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[1992-11-07-USWA-TV] Jerry Lawler vs Todd Champion / Interview: Jerry Lawler / The Moondogs vignette

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Lawler is Unified champ again, beating Todd Champion to regain the title. Yes, we live in a world where Todd Champion was at one point competitive with Jerry Lawler, although I think with some seasoning he might have become good at some point if this match is any indication. Jeff Jarrett was special referee for some reason, and we get some clips of the match while Lawler talks briefly. Jeff is WAAAAAAY too involved in this match.

 

Then, we get Richard Lee on top of "Moondog Mountain" complaining about Eddie Gilbert as we tour the Moondogs house. The place is not exactly a nice one, but this would edge out Redman as the best episode of MTV Cribs of all time.

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Champion looks like a million bucks, but just lacks charisma, and his timing sucks. I bet though he could have developed both if the territories were still in play.

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I always thought this was a phantom switch in "Cleveland," but that must have been some other Unified title change. When Todd got his football letter jacket at Utah State, he asked somebody to read it to him. Lawler's been away from the title for quite awhile so it's nice to see him back on top. Champion still isn't good but he seems markedly improved from his Patriot days, and came off well the previous week on TV. To the point where I'm surprised the WWF never gave the guy a look.

 

Lee has foregone the Heyman look for a total mountain man scuzzball. Lee takes us on a tour of the palatial estate bought with the Moondogs' tag team championship money. Lee's deadpan narration is hilarious.

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Clips of Lawler vs. Todd Champion w/ Jarrett as ref. Champion feels incredibly bush league. Prentice slips a chain to Champion, which Jarrett sees but has to pretend not to. Lawler wins on a roll up. Then a Richard Lee promo on Eddie & Doug Gilbert, somewhere out in the woods where the Moondogs are destroying a ransacked house. Almost expect to see dogs running around somewhere.

 

The Todd Champion stuff is awful, the guy has zero charisma and will not work where people have access to other wrestling. Even if it wasn't going to drive business, the Lee promo with the Moondogs was at least fun.

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Just to clear some stuff up. The phantom title change was Todd defeating Butch Reed in Cleveland. According to the WON from those days, the WWF sent Todd down to get some seasoning before a possible run. Of course, we never saw Champion ever in WWF so that shows just how impressed they were. I'm rather surprised Todd lasted that long down there since the pay couldn't have been that great, if not downright piddly (We've all heard of some of the horror stories of guys starving, sleeping in their cars etc).

The Moondogs house tour had kind of a Texas Chainsaw Massacre vibe to it. Well, Richard Lee took the door falling off a lot better than The Cook did.

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I must be having Moondog fatigue, because I didn't like the Lee promo at all. The one good part was when he brought up Eddie supposedly trying to kill him when they were boys together. That's a nice personal issue to hang a feud on, but it should have been brought up when Eddie first attacked them after they injured Doug, not now.

 

The bit at the so-called mansion was so loud and had so many people talking (or in the Dogs' case, growling) at once that I had trouble making anything out. We like to think of the WWF and WCW cornering the market on absurd sketches, but this one's just as weird as anything they've put out all year. It looked like a log cabin version of demolition derby; how effective it was as a training film I can't even begin to guess.

 

At least Todd Champion gets to say he was in there with the King for twenty minutes at the Mid-South Coliseum, if nothing else. I wasn't too impressed with what I saw, but you really can't tell anything from MSC matches because they're chopped into a thousand pieces.

 

I thought Lawler kicking out of the chain shot was overkill, even for Memphis. There had to be another way to get to the finish; you're supposed to make fans suspend their disbelief, not dangle it out the window by his ankles.

 

Under the circumstances, I can forgive seeing Jeff so active. He was pretty much Lawler's referee in all but name (just like Neighbors had been Champion's the week before), so it makes sense that he'd get active on the King's side, striped shirt or no striped shirt.

 

It's good to see the King back on top of the singles ranks. Memphis feels like Memphis again!

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