EXTREME LUCHA LIBRE RETURNS TO THE USA BESTIA 666 VS PESADILLA
Posted on June 29, 2012 at 6:19 am
The Extreme Reunion cards for the 29th in NewYork City and the 30th in Philadelphia will include a battle of Extreme Lucha Libre, with a bit of a historical nod to the mid-1990s and the arrival of lucha libre – and then extreme lucha libre – to ECW.
The match-up will feature second-generation stars Bestia 666 from Tijuana against Pesadilla from Tulancingo in the heartland of Mexico. Bestia 666 is an exciting fireball of a young wrestler, the son of the legendary Damian 666 La Profecia, often considered the personification of Extreme Lucha Libre in Mexico and a man with ECW and WCW matches on his resume. Pesadilla is the nephew of former ECW and WWE star Super Crazy, and like his uncle, Pesadilla is super in the ring but crazy enough to match Bestia 666 toe to toe with any foreign object – chair, table, kendo stick, light bulb, what have you .
In the mid-1990s, ECW promoter Paul Heyman was looking to replace some of his wrestlers who were going to begin work for WCW under Eric Bischoff’s hierarchy. Heyman contacted the well-know luchador living inSouthern California Konnan El Barbaro, and asked for recommendations of luchadores who could make an impact on an audience, even if they would not be well-known at first, asking specifically about some wrestlers he had seen onthe AAA When Worlds Collide PPV. Shortly thereafter, Rey Mysterio – the sameone in WWE still today – and Psicosis, made their way to ECW and for the first time, fans and viewers of English-language wrestling programs got an up close look at the style and crazy dives of lucha libre.
Konnan at that time was working for a Mexican promotion thatwent by its marketing brand name of AAA. Konnan observed carefully what Heyman was doing, and soon the ideas were moving along on a two-way – as Heyman usedsome of lucha libre’s most spectacular workers and their state of the artideas, Konnan took what ECW was doing and bought some of it to Mexico. Starting with a match in Los Angeles in 1995 (a match which not only introduced 1990’s Extreme Wresting to lucha libre but was the very first match in the USA with a six-sided), AAA began promoting matches formtime to time that wouldn’t be out of place one bit on an ECW card. Among the participants in this initial bout – Damien 666. And, to this day, AAA still promotes matches of this sort.
In their debut match, Psicosis and Rey Mysterio tore the house down. Their style was different enough to be appealing without being off putting, and the moves and dives were spectacular, with more than one blacony-to-floor dive to remember in the old ECW Arena! After Psicosis left to joining Konnan at WCW, Juventud Guerrera followed to give an even more spectacular take on the ECW lucha match. Damian 666 came in and worked for ECW in 1996 and Super Crazy was a mainstay from 1998 until the promotion’s last card, even winning the ECW TV title.
True to lucha libre tradition, where there are junior and Hijos everywhere you look, the next generation of the family is coming to town to settle some old scores and to continue the family legacy. Bestia 666 can becounted on, like his father to me brutal, merciless, and resourceful, giving no quarter in any match and using any method to come out on top. Conversely, Pesadilla, a little nutty but like his uncle with the heart of a lion, will ask no quarter, and will match Bestia 666 move for move, counter for counter, divefor dive, and weapon for weapon. When these two get in the ring, it’s not to be missed!
“Dr. Lucha” Steve Sims, one of the world’s foremost experts on lucha libre, weekly columnist for SuperLuchas magazine in Mexico and a regular contributor to the Observer and multiple wrestling podcasts, breaks down both the initial birth of Extreme Lucha in ECW and the impending RISING at this weekend’s events in NYC and Philly. Who are Bestia 666 and Pesadilla and why have they been chosen to carry on the spirit of Extreme Lucha Libre? Learn you about some lucha!