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June 16, 1996 / TJ Hawke

Rey Mysterio vs. Dean Malenko from WCW’s Great American Bash 1996

 

WCW is kind of, you know, dead, but you can check out WWE’s WCW page here. Also worth going to WWE’s Youtube page to see more WCW action.

 

Pre-Match Thoughts from Bryan Rose:

I have seen this match before, and let me tell you it’s pretty damn awesome, and one of the highlights of Rey Mysterio’s career in WCW. And considering this was his debut match, that’s pretty staggering. After making waves in ECW with some awesome matches, both of these guys were signed by Eric Bischoff and brought into WCW. Malenko had been with the company for a year prior, and Mysterio was making his debut in this match. Like I’ve said before, I’ve seen the match, but I wanted to watch it again because a) it’s free and b) it’s too great not to watch it again.

 

The Match:

It’s just as great as I remember seeing it the first time! Malenko spent a lot of the match working on Mysterio’s arm, and maybe it went a tad too long but it was pretty great either way. Mysterio came back every now and then with some great dropkicks and a hurricanrana here and there but Malenko always cut him off and tore his arm to shreds. I mean, he WORKED on this arm. Mysterio eventually came back to life and finally hit some more high flying stuff, the high point being a springboard senton to the floor. The finish comes when Mysterio is just laying into Malenko with hurricanranas and dropkicks when finally Malenko blocks a hurricanrana attempt and just SNAPS Mysterio to the ground with a powerbomb, hooks his feet on the middle ropes and secure a three count.

 

Match Thoughts:

This was a tremendous match. Malenko was tremendous here working on Mysterio; his working of the arm was so intricate it was fascinating to see all the ways he was working that arm around. Mysterio demonstrated what all the fuss was about by showing some great high flying ability as well as some top notch selling that worked great here. WCW’s cruiserweight division is fabled for having some of the greatest matches in the company’s history, and matches like these exemplify the legend.

Match Rating: ****1/2

 

Thoughts from TJ Hawke:

This was Mysterio’s WCW debut.  Mysterio sent Malenko to the floor with a Silverking dropkick.  Malenko got back to the ring and sent Mysterio to the floor. Mysterio avoided a baseball slide.  Malenko then went after Mysterio’s left arm.  Malenko was in control, as he worked over the arm.  This went on for a while, as Malenko was just dominating Mysterio.  Ok, this went on for fucking ever. Like, the crowd was completely restless. Mysterio was finally able to send Malenko to the floor, and he then hit a springboard somersault plancha. Back in the ring, they traded some pinning combinations. Mysterio then hit a springboard hurricanrana: 1…2…NO! Mysterio hit a super hurricanrana for a nearfall. Malenko went for a tilt-a-whirl, but Mysterio reversed it into a body press: 1…2…NO! Malenko then hit a powerbomb and put his legs on the ropes: 1…2…3!

 

I can’t believe I’m about to write this, but I found this match to be really boring. Almost the whole match was Malenko working over Mysterio’s arm, and it didn’t lead to a single damn thing. To be fair, I was expecting a great match, and if my expectations were more in line, I probably would have enjoyed the match more. Needless to say though, this was a huge disappointment personally.

Match Rating: **3/4

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