Mid-South Wrestling TV #119
December 17th 1981
Irish McNeil Boys Club: Shreveport, LA.
This week Boyd Pierce was joined by NWA North American Heavyweight Champion, Ted Dibiase. Boyd hyped the “Dream Match” fan voting deal again and told the fans they could vote for “ANY match” they wanted, however once again he made sure to name drop, Dibiase, Andre the Giant, Dusty Rhodes, JYD, Afa, Sika & Ernie Ladd. Boyd ran down the card and noted that JYD had beaten the Great Kabuki for the Louisiana Heavyweight Championship on December 7th in New Orleans. This may or may not be a phantom title change, as I’ve done some investigating and can find no evidence of any other matches taking place or even a show being run in New Orleans on December 7th 1981. Dibiase talked about Paul Orndorff countering his Figure Four and said he was in a lot of pain last week then said he would just have to try and come up with something new.
Brian Blair vs. Tom Renesto Jr. – Blair over in a total enhancement match at 5:01. Not much to this one. Dibiase put over his fellow babyface, Blair, who used his “speed” to shine and worked over the arm. Criss-Cross alert! Blair showed some wacky 80’s face fire and got the win with the Figure Four, which Dibiase made sure to commend.
Precious Paul Ellering vs. Don Serrano. – Ellering won with the Rude Awakening in 3:02. It was another complete squash. Ellering was returning from a six month “injury”, meaning he was off working other territories and cut his best Billy Graham impersonation promo before the match. Precious Paul was dressed like an amazing toolbag and talked about women and foot-long hotdogs. Ellering said he wanted to take on the Iron Sheik’s $1000 Persian Clubs challenge. For what it’s worth Ellering looked jacked to the gills and was very awkward in the ring, kind of like the team he would famously go on to manage later on in the decade.
Non-Title Match: JYD (Louisiana Heavyweight Champion) vs. Mike Boyce. – SQUIZASH for JYD in 2:11. Mike Boyce looked amazingly like Bruce Mitchell. JYD won with the Big Thump.
Paul Orndorff & Bob Orton Jr (Mississippi Heavyweight Champion) vs. Carlos Zapata & The Monk. – Orndorff & Orton over at 5:20. The heels beat the hell out of Zapata and Dibiase said he was watching very carefully because Orndorff countering his Figure Four. Monk got the hot tag but was immediately cut of like the biggest geek in the world. Heels landed a nice double team move when Orton gave Monk a powerslam and Orndorff dropped an elbow off the top. Orndorff put the Monk in the Figure Four for the finish; Dibiase didn’t really say much and could have put the spot over a lot more.
Bob Roop vs. Mike George (Mid-South Tag Team Champion). – Roop via pinfall at 8:54. THIS MATCH WAS SO FREAKING AWESOME. George out-wrestled the big heel then Roop tried to rough him up but George fired up and landed an Atomic Drop which the people went crazy for. Roop raked George’s eyes across all 3 ropes to start the heat and flagrantly cheated to keep the advantage. George made a fiery comeback then gave the heel a taste of his own medicine by raking Roop’s eyes across the top rope, which I popped for, and he got a near-fall with a Russian leg sweep. Roop hung on to the ropes to block a second Russian, but George countered Roop’s Shoulder Breaker finish and landed a couple of dropkicks for another near-fall; Roop kicked out and sent George to the outside. Both men fought on the apron then Roop avoided a shoulder charge and George smashed into the ring post. George made a brief comeback and fought with one arm, however Roop sent his shoulder into the post again and got the pin after a jumping knee to the injured shoulder. – This is my favourite match we’ve seen so far from Mid-South TV. It wasn’t flashy, but believe me it was as psychologically sound a match as you will ever see. Everything made sense and the story was 100% believable, true hallmarks of Bill Watts’ booking philosophy.
Ed Wiskowski vs. Mike Bond. – Squash for Wiskowski in 1:10. Wiskowski is being built back up after losing to Dibiase two weeks ago. He beat Jim Garvin last week and killed Mike Bond here. Wiskowski jumped him at the bell like a jerk heel. Finish saw Wiskowski hit a back splash, while Bond was in a seated position, then a backbreaker for the pin. – Wiskowski isn’t exactly oozing charisma, but at least he hadn’t been saddled with the Colonel DeBeers gimmick by Verne Gagne yet.
Iron Sheik w/Skandor Akbar vs. Frank Monte. – This turned into the Persian Club challenge angle, as Reeser Bowden introduced Paul Ellering to take on the Sheik’s dreaded clubs. The deal was that whatever number Ellering did Sheikie had to double it or he would be forced to cough up $1000. Ellering went first and did 50, which instantly turned him babyface and all the women shrieked for big hunky Paul. Akbar said Sheik would show Ellering how it’s done, but only after Sheikie’s scheduled match, and offered to double the bounty to $2000. Match was the usual Sheik domination, with the finish being his beautiful German suplex at 1:51. Post-match, Akbar protested and said it would be unfair for Sheik to swing the big heavy clubs after going through such a “gruelling” match. As time ran down, Boyd Pierce said “matchmaker” Grizzly Smith would force the Sheik to accept the challenge next week and hyped Paul Orndorff vs. Brian Blair for the show too.
Another solid week of TV from Mid-South, although unlike the past couple of weeks with heels Bob Roop & Ernie Ladd on the call, Dibiase being the whitest of white meat babyfaces made for some pretty dull colour commentary. He pretty much played it straight and made sure to toe the babyface line, whereas Roop & Ladd would dish out hyperbole by the bowl full and bury the babyfaces every chance they got. I can’t say enough good things about the Roop/George match. Sadly it seems hard to find online, I believe it is part of DVDVR 80’s project. But it is definitely worth hunting down to see the true essence of what pro wrestling is, or what is used to be anyway. There was also some nice subtle booking, with Brian Blair & Paul Orndorff both using the Figure Four to earn victories and to set up their match next week. Everything else was more-or-less enhancement matches, expect the Persian Clubs angle which was executed well and they did the old carny trick of “running out of TV time” so we’ll just have to tune in next week to see what happens!