Thursday, November 29, 2012

Gone, But Not Forgotten: Buddy Roberts

Buddy Roberts
By Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter

I couldn't let the passing of Buddy Roberts go by today and not write a few words about it.  For those who remember World Class Championship Wrestling from the mid 1980's, Roberts was one third of the Fabulous Freebirds.  Along with Michael Hayes and (the late) Terry Gordy, Roberts was one of the company's best heels.

When I was a kid I hated the Freebirds.  They of course were engaged in war with the hometown superheroes The Von Erich brothers.  One of my favorite memories of Roberts was when he was battling Iceman King Parsons in a hair match.  Roberts cheated to win, but ended up losing his hair anyway when Parsons rubbed the mysterious "Freebird Hair Cream" on Roberts' head.  He ended up wearing head gear after that for a time, using it to gain the upper hand in his matches.  Here's the link to that match.

The 'Birds and the Von Erichs battled it out for years in WCCW, trading the six man tag team championships several times.  Roberts would go on to manage the Samon Swat Team and team up with Parsons after he turned on the Von Erichs too.  His raspy voice (due to years of smoking) was his trademark, as well as his love of Jack Daniels, earning him the nickname "Jack."

In addition to tag team gold, Roberts won the UWF TV title as well as the WCCW version of the belt.  He may not have been the biggest dog in the fight, but at times he was certainly the dirtiest.  He truly had a man you love to hate type personality in my view.

The Freebirds with singles gold
Prior to his time as a Freebird though, Roberts was a part of the Hollywood Blonds with Jerry Brown.  This was in the 1970's, long before I started watching wrestling, but it's my understanding the duo was successful in Florida, Georgia, and other parts of the mid-south region.

Roberts was successful wherever he went, but an underrated star of the 70's and 80's.  He was just 65 years old.  Rest in Peace Buddy Jack.

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