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LUCHA UNDERGROUND (Season 3, Ep. 16)
DECEMBER 21, 2016
TAPED IN LOS ANGELES, CALIF.
AIRED ON EL REY NETWORK
Report by Joel Dehnel, PWTorch contributor
Announcers: Matt Striker and Vampiro
The show opened with a recaps of The Battle of the Bulls tournament, Kobra Moon-Drago, Sexy Star-World Wide Underground.
Announcers: Matt Striker welcomed the audience to the show. Striker hyped the Battle of the Bulls final and the Lucha Underground Championship match. Vampiro explained the Battle of the Bulls tournament then threw to Santos.
In ring: Santos introduced the next match as the finals of the Battle of the Bulls tournament.
(1) THE MACK vs. “THE DAREWOLF” P.J. BLACK vs. JEREMIAH CRANE vs. CAGE – Four-Way elimination match to determine the #1 contender for the Lucha Underground Championship
Cage took out everyone to start. Black fought back and beat on Cage then missed a moonsault. Crane and Black took down Cage then knocked out each other. Crane landed on Black then Mack leaped on both of them and tried to pin both. Crane and Mack stood toe to toe with each other, then Crane took down Mack and stomped on his face. Black tried to interfere but Crane took him down then dove onto him. Mack got up and dove onto Crane outside. Cage got up and leaped onto everyone outside. Black got up and hit a moonsault. Black tried to leap again but Crane caught him and slammed him on the apron. Cage grabbed Crane and hit a suplex on the outside. Mack grabbed Cage putting him on his shoulders. Black tried to knock him over but Cage caught him and slammed him. Crane tried to fight back against Cage then locked in a choke hold. Cage broke through then slammed Black. Texano interfered and hit Cage with the bull rope. Everyone then took advantage and hit moves on Cage allowing Black to pin him for the elimination at 6:01.
Crane put Mack and Black in the corner and ran his foot into both of them. Crane hit a series of moves on Black for a two count. Crane went to the top rope but was stopped by Mack. Crane flipped over Mack then knocked him over. Crane hit a sit down power bomb on Mack for two count. Crane went right into a submission move then Black interfered and tried a pin. Crane grabbed Black and hit a pile driver. Black rolled out of the ring then Mack grabbed Crane. Mack put Crane on the top rope and hit a stunner from the top for the elimination at 10:32.
Black chopped Mack on the ropes. Mack hit a stunner on Black for the pin and the win at 11:38.
WINNER: The Mack at 11:38
Still to come: Johnny Mundo vs. Sexy Star
Backstagw. AeroStar and Fenix opened bathroom stalls. Kobra Moon creeped up behind them and asked if they were looking for Drago. Moon said that Drago has returned home. The two reptile men Pindar and Vibora appeared and brawled with Fenix and AeroStar. Fenix and AeroStar put up a good fight, but were taken out. Moon stood over them and said next time it would be her Drago to take the out.
Backstage: Sexy Star celebrated Mack’s win with him. Mack encouraged Star to beat Mundo and joked about beating her for the belt.
Crane came in Dario’s office and push on the ceiling. Crane grabbed some sort of board and said he left it here when he was a kid. He ran into Catrina in the hallway. Catrina told him he just lost an opportunity to be champion. Crane said he has a match next week where Pasqual Mendoza wish she would’ve died then he said he would have Catrina all to himself.
In ring: Santos introduced the competitors for the main event.
(2) Lucha Underground Champion JOHNNY MUNDO vs. SEXY STAR – Steel cage match for the Lucha Underground Championship
Mundo spit at Star then Star slapped him back. Star landed some kicks on Mundo then threw him against the fence. Mundo took control of Star’s arm. Star reversed and put on a head lock. Mundo broke free then tried to climb the cage but Star stopped him. Star tried to escape herself, but Mundo grabbed her leg and pulled her back into the ring. Mundo rubber Star face against the fence. Fans chanted for Mundo and Star (Mundo is as clear of a heel as it gets. There is something wrong systematically that fans are chanting for him). Star tried to climb up the cage again then she knocked over Mundo and tried to climb the cage again. Mundo grabbed her leg yet again. Star tripped Mundo on the ropes then climbed the cage to be caught yet again. Mundo grabbed Starr of the ropes the hit a back breaker onto his knee. Mundo hit several kicks then picked up Star and rammed her head into the cage. The fans got behind Star. Mundo stopped Star from gaining momentum then climbed the cage. Star grabbed Mundo off the turnbuckle and hit a power bomb followed by a leg drop. Star climbed the cage and again Mundo stopped her Star knocked Mundo off the turnbuckle. Star hit a cross body from the top of the cage onto Mundo. Star tried a few pins then went for the escape. Mundo climbed the cage and they traded blows from the top. Mundo was close to escaping but his foot got caught in the cage. Star pulled Mundo back into the ring. They beat each other on the ropes then Mundo ripped off Star’s mask. Star grabbed it in the middle of the ring which allowed Mundo to climb over the cage for the win.
WINNER: Mundo at 12:09 to retain his title.
Post match: Mack cam up behind Mundo and hit a stunner.
Kobra Moon’s lair: Drago was chained up. Moon asked Drago if he’s ready to call her his queen. Moon said she would feed him some scraps of food. Drago said he would rather starve. Drago breathed some fire with a cheesy After Effects animation.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I really like how they have built the Star-Mundo feud. The match felt much bigger because it had been built for a few weeks instead of being thrown away on TV the week after the title changed hands. Being patient and building to matches makes the match feel far more important and its so easy to do. Star is a very good underdog character babyface against a hateable heel like Mundo. I think if Lucha stressed how dispicable the heels are and didnt try to make them cool, they could avoid some of the battle chants. The booking at the end of the match worked well because everyone in the temple just booed Mundo and hated him for what he did. These smaller things make a huge difference rather than Star and Mundo trying to top each other doing high spots for ‘‘This is awesome“ chants. Mundo won the match without cheating or outside interferance, but the way he did it was unsportsmanlike and made you want to see someone kick his ass.
I’m intrigued to see what happens between Moon and Drago, but I’m far more interested in Pindar & Vibora vs. Fenix & AeroStar. Moon is not a good fit for the role she’s playing. She comes off as too goofy to be taken seriously. It also doesn’t help that Drago has these weird cheesy special effects.
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NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S REPORT: DEHNEL’S LUCHA UNDERGROUND REVIEW 12/14: Jack Evans vs. P.J. Black vs. Angelico vs. Son of Havoc, Kobra Moon vs. Drago