WWE Network News has broken a story that the WWE Network is planning on releasing the entire Georgia Championship Wrestling show from October 23, 1983 that featured the infamous “Last Battle of Atlanta” cagematch between Tommy Rich and Buzz Sawyer that was Jim Cornette‘s inspiration when he created the Hell In A Cell match while working for the WWF in the 1990s. Up until 2016, the footage for that match was thought to be lost forever, until the WWE uploaded the match to the WWE Network.
It’s been revealed that the entire event, which was held in front of a crowd of over 10,000 fans at the The Omni Colosseum in Atlanta, Georgia, will be added to the WWE Network’s Hidden Gems section. The other matches on the card besides the cage match include:
- Les Thornton vs. Joe Lightfoot
- Bruno Sammartino Jr. (David Sammartino) vs. Pat Rose
- Mr. Wrestling II vs. Bob Roop
- NWA National Heavyweight Championship: Brett Wayne (c) vs. Jake “The Snake” Roberts
- The Great Kabuki vs. Ronnie Garvin
- NWA National Tag Team Championship: The Road Warriors (Hawk & Animal) (c) vs. Jimmy Valiant & Pez Whatley
- Ole Anderson vs. Paul Ellering
For years, The Last Battle of Atlanta has been considered the Holy Grail of pro wrestling. As recent as 2012, four years before the WWE obtained footage of the match, WWE.com mentioned it’s legendary status: “Very little, if any, video footage of The Last Battle of Atlanta exists,” WWE.com reported. “No one knows what happened to it. There are rumors that a Georgia Championship Wrestling official may have erased the footage by mistake. Every now and then, rumors pop up online of a mysterious tape trader who got hold of the footage, but nothing ever comes of it. All we have that confirms the match took place are a few photographs. Otherwise, one of the most brutal bouts in wrestling history is lost in time.”
The WWE broke the internet for old school wrestling fans in September of 2016 when they finally released the full match (without commentary unfortunately) on the WWE Network, but it seems they’ve now got footage of the entire near two hour event, and will be releasing it in its entirety very soon.