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Buddy Rose, Kim Song & Stan Stasiak vs. Steve Regal, Matt Borne & King Parsons (2/3 Falls) (9/19/81)

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First fall: ​Unlike most Portland matches, where the participants at least start out trying to wrestle, this fall is a brawl from start to finish. The heels rely on triple-teaming in their corner to get and keep the advantage, and all six men are in the ring at the same time at least twice. The fall ends when Buddy's trying to cook up another triple-team as he and Kim Song distract Sandy. But instead of bringing Regal (the legal man for the faces) back to home base, Stasiak finds himself being double-slammed by Matt and Regal, and Matt gets the pin that puts the faces up one fall to none with approximately sixteen minutes of disc time left in the match.

 

Normally I like to go in depth with the action in these reviews, but that's not really possible here because Buddy's team simply can't wrestle. The man himself is mostly directing traffic, and that's a shame, because what's left is none too good. Kim Song can do a few basic moves and isn't a bad bumper, but his main offense is martial arts, and despite what Frank may tell you there isn't a whole lot of difference between his karate and judo chops. (In real life, judo's almost all throws anyway, but that's a different subject.) It's mostly side headlock, chop, side headlock, chop, No wonder he didn't last long.

 

Speaking of shames and side headlocks, I've grown to like Stasiak as a broadcaster, and I was looking forward to seeing him in the ring, since Vince hasn't released a whole lot of footage of him despite the fact that he's a former WWF World champion. God love the guy, but he's shot to hell here in ten different directions. He gets an occasional shot in with his taped hand (off of a side headlock, naturally), and he's gone for the heart punch twice, only to be so slow in setting it up that it's been blocked, and I'm not sure that he was booked to be that slow, if you know what I mean. I realize that he's not supposed to be all that dangerous anymore, but he really looks pathetic here. Not only that, he's visibly gassed, and we still have two falls to go. Buddy may be better off taking his chances three on one than dragging this ragtag crew around by the feet.

 

The faces are doing enough to keep the bout interesting, although I think they're overdoing Iceman and his hard head. Then again, most promoters way overdo that gimmick, so it's not like Don's the only one.

 

Regal's really getting the star treatment here. holding both titles and coming across as the one man above all others that the Army's afraid of. I liked the spot where Regal sat on Buddy's shoulders, only to be pulled off by Stasiak right after Frank noticed their conversation in the corner and speculated that Buddy may have been looking for Stan to save him. Frank pulled that off without sounding like a know-it-all or someone who has the "script" for the match in front of them, which is part of his charm.

 

I got a kick out of Sandy telling Buddy that it was his team's fault that Matt and Steve got away with double-slamming Stasiak. I'm not sure what good giving them a warning would have done, since they executed the move in less than five seconds, but it's still nice to see the Playboy shot down every once in a while.

 

Frank really hyped the potential headbutt battle between Iceman and Kim Song throughout the fall, and I hope we see it, if only because it will give Kim Song something meaningful to do.

 

​Second fall: ​The faces dominate most of the fall, not only with their superior execution but also because the heels remain totally inept. Kim Song misses just about every chop he tries of any kind,, Buddy is dominated, and Stasiak actually takes not only a heart punch from Regal, but what I guess you'd call a heartbutt from Iceman. All it takes is one move to spell the end, though, and the heels get that move when Buddy and Kim Song manage to hold Regal open for a heart punch from Stan, who gets the pinfall and ties the match at a fall apiece with about two minutes remaining.

 

It's odd that Stan is shown not only getting the heart punch blocked at least four times but taking one of his own before finally getting to lay Regal out with it. At least they still sell the move as a killer, because Regal's nowhere to be found as the third fall starts.

 

Stan looks a bit sharper in the fall, even holding his own in a little amateur sequence against Matt. I was kind of glad to see that; no legend deserves to look like a bumbling clod. even as close to retirement as Stan was here.

 

We get yet more audience participation, as a fan throws coffee on Buddy. One fine day, Don's going to have enough, and he's going to tell the boys that the next asshole who tries to get physically involved should be stretched to the point of at least one bone being broken, right there on TV in front of the world. Maybe that would convince the rest of the yahoos to keep their butts in the seats they paid for or else. I know there are plenty of other territories where guys had to deal with a lit more than they did in Portland, but they didn't actually have to deal with most of it ​during ​their matches.

 

​Third fall: ​As it turns out, Regal wasn't hurt; he was just getting both hands taped so he could go after Stan, which he wastes no time in doing once he's tagged. They end up in the crowd, everyone else ends up outside, and the whole bout's waved off with less than a minute of TV time remaining.

 

This brief stretch was by far the most exciting part of the match, and it's a shame that it had to be so short. I guess Stan's going to get one last title series with Regal before he hangs it up, and from what we saw here it should be pretty good stuff.

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