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Charles (Loss)

[1990-12-28-WWF-MSG, NY] Roddy Piper vs Mr Perfect

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Excellent match. It's nice to see Piper back in the ring. Perfect has been a bump machine all year, but what put this over the top as a match and performance was his selling. The bumping had a logic and progression to it that made sense, instead of just being for show. There were some great nearfalls down the stretch of this too. I would have liked a real finish, but this is a Roddy Piper WWF match. This deserves a more complete write-up sometime when I'm not getting burned out.

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With days to spare, we may have found our WWF MOTY. What jumped out to me was how from a layout standpoint this didn't feel like a WWF match much at all. Piper playing duck-and-run at the beginning, punching away at Perfect wouldn't have looked out of place in the Mid-South Coliseum--Piper as a babyface Dundee unloading on Perfect as Lawler. The brawling has more intensity to it than just about anything else the WWF has put out on the year, and then we damn near go All-Japan at the end. Not in terms of big moves, but the back-and-forth near-falls come at a similar pace. It's all much more back-and-forth than the shine-heat-comeback three-step formula that the WWF had standardized. Not really a bad countout finish at all, and the post-match brawl is just as frenzied and heated as the brawling during the match. This had a much "bigger" atmosphere than Rockers/POP despite the same setting and made one anxious to see more--that's enough to put this at #1 for the promotion for me for 1990.

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As much as Mr. Perfect was a disappointment compared to Portland and AWA Henning, he was still one of the company's better workers in 1990. And this was probably his best match of the year, given that the Tito match I liked was so short. In both cases, Henning eschewed showy bullshit and sold that he was a guy trying desperately to endure the fury of inspired babyfaces. Really liked Piper here as well. I often find that he's a better brawler in theory than in practice. But in this case, he brought a real fire to everything he did. Definitely on the short list for WWF MOTY.

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Piper drags Perfect around the ring by the hair. Piper looking good in this match. He kicks out of the Perfect Plex. That move became useless over the course of the year. Perfect ends up getting counted out. Good Piper performance withe the typical non finish for his matches. Overall, WWF didn't really deliver a whole lot of strong matches for the year.

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Really good match combining the best character aspects of each character with good wrestling and bumping. Even though Perfect bombed with top guys in 1990 I must commend him for having two of the best matches of the year in WWF with Tito and now Piper. Piper was still in good shape at this point. Would be fun to compare this to something like vs. Bret at WM 8.

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This was an excellent match, one of the best from this era of the WWF as far as I'm concerned, but that finish sucked. What made it worse was that they re-used it in both of their '91 matches at Copps Coliseum on 1/25 and Orlando on 2/18. Both those matches are good, but they're the same match with a couple of extra spots thrown in. The Orlando match is shocking good for a Coliseum Video match, tho.

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This match felt like the start to a long feud, as these two brought more hatred to this bout than they did in any of their programs all year long. You really got the feeling that they wanted to pound the hell out of each other, which is exactly what they did.

 

One aspect of this that few realize is that Piper's arthritic hip had to be killing him here. That's probably one reason why he's dirtier than usual, even for him; he probably couldn't wrestle at this point, literally. But he could sure fight. Curt adapts well to this style and really lets everything hang out. It's obvious for more reasons than one that Rod's not getting the title- for one thing, Curt had just gotten it back two weeks ago- but he satisfies himself and his public by laying Curt out cold with the belt at the end.

 

It's a shame that these two couldn't have had more matches when one or the other wasn't nearly crippled; by the time Rod's hip had been replaced and he was able to get back in the ring, Curt's back was out. Would Piper have been a better IC champion than Bret after SummerSlam '91? Probably not; it was Bret's time to shine. But if Vince had chosen to go with Piper instead, it would have been a solid choice based on this match.

 

I guess Bobby was either home for the holidays or off the road due to his neck; it's very odd to see him not make MSG.

 

I guess Lord Alfred was in his tweener mode by now, as he was pro-Perfect for most of this match. Granted, the style that Piper was using made it hard to defend him, but it's still odd to hear the bland, gentlemanly Lordship that I remember supporting heels. Giving them credit where it's due, yes, but not supporting them.

 

Sadly enough, another WWF announcer has started going downhill: Howard Finkel. I hate that unnaturally high voice he used to do the intros here, especially when he has what I consider an ideal ring announcer's voice to begin with. I know Vince was all about loudness and high energy almost to the exclusion of everything else by now, but that style fits certain people better than others. Howard's definitely one of the others.

 

As good as this was, it simply can't compare to the spectacle of Hogan/Warrior or the surprise goodness that was Hogan/Hansen. But it noses out the Rockers/Harts title change that wasn't to finish my WWF ballot for this year at number three.

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I agree. Top 3 (WWF), and definite WWF MOTY contender here. I loved this. I'd have to think about it. The presence of both guys off the charts here. Loved the post-Match brawl as well and digging then Lawler/Dundee comparison.

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I've been watching a lot of Portland lately, and unfortunately I haven't seen anything out there with Piper vs. Hennig. However, please let me know if you find it!

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WWF Intercontinental Champion Mr. Perfect vs Roddy Piper - MSG 12/18/90

Been meaning to watch this for years because it is such an interesting match on paper. You never hear any talk about the Perfect vs Piper feud or any of their matches. Then when you do a little digging you find a lot of people see this as the WWF Match of the Year for 1990 (a pretty weak year admittedly). The other reason I was curious is because neither one of these men are offensive dynamos so I was curious to see what a match between these two would look like. 

Well it is filled with shenanigans and gaga so I fucking loved it! I love a lot of hijinx and this match was chock full of that. It felt very Memphis. Piper spits and smacks Perfect in the face and just rag dolls him for the first five minutes or so. Perfect loves being thrown by his hair. This features a lot of hair pulling and hair biels. Perfect is bumping like a madman for Piper. Piper hits him with a chair and feigns a ball shot only to poke him in the eyes. This is really great. My favorite part is Piper blocks a ballshot by catching Perfect's arm mid-swing. This needs to be done more often. Perfect is so overwhelmed. He has the perfect face throughout just one of "what the hell did I get myself into" and I loved him his slumping back into the ropes. The double clothesline is a pretty trite way to level the playing field. 

Perfect cements his advantage by exposing the turnbuckle and slamming Piper's head into it. Yep a lot of gaga! Hennig jabs the chair into Piper's head. I love their flagrant disregard for the rules. We dont have any offense so we just use gimmicks liberally and I love it because it feels exciting and fresh. Perfect applies a long sleeper. Then we get a lot of nearfall trading which I actually didnt care for. I much rather them continue to basically do a Rat Boy vs Rat Boy match rather than a low-rent Misawa vs Kawada. The kneelift spot was weird. It looked like neither really connected. So did Perfect miss or did Piper no-sell and hit his own. Perfect hitting the Fisherman Suplex and Roddy kicking out is so Piper. The finish sucked. Piper shakes the ropes and Perfect gets crotched and counted out while on the top rope. Yes thats technically a countout, but I think a bump to the floor and then a ten count would have been better. They do some gaga post-match with belt with both men playing tugging of war and then Piper swinging it  around. Piper wins this fight and leaves the belt with Perfect. 

Highly entertaining match back when pro wrestling was about entertaining via fun rather than MOVEZ! So you know I dug this. Piper was on fire and had that wild eye look. I loved his rulebreaking abuse of Perfect. Perfect sold and bumped his ass off. As a cheater vs cheater match this was great and people really should see it. Finish was too lackluster for me to call this great. ***3/4

 

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