David Chappell's

Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling History

February 1974

by David Chappell

The Almanac

Almanac Index

Feb. 74 Roster

Championship Picture This Month:



• Jack Brisco



• Johnny Valentine



•  Gene and Ole Anderson



February of 1974 had more than its share of memorable moments for the fans of Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling. The titanic split between the Destroyer and Swede Hanson occurred in February, and spawned a red hot feud that went on for many months. February also marked the return of the ultra popular Jerry Brisco, and at the end of the month, a new Title was introduced into the area.

At the beginning of February, a mysterious masked man appeared on the scene in Charleston, South Carolina, and was assisting the Destroyer when it appeared the Destroyer might be close to losing his mask. On February 1st, the Destroyer appeared to be in big trouble in a bout against Johnny Weaver at County Hall in Charleston. When it appeared Weaver was going to unmask the Destroyer, a burly newcomer called Mr. X, who had wrestled Art Nelson earlier on the card, rushed the ring and was able to prevent the Destroyer from losing his mask. Mr. X and the Destroyer then double teamed Weaver, prompting Danny Miller to hit the ring to assist Johnny.

This melee led to a return match on February 8th in Charleston, with Weaver and Danny Miller teaming up against the masked duo of the Destroyer and Mr. X. The good guys prevailed, but only after a long match that was out of control for the most part. This led to the third and final match of the series in Charleston on February 15th, where the two teams met again, this time in an elimination match! After a bloody bout, Weaver and Miller again emerged victorious, eliminating Mr. X and revealing him to be none other than Swede Hanson!

The major falling out between the Destroyer and Swede Hanson really occurred two days earlier, on February 13th, at the Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling TV tapings at the WRAL TV studios in Raleigh, North Carolina. The show aired around the area in most markets on February 16th. On that program, the Destroyer got quite upset at his tag team partner, the big Swede, and proceeded to slap him! Everything broke down after that, and the big feud was on!

The first match between the Destroyer and Swede Hanson occurred in Fayetteville, North Carolina on February 18th at the Cumberland Memorial Arena. This bout was about as rough as anyone could imagine, and ended in a “No Contest” result. The two came back to Fayetteville, on February 25th in a bout with two referees, with Swede winning by disqualification. The two also battled in bloody matches on February 22nd in Richmond, Virginia and on February 23rd in Norfolk, Virginia, with both of those battles being so out of control that both wrestlers were disqualified!

The Destroyer also had his hands full in the month of February with Johnny Weaver. While their feud was still hot, it was not as torrid as it was during the month of January. During the beginning of the month, Weaver won thrilling Count Out decisions over the Destroyer in Charleston on February 1st, and in Greenville, South Carolina on February 4th. Later in the month, the Destroyer put together a winning streak over Weaver, as the feud lost some of its intensity. The masked Destroyer claimed clean pinfall wins over Weaver in Salem, Virginia on February 9th, February 12th in Columbia, South Carolina and on February 14th in Greensboro, North Carolina. At the very end of the month Johnny salvaged a Disqualification victory over the Destroyer in Anderson, South Carolina on February 27th, but this was a bout that the Destroyer dominated most of the way.

Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion Johnny Valentine was perfect in his Title bouts during the month of February, securing pinfall wins in each of his Title defenses. Valentine’s most frequent opponent in February was the popular Nelson Royal. “The Champ” bested Royal in Championship encounters in Columbia, South Carolina on February 5th, Winston-Salem, North Carolina on February 7th and in Charlotte, North Carolina on February 11th.

Valentine also had a competitive back-to-back Championship series in Columbia with former Miami Dolphin’s linebacker Bob Bruggers. The two battled evenly over the Mid-Atlantic belt during a rough contest in Columbia on February 19th. The rematch on February 26th was even rougher, and saw Bruggers control long portions of the bout. However, like was often the case in bouts involving Valentine, the Champ seemed to be a master at pulling out matches that he seemed to have no business winning!

Ultra popular Jerry Brisco returned to the area during the month of February, and his legions of Mid-Atlantic fans were delighted to have him back! Jerry’s first match back was in the Greensboro Coliseum on February 14th, teaming with Sandy Scott to defeat the dangerous duo of Brute Bernard and Chuck O’Connor. Jerry’s most impressive performance of the month came the next night, at the State Fairgrounds in Richmond. Brisco battled old nemesis Johnny Valentine in a non-title bout. Jerry was impressive throughout, and captured a rare clean pinfall victory over the always rough and rugged Valentine.

Mid-Atlantic Tag Team Champions Gene and Ole Anderson were active during the month of February, wrestling in both Title and non Title bouts across the territory. In addition, the Minnesota Wrecking Crew joined forces with Mid-Atlantic Champion Johnny Valentine several times during the month. In an exciting confrontation in the Charlotte Coliseum on February 18th, the Andersons and Johnny Valentine fell to the trio of Bearcat Wright, Jerry Brisco and Paul Jones. Paul had come up from Florida to wrestle in Charlotte as part of the six man match and then the next night in Columbia, Jones wrestled the masked Destroyer.

The town that Gene and Ole were most active in during February was Raleigh, North Carolina, where three exciting bouts were held during three consecutive weeks. On February 5th, the Andersons defeated the formidable duo of Danny Miller and Sandy Scott in a Title bout in Dorton Arena. The following week on February 12th in Dorton Arena, Bearcat Wright and Sandy Scott upset Gene and Ole in a hotly contested match. The Champions demanded a rematch, and that occurred the very next week on February 19th. The fans in Raleigh were treated to a classic Championship Match, as Wright and Scott were on the verge of victory on numerous occasions, only to fall just short of unseating Gene and Ole.

Danny Miller became the first Mid-Atlantic Television Champion during the month, defeating Ole Anderson in the Tournament finals at the WRAL TV studios in Raleigh on February 27th. The bout showcased two veterans who knew each other’s styles inside and out. Danny withstood a vicious pounding from Ole during a large portion of the match, but was able to catch Ole off guard to capture the new Title! Miller certainly didn’t have an easy road to becoming the first ever Mid-Atlantic TV Champion. The prior week, he advanced to the finals of the Tournament by getting by, of all people, the invincible masked Destroyer! But Danny beat the odds throughout the televised Tournament, and wound up the territory’s newest champion.

While it may be the year’s shortest month, February in 1974 had a little bit of everything for the fans of Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling. In addition to a new Title belt being introduced to the area, and Danny Miller being crowned Champion after a hotly contested tournament on TV, fans saw a real rarity during the month when long time bad guy Swede Hanson began wrestling as a good guy, battling his former partner the Destroyer! Their battles began late in February, but this feud looked to have the potential to go strongly into March and beyond!


1. Danny Miller---Miller went through a grueling tournament to become the first ever Mid-Atlantic Television Champion. In addition to that very noteworthy achievement, Miller was also active and successful in tag team competition during the month.

2. Johnny Valentine---The Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight Champion had a strong month in February, solidifying his grasp on the Championship he obtained in January. It was starting to look like it would take an act of Congress to dislodge the Mid-Atlantic belt from “The Champ.”

3. Bearcat Wright---The popular Wright continued to look impressive during the month of February. Bearcat was a handful to any of the area’s bad guys, whether he was participating in single or tag team competition.


1. Jay York---The former “Alaskan” only wrestled in the early part of February, was on the losing end of those contests, and was quickly out of the area after that. Quite a precipitous fall for someone who was one half of the Mid-Atlantic Tag Team Champions in late December of 1973.

2. Beauregarde---York’s manager suffered pretty much the same fate during February. Beauregarde wrestled more than he managed, dropped all of his matches, and was out of the area quickly. Beauregarde stayed around a little longer than York, but the “Beautiful One” was also out of the territory for good by month’s end.

3. Art Nelson---Nelson wrestled three matches during the early days of the month, lost them all, and was out of the area by the end of February’s first week. A strange exit for a major player on the good guy side of the roster of Jim Crockett Promotions.




© 2009 David Chappell   Mid-Atlantic Gateway  Published 7/30/09