Tuesday, February 02, 2021

Crockett Cup '85 Continues: Midnights vs. High Flyers (Round Three)

See the Scouting Report on the remaining teams.

Third Round Match #3
(Tournament Match #35)
Midnight Express vs. The High Flyers

The 1985 Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Tag Team Tournament is underway. Wait, did you just say 1985? It’s time to take a look at one of wrestling’s biggest events from the mid-80s and see what it might have been like with a few historical alterations. What if Jim Crockett Promotions hosted its tag team tournament the Crockett Cup in 1985 and included teams from promotions outside the National Wrestling Alliance (“NWA”) including the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), the American Wrestling Association (AWA), New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), All Japan Pro Wrestling, and more? In this case, you’d have 48 of the greatest tag teams in the world battling in a winner take all tournament for $1,000,000 and the prestigious Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Trophy.

The first round saw 32 teams competing to advance to round two with 16 teams making it in. Round two followed as these 16 teams battled the 16 top-seeded tag teams that received a first-round bye. Now, round two has finished and just sixteen teams remain as round three continues. 

Here are the rules for the round two of our tournament. A pool of referees from the NWA, AWA, and WWF have been appointed for the tournament and randomly selected for each match. The third-round matches have a sixty-minute time limit and are sanctioned under NWA rules (throwing an opponent over the top rope is an automatic disqualification). The matches are one fall with a win obtained by a pinfall, submission, count-out, or disqualification. 

The third-round matches are being held over two nights at the Omni in Atlanta, Georgia. The first four matches will take place on Friday April 19 while the remaining four will take place on Saturday April 20. Your commentators for the matches will be Bob Caudle and David Crockett, but as always, you never know when a special guest will show up. 

Last time around Arn and Ole Anderson toughed out a win against Japanese stars Antonio Inoki and Seiji Sakaguchi. Now, Jim Cornette’s Midnight Express (“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton and “Loverboy” Dennis Condrey) take on the High Flyers (“Jumping” Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne.

The Midnight Express (“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton and “Loverboy” Dennis Condrey) with Jim Cornette vs. the High Flyers (“Jumping” Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne)
WWF referee Danny Davis is officiating as Greg Gagne starts off against “Loverboy” Dennis. Collar-and-elbow tie-up but Condrey is starting off rough. Knee to the gut by Condrey which sends Gagne into a neutral corner. Condrey moves in and fires off a punch, leading to a warning by Davis. Condrey goes for another punch but Gagne blocks it. Stiff uppercut forearm by Gagne sends Condrey staggering back. David Crockett says Condrey obviously wasn’t expecting that. Condrey charges Gagne only to get hip tossed. “Beautiful” Bobby comes in after Greg only to get hip-tossed as well. The heels roll out of the ring and regroup with Jim Cornette giving them a much-needed hug. Meanwhile, Gagne confers with Brunzell.

After a brief conference, Dennis gets into the ring and prepares for a second round with the second-generation star. Gagne quickly gets Condrey into a side headlock. Condrey tries to escape by running into the ropes but Gagne puts the brakes on. Gagne puts the pressure on to the point that it looks like Condrey is going to sink to a knee. Condrey does goes down as Gagne continues to use a basic, but highly effective amateur hold. Brunzell is clapping his hands as the crowd rallies behind the babyfaces.

With Condrey under control, Gagne drags him over to the babyface corner and tags in Brunzell. Both men whip Condrey into the ropes and deliver a back body drop. Brunzell applies an arm bar to Dennis and drags him towards Gagne. Condrey struggles but Brunzell ups the pressure. Tag to Gagne who comes off the top rope with an axe-handle to Condrey’s arm. Bob Caudle notes the High Flyers have Dennis Condrey baffled as to what’s next. Gagne applies pressure to the arm as Condrey swings wildly. Danny Davis warns Condrey about the closed fist and Gagne responds to Dennis’s fisticuffs by reapplying the side headlock.

Condrey makes several failed attempts to escape until he goes with a Greco-Roman eye rake, finally succeeding. Gagne tries to get his bearings as “Loverboy” Dennis throws Greg into the heel corner where Bobby has conveniently outstretched a knee. Quick tag to “Beautiful” Bobby who rubs Gagne’s face across the top rope. Danny Davis starts a five-count as Eaton fires off several forearm smashes while Gagne is on the ropes. Eaton whips Gagne and catches him with an elbow to the chest, knocking his opponent down. Bodyslam by Eaton as Gagne goes down again.

Outside the ring, Jim Cornette has joined Bob Caudle and David Crockett on commentary. Bob Caudle says the Midnights are facing a team that is arguably as fast as them and more technically proficient. Jim Cornette questions Bob Caudle’s take on things. David Crockett says the Midnights do have something going for them—they have the added help of Cornette at ringside. Cornette dismisses David’s comments and says Crockett and Gagne both have a lot in common—they were born on third base and thought they hit a triple. 

Eaton throws Gagne into the corner again and tags in Condrey. Eaton holds Gagne as Condrey slugs Greg with a big right. Condrey takes Gagne down near the heel corner with a side headlock on the mat. When Gagne gets to the ropes, Condrey drops a knee across the chest, dazing him. Another tag as Eaton enters, whipping Gagne into the ropes, hitting another elbowsmash. Snapmare by Eaton as he applies a front facelock on Gagne. Greg starts fighting to escape the hold, coming close to getting out, only for Eaton to drag him down with a handful of hair. The crowd boos the Midnights even more and begin chanting “Gagne, Gagne.” Eaton applies the hold as Jim Cornette boasts his team is showing that overrated Gagne what mat wrestling is all about. However, when Gagne starts to fight his way out of the hold, Cornette leaves the announce table and returns to ringside. 

Gagne is fighting his way out of the front facelock as David Crockett cheers Gagne on, saying he doesn’t know where the second-generation star is getting his energy from. Gagne is about to escape the hold when Eaton gives Gagne a thumb to the eye. The referee doesn’t see it and Gagne staggers backwards. Unfortunately, it’s towards the heel corner where Dennis Condrey grabs Gagne’s arms. “Beautiful” Bobby comes in and throws a wild punch, but somehow, Gagne breaks free and Bobby hits Condrey. As Bobby checks on Dennis, Greg rolls to the babyface corner and tags in Brunzell. 

A fresh Brunzell comes in as Eaton tags in Condrey. Eaton charges Brunzell only to get hip-tossed. Condrey tries to blindside Brunzell with a punch, but Brunzell blocks it and fires off a series of punches of his own, earning a warning from the referee. Brunzell bodyslams Condrey as Danny Davis tells Bobby Eaton to get back into his corner. Meanwhile, Brunzell throws Dennis into the ropes but Condrey reverses. However, when Condrey goes for a back body-drop, Brunzell catches his foe with a beautiful Sunset Flip for a two-and-a-half count. David Crockett says he’s not sure that wasn’t a three-count. Brunzell picks up Condrey, but Jim Cornette gets on the mat apron, yelling something at “Jumping” Jim. Brunzell pauses, but he seems more concerned with what’s going on in the ring. After all, his team is one step away from round four. 

“Jumping” Jim whips Condrey into the ropes. High elevation dropkick by Brunzell floors Condrey, but Brunzell missed the blind tag when he paused to look at Cornette. Brunzell goes to cover Condrey as Eaton drops a legdrop on him, covering him. Gagne runs in to break up the pin, but a quick-thinking Cornette extends his tennis racket, tripping Gagne as the referee makes the three-count on Brunzell. 

Winners: The Midnight Express (“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton and “Loverboy” Dennis Condrey). 

The Midnights high-tail it out of the ring and grab Cornette as the fans boo them and throw garbage at them. Should be an interesting time getting out of the parking lot, but it won’t be the first time the Midnights and Cornette have dealt with this predicament.

Join us next time:
Kevin and Mike Von Erich take on the British Bulldogs (Davey Boy Smith and the Dynamite Kid). Who will advance to round four as in the quest for tag team glory and some serious cash!

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Original Tournament Announcement (May 2020)

Seedings and First Round Pairings Announced

THIRD ROUND MATCHES  (Scouting Report)
Third Round: Match 1 (Tournament Match #33)
     The Rock & Roll Express vs. The Russians
Third Round: Match 2 (Tournament Match #34)
     Ole & Arn Anderson vs. Antonio Inoki and Seiji Sakaguchi
Third Round: Match 3 (Tournament Match #35)
     The Midnight Express vs. The High Flyers

Second Round: Matches 1 & 2 (Tournament 17 & 18)

     Mulligan/McDaniel vs. The Russians
    Rock & Roll Express vs. Maharishi/Nagasaki
Second Round: Matches 3 & 4 (Tournament 19 & 20)
    Brown/Jannetty vs. Inoki & Sakaguchi
    Ole & Arn Anderson vs. Windham/Rotunda)
Second Round: Matches 5 & 6 (Tournament 21 & 22)

    Midnight Express vs. Hart Foundation
    PYT Express vs. High Flyers
Second Round: Matches 7 & 8 (Tournament 23 & 24) 
    Rude/Barr (with Percy Pringle III) vs. Kevin and Mike Von Erich
    Fujinami/Kimura vs. British Bulldogs
Second Round: Matches 9 & 10 (Tournament 25 & 26)
    Brody/Hansen vs. Williams/DiBiase
    Road Warriros vs. Lawler/Dundee
Second Round: Matches 11 & 12 (Tournament 27 & 28)
    Piper & Orton vs. The Oklahoma Cowboys
    The Funk Brothers vs. The Younglood Brothers
Second Round: Matches 13 & 14 (Tournament 29 & 30)
    Rhodes/Murdoch vs. Adams/Hernandez
    Sheik/Volkoff vs. Steamboat/Snuka
Second Round: Matches 15 & 16 (Tournament 31 & 32)
    Fantastics vs. Fabulous Ones
    Sheepherders vs. Freebirds


First Round: Matches 1 & 2
    Hennig/Blackwell vs. Mulligan/McDaniel
    Tyler/Whatley vs. Maharishi/Nagasaki
First Round: Matches 3 & 4
    Windham/Rotunda vs. Bockwinkel/Saito
    Rougeaus vs. Inoki/Sakaguchi
First Round: Matches 5 &6
    Barbarian/Graham vs. Hart Foundation (Hart/Neidhart)
    High Flyers (Brunzell/Gagne) vs. Savage/Poffo
First Round: Matches 7 & 8:
    The Von Erich vs. Blanchard/Abdullah the Butcher
    Tenryu/Tsuruta vs. The British Bulldogs
First Round: Matches 9 & 10:
    Graham/Blair vs. DiBiase/Williams
    Valiant/McGraw vs. Lawler/Dundee
First Round: Matches 11 & 12:
    Piper/Orton vs. Patterson/Fernandez
    Rock & Roll RPMs vs. Youngblood Brothers
First Round: Matches 13 and 14:
    Dynamic Duo (Gino & Chris) vs. American Starship
    Sawyer Bros. vs. Steamboat/Snuka
First Round: Matches 15 and 16
    Batten Twins vs. Fabulous Ones
    Weaver/Houston vs. Sheepherders