Jerry Lawler v King Kong Bundy ($10, 000 Challenge, 7/16/84)
I'm a sucker for a good sub-ten minute match, and this was a fucking good sub-ten minute match. Lawler's a guy that showed he could get a ton of mileage out of doing practically nothing on the Texas set. The cage match against Kerry ended abruptly and stopped it from going ridiculously high on my ballot, but the first half of it was tremendous and it was almost entirely down to Lawler antics. He was a heel in that match. Here he's a babyface, so there's no working the crowd into a frenzy by cheating and making the referee look like a fool, but it's a match that goes 7 minutes and it takes us 6 of those minutes before Lawler so much as throws his first punch.
He spends the first couple minutes eating a man sized beating, though. Gimmick is that Lawler gets a grand of Jimmy Hart's money for every minute he can survive against Bundy, so Bundy just squashes him in the corner during the intros and we're off to the races. Bundy unloads a bunch of 400 pound offence and tries to make short work of the whole thing, and of course Lawler sells it like he's Lawler.
After a couple minutes of this he realises he's getting nowhere fast just bails to the floor. For the next 3 or 4 minutes, he basically stalls for time. And it rules. He milks the count, ducks in and out of the ring, plays cat and mouse with Bundy; Lance gets on the house mic after every minute passes and announces that Lawler's won another thousand dollars, and the crowd totally eat all of this up. Bundy and Hart are great at getting wound up (Lance: "Hart's having a hemorrhage"), and Lawler's just running down the clock and filling his pockets.
Eventually he gets caught between Bundy and a pole-wielding Jimmy Hart, and Bundy just goes to town on him some more while Hart's screaming like a maniac to put him away before he loses any more money. Of course you know where this is going, and when the strap comes down YOU smile because YOU know Lawler is about to throw some motherfucking amazing punches. His first combo that is capped off with a running straight right was BOSS as HELL and I rewound it about 7 times. Finish is what it is, but it sets up a couple awesome tags down the line so I guess I can't complain.
Just a bucket load of fun. I sent my Texas ballot in today and that set had a bunch of really great short matches on it. This has a totally different dynamic to the Von Erichs/Freebirds or Von Erichs/Duo matches where they're just fucking beating the fucking shit out of each other with leather straps and cowboy boots and cage doors, and I'll be honest, I wouldn't put this up there with the best car wrecks of that set, but if someone makes a comp of awesome sub-ten minute matches I can totally see this side-by-side with a bunch of Michael Hayes bar fights.