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Memphis Wrestling (6.20.81) Review

March 29, 2023 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Memphis Wrestling 6-20-81 Wayne Ferris Image Credit: Memphis Wrestling
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Memphis Wrestling (6.20.81) Review  

-Originally aired June 20, 1981.

-Your hosts are Lance Russell & Dave Brown.

-Lance has words with TV Champ Kevin Sullivan. The promoters agree that Sullivan is ducking Dutch Mantell, so they’re laying down the law and saying he has to defend the TV Title. Sullivan tries to change the subject, asking what the promoters are going to do about Steve Keirn SHOVING people, and Jerry Lawler no-showing TV tapings just because he was already booked in another territory that the promoters knew about.

-So Kevin Sullivan says he’ll compromise with the promoters. He’ll grant Dutch a rematch IF he can take Wayne Ferris to a draw in the ring, and Lance figures out the game plan: let Dutch get exhausted so even if he lasts the ten minutes, he can’t handle another match against Kevin.


-And it’s wrestling history right away, as Dutch has SHAVED HIS BACK for this week’s show. And if I know my old wrestling, it’s probably just because somebody shaved the word “FUCK” into his back while he was passed out the night before or something.

-Sullivan sticks around for commentary, complaining about all the closed fists that he’s using in retaliation for Ferris’ closed fists. Dutch works the arm while Kevin gripes about phantom tights-pulling. Slam and a knee by Mantell get a near-fall and Sullivan is freaking out and screaming for Wayne to kick out.

-So Mantell continues working the arm while Sullivan shifts talking points and boasts about how this is all going according to plan, because look at all the energy Dutch is using by kicking Wayne’s ass. We’re four minutes in as Sullivan is now just trying to back out of any claim that he said he’d defend the TV Title this week if Dutch at least achieved a draw, that’s silly talk and he clearly never said anything of the sort.

-Dutch rolls up Ferris for another two-count and Sullivan really is funny on commentary, just cool as a cucumber while he tries to bullshit Lance, but then screaming bloody murder any time Dutch gets a near-fall. About six minutes in, Ferris finally gets a true offensive move in and Sullivan pretty much declares victory and tries to call the match right there, but no, Lance reminds us we still have nine minutes.

-Ferris goes for a chinlock. Mantell fights out and PULLS THE STRAPS DOWN, and since he has two straps to pull down instead of one, Wayne’s gonna die. Backdrop by Mantell, and Sullivan can’t take anymore, just running in to end the match by DQ and launching a 2-against-1 assault. Roy Rogers tries to come to the rescue, but Sullivan knocks him out cold. Steve Keirn comes to he rescue next and successfully clears the ring, and your house show tag team match for the upcoming week is all set.

-We head to the Mid-South Coliseum to watch Chic Donovan battling Roy Rogers. The referee gets bumped…for THIS match…and Tojo Yamomoto bungles some attempted outside interference, knocking out Chic and allowing Roy Rogers to get the win.

-So Lance Russell is in the studio with Chic, and as a result of losing the match, he has fired Tojo and promises that he’ll never allow that man to manage him again, and oh my god, this audience could not give less of a shit that Chic Donovan has fired Tojo. The studio is silent.

-Steve Keirn pledges to run Kevin Sullivan out of the Memphis territory, and as a brief aside, Roy Rogers is still kinda loopy and nobody can figure out what he was thinking when he tried to make the save first.


-So the story here is that one of the faces was supposed to be Roy Rogers, but he’s still out of it, but to repay the favor for his attempted save earlier, Dutch has volunteered to take his spot here.

FALL ONE: Everybody takes turns jockeying for position in various combinations. Donovan tries to make it a fistfight with Lawler and that doesn’t go well. Lawler just pummels him relentlessly for a few minutes, and Lawler finally just shows mercy and backs off, intentionally allowing Chic to tag out. Dalton reluctantly tags in. Sullivan refuses to tag in until Dalton applies a side headlock for a double-team move on Lawler. Lawler tags in Keirn and Sullivan gets right out, tagging Donovan back in.

-Mantel tags in and is on the receiving end of a ganging-up by Dalton and Donovan. Sullivan throws Dutch over the top rope, and the referee calls for the bell right away to give the faces the first fall.

FALL TWO: Dutch and Chic start. Chic manages to get Dutch into the heel corner, but Dutch holds his own. The heels keep trying to do triple-teaming, and Dutch gets frustrated and hurls Dalton over the top rope, getting a DQ about one minute into the fall and tying the match.

FALL THREE: Lawler’s mad about how the second fall went and beats the hell out of Dalton, teaching him a lesson about getting thrown over the top rope. Donavan tags in and suddenly he can hold his own in a fistfight. Sullivan tags in, and in a great spot, Lawler picks him up and carries him over to the babyface corner and tags in Dutch. Sullivan actually manages to get the upper hand. We end up with all six men in the ring and we do the WWF cheat where it’s a double-DQ so it counts as TWO falls and brings the score to 2-2.

-And that’s the show!

The final score: review Average
The 411
Did you scroll back up just now and say to yourself, "Wait, that was the whole show?" I did. And the show was actually decent. Only two matches, but both worth sitting down for.

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Memphis Wrestling, Adam Nedeff