Segunda Caida

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

Friday, June 12, 2020


Felino/Emilio Charles Jr./Dr. Wagner Jr./Negro Casas vs. Pantera/Silver King/El Dandy/El Texano CMLL 12/16/95

PAS: This was an elimination 8 man tag with eight all time great wrestlers going out there are just flowing for 30+ minutes. We open with Negro Casas and El Dandy ripping it up on the mat and just go from there. Matches like these are always going to be more about the rhythm then any real story, although I did dig it coming down the Wagner boys. Fun Wagner performance as he was just planting people with powerbombs, and of course Dandy and Casas were both tremendous. As I have said a million times Casas is the master of minutia, little reactions or sells or execution on moves, everything matters and counts, and it is fun to watch him flit in and out of a match with so many other all timers.

MD: It's a 4x4 Cibernetico with some of the best talents of the era. What's not to like? According to the old WON I looked at, this was billed as "for La Copa de altra rendimiento which basically means the Cup of high-class submissions," and Dave was baffled at the pinfall finish. Anyway, it was interesting how this flowed. You didn't get a lot of clear pairings with defined beginnings and endings but instead transitions between one wrestler and the next. Of the pairings we did get, Silver King vs. Negro Casas stood out. I always love the little trip spots they work into their exchanges. Very few dives but lots of great exchanges and big moves. Maybe Casas kicked out of one or two more things than he ought of, especially when there were still enough guys around to allow for interference, but that's a small issue, as was the botch on the Felino elimination. Wagner came out of this looking like a big deal. And yeah, while it's cliché for us to say it, Dandy's punches were sure great.

ER: I love having a collection of these types of matches, the kind of match I can throw on in the background if a friend or two are over and everyone in the room gets their own level of enjoyment out of it based on their individual concentration level. The person concentrating the most gets the benefit of seeing small sequences or individual movements, but someone dicking around on their phone will still look up and see Silver King stomping the hell out of Emilio Charles' knee or Dandy getting Casas out of the way with a breathless magistral. They'll see fast moves done by men they don't know who have large perms. It's worked at such a pace that it's perfectly entertaining for every level of involvement. I thought the major standout here was Texano, looking like the stiffest and most aggressive guy in a match filled with stiff strikes and fast aggressive sequences. Everyone was lighting up everyone, like Emilio Charles throwing skeleton rattling corner clotheslines or Wagner crushing Pantera with a sitout powerbomb. Casas is the perfect kind of glue for a match like this, and Dandy comes off so plucky and punchy. I get why Dandy didn't translate to southern American wrestling crowds, but seeing him in his wheelhouse and basking in his enthusiasm is infectious. He looks like the coolest version of Barbra Streisand in A Star is Born. The first three minutes of this match are just Dandy and Casas tearing through brisk mat sequences and really its all you need. This is the kind of thing you can play through a couple times and notice new stuff each pass.

Super Dragon/Rising Son/Pantera vs. Damian 666/Halloween/Nicho El Millonario Rev Pro 11/30/02 - GREAT

PAS: This was Super Dragon really clearly excited to work a Familia de Tijuana match. Most of Dragon's career was fitting people into his formula, so it was fun to watch him fit into a formula. We get some early lucha comedy, some pratfalls, an awesome somersault rana through the post by Dragon and a killer finish. Really enjoyed Rising Son in this as he was ripping off high difficultly ranas with true pros there available to base for him. The kind of match which must have sent the crowd home on a real lucha high.

MD: Whatever I was doing in the early 00s, it wasn't watching RevPro. I guess I was focused on the East coast scene? I have no idea. That made this pretty fresh for me. The biggest problem was that La Familia de Tijuana was just too over as cool heels, getting more cheers by far, to the point where I was sort of embarrassed for Pantera at one point. They didn't adapt the match for the crowd. That said, everyone seemed to be having fun, especially Damien who was goofing a bit more than usual. They did a lot of groin based offense accordingly. Nicho based beautifully but there's nothing new with that. Super Dragon was in there less than Rising Son but his flipping tope out through the corner to set up the finish was breathtaking. The timing of the dives at the end felt a little off to maximize the moment, but I doubt anyone in that crowd cared.

Nasty Russ vs. T-Money vs. Jay Donaldson vs. Samson Walker NWF 8/15/15

PAS: This was a four-way cage match with our boys the Jollyville Fuck-Its against each other along with two other Kentucky area indy guys. It was a spotfest cage match and the Jollyville boys are guys with huge spots, and Donaldson and Walker were right there. Walker is a big guy, even bigger than T-Money and he does some chucking around including catapulting Donaldson into an ace crusher. We don't get a Nasty Russ cannonball, but we do get a crazy moonsault off the cage into Walker's feet, and several nasty cage bumps including one where he goes forehead first into a steel post. Finish was absolutely psychotic and one of greatest cage finishes I have ever seen. Total blast and a great look at some Segunda Caida favorites earlier in their careers.

MD: If you're going to have four guys in a cage, fatal four-way style, this is a pretty good way to do it. This gave everyone time to shine. When guys had to lay around, it was generally warranted. The characters were well-defined. Walker was comedic yet powerful and explosive. Donaldson had the hype man, the step-up kicks, the attitude, and the opportunism. Russ carried himself like a champ, tenacious, with fighting spirit and an easy charisma, and T-Money was an unquestionable force. The setting felt like an indy lucha match that just happens in a public square, which added to the ambiance. The big spots were sufficiently big (killing your own knees by landing on a moonsault from the top is insane and the finishing stretch worked really well). The gaga at the end (Walker faking an injury in a cage match to get the door open; Donaldson dismantling the ring, a unique use of a wrench to say the least, with the ref going above and beyond to cover for how long it was taking, the friends having victory and the belt between them at the end) was fun, even if you don't usually want gaga in a cage match. You definitely felt the stakes throughout, which is what you want in a match like this.

ER: This was exactly the kind of thing I wanted to watch on my lunch break today. A loose cage with four guys willing to die, with a finish so doomed that if I hadn't seen these guys wrestle at a later date I would have just assumed that this did actually end with two of the guys dying. Russ and T-Money have seen a lot of praise from Segunda Caida. Those Boys from Jollyville are really the two that got us into AIW proper, and they're the team that has probably most often been referenced by us as a dream match tag opponent over the past couple years. I loved seeing the ways they acted as a team here, and even more excited for the gigantic moment where they were not together. I am not familiar with Samson or Donaldson, but came away especially impressed with Samson. As Phil said, he's almost like an even bigger version of T-Money, and had insane pop up strength. He shot Donaldson so far into the air a couple times that his body cleared the top of the cage, once for a super high backdrop and once for a fantastic looking cutter; but he also hoisted T-Money up for a sit up powerbomb like it was absolutely nothing at all, jerking him up sky high before bringing him down. I also loved how Samson basically stopped the match with an injury, waited until everyone was otherwise occupied, then dove for the cage door to attempt escape. That feels like Chris Hamrick Cage Match 101 and I love it. Donaldson had one dodgy strike exchange, but did a lot of things I liked. At one point he broke up a move by hitting an enziguiri right into Samson's armpit (intentionally targeted) and hit another enziguiri that really landed. He also ripped apart the ring ropes and strangled Russ with the rope, beating him with a wrench and buckle. Russ always flew into action with his awesome big punch, everyone took big bumps (Russ moonsault into feet was wild), and the finish was spectacular.

Everything about the finish was great, with T-Money about to escape but getting lured back in when Donaldson threatened to brain Russ with a chair. Money gets back in and just destroys Donaldson with a Pounce, sending him flying sideways into the cage. As Money is about to exit, Russ grabs his ankle, and we get a great bit of friendship when Money looks down and says "come on man". He already saved Russ from getting his face rearranged by a chair, and now the guy won't even let him win? Well, he certainly solves that problem, picking Russ up in a bearhug and running him straight through the cage door, sending both crashing to the grass in brutal fashion. T-Money looked like he went straight down, Russ crashed and burned underneath. Money had to leap, holding Russ, over the top rope and through a cage door, so both of their trajectories were beyond fucked. I can't think of many match finishes more spectacular than this one. I would have lost my mind live, then calmed myself down to make sure I didn't witness a death, then lost my mind again.

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