El Hijo Del Santo/Octagon/Rey Misterio Jr./La Parka vs Blue Panther/Fuerza Guerrera/Pentagon/Psicosis, AAA Triplemania III-B, 6/18/95
Alright, forget all the bad things I say about AAA, I know what I like when I see it and this was something else. Some of you will remember the 3/95 trios that hooked a lot of us on lucha. This was the same kind of match, but packed more of a punch.
It was one of those matches where the rudos are agitated from the outset, as Octagon "bumped" Pentagon off the apron and that led to a lot of pushing and shoving and guys chasing each other around the ring area. Panther gave Misterio the nod and they were away. Panther put a little extra into his whips and Misterio bounced off the ropes; the first move -- a sunset flip attempt by Misterio -- was countered by a punch. They traded slaps before Rey scaled the turnbuckles for a wristlock takedown. Panther wound up on the outside, and Rey left him cowering with his footwork.
It only got better when Santo called Psicosis out. Santo was magnificent here, the way he leaned into his grappling stance like he was ready to take the bull by the horns. No matter how many times Psicosis charged at him, he kept getting inside position for the armdrag. Finally they stood head to head, with Psicosis using his height advantage to try and intimidate Santo. Santo wouldn't back down, and Psicosis slapped him right across the face. Santo slapped him back twice as hard and Psicosis feared his nose might be broken. The insult was worse than the injury, and when Santo dropkicked him to the outside, you knew something was brewing.
At first the technicos had an answer for everything. Parka was unstoppable. I don't think he was in control of his feet; it was the spirit that moved him. Panther got caught up in the ropes trying to avoid it, and when Parka did his peacock strut back to the corner, Pentagon lunged at him and knocked himself out. The technicos won every exchange, including a glorious one where Santo took on three guys at once. Each time the rudos were out duelled they took better and bigger bumps, and Fuerza was brilliant at slowing things down after a big spill.
The rudos needed a hard foul, and it came when Fuerza backed Misterio into a corner and Panther blindsided him, grabbing him by the throat and pinning him to the turnbuckle. Suddenly all hell broke loose. Psicosis got his hands on Santo and sent him flying over the barrier, which is a pretty big bump for Santo. I've never really thought of Psicosis as a violent rudo, but this was quite the beatdown. He started off with a chair, and when he wrecked that, he used his head. Santo was rammed from pillar to post, and when Parka tried to help, he got fucking dealt to by Fuerza. In terms of rudo beatdowns, and especially Santo beatdowns, it was one of the best I can remember seeing. The bottom of Santo's mask was ripped and he took a real mauling. When he finally got loose, he took the chair for himself and he wasn't afraid to wield it. That's a side of Santo you don't often see outside of Monterrey, but like I said, it all started with that slap around the bridge of the nose. It would've been awesome if he'd bled, but he was a sight nonetheless.
After all that, they'd built the match up to the point where only dives could top what had come before, and Psicosis completely rekindled my love for him by doing the most insane tope suicida imaginable. What greater way to go crashing out of a match? And what could've been a monumental fuck-up by Misterio Jr., turned into one of the all-time great recoveries; a recovery so remarkable you'll have to see it for yourself.
Just a great match, with awesome shifts in momentum and a mad scramble at the end. It was the AAA style wrapped around a brawl and the way that early niggle escalated was fantastic to watch.