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Mid-South Wrestling (10.15.1983) Review

August 2, 2020 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
King Kong Bundy Mid-South Wrestling 4-30-1983
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Mid-South Wrestling (10.15.1983) Review  

-Originally aired October 15, 1983.

-Your hosts are Boyd Pierce and Bill Watts.

-And Bill Watts leads off by announcing that there’s a lot of CONFUSION in the building right now and he needs to explain why. Oh, man, I love angles that start like this.

-So last week, Butch Reed and Jim Neidhart issued a challenge to Hacksaw Jim Duggan and Magnum TA for the Mid-South Tag Team Titles. Grizzly Smith approved the challenge and signed the contract. However, just before showtime, Butch Reed walked into Grizzly Smith’s office for a meeting regarding the North American Title. He insisted on having a North American Title match on TV today, and because he’s tired of being disrespected and accused of ducking “certain challengers,” he’s even consented to allowing a fan vote to determine who the challenger will be. The four choices will be Magnum TA, Krusher Darsow, Junkyard Dog, and Hacksaw Jim Duggan.

-Okay, done.

-Except, oh, wait, the Tag Team Title match that he already signed? That thing? Reed said he’ll defend the North American Title first. He’s requested that two matches be held afterward to give him time to rest, and then he’ll come back out for the Tag Team Title match. If TV time ends up being an issue, the Tag Team Title match will be bumped to next week.

-So now we go to Reeser Bowden in the ring, and he brings the top four contenders into the ring to hold the fan vote. Krusher Darsow enters first to middling enthusiasm because, you know, he just arrived in the company and the other three guys probably deserve it more. Magnum TA enters next and actually gets less of a reaction than Darsow, which truly surprises me. Duggan comes to the ring and takes the lead in this vote pretty easily. Junkyard Dog enters last and Reeser very correctly declares it a tie between Duggan and JYD. So Reeser holds a tiebreaker vote, and the winner this time is Junkyard Dog, and the match is set.

-Bill Watts chats with Butch Reed, and Butch Reed declares that the Dog doesn’t deserve it. He won in the Superdome to capture the title, he keeps winning matches with stipulations at house shows, and Junkyard Dog interfered in his match with “The Hairy Hippie” a few weeks ago on TV. And you know what? Since Hacksaw Duggan didn’t earn that win when JYD interfered, he doesn’t deserve a title shot either. And Krusher Darsow, a top contender? What a joke. So he’s eliminated those three and he says that leaves Magnum TA. Bill Watts calls bullshit on that and says Reed probably just wants Magnum because he got a win over Magnum on TV a few weeks ago! God, I love this company, this is such an intricate story they’re telling, but all the pieces of it fit, so it’s easy to follow.

-Reed denies that he’s going for an easy win and insists that Magnum TA is the only qualified opponent, and Reed points out that he did some sneaky contract finagling and has it in writing that he has final approval and that the fan vote doesn’t even matter. Bill Watts looks totally dismayed and apologizes to the fans for this bullshit and concedes that, yeah, Reed outsmarted everybody on this one.

And so at the 10-minute mark, we go to the ring for our first match.

-Cobra catches Stanton in a flying headscissors while Watts just fumes about Reed completely showing up Grizzly Smith by sneaking in a final approval clause in his contract. Honestly, if you can sneak that past the guy in charge of making the matches, REED is not the guy to blame here. Grizzly Smith just plain dropped the ball.

-Stanton slams Weingroff while Watts gives some thought to this scheme by Reed, as he’s got that Tag Team Title match later in the hour with Duggan and TA, and he suspects that Reed’s battle plan is not just to beat the guy he’s already beaten, but deliberately injure him during the match for a significant advantage in the second title match. Butch Reed is a crafty sumbitch.

-Meanwhile, Crews gets cleared from the ring. Missile dropkick by Cobra, and Weingroff does the abdominal stretch pinning combo, which this week Bill Watts has decided to name “the guillotine.”


-Just as Reeser Bowden finishes the ring intros, Junkyard Dog suddenly shows up, and holy shit, he’s wearing a referee uniform! Grizzly Smith follows him to ringside and Bill Watts just casually drops in “Oh, yeah, I did see Grizzly having a conversation with State Athletic Commission Deputy Orville Richards a few minutes ago…”

-And yes, the deputy has officially authorized Junkyard Dog to serve as referee and Bill Watts is just elated that Reed got it tossed back in his face after gloating about how smart he is.

-Side headlock by Magnum, but Reed struggles to escape from it. They do the usual resthold spot where Reed happens to have his shoulders down, and JYD dives down to the mat and counts two and twice the speed of sound, so it’s immediately clear that JYD is here to screw Reed out of the belt any way that he can.

-Reed breaks the hold and he’s just completely disgusted about this whole thing. Boot to the face stops Magnum’s progress and they trade punches for a bit. Accidental foreshadowing by Bill, who casually mentions the new wrestling TV show on USA Network, but reminding us that the finest TV main events are on Mid-South television.

-Knee by Reed, followed by a chinlock. Forearms and a press slam by Reed gets an unhurried two-count. Reed goes in for the kill again, but Magnum powers out of it so hard that Reed steamrolls the Dog’s body, which dazes him a little bit. Belly-to-belly outta nowhere by Magnum, but Reed kicks out and now Magnum steamrolls Dog, so he’s a little stunned. Dog struggles to his feet while Reed throws an Irish whip, so Magnum and JYD collide and they’re both laid out on the mat. Reed sees his opening and heads to the top rope to do an illegal version of his finisher. Dog waves at him, warning him not to do it, but Reed flies off the top and Dog gets in the way, taking the blow to save Magnum, and Watts says that’s all the proof he needs that he was right and that Reed was going for the intentional injury strategy.

-Reed goes to the top rope again for another shot at hitting the finisher, but this time, JDY sticks his arm straight out and connects with Reed’s jaw. Magnum hits another belly-to-belly for three! Magnum is your new North American Champion, and Reed is dazed going into the second title match later in the hour. Just standing on its own merit this was a good TV match, but the whole story leading up to it made it a GREAT TV match. Reed has spent a few months building up so much bad karma, and it all came together and caught up with him at once.


-Nikolai stomps away while Watts just unloads on the evil USSR and everything he hates about the country. Did you know that some people in Russia are ATHEISTS? Fuckers.

-Backbreaker by Nikolai. The worst part is that it’s a COMMUNIST BACKBREAKER, which means the pain is equally distributed to all parts of Reid’s body, and there’s no way to recover from that.


-Debut of the Leapster. Lanny applies an armbar while stretching out his leg and pressins his boot against Vines’ face. Vines tries to get some offense going, but Lanny backflips free from it. Moonsault by Lanny finishes, and for the life of me, I don’t understand Watts’ verbal gymnastics in explaining why a moonsault off the top is legal.

-Crowd has already invented a chant to taunt Reed for losing the title. Reed and Magnum pick up where they left off and it’s a straight-up fight for a moment, which Magnum wins pretty handily. Neidhart tags in and Magnum is just on the roll of a lifetime this week so he takes the fight to Neidhart too.

-Duggan tags in and overwhelms Neidhart with straight-up mat wrestling. Reed tags in and crashes on an attempted dropkick. Anvil tags in and takes over on Magnum, slamming him and hammering at him. Reed of course eagerly heads back in to work over Magnum and exact some revenge. Toolbox takes turns blocking attempted hot tags and switching without tagging.

-Duggan gets so frustrated with the double-teaming that he just comes in without tagging and it’s a pier sixer. Magnum gets thrown over the top rope behind the referee’s back. Duggan wipes out Reed with a spear, but Anvil hangs in there and looks like he’ll be able to finish this one himself. He goes for a Samoan drop, but Duggan breaks that with a spear. But Reed sneaks up the turnbuckles and comes off with a shoulderblock on Magnum and gets the pin, so Anvil and Hacksaw Reed are your new Tag Team Champs. Felt REALLY anticlimactic after the first title match.


-Only two minutes left in the TV hour. Bundy takes Darsow down but misses an elbow drop. Bundy hammers at Darsow, but misses the avalanche in the corner, and Darsow slams him out of nowhere for a two-count. Darsow unleashes a flurry of offense, desperately trying to finish this before TV time runs out, but nah…bell sounds and we’re done.

The final score: review Very Good
The 411
Just a fantastic story spanning nearly the entire hour. Huge thumbs up for this week.

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Mid-South Wrestling, Adam Nedeff