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WRESTLING COLUMNS

WWE Crusierweight Division: A Ready Made Division"
June 9, 2005 by R. Jones


When many people watch SmackDown on Thursday nights or Velocity on Saturday nights, they see what is known as the Cruiserweight division. This is basically smaller, normally more agile guys doing what they do best. At one point, there was a good emphasis on this division, now there is little, however with the recent signings of Psicosis and Super Crazy along with Juventud Guerrera, there seems to be an interest in the division coming back. Lets go through a quick rundown of it's roster, and some achievments of each superstar.

1. Billy Kidman: Kidman was one of the superstars who came to the WWE (WWF at the time) through the WCW/ECW invasion. When he came to the WWF, he was already a multiple time WCW Cruiserweight Champion. Along with that, he has won numerous WWF/WWE titles aswell as a Tag Team title reign with Paul London. So, for the most part, he was quite well known to many fans when he came to the WWF.

2. WWE Cruiserweight Champion Paul London: Paul London started out in the Indy Promotions like many others. He worked for TNA and most notably, Ring of Honor, before coming to the WWE. Also, he won the ECWA Super 8 tournament in 2003. But when he came to the WWE, he was somewhat still unknown.

3. Nunzio: In ECW he was known as Little Guido. There he was a member of the Full Blooded Italians, and held the ECW tag team titles with Tony Mameluke. In WWE he reformed the FBI with Johnny the Bull and Chuck Palumbo. So like Kidman, he was somewhat known to fans, depending on what other shows they watched, when he came to the WWE in 2002.

4. Chavo Guerrero: Chavo Guerrero's contract was acquired in the selling of WCW to the WWF. In WCW he was a well known member of the Misfits in Action along with fellow WWE roster member, Bill DeMott. Now, he is one of the major names of SmackDown, having put years under his belt, and titles around his waist.

5. Funaki: Funaki is undoubtedly the superstar in the Cruiserweight division who has been with the WWE the longest. Back in the 90's, he was a member of Kaientai with Taka Michinoku. In 2004, Funaki finally took the Cruiserweight title from Spike Dudley to become the champ for the first time. Sadly, however, his reign was just over 2 months, yet he still enjoyes success often teaming with the man who ended his title reign in the first round of a 6 man gauntlet, Paul London.

6. Shannon Moore: Shannon Moore is truly "All that and Moore". He was in WCW until it was sold out and afterwards went to the Indys. In WCW he teamed with Shane Helms, known to WWE fans as the Hurricane, and Evan Karagias as 3 Count, a "boy band" answer to the WWF's Hardy Boyz. Moore re-surfaced in WWE in 2002, again teaming with Helms, before becoming the #1 Student of Matt Hardy, the Sensay of Mattitude. Now, he wrestles with short hair with a spiked mohawk, looking like a mix between HBK's entrance clothes and the Road Warriors outfit.

7. Scotty 2 Hotty: Scotty joined the WWF in 1993 as a jobber to the bigger names. In the late 90's, however, he and Brian Lawler (Grand Master Sexay) formed a Tag Team known as TOO MUCH (Later changed to TOO COOL). Together up until Lawler's release from WWF and Scotty's absence do to an ankle injury, they held the tag team titles, aswell as Scotty's Light Heavyweight title reign. At Wrestlemania 20 he and Rikishi won the tag team titles. Now, however, he often does what he did back in the early 90's...jobs to the stars. However, somehow, evertime he does the WORM, the crowd still enthusiastically chants W-O-R-M!

8. Akio: Before signing with the WWE in 2003, Akio spent time in WCW as a member of the Jung Dragons, and in NWA TNA as a member in the Flying Elvis's. So it's no surprise that upon signing he joined Ryan Sakoda and Tajiri. In 2004, Tajiri went to RAW and Sakoda was released, leaving Akio on his own on SmackDown. However, it was not a case of being abandoned and defeated for Akio. Instead, he has been in many great matches with other Cruiserweights, often vying for the title, along with teaming with other heels on Velocity and SmackDown.

9. Spike Dudley: In ECW he was a member of the Dudley Boyz...and he was the same in the WWF/WWE. In 2002, he and Tazz defeated his brothers for the tag team titles, aswell as defeating Regal in about 25 seconds to win the European Title. In 2004 when he was drafted to SmackDown, he took a "leader" role for the Dudley Boys, and with their help, defeated Rey Mysterio for the Cruiserweight Title.

10. Rey Mysterio: Probably the most well known and cheered for superstar on Smackdown today, Rey has done it all. In WCW he held the Cruiserweight, Tag Team, and Crusierweight Tag Team titles. After WCW went out of business, Rey wrestled in the Indys and Mexico. When he signed with WWE in 2002, he became and instant hit. Since his debut he has won the WWE Tag Team and Cruiserweight titles multiple times and he often ends up defeating even the heavyweights in the showstealer of the night, and his finisher move, the 619/West Coast Pop makes the crowd go into a frenzy. He is one of the most decorated wrestlers today and continues to be a major draw wherever he goes.

In addition to these names, the WWE recently signed on some other well known Cruiserweights.

1. Psicosis: In the early 90's he and Rey Mysterio set attendance records at the Arena Mexico. In 1996 at WCW Clash of Champions, Psicosis and Konnan gave American audiences their first look at Lucha Libre, the mexican style of high flying fast paced wrestling. While in WCW he won the Cruiserweight Title. Before WCW went out of business in 2001, he became a sort of body guard for Juventud Guerrera. After WCW folded, he returned to Mexico and competed in AAA and CMLL aswell as American promotions such as the WWA and XPW. In 2005 he signed with the WWE but has yet to appear on live TV. This Sunday at ECW One Night Stand, he will face of with Rey Mysterio, and after that, will most likely appear on SmackDown for the Cruiserweight division.

2. Super Crazy: Crazy debuted in WWF as Super Loco and won the WWF Light Heavyweight Title. Soon after, however, he was part of the talent exchange with ECW, where he fueded with Tajiri. Since then he has become a well known competitor throughout Mexico, the US, and Puetro Rico.

3. Frankie Kazarian: Kazarian at one point, teamed with Nova, now known as Simon Dean, as Evolution, and enjoyed success in the Indy rings. Soon after, major promotions started to take notice of him, and he signed with UPW in Southern California. After that, he went to NWA TNA, where along with Michael Shane, he won the X Division title. In early 2005, he quit TNA and went back to UPW. From there, he signed with the WWE. Although he has yet to debut, many people know of his status with the company, and he should soon debut with Smackdown.

4. Juventud Guererra: Juvi was a 3 time WCW Cruiserweight Champion befor being released for an indcident in Australia. After that, he went on to perform in the Indy Circuit in the US and Mexico. He was a member of Team Mexico in TNA before a falling out with AAA lost him his spot. On the Indy Circuit, he often teams with Psicosis. In spring 2005, he signed a WWE contract, probably to debut in the near future on Smackdown.

In conclusion, while the WWE's Cruiserweight division appears to be getting more emphasis put on it, it is not truly an authentic WWE product. For the most part, it consists of mostly superstars who came from WCW's cruiserweight division, making it an almost ready made division. Hopefully this signing of Cruiserweights will continue, as many of the WWE Developemental Talent in OVW fit the bill for becoming the future of the WWE Crusierweight Division.

by R. Jones..


Brian Bertrand wrote:
I somewhat agree with you. The Cruiserweight Title is definately looking a lot better than it did when Spike Dudley was champion. Unfortnately, WWE might consider the division as a too-little-too-late situation and just end up making some of these guys jobbers.

As far as the current WWE roster goes, I would never put Scotty 2 Hotty in this category. He fits the weight description but his in-ring ability doesn't leaves a lot to be desired. Now I know I sound like a total ass when I say this but even WWE doesn't consider him much of a cruiserweight anymore. That's why they're bringing in Super Crazy and Kazarian. Sure I respect that Scotty has been there for a very long time and I will not deny that, but he's been reduced to a cruiserweight jobber and never gaining a push from his hard work. Maybe during the draft some new guys can come in and take notice that Scotty is still there and still wrestling even though not many of the higher-ups are paying any attention to him.
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