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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Clash of the Champions V: St. Valentine’s Massacre

October 28, 2008 | Posted by J.D. Dunn
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Dark Pegasus Video Review: Clash of the Champions V: St. Valentine’s Massacre  

Clash of the Champions V: St. Valentine’s Massacre
by J.D. Dunn

  • February 15, 1989
  • Live from Cleveland, Ohio.
  • Your hosts are Jim Ross and Magnum T.A..

  • Opening Match: The Midnight Express (w/Jim Cornette) vs. The Russian Assassins (w/Paul Jones).
    This is just a warm-up for the Midnights as they have their sights set on the Original Midnight Express. We’re JIP (or, at least, I am) to the Assassins using lookalike chicanery to take over on offense. Stan Lane is really starting to resemble Lex Luger at this point. We get some commentary from Paul E. Dangerously, manager of said OME. The Russians’ offense is horrible, btw. They miss the Russian Missile (#2 whips #1 into the corner to squash the opponent). That allows Eaton to tag in, and the Midnights finish with the Rocket Launcher at 6:41 (13:30 listed, so my copy is clipped a bit at the beginning). Although this match isn’t much, it would be important later on as Dennis Condrey walked out on the promotion, forcing Rose to team with Jack Victory, who played Russian Assassin #2 here. *1/2

  • “Hacksaw” Butch Reed vs. Steve Casey.
    Casey is allegedly undefeated coming into this match. Just imagine a poor man’s Lex Luger… or Stan Lane, now that I think about it. Reed is returning to the NWA after a few years in the WWF as the blond “Natural” Butch Reed. In an interesting bit of continuity, Reed feuded with the Junkyard Dog just before the JYD departed for the WWF. When Reed joined the NWA in 1989, he immediately started feuding with the Dog again after nearly five years. Speaking of things lasting five years – there’s this match. Reed stalls way too much for a guy who is supposed to just get in there, slam the shit out of whoever gets in his way, and get out. Casey uses his speed and some dropkicks (his one big move), but Reed catches him with a Military Press. The Missile Shoulderblock finishes at 17:36. Not surprisingly, after this performance, Reed didn’t have much success until he was paired up with another – wait, *the* other black stiff in the promotion Ron Simmons. 3/4*

  • Ric Flair comes out with his harem (and a stylish fur coat) and calls out Ricky Steamboat. Steamboat answers so Flair tells him to go “help the missus with the dishes.” Steamboat tears Flair’s clothes off and hits him with another crossbody block. Hiro Matsuda (who replaced JJ Dillon) comes in to jump Ricky from behind. They doubleteam Steamboat, but he fights back and vanquishes both of them with dragon power. Steamboat puts on Flair’s tattered suit.
  • Lex Luger vs. The Blackmailer (w/Hiro Matsuda).
    Okay, we’re getting a little desperate with these masked jobber gimmicks. This is Jack Victory again. I don’t think they ever even showed him doing any thing blackmail-y. Both guys look winded, which I could understand for Victory, but Luger is gassed too. Luger misses a clothesline and tumbles to the floor. Lots of choking and punching from the Blackmailer, but Luger sunset flips him for two. More choking and punching from the Blackmailer. Ross notes he’s not going for a pin, so he theorizes the Blackmailer is just there to soften Luger up, not to win. Luger suddenly hulks up and hits the superplex as a message to Barry Windham at 12:54. Too long for a squash. If Victory had any interesting offense, it might have helped, but this was just 10 minutes of Luger selling (sort of) punches. *

  • U.S. Tag Team Titles: The Varsity Club (w/Kevin Sullivan) vs. The Fantastics.
    The Varsity Club stole the titles from the Fantastics at Starrcade, and now they’re doing the interchangeable parts thing. Tonight, it’s Rotundo and Steve Williams for the heels. The story here is that Fulton and Rogers are good wrestlers, but none of their offense really has any effect because Williams is big and evil. Fulton tries to hit Rotundo with corner punches, but Williams just rushes over and knocks him to the floor. Williams hits the 3-point shoulderblock, but Fulton blocks the Oklahoma Stampede and tags in Rogers. It’s a donnybrook! Rogers hits Williams with the crossbody, but Rotundo goes up and stomps him in the back of the head for the win at 13:26. Disappointing, considering the talent involved. **1/4

  • Ricky Steamboat vs. Bob Bradley.
    This is just a tune-up for Steamboat, who has a scheduled date with Ric Flair. Bradley is, perhaps, best known as Battle Kat in the WWF (the ‘other’ Battle Kat). The fans are immediately bored and start a “We want Flair” chant. Lots of armdrags from Steamboat. Why is he wearing down Bob Bradley? Bradley misses a splash, so Ricky finishes with a flying Tomahawk Chop and the crossbody at 6:23. The misses just keep on coming. *

  • Non-Title: Rick Steiner vs. Rip Morgan.
    Morgan was kind of a poor man’s Bruiser Brody. He was the flag-bearer for the Sheepherders before they left. At this point, he’s just a jobber. Oddly enough, he now runs his own wrestling organization called Kiwi Pro-Wrestling. Good for him. He hits one good lariat before Steiner goes nuts and belly-to-bellies him for the win at 4:40. *

  • The Road Warriors say they can’t find anyone they can trust to be their six-man partner here in the States, so they went to Japan and found Tenryu
  • They throw it over to Sting, Michael Hayes and The JYD who act like they’re on PCP. They go down to get ready, so Kevin Sullivan pops in and locks them in a cage.
  • World Six-Man Tag Titles: Tenryu & The Road Warriors (w/Paul Ellering) vs. Sting, Michael Hayes & The Junkyard Dog.
    The Varsity Club storms the ring and takes the place of the babyfaces, thus shoving the Roadies back into babyface territory for real. I’m not sure what the deal is with screwing everybody out of the advertised main event. The brawl goes on for a little while with Animal playing the face-in-peril. Lots of action, but it all goes for naught because the babyfaces escape their cage and run in for the DQ at 5:50. It’s breakin’ loose! Horrible way to end the show, and inexcusable, considering how much crap came before it. **
  • The 411: An awful start to what would wind up being one of the best years in wrestling history. The best match barely reaches average, and little of what's here had any lasting impact. Think of it as taking a step backwards before leaping forward.

    Thumbs way down.

    Final Score:  2.5   [ Very Bad ]  legend

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