Thursday, June 15, 2017

Cyclone Negro Faces The Fury

by David Chappell
Mid-Atlantic Gateway

One of the stranger segments ever on Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling television occurred in the WRAL TV studios in Raleigh on June 28, 1978. As announcers Bob Caudle and David Crockett were running down the show’s card, a person in street clothes wedged his way onto the set.

Cyclone Negro (Pinterest)
The unknown gentleman nervously said, “Excuse me Mr. Crockett, my name is Ed Fury, I’m new around here. I’ve been watching this Cyclone Negro. I’ve been trying to get in the NWA for a long time and I think I can beat this Cyclone Negro if I’m just given a chance. I mean, I don’t like this guy at all; I can beat this guy. If I’m just given a chance, I’ll get rid of him for you!”

Incredulously, Crockett responded, “Well Ed, I’ve heard about you…have not seen you wrestle. You have a very good reputation as a professional wrestler and if you want a match I’m sure we can arrange a match.” The awkward exchanged continued with Fury exclaiming, “I’ll take him anywhere, it doesn’t matter…on TV, anywhere. I want him; I want the guy…I’ll get rid of the guy for you. I want him; I want Cyclone Negro.”

Crockett countered, “Well, if you want him bad enough, why don’t you wrestle him here next week?” With his voice cracking, Fury answered, “Anywhere, it doesn’t matter; I want the guy. It doesn’t matter where I get him…I can’t stand this guy!”

While not following up on why Fury despised Negro so much, Crockett did say, “I know the fans would like to see how good you are, and you picked a tough customer in Cyclone Negro.” Fury acknowledged, “He’s tough, I know he’s tough…he’s one of the best in the world but I still want this guy. I’ve got to make my reputation some kind of way and why not start with Cyclone Negro, I don’t like him anyway.”

When Caudle applauded that this bout would be on TV for all to see Fury agreed and said with his voice rising, “Let everybody see it; I’m gonna beat the guy. I don’t care, I want the guy no matter where I get him…I want him!” Crockett then moved to shut down the uncomfortable segment saying, “All right Ed, next week right here on Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling, you’ll have your chance.” Fury responded, “Thank you, I appreciate it.”

Caudle then seemed to almost joke, “Okay, he’s gonna get rid of him for us David! I’m ready and I know the fans are ready and you’re ready.” Crockett answered, “I hope he does.” Caudle then said, “I do too.”

The normally stoic Caudle again seemed to poke at Fury’s surprising TV challenge when Negro and Patera were in the interview area later in the show. Caudle quipped, “All right Ken, and I think we might just quickly make a comment…a young man Ed Fury came by and said he was gonna get rid of this one for us!” Patera laughed it off by countering, “Yeah, he’s an idiot just like the rest of these goofs making these silly challenges; he’ll wind up in the garbage heap like the rest of ‘em.”

In many respects, Patera turned out to be a prophet of sorts as the next week on Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling TV would be remembered for Blackjack Mulligan divulging the contents of Ric Flair’s personal items in the van the two previously owned and not the Cyclone Negro/Ed Fury challenge match. Negro, the U.S. Brass Knucks Champion with manager the Missouri Mauler in tow, who was tabbed the “Brown Bomber” by his crafty mentor, demolished Fury in the televised bout and thoroughly exposed the youngster from Greenville, North Carolina as a pretender rather than a contender.

Fury wrestled throughout the remainder of 1978 in the Mid-Atlantic area as a preliminary wrestler, often appearing on opening matches of cards, and let’s be charitable and say his wins were few and far between. Negro had a short but effective run in Jim Crockett Promotions during part of 1978, occasionally wrestling in main event matches. Negro’s piledriver and knockout punch were truly weapons to be feared. It still remains a mystery why Ed Fury was brought out on TV to publically challenge the “Brown Bomber,” as it was abundantly clear that the only one unleashing the fury between these two would be Cyclone Negro.