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[1978-03-25-WWWF-Philadelphia, PA] Bob Backlund vs Spiros Arion


Superstar Sleeze
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WWWF Heavyweight Champion Bob Backlund vs Spiros Arion - Philly 3/25/78

 

Never seen Spiros Arion, I kinda have a natural inclination to like him because he has very similar hair to me. :)

 

Bob Backlund's first title defense and it makes sense as this is an old Bruno rival from the mid-70s (famous heel turn that was covered on Titans). What didn't make sense was that Backlund was not put over clean and Arion was still protected. I know this is 1978, but still new champ that could use a win over the old guard and I don't think Arion was used much after. Pretty standard Bob match, which I always enjoy. Arion does not add much. Standard heel cheating (choking, eye rakes), not much of a bumper or stooge. Very pedestrian. Backlund was usual fun & energetic self. Loved the tenacious waistlocks into bridging pins. Loved how he overcame all the cheating with pure wrestling technique. Arion finally gets one up on him by exposing the turnbuckle. Arion gets his big false finish with an Argentine (maybe Greek in this case) Backbreaker. Backlund slips out and sends him into the exposed turnbuckle as a receipt. Now Backlund pours it on, PILEDRIVER!, bulldogs him into the exposed buckle, ATOMIC DROP~! Knocks out Dick Whirly and they brawl for a bit until the wrestlers come from the back and I guess it is a no contest. Exposed turnbuckle bit was fun and Backlund is a joy to watch. Standard stuff. ***

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  • paul sosnowski changed the title to [1978-03-25-WWWF Philadelphia] Bob Backlund vs Spiros Arion
  • GSR changed the title to [1978-03-25-WWWF-Philadelphia, PA] Bob Backlund vs Spiros Arion
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I had never watched Backlund from this era and I don't think I've ever even heard of Arion before.  Backlund looked in great shape.  This was pretty fun, I liked Backlund's energy when they were on the mat.  The waistlock sequence showed his wrestling skill.  There was another time where he was doing a rowboat maneuver, pulling on Arion's leg that got the crowd fired up.  Arion was a brawler mostly, he removed a turnbuckle pad that Backlund ended up sending Arion into twice.  I was surprised the ref allowed it.  Backlund hits Arion with a huge Atomic Drop but Arion boots the ref in the jaw as he goes up.  The ref gets knocked down and rolls out of the ring.  A brawl ensues and a double DQ is called.  Weird decision.  I guess they were setting up a rematch.  Would've liked to see Backlund go over, the crowd was really into him.

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