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Stinko Malenko




Terry Funk v. Cactus Jack - IWA King Of The Deathmatch Finals

Y'know I figured "Hey, I'm off for Christmas holidays, why not do another edition of The Single Shot?" There's nothing on TV, so I figured what the hell. Today we look at Cactus Jack v. Terry Funk from August 1995. The infamous "King Of The Deathmatch" finals and accopaning me on this ride will be Have A Nice Day, Mick Foley's 1st book. I'll be quoting Foley during the interesting parts of the match.

We start off the match and both Terry and Cactus are bandaged up. Funk's a little more worse for wear as his entire shirt is covered in blood and his head is heavily bandaged. Cactus just has one bandage on his arm. I guess that's where he got that nasty scar. Short feeling out process for the two as Funk nails Cactus with a couple rights.

Terry flicked out a couple of weak jabs that grazed my eye and opened my gash slightly. It was tough to get a rhythm going.

They finally tie up and Cactus hits a couple forearms. Cactus tires to whip Funk into the barbed wire ropes, (Have I mentioned that the ring ropes are gone and are replaced with barbed wire?) but Terry stops short of the wire and points to his head. See, cause he's too smart for that. They tie up again and Funk takes the advantage with a headbutt. He follows that up with a right hand and a neckbreaker. Now Funk tries to whip Cactus into the ropes, but Foley just slides under them to the outside. While Cactus is on the outside, Funk sets up a barbed wire board in the center of the ring and says "C'mon. Cactus!" Foley's back in and Funk points to the board as to say "That's there you're gonna be!" They tie up and Cactus takes over with a headbutt and a forearm of his own. Then apparently Cactus says to himself, "Well the ropes are right there, why not use them" as Foley grates Funk's head on the barbed wire. Terry's bandage on his head is ripped off by the wire and you can see the NASTY cut that the bandages covered. Funk's down on the ground and Cactus gives him a couple boots the head for good measure. Cactus attepmpts a suplex on the barbed wire board in the center if the ring, but Funk pushes him off into the ropes. Cactus gets back up and they tie up again. Cactus with a series of rights as Funk gets ever so closer to the board. A couple more jabs and Terry fell into the EXPLODING BARBED WIRE BOARD OF SEVERE DISCOMFORT~!

Wham! A forearm staggered the grizzled veteran. Wham! Another one had him reeling. Terry was positioned directly in front of the board and was about to go down. Four more forearms to the head and the Funker finally fell, like a tree on to the explosives blow. BABOOM! "Uhwahh!" It was just as loud and just as scary as it had been in the outfield seven hours earlier. Scarier, actually, because my idol was lying in the middle of 30,000 people with his body shaking and his arm badly burned. I knew we shouldn't have allowed the extra explosives. I also knew that my turn would be next.

Cactus with a pin attempt, but Funk miraclously kicks out at two. Cactus picks up Funk and drapes him over the 2nd rope. He goes for an elbow but Funk moves out of the way and Cactus crashes into the barbed wire. Terry gets back up and hits a double arm suplex on Cactus that narrowly misses a barbed wire board nearby. Funk is bleeding pretty bad at this point. Funk picks up Cactus an whips him into the ropes again. Those ropes don't look like your everyday barbed wire, either. They look like they have many more barbs than usual. Funk picks up another barbed wire board and maneuvers it around. He picks up Cactus and gives him a hiptoss into the exploding board. Wow.

Baboom! "Uhwahh!" "Wait, what's this?" I thought, "I'm not even really hurt." Apparently I had been rolling with the hiptoss, and the split second between impaci and detonation, I had narrowly avoided most of the explosion.

After all the smoke had cleared (literally), Funk followed up with two piledrivers. One in the center of the ring and the other on the back of one of the barbed wire boards propped up on the ropes, breaking it in half. Both Funk and Cactus are out of it. Cactus is bleeding pretty bad at this point, too. Funk picks Cactus up and peppers him with jabs that send Jack falling into the wire ropes again. Terry props the broken board up against the turnbuckle and just tosses Cactus into it. He rolls him over for the cover and Cactus kicks out at two. Jack rolls to the outside and Funk takes one of the barbed wire boards and tosses it at him and now Funk is on the outside. Oh, lord, here we go. Cactus meets Terry as he exits the ring with a couple of rights. Cactus reaches under the ring and comes back with a friggin' spool of barbed wire and nails Funk in the head with it. Cactus then takes the barbed wire board that Funk threw and placed it on a prone Terry and hits a elbow on top of the board. Cactus tries to whip Fink into the guard rail, but Funk reverses it and Jack goes flying over the top and into the fans. Funk drags Cactus back into the ring and just wails on him as only The Funker can. A succession of lefts and rights floors Cactus and Funk applys the most dreaded submission hold in the world. the SPINNING TOEHOLD~!

Actually it's only dreaded in Japan; if you tried putting on this ancient, boring manuver in the States, you might find yourself out of a job. The hold was so over in Japan, however, that the people lost their minds.

As Funk has Cactus in the Toehold, Tiger Jeet Singh comes form the back and nails Funk with the butt-end of a sword. Cactus and Tiger double team Terry and whip him into an exploding board that Cactus has set up while Tiger was going to town on Funk. While all this was going on, the PA announcer announced the 9 minute mark. That was because at the 10 minute mark, the RING WOULD EXPLODE. Cactus pulled Terry out of the barbed wire mess, and hit a spinning neckbreaker on Funk. Pinfall, kickout at two. Announcer says 30 seconds. Cactus with a Double Arm DDT. Pinfall, another two count. Announcer says 10 seconds. Cactus followed up with another DDT. 6...5...4...3...2...1...

Poof. That was it. Just poof. Kane's pyro looked better than that.

The four explosions looked like Roman candles. My old neighbor Marc Forte had put on a better fireworks show in his backyard in '76. The fans didn't fart onit, they looked as if they just smelled a giant fart. I felt this whole match slopping away. Terry stood up with his arms out to his side as if to say "Hey, it's not my fault. I tried to think of a way to save the match, and came up with one solution. Terry had the same idea. The injuries were about to pile up.

Cactus rolls back in the ring and immediately backdrop suplexed on the exloding board in the corner. Cactus' face is a MESS. 0.7 Muta, at least. Cactus rolls back to the outside and gets a ladder from under the ring. He picks ut up and jusr CREAMS Terry in the face with it. Funk is down and Cactus prings even more pain with a ladder suplex right on to of Funk. Cactus with a cover and Funks kicks out at two. Cactus sets up the ladder and s.l.o.w.l.y scales it. He makes it about halfway up and drops an elbow. They show a closeup of Foley's face before he jumps and his face is COMPLETELY red. Unbelievable. Cactus sets up the ladder again. Cactus is all the way to the top when Funk rises to his feet and pushes Cactus off. Into the the remaining bed of barbed wire, that is. And that was after he had bounced off the ropes before hitting the board.

I had talked earlier to Terry about doing this, but had envisioned myself sailing over the sharp wire and crashing down onto the floor. Well, the good news is that I didn't crash into the floor. The bad news is, I did fall into the barbed wire and the concequences were steep. I opened up an angry gash on my right hand, and a huge gash that almost cost me my good ear.

Both men are down. Both men are out and this has to be the most brutal match I've ever seen. Cactus starts to move before Funk does and manages to roll on tom of him for the 1, 2, 3.

Final Thoughts: Wow. Simply brutal. Like I said this IS the most brutal match I've ever seen, but as opposed to XPW and CZW, this was actually good. They wish they could do matches this good. Higly recommended, but it's definately not for the squeamish.

Hey, the next match on the tape is Dynamite Kid v. Tiger Mask. I guess I'll review that one next. Until then...

Stinko Malenko
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