Monday, March 17, 2014

NWA Starrcade 1987

Show starts with a 6-man tag. Garvin is "Gorgeous" here, but dressed like Hayes with a shiny red outfit and his white gear underneath. Sting is the masculine-looking one of the bunch. Rick Steiner's gear is even more absurd than his '93 stuff, Gilbert's is fine, and Larry's in the same gear he's had since the stone age.  Faces all hit dropkicks, with Hayes's being near-Renegade-level. Sting's white tights with a gold scorpion and the black line on the beltline looks great - he should've kept that beltline look. Basic stuff and a "LARRY SUCKS" chant breaks out. Hayes grabs his nose like Popeye and bops him before doing a moonwalk. Larry's showing more fire than anyone else with his kicking combo in the corner to Jimmy. SHOULDERMOUNT POWERSLAM BY LARRY. Wow. Moves. Moves. Abdominal stretch. Moves. There's no real flow or story to what's going on. There minutes remain in the time limit, so that should fire things up a bit. Hayes bulldog gets 2 with Larry's let over the ropes. 45 seconds left and Steiner's going for a win with a bearhug, turned into a suplex for 2. Time limit draw. BOO. What a crappy finish to a nothing match. The Starrcade announce desk looks good - very '80s, but still better than TNA's current one.

Missy Hyatt is looking hot backstage, and then she forgets to run down the card and throws it back to Jim and Tony's stache. UWF Title is the second match on the show, so yeah, it really was basically booked like the ECW Title when WWE brought it back. It's Williams-Windham, UWF Champ vs. WESTERN STATES HERITAGE CHAMP. Doc in his Sooners jersey looks cool. Doc basically has a stache and stubble, and looks weird. They shake hands and start with a criss cross. Nice O'Conner roll by Barry gets 1. It's funny hearing Jim talk about the Sooners here. Basic amateur stuff here. They do that to the floor and get a variety of boring chants. Now that's unfair - they're at least trying here, unlike the opener. Doc was only 27 here, and looks no less than 35. Standing chinlock gets a boring chant. I'll allow that one. They do a slow duck down exchange, peaking with Barry going for a crossbody and flying over the top and bonking his head on the table. Oklahoma Roll with a leg cradle from Doc wins this match. It was not exactly bad, but definitely not what you'd expect from these two. Doc's speed for the cradle was impressive - Brock should bust that out sometime.

MX comes out with Cornette, they'll be facing THE ROCK AND ROLL EXPRESS. This should be fun. Or not - it's a scaffold match. Robert's gut is something else here. Bubba takes out Ricky, leaving it 2-on-1 on the scaffold. They're moving the railing just by touching it. Thankfully, everyone's in black tights. Ricky takes out Bubba with the racquet, and he's bonking everyone! Powder in the eyes of Robert. They do a missed heel punch spot and Eaton's punch almost connected with the air near Stan, which is completely understandable here. OH GOD THEY'RE USING THE RAILING AGAIN. They break the railing, so it's a weapon now. Racquet's back in use and Robert's throwing some great shots here. Stan falls off the scaffold...and they miss the shot. Ricky hits Bobby with the racquet...right in the ass. Bobby takes a great bump off the scaffold to wacky kicks and racquet shots. Bubba's going up. He's got the shiny red racquet, and throws it away because he doesn't need it. Ricky tells him to look over there, he does, and gets punched in the balls before Ricky leaves. Well that part sure sucked. Ricky then tries on Bubba's jacket and hat.

Caudle interviews Garvin and MICHAEL HAYES IN A SUIT! Hayes cleans up nicely. I like them using cursive for the font. Garvin talks about how brave Dusty is for putting his career on the line, then he says he and Hayes will face whoever wins the tag title match and he's proud of his "brother" Ronnie. Hayes yells at him to TESTIFY. Garvin's double chin is aging him terribly. Garvin as a rah rah rah face is bizarre. Doc calls himself the world champ, and Barry had his chance, but UNLIKE THE SOONERS, Barry didn't take advantage of it. HE'S THE WRESTLING MACHINE OF THE YEAR, and is stumbling over his words. HE'S THE WRESTLING MACHINE OF THE WORLD. Tony's talking about the bunkhouse stampedes going all across the country. It's time for Nikita and Terry Taylor to unify the TV titles.

Terry Taylor comes out in the robe he sold to Roode later, only it's got "Terry" on it. The lighting and smoke for entrances is just blinding. Terry shows off his belt,  but they obscure it with his graphic. Big punches and arm wringers by Koloff. Reverse suplex leads to Nikita Koloffing up and hitting some corner mount punches. FANTASTIC inverted atomic drop out of the corner there. Gilbert did something to Koloff's knee that wasn't shown on-camera. Figure four to Nikita leads to him clinging to the ref for support - more facesH should do that. Russian sickle hits for the win! He's so happy...and drops the UWF belt which the ref quickly grabs. Time for Arn and Tully against the Road Warriors. Road Warriors don't have "Iron Men" yet, so their theme is replaced. Hawk and Arn start, and Arn takes the Flair slam off the top. Between that and the figure four, it's weird to do Flair spots BEFORE the Flair match. Tully makes a swift save to prevent a submission from a bearhug. Animal gets a kneeling bearhug to Tully, then hits an inverted atomic drop. Tully tags out, and Arn eats a spinning press slam. Tully comes in and takes out the knee of Hawk. Figure four from Tully to Hawk. Tommy Young gets bumped. Double clothesline sends Tully forward somehow. Road Warriors get the win! BUT WAIT! OH NO! TOMMY YOUNG IS DQING THEM FOR THE OVER THE TOP THROW! They at least had the Warriors leave with the belts, but this finish sucked.

Nikita cut a promo about Terry being his toughest foe. NIKITA IS PROUD TO BE ONLY TV CHAMPION. And he wants the world title too. JJ says they turned back the challenge of the hometown team, and while he's helping Flair train, HE SIMPLY CAN'T GET HIS MIND OFF OF DUSTY RHODES! Now, he needs to retire Dusty. DUSTY HAS TURNED BACK EVERY CHALLENGE IN HIS CAREER, CAN HE TURN BACK THE PERFECT ATHLETE LEX LUGER!? Lex has a black and silver lightning-bolt robe on. Dusty...didn't quite run down. He walked with some pep to the cage. DUSTY'S CAREER IS ON THE LINE for 90 days. I call bullshit on Dusty only weighing 270 since Lex is billed at 277 and looks at least 40 pounds leaner than Dusty. Tony puts over all of Dusty's amazing accomplishments. Winning titles. Parting the red sea. Supervising Noah's construction of the Ark. Turning water into moonshine. He's also the master of the steel cage match. Don't forget the bunkhouse match. Since Johnny Weaver's the holder of the key, Dusty goes for the Weaver Lock for a pop and it works. Dusty's left knee is wrapped up, and gets kicked after a variety of punches and poses from Dusty. Cage shot to Dusty turns up some blood. Armbar from Lex allows Dusty to rest some more. Dusty briefly stands, but is taken down again...ugh. This match is a slog to get through. Corner punches. More arm stuff. Dusty is not moving. Now he's firing back with a flurry of punches. 15 minutes gone by, 30 remain. If we only get one time limit draw, I'm glad it was the opener. MORE. PUNCHING. Weaver Lock, now in the center of the ring. JJ takes out Weaver, and since he can't get in, he threw a chair in instead. DDT from Dusty to the chair gives him the win. This either had glimpses of greatness, or it was boring. JJ worked harder than Dusty, and I think Johnny Weaver was more over than Dusty here. And Dusty's U.S. Champ now too.

Flair got a huge entrance with the crazy lighting working for him. Ron Garvin with the Big Gold NWA Belt looks so weird. Flair's white and silver robe looks great, although his subtle red, white, and blue color scheme is a tad odd. They start off with a sick corner chop exchange. A Garvin sucks chant breaks out. GARVIN STOMP. More stiff chops. Low blow from Flair saves him. Nice realistic-looking inverted atomic drop. Stiff punch and chop combo in the corner from Flair. Great selling of the bombs away on the knee from Flair - Garvin tried to stand and just fell on his ass. Chops to the chest and a kick to the knee led to a knee breaker and the figure four! Garvin gets out by reversing it. GARVIN BLOCKED A SHOT INTO THE CAGE, and does it again. Flair finally eats the steel off an irish whip counter. Cheese grater spot with the cage on Flair. Now they're fighting on the top rope and bonking heads on the top of the cage. Good God more hard chops to Flair in the corner. "We hit each other very hard in very safe places." comes to mind here. FLAIR GETS SLAMMED OFF THE TOP! Figure four from Garvin...which sure would mean more if it wasn't the third one of the night. Flair's begging to not get beaten up anymore by saying OH GOD a ton. More corner chops from Garvin. Now Flair counters with some of his own. Crossbody off the top from Garvin gets 2. High-arching backslide gets 2. Now Flair's between the cage and the ropes and getting chopped to death. Heatbutt>Chop exchange up ton leads to Flair crotching himself on the rope. Sunset off the top gets 2, with a tease of Flair winning via a counter and cheating. Flair pushes Garvin into the ref, and Garvin hits the punch. The MOMENTARY distraction allows Flair to kick out, hit a Stun Gun into the cage, and win. This was a fun war and the win got a huge pop. It's impossible to see this show and think that the WWF's production values were going on at the same time since everything is just so dim.

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