This week's MLW Azteca opened with a scene outside the arena. Cesar Duran was confronted by MLW World Champion Alexander Hammerstone and Richard Holliday. Hammerstone recently escaped from having been kidnapped by some of Duran's masked henchmen and so is not too pleased with the MLW matchmaker at the moment.
Hammerstone got in Duran's face, but Holliday pulled him away, saying that it was a trap. Duran said if Hammerstone hits him, he'll automatically be stripped of the title. He also told Holliday that he'll face Pagano in a falls count anywhere match tonight.
Duran also said Hammerstone will defend his title next week, though he never named a challenger (later revealed to be Octagon Jr.).
MLW Tag Team Champions 5150 (Rivera & Slice Boogie) defeated Aerostar & Drago to retain the titles
Before the match, Rivera cut a promo in Spanish that the live crowd did not take kindly to. Boogie then got on the mic and said that when he was a kid, he thought Mexico was beautiful but now that he's in Tijuana for the first time, he thinks it's a piece of sh*t.
It was also played up how 5150 cost Aerostar his title match last week against National Openweight Champion Alex Kane.
After both teams exchanged moves early, Aerostar & Drago got the first bit of sustained offense after Aerostar delivered a springboard cannonball to the outside. Not long after, Boogie made a blind tag and delivered a suplex to Aerostar for a two count. That led to 5150 working on Aerostar with quick tags and double team moves for a bit.
The commentary team kept bringing up how it was odd that Konnan wasn't ringside with 5150.
Drago tagged in, but 5150 were able to take turns working on him after quick tags as well. Aerostar and Drago fought back again and Aerostar got a near fall on Boogie with a cutter. He then got another near fall on Rivera shortly after with a tornado DDT.
5150 turned things around shortly after, ending things with a double foot stomp assisted death valley driver on Aerostar for the win.
-- Alex Kane and Mr. Thomas were interviewed in the back. Kane said things were going great with the Bomaye Fight Club and they even have a new sponsor. They unveiled new shirts with a drawing of a baby crying on them and their new sponsor was "Crybaby Calvin." They said a portion of the shirt sales would go to help Calvin Tankman with his legal bills as Kane previously pressed charges on Tankman for attacking him in a parking lot.
-- A video aired showing Hammerstone being attacked and kidnapped by the Azteca Underground henchmen was shown. It was speculated that Hammerstone was injured following the attack.
-- We cut backstage where Richard Holliday was very nervous about his match with Pagano. Hammerstone and Alicia Atout attempted to calm him down. Holliday asked if they had any weapons he could use. Hammerstone presented him with a bottle of pills from a Tijuana pharmacy, but Holliday said it would take a month for those to kick in before leaving for his match. References to Mexican pharmacies have become sort of a thing for The Dynasty when MLW goes to Mexico.
Proximo defeated Toto
On commentary, it was brought up that the winner of this match could be seen on MLW Azteca more frequently if they impress Duran.
Toto got the early advantage with a tope. He followed that up with a German suplex and springboard armdrag. Proximo then came back and hit a headscissors and his own springboard armdrag. Toto then went back on offense after he hit a canadian destroyer on the outside.
Proximo fought back and hit a headscissors, dropkick, and tope on his opponent. When they got back in the ring, Proximo then hit a Spanish Fly off the top, stuck his foot on the bottom rope for leverage, and got the three count.
It was announced in a video that when MLW heads to Charlotte on February 26th, Hammerstone will defend his MLW World title against Opera Cup winner Davey Richards. Richards was recently attacked backstage and had his Opera Cup trophy stolen, but we don't know by who.
Von Erichs promo
It was announced on Twitter that the Von Erichs have tested positive for COVID-19 and won't be on Saturday's Blood and Thunder show from Dallas, but they still ran a video from Kauai, Hawaii, featuring the brothers talking about their now-postponed title shot against 5150 on that show.
Marshall and Ross talked about how it will be hard for 5150 to talk as much as they do when they have the claw on them. They told Dallas to plan the parade because they are coming home. This was sad because they aren't coming home and won't be on that show. The whole angle had been the Von Erichs trying to win a title in Dallas, something their family hasn't done in 40 years. Them not being on that show is a blow as they haven't performed in MLW since last July.
Jacob Fatu promo
Fatu talked about being the son of the Tonga Kid, living in Sacramento, and how much he loves his family. Fatu continued to talk about watching The Usos while in jail and training with his uncle, Rikishi. He didn't talk at all about losing his title to Hammerstone or his fallout with the members of Contra Unit.
Later in the show, the commentary team noted that Fatu sounded like he had a different mindset and attitude during this video.
Pagano defeated Richard Holliday in a Barrio Brawl match
Duran welcomed everyone to the Barrio Brawl. They looked to be in an old gymnasium or rec center.
Pagano attacked Holliday with a chair and the two brawled around the area, hitting each other with chairs and punches. Eventually, the melee spilled outside and kept going through the commercial break.
Holliday appeared to be getting the better of the fight and went to finish Pagano off with a chair shot. As he was about to, he got distracted by Duran. After Holliday turned his attention to him, the referee (an Azteca Underground masked henchman) wrapped something around Holliday's neck and began to choke him.
Duran trash talked Holliday while the referee continued to choke him. Pagano then punched Holliday and pinned him.
Mads Krugger defeated Bestia 666 in a Tijuana street fight
Things started off with a real David vs. Goliath story. Bestia 666 is from Tijuana and was a clear crowd favorite. He tried to land strikes and use his quickness to gain the early advantage, but Krugger quickly took control.
Bestia fought back a little bit after landing a headscissors to Krugger on the outside. He tried hitting Krugger with chairs but even those seemed to have little impact. Krugger quickly fought back and hit Bestia with a chair in return.
Krugger continued on offense until Bestia began fighting back by hitting Krugger with all kinds of plunder. He settled on a cheese grater as his weapon of choice and hit his opponent with it several times. Krugger then hit a backbreaker to go back on offense before we went to commercial.
Bestia began to fight back again after the break. He hit Krugger with a chair several times before he returned to using the cheese grater.
Bestia remained on offense until Krugger caught him coming off the ropes, giving him a full nelson facebuster on a chair for the win.
It was then announced that El Hijo Del Vikingo will defend his AAA Mega Championship against Aramis, and Alexander Hammerstone will defend his MLW title against Octagon Jr. next week.
Krugger stood tall on the stage to close the show.
This was a fun show. It still feels like we have a big mystery revolving around Duran developing, although nothing major was revealed this week.
Last week, we saw that there were rooms with the labels "Salina" and "Killshot" on them in the building where Hammerstone was being held by the Azteca Underground henchmen. I'm wondering if that is perhaps alluding to the return of Salina de la Renta, who had also previously been kidnapped in MLW storyline. "Killshot" was Swerve Scott's alter ego in Lucha Underground, so it makes me wonder if he's returning too. Interesting stuff.
It is similar to how Lucha Underground had this aura of mystery around Dario Cueto. It'll be interesting to see how far they go with the Cesar Duran character.