Jump to content
Pro Wrestling Only
Sign in to follow this  
Loss

[1998-11-29-Brian Hildebrand Tribute Show] Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko vs Eddy Guerrero & Chris Jericho

Recommended Posts

Arn Anderson accompanies Benoit and Malenko to ringside and even brings out Ric Flair as a surprise before the match to present Brian Hildebrand with a replica Big Gold Belt. Eddy and Jericho heel it up big time, tearing into Brian at ringside, who supposedly loved it. This is a unique match for 1998, as none of these guys really got this much time all that often. Jericho and Eddy make an excellent heel team. I thought Jericho was fired up enough that he was on par with Benoit and Eddy for this one. Check out that chop battle with Benoit that ends with Jericho poking the guy in the eye. Malenko just couldn't match the intensity of the other three, but he hugged the apron for most of this anyway. I really loved this. I think it could have been even better if either team had more doubleteam moves, although we saw a little of that at times. But I suppose that's not a big issue since the Benoit-Malenko team was fairly new and Jericho and Eddy weren't teaming regularly. Beautiful finish with both heels tapping and Brian Hildebrand running in to ring the bell. Had this happened on pay-per-view or even television, it would be remembered as an all-time classic. The plus side to the handheld filming is that there's no obnoxious WCW commentary to not put it over properly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm surprised I've never heard of this match before. Featuring maybe the top 4 indy darlings of the era in a year with a distinct lack of 'workrate' matches and being as good as it is, you think this would've quickly got a reputation among tape traders that lasted quite a while. Really good match with a strong and well worked heel/face dynamic. Really like after Benoit's first hot tag in how he's slamming Eddy and following it up with big chops. Eddy and Jericho work well as a heel team and the FIP is really good. I love the sequence during Benoit's FIP that leads to Malenko coming off the top rope to assist a sunset flip. Nice ending stretch leading to a really great ending.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I loved Flair's promo as it felt like the CEO of the company giving a spirited Christmas speech where you know he doesn't know the person as well as others but yet you are surprised at how aware he is and how sincere he sounds.

 

The match is great and really should have been filling out the first hour of Nitro's. Eddy seems game and Jericho is gaining some confidence and is smoother in his spots than at many points throughout the year. THe finish is one of the better feel good moments of the year with Brian calling for the bell. A nice surprise in a pretty shoddy month since Survivor Series. (****1/4)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From a fancam of a benefit show. Early on it had a house showy type of feel but they did go on to work hard. Had quite a generous duration also. There was some good action from four of the better WCW workers of the time. I'd say Jericho was the weakest technically although he made up for it with his charisma. Unfortunately it got bogged down in a long FIP segment. How I love 'THE' format. I'd say it was as good as you could expect to get from an untelevised show barring a miracle.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris Benoit & Dean Malenko vs Eddie Guerrero & Chris Jericho - Brian Hildebrand Tribute Show 11/29/98

 

HOLY SHIT, THIS WAS ALL TYPES OF AWESOME! WCW's Four Corners finally get the opportunity to knock it out of the park and they don't waste one moment. Eddie and Jericho remind me why I absolutely love pro wrestling. They are just so damn entertaining, but you want to boo them every step of the way and Benoit & Malenko are here to kick ass because Jericho and Eddie went out their way to mock Hildebrand at the beginning of the match. Jericho and Eddie blend cowardly, vicious and arrogance in one appetizing package delivering an all-time great heel tag team performance. All the classic Jericho & Eddie spots are here: Eddie covering Jericho's ears so he can't hear "Jericho Sucks!", scurrying to the corner to hold onto your partner's leg, Eddie calling for timeout. That is just a few it was literally awesome heel spot after another. The heels try as they might to fight fire with fire are just overwhelmed by the badassery of The Horsemen. Even Malenko is teeing off on Jericho and making this a heated bout. This is the exact environment that Benoit excels in. Jericho and Eddie try to meet him head on and just get destroyed. In a hilarious moment as Malenko is countering a Jericho surfboard and the people are chanting "Jericho Sucks!", he yells "SHUT UP YOU BUNCH OF NIMRODS!" Sounds like a man that has a tenuous grasp at best on this match. Jericho once again tries to meet Benoit head on and a wicked chopfest ensues. Jericho does what any intelligent coward would do, pokes him in the eyes and forcefully drops him throat first across the top rope. OW!

 

Jericho and Eddie just flip the switch from cowards to arrogant prick heels like that. Eddie is telling fans to kiss his ass while he drops Benoit with a brainbuster. Jericho is covering Benoit with one foot after a double suplex. Eddie flies over the top onto Benoit throat as it laid exposed on the apron being held in place by Jericho. Then Benoit's neck is snapped into the bottom rope. Benoit is great at selling and you can hear him gasping for breath on this fancam. Benoit finally hits a suplex to break up a sleeper, but goes up top to consolidate the advantage, but Eddie is able to hit a superplex and Jericho detains Malenko. I have loved the struggle of the entire match but here you can just see Benoit fight with every last breath to break free as Eddie and Jericho do everything they can to somehow contain this raging fireball. Some of the exchanges between Benoit and these two are just incredibly fierce. Eventually Benoit waylays them both off the apron. Building to a Malenko hot tag is suspect at best and it is for the best it does not last long. Jericho rolls through a roll up to apply the Liontamer, but Malenko makes the ropes. Jericho throws a temper tantrum, but Eddie snaps him out of it. SUPERPLEX/FROGSPLASH Combo!!!! BITCHIN! Benoit bowls Eddie off of Malenko. Benoit hits his Swandive Headbutt, but Jericho pulls out the ref. Benoit shoots Eddie into a Malenko powerbomb into a Cloverleaf and Benoit has Jericho trapped in the Crippler Crossface, but there is no ref. WAIT! Brian Hildebrand leaps into the ring and Eddie & Jericho both tap out as Hildebrand gives us a classic call for the bell. Then because it is 1998 and your wardrobe determines your allegiance he reveals a Four Horsemen shirt to a nice pop.

 

Jericho & Guerrero give a master class in how you can blend old school heeling with modern offense. It is all about flipping that switch from cowards to pricks. It was just awesome watching them have all that time to work. It has been said a million zillion times and even by Jericho himself, they were a totally missed opportunity as a tag team. Benoit did a great job in his face in peril selling early and then realizing he needed to fight his way out of there going right into asskicker mode. Even Malenko did well in this crowd-pleasing, asskicking match. This would be my WCW Match of the Year if it took place in WCW and it is right there with Austin/Dude Love for US Match of 1998. Love, love this style and these four crushed it in honor of Brian Hildebrand! ****1/2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jericho and Eddy heeling on a tribute to a man legitimately on the verge of dying is brazen as all hell, but I love it because it was so ballsy and because you know Hildebrand was probably 100% behind them, for the sake of the business. It even takes a little of the sting out of the "Eddy's in hell" crap...not enough, but some.

 

On a happier note: yeah, this was one of my favorite US matches of the year, and it's precisely *because* of the setting. Ideally you would want this to be on television or PPV where people could see it, but the presentation and the atmosphere and the announcing would just kill it. Here there's no time cues, no commercials, no bickering announcers talking about the NWO, no one telling them to go home early because Hogan's talking segment ran long, no Nash or someone trying to piggyback on the moment, no desires to SWERVE anybody, and we're in Knoxville where Mark Curtis was already a known quantity with a rabid crowd squarely into the story of the match instead of looking to get seen on TV. Even if it's far from one of the high-end tag matches of the decade, taking away all those factors is one of the biggest additions by subtraction for any match you'll ever see. There are some good hot near-falls but this never really feels overindulgent--a good blend of '90s and territorial wrestling with the only possible finish. For a few minutes, Smoky Mountain Wrestling was alive and well again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

#226 - placetobenation.com/countdown-top-500-matches-of-the-90s-250-201/

 

Jericho does a good job getting some heat before this starts up. I liked when Eddy showed Jericho his chest after taking some chops from Benoit... "look at this!" Pretty brutal chop exchange between Benoit and Jericho too. Eddy is all kinds of awesome with his heel antics while working over Benoit. I agree, it really is a missed opportunity not having them as a dominant heel tag team in WCW. By the time Malenko gets the hot tag, the crowd is super fired up. You get a nicely timed save from Benoit after Eddy hits the Frog Splash. The finish is awesome, and totally aids in calling this a great match.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×