Thursday, June 18, 2015

From the Archives: THE MATCH BEYOND

Big Dust got big and violent in THE MATCH BEYOND
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Every now and again, WWE will tease bringing back War Games in passing, and the fanbase will get frothy. It's a vestige from the old Jim Crockett Promotions days and then World Championship Wrestling, one that isn't embarrassing and thus been pounded into the ground by WWE. The stock reasoning from Titan Towers on why War Games will never come back is because it already has the Elimination Chamber. In a way, the reasoning is sound. WWE has always been about the cult of personality, and this six guys fighting each other in the massive structure fits its oeuvre. War Games more represented the stable mentality of the NWA territories, especially in the mid-Atlantic and Georgia regions. Plus, it's a dual cage structure, and greedy-ass Vince McMahon is never going to cut into a live gate just to rehash something his rival did.

But in all honesty, would a modern War Games match even work in the PG environment? That's not a slam at all against PG, it's just that THE MATCH BEYOND had a certain violence embedded in its DNA. And that first match, hoo boy, it was as much a signature Dusty Rhodes match as it was the high water mark for the match type. The Four Horsemen were their full glory and their second lineup with Lex Luger in place of Ole Anderson in the brotherhood. On the other side, Rhodes assembled a team of massive men that would qualify as a HOSSFEST in any era. The Road Warriors and Nikita Koloff were three men that I would not want to meet in a dark alley or an all-you-can-eat buffet either. This first match was just so brutal and violent, and it's also available below through the back channels of DailyMotion. I'm not sure of its WWE Network availability though. The Network can be quite squirrely when it comes to classic NWA special events in its archives.