The SmarK Rant for Mid-South Wrestling – 02.27.82
Carrying on with Bill Watts and his territory in the good ol’ days again.
I don’t want to bore you with my behind-the-scenes details, but the last few days of stuff were written a few days in advance to free up my weekend, as I feverishly attempted to get a bunch of stuff in the can before I go away for a business trip next week. So far I managed to get two brand new Wrestling Observer Flashbacks done and ready for the first week of October while I’m gone, and I’m hoping to add a redo of In Your House #1 as a part of that, as well as the pertinent RAW reposts to fill in the gaps. My original plan been to do the big 6 hour “20 matches that define the Intercontinental title” special on the Network and break it up into 6 parts for posting in pieces that week, but really I’ve done all the matches already and none of them are that exciting.
Taped from Shreveport, LA
Your hosts are Boyd Pierce & Dusty Rhodes. Oh, this is gonna be a thing. Dusty encourages us to go out and steal a color TV set if we don’t already have one, because Boyd is “The Dean of Color”.
Cocoa Samoa v. Larry Higgins
Dusty notes that Samoa might not look like much, but you “always see people like that come along and knock out Sugar Rey Leonard or Muhammad Ali or Harley Race”. People like that? Higgins wants a test of strength, but Samoa takes him down with a double leg and Dusty is very excited about this. HE SWEP HIM! HE SWEP HIM! Samoa gets the advantage on the test of strength this time and goes to an armbar on the mat, then chops Higgins down and finishes him with a middle rope flying splash at 3:23. HE MUST BE TWENTY FEET IN THE AIR! LOOK AT DAT, BOYD! You cannot say Dusty didn’t bring enthusiasm to his profession.
Paul Orndorff v. Frank Monte
Dusty tells a story about being out doing road-work and running into Monte at the gym. Well now we KNOW he’s telling whoppers. They trade headscissors on the mat and Monte works the arm, but Orndorff makes the ropes. Dusty notes that he’s pretty interested in Ted Dibiase’s North American title while he’s here. Monte beats on him with an elbow but Orndorff stomps him down and Dusty notes that Monte needs to be a little meaner. So Monte does a flying headscissors and Dusty’s like “Oh yeah, I used to do that when I was younger!” He later confides to Boyd that he was being sarcastic. Orndorff finishes him with a powerslam at 3:25. Lord help me but Dusty is just cracking me up non-stop here.
North American title: Ted Dibiase v. The Grappler
This is the rematch for Grappler after Dibiase beat him for the title some time ago, according to Boyd. Grappler engages Dibiase in a footrace outside the ring, but runs into Dibiase’s forearm in the ring and Ted works on the arm. Dusty notes that if Grappler didn’t have the drive to regain his title after losing it, he should go do another sport. Like, football, or something. More from Dusty: A full man can beat you, but a half a man can’t, so take away a limb. All you kids remember that! Grappler gets a cheapshot in the corner and beats on Dibiase in the corner via the Tree of Woe. “All the blood is rushing to his head! You gonna automatically be dizzy when you get up! It’s like having a seizure or something!” Dusty is legit amazing on commentary here and I take back every bad thing I ever said about his commentary work. Grappler gets a neckbreaker for two, probably due to Ted having a seizure or something, but Ted gets a sunset flip for two and a backdrop suplex. Both are down and Grappler misses an elbow, allowing Dibiase to get fired up and make the comeback. GOTTA GET UP TO GET DOWN, TEDDY! Ted slugs away in the corner, but Grappler loads up the STEEL TOED BOOT OF DEATH and kicks Dibiase in the leg, and Dusty goes full on Excited Southerner on us. “I don’t know if he’s got a sledgehammer in there or what he’s got”. I’d be impressed if he did manage to fit a sledgehammer in his boot, to be honest. Grappler goes up and Ted brings him down with a superplex for two, but Grappler loads up the boot again and Ted snaps off another suplex and bridges into the pin at 6:54. Dusty was nearly having a damn heart attack on commentary and it was tremendous. Hell of a match, too.
Bob Roop v. Bill Ash
Roop comes over to the commentary table to bitch about how he’s got getting competition from these scrubs, but Boyd passes the buck to Grizzly Smith, the matchmaker. So Dusty relates a story about watching TV and seeing Roop get beaten by JYD right there on the TV! This really gets Roop all good and pissed off, and Dusty doesn’t care if he’s working and lacking gear if you’re gonna mouth off to him. So he goes to kick Roop’s ass and Orndorff jumps him from behind and Dusty drops an elbow on him and counts his own pin on the floor. But then the heels double-team him and Orndorff chokes him out with his own shirt until some babyfaces chase them off. I can’t believe I’m gonna say this, but I’m gonna miss Dusty on commentary for the rest of the show! Also it’s gonna cost him $2500 under Mid-South rules, because guest commentators cannot get involved in the ring, despite the fact that it happens every time there’s a guest commentator.
Mr. Olympia v. Ed Wiskowski
Olympia quickly gets an inside cradle for two and grabs a headlock, but Wiskowski puts him down with a shoulderblock and puts the boots to him. He gets some forearms for two and beats on Olympia with shoulders , but Olympia comes back, so Wiskowski cradles him for two. Backslide gets two. Ed goes with another headlock on the mat, but Olympia comes back with a suplex for two. Rolling reverse finishes at 5:14. Kind of a yawner.
Bob Sweetan v. Tony Torres
I don’t know if I’ve mentioned lately about how hideous Bob Sweetan looks, but I heard that he threw a boomerang and it refused to come back. Also, I heard that he was arrested for indecent exposure but then police realized that was just his face. He’s ugly, is what I’m saying. Very unattractive. Sweetan beats on Torres and then goes to a headlock as this show has gotten a lot less fun with the departure of Dusty. Boyd notes that Dusty has lost his dignity and lost his shirt. I’m OK with him losing his dignity but I think we would have all rather he didn’t lose his shirt. Sweetan drops the knee to finish at 2:30. I heard he went to the zoo afterwards with his wife and they thanked her for bringing him back. HE’S UGLY.
The Wild Samoans v. Junkyard Dog & Brian Blair
This is non-title, since it’s a standby match after the North American title match ran short. Blair is taking the place of Mike George, who was injured by the Samoans and thus cost them the tag titles. So Dog beats on Afa and Blair comes in, but promptly gets kicked in the face. So Brian gives Afa some of the same and gets a sunset flip for two, but Afa drops him with a stungun and the Samoans go to work. Sika beats on Blair with a clothesline and in a nice touch, Dog is actually reaching out for a tag instead of just standing there and clapping like a moron. My dad used to get really fired up by idiot babyfaces who would be standing on the wrong side of the post and weren’t ready for a tag or trying to make it look real. Blair keeps trying to fight back and gets overwhelmed, but finally makes the hot tag to the Dog and he quickly cleans house. THUMP for Afa gets two, but Sika takes out Blair on the floor with a shot to the post and they double-team JYD in the ring and beat him down. The ref gets tossed out as well and Dog is in trouble, but Mr. Olympia makes the save and then gets beaten down as well. Finally Dog makes his own comeback and clears the ring as they call for the DQ at 6:13. But they DQ JYD and Blair for outside interference from Olympia? What kind of bullshit is THAT? Well, I presume we get a Dog & Olympia v. Samoans tag team match next week to settle these shenanigans.
Well, at the risk of engaging in hyperbole, this was on track to be the greatest hour of professional wrestling television in history thanks to Dusty Rhodes and a big bag of cocaine, but it dropped off a lot thanks to those no-good heels who attacked him. Hopefully he gets some revenge for color commentators everywhere next time.