Thursday, August 21, 2014

TAKE YOUR BEST SHOT

THE ASSASSIN (JODY HAMILTON) takes control.

MR. WRESTLING (TIM WOODS) has GENE ANDERSON bloodied, but unbowed.

Two WORLD CHAMPIONS battle...
JACK BRISCO versus DORY FUNK JR.

RIC FLAIR versus DUSTY RHODES
Two more WORLD CHAMPIONS...

PAUL JONES and BARON VON RASCHKE admire their tag team championship belts.

GORDON NELSON whips Indian star BILLY TWO RIVERS.

TINY ANDERSON (aka GRIZZLY SMITH) of THE KENTUCKIANS has matters well under control.

GREG VALENTINE takes down WAHOO MCDANIEL.
But the Chief would get back up...

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

NEARLY A HALF CENTURY AGO

January 30, 1965
LEXINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA

Action galore is on tap for professional wrestling fans fortunate enough to attend
the big card tonight at the LEXINGTON YMCA starting at 8:15.

GEORGE and SANDY SCOTT, known world-wide as THE FLYING SCOTTS, and victorious here last Saturday, will face long-time rivals RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON, wrestling's BLONDE BOMBERS, in the featured two-out-of-three-falls main event.

A top semifinal match is scheduled with popular young JOHNNY WEAVER taking on rugged ex-footballer MIKE PAIDOUSUS.

Two other singles matches will round out the program when Indian star CHIEF BIG HEART faces MIKE VALENTINO *, and TONY NERO will face a newcomer to Lexington when he squares off against THE ALASKAN (JAY YORK).

GEORGE and SANDY SCOTT

MIKE PAIDOUSUS

MIKE VALENTINO

JOHNNY WEAVER
RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON
---
* MIKE VALENTINO wrestled in the WWWF as BARON MIKEL SCICLUNA.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

COWBOYS, LUMBERJACKS AND DEMONS

September 10, 1966
LEXINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA

TONI ROSE

THE MASKED RED DEMONS
with MGR. GEORGE 'TWO TON' HARRIS

TEX McKENZIE

KLONDIKE BILL

NELSON ROYAL

ABE JACOBS
---
A LUMBERJACK MATCH has been scheduled to see if two top wrestling teams, TEX McKENZIE and NELSON ROYAL on one side, and THE MASKED RED DEMONS on the other, can settle their differences.

Six other big wrestlers will spot themselves around the ring to prevent any runouts of a type taken by the RED DEMONS two weeks ago. With one of the masked men dangerously close to having his identity exposed, the DEMONS bolted to the safety of their dressing room, and the Texans won that match on a count out.

The LUMBERJACK MATCH is set for the best two-out-of-three falls within a one hour time limit.

Huge KLONDIKE BILL, with lumberjack experience, will pair up with the fast New Zealand native ABE JACOBS to meet two big men, GEORGE 'TWO TON' HARRIS and 'BIG BOY' BLONDELL in the other best-of-three falls tag match of the evening.

A special event will send girl grapplers TONI ROSE and DIXIE JORDAN against one another in what should be a crowd pleaser. These two ladies have a history.

Newcomer DON KENT, who debuted here last week, meets the veteran CORSICA JEAN in a singles match, which kicks off the card at 8:15.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

BOO THE BAD GUYS

Today, I shine the spotlight on a group of the bad guys of MID-ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING.

When I say 'bad', I don't mean poor wrestlers, but rather, the 'heels' of the business.

These are the guys who broke the rules. They pulled hair, they pulled tights, they double-teamed their opponents, they deliberately got themselves disqualified to save their championships, some even threw fire.

An integral part of the wrestling equation. For every hero, there had to be a villain. Someone to 'acquire the ire' of the wrestling fan. A catalyst to fuel the 'heat' of a match.

In short, someone the public would spend money to buy a wrestling ticket to see get beat and to get beaten.

Here are six such wrestling personalities:

BRONCHO LUBICH

(Best known in JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS for teaming with ALDO BOGNI and managed by HOMER O'DELL, but was later managed by GEORGE 'TWO TON' HARRIS, and later teamed with BRUTE BERNARD or CHRIS MARKOFF.)

FRANK MORRELL

(A bigger star in Tennessee, known as 'The King of Kingsport'. In JCP, FRANK was mostly an undercard scoundrel. His experience was a factor in making MORRELL one of the better jobbers for a number of years.)

PAMPERO FIRPO

(Known as 'The Wild Bull of the Pampas', is best remembered in JCP teaming with THE MISSOURI MAULER a.k.a. LARRY HAMILTON as a main event team. After retiring from the ring, he went to work for the U.S. POSTAL SERVICE--make up your own joke there.)

MIKE YORK

(Mike York formed a tag team with "brother" JAY YORK as THE ALASKANS and later with FRANK MONTE. In JCP, the duo was mostly mid-card status, but did have some main event matches.)

DOC and MIKE GALLAGHER

(A top team throughout the wrestling world in the late 1950s and early-to-mid 1960s. JCP main eventers for a number of years. Around 1973, after retiring from the ring, MIKE formed a short-lived independent wrestling company with GEORGE BECKER, based in Charlotte, N.C.)

'PLAYBOY' GARY HART, RIP HAWK, SWEDE HANSON

(What can I say about these guys that hasn't been said? One of the greatest teams in wrestling histories. RIP and SWEDE were together for about sixteen years, HART joined them as their manager in 1969. They headlined wrestling cards in every territory they worked.)

Sunday, August 10, 2014

CHEER FOR THE GOOD GUYS

Today, I shine the spotlight on a group of the good guys of MID-ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING.

Called 'babyfaces' in the business, these are the wrestlers 'we the people' love to watch carry out the ideals of good, clean living. They live by the creed of wrestling by the rule book (although when provoked, will 'fight fire with fire' to settle a score). No hair pulling, no eye gouging, no low blows.

Although the line between good guys and bad guys is a bit thinner in the business now than in days gone by, we buy wrestling tickets and pull to see these heroes dish out 'truth, justice and the American Way' to the perpetrators of evil.

Here are six such wrestling personalities:

THE MIGHTY IGOR
(Richard Joseph Garza - 1931-2002)

A former AWA WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION, he used the 'gentle giant' gimmick, loved children and puppy dogs. Came to JCP from the IWA. His biggest feud in the MID-ATLANTIC territory came when BORIS MALENKO and THE MASKED SUPERSTAR (Bill Eadie) burned him in the eye with a lit cigar.

RED BASTIEN
(Rolland Bastein -1931-2012)

Top 'babyface' throughout the wrestling world, did several stints in JCP, one during his prime in the early 1960s, then later in the mid-1970s as a mid-card worker.)

SONNY KING
(Larry Johnson)

A boxer-turned wrestler, he enjoyed success as a WWWF Tag Team Champion before coming to JCP in 1974 as a 'relative' of BEARCAT WRIGHT to feud with JOHNNY VALENTINE. In 1982, he was seriously stabbed at the CHARLOTTE COLISEUM.

TINY ANDERSON a.k.a. GRIZZLY SMITH
(Aurelian Smith - 1930-2010)

Father of wrestlers JAKE ROBERTS, SAM HOUSTON and ROCKIN' ROBIN, this man has done everything there is to do in the wrestling business. In CROCKETT country, he's best remembered as one of THE KENTUCKIANS (with BIG BOY BROWN), who had monumental battles with THE GREAT BOLO and BOLO, as well as every other top heel team in MID-ATLANTIC WRESTLING. In the late 1960s, he teamed in JCP with MR. WRESTLING (TIM WOODS), and repeated the cycle.

ARGENTINA APOLLO
(Vincente Denigris - 1938-1984)

A professional painter as well as wrestler, APOLLO was a top star in every wrestling territory he worked, holding a vast array of championships. He made his mark in JCP in 1972-1973, becoming the partner of top good guy JOHNNY WEAVER, after decade-long partner GEORGE BECKER left the CROCKETT company.

TONY ATLAS
(Anthony White - born 1944)

Three-time 'MR. U.S.A.' in the field of bodybuilding, he started wrestling in JCP in 1975, had big feuds with both THE IRON SHEIK and KEN PATERA, and became MID-ATLANTIC HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION. Later worked for WORLD CLASS WRESTLING, the AWA and WWF (now WWE).

Friday, August 8, 2014

A HOT JANUARY NIGHT

January 11, 1969
Lexington, North Carolina

MR. WRESTLING and SAM STEAMBOAT

RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON

TERRY and RONNIE GARVIN

JESSE JAMES
---
Professional wrestling's 'Blonde Bombers' --- RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON --- will take on the hero unit of Hawaiian star SAM STEAMBOAT and the masked man MR. WRESTLING in tonight's main event at the Lexington YMCA.

The Canadian brother duo of TERRY and RONNIE GARVIN will meet fan favorites BOB RAMSTEAD and JESSE JAMES in the semi-final tag team match.

Both tag contests will be decided under a best two-of-three falls stipulation.

Preliminary singles bouts will find rugged ROCK HUNTER meeting young BILLY SPEARS and TINKER TODD facing another masked man in the guise of EL LOBO.

The action gets underway at 8:15 p.m.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER

August 28, 1965
LEXINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA

HAYSTACKS CALHOUN

BRONCHO LUBICH, HOMER O'DELL, ALDO BOGNI

ABE JACOBS

RON REED

BOB ORTON

MIKE GALLAGHER

GORY GUERRERO

OMAR ATLAS

'ROWDY' RED ROBERTS
---
Something unusual is on tap for wrestling fans tonight at the LEXINGTON YMCA as two heavyweight championships are up for grabs when action gets underway at 8:15.

The current SOUTHERN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS, ALDO BOGNI and BRONCHO LUBICH, will defend their title against the popular contenders in that of big HAYSTACKS CALHOUN and speedy ABE JACOBS.

HAYSTACKS is the biggest man in the wrestling business, and JACOBS is a top competitor who should mesh well with CALHOUN.

BOGNI and LUBICH will have their devious manager, HOMER O'DELL, in their corner.

SOUTHERN HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION 'BIG O' BOB ORTON will put his title up against top contender RON REED (he later wrestled as BUDDY COLT). REED is certainly capable of taking the belt away from the current champ.

Both title bouts are scheduled for two-out-of-three falls with one hour time limits.

Prelim action will find GORY GUERRERO squaring off against tough MIKE GALLAGHER.

The opening match pits good-looking fan favorite OMAR ATLAS facing the rugged 'ROWDY' RED ROBERTS.

Monday, August 4, 2014

CHARLOTTE, CHARLESTON and GREENVILLE


PHIL (BUCK) ROBLEY
---
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - 1969

GEORGE and SANDY SCOTT won from THE INFERNOS with J.C. DYKES via DQ.

BRUTE BERNARD and SKULL MURPHY topped ABE JACOBS and LES WOLFE.

JOHNNY WEAVER whipped MATTI SUZUKI.

BOBBY RED CLOUD topped PHIL ROBLEY.

LES THATCHER
---
GREENVILLE, S.C. - 1968

LARSGENE and OLE ANDERSON toppled ARGENTINA ZUMALES THATCHER and PAUL DEMARCO in six man action.

JESSE JAMES topped PEPPY GOMEZ.

PANCHO VALDEZ pinned JACK RICO.

BOB RAMSTEAD wrestled JOHNNY HEIDEMAN to a draw.

GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER
---
CHARLESTON, S.C. - 1965

GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER won over BRUTE BERNARD and SKULL MURPHY.

THE KENTUCKIANS bested THE ALASKAN and THE BEAST.

GEORGE 'CATALINA' DRAKE topped EDUARDO CASTILLO.

PEE WEE LOPEZ pinned JIM DANDY.

EL LOBO
---
GREENVILLE, S.C. - 1969
---
GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER defeated LARS and GENE ANDERSON.
---
BOB GRIFFIN and LES WOLFE lost to BRUTE BERNARD and SKULL MURPHY.
---
OLE ANDERSON whipped BOBBY RED CLOUD.
---
JOHNNY HEIDEMAN topped EL LOBO.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A WAYBACK MACHINE TRIP

It would take a visit from baby boomers' Saturday morning cartoon buddies Sherman and Peabody and their Wayback Machine to witness the JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS wrestling card that occurred fifty-one years ago, but I'd give almost anything if I could.

January 26, 1963
LEXINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA

GEORGE BECKER

BILLY TWO RIVERS

THE SICILIANS
LOU ALBANO and TONY ALTOMARE

P.Y. CHUNG

THE KENTUCKIANS
TINY ANDERSON and BIG BOY BROWN
---
The two winning teams on last week's wrestling card at the LEXINGTON YMCA will be back tonight to meet top competition in an action-packed program that kicks off at 8:15 p.m.

In one of two main events, the rugged team of THE SICILIANS, LOU ALBANO and
TONY ALTOMARE, victors last Saturday, face stellar competition in the very-popular duo of GEORGE BECKER and Mohawk warrior BILLY TWO RIVERS.

Crafty Oriental judo wizards, P.Y CHUNG and YASHINO SATO *, also winners last week, will be in the unenviable position of meeting one of the largest tag teams in the wrestling business when they clash with THE KENTUCKIANS, BIG BOY BROWN and TINY ANDERSON. These two fellows top the scales at a combined 700-plus pounds and dwarf the Orientals in height.

Both tag team main events are scheduled for the best two-out-of-three falls.

A singles match featuring a local hero will open the card when Asheboro's own LARRY HULIN meets the wily veteran TINKER TODD.


* YASHINO SATO later wrestled in the MID-ATLANTIC territory as THE GREAT KABUKI.