Wrestling Observer Flashback–09.18.89

Well, evening posting did NOT work. 

imagination christmas

Back to mornings!

– Dave previews some of the major shows coming up, and notes that the last working plan for Starrcade 89 was Flair v. Great Muta, although that could certainly change.  They were STUPID not to go with Flair v. Luger that year.  WWF is still thinking of Hogan v. Zeus for the No Holds Barred show in December, although Zeus’ future is decidedly up in the air so that probably won’t happen as original planned.  Main event for Survivor Series appears to be Hogan/Demolition/Jake Roberts v. Dibiase/Zeus/Powers of Pain in one of the most random main events ever, although they’re dropping to 8-man matches because the roster is pretty thin right now. 

– Speaking of Starrcade, the gamesmanship continues as the original December 17 date for the show doesn’t appear workable right now due to competition from NFL games and being too close to No Holds Barred: The Movie: The PPV.  The new date appears to be December 13, if they can find a site for the show.  They’re trying to avoid the South because they don’t want people to think that the promotion is a bunch of southern hicks, although Dave points out that they’ve done two straight PPVs in the Northeast so they’re kind of due for a Georgia or Carolina show. 

– Dave doesn’t think that Akira Maeda v. George Foreman is a realistic idea.  No shit.

– Stampede is still in discussions with ESPN about taking over the AWA’s timeslot, as ESPN is quite unhappy with the rapid decline of Verne’s product, although Stampede would need so much updating in terms of presentation that it probably wouldn’t be feasible.  And as Dave notes, once the US audience got exposed to the commentary team of Ed Whalen and Bulldog Bob Brown, “batten down the hatches”. 

– Dave yaks about Roller Games for a while here, since they were trying another revival of it.  I know people complain about MMA taking over the newsletter all the time, but HOLY SHIT do I not care about Roller games talk in any time period or incarnation.

– Scotty the Body got his first major push in the sport, winning a tournament for the PNW title. 

– The Blackhearts (Gangrel and some other goof named Tom Nash) are into Stampede, and would end up being the last tag champions.  Dave also gets a funny line in talking about returning manager KY Wakamatsu, the latest in a long line of Calgary heel managers who can’t do interviews.  It’s funny because it’s TRUE! 

– Dave notes that Jason the Terrible still has a cast on his leg, so his promises of an October return may be premature.  That’s an understatement. 

– Dave also notes that Tom Nash from Florida is coming in, although of course he was half of the Blackhearts and I guess Dave just didn’t know who they were at that point.

– Champion Larry Cameron has actually left the promotion, although he might return when Owen Hart does. 

– Davey Boy Smith is desperately trying to get into the WWF again. 

– A new rookie named Skull Mason (great name!) came out of the Hart Dungeon, but never amounted to anything in the business.  I saw him a few times at indy shows in Edmonton that Teddy Hart headlined and he was nothing special. 

– Meanwhile, Dave brings up Dr. Jonathan Holliday, who I had forgotten about until recently, as he relates Holliday’s HORRIBLE matches where he would literally spend the entire match running away from Chris Benoit until he got counted out.  Guys apparently hated working matches with him as a result.  Holliday actually tried to get in with the WWF as a part of the creative team in 1990 but it didn’t go anywhere.

– Speaking of promotions not going anywhere, the USWA’s finishes and stips continue to get more ridiculous as crowds drop.  Kerry Von Erich got his hand tied to the ring post and Tarras Bulba repeatedly headbutted it until the CLAW HAND WAS BROKEN!  Also, Chris Adams won that match to prevent Tojo from raping his wife, so next week is a Mexican Death Match with Kerry & Adams v. Chu-Hi & Bulba.  So here’s the stipulation:  Everyone brings their favorite weapons with them, and before the match there’s a coinflip, with the winner getting to hang their chosen weapon from a pole, and whoever retrieves it from the pole first gets to use it.  Chris Adams has promised to bring Toni’s .357 Magnum as his chosen weapon.  RUSSORIFFIC.

– Dave suspects that the mysterious Masked Punisher is Master of Pain.

– Seiji Sakaguchi of New Japan is visiting Vince McMahon, trying to use some of that sweet, sweet Russian profits to rent WWF wrestlers for a Tokyo Dome show, in particular Hulk Hogan.  Well, good luck with that.

– All Japan’s relationship with the NWA is increasingly strained, with Dick Slater and Tom Zenk being the latest talent to have their Japan tour cancelled due to US commitments. 

– Atsushi Onita’s wacky new FMW promotion is upsetting traditionalists in Japan by booking lots of Mexicans and women.  Apparently Japan was run by Donald Trump. 

– Madusa is actually improving rapidly by working with all the top female stars in Japan.  Go figure.

– THIS WEEK IN KERRY VON ERICH STUPIDITY:  A rock band in Cleveland called “The Bastard Squad” does a song called “If I Only Had a Brain” and dedicates it to Kerry Von Erich before they perform it.  Awesome.

– The AWA is holding a tournament for the tag titles, which will be won by the Destruction Crew because they are literally the only tag team left in the promotion. 

– Still no word on when the Team Challenge Series will start in the AWA. 

– Stampede is trying to bring in Ric Flair for a one-shot match with Owen Hart.  Well you what they say about wishing in one hand…

– Florida update:  Still alive.

– Terry Funk is really beat up, suffering a staph infection in his elbow now, so Dick Slater is taking his place in the death matches with Ric Flair.  Maybe he’ll have to retire soon?

– Dale Veasy (half of the State Patrol) was ironically arrested on charges of extortion for threatening a witness in an upcoming trial for steroid distribution. 

– Big Steel Man is indeed coming into the WWF, as “Tugboat Tyler” in a babyface role. 

– Apparently another wrestling album is due in December, with songs by Koko B. Ware, Jimmy Snuka, Dusty Rhodes, Roddy Piper and Hillbilly Jim.  I feel like we were robbed of something special there.

– Finally, a reader is OUTRAGED at a recent episode of Stampede on TSN, as Larry Cameron was angered by fans chanting for Owen and quipped “That is the thing that pisses me off the most.”  The reader is not only offended by the bad language, but the GRAMMAR.  For shame, Ed Whalen, for letting that get through to the airwaves.