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Temple Rants (6/10/15): A Dance With Drago




Last week, our Trios Champions Angelico, Ivelisse and Son of Havoc once again came out on top thanks to some timely interference by Texano, costing his rival Delavar Daivari (with some new friends) a chance at the title. Meanwhile, Chavo Guerrero lived up to his family name, tricking Black Lotus into going to the Temple where she was captured by Dario Cueto and the Crew. Pentagon Jr. and Sexy Star also went at it once more, this time in a submission match. A shocking interference from Super Fly gave Pentagon the win and almost another broken arm, but Vampiro made sure that did not happen.

We kick things off this week with a shot of the Lucha Underground billboard, and hey, it’s DRAGO! Drago’s back! And, holy shit, he’s got wings! He can fly!


If getting banished means you'll grow a pair of wings, I hope I get fired soon.


Striker and Vampiro welcome us to the show, and Vampiro starts to apologize for his actions last week involving Pentagon Jr. and Sexy Star. Striker mentions that Sexy Star is out for the next couple of weeks. I’m glad they’re addressing this, as I don’t think this is done and dusted just yet.

Dario Cueto is in the middle of the ring, and he announces an event called Ultima Lucha, in 8 weeks’ time! This seems to be the WrestleMania of Lucha Underground, as it has the biggest matches and their biggest stars. Cueto says the road to Ultima Lucha starts now, with a match to determine who will challenge Prince Puma for the Lucha Underground Championship at that event. This match will be composed of Prince Puma’s previous challengers, and Cueto announces Hernandez, King Cuerno and Cage as competitors. He then mentions Fenix, but as we all know, that guy sort of died, so it’ll just be a triple threat match.

Cueto announces that we have a guest tonight, and it’s none other than Blue Demon Jr.! He’s back! Cueto wants to make sure that Blue Demon does not have ring rust, so he has put him in a match with another returnee. The music hits and Chavo Guerrero comes out, flanked by the Crew!


Match 1: No Disqualification Match – Chavo Guerrero Jr. vs. Blue Demon Jr.

The two start to brawl, and Chavo gets the upper hand with some uppercuts. Blue Demon hasn’t even had time to take off his suit yet! Chavo gets tossed out of the ring, but he’s able to get the upper hand again thanks to The Crew. The three continue to beat up Blue Demon Jr., and Chavo picks up a kendo stick. Blue Demon Jr. takes a beating, and Chavo goes up for a frog splash and the pinfall!

Winner: Chavo Guerrero Jr!


Alright, so is The Crew now with Chavo? If you recall on last week’s episode, Dario Cueto promised Chavo security in exchange for Black Lotus. Man, looks like Chavo got ripped off if that “security” turned out to be Cortez Castro and Mr. Cisco. These guys couldn’t even beat a pair of misfits and a girl on one leg! Nevertheless, it seems that they’re with Chavo now, so they’ve probably moved on from the fact that Bael died. Good for them.

Meanwhile, Chavo is explaining his, uh, gutsy move to Black Lotus. He tells her to enjoy the view.

Dario Cueto is in the bathroom, and Drago corners him. He threatens to call security, but Drago says he also faced Prince Puma for the title, so he should also get a shot tonight. Cueto acknowledges the loophole, and lets Drago participate in tonight’s main event. However, if he loses, Drago is banned (not that it kept him out the first time), and he loses his mask.

Back to the ring, as Melissa does introductions for our second match!


Match 2: The Disciples of Death (w/ Catrina) vs. Pimpinela Escarlata, Bengala and Mascarita Sagrada

Catrina and her lovely trio of skeletons are out first, and one of the disciples has a shirt on. Way to coordinate clothing, guys. Also, is it just me, or do they look familiar? Their competition is the rather motley crew of Mascarita Sagrada, Pimpinela Escarlata and Bengala. A midget, a white tiger and a crossdresser. I swear I’m not making this up.

Pimpi gets the crowd going early, with his usual comedy spots on the disciple with a shirt. The crowd is loving this! Bengala comes in for the first time in the Temple, but is quickly beaten down by the two shirtless disciples. Striker is calling them Trece and Sinestro de la Muerte, which is better than just calling them #1, #2 and #3.

Bengala quickly recovers and hits a nice moonsault, but Barrio Negro (the one with a shirt) keeps the white tiger down. Bengala with a hurricanrana and a corkscrew dive, and he’s looking good so far. Mascarita Sagrada comes in next, and the Disciples of Death seem to have had enough with all this comedy. They pick apart their opponents one by one with some vicious teamwork, eventually leaving Pimpi alone in the ring. Catrina gives him the Lick of Death, and the Disciples hit a triple facebuster for the win!

Winners: The Disciples of Death!


Eh, the Disciples didn’t look all too hot in the ring, but they worked effectively as a unit. I thought the match was a bit messy at times. Definitely not the best trios match we’ve seen, but it wasn’t the worst, either. Bengala had a couple of spots to impress, and he looks good so far. I’m looking forward to seeing more of him, as he has quite a distinct look.

Johnny Mundo stops by Dario Cueto’s office, and he wants to know why he’s not in the #1 Contender’s Match tonight. Cueto says that he expects him to be champion by Ultima Lucha, so he announces that next week, Prince Puma will defend his title against Johnny Mundo in a 60-Minute Ironman Match.

Wow. Wow, wow, wow. Next week’s show will be one match. Let that sink in. We’ve seen Mundo and Prince Puma compete before, but never in a match that lasted for an hour. Next week should be interesting, to say the least!

Back to the ring, and it’s time for our main event!


Match 3: #1 Contender’s Match for the Lucha Underground Championship – Hernandez vs. Drago vs. King Cuerno vs. Cage

Cage makes his way out first, followed by his frequent frenemy, King Cuerno. Man, I missed King Cuerno’s headgear, we haven’t seen him for a couple of weeks. Hernandez is next, and the returning Drago makes his way out to a huge pop!


Eat your heart out, Finn Balor.

Hernandez and Cage go at it outside as the two masked men tango in the ring. Hernandez takes early control with a backbreaker on Cuerno, before tossing him face first on the mat. Now it’s Cage’s turn to shine with a nice dropkick before working together with King Cuerno once more. There’s a bit of tension between them, but Cuerno and Cage continue to work well together, easily disposing of Drago and Hernandez. The camera cuts to Killshot on top of the warehouse, looking pretty creepy as he watches the match.




Cage and King Cuerno finally go at it, but Drago interrupts. He eats a moonsault and a diving foot stomp for his troubles, and Hernandez takes suddenly takes out King Cuerno. Cage with another moonsault, and this crowd is loving how such a big man can move like that! Drago takes out King Cuerno with a nice dive, and Hernandez soon joins the two outside. Cage wraps it all up with a third moonsault onto all of them below. King Cuerno taunts Killshot up above before hitting the Arrow From the Depths of Hell onto the guys outside! The crowd is eating this up!

Drago takes out Hernandez with a powerbomb, before spitting green mist onto Cuerno and rolling him up with the Dragon Tail Pin for the win!

Winner: Drago!


The match felt a bit short, but it did enough to keep everyone entertained. Great high flying spots from all four men, especially those moonsaults from Cage. It seems that King Cuerno’s next target will be none other than Killshot, which should make for an interesting match. The new #1 Contender celebrates in the ring, before Prince Puma comes out to meet his new challenger. The two stare down to close the show, amidst duelling chants from the crowd.

Of course, we’re not really done yet, and Catrina is back at Dario Cueto’s office. She says it was a mistake to keep Mil Muertes out of that match. She chokes Dario Cueto, and says that even a dead man like Mil Muertes wants power. Cueto eventually caves in and makes Mil Muertes vs. Drago in two weeks’ time to determine who faces Prince Puma for the title at Ultima Lucha. Dammit, not again. Catrina disappears, but not before mentioning that Matanzas would be no match for Mil Muertes.

Yep, you read that right. We have another #1 Contender conundrum here at Lucha Underground. This time, it’s Drago who got screwed as he now has to face the undead monster Mil Muertes to get the title shot he’s already earned. Sorry, bro.

This week’s show wasn’t as solid inside the ring as the previous show, but the storytelling was superb. The first two matches served to build up some new teams, and Chavo and the Disciples of Death came out looking strong. The last match had a nice sequence of high-flying spots, but apart from that it was your usual multi-man match.

The main story was the return of Drago, which they sold quite well by giving his segments a dark, gritty feel to them. I felt as if I was watching a Lucha version of The Dark Knight today. This week’s episode gets a B-. It’s slightly up from last week’s show, thanks mostly to the storytelling, with the in-ring action being just okay. Hopefully, next week’s hour-long match between Prince Puma and Johnny Mundo is enough to make up for it. I’m sure it will.


TL;DR Results:
  • Chavo Guerrero Jr. def. Blue Demon Jr. in a No DQ Match
  • The Disciples of Death (Sinestro de la Muerte, Trece and Barrio Negro) def. Mascarita Sagrada, Bengala and Pimpinela Escarlata
  • Drago def. King Cuerno, Hernandez and Cage to become the #1 Contender for the Lucha Underground Championship
*****

Anthony Cuello is an HR professional and training designer. When he’s not sleeping or reading the Harvard Business Review, he covers NJPW and Lucha Underground for Smark Henry. A psychology nut, he tends to watch wrestling looking for these small nuances of in-ring behavior. He dreams of a wrestling business with good people management practices, and hopes to help make that happen one day.

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