Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D, Sebastian, and other friends write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Saturday, June 25, 2022

On Brand Segunda Caida: Tennessee Indy Grab Bag

Bryan Turner has been posting some great unseen or rarely seen southern indy wrestling, and we've been diving in over the past several weeks. Even cherry picking through the best stuff, there are a lot of things he's uploaded that jump out. Here are a couple that jumped out at me today. 

Yokozuna vs. Tatanka MECW 12/99

ER: This is the last recorded match of Yokozuna's career, recorded sometime in December 1999 (two months after Heroes of Wrestling). Yokozuna didn't work many matches in the three years after WWF, and considering that, the match couldn't be edited more painfully. It being the last match of his excellent career, he was obviously at his largest. Knowing that, you'd go into this match expecting a long nerve hold spot in the middle somewhere. If you were editing a match for time to air on local TV, that would be the couple minutes you edit out. Instead, this match is joined in progress for the duration of Yokozuna's nerve hold. From commentary, you get the impression that the beginning of the match was a lot of active Yokozuna work. We start with him already drenched in sweat and breathing hard, and don't get to see what got him that way. When they get standing, you can see Yokozuna still has real quick burst speed. He clearly needed constant rest, as he timed a Tatanka charge really nicely to send Tatanka crashing to the floor, and the entire time Tatanka was on the floor Yokozuna stood bent at the waist, hands on his knees, torso practically horizontal. But, when he had to shut something down or do a quick dodge, he looked surprisingly nimble. His strikes were really good. Arguably the best part of the match was Yokozuna throwing hard rights to brawl down the aisle at the end of the match. He built to his bumps well, with him not bumping (in the footage we have) until Tatanka hits a tomahawk chop off the top, but he takes two more after that one, the third rolling to the floor where this ended. You could tell that there was a great wrestler still in there who could have worked a several more years without the extra 150 pounds. Of course, it's much easier said than done for any man to lose my entire literal person in weight. I sometimes think of Yokozuna still in WWF through 2002, working a whole slew of matches with WCW guys that we never got to see. What a great wrestler. 

Barry Houston vs. Jarell USWO 5/23/03

ER: I believe this is by far the latest Barry Houston we have (and the latest listed match of his that I could find), and it's not exactly the swan song a Houston fan would want to see. Barry Houston is so unlike the Barry Houston you're thinking of right now, that there is a non-zero chance this was some guy using the Barry Houston Name in front of 40 people just outside Nashville. Houston is beefy here, like when Chris Harris showed up for a week in WWE, and he shows no signs of the wrestling ability that made him a cult favorite in WCW. Jarell (graphic reads Jorell but that reads like a Planet Krypton ass name and the announcers clearly call him Jarell then whole match), looks reallll green, and is wearing just khakis and a short sleeve plaid shirt, like he just came straight from his grandparents' anniversary party. Jarell's stomach is already heaving when Houston takes him over with a side headlock to start the match. Jarell has to think  about what move to do next after any move he does, he did bad version of a couple things I like; a bad Jumbo knee lift, and raking Houston's face across the top rope. It's better that someone attempt good wrestling than bad wrestling, if it's going to look bad. Houston has a nice back elbow and clothesline, although Jarell took a bad bump for the clothesline that was so "play wrestling" that it minimized the impact a lot. A chain gets involved and Jarell throws a couple punches somewhere over Houston's head and a few inches in front of his face. Houston's punches look better and have better form, but his were only half successful. One of them was an uppercut that landed somewhere around Jarell's upper boob. I'm happy that an unseen Barry Houston match showed up, but some secrets are better left untold. 

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