Soberano Jr., one of Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre’s brightest stars, is making his Ring of Honor debut this weekend. He will be continuing his jet-setting year, as he has just finished a tour of Japan ahead of his upcoming clash against Punishment Martinez at ROH’s Manhattan Mayhem.
Soberano’s travels to Japan were part of CMLL and NJPW’s series of events called Fantasticamania, a yearly joint production that sees the best of CMLL travel to Japan for two weeks of shows, pitting the stars of the respective companies against each other.
“It was my second tour of Japan and it really was an enjoyable experience. It’s an honor to be invited to compete for such an important company like New Japan. Often times in wrestling, it’s not only about winning titles or retaining your mask, but it’s about winning important battles, which make you grow as a wrestler. Just as the door closed on that opportunity, I now have a chance in another company, Ring of Honor, a great company that I have always wanted to wrestle for. I’ll be going up against Punishment Martinez and I expect that we will have a fantastic match this Saturday in New York.”
Although the purpose of the trip was to wrestler, Soberano Jr was also able to enjoy the experience of
traveling halfway across the world in the pursuit of honing his craft.
“It’s a beautiful country and the culture is quite
different from Mexico’s. I found myself with different friends and the different rivals, some whom are very accomplished. The Japanese wrestling style is much stronger and very different than the Mexican style, but whenever we Mexican wrestlers appear, we give it our all and show the world that our talent is apparent worldwide.”
This weekend will not be Soberano’s first trip to compete in the United States, as he has competed in other small independent promotions, but this is the first time that he will be competing for a larger National audience under the Ring of Honor Banner, an opportunity that the young star relishes.
“I have been to New York for other shows, but now I have to chance to go to the United States and compete in one of the best companies, Ring of Honor. It is honestly something that is very special- I have been to the US before, but nothing as well-known as Ring of Honor. That being said, I plan to give it my all to prove it my all and give them a great match so that the company and the fans leave the show with a good taste in their mouths.”
Standing 6 feet tall himself, Soberano is not exactly a small grappler, especially not in his home promotion, but his ROH debut will pit him against a much larger opponent than he normally accustomed to facing. When looking to prepare for this new challenge, Soberano was able to lean on the work of his friend Flip Gordon, who recently took on Punishment Martinez at ROH’s Honor Rising.
“I’ve trained with Flip Gordon, whom I consider a great friend before and I watched his match with Punishment Martinez closely, observing how he handled Martinez size in their match to gain some insight. I think I will have a similar plan of attack against Martinez, using my speed against him, as well as my high-flying offense. He is a tall and very strong wrestler who possess a powerful moveset, but I have the speed and the agility. I’m just going to be the same wrestler that I have always have been in the ring and I expect that to be able to guide to me to victory against Martinez.”
Recently, Soberano was able to challenge for CMLL World Welterweight Championship against Mephisto, but fell victim to the chicanery of the notorious Tirantes. During the match, Soberano saw his opportunity to be crowned as champion slip away as the referee chose to count egregiously slowly whenever he made a pinfall attempt, essentially making it impossible for him to win the match, try as he might.
“It was a match that was really exciting for me, being able to compete for the CMLL Global Welterweight Championship, but unfortunately, the referee that officiated the match was a referee that proved he isn’t a professional. I feel that I was robbed during this match against a great fighter and champion like Mephisto, who was not responsible for what happened.Ultimately, Tirantes the referee was the person who was responsible for the counts and he affected the outcome.”
Before he might be able to gain a measure of revenge or another title opportunity, Soberano has his sights set on what is ahead of him, specifically an opportunity to also gain the CMLL World Tag Team Championship in an upcoming tournament.
“I have a chance to win the World Tag Team titles alongside Atlantis first, but I would love another shot against Mephisto for that Global Welterweight title. I will always have my sights set on that title as it it one I would like to claim for myself and if he gives me another chance, I would definitely take the opportunity.”
Soberano, whose name translates to prince, had the wrestling bug from an early age, eventually following in the footsteps of his grandfather, the original Soberano and his father, current CMLL star Euforia. Like many wrestlers, he grew up a fan of the product and had the desire and moxie to deal with the trials and tribulations of becoming a successful wrestler.
“I got into Lucha Libre because of my grandfather, the first Soberano. Wrestling has always been a big part of my family. My own career started 2007, even though I started wrestling at the age of 8. I trained under the first Diabolico and it has been incredible and it is something that really impacted me ever since I can remember, I followed my dreams and kept fighting until I reached my goal of becoming a Luchador in CMLL.”
Outside of the ring, Soberano is a fan of the product himself, but instead of just watching for entertainment, he views wrestling with an educational lens, learning the most he can to try and incorporate what he has seen in his own offense, as well as to keep him fresh in the eyes of the fans.
“I am a huge fan of Lucha Libre. When I’m not wrestling myself, I watch other matches to try new dives and other moves. I am big fan of Japanese wrestling and now that I have been presented with ROH, I have been following that company as well, taking in new styles and the holds that are used in those companies to have an idea of what I should expect when I wrestle there.”
At the young age of 24, Soberano has shown a propensity and knack for diving and flying all over the ring, something that has caught the eye of not only those in his home promotion of CMLL, but fans and matchmakers around the world. Despite his recent successes, he wants nothing more than more opportunities-opportunities that he plans to take advantage of.
“2017 was the year that catapulted me- it was that year that I started to really shine. I expect 2018 to hold even more triumphs than I had last year. I hope to return to New Japan and keep fighting hard in an effort to continue to build off what I did last year.
For the full audio of the article, in Spanish, check out a special edition of the Running Wild Podcast below featuring this Soberano Jr. Interview Ahead of ROH Manhattan Mayhem