Many of you may (or may not) be aware of the website NWAClassics.com which is a subscription video-on-demand service that features the Paul Boesch/Houston video library from the 1960s-1980s. They recently added a tape of the famous 1977 match from Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling between Greg Valentine and Wahoo McDaniel where Valentine broke Wahoo's leg and won the Mid-Atlantic heavyweight championship in the process. The video includes the complete aftermath as well, including Paul Jones attacking Valentine and Ricky Steamboat mixing it up with Ric Flair as well. It is rare to find original footage from the WRAL TV studio to begin with. Most of what is in the WWE library from the Mid-Atlantic area is from the WPCQ TV studio in Charlotte. Cool to hear Bob Caudle and David Crockett call this match in this setting. And the quality of the footage is amazing.
Houston, like St. Louis, wasn't a wrestling territory with it's own stable of wrestlers that booked regular towns and tours, etc. It was a single city that booked talent from all over the country from many different territories. While it was at various times affiliated with certain organizations or promoters from which it predominantly booked talent, it was an office that stood on its own. As a result the top talent from across the wrestling landscape, including the AWA, WWWF, and many different member offices of the NWA, appeared on the Friday night cards promoted by Paul Boesch at the Sam Houston Coliseum.
The resulting video tape library is very impressive, and it's notable that the WWE did not wind up acquiring it for its huge archive of territorial footage.
So with the NWAClassics.com library only featuring tapes of matches and interviews from the Houston promotion, it was odd that a Mid-Atlantic wrestling match showed up on the service recently.
We can't be sure what explains this one Mid-Atlantic match on the service, but in the territory days, promoters would send tapes into other territories when one of their stars was booked into that territory. It is likely that is the case here, that this match was shown on Houston TV in advance of either Wahoo McDaniel or Greg Valentine coming to Houston, or possibly both. No way of knowing if that is indeed the case here, but not sure what else would explain it. Besides, the WWE owns the Jim Crockett Promotions tape library.
NWAClassics.com is currently offering (as of this writing) a free 7-day trial of the service, and this one match makes that trial worth taking. Add to that the very impressive line-up of that includes matches with such stars as Harley Race, Ric Flair, Terry Funk, Gino Hernandez, Tully Blanchard, Ted DiBiase, Andre the Giant, Bruiser Brody, and many many others.
And the quality of the footage is in many cases just stunning, and is in full 1080 HD. The only negative is the unnecessary stretching of the video to the HD standard 16:9 widescreen format. Since I'm guessing most people watch this on the their computer or their portable device, I'm not sure I see the point, and the distortion is annoying, although the footage is still tremendous to see.
Check them out at NWAClassics.com or NWAOnDemand.com. The link directly to the Mid-Atlantic Wahoo/Valentine match is here.