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Showing posts with label Jung Dragons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jung Dragons. Show all posts

Thursday, 24 September 2020

Top Ten WCW PPV Matches from 1996 - 2001

Top Ten WCW PPV Matches from 1996 - 2001: Eddie Guerrero vs. Rey Mysterio Jr.As regular Retro Pro Wrestleing readers may recall, last week's review featured WCW Greed, the final ever World Championship Wrestling Pay Per View.

That means we've now covered every single WCW PPV from January 1996 up until the company's demise, and what better way to celebrate that fact than by looking back on the top ten best matches from that time period?

Before we get into it, here's the criteria:

There isn't one.

The only criteria for choosing these matches is how much I enjoyed them.  It doesn't matter if other matches were better from a workrate perspective or anything like that. If I had a good time watching it, it goes in.

On a similar note, these top ten WCW PPV matches aren't necessarily in exact order. Other than the number-one ranked match which remains one of my all-time favourites, there's no reason why any of the other matches are ranked where they are.







If you want to argue that my ninth pick is actually better than the match at number four, you're probably right.

Anyway, without further ado, let's dive into it.

10. Triple Ladder Match - 3 count vs. Jung Dragons vs. Noble & Karagious - Starrcade 2000

Top Ten WCW PPV Matches from 1996 - 2001: The Jung Dragons & Lea Meow
The last 18 months of WCW's existence was hardly known for producing quality entertainment. Now ould you ever consider the likes of 3 Count and The Jung Dragons to be among the company's most illustrious stars.

Still, there's no doubting that this high-octane spotfest from Starrcade 2000 was a lot of fun.

That said, so were most of the matches between these six men.

For what felt like the majority of the year, WCW would book The Jung Dragons and 3 Count against each other. When that got boring, they broke Evan Karagias away from the latter and Jamie Noble away from the former and had them establish a new tag team so that we could have lots and lots (and lots) of different six-man and three-way matches.

Though they'll never go down as all-time classics, they were insanely good fun and always a highlight of any show they happened to be on.

9. Blitzkrieg vs. Juventud Guerrera - Spring Stampede 1999



There's no denying the fact that 1999 was clearly the worst year in World Championship Wrestling's history, at least from a creative standpoint. Watching all 12 of their 1999 PPVs as I did for this blog was a tedious, frustrating, and sometimes downright infuriating process.

Yet in the midst of all their horribleness, the company somehow managed to pull a rather excellent Pay Per View out of their ass in the form of Spring Stampede 1999. The show featured several excellent contests, including a Raven's Rules tag team match pitting Raven and Saturn against Chris Benoit and Dean Malenko, a thoroughly entertaining hardcore match between Hak (Sandman) and Bam Bam Bigelow, and a gripping cruiserweight title match which pitted tag team champions Billy Kidman and Rey Mysterio (also the cruiserweight champion) against one another. 

Heck, even the main event -in which DDP won his first World Heavyweight Championship- was good stuff.

To be fair, a case could be made for any one of those matches to feature somewhere on this list, but for some reason, this compelling match between Juventud Guerrera and oft-forgotten cruiserweight star Blitzkrieg has always stood out to me as an absolute gem.

Remember, this isn't meant to be the definitive list of great PPV matches according to some strict scientific criteria. It's one dude's opinion, and this dude says that Blitzkrieg/Juvi is a favorite.

8. Steven Regal vs. Dave 'Fit' Finlay - Uncensored 96


Making their way from Blackpool and Belfast respectively, Regal and Finlay set out to show the American audiences how things were done in the UK and Ireland with a stiff, hard-hitting contest that was violently entertaining from start to finish.

OK, so the crowd at WCW Uncensored 1996 didn't seem to care much for it at the time, but if you ask me, few things are as fun as watching two talented wrestlers just beat the living crap out of each other as these two did here.

7. Falls Count Anywhere match: Chris Benoit vs. Kevin Sullivan - Great American Bash 1996


For obvious reasons, I try not to draw too much attention to Chris Benoit on RPW, but to leave out this fantastic Falls Count Anywhere match from The 1996 Great American Bash would be to deny Kevin Sullivan his rightful place on this list.

Of course, the old joke is that Kevin Sullivan booked his own divorce during his feud with Benoit, but there was no joking around when the two beat the hell out of each other all the way to the men's bathroom and back again.

This wasn't the only match from that year's Great American Bash to make it onto this list, and the one we'll get to later was (arguably) better, but man, what a heck of a fight this was.

6. Ladder Match: Syxx vs. Eddie Guerrero - Souled Out 97


Let's be honest - there wasn't a lot to like about WCW's ill-advised nWo Souled Out PPV in 1997. An attempt at running an nWo-only PPV, the show was mostly a creative and financial disaster.

So sure, with so much bad stuff surrounding it, the Eddie Guerrero/Syxx ladder match was always going to look good, but even taken out of context, this was still an excellent contest.

Of course, it could have done without the heel commentary referring to Eddie as a "Mexican jumping bean,' but that's another argument for another day.

5. Jeff Jarrett vs. Booker T - Bash at the Beach 2000



Even when WCW was at its peak in terms of popularity and creative excellence, the company's PPV main events were normally huge disappointments in which Hulk Hogan and a bunch of other  dundering old-timers wandered around the ring doing as little as possible. 

Then, at Bash of the Beach 2000, Hulk Hogan 'dropped' the title to Jeff Jarrett in an infamous angle in which he merely laid down and handed JJ the win. The show as a whole is remembered more for this -and Vince Russo's subsequent worked-shoot/shoot- promo than it is for anything that actually happened in the ring, but that's not to take anything away from the tremendous effort Jarrett and Booker T would have in the actual main event.

Proving that WCW could deliver exciting action at the top of the card, this was as good as it got at the time and still holds up today as a quality match.

4. Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Dean Malenko  - Great American Bash 1996


Told you Benoit/Sullivan wasn't the only match from Great American Bash '96 to feature on this list. Truthfully, this whole list could have been made up of matches featuring Dean Malenko and Rey Mysterio and you'd have a hard time arguing that it wasn't a reflection of the best matches ever - but I wanted to add some variety. 

Yet while I may have left out some of their matches to make room for some of WCW's other talented stars, it would be a crime against all that is good and decent to leave out this absolute five-star worthy cruiserweight classic.

3. DDP vs. Goldberg - Halloween Havoc 98


The story surrounding this match may be more famous than the match itself. In his 2018 Hall of Fame speech, Goldberg recalled how Diamond Dallas Page had the whole thing meticulously planned out, even presenting him with a 15-page script to follow.

WCW being WCW, however, the show ran long and the PPV cut off before most people could see the match. Fortunately, we got to see it for free on Nitro the following day (and on the Network years later) and it was tremendous.

Clearly, DDP's meticulous planning paid off as this Halloween Havoc 1998 match was one of his best, and I've yet to see Goldberg involved in anything better.

2. DDP vs. Randy Savage - Spring Stampede 1997



The Randy Savage/DDP feud was the hottest storyline in professional wrestling in 1997. Their promos and angles were magic, and every time the two locked up in the ring it was a thing of pure beauty. 

This match from Spring Stampede 1997 was the highlight of an incredible feud that still stands up today as being worthy of its place on this list.

1. Cruiserweight Title vs. Mask Match: Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Eddie - Halloween Havoc 97



Ask me to name my favourite matches of all time, and off the top of my head, I'll tell you that my top two are the HHH/Rock ladder match from Summerslam 1998 and this all-time classic between two true legends from Halloween Havoc 1997

Incredible from start to finish, Eddie Guerrero was at the peak of his WCW heel run here, and was an excellent antagonist for the ever-popular Rey Mysterio Jr. Take that good old fashioned good versus evil story and combine it with the outstanding talent of two men like Mysterio and Guerrero, and what you had here was not just one of the best WCW PPV matches, but one of the best matches of all time, period.







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