WWE CvC Greatest Match Ever: Eddie Guerrero vs. Brock Lesnar at No Way Out 2004
The crown for the greatest match ever wrestled in the history of pro-wrestling is at stake.
The writers here at bleacher report have already come up with an array of choices. Among these choices lies that golden match which needs proper selling to the readers, so as to make it win the award for the greatest wrestling match in the history of professional wrestling.
Somewhere out there rests an unappreciated and unknown 5 Star Classic which can take down the greatest match known to mankind in a matter of seconds. There is also the soul of an Indy wrestler roaming from arena to arena, knowing full well that his match can never be duplicated.
But what value would a 5 Star Classic be if it was performed in front of only fifty semi-drunk fans who would have forgotten about it by the next day, let alone any emotions which that match might have carried for its two performers?
Would a well orchestrated match be able to take down matches which carried a lot of emotion in them? If the greatest of matches were to be rated on the basis of skill alone, wouldn't pro-wrestling become nothing but a humdrum affair with no characters, gimmicks or story lines?
Fortunately for fans like me, pro-wrestling is not just an orchestra of body movements. It is a perfect synchronization of emotions and actions which arise from the issuing emotions.
The same applies to the greatest matches ever fought, if it were not for the setting and back story, the gimmicks, the characters and the situations then the matches wouldn't have been immortalized over time. They would just have been physical specimens with no life of their own.
This brings me to my point; Eddie Guerrero vs. Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship at WWE No Way Out 2004, was the greatest wrestling match from a fan's perspective.
It is February of 2004 and the seeds to rise to the challenge that were laid down at the beginning of the Ruthless Aggression Era have yet to materialize.
For younger fans like myself, the business was about big men with larger than life characters. From the years of Hulkamania, who was known for his larger than life character and muscular build, to the Attitude Era which was once again dominated by the big men like Rock, Stone Cold, The Undertaker, Kane, Triple H, and The Big Show.
High maintenance characters emerged such as Kurt Angle and Chris Jericho, right up to the Ruthless Aggression Era, which until that point was dominated by big men such as Triple H, Goldberg, Brock Lesner and an established Kurt Angle.
The fans desperately needed some hope. They needed some non-gigantic, goofy, non-larger than life character to affirm their faith in the business.
They needed an underdog's success to witness a perfect fairy tale. Fans wanted to see that even a non-egotistical person with a proper wrestling background could achieve his dream of becoming a world champion one day.
All the underdogs of that time, who had shown promise but had yet to win any major title, The Rey Mysterio's, The Chris Benoit's, The Cena's, The Orton's, and The Christian's needed one hero to break open the door for newer faces to win the big championships.
This match gave one of these underdogs, Eddie Guerrero, a perfect opportunity to affirm the faith of fans. The match pitted a monster with all the tools necessary to succeed in the business against a goofy, yet more entertaining underdog.
A victory for the monster would confirm that the company's motto was the domination by the big men. It would establish the image of new and upcoming wrestlers as mere entertainers who couldn't really make it to the top.
But, a victory for the underdog would be the answer to all our questions and queries.
Eddie Guerrero's long run with his nephew Chavo Guerrero as a tag team competitor had commenced and culminated into a short rivalry between the two which was settled at Royal Rumble that year.
Eddie had tasted some success as the US Champion the previous year, but lost the title to the Big Show after having ignited a rivalry between the two.
Eddie went from holding two championships to losing both his championships and ending his friendship with his then tag team partner in Chavo Guerrero. Eddie Guerrero had finally gained vengeance and was hungrier than ever, with no rivalry on his agenda at that time.
He won a 15 man battle royal on SmackDown after last eliminating Kurt Angle to become the number one contender to face Brock Lesnar for his WWE Championship at No Way Out.
Brock Lesnar on the other hand was enjoying his run of domination on SmackDown. He had just ended his rivalry with Hardcore Holly and ignited another one with Bill Goldberg. Brock Lesnar thus, came into the match hungry for domination himself.
This would put both the competitors at a position where the winner would get all the pride and glory while the loser would be forced to bite the dust.
The match thus, had all the makings of a great match owing to it being the culmination of many events.
Brock Lesnar and Eddie Guerrero put on a spectacular 30 minute match which ended with the underdog's victory over the big man.
The best thing I liked about the match was its flow. By its flow, I mean the strong and aggressive, yet well organized pace at which the match took place. Never during the match was there a moment which did not involve wrestling.
The match went from Lesnar dominating early on, to Eddie getting a brief run at dominating the match. This was followed by another seven to eight minutes of domination of Guerrero by Lesnar.
To top it all off was Eddie's final run at dominating the match in which he performed three back to back suplex' and a top rope splash onto Lesnar to win the match.
Another aspect of the match which I loved was the way Guerrero's and Lesnar's style of offence synchronized. Lesnar continued to charge at Guerrero with his hard hitting, rough housing while Eddie kept displaying his true wrestling roots with all his technical and well learned array of maneuvers.
Regardless of how diverse their wrestling styles were, they managed to synchronize it well and make a good match out of it.
Furthermore, one can never discount the fans. The fans were cheering the whole time, such a scene was adrenaline pumping and kept the interest alive for the thirty minute extravaganza.
One often forgets the importance of fans. The fans keep the wrestlers motivated to perform their best and go the extra mile. The loud chants of "Eddie, Eddie, Eddie," would have pumped his blood into performing that final splash on Lesnar from the top rope.
Another aspect of the match which I loved was the way the moves were sold. Eddie Guerrero took most of the offence and was finding it hard to make it to his own two feet, which made his pain look genuine.
The same goes for Lesnar. He wasn't treated with many offensive maneuvers, hence he wasn't really limping or finding it hard to get to his own two feet.
He was treated with a STF from Guerrero which only weakened him and did not cause any pain. The effect of this could be seen with the way the frequency of his ability to give offence going down as a result of it.
Even the ending was well choreographed. Eddie Guerrero won it the only way possible, by relying on his experience and technical background to outsmart Lesnar and to gradually hit an array of moves which would make him weak enough to be kept down for the three count.
This aspect of the match is the major reason why I chose this match over others; it all seemed genuine and well planned enough for me to find the whole match realistic.
This match had everything falling into place in terms of the in ring action.
We often read the sad tales of a million Indy wrestlers who have all the skill in the world but fail to win the big championship once.
We are all well aware of the fact that not every wrestler is able to achieve his life long goal of making it to the big leagues. We even hear about many wrestlers who quit or give up on life before they win once.
Thankfully for Eddie Guerrero, this match gave him the perfect opportunity to earn the ultimate reward. The reward was not winning the title, but getting all the fans' love.
Readers can watch his celebration on SmackDown and view his celebration after the match, where he celebrated with his emotional grandmother amongst others. That was priceless.
That is what a great wrestling match is all about. Wrestling was meant to entertain the fans.
It was meant to please the fans and make them witness things they have only seen in the fictional world of fairy tales. This match did just that.
Not only was the match physically well fought but the wave of emotions that it triggered is what makes this the greatest match ever fought in the history of professional wrestling.
Eddie Guerrero even went on to to main event at WrestleMania, thus cementing his place among other immortals. He kicked open the door for the underdogs to be taken seriously.
He gave the fans hope, a hope that you don't need to be born with all the essentials to be a winner, you can be your own goofy self and still succeed at what you do.
The match and the ensuing events in Eddie Guerrero's career did his talent and heritage justice as well, which was another positive point from this match.
I submit my case, Brock Lesnar vs. Eddie Guerrero for the WWE Championship at WWE No Way Out 2004 is the greatest wrestling match I have ever seen.
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