Edge – One of the True Greats – by Bob Bamber
He may not have crossed over into mainstream publicity like The Rock or John Cena, but when the dust settles on Edge’s retirement he will certainly be held in the same lights as Triple H and The Undertaker.
It was quite difficult to watch him on Monday night. Being only 19 years old Edge was in recent years become my favourite wrestler of all time. He was around when I started as a fan all those years ago, and up until last night he was still there.
That and the underlying fact that this was a work, a storyline too. I had half an eye on the titantron waiting for Alberto Del Rio to run out and turn the segment on its head. And then it dawned on me, this was real – Edge’s career is really over.
As much as it came out of the blue, nobody can be truly surprised at the announcement. As he said in his promo, he was always living on borrowed time after his neck and back injury in 2003. And in an interview last year, he said that at best he had two years left.
It will take a long while to settle in. There was no angle to set this up, no retirement speculation heading into his World Title match at Wrestlemania – and as a result no time to absorb the possibilities.
So it’s here I will now try. Edge, in my opinion go down as the best superstar of the last decade. Around when it started, and still going strong when it finished, there can’t be many who can say they were in the WWE for the entirity of 2000-2010. Triple H and Undertaker come to mind, but Hunter could never put on matches that Edge could, and Taker wasn’t quite the all-rounder that Edge was*.
He started off in the Brood, but it was his tag team with long time friend Christian that really set the ball rolling on his career. As part of long term rivalries with The Dudley Boys and The Hardy Boys, E&C cemented themselves as arguably the best tag team of it’s generation*
*in my opinion
Their tag-team three-way TLC match at Wrestlemania 17 was the pinnacle. Still my favourite match to watch, in terms of a spot-fest, the three tag teams put on an unbelievable match. Edge’s highlight being a spear to Jeff Hardy, who was hanging from the belts suspended above the ring. The clip would go on to be used thousands of times over the coming years.
Edge said, quite rightly, that they set the bar too high with those matches. And he was right, but Edge has made a career of setting the bar too high. In 2006 he became the new hottest commodity in Wrestling after shocking everyone and cashing in his Money in the Bank contract to end John Cena’s near year-long run as champion.
His first run as champion was cut far too short. Rather than main eventing Wrestlemania 22, he was in a Hardcore match with Mick Foley. Once again Edge was apart of an amazing Wrestlemania match, but this time he was the star. Not to take away from his X7 performance, but that was as part of 6 men, with Jeff Hardy vying for top berth in the match.
But with Foley he again tore the house down. Their match culminating in with Edge spearing Foley through a flaming table on the outside. Edge’s impressive Wrestlemania record would continue, up until Wrestlemania 24- where he would main event with The Undertaker. I always though more should’ve been made out of the streak vs streak match, but as 18 other superstars have found out, beating the Deadman on the Grandest stage of them all is no easy feat.
Edge had cemented himself as the lead man on Smackdown. His spells on Raw were good, but (as everyone has found out) it’s hard to establish yourself on Raw when John Cena is the main man. Not to say that he was found out in his Raw feud with Cena, in fact he was one of the better feuds Cena will ever have. But whenever I think of Friday Nights on Smackdown, I will think of the Rated ‘R’ Superstar.
At a time when Wrestling records are becoming more easy to beat, I still think Edge’s 31 WWE titles will be difficult to be beaten. They come more easily these days than they have in the past, but Edge’s record should stand for a very long time because of his versatility.
Being a heel gave him more freedom, but his runs as a face were still very good. And he had no problem in garnering a crowd reaction when he needed to. He also works brilliantly in any situation. Whether being on his own, with a valet in Lita or his highly entertaining run with Vickie Guerrero. He lead one of the better WWE stables in the last ten years in Los Guerreros- there aren’t many superstars who can say they have spawned their own tag team. Edge did that with Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins as ‘The Edgeheads’.
Edge will leave one of the greats. Whether you aren’t quite the fan I am of Edge, I doubt anyone could disagree that he has been one of the true greats in the company. He’s so talented that whatever he goes onto he will succeed. He will be sorely missed by all of the WWE Universe.
By Bob Bamber – a card-carrying Edgehead
So, was Edge better than The Undertaker? I want to know your answer. Go to twitter.com/bobbybamber – and tweet Yes for Edge, and No for Taker (Give it some context and explanation too! Will be a bit odd with a load of Yes or No tweets!).
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