On today’s episode of The Taz Show, Taz will debut a new weekly special entitled, “Throwback Snack”. Once a week, Taz will watch, analyze and break down a classic match from years gone by. On today’s show, he will discuss the classic 1985 match between Ric Flair and Ron Garvin which aired live from the TBS Studio in Atlanta.
This was an NWA Championship match, and Taz thought the television studio setting was a very intriguing place for this bout to take place. He thought this match was an awesome, physical bout, and he begins his detailed analysis from start to finish.
The commentary team for this match was Tony Schiavone and David Crockett. He’s always been a fan of Schiavone’s work, from his early NWA days continuing on to his work for WCW during the Monday Night Wars.
On the other hand, he wasn’t a fan of David Crockett’s commentary work at all, and he says it’s a good thing that Crockett’s family owned the business because if they didn’t he probably wouldn’t have lasted long in that position. Taz feels that Schiavone should have been the lead commentator here, not Crockett.
Taz thought the announcers did a great job of laying out during the opening minutes of the bout, as both Flair and Garvin brought the physicality. Due to the announcers remaining silent, fans watching at home could actually hear the impact of the punches, kicks, and especially Flair’s chops.
Taz points out that all the performers from this era were brought up the right way. They all had a great understanding of pacing, and an unbelievable ability to exchange holds. Flair and Garvin provide a great example of this during this match.
It’s easy for Taz to tell that there was nothing scripted in this match. Everything was called on the fly in the ring, and that makes for a much more believable match. Flair and Garvin weren’t worried about remembering all of their pre-match scripted spots because there were none. They could react to each other in the ring and this allowed their emotion to shine through.
This was a two-segment match and they went to break with both men continuing their physical work. This was an excellent hook in Taz’s opinion, guaranteeing that fans wouldn’t be able to change the channel when they went to break.
Taz points out that Garvin went on to have a run in WWE later in his career as “Rugged” Ron Garvin. Garvin’s run in WWE was an utter failure in Taz’s opinion, which was unfortunate because Garvin’s work was always believable. Like the majority of outside talents who tried to make a run in WWE, it just didn’t work out for Garvin.
Garvin gains the upper hand during the middle of the match as Flair begins to sell as only he could. Taz calls Flair one of the greatest heel sellers of all time. Eventually, Flair turns things around and begins to attack Garvin’s leg, weakening the limb for the eventual application of the Figure 4 leg lock. This is the type of in-ring psychology that Taz loves, and these two guys were at the top of their game during this match.
Dusty Rhodes does a run in toward the end of the match and immediately attacks Flair. The other three members of the Four Horsemen then run in to save Flair and they all turn the table on Rhodes. Garvin ran off as The Four Horsemen jumped all over Rhodes, attacking his leg.
Taz thought the match was terrific, even if it ended up being thrown out due to the run-ins. Flair ultimately defended his NWA Title and left the building with his Championship.
That sums up today’s episode of The Taz Show. You can listen to the show yourself anytime here, and I’ll catch ya next week for another recap!