Written by: Tim Cooke
WCW in the fall of 1997 was ahead of the WWF both in TV ratings and quality matches. The period between September 8 and December 15 may have the best set of Nitro matches from it’s almost six year existence. I thought it would be worthwhile to go back and revisit the time where the concept of the “Nitro style” match was in full force.
Rey Misterio Jr. vs. Eddy Guerrero (September 8, 1997)
Loud Eddy sucks chants to open. A typical Guerrero/Misterio exchange opens up the match and ends with Eddy claiming his hair was pulled, drawing great heat from the Milwaukee crowd. For two guys who aren’t widely praised for their striking, Guerrero hits a tremendous European uppercut that Rey takes a big bump for. Rey returns the favor a couple of times with his above average forearms (think 55 on the 20-80 baseball scouting scale). Guerrero works on the arm and the match comes in and out of the commercial break. Mike Tenay makes mention of the fact that while both wrestlers have been opposite of each other in trios matches in Mexico, this is their first singles match. Rey sloppily hits a rope trick where he springboards onto top rope, jumps again to middle rope on the diagonal rope, and then moonsaults off onto Guerrero (credit Rob Bihari for rope trick). Rey would hit this spot completely clean their September 29 Nitro rematch as well as their December 27 WCW Saturday Night match. Guerrero catches a Rey cross body off the top rope and in one motion hits a perfect body slam. A vicious power bomb and pump handle backbreaker follow, before Eddy tries the Gori Special, which Rey arm drags out of. This is one of my all-time favorite pro wrestling spots. Rey hits a pretty springboard rana for the finish and the “upset” victory.
Time: 5:32 TV Time
Rating: *** 1/4