The SmarK Rant for Stampede Wrestling – 01.23.87
By Scott Keith on 8th May 2023
The SmarK Rant for Stampede Wrestling – 01.23.87
Once again, this stuff and MUCH more is available from KrisPLettuce’s Google Drive, for a one-time payment of $12 via Paypal. Just send him a request to [email protected] and make sure you give him an address that will allow you to accept a Google Drive invite. I’d also recommend signing up for his Patreon, which gives you another fountain of ridiculous wrestling goodness.
Taped from Calgary, AB
Your hosts are Ed Whalen & Jim Davies
BREAKING NEWS: Owen Hart has won the North American title from Makhan Singh in Medicine Hat! But the bad news is that he apparently took a fireball to the face and he’s injured.
Biff Wellington v. Kenny Johnson
This was ther first iteration of the future Beef Wellington, although the graphic shows him as “Dick Wellington”. He’s playing a generic heel managed by Drago Zhivago at this point, shortly after his debut after leaving the Hart school. We’re joined with Wellington tossing Johnson and then hauling him back in for a diving kneedrop that gets two. Biff with a hooking clothesline for two. Johnson makes a comeback with a dropkick and monkey flip out of the corner, but a charge misses and Biff pins him in the corner at 3:17.
Meanwhile, in Medicine Hat, Owen Hart beats Makhan Singh in a cage match and wins the North American title for the first time, and Great Gama comes in after the win and tosses fire in his face. So then Owen and Ben Bassarab join Jim Davies to discuss tonight’s Bermuda Triangle match, and Owen has his face all bandaged up, but he’s still going to defend his title against Makhan tonight.
Makhan Singh joins Ed Whalen, who braved the snowstorms of New York and arrived 45 minutes ago because he didn’t want to miss the show where he gets to announce Makhan as the FORMER champion. Meanwhile Great Gama has a whole analogy about a mongoose, a cobra and other animals and having ears on the bottoms of his feet. Ed spraying the ring with air freshener after the heels leave is pretty funny, even if he no-sells all their insults.
Kerry Brown, Duke Myers & Ted Arcidi v. Mr. Hito, Bill Kazmaier & Jeff Wheeler
Dammit we were promised the clash between Arcidi and Kazmaier last week and now it’s been delayed until NEXT week. I had my popcorn ready and everything. Joined with the heels working Mr. Hito over, as Duke uses the (allegedly) loaded glove on him and chokes him out. Arcidi comes in and works the back, and Brown goes to a chinlock that switches to a choke off and on. Myers with a nerve pinch while Ed relates showing up for a New Jersey Devils broadcast the night before, with a snowstorm that resulted in an all-time record crowd of 334 people for the game. Sounds about right for the Devils in 1987 actually. Hito fights out of the endless chinlocks, and Arcidi comes in with a horrible clothesline that even Hito can’t salvage. HOW DO YOU MESS UP A CLOTHESLINE?! Finally Hito escapes him and makes the hot tag to Wheeler, who dropkicks all the heels and gets a big reaction from the crowd. But then Kerry hits him with a cheapshot on the apron to cut him off, and Arcidi gets a backbreaker and finishes with a body vice at 7:28 aired. This was BAD and they didn’t even let Kazmaier into the ring for the TV portion. But next week, they’re gonna have a singles match, and there’s nothing we can do to stop it.
Afterwards, we get the war of words from Kazmaier and Arcidi, and Bill is already so blown up that he can barely do a promo.
Ron Ritchie v. The Cuban Assassin
Joined with Ritchie hitting a dropkick for two, but Cuban tosses him and runs him into the announce table before adding a chairshot, which draws his second yellow card of the match. Ron fights back and tosses Cuban, then beats on him with his own chairshots to draw his own yellow card, and back in that gets two. Ron goes up and hits a Bombs Away and follows with a suplex for two. But then Cuban finds a mystery object in his pants and puts Ritchie down to take over again. So then Jim Davies makes a joke about Cuban having more foreign objects than Carter has pills (a very 80s saying) and then transitions to plugging an upcoming WWF show at the Saddledome by noting “speaking of people who are on a lot of pills…” and runs down the impending Valentine’s Day card. He does note that a lot of the people featured on the show made their name in Stampede and then graduated to New York. Cuban with an Iron Claw, but Ron escapes from that, so Cuban tries a sleeper and Ritchie runs him into the corner to break free and gets his own sleeper with time expiring. And they end up with a draw at 6:43 shown. Pretty decent match from what we saw.
Ron Ritchie promises that next week he wants a rematch in a one-hour time limit match so we can get a winner. And then Cuban Assassin counters that he discovered Ron Ritchie is actually “an Indian from Winnipeg” who brought his friends from the reservation to hand him chairs.
Bermuda Triangle match: Ben Bassarab v. Great Gama v. Viet Cong Express #1
Joined with Gama and Viet Cong double-teaming Ben with a spike piledriver, putting him on “queer street”. Gama goes up, but Zhivago turns on him and knocks him down with the kendo stick, allowing Viet Cong to toss him and beat on him outside to take over. So while that’s happening, Zhivago beats on Bassarab in the ring with his kendo stick to take him out. Viet Cong hauls Gama back into the ring and beats on him with a back elbow and a neckbreaker, as Gama is busted open, but he makes an unlikely babyface comeback with the cobra sleeper. Viet Cong makes the ropes and they both bump to the floor and continue the brawl, resulting in the ref counting them out to make Bassarab the winner at 4:00 aired. For the first ever three-way match, this was pretty good.
Ben Bassarab doesn’t even care about winning, because both of his opponents are pieces of crap and he “never should have trusted that slant-eyed chopstick”. And then Drago Zhivago does a promo on behalf of Viet Cong Express, and they’re fed up with Karachi Vice messing with them. So then Gama joins us and he’s pissed off at the “Korean rice-eater” after they made a plan to double-team Bassarab and send him out on a stretcher. So next week, it’s Great Gama v. Viet Cong Express #1 to settle it.
North American title: Owen Hart v. Makhan Singh
Joined with Makhan chasing Owen to the floor and slamming him out there, before hauling him back to the apron and ripping off the eye bandage so he can better go after the burn injury. Back in the ring, Makhan slams him for two to set up the Karachi Krunch, but that misses and Owen makes the comeback. He slams Makhan and goes up with a missile dropkick, then drops a knee for two. He puts his head down, however, and Makhan boots him down, and then accidentally bumps the ref. So Gama runs in for another fireball, and the ref wakes up and calls for the DQ at 4:44.
Afterwards, Makhan Singh says it’s all Owen’s fault because he told Owen not to wrestle this week, and in fact Stu Hart should just hand him the belt and call him the best champion ever and leave Owen home doing dishes or something. And then Ed cuts off Gama’s promo because he’s so disgusted. And we go to the dressing room, where Bruce Hart tends to Owen, who apparently might never see again out of his eye, but Owen promises that he’ll keep defending the belt as long as his heart is still beating, which is where we wrap it up for the week.
So there you go, the first ever three way match as we continue with the show that molded my wrestling fandom in 1987.