Three weeks ago I pondered the possibility of Eli Black or Quinn Harper returning to UCW to cut redneck heel Billy Gunn down to size. Billy's been raising hell at UCW, cutting a mile-wide swath through the other newcomers and even positioning himself as top contender for the championship title. The guy's funny as boogers on grits, I'll give him that, but mean as a sunburned rattlesnake. I know that Eli and Quinn are notorious heels, too, but sometimes you have to fight fire with fire!

In the company's latest release [#326], Eli's back in town, and he has Billy squarely in his sights. When Billy drawls out a couple of taunts to get the ball rolling, Eli shoots back, "Sorry, but I don't speak incest." But the tongue-lashing is only the beginning of an intense 32-minute knockdown drag-out, with Eli having to draw upon his cage-match tricks just to even the odds against a competitor who is not only bigger by half his size but also intent on making squirrel gravy out of him. "Allow me to be Hatfield and you be McCoy," Black says, setting up the fight's tone in terms he thinks Gunn can relate to.

A side headlock takedown gets fast-talking Eli stuck underneath Billy, and he finds himself in the uncomfortable position of having to play defense against the bigger contestant. "Uncomfortable" doesn't cover the half of it, as Billy nearly snaps the Yankee's head clean off. Then he grabs him by the nose and gives it several tweaks just to piss the skinny roughneck off. "Squeal, piggy, squeal," Billy jeers, echoing a popular pickup line from his mountain home. Billy may not be the quickest thinker in the room, but he's primed by instinct to hurt a body--and tickled pink to do it, too.

I'm not sure that I've ever seen Eli under this kind of duress before--and this is a wrestler who has taken on some big, meaty challengers in his day, not to mention tricky devils like Quinn Harper and Nick Diesel too. Billy pretty much has his way with the guy--a scary idea for anybody who's seen Deliverance--and the question is whether Eli can counter Billy's superior mass and cruel cunning. In the end, he will have to out-crazy the guy to make any kind of headway at all. But then we all know Eli can loosen a screw or two when he wants to!

Images edited on request (17 Feb. 2014)


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