Clash of the Champions
Ladies and Gentlemen, Introducing The Clash of the Champions
The show drew 6,000 people and was the very first in what would be 35 Clash of the Champions TV Specials. This was a Pay-Per-View worthy wrestling card that was shown for free on cable television.
The Event was brought about to counter the WWF's (now known as WWE) Wrestlemania IV which was being shown on the same day on Pay-Per-View. The special guests during this show included Jason Hervey (of The Wonder Years) and Ken Osmond of Leave It To Beaver (who was set to star in The New Leave It To Beaver).
There were four titles up for grabs on this five match card including the World Television Title, the United States Tag Team Title, the World Tag Team Title and the World Heavyweight Title. This event was shown over 25 years ago and is widely regarded as one of the best wrestling shows ever.
All photos in this Lens were taken by myself otto_phillips
World Television Title Match
Match #1 for the NWA World Television Title:
This first match features the Champion Mike Rotunda (accompanied by Kevin Sullivan) vs Gorgeous Jimmy Garvin (with his valet Precious).
This match was contested under amateur rules. Only a 1 count to solidify a victory, not the standard 3 count professional wrestling uses. The match was contested in three 5-minute periods. The rest of the matches are under Professional Wrestling rules. Mike Rotunda was a stand-out amateur wrestler at the University of Syracuse while Jimmy Garvin was a brawler so the disadvantage goes to him. Mostly Mat wrestling in this match as it is amateur rules.
Very even through the 1st round. There is a 30 second rest period in between rounds and both men come out intently in the 2nd round. Kevin Sullivan jumps up on the ring apron to interfere but Precious tries to stop him. Sullivan then grabs Precious prompting Garvin to come to her aid. Rotunda takes advantage and grabs Garvin from behind for the pin and the victory!
After the match Garvin attacks Rotunda giving him a BRAINBUSTER SUPLEX. Kevin Sullivan comes to Rotunda's aid and then from out of nowhere Rick Steiner shows up to help Sullivan and Rotunda. Its 3 on 1! All of a sudden Precious come into the ring with a 2x4 and hits Steiner in the back! Then she grabs a coat hanger and starts choking Sullivan with it! Garvin pulls her off but Sullivan tries to grab her feet and a tug-o-war ensues!
Winner and still NWA World Television Champion: Mike Rotunda
Who was Jimmy Garvin's best valet?
U.S. Tag Team Title Match
Match #2 for the NWA United States Tag Team Titles:
The second match features the U.S. Tag Team Champions The Midnight Express ("Beautiful" Bobby Eaton and "Sweet" Stan Lane) (w/ Jim Cornette) vs The Fantastics (Tommy Rogers and Bobby Fulton).
Before the bell rings these two teams start fighting outside the ring! It is a wild brawl with Lane and Rogers inside the ring and Eaton and Fulton on the outside. The Fantastics take the early advantage and work over both members of the Midnight Express. There are chairs and tables involved in this melee!
The action finally goes into the ring and The Fantastics don't let up as they keep having their way with the Midnight Express. Eaton and Rogers square off 1 on 1 in the ring which leads to some double-teaming by Eaton and Lane giving the advantage to the Midnight Express. Cornette holds a table up from outside the ring and Eaton rams Rogers' head into the table! Tommy Rogers is now at the mercy of Eaton and Lane as they double-team Rogers relentlessly. Eaton bulldogs Rogers on the flattened table outside the ring! Rogers gets enough strength and energy to fight off Eaton and Lane and leap over to make the tag to Fulton but the referee doesn't see the tag! Because the Referee did not see the tag Fulton is ordered out of the ring. Cornette comes into the ring and spears Rogers with his tennis racket while Fulton throws the referee over the top rope. Eaton holds Fulton so Cornette can hit him with the racket but Fulton moves and Cornette hits Eaton! The Fantastics do the Rocket-launcher on Eaton and another referee comes in to count the 1-2-3! We have new US Tag Team Champions! But wait the referee that was thrown over the top rope comes back in the ring and disqualifies the Fantastics!
The brawl continues between the two teams with the Midnight Express getting the upper-hand. Cornette hits both referees with his tennis racket. Cornette takes his belt off and gives it to Lane who then starts whipping Fulton while Eaton holds him by the legs with his arms draped over the top rope. Lane then gives the belt to Cornette who whips Fulton. Rogers comes in with a chair prompting Cornette and his team to retreat.
Winners by disqualification and still NWA United States tag Team Champions: The Midnight Express
Which pairing of the Midnight Express was better?
Six-Man Tag Match
Match #3 a Chicago Street Fight - Six-man tag team match:
The Road Warriors (Animal and Hawk w/ Paul Ellering) and Dusty Rhodes vs The Powers of Pain (Warlord and Barbarian) and Ivan Koloff w/ Paul Jones.
This match is contested with barb-wire on the ring ropes. The match came about after Road Warrior Animal's eye was severely injured in a weightlifting contest earlier in the year.
The Powers of Pain and Ivan Koloff seem not too eager to get into the ring but they finally enter the ring with all six men brawling. Road Warrior Animal (wearing a protective mask to protect his eye) drives The Barbarian's head into the barb-wire! Dusty Rhodes does the same to Ivan Koloff. Koloff as a result has been busted open (bleeding from the forehead). The six men continue to brawl as Dusty Rhodes has now been busted open.Road Warrior Animal head-butts The Warlord and The Barbarian and Ivan Koloff with his protective mask. Rhodes gives The Barbarian and Ivan Koloff DDT. Animal gives Warlord a powerslam and goes for a pin attempt. Barbarian jumps from the top rope hoping to hit Animal but Animal moves out of the way! Animal jumps onto Warlord for the 1-2-3!
After the match the Barbarian kicks Animal in the face knocking off the protective mask! Barbarian hits Animal in the face with a chain! The Powers of Pain attack Animal while Ivan Koloff whips Road Warrior Hawk with the chain.Dusty Rhodes jumps up and hits Koloff knocking the chain loose. Hawk grabs the chain and clotheslines Barbarian while Warlord leaps out of the ring. Hawk, Dusty and Paul Ellering tend to Animal.
Winners by pinfall: The Road Warriors and Dusty Rhodes.
Best wrestling event that Dusty Rhodes created?
World Tag Team Title Match
Match #4 for the NWA World Tag Team title:
The fourth match features the Champions Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson along with manager JJ Dillon vs Barry Windham and Lex Luger
Tully Blanchard and Arn Anderson are 2 of the dreaded Four Horsemen. The Four are currently only 3 as former member Lex Luger left the group to venture on his own.
Tully Blanchard and "The Total Package" Lex Luger start the match as he is quickly double-teamed by Tully and Arn but the tables are turned when Luger clotheslines both men. Arn leaves the ring leaving Luger to power-slam Blanchard and then put him in his HUMAN TORTURE RACK!
Anderson interferes by clipping Luger's knee and The Horsemen go to work on the injury relentlessly. Lex makes a comeback and makes the tag to Barry Windham! Barry attacks both men to give the Twin Towers (Barry is 6'6 and Lex is 6'5) the upper hand. Windham then puts a SLEEPERHOLD on Tully. Blanchard tries to exit the ring to unlock the hold but Windham keeps it locked on! Blanchard regains his bearings in time for Windham to then give him an ABDOMINABLE-STRETCH. JJ Dillon distracts the referee so Blanchard can get out of the submission move. The Horsemen work over Windham as he tries to make the tag but to no avail. Tully executes a SLING-SHOT-SUPLEX and thinks he's won the match for his team but Windham kicks out!
Arn then comes in but Windham makes the tag! Luger comes in like a house of fire nailing both Anderson and Blanchard with elbows. Lex then bangs The Horsemen's heads together. All four men are in the ring now as JJ Dillon has a chair set up in the corner but Luger whips Anderson into it! Anderson hits his head on the chair. Luger covers him for 1-2-3 and we have new tag team champions! The crowd erupts as Windham and Luger celebrate.
JJ Dillon can not believe what just happened!
Winners by pinfall and new NWA World Tag Team Champions: Barry Windham and Lex Luger.
Who was Barry Windham's best tag team partner?
The Main Event
Match #5 for the NWA World Heavyweight Title.
The fifth and final match features Champion Ric Flair accompanied by JJ Dillon vs Sting
Ric Flair is the 3rd member of the Four Horsemen. For this match JJ Dillon will be suspended in a cage above the ring and crowd. Also for this match there will be four judges in case it goes to a time limit draw. The judges are: Gary Juster, Sandy Scott and Penthouse Pet Patti Mullins w/ Jason Hervey.
Ric Flair at this point was an established superstar in professional wrestling while Sting was a young upstart.
This is the Main Event of the Show. The judges are introduced and now the participants. The crowd erupts as "The Stinger" makes his way to the ring and then "2001: A Space Odyssey"is played and that only means one thing: The World Champion "Nature Boy Ric Flair.
JJ Dillon is escorted to the cage. He is less than enthused about getting into it. This stipulation was put in place so there would be no interference by Dillon. The cage is lifted into the air.
The introductions are done. The first part of the match is spent exchanging holds with each wrestler trying to get some kind of advantage. They establish a rapid pace and JJ dIllon has the best seat in the house to watch. Flair's favorite offensive move is to smack his counterpart's chest with the palm of his hand. These are known as KNIFE-EDGE-CHOPS. He uses so many of these chops that Sting's chest quickly begins to welt and bleed. Sting focuses on Flair's back by executing GORILLA PRESS SLAMS and wrenching a BEAR-HUG to possibly set the World Champion up for his finishing maneuver: THE SCORPION DEATH LOCK. Flair gets Sting outside the ring and whips him into the safety railing twice! The Champion takes control of the match with fists, knee-drops and thunderous chops. Sting absorbs the punishments and tries to make a comeback. He tries applying the Scorpion Death Lock but Flair is too close to the ropes and breaks the hold. The Challenger tries for a clothesline but the Champion ducks and Sting goes over the top rope to the concrete. Flair goes after Sting's knee which is a set-up for his favorite move: The Figure-4-Leg-Lock. Sting's knee is ravaged by Flair. The Champion applies the FIGURE-FOUR-LEG-LOCK! Flair grabs the ropes for more leverage putting more pressure on Sting's knee.
We then see JJ Dillon cheering very enthusiastically in the cage above. Sting moves himself and Flair to the middle of the ring while the hold is still applied. The Challenger then tries turning the two over, putting pressure now on Flair's knee. Sting is successful in reversal the hold. The leg-lock is broken and both men are in a tremendous amount of pain. Sting with an ABDOMINABLE-STRETCH. He then starts to work on Flair's leg. Sting applies the FIGURE-FOUR-LEG-LOCK! Flair gets to the ropes to break the hold. Flair pushes the referee who pushes right back and knocks him down. Stings attempts several pinfalls but to no avail. He then tries THE STINGER-SPLASH (a set-up for his finishing maneuver) but misses and flies over the top rope! Flair catches Sting in a SLEEPER-HOLD. Sting breaks the sleeper-hold and goes to work on Flair hitting him with thunderous punches. The Challenger hits the STINGER-SPLASH! Sting then puts Flair in the SCORPION-DEATH-LOCK! The bell rings but Flair doesn't give up. The time limit expires! These two men have wrestled to the 45-minute time-limit. It is now up to the judges to declare a winner.
Judge Patti Mullins scores the match for Ric Flair. Judge Gary Juster scores the bout for Sting. Judge Sandy Scott has declared the match a draw meaning Flair retains his championship.
Winner and still NWA World Champion: "Nature Boy" Ric Flair