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Grimmas

Ultimo Dragon

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The matches I've liked from him that stood out were with Casas from UWF on 6/7/90 and with Regal from WCW Slamboree 97. They were good in spite of him though, and I feel like he actively prevented them from being very good.

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He's in one of my very favourite matches ever (Vs Ohtani, 96 BOSJ), and I have a bit of a soft spot for him, just because, to paraphrase DR, I thought he was awesome as a kid. But, yeah, he's not one of the 100 best wrestlers ever.

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Ultimo was great in CMLL even in 1993 where I had previously thought he was weak. Casas vs. Ultimo was a real bright spot in a pretty dark era for the company, but he's good in other trios too. I can't think of anybody who was faster between the ropes. I need to get a copy of the Casas/Ultimo singles match from '93 to see whether it transferred through to singles. I also remember him getting good stuff out of Malenko in WCW. Seems like a case of being so overrated he's underrated.

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Having gone through the '90s as much as possible to find hidden gems, and having seen pretty much every notable match he had since 2000, I don't think he's in the ballpark of top 100. Someone like El Samurai has a vastly superior body of work and Samurai will struggle to make many ballots.

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There's room on a ballot for someone who had a hand in classics as different as the Liger series in '92 and Kanemoto in '97, not even mentioning the rest of his work in tags and singles with a wide range of opponents. Enough depth and diversity that he should rank higher than most juniors.

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Ultimo is a guy I loved in the 90s, but anything I've watched that he's done throughout his career in the last couple of years is good at best. And let's not talk about when he's not at his best.

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There's room on a ballot for someone who had a hand in classics as different as the Liger series in '92 and Kanemoto in '97, not even mentioning the rest of his work in tags and singles with a wide range of opponents. Enough depth and diversity that he should rank higher than most juniors.

 

EDIT: If it wasn't already clear, I was talking about Samurai here and somehow had a brain freeze and put this in the Dragon thread. Ultimo will probably get a seat in lodge or mezzanine to view my list.

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I don't think Ultimo Dragon was bad; I think he was a better version of the British Bulldog or someone like that, an exciting guy who can absolutely be part of a really good match. My biggest problem with him is that his whole character is that he's better than his opponent. In pretty much every exchange he has, that's supposed to be the takeaway - Ultimo Dragon is the superior of these two wrestlers. It gets annoying. My second-biggest problem with him, and I know it's unfair to judge him on one match, is that his match with Javier Cruz made it pretty clear that he needed an opponent at the level of Negro Casas or Emilio Charles Jr. in order for him to have a good singles match in Mexico.

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Didn't vote for Ultimo in 2016, not voting for him on my 2021 ballot, but I think he's someone who has a much stronger case than other people this thread seem to think. When I start doing GWE viewing for 2026, he's someone that I want to focus on. 

His biggest knock is that I struggle to think of a great Ultimo match from 2003-2019. That's an absurdly large gap of him being mediocre and it should probably disqualify him from being considered, but, 

1) I've been riffling through so much ULL footage recently and unmasked Ultimo is unreal. Such a sparkplug. I love all of his Casas matches both in ULL and then later on in Mexico. 

2) I love unmasked Ultimo and early stage Ultimo in Mexico. Granted, I'm not exactly the biggest lucha guy, but in my limited viewing, I think he's the highlight of almost every match I watch him in. This is one of my favorite lucha matches ever and he's a huge part of why it's so good. 

 

3) His Dragongate run has been largely non-consequential, but it's easily the most fun run of his post-injury career. His debut six-man was awesome. He had a pretty fun grapple-centric match against U-T last year, too. 

I really wish you could point to a handful of matches from the mid-2000's where Ultimo is awesome, but I'm not sure those exist. 

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I'm on the fence about Ultimo, but I've always liked him and his best stuff is really good. If I do a deeper dive he could sneak his way on.

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I'm in the "Ultimo looked cool and did cool shit when I was a kid so I thought he was awesome" camp. Dude was so sloppy, matches never went anywhere. But he did do some cool movez and looked baller as hell with the J Crown. 

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9 hours ago, Boss Rock said:

I'm on the fence about Ultimo, but I've always liked him and his best stuff is really good. If I do a deeper dive he could sneak his way on.

Agreed. Sure there's slop in there but there's also great matches with Casas, Liger, Sasuke, Otani, Rey... granted that's a list of all-timers but Ultimo provided them with an awesome dance partner. He was definitely more of the guy the freshen up your junior division than to build around but the highs have him in contention for me even if opinion has turned against him. I also have a real soft spot for that tag with Hayashi VS GdI as it's one of the matches that got me back into tape trading after a few year hiatus after graduating high school. But I get that I'll need to go through some lows and some blind spots if i want to justify voting for him.

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