walking stuff and this spot on Strickland felt organic. There are frequent showy flips for no reason at all but also spots where Komander does something insane like running the ropes from the mat to hit an SSP to the floor. Komander also does a nice spot where he’s caught on the ropes, tries to balance himself and gets double stomped by Strickland. One thing organically leading to another. There’s not enough of that. If there was, this would rule. Vikingo blows another of his big spots; the imploding 450 into a rana. I know these spots are hard but he does them every match.
They do a good job of showing that Vikingo and Komander are on a par by having them do stereo offence on the other two. Vikingo kicks out of Komander’s finisher, lifts him up out of the pin and hits the 630 for the win. Way to bury Komander there! There was a bunch of cool shit in this match but a lot of the stuff that held it together made no sense. It was pretty bad at the start too. It didn’t help that the normally flawless Vikingo blew two of his signature spots. ***1/2.
The more I see Vikingo and Komander the more their stuff feels the same, just recycled every match. I preferred when they did strikes and actual wrestling in between the bigger spots.
A flawed show, even by AAA’s standards. Most of the show was actively bad including an all-time shit awful Vampiro vs Chessman contest. I did quite enjoy Rush & LA Park vs Blue Demon Jr & DMT Azul. It made me interested in two feuds simultaneously, while featuring top notch bloody brawling and good storytelling. The main event was spot heavy and alternated between wrestling I love and wrestling I hate. It’s hard to recommend a show based on that but I’ve always found AAA accessible and I actually like watching bad wrestling sometimes. So, I’ll probably be back for part 2 and 3 of TripleMania later in the year.