15, 1969 - The Medics (Jim
Starr & Billy Garrett) beat Bobby
and Lee Field for
the Florida state tag belts in Tampa.
17, 1972 - Greg "The Hammer"
Valentine and "The
Taylor Made Man" Terry Taylor win the WCW U.S. tag
straps from Ron Simmons
and Big Josh (Matt Borne with
a lumberjack gimmick) in Rock Hill, S.C.
17, 1997 - Prince Iaukea (Mike
Haynor) bested Steven
Regal (Darren Matthews) in Tampa, Fla. to capture the WCW TV belt. Haynor,
a native of Hawaii, was originally trained by the Malenko
family and was given the Iaukea name by then-WCW head booker Kevin
Sullivan as a tribute to his mentor Curtis
Iaukea (who actually started out as "Prince Iaukea"
himself before ascending to the throne and becoming
"King"). Regal later left WCW after a series of
strange incidents (including a situation where he
"accidentally" urinated on a flight attendant) and is
now under contract to the WWE.
17, 1997- Sycho Sid (Eudy)
beat Bret "The Hitman" Hart to win the WWE title in Nashville,
Tenn. Hart, of
course, would depart for WCW later that same year, following
the infamous breach of contract and subsequent double-cross by
Titan Sports chairman Vincent K. McMahon.
18, 1967 - The Devil's Duo (Angelo
Poffo & Chris Markoff) toppled Dick
the Bruiser (Dick
Afflis) and the Crusher
(Reggie Lisowski) to capture the WWA tag belts in Indianapolis.
the Bruiser and the Crusher
are featured in the WrestlingClassics.com Pay Per View, Beauties,
Babes, & Brawn on iN DEMAND.
18, 1973 - Karl Von Schotz and Kurt
Von Hess captured the Detroit version of the NWA World
tag-team title, downing Dean Ho (Dean Higuchi)
and Johnny Kostas.
18, 1984 - Brad Armstrong (Robert
James Jr.) beat Ted
DiBiase in a battle of second-generation superstars in
Atlanta's Omni to win the NWA National title as recognized by
Georgia Championship Wrestling. DiBiase had been scheduled to
wrestle the "mysterious Mr.
R." (Tommy Rich
under a mask after being beaten in a loser-leave-town match)
and had vowed to unmask him and drive him from the territory.
As it turned out, an unmasked Rich came to ringside
during the match and distracted DiBiase long enough for the
masked man (who in this case was Armstrong) to score the pin.
for the North American title and the Mid South tag team title
South Tape 1.
18, 1987 - Kevin Sullivan defeated Bad
News Allen (Coage) to garner the NWA Southern title in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
Coage, a former Olympic judo star who later worked as "Bad
News Brown" in the WWE, today appears occasionally on
indie shows in western Canada. Sullivan, who now works
behind-the-scenes at WCW, once performed under a rubber mask as
Merlin the Magician,
playing the sidekick to Kevin
Nash as "Oz." Thanks to the marketing genius of
former WCW boss Jim Herd,
they were accompanied to the ring by Dorothy
see Kevin Sullivan’s sunshine state reign of terror
when he brawls with Blackjack Mulligan in Florida
18, 1988 - David "D.J." Peterson
beat the Cuban Assassin
to win the NWA Central States title in Kansas City. Peterson
was killed in a motorcycle accident in 1993.
18, 1991 - Rick and Scott
Steiner (Rob & Scott Rechsteiner)
beat the Fabulous
Hayes & Jimmy
Garvin) to win the WCW World tag title in Montgomery, Ala.
It should be pointed out that the Freebirds actually lost the
title before they won them, dropping the straps in this
pre-taped match (which was set to air a month later) before the
PPV bout where they won them from Doom
(Ron Simmons & Bruce Reed)
even took place.
Freebirds are in all their glory in Mid
South Tape 1.
18, 1996 - Johnny B. Badd (Marc
Mero) downed Lex Luger to capture the WCW television belt in Norfolk, VA. Some
time later, Mero leaves WCW after a dispute with boss Eric Bischoff over the direction the company was taking his
cites his religious beliefs and family values as determining
factors in jumping from WCW to the WWE.
In an unrelated side note, his wife Sable
(Rena Mero), has appeared nude multiple times in Playboy.
19, 1966 - Cowboy Bill Watts beat Kenji
Shibuya to win the San Francisco version of the NWA U.S.
title for promoter Roy
Shire. Watts would later go on to run his own promotion,
the famed Mid-South Sports, which produced what was probably
the single most exciting year of televised wrestling in the
history of the industry in 1986. He later had stints working
for both WCW and the WWE, neither of which exactly went very
Bill Watts battles Buddy Colt for the North American
heavyweight championship in
of Buddy Colt.
20, 1978 - Bob Backlund stunned the
world, pinning Superstar
Billy Graham (Wayne
Coleman) in New York's Madison Square Garden to win the WWE
heavyweight championship as recognized by Vincent
J. McMahon's Capitol Wrestling Corporation (a member of the
NWA). Today, Graham, who both Hulk Hogan and Jesse Ventura
patterned their careers after, is today a vocal critic against
steroid abuse, which he admittedly (and regretfully) helped to
popularize in the 1970s. Backlund
unsuccessfully ran for a congressional seat in his home state
of Connecticut as a Republican.
Billy Graham is in
action in Florida
20, 1989 - Mike (Lawrence) Rotundo beat Rick
Steiner in Chicago, Ill. to win the NWA television title as
recognized by WCW. Rotundo was trained by the legendary Original,
Intelligent, Sensational Destroyer (Dick
Rotonda gets a
rematch for the Southern title he lost to Ron Bass in Florida
20, 1989 - Lex Luger pinned former
partner Barry Windham
in Chicago to win his second NWA United States title as
recognized by WCW. Luger is a former football player with the
CFL and USFL and spent some time with the NFL's Green Bay
Packers. Windham on the other hand excelled on the gridiron at
West Texas State University. Both men are former members of
wrestling's Four Horsemen.
20, 1989 - In yet another chapter of a feud that began in 1977, Ricky
"The Dragon" Steamboat (Richard
Blood) upended Nature
Boy Ric Flair (Richard
Fliehr) in Chicago to take the NWA World heavyweight
championship. Looking at the complete title history between the
two, you'll find that Steamboat beat Flair for one World title,
two U.S. titles, one TV title, and two Mid-Atlantic tag titles
(with Paul Jones as his partner). Flair beat Steamboat for one
World title, one U.S. title, and one Mid-Atlantic tag title
(with Big John Studd
as his partner).
Flair and Ricky Steamboat are featured throughout
Collection, currently on sale with free domestic shipping.
Greensboro (N.C) Coliseum - In
the main event, Ric
Flair (Richard Fliehr) defended the NWA World heavyweight championship
against Ricky Steamboat
before 8,000 fans. This
was a No DQ rematch stemming from their bout on the February
7th show in the same building, in which Flair had been
Before the match, Sgt.
Slaughter (Bob Remus),
the reigning NWA United States champion, came to ringside with
his "Privates" (Jim
Nelson & Don
challenged the winner of the match, and nearly got into a fight
As was the case with most
Steamboat versus Flair matches, this was a classic, with both
men pulling out all stops. The finish came when Steamboat
rolled Flair into a cradle coming off the ropes.
Flair kicked out, sending Steamboat's head crashing into
the turnbuckle. Flair
then schoolboyed him for the pin in 15:47.
Afterward, as Flair left the
ring with the NWA World title still in hand, Slaughter and his
"Privates" entered the ring.
Remembering the altercation with Steamboat before the
bout, they attacked him and began stomping him mercilessly.
As the crowd grew hotter and
hotter, Flair watched from ringside.
Finally, after thirty seconds or so, the Nature Boy came
back into the ring to help Steamboat, the man he had just
defeated. Unfortunately, no good deed goes unpunished as the
Marines overpowered Flair and beat him down as well. Finally, Ray Stevens and Jake
"The Snake" Roberts (Aurelian
Smith Jr.) came out to make the save, but not before Flair
had been knocked completely out.
In a stirring moment, Steamboat
hoisted Flair upon his shoulders and carried him back to the
dressing room as the fans stood to cheer both men.
In other bouts, Dusty
Runnels) beat Sgt.
Slaughter in 11:14, but didn't win the U.S. title, as
Slaughter was disqualified for throwing the American Dream over
the top rope.
Rogowski) and Stan Hansen topped Ray
Stevens and Bad, Bad
Leroy Brown (Leroy
Rochester) in 8:45, after Hansen nailed Brown with the
lariat. Anderson and Hansen had won the Greensboro leg of a
multi-city tournament to crown new NWA World tag champs on
February 7, beating Stevens
and Pat Patterson (Pierre Clermont) in the finals. The other teams in that tourney were
Adrian Adonis (Keith Franke)
& Jesse Ventura
(Jim Janos), Terry Taylor & Tim
Horner, Mr. Fuji
& Mr. Saito, Jimmy Valiant (Jim Valen)
& Johnny Weaver
(John Meyers) and Jay Youngblood (Steve Romero)
& Jake Roberts.
In what was perhaps the most
heated feud in the entire country at the time, Rowdy
Roddy Piper (Roddy
Toombs) and Bob
Armstrong (Bob James Sr.) battled to
a double count-out in 6:22.
Jake "The Snake" Roberts
pinned Pvt. Jim Nelson
(Jim Darrell) in
9:22 after executing his famous kneelift, which he used to win
matches before he mastered the DDT.
After the match, Slaughter ordered Nelson to do push-ups
and run laps.
George pinned Bill
White in 7:24 after a shoulderbreaker. Pork
Chop Cash pinned Chris
Markoff in 4:17 following a headbutt. Pvt.
Don Kernodle pinned Mike Davis in 8:31 after a powerslam. David Patterson (David
Cannell) downed Tony
Anthony (later Dirty
White Boy) in 7:41 following a backbreaker.
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Hara Arena (Columbus, Ohio)
- Former NWA
World heavyweight champion Wildfire
Tommy Rich (Tom
Richardson) beat the Great
Kabuki, managed by Playboy
Gary Hart, on a disqualification.
Kabuki was one of the most colorful and feared heels of
the time while Rich was the original golden boy of cable TV.
"The Eighth Wonder of the
World" Andre the
Giant (Andre Rousimoff) fought to a double count-out with former NWA World
titleholder Harley Race.
Eadie) and Super
Destroyer (Scott Irwin) downed Mr.
Wrestling II (Johnny
Walker) and Brad
Armstrong (Bob James Jr.)
Richard O'Sullivan has been following professional wrestling for nearly 27 years and saw many of today's 'legends' like Ric Flair and Randy Savage compete in small high school gyms and recreation centers when they were just starting out. His first foray into serious wrestling journalism pre-dated publications like The Wrestling Observer Newsletter and he has done play-by-play wrestling announcing on the radio. After a brief stint as an independent promoter, Sullivan has settled into a role as a well-paid wrestling historian, who openly laughs in the face of anyone who hasn't heard of Spaceman Frank Hickey. Richard Sullivan is also the creator of Lost Colony Entertainment.