December 13, 1986
From the Joyce Athletic and Convocation Center in South Bend, IN
Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, and Vince McMahon
Tonight, we will see Adrian Adonis, Kamala, and the Can-Am Connection. Plus, an update on the condition of Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat and a highlight package set to the song “Everybody Have Fun” by Wang Chung.
Pedro Morales & Tito Santana & Hillbilly Jim vs. Moondog Spot & Barry O. & The Raider
Jim overpowers Spot then puffs out his chest. Barry tags as Jim grabs a side headlock before tagging Santana. Tito takes Barry down with a flying headscsissors then dropkicks him before tagging Morales. The Raider also tags in and Morales catches him with a shot to the midsection. Tito tags and hits another dropkick before Morales rolls up The Raider for the win (1:57).
Thoughts: The six-man tags involving Santana, Pedro, and Jim were not particularly exciting. The crowd really only seemed to care about Tito at this point anyway as Pedro was washed up and Jim was never as popular as he was pre-WrestleMania I.
WWF Update with Gene Okerlund. This week’s subject is Randy Savage, who is shown cutting a promo gloating about how he took out Steamboat and calls himself the greatest wrestler in the WWF. He then gives the throat slash gesture to Steamboat if he ever decides to wrestle him again.
Mario Mancini vs. “Adorable” Adrian Adonis w/ Jimmy Hart
Before the match we are shown a promo from Piper who is insulting Adonis then tells him to “pay the Piper.” Adonis backs Mancini into the corner and roughs him up. He elbows him in the back of the neck then takes him down with a shoulderblock. He chops him down then taunts the crowd as Vince probes Jesse about his investigation into Andre the Giant’s investigation. Jesse says that he will be interviewing Bobby Heenan about that situation as Adonis puts Mancini away with the Good Night Irene (1:16). After the match, Adonis shoves flowers into Mancini’s mouth.
Thoughts: They did a good job at continuing the Piper/Adonis feud here and on commentary they continued the story about how Andre got reinstated by the WWF.
Ken Resnick is with Savage, who will be facing Bruno Sammartino at the January 3rd Boston Garden show. The next “Saturday Night’s Main Event” aired that night too. Savage calls Bruno a “has been” and promises to teach Bruno to respect the young. Great stuff by Savage, who was in the zone at this point.
Another Outback Jack vignette, who says that he is chomping at the bit to get over to the WWF.
Iron Mike Sharpe & Jimmy Jack Funk vs. Can-Am Connection
The crowd loves the Can-Am Connection. Funk and Martel start off the match trading off of on the arm. Martel uses his speed to his advantage and gets two with a hurricarana. He sends Funk to the floor with a dropkick as the crowd goes nuts. Sharpe tags and roughs up Martel for a bit. Martel is able to tag Zenk and they take down Sharpe with a double monkey flip. Zenk works the arm but Funk knees him in the back from the apron then tags in and roughs him up. The fans rally behind Zenk as he is able to crawl through the legs of Sharpe and make the tag. Martel is on fire then tags Zenk who slingshots in with a sunset flip for two. The match breaks down then Sharpe is in control until Zenk hits him with an atomic drop and Martel takes him down with a headscisssors. Zenk then dropkicks Funk off of the apron and catches Sharpe with a powerslam then slingshots in Martel with a splash to get the win (3:54). The crowd went crazy at the finish.
Thoughts: Awesome for a short TV match. The Can-Am’s were instantly over. They had barely been with the company for a month and had the crowds going nuts for them. The girls loved their looks and the fans loved their fast-paced moves as they appealed to just about everyone. I have to imagine that the other white-meat babyface teams like the Rougeau’s and the U.S. Express were getting worried about their spots on the card at this time.
Resnick is with Blackjack Mulligan as he will be part of the “Bunkhouse Battle Royal”match at the Boston Garden. They hype how you can wear whatever you want in this match, which is best known for Lanny Poffo wearing a suit of armor in the ring. Mulligan cuts a dull, rambling promo here.
We get another Blackjack Mulligan vignette on his ranch as he talks about the bull he got for $1,000. He then talks about his past bull as this went nowhere. Vince laughed like a moron when this ended. At least he was entertained.
Jack Kruger vs. Kamala w/ The Wizard & Kimchee
Kamala attacks Kruger with his mask before the bell. Kamala then hits him with some chops and kicks then slams him down. Kamala hits a splash then climbs up top and hits another splash for the win (0:38). Kruger is getting carried out on a stretcher as Vince calls him a “young man.” Kruger was 40 years old here and looked even older than that.
Thoughts: The Kamala TV squash matches are starting to get stale now. When his house show against Hogan ended, there was not much else left for him to do in the WWF.
Piper’s Pit with guests Butch Reed and Slick. Reed talks about how natural he is Piper mocks him for dying his roots black. Reed and Piper start insulting each other until Piper grabs Suzette the Federette and asks how she finds more attractive as she walks off with Piper. Reed then gets on the mic and flips out.
The “Everybody Have Fun Tonight” video is shown. Solid stuff as the WWF video packages at this time were generally good.
Okerlund is with Steamboat’s doctor, who is amazed at Steamboat’s progress. The doctor then states that another shot to his throat could even be fatal.
We are shown the interview by Jesse Ventura with Bobby Heenan about Andre the Giant’s reinstatement. Jesse runs down Jack Tunney then asks Heenan what happened. Jesse chides Heenan for allowing Andre to be reinstated as Heenan surprises him by putting over his size and agility and says that there is no reason for him to not be reinstated. Jesse point blank asks him if he should be allowed to be back and Heenan says yes and that he does not have to answer to anyone. Awesome segment that kept everyone intrigued.
Jake “The Snake” Roberts vs. “The Rebel” Dick Slater
Roberts got a lot more cheers than Slater to start the match. Vince goes off on Danny Davis, who is the referee for this match. Slater takes down Jake with a hiptoss to start. Slater knocks him down as the crowd boos then works the leg but Davis breaks that up as the crowd now boos Davis. Slater goes back to work on the leg as Jesse and Vince go back and forth about Davis. Slater still attacks the leg as this match is starting to drag. Roberts kicks Slater over the top rope but sells his leg and Slater is able to come back in a hit a swinging neckbreaker then an elbow smash from the top rope as Slater covers and gets the pin but Davis gets up and saw Roberts’ had his foot on the ropes and orders the match to continue as Vince and Bruno talk about how once the ref counts to three the match is supposed to be over, no matter what. As Slater argues with the referee, Roberts gets up and hits him with a short-armed clothesline. He hobbles around then grabs his snake but Slater fights back. Davis then backs Slater into the corner but gets tossed across the ring as the crowd erupts then Davis rings the bell for the DQ as Roberts is the winner (4:32).
Thoughts: The match was okay but this was more about furthering the Davis storyline than anything else. Roberts sold his leg like a champ for this match. This was one of the last TV matches for Slater in the WWF. He would remain with the company for several more months too, usually wrestling on house show opening matches.
Resnick is with Bruno Sammartino, who says that Savage has done nothing but insult him then warns Savage that he is not after his title but will mop up the floor with him and even come after him outside of the ring if he tries to escape and save his title.
Next week in action, we will see Don Muraco & Bob Orton vs. The Islanders. Also in action will be Butch Reed and the Killer Bees.
Final Thoughts: An awesome show. They accomplished a ton of stuff in just one hour. They kept their two top feuds (Steamboat/Savage, Adonis/Piper) going strong and had a very intriguing segment about the return of Andre the Giant. Plus, they showcased a hot new act in the Can-Am Connection. You really couldnt ask for much more here and a lot of the main stuff on this show continued into WrestleMania III. Great long-term planning by the WWF here.
Here is my schedule for the next several days:
Saturday: RoH Frontiers of Honor 5/17/03
Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 12/14/86
Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 12/20/86
Thursday: Shoot Interview TBD
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 12/21/86