|Division||East Division Final|
|Match Date||Friday, August 29th, 2003|
|Cloud - 58.29%|
38 for - 0 against
|Cloud - 54.13%|
The Sonic fans that remained pissed off after what happened against Samus in 2002 were ready to go for this match, and for a few seconds they were effective. They were actually able to take the board vote from Cloud, and Sonic was ahead for a tiny little bit.
But then the floodgates opened on Sonic, and Cloud proceeded to open up a can of whoopass the likes that Sonic never thought he would ever see in these contests. This match quickly turned into a bout where Sonic had upset potential into a complete laughingstock, as well as a microcosm of just how far Sonic had fallen in the past year. He went from having the lead on Cloud to almost being doubled by him, and no amount of spin can suggest anything other than the fact that Sonic had fallen a bit since his 2002 glory days in which many had him making the finals. I've said multiple times in these writeups that Sonic hasn't been the same since 2002, and this match was the final confirmation for this.
As for Cloud, this match started up a very large Cloud > Link stigma, and for good reason. Coming close to doubling Sonic is no joke, and it soon became very clear that Cloud had grown much stronger since 2002. Whether or not this would even get him close to Link remained to be seen, but something happened between these first two contests that lit a fire under Cloud's ass. And in the match that directly followed this one, people started to see exactly what caused all of this to happen. They had their suspicions, yes, but it took Sephiroth to confirm them.