* Aro Lucha, the new promotion headed by Aroluxe, the former Impact Wrestling production company, held their pilot TV taping last night in Nashville, TN at the Nashville Fairgrounds and all reports we have received described the taping as a fun show with a lot of good wrestling in front of a hot crowd. The venue was set up for 1,000 seats and we have gotten was that the show was completely full. Whether that was a legitimate sellout or they papered the market to get the venue full, I don’t know, but one source stated that the majority of the venue were legitimately sold tickets and the promotion was blown away by the crowd, which was far stronger than anyone could have hoped for a first time effort. The promotion issued an apology to fans that were turned away via their Facebook page and we have heard from fans who were not able to get in the building.
* We heard a good portion of the demographic in the crowd were Hispanic fans. One person told me it was 50% Hispanic. Another source pegged it at 75%. Others said it was less than that.
* Aroluxe obviously spent money on production as they brought a lighting truss and hung it in the Fairground Arena, plus had the big staging with video screens, smoke and fire for entrances, etc. At the close of the taping, they dumped a ton of confetti. They had special Aro Lucha ring aprons and logos on the barricades and turnbuckles. The ring aprons featured the slogan “no dejes de luchar”, which translates into “Do Not Stop Fighting.” Referees wore the promotion’s Lucha mask logo on their striped shirts.
Production was headed by Ron and Don Harris. They were on headsets all night directing the taping with Vince Russo (who was officially announced as a script consultant a few days before the taping) also working on headsets at the taping. Konnan, who was announced as lead writer, was there and appeared after the taping was “completed” in the ring with Rey Mysterio. Russo and Konnan produced the promos and pre-tapes at the taping as well. Aroluxe owner Jason Brown, Shane Helms and Rafael Morfi were also working behind the scenes as core management members. Helms was working as a producer for several matches. One person described the behind the scenes of the taping as being like TNA without all “the bullsh**” that usually came with working for TNA.
* The taping started with footage of Rey Mysterio being attacked “earlier today” by John Hennigan and Rush. This led to Mysterio coming out and cutting a promo that he was going to get his revenge and hit someone with a 619. Hennigan and Rush came to the ring. Mysterio grabbed the glasses off Hennigan’s face and smashed them. They attacked Rey with Penta 0M making the save. Rey offered Penta a handshake but Penta instead walked off.
* Willie McClinton (Willie Mack of PWG/Lucha Underground fame) defeated Mr. 450 with a frog splash. This was said to have been a good match with some nice back and forth action.
* They ran an angle where Demus 316 attacked Mascarita Sagrada (aka the former El Torito), leading to what three people told me was the best match on the show – just a great kickass back and forth athletic minis match.
* Rebecca Hardy came out cutting a promo as a heel, dubbed the “Ice Queen” with the idea that she is rich and powerful. She cut a promo establishing her as power hungry heel “businesswoman” with the implication she was overseeing the women’s division.
* Lacey Lane and Keyra fought Taya Valkyrie and Vanilla Vargas. There was a tag with the idea that two of them would face each other to crown the first AroLucha Women’s champion. The idea was that the competitor who scored the pinfall would advance to the title bout, as would the member of the losing team who was not pinned. It was a little confusing to follow the idea, we are told. Keyra and Lane won the bout, both pinning Vargas. So, its Taya vs. one of them whenever the “next episode” takes place.
* James Storm, making his first post-Impact wrestling appearance, pinned Trey Miguel with the Last Call Superkick. There was an expectation within Impact when it appeared that Aroluxe was going to end up in charge of the company that Storm would be part of the inner circle, so not really a surprise to see him pop up here.
* Sammy Guevara defeated MVP by DQ when MVP pulled the referee in front of him. MVP left Guervara laying. Was told this was decent but the finish was eh. If they are starting a storyline, obviously they’ll follow up on this in “future episodes” so I can understand the finish as a way to establish MVP as a heel.
* Maximo & Jack Edwards (Jack Evans of AAA/ROH/Calgary fame) & Hurricane Helms defeated Daga & Garza Jr. & La Mascara in a six man tag Helms had his own championship. This was said to have been entertaining with Maximo as the star of the match with big spots that really got over.
* Rey Jr and Penta 0M defeated John Hennigan and Rush. This was said to have been a great tag match with some good spots and good heel work from Rush and Hennigan. Rush came across like a star. The idea was that Rey and Penta were teaming but weren’t friends. Lots of big spots. Lots of chairshots to the head as well. After the match, they teased a handshake but this time, Rey didn’t want to do it.
* Mysterio cut a promo after, thanking Memphis (whoops) and the crowd let him have it. Mysterio said he was in Memphis last night and got hit in the head a lot and apologized to Nashville, which the crowd laughed at. He put over the crowd and the locker room. They were “off the air” so Penta returned, praising Rey and they closed out the show with much of the locker room coming out to sing “Happy Birthday” to Rey Mysterio:
* Other Notes: The taping was a tight two hours, allowing the crowd to stay hot and into the show, which featured quality action up and down the card we are told….Modelo Beer’s logo was prominently displayed at the taping, so they appeared to have come on board as a sponsor for the project….Impact Wrestling’s Jeremy Borash was backstage visiting….Former ROH and ECW champion Jerry Lynn was at the event as well…..They did not announce a return to the venue, but the word backstage was they have another taping in January…..Bob Rosen who heads up Impact’s ring crew, worked in a similar role here. There were a lot of Impact Wrestling crew members, past and present, who worked the taping….The backstage scene was said to have been very jovial and positive before, during and after the taping. There was a feeling that the taping went way better than anyone could have expected….Juventud Guerrera stated on Twitter he would be working for Aro Lucha next year….There was a female ring announcer using the name DeeDee at the taping who handled announcements in both English and Spanish. She is Denise Salcedo, who does backstage interviews for Championship Wrestling from Hollywood.