Saturday, January 23, 2021

An Introduction Fit for a 'Superstar' (Part Two)

by David Chappell
Mid-Atlantic Gateway

Catch up on Part One.

Fans of the Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling television program were introduced to the “Superstar” for the first time at the beginning of the show that was taped on September 29, 1976. Later in the broadcast, the Superstar and his cane-carrying manager Boris Malenko were unexpectedly confronted in a way that drew the ire of the masked newcomer.

Prof. Boris Malenko
with the Masked Superstar

Starting the interview that ran during the middle of the show, host Bob Caudle began, “Here is Boris Malenko with his new star, Superstar, and Malenko things must really be changing for you as you look quite a bit different from last time we saw you.” Malenko replied, “You have to spend money to make money, and talking about spending money, it cost me a fortune but it’s worth it. Every single penny that I’ve spent is worth it because what’s cheap at the beginning is costly in the end run…I’ve found that out all too often in the past.”

After his clear dig at the team of the Mongols who he had previously managed, Boris continued, “Now let me just say this, and I want you people to pay close attention. I’ve looked to the four corners of the earth for such a person as my Superstar. Where did I find him? Right here in the United States as I said before. Never has a man with such credentials come forth to you people in the Mid-Atlantic area. Can you imagine, can you imagine a former gold medal winner of the Olympics? A man that holds a ‘docrtine’ degree in two situations…psychology and also neurology? Now, what else can you ask for? This in itself, this is the ingredients itself…wrestling is a mind situation also. When it comes to mind and equipment that he has…”

Interrupting Malenko’s rant at this juncture was none other than the president of Jim Crockett Promotions, Jim Crockett, Jr. Crockett explained, “I hate to interrupt, but I just talked to Eddie Graham, President of the National Wrestling Alliance. Mr. Malenko, you’ve been here for several months, you’ve wrestled…as far as we know you have no physical ailment at all, and Eddie Graham has ruled that you will not be allowed to carry a cane in a TV studio or an arena where there’s a wrestling match being held. Thank you very much.”

A wide-eyed Caudle could only then say amazingly, “Oh my!”

A clearly riled up Superstar immediately addressed the exiting Jim Crockett, “Excuse me Mr. Crockett. You have the audacity, the unmitigated gall, to approach my associate here Boris Malenko. Now, these are some of the incidents that Mr. Malenko has warned me of before I came into this particular area. Time and time again, he said he’s been insulted, embarrassed in front of the public. I’m here for one purpose and one purpose only and that’s to reestablish the credentials of Mr. Boris Malenko…and, I’m going to do that.”

Caudle followed up to Malenko, “I tell you, he has some great credentials to live up to after what you’ve said about him and he’s gonna have some really tough competition I’m sure he must know that.”

Malenko concluded, “When Superstar talks it puts a chill up and down your spine because what he says is the truth, it’s spoken from his heart. What he says he means, because I know I have an understanding with him that’s beyond anything else and he’ll not only show it, but he’ll prove it!”

Having the President of Jim Crockett Promotions making an exceedingly rare on-air appearance reinforced that this masked newcomer was indeed a high-end talent that was coming into the territory right at the top of the Mid-Atlantic Wrestling hierarchy. Add that to all the platitudes that Boris Malenko heaped on his new charge, and this was undoubtedly an introduction that was fit for a Superstar!