The SmarK Rant for NWA Power Hour – 01.26.90
Man I love doing this show.
Taped from Johnson City, TN
Your hosts are Jim Cornette & Jim Ross. Cornette complains that they might as well be in Bucksnort TN or Oil Trough TX. Why not Kentucky? Also poor people are a burden on society.
The Samoan Savage v. Robbie Idol
Doc does a uniquely coked up inset promo to build up his match with the Savage at the Clash. Is it a TORNADO? Apparently not. So this Robbie Idol guy has a good body and an impressive mullet, so he probably could have been someone on the indie scene. A quick reveals that he retired in 1990 and then unbelievably showed up TWENTY FIVE YEARS LATER working New York indies. The Savage beats on Idol and drops a leg on him for two while Cornette and Ross argue about the possibility of finding a good looking Samoan woman. Better not say that around Rocky Johnson. Savage tosses Idol and brings him back in for a piledriver, and then chokes him down and uses Samoan Karate on him and adds a buttdrop. Meanwhile Oliver Humperdink is basically speaking in tongues at ringside, not really adding much to the act at this point. Powerslam gets two as the Savage keeps picking him up and JR stresses that kids need to get permission to call the WCW Hotline at 1-900-909-9900. Cornette disagrees and tells them to live a little! It’s true, it’s easier to beg forgiveness than ask permission. Little marriage advice for all you lovelorn out there. Savage finishes with some kind of pump splash deal at 5:20. Whatever. 0 for 1.
The WRESTLING NEWS NETWORK! WITH GORDON SOLIE!
Two lead stories this week: The Clash! And WrestleWar 90 Wild Thing, which we get an interesting “rap” video to hype. To be fair, it was the era of Vanilla Ice. BREAKING NEWS: The CWA promotion out of Memphis has merged with the USWA in Texas, but not to worry, the NWA will still be running Memphis if you want real wrestling. Also, Haystacks Calhoun died. From what?
Holy cow, I can’t believe I’ve never had a chance to use that one before now.
By the way, as promised by Solie, the live event rundown reveals that in fact they are running the Mid-South Coliseum on February 1. No honor among thieves, or wrestling promoters. In case you were wondering, they drew 5600 for a house show with Ric Flair beating Lex Luger in the main event.
Meanwhile, on World Wide Wrestling, Doom and the New Skyscrapers beat the hell out of the Road Warriors and Steiners.
The Freebirds v. Ranger Ross & The Italian Stallion
As Cornette points out, America fought Italy in war, so Ranger Ross should NOT be teaming with the Stallion. See, you learn some history on this show. Ross grabs a headlock on Hayes and gets into a strutting contest, which chases Michael out of the ring. Over to Garvin and he slugs away on Ross in the corner, but the Ranger cleans house with dropkicks, which Cornette calls “illegal commando tactics” that he learned from the US Army. Oh man, are you telling me that Con Air, the 4th most awesome Nicholas Cage movie, might have been based on Ranger Ross? Huge if true. Hayes demands “the Italian sausage” tag in, and the Sausage also chases him out of the ring and dropkicks him into a belly to belly for two. Michael Hayes talking a big game and then getting his ass kicked is always amusing. Garvin comes in and beats on Ross with knees, and Hayes sneaks in with a left from behind to take over. Ross: “They’re checking his stripes!” Cornette and myself both wonder what the hell JR is talking about there. Ross boots Garvin down and manages to bring the Stallion back and he cleans house and powerslams Hayes for two. But then the Birds hit a double DDT to finish at 6:10. A perfectly cromulent tag team match. 1 for 2.
Funk’s Grill with special guest Sting. Terry thinks Sting will be the richest wrestler in the world in the future. Well that would be the Rock by a lot, but Sting is still doing OK for himself. Funk thinks that Sting is doing too much drinking and carousing with the Four Horsemen and not concentrating on the World title. Sting is pretty sure that if he beats Flair and wins the title, everything will still be great because it’s in the Horsemen family! Wow, has he MET Ric Flair? Sting then veers into a Spicoli impression and talks about spending money on 30 or 40 surfboards in a funny bit and Terry’s got nothing to add to that one.
Ric Flair, Arn Anderson & Sting v. The Great Muta, Buzz Sawyer & The Dragon Master
The heat for this is so nuclear that Donald Trump is trying to steal the documentation. So Buzz Sawyer walks around clutching his ears in pain and the crowd gets even LOUDER, just completely losing their mind for the Horsemen. Arn and Buzz fight for the lockup to start and Arn slugs him down, before Sting dives in with a clothesline and the crowd somehow finds another gear like Dom shifting to go faster in the Fast & Furious movies. Wait, do they still drive cars in those things? I lost track after the seventh one. The heels regroup and Buzz bellows at Sting, so Sting howls back and the crowd gets even crazier. Buzz moos again, so Sting hits him with a press slam, and then brings Muta in for a press slam and walks around the ring with him before throwing him onto the other two outside. I can barely express the level of crowd heat here for this. Back in the ring, the heels trap Sting in the corner and he kicks all of their asses and escapes as the crowd goes nuts again, although once again “the crowd goes nuts” is severely underrepresenting the noise. So Muta comes in and they do a cool double monkey flip sequence, which leaves Muta in the babyface corner. So he reaches up for a tag in confusion, and the Horsemen beat on him a result. That’s an underrated great spot. Flair comes in and backdrops Muta out of the corner, but Dragon Master comes in and Flair destroys him with chops and backdrops him as well. AA comes in for another showdown with Buzz, and Sawyer beats on him with chops, but misses a blind charge and runs into the post. So Arn beats on the shoulder outside while Cornette and Ross make dated references to the Addams Family, which is funny because it was only a couple of years away from a hugely successful reboot. Flair and Sawyer slug it out and trade hellacious chops and then Flair beats on the Dragon Master before Arn comes in and works the leg with a spinning toehold. Sting switches in and tries the Scorpion, but Buzz breaks it up. Muta puts Flair down with a spinkick, but Ric gets a backdrop suplex and figure-four before Buzz stomps on his face to break it up. So Flair is face in peril after an incredible 11 minute straight shine for the babyfaces, as the crowd finally calms down. So the heels take Flair to the floor and beat on him in front of the screaming girls at ringside, and Buzz runs him into the railing while the kids shriek in horror. This is some expert level pro wrestling right here. Back in the ring, Dragon Master works the arm and keeps Flair cut off in the heel corner, and Buzz come sin with a powerslam for two. Flair with an inside cradle for two for the hope spot, but Muta cuts him off again and puts the beats on Flair in the corner. Handspring elbow and Dragon Master sends Flair into the corner with a Flair flip, but he flips to the apron and takes out the heels in the process, and it’s HOT TAG Sting. Again, a mere hot tag doesn’t quite sum up the level of crowd excitement for that tag, and he quickly gets the Scorpion on Buzz, but Muta blows green mist for the DQ at 16:25 and the beatdown is on, setting up the cage match at Clash X. This was INCREDIBLE. HOOK IT TO MY VEINS. 2 for 3 and an easy ****. WHY DID THEY TURN THE HORSEMEN ALREADY? Were they not watching their own show?
Jim Cornette’s Wrestler of the Week: DR. DEATH.
Some tremendous pro graps on this one, folks.