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[1985-07-14-Mid South-Oklahoma City, OK] Dick Murdoch vs The Nightmare


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This was sort of the babyface version of Murdoch v Afa; not as much of a total carry job as Nightmare is a plenty fun stooge and holds up his own end fine, but it's largely built around Murdoch shtick and working towards big payoffs to it. First few minutes are all about him going to punch the Nightmare and the ref' stopping him. He cocks his fist, the crowd are ready...and Fergie steps in to remind him that a closed fist is illegal. Nightmare survives again and again because the ref' is trying to enforce the rules. Murdoch isn't happy about it but he plays along and tries to do things clean. Of course the Nightmare doesn't care about that and throws a bunch of cheap little forearms and punches out of tie-ups. After a little while the crowd are itching for Murdoch to just throw a punch and the heat for him repeatedly being stopped just builds and builds. You could probably argue that it put more heat on the referee than the Nightmare, because folks were very loudly booing Carl Fergie, but you forget all that when Murdoch leapfrogs an onrushing Nightmare, cocks his fists and then pops him in the mouth on the way back. Nobody works like that anymore and I know it's because wrestling isn't remotely the same in 2019, but it's always fun to see one single punch draw a bigger reaction than most nearfalls today. They also do the spot later where Murdoch winds up the arm for one big shot, then as he goes to throw it the ref' grabs the arm so Murdoch casually pops Nightmare with the other hand. Murdoch grabbed him by the eye holes in the mask and peppered him with punches, spun the mask around so Nightmare couldn't see and wound up falling out the ring, Murdoch sporadically ducked out to the floor so he could chase Eddie Gilbert; he ran through a bunch of hits and it's a show I'll never get tired of. I love as well how babyface Murdoch in Mid-South wasn't afraid to acknowledge his salty past. He tried to play it by the book earlier, but when Gilbert came in swinging that cane you knew Murdoch wouldn't be above using it himself if it fell to him. He did it nonchalantly, with a shrug of the shoulders, like Gilbert should've known better than to think ol' Dickie wouldn't stoop to his level.

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