Time for another round of the Death Valley Driver message board’s “Best of Mid-South Wrestling”:
“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan vs. Ted Dibiase (7/29/83)
This is under street fight rules. The men are in jeans and t-shirts. They hit the mat with their fists flying right away. Duggan wins handily when the fist fight goes back to the standing position . Hacksaw chases Dibiase to the floor in order to punch and choke him further. Dibiase attempts to run for his life, but Hacksaw catches him, places Dibiase’s own shirt over Ted’s face and pounds on him hockey fight style. .
Dibiase manages to poke Duggan’s eye, giving him an opening. Dibiase pulls off his belt and whips Hacksaw with it. Dibiase uses his gloved hand to deliver a series of precise shots to Duggan’s face.
Duggan fires up, drops Dibiase with more shots and then takes his belt off to give Ted a few vengeful lashes. Duggan takes things to the floor where Dibiase is cracked with a chair several times. Hacksaw keeps the pressure on back in the ring, drawing General Akbar to the apron to distract Duggan. Dibiase is able to get the jump on Duggan, but Akbar accidentally hits Dibiase with the chair! Duggan unloads on Akbar, allowing Dibiase to sneak behind him with the chair. A swing misses and cracks Akbar though. Duggan cracks Dibiase with the chair a few more times and gets a definitive pin at just past the 9-minute mark.
This was fast paced, with the men doing little but trading hate filled punches with bad intentions. Things never got dull, and it followed suit with many of the Mid-South bouts as the heel could only gain an advantage via evil deeds, and the babyface refused to take any guff!
Mr. Wrestling II and Magnum T.A. vs. Butch Reed and Jim Neidhart (12/25/83)
This is a cage match. This might be a fan cam as there is no commentary and the camera angle is very awkward, T.A. and Neidhart test one another’s strength at the start, with the Anvil trying to cheat and Magnum out dueling him anyway.
Butch Reed comes in and is quickly tossed around the ring with ease before Mr. Wrestling II comes in. II gets a big pop off of a shoulder block and hip swivel. The heels bail out to regroup. The cage is apparently around the ringside, not the ring.
TA controls Reed with a headlock when things start back up. Reed is downed and has no choice but to tag Neidhart. Jim gets aggressive and his roughhouse forearms and punches send Magnum into a bit of trouble. T.A. quickly makes his own comeback and Reed tags in. Reed manages to toss Magnum into the cage, which in turn causes him to fall to the floor,
TA makes it back in the ring and is chucked into the cage, again causing him to fall to the floor. II comes over to aid his young protégé. Neidhart and Reed double up on TA. Neidhart dumps him back to the floor and Reed sends his face into the cage wall. A dazed Magnum manages to slip in between Neidhart’s legs and tag in II.
II explodes on both men, with Reed taking a beauty of a backdrop. Neidhart has to sneak in a cheap shot to stop II’s attack. The heels then take turns wearing down II for a few minutes. II gets a moment to shine and starts to unload on both men, but Reed is able to stop this by delivering a flying shoulder tackle. II goes back to face-in-peril.
Neidhart works on getting II’s mask off, only to discover a second mask on underneath it. This bewilders the Anvil long enough that II is able to make a tag. TA quickly hits a belly to belly suplex on Neidhart for the win just past the 17-minute mark. Not a bad match, but the heels didn’t do anything particularly interesting during their long heat segment and I kind of lost interest without commentary keeping me invested in the match.
Mr. Wrestling II and Magnum T.A. vs. Bobby Eaton and Dennis Condrey (2/10/84)
The babyfaces charge the ring and attack the heels, who are still in their robes. Things settle down after that hot start as the heels regroup. Eaton tries to tangle with TA, but when Condrey gets involved, Eaton accidentally hits him. II comes in and Eaton stooges for him, forcing Condrey to come in and give things a go. Condrey attempts to drive his shoulder into II’s mid section, but II hits his patented knee lift and knocks Condrey loopy.
The heels regroup, but things don’t turn around for them as Condrey and Eaton run into one another – Condrey is sent to the floor and Eaton eats a knee lift which drops him from the apron as well. II does a lot of dancing after that.
Eaton finally gets control with an armbar, and the fans immediately start chanting “2! 2! 2!” II mounts a quick comeback and hip tosses Eaton to the floor. The heels need a time-out to regroup, but II slams Eaton into the ring post instead. The heels hug and get big heat. The heels try to double up on II, so TA comes in to make it a four-way brawl. II destroys Condrey with punches, and the heels are tossed together. They wind up on the floor attempting to recover yet again.
TA tags in and lays into both of the Express. Condrey finally gets a cheap shot in on Magnum’s throat to give the heels an opening. Eaton delivers a flying knee to take the starch out of TA. The heels take turns working over Magnum’s arm and shoulder. This leads to several minutes of hammerlocks and armbars. The crowd is hot and screaming throughout nonetheless.
II finally makes the hot tag and quickly disposes of Condrey, blasting Eaton with his knee lift. Cornette blinds him with chalk before he can earn the win. TA is laid out as he charges in and Cornette attacks his lifeless body. This ends things via DQ at around the 18-minute mark. II is battered with the ever present tennis racquet while he lays on the mat. It appears several fans try to charge the ring.
The heels put on a show here to make the legend and hot young babyface look great. The arm work the Express focused on for a good while ultimately did not have a payoff. The hot crowd and crazy ending helped make this a fun watch.
The Rock and Roll Express vs. Butch Reed and Buddy Landell (3/28/84)
The heels attack to start, but the Express quickly turn the tables. Landell gets owned by both babyfaces when things settle down. Reed tries to make a run in but the heels hit one another as their plans blow up. Reed proves too strong for Morton to budge. Reed drops Morton with a dropkick and the heels gang up on Morton.
Jim Cornette is taking notes at ringside. The heels trade off beating on Morton, playing to his strength as being the babyface-in-peril. Reed press slams Morton, then presses Landell on top of him.Things break down into a four-way until Corny cheats and sends Gibson to the floor. Morton nearly scores the win anyway with a cradle, but Reed smacks him with brass knux and steals the win at around the 8-minute mark. The Express were able to get their shine and show toughness, but the heels devious means proved too much. Match was basic stuff, but structured well and the crowd ate it up.
Bill Dundee and Porkchop Cash vs. Bobby Eaton and Dennis Condrey (4/6/84)
Dundee is replacing Troy Graham, who the Midnight Express had previously injured. Dundee looks really small, even compared to the less than massive Express. The announcer puts over an upcoming Houston show with six matches where the stipulations do not allow for disqualifications. That sounds a bit overdone. Dundee outclasses Eaton, so Bobby goes in for a hug with Condrey. Dundee knocks their heads together to the thrill of the crowd.
Cash throws punches as he’s not a technical marvel. He and Dundee throw the Express into each other and they suffer the indignity of being caught in a rowboat. The heels bump and stooge for Dundee and Cash, then bail out for a group hug with Cornette. Condrey attempts a headbutt on Cash, only to find himself falling down in a daze. Eaton tries to run in and ends up being downed by a flying rump shot.
Eaton uses a foreign object to down Dundee. The announcer misses it completely. Eaton then gets more blatant and brings Corny’s tennis racquet in the ring and smacks Dundee in the head. Even with all that cheating, they still can’t put Dundee away. Condrey ends up knocking Dundee into Eaton, which opens up the chance for Cash to charge in. Dundee is hit with the racquet again – and he still can’t be finished.
Dundee manages to make it to his corner, but Condrey distracts Cash and he misses the tag attempt. They have teased the hot tag at least 7 times so far. He finally breaks through and makes the tag. Cash smacks both men with a plethora of punches before Cornette tags him with the racquet and Condrey snags the pin at the 18-minute mark.
Dundee knows how to work, but his role as Superman here was a bit unbelievable and could hurt future finishes involving the racquet being used. It also made Cash look like a pussy for losing after one shot since he was fresh and Dundee had survived far worse.
More to come soon…