Wrestler of the Day – June 12: Jerry Lynn

Here’s one of the most technically sound guys you’ll ever find: Jerry Lynn.

Jerry Lynn got his start on March 23, 1988 in the Minneapolis area. He would get a few job spots on WWF TV around this time, including this match from Wrestling Challenge on June 4, 1989.

Rick Martel vs. Jerry Lynn

Martel is in his brief period of being managed by Slick. Feeling out process to start with Martel tripping Lynn down and planting him with a slam. A nice dropkick and back elbow put Lynn down but Martel stops to yell about the Tito chants. Martel nails a top rope knee drop for the pin.

Lynn’s biggest claim to fame before he hit the big time was a LONG feud against the Lightning Kid, who would become more famous as Sean Waltman. Here’s one of their matches from the Global Wrestling Federation on December 27, 1991.

Light Heavyweight Title: Jerry Lynn vs. Lightning Kid

This is 2/3 falls and Kid is defending. There are special rules here: you have to win with a set finisher or the referee won’t count. The Kid has to use something called the Lightning Strike and Lynn has to use the sleeper. That’s very different. Kid grabs a headlock to start before they trade some arm work. Lynn comes back with a springboard armdrag to escape and it’s time for a test of strength.

Kid breaks Lynn’s bridge but the referee won’t count. These stipulations are going to get annoying in a hurry. Jerry grabs an amateur hold and agrees to let Kid try the same, earning him a kick to the ribs. A headscissors sends Jerry to the floor and a big dive crushes him again. Back in and Kid misses a guillotine legdrop and Jerry slaps on a quick sleeper for the first fall.

We take a break and come back with Lynn down off something we didn’t see. Kid gets rolled up but it doesn’t count either. Some kicks have Lynn in trouble but Lynn backdrops him out to the floor. A spinning cross body from the apron to the floor crushes Kid but he comes back with a tombstone out of nowhere for the pin.

Apparently that’s the Lightning Strike. Another break and we come back Kid hitting a corner dropkick but missing a charge. Lynn escapes the Lightning Strike and hits a cross body for no count. The referee goes down and Scott Anthony comes in to knock out Lynn but hits Kid with a chain by mistake. Lynn puts on a quick sleeper for the win and the title.

Rating: C+. This was the top indy feud at this point and it holds up pretty well over twenty years later. The stipulations really hurt here and it brings the match down a bit, but at least the spots didn’t hurt things too much. The Kid was a heel here despite not being big enough to make the tombstone look that effective. Good match.

Like most wrestlers around this time, Lynn wound up in Smoky Mountain. From 1992.

Jerry Lynn vs. Killer Kyle

Kyle is in a black suit and hat with a mysterious violin case. Lynn’s shoulders bounce off Kyle and forearms have no effect. Kyle slams him down and nails a big side slam but he misses a charge into the corner. A big spinebuster stops Jerry cold for the pin. I actually dug Kyle a lot here as he had a good look and I wanted to see more of him.

Lynn would wrestle around Minnesota a lot, including this match in 1993.

Chris Candido vs. Jerry Lynn

Jerry is a Gentleman here and seems to be the face. Before the match Candido rants about something but the mic doesn’t work. Feeling out process to start until Jerry armdrags Candido into the ropes. Chris complains about his teeth and gets on the mic to say something we still can’t hear. A rollup gets two on Candido and he bails to the floor for a meeting with his manager T.R. Shock. Lynn dives on both of them and the fans are WAY into him here.

Back in and Lynn snaps off some armdrags into an armbar before doing the same sequence again. Candido complains of a hair pull despite having a crew cut. Chris comes back by sending him to the apron, only to be taken down by a flying wristdrag into a fourth armbar. They botch a Jerry leapfrog into a powerbomb as Chris lands on his back but Lynn is hurt anyway. A suplex gets a delayed two for Candido and we hit the chinlock.

After spending awhile in the hold, Lynn is sent over the top and bangs his back on the apron. He’s still able to suplex Candido on the floor but Chris sends him into the steps. Back in and another suplex gets a delayed two on Lynn, followed by a gutwrench for the same. Lynn comes back with a side slam but misses a charge into the corner.

Candido nails a side slam of his own for two and they slug it out. Lynn takes over but gets crotched on the top, only to slam Chris down to block a superplex. A high cross body takes out both Candido and the referee, allowing Chris to hit Jerry low. Shock comes in with a chain but Lynn knocks him down. Chris picks up the chain and lays Jerry out for the pin.

Rating: C+. FAR better match here as both guys looked a lot more polished. Candido likes those suplexes a bit too much but that’s to be expected for someone still honing his skills. The ending was a lot more than I would have thought we would get in a match of this level which is a nice bonus.

Lynn would head to WCW under a mask as Mr. JL. One of his highest profile matches would be at Halloween Havoc 1995.

Mr. JL vs. Sabu

JL is short for Jerry Lynn in case you didn’t know that. And yes, it’s the same Sabu. The reason he’s here is he’s the Sheik’s nephew and Sheik was the king of Detroit back in the day. Lynn is in a mask here. WOW it’s weird hearing Sabu being talked about by Tony. Also that sounds like La Parka’s future music but I’m not sure. Both guys are in purple which is odd to see. They do all kinds of flying around ringside with Sabu doing all kinds of crazy dives etc.

We even get a Bobo Brazil reference to make this even more off the wall. This is pretty good for today’s standards despite being sloppy, but for 1995 this was INSANE. I mean remember, WWF was running stuff like Mabel vs. Taker at this time so having Lynn vs. Sabu on a major PPV was ridiculous. Sabu wins it with a moonsault and Sheik throws a fireball at Lynn and hits him in the mask. Ok then. Heenan freaks over this and wants to know how to do that. Don’t ask Hogan. He tried it once and it didn’t work at all.

Rating: B+. Somewhat above average match, but considering the timeframe, this was insanity. Rey was nearly a year away from changing the whole idea of what cruiserweight wrestling was, but everyone knew this kind of stuff rocked. Sabu can be passable when he’s not trying to do a garbage match, and this is an example of that.

What would a cruiserweight be if they didn’t face Rey Mysterio at least once? From Nitro on August 26, 1996.

Cruiserweight Title: Rey Mysterio vs. Mr. JL

Jerry Lynn. Rey is holding his chest after an arm drag that opens the match. Rey works on the arm and the chest might have just been selling. They’re starting a lot slower here so maybe they’re going to have some time to work with. Both guys get in some quick shots but nothing is substantial yet. Hulk Hogan is outside the arena and let’s go look at them and the Outsiders. They go over to the Turner truck and spray paint NWO on the side of it.

After a minute of that, back to our wrestling match. Tony insists there is no fourth man and let’s watch more production truck painting. Rey has on a camel clutch which is a weird look for him. We take a break and come back with JL holding an abdominal stretch. Tony says that was vandalism. THEN WHY DON’T YOU HAVE THEM ARRESTED??? You have them on tape but the cops are never going to be called are they? This would get pushed to even dumber levels when the Steiners were almost murdered but we’ll get to that later.

Rey takes over with a flip dive and Malenko is here scouting for their title match at Fall Brawl. That match wouldn’t happen for some reason, I’d bet on an injury. Tony gives the false line about the WCW Title dating back to 1905. JL fakes Rey out and takes over. A sitout powerbomb gets two on Rey. Another attempt is countered into a sunset flip for two by Rey.

JL puts on a Boston Crab as Larry talks about how different sizes of necks are easier or harder to hurt. It’s off to a half crab now. We begin the countdown for hour #2 as JL gets a two count on a belly to back suplex. Rey rolls through something to get two. LET THE FIREWORKS BE LAUNCHED!!! They seem to energize Rey as he sends JL to the floor but is sent into the post to give JL the advantage again. Rey hooks a headscissors to send him flying up the aisle. Back in Rey sends him in and hits what we would call the West Coast Pop for the pin.

Rating: B-. Pretty good match here but it was like a car that kept trying to start but couldn’t quite get the engine going. It’s not bad but it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting from these two. The ending came from absolutely out of nowhere. The idea was supposed to be Rey escaping with a win I think, but it didn’t quite come off like that, partially due to the slower pace of this one.

After a pretty worthless few matches in the WWF, Lynn would go to ECW and appear at Cyberslam 1998.

Danny Doring vs. Jerry Lynn

Lynn is “Dynamic” here. Was he ever not old? Even here he’s 35. Technical stuff to start and Doring struts a bit, which is called the Dastardly Shuffle by Joey. Dang those fans are loud. Lynn makes fun of the Shuffle and we get into some technical stuff. Roadkill trips Lynn but Doring misses a bottom rope (yes bottom rope) elbow. Rather back and forth stuff here as Lynn takes over again.

Suplex gets two and a headbutt misses to let Doring take over again. On the floor Roadkill and Doring mess up and the heels go into the crowd. Lynn is like cool dude and gets a running start off the apron and dives over the railing with a flip dive to take them both out. Lynn misses a middle rope leg drop and Doring takes over again. Tiger Bomb gets two for Doring but he might have hurt his elbow.

The distraction lets Roadie come in and hit a walk the top rope (AmishTaker according to Joey) elbow which the referee misses somehow. Doring of course has to be a jerk and wastes time so it’s only a two count. Doring puts him on top and Lynn hits a sunset bomb for the pin out of nowhere. Oh apparently Doring is afraid of heights. Got it. Makes limited sense but got it.

Rating: C. Meh match here but it wasn’t bad. Lynn is solid in the ring but Doring is just a wrestler and not that interesting in the slightest. Nothing match here but that doesn’t mean it was bad. They needed more to work with and Doring needs WAY more charisma, which he wouldn’t really get. Decent enough opener though.

Lynn’s main feud that year would be with Justin Credible, who he would face a ridiculous 21 times over the summer. Here’s another of those matches from Heat Wave 1998.

Justin Credible vs. Jerry Lynn

These two had a best of 21 series over a summer. Justin has a mob with him more or less. Naturally we get a shot at Chyna as they say Bass is bigger. Joey says they should name her Russia. Considering there was a chick in WCW named Asya, that’s kind of funny. This is the final match of said best of 21 series. Lynn of course comes out alone.

Apparently they’re feeling each other out. What the heck? THIS IS THEIR TWENTY FIRST MATCH IN THREE MONTHS. That’s a match every FOUR DAYS. How much feeling out do you freaking need? Lynn is freaking MOVING out there. The tombstone is reversed into a rollup. Shane of course runs down Flair and Shawn even though that has nothing to do with anything.

I love how one of his first jobs in mainstream wrestling was being half of the New Rockers when Shawn was hurt. We’ll ignore that though. The first chair is in 15 minutes into the show. Well at least they waited a bit. We’re on the floor now and in full brawl mode. At least we got some wrestling stuff first so it balances out. Justin takes a DDT on the chair which should knock him out but of course it doesn’t.

That’s followed up by a hurricanrana through a table. I get that this is the last of the series, but dang man could you be a bit less contrived? To be fair though, this is a big match and not just a random pairing. Lynn keeps using the Tiger Bomb for some reason. Did he not have the Cradle Piledriver yet? Chastity gets a tombstone and Joey is glad. After an odd sequence, a tombstone from the second rope ends this with Justin winning.

Rating: C-. The weapons were a turn off for me as was all of the interference, but anyone that can have a best of 21 series is pretty decent. That’s a good way to describe Justin actually. Lynn impressed me here far more as he was carrying this. That’s Justin’s problem I think: he doesn’t do much and his offense is REALLY limited. It’s punch, taunt, chair move, taunt, tombstone. That doesn’t make you a good wrestler or character, but Heyman thought he was I guess.

Jerry’s most famous feud is with Rob Van Dam. They would have a series of matches in ECW that were highly praised and it started at Living Dangerously 1999.

TV Title: Rob Van Dam vs. Jerry Lynn

Ok let’s see if this lives up to the hype still. Van Dam gets an epic pop. Still gets nowhere near the main event or the world title. I’m stunned. Oh and he and Sabu are the tag champions again. Paul, take a good look at RVD. He’s the reason you’re out of business. The fact that you simply never made him the main guy killed your company.

Well among other things but that could have gotten you a lot of cash at the end. Lynn is a guy that the more I see the more I like. Apparently Van Dam is supposed to win in a walk. ECW needs to stop the close-ups. They do a swank sequence of can you top this which is working for me. Lynn took his head off with a clothesline there. Van Dam likes to stall. A lot.

In a funny spot Lynn drops a leg on the back of his neck when he does that split move. Perfect timing on it too so it looked great. Lynn shows off his leaping too and hits a spinning crossbody to the floor. The psychology here is that Lynn is doing basic stuff to counter Van Dam’s high stuff. Apparently one of the fans loves a girl named Melissa.

We’re in the crowd now with a bunch of jumps and flips from Van Dam. Entertaining if nothing else. Van Dam tells D-Von Alfonso to get the table. Oh wait it’s a chair. That’s better. I will never be able to avoid cringing at the surfboard. That’s just insane. Not big on the chair stuff here but with Van Dam they never booked him right anyway so it works.

SWEET counter as Lynn hits a counter to something into a springboard into a powerbomb onto a chair. Better than it sounds. Van Dam takes a reverse DDT onto the chair for two. The chair is laying on the mat for the most part which is annoying but bearable I guess. Apparently Lynn is the new F’N show. Fonzie makes the save for Van Dam as Lynn was up top with the chair.

And Lynn goes off the top and through a table against his own wishes. Lynn has been down a LONG time. Jerry stops the attack with a chair to stop the split legged moonsault. I love pinfall reversal sequences and apparently the crowd does too. The speed here is great. Van Dam takes a tornado DDT from the apron onto the table. Note that it wasn’t through it. That was scary looking.

Hey we’re back in the ring again. Lynn hits a nice jumping DDT for two…and we get a bell? The referee tries to hand him the belt as he’s making a decision. Uh, WHAT? Lynn wants five more minutes. And for once that’s what we’re going to get. That decision has boggled my mind. See my mind? It’s boggled now.

Who in the world would do that? RVD hits the Van Daminator and the Five Star to take over from nowhere and get the pin. There might have been two more minutes after Overtime started, making me wonder WHAT THE POINT TO IT WAS. They shake hands after the match which is always cool.

Rating: B. THe first time I say this I didn’t know if this was good or not but it was certainly entertaining and I think that holds up actually. It’s certainly entertaining, but the referee making the decision thing was just WEIRD. I mean have you ever heard of that before? Still though, this was full of sweet spots and while there was little flow to it, the oh my goodness factor makes up for that so I’ll take it.

They would meat again on ECW on TNN, September 10, 1999.

TV Title: Jerry Lynn vs. Rob Van Dam

Jerry doesn’t even get an entrance. Van Dam is champion and has been for the better part of ever, which is about accurate I believe. They slug it out to start and we get a pretty sweet gymnastics routine until a standoff. They both pose but as Rob does, Lynn kicks him to the floor. Lynn hits a HUGE dive to the floor to take Rob out and we take a break. Back with Lynn being thrown into the barricade but RVD misses the Van Daminator because Lynn comes up with the brilliant idea of throwing the chair back.

Rob hits a moonsault off the barricade to take Lynn out. Joel: “That piece of commentary brought to you by the master of the obvious.” THANK YOU! That’s what gets on my nerves about Styles: he spends so much time saying the moves we’re seeing. This isn’t radio. I know what a moonsault looks like. Back in and Van Dam drops a legdrop onto a chair onto Lynn’s face.

Van Dam comes in with his top rope kick to take Lynn down for a close two. Fonzie throws in a chair and Rob loads up Jerry for a superplex onto said chair but Jerry counters into a sunset bomb onto it for two. They do a pretty nice sequence with the chair with both guys trying to hit the other with it, ending with Van Dam dropkicking it into Lynn’s head. Van Dam’s monkey flip is countered and Jerry hits a Van Daminator of his own for two.

Lynn hits a tornado DDT onto the chair and both guys are down. A delayed cover gets two for Lynn and the chair is thrown to the side. Lynn loads up the cradle piledriver but RVD counters into a pretty good pinfall reversal sequence. That gets a standing ovation and they clothesline each other….and the Impact Players run in for the no contest.

Rating: B-. Good match here but the chair got a little annoying. That’s part of my problem with ECW in general: I get that it’s a hardcore based company, but I’d like to see some more wrestling before we get to something like that. Good match though, and it’s clear why they couldn’t give us an ending here, which is ok.

RVD would get injured, putting him out for months. His first match back was at Hardcore Heaven 2000 against Lynn.

Rob Van Dam vs. Jerry Lynn

This is Van Dam’s return match and his BEST FRIEND Scotty Anton is at ringside. I’m sure nothing bad can happen there. DANG Van Dam is over, and yet he wouldn’t get the world title until he beat Cena in 2006. Brilliant Heyman, brilliant. Van Dam is so over it’s scary. Let’s get it on! I’ve always wanted to say that, so I said it out loud and then I typed it.

We start with a wrestling sequence and then we stall for a bit. We do another nice sequence with little contact being made but ending with a standoff and a standing ovation. The best part about it was that in their first match it ended with Lynn hitting a legdrop. In the second it ended with the legdrop missing a Van Dam kicking him. Here both of those missed and they continued the sequence.

That gets this match major points as that’s incredibly intricate thinking in there. Van Dam poses and stalls again so Lynn just pops him. I like that as we’re physical now. Where’s Olivia Newton-John when I need her? Now the fans like Jerry. Sure why not. Van Dam goes to some of his old favorites and Lynn is in trouble. Van Dam beats him down again and so he poses for a third time in about five minutes.

Apparently Lynn has been out for like five months or so also. This is one of if not his first matches back. In a strange moment, Fonzie just walks into the ring and puts a chair down before leaving. Lynn does what only Dreamer has done that I remember and counters the Van Daminator by just throwing the chair at Rob. That was awesome. Cyrus wants Fonzie to be flogged.

The spots here are pretty cool, but they’re just kind of preplanned. Of course they are, but they’re not supposed to look like they are. Ah ok Lynn has been back for about a month now. There have been a lot of counters and such in this and it’s been cool, but I’d like some more contact. Ah there we go as Lynn bulldogs Van Dam through the table. The problem was that he went through it at the same time so it hurt them both about equally.

Lynn hits a front flip onto Anton so we’re down to only three people being involved in the match. Fonzie interferes for the fourth time as it’s just stupid at this point. Van Daminator hits with Lynn sitting on the top rope. RVD hits the Five Star onto a chair onto Lynn and Cyrus leaves the broadcast place. Here are Corino and Victory as Lynn is a part of the Network…ok no he’s not. Rhyno Gores Lynn for no apparent reason. There’s a powerbomb for RVD.

Cyrus takes a Van Daminator, causing Joey to need new pants. Fonzie takes a chair shot to FINALLY make it 1-1. And of course Anton shoves Anton off the top. Let’s see: Corino, Victory, Fonzie, Anton, Cyrus, and Rhyno. Hey only six people interfered in this. Cradle Piledriver gets two but a Cradle Piledriver on the chair ends it. If this was a year ago, this would have changed ECW. Now it means nothing.

Rating: B. Solid stuff here, but GOOD FREAKING NIGHT DO YOU THINK THEY HAD ENOUGH RUN INS HERE??? Anton and Fonzie are the only two that mean a thing here or make enough sense. This is a much better match if you have only them running in but it’s still overbooked to heck and back.

And one more match from ECW, at Anarchy Rulz 2000.

ECW World Title: Justin Credible vs. Jerry Lynn

Lynn is the home town guy here so the ending should be clear but it’s ECW so of course it’s not. Justin is still wearing the Favre jersey in Minnesota which is supposed to get heel heat. That doesn’t date the shot at all. Francine has a broken rib or something. Again, these two are in the main event and RVD isn’t. Lynn gets the hometown boy pop and it’s not bad.

We stall FOREVER as it’s been fifteen minutes plus since the last match ended and this one hasn’t even started yet. We start with some technical stuff and the fans think Francine is a crack whore. Joey isn’t sure if Justin can outwrestle Jerry. Great to see that kind of thought going into things here. Lynn hits a middle rope bulldog and we hit the mat again.

Justin goes into the corner and goes to the floor. It wouldn’t have been as bad if he hadn’t jumped over the ropes like that. The plancha mostly misses though and everyone is down. This is moving pretty slowly but there’s a TON of time left so they have time to set something up. I knew the in ring stuff was going on too long. We head to the floor to get away from this wrestling nonsense. Can’t have that now.

Lynn hits a DDT on the chair to get us back to even. This match feels like something that should be in the midcard rather than the main event. Justin gets on a mic and yells at Lynn which is cheap heat 101 and there’s nothing wrong with that. We get our like third DDT of the match on the chair. Mix it up a bit guys. And there are a pair of legdrops to fix that.

Francine makes a save so there’s no table for Credible. He can’t beat Jerry though and Lynn hits the Cradle Piledriver for two, killing the crowd. Credible gets his own piledriver for two and they’re back. The referee gets kicked in the face and another is here. He gets to two and then just stops. It’s the same referee from the RVD match so yeah he was cheating earlier. Belt shot gets two.

He’s counting so fast that Jerry is having to in essence kick at what would be a two in a normal match but is almost three here. Tombstone again gets two and it’s New Jack. Dang it. He was supposed to be the referee for no apparent reason and here he is. Cookie sheet (New Jack needs his own cooking show) for the referee but Credible knocks out Jack. He walks into a Cradle Tombstone to give Lynn the title though.

Rating: C+. Not bad here, but like I said this feels like a big midcard match and not a main event on a PPV. That’s not a good sign at all but at least Credible isn’t champion anymore. Again, RVD is never champion but Credible was for over five months. Yeah that’s intelligent. The match was good, but it was Jerry Lynn vs. Justin Credible for the world title. See a problem here?

Lynn would head to the WWF after ECW went under. Here’s his debut from April 29, 2001 on the Sunday Night Heat before Backlash.

Light Heavyweight Title: Jerry Lynn vs. Crash Holly

Crash hits the ring and gets stomped down followed by a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. A LOUD ECW chant starts up as Crash comes back with right hands and a powerslam. He puts Lynn in a bow and arrow before they trade rollups for some near falls each. Lynn grabs a rollup with a handful of tights for the pin and the title.

Rating: C-. This didn’t have time to go anywhere but it’s nice to see Lynn get a title as soon as he gets to a new company. Crash didn’t do anything interesting as champion and the title was already worthless by this point so why bother having him as the champion? Nothing much to see here but it worked well enough.

Lynn would be gone in less than a year and head to TNA, where he would compete for the first X-Division Title on June 26, 2002.

X Title: AJ Styles vs. Jerry Lynn vs. Low Ki vs. Psicosis

Yes it’s just the X Title here as this isn’t an official division at this point. Ok so from what I can tell, two people start it off and when one is pinned, someone else comes in. When you lose twice, you’re eliminated. That’s a pretty cool concept actually. Styles and Psicosis start things off with AJ taking over quickly. A superkick gets two but Psicosis hits an elbow to the face to take over. Guillotine legdrop gets two on Styles but he pops back up and hits the Clash for the first pin on Psicosis.

Low Ki comes in immediately and fires off kicks, but AJ nips up from the mat and ranas him down. That was AWESOME. Low Ki reverses a German and kicks AJ’s head off to take over again. The Clash is broken up and AJ is launched into the post. Low Ki goes up top and Germans AJ down into a dragon sleeper (nowhere near as smooth as it could have been). AJ grabs the rope to escape so Low Ki kicks Styles in the head again. Low Ki misses a BIG flip dive and AJ clotheslines his head off. A German suplex into a belly to back facebuster gets the pin on Low Ki to get Jerry Lynn in to face Styles.

Lynn immediately clotheslines AJ down and hits the Cradle Piledriver to give him his first loss. This took less than ten seconds.

Psicosis comes in with a missile dropkick to the back of Lynn’s head to take him down fast. They fight over a go behind until Lynn snapmares him down, followed by a headscissors. Lynn gets a boot up in the corner and a middle rope bulldog gets two. Psicosis sends him to the floor and hits a somersalt plancha to take Lynn out. Back in and a spinwheel kick off the top gets a close two. Ricky Steamboat is going to take over as referee once we get down to two. Psicosis goes up again but jumps into a dropkick. Lynn hits the Cradle Piledriver to eliminate Psicosis.

Low Ki is back in next and it’s time to kick. To recap it’s Lynn with zero losses and Styles/Lynn with one each. Low Ki kicks Jerry down and hits a Muta Elbow for two. Lynn gets up a boot in the corner but Low Ki kicks him in the face and ranas him off the top. Jerry rolls through that into a sunset flip for two and it’s time for more kicks. Lynn says bring it on and hits an enziguri to take Low Ki down. They slug it out and Lynn backdrops him to take over. Jerry goes to the apron and avoids a shoulder to the ribs so he can hit a kind of Fameasser.

Cradle Piledriver is broken up and Low Ki grabs an arm hold. Lynn counters into a HARD powerbomb for two and loads up a brainbuster. Low Ki counters into a fisherman’s buster but Lynn counters THAT into a DDT for no cover. Cradle Piledriver hits out of nowhere and it’s down to Styles vs. Lynn. Styles has to get two falls to win the title while Lynn only has to get one.

Styles runs in and hits a quick kick but the Clash is countered into a rana. A tilt-a-whirl backbreaker gets two for Jerry and both guys are down. Lynn is sent to the apron but his sunset flip only gets one. AJ pops up top and hits a springboard moonsault for two. Jerry snaps off a tornado DDT for a two count and they’re both down again. Styles hits a DDT of his own for two but he charges into a running Liger Bomb out of the corner for two for Jerry. Cradle Piledriver is countered into the Clash and it’s one fall apiece, meaning Steamboat takes over and it’s next fall wins the title.

Both guys are down for a bit before they head to the corner. We get a pinfall reversal sequence which would make Flair and appropriately enough Steamboat jealous. There are about ten near falls in a minute and they clothesline each other to put both guys down again. They head to the floor and Lynn hits a WICKED Irish Whip into the barricade to send Styles flying.

AJ is like screw the pain and hits the moonsault into the reverse DDT on the floor to take over again. Back inside and Jerry breaks up a springboard to hit an Elevated DDT for a VERY close two. Lynn loads up the Cradle Piledriver but AJ counters into a rana. The rana is countered into a powerbomb but Lynn rotates him further than that, sending AJ’s face into the mat in a SWEET move.

Both guys are down again but it’s Lynn up first. Another Cradle Piledriver is countered into an FU into a backbreaker for two for Styles. Lynn counters a suplex into a brainbuster for two of his own. There’s a sleeper but AJ escapes and goes up top, only to get crotched and superplexed for two for Jerry. Lynn loads him up top again but AJ shoves him off and Spiral Tap gives him his first of many X Division Titles.

Rating: A. This was AWESOME and a total star making performance for AJ. Matches like this one were the ones that got the company on the map (eventually) and this was excellent even ten years later. Lynn vs. AJ was the first big feud as they would go at it for months, over that title and another one eventually. Great stuff here and an actual new idea for a match.

Lynn would also wrestle for World Wrestling All-Stars and become its Cruiserweight Champion. The company would be going out of business soon though, meaning it’s time for a unification match at the WWA Reckoning PPV.

WWA Cruiserweight Title/TNA X-Division Title: Kazarian vs. Jerry Lynn vs. Johnny Swinger vs. Chris Sabin

One fall to a finish here and the winner gets both titles. Thankfully there are no tags here and it’s a big brawl from the start. Everyone misses a flip dive before trying a quick rollup for two each leading to a fourway stalemate. We get three straight armdrags to send everyone across the ring until Sabin is left alone with Kaz. A big kick to the head gets two for Sabin but Kaz takes over while the other two brawl on the floor. Back to the Future (Sabin is on Kaz’s shoulder with Kaz dropping back into a cover) gets two and a hard clothesline gets the same.

Swinger finally comes back in to stomp Kaz into the corner before hooking up with Sabin for a double flapjack. Lynn comes in off the top to take both Kaz and Sabin down with a cross body and a bad looking rana puts Kaz down. Swinger puts Lynn in the figure four as the other two are out on the floor. Sabin and Kaz come off the top to break it up and both get two counts.

It’s Sabin and Lynn alone in the ring with Jerry hitting a hurricanrana and a dropkick for two. Lynn hooks a German suplex on Kaz but Sabin hits a sunset flip on Lynn at the same time for a double two count. Swinger makes the save and puts Sabin in an Indian Deathlock but Lynn puts Swinger in a dragon sleeper at the same time, only to have Kaz hook a reverse cravate on Lynn, all at the same time. Kaz finally turns it around into a double reverse DDT for two on Jerry.

Lynn loads up a dive on Swinger but walks into a superkick from Kaz, allowing Kaz to hit the big dive on Swinger instead. Lynn dives on both guys after getting a running start off an Irish whip from Sabin. Sabin hits a big dive onto all three guys to put everyone down. Sabin monkey flips Kaz into a double clothesline to take the other two down before Sabin belly to back superplexes Kaz off the top in another big crash.

We get the parade of finishers with Lynn hitting a TKO on Swinger for two. Kaz gets two on Sabin after a slingshot DDT and the Tower of Doom gets two for Jerry. Swinger hits a Boss Man Slam for two on Lynn and a spinning backbreaker gets the same for Sabin on Kaz. Sabin’s tornado DDT puts Swinger on the floor and Lynn counters a piledriver on Kaz into Sheamus’ White Noise for two. Sabin and Kaz are left alone in the ring with Chris hitting a MuscleBuster on a crotched Kaz for the pin and the titles.

Rating: C+. This was fun but it was every stereotype of a multiman cruiserweight match you could think of rolled into one. The problem with this comes down to feeling like I’ve seen it all before which doesn’t make it all that exciting. The ending was obvious of course but there’s only so much you can do about that.

Lynn would participate at the ECW reunion show, Hardcore Homecoming.

Justin Credible vs. Jerry Lynn

Justin is wearing a wifebeater so he looks like a bald and less interesting Billy Kidman. Apparently they had a best of 21 series in the ECW Arena in the summer of 2000. That’s not overkill at all. Jerry is in great shape which I type at the same time Joey says it. They do a technical style here and Lynn does an awesome move where he’s on the apron and teases a sunset flip but turns in the air and hits a Famerasser instead. I love that. They slow it down a lot and we get a good wrestling match out of these two. Justin argues with Hat Guy which is just fun. It’s saying a lot when you have one fan that gets over just because he’s there a lot. That’s very cool.

In a surprising spot, Jason pops Jerry with a chair and Justin gets the tombstone for a long two. This is actually pretty good. The Cradle piledriver only gets two. Jason shoves Jerry off the top rope for general heelish purposes. Lynn comes back to hit a hurricanrana through a table to the floor, which Joey for some reason calls a reverse victory roll. What the heck?

Jason pulls the referee out. Can someone exterminate him? Jazz breaks up the interference and beats up Jason. You think that’s enough J’s in this match??? The referee is named John also. Lynn hits a Cradle Tombstone Piledriver to get the pin. Lynn says that since his birthday is Sunday (This was a Friday), that wasn’t bad for a 42 year old. The fans actually chant for Justin which will never happen again.

Rating: B+. This was very good stuff. Had Jason not been so annoying and had you factored out the tables and the chair and given a hotter crowd, this was an easy A. Even still, as Lynn said, not bad for a 42 year old. That would be the case for Lynn a lot of the time as he was able to bring out the best in some pretty low level guys.

Lynn would hunt the X-Division Title, including this title shot at Final Resolution 2007.

X-Division Title: Chris Sabin vs. Jerry Lynn vs. Christopher Daniels

Daniels is champion here. I’ll give Lynn this: he does look good for a 43 year old man. Sabin gets beaten down by both guys so he hides on the ramp. Well as well as you can hide by being a pale professional wrestler in trunks hiding on a dark ramp. Back in and we get a triple crisscross. Ok that did look cool. Daniels takes over and knocks both of them down including knocking Sabin to the floor.

The champ puts a figure four headscissors onto Lynn on the middle rope, leaning out of the ring. Sabin uses the opening to kick his head off and takes over on Lynn. From what I understand, this is Lynn’s first match in TNA in about a year and a half. And someone he’s technically #1 contender to a title. Right. Anyway Daniels comes back in and goes Koji Clutch on Lynn but Sabin breaks it up.

Lynn gets sent to the floor as Sabin fires off some kicks to Daniels for two. He hooks a nerve hold on the champ and keeps Lynn on the floor once again. The fans say Lynn still has it despite him getting beaten up the whole time in this match so far. Daniels is put in the Tree of Woe and a hesitation dropkick gets two. All three back in now and the fans are way behind Jerry.

Speaking of Jerry he goes up and hits a foot into the chest of both guys. Headscissors all around and the fans are really into Lynn. He sets for the Cradle Piledriver but Daniels hits an Sto to stop him. Everyone is down again and Lynn goes after Sabin. Lynn sets for a bulldog off the middle rope but Daniels runs up and we get a low level Tower of Doom. BME gets two on Sabin. Sitout powerbomb gets the same for Lynn. Lynn and Daniels go at it and Lynn hits an inverted Emerald Flowsion for two. Cradle Piledriver puts Daniels down but Sabin grabs a rollup and tights on Lynn to win the title.

Rating: B-. I usually don’t like triple threats but this one worked very well for me. All three guys were moving out there and Daniels was doing enough other stuff to keep him from getting on my nerves. They flew around enough and the ending was hot enough to make it work and I liked this match a good deal.

The next stop was ROH, including this match from their debut TV show on March 21, 2009.

Jerry Lynn vs. Delirious

Delirious goes nuts at the sound of the bell but Jerry trips him down. Lynn grabs a headlock but gets caught in a rolling fireman’s carry for two. Some running clotheslines drop Lynn but he comes back with a backslide for two. Lynn puts on an inverted Gory Special before spinning him around and dropping him face first onto the mat for another near fall. Delirious sends him into the buckle but misses Shadows Over Hell (top rope splash to the back). A top rope hurricanrana sets up a TKO for two on Delirious but the cradle piledriver is enough to give Jerry the pin.

Rating: D+. This didn’t work for me for the most part. There was almost no selling at all and Delirious was only insane for the first few seconds. Lynn was his usual smooth self but the rest of the match didn’t do much for me. Then again that’s probably why I don’t spend a lot of time watching ROH.

Lynn would briefly hold the ROH World Title later in the year before heading back to TNA in 2011. He would face an old rival at Bound For Glory 2011.

Jerry Lynn vs. Rob Van Dam

Technical stuff to start but they’ve probably got a lot of time. There are only 8 minutes on this card and I can’t imagine that Hogan vs. Sting will break ten minutes. Rob takes over early and tries Rolling Thunder but Lynn pops up with a kick to the face. Tornado DDT is countered but the suplex is as well. The psychology here is solid and we hit a stalemate. They try a cross body over the top and that doesn’t work right, drawing half boos/half silence from the crowd.

We’re on the floor now and Van Dam tries a moonsault off the apron but misses and might have hurt his knee. Lynn brings in a ladder but Rob sends him in and gets a chair. He takes too long though and Jerry hits a baseball slide to send it into the face of Van Dam. Van Dam gets a spinning cross body onto Lynn onto the chair for two. The surfboard dropkick with the chair in the corner gets no cover. Rob does however get a ladder so the crowd is pleased.

The fans chant ECW and the ladder is splashed with Lynn under it for two. The fans never stay silent for long in this city. It’s something I wish you could hear in more cities too. Rob does a springboard moonsault over Lynn which appeared to be intentional. No idea what the point of that was other than to have Lynn hit him with the chair to take over. Lynn misses a senton backsplash onto the ladder and Van Dam takes over again.

Van Daminator misses so Lynn pelts the chair at him. Lynn gets a German for tow and Lynn is down more from it than Rob is. Lynn gets suplexed onto a ladder which is a lot more effective, so I guess American > Germany. Lionsault onto the ladder gets two for Rob. Rob tries one of his rolling moves but Jerry jumps off the middle rope and they collide at the same time. Lynn goes to the floor to get another ladder and I have the same question as Tazz: how many ladders do you need?

The second ladder is put up against the railing and Lynn tries a sunset bomb, resulting in Rob’s head slamming into the railing. FREAKING OW MAN!!! Lynn has a big bump under his eye. Van Daminator gets two. Rob sets up the Van Terminator with a ladder over Lynn’s face and it’s enough for the pin at 13:16. So Lynn can get up from a Van Daminator after two seconds but he can’t move after about 30 seconds of sitting in the corner?

Rating: B. Good match but it’s going to be overrated because it’s Lynn vs. Van Dam. This was more about the weapons and the violence than the whole psychology which was the standard of their old matches. The fans were of course into it because these guys used to be huge in ECW like 10 years ago. It was entertaining though and that’s the point of these matches.

We’ll wrap it up with one more match, this time from Lynn’s retirement tour at One Night Only: X-Travaganza.

Rob Van Dam vs. Jerry Lynn

This is part of Lynn’s retirement tour and is No DQ because that’s what these matches always are. Feeling out process to start with Van Dam getting a quick rollup for two until we get a standoff. Lynn is in a sleeveless shirt here, likely due to reasons of fat or injury. A clothesline puts Van Dam down but RVD comes back with his stepover kick to send Jerry to the floor. Van Dam follows him out, only to be sent into the barricade. Jerry slides back in but charges into a spin kick from Van Dam.

Rob brings in a chair but gets caught by a clothesline as he rolls towards Jerry in the corner. They head to the floor again with Van Dam draping him over the barricade for the legdrop to the back. Now Van Dam sets up a table in the corner but Jerry hits a springboard legdrop to the back of RVD’s head to take over. Van Dam escapes a DDT but gets caught by a neckbreaker for two. A clothesline from Lynn puts both guys on the floor where Rob sets up another table.

Lynn is sent back inside but Van Dam can’t suplex him through the table on the floor. A sunset bomb is blocked and Rob hits a legdrop onto Lynn on the apron. Back in again and Jerry hits a jawbreaker to stagger both guys but Rob gets the chair from earlier. His monkey flip out of the corner is countered into a release powerbomb onto the chair for two. The cradle piledriver is countered into a rollup for two for Van Dam and but he takes too long picking up a chair and gets speared through the table in the corner for two.

Van Dam’s northern lights suplex onto a chair gets two on Lynn and there’s a springboard kick to the face to put Lynn down again. The Five Star hits chair only and Jerry rolls him up for two. Van Dam tries to leg sweep Jerry but gets legdropped into the chair in a nice counter. Lynn gets two more off a bad TKO onto a chair and both guys are down again. Lynn takes the chair up top but a Van Daminator sends him very softly through the table on the floor. That gets two back inside and a good looking Five Star is enough for the pin for RVD, again with very little reaction from the crowd.

Rating: C+. This was a lightning fast match with some amazing counters and speed moves…..fourteen years ago. Now it’s two guys who are nowhere near as fast as they used to be and doing a lot of the same spots which were awesome back in the day but now are the same ones we’ve seen time and time again. The match isn’t horrible but it was clearly about five steps slower than their older matches.

The one word to sum up Jerry Lynn is smooth. The guy is just talented in the ring and can wrestle a good match with anyone he’s put in the ring against. The fact that he’s almost always just been Jerry Lynn: Guy in Tights makes him all the more impressive. He wrestled for exactly 25 years and had a great run in wrestling. What else can you ask for?

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