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Another interesting note on Luger vs Flair

Hey Scott,
Don't know if you've ever heard anything about this, but according to www.thehistoryofwwe.com, Lex was supposed to go Flair clean for the title at a house show in Chicago, Illinois on March 23, 1990, which was only a few weeks after "Wrestlewar 90". A film crew had been flown in for the change.
If Sting was indeed pegged to beat Flair the whole time, than this kind of throws a wrench into that plan. If Luger wins the title here, does he turn heel again so soon after turning face and they do Luger- Sting at the Bash 90? Or would Sting have went over Flair in a revenge match without a title on the line and maybe they do Luger- Sting at that years Starrcade?

NWA @ Chicago, IL - UIC Pavilion - March 23, 1990 (6,500)
A film crew, as well as Lance Russell, Chris Cruise, and Dennis Brent were flown to the city to tape what was scheduled to be NWA World Champion Ric Flair losing the title to NWA US Champion Lex Luger; the title change didn't take place because Flair wasn't given ample notice, which was part of his contract; Flair agreed to the title change but only in return for a contract release, which Jim Herd refused; Pro Wrestling Illustrated's Bill Apter was also on hand
Mike Rotunda pinned Cactus Jack; after the bout, Cactus was taken to the hospital for having been tied in the ring ropes too long during the match
Norman pinned Kevin Sullivan
Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson defeated Jimmy Garvin & Steve Casey (sub. for Michael Hayes)
NWA US Tag Team Champions Brian Pillman & Tom Zenk defeated Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane
NWA Tag Team Champions Rick & Scott Steiner defeated NWA TV Champion Arn Anderson & Ole Anderson
The Road Warriors defeated Doom
NWA World Champion Ric Flair pinned NWA US Champion Lex Luger at 20:13 after Ole Anderson interfered and hit Luger with Woman's high heel shoe

They were doing the stupid high heel shoe finish even back then?  Huh.  

I know that once Sting was out they were basically trying to get Flair to drop the title to Luger on a weekly basis.  They endgame was likely always going to be Sting v. Luger with Flair out of the picture, and I imagine they would have had Luger turn heel once he won the title to pull it off.  

Comments

  1. Yeah that is true according to the Observer at least, I talked a bit about that in the other thread:

    March 1990:


    - Meltzer reports that Flair is supposed to drop the title to Luger
    in Chicago, but refuses to do so.  Flair wants to negotiate a contract
    extension with a provision in his contract that explicitly states that
    he can go to work for the WWF without a non-compete period if he agrees
    to drop the title.

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  2. Jim Herd...That guy would have trouble making a cup of coffee. No wonder Flair went nuts. They were trying for more than two years to get the title off of him, but didn't have a guy to put it on. Sting bombed, Luger would've (and did in '91). Yes, I'm a Flair homer, but he was their only real choice during that time period.

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  3. I dunno, the more I learn about Flair and what was going on in this time, the more sympathy for Jim Herd I have.  Herd was still a colossal fuckup by all accounts, but Flair REALLY should have laid down for Luger when he was asked.  ESPECIALLY considering that Herd bailed Flair out at Starrcade 88 in the first place by putting him over Luger!  

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  4. If Luger died, a wrestling site could put up a fantasy book of his entire career and it'd be just as fitting an obituary as if you put what really happened. It seems like people cannot get their "Luger in early 90s WCW" and "Luger as mega-face in 93 WWF" fantasy booking scenarios straight enough, because it keeps coming up as a subject. I kind of have to wonder, how much of it was other people screwing up what should have made Luger a superstar and how much of it was just that Luger didn't have it and probably never would? It's hard to say. 

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  5. It could very well have been the front half of a Flair-Luger title swap, with Sting still getting the belt from Flair at the Bash. If memory serves me correct, the Flair-Luger matches weren't doing well on the house show circuit (which were economically more important in those days), probably due to the thrown-together nature of the program, thanks to the Sting injury in February. A title change could have been seen as giving the feud some more juice.

    Of course, if Flair had received his release, that would have been moot. But that may not have been Herd's thinking when he/and or his advisors concocted it.

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  6.  The Luger/Flair matches did huge business in 1988 I know, not so sure about later though.

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  7. Yeah, 88 did well. But I think 90 was another story.

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  8.  Yeah, makes sense.

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  9. Yeah, while Jim Herd was hardly a wrestling genius or anything people give him zero credit, even though he oversaw what was probably the best year in the NWA in 1989.    Obviously he shouldn't get a ton of credit for that either, but he should get SOME credit for it if he's going to take all the flack for 1991.

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  10. I think Luger did have it.  The crowds were into him in 1988 and he got a great reaction at SummerSlam 1993 and when he won the WCW title from Hogan in 1997.  It's tough to say whether he could've carried an entire company because he was never given the ball, but the guy should've been given a chance.  I do agree with you, though, that we'll never be able to definitively answer if he "had it" because he never got a great chance to do so.

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  11. The problem with Luger being a 'face of the company' is that he was clearly a lot better and more into performing when he was a heel.  His late 80's cocky heel NWA run in the Horsemen....his short run as the Narcissist....even his 95-96 tweener run when he was a heel to everyone except Sting....these were all much more interesting than Luger as a face ever was.  He was a 'good' face but by no means a great one.

    This wouldn't have necessarily been a problem for the NWA/WCW since they traditionally ran with heel champions anyway but it would've necessitated a change in booking.  It's one thing to have a cheating heel champ but it's another to have the physical adonis cheating heel champ.  Booking Luger like Superstar Billy Graham in 1977 might've worked.

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  12. Side note: that card looks fucking awesome.

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