Photo via Wikimedia Commons
Who's that jumping out the sky?
When World Championship Wrestling (WCW) was ruling the roost in the Monday Night Wars against the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) one of the ways they did so was by cultivating a cruiserweight division that would tear the house down night after night before the big money guys would go on and pose for 15 minutes in the main event.
Yeah, the New World Order (NWO) and its battle against WCW was what brought the fans to the arena but they often left with lasting memories of the smaller wrestlers who went on first and had incredible matches to get them hot and ready for the main offerings.
One of these men was Rey Mysterio.
Rey is arguably the most successful worker in America to utilize the Lucha Libre style over the past decade. Like most of the cruiserweights on the WCW roster, he never went on to bigger and better things until he signed with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Even then, he faced an uphill battle thanks to his size and style, a far cry from what WWE typically promotes in its main events.
However, his major appeal as a babyface in the Mexican market and his masks selling so damn well at merchandise stands helped him on his way to the top. In 2006, he became the man to last the longest in the Royal Rumble at 62 minutes and went on to win the world heavyweight championship at WrestleMania 22.
Not bad for a vanilla midget.
It all started for him on this date in history (July 25, 2002), though, and you can watch him debut on Smackdown to a big pop and a solid match (that he won) against former WCW foil Chavo Guerrero.