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El Boricua

Invader I vs. Ron Starr (Street Fight) (8/17/86)

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You know, I love wrestling matches on baseball fields. When I used to watch football, I always enjoyed fooball games on baseball fields. You know what I hate on baseball fields? Yep. Baseball. This starts with both guys brawling around in foul territory with Invader in control to start. These two brawl up into the bleachers! YES! This is loads of fun but we kinda get lost in a sea of chaotic fans for a bit. We find our boys again and the wild brawling continues. They end up going basically half way around the stadium it seems like (probably not really but they traveled a long way) and end up brawling on a dugout to the delight of the crowd until Starr takes over. Punching, kicking and taking off his belt and whipping Invader with it. Invader fights back with his amazing punches and manages to get the belt. Crowd is going nuts. They fight back into the stands briefly but end up back on the field. They get lost again for a second before showing back up directly in front of one of the cameras and brawling on top of what I assume is the other dugout. Brutal posting by Starr on Invader leads to some vicious built whipping. But Invader kicks Starr in the balls and gets the belt himself. Crowd is going insane. One of the fans tries to hit Starr with his umbrella as little kids are going crazy for Invader. Finally back in the ring this is a pure slugfest with both guys on their knees punching and kicking the other guy. This is really good stuff. Invader goes for a splash but ends up eating Starr’s knees. Beautiful doublearm suplex by Starr. Predictable but spectacular testicle crushing based transition but the crowd eats it up and its different than usual so that’s good. We also get a double knockdown spot for a more delayed transition. SECOND DOUBLE KNOCKDOWN but this time both guys are counted out! WHOA! Actually a really cool finish with both guys selling they’re out and the doctor coming in. This wasn’t as good as Invader I vs Embry but was another great Invader match who has had a hell of a 1986.

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Another utterly insane match. I normally don't like it when performers stay away from the ring for so long, but the brawling in the crowd was really entertaining. Part of the fun was seeing people react as the wrestlers got near, with some people running for their lives. The two guys eventually get back to the ring and Starr takes an insane nut shot after coming off the top. This looked so painful but also quite amusing. both wrestlers are counted out after a double knockout. This was really fun with both guys working hard, and the crowd loving every second and showing it.

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This was some kind of crazy. They begin brawling in foul territory, down the stadium perimeter and then up into the stands and along the first concourse before eventually making their way into the ring. If we give points for creativity, set design and cinematography then this is close to a five star classic. It is incredibly unique and heated with highlights including one woman near the field who has to be held back from going after Starr, the obligatory WWC blood and a never ending supply of punches, chops and belt shots.

 

After that 10 minute tour of the stadium we make our way to the ring where Starr hits a double underhook suplex and awesome flying sitout splash, before Invader gets his knees up on the second splash. Two flaws here -- 1) I didn't love the ref keeping a tight grip on the weight belt once they returned to the ring as though he needed to manage that prop for them, and 2) the double knockout finish didn't do anything for me. After everything else leading up to it that felt kind of flat.

 

Nonetheless this was incredibly unique and a lot of fun. Hell of a way to kick off disc 3.

 

***1/4

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If ECW had ever ran a baseball stadium show, this is about how I imagine it would've went. This was ECW before ECW was cool, baby! And it was awesome. They basically brawled all over the stadium, from the infield to the dugouts, through the crowd and into the stands, on top of what looked like a stage set up in the middle of the field, then eventually into the ring. There were bits where they'd end up disappearing amid pockets of fans, then Starr would reappear by running away as Invader tried to chase him down and throw stuff at him. It was like one of those cartoon scuffles where all you'd see is dust and flailing limbs, passing through one end of a building before reemerging from the other as you hear furniture crashing in its wake. I really haven't seen much of Starr, but he was great again in this and he's been one of the best guys on the set. He brawls, he bleeds, he bumps and stooges, and he isn't afraid to jump off the top rope and land balls-first across someone's knee. Invader continues to absolutely rule it in everything he's in. This was one of the rare occasions where his opponent actually out-bled him, but his selling was still outstanding and the way he fires back with strikes like it might be his one last chance of survival is always awesome. I understand why it's the case, but he really feels like one of the most underrated or least talked about great wrestlers ever. Last few minutes had guys getting whipped with a weightlifting belt, punch exchanges while both guys were on their knees (which led to Invader hitting his double chop from a kneeling position, and of course it was tremendous), nasty post shots and double knockdowns where they both just recklessly clattered into each other. And I don't have any problem at all with the finish being what it was. This was badass.

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In addition to the lady who had to get held back when they went into the stands, there is an older gentleman in white who has to be held back as they near the end of their time in the stands. And he is arguing with one of the security guys that he belongs on the field after they leave the stands! Tremendous. Great match, if you would call it that, and I don't know how a guy as talented as Ron Starr wasn't a major player somewhere Stateside. Some of those belt whips got picked up by the camera mic, which is seriously insane.

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You have to be the special kind of crazy to brawl through the bleachers in Puerto Rico.

 

This was my thought as well. I don't think any amount of money could convince me to mix it up in the stands at a Puerto Rico wrestling event.

 

I wasn't really feeling this. The vast majority of the match consisted of Attitude Era-esque aimless crowd brawling of the "let's go for a stroll while I grab your hair" variety. Stuff like that is fine for a couple minutes, but close to ten minutes is a bit much, especially when the total match time is about thirteen minutes. I did enjoy the use of Starr's weightlifting belt as a weapon. Whipping the opponent in the back, clubbing the opponent in the head, wrapping it around their fist before throwing a punch, jabbing the opponent in the throat-it was all pretty fantastic. Things settle down a bit once they make it in the ring. The highlight here, of course, was Starr landing crotch-first on Invader's knees in a Whoopie Cushion counter. I enjoyed that spot, along with the shenanigans with the belt, enough that a strong finish might have redeemed this match. Unfortunately, we get a teased double KO followed by an actual double KO. On the bright side, there was no Abdullah.

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