The news of Vince McMahon’s retirement sent shockwaves through the wrestling world, creating buzz around WWE. The fans, including myself, questioned the next phase of WWE. Triple H taking full control of creative peaked interest because of his success with NXT, despite the former CEO’s opinion. When a developmental show becomes more popular than two top talent shows, I’d like to think that’s success.
Madison Square Garden, the true home of WWE, hosted Monday Night Raw and living within the area, I could’ve help myself- I needed to attend. This show being the first Raw without Vince could be huge, historical in itself! New York always has a great taste in wrestling, making it fun to attend the shows; however, this MSG crowd was hyped up and ready for a show. Loud cheers and even louder boos, the WWE Universe in New York made their voices heard. Cheering for The Miz and booing Logan Paul out of the building. I felt whole being a part of something special. Talent from SmackDown were in attendance like Drew McIntyre, Ronda Rousey, and even The Brawling Brutes. Like I said, MSG has a bit of magic when it comes to WWE.
Rey Mysterio is a legend, period. I can go on and on about his accomplishments and moments he’s created throughout his career, even outside of WWE. This night was something more as we celebrated Rey Rey’s 20-year WWE anniversary. Now let’s be clear, he’s wrestled longer than 20 years. This is strictly when he debuted in WWE. 2002 was an epic year for wrestling fans and as being a 90’s baby, I was well aware of that. It was a match against Chavio Guerrero on SmackDown where Rey Mysterio sprung out of the stage. From that moment on, Mysterio became a shining star in WWE.
Let’s travel back to 2006. We had just lost quite possibly the greatest of all time, Eddie Guerrero. Being that Eddie was my childhood favorite, I was devastated along with the WWE Universe. So, I gave my love and trust to Rey Mysterio, Eddie’s best friend. I was gifted tickets to the 2006 Royal Rumble event. My dad took me as I stood on my chair holding my John Cena spinner belt. The moment of that night, a moment that lives rent free in my head today, was Rey Mysterio winning the Royal Rumble to move onto the main event of WrestleMania. 13-year-old me cried tears of joy, not only for Rey, but for the late great Eddie Guerrero. That was a feeling.
So yes, this Monday Night Raw celebrating 20 years of Rey Mysterio meant something to me and I had to be there. At 29 I was able to see Rey celebrate with his family and friends. Isn’t that what pro wrestling’s all about? Feelings memories, moments? This is why it’s the greatest thing in the world. This is why I do what I do today.