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Monday, March 07, 2016

MLJ: Recent Uploads: Chavo Guerrero, Eddy Guerrero, El Dandy vs Mongolian Mauler, Fuerza Guerrera, Vampiro

1991-05-10 @ Arena Coliseo
Chavo Guerrero, Eddy Guerrero, El Dandy vs Mongolian Mauler, Fuerza Guerrera, Vampiro


We're going to have a brief detour from all things productive for this one. decadas80s90s2000 on youtube is a lovely human being, a double-threat who posts both fancams from Elite shows and older lucha on a regular basis. His nomenclature strategies can be occasionally misleading however. This one popped up on February 23, with the title of "EDDIE GUERRERO,EL DANDY VS FUERZA GUERRERA,VAMPIRO CANADIENSE." I figured that I could tolerate some Vampiro for the sake of a 23 year old Eddy, Dandy, and Fuerza. Not mentioned in there was Chavo Guerrero, but I've been enjoying him quite a bit in the nwaclassics.com footage, and he was probably better to watch in 91 than a relatively green Eddy.

Also not mentioned, however, was the Mongolian Mauler, which was quite the oversight. I kind of love fish out of water monster lucha appearances. Sometimes, it works out really well, like with Kamala or Haku. Or it can be at least functional like Solomon Grundy, a foil for a particularly talented tecnico or rudo to play off of. A Killer Kowalski graduate running with the Geeto/Bepo Mongol gimmick and black contact lenses and prone to eating the turnbuckles, the Mongolian Mauler was a totally different beast. He had a cup of coffee in 1994 WCW, including a Main Event match of Sting, Dustin, and Pillman vs Regal, Austin, and the Mauler, which I really need to see at some point. He was actually all over the place. SMW, Reslo, WING, CWA. It's a weird career for someone I hadn't heard of. I think his ring work is best summed up with this gif I made from a squash over Brian Armstrong in WCW:


Still, it shouldn't have been an issue in a match with Dandy and Fuerza, right? Fuerza could direct traffic and Dandy could sell and it'd be fine? They could work around Mauler like we've seen with so many other such wrestlers. Not so much. The problem was two fold. First and foremost, having the Guerreros in there made things problematic in a way that you wouldn't expect. While I imagine Chavo could work a trios match without breaking a sweat, having Mauler in there to play off of meant that he decided to break from convention and work things how he wanted. That meant getting tossed over the top rope a few times so that he could do a skin the cat spot as the match ground to a halt as the others weren't sure whether they should come in the ring or not, that sort of thing.

The second issue was that this was a storyline driven match. This was the road to Vampiro's face turn, which involved miscommunication and a post-match beatdown by the rudos. Having Mauler in there as a prop for the miscommunication spots was less than ideal, especially when they were relying on Vampiro to make it all work in the first place. There were good things in the match: Fuerza/Dandy exchanges were as good as you'd expect; it was nice to see Chavo and Eddy interact, including them saving one another at times; and Vampiro, despite what I just said, is the sort of guy you're always better off seeing in story-driven matches as opposed to more technique-based ones, but I think it was, all in all, an example of just what happens when the delicate formula of lucha libre trios matches get distrupted. They only make it LOOK easy most of the time.


By the way, according to the Match Finder, Vampiro had two singles matches in 91: one vs the Mauler, one vs Nitron. Don't you wish you could see those? I sure do.

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