What the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – February 4, 1995

Lance Russell and Dave Brown call today’s action from WMC-TV 5 in Memphis, Tennessee.

Gorgeous George III (w/Big Business Brown) (2-0) pins T.D. Steel after the Powderpuff at 2:37:

Brown got his start as a heel in Florida, trained by Boris Malenko, and he got into the USWA thanks to Lanny Poffo.  He debuted in 1994 as a guy who wanted to buy out the USWA television show and turn it into a variation of the Home Shopping Network (HSN).  George stretches Steel for a while and lays in weak strikes before hitting an inverse suplex called the Powder Puff for the win.

A new segment debuts called “USWA Flashback.”  Highlights of an old Coliseum match from 1983, featuring Bobby Eaton & Cowboy Frasier vs. Terry Taylor & Sweet Brown Sugar (Koko B. Ware) are shown.  Taylor & Sugar won.

Russell interviews USWA Southern Heavyweight Champion Brian Christopher.  He says seeing Jerry Lawler and Bill Dundee wrestle in the marathon match was like watching Jurassic Park and is bitter than he lost, a loss he blames on Dundee because he had Lawler beat until Dundee intervened.  Dundee comes out and says Christopher has nothing to worry about because he has a long career in front of him.  He says he helped Lawler win because they are on a higher level than Christopher and have spent more years in the business.  Dundee challenges Christopher to a match at the Coliseum for the Southern Heavyweight Championship and Christopher accepting.  Crystalizing this feud as the past versus the future is nice storytelling, especially since Christopher has yet to win the Unified World Championship.

Non-Title Match:  Brian Christopher (USWA Southern Heavyweight Champion) (5-3) pins Edric Hines after a Tennessee Jam at 1:55:

Christopher tears into Hines before the bell, slingshot suplexing the skinny jobber and finishing with a superkick and Tennessee Jam (a flying leg drop).

A long video package puts over Jerry Lawler for his USWA Unified World Championship match against Sid Vicious at the Memphis Coliseum this Monday.  Highlights of his matches against Dream Machine, Paul Ellering, Crusher Blackwell, Hulk Hogan, Terry Funk, Andy Kaufman, Nick Bockwinkel, Ken Patera, the Iron Sheik, Jimmy Hart, Kamala, King Kong Bundy, Rick Rude, Bruiser Brody, Randy Savage, Jesse Ventura, Tommy Rich, the Great Kabuki, Bam Bam Bigelow, Kerry von Erich, Austin Idol, and Curt Hennig are shown.

Dave Brown interviews USWA Tag Team Champions Doug Gilbert & Tommy Rich.  Brown asks the champions when they are going to give PG-13 a title shot.  The heels refuse, but they have a match this week in Memphis where if PG-13 beats them they will get an immediate title match.

PG-13 (6-3-1) defeat the Shadow & Knuckles Nelson when both men pin the Shadow after Demolition Decapitation at 2:59:

The Shadow was a long-time USWA jobber, wrestling in black tights and wearing a black mask.  Nelson was a Northeast independent wrestler who made a one-time appearance for the USWA on this episode.  PG-13 go through the motions, hit a weird looking double bulldog on the Shadow, and finish the Shadow off with their version of Demolition Decapitation.

After the match, PG-13 go to cut a promo with Russell but are attacked by Doug Gilbert and Tommy Rich.  J.C. Ice is handcuffed to the bottom rope so Gilbert and Rich can spray paint in Wolfie D’s eyes.  T.D. Steel and Ken Raper make the save, a curious choice for a rescue team.  After the heels are taken away, Wolfie D is driven to a hospital.

Russell interviews Big Business Brown, who hypes his new team of Big Daddy Cyrus and Crusher Bones.  Cyrus achieved his greatest fame in wrestling as one of Hillbilly Jim’s cousins in the WWF, wrestling as Cousin Junior.  He also worked as a Moondog in the USWA in 1992, taking on the name Moondog Cujo.  Bones was a Jimmy Valiant trainee who was 6’8” and was a relative newcomer to the business, getting his start in 1993.  He did jobs for the WWF and WCW in 1995 under the name Scott Turner.  Brown rants about truck drivers before saying that his team is tougher than they are.  Cyrus calls out the USWA’s top talents before saying that they are not as tough as him.  This brings out USWA Unified World Champion Sid, who happily introduces himself and gives him an invitation to wrestle him anytime because he rules the world.  Sid’s surprise appearance at the end rescued this segment in a big way.

Fourteen-Man Battle Royal for $2,500:  Big Daddy Cyrus & Crusher Bones win after eliminating Ken Raper at 4:31:

Participants:  Knuckles Nelson, Reggie B. Fine, Doug Gilbert, Tommy Rich, Brian Christopher, T.D. Steel, Gorgeous George III, the Spellbinder, Scott Studd, Edric Hines, and Bill Dundee.

This was supposed to be a sixteen-man battle royal but Wolfie D’s injury earlier in the show led to PG-13 not being a part of it.  The battle royal starts awkwardly as some guys start wrestling and then other guys gradually join in.  And the rules say that you can be eliminated via pinfall or top rope elimination.  That never comes into play as the action goes quick.  Bill Dundee eliminates some big names like Gilbert and the Spellbinder and then cannot be bothered to go over the top rope, with Gilbert dragging him under the bottom rope and referees not seeing this and forcing Dundee to go to the locker room.  The final five ends up with Cryus, Bones, Christopher, Raper, and Studd, and the USWA kills any semblance of drama by having Christopher get eliminated first and then Studd and Raper are dumped unceremoniously.  I am a fan of battle royals, but this never got a chance to tell much of a story and it was clear Cyrus and Bones would win because they were the new act in town.  In fact, Smoky Mountain was using this same vehicle to get their new act Unabom over as well during this time.  Rating:  ½*

Tune in next week for a USWA flashback!

The Last Word:  There have been a lot of new acts coming into the promotion recently and of those, Scott Studd is still the best in terms of looking like a future star.  Gorgeous George III, Big Daddy Cyrus, and Crusher Bones help to shore up the heel side of the USWA roster but building them up is going to take some time and it is tough to see any of them as a threat equal to the trio of Jerry Lawler, Bill Dundee, and Brian Christopher in the weeks ahead.  While the wrestling was blah, the angle advancement of the PG-13-Doug Gilbert & Tommy Rich feud was great as Lance Russell did a good job selling it as a despicable act.  And anytime you get a surprise appearance from Sid that is fun too.

Attendance was steady at the Memphis Coliseum show on February 6, with 1,100 fans attending for a gate of $7,000.  This number was the same as the previous week.  Here were the results of that card, courtesy of prowrestlinghistory.com:

-Moondogs Rex & Spot (3-0-1) defeated Sergeant Victor & Reggie B. Fine

-The Spellbinder (1-2) beat Tony Williams

-Scott Studd (5-1) beat Gorgeous George III (3-0) via disqualification

-Big Daddy Cyrus & Crusher Bones defeated Doug Basham & King Cobra

-USWA Women’s Champion Miss Texas (1-1) beat Sweet Georgia Brown (1-1) in a street fight

-USWA Tag Team Champions Doug Gilbert & Tommy Rich (3-3) defeated PG-13 (7-3-1) when Rich pinned Wolfie D at 11:53

-USWA Southern Heavyweight Champion Brian Christopher (6-3) beat Big Daddy Cyrus via disqualification at 7:27 when Big Business Brown and Crusher Bones interfered.

-Jerry Lawler (1-1) pinned USWA Unified World Champion Sid Vicious (3-0) in a no disqualification match to win the title at 15:48.  After the match, Big Business Brown, Crusher Bones, and Big Daddy Cyrus attached Vicious.

Backstage News*:        Sid lost the USWA Unified World Championship because he is heading to the WWF in a few weeks.  The decision to turn him face for his final dates was done because he was getting cheers in a lot in recent matches against Brian Christopher.

*The reason that Christopher did not defend the USWA Southern Heavyweight Championship against Bill Dundee in Memphis is because Dundee missed the show due to transportation problems.

*The company’s Saturday morning live Memphis show still does good ratings at a 10 share.

*Backstage news is courtesy of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer for February 13.

Up Next:  USWA Championship Wrestling for February 11!