Professional wrestler Eddie Guerrero passed away yesterday in his hotel room in Minneapolis. Cause of death is reported as a heart attack. Although not one of my all-time favorite wrestlers, I became a fan of Eddie's work during the Monday Night Wars, when I was regularly following World Championship Wrestling. He was one of the few wrestlers with enough charisma to win me over on mike-work alone but who could also put on a helluva show in the ring. I enjoyed his lWo (Latino World Order) angle and his feud with his "crazy" nephew Chavo.
Once I had an opportunity to see a live performance by Mr. Guerrero at a house show in Peoria, Illinois. The overall card was great, featuring an Ultimate Dragon/Billy Kidman bout that blew me away and a very decent "Battle of the Big Men" main event involving Kevin Nash and The Giant. If I recall correctly Eddie was about the only performer to pick up the mike that night. Man, he really worked the classic arrogant out-of-towner angle. With a simple sneer and the proper intonation on the phrase "you hicks" he had the audience hating him from the get-go. I don't remember his opponent or the match, but his sheer personal magnetism had the whole house booing him. Eddie Guerrero, I salute you, wherever you are.
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