Scout Report Directory

Scout Report by Wrestlingscout

Cruiserweight Match Reviews

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. The Ultimate Dragon (Hog Wild)
Despite career parallels, this is the first meeting of Mysterio and Dragon. In Ultimo's debut, he takes the Cruiser champ the distance and laid the grounds for a very good run in WCW. The size advantage really works interesting for Dragon as all he's able to really have his way with lil' Rey. Mysterio's flying is excellent as always including a crazy plancha from the top rope to the ground (the ring is elevated). The crowd doesn't really go along with the psychology of Dragon, but dig the highspots. The finish is sort of out-of-nowhere and not that spectacular, but sufficed.
Rating: ***1/4

Chris Benoit vs. Dean Malenko (Hog Wild)
A can't-miss match with a little angle going on, which actually hurt it in my opinion. The Benoit/Horsemen-Sullivan/Dungeon angle played out until the next summer and unfortunately effected both Benoit-Malenko PPV matches. The in-ring matches are excellent though as these two go balls-to-the-wall with a New Japan junior style that is just awesome. This baby has so much great stuff in it: smooth cradle exchanges, awesome display of the moves and holds, tight work and classic junior psychology. This has a very similar feel to Savage-Steamboat with outdoor atmosphere, dozens of nearfalls and pacing. They go into overtime, the first of which is outstanding as Benoit targets Malenko's knee, which is sold very well. The fans are really dead and even boo a second OT. Malenko controls this one, until Woman's interference costs him. The match itself was excellent, but the crowd was dead and the finish stunk.
Rating: ****

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Dean Malenko (Clash of the Champions XXXIII)
The third meeting of Malenko nd Mysterio and it's free for to the world. Mysterio has that early technico advantage, but Malenko fights back with nice technique. There's a beautiful exchange mid-way through, which is classic Mysterio improvising with sheer athleticism and reflexes. Mysterio's stuff is so excellent and Malenko is right there hanging with him. They have a false finish and then Rey catches him from behind and "steals" a win. Okay finish, it more perpetuated their feud than anything. Malenko was average for him, getting his stuff in, but mostly working the transitions for Mysterio, whose spots were exceptional.
Rating: ***1/4

Chris Benoit vs. Chris Jericho (Fall Brawl `96)
One of the WWF's vey best feuds for match quality, this was one of a handful of their matches from WCW and it's a personal favorite. Jericho was able to show a lot of his talent in what was his first WCW pay-per-view. Benoit plays almost a solid veteran and really has the crowd behind him as 1) he's an awesome talent and 2) he's a Horseman in North Carolina. The pyschology isn't superb, but they really beat the hell out of each other, which has to get you marking out.
Rating: ***3/4

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Super Calo (Fall Brawl `96)
Calo was one of the few luchadors, who wasn't totally misused as WCW at least threw him in a few good matches before he headed back South. His offense is quite unique and not just to the US, his missile dropkick suicida was especially cool. Rey takes all of the moves well and sells well as Calo even attacks the arm quite a bit, which was interesting from a luchador. In the end, Mysterio gets in most his stuff, which looks great as always. The crowd wasn't really heated for much of this, despite it's excellence. One of the lucha-style gems of WCW.
Rating: ***3/4

Ultimate Dragon vs. Dean Malenko (Starrcade `96)
The J-Crown holder versus the Cruiserweight champion, the later belt which could (but wouldn't either way) become part of the Crown. The crowd really isn't into the match for a while as it is largely Malenko working over Ultimo's knee early on. They get into the highspots big-time, but the heat is pretty inconsistant. The last leg gets them going though with hot nearfalls, but the finish is sort of flat as it is very New Japan. The match itself was quite good with better matwork than many cruiser matches and very limited highflying.
Rating: ***1/4

Jushin Lyger vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. (Starrcade `96)
The sometimes-heavyweight Lyger plays the bigger veteran to Mysterio's small underdog youngster role. Lyger uses a lot of power moves to draw babyface heat for Rey, who makes his comeback with his flying. The crowd get into only the top highspots and really dead for what is a superb match. The finish is really good, but the crowd's unfamiliarity with Lyger's moveset doesn't make the Lyger Bomb finale heated at all.
Rating: ***1/2

Dean Malenko vs. Ultimate Dragon (Clash of the Champions XXXIV)
After a brief "USA" chant, things pick up right were they left off at Starrcade. Dragon works on Malenko's knee, which is funny because it was the other way around before. After a s short offense, Dragon starts with the kicks. The crowd is definitely into everything Malenko does as he takes apart the knee again. They pick it up with a fast sequence and then Dragon gets in his highspots. Malenko comes back and slaps on his Texas Cloverleaf to a huge pop and regains his Cruiserweight title.
Rating: ***1/2

Chris Jericho, Super Calo, Chavo Guerraro Jr. vs. Konnan, La Parka, Mr. JL (Clash of the Champions XXXIV)
Weird note, but this match has two future World Heavyweight champions and a past one in Jericho, Mr. JL and Konnan respectively. This is a lucha-style trios match with only three men who have wrestled significantly in Mexico. Chavo and JL open things up well enough, then Konnan and Calo break out a lil' lucha, then Jericho and Parka add some weird heavyweight stuff. After a little messiness, Parka and Konnan give is some nice double-teaming. Then they transition into the dive part, La Parka hitting a crazy tope suicida and Calo coming out last with a Slingshot Somersault Senton Suicida. During the chaos on the floor, Jericho takes out JL with his Jericho Spike (Top Rope Frankenstiener) for the hot win. Not on par with lucha stuff, but this thing was a tornado of action.
Rating: ***

Syxx vs. Eddy Guerraro (nWo Souled Out)
Before ladders were all the rage in the WWF came this nice gem from a pretty weak, though unique pay-per-view. Guerraro is really on the money early on with a high-impact plancha and really amplifies Syxx's limited offense (minus a sweet tope con hilo) with his selling and bumping. The early later stuff is good, but pretty generic. Then they do a great spot, where both are near the top, until Syxx hits a crazy dropkick and falls to his death. The end is good, but the finish itself is better. Both men grab the belt, but Eddy uses it to KO Syxx and reclaims his belt for the win. This seemed much better in its day, but like the HBK-Razor ladder matches it hasn't aged as well. The pre-ladder part of the match was actually quite good, unfortunately the ladder hurt the match more than it helped it. Once it was introduced, the spots were good, but not overly creative, which really makes a ladder match. The highspot of the match was actually pretty cool, but didn't make up for some of the shortcomings.
Rating: ***

Dean Malenko vs. Syxx (SuperBrawl VII)
The first time we really saw the intense Dean Malenko, a character that was excellent because he was rarely used. He opens up the match with mostly brawling and power moves. He aggressively targets the knee, before Syxx gets in his first bit of offense. The nWo's Cruiserweight goes after Dean's neck fairly well. Then Eddy Guerraro gets involved when Syxx tries to grab Malenko's belt. His help backfires and the nWo picks up and belt they really have no right to have. Syxx was really hit-and-miss in WCW and Malenko saved this thing from being a bad match.
Rating: **3/4

Konnan, La Parka, Villano IV vs. Juventud Guerrara, Super Calo, Ciclope (SuperBrawl VII)
A little too far North (San Francisco) to pull in good lucha crowd, but I'm sure there are a few. Villano IV and Ciclope have a nice early exchange, Konnan and Juvi do some cat-and-mouse, until K-Dawg has enough of that and brutalizes the whole smaller team. La Parka and Super Calo have an awesome exchange with cool dives and hard bumps. Ciclope and #4 check back in and really drag things down with sloppiness. Guerrara after half-botching a 450 Splash, goes into some smooth moves including a nice springboard rana. Then they go into some weird team submissions and then triple dives, but Konnan gets Juvi back inside with the Powerdrop. Fast action with more lucha influence than I've seen in other WCW six-mans, but it also had it's share of sloppiness.
Rating: ***

Eddy Guerraro vs. Chris Jericho (SuperBrawl VII)
Two of the best heels WCW had in the years to come in face roles having a clean match... weird. The early work is pretty good, Jericho's proto-Liontamer/Walls of Jericho is even applied an criticized by the announcers. The crowd is really not into all the submissions, so Eddy tries to pick it up with big moves. The mid-rift of the match is actually quite good, but the crowd just doesn't care. The crowd even seems to start booing before Eddy gets a roll-up win. The beginning was sort of lackluster, while the end was actually quite good. Aside from the crowd reaction this was a very good match, just not a classic.
Rating: **3/4

Dean Malenko vs. Eddy Guerraro (Uncensored `97)
One of the greatest feuds of the 90s finally comes to WCW and not just because these two guys are great Cruiserweights. In fact, they're wrestling for the US title in a "No DQs" match nonetheless. Eddy had been picking up his intensity and the fans began booing him, while Dean's smooth work was making him a fan favorite, much like Bret Hart in the WWF. Despite the rules, they don't do much, other than Dean using the belt and Syxx's camera briefly and Eddy using the heel tactics (that he could've done otherwise). Eddy focuses on the knee and does so very well. Dean sells it excellently during, but it wears off as he comes back onto the offensive, following a cool Guerraro Plancha miss. They do the other's finisher, before Syxx comes out to steal the US title. Eddy grabs it from him and tries to hit Dean with it, but Malenko ducks him and pops him with Syxx's camera for the win. Though it wasn't clean, the finish was good for angle purposes and not illegal, which makes it more acceptable. Not on par with their ECW classics, but still quite good. The fluidity of th work and organization of the match was just great and the fans were into it.
Rating: ***3/4

Ultimo Dragon vs. Psychosis (Uncensored `97)
Kind of two awesome cruisers thrown together for a PPV, but really how can you miss? Ultimo had been becoming one of the most popular cruiserweights, while Psychosis hadn't been totally lost in the shuffle yet. Tenay reminds us they were/are affiliated with different groups in Mexico, so they are not familiar with each other. The early work is pretty basic as they do generic lucha and their own signature spots. Finally they pick it up, Psycosis hit an awesome tope suicida and then a crazy slingshot legdrop suicida, Ultimo not to be outdone does his Asai Moonsault. That got the crowd into it finally and than the last leg is reasonably well heated. It ends up coming across like a Nitro match given more time, so they have a stronger finish. While there were a few flaws in execution, things were largely good and it was a nice effort
Rating: ***

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Ultimo Dragon (Spring Stampede `97)
The third PPV match between these two with two a piece. The matwork early on is very good from Mysterio and excellent from Ultimo. Then Dragon starts his usual overpowering offense, which is executed by him as well as it sold by Rey. After a Mysterio comeback tease, Ultimo comesback with stiff kicks and lucha science. Rey's comebacks elevate in content as he progresses into his awesome highflying, but Dragon cuts him off time and time again. The end is filled with hot nearfalls and a nice springing huracanrana finish. The crowd was really hot for this throughout and totally got into the nearfalls. Excellent match, definitely one of the best.
Rating: ****1/4

Dean Malenko vs. Chris Benoit (Spring Stampede `97)
A rematch of the classic Hog Wild match, half a year later and this time for the US title. Instead of a weak angle, this is a mutual respect match and means we'll see more science than heated brawling. They go with nice matwork and chain wrestling early on, slow and methodical. The crowd seems kind of hushed by the pacing, but when Benoit starts with the chopping, the fans love it. There's the nice conflict of Malenko's precise technique versus Benoit's grinding brutality. Benoit seems to have things in orderr, until the angle crap kicks in. Jacqueline comes and jumps Woman, Jimmy Hart comes and steals the US title, Eddy Guerraro stops him though as Benoit-Malenko spill onto the floor. The referee is distracted by all the extra curricular activity. Arn Anderson cheapshots Dean, Sullivan blasts Benoit, Malenko knocks him onto Eddy and it ends in disqualification. Malenko helps up Benoit and says, "he was not supposed to be here," whoever he was I still dunno. Excellent match, in many ways better than the more highly acclaimed Hog Wild match. The finish stunk, but is a stalemate better than a tainted win?
Rating: ****

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Yuji Yasuraoka (Slamboree `97)
The only trip over from WAR, which was too bad for this talented, but early retired wrestler. The early work is pretty basic and even, until Junior starts with his stuff. He and referee Mark Curtis do cool spot, where Rey tope con hilos over him. Mysterio looks really crispy and Yuji is a good seller. His offense is kind of different with nice strikes, a solid attack on Rey's arm and a cool springing plancha. After Yasuraoka's Double-Arm DDT doesn't get him the win, the communication breaks down and the finish is kind of flat. Good lil' match, which displayed Yuji's skills fairly well.
Rating: **3/4

Ultimo Dragon vs. Psychosis (Great American Bash `97)
After the Dragon-Onoo split, Sonny began focusing on luchadors and Psychosis was the first he picked up and sent after Ultimo. After an okay PPV match in March this is rematch with an angle now. The fans are really hot for this, which makes it super-cool. Psych is boo'd when he plays to them and Ultimo's offense is cheered. They really give it to Sonny, especially when he gets his kicks in on the floor. The pacing by Psychosis is really good as he has a well-rounded offense and really lays on the taunting. Ultimo almost gets his hands on Sonny, which has the crowd going crazy. We see a rare La Rueca followed by an Asai Moonsault from the Dragon and an insane tope suicida by Psychosis. The end is back-and-fourth and very heated before Ultimo hooks the Dragon Sleeper for the win. Awesome match with some of the best heat I've ever seen in Cruiserweight match. This had a lot of great offense out of both men, a bit of innovation and no obvious flaws. A hidden gem for sure.
Rating: ****1/4

Chris Jericho vs. Ultimo Dragon (Bash at the Beach `97)
Two real life friends, who've had good matches in Japan, Mexico and the US. Jericho's best days were ahead of him, while Dragon's career would be over sooner than it should've been. The work is quite good with excellent pacing, big moves and smart highflying. There is a lot of counterattacks, which makes this seem really unusual. The crowd is kind of baffled by the organization it seems as neither really calls their spots as they mostly develop out of counters. Appropriotely, the win comes from a cradling sequence and the two have a handshake at the end, which is even unusual for the Cruiserweights. This seemed like a Guerraro-Malenko or Mysterio-Psychosis match, where these two were just operating on another level. I can't believe this doesn't stand out more in my mind, but this is just awesome. Definitely one of the classic Cruiserweight matches and a type of match you rarely see.
Rating: ****

Juventud Guerrara, Hector Garza, Lizmark Jr. vs. La Parka, Psychosis, Villano IV (Bash at the Beach `97)
Psychosis and Lizmark do the feeling out, which is short. Garza really shows off a lot of skill in mere minutes against Villano with all the lucha jumps, flips and takedowns. Juvi comes in again La Parka and gets some excellent offense going, until Sonny Ono (the rudos' manager) injects himself. We get a taste of lucha comedy with La Parka fighting with his partners. The technicos do the the triple tope spot, which gets the fans up. Psychosis and Juvi, former AAA partners, go at it, Psych hitting a vicious top rope sunset flip. The technicos come back with some sweet highflying and then apply The Star. Then they go into the flying misses spot. Things get a little hectic as they transition into the dive-after-dive sequence, ending with Garza's Corkscrew Plancha. Then we see a run-in by Villano V, who messes up and loses it for the rudos. Really, really good WCW lucha match with just about all the typical spots and not some of the sloppiness we often see. Perhaps the best of the WCW Cruiserweight six-mans.
Rating: ***3/4

Chris Jericho vs. Eddy Guerraro (Clash of the Champions XXXV)
The evolution of Guerraro turning into the world class rudo he is and Jericho just playing the baby, which he's good at. Jericho's early offense frustrates Eddy, who cowers and stalls. Finally he gets an ambush on the Cruiserweight champion and so it begins. Guerraro arrogantly displays some good offense and expertly sells Jericho's. They have a nice cradle sequence, which oddly ends the match. Guerraro goes even more rudo on him with a post-match attack, which really gets the fans booing him. Awesome rudo stuff out of Eddy, who's one of the best and Jericho was kind of just along for the ride.
Rating: ***

Psychosis, Silver King, Villano IV & V vs. Juventud Guerrara, Super Calo, Hector Garza, Lizmark Jr. (Clash of the Champions XXXV)
After a handful of successful six-mans, WCW adds two men and makes this a little more interesting. The rudos don't have La Parka, but do have Silver King, which is a decent exchange. Super Calo and Villano IV do the opening work, which starts fast and keeps up a nice pace. Garza and King have a great sequence, King playing the talented rudo role he does so well. They do the dive sequence first, which really gets some pops. Calo and Psychosis end up inside and Sonny Onoo allows his man to get the Guillotine Legdrop and the win. Too short, I mean a few of the guys hardly did anything aside from a their dive. No obvious mistakes and the crowd enjoyed it, but it just didn't have the time.
Rating: **3/4

Eddy Guerraro vs. Chris Jericho (Fall Brawl `97)
A rematch after the Clash, which was a turning point for Eddy and now he's coming in as a full-fledged rudo. He complains to the ref early on to draw heat on himself. Then they kick into wrestling. Guerraro roughs up Jericho with chops and European uppercutts, while the champ uses science. Then they transfer into a less lucha-style psychology as Guerraro starts to grind away on "Lionheart" and concentrates on the back especially. Jericho has lots of neat little counters that the crowd really get into moreso than Eddy's heel tactics. The finish is really awesome with Jericho hitting two powerbombs than setting up for the Superplex. The fans stand for that, but Eddy evades his attempt and follows up with Frog Splash for the clean win. The pace of this was quite slow as Eddy used a lot of submissions and they sold the big moves very well. The crowd seemed to be really behind Jericho, but weren't booing Eddy, which was too bad. This was third big show match and far and away the best and a classic for sure.
Rating: ****

Chris Jericho vs. Gedo (Halloween Havoc `97)
Former partners and rivals in WAR and now Gedo and his yellow pajamas come to WCW. How fitting that Dusty Rhodes does commentary on at least 1 Gedo match, unfortunately he doesn't mark out for him. This has a lot of brawling in as Gedo tries to use it to play the heel, but the fans don't really dig his schtick. There is a scary botch of a top rope frakenstiener, which sees Jericho land right on his forehead. They seem to cut things short with Jericho going over in short, but fairly good match.
Rating: **3/4

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Eddy Guerraro (Halloween Havoc `97)
The culmination of Eddy's rudo days in WCW. After his turn in late summer, he is finally the complete package: the rugged, yet sleazy look, the perfect music and all the rudo tactics that he and Art Barr used a few years ago to get dangerous levels of heel heat. Mysterio is in an uncharacteristic body suit that is connected to his hood and looks the Phantom. Things start very well with Eddy running his mouth then try a slap and being met with a flurry of Mysterio offense, before stopping Junior dead! Then we see arguably not only the best Cruiserweight match, not only one of the best WCW match, not only one of the best matches in the States, one of the best ever. Rey pulls out a nice bit of innovation we haven't seen since his early matches. Eddy goes into full rudo mode with arrogant sneers, vicious offense and even mask-ripping! The pacing is excellent, the crowd is totally into it, we get a really well-rounded match, no obvious mistakes and a great finish. This is a must see match if there ever was one.
Rating: *****

Eddy Guerraro vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. (World War III)
How do you have a rematch that even compares to one of the greatest matches ever? Misawa has done it with on four different occasions, so it is possible. Can Rey and Eddy do it? Guerraro has regained the title and it is only a month later, so the potential is there. This one is quite different from the first, which is makes it hard to compare, but is decidedly not as good. Eddy drops Rey hard with an early Release German Suplex and the style of match may change because of that one move. Mysterio is good, but not as flawless as he sometimes can be. They use a slower pace with Junior selling a lot, which may be to cover for the injury, but it works regardless. The finish is good for the heel and clean. Good match, interesting rematch, but obviously not as good.
Rating: ***1/2

Eddy Guerraro vs. Dean Malenko (Starrcade `97)
After an excellent past few months on top of the Cruiserweight heap, rudo Eddy Guerraro faces his greatest rival (in ECW at least) in Dean Malenko. That seems to make the match less of a contest and more of an angle match for better or for worse. Dean's offense is crisp as always, while Guerraro is being the rudo. The crowd seem more into Eddy's antics than Dean's stuff, which is fine as it at least gives the match heat. Guerraro targets the knee, which Malenko sells very well throughout the match, until the flat finish. Probably the worst of the Guerraro-Malenko matches, but a sound match nonetheless. We saw a little miscommunication, but nothing catostrophic. On a side note, Malenko and his wife had their first child only a few days prior and Malenko's mind was not in having a barnburner with Eddy, which is understandable.
Rating: ***1/4

Juventud Guerrara, Super Calo, Lizmark Jr., Chavo Guerraro Jr. vs. La Parka, Psychosis, Silver King, El Dandy (Souled Out `98)
Calo and Psychosis get this match started very well and King and Lizmark take it to the next level. Chavo, the only non-luchador, faces off with Dandy, who makes the youngster look dynamite. Parka and Juvi do some comedy and than Guerrara tries to pick it up with highflying, until Psych cuts off a dive with a big lariat. The mid-section of this has a lot of fast replacements and faster action. Silver King and Juventud have a sloppy exchange, due to the latter man, but it is quickly forgetten with the pacing. Silver King misses his Springing Body Press Suicida, which is pretty sickening and that begins the dive after dive sequence. Chavo Jr. and Psychosis are left in the ring, where Guerraro hits his Tornado DDT for a big upset win. La Parka cleans house taking out both the technicos and the rudos with his chair, before dancing on it. Fast action and a hot crowd, though the length and extra two men sort of hurt things in my opinion.
Rating: ***1/2

Chris Jericho vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. (Souled Out `98)
Jericho, who'd just begun his great heel run in WCW and was just finding his legs. Mysterio was just coming back from his first knee injury and has a brace on. Jericho attacks the knee reasonably well, Rey sells it wonderfully. Mysterio battles back with most of his signauture spots, before Jericho counters a springing top rope rana and slaps on the Liontamer. Junior taps instantly and Jericho wins clean. He does a great post-match promo talking about how the fans love him, which they don't. He answers their boos by attacking Rey's knee violently and that's that. This was a very good match and really turned Jericho fully. Solid psychology, good heat and it perpuated the story well.
Rating: ***1/4

Chris Jericho vs. Juventud Guerrara (SuperBrawl VIII)
One of WCW's best heels, who had heat with the higher ups because he was so good. Juventud here was forced into a mask match and a poorly built up one at that, especially for someone of Juvi's status. The early stuff is pretty good with Jericho playing possum to get counted out. Guerrara gets on the advantage and has a very good offense, even hitting the Juvi Driver and 450 Splash, which gets a three, but Jericho grabs the ropes. Juvi, thinking he won, turns his back and Jericho attacks the knee. Eventually the champ counters a rana into the Liontamer and Juventud has to give up and lose his mask. Inconsistant heat, especially for a match that should have been a huge deal. Good though with sound psychology, nice heat on Jericho and a decent finisher, though it was flat.
Rating: ***1/2

Chris Jericho vs. Dean Malenko (Uncensored `98)
The beginning of the heated Jericho-Malenko feud, the heel champion has his "1,004" tights on to mock Malenko's "Man of 1,000 Holds" gimmick. The crowd really plays to Jericho's heel tactics as he displays a nice offense, but does it arrogantly. Then they get into the all the Malenko comeback teases. Awesome finish with Jericho turning Malenko's leg lariat into the Liontamer, then when Dean is almost to the ropes he's dragged back to the center and has to tap. Crowd heat helped this a lot as it was Jericho playing the heel and Malenko trying to comeback again and again, but keeps following short. That psychology was excellent and started a story that would go longer and be hotter than any other cruiserweight feud. Gene Okerland does a post-match interview with a uncharacteristically dispondant Dean Malenko and calls him a "bonafide loser" and Dean says he's going "home."
Rating: ***3/4

Ultimo Dragon vs. Chavo Guerraro Jr. (Spring Stampede `98)
A weird angle where Eddy used his heel heat to give his nephew Chavo the babyface rub. The match starts with some good matwork and then picks up before slowing back down. Things eventually go to floor and Chavo hits an awesome twisting tope con hilo. The last leg sees some good offense out of Chavo, who accidently hits a low dropkick, but he refuses to take advantage of it. Eddy is furious about it and Ultimo goes on to counter Chavo's Swinging DDT into the Dragon Sleeper for the win. Good match and probably Chavo's best at this point in time. The clean babyface thing doesn't get over like it used to, but the fans hate Eddy's cheating, so it works. Good heat, hard work by the youngster, nice finish.
Rating: ***1/4

Dean Malenko vs. Chris Jericho (Slamboree `98)
After berating Malenko on WCW TV during his hiatus, Jericho was perpared to face the winner of a 14-man battle royal immediately after. Cocky and jovial, Jericho did hilarious intros for all of the entrants. As the battle royal drew to a close it wound up with Ciclope and the recently unmasked Juventud Guerrara. Juvi lets Ciclope win, but he unmasks as Dean to a big pop. Jericho is forced to wrestle the man he wasn't expecting to see and Malenko is running on emotions. A lot of intense brawling early and the fans love it. Jericho finally turns it around and seems to have things in tow. Dean finally turns it around with a high-impact Super Gutbuster and locks on the Texas Cloverleaf. Jericho tries to fight it, but Malenko fights harder and gets the win to a huge ovation. Not the same technique as a regular Cruiserweight match, but a lot of intensity and excitement foreign to the division. A very heated fundamentally sound match and that's about it.
Rating: ***

Eddy Guerraro vs. Ultimo Dragon (Slamboree `98)
The Eddy-Chavo saga continues with Dragon being able to free Chavo if he wins this match. Thw crowd is dead during the opening, which include some lucha-style work, Eddy's heel tactics and Ultimo's kicks all of which regularly get good reactions. Both men use high-impact stuff and slow stuff (Eddy continues his rudo-isms), which is good. Ultimo's usually best received moves: Asai Moonsault, Moonsault and Dragon Sleeper all get poor reactions at best. Eddy uses Chavo's Tornado DDT and Ultimo's own signature sleeper, grabbing the ropes during the latter. Junior tries to stop him, but it backfires and Eddy hits the Brainbuster and Frog Splash for the flat victory. Chavo goes nuts and attacks the Dragon and refuses to hit his uncle, who is begging for it. Post-match stuff got a decent reaction, but that's being generous. This was a sound match with no real flaws and a nice angle to it, but the fans were deader than dead. After all the heat for Jericho-Malenko, it seems really weird, in fact Dean got a bigger pop than Goldberg did later on the card. Good match, but the lack of heat killed things and the preformances weren't elevated as they might be for an exceptional crowd.
Rating: ***

Chris Jericho vs. Dean Malenko (Great American Bash `98)
Malenko vacated his title to get another shot at Jericho, which was a cleverly and well-built up match and probably the most angle-driven Cruiserweight feud. Jericho complete in his "1,004" tights gets the heat early and the feeling out is more heated. Dean grinds away, while Jericho is arrogant when on the offensive. Unfortunately the crowd seems to lose interest though the psychology is very good: intense Malenko versus overconfident Jericho. The pacing is almost nonchalant, which is perfect, but doesn't tickle the crowd right. The crowd digs the highspots and not the slow pace, unfortunately this isn't into it, until Dean fights through a Liontamer and when he applies the Cloverleaf. The crowd is really up for the last leg as Jericho slaps Malenko and says, "you're nothing just like your dead father." Dean goes beserk and gets himself DQ'd, which pisses off the fans. They battle up the aisle, backstage and finally outside, where Jericho escapes across the street and into a building. Terribly inconsistant heat and an unsatisfactory finish after a well organized match.
Rating: **3/4

Eddy Guerraro vs. Chavo Guerraro Jr. (Great American Bash `98)
The Guerraros finally go head-to-head with Chavo having gone crazy making Uncle Eddy uneasy. A heated brawl early and both guys get backdropped onto the turnbuckle connectors, which is weird because you never see it. They go into a nice style clash with Eddy being slower and more conservative, while Chavo is doing the faster stuff, namely highflying. Finally Eddy frustrates him and draws him into making a mistake and Chavo's knee falls prey. Uncle Eddy starts grinding away with submission, which kills the crowd and even get some "boring" chants. Chavo's comeback features some excellent offense, before he gets an upset win out of nowhere for a surprisingly big pop. A really good match with heat early on, but the crowd were not into science at the least. They were popping some, but I'd say the heat largely hurt this. One of the best Chavo matches with Eddy giving a lot and building him very well and putting him over.
Rating: ***1/2

Juventud Guerrara vs. Billy Kidman (Bash at the Beach `98)
Kidman's big coming-of-age match in WCW as member of The Flock taking on WCW's most dynamic luchador. The early work is fast-paced and has the crowds into the match. Lodi interferes, but is taken out by Air Juvi and things can continue fairly. Kidman and Guerrara bump for each other a lot and the ground stays into the start-stop action fairly well. The finish is pretty good with Kidman missing his Seven Year Itch (Shooting Star Press) and Juvi hits his 450 Splash for the win. This was like a really, really good indy match with all the highspots being pretty much flawless and they try to cram as many as they can into a 10-minute match. While the selling was more exaustion from the tempo, they bumped quite a bit and had the crowd going, which is very important.
Rating: ****

Chris Jericho vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. (No Counts Outs, No DQs) (Bash at the Beach `98)
After worming his way out of facing Dean Malenko at the third straight PPV, Jericho comes to the ring with a cane and top hat ready to sing and dance, but J.J. Dillion interrupts him. It is a local guy, who hasn't wrestled in six months and Jericho agress...it is Rey Mysterio Jr. and he's bigger and badder. His early offense is quite good, Jericho finally clips the knee though and starts with the ready-made psychology. Rey hits a flying rana off the lifeguard tower on the mini-beach near the entrance. Back inside Jericho continues on the knee, until Malenko comes down and Rey turns the Liontamer into a cradle for the win! Big pop for that and Dean has his way with Jericho afterwards, which the crowd enjoys as well. Mysterio is back and the Cruiserweight champ.
Rating: ***

Billy Kidman vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Juventud Guerrara (Starrcade `98)
Interesting as we have several future Filthy Animals in a rare three-way for the #1 contenders seat. Juvi has joined Eddy Guerraro's LWO, while Mysterio was forced into the group and Kidman has been free from the Flock for some time. Guerrara is double-teamed early and rather effectively, until Rey accidently elbows Kidman. They brawl back fourth, until they realize Juvi's just watching and then it becomes every man for himself. Guerrara is so arrogant that it's almost comedic, but he still draws heat. The match itself is well-paced and not overly spotty, but it is still a three-way. The highspots were really good and the transitions were good considering those involved and their styles. Only flaw was the inconsistant crowd heat, though they boo'd Eddy huge when he swaggered out toward the end. The finish saw Guerraro try to help buddy Guerrara, until Rey helps Kidman get the win and keep the belt. Guerraro berates his LWO partners afterwards and challenges Kidman, who will take Eddy on right then.
Rating: ****

Billy Kidman vs. Eddy Guerraro (Starrcade `98)
After an excellent match and a big win for Kidman, he must take one of the best wrestlers at the time. Guerraro controls early and Juvi even gives him a hand (literally), but Rey stops him. Eddy's abuse of Juvi is actually quite funny, though it draws more heat on him and in fact he gets riles some "Eddy sucks" chants. The fans really get behind Kidman during the comeback teases. Guerraro uses boot (he's still in street clothes) and arrogant taunts to get some great heat. There is some focus on the knee by Eddy and the announcers say Kidman has had injury problems recently. Eddy does his rope-assisted rana, but with one boot on, which makes it that much cooler. The finish is hot too with Rey tossing Eddy into Juvi and then Kidman executing the Shooting Star Press for the win. Better heat then the previous three-way, excellent psychology and Eddy was just awesome and in street clothes nonetheless.
Rating: ****

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