wrestling / Video Reviews

Mid-South Wrestling (3.22.1986) Review

October 30, 2023 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Hacksaw Jim Duggan Image Credit: WWE
The 411 Rating
Community Grade
Your Grade
Mid-South Wrestling (3.22.1986) Review  

-Cold open: Buzz Sawyer whips Hacksaw Jim Duggan with the logging chain in last week’s big angle.


-Originally aired March 22, 1986.

-And yeah, that’s how they announced it, they just ran the usual opening and laid the new logo on top of it. That was a weird way to do it.

-Your hosts are Jim Ross & Joel Watts.

-We head over to Jim Crockett Promotions for a press conference about the upcoming Jim Memorial Senior Cup Crockett Memorial Tag Team Tournament. And it’s pretty much a normal press conference, with bland guys in suits rattling off ticket information. And here are your top ten seeds for the tournament:
1. Road Warriors
2. Dusty & Magnum
3. Midnight Express
4. Ric & Arn
5. Rick Martel & Dino Bravo
6. Rock & Roll Express
7. Tiger Mask & Giant Baba
8. The Koloffs
9. Sheepherders
10. DiBiase & Williams

-Bill Watts makes a speech about how he’s always dreamed of having the NWA Title change hands in the Superdome, so he worked some contract magic to have Ric Flair pulled from the tournament to face Dusty Rhodes. Magnum has agreed to take on Ron Garvin as a substitute partner and Arn will now team up with Tully Blanchard. Bill also touts that the afternoon show on the 19th will have a SURPRISE MAIN EVENT.

-And now, with all that out of the way, we move onto footage of…a press conference. I would not have opened the first episode with the new branding this way.

-Dick Slater, Dark Journey, and Buzz Sawyer are here to hold this press conference. Dick Slater shows off the new TV Title belt that he was ordered to have made, and it’s so weird because your kayfabe story here is that Slater was obligated to commission this belt because of his previous shenanigans, and Slater not only did it, he had one hell of a nice-looking belt made, complete with the promotion’s new name. Also, since Bill Watts is being such a pain in the ass about one champ having to honor commitments for two belts, Dick immediately forfeits the TV Title to Buzz Sawyer.

-And with that, we go to…Dick Slater, Dark Journey, Grizzly Smith, and Bill Watts in the ring for an incredibly redundant segment where they pretty much tell the live crowd what we already learned in the press conference. Buzz Sawyer has agreed to defend the belt here tonight against any opponent they pick. Sawyer agrees to the terms but doesn’t want to know who his opponent will be. Sawyer considers the match so unimportant that he just signs the contract without reading it or checking a few detail.

-And with that, we go to…Bill Watts in the ring with Buzz Sawyer. And after turning the screw a lot, Bill Watts reveals…okay, actually, this is a good payoff. So the whole shtick in the previous segment was that Buzz and Dick made such a show of not giving a shit that they walked off, even after Bill Watts pointed out the number of blank spaces in the contract for Buzz’s title defense. Among them, there was nothing filled in for the line about which title would be defended.

-So because of that, Buzz, the reigning TV Champion, is now defending the NORTH AMERICAN TITLE, the belt that Slater kept for himself. And Buzz’s opponent in the North American Title defense will be Hacksaw Jim Duggan.

-We go to a local house show promo where Buzz Sawyer laughs off being signed to an “I quit” match because he’s never quit in his life. No, you haven’t, you usually get your drug-addled ass fired first, that’s the problem!


-And with 22 minutes left in the show, it’s time for our opening match, with Duggan’s ribs all taped up.

-Sawyer tries a fist fight, but Duggan gives him such a hard right that Sawyer FLIES out of the ring. Duggan sends him back in and beats on Sawyer some more. Big boot by Sawyer turns the tide, and he goes to the top rope to try to get himself DQed and end this right away, but Duggan slams him off. Attempted spear, but Sawyer ducks and Duggan falls through the ropes and to the concrete.

-Sawyer goes right for the ribs, ramming him into the barricade. Duggan struggles back into the ring, but Sawyer is ready for him, slugging him and suplexing him. Sawyer goes back to the top rope and goes for a splash, but Duggan rolls out of the way and Sawyer crashes, and the referee reasons that since Sawyer didn’t harm Duggan, he won’t call for the DQ. So Sawyer’s hurt, Duggan has an opening, and he connects with the spear this time and gets the pin to win the North American Title. That was a GREAT bit of business, with both guys managing to give everything they had in a match that only took five minutes.

TAG TEAM TITLE: TED DIBIASE & “Dr. Death” STEVE WILLIAMS (Champions) vs. SHEEPHERDERS (with Jack Victory)
-Champs have white tights and “Born in the USA” in case we forgot they’re faces now.

-Sheepherders manage to trap DiBiase in their corner, but DiBiase fights off both of them and they bail out for a retreat right away.

-DiBiase keeps up the beating on Luke and the Sheepherders bail out again. Williams tags in and now he clears the ring and we pause this time for a commercial break.

-Back with Steve Williams beating on Butch Miller. Luke Williams grabs some hair from the apron to do harm to his long-lost half-brother Steve, but that doesn’t last long, with Williams connecting with a flying shoulderblock and making the hot tag.

-DiBiase cleans house on both opponents. Victory hops up to the apron to wave the flag. Williams knocks him to the floor, which leads to a donnybrook. Referee tries to restore order as DiBiase clamps a figure four onto Butch. Luke comes off the top rope and breaks the flagpole on DiBiase, knocking him out cold, and Butch frees himself and gets the winning pin and the gold. Nice bit of heat, but the Sheepherders got squashed here and looked totally out of the champs’ league on the way to winning the belts.


-Koko sends Scott into the ropes and Scott struggles to do that, so Koko backdrops him and goes right to the finish before the jobber can hurt either one of them. Missile dropkick finishes.

CHAVO GUERRERO vs. TAURUS BULBA (with Eddie Gilbert)

-Under three minutes in the show as the bell sounds for this one

-Slugfest to start. Chavo dropkicks Taurus gets a nice suplex pinning combo…for…three. Commentators seem a bit thrown by that, as does everybody in the building. On the one hand, the cameras are ready to cut to the commentary team and we’re close to the end of the show, but on the other hand…I think Taurus just screwed up the timing on his kickout and the referee had to count three.

The final score: review Average
The 411
Great angle and title changes this week, so I can't hate on it this week, but opening "a new era" with several minutes of soft-spoken men reading prepared statements in a hotel conference room was a weird misstep.

article topics :

Mid-South Wrestling, Adam Nedeff