What the World Was Watching: WWF Wrestling Challenge – July 1, 1990

Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are in the booth, and they are taped from Rochester, New York.

Opening Contest:  The Rockers (11-2-1) defeat Paul Diamond & the Brooklyn Brawler when Marty Jannetty pins the Brawler after a double flying fist drop at 4:07:

The Brawler wrestles most of the match for his team and the Rockers work him over with a bevy of double teams.  Diamond gets the same treatment when he tries to save his partner late in the match, sent out of the ring when the Rockers whip the Brawler into him.  For whatever reason Monsoon and Heenan do not talk about the Rockers feud with the Orient Express.

Lord Alfred Hayes’ Special Report segment changes the “Get Well Hulk” campaign to the “Come Back Hulk” campaign.  It re-airs last week’s Hulk Hogan tribute video.

The Barbarian (w/Bobby Heenan) (10-0) pins Mark Bee after a flying clothesline at 1:57:

Bee is assaulted before the bell and never records, finished with the Mafia kick and flying clothesline.  Monsoon notes that he would like to see the Barbarian face stiffer competition.

Nikolai Volkoff says that one of his favorite things about America is the WWF ice cream bars.

Brutus Beefcake (14-0-2) beats Dennis Allen via submission to the sleeper hold at 3:06:

Allen was a Larry Sharpe trainee that started working in 1988.  He did a job for Barry Windham on WWF television the previous year and spent 1990 working as a jobber on WWF and WCW television.

In the split screen, Heenan asks Mr. Perfect if Beefcake has any perfect qualities, and Perfect says that Beefcake is “a perfect loser.”  Heenan tells Monsoon that if Beefcake tries to cut Perfect’s hair, it is going to be turned against him and his head will end up like Boris Zhukov’s.  Beefcake tallies an easy win in his last televised match before a parasailing accident nearly ended his career.

Rhythm & Blues, along with Jimmy Hart, do a performance of “Hunka Hunka Honky Love”  This is a long performance as they do the full song and surprisingly, the Bushwhackers do not interrupt it.

Non-Title Match:  Demolition – Smash & Crush (WWF Tag Team Champions w/Ax) (1-0) defeat Duane Gill & Barry Hardy when Crush pins Gill after Demolition Decapitation at 3:31:

Hardy was another Larry Sharpe trainee that started wrestling in 1987.  On the Mid-Atlantic independents he and Gill were a team called the Lords of Darkness, with Sharpe serving as their manager and they would go on to win the Atlantic States Wrestling Alliance and World Wrestling Association tag team titles by 1992.  In addition to this, Hardy became a staple on WWF television as an enhancement talent, first working for the WWF in 1988.

In the split screen, Demolition tell the Hart Foundation that they were so great they had to expand.  Crush adds that he does not have to like anyone, continuing the positioning of Demolition as a heel team.  Like his initial appearance, the focus of the match is putting over Crush’s power.  He does a good belly-to-belly suplex but almost botches gorilla press slamming Gill into the ring from the apron.  Monsoon and Heenan debate whether Demolition should be allowed to have three members defending the titles, with Heenan becoming more sympathetic to Demolition than he was a month ago.

Gene Okerlund interviews Boris Zhukov.  Okerlund rubs in that America is about to celebrate July 4.  Zhukov has a good counter that independence is ruining the Soviet Union, so he is not a fan of it.  The Russian heel says that it is not surprising that American fans are taking to Nikolai Volkoff because he is a coward.  He vows to prove that might can make right.

Hacksaw Jim Duggan (18-1-1) pins Joe Champ after the three-point stance clothesline at 2:39:

After Duggan knocks Champ out of the ring, Earthquake does an insert promo about how the letters to Hulk Hogan make him sick and they will not make a difference.  He warns Duggan that the next tribute will be for him.  Duggan spams clotheslines to set up the big one and keep his momentum going for a future clash with Earthquake.

Ted DiBiase and Virgil visit a place that they insist is the Big Bossman’s old neighborhood.  A lawn boy says that the neighborhood does not like the Bossman because he was the area’s bully.

Bad News Brown (15-0-1) defeats Scott Colontonio after the Ghetto Blaster at 2:38:

As Brown beats on the jobber, Okerlund talks with a fan in the crowd.  The fan has Jake Roberts’ Hasbro toy, and he says Roberts is going to destroy Brown when they face each other.  Brown swallows up the jobber and wins in less than three minutes.

Vince McMahon voices over a promo that encourages the WWF’s fans to attend live events, a sign that shows have not drawn well since WrestleMania.

Tune in next week to see Koko B. Ware, Rick Martel, Dusty Rhodes, Mr. Perfect, and Tugboat in action!  And Demolition will be interviewed by Gene Okerlund!

The Last Word:  The show just featured guys in existing feuds sniping at each other on the mic.  Ted DiBiase’s vignettes in Cobb County remain entertaining and a highlight of these early summer telecasts.

To wrap up June, here is what the WWF was doing on the house show circuit, with results provided courtesy of thehistoryofwwe.com:

Johnstown, Pennsylvania – War Memorial – June 27, 1990 (2,000):  Koko B. Ware pinned the Genius with a DDT…Paul Diamond beat Jim Brunzell…The Barbarian pinned Jimmy Snuka…WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition Smash & Crush beat the Hart Foundation…Brutus Beefcake beat Intercontinental Champion Mr. Perfect via disqualification…Hercules defeated Al Perez via forfeit when Perez no-showed…WWF Champion the Ultimate Warrior pinned Rick Rude.

Long Island, New York – The Nassau Coliseum – June 30, 1990 (6,600):  Ronnie Garvin beat Mike Sharpe (substituting for Rick Martel)…Paul Roma defeated Buddy Rose…Hillbilly Jim beat the Brooklyn Brawler…Nikolai Volkoff defeated Boris Zhukov…The Rockers defeated the Orient Express via disqualification…Jake Roberts beat Bad News Brown via disqualification…Dusty Rhodes & Sapphire (w/Miss Elizabeth) defeated Randy Savage & Sensational Sherri (w/Brother Love) when Sapphire pinned Sherri.

Auburn Hills, Michigan – The Palace – June 30, 1990 (4,500):  The Big Bossman pinned Ted DiBiase…The Warlord beat Tito Santana…The Bushwhackers defeated Rhythm & Blues via disqualification…Haku pinned Shane Douglas…Tugboat beat Dino Bravo with a splash…Black Bart pinned Jim Powers…WWF Champion the Ultimate Warrior defeated Rick Rude after thirty minutes of action.

San Jose, California – Surec Arenea – July 1, 1990 (4,400 paid; WWF debut at the venue):  Koko B. Ware pinned Al Perez after a missile dropkick at 10:28…The Barbarian defeated Jimmy Snuka with a Flair pin at 11:46…Hercules defeated the Genius via submission to a torture rack at 8:02…Earthquake pinned Hacksaw Jim Duggan with the Earthquake Splash after Jimmy Hart interfered at 10:07.  After the match, Duggan cleared the ring with his 2×4…WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition Smash & Crush beat the Hart Foundation when Smash pinned Bret Hart after Ax hit Hart with a foreign object at 12:38…Paul Diamond pinned Jim Brunzell after rolling through a body press and using the tights for leverage at 9:25…Brutus Beefcake defeated Intercontinental Champion Mr. Perfect via disqualification when Perfect kicked the referee while trapped in Beefcake’s sleeper hold at 16:06.  This would be Beefcake’s last match for three years.

Backstage News*:        Rick Rude returned to the road for matches against the Ultimate Warrior because Vince McMahon refused to pay him while he was not making towns.  Rude is upset that the WWF was promoting him for shows he could not make, and he was not being compensated for it.

*In a bad sign for the Warrior’s push, fans at a San Jose house show wanted to buy Hulk Hogan merchandise but the company only had Warrior merchandise available.

*Hogan’s filming schedule will keep him out in November, which could hurt the WWF’s house shows in the fall.

*Classie Freddie Blassie was in the hospital after a heart attack last week.  He recovered and McMahon held a party for him at WWF headquarters after he was released.

*The people that have been appearing in the Ted DiBiase vignettes in Cobb County, Georgia are all friends or relatives of the Big Bossman.

*SummerSlam is nearly sold out, while the WWF claims that $800,000 in tickets have been sold for WrestleMania to this point. 

*In talent relations news, Ric Flair is unhappy in WCW since Jim Herd does not seem him as a top talent.  Flair reportedly wants to jump to the WWF to face Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania VII.  However, jumping may not be the best financial choice as Flair is making over $500,000 and that money is guaranteed.  The WWF may not pay him as much and there would be no guarantee.  Jesse Ventura told a sports radio show that his contract is set to expire soon and he is not making good headway in negotiations to renew it.  The WWF allowed the Road Warriors to work six dates in Japan because the Warriors had agreed to work dates for All Japan and New Japan before signing their contracts.  Kerry Von Erich is wrapping up his tenure in Memphis and it is expected he will appear at the WWF’s next television taping on July 17.  John Nord is also expected to make those tapings.  The WWF is looking for a new television announcer to replace Tony Schiavone, who left prior to WrestleMania VI, but has not found someone they like for the role.

*Backstage news is provided courtesy of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer for July 9.

Up Next:  Prime Time Wrestling for July 2!