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Memphis Wrestling (12.26.1981) Review

May 20, 2024 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Memphis Wrestling 5-16-81 Dutch Mantell Image Credit: Memphis Wrestling
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Memphis Wrestling (12.26.1981) Review  

-Originally aired December 26, 1981.

-Your hosts are Lance Russell & Dave Brown.

-The Express has a consultation and settles on Randy Rose & Dennis Condrey in the ring, with Norvell Austin sitting out and acting as the manager.

-Rose takes Rogers down in a front facelock and does a nice-looking mare with him. Rogers tries his own side headlock. Condrey tags in and gets caught in the face corner briefly, but recovers quickly. Condrey applies a bearhug on Rogers. Everybody tags and Rose elbows Upton down. Rose with a nice clothesline, and a powerslam by Dennis gets the win.

-We get a local house show promo, and it’s a wild one because Lance didn’t make it to the building that day for whatever reason, so it’s Bill Dundee hosting the segment. You can tell it’s a weird transition for him to go from hyping all the matches to just promoting his own stuff, which is probably why they should have just thrown a tie on the audio guy or something and had him hold the microphone for this.

DUTCH MANTELL (Southern Heavyweight Champion) vs. KENNY SHANE

-Dutch takes Kenny down and then just shoves and taunts him. Dutch works the arm as some little kid implores him to break it off. Dutch switches to working the leg, and the Double Dutch Clutch (a Polish hammer, kinda) gets three.

STAN LANE (with Jimmy Hart) vs. TOM MALEY
-Lane has a Ron Burgundy mustache here. He takes Maley down but gets caught in an armbar. Lane reverses it and Jimmy encourages his man by calling “Come on, Stanley!” which I note because according to Corny, apparently that’s a pet peeve for him; his name isn’t actually “Stanley,” it’s “Stanfield.” Maybe they’ll use it as a jumping-off point for an angle where he turns on Hart for screwing up his name, that’d be a million-dollar angle.

-Stanfield rams Maley’s head into the turnbuckle. Nice double underhook gets a one-count. Forearms by Lane, and a neckbreaker gets three.

-Bill Dundee has another house show promo, where he runs down the card again, and they don’t even have another babyface for him to interview about the card. It’s weird, it’s like he was the ONLY one who showed up for promo day. And even as a babyface, his annoyance at having to do this seeps through a bit.

-Lance welcomes a special guest to the studio, singer Rufus Thomas. Jimmy Hart comes out after the fact to gripe about having to give TV time to the worst singer he’s ever heard.

-Cuban misses a corner charge and Morton capitalizes with a backdrop and a series of dropkicks. Iranian tags in and gets armdragged around. Cuban tags in and takes some armdrags too, and the Assassins are having just a disaster of a time trying to take on Rick Morton.

-Price tags in and backdrops the Iranian. They could not have found a whiter guy with browner hair to cast as an “Iranian.” At least with Skandar Akbar, you could look at him and believe it a little bit until he actually started talking.

-Assassins take over on Price. Suplex by the Iranian looks to finish, but Morton makes the save. Assassins keep hammering on Price. Hot tag to Ricky Morton! Ricky cleans house. Funny moment as, after cleaning house, Ricky tags Price back in, and the studio audience lets out a loud collective groan. And yeah, double clothesline by the Assassins gets the three-count. Kinda getting antsy to see when this promotion finally just goes for it with Ricky.

-FALL ONE: Dundee biels Dream Machine across the ring. Eddie Gilbert tags in and they try to trap him in the corner, but Bobby Eaton accidentally knocks Sugar to the concrete (and Sugar is not shy about taking this bump, either). This leads to a really funny spot where Sugar, dazed, makes it back to the apron, and Bobby goes over to hug him and apologize…so Dundee sneaks up and tackles Bobby, knocking Sugar to the concrete AGAIN.

-So now the heels try a new tactic. Machine & Sugar both hold onto Dundee together so that Eaton can charge him in the corner. This time, Eaton accidentally knocks Machine off the apron, and Dundee just looks at Sugar and belts him in the mouth so he falls off a third time!

-Dundee backdrops Eaton, and Eaton has finally had enough and tags Sugar in so he can’t do any more harm to the guy. Dundee smacks him around and tags Eddie in. Heels try to interfere from the apron, so Tommy runs over and beats on Eaton while his son stays in control in the ring.

-Chaos breaks out and the heels take control of the confusion and Eddie gets drilled with a dropkick. All six men end up in the ring. Jimmy Hart tries to interfere but Dundee chases him around the ring and heads back in. It’s weird, they’ve teased two finishes now and the referee keeps actually doing his job, and it’s like a swerve to see competent officiating in this situation.

-Eddie manages to clear the ring, but suddenly Super Destroyer (some guy whose mask doesn’t match his tights) hits the ring and attacks Dundee, getting Jimmy Hart’s men DQed, and TV time is gone before we can start a second fall.

The final score: review Poor
The 411
Damn, this was a placeholder show if ever I've seen one.

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Memphis Wrestling, Adam Nedeff