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 - John Edwards

This month’s installment of the St. Louis series may be a bit anti-climatic. Today’s subject, “Memorable Feuds” will be somewhat limited due to the way in which Sam Muchnick booked his territory and the style that St. Louis fans grew accustomed to during the territory’s glory days of the 1960s to 1982.  

Feuds reached an art form in other territories during these years. For example, the first real feud I saw in another area (thanks to cable TV being introduced to St. Louis in 1981) was “Mad Dog” Buzz Sawyer and “Wildfire” Tommy Rich tearing up the Georgia Championship Wrestling area (and Ohio, Michigan, and West Virginia) during their bloody wars. Other classic feuds include the Von Erichs versus the Freebirds in World Class and the Four Horsemen versus Dusty, Nikita, et al in the Carolinas in Jim Crockett’s NWA. 

In St. Louis, however, things were different. Out and out feuds (as we know them today) were pretty much nonexistent during the territory years. NWA championship matches were certainly well-publicized and supported by a series of promos on Channel 11’s “Wrestling at the Chase” on Sunday mornings. But the atmosphere of Muchnick’s promotion was that a championship match was a serious event – to be sure there would be a heel and a face. There would be rulebreaking and rough tactics. But not chairs, blading, ref bumps, or run-ins. And there would absolutely be a clean finish to end the match. But I digress….back to today’s subject.

Here are a few of the feuds that I do remember from the good old days – my clear memories go back to the late 70s through the end of the promotion in 1986.

·      Ric Flair vs. Harley Race (1982-1983) – These two met many, many times over the years. I know I saw them at least three times at the Kiel, including Race taking the title in 1983. The fun of this series of matches were the TV promos. As I mentioned in an earlier installment, three weeks of TV were taped at once in the Channel 11 studio. To hype an upcoming title match, the champion and the challenger would cut great (and sometimes hilarious) promos on one another to build interest, generate heat, and sell tickets. And the matches were great – true classics.  More...

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