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AN EXCERPT FROM EDDIE GUERRERO'S BIOGRAPHY

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Eddie Guerrero's biography is scheduled to be released on December 20th of 2005. "Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story" is said to speak candidly on the demons that Eddie faced in his nearly 20 year career in the wrestling business. The following is an excerpt from Guerrero's upcoming biography.

Chapter 23

After Starrcade, we were given a very brief Christmas break. My marriage wasn't in big trouble yet, but it was well on its way. Vickie and I were arguing all the time, usually about my partying. She was dealing with it as best she could, but I could see her frustration mounting. Even though my drinking had been a part of our life for as long as either of us could remember, it was clearly growing out of control.

"Let's throw a New Year's Eve party," Vickie suggested. "That can be my turn to have some drinks and enjoy myself."

It was a fun party. All our friends and family came over, and of course everybody got pretty wasted. After everybody had gone home, Vickie and I had a bit of a spat, though to this day, I don't remember what set it off.

Vickie went to bed, but I decided to stay up a while longer. I was feeling pretty hungry and started looking through the kitchen for something to munch on. For some reason, I had an intense craving for eggs. We didn't have any in the fridge, so even though it was three in the morning, I decided to go to the store.

As I was getting into my TransAm, I grabbed a bottle of Renutrient and threw it into the backseat. Renutrient was a legal form of GHB, a drug that promotes fat reduction and muscle building by stimulating growth hormone release. It also gives you a hell of a buzz and makes you pass out. Looking back, I realize I was still feeling upset from my fight with Vickie and thinking very bad thoughts. I'll show you, I thought. I'll hurt myself.

The store was closed, so I went ahead and drove to the next convenience store up the road. I bought some eggs and a twelve-pack of beer, and then got back in the car.

Before I drove off, I decided to take some of the Renutrient. It's a liquid, taken by the capful. Usually one or two caps would put me down, but God help me, that night I took five good-sized shots.

I blocked that memory for so long. It wasn't until much later that I remembered what I had done. It was a suicide attempt, plain and simple. Maybe I did it subconsciously, but no matter how you slice it, that was what I was doing. I was tired of life and wanted to die.

I had given up believing. I had tried to fill the empty place in my heart with wrestling. I tried to fill it with booze and pills. I was making good money and I was still feeling empty. I was miserable in WCW. I knew I wasn't going to go any higher there, and jumping to WWE hadn't even crossed my mind. I couldn't stop wondering, Is this it? Is this what I worked my whole life for?

It didn't help matters that I was constantly fighting with Vickie. I think that night was a culmination of all those bad feelings. The hole inside me had just gotten too large.

I took those five caps knowing that I was going to fall asleep. If I make it home, I thought, then I make it home. If I don't, that's okay too.

I just didn't care anymore. I just wanted the pain to stop.

I wasn't thinking about Vickie or the kids. I was being selfish, thinking only of myself. I wasn't knowingly trying to commit suicide, but it was clearly going on deep inside my subconscious. Why else would I do something like that?

I started driving, heading down Highway 54. I pushed down on the gas pedal and felt the power of my TransAm -- Vrooom! Here we go!

The next thing I knew, there were doctors all around me, holding my leg. As my eyes opened, the first thing they said was, "What are you on?"

"What?" I had no idea where I was or what was going on.

"You've been in a car accident," one of the doctors told me. "You're in the emergency room. Your leg is in very bad shape and we need authorization to start surgery on you."

I sat up and looked at my leg. "Oh wow," I said. "I'm pretty fucked up."

The doctor looked straight at me. "Yep," he said, "you sure are."

And then I passed out.

I woke up again as the doctors were trying to work on me. I freaked out and started trying to fight them off, but they grabbed my arms and held me down.

Again they asked me, "What are you on?"

"Alcohol," I told them.

"No, you're on more than that. What are you on? Tell us what you're on."

They kept pushing and finally I said, "Renutrient."

"What's that?"

"GHB."

"Okay," the doctor said. "Can you give us any contact information so that we can call your family?"

I managed to give them our phone number before going unconscious again.

I was in and out of consciousness for a couple of days. I remember opening my eyes and seeing Shaul by the bed, with tears streaming down her little face. I knew I was in bad shape -- they don't allow little kids into the intensive care unit unless they think the person isn't going to survive.

My family all came to the hospital the afternoon after the accident. My brothers and sisters all flew in from their respective homes. My mom had just flown home to El Paso after spending the holidays with us in Tampa -- she literally got to Texas, then turned around and flew back to Florida. All my friends, like Dean and Tury, came to see me. Our family pastor came and prayed over me.

When I finally came to, the police told me what had happened. I had fallen asleep at the wheel -- obviously -- while going upwards of 130 miles per hour. I came to a curve in the road but didn't make it. The car went off the embankment into a ditch and just started rolling. The embankment basically acted like a ramp, sending the car into the air, soaring up over some trees. They knew this because they found parts of the car in the treetops, which weren't all mangled like they would've been if the car had hit them.

The car flipped so many times it was flattened like a pancake. It looked like a Coke can after somebody stomped on it. Luckily for me, I shot out through the T-top as the car started rolling. I must've flown a hundred feet or so before landing in the gravel on the roadside. Vickie thinks an angel pulled me out through the T-top, because had I stayed in the car, there is no way on earth that I'd have lived.

The cops came to the scene and started dealing with the traffic situation. They saw me lying there and just assumed I was dead. Fortunately for me, a lady who had pulled over to volunteer her help saw me moving. They called for an air evac -- a helicopter ambulance -- and immediately flew me to St. Joseph's Hospital.

My injuries were pretty brutal. I'd fractured my collarbone and compressed a few discs in my spine. I had severe scrapes all over my body from the gravel and broken glass -- Vickie was still pulling little pieces of glass out of my back a month later. I was bruised and swollen all over from the trauma.

Both of my legs were a complete mess. I'd broken my right hip socket and shredded my left calf. A piece of glass had severed the nerves and ligaments so badly that there was no way the doctors could reattach them. Instead, they just pulled the skin over the wound and sewed it up. They literally removed a pound of my calf.

The worst injury I'd sustained was a badly lacerated liver. When Vickie first got to the hospital, the doctor pulled her aside. "We suggest you call your family," he told her, "because we don't believe he's going to make it through the next two nights."

By the grace of God, somehow I didn't hit my head. My brother Mando jokes that it was because of my dad's training. He taught all the Guerreros to tuck and roll whenever we fall. I guess it was instinctive. Even when I was shooting a hundred feet out of a flying car, I still managed to tuck and roll and protect my head.

I only found these things out after all was said and done. A lot of what happened -- in the accident, in the hospital afterward -- remains a mystery to me. I suppose I could've asked more questions, but I don't think I ever really wanted to know all the details.

All things considered, I was very fortunate. My hip socket broke cleanly, so they didn't have to repair it surgically. All I had to do was give it time to mend and it'd be all right.

I wasn't so lucky with my other leg injuries. After performing reconstructive surgery on my calf and thigh, the doctor told Vickie that he doubted I would ever walk again. "What does he do for a living?" he asked.

"He's a professional wrestler."

"Oh no, he'll never wrestle again," the doctor replied. "That's certain. He'll have to find another career. That is, if he makes it."

Within a couple of days it became clear I was going to survive. My liver showed definite signs of healing and it looked like I was out of the woods. The doctors told me that my physical condition was a huge factor in my ability to heal. A normal thirty-six-year-old, without my level of physical activity, would've probably been crippled for life.

Still, the doctors were all pretty surprised. They would come into my room and tell me how fortunate I was. "You're a lucky, lucky man," they said.

Yeah, right, I thought. Sure I am.

While I was in the hospital, the doctors had me on morphine drip all day long. I was able to push a button and get a dose every seven minutes. And believe me, I pushed that button every time.

Obviously I couldn't do that after I went home, so I started taking a lot of pills. Anything to stop the hurting. How could I do the physical therapy if I was in terrible pain? I had to dull the pain before I could begin learning to walk again.

But as a result of having so much painkiller in me, I was pretty much in a fog. I was like the walking dead -- only I couldn't walk!


EDITORIAL: KILLING YOURSELF TO LIVE

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The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle will occassional run editorial peices. These editorials represent purely opinions, and should be taken as such.

The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle acknowledges Chico Harlan's Pittsburgh Post Gazette column for quotations contained in this editorial, and credits The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, The Pro-Wrestling Torch and "It's True, It's True" as valuable sources of information.

KILLING YOURSELF TO LIVE

On August 29th of 1985, a typical American man was hard at work on a construction site in rural Pennsylvania, perched high in the air like a bird. It was a typical summer afternoon, and with autumn drawing near he was looking forward to the relief those months would bring.

Unfortunately, for some people, the autumn never comes.

In life, a fraction of a second can ripple for eternity. He knew that he had lost balance, but he didn't have time to think about it. He was crashing to the ground. His head hit concrete first. Both of his shoulders broke instantly. His skull was cracked in three places. Lesser things would have killed any other man, but not him. He picked his broken body off the ground and began the longest walk of his life. When he arrived, he checked himself into the hospital.

No one could ever tell him that he wasn't tough. And no one could ever tell him that he wasn't determined.

On August 31st, two days later, the man was pronounced dead in the same hospital.

David Angle was 55 years old, and he couldn't take his pride with him.

Twenty-four hours later, his son Kurt wasn't listening to those who were telling him not to play in the varsity football game that afternoon. Kurt thrived to overcome all things, even his father's death. Sixteen solo tackles, two touchdowns and one interception later, Kurt walked off the field after the best football game that he would ever play, feeling proud.

Little did Kurt know that he would some day be carrying his own broken body to the hospital, and positioning himself to follow in his father's footsteps of living proud, and regretfully probably dying young.

"I just wanted to talk a little bit about him, and what he meant to me. When he was on, he was the best wrestler in the business. He may have even been the best ever. He showed me a lot of things, and said a lot of things that not only helped me professionally, but personally. He cared about everybody, he loved everybody. I love you, and I'll miss you".

Kurt Angle made these comments, fighting back tears, in the wake of Eddie Guerrero's tragic death. Sadly, these comments aren't that different than those that could made about Angle himself one emotional Monday evening if he doesn't make make a drastic change immediately.

Less than eight hours after Vince McMahon and Chavo Guerrero addressed the media at a press conference in Minneapolis in regards to Guerrero's death, a broken down Kurt Angle landed on his head after taking one of the most dangerous offensive maneuvers of his career from the top rope. Like his father, Angle is tough, determined and proud. Like his former mentor and fellow Olympic medallist David Schultz, Angle is tough, determined and proud. At 36 years old, there is a good chance Kurt Angle can outlive his mentor Schultz, who was murdered in 1996 at the age of 37. At the rate Kurt Angle is going, outliving his father may be his toughest battle to date.

His checklist reads like an almanac of worst case scenarios. Nerve damage to his face. Six knee surgeries. A broken neck. Torn muscles. Bone chips removed from his upper spine. Destroyed ligaments. Dislocated shoulders. Several years ago, Angle said to the press with pride, "Look at my face. It looks like I have aged fifteen years in the last five." Angle can no longer hear out of his left ear. It has been drained 80 times.

When training for the Olympics, Kurt Angle pushed his body to the point of insanity. "I'd train so ferociously some days that I would make myself sick". That training makes getting out of bed today even difficult according to Angle, as he broke his body down at a very young age.

Five months before the 1996 Olympics, Kurt Angle cracked two vertebrae and pulled four muscles in his back, causing two herniated discs to stab into his spinal cord. The pain was intense. Doctors told him that he risked paralysis competing, but Kurt was proud. Mepivacaine was the painkiller that Kurt Angle chose, and for the next half of a year he took it constantly to make training, and eventually winning a gold medal possible. Hunched over in tears, Angle had defied paralysis and proved himself as the best amateur wrestler in the world. He wished his father would have been there to see it.

Nine years later, Kurt was in his fourth as a WWE wrestler. In an eerily similar scenario, Kurt Angle's neck was destroyed in early 2003, and he was advised not to compete in the main event of Wrestlemania 19. Maybe it was the backflip that he attempted from the top of a steel cage, fifteen feet in the air on January 14th of that year. It was a move that could end a career if the slightest thing went wrong, but in the all-or-nothing fashion typical to Angle, he went big. The result was the most graceful moonsault imaginable, and as Kurt hung upside down in the air high above the arena, time seemed to stand still for just an instant before his knees hit the mat in a landing that could not have been any more perfect. Angle had wagered his body for glory, and come out on top yet again.

But how long could he keep getting lucky? He was willing to roll the dice one more time at Wrestlemania of that year, deciding to step into the ring and face Brock Lesnar in a match that would solidify his legacy, or paralyze him for life. Angle not only stared down death, but taunted it, taking dangerous drops on his neck and shoulders before passing the World Championship to Brock Lesnar. The 54,097 fans in attendance roared in approval of Kurt flying around the ring. Kurt's wife Karen and newborn daughter Kyra probably had different reactions.

For 240 days a year, Kurt Angle wakes up in a bed that doesn't belong to him. In hotel rooms all over America, Canada, Japan and Europe. His Coraopolis, Pennsylvania home, his BMW and his family are things he seldom has the time to see. Several years ago he stated in an interview that the only way he could continue to wrestle was through the heavy use of painkillers. In 2005, Kurt Angle is going harder than ever.

In an interview with Kurt Angle and his wife Karen several years ago, Angle stated that the only time he ever physically felt 100% was right before a match when his adrenaline took over. Kurt continued "But after that, I'm right back down to the bottom again. It sucks, because if I want to play with Kyra... (Kurt looks to his daughter playing in the next room)...sometimes I just can't do it".

Karen Angle spoke: "If he gets to the point where he really can't play with her, that will be it. No matter what you have in your house, no matter how good your life is, you can't give that up. If that's what happens, that's when I'll put my foot down and make him stop."

At that moment, Kurt Angle smiled, "I'll never stop" he finished.

Kurt Angle's marriage ended several months ago, devastating him personally. He is a proud man, and wrestling is something that he is dedicated to, and excellence is his obsession. Tired of wondering if he would be in a wheelchair in a few years, as Karen Angle has publicly wondered, she opted to separate from Kurt over the summer, and their marriage never made it to the autumn.

Kurt Angle has made it clear in the past that he will settle for nothing less than being remembered as the best of all time. But is that distinction worth his life? To Kurt, a proud man like his father, it might very well be.

Kurt's physical changes over the past half-decade are shocking. His head has increased in size dramatically, which may or may not point to use of Human Growth Hormone. Angle has suffered concussions, and has major nerve damage as a result of his neck problems. His triceps appear to be on the verge of atrophy, and one of Angle's biceps is noticeably larger than the other. Kurt Angle has a history of heart disease in his family. He has a glassy look in his eyes, and is a self-admitted user of painkillers. And he shows no signs of slowing down. As a training partner once said of Kurt Angle, "He doesn't have an off switch".

Estranged from his family, Kurt Angle is said to be more focused on being the best in wrestling than he ever has been. But how many times can Kurt Angle keep rolling the dice before his luck runs out? I don't know if World Wrestling Entertainment can continue to allow him to try.

Kurt Angle doesn't need wrestling. He has made millions and has nothing left to prove, at least not to his fans. He could stay another few years, maybe end up with permanent damage to 10% of his brain like his idol Bret Hart. Or he could move on with is life, make a new career out of motivational speaking, acting. Maybe amatuer wrestling seminars.

Kurt Angle has proven in the past that pride is more important to him than anything however. It has cost him his health, it has cost him his family, and at the rate he is going, sooner rather than later, he too may find himself dragging his dying body to the hospital when doctors can no longer help, and his pride may cost him his life. Sadly, it may already have. And Kurt won't be able to take his pride with him either.

The person most qualified to speak, Kurt's long time wife Karen, spoke best when she said, "I don't think what he's doing to himself is worth it".

Neither do I.


EDITORIAL: STEALING LIFE, CHEATING DEATH...

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The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle will occassional run editorial peices. These editorials represent purely opinions, and should be taken as such.

STEALING LIFE, CHEATING DEATH


The untimely death of Eddie Guerrero early Sunday morning was regretfully nothing new in the shadowy world of professional wrestling. In a business that strives to keep its secrets so closely guarded, no acceptable answer has ever been given as to why so many who step through its doors pay so dearly for admission. No response is given to fans who are conditioned to care for these athletes, only to have them taken from this life suddenly in the primes of their lives with no explanation. In an industry that sees the past as something better off forgotten, reaction to these tragedies lasts for exactly two hours in prime time, sometimes four. Death has a pecking order. You might get an entire show dedicated to your memory, or maybe a ten bell salute and a music video. Or maybe, if your life wasn't so relevant, you'll get a graphic displayed as the show comes on the air. In the end it really doesn't matter, because once the screen fades to black, it's back to business as usual. As the most powerful man in American wrestling has said so many times in the face of tragedy, the show must go on.

And it goes on without you. The problem of early death ceases to exist. You cease to exist. To recognize your life is to recognize your death, and to do that is to acknowledge the uncomfortable: that you and so many of your colleagues should be alive, but for some reason, you aren't. Unless your tragedy can be neatly packaged into a DVD, or a new tag team can form a shallow tribute to you, your life is better off forgotten. And the show goes on.

To blame Vince McMahon for these tragedies is the easy way out. The media doesn't mind, nor do lazy thinkers. This solution is too shortsighted. These are problems that face the wrestling industry as a whole, and they go back at least 25 years. What we are currently experiencing is the tail end of the peak of the worst period for the death of wrestlers that the United States has ever seen. If any good news can come out of such a morbid period, it is that these tragedies should ideally soon wind down and usher in a future much less devastating to so many families and fans, and serve as a lesson to the next generations of professional wrestlers.

Twenty-five years ago, professional wrestling and America were both entirely different than they are today. Steroids were legal until 1991, and easily obtainable. To live like a wrestler was to live like a rock star. Stories were not exaggerated of many wrestlers working a 30 minute match, drinking, doing drugs and partying all night, getting a few hours sleep, doing some crank, driving all day, working out and then doing it all over again. It was a vicious though necessary cycle to preserve the way of life. Healthy diets were not the priority that they are now. A dozen raw eggs a day were a routine source of protein --nobody knew that with the protein came 900% of the recommended daily intake of cholesterol. Wrestlers like Michael "Hawk" Hegstrand injected themselves with things as extreme as monkey hormones to get an edge. From many modern wrestling books written, we can gather that many wrestlers did massive amounts of steroids at the time. The schedule was in most cases much more grueling, with World Wrestling Federation wrestlers working over 25 shows a month some months. The money was so incredible when wrestling went national that the mindset was keep up or get left behind. If you weren't working in the WWF, you were working all over the United States, and often times in Canada, Mexico and Japan where acquiring any poison in the world really wasn't all that difficult. The women, the money, the Cadillac, the lifestyle... they seemed too good to be true. And with every decision that is made in this life, there comes a price.

In 2005, territorial promoters who's obligation to a man lasts only until he burns out a town and moves to the next are extinct. World Championship Wrestling -a company that employed what seemed like a hundred wrestlers, yet where nobody answered to anyone- is gone. Thankfully for the sake of professional wrestlers and their families, Extreme Championship Wrestling is no more. In the promoter Paul Heyman's last public appearance, he apologized for being late to the ring, stating he was "in the back smoking a joint with [Rob] Van Dam". As a wrestling mind, Heyman was and still is a genius. As an authority figure who looks out for his wrestlers, he was a failure, allowing wrestlers to work while impaired, presiding over what has been reported to be one of the most drug-laden locker rooms ever, and even allowing a wrestler to walk through the curtain so intoxicated that he removed his pants in the middle of the ring in front of children. Professional wrestling, for all intents and purposes, is now a one-company industry in America though others are clawing their way up. However, the aftershocks of the 1980's wild west climate of professional wrestling are still reverberating today.

In many ways, it is a positive that Vince McMahon and Dixie Carter are the only two individuals that matter in American wrestling, because it means that professional wrestling has gone corporate. Both World Wrestling Entertainment and TNA Wrestling as a division of Panda Energy have to answer to their shareholders, and their employees have to represent their parent company in the appropriate manor. As callous as it seems, every wrestler in either company has become an investment whose livelihood the wrestling industry is accountable for to shareholders. With more and more WWE talent being recruited and trained in-house, WWE is more responsible than they have ever been for the young men and women who they make international stars out of. Drug testing is still desperately needed in professional wrestling as it is in all professional sports. However, while the pressure of substance abuse may still exist in the confines of the locker room, the reality of the ramifications is no longer a mystery, and ultimately it us up to the wrestler of 2005 to decide if the temptation of a better body, a bigger payday or a crazier party is worth the home-shattering consequences. The honeymoon period is over. Wrestlers believed themselves to be invincible in the 1980's. Twenty-five years and a dozen headstones later, the message is clear. And wrestlers are catching on.

In 2005, the wrestling business has matured, but is paying dearly for the mistakes of its past. Almost every single unexpected wrestling death of the last decade involves a wrestler who spent a lot of time going up and down the roads during the wild west era of the 1980's. The WWE wrestler of current day is a different breed. A Playstation 2 has replaced a bar fight. The internet and cell phones have replaced a line of cocaine. A healthy, low-fat diet, good cardiovascular conditioning and responsible, well researched use of steroids and supplements have replaced unhealthy meals at diners and steroid binges. At current day, athleticism is demanded by fans of professional wrestling who have grown bored with the immobile, lumbering giants of yesterday. A long road trip is six shots in eight days overseas, where catering and hotels are provided, not the 16 days straight that the WWF ran in the 1980's. With the internet and media as all encompassing as they are today, being caught with drugs or domestic abuse or a DUI are enough to get a wrestler fired and never reconsidered for employment in WWE again. No one is giving PCP to strangers on airplanes and touching the female's breasts when she is passed out and vomiting, or putting lighter fluid in a fellow wrestlers inhaler as a rib in 2005. Wrestlers have matured, and wrestling has matured with it. There is a dress code. Wrestlers are cross-promoting themselves in ways they have before. In music, in acting, in literature. Shawn Michaels and Kurt Angle are the wrestlers new talent cite as influences more often than Hulk Hogan and The Ultimate Warrior. Vince McMahon has survived a trial that could have put him behind bars for 20 years, and he will not allow himself to become the defendant in another. Many of the next generation of stars -Edge and Carlito and Christian- are not the bulked up hulks of the past. Lance Storm, Christian, Edge and John Cena take pride in what they are able to do clean, without steroids. Many wrestlers, including HHH, don't even consume alcohol. Those new stars who have the finger pointed at them for possible use of steroids won't be in the business for 20 years, or even 10 in most cases with recent WWE release patterns, have better research at their disposal, and they won't be eating or doing drugs in the way stars of the past have. Wrestling is hopefully positioning itself to have an early mortality rate no better or no worse than pro football for example. Whether this is something to be proud of is a matter of opinion.

To say that there aren't still problems in wrestling would be naive. Wrestlers still party. The excessive use of painkillers and other prescription medication is still very much an issue to follow. The new steroids, or ephedrine, or whatever too-good-to-be true supplement of the moment that will eventually become illegal is probably available and being abused in wrestling as we speak. However, while warnings on labels and lectures from doctors fall on deaf ears, a friend and father sharing a locker room with you one day and being found dead in his hotel room the next speaks loud and clear. A simple look at how the average wrestler chooses to spend his free time now and 20 years ago speaks on the lessons catching on. Young, healthy wrestlers like Lance Storm and Jay "Christian" Reso saving well and being in the position to retire in their 30's speaks on the lessons catching on. Professional wrestling is an industry that can offer a lifetime's pay for eight years of service and open unlimited doors on the way out, and the responsibility of saving well and making healthy choices can't be placed on anyone but the individual performer. That lesson is catching on.

In the 1980's, a finger could be pointed at promoters for the epidemic of wrestling deaths that would occur 20 years later. In 2005, the finger must be pointed at every single man and woman who calls themselves a professional wrestler. Every wrestler is replaceable in the grand mechanism of professional wrestling, every human being in the grand mechanism of their family is not. Those who have become professional wrestlers in the last five years now share a locker room with the ghosts of those whose mistakes should be guiding the decisions of every wrestler that follows.

For Eddie Guerrero, it was too late. The mistakes of his past eighteen years followed him from El Paso to Tokyo, stalked him from Los Angeles to Philadelphia, loomed over him from Atlanta to New York, and finally and regretfully closed on him early one morning in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Eddie Guerrero did steal life, and he did cheat death. Guerrero, by every indication, should have died when he crashed his car on New Years Eve of 1999. He should have died when he crashed his vehicle one year later. But for some purpose, Eddie was granted a little more time. A little more time to lead as an example of someone who made mistakes, turned his life around and didn't want others to do the same. A little more time to be in that locker room, and use a gift his colleagues claim only he had, detecting their worries and guiding them with an inspirational scripture or simply a listening ear. When Eddie's own worries were weighing him down, he was there to support Dave Batista as his wife was suffering from cancer. He was there to believe in others who needed help believing in themselves.

Unfortunately in this life, bad decisions can take good people. Eddie Guerrero was a good person, a positive person. Someone others around him found easy to love and admire. Almost like his savior Jesus Christ, Eddie Guerrero defied death the rainy evening his car slid off the road, and returned to guide and inspire those around him, to make people smile and to lead by positive example, before finally being taken to a better place.

The message of Eddie Guerrero will continue to cheat death to generations of wrestlers to come, as those who step in to the locker room that Eddie Guerrero once occupied continue to make better decisions in the present that will affect them when they are 38 years of age. Hopefully, some day the stars of tomorrow can sit down in good health with their grandchildren and tell them stories about the time Eddie Guerrero tore the house down, and for another few moments in time, Eddie Guerrero will have stolen life once again.


NOVEMBER 14th - TOP STORIES

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In a regular feature at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle, we examine the top stories making their way around the wrestling world. We will print news only from reliable sources, and attempt to present it free of bias, speculation and negativity. Appropriate credit will always be given to the source of the news.

TOP NEWS STORIES for Monday November 14, 2005

As noted earlier today, Eddie Guerrero passed away early this morning from what remain unknown causes. When Guerrero didn't answer his wake-up call, his nephew Chavo was contacted by hotel staff who remembered he and Eddie from a stay at the hotel years ago according to a statement from Chavo Guerrero Jr. at a WWE issued press conference early this afternoon in Minneapolis. When security found Guerrero, he was lifeless on the bathroom floor with a toothbrush in his mouth, and was pronounced dead when authorities arrived. Eddie's body was taken from the room, and soon afterwards Dean Malenko, Rey Mysterio, Chris Benoit and Chavo Guerrero Jr. were said to have spent time in the empty hotel room saying their goodbyes to Eddie according to Wade Keller of The Pro-Wrestling Torch.

The shock of Eddie Guerrero's death resonated quickly, as those in both WWE and TNA were said to be devastated. TNA--WWE's only real American competitor--paid tribute to Eddie Guerrero both on their website and on their live pay-per-view Genesis, with a graphic paying respects to Eddie opening the show. During the three hour event, fans broke into chants of "Eddie", and Team 3-D and Rhyno wore wristbands marked with the letters "E.G." in tribute to their former coworker. World Wrestling Entertainment paid tribute to Guerrero by scrapping original plans for their back-to-back taping of Raw and Smackdown later in the evening, and instead turning the evening into a four hour tribute to the former WWE Champion that will air on both Monday and Friday in the Raw and Smackdown timeslots.

Press was slow in picking up on the tragedy, but by nights end the death of the former champion was the lead story in the entertainment sections of the news sites of NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX, and was being carried by Yahoo, MSNBC, The UK SUN, The USA Today and AOL News and will almost certainly appear in the Monday edition of most major newspapers. Vince McMahon and Chavo Guerrero spoke at the WWE sanctioned press conference early in the afternoon. Both demonstrated remarkable composure, with McMahon using the standard company line that Eddie would have wanted "the show to go on" that evening. Vince stated that the Guerrero family would receive royalties from WWE "forever", and noted that Guerrero was a born-again Christian. Chavo told the press that Eddie had recently celebrated the four year anniversary of his sobriety.

Former World Wrestling Federation Champion Billy Graham will preside over Eddie Guerrero's funeral, which World Wrestling Entertainment officials are trying to make arrangements for as soon as possible. With WWE set for a long overseas tour that begins on Monday with a travel day to Italy, the company realizes they are in a difficult situation with so many close friends of Guerrero who would not agree to miss his funeral. According to Billy Graham, who spoke on Dave Meltzer's Wrestling Observer Live tonight, Eddie's widowed wife Vickie passed word along to him that several WWE wrestlers refused to work the overseas tour if it meant missing Eddie's funeral, and she believes that WWE is now pushing the European tour back several days. This has yet to be confirmed.

Both Eddie Guerrero and Billy Graham have WWE published autobiographies scheduled for release in the upcoming weeks. Guerrero's autobiography -heartbreakingly titled "Cheating Death, Stealing Life: The Eddie Guerrero Story"- will be released on December 20, 2005. The Editorial Preview states: "With an open heart and a powerful determination, Guerrero searched deep within himself and fought to regain the life he had lost. Above all, his journey of self-discovery reawakened his relationship with Jesus Christ, and he found peace and strength in the Bible...Ultimately, Guerrero not only regained his life, he surpassed his wildest dreams. Despite all the obstacles strewn in his path, Guerrero triumphed, becoming WWE Champion...t's also the story of Guerrero's private struggle, of a son caught in the shadow of a larger-than-life father and three older brothers, of a marriage that reached the brink of disintegration before being reborn as a more powerful and fulfilling relationship. Throughout, Eddie Guerrero pulls no punches describing his battles with self-doubt and inner darkness. In the end, Cheating Life, Stealing Death is a story of great courage and personal redemption, of Guerrero's bravery in facing his disease and fighting to become a better man in every light". Billy Graham's autobiography, Tangled Ropes, is available on January 10, 2006.

On Eddie Guerrero, Dave Meltzer said: "When it is said that someone doesn't have a single enemy in the business, usually it's an overstatement. In Eddie Guerrero's case, it was true". Eddie's funeral will be held in Phoenix, Arizona, where Eddie had just relocated his wife and children to so that they could be closer to their extended family.

According to Dave Meltzer, World Wrestling Entertainment is very interested in acquiring the Mid-South wrestling video library. Featuring big, believable stars such as Steve Williams, Jim Duggan and the Junkyard Dog and all around exceptional talent like The Freebirds, Ted Dibiase and Terry Taylor, Mid-South Wrestling--or the UWF as Bill Watts would later rename it-- was an exciting predecessor to the television format that would be adapted by much larger promotions in the future, and was considered by many to be the greatest promotion of its time, competing with and defeating the expanding World Wrestling Federation in several markets in the mid 1980's. At the moment, the library is owned by Ene Watts, ex-wife of UWF promoter Bill Watts. She is asking twice the price that WWE is currently offering for the library, and a deal has yet to be reached. World Wrestling Entertainment has also yet to close on the World Class Championship Wrestling library that they have been in negotiations with Kevin Von Erich for several months regarding.

Pat Patterson is back with World Wrestling Entertainment on a part time basis after retiring last year according to The Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Patterson will be working primarily pay-per-view events as an agent and will lend his proven expertise in laying out important matches for the company.


TOP STORY - CHRISTIAN DEBUTS WITH TNA WRESTLING

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For one week, TNA wrestling has promised the biggest aquisition in the history of their company would be debuting at their live pay-per-view Genesis. At roughly 9pm Orlando time, a countdown wound to zero, the arena lights dimmed, and Jay "Christian Cage" Reso stepped through the curtain and made the spotlight his that he had never been given the opportunity to claim in World Wrestling Entertainment. The following are photos and a transcript of the moment. Click the photos to enlarge:

"So I can guess you can imagine the question I got asked the most this week: Are the rumors that we've been hearing true? Is it true you're going to TNA? And if so, why?

Well I'll tell you this much [Orlando fans chant Christian's name thunderously] I can tell you this much. I didn't come out here to see the same guy come out and say the same damn thing week after week after week. I didn't come here to see a grown man dressed up like a doctor pulling things out of someone's ass, and you can be damn sure I didn't come here because I got fired.

Which brings me to another rumor that I want to put to bed right now. It's not true that I got lowballed. I got offered a huge sum to stay where I was. The reason that I came to TNA is the same reason everyone is in this arena right now. The same reason that everyone's watching Genesis live on PPV.

That reason is that I love WRESTLING! I've been known to crack a joke or two, say something sarcastic, pull a rib, but I don't want anyone to forget that I am without a doubt the greatest all-around performer in this sport today. It's like this...I'm tired of egos and politics. I wanna see guys in this ring busting their asses. I wanna see wrestling reinvented!

Last night I turn on Spike TV, I'm watching Impact. It reminded me about when I broke on the scene 8 years ago. There were two companies one was old and stale, one was young hungry and cutting edge. At this very moment, there are still two companies. One is old, boring, and lacking direction, and the other one iS TNA!

This is something that I want to be a part of... I want to be the biggest piece of this puzzle.

Which brings me to Jeff Jarrett. I've got 2 things to say to you. One, you should never wear white pants after labor day. Two, I've come to tna to take the one thing that's alluded me my entire career. The most important title in this sport, the NWA World Heavyweight championship. Stand up and take notice, that Christian Cage is here! And christian cage will fulfill his destiny...

...because THAT'S HOW I ROLL!"


IN TRIBUTE TO... EDDIE GUERRERO (1967-2005)

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The morning of November 13, 2005 was supposed to be the calm before the storm of a busy day in the world of professional wrestling. TNA was gearing up for the night's Genesis pay-per-view, which was set to be perhaps the most important night in company history with the debut of Jay Reso. Bret Hart was scheduled to appear on Dave Meltzer's Wrestling Observer Live to discuss his upcoming DVD and Shawn Michael's comments on the infamous Montreal screwjob. World Wrestling Entertainment was readying an arena in Minneapolis for a double television taping for their Raw and Smackdown brands this evening before heading off for a long overseas tour. None of these things will be remembered when looking back on November 13, 2005, and none of them seem to matter all that much anymore.

Shortly after 8am this morning, Eddie Guerrero was found dead in his room in Minneapolis at the Marriott City Center at the age of 38. When Eddie Guerrero didn't answer his wake up call, his nephew and fellow WWE wrestler Chavo Guerrero Jr. called again. When no one answered, security opened the door to find Guerrero dead with his toothbrush in his mouth. The early belief is that Guerrero suffered heart failure. Shortly after Guerrero's body was removed from his hotel room, Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, Rey Mysterio and Chavo Guerrero Jr. were said to have visited his hotel room to say their goodbyes.

Eddie had appeared on television, wrestling Ken Kennedy and looking young and full of life, as recently as two days ago. His sudden death leaves the wrestling world numb, and in a state of shock.

In Tribute To... is a regular feature at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle to celebrate the life and careers of those alive and deceased who have made a great impact on not just the wrestling business, but the fans that they have touched.

Eddie Guerrero is a wrestler who's work transcended the technicalities of simply putting together and executing a memorable wrestling match. Eddie was a man who fans loved. Not Hispanic fans, all fans. To love Eddie Guerrero was to love wrestling, and to love wrestling was to love Eddie Guerrero. Eddie wasn't a man who fans judged when he made mistakes, he was a man fans rooted for. They stuck by him. Eddie had a hard time being a "bad guy", because even when doing the most heinous of things inside the ring, fans would chant his name in tribute to him as a performer, and as a man.

Eddie has made mistakes, and he hasn't avoided them. He has faced them head on, worked hard to turn his life around, and then spoke honestly and apologetically about them in a way that made you respect him even more for it. He worked hard in the ring, whether he was on the first match or the last, and held himself accountable -perhaps too accountable- when he felt his matches could have been better. He took great pride in his work, great pride in his heritage, and great pride in his family, and Eddie Guerrero will be greatly missed by all of those who his career touched.

In Tribute To...
Eddie Guerrero (1967-2005)

Eduardo Gori Guerrero Llanes came into this world on October 9, 1967 in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico. Conceived by his 46 year old father Gory Guerrero, Eduardo was born with wrestling in his blood. Gory Guerrero, a 40 year veteran of the sport and legendary trainer by the time of his son's birth, was an early pioneer of lucha libre and became famous for his technical prowess and unique submission holds, including the Gory special and camel clutch that he invented. Many consider Guerrero to be pound for pound the greatest wrestler in the history of Mexico. Eduardo knew that he was destined to be a wrestler from a very young age.

Like the Hart Family to Canada and the Von Erich family to Texas, the Guerrero family was the most storied family in Mexican wrestling history and perhaps the greatest wrestling family ever. Eduardo, or Eddie as he would come to be known as, was the youngest of four brothers, and would follow the lead of brothers Chavo, Hector and Mando, phenomenal wrestlers who were loved and respected for their technical excellence and exciting styles.

Eddie Guerrero grew up in El Paso, Texas watching his older brothers work their magic in the ring in Mexico, The United States and Japan. As an amateur wrestler, Eddie was impressive enough to earn a scholarship to wrestler for the University of New Mexico. Eddie had his sights set on professional wrestling however. His father began training him in a ring in the backyard of their El Paso home. At the age of 19, Eddie Guerrero made his professional wrestling debut in Mexico for the EMLL promotion on September 18, 1987. In one of Eddie's first high profile matches, he teamed with the son of another legend, El Hijo del Santo, to defeat El Gladiator Jr. and El Dandy. Guerrero would soon capture the World Wrestling Association World Trios in Tijuana with older brothers Chavo and Mando on July 28, 1989. In late 1989, Terry Funk brought Eddie to an NWA taping in hopes of getting Eddie a job with the company, but Guerrero never relieved an offer despite putting on a great match.

In 1992, Eddie Guerrero was working as a singles wrestler, and captured his first title on his own, the WWA welterweight title, which he lost on August 29, 1992 to Piloto Suicida in Los Angeles. At this point, Eddie began wrestling under a mask as Mascara Magic, or Magic Mask, in both EMLL and the AAA promotion.

In 1993, Guerrero again began wrestling under his real name and his career began to take off. Eddie took his increasing star in Mexico to New Japan Pro Wrestling, where he competed in the Top of the Super Junior Heavyweights with wrestlers he would letter spend a lot of time with the United States, including Dean Malenko, Chris Benoit and 2 Cold Scorpio. In 1994, Eddie was given the gimmick of Black Tiger, a foreign heel. As Black Tiger, Guerrero competed in the world famous Super J Cup in 1994, defeating TAKA Michinoku in the first round, and losing to Chris Benoit as Wild Pegasus in the second.

It was in AAA in 1994 that Eddie Guerrero really started to reach his potential in North America, and was ranked at 141 on Pro-Wrestling Illustrated's annual PWI 500. Guerrero reformed his tag team with El Hijo del Santo, the son of the legendary Santo, arguably the most popular regional wrestler ever. The duo, The Atomic Pair, reformed the duo that their fathers made into one of the most popular ever 35 years before.

And then one of the most infamous moments in Mexican wrestling history occurred. Eddie Guerrero, along with close friend behind the scenes Art Barr, turned on El Hijo del Santo in a betrayal that shocked and enraged AAA fans. Guerrero and Barr --the Pair of Terror as they were known-- became the most hated tag team in the history of Lucha Libre, as Eddie turned his back on Mexican heritage and began wearing stars and stripes, and waving the American flag. Eddie and Art Barr formed a stable called Los Gringos Locos with Konnan and Louie Spicolli. The faction became the most hated in lucha libre, and terrorized the technicos of AAA while setting business on fire in Mexico. At the first and only AAA pay-per-view, co-promoted by WCW, Guerrero and Barr lost a masks vs. hair match with El Hijo del Santa and Octagon, and both had their heads shaved after arguably one of the best tag team matches ever.

Barr and Eddie Guerrero were so impressive in losing that Paul Heyman of ECW came looking for the duo, and wanted to bring both into his upstart promotion of out Philadelphia to feud with his hot act, Public Enemy. WCW, New Japan and the WWF all expressed strong interest in the team as well. Tragically, Art Barr passed away before that could happen. He was found dead in his room in Oregon at only 28 years of age. Guerrero was crushed, and adopted the frog splash as a tribute to his best friend.

In 1995, Eddie Guerrero began with ECW as AAA could no longer afford to pay his contract. In his very first match with the company, he won the World Television Title from Too Cold Scorpio. Guerrero's most notable work in ECW was a series of matches with Dean Malenko that got both noticed, and signed, by World Championship Wrestling. Eddie made a startling jump to 17 in Pro-Wrestling Illustrated's PWI 500.

In August of 1996, Guerrero won the Super Junior Tournament in Japan, working as Black Tiger, in a field that included Chris Benoit, Jushin Liger, Dean Malenko and Jerry Lynn, and then headed to WCW alongside Chris Benoit and Dean Malenko. Several months after his debut, Guerrero defeated Diamond Dallas Page to win the United States heavyweight title. Eddie Guerrero would go on to win three cruiserweight championships, and participate in enough spectacular matches to earn him consideration as one of the best wrestlers in the world, though he was never treated as a major threat to top titles due to opinions those in management seemed to have in regards to both smaller and Hispanic talent. Tensions heated up behind the scenes as Guerrero had hot coffee tossed on him by Eric Bischoff when requesting a push and a raise. Guerrero asked for his release, both backstage and on camera on a live episode of Nitro. When he wasn't granted his release, he left the company for several months. When he returned, he was put into the Latino World Order, a play off of the popular nWo.

On New Years Eve of 1998, Eddie Guerrero was involved in a serious car accident. The collision was severe enough that Guerrero was expected to die. Guerrero, however, survived and was back in the ring in several months. In early 2000, after years of frustration with his use in WCW, Eddie Guerrero was allowed a release from his contract and left for the World Wrestling Federation with Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko and Perry Saturn.

In his WWF in-ring debut, Eddie Guerrero dislocated his elbow when landing on a frog splash, and missed several weeks of action. His injury caused The Radicalz to lose their series of matches that they were scheduled to win, and derailed the group out of the gate. When he returned, Eddie Guerrero spent most of his first year aligned with Chyna while feuding with several members of the roster. In early 2001, Eddie Guerrero developed an addiction to pain medication that stemmed from his prior car accident, and several months later was taken off of the road and sent to rehab by the World Wrestling Federation. On November 9, 2001, Eddie Guerrero was arrested for drunk driving. On November 13, his contract with the WWF was terminated.

Guerrero tried to get his life back on track, and worked for several independent companies, most notably Ring of Honor and the FWA. In March of 2002, Eddie Guerrero was rehired by World Wrestling Entertainment and almost immediately found himself in programs with both Steve Austin and The Rock. Soon, Guerrero moved to Smackdown, where he formed a tag team called Los Guerreros with his nephew Chavo, where the duo were constantly involved in some of the best matches on television.

On February 15, 2004, Eddie Guerrero defeated the soon departing Brock Lesnar to win his first World Wrestling Entertainment World Title, and would have a huge homecoming celebration when Smackdown was taped in Mexico. Guerrero defeated Kurt Angle at Wrestlemania XX to retain his title, and celebrated as the show went off the air with Chris Benoit, a man who's career mirrored his from Japan to AAA to ECW to WCW and finally to the WWF. Soon after Wrestlemania, the pressure of holding the World Championship and being responsible for drawing fans to and carrying a slumping brand were catching up with Eddie, and the title was passed to JBL. Eddie Guerrero spent the majority of the rest of his WWE career feuding with Rey Mysterio in a storyline that drew company high ratings and was particularly strong in drawing in Hispanic viewers. Most recently, Eddie Guerrero has been involved in a storyline with World Wrestling Entertainment Smackdown champion Dave Batista. There was talk that he was possibly scheduled to regain the World Heavyweight Championship at the Smackdown tapings the day that Eddie passed away.

Eddie Guerrero is survived by his wife Vickie, and his daughters Shaul (14), Sherilyn (9) and Kaylie Marie (3).


NOVEMBER 12th - TOP STORIES

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In a regular feature at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle, we examine the top stories making their way around the wrestling world. We will print news only from reliable sources, and attempt to present it free of bias, speculation and negativity. Appropriate credit will always be given to the source of the news.

TOP NEWS STORIES
for Thursday November 12, 2005

Brock Lesnar has not wrestled since winning the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship on October 8, 2005, and likely will not step into the ring again until he defends the title on January 4, 2006 against Kazuyuki Fujita. The New Japan Pro-Wrestling Tokyo Dome show from October 8th will air on pay-per-view in the near future in the United States. While nothing is certain because those involved in the case aren't permitted to speak about it, it is highly believed that Brock Lesnar won his court case against World Wrestling Entertainment if New Japan is permitted to air the main event in the United States. Brian Alvarez, editor of the Figure Four Weekly Newsletter, believes that Brock Lesnar is free to wrestle anywhere, including TNA. He believes that when Brock Lesnar went to World Wrestling Entertainment in attempt to re-sign with the company, he gave the impression that he was groveling for a job, hoping WWE would give him a lowball offer. When Lesnar received the low offer, he presented it to his lawyers, who used it to suggest that WWE didn't think that their client, Brock Lesnar, was valuable to WWE. The no compete clause was as a result thrown out in court and Brock Lesnar became a free agent. This series of events isn't certain, but Alvarez speculates that all signs point strongly in this direction.

World Wrestling Entertainment has released a Bret Hart tribute magazine which arrives at newsstands over the course of the next several days detailing the career of the Hart to coincide with the upcoming release of his DVD Bret Hart: The Best There Was, The Best There Is, and The Best There Ever Will Be which hits store shelves this coming Tuesday on November 15th. Early information on Bret Hart's DVD has the main feature coming in at just over two hours, with an introduction done by Vince McMahon himself. In the introduction, Vince McMahon thanks Bret Hart on putting aside their differences in order to create the very best DVD possible for Bret Hart's fans. Bret Hart appears in the introduction for the extras, explaining that he picked all of them personally. Those who speak on the documentary portion of the DVD included Roddy Piper, Vince McMahon, Christian, Eric Bischoff, Jim Ross, Animal, Steve Austin, Jimmy Hart, Gene Okerlund, Bruce Prichard, Chris Benoit, and of course Hart himself. The documentary is said to cover Hart's entire life and feature a good deal of footage from Stampede. Early fears were that the raw footage would not be able to be cleaned up and converted in time to make the DVD, but those fears appear unfounded. Bret Hart speaks on Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin, his brother Owen, Ric Flair and others. An emotional segment of the DVD is said to involve Bret Hart paying tribute to all of his friends in the wrestling business who have since passed, with Bret's tribute to Rick Rude said to stand out. Extras include Bret Hart telling a story about Owen prank calling his father Stu, a story about learning the Sharpshooter from Konnan, and his thoughts on the death of his brother Dean. The DVD is said to be an inspiring and positive look at the career of Bret Hart. It hits stores nationally this Tuesday.

Though Hart is back in what he describes as "good standing" with WWE, he is not limiting his options. According to PWInsider.com's Mike Johnson, Bret Hart recently met with TNA officials Jeremy Borash and Scott D'Amore while in New York City for the RingsideFest event, where Hart answered questions in a Q&A session that we covered earlier this week. While nothing concrete was planned, both sides discussed the possibility of doing something together in the future according to Mike Johnson. Bret Hart also met Kurt Angle during the event. While the two had exchanged phone calls in the past, they had yet to meet face to face.

WWE Smackdown commentators Michael Cole and Tazz crashed the set of WWE's weekly internet broadcast ByteThis! this Wednesday and vented about what they felt to be secondary treatment that the Smackdown brand receives from World Wrestling Entertainment. Michael Cole pointed out the lack of focus WWE.com gives Smackdown. While WWE.com features pre-Raw photos as well as the live video broadcast Unlimited --which The USA Network no longer allows WWE to promote on RAW-- Smackdown receives neither. Cole went on to state that two Smackdown employees, Josh Matthews and Steve Romero, were fired from their roles hosting ByteThis! to make room for Todd Grisham, a Raw talent. Cole continued, stating that while Jonathan Coachman and Jim Ross were both given columns in Raw magazine, he or Tazz still haven't been offered a spot in Smackdown's monthly publication. Cole mentioned that a Raw wrestler that "hasn't even been featured on television" is given weekly video segments on WWE.com, implying Matt Striker, and claimed Smackdown talent aside from JBL isn't given such opportunities. Taz and Cole voiced their opinions that they were tired of hearing both on Raw television and from WWE in general that Smackdown was the inferior brand. The two men closed by saying that what they did was not an angle, and left a flustered Todd Grisham to continue the broadcast. This section of the ByteThis! broadcast was edited out of the show and can no longer be accessed on WWE.com. With WWE working harder than ever to build an inter-brand rivalry and to appeal to wrestling fans on the internet, there is no word on the scripted or unscripted nature of this segment. Michael Cole and Tazz are long time broadcast partners on Smackdown as well as close friends and travel partners with fellow WWE Smackdown voice Josh Matthews. As noted earlier in the week in our daily news coverage, Michael Cole and Tazz have lower salaries than Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Jonathan Coachman and will likely also wind up being paid significantly less than Joey Styles should he and WWE come to terms. Michael Cole in particular has been vocal in the past about being seen as the "B" level announcer and being shunned in favor of Jim Ross when calling inter-brand matches on pay-per-view events.

Joey Styles appeared this week on Jonathan Coachman's Coachcast, now available on WWE.com, and argued with The Coach for several minutes about a variety of topics. Joey Styles promoted this appearance on the insider website that he owns 50% controlling interest in, 1Wrestling.com. This presents an enormous conflict of interest, as Styles website is what has always been viewed as an enemy presence to WWE, as well as competition to WWE.com. To make matters worse, Bob Ryder --a tenured behind the scenes employee of TNA wrestling-- also claims partial ownership of 1Wrestling. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter believes that Joey Styles will be forced to sell his interest in 1Wrestling.com if he signs with World Wrestling Entertainment.


15 YEARS AGO - TOP STORIES OF THE WEEK 11.13.05

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In a weekly feature at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle, we examine the top stories making their way around the wrestling world 15 years ago. Sources for the stories include Herb Kunze, The Wrestling Observer Newsletter and The Pro-Wrestling Torch Newsletter.

TOP NEWS STORIES for the week of: November 13, 1990.

The Rockers have lost the tag team titles, but they didn't lose them in the ring. The Rockers defeated the tag team champions The Hart Foundation on a taping for a Saturday Night's Main Event set to air the 24th of November. Demolition Ax (Bill Eadie) and Demolition Smash (Barry Darsow) have apparently quit the World Wrestling Federation due to frustrations over being asked to play second fiddle to the Legion of Doom and wear masks. There is no word on the status of Demolition Crush, but Ax and Smash plan to take their act to Japan. This leaves the tag team roster incredibly thin, so Jim Neidhart has been offered a new contract and will stick around the World Wrestling Federation for a while. The early word is that the Hart Foundation vs. Rockers match at Saturday Night's Main Event will be edited so that The Rockers win the bout, but not the titles.

Saturday Night's Main Event airs on November 23rd at 10pm. Matches on the card include Mr. Perfect vs. The Big Bossman, Ted Dibiase vs. The Ultimate Warrior and The Hart Foundation vs. The Rockers.

The latest rumor in regards to the Survivor Series egg is that Mark Callaway will be inside and come out to reveal himself as a character named The Eggman. Callaway is in line for a mega push and according to current plans will be paired with Hulk Hogan for an extended fued sometime in the very near future. Callaway was signed recently from World Championship Wrestling, where he wrestled his last major match for the company July 7th losing to Lex Luger at The Great American Bash.


Ric Flair and Buddy Landell will square off soon over the rights to use the name "Nature Boy".

The lineup for Survivor Series 1990 from the Hartford Civic Center is looking like:

The Ultimate Warriors (Kerry Von Erich, Legion of Doom and Ultimate Warrior) vs. The Perfect Team (Curt Hennig, Demolition Ax, Smash and Crush)

The Million Dollar Team (Ted Dibiase, Mystery Partner, Honky Tonk Man & Greg Valentine) vs. The Dream Team (Dusty Rhodes, Koko B. Ware & The Hart Foundation)

The Visionaries (Rick Martel, Warlord, Paul Roma, Hercules) vs. The Vipers (Jake Roberts, The Rockers, Jimmy Snuka)

The Hulkamaniacs (Hulk Hogan, Jim Duggan, Tugboat & The Big Bossman) vs. The Natural Disasters (Earthquake, Dino Bravo, Haku & The Barbarian)

The Alliance (Tito Santana, The Bushwackers, Nikolai Volkoff) vs. The Mercenaries (Sgt. Slaughter, Boris Zukhov & The Orient Express)

Ric Flair and Butch Reed headline WCW's Clash of the Champions Thanksgiving Thunder from the Jacksonville Coliseum on November 20th.

Since Jim Cornette and Stan Lane quit the NWA, Bobby Eaton has been working hard at becoming a successful single. Eaton was said to have a match with Sting airing this Saturday night with super heat.


AN EXCERPT FROM SHAWN MICHAEL'S BIOGRAPHY

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The Following is an excerpt from Shawn Michael's upcoming biography Heartbreak & Triumph: The Shawn Michaels Story, scheduled for nationwide release on November 22nd. In this passage from Chapter 23, Shawn Michaels discusses the events that led up to the Survivor Series in 1997.

Chapter 23 - Montreal

I was sky-high the night after Bad Blood. I had perhaps the best match of my career, and Hunter, Chyna, and I were going the christen ourselves D-Generation X (which was Vince Russo's idea) on this evening's Raw. Even the thought of having to work with Bret in the coming weeks at Survivor Series couldn't bring me down. I wasn't going to let him get to me.

From my perspective, I had won the battle with Bret. I was main-eventing Pay-Per-Views while he, as champion, was working Tag Team matches. My confidence was back. There wasn't anything that he was going to do or say that I worried about. People had turned on me because they had heard a lot of untrue stores, many of which were made up by Bret. I never once gave my side, because it seemed so transparent to me, and I was the guy who is talking the loudest and defending himself the most must be hiding something.

Working with Hunter and Chyna was so much fun and I didn't want to ruin that. I also have to give Vince Russo a lot of credit. He came up with some great ideas for us. He helped create a real awesome gimmick where we were doing and saying all the things you want to in real life, but can't beause it isn't nice and you'd get in a lot of trouble. And we were very popular. As Hunter has said, in the fall of 97, DX was the hottest thing in sports entertainment not named Steve Austin.

We were in Kansas City-another sellout, by the way-and Hunter and I were doing an in-ring promo. I asked to see footage of my victory from Badd Blood. Instead, video from the "curtain call" came on. This was done to reinforce the insubordinate image of DX. Bret came out and confronted me, calling me a homeo and a degenerate. (I believe he meant it.) I responded by saying that the only reason Bret was in the main event of Survivor Series was because he was wrestling me. Bret and I were at it again, only this time, our personal animosity towards each other blended perfectly within the storyline we were conducting.

Later that night Hunter beat Bret via countout after I superkicked him while Chyna distracted him. During the match, I started picking my nose with Bret's Candian flag. I really didn't mean to offend anyone. I just figured it would get me extra heat, which it did.

At this point, I really didn't know what the situation with Bret was. My feeling was that Vince wanted to get the title off him. His contract was taxing the company way too much if he wasn't going to be the man. I didn't' know where Steve Austin was in his talks with Vince, I'm sure they already had an idea of where they were going long-range. The ideal situation for Steve was to win the title from a white-hot heel. Bret certainly wasn't one. I, on the other hand, was there. It made sense to me that Vince would want to put the tile on me and have Steve beat me.

All I knew for certain is what I talked about with Vince. I was back into performing and uninterested in the inner workings of what was happening with other guys. I talked to Vince often, but all our discussions concerned created ideas. I was not talking about other guys' business.

A week before Survivor Series I found out Bret was going to WCW. I know Vince suggested Bret go and talk to WCW again. Vince said he would help Bret get a great deal there. Vince was going to give WCW the impression that he was willing to pay Bret even more money, so WCW would up their offer to him. WCW did, and Bret signed with them.

For the last several months, Hunter and I had been speaking to Vince on the phone every Wednesday to go over any creative ideas or concerns we might have. Vince valued our opinions and set aside some time to talk to us. The Wednesday before Survivor Series, we were on our weekly conference call. "Shawn, barring some miraculous change this weekend, we are going to work a DQ. The next night Bret has promised me that he will come out and give up the title. He will go off to WCW< and we can work some sort of tournament or something like that. I'm not comfortable with that, but Bret has given me his work. I feel I can take him at his word. Regardless of the relationship that you and he have, I've always asked him to do business, but he's just not willing to do it for you. I can't change the match with someone else." I asked Vince why he didn't just have Bret drop the title to someone else the following night on Raw. I recall Vince then saying Bret had creative control over his last thirty days. "So it's not really just me, is it? He doesn't want to drop the belt before he leaves?" "No, he doesn't. It would be one thing if it were in the States, but especially in Canada. He doesn't want to do it." "All of Canada is his? We're not in Calgary. What if I didn't want to do any jobs in the United States?" "I know, I know, but that's the situation. He has creative control." There were a few seconds of silence. "I know I'm not supposed to be talking here," it was Hunter. "maybe I'm out of line here, but what kind of business is that? Who in the world says, 'I don't want to drop the belt'? You helped him to get a better deal there and he is leaving. That isn't right. That's b.s. How in the world can you trust him? This is the same guy who while he was off, after dropping the title to Shawn, went behind youu back and negotiated a deal with WCW only to come back and renegotiate a twenty-year way-out-of-bounds contract with you. He has not done good business since, and now he is leaving to get even more money, by you giving them the impression that you wanted to keep him. We have people leaving in the middle of the night and taking their belts and dropping them in trash cans on WCW. [This was in reference to former women's champion Alundra Blayze, who had done that.] We can't afford for that to happen with the World Wrestling Federation Championship!" "There's nothing we can do about that. My hands are tied. What can we do about that?" It was my turn to chime in. "I'll do whatever you want. We'll just take it off him. I'll just swerve him or whatever I have to. You tell me what needs to get done. You and this company have put up with so much from me. My loyalty is here with you. I will do whatever you want." "What are we talking about, Shawn?" "Whatever it takes. If we have to do a fast count or get him in a hold and tell someone to ring the bell, I'll do whatever you want me to do." "That's pretty serious. That has to be a last resort. I still have until Saturday to talk with Bret. That may have to be a real option. This cannot be discussed with anyone. Pat can't know, nobody can know about this but the three of us right now. It's something we will have to talk about." Hunter and I talked when Vince hung up. We both felt that Vince was already thinking about a possible swerve, but he couldn't ask me to do that. I needed to volunteer.

Bret Hart will be the guest this Sunday on Dave Meltzer's Wrestling Observer Live, where Dave Meltzer plans to read Bret Hart excerpts from Michael's book dealing with Montreal. The show can be heard live at 8pm this Sunday Night on Sirius Radio Channel 122 or stream the show at sportsbyline.com.


AN INTERVIEW WITH VINCE MCMAHON: PART 2

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The following interview was conducted by Playboy magazine in February of 2001. It offers a rare glimpse at the man beneath the character that drives American wrestling into the future. The following is the second of four parts, in which Vince McMahon discusses his troubled teenaged years.

PLAYBOY: OK, let's take a look at the teenage Vince. You once said that you "majored in badass".

MCMAHON: I was totally unruly. Would not go to school. Did things that were unlawful, but I never got caught.

PLAYBOY:
Did you ever steal?

MCMAHON: Automobiles. But I always brought them back. I just borrowed them, really. There were other thefts, too, and I ran a load of moonshine in Harlowe, North Carolina in a 1952 Ford V8. That was a badass car at the time.

PLAYBOY: What did you get paid for running hooch?

MCMAHON: A fortune. I think it was 20 bucks.

PLAYBOY:
Finally, the police caught up with you.

MCMAHON: They had a lot of circumstantial evidence. I was always in fights, too. They'd pull up and there we were, me and my group of guys, going at it with the Marines.

PLAYBOY: You fought the Marines?

MCMAHON: Havelock is right outside the Marine base at Cherry Point. There was a place called the Jet Drive-In. Real creative --The Jet, because of all of the military jets at the base. On Friday and Saturday nights it was time to get it on with the Marines. It was a challenge. Most of them were in great condition, but they didn't know how to fight. I'm not saying they were easy pickings. They got their testosterone going and they were all liquored up. Some of them were real tough. But me and my guys were street fighters. I mean, maybe you've been through basic training and you know how to operate a bayonet. That's different from sticking your finger in someone's eye or hitting a guy in the throat, which comes naturally to a street fighter. And they can't believe you're not "fighting fait". Suddenly they can't breathe and/or see, and they realize: "Oh my God, am I in for an ass kicking".

PLAYBOY:
Ever come close to killing one of them.

MCMAHON: I would like to think not very close. That's not what I wanted to do. You want to incapacitate a guy. Once you get someone down you don't want him getting back up. You don't want him moving, so you make sure he doesn't. It's not pretty, but it was challenging and fun.

PLAYBOY: Finally the authorities in Havelock gave you a choice--

MCMAHON: Right. It was reform school or military school. I went to Fishburne Military School in Waynesboro, Virginia, in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Military school is expensive. My mom was still my guardian and she couldn't afford it. So my dad was notified and he paid.

PLAYBOY:
Your father was a pro wrestling promoter. It was wrestling money that sent you to military school.

MCMAHON: That's right. I would see him in the summertime and on the occasional holiday. That he was able and willing to send me to military school made an impression. It was a chance to start over. Maybe it doesn't seem that I changed, since I was the first cadet in school history to be court-martialed, but I at least started to change. No one really knew me at Fishburne. I had no badass reputation to uphold.

PLAYBOY: So why did they court-martial you?

MCMAHON: For no particular infraction. Again, I was lucky and a little drafty--I wasn't caught for some stuff that would have meant immediate dismissal, like stealing the commandant's car. Colonel Zinneker had an old, green, beat-up Buick, and he always left the keys in it. He also had a dog that he was nuts about. I love animals, but one day I couldn't resist giving the that dog a laxative. I put the laxative in some hamburger and the did his has business all over the commandant's apartment, which thrilled me greatly.

PLAYBOY:
What finally got you in trouble?

MCMAHON: Insubordination. I had no respect for the military because they were playing military. Sure, it's an ROTC program, but we weren't in a war. We were a bunch of kids. The idea of this adult from Army ROTC ordering all of the kids around--and getting off on it--ugh! What kind of human being is that? I was insubordinate, but I didn't really have many scrapes at Fishburne. I was playing sports --wrestling and football- and that helped me.

PLAYBOY: What position in football?

MCMAHON: Offensive guard and defensive tackle. But all I really knew how to do was fight. So it was, "Bring it on!". But when you've got bare knuckles and you're hitting a guy with a helmet on, it's no good. I was used to gouging eyes and going for the throat. A big kick in the nuts is always primo--you hear the guy go "Huhhh!" and you think, his ass is mine. But you can't do that on the football field. Football is all about technique, and I was a lousy football player. In one game I was personally penalized more yardage than our offense gained.

PLAYBOY:
Still, you beat the court-martial and even graduated. By then you had stolen cars and run moonshine. You'd had a drink. You'd had your first joint. You'd lost your virginity.

MCMAHON: [Pauses] That was at a very young age. I remember, probably in the first grade, being invited to a matinee film with my stepbrother and his girlfriends, and I remember them playing with me. Playing my penis, and giggling. I thought that was pretty cool. That was my initiation into sex. At that age you don't necessarily achieve an erection, but it was cool. At around the same time there was a girl my age who was, in essence, my cousin. Later in life she actually wound up marrying that asshole Leo Lupton, my stepfather! Boy this sounds like Tobacco Road. Anyway, I remember the two of us being so curious about each other's bodies, but not knowing what the hell to do. We would go into the woods and get naked together. It felt good. And for some reason I wanted to put crushed leaves into her. Don't know why, but I remember that. I don't remember the first time I had intercourse, believe it or not.

PLAYBOY: Your growing up was pretty accelerated.

MCMAHON: God, yes.

In Part 3, Vince McMahon discusses the ramifications of not having a father in his life, and getting to know his own and finding a place for himself in the wrestling business.


NOVEMBER 11th - TOP STORIES

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In a regular feature at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle, we examine the top stories making their way around the wrestling world. We will print news only from reliable sources, and attempt to present it free of bias, speculation and negativity. Appropriate credit will always be given to the source of the news.

TOP NEWS STORIES for Thursday November 10, 2005

Chris Jericho followed up his first interview on professional wrestling in three months yesterday with Get in the Ring by updating his official website, ChrisJericho.com, today with more suggestive images , this time a TNA logo as well as the logo of TNA's Sunday pay-per-view Genesis. As of this point, all signs point to this being another prank by Jericho, or possibly promotion of a company that Jericho admitted to watching more of than WWE as noted in yesterdays Top Stories, and there is no reason to believe that Jericho will be appearing at this Sunday's Genesis. Chris Jericho spoke further on his thoughts on wrestling in his November 9th online commentary, which he admitted to writing alone in a hotel room on his birthday. Jericho again reiterated that he was not returning soon, though he has enjoyed watching as a fan lately. Jericho said that it was fun to see the improvement of Gene Snitsky and Kurt Angle, as well as the emergence of Ken Kennedy and MNM. Jericho questioned the use of Shelton Benjamin by WWE and couldn't understand why he isn't being given bigger opportunities, and mentioned knowing from first hand experience what the young star is capable of. Jericho stated that he had no idea why WWE would let Christian go as he is a "superstar waiting to happen". In regards to the treatment of Jim Ross, Jericho said "Don't get me started", though he put over Ross' replacement Joey Styles as a "badass". Chris Jericho is currently in negotiations to host a show for VH1, and is close to securing a role in a somewhat major motion picture.

John Layfield spoke on a number of topics several days ago in his WWE.com column. The main point Layfield spoke on was the departure of Christian from WWE. JBL wrote the following: "I never would have dreamed Christian would come after me and retire before me. Christian became one of the best ring technicians I have ever been around. I was here when Christian came in, and it was remarkable to see how far he came. His “TLC” matches with Edge, the Dudleys and the Hardys were nothing short of awesome, it is amazing someone didn’t get hurt very badly in one of those matches. I am genuinely sorry to see him go; he had become a good friend and a terrific asset to our roster. I was always amused by him and Edge’s tag team and later the Peep Show. Talking about feeling old, I was here when Christian came in and when he retired. I was with Bob Orton Jr. when he was in Japan talking about his son who was in Middle School — Randy. Now Randy is a former world champion and a true star. I wish Christian nothing but the best. He deserves it."

World Wrestling Entertainment will be releasing a DVD soon titled Blood Sport: ECW's Most Violent Matches according to WrestlingObserver.com.


A MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR

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Welcome to The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle, the new home of news, history and analysis for the serious wrestling fan. It is our mission to deliver only the news and coverage that interests those who thrive to dig deeper into the wrestling business. This site was born of necessity. It is difficult to find coverage of professional wrestling in 2005 that appeals to the true fan and student of professional wrestling, and that isn't bogged down with negativity and bias. Our mission is to take the latest news from all of the major credible sources on a specific daily story and tie it all together in the most complete update available. Our premiere update that speaks on the status of Christian for example draws from two hotlines, two newsletters, three websites and wwe.com, and puts the pieces together in a few paragraphs to form the most complete coverage of the story available. No punch-lines, no cuteness, just the information that the dedicated wrestling fan wants. Our mission is to make our news coverage complete enough to be the only source of wrestling news one needs if they so choose. We will strive for coverage with the maturity of a newsletter. We will always credit the source of our news, and we highly encourage you to support The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, The Pro-Wrestling Torch Newsletter and the PWInsider Elite area. We will not speculate on news, and if the source of our news does, we will report it as such. We will avoid bias. We will not resort to knee-jerk reaction or sensationalism. The black and white design of our site exists for a reason. We are not a flashy presence, our mission is to let our content speak for itself. In addition to current news, each week we will offer a glimpse back in time with the stories that were breaking in the wrestling world 5, 10 and 15 years ago. To maintain authenticity to the period, our news will be presented as it was at the time. If Tim Horner was scheduled to win the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in mid 1990 (and obviously he wasn't), we will report that Tim Horner is scheduled to win the NWA Title in mid 1990.

Television reviews and star ratings will not be a focus here. The stories, people and events that make the wrestling industry turn, and the business side of the sport as a whole will be the dominant focus, and if three words best describe our interests, they would be
the bigger picture. With the launch of the site we have part 1 of an interview with Vince McMahon conducted by Playboy Magazine, where the most powerful man in American wrestling recounts being beaten with a wrench by his step-father for attempting to stop him from beating his mother, only to have his mother sexually assault him as well. While other sites call Vince McMahon twisted, we want to know why he is the way that he is. If Lanny Poffo says something interesting about wrestling twenty years ago, we'll print it. Simply put, The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle is for the wrestling fan who is never content with only examining the surface of a story, for the wrestling fan who can never take in enough information on the industry, and for the wrestling fan who wants more information and less opinion.

Thank you for your interest in
The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle. Please take some time to look around, and please bookmark the site and tell a friend if you enjoy what you see. The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle is still very much a work in progress, and invites any and all comments and criticism. Together, we can look at wrestling the way it should be looked at, with the respect and passion worthy of all of those who sacrificed their livelihoods and bodies to keep our dream alive.

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