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 - Chuck Merkich

It seems that when most wrestling fans talk about their favorite promotions, one of the main topics brought up is who wrestled there and who were the champions? Last month, I promised an in-depth look at the roster of TASW. Since title-holders are the wrestlers most prominently featured in any promotion, a run down of champions seems like the best place to begin and since the Heavyweight title is the top belt in wrestling, I'll start there.

When Southwest Championship Wrestling was sold to TASW, the Heavyweight title which at the time was held by Kevin Sullivan, was abandoned and a new champion to showcase the upstart promotion was needed. According to the record books, Ted DiBiase, who was in-between runs as a Mid-South tag team champion with "Dr. Death" Steve Williams became the first TASW Heavyweight champion in September of 1985 by winning an alleged tournament in Phoenix, AZ. I have found no proof that this tournament actually happened and it is probably fictitious. DiBiase, who wouldn't gain nationwide attention until entering the World Wrestling Federation in 1988, was acknowledged by most wrestling observers at that time as one of the finest scientific wrestlers in the game and that reputation alone was enough exposure for TASW to crown him the first Texas All-Star U.S.A. Heavyweight champion. DiBiase would reign on top for only a short time as he soon dropped the title to Chavo Guerrero (Salvador Guerrero) on the 29th of September in San Antonio, TX.  

Chavo was a mainstay of San Antonio wrestling, having stayed in the area after the transition to TASW. During his time in the Southwest area, he held virtually every title available and his tag team with Al Madril is a part of Texas legend. His son Chavo Jr would later gain fame in WCW. Chavo's time as champion came to an end when the title was allegedly held up after a match with former partner Madril that took place near the end of '85.  A match was soon held on December 21st of that same year between Madril and Big Bubba (Fred Ottman) with Bubba coming out on top. Bubba was another stay over from SWCW where he once wrestled under the name Terminator. Most people would come to know Ottman as Typhoon and than the Shockmaster from time spent in both the WWF and WCW later on in his career.  More...

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