SHEAMUS, ALBERTO DEL RIO WILL END 31-YEAR FEUD THIS SUNDAY
By RD Reynolds
Boston – After beginning their World Heavyweight Championship feud in the fall of 1981, champion Sheamus and forever-challenger Alberto Del Rio will settle the score at Night of Champions this Sunday in Beantown.
Although WWE customarily prefers for their storylines to end in a timely fashion, this feud between “The Great White” and “The Mexican Aristocrat” has spanned years and even generations, before the likely (purported) conclusion at Night of Champions.
Beginning on an episode of All-Star Wrestling in 1981, Del Rio issued the challenge to Sheamus after defeating SD Jones. The two had a confrontation during a ringside interview with a young Vince McMahon, and the match was signed for Madison Square Garden on October 19, which ended in a disqualification.
Since then, Sheamus and Del Rio competed against each other in three straight WrestleManias (including a boxing match at WrestleMania II, in which Del Rio bit off Smokin’ Joe Frazier’s ear), and the feud was thought to have been over after Sheamus press slammed Andre the Giant onto Del Rio’s carcass at WrestleMania III a year later.
The feud, however, would be rekindled at Survivor Series 1989, when their two teams, The Celtic Warriors and The Money-Fest Destinies, squared off. Sheamus was disqualified midway through, and Del Rio stole the win at the end by pinning Demolition Smash. The war would climax on The Brother Love Show in December 1989, when Del Rio knocked Sheamus out and poured Lucky Charms into his gullet.
Both men left the WWE around the spring of 1992, feuding briefly in WCW, before returning in 1994 with much more streamlined physiques (Sheamus wore a frilly green shirt as part of his appearance, due to Vince being ashamed of how his body looked). Sheamus defeated Del Rio cleanly three times on Action Zone in front of 1100 fans each time, but the battle would not end.
This led to them feuding into the Attitude Era, with both men exchanging ethnic slurs, and Sheamus hanging Ricardo Rodriguez above the ring. He beat him with a shillelagh until Smarties and Gobstoppers fell out of Ricardo’s rectal cavity, which led to a Vince Russo-booked “Ricardo on a Pole” match at Backlash 1999.
Both men briefly aligned, joining the Invasion in 2001 as WWE turncoats, but this was forgotten by November when they were feuding again for some reason. The two feuded off and on in the Brand Extension era, back when WWE paid strict adherence to who was on what broadcast. By 2005, when Vince completely stopped caring, the two would then face off at 16 straight PPVs, including ECW One Night Stand 2006, where they received the only crowd reaction of their entire feud by both being booed out of the Hammerstein Ballroom.
Finally, after 31 years of turmoil, hatred, and angst, Sheamus and Alberto Del Rio will end their insufferable feud at WWE Night of Champions.
May the least stale character win!