Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are tonight’s hosts. Monsoon tells Heenan that he does not appreciate how he left last week’s show. He says that he has seen Hogan and he is okay but could be doing better.
Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan are in the studio for this evening’s show, with Monsoon in a dour mood because of Hulk Hogan’s condition.
Welcome back to more Dream Matches! This time, I lead off with what is probably Blitzkrieg’s best match ever, as he takes on Juventud Guerrera on PPV. More Hossery as the Faces of Fear take on the Giant Jobber Division of Ron Studd & John Tenta at the same time! Then it’s a rare look at the 1-2-3 Kid in a JTTS match, as Damien “I was NOT a JOBBER!” DeMento takes him on! And I found one of Lash LeRoux’s early matches, up against a “long since stopped giving a fuck” Roadblock. And finally, my “King of the Ring Qualifying Matches” series continues, but with the only two bouts I could find on YouTube. No idea why 1993 & 1995 are there in their near-entirety, but this one only has a couple.
JUVENTUD GUERRERA vs. BLITZKRIEG:
(WCW Spring Stampede, 4/11/1999)
* Here’s another Blitzkrieg match- arguably his biggest, as he takes on Juventud on PPV! Juvi’s maskless and in mostly black (with silver & gold highlights), while Blitz has his best gear on- a slick black/red/silver get-up that’s not as loose as it sometimes is.
Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan handle commentary and they are concluding the taping cycle in San Antonio, Texas.
Rhythm & Blues squash match from Prime Time Wrestling opens the show.
Such a dream match that somebody played it in WWE2K19!
Welcome back to more Dream Matches! This time I find another match adding to the culmination of the break-up of the Rockers, as they take on the WWF Tag Team Champions in their final title shot!
Also up, a super-famous BUNGEE JUMP Match from the GWF in 1992. Also, a request, as the West Texas Rednecks take on… The Public Enemy? Yes, they’re back in WCW after they got chased out of the WWF by the Acolytes! Then it’s an apparently “semi-infamous” squash as Fit Finlay wrestles his normal match against Power Plant jobber Lorenzo, which is indistinguishable from Fit Finlay shooting on Power Plant jobber Lorenzo! Also one more PCO match, as Jean-Pierre Lafitte takes on Man Mountain Rock in one of the only “featured matches” Maxx Payne fought in the WWF.
WWF WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES:
THE LEGION OF DOOM (Hawk & Animal) vs. THE ROCKERS (Shawn Michaels & Marty Jannetty):
(Dec. 28th, 1991)
* Way, WAY at the end of the Rockers’ run comes their last shot at the World Tag Titles, as we get a rare Face vs. Face match against the unstoppable LOD in what’s truly a Dream Match. The LOD are in the usual, but the Rockers have on some bizarre technicolor shirt & tights combos, with neon stripes going up black middles and paint-splatter and tassels making up the rest of it. Ah, but they soon doff the shirts and look more like themselves. As someone pointed out last week, the Rockers were in a weird zone where they faced nearly everyone- babyface or heel- in the tag division during their time with the WWF. I surmised it was probably because they made everyone look good. The unusual match here is a giveaway that something’s gonna happen.
Vince McMahon and Jesse Ventura handle commentary and they are taped from Austin, Texas. To put over the Texas setting of the show, McMahon and Ventura open the show on horseback in the aisle. The card was hyped as “The Tussle in Texas” and took place on April 23. According to thehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a crowd of 8,500 fans.
As noted in prior columns, this show was a joint effort by the WWF, New Japan Pro Wrestling, and All Japan Pro Wrestling. The WWF was looking to expand its global presence while New Japan and All Japan felt threatened by Akira Maeda’s shoot-like Universal Wrestling Federation, which drew a 50,000 person crowd to the Tokyo Dome for a big show in November 1989. To counter them, New Japan and All Japan worked together on a supershow at the Tokyo Dome on February 10. Then, they built on that effort by partnering with the WWF for another big card in Tokyo on April 13 that was named The Wrestling Summit. According tothehistoryofwwe.com, the show drew a crowd of 53,742.
Welcome back to more Dream Matches! This time, we’ve got something weird- apparently when John Tenta was just starting out in wrestling, he was in ALL JAPAN of all places, teaming up with the Ace and weighing only 300-ish lbs., and fighting the legendary Road Warriors!
Also I found more of that bizarre Land of Giants team, as they take on… The Undertakers? Yes- it’s a pair of obese twins with a name the WWF actually bought off of them. Then wen see a “Battle of the Kings” as King Mabel decides to take out Ken Shamrock shortly after his King of the Ring victory- a shockingly good attempt at putting a guy over from MABEL of all people! And then, in a fantastically-terrible bout, come see the legendary POWER UTI, villain of Mick Foley’s first book and national hero of Nigeria, take on the worst wrestler in AEW- Doc “Super Festus” Gallows! And then we cap things off with WCW’s Wrath & Mortis vs. The Faces of Fear in a shockingly-good Hoss Brawl!
JUMBO TSURUTA & JOHN TENTA vs. THE ROAD WARRIORS (Hawk & Animal, w/ Paul Ellering):
(All Japan, 1987.6.8)
* Haha, oh Jesus- look at this! Baby John Tenta, fresh out of sumo and having lost a LOT of weight, is in the early stage of his pro wrestling career in All Japan as the Ace’s tag team partner, and they’re going up against the early form of the Road Warriors, in full black spike-vests and ’80s facepaint! Tenta, in his navy-blue singlet with a Canadian flag on it, is almost unrecognizable, being barely 300 lbs. and scarcely larger than Jumbo- he’s all straight lines! Even at 24 he’s lost almost all the hair on top of his head, though.
Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon are in the charge of the play-by-play and they are still taped from Tucson, Arizona.
Tony Schiavone and Gorilla Monsoon are in the booth and they are concluding the tapings in Fort Myers, Florida.
Hogan & Hansen: Main Event in the making!
WWF/AJPW/NJPW WRESTLING SUMMIT:
(Tokyo Dome, April 13th, 1990)
* This is a pretty wild and wacky card, full of the kind of “Dream Matches” you’ll never see again- I’m really shocked it’s not more famous. I mean, it’s a triple-show with All Japan, New Japan, AND the WWF all at once! In the Tokyo Dome! Apparently highlights were aired on Japanese TV, but complexities with the rights led to the full event never being shown in its entirety (which might be why it’s so obscure). The biggest matches are Hulk Hogan vs. Stan Hansen, Macho Man vs. Genichiro Tenryu, and the Ultimate Warrior vs. Ted DiBiase. The WON awards declared this the “Best Major Wrestling Show” of 1990!
“TL;DR” Version: So come see Bret Hart vs. Mitsuharu Misawa in the most disappointing Dream Match of all time! Hogan with his “Japan working boots” (where he’s more “Unstoppable Monster” than the Technically-Gifted Powerhouse I was led to believe he was) on against Stan Hansen in one of his greatest matches ever! Macho King & Queen Sherri doing their schtick against a stoic top-tier Japanese legend in a befuddled Tenryu! Grumpy ol’ Jumbo Tsuruta dealing with hard-working heels in Martel & Perfect!
The show had two dark matches- Dan Kroffat, Doug Furnas & Joe Malenko beat Samson Fuyuki, Tatsumi Kitahara & Toshiaki Kawada in (11:56), and Jushin Liger beat Akira Nogami in (8:37). An extremely shaky fancam of the latter exists- it’s mostly hold-trading. They trade corner moves and Liger hits a surfboard and a rock-the-cradle. They trade flash-pins and Nogami hits a very good plancha and German Suplex for two, but Liger dropkicks him coming off the top and hits a Tope Con Hilo to the floor! He misses a roundhouse kick but gets a powerslam and finishes with a Moonsault Press. Looks **1/2-ish but holy god am I not gonna go move-for-move with such a shaky vid.
Tony Schiavone and Jesse Ventura are in the booth and they are live from Orlando, Florida. According to thehistoryofwwe.com, this show drew a sellout crowd of 16,000 fans. It also drew a buyrate of 2.0 (an estimated 260,000 buys), an increase from the 1.5 number the Rumble did the previous year. This would also be the last pay-per-view that Schiavone would call for the WWF.
It’s a shock and a tragedy that I can’t find any solo matches between these two.
And we’re back with more of wrestling’s wildest Dream Matches! Can you withstand the power of Yoko & Booger working the world’s softest match with Mo & Mabel? More Booger, as he wrestles Rick Martel in a battle of opposites! Also watch the Dungeon of Doom’s B-Team crush High Voltage, Joe Gomez & The Renegade! Speaking of “Plain Old Rick”, watch his last match as he fights Wrath during his “Goldberg” Run! And did you know that Terry Taylor had the world’s most forgettable run in the WWF during 1992-93? True story! He takes on Jim Powers!
As always, these are all readily available on YouTube.
YOKOZUNA & BASTIAN BOOGER (w/ Mr. Fuji) vs. MEN ON A MISSION (Mabel & Mo, w/ Oscar):
* An Oakland, California house show gets this AMAZING Dream Match, featuring four huge fat guys (when Mo is the Cruiserweight, you know a match will be good). Yoko was actually WWF Champion at this time, apparently. He tosses his salt right on a ring attendant and shoves the announcer after announcing the faces, then he & Mabel won’t get out of each other’s faces, practically squashing Hebner between them- dude has gotta be ribbing these guys. The terrible video and sound transfer has robbed us of Oscar’s famous diction, sadly.
And we’re back with more bizarre finds of “what can I find by typing random names into YouTube?” (and also some requests from sadistic BOD members). This set sees a match between two of the worst workers of all time clearly booked by a monster, along with some unusual WWF matches- the Colossal Connection vs. The Rockers, plus a certain legendary JTTS worker “Huss”-es his way in!
Once again, WWF YouTube videos are non-kosher to post here, but you can find them pretty easily.
ZEUS vs. ABDULLAH THE BUTCHER:
(World Wrestling Council, 1990)
* OH MY GOD SOMEONE ALLOWED THIS TO HAPPEN!!! This is in Puerto Rico, a pretty wild territory (a murderous one, even), with the famous blood ‘n’ guts wrestler Abdullah facing off against Zeus, following his WWF run, which was so bad he wasn’t even trusted to do a solo match with Hogan in a big way. They look like a pair of “Fist of the North Star” villains fighting- Zeus roided to the gills and in silver & black pants, and Abdullah this scarred-up monstrosity, baggy pants hoisted up to his tits. I mean, at least Zeus LOOKS like a star.