wrestling / Video Reviews

YouTubular: Ron Cumberledge

November 7, 2010 | Posted by Leonard Hayhurst
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YouTubular: Ron Cumberledge  

Based on another suggestion from the comments, we have a classic early nineties WWE jobber that I again don’t know much about. I did find on YouTube a pretty funny series of videos from a guy who created a CAW of Cumberledge on a WWE video game of Cumberledge hosting RAW. That’s where I got the tag line as the video called Cumberledge the Pink Sensation. The main event is Cumberledge taking on an old foe from directly below.

Ron Cumberledge vs. Abe “Knuckleball” Schwartz
Video Length: 4:05


Yeah, I probably have to explain this one to newbies. During the 1994 Major League Baseball strike, WWE attempted to court disgruntled baseball fans by pushing WWE superstars as the real boys of summer and they will never go on strike; probably because they’re not unionized. Utility man Steve Lombardi played Abe “Knuckleball” Schwartz, a baseball player with his face painted like a baseball player and wearing a 00 on his jersey. His original name was MVP, or Most Violent Player, but I guess Vince McMahon felt the need to draw on the long, storied tradition of Jewish baseball players. I meant that as a joke, but I looked it up and there are actually several Jewish big leaguers. Notable ones are Hank Greenberg, Sandy Koufax, Ian Kinsler, Shawn Green and Kevin Youkilis, The Greek God of Walks.

This is from “Superstars” with Vince McMahon and Jerry Lawler on commentary. Schwartz teases and frustrates Cumberledge to start. The best part is when he baseball slides between Cumberledge’s legs and declares himself safe. Cumberledge walks into a body slam and Schwartz does jumping jacks. Cumberledge works and arm wringer and goes into an arm bar. McMahon and Lawler try to figure out who Schwartz really is, their best guess is Pete Rose. Schwartz forces Cumberledge into the ropes to break. Cumberledge leapfrogs Schwartz and then gets a hip toss. Ron works the arm. Schwartz slides to the floor and drags Cumberledge out by the ankles. Cumberledge is body slammed on the floor. Schwartz goes back into the ring so he can baseball slide back into Cumberledge. Back in the ring, Abe stomps the gut and follows with a suplex. Schwartz argues with the referee and kicks imaginary dirt on him. He then acts like he’s going to pitch and slugs Cumberledge with a big right hand. Schwartz points to the lights like Babe Ruth and finishes with a superplex. I give Lombardi credit, he worked the gimmick like a pro with a lot of baseball references. Mildly amusing on the ‘Vince is batshit crazy’ meter. ¼*

Ron Cumberledge vs. Nailz
Video Length: 3:06


The hits just keep on coming. Nailz was brought in as the arch nemesis of the Big Bossman, a former inmate the Bossman had when he was a prison guard. He had previously been Kevin Kelly in the AWA. Nailz was poised to feud with the Undertaker when he was fired due to fighting with Vince McMahon over money. Nailz sued WWE, claiming McMahon sexually harassed him. He was also a witness against WWE in the steroid trials, but proclaiming his hatred of McMahon kind of hurt his testimony.

This is from “Superstars” with McMahon and Curt Henning on commentary. Nailz chokes Cumberledge and pushes him around the ring. Nailz delivers a high knee and then punts Cumberledge in the ribs as he crawls around the ring. More choking. Nailz hits a clothesline. Cumberledge passes out to a choke sleeper. DUD. Nailz chokes Cumberledge with the Bossman’s nightstick. When you have such a limited character, it’s hard to put a good match together. Nailz is supposed to not be a trained wrestler, but a prisoner who only knows how to choke and brawl.

Ron Cumberledge vs. the Barbarian
Video Length: 2:27


Gorilla Monsoon and Lord Alfred Hayes are on commentary. Barbarian uses a side slam to break a headlock. The Barbarian totally no sells a wristlock and clubbing to the arm. Cumberledge ducks a clothesline and tries an O’Connor roll, but Barbarian holds onto the ropes. Barbarian hits a big clothesline. Barbarian stomps the abdomen and hits a series of kicks. He uses a backbreaker. Body slam. Barbarian holds a suplex so long I read “Ward and Peace.” The video ends there, but we can assume Barbarian won shortly thereafter and the rating can be a DUD.

Ron Cumberledge vs. Bob Backlund
Video Length: 2:27


Jim Ross and Ted Dibiase are on commentary. Backlund works the arm and hits a couple arm drags. Cumberledge breaks an arm lock with a head scissors. Backlund fights out. He scores a monkey flip. An insert promo has Backlund putting himself and his era over. This was right when Backlund turned heel and started acting crazy. Cumberledge gets a heel trip and rides Backlund like an amateur. That might read funny out of context. Backlund gains control and wins with the crossface chicken wing. ¼* A longer match without Backlund turning crazy at the end could have been pretty good.

Ron Cumberledge and Rick Sampson vs. Power and Glory with Slick
Video Length: 3:33


From “Superstars.” Commentary is McMahon, Roddy Piper and Honky Tonk Man. Power and Glory are Hercules and Paul Roma. Hercules beats on Sampson for a bit before tagging Roma. We get an insert promo from Slick on Power and Glory going after the tag belts. Roma hits a dropkick. He pulls Sampson up on the cover. Tag to Hercules. He slams Sampson into his corner to tag Cumberledge. Hercules does some more beating and the heels win with the Powerplex. ¼* Ok squash, Power and Glory were decent for the period.

The 411: Cumberledge had a great look. The Backlund match showed he had some tech skills. He seemed to have everything McMahon would want, but for whatever reason didn’t get the push. He didn’t have much a personality, but he didn’t have a chance to show one. As with many of the guys we’ve done lately we can only think what could have been.
Final Score:  5.0   [ Not So Good ]  legend

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Leonard Hayhurst

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