What the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – June 17, 1995

(I was doing a 2.5 hour move yesterday, so I was not able to get my regular USWA column up.  Read below about what was happening in Memphis in mid-June 1995!)

Dave Brown and Corey Maclin are handling the announcing today and they are broadcasting from the WMC-TV5 studio in Memphis, Tennessee.

Brown interviews Brandon Baxter, who proclaims a new era in the USWA.  He welcomes out Doug Gilbert, Brian Lee, and Jimmy Harris and dubs his group “the Legend Slayers.”

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – June 17, 1995

What the World Was Watching: SMW Charlotte Memories

Like Volunteer Slam IV, footage of this show comes from a fan cam.  It took place on Saturday, May 20 at the Grady Cole Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.  According to prowrestlinghistory.com, the show drew a paltry 200 fans.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: SMW Charlotte Memories

What the World Was Watching: USWA: A Night to Remember

This show took place at the Louisville Gardens in Louisville, Kentucky on June 11.  According to Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer, the show drew a crowd of 3,500 and a gate of $25,000.

Corey Maclin welcomes out Jim Cornette, who walks to the COPS theme and is sporting his military-style jacket from WrestleMania X.  Cornette puts over how the Gardens is better than the Omni or Madison Square Garden and then welcomes out Lance Russell.  Russell and Maclin will be doing commentary.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: USWA: A Night to Remember

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – May 20, 1995

Chip Kessler and Les Thatcher are doing commentary and they are wrapping up the tapings from Warrensville, North Carolina.  Very few fans are left facing the hard camera.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – May 20, 1995

What the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – June 3, 1995

Lance Russell and Dave Brown call the action and they are broadcasting from the WMC-TV5 studio in Memphis, Tennessee.

Russell interviews newcomer Billy Jack Haynes.  Haynes puts himself over as a heel and demands respect from the crowd, who get on his case.  This segment started well but Haynes got distracted by the crowd and he lost his train of thought.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – June 3, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – May 6, 1995

Chip Kessler and Les Thatcher are doing commentary and they are still taped from Warrensville, North Carolina.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – May 6, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 15, 1995

Chip Kessler tells the audience that today’s broadcast will recap the events of the Bluegrass Brawl where fans were turned away in Pikeville, Kentucky.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 15, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 8, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are in the booth and they are concluding the television tapings in Council, Virginia.  Tonight is the big Fright Night card in Johnson City, Tennessee, so Ross spends a lot of the match hyping it.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 8, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 1, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are doing commentary and they are still in Council, Virginia.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – April 1, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 18, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are tasked with commentary and they are kicking off a new set of tapings in Council, Virginia.  According to prowrestlinghistory.com, the shows in this new round of tapings were held on March 6 and drew 425 fans.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 18, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 11, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are handling commentary and are wrapping up the television tapings in Lenoir, North Carolina.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 11, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 4, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are in the booth, with today’s show still part of the Lenoir tapings.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – March 4, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Sunday Blood Sunday II

Like Super Saturday Night Fever, this card was taped from a fan in the crowd.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew 1,100 fans to Knoxville’s Civic Coliseum.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Sunday Blood Sunday II

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – February 25, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher provide commentary for today’s matches, which are still airing from Lenoir, North Carolina.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – February 25, 1995

What the World Was Watching: SMW Super Saturday Night Fever ’95

(So I actually did have a copy of this show sitting in my home office, so we got a little ahead of ourselves in the SMW reviews by doing the February 4 television show.  We will rewind to review this big event and then move to February 11 next week)

Smoky Mountain Wrestling never put out a VHS release of Super Saturday Night Fever so existing footage is from a fan cam.  According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the show, which took place at the City Coliseum in Knoxville, Tennessee, drew 2,000 fans and a $16,000 gate.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: SMW Super Saturday Night Fever ’95

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – February 4, 1995

Today’s show features some of the matches that took place at Super Saturday Night Fever in Knoxville, Tennessee on January 28.  Les Thatcher does commentary on the matches.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – February 4, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 28, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher oversee commentary and they are still taped from Sevierville, Tennessee.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 28, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 21, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are in the booth and they are still taped from Sevierville, Tennessee.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 21, 1995

What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 14, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher are calling the action and they are taped from Sevier County High School in Sevierville, Tennessee.  According to prowrestlinghistory.com, the taping drew 400 fans.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – January 14, 1995

What the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – January 7, 1995

While Smoky Mountain Wrestling (SMW) was a nostalgic look at wrestling’s past, the United States Wrestling Association (USWA) stubbornly fought for its existence, casting itself as a major promotion that was on the same level as the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) or World Championship Wrestling (WCW).  Based in Memphis, Tennessee, a classic wrestling hotbed and arguably the only place to successfully fend off Vince McMahon’s territorial expansion in the 1980s, the USWA was created from a merger of the Continental Wrestling Association (CWA) and World Class Championship Wrestling (WCCW) in 1989.  The promotion tried to run shows along the East Mississippi and Texas in the early 1990s, but the venture proved unsuccessful.  By the middle of the decade the USWA was back to running its weekly shows in towns such as Louisville, Kentucky and Evansville, Indiana, as well as holding weekly supercards on Monday nights at the Memphis Coliseum.  These events were heavily promoted on USWA TV, filmed at the WMC-TV 5 studio in Memphis.  While that may have made USWA TV seem second rate, the company had a talented core with owners and bookers Jerry Jarrett and Jerry Lawler, as well as announcers Lance Russell and Dave Brown (who had a full-time gig as WMC-TV 5’s meteorologist).  They were supplemented by older territory stars such as Tommy Rich, Doug Gilbert, and Bill Dundee and a crop of new talent that included Lawler’s son Brian Christopher, PG-13, and wrestlers that the WWF and WCW sent for seasoning as the USWA had a working agreement with both.

Read moreWhat the World Was Watching: USWA Championship Wrestling – January 7, 1995