The SmarK Rant for Mid-South Wrestling – 05.01.82
Taped from Shreveport, LA
Your hosts are Boyd Pierce & Cowboy Bill Watts. Boyd reminds Bill that if he’s here as color commentator, you DO NOT interfere in the matches. Oh come on, Bill only has one or maybe two un-retirements left in him.
General Akbar introduces the newest member of his mercenary stable: HACKSAW JIM DUGGAN. This was Duggan’s Mid-South debut after spending most of his early career in Georgia, and of course he stuck around for a good long while.
The Assassin v. Tony Torres
Assassin does a quick promo before the match, noting that he was paid a lot of money to turn on Ernie Ladd, and wouldn’t we all do the same thing in his shoes? Torres gets a rollup for two while Assassin is doing his promo, but Assassin puts him in a facelock and then beats him down with a kneelift for two. The loaded headbutt finishes at 1:30.
Ernie Ladd v. Larry Higgins
Ladd beats on him with forearms and goes to a bearhug, then slugs him down in the corner and puts him down with a headbutt. Big boot and legdrop finishes at 1:45. Saaaaaaaaaaaay. That’s a pretty good finishing combination!
Meanwhile, back in March, Ted Dibiase was supposed to defend the North American title against Paul Orndorff, but Paul developed car trouble and couldn’t make it to the match. So Paul’s partner and best friend Bob Roop takes his place and gets the title shot. So the ref gets bumped and One Man Gang interferes, screwing Dibiase over and costing him the title.
Ted Dibiase v. Bob Roop
Yet another non-title match for Roop, who has rarely defended the title since winning it. Dibiase immediately takes him down and works on the arm, then slams him and drops elbows on him for two. Dibiase with a hammerlock while Watts declares that Mid-South is “the most progressive organization in wrestling”, I guess because he hired a couple of black guys. Roop pulls the hair to escape the hammerlock and takes Dibiase down with a toehold, but Ted reverses out and goes after the arm again. Roop slugs away in the corner and follows with a neckbreaker, but Dibiase slugs back, so Roop hauls him to the apron and goes after the knee. He tries a figure-four, but Dibiase does a nice rolling reversal and makes the comeback with a back elbow and powerslam for the pin at 7:00. Roop tells him to give him a rematch, so Dibiase picks him up and gives him a shoulderbreaker (Roop’s own finisher) and then pins him again for good measure. I’d say he deserves a title shot! **1/2
Dick Murdoch v. Hacksaw Duggan
So Duggan was blessedly silent at this point, seemingly trying to be Bruiser Brody before later figuring out his own character. Duggan attacks him in the corner and hiptosses him, then slugs away in the corner with forearms while Dick tries to get out of his Marine costume. Murdoch finally takes him down and puts the boots to him, but Duggan slugs him down for two. Duggan works the arm and Murdoch reverses out and goes after the knee while Watts propagates Murdoch’s story about playing football at West Texas with the Funks. Now I’m wondering if he was actually a Marine, either. Murdoch tries a slam and Akbar trips him to put Duggan on top, but he tries an elbow to follow up and Murdoch moves and makes the comeback. Brainbuster follows and he grabs his shovel from the Marine gear, but Duggan nails him from behind and steals it. Murdoch fights him off and gets the shovel back, and then knocks out Duggan at 4:52 for the pin. That’s quite the leeway from the referee there. You could see a little bit of star power from Duggan at this point, but not much. He was barely more than a rookie at this point anyway.
Junkyard Dog & Mr. Olympia v. Bob Sweetan & Kelly Wayne
Kelly Wayne is actually Nightmare Ken Wayne, which makes the heel team just about the creepiest pair of perverts humanly possible. Sweetan was convicted of molesting his own daughter, and Wayne has been in prison since 2014 for child pornography and is now a registered sex offender. Their pre-match planning sessions must have been horrifying. Olympia clears the ring and JYD comes in to face off with Sweetan, but Bob backs off quickly, so Olympia puts both heels in the sleeper and then drops an elbow on Wayne to finish at 2:10.
The One Man Gang v. Coco Samoa
Gang chases him around the ring, clearly trying to be Crusher Blackwell, and catches Samoa in a bearhug, but he misses a clothesline. Samoa dropicks him, but Gang just swats him down and finishes with a big splash at 2:00.
The Grappler v. Buddy Landell
Grappler puts Budro down with a clothesline and gives him a headbutt right in the bread basket, then drops an elbow for two. So much like the Assassin has a loaded mask, Grappler has a suspiciously loaded boot, which is supposedly for orthopedic purposes. Sounds made up to me. Buddy gets a brief comeback, but he tries a brainbuster and Grappler reverses to a neckbreaker for the pin at 2:30.
Next week: One Man Gang & Assassin v. Iron Mike Sharpe & Ernie Ladd!
A very breezy and fun show this week, and I’m glad to see Dibiase back to get things moving again with the main angle.