El Dandy y Negro Casas vs. Corazon De Leon y Ultimo Dragon, CMLL 7/16/93
Whose bright idea was it to give this 40 minutes?
People often complain about how short and meaningless the first two falls in lucha are, but three falls of equal length makes for really dull matches.
When Jericho was in it was wrestled like an American match. When Ultimo was in it was wrestled like a Japanese match. Dandy was a technico and Casas a rudo, but the match wasn't remotely story driven. It was a workrate match through and through despite Felino giving Casas stick for teaming with a technico in the segment which Raging Noodles translated.
When it was over, the crowd threw money in the ring to show their appreciation. Being a tightwad, I probably wouldn't have thrown any money, but I can see why the crowd did as the bout was different from what they were used to.
(Actually, I probably would have gotten into it live as I generally don't care how good the matches are during live wrestling.)
Jericho couldn't mat wrestle to save his life so he and Dandy went with a side headlock. It was cool, but can you imagine Doobie in your funk?
Casas attacked the leg and looked like he was imitating his hero Choshu. He was really at his athletic peak here. Ultimo showed phenomenal speed between the ropes and Casas almost matched it with his running dropkick. It was a shame he entered CMLL just as the Televisa shit was about to go down with Pena. Can you imagine what he could have contributed in 1990? Then again, someone else may have missed out like Azteca or Satanico or Emilio. Plus he was able to rule the roost a bit with everyone defecting to AAA.
Casas managed to make Jericho's strikes halfway decent, which was the only good thing Jericho contributed, and Dandy was slightly disappointing against Ultimo, so I'd have to say Casas looked better than his rival here. It did help that he had natural charisma with Ultimo, but Dandy was going through a pudgy stage where his work began to suffer.
Aside from the match not really being lucha, the two other problems I had with it were that the finishes to each fall were weak and there were too many submissions that felt like restholds. If you're going to wrestle long falls, you better make the finish to each spectacular so that the momentum carries through to the next caida, but they fell short of that here. There was no intrinsic reason for it go go long; it just did.
In fairness, it wasn't as bad as it could have been, and in the 1993 CMLL landscape it probably stands out as one of the better bouts, or at least one of the more ambitious ones. But I'd rather watch lucha.