CWA Championship Wrestling – December 26, 1987: Letting Talented People Entertain You

CWA Championship Wrestling
Date: December 26, 1987
Location: WMC-TV Studios, Memphis, Tennessee
Commentators: Lance Russell, Randy Hale

I haven’t done a Memphis show in awhile and I found this online so why not check it out. Since things move very fast in Memphis, it’s hard to say what’s going on, though I’ll go out on a limb and say Jerry Lawler is world champion. This is just a few weeks after the a bunch of titles were merged to make the CWA World Title so things are changing around this time. Let’s get to it.

A typical video package opens us up, set to a fast version of Ric Flair’s theme.

The announcers run down part of the card.

Here’s Hector Guerrero as the most over the top Mexican stereotype you’ll see in a wrestling angle. He’s in a big sombrero and singing Feliz Navidad while playing the guitar. This is supposed to be a Christmas greeting but instead he rants about Americans stealing Mexican songs. Hector says there is no Santa Claus and Jerry Lawler and Jeff Jarrett won’t be getting any presents this year.

Freezer Thompson vs. Tejoe Khan

Khan is your standard Asian monster and Freezer is a fat black guy. Khan pounds him down and hits a nice slam. More chops have Freezer in trouble and a shot to the throat ends Thompson quick.

The announcers tell us about an ongoing tournament called the Lord of the Ring which is for….a ring. Jerry Lawler and AWA World Champion Curt Hennig met in the first round in Memphis so here’s the entire match.

Lord of the Ring First Round: Curt Hennig vs. Jerry Lawler

Hennig jumps Lawler to start and stomps away with Jerry in big trouble. Curt pokes him in the eye as this has been one sided so far. Lawler is draped across the top rope for two and a knee lift puts him down again. Curt sends him into the corner as the beating continues. Lawler finally starts getting fired up and takes the strap down as the fans get into the match. Jerry pounds away in the corner so Hennig throws the referee down. Apparently that isn’t a DQ so Lawler makes his comeback and punches Curt down, eventually ending him with the middle rope fist drop.

Rating: D. This was more of an angle instead of a match. Jerry was chasing the world title at this point and would finally win in about five months later. This was more or less a teaser for future matches which is fine, though I’m surprised they went with the champion getting pinned in just over five minutes.

House show ads. Some manager named Nate the Rat says Bobby Jaggers will beat Scott Hall in a loser leaves town match.

Tejoe Khan’s manager says his man will beat Bill Dundee in a cage at an upcoming show.

Jimmy Jack Funk vs. David Johnson

Jack takes him down with some snapmares to start before dropping him throat first across the top rope. A spinning powerslam ends Johnson in about a minute.

Funk yells about wanting to fight someone I couldn’t understand.

More house show ads.

Scott Hall vs. Keith Eric

The video I have says this is Hall’s in ring debut, yet he has a loser leaves town match in a few days? Nate the Rat runs his mouth a bit until Hall grabs the mic and says let’s get to the match before punching the Rat. It’s strange to hear Hall without his trademark accent. Eric tries to get in some cheap shots to start but Hall no sells them and dropkicks (yes dropkicks) him down. Nate is panicking over Hall punching him as Hall bulldogs Eric for the pin in maybe 45 seconds.

Jeff Jarrett vs. Hector Guerrero

Before the match Guerrero sings Mexico’s praises even more. Jarrett comes out to shut him up but Hector keeps going about how the United States of Mexico came before the United States of America. Hector wants punches and kicks banned in the match tonight and Jarrett agrees. In other words, you throw a punch or a kick and it’s a DQ. Forearms are still legal apparently.

Feeling out process to start with both guys trading armdrags. Guerrero gets two off a rollup but Jarrett kicks out to another standoff. Jeff scores with some shoulder blocks and grabs a headlock. They fight over a top wristlock with Jeff taking him down to the mat, only to be countered into a crossface chicken wing. Jeff counters into an armbar, making Guerrero tap. Not that it means anything as tapping hadn’t become a thing in wrestling but it’s interesting to see.

Hector’s surfboard goes nowhere and they stare at each other a bit more. Jeff backdrops him down as we hear about the Guerrero Brothers. The most famous one is just mentioned as Hector’s younger brother which made me chuckle for some reason. Guerrero grabs a chinlock and wraps Jeff up on the mat but can’t maintain a bow and arrow hold.

A pair of dropkicks (I guess they’re legal too) gets two for Jarrett and Hector is getting frustrated. We get intellectual now with Hector slapping Jeff in the face to tick him off but Jeff holds off on the right hand. The referee tries to stop him, allowing Guerrero to get in a right hand of his own and put his feet on the ropes to pin Jarrett.

Rating: C+. This is a good example of what Memphis was great at: they took a really basic idea like no punching and turned it into a fun match. It wasn’t anything over complicated and it took all of a minute to set up but it was entertaining anyway. This was also a good example of talented guys being able to make almost anything work. The fans are all over Guerrero now because that’s solid heel work. Imagine that: heels get heat for CHEATING.

Jarrett says he’ll get Hector next time.

Buy the Jeff Jarrett poster! He was pushed as a sex symbol in Memphis which is bizarre given what he would become.

More house show ads, I believe for the same show.

Bill Dundee is ready to stand and fight against Khan in the cage.

Scott Hall talks about getting back from Japan and looking forward to 1988. He’s ready for Bobby Jaggers and can’t wait to run him out of Memphis.

The Bruise Brothers (Harris Brothers, in white trunks and with HAIR) want the Rock and Rock RPMs again. They’re faces here.

Bruise Brothers vs. Rough N Ready

Rough N Ready are a pair of masked guys. It’s a brawl to start with we’ll say Ron dropkicking we’ll say Rough down and putting on an armbar. Off to Don as country music band Sawyer Brown is on commentary. Apparently they’re sponsoring the Bruise Brothers, whatever that means.

Don gets two on Rough via a suplex before it’s back to Ron. Rough takes him down with a headlock but gets caught in a headscissors. It’s so strange seeing the Harris Brothers wrestle like normal size guys (they stand about 6’9 each). Back to Don for more arm cranking before Ron comes in to backdrop Rough down. The masked guys go to the floor, only to come back in and get clotheslined down by Don. An abdominal stretch into a rollup of all things gets the pin for Don on Ready.

Rating: D. Other than seeing the Harris Brothers wrestling an entirely different style than I’ve ever seen them use, there was nothing to see here at all. This was a long squash which didn’t get interesting at all. It’s an interesting idea to have the monsters wrestle like guys a foot shorter than they are but it didn’t work in reality.

The announcers recap the show and wish us a Merry Christmas to take us out.

Overall Rating: C+. Typical Memphis here: some interesting stories performed by talented wrestling making for an entertaining hour of wrestling. Nothing is too heavy here and nothing comes off as stupid. Hector Guerrero’s is a very basic idea but they let his talents make it work. They didn’t have every single idea mapped out for him but rather just made him over the top enough that it was hard to like him. Oh and he cheated, which you don’t see enough of anymore. Check out some Memphis if you get the chance and like good, basic wrestling.

 

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2 comments

  1. Vinnie says:

    Any idea who played Rough ‘n Ready?

    dookie blaster 3000 Reply:

    Cleo and Larry Reeves