I kind of abandoned my 2004 PPV gloss over that I started till I read your post, haha. I might has well do one and kill some time.
No Way Out 2004
Pre-Show) Billy Kidman, Paul London, & Ultimo Dragon vs Yoshihiro Tajiri, Akio, & Ryan Sakoda ~ **1/4
1) WWE Tag Team Championship - Handicap Match:
Scott Taylor/Rikishi(c) vs Basham Brothers & Shaniquia ~ *
2) Jamie Noble Must Wear a Blindfold:
Jamie Noble vs Nidia Guenard ~ DUD
3) APA vs World's Greatest Tag Team ~ **3/4
4) Bob Holly vs Rhyno ~ *1/2
5) WWE Cruiserweight Championship:
Rey Mysterio(c) vs Chavo Guerrero Jr ~ ***1/2
6) #1 Contender's for WWE Championship - Triple Threat Match:
Kurt Angle vs Big Show vs John Cena ~ ***1/4
7) WWE Championship:
Brock Lesnar(c) vs Eddie Guerrero ~ ****1/2
That main event combined with a really energetic crowd make the over-under on this show really come out to a definitive positive.
Thought I'd give a shout to the Sunday Night Heat match since it was tons of fun. Look at the talent involved. Ultimo Dragon was SEVERELY underused by the WWE. Not like the traditional underused. A whole different level. I bet most people forget he even had a stint there.
Opener sucked. Not a shocker. Bashams are one of the worst teams I've ever seen and Rikishi was involved. Scotty & Shaniqua were the only "high" points (and I use that loosely) of the bout.
Part of me wants to say Jamie Noble deserved better. Then the other half knows that this match beat doing nothing for the PPV. So yeah...good for Noble that he was involved in something. Even if it was THIS. It sucked simply because Noble was blindfolded. There you go. Shite gimmick results into a shite match. Crowd ate it up. So it's bearable in that sense. And Noble owned Nidia so we can all rejoice.
APA vs WGTT was simplistic fun. One of the matches to be built up only the Smackdown prior to the event and to the surprise of us all, it delivered. Found the arm work callback from the Shelton/Bradshaw match to be a nice touch. Smart way to center the match on. Simmons was nearing the end of his career here and he did...a spinebuster. That's all. Which was for the best. Bradshaw was able to carry the rest of the match alone. WGTT were still key workers here. Actually knew how to work a match without putting you to sleep. A nice gem.
Bob Holly vs Rhyno. Eh. It was just there. Seen worse, but clearly have seen better. Forgettable. Spanish commentators being brought up mid match only for Tazz to come back and say "They said I have a really snazzy suit in Spanish" was the highlight.
Cruiserweight championship. Ok, here's where the show remained on that upper level. I know plenty never liked Chavo Jr. Fair enough. I'd like to see someone argue that he doesn't work well with Mysterio though. This wasn't on par with their eventual best match ever (or tied for first) at Great American Bash '04. Still plenty good. Chavo Guerrero Sr. is new on the scene at this time and of course he comes into play for the finish. CHAVO CLASSIC IMO. Pretty darn crisp action overall. The prime example of a really good lengthy bout. Was AWESOME to see the Cruiserweight championship on such a big level on a WWE PPV. Was there any other one that was bigger? Don't think so.
Triple Threat was fast, fresh, & fun. All 3 dynamics worked well in the quick span of the bout. Show was the monster who has been on a roll for quite some time. Incorporated his longstanding program with Cena thoughout the bout. Angle was the wrestling veteran who's gunning to main event his second WrestleMania. The dissention between Angle & Cena was the precursor to Angle's eventual turn vs Eddie. Cena was out there as the new hot face on the block. Actually felt like he had a chance to win it all and main event WrestleMania for the WWE Championship. Injured knee or not he was game. Going off on the dynamics alone made me dig it. Only gripe I could say is that it wasn't too long. Not really a big deal. Obviously the match was quality. I'm a sucker for triple threat matches in the WWE. Vast majority of the time they deliver.
Oh the main event. What is there to say about it? The elements that legends are made of. I think everyone knows what I hold in high regard about the bout. Nailed it to a tee. Every aspect worked. Brock as the asshole BEAST champ who didn't take Guerrero seriously. Eddie in his biggest underdog role of his career. Trying to vindicate all of his past transgressions in one swoop by achiving the pinnacle of his career. Goldberg's interaction. Even the run-in worked. Loved, loved, loved how Brock kicked out of the spear when Eddie covered him. Made you think "Eddie only won because of Goldberg" Instead that part was merely fodder for the drama. The real finish was appropriate. It ended in true, honest to goodness Eddie Guerrero fashion. Tornado DDT on the championship. Play dead. FROG SPLASH. NEW WWE CHAMPION. I'm getting emotional simply by tying this. Incredible. One of my favorite sound-bites occurs at the end of this too: "Eddie Guerrero can no longer be called addict. Tonight, Eddie Guerrero will simply be known as WWE Champion"