Championship Wrestling from Florida 07.01.1984
In this episode, we go straight to the action as Hector Guerrero fights Tommy Wright. One of the things that most interests me about this venture is seeing people I’ve never really heard of, and Guerrero has a man in a suit called Jim Holliday in his corner who looks interesting. Naturally, he gets involved in the end of the match, as he distracts Wright after Guerrero is nailed with a vertical suplex, thus allowing Guerrero to drop him with a slam and nail a pretty sloppy looking splash off of the top rope. What I saw of it was good and surprisingly competitive – I’ve always enjoyed any Guerrero in the ring throughout the ages.
Another thing that interests me in this project is seeing guys before their prime/popularity peaks, so seeing a young Mike Rotundo speak about his feud with Kendo Nagasaki should at least be interesting – if he wasn’t the most boring man I’ve ever heard. Admittedly, I assume he is green, but he has no fire whatsoever. He speaks over footage of a match he had with Nagasaki, with an airplane spin to JJ Dillon (Nagasaki’s advisor) leaving Rotundo open for a pummeling from Nagasaki. The guy who plays Nagasaki just looks odd, rather than scary.
The second match is Zane Grey vs Kareem Muhammed of the Zambuie Express. Not much to say here, outside of the fact that it feels weird that they don’t just have Kareem Muhammed squash him completely, rather than work the arm for a few minutes and then beat him. The match is followed up by a Zambuie Express interview, and it is made entirely clear as to why we never talk about them when thinking about the best promo guys. The audio quality doesn’t help either.
Mike Davis faces a guy wrestling under a mask as Dr. X in the third match, and after a back and forth match, a pretty nifty looking Lou Thesz Press by Davis is enough for the three count. David didn’t exactly look like an exciting wrestler, but seems to at least have some name value.
I was taken by surprise a bit with the next match, as a jobber called Frank Leopard was up against a huge guy that I couldn’t quite place – finally, he was announced as the One Man Gang, with a look quite different from the one he had when I was watching him in WWF/Wrestlemania 4 timeframe. This was what the Kareem Muhammed match should have been like, as Gang looks impressive, throwing Leopard (not a small man himself) around. Gang is almost too gung-ho, as the two gifs below show:
We have a spate of interviews following this match, with Ron Bass giving a good promo about the identity of Yellow Dog (Barry Windham), JJ Dillon and One Man Gang talking about Blackjack Mulligan and finally Mulligan responding to the One Man Gang in studio. Clear, easy to follow angles and booking galore, pretty much.
Kendo Nagasaki beat Tony Diamata in another quick squash match, followed by an interview with JJ Dillon, discussing the nature of his relationship with Nagasaki. Interstingly for this time period, the interviewer was a woman, although she didn’t really add much to what was mostly Dillon talking.. Nothing much to talk about during the match, though I though Nagasaki at least looked fairly decent in ring.
The main event was interesting, as it was the first show so far with an actual decent main event in terms of name alone, with Mike Rotundo going against Ron Bass for the Southern Title. With four minutes left of the show, not surprisingly it ended in a clusterfuck, with Bill Alfonso taking a big bump from a collision with Rotundo. One Man Gang interjects, only for Dusty Rhodes to head down to the ring and go toe to toe with the giant. The locker room empties, but not before both Dusty and OMG bleed fairly heavily for a TV show I thought.
The show was fun – I liked the looks of the various angles, and hopefully some future interactions between One Man Gang and most of the faces will mean that the future is also fairly bright.
The big show that is advertised throughout:
Bodyslam/Pin Match: One Man Gang vs Blackjack Mulligan (Mulligan can win by pin or bodyslamming OMG)
Ron Bass vs Yellow Dog (probably for the title, though not made clear)
Mike Rotundo vs Kendo Nagasaki