The SmarK Rant for World Class Championship Wrestling – 08.22.86
Thought I’d jump forward in time for fun, to see just how badly World Class was falling apart at this point since we’re around here with the Observer Flashbacks. Plus the main event was…interesting.
Taped from Dallas, TX
Your host is Bill Mercer, who thankfully has shaved his ugly beard off by this point.
Buzz Sawyer & Matt Borne v. The US Express (Brad & Bart Batten)
The team of “Maniac” and “Mad Dog” is such a natural one that I don’t know why they didn’t do it more often. Sawyer throws a Batten around with press slams, but Batten gets a rollup for two. The Battens are kind of annoying because it’s not like the Usos where there’s some subtle differences to tell them apart. They’re IDENTICAL twins, who wear identical gear with “BB” on their boots either way. Think a pair of slightly more well-built Mike Grahams or Greg Gagnes, basically. The Battens double-team Buzz with dropkicks to send him running away, and it’s over to Borne. A Batten controls the heels with a series of armdrags as these guys are just the most bland babyface team possible. It’s like they want to be the Rock N Roll Express, but rock n roll is too rebellious for them, so they’re like the Smooth Jazz Express or Elevator Music Express instead. Finally Borne tosses a Batten to cut them off and slams him on the floor, and Buzz suplexes him back into the ring for two. He drops Batten back-first onto Borne’s knee for two, and Matt goes to the bearhug before turning it into a belly to belly. Batten makes a comeback and Sawyer cuts him off with a beautiful powerslam for two, and Borne finishes with a Whoopie Cushion at 8:44. Good solid tag match here, although the Battens didn’t even get a hot tag. **3/4
Percy Pringle, looking much thinner in his younger days, feels like it’s time for Chris Adams to return the World Class title to Rick Rood, and he introduces his new man, Jos LeDuc. They were really reaching for heels at this point, clearly. LeDuc is looking for some big nasty men. Well, good for him.
Jos LeDuc v. Perry Jackson
LeDuc wasn’t long for World Class anyway. Jackson would later try for his 15 minutes of wrestling fame by changing his gimmick to “Action” Jackson to cash in on the movie that nobody remembers today. LeDuc, old and out of shape by this point, slugs away on Jackson and stomps him down, then no-sells a comeback attempt and finishes with a bearhug at 4:00. LeDuc looked TERRIBLE here. DUD
Rick Rood v. The Dingo Warrior
Rick was of course on his way to Crockett soon. This was very early in Dingo’s WCCW career, as Gary Hart was managing him and promising a partner named “Socko” that would presumably form the Road Warrior ripoff team that Fritz had been pushing for. Technically he was a heel at this point (the last time in his career that would happen) but the fans basically turned him babyface and he never looked back. Rood slams him and Warrior pops right up again and gets his own press slam. So Rude bails and Gary Hart throws out a challenge for an arm-wrestling match RIGHT THERE with $10,000 on the line. Sure, why not. So the match grinds to a halt and they go down to the mat, but Rood just attacks him and Warrior no-sells and throws him out again. Back in after MORE stalling, and Rood tries a full nelson that gets immediately broken while the managers jaw with each other. Probably the match would be better if they put mics on Pringle and Hart. Rood fires away in the corner, which gives us a glimpse of a large “Smoking Allowed in Arena” sign. Man, the Von Erichs must have been PUMPED to find that out! It doesn’t even specify what you can and can’t smoke, and that’s a legal loophole if I’ve ever seen one. Rood slugs away and gets a dropkick, but Warrior blocks a piledriver (or an Atomic Drop as Mercer calls it) and throws knees in the corner. “It’s even more of an awesome display of brute strength than we thought it would be!” declares Mercer. Well my standards were pretty low coming in, so I suppose that’s technically true. Rood goes to a lengthy chinlock, but Warrior comes back with another press slam (his one move) and goes after Pringle for the double DQ at 12:00. What a s--- finish to a s--- match. -**
Lance Von Erich v. The Grappler
Although Lance was TERRIBLE, he had a great look for wrestling and probably should have been a star if the Von Erich scam hadn’t destroyed his marketability. Lance trades some mat-wrestling with Grappler and monkey-flips him to set up a backdrop as Grappler bails. Lance’s timing is really bad here. Grappler takes over with a suplex, but Lance comes back with a sloppy sunset flip for the pin at 6:21.
Wow, that Dingo Warrior match was…something. I don’t know what that something is, but it whatever it was, this was it.