Written by: Bob Colling
Smoky Mountain Wrestling House Show
From: Johnson City, Tennessee
I’ve always been fascinated by house shows, as you can probably tell by the several house show reviews on the website. Seeing this show, there is seemingly not many people in attendance. The floor seats are not full and naturally the bleachers are mostly empty, as well. Roughly 1,200 total fans attended the show.
Opening Contest: Mike Furnas vs. Jeff Victory: Victory attacks Furnas as soon as the bell sounded. Furnas fights back with a hip toss and scoop slam. Furnas gets in a football tackle position and runs over Victory to earn the quick win. That literally lasted less than a minute. It would be hard to suck for less than a minute, so that’s an improvement by Furnas.
There’s a check hung above the ring with the help of two poles. That’s because there is a ladder match on the show and it’s next. The ladder they are using is a traditional wooden ladder.
Second Contest: Chris Candido vs. Tracy Smothers in a ladder match: Smothers plays to the fans and gets a good reaction as he teases to throw his bandana. Candido tries to use the referee to grab the check can can’t do it. Candido attacks Smothers before he can leave the ring. Smothers chops Candido followed by a backdrop and dropkick. Smothers tosses Candido to the floor and goes to the ladder. Candido comes off the apron and is met with a strike and ladder shot to the midsection. Candido yanks Smothers off the apron and gently slams the ladder onto Smothers back. Candido tosses the ladder into the ring and rolls Smothers in as well. Candido chops Smothers in the corner a few times, but Smothers counters with several chops of his own. Smothers strikes Candido from the apron and hits a slingshot kick to knock Candido to the floor. Smothers continues with a baseball slide dropkick and Candido gets tangled up in the rope barricade on the floor. Smothers comes off the apron with a double axe handle, but is met with a low blow and right hand by Candido. Candido drops the ladder over Smothers back as the announcer reveals that five minutes has passed in the match.
Smothers blocks a suplex attempt and plants Candido with a vertical suplex onto the ladder. Smothers tosses the ladder at Candido in the corner. Smothers drives the ladder into Candido’s midsection and rams Candido head first into the corner several times. Smothers goes to another corner and does it again to stagger Candido. Smothers drops the ladder onto Candido’s midsection. Smothers climbs the ladder but is met with a clothesline by Candido to stop his momentum. Candido delivers a few strikes in the corner and tries to climb but Smothers knocks him to the floor. Smothers sends Candido into the crowd with a running baseball slide. Candido recovers and comes off the top to prevent Smothers from reaching the check. Candido drives the ladder into Smothers midsection and then over the back. Candido uses the ladder to choke Smothers on the mat. Candido tries to climb the ladder, but Smothers gets up and Candido delivers a strike. Candido proceeds to drop the ladder onto Smothers a few times. Candido stomps the ladder onto Smothers to keep his rival on the mat. The announcer reveals that ten minutes have passed in the match.
Candido begins to climb the ladder but Smothers comes off the middle rope to knock Candido off with a double axe handle. Smothers can’t continue the advantage and lays on the ladder. Candido leaps off the top and misses a diving headbutt hitting the ladder instead. Smothers strikes Candido a few times followed by an elbow strike. Smothers pummels Candido with strikes in the corner followed by a heel kick to the back of Candido’s head. Smothers hits Candido with the ladder and Candido ends up upside down on the apron for a moment before dropping to the floor. Smothers climbs the ladder, but Candido hits him with something on his fist. Candido tosses it on the mat so the referee doesn’t see it and Smothers uses it to knock Candido out. Smothers climbs the ladder and grabs the check for the win. (**1/2. There wasn’t anything overly memorable about the match nor is there anything all that exciting, either. The action was consistent and the crowd was invested in what was going on. It was a fine competitive match.)
Third Contest: The Infernos vs. Thrillseekers (Chris Jericho & Lance Storm): The Infernos are a masked duo and haven’t had much, if any, success on television. So, it is safe to say that this is just an exhibition of the Thrillseekers to solidify themselves as the next up and coming face tag team. Storm showcases his offense with a standing superkick. Jericho enters and delivers a superkick to send one of the men to the floor. Storm comes off the top to deliver a springboard axe handle and Jericho does the same. Jericho gets worked over by the Infernos. Jericho quickly fights back with a spinning heel kick. Storm enters and sends the Infernos into each other. All four men are in there with the Thrillseekers hitting a double backdrop and dropkicks. Jericho tries to get one of the guys on his shoulders, but can’t do it and falls flat on his face. Storm comes off the top to hit a splash and they win the match. (*. It was exactly what I thought it was going to be. The botch by Jericho hurt the finish, but it would appear they are connecting the fans.)
Prior to the next match, Cornette cuts a promo putting over his friend and tag partner, Dick Murdoch. He’s confident that Murdoch will end Bob Armstrong tonight.
Fourth Contest: Dick Murdoch & Jim Cornette vs. Bob Armstrong in a handicap match: Armstrong starts the match punching Murdoch in the corner and then backing away. Armstrong controls Murdoch with a headlock for several moments. Five minutes have gone by and basically nothing has happened. Armstrong has kept the headlock on for nearly four minutes. Murdoch finally realizes that an eye rake would break the hold and does that. Armstrong drops Cornette throat first over the top and Cornette falls to the floor. Armstrong messes up an atomic drop but Murdoch still sells it. Murdoch goes into his trunks and hits Armstrong in the midsection a few times as the referee wasn’t paying attention. Ten minutes have gone by at this point as Cornette gets tagged in. Cornette stomps away on Armstrong but can’t send him into the corner. Armstrong rams Cornette into the corner and Murdoch gets tagged in. Murdoch elbow strikes Armstrong on the apron a few times to keep control of the match. Murdoch drives a chair into Armstrong’s throat and chest as the referee was distracted by Cornette. Murdoch keeps control in the ring by choking Armstrong and taunts the fans. I can’t believe this match has been going on for fifteen minutes. Cornette delivers a few forearm drops to keep Armstrong on the mat.
Armstrong avoids an elbow drop as Cornette came off the ropes. Armstrong hammers away on Cornette and chops Murdoch. Cornette accidentally punches Murdoch and they get sent into each other. Armstrong covers Cornette and wins the match. (DUD. Honestly, this was one of the most boring matches. They essentially did nothing for fifteen minutes.) After the match, Murdoch backs Cornette into a corner and yells at him. He cools down and raises Cornette’s arm. Cornette says that Murdoch wants best two out of three falls and praises Texas. Cornette promises that they will sign the contract.
Fifth Contest: SMW Heavyweight Champion Dirty White Boy & Dirty White Girl vs. Brian Lee & Tammy Fytch: Lee and White Boy start the match with Lee backing White Boy into a corner. White Boy fights out and strikes Lee, which the fans are enjoying. White Boy holds Lee to let White Girl deliver a right hand. Lee eye rakes White Boy and holds him for Tammy, but Tammy accidentally slaps Lee and he rolls to the floor. White Boy has gotten a steel chair, which was tossed in by Lee. White Girl eye pokes Lee and Lee staggers to the corner to regroup with Tammy on the apron. White Boy gets control with a front face lock, and Tammy tries to get on Lee’s back, but White Boy lets go and the heels collapse to the mat. Lee wants to tag out, but Tammy shakes her head no. Lee holds White Boy and this time Tammy delivers a slap, which seems to just piss White Boy off more. White Girl gets tagged in and that means Tammy must enter the match. Lee decks White Girl after Tammy shoves her into Lee. Tammy tags in Lee and White Boy returns to deliver punches in the corner. Lee stops him with a boot in the corner. Lee continues to work over White Boy and distracts the referee to allow Tammy to choke White Boy over the middle rope.
Lee delivers a few knee drops and chokes White Boy. White Boy comes off the ropes and decks Lee with a clothesline. White Boy hammers away on Lee followed by a big boot. Lee wants to tag in Tammy, but she turns her back. Tammy prevents a choke slam from happening and is chased backstage by White Girl. White Boy comes of the ropes and gets an inside cradle on Lee for the win. (*. They only went eight minutes and it never got past the first level. Tammy did virtually nothing and it was a clunky singles match between White Boy and Lee for the most part.)
Main Event: SMW Tag Team Champions Heavenly Bodies (Tom Prichard & Jimmy Del Ray) vs. Rock N’ Roll Express (Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson) in a 60-minute Iron Man match: Morton and Gibson go right after Pritchard and send the champs into each other after double atomic drops and that leads to Prichard being pinned within ten-seconds. Express: 1 – Bodies: 0. Jim Cornette complains that the fall doesn’t count because the match hadn’t started yet, but it had. The referee, Mark Curtis, is shaking his head saying that match started. He tells Cornette that the fall does count because they started to wrestle. The fans are heavily behind the Express.
Gibson and Prichard start the match with Gibson backing Pritchard into a corner before backing away. Gibson arm drags Prichard out of the corner and they have.a brief standoff. Gibson tosses Prichard to the mat and Tom complains that Gibson pulled his tights. There has been five minutes gone by and it seemed like the crowd went silent realizing they had 55-more minutes to go. Prichard goes to the floor to stall for a few moments. Gibson takes Prichard down controlling his arm and Morton enters to keep momentum in their favor. Del Ray gets tagged in, but the referee didn’t see it. Gibson has kept control of the arm with a wrist lock. Del Ray tries to get in after another tag but the referee doesn’t see it again. Prichard works over Morton in the corner with a few knee strikes, but runs into a low blow by Morton sending Prichard to the floor. Del Ray enters the match and tries his luck against Morton, but is taken to the mat quickly. Morton briefly had control with a head scissors as the announcers reminds us that 50-minutes remain.
Del Ray controls Morton on the mat with a head scissors. Gibson tries to get in, but Prichard switches in and keeps a head scissors on Morton for a few moments. Gibson continues to distract the referee and Morton can’t get out of the hold. Morton pops out for a moment and Prichard goes back to a head scissors on the mat. Morton continues to be double teamed as the champions switch in and out behind the referees back. Morton is able to deck Del Ray with a few right hands to end the head scissor segment of the match. There is 45-minutes remaining in the match.
Gibson knee drops Del Ray a few times on the lower back and controls the left arm. Morton enters as the referee is distracted. Neither team appears to like the ideas of legal tags. Morton dumps Del Ray over the top to the floor. Gibson sends Del Ray shoulder first into the ring post. Prichard and Morton are the legal men now. Prichard shoulder blocks Morton but is met with a standing dropkick. Morton sends Prichard over the top to the floor. Gibson sends Prichard into the post in a deja vu moment. Morton has wrist control on Prichard and tags in Gibson. Gibson delivers a slingshot knee drop and pulls on the left arm. Gibson keeps control by pulling on Prichard’s left arm. Morton punches Prichard to keep him on the mat. There is 40-minutes remaining in the match.
Morton drops Prichard’s arm over the top rope and gets tossed to the floor by Gibson. Morton sends Prichard shoulder first into the post a few times. Del Ray knee lifts Morton from the apron and delivers a knee drop. Del Ray knee drops Morton keeps a chin lock on in his corner. Del Ray drops Morton with a jab to the throat and Gibson tries to get involved, but is prevented by the referee. Cornette helps choke Morton over the bottom rope. Prichard hammers away on Morton in the corner. Morton fires back with right hands but misses a splash in the corner hitting his shoulder on the top turnbuckle. Cornette stomps on Morton outside the ring and Prichard is able to keep control in the ring. There is 35-minutes remaining in the match.
Prichard holds Morton allowing for Del Ray to deliver several boots to the midsection. Morton punches Del Ray and tags in Gibson, but the referee didn’t see it. Prichard gets a few shots in on Morton to keep him on the mat. Prichard drives Morton down to the mat with a backbreaker but isn’t able to get a three count. Prichard sends Morton into the ropes and Morton almost wins with an inside cradle. Prichard and Del Ray keep control as Del Ray comes off the middle rope hitting a double axe handle and a standing leg drop. Prichard comes in and presses his knee into Morton’s upper back as there is 30-minutes left in the match.
Morton tries to get out of a hold, but Prichard drops him with a strike to the midsection. Prichard locks in a sleeper hold but Morton breaks free with a jawbreaker. Morton atomic drops Prichard and Del Ray. Gibson gets the tag and cleans house with right hands. Gibson connects with a kick to drop Prichard and all four men are brawling. Cornette whacks Gibson with the tennis racket while on the floor and Prichard pins Gibson. Express: 1 – Bodies: 1.
Bodies continue to work over Morton and Gibson with strikes in the ring. Prichard pummels Gibson with strikes in the corner. Prichard stomps on Gibson followed by a scoop slam for a two count. Del Ray enters the match and works over Gibson with more elbow strikes. Gibson hits the post shoulder first missing a spear on Del Ray in the corner. Cornette jabs Gibson with his tennis racket outside the ring. Del Ray taunts the fans and does a few jumping jacks. Del Ray locks in a Boston Crab and Prichard provides extra leverage. Prichard comes in to put a half Boston Crab and use Del Ray for some extra leverage. Del Ray tags in and keeps the same move on. There is 25-minutes left in the match.
Gibson continues to be worked over on the mat with Prichard twisting his right leg. Gibson tries to hit a dropkick, but Prichard catches him and locks in a Boston Crab. Morton punches him from the apron to break the hold. Del Ray enters and chokes Gibson over the middle rope. Prichard nails Gibson from the apron and Del Ray tries for a backdrop, but Gibson counters with a DDT. Prichard enters and boots Gibson but is met with a backdrop after running the ropes. Gibson knee lifts Prichard but gets decked by Del Ray and Prichard connects with a knee drop for a two count. Del Ray tries to get a cover on Gibson, but can’t keep him down. Gibson has a sunset flip on Del Ray, but Cornette has distracted the referee allowing Prichard to get involved for a moment. Gibson tries to fight out of the corner and tags in Morton. Morton eye rakes the champions but the Express hit a double dropkick on Del Ray for a three count! Express: 2 – Bodies: 1. There is 20-minutes remaining in the match.
Morton tries to chase Cornette, but Prichard stops him on the apron. Morton rams Prichard face first into the ring post. Morton takes Prichard down to the mat with a leg sweep. Gibson tags in and knee drops Del Ray’s legs. Morton wraps Del Ray’s left knee around the ring post a couple of times. Gibson drives Del Ray down with a knee breaker and locks in a figure four. Morton takes Prichard down and also put a figure four on. Corentte jabs Gibson with his tennis racket since he’s the legal man. Morton rolls Gibson out of the ring and continues to work over Del Ray’s left knee. Gibson comes off the top to deliver a knee drop to Prichard’s leg. There is 15-minutes remaining in the match.
Del Ray has remained on the mat as Morton continues to work over his left knee. Del Ray crawls to his corner and tags in Prichard. All four men are in the ring and the Express proceed to use the Bodies legs like they are rowing a boat. Somehow, Cornette gets in the middle of it and his legs get worked over as well. Morton keeps control of Prichard by focusing on his left leg. Prichard strikes Morton a few times and comes off the ropes with a knee drop. Morton continues to be worked over by the Bodies. There are only 10-minutes remaining in the match.
Del Ray drives his knee into Morton’s shoulder blades and is trying to get a submission but isn’t successful. Del Ray drops Morton to the mat following a right hand to his lower back. Prichard sends Morton into the corner, but Morton comes back with a swinging neckbreaker. Del Ray gets tagged in and drives Morton into the corner back first leading to a near fall. Morton backdrops Del Ray but Prichard gets tagged in. Morton takes Prichard over with a snap suplex. Prichard misses a knee drop after a snapmare and Gibson gets tagged in. All four men are brawling in the ring as Morton nearly gets a three with a crossbody. Prichard knee lifts Morton from behind. There is only 5-minutes left in the match.
Morton has a crossbody on Del Ray, but Cornette gets on the apron and tosses the racket to Del Ray before Morton hits him. Del Ray whacks Morton with the tennis racket and the match is tied. Express: 2 – Bodies: 2.
Del Ray delivers a few headbutts in the corner but Morton fights back with several of his own. Morton decks Prichard on the apron and Del Ray gets knocked down. Morton goes for a backslide and nearly pins Del Ray, but Prichard breaks the cover. Gibson pummels Prichard in the corner. Morton spikes Prichard with a piledriver, but Prichard is under the ropes. Morton delivers a piledriver to Del Ray, but Cornette pulls Del Ray under the ropes. Gibson tries for a pin on Del Ray, but Prichard breaks it up. Gibson gets an inside cradle on Del Ray for a two count. Del Ray is met with a knee lift by Gibson, but Prichard breaks up the pin attempts. There is only 30-seconds remaining as they are all going at it. Del Ray and Gibson collide and Cornette is able to shove Del Ray on top of Gibson allowing Del Ray to pin Gibson with seven-seconds left in the match. (**. Well, that was a mostly boring ironman match between two teams that I was hoping would be able to put on a classic. They instead settled for working a slow pace and seemingly tried to keep it as basic as possible.)
The overall house show as a disappointment and not very good at all. You’d probably think that SMW would have enjoyable house shows since their TV is usually strong, but more times than not thus far the house shows or big events are lacking the same excitement. I can’t recommend anything from this show.
Thanks for reading.
31-year old currently living in Syracuse, New York. Longtime fan of the New York Mets, Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Vikings. Avid fan of professional wrestling and write reviews/articles on the product. Usually focusing on the old school wrestling.