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Charles (Loss)

[1990-11-03-WWF-Superstars] Ted DiBiase vs Dustin Rhodes

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Really fun TV match. The storyline is that Dustin is trying to last 10 minutes against DiBiase. They put together a really solid match. Sapphire cuddling her Million Dollar Man buddy on the outside cracks me up, because I didn't realize she was ever at ringside. The fans are hooked on every two-count where it looks like DiBiase might be upset. This really is one of the better cases for DiBiase knowing who he was and really creating the perfect match for the storyline and setting. Time calls add so much to the drama in this match. I wish the promotion wasn't so dead set against doing them.

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I wish the promotion wasn't so dead set against doing them.

Given that the overwhelming majority of matches are under 10 minutes, I can understand it.

 

But it definitely helped this match a lot.

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I didn't realize Sapphire was still around at this point. This is a rare opportunity to see DiBiase work a non-squash in the WWF as the dominant guy, as the story of Dustin's heart vs. DiBiase's experience takes center stage and DiBiase controls 90% of the match and gets to act like a gigantic prick while doing it. Well-done finish as Dustin is trapped in the Million Dollar Dream as the clock is counting down, but manages to avoid having his arm drop for the third time right at the expiration. Dustin eats a Million Dollar belt to the head afterward but also gets the official win. I was expecting the Tornado to show up at this point but I guess that comes later.

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I may have been tired but I was pretty disappointed in this match. I know the story is that Dibiase is overconfident but why even with the announcer saying 8 minutes have expired is he still mugging for the crowd. The action was decent I was just hoping for more and I love Dustin comebacks.

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Sapphire has a DiBiase wrestling buddy in her arms. Dustin only has to last 10 minutes with Million Dollar man to win match. Ted does not have a whole lot of urgency when he is on the offense. Spending too much time putting the sleeper on. Million Dollar Dream with a minute left. Dustin is able to hang on.

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This was a good match, but it would have been better if Teddy had reversed course at some point and begun going for more pinfalls on Dustin. He never really tried to beat Dustin until the end with the Million Dollar Dream, and while I'll give credit for the dramatic finish, I was also wondering why Teddy wasn't going for the kill constantly during the second five minutes.

 

I loved Dusty constantly talking it up at ringside. Contrary to what Piper was saying on commentary, he was clearly trying to avoid a verbal contest with Teddy so that Dustin could possibly beat him clean. I get that Dustin was inexperienced and a WWF newcomer, but there were times when Rod treated him like Mario Mancini. Vince was actually much more evenhanded while still getting across the long odds that Dustin was facing.

 

I loved Finkel and his time calls. They really don't come into play much in a promotion where matches seldom go over ten minutes and time limits aren't even announced ahead of time anymore, but they were needed here, and The Fink rose to the occasion with a flourish as only he could.

 

Boy, did Sapphire get short shrift or what? In spite of being the main reason that this feud started, and in spite of the fact that she was making her first (and only) appearance in Teddy's corner on television, she gets no acknowledgement of her presence by either Piper or Vince and only a brief mention of her backstory with Teddy. It's almost like they were trying to erase her from existence in plain sight, and that's a shame. I wonder if she did something to upset someone?

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I don't mind Ted not pressing for the win until late. It plays perfectly into how cocky he had to be going into a match against a rookie like Dustin. Great Stuff.

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