After beginning his professional wrestling career in the late ’80s, working for promotions in Mexico as well as companies like New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) and Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW), Eddie Guerrero made quite the name for himself in WCW. As one of the Cruiserweight division’s biggest stars, Guerrero put on some amazing matches inside WCW’s ring.
He’d eventually sign with WWE in 2000, joining the company before they bought out his former employer. However, he was released from his WWE deal after a drunk driving arrest in November of 2001. Guerrero returned to WWE in 2002 when he attacked Rob Van Dam on an episode of Monday Night RAW. During his time with WWE, Guerrero established himself as one of the WWE Universe’s most beloved stars. He won a WWE Championship, two European Titles, a United States Championship, and two Intercontinental Titles.
Guerrero also captured four Tag Team Championships with partners such as Chavo Guerrero, Tajiri, and Rey Mysterio. Unfortunately, Guerrero’s career was cut short when he passed away in November of 2005 due to an underlying heart condition. It was a tremendous loss for the professional wrestling world. He was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame in 2006, several months after his passing.
Recently, Chris Jericho released a podcast that was taped on his Jericho Cruise. The show included himself, Rey Mysterio, Konnan, and Diamond Dallas Page. The four men honored Guerrero with an episode of the “Talk Is Jericho” podcast, reminiscing on his life and career. During the show, Jericho revealed how WWE CEO Vince McMahon felt about Guerrero upon his arrival to the company:
“He came in with Chris [Benoit], Perry Saturn, and Dean [Malenko]. They were called The Radicalz, imagine combination. Now, if you look at those guys, Chris Benoit, Perry Saturn, Eddie Guerrero and Dean Malenko. It’s the WWE system. Who’s gonna make it?
“Right from the start – I vividly remember this two weeks after they got there – I heard from a very high source, ‘Vince says, ‘Eddie’s the guy.’’ I was like, ‘Really?’ ‘Eddie’s the guy. He’s the one?’ ‘Out of all these other guys?’ Perry’s all big and Benoit was Benoit and Dean was Dean.
“Vince said, ‘Eddie’s the guy.’ Because he checked off all the boxes. He didn’t have the size, but he worked like he was a giant. He thought like he was a giant, he could do anything, as all of us know, and he had the character and charisma.
“Lo and behold – Vince is a genius and Vince knew what he wanted and Vince made him one of the biggest stars in the company, but that was right off the bat. He saw that, which I always though, ‘Wow, right away, you could see Eddie’s character and charisma coming through.”
H/T WrestleZone for the transcriptions