Wednesday, 22 February 2012
Negro Casas v Blue Panther (CMLL, 4/24/11)
This was tremendous. I have no idea how Negro Casas does it. He's a 52 year old man and looks as good as he did 20 years ago. I mean, there's plenty of guys in lucha that reach their 50s and are still awesome. Shit, half of them don't even hit their prime until they're 45. But Casas is more or less the exact same as he was when he was in his 30s. Black Terry, Negro Navarro, Negro Casas, Blue Panther...those guys are still some of the best wrestlers in the entire world. Christ, Terry will be SIXTY this year. Terry and Navarro and Panther have a maestro/vet aura about them. I guess Casas does as well, but he doesn't LOOK old. He doesn't move around like a guy in his 50s that's been wrestling for 30+ years. If someone were to watch this without actually knowing he was 52, they'd think this was a lucha vet wrestling a guy 20 years his junior. Still, this being as good as it was had as much to do with Panther as it did Casas. The first fall is short, but the brawling segment with Casas dishing out punishment was really awesome shit. He jumps Panther in the aisle and just beats on him, choking him with his jacket, headbutting him right in the nose, ramming his head into the fixed seats, etc. Casas is cocky as all get out, but Panther manages to catch him with a flash Fujiwara armbar for the first fall, and they do a great job making the arm a focus for the rest of the match. Panther is such a nasty bastard going after it. He folds it up in a chair and starts kicking at it so hard you could imagine Casas' shoulder getting torn to pieces, and there's a few moments where he'll hammerlock the arm and start biting Casas' fingers. At the end of the second fall Casas dropkicks Panther in the knee (and then takes the fall), and by the end of the match Panther is hobbling around like his leg is completely useless. Third fall is loaded with great moments, but the spot that really cements this as a work of fucking ART is Casas breaking the Nudo Lagunero by SPITTING right in Panther's eyes. Just an incredible desperation spot. Finish pays off all the arm work and is about as great a "flash finish" as the first fall's was. I'm not sure if I'd call this the best match of 2011, but these guys have a fucking hair match coming up in about a week and I will be counting the minutes until that shit shows up.