WWF Wrestling Challenge December 14th,1986

December 14, 1986

From the Metro Centre in Rockford, IL

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon

In action tonight will be Randy Savage, Butch Reed, U.S. Express, and Adrian Adonis.

Randy “Macho Man” Savage w/ Elizabeth vs. Mario Mancini

Mancini surprises Savage by taking him down. He then backs Savage into the corner as the announcers talk about what Savage did to Steamboat as Heenan makes a joke about Steamboat being unable to help out his wife with the housework. Mancini eats a knee on a charge then gets tossed to the floor. Savage follows him out with a top rope double axe handle then rolls Mancini inside to hit another one as we get an insert promo from Savage dissing Steamboat then he gets the win with a flying elbow smash (1:24).

Thoughts: They really kept the Steamboat/Savage storyline going strong even with Steamboat off of TV. This feud was red hot.

We get a “Wrestler’s Rebuttal” from Kamala and the Wizard, who screams about Kamala not being in the lastest issue of WWF Magazine. Enough of the Wizard.

Jack Tunney lets us know that Andre the Giant has been reinstated into the WWF and only tells us how Andre no-showed the meeting and Bobby Heenan was there. You could easily tell that something fishy was going on about Andre’s suspension being lifted and the WWF did a great job at keeping the fans in suspense.

Bobby Colt & Steve Lombardi vs. U.S. Express

Gorilla asks Heenan about Andre and he just dodges the question. Lombardi and Rotundo briefly go back and forth until Rotundo takes him down with a flying headscissors. He hits an atomic drop then tags Spivey, who also hits an atomic drop. Colt tags but Spivey takes them both down with a crossbody block. The announcers talk about how referee Danny Davis’ license expires in April as Colt takes a beating before getting put away with the bulldog (2:20).

Thoughts: The U.S. Express fell by the wayside at this point as their were a lot of teams better than them and the fans were not all that crazy for the duo either. It seemed like they still saw Spivey as a Barry Windham knockoff.

Ken Resnick is with Johnny V. and Dino Bravo. Johnny talks about how Bravo has agreed to listen to everything he says as he can trust him and is able to go all the way to the top. Bravo says that playing Mr. Nice Guy got him nowhere and that Johnny showed him the light. A segment designed to show everyone how these two were on the same page.

Another vignette from Blackjack Mulligan on his ranch. He talks about all he has been doing and calls out King Kong Bundy. Oddly enough, Bundy kept on getting called out but had not been on TV for several weeks.

Paul Roma vs. King Harley Race w/ Bobby Heenan

Johnny V. has replaced Heenan on commentary for this match. Heenan demands that everyone give Race a standing ovation and they boo mildly. Roma leapfrogs Race then sends him over the top rope with a dropkick. Roma then goes outside and puts on Race’s crown. Race then rams him into the post and rolls him back inside where he drops a pair of elbows before putting him away with the cradle suplex (1:50).

Thoughts: Nice of them to give Roma a bit of offense here. Race was still struggling to get over as he never looked comfortable with the King gimmick. If Roma was six inches taller, he would have been a star. His height held him back a lot.

A replay of the Honkytonk Man revealing Jimmy Hart as his manager is shown.

“Leaping” Lanny Poffo vs. “The Natural” Butch Reed w/ Slick

Once again, Heenan dodges Gorilla’s question about Andre the Giant’s hearing. Poffo floats over Reed and gets two with a rollup. Reed gets cocky after a leapfrog and ends up walking into a dropkick. Reed comes back with a dropkick of his own that sends Poffo to the floor then goes outside and exposes the concrete and slams him down. Back in the ring, Reed knocks down Poffo and slams him him down before getting the win with a flying clothesline (2:09).

Thoughts: The Natural’s push continues but he really wasn’t getting all that much heel heat. He needs a feud.

The Snake Pit with guest Roddy Piper. Roberts insults Piper before inviting him out then asks him about Adonis coming on the Pit last week and declaring that Piper’s time is up. Piper  looks focused and pissed off and only talks about how Adonis is wrestling next as Jake gets upset. Piper then  declares that Adonis’ time is up. Interesting segment with a lot of foreshadowing here.

S.D. Jones vs. “Adorable” Adrian Adonis w/ Jimmy Hart

Adonis puts his robe over the head of Jones then hammers away. The crowd starts to go crazy as Piper comes out to the ring. Adonis gets distracted as Jones takes control. Adonis keeps looking and Piper and struggling to maintain control in the ring. Jones gets two off of a rollup but Adonis tossing him outside then Piper runs into the ring to attack Adonis as the ref rings the bell for the DQ (2:13). Piper unloads on Adonis until half of the locker room comes out to break it up. Adonis tries to escape but Piper follows him out and chases him up the ramp.

Thoughts: Decent pull apart brawl. It might have looked tame by today’s standards but these two were in the midst of a hot feud so any action between the two was great, especially seeing Piper getting the upper hand on Adonis.

Jesse Ventura is with the Can-Am Connection. He tells the duo that he is impressed by them and tries to intimidate them with his body as they laugh at him. They are already giving the Can-Am Connection a strong push.

Sika w/ The Wizard vs. Bob Boyer

Sika catches Boyer with a back elbow smash then slams him down as Heenan continues to avoid Gorilla’s questions about the reinstatement of Andre the Giant. Sika roughs up Boyer for a bit until he puts him away with the Samoan Drop (1:01).

Thoughts: Sika still looked as scary as anyone else on the roster but he was washed up in 1984 and even more deteriorated here.

We get a promo from Hulk Hogan who tells Randy Savage that he will throw the title aside in order to wrap his 24 inch pythons around his neck for what he did to Ricky Steamboat. With Hogan endorsing how much he wants to hurt Savage for what he did and even put the title aside, you know the WWF was serious about making Steamboat/Savage a top feud.

Next week in action will be the Honkytonk Man and Hercules plus an update on the condition of Ricky Steamboat.

Final Thoughts: A much better episode of Challenge than the previous few weeks. They advanced angles instead of just showing replays of “Superstars of Wrestling.” The show long theme on commentary of Heenan ignoring Gorilla’s questions about Andre was well done. The WWF was doing a great job of keeping their top feuds hot at this time.