Taped in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, California this is Lucha Underground for Season 2 – Episode 23.

Mexican rock band El Conjunto Nueva Ola kick off this week’s episode with their musical stylings as our commentators Matt Striker and Vampiro welcome us back to The Temple. Vampiro talks about how excited he is for Ultima Lucha Dos next week. It is Lucha Underground’s equivalent to WrestleMania in that it’s their biggest show of the year.

Striker lets us know that Dario Cueto has confirmed that the Trios Titles will be on the line at Ultima Lucha Dos. That match will see PJ Black, Johnny Mundo and Jack Evans (who are now going by the name Worldwide Underground) defending their Trios Titles against the team of Drago, Fenix and Aerostar. Striker also reminds us that a dream match between Prince Puma and Rey Mysterio will be happening next week at Ultima Lucha Dos.

As for tonight, Johnny Mundo will go one-on-one with Fenix for the first time ever. We will also be seeing Prince Puma taking on his former Trios partner El Dragon Azteca Jr. For now, we’ve got King Cuerno facing off with the man who cost him his opportunity of main-eventing Ultima Lucha Dos for the Lucha Underground Title, Mil Muertes.

Evaluation: I thought we would be getting Cuerno vs. Muertes at Ultima Lucha Dos, but then again I’m not sure how many hours/weeks LU plans on stretching out Ultima Lucha Dos.

Mil Muertes Cuerno

King Cuerno vs. Mil Muertes (w/Catrina)

Mil is sporting some bright red eyes now. This is due to Catrina “bringing him back from the dead” after he lost to Matanza Cueto in a Graver Consequences Match. Mil enters the ring and rushes at Cuerno right away as the bell rings. Cuerno dodges him until Mil finally catches Cuerno with a boot to the gut and a spear. Mil then hits Cuerno with a big lariat for a nearfall. Cuerno tries fighting back, but his attempts are futile as Mil delivers a big chokeslam for another nearfall.

Mil throws Cuerno into the ropes and Cuerno runs back at Mil, hitting him with a big knee to the face. Cuerno takes advantage of a dazed Mil by clotheslining him over the top rope and out onto the floor. Cuerno does his signature “drawing the bow” motion signaling its time for a big suicide dive, and he does just that, taking out Mil, Catrina and the referee in the process.

Cuerno rolls Mil back in the ring and follows right behind him, entering with a steel chair in hand. Looking to capitalize while the referee is knocked out, Cuerno waits for Mil to stand up and when he does, Cuerno waffles Mil over the head with the steel chair as hard as could. As devastating as it looked, it didn’t knock Mil off his feet as he stares back at Cuerno as if to say, “is that all you got?” Cuerno loads up for another chair shot, but is met with a big right hand across the face from Mil. Now Mil picks up the steel chair and hits Cuerno over the back with it. He then wedges the chair into the corner, and tries to throw Cuerno into it. However, Cuerno stops himself before reaching the chair. Noticing this, Mil looks to spear Cuerno into the chair, but Cuerno dodges which sends Mil head first into the chair. Cuerno immediately rolls up Mil in a pin attempt, holding onto the ropes with one hand and pushing off of the ropes with one foot for leverage. One… two… three! Cuerno wins after about 4 and a half minutes.

Winner by pinfall: King Cuerno

Post-match, Mil looks furious as Catrina puts his hand on him, preventing Mil from attacking Cuerno.

Evaluation: Although that was a much shorter match than I expected, a lot happened in it that made it feel much longer. I don’t think Mil getting beat by Cuerno this quickly necessarily hurts him, as weapons were illegally used and Cuerno used a lot of the ropes in his pin attempt. As I mentioned above, I was surprised this match didn’t take place at Ultima Lucha Dos. However, after seeing the outcome, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a rematch happen then.

(Commercial)

Ivelisse and Taya are seated in Dario Cueto’s office. He tells Taya that she’s proven herself here and tells Ivelisse that she’s one of his Temple’s most celebrated Trios Champions. Cueto says there can only be one “baddest bitch in this bulding”, so at Ultima Lucha Dos Taya and Ivelisse will fight to see which one is most deserving of that name. Both women silently agree and leave his office while Catrina enters.

Catrina tells Cueto that she and Mil wants a rematch with King Cuerno and Ultima Lucha Dos. Cueto laughs off Catrina’s request saying that after all she’s done to him, she doesn’t get to make demands. Catrina persists saying that she wants Mil to fight Cuerno again, but this time in a Death Match. Cueto tells Catrina that he hates her, but she knows just what to say to get him excited. Cueto: “If it’s a Death Match you want, you got it.”

Evaluation: Yes! Two more big matches added to Ultima Lucha Dos. Now I’m sure Ultima Lucha Dos will likely be either a two/three hour show or will stretch out over two or three weeks. I think the latter is correct as if they were doing a two or three hour show, I’m sure they’d be mentioning the hell out of it. I could probably just Google this to make sure, but I’m hesitant to do so as I want to avoid any possible spoilers.

Note from John the Editor: It’s is three weeks of shows starting next week. Will be awesome!

(Commercial)

Prince Puma vs. El Dragon Azteca Jr. (w/Rey Mysterio)

You can watch this match in its entirety below.

It makes sense that Mysterio would be in Azteca’s corner since he is Azteca’s mentor. Both men go back and forth with a fast series of reversals for a straight minute, which leads to both men shaking hands. After getting thrown into the ropes, Puma escapes to ringside. Azteca looks for a suicide dive out of the ring and onto Puma, but Puma catches Azteca on his shoulders and throws him into the ring post. Puma rolls Azteca into the ring and stays on him with uppercuts. The crowd is split as they’re chanting for both Puma and Azteca.

Azteca hurricanrana’s Puma off the top rope and goes for the cover, but Puma kicks out at two. Azteca then hits Puma with a big flying DDT. He goes for the cover, but Puma kicks out at two once again. Both men get to their feet and Puma gains control with a northern lights suplex into a standing suplex. This time Puma gets a nearfall on Azteca. Puma goes to the tope rope for the 630 splash, but Azteca stops him by hitting an incredible looking sunset flip type powerbomb off the top rope! Wow!! He goes for the cover. One…two… no! Puma kicks out.

Azteca heads to the top rope again, looking for a 450 splash, but Puma rolls out of the way and belly to belly suplexes Azteca into the turnbuckle! Puma hits Azteca with a running axe kick and a modified michinoku driver. One…two… no! Azteca kicks out. Puma hits Azteca in the corner with a running dropkick. He then heads to the top rope to hit his signature 630 splash, and he connects with it! That’s all she wrote for this one as Puma gets the victory after about 9 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Prince Puma

Evaluation: Wow, that match was a lot of fun. As is the case with many Lucha Underground matches, due to the insanely fast pace of the match, this one felt longer than 9 minutes. The right guy won in Prince Puma since he’s facing Mysterio at Ultima Lucha Dos and I expect him to win that match. This loss for Azteca Jr also doesn’t hurt him much since Puma is the face of Lucha Underground and will likely cement that claim at Ultima Lucha Dos. Also, Azteca is still in that mentee role, so a strong showing tonight against Puma elevated him, if anything.

(Commercial)

Mundo Fenix

Fenix vs. Johnny Mundo

Fenix goes right at Mundo, hitting him with a standing moonsault and getting a few quick nearfalls on him. Mundo now gains control with a big running knee to the head. Mundo hits Fenix with a standing C4 and goes for the cover, but Fenix kicks out at two. Mundo then nails Fenix with a spinebuster for another nearfall.

Mundo distracts the referee while Taya chokes Fenix using the bottom rope. Mundo looks to hit Fenix with a springboard attack, but Fenix catches him with a big superkick, knocking Mundo to the outside. Fenix then follows it up by landing a big dive over the top rope onto Mundo and Taya. Back in the ring, Fenix superkicks Mundo and hits him with a sunset flip powerbomb. He covers Mundo, but Mundo kicks out at two.

Fenix looks to finish off Mundo. He climbs to the tope rope, but Taya grabs at Fenix’s leg preventing him from doing anything. Mundo then enziguri kicks Fenix and hits him with a springboard crossbody. Mundo covers Fenix, but he kicks out at two. Mundo goes to the tope rope, but Fenix hits him with a big uppercut. He then hits Mundo with his own signature move, the standing C4 off the tope rope. He goes for the cover, but Taya is distracting the referee. When Fenix notices this he heads over towards Taya. While this is happening, Mundo grabs his Trios Title and hits Fenix with it while the referee isn’t looking. Mundo goes for the cover and gets the three count after 8 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Johnny Mundo

Evaluation: Solid match between these two. Any time you get Mundo and Fenix in the ring together you’re going to see some cool spots. Since the match went at a slower pace, it did feel a bit short. The cheap finish at the end makes sense as it leads into their Trios Title match at Ultima Lucha Dos.

Post-match, Mundo’s fellow Trios Champions of PJ Black and Jack Evans join him to celebrate in the ring. They then attack Fenix some more which leads to Aerostar and Drago rushing the ring to help out Fenix. Ivelisse then joins the fight by taking out Taya and all hell’s breaking loose in the ring between all 8 wrestlers. The Fenix’s babyface team gets the upperhand in the fight and that’s it for today’s episode.

 

Game ball goes to…

Prince Puma – He had the match of the night with Azteca. Both men were great, but Puma shined for me just a bit more and got the victory.

 

Final thoughts

I really liked this episode of Lucha Underground. I thought it was a nice go home episode heading into Ultima Lucha Dos. It set up a few more matches that we’ll get to see at Ultima Lucha Dos in addition to adding to the rivalries and providing a really fun match in Puma vs. Azteca Jr.

As noted in the video below, Ultima Lucha Dos will span three weeks: July 6, July 13 and July 20.

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That’s it for me. Thanks for reading. If you like Lucha Underground and have other friends who enjoy the show too, then give this review a share. I appreciate any thoughts or conversation in the comment section below.

Pictures used above are courtesy of Lucha Underground.