Thursday, June 09, 2022

Poster: Flair vs. Anderson at Cincinnati Gardens

by Brack Beasley
Mid-Atlantic Gateway Contributor

This poster promotes a card held at the Cincinnati Gardens, a venue rich in professional wrestling history. Held on Friday, October 16th, 1981, both the NWA World Heavyweight Championship and the United States title were on the line. 

Ric Flair, still riding high only one month into his first reign with the Ten Pounds of Gold, took the challenge of cousin Ole Anderson, while Sgt. Slaughter would defend his belt against Johnny Weaver. 

The big names didn't stop at the main events as the rest of the lineup included Wahoo McDaniel, Roddy Piper, Greg Valentine, Ivan Koloff, Jay Youngblood, and Bad Leroy Brown. No doubt an exciting night of wrestling for the fans in Cincinnati.

With a horizontal layout, the poster has red and black print over an ultra bright yellow background and great images of Flair, Wahoo, Koloff, and the Andersons. It's especially nice to see the full body image of Flair in my personal favorite Olivia Walker robe.


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Mid-Atlantic Gateway Notes
by Dick Bourne

Cincinnati was an interesting town for JCP, as it fell outside their usual territorial footprint at the time. It was really more a Georgia Championship Wrestling town when Georgia had started running Ohio, Michigan, and West Virginia after it had been basically abandoned by the Sheik's Detroit promotion. Their cards were promoted off of Superstation WTBS. But Crockett had a TV outlet there that did pretty well, and booker Ole Anderson, who was booking both Mid-Atlantic and Georgia territories at the time, stacked the Cincinnati cards with more Mid-Atlantic talent than he did Georgia talent for awhile. 

Anderson booked himself as Ric Flair's first regular title challenger in the Mid-Atlantic territory. The Andersons had been in a bitter feud with Flair the entire summer of 1981 before Ric won the NWA title in September, and so Ole made a natural choice as Flair's challenger plus it was a continuation of the on-again / off-again family feud between Flair and his cousins that had been going on since 1976. Flair and Ole headlined cards all over the reach of JCP including Cincinnati, Buffalo, NY, Savannah, GA, and all across the traditional Mid-Atlantic territory.

Wahoo McDaniel and Roddy Piper was the most heated feud in the territory at that point, coming off Piper's hiring of Abdullah the Butcher a month and a half earlier to attack Wahoo on TV which resulted in Wahoo being injured and being stripped of the U.S. title for failing to defend against Piper, even though it was Piper who had hired the Butcher. The U.S. title had been placed in a tournament.

And speaking of that U.S. title tournament, Sgt. Slaughter, a newcomer to Jim Crockett Promotions, was just coming off his big surprise tournament win of the United States Championship less than two weeks earlier. Johnny Weaver was his early opponent in lots of towns across the Mid-Atlantic territory helping to establish Slaughter as a top heel, including this card in Cincinnati.

A great card in the Queen City!