By John Moore
Lucha Underground Hits
El Dragon Azteca Jr. vs. Dante Fox: There were a lot of moving pieces, lots of action, and lots of interference. That said, it walked the line fine enough not to get contrived while forwarding story threads. As for the match quality, it was lucha madness. There was high flying everywhere with two guys who can truly do innovative stuff in the air. Dante Fox might be a good contingency plan for Lucha Underground if they lose Ricochet because the guy may be just as athletic in the ring.
Prince Puma vs. Ricky Mandel: Lucha Underground’s huge problem after Season 1 for the longest time is that they would only have their squash matches be dark segments. The Cueto Cup forces them to televise the squashes and they are doing a good job enhancing the pushed wrestler. That’s the purpose of an “enhancement match”. This match only went about a minute but a lot was done. Prince Puma wasn’t his high flying video game self. He was Ricochet, there was no doubt about that, but he was grounded for the most part and won the match with a Michinoku Driver rather than the 630. On the other side, we got the best one of our Lucha Underground jobbers, Ricky Mandel. He reminded me initially of Mizdow due to Mundo’s association with Miz, but Mandel did a good job establishing his own character with the pre match work. He also gets bonus points for channeling Gillberg in his entrance.
PJ Black vs. Sexy Star: I was about to put this in the Miss column due to the finish and how I think they should be doing a lot more with Sexy Star. It ends up getting a Hit due to match quality. Sexy Star has had two of her best in-ring performance in Lucha Underground against PJ Black (a.k.a. Justin Gabriel). Sexy Star worked this match inspired because it was recorded just a few days after No Mas aired and people were sending good vibes her way. The finish was crummy, but I understand the purpose. They were trying to put more heat on Worldwide Underground, who need to come off more than just Lucha Underground’s version of 3MB.
Lucha Underground Misses
Son of Havoc vs. Son of Madness: The match quality was great here. The reason it gets a Miss is for doing the exact opposite of what I said in the Star vs. Black match. There wasn’t a purpose. Or if there was one, it wasn’t clear nor intriguing. Son of Madness came in as a doppelganger but the announcers were trying to set up some biker war a la Sons of Anarchy? Son of Havoc was also established as a jobber parody of Sons of Anarchy. The Miss comes from the confusion of where this is all going. Son of Madness loses too? So there is no intrigue there? Son of Havoc just needs to move on from this and be put in an actual program because the guy can wrestle really well and the Temple crowd loves him.