[TV Review] Pro – 3.23.91

Commentators: Tony Schiavone & Larry Zbyszko

This week on Pro Brian Pillman looks for revenge against Arn Anderson, Bobby Eaton’s singles match with Terrance Taylor turns into a tag team contest (HOLLA), and Larry Zbyszko does triple duty as commentator, segment host, and wrestler.

Champion Roll-Call

  • WCW WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION: “The Nature Boy” Ric Flair
  • WCW UNITED STATES CHAMPION: “The Total Package” Lex Luger
  • WCW WORLD TELEVISION CHAMPION: “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson
  • WCW WORLD TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott Steiner)
  • WCW UNITED STATES TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott Steiner)
  • WCW WORLD SIX-MAN TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: Ricky Morton, “Wildfire” Tommy Rich, & The Junkyard Dog

The Lineup

  • PROMO: Ron Simmons
  • Big Josh & Tommy Rich vs. Mike Samples & Keith Hart
  • PROMO: Buddy Landell
  • PROMO: Ric Flair
  • Dustin Rhodes vs. Greg Sawyer
  • IN-RING SEGMENT: Larry Z’s Legends w/ Larry Zbyszko & Diamond Dallas Page
  • PROMO: Sid Vicious
  • Barry Windham vs. Tommy Angel
  • Brian Pillman vs. Arn Anderson
  • SEGMENT: Brickhouse Bonus w/ Jack Brickhouse
  • Bobby Eaton vs. Terrance Taylor
  • Bobby Eaton & Tom Zenk vs. Terrance Taylor & Buddy Landell
  • Larry Zbyszko vs. Thad Clark
  • PROMO: Big Josh & Tommy Rich
  • PROMO: Sting
  • Ron Simmons vs. Rip Rogers

*****

Ron Simmons cuts a babyface promo about how he was blinded by success and money but is returning to the things that made him successful in the first place.

-Schiavone and Zbyszko welcome the home audience. Zbyszko says Diamond Dallas Page will be on this week’s edition of Larry Z’s Legends. Schiavone announces that Brian Pillman will meet Arn Anderson in singles action. Anderson’s groin injury has apparently healed since Power Hour.

Big Josh & “Wildfire” Tommy Rich vs. Mike Samples & Keith Hart

Rich is 1/3rd of the Six Man Tag Team Champions. I wonder if those titles are ever going to be defended. Zbyszko is apparently wrestling in addition to hosting his segment tonight. Jack of all trades. Rich with hip tosses for everyone, Josh runs in to cheerlead and gets hit behind by Samples which SETS HIM OFF. Josh gets the tag and stiffs the sh*t out of Samples leading to the seated splash for the win. Nice. (3:01)

“Nature Boy” Buddy Landell says he’s the hottest thing on the scene, and says he’ll cut The Steiner Brothers some slack and keep the World Tag Team Titles (?!?). Landell concludes with some shade at Bobby Eaton, remembering he actually does have a feud going on.

-The REAL “Nature Boy” Ric Flair says Sting doesn’t know the feeling of wanting to be the best, and hypes an impending steel cage showdown.

“The Natural” Dustin Rhodes vs. Greg Sawyer

Rhodes gets all of his sh*t in and wins with the Bulldog. One of the crisper matches he’s had, outside of his weak clothesline. (2:36)

Larry Zbyszko is in the ring with Diamond Dallas Page for this week’s edition of Larry Z’s Legends. Zbyszko asks what The Fabulous Freebirds are going to do next after losing the Tag Team Titles. Page insults the fans and says that he has hired Big Daddy Dink as a road boss as he can’t be there all the time. WE KNOW.

Sid Vicious calls Brian Pillman a coward and says if he ever sticks his face in his business again, he will not walk away from it. Sid delivered the promo in a very calm manner which is way more menacing than his usual nonsensical yelling.

Barry Windham vs. Tommy Angel

Schiavone calls the match alone as Zbyszko is getting ready to wrestle. Windham says no championship is safe via insert promo. Angel drops Windham with a dropkick but Windham dodges the second and he’s all offense from there, winning with the Superplex. (4:05)

“Flyin” Brian Pillman vs. “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson

This match is part of Pillman’s mission to get revenge on all the Horsemen after being injured at WrestleWar ’91. Anderson has been fighting a groin injury so he hasn’t been in action much lately despite being Television Champion. I’m glad to see him back, hopefully we can now get some title defenses.

Anderson tries to target Pillman’s taped up shoulder early, Pillman repeatedly fights him off. Pillman fakes Anderson out and connects with a missile dropkick that sends him to the floor. Pillman follows him out, Anderson sends him hurt shoulder-first into the post. Will Pillman finally sell his supposed injury? We’ll see! Pillman fights back with one arm and connects with a flying clothesline for the 1…2…Sid Vicious runs in and Pillman breaks his lateral press to attack. (3:01)

Match was faster than I was hoping for but given the ending I can’t say I’m surprised. Anderson was on brand by exploiting a weak limb, Pillman showed heart trying to fight with only one arm and finally had to sell his injury for once which was nice to see.

  • RATING: *1/2

Sid and Anderson beat Pillman up, focusing on injuring his shoulder further, until Tommy Rich, Big Josh, and Dustin Rhodes chase them off.

Jack Brickhouse puts over “Beautiful” Bobby Eaton in this week’s edition of The Brickhouse Bonus.

“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton vs. “The Computerized Man of the 1990s” Terrance Taylor [w/ Alexandra York]

If you’ve lost count this is the 0248357453454835th match between these two since their feud started, and probably won’t be their last. Ring announcer and graphics say “Terry Taylor” and my heart breaks a little.

Eaton outwrestles Taylor to start, dropping him with a beautiful right hook and causing him to retreat to York and her COM-PEW-TOR. Eaton misses a corner splash, Taylor goes on the offensive with a series of stomps and a catapult into the bottom rope. Eaton counters a backdrop with a neckbreaker and heads to the top, Buddy Landell shows up to distract Eaton. Eaton drops him from the apron, Taylor attacks from behind, out comes “The Z-Man” Tom Zenk to even the odds at ringside. Taylor brings Eaton into the ring with a belly-to-back suplex for a two-count. Taylor connects with a backbreaker and covers again but Eaton escapes the pinfall by raking the eyes. NICE. I don’t think I’ve seen that before. Zenk and Landell climb the apron, and the ref MAKES THIS A TAG TEAM MATCH, PLAYA.

“Beautiful” Bobby Eaton & “The Z-Man” Tom Zenk vs. “The Computerized Man of the 1990s” Terrance Taylor & “Nature Boy” Buddy Landell [w/ Alexandra York]

Landell tags in and keeps the pressure on Eaton, drilling him with a suplex. Eaton dodges an elbowdrop but ends up in the wrong corner, Taylor dropping him with a right hand. Taylor tags in, double clothesline for a two-count. Zenk gets the tag and hits Landell with a dropkick followed by a superkick for the 1…2…Taylor breaks it up and Eaton runs back in. Landell goes for a slam, Eaton clips the knee and Zenk lands on top for the 1…2…3! (6:47)

Changing a singles match midway though into a tag team contest is old hat in 2019 but for WCW TV in this era it felt unique. I enjoyed this one a lot, and I’m into former heated rivals Eaton and Z-Man finding common ground and becoming a reluctant team.

  • RATING: **1/2

Taylor tosses Zenk out so he and Landell can pummel Eaton. Z-Man recovers and clears the ring, then carefully checks on Eaton to avoid getting decked again. Taylor and Landell try to attack, Z-Man and Eaton work together and send them back to the floor. Z-Man and Eaton stare one another down tentatively and leave the ring at the same time to avoid the other attacking them. That was great.

Larry Zbyszko vs. Thad Clark

This is Zbyszko’s first match on Pro after spending the past three months co-hosting the Chicago version of the program. Zbyszko wins in short order, getting the pin with a crucifix for the hell of it. (1:28)

Big Josh and “Wildfire” Tommy Rich are coming after the World & U.S. Tag Team Titles. Josh reminds “Leonard” to feed his dogs. HA. Big Josh is awesome.

Sting is sick and tired of Ric Flair’s face, hair, and attitude. I’m sick of Flair’s hair too. That hair is not fair to Flair.

Ron Simmons vs. Rip Rogers

Rogers runs at Simmons, gets planted with a powerslam. Rogers chops and jabs Simmons, Simmons no-sells it all and drops him with a headbutt. Rogers ducks a clothesline and runs right into a spinebuster from Simmons for the 1…2…3. (1:24)

Butch Reed runs in and a brawl breaks out, Theodore R. Long watching as they fight to the back. Officials try to break it up but they are powerless. Simmons and Reed brawl into the crowd as the episode ends.

*****

FINAL THOUGHTS: Good stuff from Pro this week, a lot of it we will probably see on next week’s Power Hour. Eaton and Z-Man continue their path to becoming unlikely allies, Pillman’s feud with the Horsemen continued, and the show ended with a fun brawl between Simmons and Reed. Not much to complain about here, folks. Pro is kickass.

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