Monday, February 28, 2011

History of the Louisiana Heavyweight Championship

The Louisiana Heavyweight Title has a history that dates back to the early 1960's when a version of the title was promoted by the NWA through its Gulf Coast booking office. After this office stopped promoting in Louisiana, the Tri-State booking office of Leroy McGuirk started a version of the title in 1972.

When "Cowboy" Bill Watts took over the promotion in 1979 and renamed it Mid-South Wrestling, he withdrew from the NWA and renamed the titles of the promotion. Although not a member of the National Wrestling Alliance, Watts kept close ties with it and used NWA talent from time to time, including the World Heavyweight Champion.

On April 27, 1978, a one night tournament was held in Baton Rouge, LA to crown a Louisiana Heavyweight Champion, as the title had been defunct for several years. This tournament was won by the masked Assassin (Joe Hamilton). The title was recognized and defended in Mid-South Wrestling until it was retired in 1983 when Mid-South became the Universal Wrestling Federation. The last champion was "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan.

Enjoy this story from the Wrestling Revue/Wrestling News that discusses the history of the title beginning with the 1978 tournament.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

World Junior Heavyweight Title

For many years, Leroy McGuirk and his territory controlled and promoted the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Championship. Leroy himself held this title for many years and retired as the champion when he lost his eyesight due to an accident.

The greatest Junior Heavyweight champion, however, was the great Danny Hodge. Hodge held the title on six occasions and also retired as champion in 1976 when he suffered a broken neck in a car accident.

During the 1960's and 1970's, the championship received top billing on cards throughout the territory and was as important as the North American Heavyweight Championship in the promotion. Enjoy this clipping that discusses Danny Hodge's fifth title win.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Mid-South:The Best Buy In Wrestling

Unlike many believe, the sale of wrestling T-shirts didn't start with Hulkamania. I remember seeing ads in programs at least as far back as the early 1970's for Dr. X shirts and masks.

Check out this ad from a mid 1980's program for JYD and Hacksaw Duggan T-shirts and caps. I remember the souvenir stand having these, as well as Hacksaw Butch Reed, Rock-N-Roll Express, Jake Roberts (anybody remember the shirt that said "DDT - Cruel But Fair?), and several others.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Who Is Stagger Lee?

One of the hottest angles in Mid-South history was the appearance of Stagger Lee. After his initial run against Ted DiBiase, he made a return appearance to help out "Cowboy" Bill Watts in his feud against Jim Cornette. This culminated in a match at the Superdome with the two facing the Midnight Express with the control of Mid-South Sports at stake.

Many believed that Stagger Lee was really Junkyard Dog in disguise, but neither DiBiase nor Cornette were ever able to prove this. Enjoy this story from an old program from the Superdome.

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