Indie Watch: The Rise of Puma King

Indie Watch is our regular series that looks at all of the amazing talent working the independent circuits around the world. Some are veterans revitalizing their careers, some are indie prospects hitting their peaks, while others are names to be on the watch for! This edition looks at one of the new faces of lucha libre who is testing the international waters after making it big in his native Mexico. Puma King has begun working various US indies, and tonight made his television debut on IMPACT Wrestling.

It’s crazy how the indie wrestling scene keeps reinventing itself. Just months ago, guys like Keith Lee, Matt Riddle and Deonna Purazzo were snatched by WWE and the indie scene seemed to lose key main eventers. But now, a new crop of dedicated wrestlers is on the path for success. The recent Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) Battle of Los Angeles featured many of those guys, but one that caught the eyes of many fans was the Lucha Libre feline Puma King.

Those in attendance at PWG’s BOLA were raving about the abilities of the somewhat unknown luchador. But Puma King comes from a long generation of talented wrestlers – one of his mentors (and relatives) is non-other that the 4.40, Negro Casas. Just some few months back, Puma King was in the preliminaries with his brother Kid Tiger, wrestling young talents in Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL) – Mexico’s premier promotion. It seemed as if King was the victim of the slow-moving system of CMLL, in which rising trough the rankings of CMLL takes you years. Solid wrestlers have come out of that system, but other have taken another route.

Pentagon Jr. and Rey Fenix are clear examples of doing it yourself and winning big. They skipped the CMLL system – even though they were training there – and are now the biggest Mexican Lucha Libre attractions in the world. Another example was Hijo del Fantasma, like Puma King he was stuck in the system, but, after exiting for the promising AAA, he now is one of the best wrestlers in Mexico.

Puma King suspected that he needed a change and threw himself to the wolves. This summer, he announced his departure from CMLL. King at the time, only had the PWG BOLA tournament outside of CMLL. He was betting on himself and for the moment, is working. So far he’s been making waves in PWG, PCW ULTRA, Beyond Wrestling, CHIKARA, Major League Wrestling (MLW) and now IMPACT Wrestling.

A New Luchador on Town

Puma King first debuted with CMLL rival company AAA Worldwide. He started to team with ELITE guys, but his role is in the mid-card. Later came PCW Ultra, where he defeated Jake Atlas and Maxx Stardom. King seemed to get on a roll, but, where he really exploded, was in the PWG BOLA Tournament. His match against Dragon Gate star Flamita stole the show in night one. Is easy, Puma had the CMLL-fundamentals with a ferocity that can have incredible results in the indie scene.

Now Puma is on the verge of breaking out. He debuted this Thursday on IMPACT Wrestling in a fatal four-way that opened tonight’s episode. Moreover, King will be in the WrestleMania weekend for the Wrestlecon show. Puma has gathered huge traction on the internet, with many mesmerized by his unique look and incredible ability. Watch out for the new Puma, the indie wrestling scene could become his jungle.

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