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[2000-12-21-IWRG] Hijo del Santo vs Dr Cerebro

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Saving the best for last...

This was the best lucha match of the month and one of the best matches of the year. Santo looked like royalty as he arrived in Naucalpan and worked a majestic first fall full of wrestling artistry. It went a full 13 minutes and was mostly worked on the mat, a dream come true for fans such as myself. I'm not sure Naucalpan had seen a title match of this quality in many a year. I often talk about how it's difficult to work a true epic at an arena this size but Santo showed that all things are possible with a little vision. As good a worker as Cerebro is, he struggled to keep up with Santo's grand plan for how he wanted this match to play out. There were elements of the Santo formula but rarely have a seen a first fall as competitive and long as the one they put on here. It stretched the usual conventions of an opening fall into something magnificent and worthy of a match itself. By lucha standards, it was as competitive as the first fall in Thesz vs. Gunkel. The second and third caidas were also strong and the signature Santo spots seemed extra special as the match grew in stature. It flirted with being an all-time classic but Cerebro's performance was nervy and the finish was tailored for him in a way that made the ref the scapegoat for Santo's loss. Still, it was one of those nights that wrestling fans long remember. The night where a star came to town and put on a show. This match doesn't get talked about much among Santo's body of work. My immediate thoughts were that it was worth a rewatch down the line and hopefully a bit more discussion from lucha pundits. The first fall, in particular, deserves recognition within the cannon of lucha title match wrestling. Go watch this if you  haven't already. 

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