With only days until the huge Fritz Von Erich Retirement Show in Texas Stadium, tonight the war wages on between the Von Erichs and H&H Limited. The big man, King Kong Bundy, squares off with “The Modern Day Warrior” Kerry Von Erich! Fan-favorite Al Madril faces the feared Great Kabuki. Also featuring Texas Heavyweight Champion Wild Bill Irwin, and much more!
From: Dallas, Texas
1. Wild Bill Irwin vs. Ken Mantell
2. Kim Duk vs. Magic Dragon
3. The Great Kabuki vs. Al Madril
4. Bugsy McGraw vs. Tom “Boogaloo” Shaft
5. Kerry Von Erich vs. King Kong Bundy
BREAKDOWN & REVIEW
- Marc Lowrance ran through some of the talent featured on the card tonight. He was joined by King Kong Bundy. He warned Kerry that all he is is just another Von Erich that’ll add up to a big bonus for him when he beats him down tonight! I like that we’re getting this refocused Bundy as of late.
- Wild Bill Irwin vs. Ken Mantell: This match was set for one fall, ten minutes for a limit. Looks like Wild Bill is sporting some new trunks and knee pads! He has been flip-flopping between working heel and attempting to be a tweener with his feud against Frank Dusek. Here he was working full heel, begging off in the ropes and all. Mantell worked over the knee and legs of the Texas Champion. A quick exchange almost lost Wild Bill the match via a roll-up. The knee work continued, as a toe hold type submission was applied. A big bicycle kick put Mantell on his back, momentum swinging back in the champion’s favor. A two-minute warning was given, just as Wild Bill missed a second rope splash onto Mantell. We ended at draw, with both men trading strikes. Really solid match with plenty of momentum shifts back and forth, looking forward to a return bout. Good showing for both men, but this might Wild Bill Irwin’s best match of 1982 so far!
- Kim Duk vs. Magic Dragon: This special challenge match was set for one fall, ten minute time limit. Arman Hussein was ringside and corrected the introduction for Dragon, per usual. These guys were throwing some deadly chops! Dragon’s strikes looked much tighter than they have the few times we’ve seen them. A grapevine around Magic Dragon’s neck sent the crowd to their feet. Hussein came in and got a slap and a grapevine for his troubles. The crowd exploded more and the bell was rang as a a disqualification on the Dragon, awarding Kim Duk the match. Magic Dragon retaliated with some offense until The Spoiler came down with a kendo stick and started swinging on Hussein and Dragon. The crowd was unglued for the run-in, they’re super hot tonight! Kim Duk is over, no doubt. This was a quick bout, but between crowd reaction and work, nothing to complain about. A star from me!
- The Great Kabuki vs. Al Madril: We were set to get right into this next one. It was scheduled for one fall with a thirty minute time limit, billed as a ‘taped fist match’. First I was hearing of it, but that was fine with me. Madril was the only one with taped fists, though? A mist from Kabuki into the air got us started. A chop and savate kick sent Madril reeling. Al Madril put his fists to use with a few trapped head punches. Kabuki locked in his nerve hold on the traps, putting Madril in a bad spot. After breaking it, Al almost boxed Kabuki, until the referee was ran over by the Great Kabuki. This allowed Gary Hart to trap Al Madril on the ropes long enough for Kabuki to hit a running dropkick to the face. Kabuki got the win with that aid of the manager. More officials headed to the ring and actually got the decision reversed! Madril’s hand was raised and Kabuki went back to work on him. Tom Shaft hit the ring but quickly caught a boot to the throat. Mantell came down and met the same fate. Finally, José Lothario came down and was able to get Kabuki out of the ring to save Al Madril! This was another decent bout, I always like this pairing. I wish there was more shine put on the taped fists gimmick. Ending wasn’t so great with a screwed finish, but what else do you do when you have two top stars of the promotion go at it? Still, better than the last match!
- H & H Limited was with Marc Lowrance for an interview. Hussein talked up their financial empire and unlimited talent. Bundy says all he is making is money, he is a champion, and he is a somebody. Bugsy McGraw says when it comes to slamming giants, H&H Limited is all reality. Bugsy ruins any sort of credibility on the microphone for his group. Bundy has gotten more and more comfortable over the last few weeks with being a personality as much as being a monster.
- Fritz Von Erich was up next to be visited. Fritz was set to be retired on a football field, just as he played in his heyday. His last match with King Kong Bundy was all about bringing back the title to his family, to see who would be the last man standing. He is going to leave Bundy with something to remember. He wants each and every one of his boys to be a world champion. It is all about his boys moving forward, and he will do whatever it takes to see them all become champions. Nice closing interview for Fritz before his big match at the Wrestling Star Wars: Superbowl of Wrestling where he is set to retire. Looking forward to seeing what happens with Bundy on that night in a Last Man Standing match.
- Bugsy McGraw vs. Tom “Boogaloo” Shaft: Apparently Bugsy McGraw is the WCCW Brass Knucks World Champion. This one was set for one fall with a ten minute time limit. That has to be a made-up title for McGraw… McGraw was all over Tom Shaft here, strikes raining down on the bigger man. Shaft rallied back with strikes of his own, including a big headbutt. Action made it to the floor, Shaft ultimately being pushed into the ring post. Back in the ring Bugsy went to the top and scored the win with his top rope falling splash. Nothing to really see here. Bugsy has to have some stroke backstage to be so featured, because his work isn’t great.
- Kerry Von Erich vs. King Kong Bundy: This main event was set for one fall with a thirty minute limit. Arman Hussein accompanied King Kong Bundy, so I expected more fuckery. Kerry was in top form here, not shying away from Bundy one bit. A dropkick set Bundy into the corner, catching him off-guard. Punches followed up and Bundy was having some serious trouble with Kerry. Bundy finally got going with some strikes and a big knee drop to Kerry’s face for a two-count. Bundy was able to keep the Iron Claw from being applied for the first attempt. A second attempt found the midsection of Bundy, forcing him to rake Kerry’s eyes to break the hold. Hussein shouted about the bonus to remind his man. They made it to the floor where Kerry Von Erich was able to trade strikes with the bigger man. The bell rang while both men battled on the floor at ringside. Both men had been disqualified. Kerry is a star, Bundy is on the rise, and the crowd was eating up the action. I could easily see these two battling it out for the next couple of years, ending up very high profile. I’m talking NWA World Heavyweight Championship. For what this was, it delivered.
- After the match, Lowrance met Bundy for a post-match interview at ringside. Hussein blamed a bias referee. Bundy said that he may have not gotten his bonus this week, but next week, Kevin Von Erich is going to get it. He is going to collect his bonus, one way or another! Interesting, the Von Erich will continue to be plagued by Bundy next week. Glad to hear the foot will remain on the gas pedal.
- Marc Lowrance closed us out, asking fans to get ready to tune in next week for another exciting night of action.
This was the best night of action I think I’ve watched in 1982. The crowd was really rowdy which only added to every match on the card. We got a lot of non-finishes here, but that was to be expected with a big show around the corner. You want everybody to be seen as strong as possible going in. Watching Bundy’s reemerge as the top heel of his stable has been cool. I feel like we are definitely turning a corner here action and storytelling-wise for the mid-year. I am ready for the memorial show in Texas Stadium!
See you all then!