Sunday, October 19, 2008

Charlie Harville interviews Weaver & Nelson - 1972

December 12, 1972
WGHP Studios in High Point, NC
Charlie Harville interviews Johnny Weaver and Art Nelson

Charlie Harville: This is Johnny Weaver and Art Nelson standing behind a seven foot chain link, steel fence like the one which they will be wrestling inside of at the Winston-Salem Coliseum on Tuesday Dec.26, a big holiday card there the day after Christmas. They will meet the (Royal) Kangaroos inside the chain link, steel fence, seven feet high, that will completely surround the ring and keep anybody from getting out of the ring, anybody from running. Johnny, what’s the purpose?

Johnny Weaver: Well Charlie, after the last match we had in Winston- Salem with them, a lot of the fans, they wanted us to get them behind a fence where they can’t run away from us. Well, we went a little better than that with a first in the Winston-Salem area. We’re gonna have a Death Match behind this fence. We have a piece of the fence right here. It’s a real strong fence. It’s gonna be one of the pieces they’re gonna put up around the ring. It’ll be seven feet high and go all the way around the ring. We will be inside the fence and then the fence will be sealed. There’s no getting around it, they’re sure not gonna go under it and they’re not gonna go over the top of it. There are little jagged edges on the top. If they try to go over that, they’re gonna get cut up. The last time we were there, we got cut up. One of the Kangaroos brought something in the ring, they busted both of us open. Before the match was over though we got it away from them and we found out that Royal blood that flows in their veins, it’s the same color as the Yanks blood we got over here. It’s red just like ours and went all over the ring until they ran to the dressing room. With a fence around the ring, a Texas Death Match means that falls don’t count, you can just continue to whip them until they can’t stand up. I think that’s what all the fans want and I know that’s what Art and I want because we’re fed up with these guys coming over here knocking the Yanks and talking about the Yank people and we’re gonna find out just how much more Royal blood they got in their veins.

Charlie Harville: All right, don’t forget that Texas Death Match too, that does mean that you just keep beating up them Art, as long as you want to?

Art Nelson: That’s right. An important thing involved too, there is a $3,000 dollar minimum purse to the winning team. Plus there is $100 for each fall that the winning team wins. Therefore the more falls that we win, the more money we’re gonna make. You know this is the match that… I’m in the business mostly for money like I’ve said many, many times but also this match is for prestige and being proud to be an American. Now this is a match I’ve been in many, many times. America is about the only place that we’ve had it. I’ve been in Australia five years. I never have seen a match like this there. But we’re gonna show these two Aussies how two Yanks can fight and how the better team will leave this ring and this gonna be Johnny and myself. When we get through with them, I think they’re gonna have a lot more respect for the Americans than they have been lately on television and everywhere else.

Charlie Harville: That’s right. Well, that will be in Winston-Salem the day after Christmas on Tuesday December 26. Now you’ve got a big match coming up also in the Greensboro Coliseum a couple of days later on Thursday, December 28. Johnny and Art will be meeting Ole Anderson and the Menace and I know you’ve tangled with Ole Anderson on several occasions.

Art Nelson: That’s right. The Anderson brothers are one of the best wrestling brother’s teams, I think, in the country. This masked man, the Menace, they seem to be going out there and coaching him and he seems to be out watching the matches and sometimes even around ringside and we don’t know if he’s a relative or brother or what. But he’s also close to them and they’ve been grooming him and leading him and he’s doing real good. I would say that we’re not going to underestimate this man. Ole is in there with the Menace because I think they are related to each other and if Ole could get a win over us, this would be a feather in his hat and the Menace, it would be a feather in his hat too. So we’re gonna have to be careful. It’s gonna be right after the tough match we have in Winston-Salem so that’s gonna be extra double tough for us.

Johnny Weaver: Getting back to Winston-Salem for just a minute if I may Charlie. After the last match over there, a Kangaroo went out of there with 14 stitches in his head. We hope we’re gonna put a lot more in both their heads this time.

Charlie Harville: Okay, we’ll find out. That’s in Winston-Salem on the 26th and Greensboro on the 28th.

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Transcription of original TV interview by Carroll Hall. Clipping from the collection of Mark Eastridge.