Chavo's final lap?
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- A white flag has many meanings; among others, it can be flown to signify surrender or the final lap in an auto race. Over the last few months, ECW Champion Chavo Guerrero has proven that he will never do the former. But if the final ECW on Sci Fi before WrestleMania XXIV was any indication, the "Mexican Warrior's" title reign may be past the white flag and headed toward the finish line.
It appeared as if Chavo would have a fruitful, perhaps even easy, evening in the Crown Coliseum. As the show opened, the men who will compete in WrestleMania's 24-Man Battle Royal squared off in a gigantic tag team match. The ECW Champion no doubt looked on, scouting the two dozen men who will have a chance to earn an ECW Title opportunity this Sunday.
But moments after the match ended, Chavo ran into Tommy Dreamer -- who was pinned by Snitsky to end the tag team battle -- and Colin Delaney in the locker room. The "Mexican Warrior" took the opportunity to mock Dreamer & Delaney, but the ECW Original and his young protégé weren't about to take Chavo's comments lightly.
Springing into action, the banged-up Dreamer challenged Chavo to a match later in the night. The surprised champion scoffed and refused, until Dreamer questioned his heart -- using the oft-beaten and much-beleaguered Delaney as an example of someone who had more than the ECW Champion. This got the "Mexican Warrior's" Latino blood boiling, and he agreed to meet Dreamer in a non-title match by telling the ECW Original that "this will be the closest you ever get to the ECW Championship ever again."
Unfortunately for Chavo, those words may have been more wishful than prophetic. Chavo did indeed meet Dreamer in the main event, but there was an added surprise: The other 23 Battle Royal participants surrounded ringside to get a final look at the ECW Champion.
This development turned the bout into a de facto Lumberjack Match, as the Battle Royal participants made sure both men stayed in the ring. In the end, they may have ended up getting a little too involved, as moments after Chavo pinned Dreamer following a Frog Splash, all 23 Superstars climbed into the ring and began brawling in a possible preview of what's to come at WrestleMania XXIV.
What is to come for sure on Sunday is that one of those 24 Superstars will win the WrestleMania Battle Royal and earn the right to face Chavo later in the night on the grandest stage in sports-entertainment. The ECW Champion may have all week to worry about strategy, but be it Dreamer or any of the other 23 Superstars in the Battle Royal, his opponent won't be determined until shortly before WrestleMania goes live on pay-per-view. The challenger could be short or tall, big or small, and Chavo will have to adapt and formulate his game plan accordingly.
Can the "Mexican Warrior" find a way to lap the field and leave Orlando with the gold around his waist, or will a new kingpin make his way to the Extreme winner's circle in the Florida Citrus Bowl?