(by PHIL RIPPA)
A straight forward theme this time which I, of course, made way more difficult for myself.
501) ARN ANDERSON vs. THE GREAT MUTA – NWA POWER HOUR – (01/02/90 – NWA TV Title)
Arn beats Muta in a match as good as you would hope it would be when seeing the names on paper to start his nearly year long reign as TV champ. God – the best thing that could have happened for my love of Arn Anderson was Tully Blanchard loving cocaine.
502) BAM BAM BIGELOW vs. “DR DEATH” STEVE WILLIAMS – HERB ABRAMS’ UWF “BEACH BRAWL” (06/09/91 – Finals of “SportsChannel” TV Title Tournament)
Oh Herb Abrams’ UWF… not to be confused with Bill Watts’ UWF or Gran Hamada’s UWF (or the probably 82 other UWFs). Side tangent – Watts never trademarking UWF is still one of my favorite “only in wrestling” type of things. Lord – was Herb Abrams made perfect for wrestling. Crazy and had money and then was crazy and didn’t have money (because besides owning a wrestling federation, he loved coked and hookers) Abrams’ UWF was a thing back in the day for those of us in the early 90s and/or who read the Apter mags. This is the final match of their disastrous one and only PPV. God – the title was named after the channel that aired their TV and had a whopping two champions (neither of whom were ever beaten for the title). God I love wrestling.
503) CARLOS COLON vs. STAN HANSEN – WWC (03/14/87 – Cage Match)
The blowoff to the Hansen/Colon feud with shocker – a wild brawl. It is Puerto Rico, just go with it. (This an Escape the Cage match if that helps you figure out what is going on.)
504) DEMOLITION (AX & SMASH) vs. THE COLOSSAL CONNECTION (ANDRE THE GIANT/HAKU) – WWF (12/28/89 – WWF Tag Team Championship)
Hey, the Colossal Connection could have worked for the C section! Anyway – Demolition is the best of painted tag teams of that era not named Faces of Fear. Hey! Haku is right there and Andre is the best crippled wrestler ever so this is really fun despite having the house show ending.
505) ERIC EMBRY vs. TULLY BLANCHARD – SCW (01/31/83 – Southwest Championship Match)
I will admit that this isn’t really an Embry showcase more a use of him as a vehicle to get to the angle. Tully Blanchard is avoiding Bob Sweetan but he is forced to have a Southwest Championship Match. So he cons the Grappler to allow him to wrestle Embry (who is just starting out) in a title match. So an enraged Sweetan comes out and does color talking about how he was mentoring Embry, etc.. etc.. As you can tell by the screencap – Embry ends up a HUGE bloody mess and then Sweeten cuts a promo holding Embry’s lifeless corpse.
506) FLASH FLANAGAN vs. WOLFIE D – MUSIC CITY WRESTLING “CHRISTMAS CHAOS” (12/25/97 – Texas Death Match)
THE BLACKSHEEP EXPLODE~! possibly before they ever tagged together. The 90s were a long time ago and my memory is shit. Anyway – Flanagan and Wolfie D have a Texas Death Match in front of like two dozen people where they bleed and bleed and bleed. Merry Christmas indeed.
507) GREG GAGNE vs. BOBBY HEENAN – AWA (08/17/80 – Loser Wears a Weasel Suit)
The Bobby Heenan Weasel Suit concept starts here. Heenan might be the most underappreciated seller in wrestling history.
508) HIROSHI HASE vs. SHINYA HASHIMOTO – NEW JAPAN (12/13/94 – IWGP Heavyweight Title)
Some will thing their 93 G1 Match is better. Those people are wrong. Some will not like this because of matwork or selling (both doing and not doing.) Those people are fools.
509) INVADER I vs. AL PEREZ – WWC (10/26/86 – Street Fight)
Terrible human being Jose Gonzalez goes out and has the expected wild Puerto Rican brawl with Al Perez in what is probably the best match of Perez’s severely disappointing career (at least based on the way the Apter mags used to hype him up.)
510) JET JAGUAR vs. MIKE QUACKENBUSH vs. JEFF PETERSON – IPW HARDCORE (03/03/98 – Forklift Ladder Match, IPW Light Heavyweight Title)
First off, Godzilla will not be making an appearance. I hate to disappoint you all. We first saw Jet Jaguar wrestle the late Jeff Peterson (and I probably pick another Peterson match just to talk about that) at a Super 8 and man did they wrestle like a billion times against each other. This match is about as 90s indies as it comes since it is supposed to be a ladder match but the belt falls from the ceiling so they have to hang it from a forklift. And the VQ is shit. Misty water colored memories…
511) KAMERON KADE vs. CHASE “CAULIFLOWER” BROWN – TRANS-SOUTH WRESTLING (08/09/14 – No DQ)
Two guys you have never heard of have a whale of a No DQ match all because Davey Richards no showed. (He was supposed to face Brown). These two have a history and I really need to watch their I Quit match but for now this is great. I love Southern indie wrestling.
512) LEX LUGER vs. HOLLYWOOD HULK HOGAN – WCW NITRO (08/04/97 – WCW Heavyweight Championship)
God bless you WCW. Never change. Let’s give WCW it’s first big win over the NWO on a hot shotted angle on Nitro. Oh and since you go right back to Hogan at the PPV, the win turned out to be utterly meaningless too.
513) MITSUHARU MISAWA vs. YOSHIHIRO TAKAYAMA – NOAH (04/15/01 – GHC Heavyweight Championship Tournament Final)
The Finals of the Tournament to crown the first GHC Heavyweight Champ. Not surprisingly – Misawa and Takayama beat the hell out of each.
514) NEGRO NAVARRO vs. VIRUS – LUCHA MEMES (12/25/15)
Wrestling on Christmas is swell. Here is the Segunda Caida review.
515) ODINSON vs. MIKE CARTER – PRO WRESTLING EGO (02/20/16)
A guy doing a Son of JYD gimmick vs. a guy doing a son of a Norse God with a terrible chest tattoo gimmick is indy wrestling as fuck.
516) PSICOSIS vs. REY MYSTERIO JR – AAA (09/22/95 – WWA World Welterweight Title)
Another of those “Wait? Nothing from this feud has been picked yet?” Well at least not singles match so here we are. Y’all have watched the ECW matches a bunch. This is before that and better. Just please ignore the terrible WAR match the two did. This one got 5 stars from Meltzer but he hates lucha and stuff.
517) QUICKSILVER vs. SUPER DRAGON – JERSEY ALL PRO WRESTLING (04/23/05)
The pickings are very slim when we get to Q so here is a match between two Cali guys working in New Jersey because wrestling wouldn’t have it any other way. Quicksilver is another one of those “What could have been guys”? before concussions and MRSA ended his career.
518) RIKIDOZAN vs. FREDDIE BLASSIE – JAPAN WRESTLING ASSOCIATION (03/28/62 – WWA Heavyweight Championship)
If you are a wrestling fan – you probably should at least watch one of the few matches available of Rikidozan just so you can say you did. Here is the added bonus of being able to see Freddie Blassie wrestle too.
519) THE STUD STABLE (ROBERT FULLER/BRIAN LEE) vs. SOUTHERN ROCKERS (REX KING/STEVE DOLL) – USWA (02/17/90 (TV Episode) – USWA World Tag Team Titles)
Technically this is three matches in one. The Stud Stable loses the tag titles in the first match. Offer the Southern Rockers $1000 for a rematch. Lose that. Then offer the Southern Rockers $2000 for ANOTHER shot. There is way more angle than wrestling but it really is all worth it. Robert Fuller is the best and Brian Lee has his blonde hair which means I have been watching wrestling for far too long.
520) TATSUHITO TAKAIWA vs. NAOMICHI MARUFUJI – NOAH (12/09/01 – GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship)
People always talk about Kanemoto and Ohtani as the great New Japan Jr dicks and poor Takaiwa is forgotten. Heck – he could be even forgotten in this match as 2001 was much more about Marufuji’s coming out party than anything. But hey – fun, singles Takaiwa match.
521) UMAGA vs JOHN CENA – WWE “ROYAL RUMBLE ’07” (01/28/07 – Last Man Standing, WWE Championship)
Another notch in the great John Cena match list but y’all keep hating him because he wears jorts.
522) VILLANO III vs. PEGASUS KID – UWA (01/26/92 – Mask Match)
Another from the “Boy – this match was on a comp tape we traded for in the 90s” match. Hell, for awhile, this was probably the only UWA match any of us had seen. The match doesn’t necessarily hold up but it does have some historical significance. (Both in being Benoit’s last match under the mask and signifying the end of his learning tour of Mexico)
523) WELLINGTON WILKINS JR vs. YOSHIAKI FUJIWARA – PWFG (05/19/91)
Wilkins doing shootstyle is still wacky to me. But this is more Fujiwara and that is never a bad thing.
524) XAVIER vs. LOW KI – IMPACT CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING (06/30/01 – Ladder Match, ICW Title)
I think Ray and Pete saw this live but I will be damned if I can find the Road Report for it. Remember – Former ROH Champ Xavier! This is a really good ladder match, don’t let the infuriating way it is on Youtube stop you.
525) YUTAKA YOSHIE – NEW JAPAN G1 CLIMAX 2003 (10/08/03 – Block B Day One)
So much fat man goodness. I love Yuji Nagata. Dean loves Yoshie. This is the best of both worlds. This was a great way to kick off the 2003 G1 Climax.
526) ZEUXIS vs. PRINCESA SUGEHIT – CMLL (06/24/16 – Mexican National Women’s Championship)
Watch these Zeuxis matches now before she signs with the WWE and vanishes for good. Poor poor Mascara Dorada.