Segunda Caida

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

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

WWE Cruiserweight Classic 7/13/16

PAS: Helmsleys fake Liev Schriber documentary voice was pretty bad. I get they probably couldn't afford Liev, but they could have at least sprung for Pablo.

1. Gran Metalik vs. Alejandro Saez

ER: Metalik is Mascara Dorada, and I have never seen Saez before. And Saez might have the absolute goofiest "stagger" selling I've ever seen. Watching him twitch around the ring after Metalik hit a superkick, well...it was something. His facials in general are just absurd. Dorada hits a big springboard flip dive, Saez surprises me with a shooting star off the apron, and Dorada wins in about 4 minutes. This wasn't much, any Dorada lightning match is more interesting than this. Saez hit a nice SSP but man was he goofy.

PAS: Saez was XL in Chile and I saw him during that brief period where a bunch of Chilean youtube showed up. I remember him as an amusing crowbar, and he was a little less crowbary here. That SSP off the apron was really nasty as was the high kick that set it up. I had no problem with Saez's facial selling, I am in on Chilean crowbar John Tatum, that is a wrestler I want to watch. Metalik is obviously a pro and will do fine.

2. HoHo Lun vs. Ariya Daivari

ER: I've not seen either of these two, but I must say I'm happy WWE went so far out of their way to bring guys like Lun into this. Quite the unexpected move. That said, Lun does not seem ready for prime time. He has super weak strikes, doesn't really have expressive selling, and was part of a few awkward behind the curtain moments (the worst being when he was breaking Daivari's grip, and Daivari was flexed as if struggling to maintain grip, and Lun moves his hands off Daivari's arms to clearly show Daivari was just struggling against himself). Yeah yeah we all know it's a show, but man did Lun expose some things here. Daivari looked a lot better here than his brother looked in Lucha Underground, so that's a plus. Daivari had a lot of polish and I much would have rather seen him advance. He missed big, smothered Lun with a headlock, fed into...whatever it was Lun was supposed to be doing. I think they were supposed to be moves. But one can't be sure.

PAS: Daivari had nice pop on his stuff, everything looked very sharp and professional. Lun is a guy who trained himself watching youtube, and kind of wrestles like it. I think it is cool that they got a Hong Kong backyarder into the tourney, no reason to have him advance though.

3. Clement Petiot vs. Cedric Alexander

ER: Didn't get much of a feel for Petiot here. His control segments were sound, but kinda boring. I liked his discus clothesline and liked how it set up Cedric's finisher, dug Cedric's big springboard clothesline, but this felt like they could do more with the limited time. And less Bryan talking about grinding.

PAS: Thought Petiot was fine, he and Davari should both be singed and be put together as a workhorse NXT tag team to put over guys they think have futures. I haven't care for Alexander in longer matches, but his flashy stuff works good in a five minute TV match.

4. Kota Ibushi vs. Sean Maluta

ER: Maluta seems pretty raw, fairly tentative, does some goofy stuff (top rope codebreaker, ugh), but I liked his big bump off the top to the floor off an Ibushi Pele kick, and liked his stiff superkick (with Ibushi turning right into it and falling like a felled tree). Maluta almost kills himself on a flip dive, catching the ropes and then getting a lucky break by hitting feet first on the apron with his momentum taking him into Ibushi. Most of this is a mini showcase of some trademark Ibushi flying, his slingshot moonsault to the floor, his nice standing moonsault, some quick kicks, nothing you haven't seen before if you've seen one Ibushi match.

PAS: I thought the announcers did a nice job of selling this as potential 16 v 1 seed tourney upset, and the match was worked like that. Maluta had no real shot coming in, but maybe Ibushi's neck is hurt or he has jet lag. Maluta's nutty blown dive really worked in the context of this match, he probably shouldn't have tried it, but he needed to try some David strategies to have any shot. That superkick looked great and was sold great and ended up being a big near fall. I thought this was an actively good match, and better then a lot of your pimped NJ Ibushi "classics"

ER: Well, let's hope the matches kick up a notch once we trim some of the first round dead weight. I love the idea on paper of giving these unknown guys showcase matches, but so far the unknowns have only shown that they don't have tons to show yet.

PAS: I thought this was good first show, Ibushi v. Maluta was good stuff and I thought a lot of the first round losers showed some real promise.

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