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Memphis Wrestling (1.31.1981) Review

December 9, 2022 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Memphis Wrestling Bill Dundee Image Credit: Memphis Wrestling/YouTube
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Memphis Wrestling (1.31.1981) Review  

-Originally aired January 31, 1981.

-Your hosts are Lance Russell & Dave Brown.

-BOMBSHELL TONIGHT! Austin Idol says that there’s a conspiracy against him, and he has sufficient proof to support his allegations.

-We go to Mid-South Coliseum, where referee Jerry Calhoun grabs Idol’s arm and prevents him from throwing a potentially lethal match-ending punch to Lawler’s face. Jimmy Hart then jumps up to the apron, where he’s not supposed to be, and conveniently collides with Idol at one point, allowing Lawler to roll Idol up for a fast three.

-So Idol’s done some research and found things out–#1, Jerry Calhoun got hired in the wrestling business as a friend of Jerry Lawler. #2, Jimmy Hart got into the wrestling business because he was a friend of Jerry Lawler. Lawler and Hart aren’t enemies, they’re in collusion with referee Jerry Calhoun to prevent Austin Idol from getting victories! Now now he’s demanding another match against Lawler, vowing not to stop until the bone of the leg is coming out of the skin. Austin wraps up by calling Jerry Jarrett on the phone and asking him to find 11,780 match wins somewhere.

-Jerry Lawler is out here to respond to the allegations against him. Better get used to typing that sentence. Anyway, he’s calling it the stupidest accusation he’s ever heard and assures us that there’s NOTHING but hatred between himself and Jimmy Hart, and if Idol wants Jimmy Hart barred from ringside Tuesday night in Louisville, The King is actually fine with that.

-The parade of interviews continues. Hector Guerrero is here to say he doesn’t want to make any excuses about what happened. He learns from any defeat he suffers, and he learned last week not to let his heart overtake his mind; he had a chance to recover first and THEN wrestle, and he didn’t take that chance. Hector is so soft-spoken as a babyface that he actually triggers my ASMR, which makes this the best promo in the history of this show.

-Next, the Bounty Hunters are here. Did they forget to bring the ring to the TV studio this week?! The Bounty Hunters are tired of being ducked by champions. They want a title match! Manager Jimmy Kent just RAMBLES here, making some point about hunting deer and grasping to remember the names of babyfaces as he talks. And then he moves on to his sinister plan to buy apples. Tony Schiavone covered this on his podcast once while watching a Jimmy Garvin promo that was similarly odd and unfocused. Dusty would sometimes just send guys out on 30 seconds’ notice and say “Cut a two-minute promo, daddeh!” So Jimmy Garvin just rambled and rambled while searching his brain for a point to make, and I think that’s 100% what’s happening here. Kent really sounds like he wasn’t expecting to work the mic today.


-And so at the 27-minute mark of this week’s episode (including commercials) we start our first match.

-Jimmy flings Maley around and slams him a few times. Big elbow gets a three-count in 39 seconds.

-Jimmy rants and raves about how Hector Guerrero throws such weak punches that he couldn’t wake Jimmy from a deep sleep, and no short little Australian punk is gonna take his belt away from him either. And just to prove it, he won’t wait for some match that only 5,000 people will see, he’ll defend the title against Bill Dundee right now in front of 5 million viewers!

-So Dundee hurries to the ring along with a referee. Dundee dominates Valiant until the Bounty Hunters show up for a surprise attack. And to add insult to injury, they cut Dundee’s hair until Tommy Rich and Hector Guerrero come to the rescue and clear the ring.

-And now it’s time to re-visit the pledge from Jerry Lawler to throw Jimmy Hart’s gold record into the Mississippi River. And sure enough, we go to remote footage of Jerry Lawler standing at Old Bridge and dropping the gold record in there, true to his word. Jerry apologizes for the crappy camera work because they missed the shot of the record actually hitting the water, but he promises it looked cool. In fairness, they did manage to get a shot of Jerry dropping the record over the bridge, so SOMETHING went into that water, whether they did a switcheroo or whatever.


-Irwin wants a fist fight and Dundee is game for that. Rich tags in and dropkicks Irwin. Hiptoss and an armdrag on Irwin, who’s had enough of this and tags in Oswald. Oswald monkey flips him around and gets a one-count. Irwin comes back in and backdrops him for two. Hot tag to Rich, and the heels get whipped into each other, and a bodypress by Dundee gets three. This reminded me a lot of a late ’90s WWF match, where they moved and moved and moved to create the illusion of a ten-minute match in the space of only four minutes.


FALL ONE: Morton hiptosses David, then tags in Koko, who snapmares David into a chinlock. Koko gets caught in the heel corner and worked over with a side headlock, but he counters with an atomic drop and starts working David’s leg. Ricky tags in and stays on the leg. Koko tries to finish with a half-crab, but Jerry gives Koko a swift boot to the head to break the hold.

-So Koko gets caught in the heel corner. Jerry applies a bearhug and Jimmy Kent is able to reach in and give some cheap shots. Referee forces a break because of all the shenanigans, and Koko slips away and hot-tags Rick. Jerry manages to back Rick into the corner, and Kent takes another cheap shot, and the referee declares no-more-freebies and calls for the bell, giving the faces the win. Post-match, the Bounty Hunters keep up the assault until Tommy Rich & Bill Dundee come to the rescue.

The final score: review Bad
The 411
Really weird show this week.

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Memphis Wrestling, Adam Nedeff