Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D, Sebastian, and other friends write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Thursday, June 16, 2016

2016 Ongoing MOTY List: Casas v. Hechicero

1. Negro Casas v. Rey Hechicero Monterrey 4/24

PAS: This year I have watched a bunch of really fun on paper lucha matches that have been slightly disappointing, this however totally lived up to it's promise. The matwork opening up this match was sublime, Casas doesn't do a ton of matwork normally, but man is his stuff beautiful here, finding sensible awesome looking counters to all of the flashy stuff Hechicero was pulling off. I loved that rolling cradle hamstring stretch Hechicero pulled off, and adored how Casas's hamstring tightened up in the third fall costing him the match. This was a really great match, and they left some stuff on the table for a possible rematch. This is that lucha libre I love.

ER: This whole match was just lucha heaven for me. Wrestling heaven? Possibly. This is arguably my favorite mat stuff of the year, and I say that as someone who is fully in love with all of the things Gulak and Yehi and others are doing. This had the beautiful grace of the best lucha matwork, combined with some genuinely painful looking stuff, with all sorts of twists and sequences so neat that they could only be done by masters. They throw out plenty of neat counters, but never get cute, it always feels like two guys trying to slowly wreck joints. At one point Hechicero is working for a bow and arrow and Casas breaks free and kind of lifts out of Hechicero's clutches like Nosferatu rising from his crypt and all in one motion he spins while never letting go of Hechicero's ankle, and suddenly he's got a wrenching ankle sub. Both men were joined together throughout almost all of this matwork, like they were a one line drawing, with them moving in these weird rolling patterns. It was hypnotic. I could have watched for hours. Negro locked in one of the stiffer sharpshooters I've seen, locking in those legs and every time Hechicero would lunge for the ropes it would send Casas stumbling and bending Rey's back even more. Also loved Negro just slowwwwwly yanking Hechicero's arms behind his back, and the camera was just right in Rey's face with Casas over his shoulder just slowwwwwly pulling back, like he was waiting to get right to the point of shoulder dislocation. The tercera was when they got on their feet, and then they wowed me in entirely different ways. Hechicero does some of his great strength spots, doing the one arm lift with the fun wrinkle of Casas trying to roll through it (something we just saw in Hechicero vs. Cerebro) and here Hechicero somehow blocks Casas' momentum before flinging him up and over. At one point they fight on the apron and man, I don't know if I've seen better apron fighting. It reminded me of Dundee/Koko in their scaffold match of two guys finding cool ways to work on a slender surface. This was just a tight, extremely well executed match. The spots were gorgeous, but they weren't just getting up and moving to the next spot. They found perfect ways to tie things together, kept up the basics (Casas blasts him with elbows, Hechicero throws some nasty flat footed kicks to Casas' forehead), there's neat memory stuff like Casas screaming to the crowd for a clothesline only to turn around as Hechicero is kicking his clothesline arm, it's just jammed full of the best of lucha. Great match.


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