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[1982-10-18-CWA-Mid-South Coliseum] Nick Bockwinkel vs Jerry Lawler

Superstar Sleeze

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AWA Southern Heavyweight Champion Nick Bockwinkel vs Jerry Lawler - Mid-South Coliseum 10/18/82


Let's see if this Jerry Lawler is all he is cracked up to be. I have seen a handful of Lawler matches from the 80s and they have been very good to great and am looking forward to watching him in detail. I figure much like how I started the Von Erichs off against the best. I should start Lawler off against the best, Nick Bockwinkel. Bockwinkel is master chessman in the ring and understands the use of strategy in pro wrestler probably better than any pro wrestler in history. Everything he did in that ring was internally consistent with what happened previously and what he wanted to happen that was to ensure him retaining his belt. The previous week at the Mid-South Coliseum, Bockwinkel challenged for Lawler's Southern Title and won it! In the interim, he defeated Otto Wanz for the AWA World Heavyweight Championship, quite a week for Bock. However, this match is just a rematch for the Southern Championship.


Lance Russell informs us early that the piledriver is legal in this match because Bockwinkel being a world traveller is more accustomed to the piledriver being legal and he used one last week to win the Southern Title. He claimed he had forgotten it was illegal. So in this rematch, the piledriver is legal. Lawler teases the piledriver early sending Bock scurrying. Bock also had a trouble with Lawler's famous stinging right. I loved Bock's selling of it and Lawler does have one of the best punches in history. Bock grinds the match to a halt with various holds to try contain the fists of fury of Lawler. Lawler lets us know he ain't just a pretty punch. He had some neat reversals for Ol' Tricky Nick including reversing a bodyscissors into a Boston Crab. I will admit the beginning of the match was slow and surprisingly unheated. I was used to Texas where literally every Von Erich spot was cheered. Lawler is shoved into the ref and this gives Bock the opening he needs to hit a piledriver and finally mount some offense against Lawler. Lawler is a mighty foe and he pulls the strap down to the roar of the crowd and fires off some wicked punches that staggers Bock. The guy in the front row signals for the piledriver or for the old lady next to give him head it is hard to tell which. Lawler is happy to oblige on the former, but Bock tucks tail and crawls away. Bock gets an uppercut that sends Lawler tumbling over the top. KING OF THE MOUNTAIN! Bock ain't letting him back in and is finally kicking some ass. Bockwinkel preps for the piledriver, but Lawler backdrops and hits a PILEDRIVER of his own! Lawler can't capitalize. Bockwinkel is convulsing looking for the bottom rope and pulls himself out. They now do reverse king of the mountain where Bock is always trying to get out so Lawler comes up with some really inventive ways to keep him like a bodyslam from the apron and a running fist to the side of Bock's head on the outside. We of course get the patented Lawler fist drop. Just as Lawler looks to have this one sewn up, Bock headbutts him in the midsection, double legs and uses the ropes to pin Lawler! HIGHWAY ROBBERY I TELLS YA! The match started slow, but they built to a fever pitch. I loved Bock's strategy of keeping Lawler on the outside and then it reversing once Lawler was in charge. Great use of the piledriver to be the transition between those two segments, ****

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  • 11 months later...

Watching Bock is always a treat. A nice, long slow-building match with some great spots - my favorite is Bock lying on the apron to the outside, and King gets onto the floor and does a running punch, knocking the hell out of Bock. Then he did it again!


Lack of heat I felt may have been due to the WWE mix - Lance seemed very loud, and the crowd much less so then on the usual tapes.

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  • GSR changed the title to [1982-10-18-CWA-Mid-South Coliseum] Nick Bockwinkel vs Jerry Lawler
  • 2 years later...

Lance Russell did a great job explaining why the Piledriver is legal for this match. This was a great showcase for Nick Bockwinkle. He schools Lawler on the mat with his insistent holds that manipulates Lawler’s movements. Lawler does show some shine of skill but Lawler's best out is his punches which were as great as they usually were. Lawler’s hope spots and Bockwinkel’s subsequent cutoffs were well done. The drama raised high once the straps came down and then it grew even more when Bockwinkel sent Lawler crashing to the outside floor. Bockwinkel cheats to win, keeping his title safe for another week and protecting Lawler who’s pissed. ***3/4 

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