The SmarK Rant for World Championship Wrestling – 06.10.89
It’s Saturday! You know what that means!
Taped from Atlanta, GA
Your hosts are Jim Ross & Michael Hayes
Brought to you by A&W, so go get a root beer. Go ahead, I’ll wait.
Ranger Ross v. Jim Bryant
Apparently the NWA running the SILVERDOME on Monday?!? That can’t have gone well for them. Let’s see the stats…
NWA @ Pontiac, MI – Silverdome – June 11, 1989 (about 900)
Family Appreciation Day – all kids tickets were only $5
Scott Steiner vs. Mike Rotunda (suplex match)
Eddie Gilbert vs. Kevin Sullivan (taped fist match)
Ricky Steamboat vs. the Great Muta
The Road Warriors vs. the Samoan Swat Team
NWA US Champion Lex Luger vs. Michael Hayes (Badstreet match)
Also included Ricky Santana, Shane Douglas & Johnny Ace
Who the hell thought that running the Pontiac Silverdome for a gate of $5000 was a good idea? That doesn’t even cover the cost of gas to drive everything out there! Do you know how much delicious A&W root beer they need to sell to cover costs? A lot. Ross sends Bryant to the floor with dropkicks and slugs away out there while Teddy Long takes notes at ringside. Back in, Ross continues punching and not much more, but Bryant puts him down a shoulderblock. However, his run of offense is cut off by Ross superkicking him for the pin at 2:00. Ross was SO bland. 0 for 1.
Meanwhile, Missy Hyatt confronts Gary Hart and his crew on Worldwide, so Muta sprays mist in her face. OKAY GO AHEAD AND FILL IN THE PUNCHLINE. You know you want to. We’re all thinking it. I’m just a better person and won’t do it for you.
The Great Muta v. Ray Lloyd
OMG, Muta gets to face the second-greatest martial artist in WCW history! Meanwhile, Hayes criticizes Eddie Gilbert for not saving Missy, because “if someone did that to one of my many broads, I’d be all over them!” And you thought chivalry was dead. Lloyd gets some kicks to start, but Muta flattens him with his own and then dropkicks him to the floor. Lloyd heads back in to escape the dive, but Muta drops an elbow on him from the top instead and then follows with the power elbow. Handspring elbow and bridging german suplex finish at 2:00. Muta just squashed GLACIER in 1989! HOLY SHIT. 1 for 2.
And now, live from New York, it’s the NWA Top Ten!
None of the NWA Top Ten are responsible, and will not be liable to you or anyone else, for any damages whatsoever and howsoever caused (including direct, indirect, incidental, special, consequential, exemplary or punitive damages) arising out of or in connection with your Mom or the Information, or your ability on inability to access or use your Mom or the Information, or any action or decision made by you in reliance on your Mom or the Information, or any errors in or omissions from your Mom or the Information, or any unauthorized use or reproduction of your Mom or the Information, even if the NWA Top Ten has been advised of the possibility of these damages.
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NWA World champion: Ric Flair
- Ricky Steamboat
- Lex Luger
- The Great Muta
- Eddie Gilbert
- Michael Hayes
- Dan Spivey
- Terry Gordy
- Steve Williams
- Terry Funk
YES. Terry Funk has finally cracked the top ten! Let’s face it, he’s been winning via stretcher job over tons of people, and Dan Spivey isn’t even in the COUNTRY right now! The whole thing is obviously rigged against him in the first place. Also I’m very dubious about Steamboat still being the #1 contender.
Dick Murdoch v. Fred Avery
Not sure why Murdoch is from Canyon Texas here, since he was always from Waxahachie Texas for his entire career. Maybe he moved for tax reasons? Murdoch beats him down with elbows and brings him to the apron for more elbows to the throat, as JR notes that Dick is “275 pounds before the last six pack”. Murdoch gets a couple of slams while JR calls Avery “a big load, like one of the steers that Murdoch ropes”. Speaking of big loads, Missy Hy…NO. I’m not going there. I’m better than that. And then Murdoch puts him away with an elbowdrop. 2 for 3.
Dick Murdoch joins Jim to talk about his relationship with Terry Funk and how they grew up together in Texas and then went on to play football at West Texas State. I don’t remember if I covered this in the Observer Flashback about Dick’s death in 1996, but that was actually a complete lie that he told consistently for years and it just happened that no one ever fact-checked him. In fact Murdoch didn’t even play football, and just told people that he did years later because the internet wasn’t a thing. Anyway, Dick talks about Terry’s current quest for the World title, and that Terry’s “elevator doesn’t stop at every floor” and he’s just a tad bit goofy. Which means that he wouldn’t want to be Ricky Steamboat at Clash VII.
The Midnight Express v. Lee Scott & Keith Steinborn
I bet they could come up with a pretty catchy name for that jobber team! I’ll have to think about it. Cornette notes that his team “gets more action than Rob Lowe”, which makes this is a very 1989 match. We certainly know that Lane got a lot of action, particularly in Florida. The Express double-teams Scott and brings in Steinborn and his gigantic Florida Man mullet, and Lane puts him down with a leg lariat. And the Veg-O-Matic finishes at 2:00. Replay shows that Eaton missed the guy completely with the legdrop, a rare whiff on his part. 2 for 4. I’ll keep workshopping names for that jobber team and get back to you.
Paul E. Dangerously reels off a bunch of pop culture references about double-dating with Rob Lowe (twice in one segment!) and driving with Ted Kennedy, and promises not to bash anyone’s head in with the telephone at the Clash.
Meanwhile, Terry Funk joins Jim Ross on another show to talk about the Clash match with Steamboat, and he relates how Dory Funk Sr. “died in his arms after a pro wrestling match”. Wait, WHAT? Huh, I checked, and apparently Dory died of a heart attack after demonstrating holds at his ranch in Canyon Texas in 1973. Damn. No wonder Terry is messed up. So Terry visited his gravesite and saw that it said Funk, and decided to make the name synonymous with wrestling FOREVER. FOREVER. So if has to go through Sting and Flair to do it, he will. This brings out Ricky Steamboat, who apparently thinks that Funk is “talking about his family”. He was talking about beating Ric Flair, not your family, you narcissist! Terry rightly questions why Steamboat is even the #1 contender, but…
BREAKING NEWS: Lex Luger cuts into the taped segment back in the studio, and he’s sick of the politics and being left out of the Clash of Champions despite being the new US champion. Man’s got a point. But then he accuses Terry Funk of not being worthy of the Top Ten because he hasn’t beaten anyone, and accuses Steamboat of stealing his #1 contender spot by sliding in the back door. Speaking of the back door, Miss…NO! I’m not giving into temptation for the easy punchlines. Also Ric Flair is hiding! EITHER WRESTLE OR GIVE UP THE BELT, RIC! Preach! This kicked off a pretty fucking awesome run for Luger.
Back to the Steamboat segment from earlier! Ricky thinks that Funk pulled some strings to get into the Top Ten. Coming from the guy who lost to Flair and is still #1 contender somehow, that’s pretty rich.
Kevin Sullivan joins us to promote his tag match with “the Moron Brothers” at the Clash, who he helpfully clarifies as the Steiner Brothers. Also they’re apparently going to the Boston Garden for a show. I don’t think WWF would have let that one stand. Oddly, the show did happen on July 8 and they drew 4800 people (with Sullivan jobbing of course) but then they had to cancel the next night’s show in Rhode Island due to poor advance.
Kevin Sullivan & Mike Rotunda v. Dewayne Bruce & Mark Smith
Bruce is more well known as Buddy Lee Parker, of course. The Varsity Club beats on both jobbers and Mike puts Bruce down with a back elbow, then Sullivan drags Smith in for a clothesline. Rotunda with a butterfly suplex and Kevin finishes him off with the double stomp at 1:29. Sullivan brutalizing jobbers is always great fun. 3 for 5. They continue after the bell, so the Moron Brothers save and they brawl into the break. Hey, that IS a catchy name for them! “We gotta go to station identification!” notes Jim Ross. Really, don’t we hear about how it’s on TBS every 30 seconds anyway?
And as promised, we get the TBS station identification! That’s actually a cool touch from the poor Network interns they keep in the basement of Titan Towers.
Meanwhile, we get to hear from Wild Bill Irwin, who apparently gets a title shot at Sting on the Clash. Apparently Sting is going to get whipped and instead of going “Wooo” he’ll be going “Owwww” instead. Doesn’t he already go “Owwww”? I’m dubious about this guy’s claims.
Wild Bill Irwin v. Mike Justice
Is Mike any relation to Sid? Maybe he brought him into the promotion. Huge if true. Irwin puts him down and drops an elbow, and then chokes away while complaining about the job done by referee Tommy Young. YOU SHUT UP when you’re talking about Tommy Young! Hayes wants JR to guess the new Freebird and Jim continues guessing Buddy Roberts to annoy him. Irwin tosses Justice and suplexes him back in. Then they screw up on a leap frog spot, but Irwin puts him away with a pump kick at 2:47. Well, they tried to build up Irwin a bit, I guess. 3 for 6.
World tag team title tournament quarterfinals: The Dynamic Dudes v. Jack Victory & Rip Morgan
I’m assuming that the purged Dudes entrance theme is “Wipeout” here. So apparently this is the TV debut of Victory & Morgan as The New Zealand Militia, which was actually a Victory repackage that stuck around for a while. Although then they ended up as The Royal Family later on, marking a rare double-repackage for Jacko. The Dudes get some shine on Morgan while Hayes and Ross reminisce about the UWF while discussing the impending Gordy-Doc match at the Clash. Shane gets trapped in the Kiwi corner and double-teamed, as Victory slugs away in the corner and puts him down with a lariat. “This guy’s got more personalities than Sally Field” notes Hayes in a meta moment. Victory misses a blind charge and hits Shane’s boot, and it’s hot tag Johnny Ace. He slams everyone but Morgan hits him from behind and they toss Johnny. Double backbreaker, but Johnny switches back in and rolls up Rip for the pin at 4:00 to advance. And then the Militia attack the Dudes with the BOOMERANG because they’re from New Zealand. CRIKEY! Jay White should steal that for his big heat spot. The 75 people at the Impact taping would probably pop for it. This was a fun match. 4 for 7.
The Samoan Swat Team v. Randy Rose & Bucky Seigler
Wait, Rose lost a loser-leaves-the-NWA match to the Midnight Express in February. How is this allowed? Is he gonna take Funk’s spot in the Top Ten next? The SST destroys them and finish Seigler with the flying splash at 2:00 and then cracks Randy on the head with a pineapple for good measure. 4 for 8.
Meanwhile, Jim Cornette points out that Paul E. is gonna be the only fruit salad at the Clash if he tries to interfere.
Meanwhile, Teddy Long will have two surprises on the Clash, and one of them is going to be Norman. That’s not much of a surprise. The other surprise is some kind of team. Yeah I’m sure that’ll really get over.
The Steiner Brothers v. Snake Brown & The Raider
Snake Brown, from “out of town”, looks more like one of the members of Yes playing keyboards on their 50 year anniversary tour. Talk about a mismatched wrestling name. Scott powerslams the Raider and cleans house on the jobbers. Back in, Scott hits Snake with a belly to belly, and then Rick gets an even bigger one to finish at 1:44. 4 for 9. And this brings out the Varsity Club for another brawl, and we’re desperately out of time and have to go! BUY SOME GODDAMN A&W CREAM SODA, PEOPLE!
Gosh I love this show.