Dedicated to Gordon Solie
January 29, 1929 - July 27, 2000
Before we get into today's edition, I wanted to mention that I just have opened a major new image gallery here on the Solie's site. The Marc Friedland Collection consists of snapshots, autographs and publicity photos collected my Marc in 1962 and 1963 in and around his hometown of New Haven, Connecticut. It features never before seen photos of such stars as Bruno Sammartino, Pedro Morales, the Fabulous Kangaroos, "Manic" Mark Lewin, Hans Mortier, Arnold Skaaland and a host of others as well as great action shots from the October, 1963 issue of Wrestling World magazine. The collection can be accessed by going to Solie's Classic Wrestling Image Gallery. Check it out!!
You can get more of the latest news and rumors by listening to this week's Solie's Wrestling Radio report.
We at OVW are thrilled and honored to welcome this great, beloved icon to OVW! Folks, you CANNOT miss this HUGE event! For the first time since their coming to the WWF last year, it'll be Ric and David Flair together in the ring!
What was the reaction of the OVW Champion Prototype to this news? Find out when we post the complete and OFFICIAL OVW tv results at OVWRESTLING.COM this weekend - otherwise, STAY TUNED! WHOOOO!!!
The bleacher area became an unhealthy place for Canadian heavyweight Doug Donnan last night when several chair-wielding spectators sought to even scores for their favorite Bill Fletcher in the mainliner match at Pasco Airport Arena.
The near riot erupted after Donnan crippled Fletcher with a knee jab attack, then punished him with a series of whip-snappers. Ringside sympathizers took up Fletcher's cause with folding chairs and drove the Canadian from the roped area. The chair onslaught continued until fellow wrestlers came to the rescue.
Following the crowd fracas, Fletcher took the deciding fall from Donnan by an uppercut and shoulder press amid cheers of approval.
Earlier, Donnan took the Boise contender for fall No. 1 by a series of muscle bruising knee jabs, two body slams, a throat stomp and a fancy Steiner toehold in 17:03. The second fall was Fletcher after he sidestepped a Donnan body block and allowed the Canadian to catapult himself into the chair section, then prostrated him with a dropkick and body press in 9:20.
The semi-final 45-minute ruckus mated Frank Faketty of Omaha, Nebr., against the Boston Brown Bomber, Don Kindred. The first encounter saw Kindred tee off with an aerial head scissors before Faketty laced him in the ropes and bruised the Bomber with a body block barrage. Angered over a bomber-style head butt, Faketty hoisted the invader and paralyzed him in 22:35 with his famous special sidewinder.
In the second period, Kindred loose a head banging attack that had his opponent bleeding before referee Lone Eagle handed the laurels to Faketty on a default.
A real crowd-pleasing display of classy collegiate wrestling featured Jim Morgan of Minneapolis and Chico Bonales, Chihuahua, Mexico, matman, in the 30-minute, one-fall prelim.
Morgan, who maltreated his ringmate in opening minutes with persistent hammerlocks, was paid off by a frontal surfboard twist by Chico and had Bonales groaning from a horizontal leg split and belly bunt. As final seconds ticked off, the pair threw every trick of their calling into the fray and climaxed the half-hour set-to with a draw decision.
ED. NOTE -- The Frank Faketty above became more widely known as Karl Von Hess, a few years later, after climbing aboard Vince McMahon's eastern wheel. Bill Fletcher found last fame in the South as Rocket Monroe, "brother" to Sputnik Monroe. Doug Donnan became Doug Donovan and, eventually, one of the Von Brauner brothers.)
I have a mission this coming weekend...a very important mission.
However, it isn't a "Top Secret" thing...I can tell you. Are you ready? Are you sure?
I have to survive until Monday. If I can make it to Monday, I will be all right.
I don't know if I have told you, but I play in a bagpipe band. I'm not a bagpiper, per se...I play the side drum. The snare, if you will. For those of you who still don't have the foggiest idea, I play the "rat-a-tat" thing. I have for around 20 years. This parade will be my 20th overall as a member of the Shamrock Club Pipes and Drums, and my 23rd St. Patrick's Day Parade overall (I started marching when I was 10).
The parade is Sunday, the 17th. That, in and of itself, isn't the problem. The problem is the bulk of the weekend before it. I will elucidate:
At 5:15 a.m., Friday morning, I'll wake up, put on my Kelly-green kilt, white dress shirt, black military sweater, sporran (black leather pouch worn on the front in lieu of pockets), cream-colored wool hose (socks), green flashes, black shiny wing-tips, a big ol' belt, with a big ol' shiny buckle, and my Glen Gary (a hat). I'll precede that, of course, with a shower and a shave. Can't go out and kill myself smelling offensive, can I?
At 6:15. I'll arrive at my first 'gig', the Breakfast Club for WLVQ, or, as they call it, Q-FM-96. It is a madhouse. People are drinking at, say, 5:45 in the morning. The breakfast hosts, Wags and Elliott, direct this madness, and are great, great guys. This is called a Whiskey Gig, because the band does this for the publicity, and a shot of whiskey. We end up playing at around 7:00 to 7:15. If you are close enough to Columbus, we'll be on 96.3 FM. Neat start to the weekend.
Then, we will play for, in order, my co-workers, a group of FBI agents, a group of lawyers (that gig pays....I'm not dumb), the Mayor and City Council of the City of Columbus, and then the Shamrock Club goes off and paints shamrocks around the main intersection of Columbus, which is Broad and High. After that, we will have 6 hours off, and then, we play four or five bars in a three-hour span in the Arena district. At 10:00 PM, we should be done.
We'll be off until 2:00 PM the next day (Saturday), when we will meet at a restaurant called Mary Kelleys, and play there. We will then have nine more stops to play before the night is out. We should be done around 11:00 PM.
Then, The Day. Around our house, we call it The Day.
At 6:00 AM, up, shower, aspirin, dress, meet the brother, and carpool down to the parade route. Here is a preliminary procession, that goes the half-mile to the Church, where there is Mass....after all, it is ST. Patrick's Day! After Mass, we reform the full parade, and parade from the church to Broad Street, then west on Broad, crossing the aforementioned High Street at around noon. Then, we traverse the remaining distance to Veterans Memorial, where we will be playing at 1:00 PM.
After that, all hell breaks loose. If you have ever been in a butt-kicking contest with a one-legged man, you will know what it looks like to see a bagpipe band on St. Patrick's Day.
At 2:00, we will make our first stop. Then, in order, 3:30, 4:30, 5:00, 6:00, 6:35, 7:00, 7:45, 8:30, 8:55, and 9:20. If we are lucky, we could be done by 10:00 pm. These are all, of course, at different locations within the city, and we play for 15-20 minutes, then pick up, drive to our next destination, then play. Over and over and over.
Now what does all this tell you? That I am a sick, sick individual, to involve myself in this ritualized suicide? Nah...I am no Jim Jones.
It should tell all of you two thinks, which are very pertinent: One, that I am very Irish...to the core, in fact. The second point should be ringing in your ears.
I'm gonna miss Wrestlemania. Pure and simple.
How can I bear it? Well....that might just be real easy. There are four matches scheduled. Four. One per hour. Quatro.
Even with the soap operas in the back, four matches isn't enough. We are going to see the most manic attempt to build heat between people that you will ever see....all this week.
Kane and Angle will be added to the card, as well as Edge and Booker. I expect that they can't just throw out the Tag Title angle, with Billy and Chuck (though that seems to have been quite truncated), so I expect a match with the Tag Titles involved. And, I feel we will see a Women's Title match, with Lita, Jazz, and possible Trish.
Hmmm...I love watching Angle and 'Taker work, so I would like to see those match-ups.....watching Undertaker work against Flair would actually be a treat. Of the four scheduled matches......if you take all the wrestling acumen of HHH, Jericho, Austin, Hall, Rock, and Hogan, put it in a box, and measured it, you would probably get enough to equal a half of what is in the other booked match, between Regal and RVD.
That match will really be a dichotomy, won't it? Two very different styles, two very different body types and characters....very interesting. That might be one of the top two matches of the night... for the purists, that is.
There are two things that my brother Mike (who plays the bass drum in the band, too) and I have batted around for this WM show, and I want to share them with you, before I go. First off, Mike believes that the Stephanie/Jericho union is a farce, and that HHH and Stephanie are trying to work Jericho over on this, in a big swerve to get Jericho back for injuring HHH. He says that Jericho gets screwed and turns face, and that HHH and Steph are nWo-bound. I think that is not as likely, because the heat that HHH is getting as a face is immense.
My thing is that Rocky's catch phrase is...well...very Goldberg-ish. And so, without any basis, I will say that there is a very slight chance that we have a Goldberg sighting at the event. Just a thought, though far fetched.
OK...I think that I have spent enough of your time....except one more thing, then I will close.
Six Months, everyone. Let's not forget, OK?
See you next week, with another Connection.
by Earl Oliver
SmackDown was live tonight from the Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio, Texas and the first thing we saw was Ric Flair beating on the Undertaker's dressing room door as the latter lounged inside watching a tape of his beat down of David Flair on Monday. Unable to do more then knock the "Dead Man" sign off the door - Flair headed for the ring and we went to the opening montage. After the introductions, the Nature Boy came to the ring without ceremony and ranted at UT about how he was through with wrestling after kicking Vince McMahon's butt a few months ago. He talked about UT's attack on Arn Anderson, who told Flair NOT to let the Dead Man get to him. So he still said "No". Then the Dead Man attacked his son - and that did it. Flair declared that he is a wrestler again - and accepted his challenge for a match at WrestleMania. This brought the Undertaker out to the platform looking a bit confused. He told Flair he needed to calm down just a little bit because he's "...taking all of the fun out of all this" and said that he wasn't sure if he wants to fight him after all! He then promised an answer later this evening. Gosh - I can't imagine what his answer will be...
Backstage, Stephanie ran into Triple H, who commented on her hives clearing up. The he told her that he was returning her Corvette (the one her daddy gave her for her 16th birthday) and wanted his dog, Lucy, back. She refused to give him the dog - so he made a rude comment. Something tells me we will hear more about the dog...and the car...
Willy Regal joined the announce team as we came back. he was there to "scout" his WrestleMania opponent, Rob Van Dam, who challenged Goldust for the Hardcore Title. Goldust made his entrance, as usual, on film, in letterbox format. That lasted until the moment RVD launched himself over the ropes and splashed the champ before he could even get into the ring. Goldust hauled his own custom "gold plated" trash cans and a gold chair out from under the ring to use as weapons. He set RVD up in the corner to get his "jewels" smashed - but then he turned aside, allowing his challenger to escape and then turn the tables. So Regal strolled over and whacked Van Dam with his brass knucks to end the match.
Backstage, Stephanie presented Chris Jericho with Triple H's first ring robe (given to him by his mentor, Killer Kowalsky).
In the ring, Tajiri took on Booker T, who was still smarting over his loss of the Japanese shampoo endorsement to Edge. Tajiri had made some disparaging comments about Booker's hair on RAW. Tajiri made a great account of himself but then ran into a spine buster and was pinned. After the match, Edge ran out and attacked Booker, chasing him from the ring.
The Rock returned tonight for his first TV appearance since the initial nWo vehicular attack on him three weeks back. He walked to the ring without a limp - looking none the worse for wear after his run in with the thug patrol. The announcers told us that he was hurt worse then he is letting on, however. His first statement was to allow that he made a mistake - thinking that the only thing that the nWo coming to the WWF meant to him was a match against Hulk Hogan. He said that he was so obsessed with what Hulk Hogan "was" that he forgot what Hulk Hogan "is". "A bitter, self-centered, SOB!", according to Mavia. But then he revealed that Hogan made an even bigger mistake - by not finishing off the Rock when he had the chance. He then challenged Hogan to try and finish the job tonight. This changed the camera setting to black and white and brought the nWo to the platform. Hogan said he could go to the ring and kick Rock's "crippled" butt - but he wasn't going to do that - he'll wait for WrestleMania, thank you very much. Maivia then begged Hogan to "come on down" and take advantage of him. He started taunting Hogan, accusing him of having 1/2" t*sticals! The nWo huddled, then Scott Hall announced that he would take on Mavia tonight. Mavia accepted the match - but he warned Hogan not to get too comfortable because...well, you know the rest...
Maven and Al Snow took on - and lost too the Undertaker in a handicap match. Afterward, UT accepted the match with Flair for WrestleMania on the condition that Flair come out to the ring and beg him for it. Flair came out, but there was no begging involved. The two immediately got into a slug fest and battled into the crowd where Flair accidentally slugged a fan!!
Chris Jericho came to the ring accompanied by Stephanie, and wearing Triple H's ring robe, to take on Kane in a non-title match. He might have lost, except that Kurt Angle ran down and interfered. After losing the match, Kane battled Kurt Angle up the ramp and right out of the arena. Back at the ring, Stephanie was giving the robe back to Jericho when Hunter ran out and clobbered him then threw him out of the ring. He tried to put a Pedigree on Steph, but Jericho rescued her. At least triple H got his robe back.
Backstage, the fan that Flair hit showed up with the police and had him arrested! Meanwhile, Kane was looking for Kurt Angle in the parking lot. Angle sneak attacked him and the battle was on again. Eventually, Angle caught Kane under a roll-up door and then smashed his head with a chair (ouch!)
Lita handled Stacy pretty easily in their one-on-one match - but then she was flattened by a sneak attack by Jazz on the platform.
Outside, Triple H showed Steph her car...cut in half!!!
The Rock was on the receiving end through most of his match with Scott Hall, but the great one just wouldn't quit. Finally Nash and Hogan ran down and joined in the attack - but then the Rattlesnake showed up! He routed the attackers with a steel chair. Vince McMahon then appeared and called Austin an SOB. He booked a handicap match for Monday on RAW - Austin and the Rock vs. the nWo.
Edge was voted off first, undeservedly, I might add. The King was quite sharp - Steve Austin and Debra both came off like dunces.
The two who made it to the final round were Kane and Bubba Ray Dudley.
It was actually Bubba who came across during the early rounds as the most intelligent. But as the game went on, Kane showed himself to be more cool under pressure. Interestingly, Kane missed a question, the answer to which was "Novocain" - LOL :-)
Kane won it - and took away $83,500 for his charity, St. Jude's Children's Hospital.
Raw came to us live from the in Detroit, Michigan and opened with the announcement that tonight's main event would be a handicap match pitting the nWo against Steve Austin and the Rock. Then we went right to the ring for a 6 man match featuring the Hardeys and Rob Van Dam against the Dudleys and Willy Regal. After some pretty fancy footwork. RVD pinned Regal on a frog splash.
Meanwhile, there was an emergency session of the WWF Board of Directors wherein Vince was accusing Ric Flair of wreaking havoc with the corporation. He was trying to railroad Flair out by a vote of the board. He puts his case like a trial lawyer, stating that his goal is to make a decision about which of them will lead the company into the future.
After some not very interesting extended verbal fireworks, Kurt Angle and Booker T agreed to team up to take on Edge and a yet unnamed opponent. Backstage, Stephanie had Triple H's dog (Lucy - the bulldog) and was complaining about it when Hunter walked up and started to walk off with it. Stephanie showed him a court order giving her possession of the animal - even though she hates it.
Rikishi took on Test in a match that was going all his way until Mr. Perfect distracted him. One good boot to the jaw put Rikishi down for the count.
Backstage, the dog did his "doody" on the rug - much to Stephanie's chagrin. She delegated Chris Jericho to take him out for a walk. After the break, Jericho complained constantly as he did Stephanie's bidding. Falling down on the job, he tied the dog's leash to a limo door handle and walked off.
Backstage, Christian the "Loser" and Diamond dallas Page got into a verbal altercation with Chuck and Billy. The result, a challenge match between Christian and Billy. Back in the board room, Vince was showing footage of Flair's attack on the Undertaker Thursday night, in retaliation for the Dead Man's attack on his son. It showed Flair punching a fan and then getting arrested.
Al Snow won the Hardcore Title from Goldust for his sixth title reign despite the Champ's golden plunder.
Out back, Chris Jericho appeared to trick a limo driver into running over the dog by getting in and telling him to step on it. It actually wasn't clear as we went to commercial whether or not the dog was actually hurt. After the break, we came back to find that the dog was stuck under the car but still alive - although maybe injured.
Next up - the Angle/Booker tag match against Edge and his mystery partner...the Big Show! JR informed us as the match began that HHH had taken the dog to the vet. At one point, Angle tried to capture TBS's ankle but the big guy just twisted himself over and booted Kurt clear out of the ring. Moments later, Edge leaped off the giant's shoulders to deliver splash his opponents out on the floor. Still later, Angle and Booker tried to put a double suplex on the big guy - but he reversed it. Amazingly, shortly after that, Angle actually picked up the giant in an Angle Slam and then slapped the ankle lock on a second time and took the submission victory.
Backstage, Stephanie was freaking out over what Triple H would do to her for letting his dog get hurt. Jericho calmed her down and then started explaining his plan for Triple H as we cut to commercial.
DDP accompanied Christian to the ring for his match against Billy Gunn then joined the announce team. Chuck came with Billy (did I actually say that??) Both corner men got involved in the match, but DDP's interference was decisive. He put the Diamond Cutter on Billy so that Christian was able to win his first match in some time. After the match, Christian suddenly attacked his mentor, shouting that he didn't need him anymore because he is a winner...right...
Back in the board room, Vince was summing up his case against Flair. He called for a vote of confidence for himself to assume complete authority over the company. CEO Linda McMahon said that they had a decision to make, and they would announce that decision soon.
In a womens' tag team match, Lita and Trish took on Jazz and Stacy. Things were going well for Lita and Trish until the latter accidentally kicked her partner in the face. Jazz took an easy pinfall. During this match we learned that Lucy has a broken leg and Hunter is on his way back to the arena.
As HHH stormed into her dressing room. Stephanie was already headed to the ring, glancing back over her shoulder the whole way. She immediately issued an apology for causing Lucy's injury - saying she never meant for anything bad to happen top the dog. Hunter came to the ring and was irate. As he was setting his "soon-to-be ex wife" up for a Pedigree, Chris Jericho ran in and attacked his bad wheel with a rubber sledge hammer! EMT's ran to the ring as Jericho and Stephanie retreated wit big grins on their faces. Hunter was heard to say that he thought he had torn his quad again...
During the break, Jericho ran in again and clipped HHH off his feet. He was stretchered out.
Back at the board room, Linda announced that a decision was imminent then asked Flair if he intends to go through with the match at WrestleMania. After he asnwered in the affirmative, Linda announced that the board then had no choice but to vote in Vince's favor, with the proviso that they reserved the right to review the decision after WrestleMania. Flair made a speech about his responsibility to his family and vowed again to even the score with the Dead Man. He stared Vince down before leaving the room.
Backstage, Hogan and the guys were pumping themselves up for WrestleMania...and the handicap match which was coming up next. They vowed to make history tonight.
In the main event, the Rock and Steve Austin took on Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall. This was Hogan and Nash's first official match in the WWF since returning to the promotion. Nash got into the match early and was awesome. He hit the Snake Eyes on Mavia and then handed it over to Hogan. Hogan beat on the Rock for a bit then hit a belly-to-back suplex before tagging Nash back in. Mavia managed to tag Austin in and all hell broke loose. Austin cleaned house on Hall and nash while Hogan held back. Eventually Nash broke Austin's momentum with a boot to the face then tagged Hall in. Hall dominated the Rattlesnake then sent him to the corner where he was doubleteamed by Hogan and Nash. Nash then tagged in again and continued the punishment. Austin was isolated then handed over to Hogan, who slapped on a choke hold for a bit then tagged out again. Hall went for the Razor's Edge, but Austin back dropped him and started a come back. The Rock tagged in against Nash and had his way with him for a moment - then was knocked down. Hogan tagged in again and played to the crowd for a bit. Maivia got to his feet but was attacked from behind by Nash. As Austin went out to battle Hall and Nash, Hogan hit the boot to the face and the leg drop on the Rock...and pinned him!! Austin ran back in on the attack but was brought down by Hall and Nash. The nWo ended the program triumphant in the ring.
At least that's the way I see it...
Editor, Solie's Wrestling Newsletter
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