By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Azteca opened with a recap of the recent drama involving The Dynasty and Cesar Duran’s crew… The Azteca opening montage aired… The broadcast team of Rich Bocchini and Joe Dombrowski checked in from ringside…
1. Arez vs. Extreme Tiger. Tiger knocked Arez off the apron and then followed up with a plancha onto the concrete floor at ringside. Back in the ring, Tiger threw a single leg dropkick and covered Arez for a two count. Arez rallied with an offensive sequence that he capped off with a moonsault for a two count.
Tiger came back with a piledriver for a near fall. Bocchini questioned whether it was a slow count. Tiger went up top and leapt into a kick from Arez, who sent him to ringside and hit him with a moonsault from the apron. Back in the ring, Arez performed a double stomp and then executed a suplex into a bridge for the three count…
Arez beat Extreme Tiger.
Powell’s POV: A good match. The outcome was logical in that Arez has been working the MLW shows, whereas Extreme Tiger is not a regular for the promotion. By the way, the broadcast team really wants you to know that the show is being held at a “no frills fight club.” They have yet to acknowledge that it’s apparently the most kid-friendly fight club in North America, if not the world.
A 5150 video aired. Rivera and Slice Boogie were shooting craps backstage when Cesar Duran showed up. He asked them about their match against the Von Erichs in Dallas, then joined them in shooting craps… The broadcast team played up the possibility that Alexander Hammerstone was injured heading into his title match… [C]
2. El Hijo Del Vikingo vs. Aramis for the AAA Mega Championship. Aramis performed an early huracanrana from the ropes. A short time later, Vikingo sent Aramiz to ringside. Vikingo jumped from the top rope and caught himself on a support beam next to the ring, then leapt from the beam onto Aramis below. Cool spot. Vikingo took Aramis back to the ring and covered him for a two count.
Vikingo went for a shooting star press, but Aramis put his knees up. At ringside, Aramis picked up Vikingo in powerbomb position and ran him into one of the support beams. Aramis followed up with a moonsault from the ropes onto Vikingo on the floor.
Back inside the ring, Vikingo countered an Aramis move with a head-scissors takedown. Vikingo put Aramis in electric chair position and ended up slamming him face first onto the mat and then covering him for another two count.
Both men ended up trading strikes on their knees and continued as they got to their feet. They also traded a series of chops. Aramis countered out of a Vikingo move and gave him a buckle bomb. Vikingo came right back with a crucifix driver, and then Aramis returned the favor.
Arez came out and apparently slid a briefcase inside the ring. The referee picked up the briefcase and looked at it while Arez performed a lung blower on Aramis. Arez fled the ring, then Vikingo performed a double knee driver and an inverted 450 splash and scored the pin.
El Hijo Del Vikingo defeated Aramis to retain the AAA Mega Championship.
After the match, Arez held the briefcase and taunted Aramis while he was down. Vikingo checked on Aramis and helped him to his feet. Vikingo raised the arm of Aramis, who returned the favor…
Powell’s POV: This was a treat. Vikingo really impressed me in Impact Wrestling and is obviously thriving in Mexico as the AAA Mega Champion. Aramis is the MLW regular, but there’s no shame in losing a competitive match to the champion. I don’t know if it’s realistic, but it would be great if MLW could get Vikingo to work for them in the U.S. on a regular basis.
An EJ Nduka video package aired. He spoke about marrying his best friend in 2017. He said they had a child together last year. He recalled being signed to the WWE Performance Center in 2019 and spoke about learning from the “amazing minds” on the coaching staff. He said he wants the gold… A graphic listed Nduka as being in action next week…
The upcoming fight schedule listed a six-man tag match for next week with Alex Kane and two masked luchadors against Vikingo, Laredo Kid, and Octagon Jr., MLW Fusion’s new season on February 10, and MLW SuperFight for February 26 in Charlotte… [C]
A Mads Krugger video package aired. He wants to face Jacob Fatu and collect his trophy… The broadcast team played up the mystery of who stole the Opera Cup trophy from Davey Richards…
Powell’s POV: Check Alicia Atout’s luggage. Sure, she seems nice, but something about her just screams kleptomaniac. Okay, maybe not.
Cesar Duran was on the phone when Alex Kane arrived with Mr. Thomas. Kane yelled “Bomaye” repeatedly until Duran hung up his phone. Duran spoke to him about teaming with Extreme Tiger and Villano to face Vikingo’s team next week. Kane said he doesn’t care about lucha, but he agreed to do it with the idea being that Duran would owe him a favor… [C]
The second part of the all access look at Jacob Fatu will air next week (the first part aired on last week’s show)… The MLW Heavyweight Champion roll call video aired to display all of the company’s past champions and current champion Alexander Hammerstone…
Cesar Duran made his entrance. A tale of the tape was shown for the main event…
3. Alexander Hammerstone vs. Octagon Jr. for the MLW Heavyweight Championship. Hammerstone had a brace on his left arm. Duran stood at ringside and spoke to Octagon, who was in the ring. Octagon leaned down and bumped fists with Duran. Hammerstone sent Octagon to ringside early on. [C]
A big group o Duran’s masked henchmen stood on the stage and watched the match. Hammerstone spotted them and pointed at Duran. Octagon took advantage of the distraction and performed a move from the ropes onto Hammerstone. Octagon eventually went up top and dove at Hammerstone, who caught him and slammed him to the mat.
Hammerstone sold his arm injury, yet remained on the offensive. The broadcast team questioned whether he would be able to perform his Nightmare Pendulum finisher. Octagon came back and executed a 450 top rope splash for a near fall. Hammerstone rallied with a spinning facebuster and scored the pin.
Alexander Hammerstone defeated Octagon Jr. to retain the MLW Heavyweight Championship.
After the match, the masked henchmen went after Hammerstone, who fought some of them off. The henchmen surrounded Hammerstone. Richard Holliday ran out and stood with Hammerstone. The masked men attacked Hammerstone and Holliday as the show concluded…
Powell’s POV: The finish to the main event was flat, but the match was fine with Octagon Jr. performing some flashy moves around Hammerstone, who gets by mostly based on his charisma along with some fun power moves. Overall, this was a good show. It was shorter in length than most MLW shows by roughly ten minutes. It featured more in-ring action and less storytelling than usual. While that’s not always a positive in MLW, these were my favorite of the matches they filmed during this trip to Mexico, in part because they were easy to follow singles matches that were straight forward rather than garbage matches. My audio review of this episode will be available by the time most of you read this.