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 - Greg Klein

- Mid South Wrestling tape 027, produced 12-30-82, from what I hear, in the basement of Bill Watts' house in Oklahoma.

- Announcer is Watts for the year in review and on voice-overs for the matches, however Houston City Wrestling announcer Pete Birkholz, Paul Boesch's nephew, calls some of the matches from the Sam Houston Coliseum.

Nearly everything is joined in progress.

- Very slyly, the "year in review" features matches only from October of 1982 on, allowing Watts to recap current angles and feature his big wrestlers moving into 1983. There's also a lot of talk from Watts about his new partnership with Paul Boesch and Houston City Wrestling.

- For background, MSW started with the "lower Tri-States" area, Mississippi and Louisiana, but ultimately Watts bought out former partner Leroy McGuirk and added Oklahoma and Arkansas. Southern Missouri was also part of the old promotion, but I'm just not sure where Watts drew the line in the 80s. In the late 70s/early-80s, the Mississippi and Louisiana titles were big features of the promotion, just behind the North American title, but in 1982 Jim Duggan won both titles to consolidate them, and they are phased out by 1983.

- Boesch's Houston City Wrestling had run independently for nearly 50 years, but in the early 80s had begun to get more talent from local offices. Boesch tried working with Texas World Class and Southwestern Championship Wrestling, but had problems working with Jack Adkisson (aka Fritz Von Erich) and Joe Blanchard. In 1980 and 1981, Watts had one of the biggest stars in the country in Junkyard Dog, and in Dog's obit in the The Wrestling Observer it says Watts used Dog's drawing power as leverage to get into Houston and make Boesch one of his promoters. Boesch however always made his own cards and often booked main events and features than had nothing to do with MSW. His TV show on Channel 39 in Houston featured MSW's show plus another hour (in the later years, a second show was added with more extra footage) of promos and highlights from the Sam Houston Coliseum and the biweekly shows.

- Boesch also had a history of booking the world champion in his city. In the 70s he often used NWA champs, but there were some famous problems, such as the time Dory Funk Jr. got into a ranching accident and missed dropping the title to Jack Brisco in Houston. Later in the decade Harley Race no-showed two huge cards. At that point, as has been recently either discovered or uncovered on Kayfabe Memories, Boesch sold a small part of his promotion to AWA champ Nick Bockwinkle. Bockwinkle had several years of great matches and title defenses in Houston, including Watts first full year in partnership with Boesch, 1983, wheen Bockwinkle defended against Mil Mascaras, Mr. Wrestling II, Chavo Guerrero, JYD and Dusty Rhodes. But Bockwinkle apparently didn't get along with Watts, and bailed in late 1983. 

- Whew! Onto the Dec. 30 Mid South show:

- Video of Kamala. This is his intro, with the video from Jerry Jarrett's backyard. I never know what to say about Kamala. Watts is selling the matchup with Andre the Giant.

- Andre-JYD-Mascaras vs. Killer Khan-Tully Blanchard-Gino Hernandez. 10-1-82, Houston. Andre plods around even here. No one notices. And Killer Khan is nothing but the heat from the angle where he "broke Andre's ankle." Gino and Dog have cameos in what is shown. Mil versus Tully is very good action though. Tully throws Mil onto Andre outside the ring, but Andre throws Mil back in on top of Tully for the pin. Watts works hard to sell the different rules in Houston including Mil using the top rope, and says the two groups will be working together to solve their differences. It just makes me think, even ten years before the ill-conceived ban in WCW, Watts was making a mistake with the top-rope rule.

- Gino Hernandez vs. Mil Mascaras. 10-15-82. Houston. Just the finish of "the Trojan Horse," according to Watts. Mil flying body presses Gino from the top, but the ref is out and Tully, wearing a wig and letter jacket hits the ring, counts the pin and then decks Mil with an object. Gino covers and sure enough the real ref makes it back in time to count the pin. Mil rarely did jobs, even Watts points out that it must certainly be the first time Mil has lost in Houston.  More...

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