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The following is a reprint of the Torch Newsletter ETC. Newswire from five years ago this week.
-Jason Powell, Torch assistant editor
* * *
Torch Newsletter Archive
By Wade Keller, Torch editor
Originally published: Pro Wrestling Torch Weekly newsletter #479
Cover dated: February 14, 1998
EXTREME CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING
On the Road: Feb. 6 in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. at the War Memorial: Al Snow (w/The Head) beat Danny Doring (w/Roadkill, Paul Diamond, Bill Alfonso), Justin Credible (w/Jason) beat Jerry Lynn, Lance Storm beat Tracy Smothers (w/Little Guido, Tommy Rich), Rob Van Dam & Sabu & Brakkus beat Axl Rotten & Balls Mahoney & Tommy Dreamer, Shane Douglas beat Chris Chetti, The Dudleys beat New Jack & Kronus & Spike Dudley, Taz beat Bam Bam Bigelow via DQ when Douglas interfered, Tommy Dreamer & Sandman beat Sabu & Rob Van Dam.
Feb. 7 in Kissimmee, Fla.: Dreamer & Axl & Balls beat The FBI (Rich & Smothers & Guido), Justin beat Chetti, Taz beat Roadkill (Erin O'Grady was special ref), Douglas beat Lynn, Storm beat Candido, Snow beat Diamond, Van Dam beat Bigelow, New Jack & Kronus & Spike Dudley beat Buh Buh Ray & D-Von Dudley, Sandman beat Sabu.
Notebook: Snow continued to get huge pops at house shows...
Dreamer and Beulah sign autographs on Feb. 13 at the Rock & Roll Plus on South Street in Philadelphia...
Feb. 21 at ECW Arena in Philadelphia features Dreamer vs. Justin in a "First Blood" match and Taz vs. Brakkus (w/Lance Wright)...
The Mar. 1 ECW PPV appears to be shaping up as Bigelow vs. Taz, Sabu vs. Kronus, Candido & Douglas vs. Storm & a partner, Dreamer vs. Justin, Wing Kanemura vs. Masato Tanaka...
New Japan: Feb. 7 in Sapporo, Japan at the Nakajima Sports Center (6,500): In the main event, Kensuke Sasaki beat Osamu Nishimura to retain the IWGP Hvt. Title with the Riki Lariat at 25:20. It was Nishimura's first challenge for the title. It's surprising the match was booked for 25 minutes considering Sasaki's typical workrate and Nishimura's lack of being over with the crowd. Also on the card, Masahiro Chono & Keiji Muto (representing NWO-Japan) beat Manabu Nakanishi & Satoshi Kojima at 20:25 to retain the IWGP Tag Team Titles. Chono made Kojima submit with a reverse full-nelson. That continued the storyline of putting heat on the NWO. Scott Norton & NWO Sting & Big Titan (Rick Bogner, who wrestled in the WWF as the "new" Razor Ramon last year) & Hiroyoshi Tenzan beat Shinya Hashimoto & Kazuo Yamazaki & Junji Hirata & Tadao Yasuda two falls to one. In the first fall, Norton pinned Yasuda at 0:20 with the powerbomb. In the second fall, Hashimoto pinned Tenzan at 11:27 after a brainbuster DDT. In the third fall, Big Titan pinned Hirata at 3:57 with the flying shoulder block. Justin Liger pinned Shinjiro Otani at 23:08 with a top rope brainbuster to become the 32nd IWGP Jr. Hvt. Title. It begins Liger's ninth IWGP Jr. Hvt. Title reign. Otani's title run, which began last August, included him beating every major junior heavyweight in the promotion including victories over WCW's Chris Benoit and Ultimo Dragon. The only wrestler he had yet to beat in a title match was Liger, although he had defeated him in a non-title match last fall. This is the third straight year that Liger and Otani have had title matches early in the year. Liger has now won all three matches. The previous two were strong match of the year candidates, and early reports on this year's match are that it was also exceptional.
On the undercard, Akitoshi Saito pinned Yutaka Yoshie, Kashin & El Samurai beat Tatsuhito Takaiwa & Koji Kanemoto, Michiyoshi Ohara & Tatsuhito Goto & Kengo Kimura beat Kazuyuki Fujita & High Voltage, and Osamu Kido & Tatsumi Fujinami beat Akira Nogami & Shiro Koshinaka. [John Williams, Koichi Yoshizawa]
FMW: Feb. 4 in Osdaka at Furitsu Gym: Mr. Pogo (not the original) pinned Sasakmi, Crusher Maedomari beat Miss Mongol, Mr. Fuji pinned Flying Kid Ichihara, Hayabusa & Hisakatsu Oya beat Super Leather & Hido, Masatao Tanaka pinned Tetsuo Kuoda, Atsushi Onita & Koji Nakagawa & Hideki Hosaki & The Gladiator beat Jado & Gedo & Mr. Gannosuke & Yukihiro Kanemura.
Onita asked Giant Baba if he would use The Gladiator on his May 1 Tokyo Dome event, but Baba said no. Onita had offered to fight Baba in an Electric Dynamite Match, but obviously Baba did not want that match or Onita on his show.
Music City Wrestling: Feb. 7 in Nashville, Tenn. at the Fairgrounds: Billy Joe Travis beat Bobby Brawnz, "Stylin" Shane Eden beat Frenchy Riviera via DQ, Nick Dinsmore pinned Skinny Kenny, King Mabel beat Jason Perry, Wolfie D pinned Derrick King, Wolfie D fought Mabel to a DCO so Wolfie retained the N.A. Title, Colorado Kid & The Moondogs (replacing no-shows Head Bangers) fought Flash Flanagan & Terry Golden & Brickhouse Brown to a no contest, Dutch Mantell (w/Derek King) fought Nick Dinsmore to a draw, Ladies Night Out beat Jason Lee & Mike Maverick, Rock & Roll Express beat The Volunteers (Riggins & Dunn) via DQ to retain the NWA Tag Titles.
Intercontinental Pro Wrestling: Feb. 7 in Booneville, Ark. at the Armory: Gary Lang beat Rude Dog, New York Nightmare & Sheik Omar beat The Hillbillies, "Tiger" Treach Phillips Jr. beat Johnny Morton, Buster Johnson & Motley Cruz beat Crane & Bill Ash.
Global Wrestling Alliance: Feb. 7 in Lima, Ohio (490): Calavera Cortez beat Devon Daniels, "Canadian Sensation" Larry Destiny beat Dexter Dementia (w/The Postmaster), Kasey Thunder beat G. Moe, "Beautiful" Brian Fury (w/The Producer & Alexis Machine) beat Elvis Elliot, Mr. Main Event beat Jimi V and Ireland in a Triangle match, Crusher Kline beat Alexis Machine. Upcoming dates: Mar. 7 in Cleveland, Oh. at Chanel H.S., Apr. 7 in Cleveland, Oh. at Independence H.S.
National Wrestling Alliance: Feb. 7 in Somerdale, N.J. at the H.S.: Overweight Lover beat Lupus, Great Caruso beat Metal Maniac, Dave Keller beat Evil Twin, "Surfer" Ray Odyssey beat Rik Ratchet (mgd. by Donny B.), The Patch beat "Ragin' Bull" Manny Fernandez (mgd. by The Master), Reckless Youth beat Lance Diamond, The Misfits beat Devon Storm & Twiggy Ramirez, Cactus Jack fought Doug Gilbert (w/Dennis Coraluzzo) to a no contest. Upcoming dates: Feb. 14 in Mount Holy. N.J. at the Armory (Lt. Hvt. Title Tourney). Feb. 21 in Pinehill, N.J. at the H.S. The Third Annual Eddie Gilbert Memorial convention will be held Feb. 27 and 28 at the Philadelphia Airport Radisson. Advertised as appearing are Nick Bockwinkel, Sid, Sunny, Marlena, Jim Cornette, Public Enemy, Dory Funk Jr., Buddy Landell, King Kong Bundy, Doug Gilbert, and Tommy Gilbert. The main events are Sid vs. Bundy, Tommy & Doug Gilbert vs. Dory Funk Jr. & Landell, Storm & Ace Darling (w/Jim Cornette) vs. The Misfits, Sunny vs. Marlena in an arm wrestling match (Bockwinkel as referee). Info available at (973) 684-3137 or write Tommy Fierro, P.O. Box 2072, West Patterson, N.J. 07424. Also, Mar. 22 in Garfield, N.J. at the Boys & Girls Club headlines with Bundy vs. Jimmy Snuka.
North American Wrestling Alliance: Feb. 7 in Cherryville, N.C. (230): Pat Beck beat Gladiator, The Executioner beat Jason Friedman, Flamin' Newsome & Queen of Hearts beat Lelani Kai & Jessica, Big Ron Studd (Ron Reis) beat Gary Royal, The Assassins beat Kane & Abel.
Hammerlock Wrestling: Feb. 6 in Essex, United Kingdom at the Civic Hall (310): "Wonderkid" Jonny Storm beat Robbie "The Rocker" Thomas, Gary Steele beat Mad Dog McPhie, "Fearless" Jody Flash & "Debutante" John Ryan beat Dino Scarlo, Guy Thunder beat "Solid Gold" Scott Parker, Dean Champion & "The Anarchist" Doug Williams beat Tyrone Archer & "Extremist" Justin Richards via CO, Gary Steele won a 20 man rumble. Upcoming date: Feb. 17 in Catford, London. [Dean Ayass]
Southern Championship Wrestling: Feb. 3 in British, S.C. (70): S.W. Steele beat Billy Bad, Jay Eagle beat American Storm Trooper, J.B. Anthony fought J-Dawg to a DDQ, Ricky Regal beat Wonderful Wayne, Desperado & Johnny Dollar fought Mad Max & Steve Stampede and Cruiser & Morton Lewis to a DDQ.
IPWA: Jan. 15 in Alexandria, Va. at Secret Cove Restaurant (175): Draco beat Shorty Smalls, Knuckle Zanwich beat Harvey Shaw, Christian York beat Mark Shrader, Cpl. Punishment beat Adam Flash, Cueball Carmichael beat Party Animal Arillo, Julio Sanchez, beat Lance Diamond, Axl Rotten beat Knuckle Zanwich, Jimmy Cicero beat Dan Rage, Carmichael won a battle royal to win the vacant IPWA Title. Reurn date: Feb. 19 [Bob Pivoroff]
Southern Championship Wrestling: Jan. 13 in Greer, S.C. (100): Rattlesnake Wesbrooks beat Billy Badd, Beau James beat J.D. Justice, Blackhawk Dalton beat Max Cortez via DQ, Jay Eagle beat The Desperado, Dog Pound beat Steve Stanpede & Madd Maxx Miles.
Portland Wrestling: Jan. 9 in Eugene, Or. Tony Cazina beat Chad, Richie Magnet beat Chuck "Bam Bam" Gordy, Buddy "Heart Throb" Wayne beat Billy Two Eagles, Josh Wilcox & Bruiser Brian Cox beat Lou "The Bull" Andrews & C.W. Bergstrom to win the Portland Tag Titles after which Cox turned on Wilcox and Wilcox was stretchered out.
Notebook: The Associated Press ran a brief story last week on an independent pro wrestler who went berserk and was arrested. The nearly 400 pound William G. Kinney II, who wrestled as "Tiny," went on a rampage in Summit Hill, Pa., smashing his way into a neighbor's house at 6 a.m., trying to break into three other houses, and then roaming the street naked. He became combative when police tried to take him away in a patrol car. He suffered cuts, was treated at a hospital, then was transferred to a local mental health unit. Summit Hill police chief Bruce Markovich said, "He was yelling stuff about Gatorade, how he wanted to live forever, and then saying he wanted to die. Nothing made much sense"...
The NWA has added Pro Wrestling Express out of Pennsylvania and Southwest wrestling out of Texas as members...
Jerry Lawler has had discussions with WMC-TV about reviving the USWA Saturday night timeslot. He continues to promote Wednesday Casino shows in the area. The lawsuit filed against Lawler by Mark Selker has hit a snag as the judge failed to grant a trial to the Selker group, but it could come up again...
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