R.I.P. Eddie Guerrero 1967-2005
November 13, 2005 4:18 PM   Subscribe

[WrestleFilter] Eddie Guerrero, a/k/a Latino Heat, was found dead in his hotel room in Minnesota this morning. He was 38. His is the latest in a years-long string of tragic early deaths in professional wrestling.
posted by MegoSteve (44 comments total)
What's particularly noteworthy about Eddie's death, aside from the fact that he famously conquered personal demons, is that it's been rumored he was going to win the WWE title in his match tonight.
posted by MegoSteve at 4:22 PM on November 13, 2005

"it's been rumored he was going to win the WWE title in his match tonight"

dun dun DUN! you know who wins is always decided beforehand right? Wouldn't the "killer" wanna kill the members of the committee who decided Guerrero would win this time?

also, my money is on the personal demons taking revenge.

RIP Eddie :T
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 4:37 PM on November 13, 2005

At first I wondered if this was a hoax to raise publicity. Sadly, it seems not. I wouldn't put it past the WWE, however.
posted by allen.spaulding at 4:46 PM on November 13, 2005

Cheat to win, forever.
posted by zerolives at 4:48 PM on November 13, 2005

Indeed it is true. Mentioned it earlier in the Shroom thread.

The front page of WWE.com is dedicated to Eddie Guerrero and has links to memorable videos and background info. I like this one the most. While we know wrestling entertainment is planned for the most part, it's videos like that one that show how much it means to those people who do this stuff night after night.

However Eddie was not going to win tonight, as it's a Heat show followed by a RAW taping. He was going to make an appearance on the RAW taping and on tuesday(Smackdown! taping) he was going to pick up the strap in a triple threat match versus Batista and Randy Orton.
posted by JakeEXTREME at 4:59 PM on November 13, 2005

Frightening to think it's been over 8 years since Pillman passed. Sigh.
posted by Remy at 5:00 PM on November 13, 2005

posted by Hat Maui at 5:04 PM on November 13, 2005

Let's not forget Kerry Von Erich and Owen Hart.
posted by furtive at 5:23 PM on November 13, 2005

JakeEXTREME: It sounded to me like tonight was a weird double taping tonight (Pro Wrestling Torch refers to it in a couple news items), but maybe I've misinterpreted something.
posted by MegoSteve at 5:29 PM on November 13, 2005

Wow. I'm not a wrestling fan, but my roomates are. I suspect they may already be at work on the Eddie Guerrero memorial lowrider at this very moment.
posted by mullingitover at 5:43 PM on November 13, 2005

I remember the Eddie v. Chavo feud and the Hair v. Hair match fondly.

RIP Eddie.
posted by grey_flap at 5:45 PM on November 13, 2005

MegoSteve: Ah yes, stupid me not to check and see the Supershow schedule. I was making mention as Smackdown! is normally taped on tuesdays.
posted by JakeEXTREME at 6:08 PM on November 13, 2005

Junkyard Dog too, may he never be forgotten.
posted by edverb at 6:10 PM on November 13, 2005

I haven't watched wrestling for absolutely ages, yet I switched the idiot-box on today and there it was : some second-string WWE recap show, with Eddie G versus some guy called Kennedy. True to his "I lie, I cheat, I steal" catchphrase, he did indeed cheat to win. All the time with a huge grin on his face.

Ten hours later I hear he's dead. And he was only two years older than me. Damn.

RIP, Eddie Guerrero. You will be missed.
posted by kaemaril at 6:18 PM on November 13, 2005

[BoxingFilter] For what it's worth, genius San Francisco musician Mark Kozelek and his band Sun Kil Moon recorded a song about the death of a young Korean boxer named Duk Koo Kim on their album Ghosts of the Great Highway last year. It's one of the saddest songs I've ever heard, and Kozelek and company turn it into a Neil Young-esque psychedelic epic that's worth hearing. It's a tragic tale -- both Kim's mother and the referee committed suicide after the fight.
posted by digaman at 6:21 PM on November 13, 2005

The last time I checked into wrestling was quite some time ago. I think I was in summer camp.

So it's quite a shock to me to find out that British Bulldog, Big Boss Man, Miss Elizabeth (that one really hurts), Mr. Perfect and JYD are all gone! Positively tragic.

I'm starting to think that the world of professional wrestling might not be a particularly healthy one . . .
posted by aladfar at 6:25 PM on November 13, 2005

I'm just a few blocks from where he died. Exciting.
posted by maxsparber at 6:29 PM on November 13, 2005

digaman -- If you do not know it already, you may be very interested in listening to "Boom-Boom Mancini" by Warren Zevon.
posted by flarbuse at 6:52 PM on November 13, 2005

Miss Elizabeth and Mr. Perfect are dead? I knew about some of the others (not the British Bulldog, too!). Is there a relation between steroids and heart attacks? My memory is fuzzy.

On preview, I'm with aladfar.
posted by Eideteker at 7:15 PM on November 13, 2005

posted by caddis at 7:19 PM on November 13, 2005

What a weird, sad profession. Earlier mention of Kerry Von Erich reminded me just what a Strange life that family led.
posted by Gilbert at 7:23 PM on November 13, 2005

Coming soon to a CSI episode near you.
posted by fenriq at 7:40 PM on November 13, 2005

I haven't watched in a couple years, but Eddie was one of the few lights in the WWE when I stopped watching. Sad.


Cheat to Win.
posted by papakwanz at 8:19 PM on November 13, 2005

posted by Corpus Callosum at 8:21 PM on November 13, 2005

Eddie was a great performer - even as a bad guy, his pure wrestling skill and charisma had fans cheering for him.

posted by sachinag at 9:04 PM on November 13, 2005

caddis, not a double since it wasn't front page. There's a bit more substance here in this thread. I also linked back to my original post from this thread already. But hey, if it can boost the shroom post I guess.
posted by JakeEXTREME at 10:15 PM on November 13, 2005

I heard about this as soon as I woke up this morning and it ruined my whole day. I'll never forget Eddie and Chris Benoit celebrating in the ring as WMXX went off the air. It was truly a night both of them deserved.

posted by Lusy P Hur at 10:55 PM on November 13, 2005


Truely A Class Act.
posted by Dreamghost at 12:28 AM on November 14, 2005

Hmm, why do the wrestlers all seem to choose to die in my homestate of Minnesota?
posted by AMWKE at 12:32 AM on November 14, 2005


Damn. I was a total Eddie Guerrero mark...
posted by PenDevil at 1:43 AM on November 14, 2005


I watched wrestling back in the late '90s, because the WCW had picked up a lot of great talent from Mexico and Japan and would show about five minutes of excellent technical wrestling before they put out a forgettable shmuck. Eddie Guerrero was one of the best, and it seems like he was finally getting some time in the spotlight. A tragedy.
posted by graymouser at 4:58 AM on November 14, 2005

"it's been rumored he was going to win the WWE title in his match tonight"

dun dun DUN! you know who wins is always decided beforehand right?

I think you misunderstood. The rumour was that Batista was supposed to be booked to drop the title (i.e., the match would be written for him to lose) as he needs time off for an injury (operation + rehab = at least 3 months on the bench).

But anyway. Eddie's death is stunning, yes, but in hindsight not too surprising. These says it seems that wrestlers only die from drug ODs or heart attacks. Eddie might be just another in a long line of cardiac deaths which includes Brian Pillman and Ravishing Rick Rude, not to mention the others already noted here -- and of course, Eddie's old tag team partner from his AAA days, Art Barr, who also died well before his time.
posted by macdara at 5:35 AM on November 14, 2005

Eddy Guerrero was my favorite wrestler. Even though I found out yesterday that he died, the reality still hasn't hit. Watching Raw and Smackdown this week (both shows will be tributes) is gonna be pretty hard, though. La Arena has a profile on him with a pretty comprehensive list of titles held; for those not familiar with the man and his work I'd recommend his series against Dean Malenko in ECW, his matches as Black Tiger in New Japan Pro Wrestling, his tag match with Art Barr against el Hijo del Santo and Octagon at 1994's "When Worlds Collide" show, and his World Championship title win against Brock Lesnar at 2004's "No Way Out" pay per view.
posted by jtron at 7:21 AM on November 14, 2005

posted by dobie at 7:32 AM on November 14, 2005

posted by solistrato at 7:36 AM on November 14, 2005

jtron: I'd also add to that the no DQ match he did with Edge on Smackdown in 2002. That match managed to turn my mom into a total mark for it's duration.
posted by PenDevil at 7:36 AM on November 14, 2005

Howcome so many of these guys die so young?
posted by Smedleyman at 8:15 AM on November 14, 2005

Smedleyman: I'm just speculating here, but I believe it's a number of factors. The wrestling business goes year round unlike traditional sports with seasons like football and baseball, so there's no time to rest up and heal from injuries that invariably happen with the insane high impact moves that are popular today. In order to get over with the crowd (fueling merchandise sales and popularity, which leads to bigger paychecks), the wrestlers have to do insane, high risk manuevers that lead to injuries. There's no union, either, and the wrestlers are independent contractors, often with no insurance, so, in order to get paid, they have to work through the pain of their injuries. If they don't work, their families don't eat. As a result, many develop problems with painkillers and other ways of self-medicating.

The other major factor is that wrestling requires a certain look (freakishly huge muscles), because promoters like Vince McMahon want their wrestlers to look larger than life. Most people just don't have the genetics to develop that look, so they take shortcuts. Unfortunately for the wrestlers, those shortcuts have long-term health effects, particularly with the heart, which leads to this abundance of premature deaths in the field.
posted by MegoSteve at 8:46 AM on November 14, 2005 [1 favorite]

Eddie and Dean's matches in ECW still stand among the finest ever in the bingo hall, or in the US at large. What those two did for mat wrestling in the united states back then cannot be overstated.
posted by zerolives at 9:54 AM on November 14, 2005

RIP Latino Heat...I shall miss you.
posted by black8 at 10:04 AM on November 14, 2005

posted by Simon! at 10:06 AM on November 14, 2005

This is one of the coolest FPPs I've read in a long time, and I'm not sure why.
posted by nonmerci at 12:53 PM on November 14, 2005

HBO's RealSports sent out snarkist Armen Keteyian to interview Vince McMahon. Keteyian asked McMahon why it was that professional wrestlers kept dying at an early age and whether McMahon felt at all responsible. McMahon took almost a stereotypically theatrical "moment" before flipping out on Keteyian, knocking the interviewer's clipboard out of his hands. McMahon's response was pretty much "no, I run a business, these things happen."
posted by Ogre Lawless at 1:38 PM on November 14, 2005

As has been noted here, Eddie had dealt with drug problems in the past. He probably used a number of chemicals, including roids, but I believe his most severe problem had been with painkillers. As Megosteve noted, wrestler's get injured A LOT (something that the "oh it's all just fake nonsense" crowd denies... yes it's nonsense, but I prefer to call it staged high-impact entertainonsense... anyway). Eddie had (supposedly) been clean for the last 4 years or so. I say supposedly because you never really know, but I don't see any major reasons to doubt it. Even still, painkillers do a number on the heart, and cutting them out cold turkey can do an even worse number because of the strain it puts on your body as you're going through detox. Also, the guy was 5'8", 220 lbs. That's a lot of muscle on a small frame, and if he wasn't on roids, he was working out A LOT. His body wasn't meant to carry that much mass, his heard wasn't built to pump blood through it.

Another thing that a lot of people don't realize is the stress these guys go through. They are away from their families all year long, usually 200+ days (if they are lucky!). Plus, being in a high profile position like Eddie has been the last few years means a lot of pressure to perform. If you're the champ, or wrestling near the top of the card, it is on you to perform to the best of your abilities to give the crowd a good show so that people will come back tomorrow. If you don't, then you move down the card, and your paycheck starts getting smaller. Being the champ means that management and the bookers have faith that you are a big draw, and so you better damn well be one. Eddie had never before had the kind of attention on him in the last couple years, even when he was a big fish in the small pond of ECW. At 38, with years on the road, lots of drugs in his past, and constant injuries, well, it just all adds up.
posted by papakwanz at 10:36 PM on November 14, 2005

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