Wednesday, September 26, 2007

One of Many Great Park Center Nights

by Mike Cline

One summer Monday night in 1968 0r 1969, I journeyed down to Charlotte's Park Center after seeing the Saturday build-up on WBTV's Championship Wrestling for a big feud match between the Southern Tag Team Champions Gene and Ole Anderson versus crowd favorites George Becker and Johnny Weaver. Both teams were heavily pushed on TV that week, with Becker & Weaver promising to regain the belts from "The Minnesota Wrecking Crew".

The two-out-three-fall match began (all tag matches in Crockett land back then were of this nature). Well, after two falls, all was even (this was usually the case). The winner of the third fall would get the Tag Team Belts. I recall vividly the point of the match in which Johnny Weaver ended up on the Park Center floor, and before he knew what was happening, Ole Anderson posted Johnny's noggin' against the solid steel ring post. Johnny disappeared from our site. The crowd is going crazy. Finally, Johnny staggered to his feet, his face the proverbial Gordon Solie "crimson mask", and I mean big-time. Johnny is delirious, swinging and attacking anything close to him. He gets back into the ring, and he slugs Gene, he slugs Ole, he slugs George, and he slugs the referee. Oh no---slugging the ref means a DQ, and no belts.

The show is over. Johnny is dragged to the dressing room seeking medical attention. Everyone goes home. I'm disappointed, because George & Johnny remain beltless. But they were still champions in my eyes.

Taken from "The Road To Statesville", as originally appeared on the Mid-Atlantic Gateway in July, 2003.