A Rey of atonement for Vickie?

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August 05, 2007

Irish author James Joyce once stated, "Mistakes are the portals of discovery." Well, if Mr. Joyce's words ring true, then Vickie Guerrero has undergone an incredible odyssey since last May, and emerged from it as a great Assistant General Manager on SmackDown.

The evidence of her startling self-excursion? That lies not within our stars, but within our DVRs and TV sets, which this past Friday night showed Vickie taking steps to rectify a year-old mistake she made ("My greatest," she clarified for WWE.com), when she turned her back on a lifelong family friend and former World Champion. Her solution? To name the returning Rey Mysterio as Chavo Guerrero's opponent at SummerSlam three weeks from today.

Of course, Vickie's nephew-in-law refuses to view his shameful treatment of Mysterio the same way as she does these days. As Chavo explained to WWE.com last week, he defended the Guerrero family name against the longtime family friend whom he believed had been exploiting it. Clearly, he feels no remorse over the mental anguish he and Vickie caused Mysterio throughout the latter part of 2006. Worse, he's prouder than ever of the tremendous physical suffering he inflicted with a chair during their "I Quit" Match on SmackDown last October. And he positively beams at the end result beyond his victory in that brutal contest: Career-threatening surgery for Rey's ruptured ACL and torn patella tendon, from which the former World Champion required nine grueling months of rehabilitative physical therapy.

A year ago, Vickie applauded Guerrero's heinous actions toward Rey. A year later, she made certain that her nephew-in-law knew that she'd no longer join in his sadistic Mysterio-bashing. Sitting with WWE.com in the G.M.'s office shortly after the conclusion of Friday's SmackDown in Phoenix, she only wants the best for a man whom her late husband, WWE Hall of Famer Eddie Guerrero, hailed as both mejor amigo and hermano.

"Knowing how Chavo had hurt him during the ‘I Quit' Match…what he must have gone through with the surgery and rehab…my heart has been real heavy for Rey," Vickie lamented. "As the months have gone by, I've become a better person. Knowing Rey has healed well and that he's returning to SmackDown, I just hope I can face him one day and say how sorry I am."

From a business standpoint, the Assistant G.M. is also fully aware what the Master of the 619 represents for the Friday night brand. "Rey's an enormous asset to SmackDown. He's a great wrestler and one of our finest Superstars. I think our fans can't wait for his return at SummerSlam; I know I'm looking forward to seeing him there in the ring."

It's a remarkably different and pleasing sentiment, though surely Vickie must realize what she did Friday night; by putting Mysterio in a SummerSlam contest with the Superstar who nearly ended his career, there's a distinct possibility that Chavo could suffer a similarly vindictive fate. Vickie claims that she'd rather not worry about things that haven't happened yet, though it's clearly on her mind, judging from the way she clasps onto her Styrofoam cup of water while talking.

"When I was Chavo's manager," she recalled, going somewhat off-topic, "we didn't feel that we had been treated fairly by people. We just wanted revenge on everyone. Now, with me being Assistant General Manager here, I want to show our fans that I have turned over a new leaf, and make our brand a better product for them."

Though she maintains having learned from her past mistakes, Vickie knows she can't excuse them -- particularly those she imposed in Mysterio's direction. Instead, she simply hopes that neither Superstar will be irreparably harmed at their upcoming SummerSlam clash in New Jersey, and that her decision to sanction the match ultimately serves as a method to heal long-open wounds.

"The new Vickie Guerrero is more caring about people," she insisted. "She's more interested in trying to make friends rather than enemies. I just ask for more time with our fans, so that they can see that I'm trying to become a better person."

Spoken like a person who has truly discovered herself.

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