Portland Wrestling: 1980 (VOLUME 1)


Portland Wrestling

The current Portland wrestling champions are as follows as of 1/5/1980:
NWA World Champion: Harley Race (11/7/1979)
PNW Heavyweight Champion: Buddy Rose (11/17/1979)
PNW Tag Team Champions: The Sheepherders (11/9/1979)

Your host is Frank Bonnema.

  • 2/3 Falls: Roddy Piper, Rick Martel, Dutch Savage & Stan Stasiak vs. The Sheepherders, Buddy Rose & Sam Oliver Bass – (Portland Wrestling, 1/5/80)

FIRST FALL: We’re pretty much starting where we left off here with a YUUUGE eight man tag. The Rose Army in full effect here as they have recently realigned with Sam Oliver Bass. All we need is Ed Wiskowski back. We’ve got our usual heroes still around: Roddy Piper, Dutch Savage, and Stan Stasiak. Rick Martel is new to the area and he’s about to get an NWA world title match with Harley Race. Martel starts this match with a snug headlock on Bass. Dutch takes over and immediately tags out to Piper. Piper is FIRED UP and cranks on the headlock. Tag to Rose, and it’s time for Rose and Piper showdown. They do the tackle dropdown spots ending with a monkey flip. Piper delivers the flip to Rose, but then Rose tries and gets caught in a pinning situation for 1-2-NO! Butch lowers the boom on Piper and that turns things around for the Rose Army. They keep Piper on their side of town for a while. Some great heel work from these guys. When Bass heads up top to drop on Piper, Dutch goes over and jabs him to prevent the move from happening. Hot tag to Stasiak, he’s got some good punches for Rose. Here comes Martel. He whips Rose into the post that catches his shoulder. Now the good guys are over the arm. They switch in and out on a wristlock behind ref Sandy Barr’s back to piss off the heels. Buddy finally manages a tag to Luke and the arm work continues. Same goes for Bass. These babyfaces have a plan! Rose leaves the ring and comes back with an elbow pad on his hurt arm. Hmm. Dutch ends up playing a little face in peril. Using the elbow with the pad, Rose delivers an elbow drop from the middle rope. He avoids another elbow drop and brings up the knees to block a splash from Butch. Savage falls back into a tag to Stasiak. When he goes for the HEART PUNCH on Butch, Rose clips the leg that was previously injured by the Rose Army in a different match. They swarm on Stasiak and post the hurt leg. Back inside, Rose lowers the boom on Stasiak’s leg helping Bass get the submission with a half crab at 17:39 shown.

SECOND FALL: Stasiak is noticeably limping and does what he can to block a leg dive from Bass. As soon as they make contact, Bass kicks at the leg and Stasiak tags out to Dutch. He shoves Bass back into the Army and grabs a full nelson, but turns his back to his opponents for some reason. Butch comes in and breaks up the hold. Tag to Piper, he and Bass test each other’s strength with lock-ups. Piper wants a slam and can’t lift Bass, but Bass can certainly lift Piper. We get an actual test of strength battle which Piper ends with a nice standing dropkick. YES. Bass counters a headlock though and applies a headscissors on Piper. Piper fights off Butch and Rose before making a tag to Martel. Hurracanrana (!!) by Martel on Rose gets two. Martel gets a few more two-counts on Rose. In comes Savage, he grabs hold of Rose so Piper can tag in and unload on him. Match breaks down and we get QUADRUPLE BATTERING RAMS on the heels. Only in Portland. We finally come to the time limit draw. (28:42 total) As usual in Portland, the first fall is just fine. Unless there’s an angle or something, the other falls normally suffer for one reason or another. Momentum in any match is certainly something that adds to a match. **½

From 1/5/80, the Rose Army seem to be getting the last word as they gloat about winning this eight-man tag. Buddy says his army will win the battle royal next week and split the money because they are *that* good. Sam Oliver Bass wants Martel whether he becomes the NWA world champ or not. Rose hypes a Portland tag titles match between the Sheepherders against the team of Roddy Piper and Dutch Savage. Rose and the Sheepherders remark how much they like the SOB. Great promo as if there was any doubt.

  • Buddy Rose & Chris Colt vs. Matt Borne & King Parsons – (Portland Wrestling, 1/12/80)

This is our first real look at Matt Borne. He may have been in a battle royal at some point in the 77-79 recaps I did, but this is our first match where he’s featured. Another newcomer to my Portland recaps is Chris Colt. He’s certainly not a newcomer to wrestling in 1980. We have seen him before in the 1970s Detroit recaps I worked on a few weeks (months?) ago as he was part of the Hell’s Angels tag team in Volume 2. Nevertheless, this is pretty much where Colt makes his home for the rest of his career.

Bonnema says the sponsors of Portland wrestling have put up $1000 to anybody who will accept a hair match with Buddy Rose. He doesn’t even have to win! Someone just has to wrestle the match and they win a thousand dollars. Colt starts with Borne and complains of hair pulling. Boy, Chris Colt looks like a dirt bag. He reminds of Dennis Condrey a little bit. Rose gives Borne a try. They trade full nelson locks. While in the hold, Rose moves Borne and himself over to Colt for a tag and tags out as Colt comes in and nails Borne from behind. Bonnema keeps talking about a big snow storm in the Portland area. Since it’s the modus operandi of Buddy Rose, they work over Borne’s arm. I’m already a fan of Chris Colt. They do the false tag spot after Rose and Colt have had plenty of time to build it up. It pays off BIG as the crowd gives the ref hell for it. As the crowd gets behind Borne, he punches away Colt while in an armbar and makes the desperate leap to a tag to Parsons! While Colt begs off in the corner, Rose comes in and gets nailed by Parsons. Borne grabs Colt and whips him into Rose. Not once, but twice. Rose takes a bump through the ropes and lands backwards on the concrete. Good grief. Back inside, Parsons knocks Rose silly with headbutts and slings Colt from the apron into the ring into Rose. DOUBLE NOGGIN KNOCKER~! Parsons misses a splash in the corner on Rose, but reverses a whip on Colt and sends him face first into the pole. As Parsons stalks Colt in the corner, Borne saves Parsons from getting whacked from behind by Rose. Colt goes to the eyes on Parsons and heaves him out to the floor. Back in, Parsons NO-SELLS a knee drop from Rose and Colt trips up Parsons from behind. Awesome. Parsons though flips away a front headlock from Rose and tags out to Borne. He’s got a backdrop and a rolling neck snap on Colt. Back to Parsons and Rose, Parsons hits a slam on Rose and nearly gets the three-count when the bell rings. He and Borne both think it’s over, but ref Sandy Barr says NO. Instead, it’s a time limit draw. (15:00) Thanks, Woody. Great heel work from Rose and Colt. Maybe I’m just starved for good tag wrestling, but I really liked this one. Two experienced heels against two young babyfaces made for some real fun. ***¾

From 1/12/80, Buddy Rose can’t believe the sponsors at Portland wrestling would put up $1000 for anybody to wrestle him in a hair match. Why can’t he get $1000 for putting his hair on the line instead? Roddy Piper isn’t here tonight because he’s running scared of Buddy Rose. Nevertheless, Rose is fine with the $1000 bid. He explains the rules and tells everybody he’s not afraid, but it doesn’t seem like anybody around here has the guts since no one is taking up the challenge. If Steve Pardee and Red Bastien wasn’t competition (who lost hair matches back in the fall), BRING HIM SOME BETTER COMPETITION. Plain and simple.

  • 2/3 Falls for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship: Harley Race (c) vs. Rick Martel – (Portland Wrestling, 1/12/80)

FIRST FALL: Race only made four different tours of Portland throughout all the years he was the NWA world heavyweight champion. Once in 1973, 1977, 1980, and 1983. His opponents included Dutch Savage, Stan Stasiak, Jimmy Snuka, Rick Martel, Billy Jack Haynes, and Buddy Rose. Martel won via DQ against Race last Tuesday night in Portland and now he’s getting the rematch to hopefully settle the score. Race slaps Martel across the face and Martel slaps him back before giving him a big slam. He takes a powder and complains to ref Sandy Barr. Back in, Race suckers Martel into a corner, but then Martel reverses a whip into the opposite corner and Race takes his big bump to the floor. Back in again, Martel shows he ain’t no pushover as he fires back on Race and slams him down. Nice armdrag and Martel works an armbar. Race escapes and hiptosses Martel, but then runs into a backdrop. Another big slam by Martel leads to an armdrag and armbar. Race gets free again, but doesn’t go high enough off a leapfrog and turns around into a crossbody block. Back to the armbar. Race breaks loose and tries his gutwrench suplex, but Martel counters and hits his own for two. Back to the armbar. Race needs to hit Martel with a heavy blow to slow him down a bit. When he escapes this time, Race nails Martel with his patented High Knee. Races goes up top for some reason and gets slammed down. Martel looks for a SLEEPERHOLD, but Race stumbles into the ropes. More armbar work. Race hotshots Martel to get out of this again. That looks like the move that will stun Martel. Race hits the PILEDRIVER and covers for 1-2-NO! A swinging neckbreaker gets two as well. Race delivers his Diving Headbutt and still can’t get the pinfall. Here’s a Stalling Suplex and Race finally gets the three-count on this kid at 15:55.

SECOND FALL: Race backs Martel up against the ropes and headbutts him across the forehead. A hiptoss by Race is countered to an abdominal stretch by Martel. Race hiptosses out of the hold, but the damage may be done. Martel pounds on Race’s lower back and Race fires back on him. Martel hits a slam for two. Could we see a PILEDRIVER on Race? YES WE DO! Cover, 1-2-NO! Race gets his foot on the bottom rope. He begs off into the corner as Martel stalks him. Martel pounds away on him and Race stumbles to the mat. There’s a backbreaker. Cover, 1-2-NO! Martel gets whipped into the corner and tries a crossbody out of the corner, but Race moves causing Martel to crash and burn. Martel flips out of a suplex and applies a SLEEPERHOLD. Race drops to the mat! His arm falls once, twice, THREE TIMES. Martel has won the second fall at 20:51 total. The crowd doesn’t want Martel to wake up Race after the sleeperhold. At first he listens to his fans and refuses, but then he wakes him up when ref Sandy Barr threatens to DQ him. Haha, wrestling.

THIRD FALL: Martel goes right back to the SLEEPERHOLD. Race falls through the ropes and Martel goes with him. He wants a PILEDRIVER on the floor, but Martel backdrops him over. Martel slams Race back in the ring for 1-2-NO! He continues to try for that final blow on Race to get the pinfall, but Race punches back and hits his suplex for two. Martel grabs the SLEEPERHOLD again, but the time runs out and Race retains the title by the skin of his teeth. (23:51 total) This is a by-the-book example of what Harley Race did as the NWA world champ. He comes into the territory, sells for the top viable babyface, makes him look like he could win, and then hurries past the city limit sign with his NWA world title still in his possession and onto the next territory. ***¼

Final Thoughts: Everything is pretty sweet on this edition of Portland wrestling. Really nothing to skip over for a solid 80 minutes of wrestling. Thumbs up all the way.

When we meet again tomorrow, we’ll be seeing plenty of Buddy Rose singles matches as he’ll be taking on Stan Stasiak and Rick Martel. He’ll also be having some trouble with Frank Dusek which will be heavily featured on Volume II from Portland 1980!


Posted on September 30, 2016, in Portland and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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