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[1996-06-CMLL] El Dandy & Atlantis & Hector Garza vs Apolo Dantes & Dr Wagner Jr & Felino

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El Dandy is in most of the match here and looks great. This is also Hector Garza's debut on this set, who Vince Russo was apparently a fan of. I don't want to say this drags, because the pace is pretty fast, but there are points where it seems like nothing of any consequence is going on and it's just guys trading moves. It's entertaining, but there is much better with pretty much everyone here.

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The taping date for this is 4/26.

 

With Dandy vs Felino exchanges you know there's going to be some nice action. Hector Garza was very flashy and displayed some impressive athletic ability. I sensed that without strong rudos to support him it could all come crashing down. That wasn't a problem today.

 

Decent first fall. I was unsure at that stage whether the quality level was going to up or down. The surprising answer was both. The middle stages were weak, with a lack of intensity and focus. It seemed to be drifting to nowhere. Yet they turned it around completely with a strong tercera to end on a positive vibe. 1996 CMLL has the feel of a promotion on the rise again after a few tough years.

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I really liked the hard-hitting matwork of the first fall, with Wagner working like a 1970's babyface constantly going back to the headlock. It was shaping up to be a sleeper match of the year or at least a lucha match of the year, but Loss' point about dragging is well-taken. Particularly in the second fall, and in the third fall there are a ton of near-falls but it almost reaches the point of being overdone. Still, there was more good than bad here--Garza looked terrific and like a guy on the way to being a big star in Mexico and what probably should have been at least a decent-sized star in the U.S. I think he would have brought more to the table in-ring than a guy like Chavo Guerrero, Jr.

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This peaked for me in the first fall too with the matwork that Dandy was doing with Wagner. Basic but beautifully done. The match tries to ratchet up like the previous one but never felt like it reached the heights. Garza does some stuff well but also looks sloppy and green still at points. Atlantis was pretty much attached with Felino for big portions of this and feels lost in the shuffle. Good match but nothing extraordinary for a CMLL trios and mainly here to see Dandy and Wagner do some neat stuff. ***

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I'm the odd man out on these two trios because I liked this one more -- a good bit more really, I loved this match. The first fall was so sweet; Wagner and Dandy rocking the mat, Dantes and Atlantis doing a pretty damn good job of it themselves, and Garza and Felino working a cool athletic sequence. Wagner and Dandy work around a headlock for a bit at the end, where Wagner has Dandy in the headlock, they get up to work a quick exchange and then Wagner takes him back down with the same headlock -- a common construction in American wrestling, but somehow I feel that formula isn't seen as often in lucha. Atlantis taking out all the rudos at once in the beginning of the second fall was great. Tecnico comeback in the third fall was really energetic and they settle into Dandy and Felino working a really high-end exchange in the ring, and Wagner and Garza follow it up. Nice dive section toward the end. This was a great trios.

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