It's a new year and time for a new feature from RasslinRiotOnline.com. Yes, yours truly, will begin doing weekly Memphis Wrestling TV reports. We'll see how it goes as this will hopefully become a weekly thing or at least a regular feature. Of course, depending on my schedule I may not be able to recap the show EVERY week, but I'll give my best effort. The structure of this report will consist of a recap of the show with my thoughts at the end. Enjoy and be sure to let me know what you think!!!
Corey Maclin opens this week with a rundown of what to expect from Memphis Wrestling's first episode of 2009. We're going to get old footage from CW 30 studio tapings, legends events and from the Memphis Wrestling vault. Corey also teased an announcement concerning the RETURN of live studio wrestling to Memphis. That news, he said, would come next week which he also touted as the "20th anniversary of Corey Maclin in Memphis Wrestling."
We go to our first clip, featuring Corey interviewing Derrick King from a Memphis Wrestling Prime Time show. I believe this might be from May or June 2007. Derrick talks about how "great" he is. The promo leads to a match with Dustin "Five" Starr.
Match: Dustin "Five Starr" vs. Derrick King
Jerry Calhoun is the referee for this contest which sees Dustin exert his power early with a couple of shoulder tackles. Derrick plays a somewhat whiny heel by complaining of hair pulls, etc. A fist and a few dirty tactics gives Derrick an edge. Dustin hits a sunset flip for a near fall. He gets a second advantage for another near fall with both counts from Calhoun seeming a bit slow. Derrick misses a superkick, but moments later connects with a "foreign object" to beat Starr.
We're back to Corey Maclin who reminds everyone that if "you blink, you will miss something." Do we need to duct tape our eyelids open Corey? (lol)
Maclin then sends us to a series of music videos featuring "legends" of Memphis Wrestling's past. We first get a video on "Superstar" Bill Dundee. Bill travels from Charlotte, NC, to Memphis and its shows him driving, making stops at diners, etc. This is all interspersed with footage of Bill wrestling.
The next video is of Jerry "The King" Lawler singing. This is interspersed with Lawler in action.
The finally video features Jimmy "Mouth of the South" Hart singing "We Hate School."
We come back to Corey Maclin who mentions that Jimmy Hart will be a part of next week's "celebration" of Corey's 20th year in Memphis Wrestling. We then see an old USWA clip of Corey interviewing the late "Hot Stuff" Eddie Gilbert as we head to a break.
Corey then brings us back and pitches to clips from several matches from Memphis Wrestling related events.
Match: Six Man Tag featuring Memphis Legends
I'm not sure on the date of this event. It was a six man tag team bout with "Wildcat" Chris Harris, Tommy Rogers of Fantastics fame and King Cobra, I believe, facing "Wildeyed Southern Boy" Tracy Smothers, Porkchop Cash and Norvell Austin, I believe. I'm not positive that it was Cobra and Austin in this match. Could someone help? There was no commentary on the bout either to clarify. This was a pretty short, unspectacular yet fun match. Some nice work early between Smothers and Rogers, who can still go today. Harris, Rogers and Cobra? get the win from a Cobra? roll-up on Austin?
Match: Rock N' Roll Express w/"Handsome" Jimmy Valiant vs. Dennis Condrey & "Bobby Eaton's Son" w/Phil Hickerson
This was a match from I believe Southaven, MS when Memphis Wrestling did a "Clash of the Legends" doubleshot with a Jackson, TN event on Friday night and this shot on a Saturday evening. This was the summer of 2006. Back story here is that Bobby was booked in Phoenix, AZ, along with myself, Tim Warcloud and Tony Gunn and could not make both events. There wasn't any heat as the Phoenix shot was a done deal before the Clash shows were finalized. Anyway, the guy working as "Bobby Eaton's Son" was not that for a shoot, for the record. Bobby's son Dylan does wrestle in the Carolinas, by the way. This was a standard old school match. Valiant gets involved early by punching Dennis on the floor. Hickerson interferes late, but is offset by Valiant. Finish sees Robert Gibson and Ricky Morton double team "Eaton" for the win.
Match: Bobby Eaton & Koko B. Ware w/Slick vs. Bill Dundee & Dutch Mantell w/"Handsome" Jimmy Valiant
This match is from the big FedEx Forum event from the spring of 2007 that featured Hulk Hogan vs. "Big Show" Paul White in the main. Valiant wastes no time in getting involved in the match by punching Eaton on the outside. Dutch and Eaton do a little in-ring comedy, getting on all fours and going back and forth. Koko gets tagged in and takes control on Dutch, who ends up taking the heat. Bobby misses an elbow drop, allowing Dutch to hot tag to Dundee. Dundee comes in and takes control on Bobby. He rolls Bobby up, but Koko makes the save. Then, all four end up in the ring. Koko and Dutch go to the floor and end up in a stand off with Koko holding a chair to Dutch's "Shoe Baby" bullwhip. Slick gets on the apron.Valiant pulls him off. Camera work made it hard to decipher the finish. But it looks like Slick tried to give Eaton a weapon, but Dundee ends up with it to clock Bobby for the win. After the match, Bobby and Koko sneak attack only to end up the victims of a Jimmy Valiant, uh "nutcracker."
Maclin is back on the screen, teasing a potential "Clash of the Legends" for 2009. He also again discusses next week's "celebration" of his 20 years in Memphis Wrestling. We go to a break with a clip of Corey announcing from the desk in the USWA.
Corey is back and talks about Memphis always providing "traditional wrestling" footage from the studio. He sends us to a clip from CWA.
Match: Southern Tag Team Champions Fire & Flame vs. Joe Leduc & Phil Hickerson
A little back story here, as told during the opening part of the match by Lance Russell and Dave Brown, is that Fire & Flame did something that caused them to be suspended. However, Eddie Marlin ruled that they could return to TV ONLY if each match is a Southern Tag Team title bout. Fire ends up taking most of the heat. Flame makes the save on a reverse chinlock which allows Fire & Flame to do a double team and get the edge. Flame uses an object. It ends up being dropped with Hickerson getting it. All four men end up in the ring. Hickerson and Leduc go to work on Fire and Flame, trying to rip their masks off while hitting them in the corners. Crowd is popping heavy for the possible mask removal. Fire and Flame both get color, which shows through their exposed, torn masks. One of the Fire and Flame is submitting to an abdominal stretch by Hickerson, but referee Jerry Calhoun is distracted by the other two participants in the match fighting. As Calhoun turns to come to check on the submission, he gets punched. Match is ruled a DQ with Fire and Flame retaining their belts. This match was in the early 1980's I believe. Maybe Mark James could correct me?
Corey Maclin reminds us about next week's "celebration" of his 20 years with Memphis Wrestling. He talks about surprise guests for next week. We go to a break with a clip of Corey "dancing" with "Grandmaster Sexay" Brian Christopher during a "legends" show.
We return from break with Corey again plugging next week's "celebration" show. He jokes that this week went by so fast that maybe we need to go back to the old 90-minute format. He says that was just a joke. He gives a "sneak preview" of next week's broadcast. We see an old USWA clip from I believe the early 1990's with Richard Lee about to attack Dave Brown from behind with a steel chair. Corey grabs the chair to prevent the attack and ends up in a tug-of-war with Lee. This goes on for a few seconds until the late Moondog Spot ambushes Corey from behind. The clip ends there with Corey back on the screen to remind us of next week's festivities and his promise of stories about his career and how he got started in wrestling.
RassleNotes: The show was fine for what it was. I think the most talked about thing from this week will be the potential announcement of live studio wrestling. Will be interesting to see the follow through there....Jerry Lawler and Corey were on commentary during the Starr/King bout. They did a decent job together. I think this could be a GREAT role for Lawler on Memphis Wrestling should they go back to the studio. He could help put over young talent with his comments. Then, a top babyface could get into a situation where he is outnumbered and Lawler makes the save leading to the occasional tag or six man with "The King" and a young talent(s) against a group of heels....Jimmy Hart's music video was fun. I think that song could get over at any given time. "We Hate School." You know kids LOVE that!...New Experience Wrestling's own executive TV producer Richard Bressler could be seen around the ring filming the Rock N' Roll Express vs. Condrey/"Eaton's Son" bout...It'll be interesting to see if we have a "Clash of the Legends" this year. Those always do fairly decent at the box office and are good for a little nostalgia. We also usually have the Derrick Kings, Kevin Whites, Too Cool 2's, etc. on the card...Local announcers should watch the Fire & Flame vs. Hickerson & Leduc match. Russell and Brown are sooooo GOOD. As anyone could see, Hickerson and Leduc as well as Fire and Flame were not body builders. Some might actually say they are out of shape, which I would disagree with. They were in shape for being in the ring. Anyway, Russell early on in the match said, "Hickerson will never be confused with Mr. America. He's just rough and tough. He can really move for a guy of his size." Dave added, "He's very agile although he's not much for training." Russell finishes with, "His training is a little different." That is how, as a play-by-play man, to put over the talent in the ring. Any viewer that might have had out of shape or "fat" thoughts about Hickerson, will certainly change their tune especially since Lance and Dave had such credibility. You don't need muscles in every part of your body to be "tough"....Please let me know your thoughts on Memphis Wrestling. Drop me a line at email@example.com.