The SmarK Rant for Lucha Underground S01E26 – “The Best in the Business”

The SmarK Rant for Lucha Underground S01E26

“The Best in the Business”

Dario Cueto is chilling in his office, but Johnny Mundo and Alberto El Patron burst in and they’re both after a title shot at Prince Puma.  Dario agrees that they both deserve a title shot, but not yet.  Mundo thinks they deserve it over “Fernandez” because they’re both better than Hernandez, and they’re the BEST IN THE BUSINESS.  So Dario, always looking for the ratings bump, books Mundo v. Alberto tonight, with the winner facing Hernandez next week to determine the TRUE #1 contender.

Taped from the Aztec Temple

Your hosts are Matt Striker & Vampiro

Son of Havoc & Angelico & Ivelisse v. The Crew

This is non-title, plus Ivelisse is still on crutches anyway and so is only technically part of the match.  So she watches from the front row and yells orders at her partners.  Angelico and Havoc control the Crew to start as Angelico gets some nice legsweeps on Mr. Cisco and runs wild on the heels with kicks and a running knee into the corner on Cortez.  Cortez escapes a Razor’s Edge and tries a sunset flip, but Angelico double-stomps him for two.  Angelico sends them to the floor and Havoc dives out of nowhere onto them, and then Angelico gets his own somersault plancha and then hits Castro with a pump kick on the way back into the ring for two.  Not a huge fan of Vampiro calling Ivelisse a “huge bitch” while she’s giving orders, because it kind of adds to the whole woman-hating vibe of the show.  Havoc gets the hot tag and springboards with a double clothesline, but Cisco catches him with a codebreaker out of a flapjack from Castro and gets the pin at 5:30.  Some nice dives but they were all over the place and it was pretty short.  **1/4

Dario Cueto sits down for a drink with Shawn Daivari, who is busy on his phone as Dario seethes.  Dario just swirling his drink with barely concealed annoyance is a great subtle bit.  So Dario puts him in the ring with Texano to see how much violence he can inflict.

Dario Cueto shows up next in the locker room, stirring up more trouble by booking Puma and Hernandez in a tag team match against Cage & Cuerno.

Delavar Devari v. Texano

The story is that Daivari left wrestling and made a bunch of money with his family in LA, so now he’s rich and drinking fancy liquor in the corner.  And he attacked Texano out of the crowd a couple of weeks back to cost Texano’s team the Trios title, so there’s bad blood.  And indeed, Texano attacks him and shoves the referee in the process, drawing the DQ at 0:14.  So they brawl for a bit and Daivari takes a powder.

Cage & King Cuerno v. Prince Puma & Hernandez

Hernandez is trying to be all buddy-buddy because they’re both mentored by Konnan, but Puma is in no mood for his shit.  Cage grabs a headlock on Hernandez to start, but he misses a charge and Hernandez hits him with a slingshot shoulderblock and brings Puma in.  Puma takes him down with a rana and it’s over to Cuerno, but Puma takes him down with an amazing handspring into a headscissors, and then he misses a knee.  TAKE A DRINK for Vampiro disgustedly burying Konnan and bitching that he’s only in it for himself and his payday.  Cage comes in and pulls out a 619 on Puma, then presses Puma in a delayed suplex and finishes into a Jackhammer for two.  Puma fights back with spinkicks on the heels and makes the hot tag to Hernandez.  He tosses Cage, then slams Cuerno onto him and follows with a dive onto both guys.  Puma follows with his own, but Hernandez is busy strutting on the apron and Puma is unable to dive.  Back in, they double-team Cuerno, in the sense that Hernandez tells Puma what to do and dominates the match, as he hits Cuerno with an overhead suplex and Puma gets two.  Back to Cage, as Puma hits him with an enzuigiri and it’s BREAKING LOOSE IN TULSA as everyone is down.  Hernandez gets dumped and Cuerno sets up his killer dive, but Hernandez PUSHES PUMA IN THE WAY and Puma takes the bullet instead.  WHAT A JACKASS.  And then he casually boots Puma in the face and powerbombs him on the apron, which finally makes Konnan realize whose side Hernandez is on.  Which is to say, not his.  And Cage finishes Puma with the Weapon X at 7:31.  This was a fantastic piece of business, as I actually said “You fucker!” when he turned on Puma.  ***1/4

Meanwhile, Black Lotus is unable to best Dragon Azteca in karate, but he promises that she’ll be able to avenge her parents if she stays with him and learns from him.  I’m just gonna say what we’re all thinking here:  She should be GRATEFUL that he kidnapped her off the street, threw her in the trunk of his car, and then held her prisoner for weeks in his abandoned warehouse while forcing her to fight faceless ninjas to survive.  We should all have a friend like Dragon Azteca looking out for us.

Johnny Mundo v. Alberto El Patron

They fight for a wristlock to start and Patron beats on him in the corner and gets two, but Johnny clotheslines him to the floor and dives.  Patron counters by pulling out the apron and trapping him, then hitting him with an enzuigiri and back in for two.  What’s with Alberto working in his t-shirt, by the way?  Alberto with the chinlock and chokes him out, and Vampiro straight up loves that Alberto is fighting dirty and he’s now a fan.  Alberto with a backdrop suplex, but he misses a moonsault and Mundo comes back with clotheslines and his springboard enzuigiri for two.  Johnny charges and Alberto backdrops him over the post and to the floor, and Alberto pulls out his own dive.  Amazingly, Mundo landed on the wooden stairs on his dive and managed to shatter them, which is a spot I’ve never seen or even thought of before.  They slug it out and Alberto gets the tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, but Mundo sends him out and follows with the corkscrew dive.  Back in, Mundo goes up and tries a moonsault, but Alberto brings him down with an inverted suplex for two.  FINALLY Alberto takes off the shirt and calls for the armbar, but Mundo escapes and gets a sunset flip for two.  Rollup for two.  Moonlight Drive gets two, but Alberto is in the ropes.  So he tries it again, but he gets too close and Alberto snatches the arm and gets the cross-armbreaker, and Mundo makes the ropes this time.  Alberto gets frustrated and kicks away at Johnny’s arm in the corner, then hangs him in the Tree of Woe and puts the boots to him, but he charges and Johnny does a situp to dodge him and Alberto hits the post.  Johnny goes up and double-stomps the back for two, but Patron takes out the arm again and superkicks him for the flash pin at 12:20 to advance to the #1 contender match next week.  This was FANTASTIC and makes me sad for how little Johnny cares today.  I mean, I can’t blame him, but GEEZ.  ****1/4

And finally, Catrina has decided that it’s time for Mil Muertes to RISE from his grave after, you know, dying. I can see how that would have been inconvenient.

WHAT A GREAT SHOW.  I wish this would have been airing somewhere of note in Canada at the time so I could have watched it then.