Arn Anderson & Bobby Eaton v Larry Zbyszko & Brian Pillman (WCW Saturday Night, 8/8/92)
This got way more time than I was expecting. In some respects I'm glad it did, and the more I think about it the more I actually really liked the match, but I can't help but think it would've been even better had it happened four months earlier before Watts came to town.
It's Larry Z's revenge match of sorts (or one of his revenge matches, I guess) and he really felt like the star to me. He's loud as all shit, which is what you come to expect out of Zbyszko, but he's not bitching and complaining loudmouth heel Larry Zbyszko; he's trash talking pissed off babyface Larry Zbyszko and he wants him some of his old running buddies. "Shut up you fat SLOB!" "Come on, Anderson. Why don't you get in here?"
He also takes an extended run as FIP, which I totally wasn't expecting considering PILLMAN is his partner, but holy fuck was it great. By the time Arn and Eaton get to working over Larry they've already managed to get 3 short heat segments in on Pillman. None of those segments lasted very long, and at points it bordered a little on time killing, but they went after Pillman's arm every time and fuck me these two guys are DETERMINED to take someone's arm home with them. When they get control of Zbyszko they really go to town on the arm and Larry is seriously awesome as a gritty, stubborn face in peril, wounded but refusing to quit. They manage to work in some really neat matwork and it makes me want to check out those awesome Zbyszko/Regal matches from 1994 again.
Finish to this is sort of a double edged sword. The match comes at a time where Arn and Eaton are in the middle of some angle where they're going to take out the Steiners for Gordy and Williams, and I guess a good way to build them is to have them win the match via ref' stoppage after they break Zbyszko's arm. Feels like good ol' Watts booking. The problem with it is that they have it happen during the commercial break. Which also feels like good ol' Watts booking. Doesn't bother me a whole lot, because they show us what happens when they get back from the break, but I could see it really irking someone.
There's a fair amount of similarly structured tags in '92 WCW. Most, if not all, of them pop up during the second half of the year, which is where you can really see Watts' booking. A lot of them feel like hybrids of a southern tag and Watts wanting his guys to go out there and do some matwork, but the problem with that is the matwork not always "going somewhere". I wouldn't be shocked if someone watched this and thought it never got going until Larry starts playing FIP. I like it for more than that, but I don't think it's crazy to suggest otherwise.
I'd be interested to hear what others think of this because I don't remember reading anything about it in the past.