WWF Championship Wrestling May 24th, 1986

May 24, 1986
Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino and Vince McMahon
Tonight’s featured match is between Iron Sheik & Nikolai Volkoff & Killer Bees. Also, Harley race makes his debut. Plus, the Dream Team and Ricky Steamboat are in action and the “Flower Shop” with guests Don Muraco and Mr. Fuji.

Steve Lombardi & Paul Christy vs. “Golden Boy” Danny Spivey & Mike Rotundo
Rotundo returns after several months and still has “Born in the USA” as his theme music. The faces take turns working the arm of Lombardi to start. Rotundo catches him with a back elbow smash then slams him before tagging Spivey. Lombardi makes the tag as Christy lands a few shots with minimal effect on Spivey. Rotundo tags and they hit a double dropkick but Rotundo gets backed into the wrong corner and choked out by Lombardi. Rotundo escapes and a few mistimed sequences follow then shortly after that he catches Lombardi with the airplane spin before Spivey hits a slingshot splash for the win (3:56).
Thoughts: The crowd was into this match. Then again, it was the first show of the taping and sometimes that factors heavily into crowd reaction. They finally found something for Spivey and it was nice to see Rotundo return, as he was a solid worker. But really, this team was just to add depth to the tag team division.
WWF Update with Mean Gene Okerlund. We have a new set and music know too. This week, the subject is King Kong Bundy and how he is a mean guy. In a funny moment, they come back from the clip and a guy with a broom walks behind Gene, who tells him two doors down on the left then the segment just ends. This was not very good.
Harley Race w/ Bobby Heenan vs. John Centeno
This is Race’s debut in the WWE. He hits a back suplex on Centeno then tosses him outside and beats the shit out of him. Back inside, Race follows a neckbreaker with a falling headbutt. After a shoulderbreaker, Race beats on Centeno before hitting him with a piledriver. Race drops an elbow then finishes him off with a slingshot suplex (3:09).
Thoughts: Race was quite impressive here and was moving around very well. Not a lot of fanfare for his debut but he was completely dominant.
Ken Resnick is with Nikolai Volkoff, who cuts a promo on Corporal Kirchner hyping their house show match tonight in Boston. It was tough to understand Nikolai here as he sounded like he had marbles in his mouth.
Ron Shaw vs. Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat
Steamboat catches Shaw with a powerslam then tosses him outside as the announcers talk about his feud with Jake Roberts. Back inside, Steamboat works a reverse chinlock as Vince warns us at home not to try any of the moves. Steamboat hits a reverse neckbreaker then heads up top and finishes him with a flying body press for the win (2:48).
Thoughts: Steamboat was very aggressive in the match as they were hyping him as ultra pissed off over being attacked by Roberts at “Saturday Night’s Main Event.” That feud has been really hot so far.
Resnick is with Hulk Hogan, who said that he hates pre-taped interviews as they take place a month in advance. Hogan calls out his opponent in Boston, Randy Savage, and says that he is not a champion after robbing Tito Santana but rather a bum. He closes by promising to run wild on Savage. Interesting to hear Hogan tell everyone how these promos are taped a month in advance.
The Dream Team w/ Johnny Valiant vs. George Wells & Mike Saxon
Heenan comes out on commentary and interrupts the match, telling us that Andre the Giant has been suspended by President Jack Tunney. Back to the match as Saxon is getting beat down by the Dream Team. Valentine then puts him in the figure four for the win (2:48).
Thoughts: The match just the backdrop for Heenan’s announcement of Andre’s suspension, which was major news. The angle that followed was shit, however.
Flower Shop with guests Don Muraco and Mr. Fuji. You can hear all of the kids in the crowd start up a “faggot” chant aimed at Adonis. Muraco talks about how they look great while “Hulk Hooligan” walks around ripped t-shirts. Nothing much happened and the Flower Shop was a pretty bad talk show segment all around, actually.
We are shown the “Hulkamania” music video. It is always great to see this. I fucking can’t get enough of the video.
Iron Sheik & Nikolai Volkoff w/ Freddie Blassie vs. Killer Bees
The Bees work over the arm of Nikolai to start as the crowd is screaming “USA.” Brunzell takes over Nikolai with a sunset flip but Sheik breaks that up. Brunzell goes after the Sheik and that backfires as the heels double-team him behind the referee’s back. They continue to beat on Brunzell until he escapes. The ref orders the heels back as the Bees put on their masks as the heels are confused. Blair is the one in the ring and locks Sheik in an abdominal stretch then they keep switching behind the ref’s back as he is unable to keep track of who is underneath the mask. Nikolai breaks up a sleeper but eats  a clothesline. Brunzell dropkicks Sheik, who gets pulled out by Nikolai then they head up the aisle and get counted out, as they did not want to deal with the Bees (4:38).
Thoughts: They used this match to get over the Bee’s mask gimmick. The crowd hated Sheik & Volkoff too. A fun match to close the show.
In action next week are Paul Orndorff, Jake Roberts, George “The Animal” Steele, Funk Brothers, Tito Santana & Pedro Morales, and Don Muraco & Bob Orton.
Final Thoughts: Solid show overall. The featured bout was fine and the big news of Andre’s suspension made it a big show. Harley Race’s debut went well and the return of Mike Rotundo got over with the crowd.
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