WCCW: TV (01.08.83)
January 8, 1983
The NWA & WCCW champions were as follows:
NWA World Heavyweight Champion: Ric Flair (9/17/1981)
NWA American Heavyweight Champion: Kevin Von Erich (9/5/1982)
NWA American Tag Team Champions: The Fabulous Freebirds (11/26/1982)
NWA World Six-Man Tag Team Champions: The Fabulous Freebirds (12/25/1982)
NWA Texas Heavyweight Champion: David Von Erich (9/19/1982)
Your host is Bill Mercer.
To set up tonight’s main event, Mercer takes us through the 2/3 falls match that took place in August between Ric Flair and Kerry Von Erich that has set up this rematch inside a steel cage.
Before we go to the ring, we get some comments from both competitors. Kerry is just plain excited. Flair stoically sticks to his catchphrases.
- Cage Match: NWA World Heavyweight Champion Ric Flair vs. Kerry Von Erich
This is obviously from the Christmas show. Michael Hayes was “voted by the fans” to be the special referee. He appoints fellow Freebird Terry Gordy to stand outside the door as the gatekeeper. However, there’s your standard World Class referee David Manning and then there’s Michael Hayes, which is kind of odd. Flair plays the mind games to start, but Kerry has no mind, so they have no effect. He goes right for the knee of the champ. Flair escapes and chops Von Erich in the corner, but he fights out with right hands as Flair Flops to the mat. Flair goes low and snapmares Kerry for the Rolling Knee Drop. Flair ties Von Erich up in the ropes to get in some open shots, but Michael Hayes steps in and enforces the rules. Once Von Erich corners Flair, Hayes pushes Kerry back to confuse the crowd. Next up, Von Erich flips out of a suplex and grabs a sleeper. Real smooth transition there. Flair escapes with a back suplex, but Kerry maintains control with a fist drop off the top rope. He knee drops Flair, which gets him RILED up. A couple wild swings and Von Erich trips Flair up for a series of punches to the head to set up for the CLAW, but Flair knees him away. He starts choking Kerry in the ropes, which causes Hayes to get physically involved. They trade advantages on an ab stretch and when Flair hiptosses out, he misses an elbow drop. HERE COMES KERRY! He sends Flair face-first into the cage a couple times and then grates his forehead on the mesh. Flair is a bloody mess, but he kicks at the knee and begins to take Von Erich to school. Hayes pulls Flair off Kerry by his hair, which of course Flair doesn’t like too much. Von Erich kicks away the FIGURE-FOUR a few times and then tosses Flair into the cage. He tries a knee drop of course using the worked-over knee, but misses. NOW~! Flair hooks on the FIGURE-FOUR with no problem. Eventually, Von Erich reverses the hold and wrenches on Flair’s knee. He finds the cage is much more effective as Kerry grates Flair’s face on the mesh some more. Flair goes low again and heads up top, but flies down into the CLAW! Once Von Erich has Flair down on the mat, he counts 1-2-NO! Hayes notices that Flair reached the bottom rope with his foot, but that’s enough to satisfy a break of the three-count.
Since he can’t reason with David Manning, Hayes physically has to break the CLAW himself. As Kerry gets all up in his face, Hayes tries to explain that Flair got his foot on the bottom rope to cause a break of the hold. That’s a key moment in any great feud: the fans should be able to easily defend both sides of the angle for both parties involved. With Kerry’s back turned, Flair runs up and knees him into Hayes. When Hayes tries to get Flair off Von Erich when he’s stuck in the corner and can’t, Hayes ends up cleaning Flair’s clock with a right hand. With Flair down and out, he tells Von Erich to cover the world champ. Being a competitor and not wanting to win fair and square, Kerry refuses to take the win like that. YOU IDIOT! Hayes says screw you and walks out on this match. As Hayes starts to come out the door with Von Erich right behind him, Flair runs over and knees Von Erich into Hayes to knock him down to the floor. Oops! Since it appeared to Gordy that Von Erich shoved Hayes out, Gordy slams the cage door on Von Erich! Gordy helps Hayes back inside the cage. Hayes throws David Manning away and counts the pinfall on Von Erich even though he kicked out at two. Now he’s just being a prick, but at least now it appears he has just cause. Again, that’s a KEY element in any great feud. The Freebirds give up on the match for good this time as they walk out and head to the locker room to a chorus of boos. The match continues. Flair stalks Von Erich all over the ring beating him senseless. That is until Kerry fights back and uses the last of his energy to KO Flair with a DISCUS PUNCH. Von Erich collapses and apparently can’t continue, so David Manning calls for the bell to award Flair the victory while he remains flat on his back. (24:03) After the match, David and Kevin Von Erich check on their brother Kerry and vow revenge on the Freebirds. Dang, that was AWESOME drama near the end. While I liked the 2/3 falls match better, this is still really good overall and a truly important match in the history of World Class as the Von Erichs-Freebirds feud begins and completely turns the promotion around. BLOOD COUNT: Ric Flair and Kerry Von Erich. ****
When we return, Bill Mercer walks us through the key points of this match to close out the show.