Mid-South Wrestling (TV #153)
August 14th 1982
Irish McNeil Boys Club: Shreveport, LA.
This week Bob Roop was the guest colour commentator alongside Boyd Pierce, who ran down the show as usual. Boyd talked about the Junkyard Dog being absent from Mid-South for three weeks because he refused to wrestle on TV unless it was against Ted DiBiase and Boyd called JYD the “People’s Champion.” Roop buried JYD for walking out on Mid-South, but said that he had never heard of a wrestler being so beloved he was crowned the “People’s Champion.” Boyd introduced a video from Paul Boesch’s Houston Wrestling of JYD vs. AWA World Heavyweight Champion, Nick Bockwinkle and explained that the stipulation was that JYD would get five minutes with Bockwinkle’s manager, Bobby Heenan, if he won. However, due to JYD refusing to wrestle on Mid-South TV, Boyd told the viewers that they were unable to show the actual match itself and instead we were treated to the ring introductions of both men. The clip they showed was from June 11th 1982 at the Sam Houston Coliseum with a young Bruce Prichard as the ring announcer and he explained the stips were JYD’s five minutes with Heenan vs. JYD’s King of Wrestling crown. The deal with crown was that due to his immense popularity, JYD was voted by the Houston fans as the “King of Wrestling” or “the People’s Champion” and he was given the crown as a substitute for a real championship. The tape cut off before the match started and we were back with Boyd & Roop at the Irish McNeil Boys Club. Boyd told everyone that JYD won his match with Bockwinkle and went on to defeat Bobby Heenan too. Unlike last week when Boyd told viewers that Dick Murdoch had beaten Tatsumi Fujinami, JYD did in fact beat Bockwinkle & Heenan on June 11th 1982 in Houston. Roop accused JYD of “sulking” and put Ted DiBiase over as the only man to ever run JYD out of Mid-South. – That’s two weeks in a row where they pulled the old bait and switch with a tape from another territory. It’s such a carny move, but at least with JYD it kind of fit the storyline of him refusing to wrestle on Mid-South TV.
Ted DiBiase (North American Heavyweight Champion) & “Hacksaw” Duggan vs. Jesse Barr & Mike Bond. – DiBiase & Duggan over in 3:13. This was great and the second best squash match on the show. They took the basic psychology of a tag match and altered it slightly in order to make the heels look strong. Instead of the babyfaces out wrestling the heels early on, DiBiase & Duggan essentially got to shine by beating up Jesse Barr right from the opening bell. It was so refreshing to see two heels being booked as a credible competitors who just outclassed these two young kids. Duggan missed an elbow drop, which gave Barr & Bond a brief chance to use their speed to get a couple of hope spots in, but they were cut off with ease each time. Finish saw Duggan hit his goofy NFL headbutt tackle on Barr and DiBiase finished him off with the Figure Four.
“Iron” Mike Sharpe vs. Tug Taylor. – Sharpe over in 5:06. Tug Taylor was of course Fred Ottman, who was 26 years old here and not particularly that good. Sharpe was his usual clumsy self and they stumbled and bumbled their way through a very bad match. Roop pointed out that Taylor had no neck and questioned if he would be immune from Sharpe’s Piledriver. For the finish, Sharpe hit the Piledriver and pinned Taylor clean, so I guess Roop got the answer to his question. Match sucked.
Back with Boyd & Roop at the desk and Boyd said Dick Murdoch was back from his tour of Japan, which Boyd hilariously called the, “Middle East!” Last week I noted that Murdoch was away on a six month tour of New Japan, however after looking more closely at the results, Murdoch did in fact return to Mid-South for six weeks after the 1982 Summer Fight Series. In his last match for Mid-South he beat The Turk on June 5th (episode #143), however the week before (episode #142), they shot a hanging angle where “Hangman” Harris hung Murdoch over the top rope with his noose. Murdoch went to New Japan and worked his first match on the Summer Fight Series tour against Yoshiaki Yatsu on June 18th and wrapped up his two month, thirty-eight shot tour on August 5th in a tag match with The Grappler against Hiro Matsuda & Yoshiaki Yatsu, who we will be getting a look at on Mid-South TV in the near future. Murdoch would be around in Mid-South until October then he went back to New Japan in November for another two month, twenty-two shot tour, this time for the 1982 Tag League. Anyway, now that is cleared up, they aired Murdoch vs. “Hangman” Harris from, according to Boyd Pierce, “May 26th 1982.” Boyd wasn’t technically wrong, however as I have learned through researching these shows, Mid-South would tape TV on Wednesday and it would air on WGNO in New Orleans on Saturday, so the match they showed was actually shown on TV three days later on May 29th. Boyd said Murdoch was coming back to teach Ted DiBiase a lesson, however Roop replied that it wasn’t Murdoch’s business and told him to stay out of it.
Paul Ellering vs. Billy Starr. – Ellering over in 4:44. Roop talked about Ellering being out for a year with a serious knee injury and this would be our last look at “Precious” Paul before he would once again go down with another knee injury. Out of nowhere, Boyd Pierce said next week we would either see JYD vs. DiBiase for the North American title or JYD & Mr Olympia vs. DiBiase & Duggan for the Tag Team titles. Match was boring; Ellering won with a Rude Awakening style Neckbreaker.
Non-Title Match: Killer Khan (Louisiana Heavyweight Champion) w/Skandor Akbar vs. Tommy Saxton. – Khan over in 2:32.This was a five-star squash and the best match on the show that I alluded to earlier. Roop said he had to leave to go “catch a plane,” however he made time to stay and watch Killer Khan destroy poor Tommy Saxton. Khan, as always, was the epitome of a monster heel and brutalised Saxton with big clubbing forearms, stomps, chokes, and, of course, Mongolian chops. He raked Saxton’s face with his forearm and it was beautiful. Saxton literally got no offence in at all and Khan won with his killer Knee drop off the second rope. – THIS IS HOW YOU DO A SQUASH MATCH.
With Roop gone to catch his flight, Ted DiBiase and “Hacksaw” Duggan sat in on commentary and Boyd said he would talk to them later about the situation with JYD.
Non-Title Match: Mr Olympia (Mid-South Tag & Mississippi Champion) vs. Vinny Romeo. – Olympia over in 3:48. Basic showcase for Olympia, who won with a reverse body press off the second rope. DiBiase put Olympia over as a great wrestler, but said he couldn’t get anything done on his own and was always hanging onto JYD’s coat-tales. Duggan yelled that JYD didn’t have the guts to show up next week and Boyd asked DiBiase about his former mentor, Dick Murdoch coming back to Mid-South. DiBiase said he wasn’t a kid anymore and didn’t need anybody’s approval then stated that he was the North American champion and demanded respect from everyone.
At the desk, Boyd hyped Kevin Von Erich and JYD vs. DiBiase next week, either in a singles or a tag. DiBiase said he wanted to set things straight and claimed he never refused to wrestle JYD then noted that JYD had not shown up for the last three weeks. DiBiase challenged JYD & Mr Olympia for the Tag Team titles and stated that if he and Duggan won the Tag belts then JYD would have nothing and would be forced to leave Mid-South due to the humiliation. Boyd reiterated that it could either be a singles or a tag match next week and thanked all the fans for watching.
There wasn’t a lot to get excited about on this show; the Killer Khan squash was tremendous and the Duggan & DiBiase match was also very good, but that is about it. The main focus of the show was really to set up JYD returning next week to finally step back in the ring with DiBiase.