SMOKY MOUNTAIN WRESTLING TV – February 15th, 1992
Taped: November 27th, 1991; East High School; Morristown, TN
– Last week on SMW TV… The Fantastics defeated Ivan and Vladimir Koloff in a decent Main Event, but who knows if that’s the end of their little ditty… “Mr. Wonderful” Paul Orndorff made his debut and immediately leap-frogged every other singles wrestler when it comes to star power… “Hollywood” Bob Holly, “Hustler” Rip Rogers, Scott Armstrong, and “Nitro” Danny Davis made their first appearances… Jim Cornette is still promising to unveil a new tag team that will rival the success of the Midnight Express… Ron Wright is still looking for talent to manage… Dutch Mantel laid a country whoopin’ on Scott Armstrong to further his program with “Primetime” Brian Lee.
– Taped on November 27th, 1991 (Happy Thanksgiving!), from the East High School in Morristown, TN, hometown of SMW Legend Tim Horner. Caudle and Jim Cornette are calling the action for a second week in a row thanks to Dutch Mantel being scheduled for competition against Brian Lee. Also in action, tonight: “Hollywood” Bob Holly, “Rock & Roll” Robert Gibson, and White Lightnin’ Tim Horner. They’re also teasing that Ivan Koloff has a new tag team partner. Good, Vladimir was terrible.
– “Hollywood” Bob Holly vs. Pat Rose:
I’m certain I’ve seen Rose from time to time working as enhancement talent for WCW. New set of tapings and Holly is still sporting the boring wind breaker instead of a robe. Holly gives Rose a handshake and high-five, only to sneak attack him moments later. Rose reverses a whip and catches Holly with a fist to the forehead. Lockup, Holly with a side headlock and shoulder tackle. Rose catches him off the ropes with a hip toss, followed by a slam and arm drag. Cornette says Holly has all the tools to be a future Superstar. Rose ducks under an elbow, but runs right into an inverted atomic drop. Holly with a snap mare and leg drop for two. Whip to the ropes and he hooks a sleeper. Rose weakly rams Holly to the turnbuckle to break the hold. Holly grabs it again, but Rose counters. Whip to the ropes and Holly catches Rose off guard with a swinging neck breaker. Holly climbs the ropes and the flying knee drop finishes at 3:43. Rose had the balls to kick out just after three, too. Watchable preliminary match. Holly continues to showcase a solid offense.
– Bob Caudle is standing by with the Fantastics and Tim Horner to promote Smoky Mountain Wrestling “coming soon to your area.” We’ll be seeing this segment a few times this week, and probably next week, too.
– Bobby Fulton is standing by to promote tonight’s match. Vladimir has (allegedly) been called back to Russia for unknown reasons. The Fantastics have proven to be winners, and it won’t matter who Ivan chooses as his new partner. We cut back to Bob Caudle, and Ivan introduces us to Jimmy Golden (WCW fans will recognize him as Bunkhouse Buck). Koloff puts Golden over for being the one American that is trustworthy. He says they’re going to separate the men from the boys.
– “Jumpin” Joey Maggs vs. “Hustler” Rip Rogers:
You can’t not love when all the enhancement talent has cute nicknames. What’s this… two guys who are usually seen on the losing end of matches? That means somebody has to win! OK, time to take your bets. Maggs has the babyface advantage, but Rogers has the experience. Rogers attacks from behind, a trend setting for tonight. He sends Maggs to the corner and takes him over with a snap mare. Maggs ducks under an elbow, but gets slammed down with a handful of hair. Whip to the corner, Maggs takes him over with a hip toss, and throws him across the ring with Rogers’ vest wrapped around his neck. Maggs telegraphs a back drop and gets a boot to the chest for it. Rogers dumps him to the basketball court and comes off the top with a double axe-handle. Back inside, Rogers with a boot to the face and clothesline for two. Maggs with a surprise small package for two. They trade blows until Rogers lands a headbutt. Maggs reverses a whip to the corner and follows in with a clothesline. Rogers gets trapped in the Andre Special (arms caught in the ropes) and Maggs has no sympathy. Rogers boots him coming off the ropes, but collapses under the weight of a slam attempt. Maggs with a back slide for two. Diving body press for two. Maggs climbs the ropes, but Rogers “accidentally” falls into the ropes, straddling him across the turnbuckle. Rogers follows up, and the Ripper-Plex (Super-Plex) finishes at 4:46. **1/2 Solid back-and-forth action. Rogers is underappreciated talent.
– “Rock & Roll” Robert Gibson vs. The Mighty Yankee:
The Mighty Yankee is introduced from “Up North”. That’s pretty lazy, if you ask me. This is Gibson’s second in-ring appearance for SMW. The Yankee comes off the ropes with a shoulder tackle and takes Gibson over with a hip toss. Gibson mule kicks Yankee and hits him with a dropkick for a two count. Crisscross and Gibson hits him with an elbow. Gibson with a fist to the midsection and a knee lift for two. Caudle informs us that Robert’s brother Ricky was recently involved in an automobile accident. The Yankee drives an axe-handle across the back and drops a pair of elbows for two. The Yankee sends Gibson to the floor with a shoulder tackle and brings him back into the ring with a suplex. The Yankee misses a charge to the corner and Gibson finishes with the bulldog at 3:19. Not an impressive victory. I have a feeling we’re just buying time until we get the inevitable reunion between Robert Gibson and Ricky Morton.
– Bob Caudle asks Jim Cornette about the tag team he’s been talking about for the last couple of weeks. He rants about Magic Johnson “completing more passes off the court than on” and Pee Wee Herman liking to “play solitaire in a public theater.” You don’t know who’s word to believe in, but you can believe in Jim Cornette. If he says the sun isn’t coming up tomorrow, you better go get a flashlight. There’s going to be a tournament to crown SMW Tag Team Champions, and his team will win it, whether the hillbillies in attendance like it or not.
– Recap of last week’s match between Dutch Mantel and Scott Armstrong. We cut to Dutch Mantel, kneeling in front of Ron Wright, offering for Mr. Wright to accompany him to ringside for his match against “that low-life, egg sucking” Brian Lee. Wright says Mantel brought tears to his eye (must… resist… Bret joke) and says he’s looking forward to the day he can have his hip implant surgery.
– White Lightnin’ Tim Horner vs. “Bad Boy” Barry Horowitz:
Yes! Even Barry Horowitz has a nickname! It’s a slight improvement over “The Winner” nickname he used in GWF. Some fans have Tim Horner foam lightning bolts. How many of them were paid for and how many passed out for free? Lockup to the corner and a clean break. Horner with a bit of chain wrestling into a cover. They trade wrist-locks and Horner with a fireman’s carry. Horowitz with a cheap shot in the corner, followed by a pair of uppercuts. Horner leaps over a charge and nails him with a blatant right hand. Bob Caudle says he has an important message being relayed to him… next week, the Fantastics face Ivan Koloff and Jimmy Golden! Horowitz with a whip to the corner and a gut-wrench suplex. Horowitz with a knee lift and reverse back breaker for a near fall. Horowitz with an over-head slam into a bridge for two. Horner blocks an inverted atomic drop and runs over Horowitz with a body tackle. Horner with a hip toss, slam, and elbow for two. Horner with the Natural Bridge (O’Conner Roll) on attempt #2 for three at 5:08. I still hate that as a finisher, but it works as a believable wrestling move. ** Another decent, competitive match.
– Tim Horner with post-match comments thanking the Morristown fans for their support. Short and sweet, the best you can hope for out of White Lightnin’.
– “Nature Boy” Buddy Landel is standing by with comments. He doesn’t kiss anybody’s can or bend over backwards for the promoters, but in SMW, he’s allowed to be whoever he wants to be. He goes off on a rant that I’m assuming is a jab at Dusty Rhodes, based on the lisp. Landel says he’s a God in the Smoky Mountain area, and he has a bad attitude to go with his big ego.
– “Primetime” Brian Lee vs. “Dirty” Dutch Mantel:
TV Main Event. Ron Wright isn’t at ringside… yet. This was set up on the premiere episode of SMW when Mantel critiqued Lee’s victory over Barry Horowitz. Lockup and Lee shoves Mantel across the ring. Mantel grabs a side headlock and puts Lee down with a shoulder tackle. Lee quickly recovers, taking Mantel over with a hip toss and a press slam. Mr. Ron Wright finally makes his way to ringside while Lee works the arm of the Dirty Dutchman. Caudle gets on Cornette’s case for defending Wright, who has a track record of being a miserable human being (Ole Anderson?). The referee kicks Mantel’s hand off the rope when Lee’s wrist-lock should’ve been broken. Dutch takes control with an abdominal stretch, and yes, he uses the ropes for leverage. There’s an elderly woman getting too excited with the action. Cornette: “I wonder if her Undertaker knows she got up this morning.” Dutch with a big clothesline and knee drop. Lee gets the better of a slugfest, sends Mantel across the ring, and takes him over with a power-slam. Wright passes a weapon off to Mantel, but Lee blocks the blow, grabs the weapon, and nails Mantel instead. The referee counts two, sees the weapon still on Lee’s hand, and Disqualifies him at 5:20. Wright wastes little time fleeing the scene of the crime. *1/4 Wasn’t a fan of the match, but it was short, and further establishes Wright’s tactics at ringside, even from a wheelchair.
– We cut to taped comments from Mr. Ron Wright. He says he’s a living legend in Tennessee. He still needs a hip implant surgery, and he’s got arthritis in his back and knees that he’s taking nitroglycerin for. Bob Holly wanders into the scene saying he can’t waste time, because he has a date with Julia Roberts and there’s a limo waiting for him. Jim Cornette interrupts that to put Holly over for having one of the best punches and teases introducing us to his tag team (when the time is right).
– Brian Lee is standing by, and he’s figuratively hopping mad at Dutch Mantel and Ron Wright for what transpired moments ago. He says he’s going to put Mantel in a wheelchair so he can be side-by-side with Wright, and he wants a rematch, any time and any place. “You may be good, but you’re not ready for Primetime.”
Final Thoughts: Besides the teases of tournaments to crown Smoky Mountain Wrestling Champions, Ron Wright has gotten a lot of screen time and is clearly being positioned as the soon-to-be-manager of a high-profile heel, likely to feud with Brian Lee, who is getting the push as the top baby-face of the company. Bob Holly and Tim Horner got more time to showcase their abilities as solid hands in the mid-card. Jimmy Golden made his debut, making an unlikely alliance with Ivan Koloff in his further battles with the Fantastics. We can look forward to seeing “Nature Boy” Buddy Landel soon, assuming he’s able to show up on time. Another show where we continue to set the pieces in place for future episodes.
I’ll be back next Wednesday with the February 22nd episode. Until then, you can check out other rasslin’ recaps over at http://www.DaWrestlingSite.com, where I’m one of the main contributors.