Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Hip To Be Square

Roddy Piper/Rick Martel (c) VS Kiwi Sheepherders - Portland NWA Pacific Northwest Wrestling Tag Team Championship 5/3/1980

JJZ: I really really tried to play forward an Islanders match since I wasn't super familiar with the tag team. The match pool was just so shallow I couldn't dive in no matter how hard I tried. But I found this. The video quality is shit and even cuts out for a few seconds. I've only seen a few things from Portland but always enjoy it. This is a 2/3 falls or TV time remaining match for the tag titles. The story telling in this match makes it really stand out to me. Playing on things later in the match from earlier in the match. Using the match format to preserve themselves for the later falls. I really popped when the ref didn't see the Sheepherders tag only for the babies to capitalize off it. I don't really remember seeing that in the 80s. I would love to dive into this feud more.

CJD: Early 80s Portland is a territory I just vibe with every time I watch it and this match is no different. The heels start out underneath and stay there for a large chunk of the match which is a format I've mentioned before is hard to do well. They do it well here. Piper being the bad friend influencing the clean-cut good kid Ricky Martel is awesome. Is Piper the first real anti-hero in pro wrestling? This felt like a chippy hockey game between division rivals where the ref knows to throw the rule book out at times, the best you can do is try to contain it. This story of the feud boiling over to the point where the faces are trying every tactic they can to to beat the dastardly Rose Army makes for a compelling psychology each fall. You weren't able to find an Islanders match but you found another beautiful illustration of the art of a heated feud, and in particular a tag team feud at that. Every minute of this, including everything post-match, makes me want to tune in to watch more of these teams against each other. Simply put, I loved this match!

One thing that bummed me out though was that we missed a Martel dropkick when the video cut out, which is always a thing of beauty. But thankfully he made up for it later in the match, including a psycho bump that caught me totally by surprise. I brought that one back multiple times.

No comments:

Post a Comment