Perhaps one the most captivating debuts I can remember is Rey Mysterio at the Great American Bash. There he went against “The Man of 1000 Holds,” Dean Malenko. This match had counters, holds, and aerial arts, the likes of which I had never seen before. We also saw pure wrestling, sans the gimmicks and pseudo heat; simply two wrestling technicians at the height of their craft putting on a show that held the crowd on the edge of their seats with the poetry in motion they created in the ring.
WCW broke new ground with their reintroduction of the Cruiserweight title, creating rivalries putting on matches that consistently stole the show. They created a launch pad for the careers of Rey Mysterio, Juventud Guerrera, Chris Jericho, Eddy Guerrero, Chavo Guerrero, and Billy Kidman as well as showcased the talents of Jushin Thunder Liger stateside.
WWE tried to replicate the success in 2003-2005; however, they often treated it as a minor league title. They invested no faith in the performers, instead they successfully turned their matches into glorified aerial exhibitions by utilizing the Cruiserweight Open match format, in effect diminishing the value of the title, and the legitimacy of the wrestlers in the division.
Now, however, there is a chance for the cruiserweights to steal the show. WWE is searching for a way to break Evan Bourne into his burgeoning superstardom. A singles title would more than solve that problem. As much I would love to watch a rivalry between Rey Mysterio and Evan Bourne, Rey’s status as a main event promises that will probably not happen. I am equally intrigued by the possibilities of Justin Gabriel and Kaval in the cruiserweight division.
Additionally, the division would provide a place for lost souls such as JTG, Cody Rhodes, Primo Colon, Yoshi Tatsu, Zach Ryder, and the newly added Consequences Creed. Just consider the capabilities of all those wrestlers: a match between any two or three of them at a PPV with the title on the line could easily revive the show-stealing prowess of the cruiserweight division.
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