[TV Review] Main Event – 3.3.91

Commentators: Jim Ross & Missy Hyatt

Main Event this week features a Six Man Tag Team main event as the champs Ricky Morton, Tommy Rich, and The Junkyard Dog take on Terry Taylor, Buddy Landell, and a reluctant Bobby Eaton. Also on the show Larry Zbyszko makes his TV in-ring return, Brian Pillman sells his shoulder injury by wrestling like nothing is wrong, and Ron Simmons makes his first post-Doom singles appearance against Dutch Mantell.

Champion Roll-Call

  • WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair
  • WCW UNITED STATES CHAMPION: “The Total Package” Lex Luger
  • WCW WORLD TELEVISION CHAMPION: “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson
  • WCW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael “P.S.” Hayes & Jimmy “Jam” Garvin
  • WCW UNITED STATES TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott Steiner)
  • WCW WORLD SIX-MAN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: Ricky Morton, “Wildfire” Tommy Rich, & The Junkyard Dog

The Lineup

  • Larry Zbyszko vs. Ricky Nelson
  • Ron Simmons vs. Dutch Mantell
  • Brian Pillman vs. Tom Sawyer
  • IN-RING SEGMENT: The Danger Zone w/ Paul E. Dangerously & Larry Zbyszko
  • Dustin Rhodes vs. Brian Carr
  • Ricky Morton, Tommy Rich, & The Junkyard Dog vs. Terry Taylor, Buddy Landell, & Bobby Eaton

*****

Larry Zbyszko vs. Ricky Nelson

I believe this is Zbyszko’s first in-ring TV appearance this year. He doesn’t have a theme yet, so he comes out old school-style (read: awkwardly). Nelson has the same fire he showed against Bobby Eaton last night on World Championship Wrestling but Zbyszko isn’t as giving and wins in short order with a neckbreaker. (2:05)

  • FINAL RATING: SQUASH

-Ross and Hyatt segue to footage of Doom’s break-up following their loss of the Tag Team Titles to The Fabulous Freebirds at WrestleWar ’91. Hype for a Simmons/Reed match happening at a live event at the Omni the following weekend. I wish they had recorded these house shows; they sound so good or at least worth having on for background noise.

Ron Simmons vs. “Dirty” Dutch Mantell

Simmons still has the “D” on his boots but has switched out the pants for trunks which looks weird to me for some reason. Mantell tries to play the power game with Simmons, but it’s futile and he begs off quickly after getting clotheslined. Mantell switches his game plan and goes, um, dirty by focusing on the eyes with rakes, pokes, and boot laces. It’s a smart move honestly. Mantell grabs an abdominal stretch, using the ropes for leverage until he’s caught. Simmons mounts a quick comeback, hitting a powerslam followed by a flying shoulderblock (the finishing move of his former tag team partner) for the win. Not much to say about the action, but I did enjoy Mantell switching things up on the fly while trying to take his much bigger opponent down. Made it feel more realistic in a way. (4:30)

  • FINAL RATING: *3/4

“Flyin” Brian Pillman vs. Tom Sawyer

Pillman cut a promo on World Championship Wrestling that made it sound like he wasn’t going to be in action for a bit following WrestleWar ’91 but I guess I was reading too much into it. Pillman goes work while Ross gushes about his football background (for the 384384983th time), Pillman no-selling his supposed shoulder injury and winning with a flying crossbody. (3:24)

  • FINAL RATING: SQUASH

Paul E. Dangerously is joined in the ring by his Danger Zone guest, Larry Zbyszko. Zbyszko says his destiny is to win the World Championship and has been calling out Ric Flair for fifteen years…but then decides to challenge Sting instead? Sting decides to answer the challenge in-person and a brawl breaks out. They will be doing battle for real next weekend on Power Hour, so we’re at least getting ONE original match in next week’s recap. Hooray.

“The Natural” Dustin Rhodes vs. Brian Carr

Rhodes in control early with a dropkick into an armdrag takedown. Ross gushes about what a nice boy Dustin Rhodes is, because it’s 1991 and white-meat babyfaces are still a thing. Rhodes hits Carr with a clothesline but he doesn’t sell it so Rhodes hits a MUCH HARDER second clothesline to bring him to the mat. Carr gets some offense but Rhodes no-sells it and wins with the Bulldog. It was a match! (2:56)

  • FINAL RATING: SQUASH

Ricky Morton, “Wildfire” Tommy Rich, & The Junkyard Dog vs. “The Computerized Man of the 1990s” Terry Taylor, “Nature Boy” Buddy Landell, & “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton [w/ Alexandra York]

Morton, Rich, & JYD are the Six-Man Tag Team Champions but they don’t have any belts and aren’t announced as such, so I guess the title didn’t exist during these tapings yet? WCW’s TV taping schedule confuses the hell out of me. Ross makes mention of Eaton not really thrilled to be teaming with Taylor and Landell, sewing seeds of his babyface turn.

I didn’t hear a bell but JYD and Taylor are rasslin’ so I’m going with it. JYD slams Taylor and sends him scurrying to the floor with a pair of headbutts. Ross tries selling this as being for a championship, bless his heart. Eaton tags in and gets taken down with a hip toss, then all three heels are cleared from the ring with a whole lot of clotheslines. Rich tags in and drops Eaton with a shoulderblock. Eaton wants a tag but his teammates “encourage” him to stay in, annoying the Beautiful one. Test of strength, Rich turns it into a monkey flip followed by a scoop slam. Taylor runs in, gets slammed. Landell runs in, gets slammed. Heels beg off to regroup. Apparently, there will be no Main Event next weekend due to a James Bond marathon, but I see one on my external drive so I wonder what that one actually is. Morton catches Taylor with a crossbody, Eaton breaks the count. Eaton falls out to the apron and into York’s COM-PEW-TOR which is now apparently broken?!? Taylor kicks out of a pinfall and rushes to York. Landell joins in and give Eaton a hard time for it. The heels go to work on Morton, who does what he does best: SELL SELL SELL. I guess they didn’t need York’s tech after all! I’m sure they won’t realize the lesson they’ve just learned. Eaton blocks an O’Connor roll and belts Morton with a clothesline. He heads to the top and MISSES a flying elbowdrop. JYD gets the tag and takes it to all three heels until Eaton attacks from behind. Eaton holds JYD, JYD escapes and Taylor and Landell accidentally double clothesline Eaton! JYD covers and the Six Man Tag Team Champs win! Or retain! Or something. A decent match built on the back of Morton’s selling and the dissension between Eaton and his teammates. (8:21)

  • FINAL RATING: *3/4

-Hyatt returns to Ross’ side to close the show and hype the Sting/Zbyszko match scheduled for Power Hour. Ross reminds us that there’s no Main Event next Sunday and that’s the show.

*****

FINAL THOUGHTS: A quick and harmless episode this week that laid some groundwork for next week’s weekend TV. Cool to see Power Hour get some love. The main event was okay for what it was, but I’m down for Bobby Eaton to start doing babyface stuff for the first time in his career; they’ve been hinting at it since January after all. Not sure what to expect on next weekend’s Main Event since according to Jim Ross it doesn’t exist, but we shall see what happens.

 

 

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