WWF Wrestling Challenge – June 26th, 1988

June 26, 1988

From the Fresno Convention Center in Fresno, CA

Your hosts are Bobby “The Brain” Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon

In action this week will be Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Demolition, Bam Bam Bigelow, and the Big Bossman

 

 

Demolition w/ Mr. Fuji vs. “Leaping” Lanny Poffo & Jerry Allen

Poffo’s poem is about how Demolition is incapable of doing anything without Mr. Fuji. He immediately gets his ass kicked after that. Allen finally tags and lands a few punches before running into a boot. Demolition destroys Allen as Heenan talks about Harley Race as the picture of his head in the clouds appears on the lower right corner. Allen gets tossed outside then Poffo runs over and tosses him back in and very shortly after that Demolition hits the Decapitation for the win (3:40).

Thoughts: Another dominating performance by Demolition, who are now in need of new challengers with Martel on the shelf due to the concussion angle.

 

 

WWF Special Report with Lord Alfred Hayes. This week’s subject is the conflict between Jimmy Hart and the Hart Foundation. We are shown Neidhart tossing Hart from ringside during Bret’s match as we see a clip from Jimmy Hart as he tells the Hart Foundation to call him collect so they can work things out. Funny.

 

 

Dino Bravo w/ Frenchy Martin vs. Frank Valdez

Bravo beats on Valdez as Gorilla tells us the tests on Rick Martel have come back “non-conclusive.” We get an insert promo from Frenchy that was spoken in French as Bravo stays in control until he puts Valdez away with a side slam (1:36).

Thoughts: The strongman gimmick for Bravo was not getting over as a heel act but it did not stop the WWF from pushing him even harder.

 

 

Stymie Richards vs. Hacksaw Jim Duggan

Stymie was a huge black guy billed from Compton, CA. The arena erupted for Duggan as he entered the ring. Stymie attempts to attack Duggan from behind but ends up running into the corner. Stymie then reverses an Irish whip and hits the most pathetic attempt at a corner splash that I have ever seen. Duggan catches Stymie with a boot then shortly after that hits the Three Point Stance for the win (1:38).

Thoughts: Stymie was a big dude but just horrible in the ring. He also had some of the biggest hands I have ever seen. This was another TV win to keep Duggan looking strong for his feud against Andre.

 

 

Sean Mooney is at the Event Center. This now features the new Control Room background. We hear from the Honky Tonk Man and Jimmy Hart as they run down Brutus Beefcake and the Ultimate Warrior, who talks about controlling the force and not letting down the little Warriors.

 

 

Big Bossman w/ Slick vs. Mark Ming

Bossman overpowers Ming as we get an insert promo from Slick, saying that there is time for some law and order in the WWF. Bossman kills Ming with a spinebuster then hits a sidewalk slam for the win (1:38). After the match, Bossman cuffs Ming to the ropes and wails away on him with his nightstick to the amusement of Heenan.

Thoughts: They’ve been doing a pretty good job at getting over the Bossman gimmick in his first few TV appearances. The post-match gimmick was awesome.

 

 

Mooney is back in the Event Center. We hear from Slick as he tells us that the One Man Gang will be dishing out pain, especially to Bam Bam Bigelow. Jake Roberts then warns Rick Rude what will happen to him when they face off.

 

 

British Bulldogs vs. Steve Lombardi  Barry Horowitz

Heenan makes fun of Matilda and the Bulldogs, who take control of the match. We then hear from the Fabulous Rougeau Brothers, who think that the Bulldogs would be an even better team if they left Matilda at home. The Bulldogs work over Horowitz until they finally put him away with an assisted flying headbutt (2:44).

Thoughts: They seem to be setting up for a future Rougeaus/Bulldogs feud based off of the insert promo.

 

 

Brother Love is back again. He does his preacher schtick before getting to the point and introducing his guest, who provides the money for him to do the show, the Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase. Virgil accompanies DiBiase, who reminds us all that everyone has a price has Brother Love says that DiBiase loves each and everyone of us. After two appearances, the Brother Love act is just failing to connect with the audience, who are not even reacting to him. This only seemed to establish that the show exists because DiBiase pays for it, which is fine but unless this directly helps DiBiase out it does not make sense.

 

 

We are shown Greg Valentine putting Superstar Billy Graham in the figure-four leg lock from the 6/18/88 edition of Superstars. This ended Graham’s managerial career as he is now an announcer. It also set up a Don Muraco vs. Greg Valentine feud, which might have been something in 1983. And Graham was horrendous as an announcer.

 

 

Bam Bam Bigelow w/ Oliver Humperdink vs. The Intruder

Bigelow beats on the Intruder as the announcers talk about Graham. Bigelow then hits a suplex and a slam before finishing off the Intruder with a slingshot splash (2:11).

Thoughts: This was Bigelow’s last TV appearance in the WWF for over four years. Bigelow ended up quitting as he said that Vince kept pushing him to wrestle while he was hurt and refused to give him time off and that his payoffs were getting smaller as Bigelow stated himself that he began to hate the business. According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, at the time the WWF was giving out smaller payoffs and making talent drive any trip that was less than 600 miles instead of giving them plane tickets. Bigelow would end up in Japan a month later.

 

 

Mooney is back in the Event Center. We hear from DiBiase as he tells Randy Savage that the WWF World Heavyweight is the only thing he does not have and that he always gets what he wants.

 

 

Next week we will see the Rockers, Brutus Beefcake, Honky Tonk Man, and Jake Roberts. Plus, Slick and the Big Bossman as guests of the Brother Love show.

 

 

Final Thoughts: Not much of a show this week. The Brother Love segment once again bombed and besides the Bossman making his Challenge debut and getting his gimmick over, nothing else of note happened.

 

Monday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/2/88

Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/3/88

Wednesday: RoH Supercard of Honor X, Night Two 4/2/16

Thursday: Shoot Interview TBD

Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/9/88

Saturday: RoH Main Event Spectacles 11/1/03

Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/10/88