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Temple Rants (5/18/16): It Takes Gutz to Be a Guerrero, Pt. 2


Last week, Matanza finally got rid of his biggest challenge yet. The Monster defeated Mil Muertes in Graver Consequences, finally putting the dead man away in a coffin. Elsewhere, Rey Mysterio, Dragon Azteca Jr. and Prince Puma enjoyed a successful title defense, while Joey Ryan picked up the final Aztec medallion available.


The Legend of Chavo Guerrero
(Yes, that is an actual song. You can find it here.)

Chavo Guerrero Jr. has had a lot to live up to his entire career. His grandfather, Gory, is known as one of lucha libre’s pioneers. His father and uncles have competed all around the world, and have won a number of titles. So far, though, Chavo’s career in Lucha Underground has not reached the heights you would expect of a Guerrero. He’s had memorable feuds with the likes of Sexy Star and Texano, but he fell short against them when it mattered. Heck, he hasn’t even been a strong presence this season.

That all changed this week, when Chavo finally got his first taste of gold in the Temple. And he did it in the one way he knew how—by lying, cheating and stealing.


The actual Gift of the Gods match was a fun multi-man brawl. Everyone got their own signature stuff in—Joey Ryan was creepy, Aero Star was flippy, Texano was cursing in Spanish, and so on. The match played out similarly to the first Gift of the Gods match at Ultima Lucha, with the focus quickly shifting between different pairs of competitors. Once everyone got their time in, Cage came out and demolished everyone, before shockingly setting up Chavo to pick up the win. We would then find out that this was because the winner would be defending the Gift of the Gods next week against Cage, so he picked the one guy he wanted to beat the crap out of.

I’m a fan of how they decided to keep Cage in contention, even if it abruptly ended what should’ve been a great seven-way match. Cage has looked very strong for some time now, and it was only a matter of time before he climbed into the Lucha Underground Championship scene. This allows him to do exactly that, while giving him a nice foil in the conniving Guerrero. Also, it makes sense that he’d take this route to the Gift of the Gods, since now he just has to face one guy instead of everyone who held a medallion. Only a machine can make that kind of computation, guys.

It’s always fun to watch a Guerrero lie, cheat and steal, and Chavo’s recent antics remind you of the stuff his uncle Eddie used to pull off back then. He’ll get his comeuppance soon enough, and that’ll be fun to watch. I hope that he remains relevant in the Temple afterwards, though, whether he continues to hound Cage or finds someone else to pick on. He’s one of the more hateable characters on the roster right now (not Hernandez levels of heat, but close), and we need these kinds of guys to give our heroes a challenge.


Focus Fire

Hey, speaking of hateable guys, resident creepy bastard Marty “The Moth” Martinez just got another guy to hate him.


He may have lost to Killshot, but he had the last laugh in the end as he stole Killshot’s prized dog tags before laying him out with a curb stomp (heh). We know how important those dog tags are to Killshot, so expect the Tacoma native to go after Moth in an effort to get his things back.

It took them some time to give Killshot something meaningful to do, and I’m glad they’re moving forward with it. I’d love to see more of Killshot and Moth in the ring, as Killshot’s tactical, precise approach contrasts well with Moth’s power and brawling. They only had a short bout this week, but action picked up nicely towards the end. Look for these two to have a rematch in the next couple of weeks, and hopefully they’re given more time to bring the house down.


Quick Hits:


  • We had another multi-man match this week, as Daga, Kobra Moon, Argenis and Mascarita Sagrada all faced off against each other. Having the little man in also meant we got more of Famous B, which is always a good sight. It was a decent match, with Daga picking up his first win thanks to Kobra Moon backing off a fallen Sagrada. Seems like the classic case of #sparks, so let’s see how they move this forward.

  • I know Dario Cueto being awesome isn’t news, but holy shit, he was amazing in this week’s opening segment. His running commentary as the Aztec medallion bearers came out was genius, the highlight of which being that “spooky!” line aimed at Siniestro de la Muerte. I wouldn’t mind having Dario follow me around commenting on the mundane things I see everyday.

  • Pentagon Jr. continues his road to recovery, this time hanging from a torture device as Vampiro beat the weakness out of him. Told you he was the world’s shittiest caretaker. I do hope they wrap up this rehab plot soon, as I really miss Pentagon fucking shit up in the Temple.

This week’s episode was fun to watch, as we got three decent matches and some nice story progression. None of the bouts were jaw-dropping, but they worked to set up some new rivalries and one big match. B seems like a fair grade for this week, just like last week’s episode.

What do you think of this week’s episode? Let us know in the comments section!

*****

Anthony Cuello is an HR professional and training designer. When he’s not sleeping or reading the Harvard Business Review, he covers 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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