1001 MATCHES: Handheld


All these matches are handhelds. Some of them have better quality than others (and some might have eventually have shown up in a more professional shoot). Yet – this is the way a lot of us cut our wrestling viewing teeth.

701) BRAZO DE ORO vs. EL HIJO DEL SANTO – UWA (01/13/91 – Mask vs. Hair)

Two of my favorites bleed all over Naucalpan before the inevitable shaving of a Brazo


702) TATSUMI FUJINAMI vs. BULL POWER (Vader) – CATCH WRESTLING ASSOCIATION (12/21/91 – CWA Intercontinental Title)

Say what you will about Otto Wanz but the man gave us the only match outside of Japan between these two long rivals and it could be argued that it is their best one.


703) EDDIE GILBERT vs. TERRY FUNK – WWA (11/14/92 – Texas Death Match)

Besides Eddie Gilbert vs. Cactus Jack – Gilbert vs. Terry Funk was probably the other classic early indie feud that was a hot commodity as we all started tape trading. (Either Meltzer or the person who sent the results into the WON had it at 5 stars.) A pretty good of example of what we used to have to deal with when we where young in regards to VQ. (And as the counterpoint – here is an entire thread 20 years later devoted to how much the handheld hurts the match.)


704) AL SNOW vs. SABU – CAL INTERNATIONAL (09/11/94)

“A full house of 300 fans, consisting largely of local newsletter readers and local indie wrestlers, came to LaPuente, CA on 9/11 to see the Southern California debut of Sabu. Sabu, who wrestled Al Snow on a card promoted by Larry Doyle and Dan Farren, didn’t disappoint anyone doing a ****1/4 match. But that was only the beginning. Out of nowhere, unannounced, came Terry Funk. The two brawled all over the place destroying three tables and two-dozen chairs. The people in charge of the community center freaked out because they didn’t know Funk was part of the show, and wound up calling the police who dispersed the place when they arrived but didn’t arrest anyone. Several people called and said it was one of the wildest scenes they’d ever seen at a wrestling show. Don’t expect any future shows in that building.” – WON (9/19/94)



A handheld done during one of the “legendary” George Mayfield trips to Japan. Dean really dug this match when talking about the whole tape in DVDVR #11



Arguably the best of the Dan Severn NWA Title defenses. And this one took place at an outdoor show with Tarzan Goto randomly sitting in a lawn chair watching. And Tajiri always rules.


707) REY MYSTERIO JR. vs. EL HIJO DEL SANTO – PROMO AZTECA (02/21/97 – WWA World Welterweight Championship) 

The first time Rey Jr and El Hijo del Santo faced off in singles competition. God I miss Promo Azteca.


708) CHRISTOPHER DANIELS vs. MATT HARDY – ECWA SUPER 8 ’99 (02/27/99 – Semifinals)

709) CHRISTOPHER DANIELS vs. STEVE BRADLEY – ECWA SUPER 8 ’99 (02/27/99 – Finals)


The show that cemented the Super 8 as our go to destination for several years. Also helped introduce Christopher Daniels to more than just West Coast. Also one of the last indie dates for the Hardys before they went to the WWF.



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If I had to pick one purest example of what the tape trading era was like it probably would be Larry Sweeney and Eddie Kingston having a backyard match over a made up title at a random frat party at Colgate University where Kingston may or may not have also fucked Sweeney’s sister.


711) MASCARITA DORADA vs. PIERROTHITO (03/20/10 – 2 out of 3 Falls, seconds hair vs. wears a dress match) 

Y’all used to think I was joking when I would say that El Torito was the 2nd best wrestler on the WWE roster. He and Pierrothito had this tour across the US indie scene and all the matches are a hoot. (Pierrothito is the best version of Pierroth). What makes this handheld special is the wacky random seconds where the skinny racist second of Pierrothito puts his hair on the line vs. the random old white dude (the promoter perhaps???) who would have to wear a dress if Mascarita lost.


712) KEVIN STEEN vs. “SPEEDBALL” MIKE BAILEY –  C*4 (09/24/10)

Super Canadian indie fun with a good crowd. Eventually Mike Bailey will be allowed into the US.


713) AKIRA TOZAWA vs. JOHNNY GARGANO – ABSOLUTE INTENSE WRESTLING (05/20/11 – Todd Pettengill Invitational 1st Round)

I am not sure these two have ever had a bad match with each other. Soon they might even have a match on TV in front of less people that care than what happened this night.


714) KEVIN OWENS vs. SAMI ZAYN – WWE (02/04/17 – Street Fight, WWE Universal Title)

One of the most frustrating things of the modern age is all the lost great matches because people are too lazy to take out their phones. (And don’t get me started on them not holding them in the right direction.) Not shockingly – these two have good matches. Fortunately more than just the Mormons got to see it.



The above version was shot by cubsfan. There is better quality handheld that was posted on DJZ’s Youtube Channel but first priority is always too cubs. I love how no matter how tiny the show, Penta and Fenix will go all out.