The SmarK Rant for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling – 02.22.86
Taped from Charlotte, NC
Your hosts are Bob Caudle & Johnny Weaver, sober since…whoops, never mind.
Magnum TA joins us to start, and the guy on his mind is Nikita Koloff and all his Russian friends, or COMRADES, if you will! So if Nikita wants to take his US title back to Russia with all the Russians and other assorted communists, then he’ll have to deal with AMERICA’S TEAM.
Ivan Koloff & Baron Von Raschke v. Rocky King & Denny Brown
Nikita is hanging out at ringside and ROCKING a white suit, looking very gangsta and badass. Denny manages to hold off Uncle Ivan and control with headlocks on the mat, but it’s over to the Baron. He’s an honorary Russian, you see, since he doesn’t specifically subscribe to the tenets of communism but respects the haircut. Baron beats on Denny with clubbing forearms, and then Rocky comes in and Baron puts him away with THE CLAW at 2:54.
Yeah this was pretty terrible, but I have to give Nikita’s sharp suit a point. 1 for 1.
Meanwhile, the Midnight Express FUCK the Rock N Roll Express out of the World tag team titles on the Superstars on the Superstation special. This gives us the classic spectacle of David Crockett demanding that Ricky WHIP HIM, WHIP HIM LIKE A DOG, but alas Cornette hits Ricky with the racket and puts Bobby Eaton on top to claim their one and only title.
Teijho Khan v. Gene Ligon
Powerslam finishes at 0:19 as Khan stands up for Mongolia. OK, here’s what I don’t get about NXT and WWE’s current developmental philosophy. Wrestling is a work put together by liars and carnies and we all know it. So WWE is currently desperate for ethnic diversity, which is why the guy from Singapore got a shot on NXT this week. But WHY? For the past 100 years now, if you need a guy from “Mongolia”, you just give some goofy white guy a mohawk and bam, instant Mongolian. Hell, people thought Scott Hall was Cuban until they dragged up pictures of him from this time period. The lesson is that wrestling fans are stupid anyway and you’ve already got a million people doing nothing under contract, so why not fix your diversity issue by assigning them ethnicities like in the old days? You want to appeal to Germany? Just say someone is German and give them a name like “Schmidt” via the Name Generator. It’s win-win and I see no downside. There, racism solved, let’s carry on. 1 for 2.
Jim Cornette declares the Rock N Rolls to be FINISHED, and unlike them, the Midnights are fighting champions who are going to be defending their titles on TV all the time. Such as tonight, when they’re facing the top tier team of Sam Houston & Pez Whatley. But then Sandy Scott barges in and fines Cornette $5000 for using the tennis racket, and Cornette shrugs it off because his team makes “half a million dollars a year apiece”. Yeah, that’s why Crockett went out of business and Bill Watts tried to cut their salary later on!
Tully Blanchard v. Mike Simani
Tully offers a handshake and then takes him down with an armdrag and gives us a strut. Simani grabs a headlock, but Tully reverses to his own and then puts him down with elbows. At this drunk uncle Johnny Weaver talks about Tully was the longest reigning TV champion in history, although to put that in perspective the title was established roughly 10 months before this show. Slingshot suplex finishes at 3:50. 1 for 3.
Sam Houston is FULL OF STEAM and ready to go against the Midnight Express in the main event. Oh and he’s also still the Mid-Atlantic champion for those keeping track. Also Ron Garvin is here and he’s pretty sure Flair’s number is up.
Arn Anderson dislikes getting all blowed up like a big blowfish, but Dusty Rhodes is threatening to come break his leg and he cannot abide that. Whew, we’ve gone almost 25 minutes on this episode without talking about Dusty Rhodes, I was getting worried there.
Ron Garvin v. The Golden Terror
Not to be confused with the Golden Terrier, who was a dog that used to hang out in the locker room. Local wino Johnny Weaver notes that Garvin is “the man with fists of stone”, somehow managing to screw up Garvin’s famous nickname and catchphrase because apparently “Hands of Stone” was too hard to remember. Garvin mangles the Terror on the mat and hits him with a kneelift, and then whips him into the corner and hits a big boot and big splash for two. He tortures the Terror for a bit more and then finishes him with Hands of Stone at 3:05. HANDS of Stone, Johnny. HANDS. I love the jobbers selling that move despite it defying the laws of physics when they go flying in an unrelated direction. 2 for 4.
Tully Blanchard would also like to talk about Dusty Rhodes, and he’s giving him SIX WEEKS before he comes for the National title and wins it. That’s some pretty impressive prognostication, actually.
Dusty Rhodes is still proud of putting Ole Anderson on the shelf, and he’s still coming for Arn and Tully. Also he’s wearing a WCW polo shirt, which is weird. The TV show was called World Championship Wrestling at that point but I don’t think the “WCW” acronym was in particular use.
NWA World tag team title: The Midnight Express v. Sam Houston & Pez Whatley
Bobby’s wearing his weird circus strongman tights here, and he gets a kiss on the cheek from Cornette for good luck. The fans don’t like that for some reason. The babyfaces double-team Condrey’s arm to start as Weaver insists that you shouldn’t take Sam Houston lightly and he’s a threat to win the titles.
I’m with Thor. The babyfaces now double-team Bobby’s arm for a while and work on it with a hammerlock, but finally Condrey manages to backdrop him to end the awesome shine of Houston. Condrey gets caught in the corner again, however, and Whatley slugs away on him and chases him back to his own corner. Finally Cornette demands RESULTS from his team, so Dennis suplexes Pez for two and Bobby comes in to follow up, but Pez suplexes him and Sam Houston gets a tag and runs wild as we take a break.
During the break, Paul Jones introduces Teijho Khan, who has moved from Mongolia to Singapore in the 15 minutes since his squash match earlier in the show. That’s a pretty significant difference in locale. I mean, whatever, he’s got a mohawk, so obviously he’s foreign and thus evil either way.
Back to the match and Pez is running wild, but Bobby rolls him up for two. Sam gets a hot tag and runs Bobby into the corner before taking him down and working the leg. Dennis comes in to save and gets pinballed by the babyfaces, and Pez splashes him for two. Finally Condrey rakes the eyes and then lets Houston come in before blindsiding him to take over and going to an abdominal stretch. Bobby slams him and goes to the top with the Alabama Jam, and THAT shuts up the crowd in a hurry. Condrey with a butterfly suplex for two, and Bobby goes up again, but Houston slams him off the top and gets a spinning toehold which is apparently a deadly finisher. Sam unleashes his famous bulldog that we heard about all last episode, but Cornette takes the ref and Condrey breaks up the pin and hits a discus clothesline, as Eaton gets the pin to retain at 16:44. I should note that Bobby Eaton pinned the guy who is supposed to be the top champion in the territory and it means nothing at this point because the belt was essentially worthless by 1986. Anyway, the Express just sold and sold and sold here, giving the midcarders as much shine as humanly possible before putting them away. They kept it simple and it worked. 3 for 5.
Nothing mind-blowing this week but a solid episode well worth watching.