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   Thu, December 23, 2004



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SLAM! Speaks: Our 2004 highlights
By SLAM! Wrestling


Cartoon by Annette Balesteri, our SLAM! Wrestling Editorial Cartoonist


As the year 2004 comes to a close, the SLAM! Staff chose to together to reflect on the year that was in pro wrestling.

After much discussion on the highs and lows of the year, the question was raised as to the single greatest moment this year. Here's what we thought.

Jason Clevett
I am sure many will pick this as the highlight, but it takes on a personal twist for me. Standing in Madison Square Garden watching Eddie Guerrero, the Smackdown brand's WWE Champion, embracing newly crowned RAW World Champion Chris Benoit while confetti rained from above still gives me chills. It's rare anymore for true emotion to come through in wrestling, but the smiles and tears on the faces of both the wrestlers and many fans in attendance said it all. For one night, it was about two best friends who, according to some, weren't big enough/tall enough/charismatic enough to win the big one, proving the world wrong. In a year filled with too many lowlights, that one moment shines and will remain with me for the rest of my life.

Greg Oliver
As I guy who never missed an edition of TSN's Stampede Wrestling show, nothing in 2004 will ever compare to seeing Chris Benoit finally rewarded for his hard work, professionalism and mat skills. Eddie Guerrero reaching the pinnacle too was just gravy.

Bob Kapur
The highlight of 2004 was the continued existence of NWA-TNA. Wrestling has been in a rut lately, in large part due to the lack of any serious competition for WWE. Vince McMahon, it has been proven, thrives on competition; when there's a threat he fights back by putting on the best product possible. If NWA-TNA can capitalize on the momentum from its stellar December PPV, and if Panda keeps bankrolling it, the company may one day become a viable threat to the WWE. And push them to being as good as we all know they can be.

Jon Waldman
While many will be surprised by my selection -- given my eternal leanings towards Chris Benoit as my favourite wrestler -- it was seeing Eddy Guererro with the WWE Heavyweight Championship around his waist. After all that Latino Heat has had to deal with in his life, seeing him on top was definitely a highlight reel moment that will stick around for years to come.

So now you've heard what we think was the highlight of the year in wrestling; now we want to hear your opionion. E-mail us and let us know what you think was the top moment in 2004.

-- Compiled by Jon Waldman