Mid-South Wrestling (TV #123)
January 14th 1982
Irish McNeil Boys Club: Shreveport, LA.
1982 is here! Ric Flair is enjoying his first reign as NWA World Heavyweight Champion, I’m still a good 4 years away from being born, and at the Irish McNeil Boys Club Boyd Pierce was once again joined by Cowboy Bill Watts. Boyd hyped, “One of the greatest shows of all-time!” and excitedly announced the second place Dream Match would be the main event of the show featuring, the Samoans & Ernie Ladd vs. Dusty Rhodes, JYD & Andre the Giant. Boyd said over “100,000” votes had been sent in to the TV station and Watts recapped the first place Dream Match of Ted Dibiase & Paul Orndorff from missing episode #122. Apparently, Orndorff won and lost the North American Heavyweight title in the space of 60 seconds during a special stipulation match with Dibiase.
Brian Blair vs. The Monk. – Blair over in 3:45. Basic enhancement match for the young babyface, Blair. Blair did a wacky amateur cross body ride then a “banana split”, which Watts called with the utmost legitimacy. Blair dominated the jobber, Monk, who landed an ugly suplex and a backdrop but Blair came back to win with an Abdominal Stretch into a cradle.
6-Man Dream Tag Team Match: JYD (Mid-South Tag Champ), Dusty Rhodes & Andre the Giant vs. The Samoans & Ernie Ladd. – JYD, Dusty & Andre over in 7:45. This match is on the awesome Legends of Mid-South DVD put out by WWE, so it’s easy to track down. Babyfaces shone early with lots of teamwork; Andre looked in good shape and moved around pretty damn well. They teased an Andre/Ladd face-off and the two eventually squared off. Ladd took an amazing “Tim-ber!” bump from an Andre chop. The heels triple teamed Andre in their corner for the heat then Dusty ran wild on everyone off the hot tag. Watts said Dusty had signed an “exclusive” contract with the Mid-South Booking Office and all his dates would have to be approved by the promotion. Watts claimed, Vince McMahon, Joe Blanchard, “Baba and the All Japan Group” amongst others had been blowing up the phone to book the Dream. Things broke down and all 6 men brawled in the ring; the Samoans double slammed Andre then Dusty & JYD backdropped Ladd over the top. Finish saw Andre pin Ladd with a SPLASH OFF THE SECOND ROPE! – This wasn’t the smoothest match, but with so many bonafide legends in the ring it was truly a great spectacle.
Mr Olympia vs. Zapata. – Squash for Olympia in 3:50. It seems the trend of guys losing their first names isn’t just a WWE thing, as poor old Carlos Zapata lost his long before Antonio Cesaro or Alexander Rusev. Olympia moved like lightening and landed a dropkick after an awesome double leapfrog, dropdown spot. Olympia won with a sleeper and looked very impressive in his first appearance. – Mr Olympia was journeyman worker, Jerry Stubbs, who was the original “Mr Perfect” in Ron Fuller’s Continental Championship Wrestling in 1986 after losing his mask to Bullet Bob Armstrong.
Ed Wiskowski vs. Tommy Wright. – Wiskowski over in 2:48. Unlike the previous babyface showcase, this was a total heel squash match. Wiskowski beat the hell out of Wright and refused to go for pinfalls, instead opting to inflict more pain on his opponent. Boyd Pierce said Bill Watts had left the announce table to catch a plane! WHAT?!!! It was like those “business meetings” that always seem to happen at 9pm on a Monday night. Wiskowski finally put Wright away with his goofy-looking back splash and backbreaker.
Dick Murdoch vs. Bob Roop. – DQ for Murdoch at 8:32. Murdoch was the face and did a fantastic Ali -shuffle after landed some right hands. Roop went after the arm and slapped on some holds, even biting Murdock’s fingers at one point. Murdoch showed great agility and NIPPED UP out of an armbar, however the dastardly Roop took him back down with a handful of hair. Finish saw Murdoch go for the Brainbuster but Paul Orndorff hit the ring for the DQ. Murdoch out-manoeuvred Roop & Orndorff, who played the bumbling heels and bumped into each other then Bob Orton Jr showed up and the 3 heels put the boots to Murdoch. Ted Dibiase ran out to make the save and the bad guys ran away even though they had the man advantage. – The action was kind of slow and it felt like they were just killing time until the DQ, but it was still cool to see Murdoch pulling out a kip-up!
Ernie Ladd was with Boyd Pierce at the desk. Ladd was furious and claimed the faces cheated in the 6-man earlier. He said everyone was going to pay for what happened, especially JYD and told Boyd he had “bought the contact” for the next match, which was supposed to feature Rick Ferrara & Jerry Novak but the Samoans would be taking their place.
The Samoans w/Ernie Ladd vs. Frank Monte & Jesse Barr. – A slaughter for the Samoans in 2:18. Afa & Sika killed Monte & Barr to death. Sika gave Barr a big chop and flying headbutt then Afa pinned him with a Samoan drop. – A nice little deal to get the Samoans some heat back.
Non-Title Match: Bob Orton Jr (Mississippi Heavyweight Champion) vs. Mike George (Mid-South Tag Champion). – George over in 0:56. Orton went for his piledriver but George countered with an Atomic Drop which sent Orton into the turnbuckle and George got the pin with a Russian leg sweep. The Samoans hit the ring and attacked George, however his tag team partner JYD and Dusty Rhodes showed up to run the heels off. – This was a weird deal. The match was pretty irrelevant and I’m guessing the Samoans would have run in for a DQ if we hadn’t already had a run-in DQ on the show, so they quickly got the match out of the way and went to the angle.
To close the show, Dusty Rhodes was with Boyd Pierce at the desk. Dusty said he was good friends with JYD and cut a promo on Ernie Ladd & the Samoans, whom he called “big baboons”, which sounds pretty racist in 2015, but after what we witnessed last week from Dusty this was positively tame in comparison.
There was some really solid stuff on this episode. The 6-man Dream Match was a great spectacle from a historical standpoint and the follow up angle with Ernie Ladd’s promo and the Samoans killing some geeks was tremendous booking. Mr Olympia impressed in his debut and we had Dick Murdoch being Dick Murdoch, which is always a good time. As I have mentioned before, my collection of 1982 Mid-South TV is incomplete, so next week we’ll be jumping ahead to episode MS#126. I won’t give too much away, but that show is easily the best episode of Mid-South we’ve looked at yet, with some quite frankly genius booking on the part of Bill Watts.