Portland Wrestling: 1980 (VOLUME 4)
The current Portland wrestling champions are as follows as of 5/3/1980:
NWA World Champion: Harley Race (11/7/1979)
PNW Heavyweight Champion: Rick Martel (3/22/1980)
PNW Tag Team Champions: Roddy Piper & Rick Martel (3/29/1980)
Your host is Frank Bonnema.
- 2/3 falls for the PNW Tag Team Championship: Roddy Piper & Rick Martel (c) vs. The Sheepherders – (Portland Wrestling, 5/3/80)
FIRST FALL: Buddy Rose is allowed to sit at ringside for some reason. Piper and Martel work the armbar on Luke to start. Sometimes they tag, sometimes they don’t – which riles up Butch, Buddy, and the crowd. Sometimes when they do tag, the tagged-in wrestler will leapfrog over the other onto Luke’s arm, which is a cool old school high spot. While Luke is stuck in a hammerlock in the corner of the tag champs, they take turns slingshotting themselves to stomp his elbow. With all the fake tagging in and out from Piper and Martel, this really incenses the Sheepherders once Luke actually reaches Butch and ref Sandy Barr doesn’t see him making a tag. Piper continues to work the hammerlock and actually gets the submission out of Luke to win the first fall at 8:09.
SECOND FALL: We pick up where we left off working the arm of Luke. Luke now has an elbow pad to stabilize the elbow. Rose finally distracts ref Sandy Barr to allow Butch to break up the armbar from Martel. Butch tags in and abuses Martel in the corner before applying a chinlock. Now we get a false tag spot on Piper and boy is the crowd reaction day and night there. Luke comes in and headlocks Martel so he can jab him in the throat with his thumb, but his left arm sure is sore. Martel gets double-teamed and takes a Buddy Rose-style back elbow from Butch to get the second fall at 12:47 total.
THIRD FALL: Since Buddy Rose was the instigator to the second fall ending the way it did, Sandy Barr makes him stay in the dressing room or the Sheepherders will be DQ’ed. Butch and Luke keep Martel down with nerve holds and chinlocks. He hits an occasional hope spot, but they keep him down for a while. That Martel sure can take a bump. He’s like the Portland version of Ricky Steamboat. After a double-KO with Butch, Martel crawls towards Roddy and leaps at him for the hot tag. PIPER IS A HOUSE OF FIRE. He works over the neck and hits a knee lift. He thumbs Luke in the throat. Why not. He lifts up Luke for a suplex, but Luke falls on top of him for two. Piper finds himself on the wrong side of town and gets kicked to the floor. Butch picks up Piper and gives him a slam on the concrete. Piper manages to beat the count, but Luke cuts off the tag to Martel. Big kitchen sink knee to Piper gets two. Butch grabs a bearhug until Martel breaks it up. The Sheepherders give Piper a double-team backbreaker. Martel does all he can to prevent this match from ending this way. Piper reverses a whip on Luke and knees him in the gut to allow him to reach Martel for a tag. HERE COMES MARTEL. He’s applying an abdominal stretch on Luke and giving Butch a dropkick. He goes to give Luke a dropkick, but Luke hits the deck and Sandy Barr gets wiped out! Since there’s no ref, all four men are in the ring. When the tag champs go to whip the Sheepherders into each other, Butch reverses Piper into Luke. Martel drops an elbow on Luke and covers him anyways. Meanwhile, Butch gives Piper a PILEDRIVER and Barr gets up to count the pinfall apparently on Piper. CONTROVERSIAL ENDINGS~! (26:12 total) Another fun match with these guys. Definitely an improvement over the last one they had. Piper and Martel are the yin and yang of each other as Piper seemed more willing to cheat while Martel was more of a traditional babyface who wanted to win the right way. There’s only like five guys we are watching right now and it’s all been fantastic. ***½
We go up to the Crow’s Nest to hopefully get a final decision from Sandy Barr. Despite all the pleadings of the two teams, Barr says the PNW tag titles will be held up until there’s a rematch. I love watching a masked Buddy Rose try to make the announcement even more clear when it’s pretty simple. The Sheepherders start hitting on each other because they’re New Zealanders. They take a shot at Rose and I’m pretty sure he drops an F bomb there. Since we don’t get to see the rematch, I will tell you that the Sheepherders do in fact regain the tag belts.
- 2/3 falls for the PNW Heavyweight Championship: Rick Martel (c) vs. Buddy Rose – (Portland Wrestling, 5/17/80)
FIRST FALL: The ladies sure love Martel. He’s a got a Chachi look to him for sure. Speaking of ladies, one of them gives Martel a bunch of flowers, so of course Rose steals them and tears them up. Martel makes him pay with a flurry of punches and a backdrop to send Rose out to the floor for a powder. This crowd is just MOLTEN hot. Rose cowers in the corner and gets drilled by Martel. Now he applies a headlock. He walks the ropes and takes Rose down to the mat. By the way, Rose is still wearing the wig on the mask. They continue to play off the headlock for a while. When Martel tries walking the ropes again, he senses maybe Rose will counter the move and instead flips off Buddy’s shoulders. When Rose faces Martel, Martel takes him over with a headscissors for 1-2-NO! More headlockage. Rose escapes the headlock, but Martel catches his dropkick and catapults him into the corner. He tries walking the ropes a third time with the headlock, but this time Rose counters with a back suplex. Rose starts hammering the back and whips him from corner to corner. Backdrop gets two. Rose continues to work on the back and drives Martel down using his knee from the top rope. It’s an old Ivan Koloff move. The BILLY ROBINSON BACKBREAKER gets the win at 11:02.
SECOND FALL: Rose picks up where he left off hammering the back. Martel’s lanky body gets put up on the top buckle as Rose continues to field goal kick the lower back. He even goes as far as to kick Martel off the buckle to the floor! To make it worse, Rose backs Martel into the ringpost as well. Inside the ring, Martel counters an abdominal stretch and applies it on Rose, but Rose quickly hiptosses him away. Martel starts reversing suplexes on Rose and mounts his comeback. He fires back on Rose and whips him from corner to corner. Boy, Rose can bump. He delivers a slam and hurts his back. He reverses a whip on Rose and applies a SLEEPERHOLD to win the second fall at 16:04 total. Even though he doesn’t want to, Martel wakes up Rose from the hold. That’s so carny.
THIRD FALL: Rose has done something to one of the top turnbuckles and the crowd lets Sandy Barr know something fishy is going on. Anyways, Rose chokes on Martel while Barr tries to fix it. Martel misses his crossbody out of the corner, but he recovers pretty quickly from that. Rose tries a splash and hits knees. Martel goes back to the SLEEPERHOLD and that’s when the Sheepherders come out and attack both Martel and Barr! (19:48 total) The Sheepherders bring with them a New Zealand flag pole and jabs Martel in the face! Holy crap. Roddy Piper clears the ring, but the damage is done. Dutch Savage comes in the ring as well. Earlier in the show apparently, Buddy Rose and the Sheepherders made a challenge to Rick Martel and two other guys. Roddy Piper and Dutch Savage challenge the Rose Army for a six-man tag next week. ***¾
Over at the Crow’s Nest, Buddy Rose seems like he didn’t really want the Sheepherders to interfere, but he looks forward to crippling Martel, Piper, and Savage. Butch introduces the TV audience to the New Zealand flag as the official Rose Army flag. He rants on and on until we run out of video. Something about the Olympics in Russia? I don’t know.
Final Thoughts: Another winner here. Watch it ALL. I mean, it’s just two matches this time.
Next time we visit Portland, we will wrap up the remaining footage from May 1980. This includes the six-man tag mentioned above, a rematch over the tag titles between the new champs the Sheepherders and Rick Martel and Roddy Piper.