Sunday, October 17, 2021

Final Match in Crockett Cup '85! Briscos vs. Rock-n-Roll Express

by Mike Rickard

Mid-Atlantic Gateway Contributor 


Rock-n-Roll Express vs. Jack & Jerry Brisco (Oklahoma Cowboys)

Tournament Final - 2 of 3 Falls
(Tournament Match #47 - First Fall)

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. Round three continued with the remaining 16 teams slugging it out with eight making their way to round four. Round four saw things heat up further as eight teams battled to determine “The Final Four.” Now, two teams remain as only one team will walk away with $1,000,000 and the prestigious Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Trophy awaits. 

Sixth Round Rules: Special Stipulations Announced
Here are the rules for the round six of our tournament. While a pool of referees from the NWA, AWA, and WWF were appointed for the tournament’s first five rounds, things are going to be different this time around due to the wild finish to round five’s second match between the Fabulous Freebirds (Michael “P.S.” Hayes and Terry “Bam Bam” Gordy) and the Oklahoma Cowboys. There, Road Warrior Hawk and “Precious” Paul Ellering attempted to attack the Cowboys, with Hawk unmasking Roy as Jerry Brisco.  There’s a lot of confusion going on but announcers Bob Caudle and David Crockett will hopefully have some answers. 

The final match is taking place at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex in Greensboro, North Carolina on Sunday April 28. Let’s join Bob Caudle and David Crockett at ringside. The fans are cheering as the main event is about to take place. Bob Caudle says it’s the moment weeks in the making and that the fans will finally see who the best tag team in the world is. David Crockett says the tournament isn’t without controversy, but NWA President Jim Crockett wants to make sure things end conclusively and without outside interference. Bob adds he understands Jim Crockett Jr. has made special arrangements and asks David to explain them. David says that the match is going to be held in a steel cage with a special referee and a ringside enforcer. In addition, the match is two-out-of-three falls with no time limit. The only way to win a fall is by pinfall or submission. Andre the Giant serves as special ringside enforcer but he has no authority to officiate in the match or tell the referee if he sees any chicanery. 

Pre-Match Interviews
Bob Caudle tells David Crockett that Johnny Weaver met with the Brisco Brothers earlier at an undisclosed location. David Crockett adds Jack and Jerry have lots to worry about as Stan Hansen is gunning for them as are “Precious” Paul Ellering and Road Warrior Hawk. Jack and Jerry smirk as “The Buzzsaw” interviews them. Johnny asks the Briscos if they have anything to say for themselves. Jerry laughs and says, “We have a lot to say, but it boils down to this—we fooled everyone. We fooled you, we fooled the fans, and we fooled all the wrestlers who stepped into the ring with us.” Jack Brisco adds “Who said you can’t fool all of the people all the time?” Jack laughs and tells Johnny “They say we’re wild and we’re mean and we’re creating a scene. We’ve gone crazy. Let me tell you something Johnny Weaver, the Briscos are one step away from the million dollars and the Crockett Cup and there’s no way two long-haired punks like the Rock-n-Roll Express are going to beat them.” Jerry adds that he and his brother were world champions when Morton and Gibson were stealing hubcaps. Jack finishes by saying “We’ve been wrestling Oklahoma tornadoes for years and the Express won’t know what hit them.” 

Tony Schiavone is backstage with Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson of the Rock-n-Roll Express. Tony asks how it feels to be one step away from tag team immortality? Ricky tells Tony the fans know the Rock-n-Roll Express don’t make promises they can’t keep. It’s been a difficult battle as they’ve faced three of the toughest teams in professional wrestling today. They know the biggest obstacle is ahead with those two snakes the Brisco Brothers, but with the fans still standing behind them, they know they can win. Robert says the fans in the Mid-Atlantic region have welcomed them like they’re their own and they won’t let them down tonight. Ricky adds that after he and Robert have won the tournament, they’re going to show the fans how they rock and roll all night and party every day. Rock-n-roll will never die!

The Rock-n-Roll Express (Ricky Morton and Robert Gibson)
vs. The Brisco Brothers (Jack and Jerry Brisco)

The ring announcer tells the fans that a guest referee has been appointed—eight-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion Harley Race. Serving as the special enforcer outside the cage—“The Eighth Wonder of the World” Andre the Giant. David Crockett says the tournament has seen some wild moments but if those two men can’t maintain order, who can? Bob Caudle notes it’s apparent that NWA President Jim Crockett Jr. wants this tournament to end with no interference and with a conclusive winner. The announcer introduces the first team, Jack and Jerry Brisco. The Brisco Brothers jog out to the ring and they’re all smiles. The fans boo the Briscos. Next are the Rock-n-Roll Express who come out to Kiss’ “Rock-n-Roll All Night.” The crowd is near-deafening. 

Jack starts the match against Ricky Morton. The two lock up with a collar-and-elbow tie-up but Brisco quickly applies a Fireman’s Carry. Waist-lock attempt by Jack, but Ricky counters with a go-behind and slams Brisco down to the mat. Ricky goes after Jack, but the former NWA World Heavyweight Champion catches him with an arm drag. A second arm drag sends Morton down as Brisco quickly follows up with a bodyslam. Jack laughs and motions for Morton to lock up again. David Crockett says he doesn’t know if it’s a good idea for Ricky Morton to try and match wrestling holds with someone the calibre of Jack Brisco. The two go to lock up again but Ricky catches Jack in a side headlock. Brisco tries to run the ropes, but Morton puts the breaks on. Snapmare as Morton takes Jack down to the mat and reapplies the side headlock. Brisco is complaining that Morton grabbed the hair. Referee Harley Race does a quick check but doesn’t do anything. Bob Caudle says Ricky Morton is showing he has some mat wrestling skills of his own. 

The two tumblers lock up again as Ricky arm drags Jack. Jack gets up and Ricky goes for an arm bar but Brisco slugs him with a forearm. Elbow to the head as Jack whips Ricky into the Briscos’ corner. Tag to Jerry. The Briscos deliver a double hip toss to Ricky. Jerry whips him into the heel corner and tags Jack in. The Briscos both whip Morton into the corner then deliver a double body slam. Side suplex by Jack as he covers Morton for a two-count. Snapmare by Jack as he applies a front facelock, taking Ricky down to the mat. Ricky scrambles to escape as Jack applies the pressure. Ricky gets to his feet but Brisco grabs the hair, pulling him down. Harley Race sees it and warns Brisco he’ll disqualify him if he sees it again. Bob Caudle says there are no disqualifications in this match so Harley is either confused or trying to bluff the Briscos. David Crockett says Harley Race has bent or broken a few rules in his day which means he’s more apt to spot infractions. Brisco rakes Morton’s eyes then whips him into the heel corner yet again. Tag to Jerry who delivers a kneelift to Morton. Jerry applies an abdominal stretch in the center of the ring. Morton is in trouble. Bob Caudle notes that the Briscos have been working Ricky over for some time and the longer he stays in that hold, the more likely it is he could get hurt. David says that with this being a two-out-of-three falls match, the last thing the Rock-and-Roll Express want is to go into the second fall with one or both of them injured.  

Ricky is struggling to escape but Jerry has the hold locked in tight. Things are looking bad for Morton but the fans begin rallying, clapping their hands as they chant “rock and roll, rock and roll!” In an incredible display of willpower and balance, Ricky hip-tosses his way free, sending Jerry to the mat. Ricky tumbles and rolls to his corner ring as Jack Brisco runs in to intercept him. Hot tag to Robert who dropkicks Jack, knocking him down. Jerry gets up and eats a dropkick as well as Ricky staggers in his corner. 

Jack and Jerry go after Robert but he grabs their heads and delivers a double noggin-knocker. Ricky comes in as Robert takes Jack and Ricky takes Jerry. The Rock-n-Roll Express whip the Briscos into each other, knocking them down as Harley Race starts a five count. Ricky gets back to his corner as Jack staggers back to his. Bodyslam by Robert followed by a flying head scissors. Robert whips Jerry into the ropes and goes for a dropkick, but Jerry holds onto the ropes, with Gibson landing on his head. Jerry hits Robert with a big left then whips him towards Jack, who has a boot outstretched. Tag to Jack as the Brisco lift Robert up for a double suplex, driving him down hard into the mat. Near-fall but Gibson is still in it. Jack stomps Gibson in the back then rolls him over, dropping an elbow on his knee. Tag to Jerry as Jack holds Gibson’s leg. Jerry dives off the second rope with an elbow to Gibson’s knee before Morton can get in. Morton starts slugging away on Jack and Jerry as Harley Race makes him get back to his corner. David Crockett says Harley Race is an eight-time world heavyweight champion but as a referee, he stinks. Bob Caudle tells David that maybe someday he’ll get a chance to step into the ring as a referee. Meanwhile, the Briscos whips Gibson head-first into the cage as he falls to the mat. Jerry drops another elbow on Gibson’s leg then applies the Indian Deathlock. However, Ricky comes in and stomps Jerry in the head. Ricky picks Jerry up and whips him into the ropes, dropkicking him down to the mat. Harley Race forces Ricky back to his corner and as he does, Jack lifts Robert up for an atomic drop and crotches him on the top rope. Jerry gets Race’s attention as Jack covers Gibson for a three-count while Gibson wonders if he’ll be singing soprano for the rest of his life. David Crockett is flabbergasted at the injustice that just took place. The Briscos have stolen the first fall and now they’re one win away from the million-dollar prize and prestigious Crockett Cup trophy. 

Fall One Winners: The Brisco Brothers (25 minutes and 3 seconds)

David Crockett is right. With one fall under their belt, the Briscos are in the catbird seat as we head to the second fall. Be sure to come back for the remaining installment in the 1985 Crockett Cup tournament!

* * * * * * * * * * * *


[ Brackets ]

Sixth Round Match (Tournament Match #47)
     Rock-n-Roll Express vs. Oklahoma Cowboys (Briscos)
     First Fall   |   Second and Third Fall 


Fifth Round: Match 1 (Tournament Match #45)
  Rock-n-Roll Express vs. Midnight Express
Fifth Round: Match 2 (Tournament Match #46)
  The Fabulous Freebirds vs. The Oklahoma Cowboys

[ Preview ]

Fourth Round: Match 1 (Tournament Match #41)
The Rock & Roll Express vs. Ole and Arn Anderson
Fourth Round: Match 2 (Tournament Match #42)

     Midnight Express vs. British Bulldogs
Fourth Round: Match 3 (Tournament Match #43)
    Brody/Hansen vs. The Oklahoma Cowboys
Fourth Round: Match 4 (Tournament Match #44)
    Rhodes & Murdoch vs. The Fabulous Freebirds

[ Scouting Report ] [ Brackets ]

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)
     Midnight Express vs. High Flyers
Third Round: Match 4 (Tournament Match #36)
     Kevin and Mike Von Erich vs. The British Bulldogs
Third Round: Match 5 (Tournament Match #37)
     Road Warriors vs. Brody and Hansen
Third Round: Match 6 (Tournament Match #38)
     Funk Brothers vs. Oklahoma Cowboys
Third Round: match #7 (Tournament Match #39)
    Texas Outlaws vs. Iron Sheik/Nikolai Volkoff
Third Round: match #8 (Tournament Match #40)

    Fantastics vs. Freebirds

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

Original Tournament Announcement (May 2020)
Seedings and First Round Pairings Announced