Thursday, December 3, 2015

NWA Champ Dusty Rhodes on the cover of Florida's "Grapevine"

Championship Wrestling from Florida program "The Grapevine"
Dusty Rhodes with the Ten Pounds of Gold
The post first appeared on the Mid-Atlantic Gateway

Friday, November 20, 2015

Mike Cline: Jack Brisco - The Champ

Check out Mike Cline's great post on former NWA champion Jack Brisco on his website "Mid-Atlantic Grapplin' Greats":

Jack Brisco: The Champ

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Ten Pounds of Gold (The Book)

In October of 2008, Dick Bourne and Dave Millican had the rare opportunity to inspect and photograph the genuine NWA world heavyweight championship belt worn and defended in the 1970s and 1980s by Ric Flair, Terry Funk, Harley Race, and others. Not long afterwards, Bourne decided to put together a book about the history and construction of the NWA belt, a chance to share with others the opportunity they had been fortunate enough to have. The result was “Ten Pounds of Gold".

This Revised & Expanded Second Edition of the 2009 book contains 70 additional pages of photographs, memorabilia, and historical information, plus a new title history chapter with behind the scenes details, and an expanded chapter on the night the belt was first presented and defended.

Plus all the material in the original book including champion profiles, detailed and close-up photos of the belt itself and a detailed history of how it was made.

Order Your Book Today!

"A fabulous book!"   - James. J. Dillon

"To anyone who cares about the NWA, its history, and, of course, the famous "Ten Pounds of Gold,"
this book really is a necessity."    
- Tim Hornbaker,

"...a love letter to championship belts, ones that have deep meaning and stand for something."
- Greg Oliver, Slam! Wrestling  (

"From cover to cover, the book is amazing. Any old school wrestling fan out there should order this book today."
- Mark James,

"The only thing that could be better would be to hold the actual belt. This book is that good."  
- Eric King, Rural Retreat, VA

"The book, beautifully illustrated and drenched in history, is worth its weight in gold."
- Mike Mooneyham, Charleston Post & Courier

"Now we go to school: Ten Pounds of Gold has everything you always wanted to know about the NWA belt ...but were too much of a mark to ask."    
 -Scott Bowden, Kentucky Fried Rasslin'

Drawing from their interest, experience, and research, Bourne and Millican proudly present the NWA belt as you’ve never seen it before. A belt enthusiast's dream come true. As one of their customers once wrote, "The only thing that could be better would be to hold the actual belt. This book is that good."

Saturday, June 27, 2015

NWA Champion Dusty Rhodes in Key West

"Wrestler Dusty Rhodes in the ring for his NWA wrestling match with Harley Race - Key West, Florida."
State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory
Website Location

See more photos on Pinterest.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Toronto Ad: Funk vs. Race

This is the newspaper ad for the February 6, 1977 match where Harley Race defeated Terry Funk for the NWA world heavyweight championship at Toronto's Maple Leaf Gardens.

Although former NWA champion Pat O'Conner is billed as special referee, he was not the referee in that match.

It is part of a great collection of clippings on the excellent Maple Leaf Wrestling Pictorial website spotlighting NWA title defenses in Toronto from 1950 - 1984.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

A Classic Newspaper Ad from Florida (1975)

A great looking ad from "Championship Wrestling from Florida" featuring NWA Champion Jack Brisco and "the ten pounds of gold."

What a loaded 10-match card! Not only was Jack defending the title against Terry Funk, but two former world champs were also meeting in the semi-final as Terry's brother Dory Funk, Jr. met Harley Race. Plus Eddie Graham, Jim ("J.J.") Dillon, Johnny Weaver, Bob Backlund, Bob Armstrong, Danny Hodge, and others.

The card was held at the beautiful Bayfront Center in St. Petersburg, Florida. For my money on of the most beautiful arenas in the most perfect setting of any venue in Florida.

Belltime 8:30!!

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St. Petersburg Newspaper

ST. PETERSBURG—Wrestler Terry Funk. brother of former world champion Dory Funk Jr.. has won the right to meet current world champ Jack Brisco for the title and will tonight in the feature match at the Bayfront Center.

That will be the final match on a card that begins at 8:30 p.m.

In another big match, Dory Funk Jr. will meet the man who took his title away from him, Harley Race. Eddie Graham will take on the Mongolian Stomper and then Bearcat Wright in a special five minute match.

In other matches: Johnny Weaver will meet Jim Dillon in a Florida TV title match; Mike Graham and Tiger Conway will wrestle Doug Somers and Joe Soto: Bob Armstrong will wrestle against Roger Kirby: Danny Little Bear faces Dutch Mantel; Danny Hodge battles Jon Foley and in the opener Bob Backlund comes up against Pat Barrett.

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Jack Brisco defeated Terry Funk
Dory Funk Jr. defeated Harley Race by DQ
Mike Graham and Tiger Conway defeated Joe Soto and Doug Somers
Dick Slater defeated Chris Markoff
Jim Dillon defeated Johnny Weaver
Eddie graham defeated the Stomper

Thursday, June 11, 2015

"The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes Passes Away

It is with great sadness that we learn of the passing of "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes. A 3-time former NWA world heavyweight champion, he was one of the eight champions who wore the famous domed-globe version of the NWA belt.

Our condolences go out to all his friends and family.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Brisco Celebrates with Boesch in Houston

Promoter Paul Boesch hugs Jack Brisco who had just defeated Harley Race for the
NWA World Championship. 

One of my favorite magazine photos from Houston the night Jack Brisco defeated Harley Race for the NWA world championship. The date was July 20, 1973.

Brisco is being hugged by promoter Paul Boesch. Boesch holds a camera in his left hand. He took many photos in the ring after that match, several of which were given to Harley Race who provided them for use in the book "Ten Pounds of Gold" which documents that historic night in Houston.

Also in the photo are ring announcer Boyd Pierce and despondent Harley Race.

Available on and at

Thursday, April 16, 2015

NWA World Champion Tommy "Wildfire" Rich (1981)

NWA World Champion Tommy "Wildfire" Rich, 1981 (
Scott Bowden made us aware of a photo on featuring Tommy Rich with the NWA world championship belt over his left shoulder.

"I had never seen it before," Scott wrote me, "but from the look on Rich's face, it appears as if he was just told he'd be dropping the belt back to Race on Friday."

I love that line.

Rich won the NWA title on a Monday 4/27 in Augusta, GA, and dropped back to Race on Friday 5/1 in Gainesville, GA. He is part of a short list of guys in the 1970s and 1980s who were "cup of coffee" champions, as in - - they hardly held it long enough to have a cup of coffee.

Other content regarding Tommy Rich -

The match that inspired Hell in a Cell: 
Tommy Rich, Buzz Sawyer and The Last Battle of Atlanta
(includes some video)

Rich was one of the biggest stars in pro-wrestling at the time he won the NWA title. He was huge box office in George Championship Wrestling and the Memphis, TN territory.

Scott Bowden actually managed Rich in Memphis in the 1990s, and has written about him occasionally on his excellent blog "Kentucky Fried Wrestling" site ( "A Wrestling Perspective That's Both Original and Extra Crispy" - - I love that line, too.)

Somebody Say Something 'bout Hollywood?
by Scott Bowden

* * * * * 

Tommy Rich winning the NWA title from Harley Race
Poor video quality, but historically worth seeing.
Commentary by Gordon Solie, Jim Crockett, Jr., and Tommy Rich.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Terry Funk Letter to Jack Adkisson (1975)

Terry Funk letter to Jim Barnett (1975) (Click to Enlarge)

Another wonderful piece of historical memorabilia:

This is a letter written by Terry Funk to the NWA secretary-treasurer Jim Barnett in the days following Funk's victory over Jack Brisco for the NWA world heavyweight championship. Funk won the title December 10, 1975, in Miami, FL. The letter is dated December 15, 1975.

It is basically formal documentation of:

(1) Funk's request that the NWA, through Barnett, be his booker for appearances as long as he is NWA champion.
(2) Funk acknowledges he is in possession of the gold belt which remains the property of the NWA.
(3) He will only lose the title when instructed to do so by the NWA.
(4) He agrees to be booked for at least one rematch with the person who takes the title from him.

Fascinating stuff indeed.

* * * * * * * * * *

Special thanks to Yuhki Kihara and Atsushi Kanie for providing this and other images on the Domed Globe blog.

Historic Telegram to Sam Muchnick (1975)

1975 Telegram Announcing a new NWA World Champion (click to enlarge)

What an amazing piece of historical memorabilia! This is an actual telegram from then NWA president Jack Adkisson (aka Fritz Von Erich) to former longtime NWA president Sam Muchnick informing him that a new NWA world heavyweight champion had been crowned in Miami, FL. 

On December 10, 1975, Terry Funk defeated Jack Brisco for the world's most prestigious wrestling championship.

"Terry Funk defeated Jack Brisco with a cradle hold in 28 minutes tonight December 10th in Miami, Florida and is now recognized as the new world's heavyweight champion by the National Wrestling Alliance."

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Special thanks to Yuhki Kihara and Atsushi Kanie for providing this and other images on the Domed Globe blog.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Japan Wrestling Stickers

Click Image to Enlarge

Japanese magazines occasionally included sheets of stickers within their pages. This particular sticker sheet featured several U.S. stars including NWA world heavyweight champion Terry Funk wearing the "ten pounds of gold."

Others featured include Ricky Steamboat, Dick Slater, Bruno Sammartino, and Fritz Von Erich.

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Special thanks to Yuhki Kihara and Atsushi Kanie for providing this and other images on the Domed Globe blog.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Ric Flair Wins #1

Ric Flair defeats Dusty Rhodes for the NWA world heavyweight championship in Kansas City, KS, September 17, 1981. The special referee is former 6-times NWA champion Lou Thesz.

NWA President Jim Crockett, Jr. shakes the hand of world champion Dusty Rhodes before the title match. Referee Lou Thesz looks on.

Lou Thesz holds up the "Ten Pounds of Gold" before the match in Kansas City's Memorial Hall.
From “Wrestling at the Chase” in St. Louis, hosted by Larry Matysik.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Champions Ric Flair and Jumbo Tsuruta

NWA champion Ric Flair and AWA champion Jumbo Tsuruta
(Verne Gagne is behind them left.)
Ric Flair and Jumbo Tsuruta's world title reigns overlapped in the spring of 1984. Tsuruta defeated Nick Bockwinkle for the AWA championship on 2/23/84 in Japan and lost the title three months later to Rick Martel on 5/13/84 in Minnesota.

Flair was NWA champion most of that time, losing the title briefly to Kerry Von Erich in Texas on 5/6/84 and regaining on 5/24/84 in Japan.

The photo above (from a Japanese magazine) was not taken in Japan, since Flair's only known appearance during that time (when he regained the the title from Von Erich) was roughly a week after Tsuruta lost the AWA title to Martel.

It was likely taken 3/10/84 in St. Louis, MO when Flair and Tsuruta were on the same card at the Kiel:

St. Louis, MO  3/10/84
NWA champion Ric Flair vs. King Kong Brody
Wahoo McDaniel vs. Harley Race (Indian Strap Match non-title)
Greg Gagne and Ted Oates vs. AWA champion Jumbo Tsuruta and Genichiro Tenyru
Blackjack Mulligan vs. Ox Baker
Kimala vs. Bulldog Bob Brown and Buck Zumhofe
Blackjack Lanza vs. Roger Kirby
Luke Graham vs. Jay Wolfe
Buzz Tyler and Ron Ritchie vs. The Grapplers

The two never had a NWA title vs. AWA title match. But it certainly was a busy few months for these two major championships in the spring of 1984.

Monday, February 23, 2015

News of Jack Brisco in Japan (1973)

Tiger Conway, Sr. straps the brand new NWA world championship belt around the waist of Jack Brisco moments after he defeated Harley Race in Houston, July 20, 1973.
Also published on the Mid-Atlantic Gateway in October 2022.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The NWA Champion in Japan (from 1957)

NWA World Heavyweight Champion Harley Race
Featured Link: The NWA Champion in Japan 1957-1999

by Masanori Horie