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Ric Flair vs Butch Reed (NWA Clash of the Champions XIII 11/21/90)

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Last few minutes of a fun clusterfuck of a match. It was heel versus heel, so both sides were cheating like crazy. Of course, in a battle of cheaters, the Horsemen will always win. So they get their rematch at Starrcade, Flair keeps his yacht and limo, and Teddy Long has to be his Chauffeur For A Day.

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The work is good and it's a fun crowd cheering the heel Horsemen, but this was overbooked as fuck from all the stips that I had trouble keeping straight to the finish.

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This was a good one until the finish, reminiscent of Flair and Reed's battles from Mid-South several years earlier. But then we had to have it thrown in our faces that both teams were heels, so neither could take a clean loss. Not that the cheating segments weren't well done (although the mass wipeout of everyone at ringside was a little much), but I was hoping to see Flair beat Reed cleanly, especially after they pulled the whole thing with Teddy distracting Nick Patrick and costing his own team a clean win, which was a ridiculous spot and further shining proof of Ole's racism. You just can't get away with making an African-American, even a heel African-American, look that stupid, especially in 1990.

 

This was the main event of the show and felt like it. It was also announced like it, as JR and Heyman were both on the top of their game. The mentions of the other athletes watching wasn't really needed at the time, though; JR could have taken care of all that stuff earlier in the card. By the way, Brad Daugherty of the Cavs wasn't watching, because his team was at the Richfield Coliseum beating the Heat 123-109, according to Basketball Reference. He scored fifteen points in twenty-four minutes of action. You'd think that somebody at Turner Sports could have slipped somebody at WCW an NBA schedule so they could tell JR not to make ridiculous shoutouts like that.

 

As for Heyman, I continue to be impressed with his skills in the booth. Only occasionally are we reminded that he's a heel at heart; he delivers his analysis straight, and it's always relevant to the strategy of the match. He probably figured out that that was the only way not to be completely stonewalled by JR, who could be childish in his refusal to acknowledge partners whose analysis displeased him during matches.

 

Patrick earned himself a punch in the mouth for pulling Reed's hair to get him to break the figure four, and whoever worked out that spot should have been told never to do it again. Short shoving matches with Flair and kicking hands off ropes during sunset flips are one thing, but referees should never, ever get physical to that extent unless they're working a Danny Davis-type angle (or unless they've been inexplicably possessed by the Black Scorpion).

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