Saturday, 2 September 2017

Star-Spangled Up and Virus' Chain Got Cuts, Mr. T Looked, Saw His Shit and Went Nuts

Virus v Dragon Lee (CMLL, 4/5/15) - EPIC

I haven't watched any Virus in a minute, let alone written about any. I guess absence really does make the heart grow fonder, because after this I want to go back and watch everything he's done over the last couple years. I guess this match is a little bittersweet. I remember when the Guerrero Maya Jr title match popped up online in 2011 and blew everyone away. That kind of awesome old school title bout was a rarity (still is, I guess) and there was Virus, the guy who'd seemed to spend most of his prime in barely-featured CMLL undercard lightning matches, hand-leading Black Terry's kid through a classic. And for the next four years we got a handful of killer Virus title matches each year. Still, nothing lasts forever. All good things must come to an end, and this was that end, that occasion where the young challenger usurped the champ. What a way to go out, though. The first caida was a total Virus showcase and a Virus matwork caida is pretty much never not great. I love how he used his stocky little frame to pin one of Lee's arms in place while he twisted the other into the position he was satisfied with. Lee spent most of the time escaping holds rather than applying them, but I liked his snappy ankle lock reversal, and that led to Virus straight kicking him in his taped up thigh to get free, which of course ruled. Pretty soon Lee started making some headway, being the younger and quicker of the two, firing off some rapid strikes that Virus had no real defence against. He'd throw his arms up to block, but Lee had it all scouted and changed it up accordingly (loved his jab-hook-spin kick to the gut combo). I'm not sure if Lee intended to go for the double German at the finish or if he just messed up the initial bridge and improvised, but if it was the latter then it was a pretty solid indication of how good he is for someone so young. The second caida followed on from where the first left off, but Virus evening things up by using his old man smarts - punching Lee in the gut in order to secure the Emerald Frosion - was a neat touch. They really kicked it into high gear for the deciding fall, and even if Lee blowing off the leg work when it was time to make his comeback was frustrating, it was worth it for the way Virus tore that thigh apart. How he'd tie him in knots was impressive enough, but it was those nasty moments where he'd just slam the leg into the mat that I dug most. Stretch run had the heat and the drama, a corker of a tope, and a finish that somewhat played off those German suplexes from earlier. Slam dunk of a title match. It may be the last we see of Virus in this setting, which is a real bummer, but it sure ended on a high. 


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