Sunday, July 31, 2016

WHO WON and WHO DIDN'T


GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER
---
RICHMOND, VA. - 1971

GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER defeated ART NELSON and GENE ANDERSON

BRUTE BERNARD and THE MISSOURI MAULER whipped KOA TIKI and LUTHER LINDSAY

ANGELO MARTINELLI lost to JESSE JAMES

BARBARA NICHOLS bested TAMMY JONES

SAILOR ART THOMAS
---
LYNCHBURG, VA. - 1969

RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON beat THE MISSOURI MAULER and HIRO MATSUDA

THE AMAZING ZUMA and SAILOR ART THOMAS topped PEDRO GODOY and EL GAUCHO

LES WOLFF bested JOHNNY HEIDEMAN

JESSE JAMES wrestled BOB RAMSTEAD to a draw

BOBBY RED CLOUD
---
CHARLESTON, S.C. - 1968

LARS and GENE ANDERSON whipped ABE JACOBS and LUTHER LINDSAY

BOBBY RED CLOUD and CHIEF LITTLE EAGLE wrestled TERRY and RONNIE GARVIN to a draw

NIKITA MULKOVICH beat ALEX MEDINA

PEPE GOMEZ won from JIM GRABMIRE

THE MISSOURI MAULER
---
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - 1967

THE INFERNOS with J.C. DYKES topped ALDO BOGNI and BRONCHO LUBICH with HOMER O'DELL

JOHNNY WEAVER defeated THE MISSOURI MAULER

GEORGE BECKER demolished HOMER O'DELL

PENNY BANNER bested TAMMY JONES

Friday, July 29, 2016

DOWN AND DIRTY

December 10, 1962
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA
---
54 Years Ago


A rematch of the tag team bout between two rowdy combos, THE GREAT BOLO and BOLO and RIP HAWK and ROCK HUNTER, headlines tonight's wrestling card at PARK CENTER.

The two teams collided last Monday night, with HAWK and HUNTER receiving a disqualification loss for going beyond the rule limitations allowed. RIP and ROCK apparently entered the ring with that intention, and maybe were willing to take the DQ in order to wreck havoc on THE BOLOs, which they did. When the BOLOs exited the ring, one was a bloody mess, and the other's mask was ripped half-way off his head.

HAWK and HUNTER have vowed they will finish the job tonight, and the reign of terror of THE BOLOs will be over. This week's two-out-of-three falls match, however, will be fought under a NO DISQUALIFICATION stipulation, meaning either team can do virtually anything they choose without risk of penalty.

In the evening's other tag battle, GEORGE and SANDY SCOTT, both winners in individual competition last Monday, are reunited as "THE FLYING SCOTTS" when they collide with IKE EAKINS and PANCHO VILLA in a best-of-three falls encounter.

Single actions finds popular JOHNNY WEAVER facing BILL PARKS and RAY VILLMER battling FELIX LAMBAN.

Action begins at 8:15.

Monday, July 25, 2016

THE 1966 STATESVILLE SUMMER OF WRESTLING - PART THREE

September 2, 1966
STATESVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA




CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE


Time for one more outdoor wrestling card before Jack Frost starts to appear.

The third and final JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS wrestling show of the summer, again sponsored by the COMMUNITY BASEBALL CLUB, came to town Labor Day weekend.

And what a treat for the locals...a true legend in all sports...LOU THESZ, multiple-time WORLD'S HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION.

On this night, THESZ, then fifty years of age, showed those of us in attendance, that he could still go at full throttle.

And he and partner ABE "Kiwi Roll" JACOBS would have their hands full, as their opponents this night were two devious ruffians in THE MISSOURI MAULER and THE GREAT MALENKO, one of the top heel teams at the time.

Not surprisingly, the two combos split the first and second falls. Jacobs took the loss for his team--no way Thesz is going to lose a fall clean. At the climax of the third fall, just as Thesz took the "hot tag" and was cleaning up the ring with the "M & M" boys, Malenko pulled the referee in front of him, and Thesz dropkicked the referee, causing an immediate disqualification.

MAULER and MALENKO made a fast exit through their dugout to their dressing room, and I assume, spun out of the Statesville Senior High School parking lot heading back for Charlotte on that pre-Interstate 77 highway night.

Earlier in the evening, KLONDIKE BILL, getting a major push by JCP, took the toll of GEORGE "TWO TON" HARRIS in what was billed as a BATTLE OF THE MAT GIANTS by big-splashing "Bunk" before "Bunk" could big splash him. Oh well, "do unto others..."

Veteran IKE EAKINS crushed KEN HOLLIS and a young BOBBY SHANE (just getting started in the wrestling business) pinned a much-larger "BIG BOY" BLONDELL.

Another great crowd...another great night...another great summer of wrestling in my home town.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

THE 1966 STATESVILLE SUMMER OF WRESTLING - PART TWO

August 12, 1966
STATESVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA


CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE


Just three weeks after drawing a crowd of nearly 1400 fans, Statesville, North Carolina, hosted it's second of three JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS wrestling cards of the summer.


There was a minimum of two objects which would be at the baseball park behind Statesville Senior High School this night...a wrestling ring at home plate and...me.

Fortunately, I had lots of company. Another large crowd was in attendance this night to add to the coffers of both JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS and the COMMUNITY BASEBALL CLUB, which sponsored the event.

The SOUTHERN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP was up for grabs (we thought) this night. Of course, a key championship was not going to change hands in a hamlet the size of Statesville, but the participants had us all believing that it could happen.

Champions BOGNI and LUBICH and challengers McKENZIE and ROYAL were in the third and deciding fall. TEX and NELLIE were on the verge of capturing the titles when that low-down, unscrupulous manager HOMER O'DELL wacked ROYAL with his cane (in the referee's vision), causing his team to be disqualified, thus enabling BRONCHO and ALDO to leave the "City of Progress" with the belts which had accompanied them to our fair town.

Disappointment? Sure, but we had definitely witnessed a great match which made us all "believe" - something rare in today's "sports entertainment."

The MINNESOTA WRECKING CREW, i.e., the original incarnation of the name, wrestled separately this night. LARS took the toll of ABE JACOBS, and GENE toppled youngster PAUL DEMARCO.

KEN HOLLIS pinned CORSICA JEAN to open the show, but this was not a big deal as my grandmother probably could have pinned CORSICA JEAN.

Regardless, any time "many of the top TV wrestling stars" came to town was worth plopping down the two bucks to sit two hours in a hard-on-the-bottom steel chair in the infield dirt of the ball park.

And in just three more weeks, the stars of JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS would return again.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

CHILLIN' WITH HAWK AND HANSON


Rip and Swede about to enjoy another day off from ring action...

A little time for serious conversation, but probably NOT politics...

Giving THE BEATLES and THE BEACH BOYS a little musical competition.

Back to the links. Always a round of golf on a day off.

On no! Apparently the hotel has overcharged the guys on their bar tab!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

THE 1966 STATESVILLE SUMMER OF WRESTLING - PART ONE

Statesville, North Carolina wrestling fans (and I was one) were treated to THREE nights of JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS wrestling shows during the summer of 1966.

A perfect location for wrestling during the summer months...the wooden grandstand ball park similar to that in the movie BULL DURHAM. Sponsored by the COMMUNITY BASEBALL CLUB, who also gave us DOUBLE A BASEBALL at the same site. The ring was set up at home plate, surrounded by metal ringside seat chairs all around. The grandstand served as the General Admission area. The wrestlers entered the ring from the two dugouts.

No rainouts during the summer of 1966. THREE shows in TWO months.

As a fifteen-year old 'rasslin' fan, I found myself at all three shows parked in my $2.00 ringside seat.

This was the first card of the 1966 summer...



CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE





The match results are shown above.
-
For whatever reasons (maybe analysis would reveal why), two memories come back to me about this night.

(1) My cousin, who attended with me, spilled a cup of Coca-Cola on himself during the matches.

(2) One of The Masked Red Demons (either Billy or Jimmy Hines) came out of the dugout for the main event smoking a cigarette (through the mask), discarding it as he approached the ring. I thought to myself - "Athletes aren't supposed to smoke." Give me a break, I was a naive fifteen year-old who was reading FAMOUS MONSTERS and wrestling magazines, instead of PLAYBOY, at the time. (Don't worry, the PLAYBOYs came later.)

Regardless of my mental stability, I remember the evening fondly.

Friday, July 15, 2016

WRESTLING and the FOURTH OF JULY

Thinking back through all of my MID-ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING memories, I recall that JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS was synonymous with our nation's INDEPENDENCE DAY.

The point during the summer season in which JCP held BIG shows all over their territory.

In the final years, it was THE GREAT AMERICAN BASH, a virtual month-long tour throughout the United States.

In the earlier years, the JULY 4th shows were limited to the Carolinas, Virginia and West Virginia. But they were still BIG cards at the big venues.

My territory was limited to Greensboro, Charlotte and Winston-Salem, N.C., so let's go back and revisit some of the great FOURTH OF JULY shows JCP provided...

GOD BLESS AMERICA



GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 4, 1963

GEORGE BECKER and ARGENTINA ROCCA topped BRONCHO LUBICH and ALDO BOGNI with HOMER O'DELL.

GEORGE and SANDY SCOTT bested DOC and MIKE GALLAGHER.

JOHNNY WEAVER and RIP HAWK wrestled to a draw.

LITTLE BOY BLUE stopped CHICO SANTANA.

BRENDA SCOTT pinned OLGA MARTINEZ.



GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 5, 1962

HANS SCHMIDT defeated PAT O'CONNOR to become the NWA U.S. HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION.

GEORGE BECKER and ARGENTINA ROCCA whipped P.Y. CHUNG and TARO MYAKI.

RIP HAWK defeated JOHNNY WEAVER via DQ.

PENNY BANNER pinned ANN LAVERNE.

DICK STEINBORN topped ANGELO SAVALDI.

ABE JACOBS and ROCK HUNTER wrestled to a draw.


GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 4, 1964

HAYSTACK CALHOUN and JOHNNY WEAVER won over THE GREAT BOLO and BOLO via countout.

PENNY BANNER and JUDY GLOVER toppled CORA COMBS and KATHY O'BRIEN.

TIM WOODS defeated FRANK VALOIS.

NICK KOZAK and JOHN HEATH wrestled to a draw.

BOB BOYER and LORD LITTLEBROOK got past PEE WEE LOPEZ and PEDRO GODOY.


WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.
July 1, 1967

THE INFERNOS with J.C. DYKES defeated GEORGE BECKER and JOHNNY WEAVER via DQ.

RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON lost to THE KENTUCKIANS via DQ.

P.Y. CHUNG and HARU SASAKI topped DON CHUY and JERRY LONDON.

PENNY BANNER pinned DONNA CHRISTIAN.

LUTHER LINDSAY won over BULL RAMOS.



GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 3, 1975

JOHNNY VALENTINE defeated HARLEY RACE to become the NWA U.S. HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION.

GENE and OLE ANDERSON topped ANDRE THE GIANT and PAUL JONES.

RUFUS R. JONES was the winner of the 21-MAN BATTLE ROYAL.

Winners of single matches were KEN PATERARUFUS R. JONESBORIS MALENKO, STEVE KEIRNKLONDIKE BILLRON STARR and SANDY SCOTT.


GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 4, 1976

TERRY FUNK retained the NWA WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP over WAHOO McDANIEL.

BLACKJACK MULLIGAN lost to RUFUS R. JONES via DQ.

ANDRE THE GIANT and PAUL JONES topped GENE and OLE ANDERSON.

JOHNNY WEAVER won over 'CRUSHER' JERRY BLACKWELL.

STEVE BOLUS and ANGELO POFFO wrestled to a draw.

JOHNNY EAGLE topped DR. FUJIANI.

HANS SCHROEDER pinned KLONDIKE BILL.


GREENSBORO, N.C.
July 3, 1977

GREG VALENTINE retained the MID-ATLANTIC HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP via DQ over WAHOO McDANIEL.

ANDRE THE GIANT and THE MIGHTY IGOR defeated THE MASKED SUPERSTAR with BORIS MALENKO and BLACKJACK MULLIGAN.

RICKY STEAMBOAT retained the MID-ATLANTIC TV CHAMPIONSHIP over RIC FLAIR.
(Flair won the match but not within the 15-minute TV time limit.)

BOBO BRAZIL and TIGER CONWAY JR. bested THE MISSOURI MAULER and KIM DUK.

BRUTE BERNARD lost to JOHNNY WEAVER.

DANNY MILLER (subbing for FRANKIE LAINE) topped 'CRUSHER' JERRY BLACKWELL.

STEVE KOVAKS wrestled the masked MR. X to a draw.


(Illustrations from CLASSIC CLIPS, compiled by MARK EASTRIDGE)

Monday, July 11, 2016

EVEN MORE OF STATESVILLE'S 1967 SUMMER OF WRESTLING


August 24, 1967
STATESVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA









The third and final JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS wrestling card for Statesville, N.C. in the summer of 1967.

This says it all.

I was not happy.

Back to City News Stand to retrieve my $2.00 reserved ringside admission.

I probably spent the $2.00 on new comic books before I got out of the place.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

MORE OF THE 1967 STATESVILLE SUMMER OF WRESTLING

July 14, 1967
STATESVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA

The Card (and a good one)...














The COMMUNITY BASEBALL CLUB of Statesville (who gave the area citizens AA Baseball) sponsored their second wrestling card of the summer, and it was a great one.

The card's two top matches were both main event matches, with four of JIM CROCKETT PROMOTIONS' top tag teams at the time. And considering GEORGE BECKER & JOHNNY WEAVER were there, it included THE top tag team of the decade.

Specific memories I have of this show:

(1) Prior to the evening matches, Statesville was victim of a horrific summer thunderstorm, which threatened to cancel the show. Fortunately, the storm passed, and the skies cleared. On the down side, the ring had already been set up before Mother Nature struck with a passion, thus soaking the ring mat. As a result, all of the wrestlers had to work a bit slower than usual, to prevent a loss of footing during their matches.

(2) One of the mat stars wasn't entirely successful in keeping his balance. During the ROGER KIRBY / MUMMY bout, Roger gave THE MUMMY a hip toss, and the masked man's momentum (on the slick mat) took him under the bottom rope out onto the normally dirt infield (the ring was set up in the home plate area). This night the dirt was nothing but mud, an aftermath of the storm. The off-white outfit was from that point on, a soaked, slimy brown.

(3) At the point of the "BULLIES" match when THE INFERNOS won the second fall by kicking SWEDE HANSON with the loaded boot, SWEDE JUICED. I freaked out because SWEDE would "bleed" for us in our little bitty town.

And to clarify the clipping where it says BECKER took a karate chop to the throat to drop the second fall of the main event - BECKER and SASAKI were the legal men in the ring. SASAKI applied a "stomach claw" hold on GEORGE. WEAVER entered the ring to help his partner, and CHUNG gave JOHNNY a karate thrust to the throat, preventing the save. BECKER submitted to the "stomach claw" hold.

A most memorable evening for me, certainly worth more than the $2.00 I paid for my ringside seat.

GEORGE, JOHNNY, RIP, SWEDE, and J.C. and THE INFERNOS in one night.

Sorry CENA, REIGNS, ZIGGLER...you don't come close.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

TEXANS versus BOMBERS

July 20, 1968
LEXINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA

RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON

PAUL JONES and NELSON ROYAL

BRONCHO LUBICH, MGR. GEORGE 'TWO TON' HARRIS, ALDO BOGNI

PAUL DEMARCO

JESSE JAMES
---
A rematch of a thriller of several weeks ago features wrestling tonight at the LEXINGTON YMCA with the 'BLONDE BOMBERS', RIP HAWK and SWEDE HANSON, meeting the popular Texas duo of NELSON ROYAL and PAUL JONES.

The last time the two teams met, each had a fall when the one hour time limit ran out, and a draw was declared. Neither team being satisfied with letting it go at that, both combos have asked for a rematch. Requests granted. Both teams predict a victory in tonight's best two-out-of-three falls battle.

In another two-of-three-falls match, the hero unit of young PAUL DEMARCO and BOBBY NICHOLS will challenge the rugged duo of ALDO BOGNI and BRONCHO LUBICH, who will be joined by their pesky manager GEORGE 'TWO TON' HARRIS.

In supporting singles matches, JACK RICO meets the wily PANCHO VALDEZ, and JESSE JAMES takes on FRANK HICKEY in the 8:15 opener.

After tonight's card, professional wrestling at the LEXINGTON YMCA will be discontinued for a temporary basis until late September. The reason is the extreme hot weather that has made the YMCA gymnasium uncomfortable for large crowds. Wrestling fans are reminded that this move is only a temporary one until cooler weather arrives.