Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Thursday, July 31, 2014

MLJ: Atlantida Rising 12: Dr. Wagner Jr., Mr. Niebla, Rey Bucanero vs Atlantis, Tarzan Boy, Último Guerrero

Aired 2006-07-15
taped 2006-07-09 @ Arena Coliseo
Dr. Wagner Jr., Mr. Niebla, Rey Bucanero vs Atlantis, Tarzan Boy, Último Guerrero



This is an interesting match to poke at. It has some of its own merits and drawbacks but at the same time, it's very structurally similar to the previous match, just with a few different motifs and a differently set up tercera (though one that got across a lot of the same ideas). Here, the focus wasn't necessarily on Rey vs UG, though he did ambush Rey coming out and they did pair off in the tercera, but instead on Atlantis vs Niebla, to set up a mask match that they've actually teased a few times over the years with it never actually happening. What makes this match better than the last one is a more visceral beatdown in the primera and then a more balanced tercera that led to a cleaner and clearer big moment, even if the actual payoff to that moment wasn't great.

I really liked the rudo mugging in the primera that bled into the segunda. It's not any longer than in the last match but it was grittier. Like I said, they started out by ambushing Rey again, as the second guy out. Tarzan Boy looked as good as I've ever seen him with elbows and knees in the corner. Atlantis, in a theme for the match, went right after Niebla's mask, doing some real damage. As a brief aside, Atlantis and UG have these cool combo masks for this match, with both of their looks on it. Rey leaving Los Guerreros seemed to have helped solidarity, just like it pushed Tarzan Boy up the ladder of importance. Niebla also had a taped up shoulder and they beat the crap out of that; even though that didn't pay off later it did add to the grindhouse feel of the beating. They hit the three corner moves on Rey, ending with UG's handstand body splash. Later on a fan actually had to help Rey up which was a nice little visual.

They also did a great job negating Wagner and Niebla's usual BS. I was sort of excited to see them on the same time because they both have this crazy charisma, but Wagner has a tendency to no-sell things to get the crowd behind him and Niebla has a tendency to go off on crazy comedy tangents. Los Guerreros had such a dominant and focused attack that even when Wagner tried to do his stuff, they just beat him down more (including holding his arms so he could eat a Tarzan Boy dropkick). Again, it added to the feel when it might have otherwise taken away from it. The caida ended with a great Atlantida on Wagner, where the momentum of he being tossed into it really made it stand out. It was only four minutes but it felt like a lot longer even before it bled into the segunda, where they hit both the triple body splash on Rey, and the catapult-clothesline-top rope move (this time Tarzan Boy's rope walk legdrop) on Wagner. For some reason, I've come to quite enjoy the rudo triple kick off the ropes even though it's so simple a move. The beatdown was so absolute that they even took the time to do the Guerreros huddle afterwards.

I think a great sign of how effective the beating had been was how, at the end, the fans were chanting for Niebla. His mask was torn. He was battered, and everyone in that arena was very much ready for the comeback. Unfortunately, his part in it was underwhelming enough to drag the whole thing down, even if he didn't actively do anything to hurt it, which had been my initial worry. Los Guerreros went for the triple body splash again, but this time, the tecnicos on the floor grabbed Tarzan Boy's leg. Niebla started to come back against Atlantis, tearing at HIS mask and the tecnicos hit a body splash of their own (Rey doing the flying) before taking the fall on Tarzan Boy and UG (with Atlantis taking a powder to set up the anticipation of him facing Niebla in the tercera).

The tercera was still tecnico heavy, sort of an extension of the comeback, but it was more focused on the individual match ups and setting up that potential Atlantis/Niebla match that never seemed to happen. The rudos would start the match ups with the advantage but the tecnicos would quickly take over. Past some fun headscissors spots by Rey and UG, the big focus was between Atlantis and Niebla, who had a couple of good slaps and managed to keep the jiving hulk up to a minimum. It was all a bit in slow motion, though, and not due to selling or conscious pacing to make things look important. There just wasn't the intensity there to pay off the early mugging. Rey and Wagner hit their big dives and Niebla lost to a crucifix roll up that seemed like it was in slow motion as well. Very solid, very visceral Guerreros offensive showcase in the beginning with a good productive structure but ultimately hurt by a lack of intensity by the main player in the comeback. Still probably worth watching though, even if the Atlantis/Niebla match never ended up happening.

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