Terry Gordy v Steve Williams (Texas Death Match) (Houston Wrestling, 2/6/87)
Well I'll be damned. It's been a while since I watched Williams or Gordy in a non-All Japan singles match setting, but this was fucking tremendous and might be the best US singles match either guy ever had. You used to hear a lot on WWE commentary about guys having "no wasted motion." Michael Cole would say it three times every Chris Benoit match. Half the time I'm not even sure he knew what he meant, but if Michael Cole, in some weird alternate universe, happened to commentate on this match I could absolutely imagine him banging on about no wasted motion. Everything in the first few minutes is fought for. The collar and elbow tie-ups actually look like they're struggles for dominance, like a pair of white rhinos butting horns. Then Gordy spikes Williams with a DISGUSTING piledriver - like, this is one of the absolute nastiest piledrivers you'll see - and it turns into everything you want in a Texas Death Match. This might be my favourite Williams performance ever, with his dead on his feet selling being particularly awesome. Both guys hit gushers in this but oh my days does Terry Gordy go full Eddie Guerrero with the blade. He is a fucking mess after half a minute. At one point he tries to hit another piledriver and the blood pouring from his head turns the back of Williams' yellow trunks bright red. I usually hate the "pull opponent up from pin attempt" spot, but it worked better here than just about any other time I can remember. When Gordy does it it obviously leads straight to Williams making his comeback (and Gordy getting opened up), then Williams does it in return and roars like a fucking wild gorilla and the crowd just ERUPTS. It was very awesome, unlike pretty much every other instance of that spot. At first I was kind of whatever on them doing a draw at the finish, but then they threw a curveball and I changed my tune. Williams falling through the ropes at the end and staggering back to the locker room in a stupor was perfect. Just an amazing, violent bloodbath of a match. Might've finished top 10 on the Mid-South set had it been available at the time.