What the World Was Watching: The Action Zone – July 30, 1995

Jim Ross recaps how Shawn Michaels defeated Jeff Jarrett at In Your House 2 to win the Intercontinental title for the third time.

Ross and Todd Pettengill are in the booth and they are taped from St. Louis, Missouri.  According to the historyofwwe.com, the taping drew 10,500 fans.

Opening Contest:  Adam Bomb (16-3-3) pins Tony DeVito after a Neutron Bomb at 3:16:

Ross references Bomb wanting another match with Henry Godwinn after Godwinn slopped him earlier in the month but no feature match between the two appears to be forthcoming.  That shows how far Bomb is down the company’s totem pole because Godwinn is locked into a storyline with the Million Dollar Corporation.  Bomb goes through some basic wrestling moves on DeVito, following the usual pattern in his squash matches, and after he shrugs off a hot shot, he hits the Neutron Bomb to win.

Ross and Pettengill do the first SummerSlam Report.  They discuss the Diesel-Mabel main event.  Diesel cuts a promo against Mabel saying that Mabel is just another big boy that he is going to beat.

King Kong Bundy (w/Ted DiBiase) (13-3) pins Buck Quartermaine after an Avalanche at 1:25:

Bundy appears to have recovered from walking pneumonia and this is his first appearance on WWF television since May 22.  Quartermaine botches an avalanche spot, taking a bump into the ring post when whipped into the corner, causing Bundy to run himself into the turnbuckles.  Ross cannot stop talking about the Kiel Center, which was a new facility at the time, and dates the footage by discussing the St. Louis Rams.  Bundy wins a quick victory but there do not appear to be any long-term plans for him, or much of the Million Dollar Corporation, at the moment.

Fatu has a new vignette where he goes to his old high school and smiles when he sees some graffiti art that reads “Say no to drugs.”

The Bret Hart-Hakushi match on RAW is replayed.

A replay of Isaac Yankem’s newest vignette is aired, with Ross and Pettengill grimacing just as Vince McMahon and Dok Hendrix did on The Action Zone to Yankem stabbing the inside of his patient’s mouth with a needle.

The Smoking Gunns (15-3-1) defeat Victor Lewis & Scott Turner after Billy pins Turner with a Hart Attack at 3:28:

Lewis was a grizzled veteran in the business by this point, wrestling on the independent scene as the Black Dragon.  Less is known of Turner, who made his lone appearance in the WWF in this match.  McMahon appears to have recast how a swinging neckbreaker should be called, as Ross calls it a “neck ringer” like McMahon has a tendency to do.  This squash is pretty dull, with the Gunns smothering the jobbers for a long time – and working over Turner forever – before delivering their version of the Hart Attack to build a winning streak.  Ross and Pettengill debate whether the Gunns or the Allied Powers deserve a crack at Owen Hart and Yokozuna’s tag team titles.

Dean Douglas’ debut vignette is replayed.

Ross and Pettengill recap the division between Jeff Jarrett and the Roadie and the Roadie’s claims that he sang “With My Baby Tonight.”  Ross signals that he does not want to see Shawn Michaels and Sid for the Intercontinental title by saying “That one is not going to be pretty.”

A condensed replay of the Razor Ramon, Savio Vega, & the 1-2-3 Kid versus Blu Brothers & Uncle Zebekiah match from Superstars is aired.

Call 1-900-737-4WWF to hear about matches that might be signed for SummerSlam, bad news for Sid, and what the future of Jeff Jarrett’s tenure will be in the company!  The call will cost you $1.49 per minute!

Tatanka (w/Ted DiBiase) (7-2-3) pins David Haskins after the End of the Trail at 4:07:

Haskins gets a lot of offense in at the beginning of this contest, scoring several near-falls, but Tatanka nearly takes his head off with a clothesline.  Ross talks about Bam Bam Bigelow’s strap match against Tatanka that will take place at Madison Square Garden next month as Tatanka methodically works over Haskins before finally finishing him off with the End of the Trail.  After the bell Ross and Pettengill talk about how much they hated Waterworld.

Ross talks about how Jerry Lawler is trying to get in Shawn Michaels head to help out Sid, who lives close to him.  A replay of Lawler goading Michaels at the end of RAW is shown.  After a commercial break, Ross puts over Michaels’ “pitbull” image.

Tune in next week to see Bam Bam Bigelow, the 1-2-3 Kid, and Waylon Mercy in action!

The Last Word:  These shows are really dragging now that feature matches have been eliminated and the long Smoking Gunns and Tatanka squashes did very little to enhance the broadcast.  However, Jim Ross is trying to go everything he can to put over some of the SummerSlam matches, even if they do not really have much appeal as presently constructed.  Another interesting side note is that all of the guys that went over on this show, except for the Smoking Gunns, were gone from the company six months later.

There was one additional match that aired on Wrestling Challenge:

*Aldo Montoya (11-5) beat Tony Williams

Aside from a new round of television tapings, there were some additional house shows that took place on the West and East coasts.  Here were the results of a sampling of those shows (courtesy of thehistoryofwwe.com):

Rancho Cucamonga, California – Epicenter – July 28, 1995 (3,400):  Adam Bomb beat Rad Radford…Waylon Mercy (substituting for Jeff Jarrett) pinned the 1-2-3 Kid after the Kid missed a flying leg drop…WWF Women’s Champion Alundra Blayze beat Bertha Faye…Diesel & Shawn Michaels defeated IRS (substituting for Sid) & Tatanka…Fatu pinned Henry Godwinn…WWF Tag Team Champions Owen Hart & Yokozuna defeated the Allied Powers…The Undertaker defeated Kama in a casket match.

Warwick, Rhode Island – Musical Theatre – July 28, 1995 (1,500):  Skip beat Aldo Montoya…Jean-Pierre LaFitte defeated Duke Droese…Razor Ramon beat Hunter Hearst-Helmsley via count out…The Smoking Gunns beat the Blu Brothers…Bob Backlund defeated Man Mountain Rock…Savio Vega beat Hakushi…King Mabel defeated Bam Bam Bigelow.

Stateline, Nevada – Buffalo Bill’s Casino – July 29, 1995 (3,750; 2,900 paid):  Fatu beat Henry Godwinn after a splash off the top rope at 5:53…Adam Bomb pinned Tatanka at 12:47…Waylon Mercy (substituting for Jeff Jarrett) beat the 1-2-3 Kid after the Kid missed a flying leg drop…Intercontinental Champion Shawn Michaels defeated IRS (substituting for Sid) in a steel cage match after escaping the cage at 9:13…WWF Women’s Champion Alundra Blayze beat Bertha Faye…WWF Tag Team Champions Owen Hart & Yokozuna defeated the Allied Powers at 9:28…The Undertaker beat Kama in a casket match at 14:37.

Hyannis, Massachusetts – July 30, 1995 (2,200):  Skip beat Aldo Montoya…Jean-Pierre LaFitte defeated Duke Droese…Hunter Hearst-Helmsley defeated Phil Apollo…The Smoking Gunns beat the Blu Brothers…Bob Backlund beat Man Mountain Rock…Savio Vega defeated Hakushi…Razor Ramon beat King Mabel.

Here were some news and notes concerning the company following In Your House 2 (courtesy of The Wrestling Observer newsletters from July 31 and August 7):

*Reports are that Jeff Jarrett and the Roadie left the company after the Intercontinental title match because they did not like the angle that was booked for them.  The company thought of having a screw up during Jarrett’s musical performance, which would culminate in it being revealed that the Roadie was the real singer, but then decided to have them fight after the Intercontinental title match.  This was then supposed to lead to them wrestling each other at SummerSlam.  However, the planned post-match altercation did not happen as both walked to the locker room and left the building.  Some rumors are swirling that Jarrett might want to go to WCW because his father has a working relationship with them at the moment but he is still under contract with the WWF, who is unlikely to release him if he did want to leave.

*Some pay-per-view distributors are not happy at the firing of Skip Desjardins, who headed the company’s pay-per-view department.  The recent releases inside of the company have distributors wondering about the company’s fiscal health.  The WWF has lost money in recent years from poor house show attendance, declining pay-per-view buy rates, and growing legal bills.  However, Meltzer says that the best indication of the company being in dire straits would be if the McMahons sold part of the company to an outsider or changed corporate offices.

*There was a rumor going around that the company would love to have Owen Hart & Yokozuna face off against Steve McMichael and William “Refigerator” Perry at SummerSlam since both men, former NFL stars, have pro wrestling aspirations.  However, when Perry wanted a guaranteed contract the talks broke down because the WWF has a strict policy against them.  Perry also did not want to go on the road and only wanted to do big shows.  McMichael later signed with WCW since they had better ideas for what to do with him as a singles competitor.

*Akio Sato, who was serving as Hakushi’s manager, is gone from the company and will be working in Japan’s WAR promotion.  Although previous reports said that Hakushi was asking for a release, he appears to be sticking around for the time being.

*The final major taping of Wrestling Challenge matches drew a very impressive crowd in St. Louis, with more than 10,000 fans attending and the company collecting a $95,000 gate.  However, the show probably lost money due to rent, taxes, holding a television show in a unionized building, and advertising costs.  However, the company does feel good about the reception for In Your House 2, advances for SummerSlam, and how the recent RAW did a 3.8 rating, which is one of the best in its history.

*Sid has been out of action due to bone spurs in his neck so he was replaced on house shows.  This also explains his poor performance in the In Your House 2 main event.

*The company is really high on bringing in Tony Norris, who has been having good tryout matches with Rico Suave, who was brought in to give Norris someone to work with on the house show circuit.

Up Next:  Monday Night RAW for July 31, 1995!