Thursday, September 24, 2015

Ric Flair Hits the Road as Champion

"The new champion must fulfill the obligations of the previous champion." - NWA Bylaws

Following Ric Flair's first NWA title win in September of 1981, he immediately took the bookings of previous champion Dusty Rhodes and had to miss some of the bookings he had previously scheduled in his home area of Mid-Atlantic Wrestling.

The first of those was Richmond, Virginia where he was scheduled to team with Wahoo McDaniel to battle Roddy Piper and Abdullah the Butcher.

The second was in his hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina where he missed teaming with Wahoo and Ricky Steamboat to go against Piper, Abdullah, and Ole Anderson.  He was replaced on that show by Jake "The Snake" Roberts.

The Charlotte Observer reported in their results from the Charlotte card:

"Ric Flair, scheduled to be teamed with McDaniel and Steamboat, was replaced by Roberts because of other commitments as the new National Wrestling Alliance heavyweight champion."

Here is a brief look at Ric's first week as NWA Champion:

Friday, September 18
After beating Dusty Rhodes in Kansas City Thursday night, Flair travels 190 miles north on I-35 to Des Moines, Iowa, and successfully defends the title against former champion Harley Race. (Flair was originally booked to wrestle in Richmond, VA.)

Saturday, September 19
Flair takes the red-eye to Atlanta, Georgia, for his first televised appearance as NWA champion on "Georgia Championship Wrestling" at the studios of WTBS-17.

After the Atlanta TV taping, he hops a plane back to Kansas City and makes the 120 mile trip due west on I-70 to Junction City, Kansas and defends the title against "Bulldog" Bob Brown. (Flair was originally booked to wrestle in Charlotte, NC.)

Sunday, September 20
Flair leaves the heartland to head back to his home area and wrestles on a 3:00 PM matinee show in Asheville North Carolina, teaming with Wahoo McDaniel to face Ole Anderson and Roddy Piper. He then hops a chartered plane to Toronto, Ontario, to again team with McDaniel vs. Anderson and Piper in the Maple Leaf Gardens. The Toronto office was being booked by Jim Crockett Promotions during this time.

Monday, September 21  - Wednesday, September 23
Flair spent the early part of the following week in the Georgia territory defending the NWA title against old rival Jimmy Snuka in Augusta, the Masked Superstar in Macon, and Tommy Rich in Columbus.