USA Championship Wrestling – March 5, 1988

Made a decision after last weekend that I’d try and review as much of the short run of USA Championship Wrestling as is available. The promotion itself came to life after Ron Fuller split off the Knoxville end of the Continental Wrestling Federation from the Alabama end and ran independently. It did… OK, but didn’t get to the other end of the summer.

This episode is joined in progress and is one week before the last episode I reviewed. The next episode will be three weeks later because the March 19 episode isn’t available.

Joined in progress with the Bullet winning a match against fat jobber Tony Peters, Gordon Solie and Ron Fuller on the call.

Promo: The Bullet, in an empty arena before the show, talks up the March 19th show, the Night of Champions, which makes me wonder if they actually ran a TV show that day.

USA Video of the Week: Austin Idol clips to The Kid Is Hot Tonite by Loverboy, followed by a quick interview. His belt is ugly as f---, with a crown on it which the horns of point up and off the leather.

Todd Morton and Brickhouse Brown vs. The Rock ‘n’ Roll RPMs

Nice leather jacket for Brickhouse, who at one point had a hilarious shoot series on Highspots where he used to call out who “played protocol” to get to the top in the WWF. Friends of Patterson, shall we say? No names mentioned, but Shawn Michaels, Tito Santana, Don Muraco, Bill Eadie and Dino Bravo. The RPMs, with a music-based gimmick and ring attire, come to the ring to NO music. Brickhouse handles Tommy Lane well, so Mike Davis comes in and struggles himself with Todd Morton. Davis played Jake Roberts ripoff the Viper in the GWF and actually has some body language not too far off Jake’s. Lane gets a side suplex to turn the tide and they quickly finish with the Hart Attack/Doomsday Device cross to win. Fine squash, everyone in the ring was pretty capable.

Interview: Gordon speaks to Lane and Davis, boasting about being the tag team champions. Gordon talks up Johnny and Davey Rich as the top challengers. Lane: “Never heard of ’em!”

Personality Profile: And speaking of, here are the Rich cousins. Pretty standard babyface interview, nothing of interest said.

Keith Hart vs. Hector Guerrero

No, it’s not Bret’s brother, it’s a guy from Florida with a funky stars and stripes robe. Hector is Eddie’s brother, though, flanked by Buddy Landel, who jumps on commentary. Hector gets a nice counter to a back body drop by holding onto Keith’s head and giving him a neckbreaker as he goes down. Clothesline sends Hart spinning on his bump, but he misses a splash. Thumb to the eye and a funny concealed choke turns it back around. He and Hart exchange leg grapevines, with the referee getting in on the act. Hector finishes with the flying burrito as called by Buddy, or an Alamo avalanche if you ask Gordon.

Interview: It’s been a bit of a dry episode so far, so here’s Ron Wright and his charges the Mongolian Stomper and the Dog. Wright’s not seen so many great wrestlers in his life on the upcoming card, but the Bullet wears a mask to hide his ugly face and the Stomper’s gonna tear it up, then the Dog’s going to take care of “his son”, prompting Gordon to deny any relationship on the Bullet’s behalf.

Carl Stiles vs. Doug Furnas

Weird pairing here, because Stiles, who used to do the gimmick where heels would pluck out his glass eye, is f------ jacked, so you’d think they’d stick a skeletal jobber in with Furnas to make him look bigger. Stiles is actually of the Rick Rude mold, with a fantastic upper body, then tights covering that his legs are distinctly average, while Doug has the famously massive thighs. Furnas absolutely spikes Stiles with a spinebuster where he holds him up for a second before slamming him down. Shame, as Ron Fuller says too, as it would be an awesome finisher. He goes to a bearhug instead to no avail. Stiles gets the advantage and muscles up Furnas for a backbreaker, then goes to an abdominal stretch or standing guillotine as Gordon calls it. Some dull punishment for a bit, with Stiles in essence getting far more than he should for a jobber, but probably as much as he should for a guy of his size. Furnas gets a surprise clothesline to come back, then a slam and big splash off the top. Odd finisher for a guy like him, you’d expect a power move or submission hold that shows off his strength.

Interview: Gordon speaks to the viewers of Mountain TV, WYMT, a most prestigious audience, with Bill Dundee, Doug Furnas, Scott Armstrong and the Rich cousins along with him. Scott tries to play up the crazy Party Boys gimmick and looks like a goof. He might look alright now as a ref, but he used to be 150 pounds with 30 pounds of that being his mullet and glasses. Ron and Gordon then sign off.

The Bottom Line: Not especially exciting this episode, but it gets better.

Next review will be the March 26 episode.