Welcome to Seven Things, a list that will run weekly and consist of very eclectic topics. These are of my opinions and doesn’t express the views of others on WrestlingOnEarth.
This week’s edition is taking it back to the late 90’s. The most popular time frame for pro wrestling was the late 90’s and early 00’s due to the Monday Night Wars of WCW Nitro and WWF Raw being red hot television programs.
Larger than life characters and awe-inspiring athleticism mixed for a time that the culture and society was most ready to accept pro wrestling as an art form and top dollar entertainment option. As the years go by, legacies, mindsets, theories and agendas are passed on as fact and become more matter of fact. I’m going to tackle (or Spear) some of these head on with what I consider to be popular misconceptions about the Monday Night Wars.
7. The unmasking of Rey Mysterio killed his WCW career.
The popular opinion is that WCW buried Rey Mysterio Jr. by having Kevin Nash beat him, stripping his mask away and leaving him for dead. While the premise of unmasking Rey was a foolish idea, it was followed with a big push. Right after that, unmasked Rey defeated Nash cleanly on Nitro in one of the biggest upsets at the time. After that, he defeated bigger and relevant wrestlers like Bam Bam Bigelow and Scott Norton cleanly.
A few weeks after, he had a main event title shot on Nitro on one of the Spring Break shows vs. champion Ric Flair. He was portrayed as the better man as Flair’s rogue referee Charles Robinson ended the match before Rey could get the pin. I really wonder what would have happened in a world with Mysterio winning the title here.
If anything, the signing of Master P and WCW putting him in a team with Konnan that failed due to the WCW audience not liking the No Limit Soldiers slowed his progression down for good. While not something I liked or understand the logic behind, the unmasking wasn’t what did Rey in.