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    Friday, December 2, 2016

    Good Lucha Things (11/30/16): Cero Brazos

    Last week, Sexy Star defended her Lucha Underground Championship for the first time against constant nemesis Johnny Mundo. Once again, however, Sexy Star fell to a trap from the Worldwide Underground, which allowed Mundo to finally capture the Lucha Underground Championship. Elsewhere, Dante Fox and Killshot renewed their rivalry, with Fox picking up the victory in an entertaining match. Paul London and the Rabbit Tribe also made a lasting impression in their Lucha Underground debut, but eventually fell short of claiming the Trios Championship from Drago, Aero Star and Fenix.

    Trial From the Triad

    This week, Pentagon Dark faced the Black Lotus Triad in a Gauntlet match, and we got our first taste of the Stardom trio’s in-ring skill.

    All our three newcomers managed to do well in their respective matches. I suppose you could say that Doku (Kairi Hojo) got the short end of the stick, as she faced a Pentagon that wasn’t as beat up as the one that the other two got. Still, she managed to get in some decent offense, including an elbow drop that looked amazing. Yurei (Mayu Iwatani) also got some nice moves in, but what impressed me the most were her facial reactions throughout the match. She’s got the baby-faced assassin look locked down, and that smile is a mixture of both cute and scary. Imagine how NXT Women’s Champion Asuka smiles before unleashing a barrage of kicks, only much cuter.

    The real star of the night, though, was Hitokiri (Io Shirai). Capitalizing on the damage done by her two buddies, Hitokiri matched Pentagon Dark blow for blow before putting him away with a devastating Far East Destroyer. She had the most airtime out of the Triad and was able to put on a display that covered all bases. Flippy shit? Check. Hardcore violence and bloodlust? Check. Diving off Dario Cueto’s office roof? Mega check. In around ten minutes, Hitokiri made half a dozen members of the Lucha Underground roster look obsolete. The next time you see any of the luchadoras or Angelico take to the ring, remember that they have a lot to live up to. Outside of the Temple, Hitokiri is regarded as one of the best female wrestlers in the world, and she proved that here.

    All in all, the three matches we saw told a very cohesive story. Pentagon Dark started out strong, but was eventually worn down as he faced each member of the Black Lotus Triad in succession. He was able to take Doku out with relative ease, took much longer to put Yurei away, and finally succumbed when he was up against Hitokiri. The Triad looked strong as they each got to showcase some offense, and at the same time, Pentagon looked tough as hell because it took three fights to finally subdue him. Everyone came off looking like a winner in this match, and this is easily among my favorites of the season to date.

    That said, I’m not a fan of Pentagon Dark getting put on the shelf again (exactly like last season), as it means that we won’t be seeing him in matches. At the very least, though, his injury made sense. It’s the natural conclusion to what went down at Ultima Lucha Dos, when he broke the arms of both El Dragon Azteca Jr. and Black Lotus. I loved the show of respect Black Lotus had for Dragon Azteca when he came out at the end—they’re not buddies, but she recognized that Dragon Azteca also wanted revenge and let him have it. Fittingly, both ended up breaking each of Pentagon Dark’s arms, leaving the poor guy with cero brazos. Let this be a lesson to everyone: if you don’t want your arms broken, try not to break others’ arms first.

    The Rest:

    • Jeremiah Crane ran into Catrina this week, and we found out that these two actually have romantic history! It just had to be with your girlfriend’s rival, right, Jeremiah? This is a nice way to keep the feud between Ivelisse and Catrina going, and having Jeremiah get into the mix should shake things up. Jeremiah did get the Lick of Death, though, which doesn’t really bode well for him.

    • Matanza isn’t doing too well post-Lucha Underground Championship reign, it seems. The poor guy can’t get over the fact that he was pinned by Rey Mysterio Jr., and has been painting the walls red with his own blood. When Dario Cueto told him to prepare for a Lucha Underground Championship rematch, the big monster said no and called for the lucha libre legend instead.

    • Do you guys remember how Prince Puma met his unfortunate end a couple of weeks ago? Well, it doesn’t look as grave now, as apparently he’s been revived by Vampiro! One has to wonder whether Puma 2.0 will be any different or if he’ll be looking at Vampiro more like a mentor. I’m looking forward to seeing how Lucha Underground develops this in the next couple of weeks.

    From time to time, Lucha Underground puts on one-match shows where the main focus is on just one particular feud or storyline. Technically, we saw three matches, but this week’s episode had more similarities with these special episodes than with the normal shows we usually see. Pentagon’s gauntlet with the Black Lotus Triad felt like one cohesive whole rather than three individual matches, and we got to see a some jaw-dropping moments out of it. Hitokiri stole the show, and if that didn’t convince you to look up her matches outside of Lucha Underground, I don’t know what will. All in all, this was one of the top episodes of the season. A-

    What did you guys think of this week's episode? Let us know in the comments section below!

    Photos taken from Lucha Underground.


    Anthony Cuello is an HR professional and training designer. When he’s not sleeping or reading the Harvard Business Review, he covers Lucha Underground for Smark Henry. A psychology nut, he tends to watch wrestling looking for these small nuances of in-ring behavior. He dreams of a wrestling business with good people management practices, and hopes to help make that happen one day.
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    Item Reviewed: Good Lucha Things (11/30/16): Cero Brazos Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Anthony Cuello
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