Images: CMLL. Photography by Alexis Salazar.
In a match pitting Mexican pride against American nationalism, a foreign villain took the hair of a legendary luchador on Friday night in Arena Mexico.
Sam Adonis had what is probably the highest profile match of his career so far in a hair match against Blue Panther. In winning the match, Adonis is now arguably the most hated villain in Arena Mexico. Even a rudo like Rush is now seemingly not nearly as hated as the evil American.
Besides hair being at stake, nationalistic pride also played heavily into the match. Adonis could presumably take his Donald Trump supporting pro-America gimmick to greater heights as he continues to play the foreign menace on Mexican soil.
Mexicans against foreigners is also seemingly the theme for the upcoming Grand Prix. Banners now hang in Arena Mexico to promote the show. The multiple banners have images of the entrants in the Grand Prix with the Mexican lucahadores hanging on one side, and the foreign outsiders hanging on the opposite side of the arena.
The show on Friday night was largely very entertaining. The tecnico side went over in most matches on the undercard to counteract the fans being sent home having seen a beloved luchador lose his hair.
Dave Meltzer discussed the show with Bryan Alvarez on the latest edition of Wrestling Observer Radio (available for our subscribers). The full card from Arena Mexico is available to see for free on YouTube. Watch below:
Pegasso, Drone & captain Fuego defeated Disturbio, Sagrado & captain Virus
The rudos gained an early advantage by winning the first fall as a captain submitted an opposing captain when Virus applied a mecedora on Fuego. The tecnicos soon rallied to even the score in the second fall after Fuego pinned Virus with a crucifix.
The tecnicos went on to take the match in the third fall. Drone eliminated Disturbio after pinning him with a moonsault press. Moments later, Sagrado missed a moonsault off the top rope, and Pegasso then climbed the turnbuckles to hit a 450 splash for the deciding pinfall.
Microman & Gallito defeated Mije & El Perico Zakarias
The micros were back in Arena Mexico, much to the delight of the crowd. They have improved their act together. This match was even more entertaining than their first match this past spring that gained so much admiration from an Arena Mexico crowd.
They only went one fall — but got plenty of time in doing so. In the end, Gallito submitted Mije with the Rings of Saturn just before Microman did a handstand on the top rope into a splash to pin Zakarias.
In between matches, during an interview with an audience member, the crowd booed a tourist who said she was rooting for Sam Adonis in the main event.
Cuatrero, Forastero & captain Sanson defeated The Panther, Rey Cometa & captain Soberano Jr.
Soberano got to shine with his high flying as his big push continues. Still, the teamwork of Nueva Generacion Dinamita was the story of the match. That story began with the rudos winning the first fall.
On the live feed and on-demand on YouTube, this match is missing a few minutes from the first fall when the stream cut out. It returned in time to show the rudos taking control with their team captain pinning the tecnico captain. For the pinfall, Sanson used an assist from his brothers to powerbomb Soberano into a backbreaker.
Into the second fall, the rudos did a cool spot where Cuatrero helped launch Forastero with a monkey flip into a cannonball. The tecnicos made a comeback to even the falls soon thereafter with Soberano doing a Fosbury flop to the outside.
Cometa eliminated Forastero by pinning him with a 450 splash. The Panther then hit a missile dropkick on Cuatrero for a pinfall to win the fall.
The third fall built to a parade of dives featuring almost everyone. Soberano in particular did some spectacular flying. When fighting spilled onto the entrance ramp, all three tecnicos did simultaneous dives off the stage.
Back in the ring, they traded near falls. The tecnicos did a trifecta of frog splashes at one point. Soberano leapt into a wild corkscrew plancha.
Sanson and Cuatrero executed a version of Demolition’s finisher, and Cuatrero pinned Cometa to eliminate him. Sanson and Soberano were fighting on the top rope when Sanson lifted him into a torture rack and spun him around into a super powerbomb. Sanson then covered Soberano for a pinfall.
Diamante Azul, Angel de Oro & captain Marco Corleone defeated Hechicero, Pierroth & captain Rush
The father and son duo from Los Ingobernables, Pierroth and Rush, snuck into the ring to throw off the tecnicos. Like with most matches in recent weeks involving Los Ingobernables, a brawl erupted at the outset. Rush untied Azul’s laces and tried to unmask him, which would later play into the eventual outcome.
A tecnicos rally led to Corleone running down the ramp and leaping into a crossbody on both Hechicero and Pierroth. With Oro’s assistance, Corleone covered both rudos for a dual pinfall.
The second fall began with more brawling, and Hechicero stole the numbered fall card from the ring girl. Rush kept powdering out and begging off when he and Azul would square up, so Azul would give chase. When the chase led back into the ring, Rush blatantly unmasked Azul for a disqualification.
Azul cut a promo after the match wanting not only a singles match, but also wanting to take the hair of Rush. Rush taunted him by playing with his hair and putting it in a bun.
Rush responded to the promo by first speaking in English before changing to Spanish. He stormed into the ring to get in Azul’s face, then unmasked him again. The two meet in a singles match next week.
Niebla Roja, Volador Jr. & captain Caristico (w/ KeMonito) defeated Gran Guerrero, Euforia & captain Ultimo Guerrero
Los Guerreros Laguneros overwhelmed the tecnicos in the first fall, gaining an early advantage with a triple submission spot. Gran Guerrero continued feuding with Niebla Roja, and he even powerbombed Roja into the announce booth after a brawl erupted. Los Guerreros Laguneros then ganged up for a beatdown on Roja.
Gran Guerrero ripped off the mask of Niebla Roja as the second fall began. Roja covered his face and went backstage to retrieve a new mask. He re-emerged minutes later and dove off the stage during the tecnicos comeback. Volador catapulted Roja into the ring to set up Roja diving back outside with a tope con hilo on Gran Guerrero.
To even the falls, Volador first eliminated Ultimo Guerrero with a backstabber for a pinfall. In the meantime, Caristico applied La Mistica to submit Euforia as the tecnicos tied the match.
Roja ripped at Gran Guerrero’s mask during the third fall. Niebla Roja continued their beef while a parade of dives and high spots happened around them.
Volador executed a super Frankensteiner on Euforia, and Niebla Roja covered him for the elimination. Just as the referee counted three, Gran Guerrero trapped Volador in Pulpo Guerrero to eliminate him via submission.
Niebla Roja valiantly rushed in to nab Gran Guerrero. Standing on the middle rope, Roja hooked Gran Guerrero in a chicken wing and dropped him into a facebuster. Roja covered his rival for the deciding fall.
Following the match, Gran Guerrero and Niebla Roja cut promos on each other as they continue to talk of wanting a mask match between them.
Sam Adonis defeated Blue Panther in a hair match
Blue Panther wore a serape decorated in the colors of the Mexican flag to the ring. Adonis waved his American flag emblazoned with the face of Donald Trump as the crowd showered him with boos.
Adonis attacked Panther to start the match. Panther fired up, but heel referee Tirantes pulled him off of Adonis. They bickered for a moment, allowing Adonis to strike with a brainbuster. Going right to work on Panther, Adonis proceeded to get heat on him. Adonis delivered a Michinoku Driver to score a pin to take a lead by gaining the first fall.
Adonis continued his attack on Panther in the second fall until stopping to strut around and play to the crowd. Panther regrouped and avoided a Stinger splash. He caught Adonis and submitted him with nudo lagunero, evening the falls at one apiece.
The final fall started with Panther making his comeback. He clotheslined Adonis into the first row at ringside. Adonis soon cut off Panther to set up a plancha and followed with a tope con hilo. Adonis then dumped Panther into the first row.
They went into trading near falls. After a series of Hulk Hogan leg drops, Adonis covered Panther — only for him to kick out at two. Adonis dropped an elbow off the middle rope for another near fall. Panther twice cradled Adonis for a two count.
Adonis picked up Panther for a tombstone. The referee stopped him as that move is illegal. Adonis argued with Tirantes, and Adonis soon found himself spilling out to the floor.
Panther went for a series of tope suicida dives to the outside. After two successful attempts, he went for a third tope. Tirantes moved into his path, and he and Panther began to argue. When Panther eventually went for the tope, he crashed and burned on the floor.
Adonis celebrated by waving his flag. Back in the ring, Panther kicked out of a subsequent cover. Adonis draped his flag over the prone body of Panther. He then leapt off the top rope into a frog splash. Panther still kicked out, then reversed into a crucifix for a two count.
They fought onto the entrance ramp. Adonis scoop slammed Panther on the ramp, but Panther soon countered with an armbar. Adonis leapt back into the ring with a flying crossbody, and Panther rolled through for a cover. Adonis got his shoulder up on a slow count by the ref.
An angry Panther shoved down Tirantes. When he turned around, he walked into the clutches of Adonis. After a Michinoku Driver, Adonis pinned Panther while grabbing the bottom rope to gain leverage. Tirantes never saw the cheating, costing Panther his hair.
Panther sold being in disbelief as the barber began shaving his head bald. The crowd booed and threw objects at Adonis. Waving his flag in victory, Adonis left hopefully as a bigger heel drawing card after taking the hair of a legendary luchador.
Time will tell, but if this night is any indication, then Sam Adonis and his pro-Trump gimmick are more hated than ever in Arena Mexico.