Since announcing his retirement on WWE Raw, EDGE has had to contend with the life-altering injury, keeping him from ever competing inside of the squared circle, in a short span of time. On WWE SmackDown, EDGE relinquished the World Heavyweight Championship.
Welcome back to The Wrestling Times. There’s a lot of emotions coursing through our hearts over the sudden forced retirement of EDGE, but with all great endings comes new beginnings. At WWE’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view, a new World Heavyweight Champion will be decided in a Ladder Match. So you know the drill, let’s discuss–are you ready?–wrestling.
You wouldn’t expect this from the heelish Mexican Aristocrat, but Alberto Del Rio proved to be a class act when he spoke respectfully of EDGE’s career. There was a sense of longing pride in his rhetoric, because Del Rio wanted his Destiny to lead him to the World Heavyweight Championship through the act of defeating EDGE. Alberto knew what defeating EDGE would have meant for his career. A wise-crazy wrestling deity once said, “To be The Man, you’ve got to beat The Man.” EDGE had reigned as The World Heavyweight Champion more times than anyone has in the WWE; if Del Rio had defeated EDGE, it would have set the pace for his legacy.
Unbeknownst to Alberto Del Rio, his Destiny would not entail EDGE surrendering the World title to him, either. Unlike when Mr. McMahon crowned Randy Orton the new WWE Champion (No Mercy 2007) after John Cena was forced to surrender it due to injury, SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long does not believe in just handing over a title. A 20-Man, Over the Top Rope, Battle Royal, to decide who would compete at Extreme Rules against Alberto Del Rio, was issued as the night’s main-event.
Under different circumstances, Rey Mysterio Jr. would have been an excellent replacement. Mysterio and Del Rio’s feud ended abruptly to my standards; to see the two compete in a Ladder Match would have been fulfilling story wise, and presented an innovative lucha libre styled PPV main event.
But what better way to end WWE SmackDown than with Christian earning the opportunity at The World Heavyweight Championship, and EDGE going out to congratulate his best friend of twenty-seven years?
Going back to WWE SmackDown, Alberto Del Rio (after Teddy announced the main event) scathingly declared that he was happy that he crippled EDGE from ever wrestling again. What did you expect? He’s a heel and needed to draw back his heat. But what I most loved about it, was what happened after EDGE’s vacating of the title. The two came face to face backstage with Del Rio extending his hand, and giving his signature wink. Instead of EDGE shaking his hand, he left Del Rio standing there. Every hero needs a mortal enemy. Del Rio is The Joker of this wrestling feud, as EDGE now leaves behind his Robin, Christian, to carry on the feud.
Though this episode of WWE SmackDown did a great job presenting EDGE tying up loose ends, and leaving others just a tad loose, the real tear-jerker came about after WWE SmackDown went off the air. In an exclusive video on WWE.com, Christian notified to those with the benefit of flash photography that EDGE and Christian (E&C) would pose for exactly five seconds. Then the entire SmackDown locker room poured out on the stage to congratulate EDGE, with The Big Show, Chavo Guerrero, Rey Mysterio, and even Triple-H coming down the ramp to personally congratulate him. What made it so heartfelt was EDGE wasn’t expecting it, and became overwhelmed with tears. So did I.
That’s it for this post. Thank you, EDGE. WWE won’t be the same without you.
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