SECW #20 Page #2
If Southeastern had the foresight to do cousin against cousin, I feel the ball was dropped on potentially the first ever father versus son feud in wrestling. Bad guy ďBulletĒ Bob Armstrong was running roughshod over the area. His son Brad had recently returned to the area. During a scientific match between Brad and Robert Gibson, Gibson hit his shoulder hard into the corner post when he charged Armstrong and missed. This further injured Gibsonís shoulder that Bill Ash had previously injured just a few days before. Brad stopped wrestling and began checking on his friend. Bob Armstrong then entered the ring and told Brad to finish his opponent. Brad refused, and Bob slapped his son right there before millions of people on television. Brad was stunned. He left the ring immediately and returned to the dressing room. Bob Armstrong versus Brad Armstrong was there for the taking, but the promotion didnít take it. I really wish the promotion had taken the opportunity to have done the feud. It would have been a first in wrestling, and would have made history. Man, what could have been.
Calculated risks: Turning the extremely popular Bob Armstrong to a bad guy was a calculated risk. His heel turn is probably one of the five best the sport has ever witnessed. Weíve talked about it lovingly a zillion times. There were two guys who were also super popular in Southeastern that didnít get a heel turn: Ken Lucas and Austin Idol. While I know both have been heels before, and Idol was even a heel in the area in 1979, when I began watching the area it never happened. Both of these wrestlers were so popular, that the risk of turning them heel would have been on par with Bob Armstrong. In hindsight, Iím very glad the promotion never did. There had to be some wrestlers we could count on to always be good. I mean, Bob Armstrong, Mr. Olympia, Jimmy Golden and Ron Fuller all eventually turned bad. Idol and Lucas provided the stability the fans needed. It would have been interesting if the promotion had gone that route, but thankfully it never did.
One bad guy turn I would have liked to have seen would have been if Brad Armstrong would have done some time as a heel. The way I would have gone about it, (playing armchair booker for a minute) would have been after Bob returned back to the good side, is have Brad return the favor for his dad slapping him. Alas, it didnít happen, but what could have been?
Well thatís it for this month. Thanks for taking the time to read this monthís Southeastern Championship Wrestlingís column on Kayfabe Memories.
The tag team of Dennis Condrey and Randy Rose a.k.a. the Original Midnight Express.
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