WCW: Ranking the Top 10 Greatest Wrestlers of the Cruiserweight Division

Agent GreenCorrespondent IIFebruary 17, 2012

WCW: Ranking the Top 10 Greatest Wrestlers of the Cruiserweight Division

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    In the prime of its existence, World Championship Wrestling was a machine that created some of the best moments in the history of the entire sport.

    From the winning streak of Bill Goldberg to the creation of the New World Order, there was always an abundance of entertainment on their shows.

    For many fans, that would would also include the fast-paced athleticism of the Cruiserweight Division.

    Before WWE tainted their Cruiserweight Division with Hornswoggle, WCW had some of the best athletes that implemented various styles, whether it be lucha libre, the "shoot style" of Japan, or a submission-based technical style.

    Since WWE is in no rush to bring back their Cruiserweight Division, I often turn to YouTube to see some of those talents in their earlier days, as I believe the division was better prior to the "Invasion" storyline,  and had more rising stars.

    With that said, I present to you, in my opinion, the greatest Cruiserweights of World Championship Wrestling.

Honorable Mention: Shane Helms

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    Gregory Shane Helms was one of the last good Cruiserweights to appear in WCW before the company was sold to WWE.

    He had an impressive range of high-risk attacks, like his diving crossbody and his somersault plancha.

    But he could be technical with moves such as a Northern Lights Suplex and a Straitjacket Suplex.

    Helms would be the final Cruiserweight Champion before the WWE acquisition. He later took on his more famous persona, as a mock superhero known as "The Hurricane."  

Number 10: Syxx

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    Formerly known as the "Lightning Kid," Syxx was the resident Cruiserweight of the nWo.

    He was known for invoking a martial-arts style into his matches, especially with thrust kicks and quick chops. And, for some reason, he used the Bronco Buster as well.

    Syxx held the Cruiserweight Title for 125 days before losing it to Chris Jericho.

    Later, Syxx made his return to the WWE under the name "X-Pac."

Number 9: Juventud Guerrera

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    Juventud was one of several wrestlers in WCW to incorporate the lucha libre style, and he was one of the best to use it as well. He is also one of the best known users of the 450 Splash.

    I am not a huge fan of some of his rumored behavior outside of the ring, but he was usually on point inside of the ring.

    Juvi is a three-time holder of the Cruiserweight Title and a one-time holder of the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Title.

Number 8: Ultimo Dragon

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    Ultimo Dragon is a Japanese wrestler who uses the lucha libre style.

    The international star, whose real name is Yoshihiro Asai, is credited with being the inventor of the Asai Moonsault.

    When Ultimo won the WCW Cruiserweight Title, he added the belt to his previous collection of eight junior heavyweight championship titles collectively known as the "J-Crown."

    He is also a two-time WCW World Television Champion.

Number 7: Brian Pillman

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    The late Brian Pillman is one the first breakthrough stars of WCW who sat below the Heavyweight Class.

    He was known for his top-rope moves such as a missile dropkick and his springboard clothesline.

    These moves appropriately earned him the nickname "Flyin' Brian."

    Brian is the first holder of the WCW Light Heavyweight Championship, a title that he held on two separate occasions.

Number 6: Eddie Guerrero

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    The most famous member of the Guerrero wrestling family, Eddie Guerrero could use high-risk maneuvers or technical moves such as his multiple suplex variations.

    But he is best known for his finisher, the Frog Splash.

    The late Eddie Guerrero held the Cruiserweight Title twice before moving to the Heavyweight Division.

Number 5: Billy Kidman

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    Billy Kidman was one of the standout members of Raven's Flock before he broke out on his own.

    Despite being a smaller guy, his moves often appeared to be quite powerful, and at times, a little scary looking.

    His Shooting Star Press often made me wonder if it would ever cause permanent damage to his opponents or even himself. But he rarely had any dull moments while he was in the ring. 

    Kidman won the Cruiserweight Title three times in WCW. Also, he and Rey Misterio Jr. were one of just two teams to hold the Cruiserweight Tag Team Championship.

Number 4: Jushin "Thunder" Liger

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    Jushin Liger got his start in New Japan Pro Wrestling, but he was no stranger to the WCW audience.

    He had a combined style of technical wrestling and martial arts attacks such as his Rolling Koppo Kick.

    Jushin is credited as the inventor of the Shooting Star Press, which Evan Bourne calls the "Air Bourne." And he also used a devastating Brainbuster, sometimes from the top rope!

    Jushin is a former WCW Light Heavyweight Champion. He is also known for losing his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship after Juventud Guerrera struck him in the head with a bottle of tequila.

    Thankfully, he soon won the title back after defeating Psychosis a week later.

Number 3: Dean Malenko

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    Dean Malenko is one of the best technical wrestlers in the world.

    His penchant for submissions and grapples has earned him the nickname, "The Man Of 1,000 Holds."

    Dean often used suplex and powerbomb variations before making his opponents tap to his Texas Cloverleaf.

    Dean held the Cruiserweight Title four times in WCW.

Number 2: Chris Jericho

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    Before his days as a main-eventer, Chris Jericho had a strong career in this division.

    Jericho was capable of multiple styles. After a flurry of luchador-like offense, he would switch to mat wrestling and submissions, and he would often follow that by yelling for the referee to ask his opponents if they wanted to give up.

    He used a springboard moonsault that he calls the "Lionsault," and also an elevated Boston Crab, known as the Lion Tamer, which in WWE he calls the "Walls Of Jericho."

    Like Malenko, Jericho held the Cruiserweight Title four times, and he held the Television Title once.

Number 1: Rey Misterio Jr.

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    At the top of this list is none other than Rey Misterio, Jr.

    A true high-risk taker, Rey's offense heavily relied on his speed and his ability to launch from the top rope in a multitude of ways.

    He has several finishers from the top rope, including a Springboard Leg Drop, Frog Splash, and a Springboard Huracanrana, also known as the "West Coast Pop."

    And he is also known for his Tiger Feint Kick, commonly referred to as the "619."

    Rey won the Cruiserweight Title a whopping five times in WCW, including a reign that lasted 115 days. And he also held the Cruiserweight Tag Team Titles with Billy Kidman.

Thanks for Reading!

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    That's all for now, everybody. I hoped you enjoyed the slideshow.

    As a bonus slide, I leave you with this hilarious promo featuring Y2J!