SI.com’s Week in Wrestling is published every week and provides beneath-the-surface coverage of the business of pro wrestling.
Arez and Aramís ready to capture the wrestling world’s attention with their match on ‘MLW Fusion’
The future of wrestling will be broadcast Wednesday evening.
Lucha sensations Arez and Aramís put on a sublime display in their match for Major League Wrestling, which will air Wednesday night on MLW Fusion. The pair worked an evolutionary style in the 11-minute encounter that was taped in July, which is fitting since the match took place in Philadelphia, the home of revolution.
The Arez-Aramís match took place in the same spot where Rey Mysterio and Psicosis set the wrestling world aflame in 1995. That 10-minute match put them on the map in the U.S., and it was held in Philly at the famed ECW Arena (now 2300 Arena), the same place where Arez and Aramís worked their magic.
Just like the cutting-edge lucha from Mysterio-Psicosis in 1995, a shared factor for Arez and Aramís was wrestling great Konnan bringing the talent to Philly for the match.
“I still remember telling Paul E. [Heyman] that Rey and Psicosis were going to blow everyone away,” says Konnan, who is the head of creative for AAA and serves in a variety of behind-the-scenes roles for MLW, including talent liaison. “After the Rey-Psicosis match, Paul E. called me from the arena and said to me, ‘Can I have them back next week?’ I knew it was going to be great.”
Konnan’s track record speaks for itself when he brings in new talent, and he is confident that people are really going to like Arez and Aramís.
“It wouldn’t be fair to compare them to Rey and Psicosis—they revolutionized wrestling and there has been no one like them since; Arez and Aramís will get over for different reasons,” Konnan says. “People are really going to get into them.”
Arez has his own distinct approach to wrestling, which he calls “Strange Style.” It is a beautiful array of unique holds and creative high-flying spots.
“His stuff looks different,” Konnan says. “He stands out.”
Asked to describe “Strange Style,” Arez explains that it needs to be seen in order to be fully appreciated.
“There is no other way to describe it than strange,” Arez says through a translator. “You never know when I will entangle you or do strange things on the ropes, corners or another attack. That’s why I am here. I arrived at MLW so that they knew what the ‘Master of Strange Style’ is capable of.”
Aramís applies a different style of magic, generating genuine emotion from those watching him in the ring.
“My fighting style is a combination of all my experiences, which has led me to where I am today,” Aramís says through a translator. “My wrestling reflects the heart of fighting for what you love. I want to convey that passion and emotion, and be able to inspire someone like I was inspired.
“I think there was no better way to make my MLW debut than facing Arez. We always push ourselves to the limit in each fight, we both want that victory, and we are hungry to show that we are ready for great challenges in MLW.”
Arez and Aramís seek to connect with wrestling fans on a deep level by delivering a sensational display of cutting-edge lucha. Only a week after Kenny Omega and Bryan Danielson set the gold standard for wrestling on a Wednesday night by capturing the beauty and power of wrestling, Arez and Aramís hope to show the wrestling world its future.
“Twenty-six years after Rey Mysterio and Psicosis changed their careers at the ECW Arena, it is time for me and Aramís to have our moment,” Arez says. “I think this is a good time to carry on their legend.”
For Aramís, it is not only an honor to be mentioned alongside Mysterio and Psicosis, it is also a dream come true.
“They are two great idols that symbolized an era for me,” Aramís says. “I am honored to have wrestled in their building. And the MLW audience turns this into a night I will never forget.
“Everything happens very quickly in the match, but as it was happening, I tried to remember everything we sacrificed and fought for to reach this moment. I was in front of a rival who, like me, has not had a simple path. I was very proud to share that moment with him, and I can’t wait for everyone to see our struggle and dedication.”
Adam Cole on Kevin Owens’s Twitter post: “I got a kick out of the tweet”
Earlier this month, Kevin Owens tweeted the coordinates for Mount Rushmore.
While the Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a famous sculpture carved into a South Dakota mountainside, it was also the name of a faction in Pro Wrestling Guerrilla just under a decade ago that featured Owens, The Young Bucks and Adam Cole.
Owens later deleted the tweet, but it still caused a great deal of speculation, specifically centered on the chance that he would like to one day work again with the Bucks and Cole, who are all employed by AEW. Owens is one of Cole’s best friends, and he also cherishes his memories of their time together as Mount Rushmore.
“I got a kick out of the tweet,” Cole says. “Kevin is one of my best friends, and the friendship goes deeper than just pro wrestling. I’m very thankful for our friendship.”
If Owens were to ever leave WWE for AEW, which is not out of the realm of possibility, it would cause a massive shock to the industry. But wrestling aside, Cole shared that it is not uncommon for Owens to be paying attention to whatever it is he is doing in the ring.
“He’s one of the first people to text me, no matter what,” Cole says. “Whether it was about NXT or Pro Wrestling Guerrilla or Japan, or now AEW, he’s [one] of the first people to reach out every single time.”
The (online) week in wrestling
- The match pitting Kenny Omega against Bryan Danielson was absurdly entertaining. Will Danielson now need to work his way through the entire roster to get back at Omega? And how will Hangman Page enter the fray when he returns?
- Eventually I’ll stop doing this, but I have to remind myself each time I watch him wrestle that CM Punk is back. His match against Powerhouse Hobbs on Rampage served as an excellent chance to highlight both performers.
- Big E is making the most of his time so far as champ on Monday Night Raw, creating a show in his image. He fought off the newly reconciled Hurt Business, then defeated Bobby Lashley in a steel cage match. It is great to see Raw fully committed to Big E, whose next challenger appears to be Drew McIntyre.
- A name doesn’t make the man, but I like the new “Bearcat” nickname for Keith Lee. If that is all it takes to highlight one of the best talents in the entire industry, then I’m all for it.
- Bianca Belair likely created a fan for life by getting this young woman involved in her attack against Becky Lynch.
Shayna Baszler with an edge gives Raw another dimension.
- Ronda Rousey, who helped headline WrestleMania 35, just welcomed her first child into the world.
- Following that thud of an ending to their match at Extreme Rules, will Finn Bálor be added in the upcoming Roman Reigns–Brock Lesnar match in Saudi Arabia? Unfortunately for Bálor, neither Reigns nor Lesnar is likely to take that decisive pinfall.
Tony Khan on Urban Meyer’s AEW appearance: “Urban is a red-light guy”
In addition to his role overseeing AEW, Tony Khan is also the chief football strategy officer for the Jaguars.
Urban Meyer is the new head coach of the Jags, who are rebuilding the team this season. They have lost their first three games, but Khan is excited to have a three-time Division I FBS national title winner as his head coach.
Along with assistant head coach Charlie Strong, viewers were treated to a Meyer cameo during AEW’s Double or Nothing pay-per-view in May.
“When I asked Urban and he agreed, I was so excited,” Khan says. “I thought Charlie would be really excited for it, too. Charlie’s a huge wrestling fan; he’s followed it for years. They were both so great about it, and I think they enjoyed it. We thought that would get us a lot of mainstream press, while also staying in the spirit of the Stadium Stampede.”
The show took place at Daily’s Place in Jacksonville, which is connected to the Jaguars’ home stadium, where The Inner Circle and The Pinnacle threw down in a Stadium Stampede match. So it made sense when the brawl between Chris Jericho and MJF sprawled into the coaches' room.
“I had this idea where Max and Chris would be fighting around the building, and since the coaches are always here late, anyway, they’d go into the coaches' room and we’d see how it played out,” Khan says. “Urban is a red-light guy, as we say. He’s a very charismatic person, so I felt like this was going to be a home run.”
Tweet of the Week
Even MJF’s parents are getting in on the fun.