37. El Satanico
Another contender for my Greatest Wrestler Ever. I used to make the claim that he was the best luchador of the past 35 years, but I guess the consensus is that Casas, Santo and Dandy are one, two and three. Satanico is a guy who could do it all -- title bouts, apuesta bouts, matwork, brawling, every style of trios bout there are, lead man, supporting cast, stooging, acting, promos, feuds, the whole shebang. And like Casas he was a guy who could add a different wrinkle each night. You rarely saw the same Satanico performance twice. He had so much confidence as a performer and such a feel for wrestling that he could ad lib with the best of them. And the whole thing was based on the truth to his claim that he was El Numero Uno. The only thing he couldn't really do (aside from tolerate working with dudes like Octagon, and sorry elliot that Satanico performance is not good) is fly. You could probably count on one hand the number of times Satanico did a tope. There is evidence on tape that he did one, but it was rare. He'd rather stalk a guy on the outside or have someone feed him an opponent in the ring like feeding time at the zoo or a frenzy in the shark tank. If he'd had Chicana's tope it would have been mindblowing, but he probably didn't need it. He didn't need a jumper when his post game was so strong. And from an old time smark's point of view, nobody was better at working transitions in lucha matches. The man was a genius. An artist!
36. Buddy Rose
I've tried and tried, and I'll try again, but I haven't gotten over the hump with Rose yet. One day I'm gonna watch a Buddy Rose match, the YouTube clip will finish and tears will be streaming from my eyes, And I'll flip tabs and send Matty D a message, "mine eyes have seen the glory." and I imagine it'll be like a revival meeting and folks will shake my hand virtually and say: "congratulations, son." I should like this Portland stuff way more than I do. I don't exactly hate myself for it, but maybe I need my head checked. I will persevere. It'll probably get taken down the day after I convert.
35. El Dandy
Well, here he is. From memory I went super high on Dandy in 2006. When you first get that '89-90 stuff in, and I was still getting tapes at the time, and you watch it all at once, man what a hit. It's like wrestling smack. It surprises me that people don't "get" Dandy as in they don't find him charismatic. Dandy seemed like the baddest man on the planet in 1990. A supreme talent at his absolute peak, he just oozed charisma. He was an amazing two-way worker in 1990. I've seen come to appreciate a guy like Super Muneco as a pro-wrestling story, but back then when you saw Dandy make Munceo look like a million bucks it was impressive. Whether he was hitting moves or taking them, Dandy was phenomenal on both ends. Once the euphoria wore off, I started picking holes in his stuff and realised there were some pretty big gaps in his career, but for pure talent, Dandy is hard to beat. Finishing behind Casas and Santo is probably right even if I have bones to pick with them as well. If Dandy had done more in '93-95 he would have pushed them hard for the top luchador spot.
34. Chris Benoit
Didn't fall that far. If he'd retired in 2007 rather than the murders, I think he would have fallen into the teens so this is about 20 places lower than that projection. Anyway, I have a hard time watching Benoit matches. What am I gonna do, praise him for being a great worker? Overly scrutinize him because of the murders? For years I avoided watching his matches even ones I wanted to see for projects like the Smarkschoice WCW & WWE polls. I watched a few of his matches during this project from UWA, CMLL, and against Liger and El Samurai. I thought his selling was spotty, his transitions crappy, and he wrestled like the robot he was often accused of being. But that was early Benoit. Maybe he got better. It's not something I'm gonna explore.