A majority of our This Day in Wrestling History accounts are from the last thirty or so years and cover the modern WWE and WCW, but we’re going a little further back to July 20, 1973.
We’ve all heard of Harley Race as stories of his toughness are as legendary as his exploits in the ring.
He was a consummate professional that was capable to taking control in the ring if needed, and he was known to put the business first, and the included dropping titles and putting others over.
This was a case of putting the business and others first, as he explains in the following excerpt, with special thanks to @awrestlinghistorian for the excerpt.
One for the team
“My run as titleholder seemed to end as soon as it began. A taste of success at such a high level was great, but it whet my appetite for more. However, I focused on the job at hand: boosting the name Jack Brisco into superstar status.
“About 11,500 fans showed up to the Sam Houston Coliseum into Houston, Texas to watch the showdown. Before and after the match, I talked privately with Jack.
“I had no problem dropping the belt to him. I knew that was the plan all along, and that I was just fortunate enough to get it for a short time. I congratulated Jack and told him that he was finally getting the belt he deserved.
“The match itself was designed to make Brisco look like he was on the receiving end of an ass kicking up until the end. We hadn’t wrestled each other much previously, but our styles matched up well since we both liked a lot of technical wrestling down on the mat. It lasted 25 minutes, and by the end there, there weren’t three people in the building who thought Brisco had a chance of winning. For one, I had just recently won the belt and many fans didn’t expect me to lose it so soon. Plus,
“I had the upper hand pretty much throughout the match, just as we planned.
“Near the end, I jumped off the top rope to land across his body, but Jack pulled his knees and my chest landed right into them, knocking the wind out of me. As soon as I stood up, he was coming off the ropes. He jumped into me with a flying body press. In one sweeping motion, he slammed into my body, knocking me backward while trapping my arms above my head and grapevining my legs as I fell on my back. That’s when he got the count: 1-2-3. The shocked crowd cheered. Brisco was the new NWA Champion.” – Harley Race, King Of The Ring book
For ourselves, we became fans near the end of Race’s career during his time as King Harley Race in the WWE with Bobby Heenan as his manager.
While Race is known to many professional wrestling fans, Jack Brisco isn’t despite being another consummate professional.
It’s for those like Brisco that helps to make This Day in Wrestling History fun as we get to help him have another moment to shine, even if it is brief and to a small audience than he was used to.
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