Article: Tommy Rich vs Buzz Sawyer

Title History

  • NWA Southeastern Television title defeating Bobby Jaggers in a Tournament Final (Febuary 16, 1980);
  • NWA Mid Atlantic Tag Team titles w/Matt Borne defeating Iron Sheik & Jimmy Snuka in a Tournament (June 2, 1980);
  • NWA Pacfic Northwest Tag Team titles w/Brett Sawyer defeating The Destroyer & Rip Oliver (April 18, 1981);
  • NWA (Georgia) National Heavyweight title defeating Tommy Rich (May 2, 1982);
  • NWA (Georgia) National Tag Team titles w/Brett Sawyer defeating The Road Warriors (November 27, 1983);
  • NWA (Georgia) National Tag Team titles w/Brett Sawyer defeating The Road Warriors (December 27, 1983);
  • UWF (Mid South) Televison title Awarded by Dick Slater (March 16, 1986);
  • WCWA (World Class) Television title defeating “Gentleman” Chris Adams (June 16, 1986);
  • WCWA (World Class) Texas Heavyweight title defeating Brian Adias (July 4, 1986);
  • WCWA (World Class) World Tag Team titles w/Matt Borne defeating Lance Von Erich & Chris Adams [Tournament] (September 1, 1986);

Career Highlights

  • Buzz Sawyer was an accomplished amature wrestler before turning pro.
  • May 2, 1982: Buzz Sawyer defeated Tommy Rich to win the National Heavyweight title.
  • 1983: Buzz Sawyer was a member of the original Legion of Doom managed by Paul Ellering.
  • ~~~Which also included The Road Warriors, The Spoiler, and King Kong Bundy.
  • October 23, 1983 – Last Battle of Atlanta: Tommy Rich & Buzz Sawyer battled in a famous cage match.
  • Buzz Sawyer held thew Mid-Atlantic tag belts with Matt Borne, subsequently losing them to the New Zealand Sheepherders.
  • July of 1986: Kevin von Erich & Buzz Sawyer engaged in a bloody feud in World Class.
  • November 1986: Buzz Sawyer was fired from World Class after failing a drug test.
  • 1989: Buzz Sawyer was part of the group “J-Tex Corporation”.
  • Wrestle War 1990: Buzz Sawyer & Kevin Sullivan defeated The Dynamic Dudes.
  • February 7, 1992: Tragically passed away in as the result of (reportedly) a heroin overdose.
  • Buzz Sawyer’s reputation as a brawler was known world wide and is known as original crazy men of the ring.
  • Buzz Sawyer wrestled in the NWA, Georgia, World Class, Florida, Mid-South, UWF, WCW, Memphis, Continental, New Japan.
  • Buzz Sawyer was managed by Paul Ellering and Gary Hart at different times.
  • Buzz Sawyer formed tag teams with Brett Sawyer, Bob Armstrong, Terry Taylor, Dick Slater, Kevin Sullivan, Rick Steiner.
  • “The Mad Dog is on the prowl…Wooooooooo!”

    Brandon Welch wrote: The last ever match between Tommy Rich and Buzz Sawyer was a closed steel cage match (with manager Paul Ellering in a little cage 30ft above the ring) called “The Last Battle of Atlanta on October 23, 1983 in the Omni. Rich won, it was a bloodbath and concluded their 18month fued. I saw Rich wrestle before and after and this match (and the fued in general) really took a lot out of him. He would go on to fued with Ted DiBiase over the Georgia National title, and have great matches (even under a mask in the amusing Mr.R story line) but he was never quite as fast or explosive as he had been when battling Sawyer. They murdered each other every night and it was unlike any wrestling conflict I have ever seen. Sawyer is one of the best wrestlers I saw, he could do a great match with a huge man like Crusher Jerry Blackwell or a ring scientist like Arn Anderson. He had the best powerslam ever, better than the Steiners. To bad he ODed at the age of 32 and is completely forgotten by many modern fans. He would have done great in a promotion like ECW because he could look fantastic in any kind of match. It would have been great to see him get a popular as Mick Foley.


Brandon Goldberg wrote: I have been a true to the bone wrestling fan since I was born. Some time in the early 80’s….Pez Watley was the first wrestler to pin Buzz Sawyer on Live Television…this was when the NWA was on the superstaion 17 (cable)….it was a big event; Cable was new…I saw this and remembered it. To my recollection, no one else did pin him (Buzz) not even Tommy Rich (Wildfire) on TV.