Wrestling Observer Flashback–08.22.88

Apparently it’s a “great week for rumors, and a lousy week for news”, so this should be fun!  On with the “news”!

– Turner’s purchase of Crockett is pretty much a done deal, pending Crockett clearing up any outstanding debts. 

– The third Clash of Champions comes up next month, and the lineup is kind of shitty.  Barry Windham v. Sting is the main event, as well as Dusty Rhodes & Dick Murdoch reuniting as the Texas Outlaws against Al Perez & Ron Garvin.  That second match of course did not happen.  Dave feels like the lack of Flair and Luger means they’re just mailing this one in.

– NBC will be launching their new channel, called CNBC, and are looking for a one-hour wrestling show to go along with it.  Nothing ever came of that.

– Ric Flair, Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson all threatened to quit unless a “specific change” was made, and Crockett apparently called their bluff and they all showed up for TV anyway and everything was worked out.  Well, Dave, I wouldn’t speak so fast there…

– Over in World Class, Kevin Von Erich lost the Texas title to Iceman Parsons.  Sort of.  Kerry actually did the job for him, because Kevin “stepped in broken glass” and had stitches in his feet, and thus was unable to do the job.  What is this, Die Hard?  Amazingly, people at the arena bought this nonsense, as Dave notes that wacky stuff like that always seems to happen when Kevin has to lose a title.  I wonder if Shawn Michaels was taking notes?

– In PNW, the new team of Buddy Rose & a rookie named Avalanche, who call themselves the Beach Boys, win the tag team titles.  Apparently Dusty Rhodes is looking to bring in Avalanche, and that intrigued me enough to check out who this guy was.  Turns out that it’s Paul Neu, who debuted for WCW in 1991 as PN News.  He’s apparently still working today, as “Cannonball Grizzly”, which is a pretty badass wrestling name in itself!

– Over in Stampede, injuries and a mass exodus are really stripping the territory down.  Jason the Terrible is strongly rumored to be headed to the NWA (didn’t happen) and North American champion Makhan Singh is doing TV commercials for a furniture store in Edmonton (don’t remember that, but I didn’t move to Edmonton until 1990). 

– In Windy City Wrestling, John Nord wins the award for most honest reason for a no-show by announcing that he can’t make it due to depression from the murder of Bruiser Brody. 

– In Puerto Rico, pretty much every US-based wrestler abandoned the promotion after Brody’s death, with only a few stragglers left working for Colon. 

– The AWA remains the second-highest rated show on ESPN even as it spirals down the drain, which Dave notes is pretty impressive given that ESPN treats it like garbage.

– Dave offers a medical sidebar here, as he notes that Savannah Jack looks to return to wrestling soon after suffering some heart problems.  At one point it was thought he would need a transplant, but then his heart issues magically cleared up around the same time that he stopped doing roids.  Unfortunately that was not the case, and he never did return to wrestling although he did live until 2012. 

–   Dave watches four weeks of Continental, which is now being booked by Eddie Gilbert & Paul Heyman, and notes that it’s some of the best stuff in North America but might be a bit “over-angled”.  What, Paul Heyman book too many angles?  That’s CRAZY.

– Apparently the payoff for the Rude-Roberts feud was supposed to be Rude’s sister, who wrestled as Raven, coming in for a mixed-gender match of some kind.  People keep pitching the same kind of idea for Elizabeth, but you can guess why THAT never flew.  Not sure why the Raven thing never panned out.

– Iron Sheik has been fired again for the same thing that got him fired before.  OK then.  Drugs, I assume?

– The “rumor” about Liz showing up at Summerslam wearing a bikini for the distraction of the heels is a planted story by the WWF, hoping to draw a buyrate.  And it certainly worked.

– While the Hogan-Tyson rumors are very intriguing, Vince would never allow Hulk to be put in a position where it wasn’t 100% under his control.  And if Tyson KO’d Hogan with one punch (which is 100% likely to happen) then he would pretty much sink the entire company at the same time.  Not worth it for a one-time payoff.

And that’s all for this week!