July 4th Open Thread

The United States championship birthday open challenge thread is now OPEN.

Hopefully you’re all too busy grilling delicious meat, drinking beer and blowing shit up to be here, but if you’re like Cult and are scared to go outside, here you go.

Impact Wrestling – July 1, 2015

July 1, 2015
Impact Zone, Orlando, Florida
Josh Matthews, D’Angelo Dinero
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
is a big special show called Bell to Bell, headlined by Ethan Carter
III challenging Kurt Angle for the World Title. We’re also coming
off a pretty lackluster Slammiversary with the main story being Jeff
Jarrett winning King of the Mountain and taking the newly created
title to Global Force Wrestling. We also have a thirty minute Iron
Man match for the Tag Team Titles so this is a packed show. Let’s
get to it.

opening video looks at Angle’s TNA career but tonight he’s up against
someone who has never lost. It’s a simple video but it hits every
point it needed to touch.
Rising vs. Beat Down Clan
losing team must disband, thank goodness. It’s also a 4-3
elimination match with Hernandez/MVP/Kenny King/Low Ki vs. Drew
Galloway/Mica/Eli Drake. MVP and Drew get things going with Galloway
kicking him in the face and hammering away in the corner. Low Ki
comes in and loses some skin off Galloway’s chops. It’s off to King
vs. Mica with the former taking Mica down with ease for a bunch of
right hands to the head. That’s more aggression than you usually see
from him.
BDC starts taking over but Hernandez isn’t pleased that he didn’t get
a tag. Ki gets a nice running start into the corner and kicks Mica
in the head for the elimination. Back with Ki suplexing Galloway for
two as this is very one sided so far. Drew quickly rolls over to the
corner for the hot tag to Drake for some house cleaning, including a
dive to take MVP down on the floor. Drake comes up favoring his knee
though and it’s time for the trainers. That’s officially an
elimination so it’s Galloway vs. the entire BDC.
gets things going for his team as the Pope talks about pork chops.
They chop it out in the corner (dang maybe Pope is on to something)
but it’s quickly off to Ki, who accidentally kicks King in the head,
allowing Drew to roll up Low Ki for the elimination, followed by a
quick cover on King to get it down to 2-1. See, now that’s logical
thinking and doesn’t make the whole match seem fake.
gives Ki a shoulder breaker onto the steps, likely to write Ki off
the show, only to walk into a Border Toss. MVP’s Playmaker (or
whatever he’s calling that stupid move these days) drops Galloway
again but he tells MVP to bring it, earning him a Drive By to the
head for the pin at 16:45.
C. Well, at least it’s finally
done. The Rising was one of the most worthless stables I’ve ever
seen as they just had no reason to exist. The BDC is nothing special
either but at least they seem to have a purpose. Galloway was
clearly several steps ahead of his partners so getting rid of Drake
and Mica is a good thing for him.
break, MVP is told that Low Ki is heading to the hospital for his
shoulder. Oh yeah that’s his way off TV.
Magnus with something to say. He
doesn’t think much of James Storm and doesn’t care that Storm’s
parents didn’t give him enough hugs and kisses. That’s an image I
didn’t expect to think of today. Storm played some mind games but
what he forgot was the power of a man when his family is threatened.
Magnus brings out Mickie James, who is totally fine after that near
death thing. Mickie thanks
Magnus for always being there for him because he’s the man for her.
Storm and Khoya, with the Cowboy saying he’s here to talk to Mickie.
He thinks Mickie should be
be thanking him for not pushing her a little bit harder. Storm
didn’t want her in the Revolution, but rather to prove how easy it is
to manipulate a woman. He could have any woman he wanted but Mickie
doesn’t seem to take too kindly to this line of thinking.
would love to take the bet that Storm can’t find one woman to be on
his side, because she and Magnus will fight the two of them anytime.
This was a pretty awkward exchange but at least it gets Mickie back
in the ring and maybe some fresh blood in the Knockouts division.
One other thing: it’s always amusing to hear the commentary reference
a match happening but not being able to say who actually won.
Team Titles: Wolves vs. Dirty Heels
belts are vacant coming in and this is a thirty minute Iron Man match
for the fifth match in a best of five series. I’m so glad this is it
for these teams as I’m long past over caring about watching them
fight. Oddly enough they say that Aries won but couldn’t say who won
between Storm and Magnus.
and Aries fight into the corner to start before it’s off to the
partners with the Wolves taking over on Roode’s arm. Back to Aries
who takes Eddie down as they’re clearly taking their time to start.
An elbow to the back gets two on Eddie but he easily drives Aries
into the corner for the tag. Things speed up a bit with some Wolves
double teaming before Eddie suplexes Austin for no cover. Instead
it’s off to Davey vs. Roode with Richards putting on a kind of
reverse Figure Four.
the smart heel, Aries pushes the bottom rope towards his partner for
the save. The Heels (stupid meta name) take over in the corner and
start working on Eddie’s leg to really slow things down. We hit the
ten minute mark as the leg work continues. The Heels make a wish on
Eddie’s legs but he finally snaps off a hurricanrana to make the tag
off to Richards. Davey takes over and everything breaks down with
Bobby getting tied up in the Tree of Woe, setting up a swan dive into
the corner (cool spot) for two.
take a break and come back with just under twelve minutes to go and
no score. Richards is in trouble and Aries’ top rope ax handle to
the floor makes it even worse. Edwards breaks up a cover with ten
minutes to go. Davey breaks up a catapult into a forearm and stomps
Roode down, finally allowing the tag off to Eddie. Edwards kicks
Roode off the top and hits a backpack Stunner for a very close two.
A jackknife cover gets another near fall on Roode and Eddie is
the catapult works with Aries adding a slingshot elbow drop for two
of his own. The Last Chancery nearly gets a submission but Davey
makes the save. It’s not like that move EVER WORKS ANYWAY so I
didn’t get the drama. The double top rope double stomp gets a VERY
close two on Aries and we hit five minutes to go. Roode plants
Edwards with a spinebuster and Aries nails the 450 for the first fall
with four minutes left.
Heels get smart by throwing the Wolves to the floor to kill some time
and Aries keeps up the intelligence with a suicide dive to take them
both out. Eddie starts fighting back at the two minute mark and the
powerbomb/Backstabber combo ties things up with about seventy five
seconds left. Roode sneaks in with a belt shot to the head for two
but Eddie counters the Roode Bomb into a rollup for the pin. The
last ten seconds quickly run out and the Wolves get the titles back
at 30:00.
B+. I’m really not wild on the
feud as a whole but the last two matches were far more entertaining
than the first three. This match was a really good example of a
match taking its time and the wrestlers thinking instead of just
throwing everything in at the same time. Really well done match here
and I never once questioned the Wolves’ ability to get two straight
falls near the end. That’s a very good sign and the match worked
really well.
Title: Awesome Kong vs. Brooke vs. Taryn Terrell
is defending and this is one
fall to a finish. Brooke
and Taryn get in a brawl to start as Kong stomps around the ring.
The champ gets double teamed
with Kong hitting a corner splash, sending Taryn running to the floor
for a breather. Simple heel
strategy at least. It’s
fine with Kong who chinlocks Brooke down and then swings her around
by the throat. Taryn comes back in with
a dropkick to Kong but she turns around and
eats a dropkick from Brooke.
a chokeslam from Kong on the champ but the Dollhouse pulls her to the
floor for a quick beating. Brooke hits a pretty lame spear on Taryn
as Josh wants the Dollhouse gone forever. Yes because the last thing
we need are three good looking women on the show. Jade
hits a quick Stunner over the top rope to daze Kong, setting up the
Taryn Cutter for the pin at 4:44.
D. This felt like something out
of the Divas division, as the match was more about the heel champion
escaping than anything about the match itself. It’s not the worst
I’ve ever seen, but the Knockouts work better when there’s a bit more
time for them to work with. Taryn retaining is good though because
whoever takes it from her is going to look like a giant killer.
match the PLAYTIME IS OVER video comes on again…..and it’s Gail
Kim. Well of course it is, as it’s been at least six weeks since
she’s been out there reminding us how SERIOUS this is and how she’s a
real wrestler. I know Kim is one of the best Knockouts ever (and
probably the best ever) but she’s basically the female Dean Malenko:
incredibly talented, but the charisma of a frozen turkey dinner.
time for the big sitdown interview with the Jarretts. Here’s the
whole thing: the last eight days were shocking, there’s a future
between TNA and Global Force, and Jeff is excited about it. This
wasn’t even two minutes long.
World Title: Ethan Carter III vs. Kurt Angle
is defending and Carter is undefeated. After
some Big Match Intros we’re ready to go with the fans sounding pretty
much behind the champ. Thankfully
the bell rings after a break so we don’t have to miss a bunch of time
after a few opening seconds. I wish WWE would figure out that
mentality. The fans start
the dueling chants as we have a very basic standoff to get things
takes him down into a wristlock but is all like SCREW
YOU NECK TUMOR and starts
busting out the suplexes. Carter
is sent to the floor and gets suplexed out there as well with Kurt in
all fired up mode. Back in
and Carter scores with a clothesline for one and it’s off to a
chinlock. There’s the
Stinger Splash, followed by a TKO of all things (always loved that
move) for two. Angle misses
a charge into the post and gets DDT’d (DDP’d according to Josh) on
the apron.
from a break with Carter
holding a full nelson but Kurt easily powers out because neck
surgeries mean nothing to him. Both
guys are down off a clothesline but it’s Kurt quickly up and busting
out the suplexes. The Angle Slam is countered so it’s time to roll
some more Germans. Now the
Slam gets two but Carter breaks up the ankle lock and sends Kurt to
the floor. Tyrus finally gets involved with a clothesline but the
1%er is countered into another ankle lock.
goes nowhere so it’s back to the Germans because Kurt is really,
really repetitive at times. Another
Slam gets another two (remember that repetitive thing?) and
it’s back to the ankle lock, only to have the referee get bumped on
the counter. Tyrus takes Angle out and the 1%er gets two more. Well
at least they didn’t go with the obvious ending. The
monster tries to bring in a chair (because monsters need chairs) and
gets ejected as Josh becomes a face announcer again by saying it’s
the right call.
1%er is countered into the ankle lock with the grapevine but Carter
actually makes the rope. I can’t imagine there are more than five
people that have gotten out of the grapevine version so well done
there. Another Angle Slam is countered into a rollup to give Carter
the title at 20:16.
B-. Well
it was good, but I’m not really sure how I like Carter winning with a
rollup. On one hand, I like the idea of having Carter win on a
fluke, but this is going to set up another period of Angle chasing
the title, which really isn’t something TNA needs to do at this
point. Angle is still good, but I really do not want to see him near
the World Title ever again in all of history. Still though, good
match and Carter winning was the only right answer, but this really
didn’t make Carter feel like anything bigger than he was before.
B. Good show for the
most part here but there were some major issues. The Knockouts Title
match and the elimination tag were bad and boring respectfully and
the Jarrett interview was more insulting than anything else. The
rest was good though and it felt like a major night, but it certainly
didn’t light anything new on fire.
Down Clan b. The Rising – Drive By to Galloway
b. Dirty Heels – Rollup to Roode
Terrell b. Awesome Kong and Brooke – Taryn Cutter to Kong
Carter III b. Kurt Angle – Rollup
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with cheap wrestling books at:

Smackdown – July 2, 2015

Date: July 2, 2015
Location: Giant Center,
Hershey, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Tom
Phillips, Jerry Lawler, Jimmy Uso
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
There isn’t a lot to
say at the moment as we’re getting closer and closer to Battleground
and the showdown between Lesnar and Rollins. Raw mainly focused on
Wyatt vs. Reigns, which is coming off as a strong feud with Wyatt
getting inside Reigns’ head, but I can’t imagine there being much of
a challenge for Roman when they finally face off. Let’s get to it.

open with a recap of Rollins giving the Authority all their presents
on Monday, leading to the Authority and Wyatt beating down Reigns to
end the show.
are Rollins and the Stooges to open things up. Rollins keeps
plugging the product placement but says it’s time to talk about the
present. One day, everyone is going to ask about what it was like
when Seth Rollins destroyed the Roman Empire and burned Suplex City
to the ground. After some clips of the beatdowns, Rollins brags
about conquering the conqueror last week.
Then Roman couldn’t
hang with the power of the Stooges and Kane got on his flight to
Tokyo, but before he left he made a few matches for tonight: Dean
Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt and Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins, assuming
Roman shows up. Cue Ambrose to come towards the ring but he walks
back and comes out again with a kendo stick. Dean fights them off
but is told his match with Wyatt starts RIGHT NOW.
Dean Ambrose vs.
Bray Wyatt
chops and strikes away against the ropes to start but walks into the
running body block to change control early on. We hit the chinlock
way faster than we should before they head outside for Ambrose’s 619
under the bottom rope and a big clothesline before it’s off to a
break. Maybe they can get out of this lame formula stuff during the
commercial. Back with Dean fighting out of Sister Abigail and
nailing a big suicide dive to the floor.
A tornado DDT gets two
for Ambrose but Wyatt takes his head off with a clothesline and gets
two of his own off the backsplash. Back up and Dean’s rebound lariat
and top rope elbow get two as well, meaning the wait for anything but
signature moves continues. Dean dives off the apron and gets thrown
into the barricade for his efforts. Well that was different. Sister
is good for the pretty sudden pin at 9:00.
It was watchable as these two have fought so many times before, but
this felt a lot more like a house show match than anything else.
Dean did his signature stuff, Bray did his signature stuff, and then
Wyatt won. I’ve seen far worse matches, but I never got the
slightest bit interested in this one, partially because I’m sick of
seeing these guys fight.
Rose and Rosa Mendes are in the ring to call the entire audience
jealous of him, only to be interrupted by R-Truth.
R-Truth vs. Adam
gets thrown around to start and Truth thrusts some pelvis at him.
Phillips: “Truth is aware we don’t have kings in this country
right?” Lawler: “Are you kidding me?” Truth blocks some right
hands and hits the Lie Detector for the pin at 1:58.
of Rock appearing at a house show over the weekend. Since this is
WWE, they show it on the WWE Youtube channel.
Recap of Cena vs.
Cesaro on Monday with Owens coming in for the DQ.
On WWE.com, Ryback
promised to run through Mark Henry tonight on his way to
Battleground, where he’ll run over Big Show and Miz.
Henry disagrees and says Ryback is disrespectful.
Henry vs. Ryback
again and Henry’s signature entrance with the camera behind his back
makes its return. Mark shoves him to the floor to start but Ryback
just punches him in the face and tries Shell Shock, only to be
thwarted by the powers of fat. The announcers say that if he can’t
get Henry up, he can’t get Big Show up. Please forget that HE
ALREADY DID THAT. Ryback gets one off a splash but can’t get Henry
up for a suplex. Henry: “FEED ME MORE!” How many times do you
think that’s been said in Mark’s life?
bearhug doesn’t last long but Henry falls on Ryback’s slam attempt
for two. There’s a double clothesline to put both guys down but
Ryback is up first with the suplex. The World’s Strongest Slam is
countered into the spinebuster, followed by the Shell Shock for the
pin at 7:00. Jimmy Uso is VERY excited over this.
I liked this more than I was expecting to with Ryback building up to
the suplex and then finally paying it off. No it’s nothing mind
blowing, but they built something up and then got to the point.
That’s basic storytelling and it’s WAY more than you would expect to
get out of something like this.
Stooges show off some Apple Watch features.
Brie Bella vs. Naomi
is described as a match between the stars of Total Divas. Brie slaps
her in the face to start and a chase on the floor lets Brie get in a
clothesline to take over. Back in and the BRIE MODE minus
obnoxiously shouting BRIE MODE knee to the face gets two but Naomi
slaps her in the face. Turnabout being fair play and all that jazz.
Fox trips Naomi up though and the Bella Buster is good for the pin at
Yeah this happened. It’s a shame that Naomi’s big push has been
stopped for the sake of another Total Divas storyline because it’s
that time of the year again. There are some good elements in the
division but the complete lack of any real motivation or logic to
most of the characters cripples anything they could do.
says he’s the reason Reigns wasn’t there to save Ambrose earlier
tonight. Reigns must be hiding in some cave feeling sorry for
himself. That isn’t the Reigns that Bray knows though, because
Reigns is all about fighting the world. Bray hasn’t known anyone
since he’s been on this planet and that makes him stronger.
Everything Roman loves in this world is going to be burned to the
ground, leaving Wyatt and Reigns all alone. Then and only then will
Wyatt finish Reigns, because it’s anyone but you Reigns. Run.
Time Players vs. Ascension
Titus chops Viktor to start and the announcers cringe in stereo.
Jimmy: “Geez Louise.” Darren gets suplexed onto Viktor and gets
two off the Earthquake splash. It’s off to Konnor to run Darren
over, followed by shrugging off a forearm and punching Young down.
They head outside with Darren getting posted as we head to a break.
with Lawler updating us on Roman Reigns’ status for tonight: he’s
still not here. And I’m sure he will NOT be here for the match
they’ve basically spent the whole night advertising. Young finally
sends the losers into each other for a hot tag off to Titus as house
is cleaned. Jimmy: “BOO YEAH!” Everything breaks down and the
Clash of the Titus ends Konnor at 9:41.
The match was acceptable and the action was fine, even though there
was never any doubt as to who was winning. The part I’m interested
in though is who the Players are going to be facing. They keep
hyping the idea that it isn’t clear which members of the New Day are
getting the shot, which makes me think Dallas might be brought in as
a surprise. Why that would be imposing is anyone’s guess.
are Rusev and Summer Rae (looking as good as she ever has in a white
dress) for a chat. Summer wants to apologize for her actions at Raw
as she stooped down to the gold digger’s level when Lana isn’t even a
real woman. Rusev says Summer knows her place but almost calls her
Lana by mistake. He’s coming for Ziggler and that’s about it.
and the Stooges come out for the match with Reigns and it’s time for
the dreaded ten count. In case you’ve never watched wrestling
before, Reigns shows up at nine and it’s time to fight.
Seth Rollins vs.
Roman Reigns
of course. Roman starts fast and whips Rollins into the corner
before taking FOREVER to powerbomb Mercury, allowing Seth to kick him
in the ribs and take over. A top rope double stomp on the back makes
Reigns’ injuries (from Raw) even worse and a spinning kick to the
ribs stops his comeback. Reigns shrugs it off again and plants Seth
with a powerbomb, drawing in the Stooges for the DQ at 5:58.
I get that it was short, but there’s no reason to have this match.
Why burn through another edition of this match instead of having,
say, Reigns vs. the Stooges? If you’re only going to give it a few
minutes then let Roman beat the two of them up and then have Rollins
interfere. It’s that simple and a way to save one of these matches
from being done to death. Again, thinking can make the booking that
much better but for some reason it almost never happens.
beating is on but Ambrose comes out for the save, allowing for a big
double beatdown on Mercury as the other two bail to end the show.
This one didn’t work for me as it was mainly midcard stuff and then a
really lame main event story that went nowhere. You can only have
the Shield guys fight each other so many times before it stops being
interesting and unfortunately we passed that back in like December.
These matches should be major showdowns, not getting six minutes and
a lame DQ finish on a random Smackdown. The show didn’t do anything
for me and there’s no reason to see this.
Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and head over to my Amazon author page with cheap wrestling books at:

WWF Wrestling Challenge July 26th, 1987

July 26, 1987

From the Olympic Center in Lake Placid, NY

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon

In action this week will be Ken Patera, George Steele, Demolition, Killer Khan, and the One Man Gang

Al Navarro vs. Ken Patera

Navarro got a haircut since the last set of tapings. Good for him. Navarro lands some truly horrendous offense into Patera, who then picks him up and places him on the apron. Patera knocks Navarro off then rams him into the stairs before the action heads inside. Patera tosses Navarro around before putting him away with the swinging neckbreaker (1:53). After the match, Patera points and stares at Heenan.

Thoughts: The Patera/Heenan Family feud has lost a lot of steam and at this point it is safe to say that Patera himself has failed in his new role.

Craig DeGeorge tells us that the Can-Am Connection is no more as Zenk quit. We are then shown Martel, who said his partner left because their feud against the Islanders was too tough for him. Heenan and the Islanders are shown as Heenan buries Zenk for being a coward and that Martel should follow suit and quit himself. They made sure to bury Zenk on TV.

Scott Casey & Steve Douglas vs. Demolition w/ Mr. Fuji

Casey lands a few shots on Ax but Smash comes in as Demolition takes control. We get an insert promo from Mr. Fuji talking about how he will manage Bam Bam Bigelow as Heenan says he is lying. Douglas tags as Demolition beat the crap out of him until they put him away with the Decapitation (3:11).

Thoughts: More of the Bam Bam stuff but with regards to Demolition, they really need a feud at this point instead of just destroying jobbers.

Gene Okerlund is with “Ravishing” Rick Rude. Okerlund asks him about his alignment with Heenan as Rude says it is about money, while referring to Okerlund as “Little Man.” Okerlund brings up Heenan’s past failed promises as Rude says that is all in the past as he is the future of wrestling. Rude is asked about Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage as Rude says both of them will go down. They are giving Rude a solid push from the start.

We get footage of the Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase at a house show. He pays a woman $100 to wipe the sweat off of him after his match while he tells us everyone has a price.

The Gladiator vs. George “The Animal” Steele

Gladiator tries to attack Steele but ends up getting tossed outside. Steele heads back in and bites open a turnbuckle then tosses the stuffing at the Gladiator before trying to rip off his mask. He tosses the Gladiator back over the top rope again and works on the arm before putting him away with the flying hammerlock (2:32).

Thoughts: The crowds loved Steele but he was really just a side attraction at this point. He would be pitted against lower card workers at house shows but that role was just fine.

Okerlund is with Koko B. Ware, who is playing the harmonica. Koko tells us about his feuds with Danny Davis and the One Man Gang. Not much to this interview other than to show us that Koko had music ability, which would continue to be on display as the year continued.

We get a WWF Ice Cream Bar plug from Little Beaver, who said he eats one of these to cool off when he gets upset about what King Kong Bundy did to him at WrestleMania III.

Killer Khan w/ Mr. Fuji vs. David Stoudemire

Stoudemire looks like a slightly more toned version of Bo Dallas. Khan does some sumo rituals before attacking Stoudemire. He stays on the attack then sprays the mist in his face. Khan then hits a backbreaker before going up top and hitting the flying knee drop for the win ( 2:59).

Thoughts: They are making sure to put over the mist so they can sell Khan’s house show matches against Hogan.

Snake Pit with guest Mr. T. This was shown in most markets on the 7/18 edition of “Superstars of Wrestling.” Mr. T comes out and says that most referees do not know what they are doing so he is going to stand outside of the ring as the enforcer. Danny Davis comes out to interrupt and takes offense to Mr. T receiving his referee’s license. Mr. T says that Davis isnt much of a referee or a wrestler. Jake then talks for a little bit before scaring Davis with the snake. This feud ended just as soon as it started.

Steve Lombardi & Barry Horowitz vs. Jim Powers & Paul Roma

Powers works the arm of Lombardi to start. Roma tags and takes control until Lombardi blocks a monkey flip. Roma gets beaten down for a minute until Horowitz misses a leg drop from the second rope. Hot tag to Powers as one fan is screaming. His offense looks like shit as he works over Horowitz. Lombardi breaks up a pin attempt after a powerslam then the match breaks down until Roma tags himself in and jumps off the top rope with a sunset flip that puts away Horowitz (4:20).

Thoughts: Roma & Powers finally win a tag match. Roma looked like he just won the Powerball drawing. This win would lead to a mini-push for the duo.

DeGeorge is on the stage with Bobby Heenan, who brings out King Harley Race. But firsts, he tells the crowd to get up and bow to the king. Race comes out and says he tells, not asks, the crowd to get up and bow to him. He also says he is “the man in wrestling” today and that no one can beat him. Heenan closes by saying the one thing to top off his career will be the World Title as he guarantees that it will happen. I really didnt get the point of this at all as Race just lost a series of house show matches against Hogan, which drew poorly to begin with.

One Man Gang w/ Slick vs. Eric Cooper

Gang destroys Cooper as Slick is shown in an insert promo saying he is mad about the other managers saying Bam Bam will sign with them because “the brother is mine.” Gang continues his assault until he finishes Cooper off with the gordbuster (1:38).

Thoughts: A quick squash that also furthered along the Bam Bam angle.

Okerlund is with Jimmy Hart and the Hart Foundation. Neidhart tells us that since they won the Tag Team Championships, everyone has been jealous of them. The Hart Foundation then make fun of the other Tag Teams as they leave. The Honky Tonk Man comes in as he lists off the guys he has beat and says no one else can beat him. This was done to put over Hart and all of his guys.

In action next week will be Koko B. Ware, Jake Roberts, Hart Foundation, and more.

Final Thoughts: The show was okay this week. The Bam Bam story continues to dominate and they were pushing other soon-to-be debuting acts like DiBiase and Rude. The Mr. T and Danny Davis stuff went nowhere though. The WWF had some bad luck with feuds after WrestleMania III, with several of them ending abruptly.

Here is my schedule for the rest of the week:

Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 8/1/87
Thursday: RF Video Shoot Interview with Kevin Steen
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 8/2/87
Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 8/8/87

WWF Madison Square Garden July 25th, 1987

July 25, 1986

Your hosts are Lord Alfred Hayes and Gorilla Monsoon

Matches tonight include Ricky Steamboat vs. Honky Tonk Man for the Intercontinental Title and the Hart Foundation vs. British Bulldogs for the Tag Team Titles

Brady Boone vs. Dino Bravo w/ Johnny V. 

Bravo overpowers Boone to start. Bravo misses a charge then Boone does a few backflips before connecting with a dropkick. Bravo regroups with his manager then heads back inside and gets caught with an atomic drop. Boone hits another dropkick and fires away in the corner until Bravo catches him with an inverted atomic drop. Bravo grabs a front facelock before hitting a kneelift. Johnny V. joins on commentary and screams about Brutus Beefcake as Bravo stays in control of the match as he puts Boone in a bearhug. Bravo then tosses Boone to the floor a few times where Johnny V. roughs him up. Bravo works the back and neck of Boone, mostly using rest holds, until he misses a charge in the corner. Boone fights back until he misses a corner splash then Bravo gets the win with a side slam (10:46) *1/4.

Thoughts: Boone looked good when on offense but Bravo was a slug. Boone had yet to appear on TV at this point and was a jobber as soon as he appeared.

Tama w/ Haku vs. Rick Martel

Martel still has the Can-Am Connection jacket, despite the fact that Zenk has quit. The Islanders attack Martel before the bell. Martel comes back with a double clothesline as the fans go crazy while the Islanders are outside the ring. Tama finally re-enters the ring and tries to offer a handshake but Martel is not biting. Tama gets caught with a pair of armdrags then heads back outside to regroup. Tama comes back in and hammers away in the corner but misses an elbow drop as Martel now works the leg for a while. Tama pushes Martel through the ropes then shoves him into the post. Tama distracts the ref so Haku can beat on Martel. Back inside, Tama works a nerve hold. Martel fights out but Tama catches him with a knee then goes back to the hold. Martel gets tossed back outside after missing a crossbody where Haku beats him down. Tama suplexes him back inside for a two count then hammers away as the crowd rallies behind Martel, who comes back with a kneelift. Tama fights back and slams him down but misses a top rope splash as both men are down. The crowd rallies behind Martel, who hits a backdrop then fires away. Martel sends Tama to the floor with a back elbow smash. Martel beats on Tama inside then slingshots him into Haku, who was standing on the apron while yelling at fans. Tama then attacks Martel and comes off the top with a crossbody block but Martel uses the momentum and rolls on top of Tama for the win (19:47) **3/4

Thoughts: Fun match, although it had some dead spots. The Martel vs. Islanders feud still worked even with Zenk gone. The crowd was into it as well.

“The Natural” Butch Reed vs. Hillbilly Jim

Reed grabs a side headlock then tries and fails to knock down Jim. Reed jaws away them Jim knocks him down a few times. Reed bails and complains to the referee for a bit then when he comes back inside, Jim toys with him. They engage in a test of strength and battle over that for a while until Jim steps on his fingers as Reed once again heads outside. Reed then sneak attacks Jim then chokes him out on the mat. Reed sends Jim outside then slams him down. Reed stays on the attack until he runs into a big boot. Jim clotheslines Reed then both guys miss elbow drops. Reed connects with a high knee then perches on the top rope as he hits a flying clothesline for the win (10:58) *. After the match, Jim calls Reed back inside but he just heads back to the locker room.

Thoughts: Most of this was stalling but Jim was a limited worker and this type of match suited his talents. It was long for what it was but not too terrible or anything.

WWF Intercontinental Title Match
Honky Tonk Man (Champion) w/ Jimmy Hart vs. Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat

Steamboat immediately fires away on Honky. He chops and slams him down all before taking off his robe. He gets two with a crossbody block as Honky ducks out for a breather. Steamboat chases him around the ring and beats the crap out of him as the action then heads back inside, with Honky begging for mercy. Steamboat hits a few more chops and a backdrop before getting a nearfall with a small package. Honky tries to escape but Steamboat pulls him back in and almost regains the IC Title with a bridging back suplex. Honky finally gets in some offense as he catches Steamboat with a knee. However, Steamboat blocks a turnbuckle smash then takes him down with a snapmare. Honky blocks a suplex and hits one of his own then gets two with a top rope fist drop. Steamboat fights back but gets kicked after ducking his head as Honky beats on him in the corner. Steamboat comes back with an atomic drop and some chops but Honky rakes his eyes. Hart grabs Steamboat’s leg and gets chased around as Hart distracts the ref and that allows Honky to use the megaphone to attack Steamboat. Honky covers but only gets two as he is beside himself. Honky then wins a slugfest but Steamboat gets back up and chops him down. Honky gets his knees up on a splash attempt then puts on an abdominal stretch as the crowd chants like crazy for Steamboat. Honky dumps Steamboat to the floor then follows him out but Steamboat fights back. They are back in the ring where Steamboat hits several mounted punches. Steamboat fires away then sends him to the floor with a flying chop. Steamboat then tries to toss Honky back inside but he grabs a hold of the apron, while his body is in the ring, and the ref counts to ten as Steamboat gets the win via countout as Honky still retains (11:39) ***1/2. After the match, Steamboat beats on Honky then almost grabs a hold of Hart, who retreats with Honky.

Thoughts: Damn good match with a ton of heat. Originally, Jake Roberts was going to face Honky here but was still banged up I believe so Steamboat came back a bit earlier than planned to wrestle against Honky. Steamboat could play the pissed-off fiery babyface just as well as Honky played the chickenshit heel.

Monsoon is now with Steamboat, who is pissed. Steamboat calls out Honky for not being a fighting champion as he vows to get revenge.

Hart and Honky are then with Monsoon. Honky tells us that a win is a win, right or wrong, as he tells us that Steamboat will not get another shot and he will do anything to keep the IC Title.

Nikolai Volkoff vs. Tito Santana

Santana lands a few shots on Volkoff to start. He then works the arm until Volkoff steps between the ropes and cheapshots Santana. Volkoff uses a lifting choke before tossing Santana to the floor. Back inside, Volkoff stomps away then grabs a bearhug that Santana breaks but Volkoff puts him right back in the move as this match has been brutal to watch. Volkoff takes Santana down with a clothesline that looked pathetic then hit his backbreaker but Tito had his foot on the ropes. Volkoff argues with the ref then shortly after that gets hit with the flying forearm as Santana gets the win (8:21) 1/4*. After the match, Santana walks around and slaps hands with the fans until Ron Bass, who is wrestling next, comes out and blindsides him before choking him out with a cable. Outback Jack then comes down for the save.

Thoughts: Holy shit was this terrible. Volkoff was on offense the majority of the match and did nothing as they were protecting him somewhat for reasons I cannot fathom. However, the post-match stuff with Bass and Santana was something as those two finally seem to have a program now.

“The Outlaw” Ron Bass vs. Outback Jack

Jack hits Bass with a clothesline and a slam but Bass gets his knees up on a splash attempt. A few officials prevent Santana from going after Bass, who taunts him then turns around a gets decked. This match is apparently clipped as back from break, Bass is choking out Jack in the corner. Jack fights back and slams Bass down but plays up to the crowd and misses an elbow drop then Bass hits the gourdbuster for the win (6:00) 1/4*.

Thoughts: Jack was getting firmly establishes as nothing more than a lower card guy. He was a bust and could not wrestle, no matter how hard he tried.

Steamboat comes out and tells us how he won the IC Title at WrestleMania III and lost it to a coward like the Honky Tonk Man as he tells the crowd that next month he will face the Honky Tonk Man in a Lumberjack Match. The crowd liked that.

Greg “The Hammer” Valentine w/ Johnny V. vs. Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake

Beefcake uses the double noggin-knocker on Valentine and Johnny V. to start the match. Beefcake attacks Valentine then slams him down. Beefcake struts as the crowd applauds then dodges an attack before hammering on Valentine in the corner.Beefcake pulls down Valentine then crotches him against the ring posts repeatedly before booting him in the back of the head. Beefcake hits an atomic drop for a nearfall then shortly after that Valentine pulls Beefcake by the tights and into the ring post. Valentine beats on Beefcake, who is on the apron, as Johnny V. interferes behind the referee’s back. Valentine now has Beefcake in the center of the ring and applies a chinlock. Beefcake powers out but Valentine knees him down then rams him into the corner but Beefcake counters a piledriver with a backdrop as both men are down. They get up and slug it out but Valentine boots him down then follows with a headbutt to the groin. Valentine is now slapping Beefcake around then rams his head off of the mat as Johnny V. is yelling into the face of Beefcake, who is getting choked out by Valentine. The announcers talk about Mr. T as the special enforcer of the WWF as Valentine puts Beefcake in the figure four leg lock. Beefcake eventually makes it to the ropes. Valentine tries it again but Beefcake shoves him into the corner. Valentine then hits Beefcake with mounted punches but Beefcake reverses and hits some of his own. They fight over a suplex as Beefcake wins that battle then he pumps up and fires away. Beefcake takes him down with a clothesline then follows with the sleeper. Johnny V. runs in so Beefcake puts him in the sleeper instead then Dino Bravo runs in and assaults Beefcake for the DQ (13:11) *3/4. Valentine grabs the scissors as Bravo holds up Beefcake and attempts to cut some of his hair but the British Bulldogs run in for the save and chase off the New Dream Team.

Thoughts: Too slow-paced to be any good. The end seems like we are getting six-man matches between these guys and a possible New Dream Team/Bulldogs program. Beefcake’s signature spots got a good reaction but that was just about it here.

Jerry Allen vs. “Ravishing” Rick Rude

This is the MSG debut for Rude, who had not even made his TV debut yet at this point. Gorilla notes that Rude is the newest protege of Bobby Heenan, who is not here tonight (Heenan was at the Baltimore show managing Paul Orndorff against Ken Patera in a strap match, a match that started the rift between Orndorff and Heenan). The announcers also note how Rude reminds them of Tom Selleck. Before the match, Rude demands the microphone get lowered as he wants the men to keep the noise down so the ladies can enjoy his body when he takes his robe off. Match finally starts as Rude backs Allen against the ropes then taunts the crowd. He shoves Allen then taunts him by flexing his muscles but Allen responds with a right hand that sends Rude to the floor. However, Rude comes back inside and fires away. Allen gets two with a sunset flip then works the arm until Rude retreats to the corner. Rude then beats on Allen and catches him with a backbreaker, followed by some more flexing. Rude gets two with a flying clothesline as he is stopping to taunt between each move. He hits a fist drop from the middle rope but pulls up on the three count then works a nerve hold as Gorilla notes that Sherri Martel has defeated the Fabulous Moolah for the WWF Women’s Championship in Houston (it occurred the previous day). Rude hits a pair of snap suplexes but Allen comes back with one of his own as both men are down. Allen tries an elbow drop but Rude rolls away. Rude comes back with a dropkick then tries another one that misses in a really bad spot that Allen was seemingly out of position for as Allen mounts a comeback. He tries a second monkey flip but Rude counters that with an inverted atomic drop then puts Allen in the backbreaker as he gets the win via submission (7:12) *1/2.

Thoughts: Far too long for a squash match and Rude did some impressive stuff. Rude tried hard to establish is character but the crowd didn’t care, with a few even chanting “boring.”

Howard Finkel tells us the curfew has been waived for the final match. He then runs down the next MSG show, which occurs on August 22nd. Matches announced are Jose Estrada vs. Chavo Guerrero (never happened as Lanny Poffo subbed for Chavo), Tama vs. Scott Casey, new WWF Women’s Champion Sherri Martel defends the belt against Velvet McIntyre, Ron Bass vs. Tito Santana, Haku vs. Rick Martel, Demolition vs. Junkyard Dog & George Steele, and the Honky Tonk Man vs. Ricky Steamboat in a Lumberjack Match for the IC Title. Also, Butch Reed will take on Superstar Billy Graham.

WWF Tag Team Title Match
Hart Foundation (Champions) w/ Jimmy Hart vs. British Bulldogs

Matilda chases Jimmy Hart out of the ring as Lord Alfred can barely contain his laughter. However, the Hart Foundation immediately attack Davey as the match is now underway. Davey avoids a double-team move as the Hart Foundation collide with each other and is able to make the tag. Dynamite his Bret with a snap suplex then tags back out as Davey comes in and grabs a headlock. Davey then gets two with a crucifix as Dynamite tags in and flattens Bret with a clothesline. Dynamite beats on Bret in the corner until Neidhart runs in to break it up. The Bulldogs regain control and get a few nearfalls until Bret knocks Dynamite down. Neidhart tags and roughs up Dynamite as the Hart Foundation are now in control of the match. Dynamite manages to fall on top of Bret on a slam attempt for two but Bret tags out as Neidhart goes on the attack. Dynamite fights back and tries to make the tag but Bret cuts him off. Dynamite dodges a charging Bret then dumps Neidhart as he makes the tag. Davey runs wild and hits all sorts of suplexes and flying moves on Bret. He then hits the running powerslam but Bret is able to get his foot on the ropes. Davey then presses Bret over his head and runs backwards and dumps him on the top rope. Davey tries to suplex Bret back into the ring but Neidhart sweeps his leg and Bret falls on top and gets the win (10:26) ***1/4.

Thoughts: Fun match, which is expected from these two teams. They had great chemistry. However, their feud with the Bulldogs has just about run its course.

Final Thoughts: This had three good matches and some crap so overall, by 80’s WWF house show standards, it was solid. I’d seek out Steamboat/Honky and the Bulldogs/Harts as well. For historical purposes, you can check out Rude before his TV debut too. If they went with the Honky/Steamboat feud a bit longer, they could have had something there.

Here is my schedule for the rest of the week:

Thursday: RoH Secrets of the Ring with Dusty Rhodes
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/26/87
Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 8/1/87
Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 8/2/87

WWF Superstars of Wrestling July 25th, 1987

July 25, 1987

From the Civic Center in Glen Falls, NY

Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, and Vince McMahon

In action tonight will be Koko B. Ware, The Islanders, Randy Savage, and the return of Superstar Billy Graham

Before the show, we see still photos of Ricky Steamboat and his wife with their newborn son. Ricky and his son were both dressed in his entrance gear in a really awkward staged photo. I assume this idea was okayed by his wife, Bonnie.

Barry Horowitz vs. Koko B. Ware

Koko hits a dropkick then takes Horowitz down with a few armdrags. Horowitz takes a breather then comes back in to hit a dropkick of his own but stops to give himself a pat on the back and that allowed Koko to dropkick him. Koko hits a slam then a missile dropkick before hitting the Ghostbuster for the win (1:41).

Thoughts: Despite Vince going out of his mind when Koko was dancing, Koko still had nothing going on in the company. This match is a must-see for dropkick aficionados.

WWF Update with Craig DeGeorge. This week’s subject is the “Million Dollar Man” Ted Dibiase as they show a clip of him at a house show of Virgil taking off one of his boots as a fan kissed it in order to give us $100. This gimmick was simple yet amazing. Instant heel heat.

DeGeorge is with Rick Martel as we find out that Tom Zenk has quit the WWF. Martel warns the Islanders that he is not a quitter and will fight them himself if needed. Jesse jokes that Martel should get Oliver North to be his new partner. They wouldn’t even mention Zenk by name going forward as his quitting fucked up the WWF’s Tag Team Division.

S.D. Jones & Scott Casey vs. The Islanders w/ Bobby Heenan

The match starts with Jones & Casey beating on Tama as Heenan is shown in an insert promo telling Martel that he should quit like his partner so he does not get hurt. Tama catches Jones with a jumping back elbow smash as the Islanders take control. Jones misses an attack then tags out as Casey runs wild until Haku attacks him from being then tosses him outside as the Islanders put Jones, the illegal man, away with double jumping headbutts (2:26).

Thoughts: With Zenk gone, they are now going with the idea that Martel would be insane to try and fight against the Islanders by himself.

Gene Okerlund is with Hulk Hogan, who will be facing Killer Khan at the Cow Palace on August 25th. Hogan comes out and cuts a wacky promo about how he consulted with Oliver North, Donna Rice and Gary Hart on how to get rid of Killer Khan. Political Hulk!

We see a video package on Jake Roberts, specifically his DDT, set to what sounds like a Tom Petty song. Not bad.

“The Outlaw” Ron Bass vs. “Leaping” Lanny Poffo

Poffo’s pre-match promo is about Bass calling his whip “Miss Betsy” because its the closest he can get to a date, which Bass responds by beating the piss out of him. Poffo rolls away then starts throwing punches before taking Bass down with a dropkick. Poffo hits a slam and gets two with a moonsault but ducks his head on a backdrop and gets kicked then Bass gets the win with the gourdbuster (1:27).

Thoughts: They are giving Bass a midcard push with the bullwhip gimmick now. He had been doing a whole lot of promos and not wrestling prior.

Okerlund is with Brutus Beefcake, who will be facing Danny Davis at the August 25th Cow Palace show. Beefcake, sporting a barbers coat with all the tools, tells us that he is looking forward to this match as he talks about his new “School of Style.”

Steve Lombardi vs. Superstar Billy Graham

Graham gets a nice ovation as he walks down the aisle. He is walking very, very slowly by the way. Lombardi gets shoved through the ropes as he did all the work on that one. Graham uses a forearm smash and an eye poke before getting the win with a sleeper (1:18).

Thoughts: I give Lombardi all the credit in the world for working 99.9% of the match. Graham could barely even walk down the aisle, nevermind wrestle a match. The fans did give him a great ovation and having his debut take place in the Northeast was a smart move as they were more familiar with him.

DeGeorge, on a platform near the crowd, is with Slick and Butch Reed, who is not impressed at all with Graham. This was the first time they used the interview in front of the live crowd in this way. Reed then challenges Graham to a pose down next week.

Killer Bees vs. Tiger Chung Lee & Iron Mike Sharpe

The Bees are wearing their masks here. Vince hypes up the Bees as he brings up how they beat the Hart Foundation in a non-title match a few weeks ago. Match starts with the Bees working over Sharpe. Lee tags as Brunzell slams him down. Sharpe breaks up a pin then the match breaks down a bit as Jesse goes off on the Bees for wearing masks. The match breaks down again then Brunzell puts Lee away after a pair of dropkicks (3:39).

Thoughts: The Bees are being pushed as the #1 contenders, despite being a vanilla team. The crowds were somewhat into the masked confusion stuff.

We get a segment called “The Battle for Bam Bam” in which all the managers are shown telling Bam Bam Bigelow why they should sign with them.

Omar Atlas vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage w/ Elizabeth

Vince is fawning all over Elizabeth as she heads down the aisle. Atlas takes Savage down with a jumping side headlock takeover. Savage tries a slam but Atlas falls on top and gets two off of that as Savage rolls outside. Savage heads back in and kness Atlas. He slams him on the ropes and roughs him up for a bit before taking him down with a clothesline. Savage then slams Atlas and heads up top, as a lot of fans are standing and cheering on camera, then drops the elbow for the win (2:01).

Thoughts: The cheers Savage was getting at this time were very noticeable.

Okerlund is with Mr., Fuji, who will be managing Demolition against Billy Jack Haynes & Ken Patera at the Cow Palace. Fuji tells Haynes & Patera that he hates the state or Oregon and has told Demolition to destroy them. Demolition finally come out as they talk trash about their opponents before leaving. Killer Khan comes out as Fuji tells the people of San Francisco that he loves them because they are “sick” and “funny” as Khan stares into the camera. Typical wackiness from Fuji here.

Superstar Billy Graham tells us that he has conquered everything and is back and will also accept Butch Reed’s challenge for the posedown.

In action next week will be Rougeau Brothers & Brutus Beefcake, Ken Patera, and the Honky Tonk Man.

Final Thoughts: The first few months after WrestleMania III saw the WWF have a lot of bad luck with their feuds due to wrestlers getting fired, taking time off, or quitting. The Islanders vs. Can-Ams feud was hot at the time too so that one hurt when it ended abruptly. The Graham return just never worked out and the rest of the show was focused on pushing soon-to-be debuting acts, which were hyped up wonderfully.

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Saturday: RoH Glory By Honor 9/20/03
Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/26/87
Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 8/1/87
Thursday: RoH Straight Shootin’ Series with Dusty Rhodes
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 8/2/87

WWF Wrestling Challenge July 19th, 1987

July 19. 1987

From the Louisville Gardens in Louisville, KY

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan (holding a video tape that he says contains TV footage of Bam Bam Bigelow) and Gorilla Monsoon.

In action this week will be Jake Roberts, Kamala & Sika, Can-Am Connection, and Randy Savage.

Sonny Rogers & “Leaping” Lanny Poffo vs. Kamala & Sika w/ Mr. Fuji

Poffo’s pre-match promo is about Bobby Heenan and his struggles with Ken Patera. Match starts with Kamala tossing around Poffo, who briefly fights back only to get taken down with a thrust kick. Rogers tags as Sika beats him down. Sika hits the Samoan drop as Mr. Fuji is shown in an insert promo saying he specializes in big men like Bam Bam Bigelow as he promises to be his manager. That gets Heenan all worked up then Kamala tags and finishes Rogers off with a splash (1:22).

Thoughts: The point of this was to further along the “who will manage” Bam Bam Bigelow storyline. Kamala & Sika were past the point of usefulness here and Kamala would be done with the company in several weeks.

Craig DeGeorge talks about Danny Davis as we see clips of him and his dubious officiating. It was the same thing they showed on “Superstars of Wrestling.”

Scott Casey vs. Honky Tonk Man w/ Jimmy Hart

Match starts with Casey in control as we get an insert promo from Hart telling all the other managers to back off as he is signing Bam Bam Bigelow. Casey hits a slam but Honky gets his knees up on a splash attempt as Heenan goes off on Hart. Honky rams Casey in the stomach as Gorilla talks about Honky visiting Graceland, which was detailed in WWF Magazine. Casey fights back but Honky elbows him in the back of the neck then hits the Shake, Rattle, and Roll for the win (2:13).

Thoughts: They pushed Honky a bit on commentary but again, most of this was about hyping Bam Bam Bigelow.

Gene Okerlund is with the Junkyard Dog, who talks about coming from the Mid South area to the WWF and how he started having bad luck lately so he talked to his grandma, who told him to go to his closet and grab his old chain. Gene talks about his new golf clubs as JYD rambles on and on about nothing.

We get a replay of the Million Dollar Man where he pays off the pool manager to kick out the kids so he can have it all for himself.

Can-Am Connection vs. The Shadows

Martel takes Shadow #1 down with a headscissors as the Can-Ams are shown in an insert promo saying they are going to take care of the Islanders before challenging for the titles. The Shadows take control of the match as they work over Martel while the announcers talk about the Million Dollar Man. The crowd rallies behind Martel, who kicks Shadow #1 after he ducked his head on a backdrop attempt then makes the tag. Zenk runs wild then the match breaks down as #2 gets dropkicked over the top rope then Zenk hits #1 with an atomic drop as Martel hits a crossbody for a win (4:11).

Thoughts: They put over the Can-Ams a lot here but this would end up being Zenk’s last televised match with the company.

Okerlund is with Tito Santana, who does not care for Ted DiBiase trying to buy his way to the top of the WWF and that you have to earn the title here. Tito then believes Mr. T will do an honest job as the enforcer as he states he wants a shot at the Honky Tonk Man before screaming “arriba!.” Looks like they are starting to give Tito something to do here instead of waste away in six-man tags.

A clip of Brutus Beefcake cutting off some of Greg Valentine’s hair from this past episode of “Superstars of Wrestling.”

Jerry Allen & Jim Powers vs. New Dream Team w/ Johnny V.

Powers works over the arm of Bravo to start. Allen tags but gets backed into the corner as we get an insert promo from Johnny V. as he claims to have the inside track at managing Bam Bam Bigelow because of his “grandma’s cooking.” Valentine beats on Allen as Heenan proclaims that all the managers are jealous of him as in college he had all the girls and the nice cars. Bravo hits Powers with a back suplex then an inverted atomic drop but misses an elbow drop as Allen tags. Bravo dodges a dropkick then hits a side slam before tagging Valentine, who gets the win with the figure four (3:25). Valentine refuses to break the hold as Johnny V. distracts the ref. Bravo tosses Powers to the floor as they finally stop the attack.

Thoughts: More Bam Bam Bigelow drama here as Johnny V. throws his name into the hat. The New Dream Team sucked and really never got over at all as heels. They were only useful as fodder for Beefcake.

DeGeorge is with “The Outlaw” Ron Bass. He asks Bass about his whip, Miss Betsy,  as Bass tells us that Miss Betsy is here and warns Tito Santana and even Hulk Hogan about her.

Jake “The Snake” Roberts vs. Dusty Wolfe

Wolfe briefly works the arm until Jake brushes him away. Wolfe gets tossed outside then Jake sends him out again with a clothesline. Wolfe finally gets up and Jake hits the DDT for the win (1:29). After the match Jake wraps the snake around Wolfe’s neck.

Thoughts: Jake looked rough with Wolfe in the ring. He beat the shit out of him.

We now see Heenan’s footage of Bam Bam Bigelow, which was the same exact clip Jimmy Hart showed us on “Superstars of Wrestling.” Gorilla tells Heenan that clip doesn’t prove anything about him managing Bam Bam.

Sivi Afi vs. “Macho Man” Randy Savage w/ Elizabeth

The crowd is cheering Savage here. Gorilla asks Heenan if he has anything to prove that he manages Bam Bam as the two guys in the ring lockup. Afi hits a hurricarana and a slam but misses a splash from the top rope. Savage tosses Afi to the floor and follows out with a top rope double axe handle. Back inside, Savage chokes out Afi against the ropes then hits a knee drop for a nearfall as Savage pulled him up. Savage then slams Afi then climbs up top and hits the flying elbow smash for the win (2:17).

Thoughts: The crowd treated Savage like a total face here, with Gorilla even being complimentary towards him. Another thing to note was how often Gorilla mentioned that Elizabeth looked worried.

Okerlund is with Mr. Fuji. He asks him about Demolition as Fuji holds an extension cord as he claims to train them by plugging it in as Demolition comes out, sporting new face paint, and tells us that they break bones while Fuji is laughing in the background. Demolition then plays with the cord and make electrical puns as Fuji is cracking up. Okerlund then asks them if the cord means that they are on the “juice” while they laugh. Funny stuff here and it seemed to have a lot of inside references.

Next week in action will be Ken Patera, Demolition, George Steele, and Killer Khan.

Final Thoughts: They are really pushing the newcomers like Bam Bam and DiBiase and its a good thing as the top of the card is lacking at the moment. The Can-Am push was for nothing as Zenk quit, which put a wrench in their hot feud they had with the Islanders. Plus, the Savage face turn was ever so slowly starting out here, with the announcers dropping subtle hints. It was a slow time still but they were putting the pieces in place to get the product going again.

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Thursday: RF Video Shoot with Greg Valentine
Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/25/87
Saturday: RoH Glory By Honor II 9/20/03
Sunday: WWF Madison Square Garden 7/25/87
Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/26/87

WWF Superstars of Wrestling July 18th, 1987

July 18, 1987

From the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, IN

Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, and Vince McMahon

In action this week will be Brutus Beefcake, Demolition, One Man Gang, and the Junkyard Dog & Billy Jack Haynes & Hillbilly Jim vs. Cowboy Bob Orton & Don Muraco & Ron Bass

Cowboy Bob Orton & Don Muraco & “The Outlaw” Ron Bass vs. Junkyard Dog & Hillbilly Jim & Billy Jack Haynes

Bass beats on JYD to start as we see him in an insert promo with his bullwhip, Miss Betsy, and how you better show her some respect. JYD fights back and it looks terrible but Bass is able to tag Muraco before getting hit with the crawling headbutts. Haynes also tags in and eventually knocks him down. Orton tags in and slugs it out with Jim then gets sent outside with a big boot in a spot that definitely “exposed the business” so to speak. Amateur hour stuff. Muraco goes out to check on his partner but gets decked, as the announcers play up that Orton had no idea it was Muraco, then they have a shove each other and argue as the referee as counted out Orton (2:53). Muraco leaves his partner and Bass behind as the faces all dance in the ring.

Thoughts: This was all about the Muraco/Orton split as that intensifies this week. The other four in the match really didnt have anything going on at all.

WWF Update with Craig DeGeorge. This week’s subject is Ted DiBiase as we see him in a vignette telling us that “everyone has a price” and that he is also the most gifted and talented athlete the WWF will ever see. DiBiase and Virgil then enter a restaurant as DiBiase tells the host he does not wait for anything after being told it will be a half-hour wait as he has Virgil bribe him until he gets seated. Another patron asks him why he cannot wait like everyone else then Virgil stares him down, to show that DiBiase hides behind Virgil. DiBiase then gets seated as he tells us that everybody as a price. These introductory vignettes for DiBiase were as good as it gets.

One Man Gang w/ Slick vs. Sonny Rogers

Gang immediately attacks Rogers then puts him in the tree-of-woe as he get an insert promo from Slick that he will have Bam Bam Bigelow as the announcers are all confused as to who will be Bam Bam’s manager then Gang gets the win with a gordbuster (1:20).

Thoughts: Another segment to add drama on who will actually manage Bam Bam Bigelow.

Gene Okerlund is with Hulk Hogan, who will be facing Killer Khan at the Cow Palace in San Francisco. He asks him about his eyes (Khan sprayed him with mist that was shown in some markets on the “Snake Pit,” including the copy that I have as most markets saw Mr. T appear) as Hogan tells Khan and Fuji they made the biggest mistake of their lives.

Another clip of Jesse from “Predator.”

The Shadows vs. Rougeau Brothers

The Rougeaus send Shadow #1 to the floor with a double dropkick. Shadow #2 comes in as Jacques takes him down with a monkey flip. Shadow #1 holds #2 back as Jacques missed a dropkick as the Shadows take control of the match. Jacques comes back with a double dropkick then makes a tag to Raymond as he runs wild briefly until they hit #1 with the Rougeau Bomb (2:57).

Thoughts: Before the match Vince talked about the Rougeaus article from “WWF Magazine” that showed their goofy side and I guess that was a small attempt to push them as a team more personable than they came across on TV.

Okerlund is now with Billy Jack Haynes, who will be teaming with Ken Patera to face Demolition at the next Cow Palace show. Haynes puts over Patera for paying his dues in jail and tells the fans to support them as it will be a tough match.

The British Bulldogs are with Matilda as they plug over the WWF Ice Cream Bars. At the beginning, Vince actually said that the Bulldogs always take care of Matilda. Over the years we have learned that was not always the case.

Omar Atlas & Scott Casey vs. Demolition w/ Mr. Fuji

Ax beats on Casey to start the match as we see an insert promo from Fuji telling the other managers that they are crazy because he is the one who will manage Bam Bam Bigelow. Atlas tags in as Smash brushes away all his offense then shortly after that Demolition scores the win with the Decapitation (2:35).

Thoughts: Another dominant squash by Demolition and another manager (Mr. Fuji) claims that he will manage Bam Bam.

Snake Pit with guest Hulk Hogan. The crowd goes nuts for Hogan as he says he feels sorry for the next guy to step into the ring with him. Mr. Fuji and Killer Khan come out as Fuji asks Hogan if he wants to experience the dark side. Khan gets in Hogan’s face and they have a staredown that ends with Khan spraying mist into Hogan’s face. Jake wipes away the mist as Hogan, with his face covered with the mist, is in agony on the ground. We get a slo-mo replay of the mist at the end and it did look good at least. They did as good of a job as they were going to in building up this feud.

Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake vs. Pete Sanchez

Jesse talks about how Mr. T, and how he was just on the Snake Pit, as like Beefcake, does not have a license for his practice. Sanchez rakes Beefcake’s eyes then lands some forearm smashes but gets caught with a powerslam and shortly after that Beefcake catches him with a sleeper for the win (1:06). After the match, Beefcake gives Sanchez a haircut then shows him the results as Sanchez flips out and runs away.

Thoughts: The barber gimmick continues to be a big hit among the fans in attendance.

We now get a “posing routine” from “The Natural” Butch Reed that is set to generic 80’s porn music. This was more fuel to the fire for his feud with Superstar Billy Graham, who had a similar posing routine that was shown last week. I am not really feeling this feud.

Jimmy Hart is shown as he tells all the other managers that he will manage Bam Bam Bigelow and shows us footage of him for the first time as the camera first zoomed in on the flames tattoo on his head as Bam Bam is then shown grunting and looking like a monster. Finally, we get to see Bigelow and it seems like we actually have a front-runner to manage him as well.

Mike Richards & Jerry Allen vs. Hart Foundation w/ Jimmy Hart 

Neidhart brushes away a dropkick from Allen then beats him down. The Hart Foundation beat on Richards as the announcers talk about Jimmy Hart having the inside track on signing Bam Bam Bigelow then the Hart Foundation put Richards away with the Hart Attack (1:20). After the match, the Hart Foundation toss Allen to the floor then beat up on Richards.

Thoughts: Brief squash to put over the Hart Foundation.

Okerlund is with Randy Savage and asks him about wanting to regain the Intercontinental Title. Savage says his sights are now set on Hulk Hogan and how he would rather die from exhaustion than starvation as he will go to the top and there is nothing Hogan can do to stop him. Okerlund asks about Elizabeth then about the Honky Tonk Man and if he is trying to “swerve” him about the Intercontinental Title. He even tells Savage he might have a shot at the IC title soon. They really set up the Savage face turn months before it happened, really as soon as Honky won the belt. Okerlund kept on goading Savage in interviews about going back after the title as Savage would dodge the question.

Next week in action will be Koko B. Ware, The Islanders, and more.

Final Thoughts: Solid show this week. They built up Hogan’s feud and showcased newer talents through vignettes. The action was so-so but they actually seem to have some traction going here as they try to get some feuds going again.

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/19/87
Thursday: RF Video Shoot Interview with Greg Valentine
Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/25/87
Saturday: RoH Glory By Honor II 9/20/03
Sunday: WWF Madison Square Garden 7/25/87

WWF Wrestling Challenge July 12th, 1987

July 12, 1987

From the Louisville Gardens in Louisville, KY

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon.

This week’s featured match will see the Killer Bees vs. Don Muraco & Bob Orton. Also in action tonight will be the Junkyard Dog, Hart Foundation, One Man Gang, and Hillbilly Jim & Billy Jack Haynes & Tito Santana.

Brian Costello vs. Junkyard Dog

Gorilla notes the weight gain of JYD as Heenan said JYD recently bought flash cards so he could learn to count to ten. JYD hits a poor excuse of a clothesline then overpowers Costello for a bit, as he barely seems able to move, until he puts him away with the powerslam (1:53). After the match, JYD dances with a few kids in the ring.

Thoughts: Even the announcers are hinting at how terrible JYD looks now and its clear that he is being phased down the card.

Craig DeGeorge talks about Killer Khan as we see him use the mist on his opponents. They are playing this up as a threat to everyone, including Hogan. Well, they had to hype their house show matches somehow.

Jerry Allen & Mario Mancini vs. The Islanders w/ Bobby Heenan

Johnny V. replaces Heenan on commentary for this match. He also tells us that is the one who has signed Bam Bam Bigelow. Allen catches Tama with a slam and a dropkick. Haku tags in but Allen hits him with a crossbody for a nearfall. The Islanders trap Allen in the corner and beat him down for a bit. Allen makes the tag to Mancini, who immediately gets attacked then put away with the double flying headbutt (2:42).

Thoughts: Not much to this other than the continuation of the Bam Bam Bigelow angle.

Gene Okerlund is with Ken Patera, who tells us the emotional scars he deals with then refers to the Heenan Family as the “goon squad.” Patera now has an insane look on his face that even Okerlund seems scared of him as Patera talks about taking out the Heenan Family one-by-one until its just Heenan himself and that “paybacks will be paid.” This interview was something else.

Cowboy Bob Orton & Don Muraco vs. Killer Bees

Gorilla tells Heenan that Johnny V. told him he signed Bam Bam, which Heenan states is a lie because he is the one who signed him. Muraco and Blair start off the match. After a minute of back and forth action, Blair catches Muraco with a powerslam then Orton tries to break it up but accidentally leg drops his partner. Blair hits Muraco with an atomic drop as he collides with Orton, who then tags into the match. Orton pulls up on the ropes but in the process he slingshots Muraco into the ring. Muraco and Orton finally take control of the match. Orton goes to hit Brunzell, who ducks, and accidentally nails the referee then the bell rings as the ref disqualifies Muraco and Orton. After the match, Muraco and Orton argue until Orton storms off.

Thoughts: More of a comedy match with Orton & Muraco, former stars, reduced to doing goofy miscommunication spots leading to a breakup.

Okerlund is with Greg Valentine, who blames Brutus Beefcake for losing the Tag Team Titles and how he will never touch his hair and if Beefcake does try to cut his hair, he will put him in the figure four and snap his leg.

One Man Gang w/ Slick vs. Jim Evans

Gang chokes out Evans with his own jacket to start. He rams him into the corner as Slick is shown in an insert promo telling us that he has the “inside track” on Bam Bam Bigelow as Heenan is irate. Gang then puts Evans away with a gordbuster.

Thoughts: Again, the main point here was adding further intrigue to the Bam Bam Bigelow angle.

DeGeorge is with the Heenan Family as they gloat over the fact they beat up and whipped Ken Patera. We are then shown footage of Patera in the locker room after the attack, with welts all over his back.

Hillbilly Jim & Tito Santana & Billy Jack Haynes vs. Tiger Chung Lee & Terry Gibbs & Chris Curtis

Haynes works over Lee to start. Jim tags in and does a cartwheel as the fans applaud but Tito tags in after that and slams Gibbs around. Curtis, sporting a shaved head, enters as Tito works him over. Jim then catches Curtis in one of the sorriest attempts of a bearhug that I have ever seen. The jobbers break that up then Tito tags in and gets the win after hitting Curtis with the flying forearm (2:39). After the match the winners dance and clap with a few kids.

Thoughts: The action was pretty bad when Tito was not in the ring. Other than that, just a way to get three guys with nothing going on a chance to shine on TV.

A replay of footage from Ted DiBiase at a house show tossing money into the crowd.

Hart Foundation w/ Jimmy Hart vs. Omar Atlas & Corporal Kirchner

The Hart Foundation beat on Atlas as we see Jimmy Hart in an insert promo saying he will be the one to sign Bam Bam Bigelow. Kirchner tags and cleans house then tags Atlas, who comes off of the rope with an elbow smash. Gorilla hypes the WWF Magazine and an article on the British Bulldogs and how they hope to regain the titles. The Harts are beating on Atlas in the corner then put him away with the Hart Attack (3:15).

Thoughts: More fuel for the Bam Bam angle and they seem to be hinting that the Bulldogs will be #1 contenders to the Tag Team Titles.

Okerlund is with Slick, who refuses to answer his question about the One Man Gang’s signing bonus. Butch Reed comes out and runs down the top babyfaces in the company.

Next week in action will be Jake Roberts, Kamala & Sika, Honky Tonk Man, Can-Am Connection, and Randy Savage

Final Thoughts: The Bam Bam Bigelow hype and storyline over which manager will in fact manage him dominated the show. They also had more tension between Muraco and Orton and hyped up the cold Patera vs. Heenan Family Feud but other than that nothing really happened. They are at least pushing newer acts here but they are struggling to find a top TV feud and credible opponents for Hogan.

Here is my schedule for the next several days.

Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/18/87
Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/19/87
Thursday: Shoot Interview TBD
Friday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/25/87

WWF Superstars of Wrestling July 11th, 1987

July 11, 1987

From the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, IN

Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, and Vince McMahon

In action this week will be Ken Patera, Hercules & King Kong Bundy & King Harley Race, Honky Tonk Man, Can-Am Connection, and Jake “The Snake” Roberts

Iron Mike Sharpe vs. Ken Patera

Vince puts over Patera’s strength as he works the arm of Sharpe. Patera then hits a clothesline and slams Sharpe as Vince tells Jesse that Patera has already paid his debt to society when he referred to him as a jailbird then shortly after that, Patera got the win with a bearhug (2:46).

Thoughts: Vince was really pushing Patera hard here but the fans just weren’t buying.

WWF Update with Craig DeGeorge. This week’s subject is the “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase as we see him tossing money out to the fans as he is heard in a voiceover saying he gives his money away because he enjoys watching “swine” fight over it as he proclaims that everyone has a price. This was such an interesting character and it instantly clicked as a top heel act. You can tell Vince was heavily invested in the gimmick too, which helped a lot.

Vince plugs the WWF Magazine “Win Lunch With Hulk” contest as Jesse cracks jokes about that.

Mario Mancini & Jim Evans & Paul Roma vs. Hercules & King Kong Bundy & King Harley Race w/ Bobby Heenan

Before the match, Heenan yells at the crowd to bow as they boo. Match starts with Hercules destroying Mancini then we get an insert promo from Heenan, who states that he has signed Bam Bam Bigelow. Back to the match as Bundy is now destoying Mancini. Evans tags as Bundy hits the Avalanche then drops an elbow then demands a five count and that gets the win (2:23).

Thoughts: The action was forgettable but the biggest takeaway again was the intrigue about Bam Bam Bigelow and the multiple claims by various matches that they have signed him. It was a good way to build for the debut of Bam Bam.

Gene Okerlund is with Brutus Beefcake, who will be facing Greg Valentine at Madison Square Garden. Beefcake talked about the rush he gets from cutting hair.

Can-Am Connection vs. Terry Gibbs & Dusty Wolfe

The Can-Ams take control early, hitting stereo monkey flips and atomic drops then partake in a lame celebration. The match settles down as they use their high flying offense while we get an insert promo from the Islanders as they promise to destroy the Can-Ams. Back to the match as Gibbs pulls the ropes on Martel as he dumps to the floor. However, Martel fights back shortly after that then holds up Wolfe as Zenk comes off the op with a missile dropkick as the Can-Ams get the win (2:56).

Thoughts: Zenk had actually quit the WWF by the time this made it to air, making this is last appearance on “Superstars of Wrestling.” They seemed to have big plans for this feud too.

Okerlund is now with Hulk Hogan, who will face Killer Khan at the August 1st show at the Meadowlands arena. Hogan promises to eat Khan alive and warns him and Mr. Fuji that Hulkamania is coming. After several weeks of strong build on TV, Khan is now facing Hogan for the title at house shows across the country.

A replay of last week where Khan sprayed mist into the face of Outback Jack as they build up Khan as a serious threat to Hogan in their upcoming matches.

Jake “The Snake” Roberts vs. Brian Costello

Jake beats on Costello in and out of the ring. Back inside, he hits the short-armed clothesline then follows with the DDT for the win (1:45). After the match, Jake dumps the snake on Costello, who freaks out and leaves the ring.

Thoughts: Not a whole lot of talk about Jake and his feud with Honky here as it was merely a showcase for Jake to get a quick win and for the fans to see him use the snake.

WWF Special Report with Craig DeGeorge. This is about Danny Davis as they show clips of him that led to Jack Tunney suspending him for life as a referee. Then, DeGeorge shows us the clip of Mr. T being named the new “Special Enforcer” of the WWF as we hear from Davis, who says that he is a good wrestler.

A small clip of Jesse Ventura from the film “Predator.”

New Dream Team w/ Johnny V. vs. Sivi Afi & “Leaping” Lanny Poffo

Poffo’s pre-match promo was poking fun at Johnny V’s haircut courtesy of Beefcake. The New Dream Team beat on Afi as we see Johnny V. in an insert promo saying that he has signed Bam Bam Bigelow. Beefcake joins the announcers table as Bravo hits Afi with a dropkick. Beefcake says that he has something special for the New Dream Team. Bravo misses a top rope senton as Poffo tags in and cleans hammers away. Valentine breaks up a pin after a moonsault then the New Dream Team take control of the match. Valentine stares down Beefcake then puts on the Figure Four as Poffo submits (3:32). Valentine keeps the hold on after the bell then Beefcake runs down to the ring and cuts off a piece of Valentine’s hair as the crowd goes nuts. The New Dream are flipping out as they are outside of the ring while Beefcake is playing with his hair.

Thoughts: They continued the Beefcake vs. Dream Team feud here as it was at least helping Beefcake get over. Bravo & Valentine sucked as a team but the important thing was getting over the guy with the new push and it worked in that aspect.

DeGeorge is with Slick and Butch Reed, who are not impressed with the latest Superstar Billy Graham video, which shows him in various poses. Reed then promises to show us a posedown next week.

Honky Tonk Man w/ Jimmy Hart vs. Omar Atlas

Atlas reverses an Irish whip then gets two with a sunset flip. However, he ducks his head on a backdrop attempt and gets kicked in the face as we see an insert promo from Jimmy Hart as he tells us that is the one who signed Bam Bam Bigelow, even promising us exclusive footage next week. Back to the match as Honky catches Atlas with a clothesline then puts him away with the Shake, Rattle, and Roll (1:41). After the match, Honky poses for his fans.

Thoughts: Match was nothing but this segment sure made Hart seem like the favorite to land Bigelow.

In action next week will be Brutus Beefcake, Demolition, One Man Gang and the featured match of Junkyard Dog & Billy Jack Haynes & Hillbilly Jim vs. Don Muraco & Bob Orton & Ron Bass. Plus, Mr. T will be the guest on the “Snake Pit.”

Final Thoughts: The show was fine this week in pushing newer acts. They put over DiBiase’s gimmick a lot and are hyping up Bam Bam as good as you can without having him actually appear on TV. They also are getting Beefcake’s barber gimmick over with the crowds as well. Hogan has a new opponent for house show matches in Khan, who they are making an attempt to get over by having him spew mist. Still, they need stronger feuds at the top of the cards and Patera vs. the Heenan Family is not working.

Here is my schedule for the rest of the week:

Thursday: RF Video Shoot & Undercover with New Jack (2004)
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/12/87
Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/18/87
Tuesday: WWF Wrestling Challenge7/19/87

WWF Wrestling Challenge July 5th, 1987

July 5, 1987

From the Louisville Gardens in Louisville, KY

Your hosts are Bobby Heenan and Gorilla Monsoon

In action tonight will be Jake Roberts, Honky Tonk Man, Demolition, Brutus Beefcake, and Killer Khan.

Tony Leone vs. Jake “The Snake” Roberts

Leone lands a few punches in the corner but Roberts comes back with a clothesline. Heenan then tells us that he has signed “Bam Bam Bigelow,” who he tells us weighs 396 lbs. Back to the match as Roberts hits a slam then shortly after that hits the DDT for the win (1:27). After the match, Roberts puts the snake on Leone, to the delight of the fans.

Thoughts: The fans loved Roberts but the announcers talking about Bam Bam was the theme of the show as Monsoon would goad Heenan about the other managers claiming to have signed Bam Bam as well.

“Leaping” Lanny Poffo recites a promo about the WWF Ice Cream Bars

Jim Powers vs. Honky Tonk Man w/ Jimmy Hart

Both guys trade off working the arm as Jimmy Hart is shown in an insert promo announcing that he has signed “Bam Bam.” Back to the match as Honky is in control then puts Powers away with the Shake, Rattle, and Roll (1:38). After the match, Honky thanks the fans then dances.

Thoughts: Honky did a good job getting heel heat here but the story of the show is still just exactly who is Bam Bam, as Hart told us that he is 6’6 and can do everything.

Gene Okerlund is with the Killer Bees, who tell us that they have been having fun this holiday weekend as Blair gives him some “orange blossom special.” Brunzell looks ungodly hungover here as he talks about masked confusion. These guys gave us a lot of really corny promos.

Frankie DeFalco vs. Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake 

Beefcake is carrying a mirror to the ring. He starts the match by beating on DeFalco as the announcers talk about the haircut Johnny V. received. Beefcake then catches DeFalco with a sleeper and gets the win (1:46). After the match, Beefcake puts on his coats and cuts DeFalco’s hair before spraying it red.

Thoughts: Beefcake was another wrestler that found success with a post-match gimmick. During a time when the company needed help in the midcard, the success of Beefcake was welcome.

S.D. Jones & Paul Roma vs. Demolition w/ Mr. Fuji

The faces briefly work over the arm of Smash to start. Smash comes back with a slam on Roma as Fuji is shown in an insert promo announcing that he has signed Bam Bam Bigelow. Back to the match as Roma comes back with a dropkick on Ax but gets caught with a stungun then put away with the Decapitation (2:21).

Thoughts: Most of the focus was on the Bam Bam situation. Demolition needs a feud.

We are shown the replay of the Heenan Family beating down Ken Patera after his match from the 6/27 edition of Superstars of Wrestling.

Killer Khan w/ Mr. Fuji vs. Mike Richards

Khan destroys Richards as Heenan thinks Khan can beat Hulk Hogan for the title. Khan hits a thrust kick then sprays mist into Richards eyes. Khan then hits a piledriver before putting Richards away with a flying knee drop (3:24).

Thoughts: They certainly tried to put over Khan as a credible threat to Hogan. As far as the match, it went on for too long. Khan should have put this clown away in half the time.

Next week in action will be the Junkyard Dog, Hart Foundation, One Man Gang, and Hillbilly Jim & Billy Jack Haynes & Tito Santana. Plus, the featured match will have the Killer Bees take on Don Muraco & Bob Orton.

Final Thoughts: They did a great job in making you want to see just who Bam Bam was but other than that, there was no real feud advancement to speak of besides a clip of Patera getting beat down. Not the most exciting show and really nothing you would have needed to see back in the day.

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/11/87
Thursday: RF Video Shoot Interview with New Jack (2004)
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/12/87
Sunday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/18/87

WWF Superstars of Wrestling July 4th, 1987

July 4, 1987

From the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis, IN

Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, and Vince McMahon

The featured matchup this week is Killer Khan vs. Outback Jack. Also in action this week will be Randy Savage, Kamala & Sika, Tito Santana, and Brutus Beefcake.

Sonny Rogers vs. Randy “Macho Man” Savage w/ Elizabeth

Rogers surprises Savage with a rollup but gets clotheslined shortly after that. Savage hits a double axe handle then yanks him up after two then dumps him outside and hits another one then  rolls him back inside and sets him up for the flying elbow smash as he gets the win (1:41).

Thoughts: Savage got a lot of cheers here, especially after winning. Not even blowing off Mr. T. could get him heel heat.

WWF Update with Craig DeGeorge. This week’s focus is on Ken Patera and the beatdown he suffered last week on Superstars at the hands of the Heenan Family. We are then shown footage from the locker room as Billy Jack Haynes and Brutus Beefcake tell Patera, whose back is covered in welts after getting whipped with a belt, that they are on his side. Patera is then shown in a promo telling the Heenan Family that they have created a monster while mispronouncing words such as “humiliated.” After this segment, they show Patera in the WWF Magazine as he holds his high school diploma as Jesse makes fun of him.

Jim Powers & Mario Mancini vs. Kamala & Sika w/ Mr. Fuji & Kimchee

Powers tries to use his speed to get the best of Sika but misses a dropkick then gets chopped down. Kamala tags in and goes on the attack as we are shown an insert promo from Mr. Fuji, telling us that he will be managing “Bam Bam” as the announcers wonder who he is talking about. Back to the match as Sika hits Mancini with a Samoan Drop then tags Kamala, who gets the win with a splash (1:55).

Thoughts: Quick match to put over Kamala & Sika but the real story was about this “Bam Bam” that Fuji was talking about.

Gene Okerlund, wearing sunglasses, is with the Honky Tonk Man and Jimmy Hart. They hype their match next week against Jake Roberts as Honky guarantees victory. Actually, Jake never wrestled this match as he was replaced by Bruno Sammartino. Jake was still hurt at the time.

Another “Million Dollar Man” vignette is shown. DiBiase cannot believe that people put morals and value ahead of money and tells us that everyone has a price. We are then shown DiBiase and Virgil enter a public pool that is filled with children. DiBiase then bribes the guy running the pool to kick everyone out, even saying that he pays more taxes in a month then their parents pay in a year (Seems like a line Vince would write). Virgil yells at the kids to leave as DiBiase tells us not to get mad at the pool manager as he has a price, just like everyone else. Great stuff and it is easy to see how the WWF got over this gimmick. It was tremendous.

Terry Gibbs vs. Tito Santana

At this point, Santana was starting to grow his mullet out. Santana starts the match by working the arm of Gibbs. He hits a few armdrags and hip tosses then Gibbs comes back with some basic heel offense. Gibbs gets two with an elbow drop but Santana fights back. He dropkicks Gibbs then gets the win with a flying forearm (2:42).

Thoughts: Santana had nothing going on at this time but that was all about to change in the next couple of months.

Okerlund is with the Can-Am Connection. Martel warns the Islanders that they will not get away with what they did to them and in Boston, they will show how they are not pushovers. Zenk promises the Islanders they will not be smiling after their match. Another match that never took place as Zenk quit the day before the show and was replaced by the Junkyard Dog.

We are shown footage of Superstar Billy Graham’s workout video. After it airs, Butch Reed is with Craig DeGeorge and says he is not impressed as they try to build up this feud.

Outback Jack vs. Killer Khan w/ Mr. Fuji

Khan beats the crap out of Jack to start. Jack ducks a clothesline and comes back with a forearm smash and some other strikes that all look terrible. He then knocks Khan with a sorry excuse of a clothesline. Khan ducks underneath the ropes as the ref holds Jack back then gets up and super kicks Jack before spitting mist into his face. Jack rolls around like he has been pepper-sprayed then hits a backbreaker before putting him away with a flying knee drop (2:10). After the match we get a slo-mo replay of the mist and Khan did it perfectly as it went directly into Jack’s eyes. Jack is then shown being carried to the back with a towel over his face.

Thoughts: This match was really awful but I at least give Jack credit for selling the mist. It was the only thing about this match that didn’t suck. Speaking of Jack, this was the beginning of the end for him as he was essentially a TV jobber after this match.

Snake Pit with guests the Killer Bees. Good reaction for the Bees here, who are wearing their masks. Jake asks them about beating the champs last week as they talk about waiting two years for a title shot. They promise to counter Danny Davis and Jimmy Hart with masked confusion. Jake then picks up the snake to show them as the Bees then leave. They have now built up the Killer Bees as the #1 contenders.

Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake vs. Chris Curtis

Curtis cheapshots Beefcake after a break but ends up getting knocked down. Beefcake hits a clothesline then catches him with a sleeper for the win (1:11). After the match, Beefcake puts on his coat and pulls out the clippers as he cuts some hair, setting Jesse off. He gave Curtis one shitty haircut by the way. He then sprays the top of Curtis’ head with pink spray then surprises him with a mirror when he wakes up as Curtis flips out when he sees his new hairstyle

Thoughts: Beefcake continues to get over the barber gimmick as the fans are really digging the haircuts at the end of the match.

DeGeorge is with Danny Davis, who wants to talk about Jack Tunney giving Mr. T a referee’s license. DeGeorge then says that next week, Tunney will show us why Davis was suspended as a referee.

Now, we are shown another clip of the Jumping Bomb Angels as they wrestled the Glamour Girls from the 6/24 “Wrestling Challenge” tapings in Louisville, KY. That match was shown on the 7/20 edition of “Primetime Wrestling.” Vince promises us that we will see more of them in the coming weeks.

Frankie DeFalco & S.D. Jones vs. The Islanders w/ Bobby Heenan

Loud “weasel” chant by the crowd. Match starts with Haku beating on DeFalco. We are then shown an insert promo by Heenan, who promises that “Bam Bam” will be the newest member of the Heenan Family. S.D. is in and gets in some offense, including an atomic drop on Tama. DeFalco tags but Tama clotheslines him then he puts DeFalco away with a top rope splash after a powerslam from Haku (2:29).

Thoughts: More intrigue here as to who exactly was this “Bam Bam” the managers were talking about. The Islanders looked good in this match.

Okerlund, without the shades, is with Jake Roberts, who talks about his match against the Honky Tonk Man in Boston. Jake tells us that it will be stormy in Boston and that Honky will be unable to see what is going on and is now in a no-win situation. Good promo from Jake but those poor fans in Boston must have been pissed. The card for that show was terrible.

Next week in action will be Ken Patera, Hercules & King Kong Bundy and King Harley Race, Can-Am Connection, and Jake Roberts. Plus, an update on the medical condition of Outback Jack.

Final Thoughts: This show had some good stuff, like the Million Dollar Man vignette and the hype about “Bam Bam.” They put over Khan strong with the mist, although you can debate if he was even worth pushing at this time. However, the company doesnt have any hot feuds and too many older guys (Graham, Patera) are getting pushed the hardest on TV. They continue to struggle finding their groove.

Here is my schedule for the next several days:

Saturday: RoH Beating the Odds 9/6/03
Sunday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/5/87
Tuesday: WWF Superstars of Wrestling 7/11/87
Thursday: Shoot Interview TBD
Friday: WWF Wrestling Challenge 7/12/87

Ring of Honor: Death Before Dishonor July 17th, 2003

July 17, 2003

From the Rex Plex in Elizabeth, NJ

Your hosts are Ray Murrow and Chris Levy

CM Punk is backstage. He says it is the most important night in his life. He calls Raven no better than the dog a collar goes around and promises to end the feud tonight as it has gotten way too personal. He talks about choking out Raven at Wrestlerave and gloats that he gave Raven a flashback of his horrible life then talks about a time when his dad came home from work drunk then puked as he was asleep and turned blue then watched the light fade away but tipped him over so he could breathe again and regrets doing that ever since as he wanted the misery and pain to end. He now cannot figure out why he let Raven live as he is better than him because he has saved lived while all Raven has done is ruin them. Colt Cabana then walks in to interrupt as Punk pins him up against the wall and says how he is sick of his “Tom Foolery and shenanigans.” He walks away then Cabana looks into the camera and attempts to be funny as he claims that fans say they remind them of a “modern day Dave Coulier” before saying he has a serious side because he cried during the film “My Girl.” Cabana closes by saying we should wait until the night is over so we can take him seriously.

Before the show we see Special K having a rave at ringside. Elax has even made his return, to the joy of no one.

Backstage, Gary Michael Cappetta approaches Samoa Joe and asks him about his match against Paul London, who is having his last match in the company tonight. Joe then runs down other special moments and says that it won’t be one for Paul London tonight as this is his night and he will retain his RoH World Title. Cappetta then gets notified off camera that Homicide and Julius Smokes are here so he runs off to find them.

Back to the ring as the Special K rave continues. Becky Bayless was smoking hot here.

Cappetta talks to Homicide and asks what happened at the closed door meeting between Low Ki, Julius Smokes and himself after Wrestlerave. Homicide calls Cappetta a dumb ass for suggesting that he is now in a feud with Ki as Smokes and another one of Homicide’s thugs call Cappetta a “bitch-ass wigga” and does not care that Steve Corino refuses to come back to RoH because of him. Homicide then tells Cappetta to tell Corino that he is challenging him to a Strong-Style match in RoH and that he will leave his guys back in Brooklyn.

Back in the ring as the show is starting with the rave continuing in the ring. They then start to mess with ring announcer Stephen DeAngelis. Now, the Christopher Street Connection come down to the ring with Ariel as they have interrupted the rave. A “you suck dick” chant is aimed at the CSC as they tell Special K that they do not like their raves but rather disco music as they dance briefly until Special K jumps then from behind. The CSC get destroyed until Low Ki comes out and he looks pissed. Special K all back away from him as Ki first excuses himself for interrupting but that he is not here to see anyone dance and that he came here for a fight. The bell then rings as Deranged, Cloudy, and Hijynx all plead with Ki, who slaps down Cloudy. Hijynx laughs as Ki laughs with him before taking him down with the Dragon Clutch as the bell rings again. The rest of Special K leaves except for Deranged, who hits Ki with a low blow then mocks Ki as we now have a match.

Deranged vs. Low Ki

This is Ki’s first match in RoH since returning from injury. Deranged lands a bunch of shots then hits a tilt-a-whirl armdrag. Deranged then snaps off a hurricarana then gets two off of a spin kick. Deranged chokes him on the mat then targets the injured shoulder of Ki. Deranged doesn’t look half bad here. He kicks Ki in the face before going back to the arm as Levy tells us that Ki is only at 75%.  Ki gets sent through the ropes with a dropkick then Deranged takes him out on the floor with a springboard moonsault. They head back inside as Deranged hits Ki in the back of the head with a springboard dropkick. He then tries a handspring move but Ki catches him and just slams him down in a clunky-looking sequence. Ki is now viciously kicking Deranged in the face as he grabs him by the hair. He then drills him with a rolling Koppu Kick in the corner as he is just brutalizing this kid. Deranged sells like he is dead on the mat as Ki yanks him up so he can chop him in the corner. He then hits Deranged with the Tidal Crush as a few of the Special K goons distract Ki so Slugger can run out and grab Ki as the ref does nothing because this is not a match with honor from what Levy said. We then see that Ki is grabbing Slugger by the dick as he has the big man down. Deranged moves in for the attack but Ki picks him up and hits a pair of Krush Rushes before hitting the Ki Krusher then gets the win with the Dragon Clutch (6:34) **.

Thoughts: Fun match that was able to put Ki right back in the mix as a top guy for the company. Deranged did his part here too as this was a smart way to start the show.

Christopher Daniels is “backstage” at a New Japan show as he tells us that this is the biggest night in RoH history but that they never would have been in position to draw 1,200 fans tonight if it wasn’t for him and that the company was built on his shoulders. He then calls out Low Ki and how he will take him out just like he did with Corino, by getting close to those around him. He then says that he will challenge for the #1 Contender’s Trophy when he gets back to the states.

Jimmy Rave vs. Matt Stryker

These guys both trade hammerlocks to start. They are now fighting over a headlock as Stryker wins that battle then attacks the arm. Rave now takes control as he takes Stryker down with a Fujiwara armbar and that leads to a back-and-forth sequence that ends in a stalemate. Levy says that we will get some information about the “Field of Honor” as soon as tonight as Stryker has Rave grounded. Stryker targets the arm as this match has slowed down. Rave fights back and hits a backbreaker then follows that with a bridging suplex for a nearfall. Stryker comes back with a boot to the face but Rave counters a leg lock and puts on a rear chokehold. Stryker backs Rave into the corner but gets placed up top as Rave hits a Spider belly-to-belly suplex but poses for too long and that allows Stryker to hit a suplex of his own. Both guys are down then trade chops in a sequence that ends with Rave kneeing Stryker in the gut. Shining Wizard gets two. Rave ducks his head and gets booted in the face. Stryker then comes back with a leg lariat and gets two with a powerslam. Rave escapes from a Death Valley Driver attempt and goes for a headlock but Stryker hits a jawbreaker. Rave then uses a satellite headscissors to take down Stryker then puts on a STF. Stryker reaches the ropes then gets up and hits Rave with the Death Valley Driver for the win (8:45) **.

Thoughts: The action here was okay but they did not have the greatest chemistry and just a showcase for Stryker as a threat in the upcoming “Field of Honor” tournament. Stryker did not have anything to warrant a push, IMO.

Weapons Match
Carnage Crew & Justin Credible & Masada vs. Fast Eddie & Don Juan & Hotstuff Hernandez & Rudy Boy Gonzalez

Match starts with a giant brawl outside of the ring. DeVito is smiling as he canes Fast Eddie. The action starts to spill into the ring where Hernandez crotches Masada on the top rope then he an Eddie mistime a double dropkick that draws a “you fucked up” chant. In the ring, Credible is chopping Juan in the corner then powerbombs him for a nearfall. The action is everywhere as Rudy Boy follows Credible into the crowd and it looks impressive as there is a decent sized crowd here. The camera work is shaky though. In the ring, Eddie hits Masada with a release German suplex, crashing his head off of a chair. Loc cuts him off the top then climbs up and hits a released German suplex that sends Eddie through a folding chair! That draws a well-deserved holy shit chant as that spot looked fantastic. The ladder is in the corner across the ropes as that is used as a weapon. These guys are just beating the shit out of each other now but its all action and come cool spots too. Juan DDT’s Masada off of the top rope and through a chair as DeVito breaks up that pinfall. Masada bounces the ladder off of Hernandez then Eddie sets it up in the corner. He climbs up but Loc is on the second rope and cuts him off. DeVito climbs up the ladder and takes Eddie down with a superplex after Juan takes Masada off of the apron and through a few chairs with a swinging neckbreaker. Christ, this match is brutal. Everyone slows down for a few minutes then the Carnage Crew put Juan through a table from off of the apron with a spike piledriver as Levy alerts us that Gonzalez and Credible are now brawling in the parking lot. Hernandez then flies out and hits a tope on Masada that gets a good reaction. Gonzalez comes out as Levy now tells us that Credible is hurt and unable to continue. Back to the match as Hernandez puts Masada through a few chairs with a crucifix powerbomb (8:04) ***1/4.

Thoughts: This was a lot better than I was expecting. No idea what happened with Credible here but he did look very good in this match. Some of these spots were absolutely brutal though as these guys beat the shit out of each other.

Outcast Killaz vs. The Purists

The purists are Tony Mamaluke and John Walters. They are both very intense during the pre-match handshake. Levy talks up the Purists as Mamaluke starts off the match by grounding Tortuga, who to his credit fought back well, as they end up tangled in the ropes. Walters and Santiago tag in as they also roll around on the mat. They are letting the Outcast Killaz look a bit credible here. Walters works the ankle as the announcers talk about the feud the Killaz have with Dunn & Marcos. The Killaz take control of the match and hit a few nice double-team moves. Walters clotheslines Santiago then puts both of the Killaz in a contrived double submission hold that does not even get that much of a response from the crowd. Mamaluke works a neck vise but that gets broken up with a jawbreaker. Mamaluke comes back with a knee to the gut then gets two with a flying knee smash to the face. Walters tags and chops down Santiago in the corner. Dropkick gets two. Santiago comes back with a blockbuster as both men are down. The crowd rallies behind Santiago, who makes the tag. Tortuga then runs wild on Mamaluke and puts him in a stretch after elevating him in the wheelbarrow position as Santiago dropkicks him down. Walters comes in and dumps Santiago on the ropes then sends him to the floor with a dropkick. Mamaluke then powerbombs Tortuga as Walters stretches him out while Mamaluke puts him in a leg lock and they get the win (8:31) **1/4.

Thoughts: A decent way to showcase the new Purists team. Also, they let the Outcast Killaz shine a bit here and they did fine.

After the match, Dunn & Marcos come out and mock the Killaz. Then, Xavier makes his return as he walks down the aisle and stares at the duo, who are doing their routine. Xavier is not amused as he takes them both out with a double clothesline. He hits Dunn with a Cobra Clutch suplex then hits Marcos with the Kiss Your X Goodbye but not before kneeing him in the head three times. Gary Michael Cappetta then comes out and asks Xavier why he has returned. Xavier said that he cannot believe RoH would hold a tournament with the eight best wrestlers without inviting him and says that all he wants is respect and will go through seven other guys to get some. He closes by saying that he is back and better than ever. Decent promo from Xavier but the sound was not too good here.

Tom Carter vs. Doug Williams

Match starts with some back-and-forth action on the mat that the crowd appreciates. Carter works the arm for a bit as Levy puts over the matwork featured in RoH and how they respect it, unlike “other” companies. Williams fights back and hits a pair of European uppercuts before using a figure-four neck lock. Carter escapes and from that puts Williams in a bow-and-arrow hold. Williams then fights back and hammers away. Neckbreaker gets two. Carter is able to put Williams in an armbar then continues to work on the arm for a while. They go back and forth with Williams trying to act aggressive as Carter counters by targeting the arm. Williams rolls outside and sells his shoulder but drags Carter outside then sends him into the guardrail. Back inside, Carter blocks a suplex attempt but Williams eventually gets him up in a delayed vertical suplex that gets two. Tornado DDT gets two. Williams kneedrops Carterin the head before placing him up top. Williams tries for a German suplex but Carter reverses and has him in a hammerlock. Williams tosses him off as both men are down on the mat. Carter comes back with a moonsault block that gets two but Williams sends him into the corner and hits a pair of knee smashes. He then hits a top rope kneedrop that gets two. Williams targets the head but Carter comes back with a Flatliner and a pair of Shining Wizards but is unable to put him away. He heads up top but Williams cuts him off. Williams tries to take him off but Carter counters with a swinging DDT. He heads back up top and hits a beautiful frog splash that gets two. Carter uses an armbar but Williams lifts him up off of the mat and tosses him into the corner. Williams then hits the Chaos Theory but sells his arm and is unable to cover. He gets up and tries a suplex but Carter reverses the hold and rolls him up for the win (14:21) ***1/2.

Thoughts: Really good match. This was also the last appearance of Carter in RoH. No idea what happened here but it made no sense to have him win this and blow off joining the Prophecy if he was planning on never returning to the company. His wife did give birth several weeks before the match so maybe he just decided to quit wrestling. Does anyone know what happened regarding his departure?

After the match, Allison Danger meets Carter in the back and asks him to join the Prophecy because Daniels wants him in the group. Carter doesn’t say anything then walks away. This was the last time Carter was in RoH.

#1 Contender’s Trophy Match
Colt Cabana vs. BJ Whitmer vs. Homicide w/ Julius Smokes vs. Dan Maff w/ Alison Danger

After some blind tags, Whitmer and Homicide start off the match. They go back-and-forth in a decent sequence. Colt blindly tags Homicide and tries to attack Maff from behind but that fails. Colt has been doing his comedy schtick the whole time. Maff hits a suplex but misses a diving headbutt. Cabana comes back with a lariat. Whitmer and Homicide tag in and go at it for a bit. Whitmer goes outside and Homicide flies out with a tope as he crashes into the guardrail. Back inside where Whitmer catches Homicide with a powerslam then hits a Northern Lights Suplex as Cabana breaks up the pin. Cabana is now in as Homicide chops him in the corner. Cabana comes back with a suplex-type move that ends up as a butterfly lock but Whitmer tagged himself in and targets the back and neck of Homicide, who then returns the favor as they trade kicks to the back in a “Strong Style” sequence. Maff then yanks Homicide to the floor. Whitmer charges and Maff backdrops him outside then Maff pauses and look back and forth before flying out with a tope that he overshot and wound up in the front row. That looked quite painful. Cabana then takes out the other two with a quebrada. In the ring, Maff and Whitmer trade chops until Homicide pokes Maff in the eye. They all trade various suplexes. Whitmer is getting destroyed in the corner as Cabana is back in with the action too fast to call. The crowd goes nuts as Maff hits Cabana with a German suplex as he hit Homicide with a fisherman’s buster. Everyone is down on the mat as Colt is up first. He tries to hit Whitmer with the Colt 45 but Whitmer floats over and hits an inverted DDT. Whitmer gets flattened by a clothesline courtesy of Homicide. Maff hits Homicide but misses a cannonball. Cabana hits Homicide with a draping Ace Crusher then Maff hits Cabana with the Burning Hammer and covers but Whitmer breaks that up. Whitmer hits a Saito suplex for two that Homicide breaks up. He boots Whitmer in the face then sends Maff to the floor. Homicide places Cabana on top but takes too long as Whitmer takes him off with a German Suplex. Whitmer then goes up top and hits Cabana with an Exploder for the win (13:45) ***3/4. After the match everyone shakes hands except for Maff, who spits at Homicide then leaves after telling everyone to fuck off. Maff and Smokes then get into it as Maff yells at Smokes to “go back to the projects.”

Thoughts: Awesome stuff. All four guys busted their ass too. They are doing a fine job with the Homicide storyline of him trying to get away from his thug past to provide for his kid yet needing protection and having Smokes and his thugs with him, with everyone hating Homicide for bringing Smokes into the company. They are also giving Whitmer a push and although he was fine in the ring here, he did not really stand out other than being taller and having a better physique than most on the roster. See, even in RoH that can be the case as that is something not just unique to the WWE but rather accustom in all of professional wrestling.

Daniels is shown backstage from “Japan” as he is talking to Danger on his phone. He tells her to watch the show and call her as soon as the title matches end. He then gets off the phone and says that Xavier’s return was planned all along then tells Maff that he stole the show and made a mockery of the “Code of Honor.” He then addresses Tom Carter and tells him he needs his answer soon as its better to be with the Prophecy then against them.

Cappetta is backstage with Low Ki. He asks him about hurting Special K tonight as he tells Cappetta that they have disrespected the Code of Honor since the company began and will teach them lessons until they stop breaking the code. He calls out Maff for betraying his family before closing by saying he will be the RoH World Champion again. Cappetta then asks him about his meeting with Homicide as Ki tells him that it is not of his concern and to do his job and listen as he tells him he will be the RoH Champion once again.

We are shown a clip from Wrestlerave when Special K put the Backseat Boyz through a table.

Scramble Match
Mikey Whipwreck & Hydro & Angel Dust & Brian XL vs. Backseat Boyz & Spanish Announce Team

Hydro and Joel start off the match with a nice little sequence. Hydro in particular looked good. Angel Dust then comes in and hands a pill to Kashmere, who shoves it back down his throat and hits him with a few chops. Kashmere then spears Angel Dust and applies a figure four. Brian XL flies in with an elbow as he and Jose work their usual botch-filled sequence of highspots. Whipwreck hits Acid with a facebuster then this heads to Special K getting suplexed in a lame spot. Acid and Hydro anre in the ring and its clear that they are the best two in the whole match. The SAT’s then take down Hydro as Jose puts him in the Camel Clutch and everyone else hits him in the face with dropkicks repeatedly. Angel Dust springboards in to hit Jose with a blockbuster that gets two. The match breaks down then Jose drops Angel Dust as both men are down. Joel then hits the Maximo Explosion on Brian XL as now Trent Acid runs wild then this leads to the SAT’s hitting Hydro with the Spanish Fly. Joel then holds up Mikey for Acid but misses and gets hit with an enziguiri as Whipwreck then gets the Whippersnapper on Acid for the win (8:22) *1/4. After the match, the Backseat Boyz destroy the SAT’s as the crowd applauds.

Thoughts: These scramble matches were a lost cause and this match pretty much sucked. A majority of the Special K guys were useless and the SAT’s fucked up all the time. And fat Mikey Whipwreck is just awful in every single way. And he trained these guys too.

Krazy K vs. Joey Matthews vs. Jeff Hardy

A few fans start a “Fuck you Hardy” chant as he came to the ring in a goofy mask doing some of his terrible dancing. Hardy had a few vocal fans here at the start then a loud “You Got Fired” and a “We Want Matt” chant breaks out just before the match. Matthews beats on both guys to start. Hardy fights back as the fans boo then he takes off his mask as the girls in attendance scream. Hardy clotheslines Matthews to the floor then works one of the worst sequences I have ever seen with Krazy K. My god, wrestling school students in their first week could have done a better job. Hardy is still wearing his coat here too. Matthews comes back and tosses Krazy K to the floor. He follows him out and orders the fans to get out of the way then teases throwing him over the guardrail before tossing him back inside. Hardy comes out and brawls with Matthews then Krazy K flies out with a twisting plancha as Hardy doesn’t ever bother to catch him. Even the announcers are noting how Hardy isn’t giving a shit out here. Krazy K and Hardy team up on Matthews until Krazy K goes for a quick rollup. Hardy comes back with a powerbomb then takes forever to climb up and gets shoved off by Matthews as the crowd cheers. Matthews then hits Krazy K with an inverted DDT for two as the fans are completely shitting on this match and rightfully so as it is awful. Hardy and Matthews fight up top as Hardy shoves him off then hits the Swanton Bomb. Hardy now goes after K and gets the win with his double leg drop rollup (6:15) DUD.

Thoughts: What a fucking disaster this turned out to be. If not for Matthews, this would have easily reached negative star territory as Hardy and Krazy K were fucking horrible. The crowd hated Hardy, who looked every bit as strung out as he did before getting canned by the WWE. Krazy K was never seen in RoH again and for good reason. Its almost worth seeking this out because of the trainwreck factor.

We are shown a recap of the Punk/Raven feud.

Punk taunts the crowd before the match about how the building does not sell alcohol and that they were led down the wrong path as they start a “shut the fuck up” chant back at Punk, who says he feels sorry for them because Raven led them down the road to ruin. Punk then compares Raven to his “lousy, drunk father” as the crowd starts an “alcohol” chant. He then rips on Danny Doring, who is shown chugging a beer in the crowd as the fans start an “ECW” chant. Security prevents Doring from coming out to the ring as Punk again rips on the crowd until Raven comes out for the match. Punk was truly great here.

Dog Collar Match
CM Punk vs. Raven

A few in the crowd start a “CM Pussy” chant. They get chained together as Punk tries to escape but Raven yanks him back then uses the chain as a weapon. The action heads outside where Raven sends Punk into the post then crotches Punk with the chain before sending him into the guardrail with a Russian leg sweep as Punk is already busted open with his forehead painted red with blood. Raven continues the assault as he rolls Punk back inside. He sets up a table in the corner but Punk hits him with a low blow. Raven comes back with a kneelift but Punk reverses an Irish whip and sends Raven through the table as he now takes control of the match. He beats on Raven outside of the ring then chokes him out with the chain then busts open his forehead. Punk sends Raven into the guardrail a few times before sending him into the crowd. Punk steps back to take a breather but Raven yanks the chain as Punk flies into the guardrail. Both men are brawling through the crowd as this match is pretty fucking good right now. Raven knocks Punk through a few chairs then they head through to the other side of the crowd where Raven hands a fan a chair to hold so he can bounce Punk’s head off of that. Raven heads up to the bleachers but Punk yanks him down as Raven takes a hell of a bump. Punk now whips Raven with the chain as they head back towards the ring. Punk brings a garbage can ringside then rolls Punk into the ring. He hits Raven with a back elbow smash as Punk hurt his arm on that move. Punk then drops a knee on Raven as he has a microphone and calls Raven an “old timer” as he beats on him some more. He hits a suplex then a step-up enziguiri before he climbs up top and talks into the microphone but Raven yanks him off. Punk gets back up and taunts Raven by calling him “Flamingo” but Raven fights back. He clotheslines Punk down several times and gets two with a kneelift. He sets up a chair and sends Punk into it with a drop toehold for two. He then spits on Punk before grabbing a chair but Punk ducks as the ref gets hit with the chair. Raven then yanks Punk down then hits the Raven Effect but the referee is down. Colt Cabana runs into the ring and hits him with a low blow before hitting a DDT onto the chair. Cabana then taunts the crowd but Danny Doring comes out from the crowd and takes him out with a clothesline as they brawl outside but in the ring Punk rolls on top of Raven as the referee awakes and gets the win (18:22) ****. After the match, Punk tapes Raven’s wrists to the ropes as he is on the floor. Punk then grabs the mic and tells Raven that he is better than him and all that is left to do now is to send Raven back to rehab as he cracks a beer and pours it down his throat. Punk then calls Raven an addict as someone screams “I can’t believe you gave him a fucking beer.” Tommy Dreamer then comes out from the crowd to whack Punk with a chair as the crowd starts an “ECW” then a “Dreamer” chant. Dreamer then ties Punk to the ropes as the crowd chants “fuck him up Dreamer, fuck him up.” Dreamer then unties Raven, who can barely stand then they hug as the fans applaud. Raven then grabs the mic as he welcomes Punk to his worst nightmare as he cracks a beer then pours it down Punk’s throat, who is spitting it out. Dreamer when pulls a Sandman and smashes the can against his head as Punk is flipping out. Raven pours another beer on Punk as Dreamer struts around. They leave as the referees untie Punk, who flips out and tosses them down as he heads to the back.

Thoughts: Excellent match and easily the best from Punk at this point in his career. Both guys beat each other and kept it heated throughout the entire time. The post match stuff was fun as well with Dreamer surprising everyone by running in and he had some fun with Raven as they tortured Punk. It also set them up to have another match to keep the feud going.

Paul London cuts a promo about his experience in Ring of Honor as this was his last show before heading to the WWE. He puts over his opponents like Michael Shane, Bryan Danielson, Low Ki, and AJ Styles. He closes by saying that he will not let the people down and has a special feeling tonight and has to win the Championship. Long-winded promo from London, who seemed genuinely emotional here. And came off a tad high as well.

The Briscoes vs. AJ Styles & Amazing Red w/ Alexis Laree

The stipulations here are that this is the last match between the two teams and no matter who wins, there will not be a rematch. Match starts with Jay and AJ beating the shit out of each other as they spill outside. Mark and Red fight in the ring then Mark misses a dive to the floor. AJ sends Mark into the guardrail but Jay sends whips him then rolls AJ back inside. Red tags in and hits Jay with the Code Red for two. Mark tags in as the Briscoes now attack AJ, who comes back with a lariat on Mark. AJ tries for the Styles Clash but that gets blocked as Red tags and they hit Mark with stereo enziguiris for two. Red kicks Mark in the back then hits a basement dropkick for two. AJ tags as the announcers bring up Red’s knee injury. AJ gets two off of a dropkick then a neckbreaker. Red tags back in as he chops Mark then gets a baseball slide for two. Mark comes back with a low dropkick onto the hurt knee of Red. The Briscoes take turns working over the knee of Red as Mark uses a single leg crab. Jay chokes out Red as the referee orders AJ back to the apron. Laree rallies the crowd behind Red as he gets taken down with a Dragon Screw. Red gets sent to the floor and gets roughed up briefly before getting rolled back into the ring. Mark and Red exchange chops until they have a sloppy reversal sequence that ends with Mark getting two with a powerbomb. Red then is able to come back shortly after that with a Kryptonite Krunch as both men are down. Red finally makes the tag as AJ beats on both of the Briscoes. Mark then hits AJ with a T-Bone suplex then hits Red with a Mafia Kick. AJ comes back with a slingshot crossbody and then this leads to a Tower of Doom spot with each team getting a nearfall. Jay hits Red with the Jaydriller but AJ breaks up the pin by tossing Mark at his brother. The Briscoes hit AJ with a springboard Doomsday Device for two as Red is down in the corner. AJ comes back with the Phenomenon on Mark then Red hits Jay as he tried the Jaydriller then hits a Shining Wizard and that leads to AJ hitting Jay with the Styles Clash for the win (14:27) ***1/2.

Thoughts: Good match. The story at the end was that Red sacrificed his injured knee in order to help retain the Tag Team Titles. The Briscoes were so damn impressive too, especially when they were both under 20 years old. The Tag Team Belts have not been focused on much, especially with Red having been out with an injury, but that will be changing going forward.

Jim Cornette is shown in a promo with the Ohio Valley Wrestling logo in the background. He says that he will be part of the RoH show on August 9th as he wants to see what RoH is all about as he smells money and wants to be a part of that. He closes by saying that his appearance will make news on the internet and the magazines. Not bad and it did the job in making you intrigued as to why Cornette will be appearing on a RoH show.

We see clips of the last few matches featuring Paul London and Samoa Joe. This lasts for several minutes.

RoH World Championship Match
Paul London vs. Samoa Joe (Champion)

This match gets the boxing-style ring introductions as London gets a great crowd reaction as streamers drop from the ceiling after its announced that this is his final night in the company. Joe takes down London after the handshake then grounds him on the mat. London fights out as they are both on their feet. London puts Joe in a side headlock then they work a fast-paced sequence that ends with Joe destroying London with a forearm smash to the face. Joe beats on London in the corner for a bit. London floats over and gets a quick rollup then sends Joe out of the ring. He sends him into the guardrail with a baseball slide then takes him down with a moonsault off of the guardrail. Back inside, London barely gets a two count off of a splash but gets caught with an uranage off of a charge. Joe targets the back of London then catches him off of a springboard and throws him across the top rope. Joe then puts London in the tree-of-woe but misses on a baseball slide. London flies out with a pescado but Joe caught him then slams London into the post. Joe puts London in the chair and hits him with a few running kicks. In the ring, Joe hits London with a missile dropkick then gets two with a German Suplex. Joe tries for the Island Driver but London counters with a rollup as that leads to a rollup reversal sequence. London hits the dropsault then fakes out Joe pretending that he is hurt as he hits the legsweep DDT. London then heads up top and hits the London Calling but Joe kicks out at two. That looked perfect by the way. Joe then ducks a swing and locks on the Coquina Clutch as he drags him back in off of the apron. London escapes quickly but misses a spinning heel kick. Joe gets two with a Dragon Suplex. London comes back with a quick backslide but Joe comes right back with a vicious lariat. Joe then murders London with all sorts of strikes then locks on the Coquina Clutch and after a struggle, London’s hand drops three times as Joe retains the title (14:13) ***1/4. After the match the entire locker room comes out as Whitmer and Williams hoist him up on his shoulders before they all say their goodbyes to him. London grabs the mic as the roster surrounds him with the entire audience now giving him a standing ovation. He thanks everyone here as he refers to them as family. He then thanks Rudy Boy and hugs him then puts over the RoH office for making this show possible. The crowd starts a “please don’t go” chant then London said that no matter what he will always have Ring of Honor in his heart. He then says goodbye to everyone in the ring.

Thoughts: Good match but not a classic or anything. It was missing something. The announcers telling the story that London was risking his WWE contract by taking this match as he could get hurt by Joe wasn’t the worst I have heard but no one seemed to buy that or the fact that he was going to win this match. They just seemed happy to see him for the last time and wanted to give him a good sendoff. The end with the locker room wishing London luck as he went to the WWE was great and he gave a passionate, from the heart speech to the fans and other wrestlers. That was a great moment.

Raven cuts a promo behind a chain link fence about how Tommy Dreamer could not beat him for 2.5 years but now he cannot beat CM Punk. He then says that payback is hell and that he does not think that Punk has suffered enough because he is an “arrogant piece of shit” as he challenges Punk to a cage match and guarantees victory as long as Punk has the balls to face him.

The Carnage Crew talk about their ugly wives and shitty jobs then tell Mikey Whipwreck is a crippled old man then run down Special K as Credible calls them a joke as they leave to head to the “nudie bar.” Credible wasnt that good here on the mic.

Daniels tells AJ & Red that the Prophecy is coming for those titles but his first priority is taking the RoH World Championship from Samoa Joe. The Prophecy has gotten better but they have been a weak stable for a long time. This act is not a favorite of mine.

Rob Feinstein approaches Colt Cabana and CM Punk, who he asked to cut a promo about the challenge issued by Raven. Cabana warns Feinstein to leave Punk alone but he does not listen then Punk shoves Feinstein down as he tells him how he does not care where the match happens and that he will not be held responsible for his actions and how no one does what Raven did to him. The Punk character was so, so much better than the other acts in this company. Quite frankly, no one else was close.

Final Thoughts: Even at 4.5 hours long, this show was incredible. This show had it all:hot feuds, memorable moments, and great action. Plus, the pacing was fantastic. There was minimal filler as they reestablished guys, formed new teams, and had a great sendoff for London. Even Jeff Hardy’s disaster of a debut was enjoyable in a way. Plus the action was good as RoH hit a home run for their biggest show to date. Definitely seek out this show because it is one of the best that RoH has ever produced and it is loads of fun.

Thunder – July 29, 1999

Date: July 29, 1999
Location: Mark of the
Quad Cities, Moline, Illinois
Attendance: 6,754
Commentators: Larry
Zbyszko, Mike Tenay
Reviewed by Tommy Hall

another taped show, meaning we’re getting a lot of recaps from
Monday’s trip back to the mid 80s. We’re closing in on Road Wild in
a few weeks which looks like a more logical (well, more than the rest
of the summer) show, albeit far more boring. Maybe they’ll let the
wrestling dominate the show and it could be entertaining. And maybe
I’ll grow wings and fly through a tree made of locusts and encounter
the Great Potato. Let’s get to it.

Tenay and Larry do
their usual intro that we can’t see.
We get a LONG video
(same one from Monday), detailing the history between Nash and Hogan.
KISS is coming to Nitro
on August 23.
Cat vs. Barry Darsow
says he can win this in less than five minutes. Darsow takes him
down by the leg to start like a smart guy should. Back up and Miller
goes to the eyes to take over, only to get slammed right back down.
Barry slugs him down as the crowd looks at something off camera.
More hammering ensues until Miller finally gets in a shot to the
throat and chokes in the corner. Onoo gets in a few kicks of his own
but Barry grabs a belly to back suplex for two. The referee argues
with Darsow over something though, allowing Cat to superkick him with
the red slipper for the pin.
So it’s heel vs. heel with Barry Darsow being the hope for the
wrestling world? We’re definitely in the dark days of a taped
Thunder here and I can’t imagine things are going to get much better
as things go on. Miller needs to do something different in his
matches though as this is getting really repetitive.
Crush Em video.
We see Rodman
kidnapping Gorgeous George on Nitro.
Diamond Dallas Page was
on Hollywood Squares.
Bagwell vs. Erik Watts
pose at each other to start as this really isn’t waking up the crowd.
Erik takes him into the corner and chokes a lot until Buff grabs an
armdrag. A clothesline puts Watts on the floor before slapping him
in the jaw back inside. Buff fires off right hands in the corner but
gets dropped down into a hot shot. Riveting stuff here people. Erik
hammers away with knees to the ribs and forearms to the back as you
can hear the crowd just dying. A bad looking but still acceptable
standing moonsault gets two on Buff and we hit the chinlock. Back
from a break with the hold still on and Buff’s arm dropping twice.
knees him in the ribs for two and we’re back to the chinlock.
Bagwell’s comeback consists of a clothesline and cross body for two
before Erik clotheslines him down again. He misses a charge in the
corner though, only to hold onto the ropes to avoid a Bagwell charge.
A Vader Bomb hits feet though and Buff starts his real comeback.
After another barrage of clotheslines and punches, he nails the
Blockbuster and gets the pin, despite Cat running down to try to
break it up.
Oh no they’re not trying tonight. This is clearly one of those shows
where it’s just thrown together with the hopes that not many people
are watching. Considering that we’re over half an hour into this
show and everything new so far has been about a bad midcard feud, you
can tell what kind of a show we’re in for.
Bagwell nails Sonny
after bailing from Miller.
Here’s the whole
(albeit short) Goldberg vs. Hennig match from Nitro.
This Week In WCW
Chad Brock will perform
on Nitro, August 9.
T. vs. Bam Bam Bigelow
the match, Page actually makes Yo Mama jokes about Booker. You think
I can make this stuff up? Bigelow misses an early splash but Booker
charges into a boot in the corner. The big man hammers away, only to
miss the falling headbutt. Booker hammers away but Bigelow swats a
kick away and suplexes him down.
and Bigelow take turns choking until Booker rolls outside so Page can
whip him into the barricade. Back in and Bigelow keeps hammering
away until he misses a charge, allowing Booker to side suplex him as
we take a break. Back with Booker hitting two kicks, drawing in the
Triad for the DQ. The post break stuff wasn’t even 45 seconds,
meaning not enough was shown to rate it. It was basically a Bigelow
squash until the break though.
match the Triad triple teams Booker until Stevie Ray comes out with a
chair. After some trash talk, Booker says he wants his brother back
but not with that NWO shirt on. Stevie throws it into the crowd and
Harlem Heat is back. My goodness we actually had some storyline
development on this show.
everything related to Hogan/Sting/Sid/Nash from Nitro, including the
FULL main event. This eats up about half an hour, not counting
Road Wild ad.
Benoit/Perry Saturn/Dean Malenko vs. Diamond Dallas Page/Kanyon/Ric
is the main event people and we have about fifteen minutes left in
the show. Flair and Benoit get things going but Page gets in a cheap
shot. Everything breaks down for and the good guys clear the ring
(of course). We settle down to Saturn vs. Kanyon with Saturn getting
knocked down and cradled for two. He comes right back with a low
blow and middle rope forearm (nice one too) before snapping off a
Benoit for a backdrop and two before he drop toeholds Kanyon down,
allowing his partners to drop an elbow apiece. Dean comes in for his
leg lariat as the young guys take over. Page breaks up a belly to
back suplex though and it’s a double tag to Saturn and Flair. It’s
Saturn taking over and hammering away in the corner until Kanyon gets
in a cheap shot, setting up a Russian leg sweep off the middle rope
for a nice spot to take us to a break. Back with Page Rock Bottoming
Saturn before it’s off to Kanyon for a reverse powerbomb out of the
comes back in with a front facelock, setting up the required missed
tag thanks to a Flair distraction. Page knocks Benoit and Malenko
off the apron before stomping on Saturn, only to miss a splash. The
hot tag brings in Benoit to face Kanyon as the Canadian starts
cleaning house. Flair and Kanyon are rammed together and the dragon
suplex puts Kanyon down again. The Swan Dive connects on Kanyon and
everything breaks down. Bigelow’s top rope headbutt hits Kanyon by
mistake but Asya gives Flair an object to knock Benoit out, giving
Kanyon’s unconscious body the pin.
Not bad here but it came at the end of a worthless show. However,
it’s yet another loss for the youth movement which is more or less
done at this point. This worked well enough for the most part and
was a decent enough main event, but I was done with this show a long
time ago.
Shane Douglas comes out
post match and says they’re taking WCW back. Maybe winning a match
would help.
You could also go with a rating of “Nitro” because that’s what
this show is about. Thunder has become a two hour version of WWF
Metal or Jakked with mostly recaps and matches that don’t mean a
thing. Harlem Heat reuniting will be covered on Nitro and didn’t
need to be here, especially on a show this worthless. Over a third
of the content on this show was spent on recaps from Nitro and
another third was dedicated to Bagwell vs. Cat. Let that sink in for
a minute.
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Monday Nitro – July 26, 1999

Nitro #198
Date: July 26, 1999
Location: Mid-South
Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee
Attendance: 7,201
Scott Hudson, Bobby Heenan
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
We’re less than three
weeks away from Road Wild and the top of the card is starting to come
into focus. Nash took a very sharp heel turn last week, seemingly
for no reason other than Hogan vs. Nash needed to be face vs. heel.
On top of that, Thunder actually set some stuff up for tonight, such
as Nash/a mystery partner vs. Hogan/whomever he can find, plus Hennig
vs. Goldberg. Let’s get to it.

open with a long recap of last week’s major events, including Sting
winning control back and Rodman attacking Savage.
of Hennig challenging Goldberg from Thunder.
Video on Goldberg.
Gene brings out Hogan
for an opening chat and brings up Nash’s challenge for the tag match
tonight. Hogan doesn’t have a partner, but he does have the title.
Cue Nash, Steiner and Sid to beat Hogan down until Sting makes the
Back from a break with
a recap of what we just saw.
Guerrera vs.Kendall Windham/Bobby Duncum Jr.
wants to start and springboards in, only to dive into Bobby’s boot.
The Rednecks take over to start with their slow Texas pummeling until
Duncum charges into a boot to the face. A missile dropkick sends
Bobby into the corner for the tag off to Kendall, who knocks Guerrera
into the corner. Juvy doesn’t tag for some reason, allowing the
Rednecks to beat him down even more. Bobby misses an elbow to the
jaw and Juvy finally tags out.
Psychosis in with some fast kicks to the face followed by a
springboard missile dropkick from Guerrera. Kendall comes back with
a hot shot and BIG lariat to take Psychosis down as the Rednecks
regain control. Duncum gets two off a shoulder breaker, setting up a
Windham belly to back superplex for two on Psychosis. An attempted
tag to Juvy goes nowhere and a double bulldog is enough for the pin.
The ending here was kind of awkward but the luchadors put on a decent
effort. This is the weaker half of the Rednecks and it’s getting a
bit annoying to see the team out there getting cheered when we’re
supposed to be booing them because WCW doesn’t understand its own
fans. Nice little match though and that’s a step up for WCW.
Country singer Chad
Brock will be performing live in two weeks.
and Miss Madness will be having a match at Road Wild but they can
still insult Gorgeous George. Ignore the phone ringing during this
vs. Rey Mysteiro Jr.
because the Cruiserweight Title means nothing anymore. The Insane
Clown Posse is in Vampiro’s corner because they think they’re
wrestlers. Vampiro easily shoves Rey down to start and nails him
with a clothesline. Rey finally gets up and dropkicks the knee out
before a regular dropkick puts Vampiro on the floor. The Clowns have
a quick meeting with Vampiro outside before he heads inside for a
Rock Bottom to plant Mysterio again.
Rey ducks a spinwheel
kick though and nails a Fameasser in the ropes. The Clowns offer a
distraction though and the Nail in the Coffin knocks Rey silly.
Vampiro goes up though, only to get crotched. We’re not done with
the Clowns though, as Jay holds Vampiro’s legs to prevent a super
hurricanrana, allowing Vampiro to powerbomb Rey off the ropes for the
Again the match was fine and it’s nice to see someone new getting a
bit of a push, even though it has to be thanks to the Clowns. That
being said, this was a nice change of pace as the underdog good guy
was fighting big odds and lost to cheating heels. That’s wrestling
101 and it’s going to work every time. Granted it helps that these
wrestlers aren’t my grandparents’ age.
Eddie runs out to save
Rey from a beatdown.
Vincent vs. Stevie
you knew the good stuff wasn’t going to last forever. Vincent, with
Horace in his corner, rips on Stevie for having a heart about his
brother before jumping Ray on the way into the ring. Ray shrugs him
off and nails a hard elbow to the face, setting up a Flair Flop. A
powerslam puts Vincent down again but he comes back with a low blow,
which is totally legal anymore in WCW. Horace tries to interfere but
Ray whips Vincent into him to knock Sergeant Nepotism (David Flair
would be the Captain of course). Ray loads up the Slap Jack as
Booker comes out to cut off Adams. The Slap Jack (move) is enough to
end Vincent.
If this is what it takes to finally end the NWO, I guess I can
survive it. It’s still not a good match or anything, but at least
they kept this under four minutes. Unfortunately it means we have to
see Booker T. get dropped back into the tag team scene instead of
moving up the card like he should be. Granted, that’s probably a
good thing at this point.
goes into Hogan’s dressing room.
match here’s President Sting to say that he’s made his first decision
as boss: he’s going to be Hogan’s partner tonight. Hogan comes out
and says he’s not Hollywood anymore and promises not to stab Sting in
the back. Sting says that’s fine, but if Hogan does screw him, Sting
will “getcha”.
freaking Hervey joins the broadcast booth to make up for the bad
taste Arliss left on him last week.
Prince Iaukea vs.
Lash Leroux
Iaukea grabs a quick
armdrag to take Lash down but slaps him in the face. Not that it
matters as Savage and George come out to beat up both guys for the no
contest less than a minute in.
Savage babbles about
running for President until Madusa and the former Miss Madness come
out to insult George. Madusa is on Savage’s side in this, but George
is the real problem. In the distraction, Dennis Rodman sneaks in and
kidnaps George.
KISS is coming.
Savage is looking for
Goldberg comes out,
says he’s going to hurt Hennig, and that’s about it.
The Cat vs. Evan
makes his usual offer as Hervey plugs some movie he’s in with DDP.
Of course he doesn’t mention the name of the movie or when/where we
can see it but he does mention it. Cat takes Evan down with a
clothesline to start and we appear to be in squash mode, which makes
me think there’s a swerve coming. Kicks abound, broken up by a
dancing elbow from Miller.
A sunset flip doesn’t
get Evan anywhere so Ernest dances and kicks him in the face. Evan
comes back with a forearm and a nice springboard cross body. Cue
Onoo for a distraction so Miller can get the shoes, but he finds
bunny slippers instead of the ruby slippers. Bagwell pops up on
stage with the red shoes, allowing Evan to get a rollup for the pin.
Somehow this was tolerable as Miller is starting to get the hang of
being a heel. He’s still nothing to see in the ring but at least
he’s starting to find something other than just kicking all the time.
This is a waste of Bagwell, but at least he might get a win out of
the thing.
Mikey Whipwreck vs.
Steven Regal
announcers explain that Finlay has injured his leg in a hardcore
match last night and may never wrestle again. During Regal’s
entrance, a fan jumps the barricade but is quickly taken down by
security. As you would expect, Regal takes it to the mat to start
and easily rides Whipwreck. Back up and Mikey tries to quicken the
pace with some armdrags and a headscissors, sending Regal over to the
warm cuddling arms of Dave Taylor.
gets back in and takes Whipwreck down again before cranking on the
arm. That goes nowhere though because Hart’s First Family (about as
over as anyone all night) comes out to say the Brits can get the
Hardcore Trophy back at Road Wild. We get an Andy Kaufman reference,
allowing Hervey to try to sound intelligent, making him all the ore
distraction lets Whipwreck grab a quick rollup for two and a nice
pinfall reversal sequence doesn’t get anyone anywhere. Regal drops a
leg for two but gets rolled up for the same. Now it’s Mikey taking
him into the corner for the top rope hurricanrana, only to have
Taylor blast him with the Union Jack, setting up the Regal Stretch
for the submission.
They’re actually bringing some decent wrestling tonight, perhaps due
to letting talented people get a few minutes in there. The match
wasn’t anything great, but it was nice to see some wrestling going
on. You know, in between the various interference that this match
just had to have. I’m still not quite sure why Mikey was hired,
unless it was so that he couldn’t work for ECW.
Mike gets covered by
the Union Jack.
Here are David Flair
and Torrie for a chat. David does all his dad’s catchphrases
(including saying to be IN the man) and has Torrie say he looks good.
Short version of this is David will be champion as long as he wants.
Savage swears a lot and
storms into Rodman’s trailer with the censor missing an F bomb.
Shane Douglas is here
to help his friends and cut out the cancer called Ric Flair. I
really don’t like it when you hear wrestling angles called cancer.
Goldberg vs. Curt
brags about having access to WCW clips and how great a job Goldberg
does. Hudson: “I don’t think Goldberg does jobs at all!” I
chuckled a bit. Anyway Goldberg throws Hennig around with ease and
slams him out to the floor. The Rednecks offer a distraction so
Hennig can nail Goldberg with a cowbell for no cover. Goldberg pops
back up and powerslams Hennig down, drawing in the Rednecks to be
quickly dispatched. Curt grabs a chair but backs down instead,
giving Goldberg a DQ win due to the interference. They couldn’t have
Hennig get pinned by GOLDBERG?
spits on Hennig post match to draw him back in, only to knock Curt
right back to the floor.
Video on Hogan vs.
Nash, featuring a big backstory on the NWO. I’ll give them points
for making it feel like a big deal, but making it face Hogan vs. heel
Nash has really hurt my interest in the match.
Patty Stone Grinder
vs. Madusa
Grinder is former WWF Women’s Champion Lelani Kai as a biker. Hervey
spends the entrances bragging about being a network actor, making him
better than Arliss. Patty jumps Madusa as she gets in the ring and
chokes her with a chain. Some bad looking knees have Madusa in
trouble as Hudson runs down upcoming Nitro dates. Patty drops her
with a butterfly suplex but Madusa comes back with a clothesline to
knock Grinder to the floor for a big dive. Back in and the German
suplex ends Patty to end the Wrestlemania X rematch.
You know, I had a big rant set up about how this is the best WCW can
do to compete with the WWF’s women’s division, but then I realized
that Fabulous Moolah was about three months away from winning the
title again. However, that at least had some nostalgia and charm to
it. This was Madusa beating up whatever relic WCW could find who
could work a passable match. It’s really all the proof you need that
they didn’t care about this division and just put it together for the
sake of saying they had one. To be fair though, that’s basically
what WWF did with the light heavyweight division around this time.
Douglas vs. Scott Putski
actually gets the first blows in with some clotheslines and a snap
suplex for two. A backdrop has Shane in even more trouble but he
finally grabs a neckbreaker to take over. We actually get a
reference to Shane’s WCW tenure back in 1992. Shane piledrives
Putski for two and we hit a chinlock. Way to show WCW that fire
you’re bringing with you Douglas. Putski fights up like a jobber
should and walks into the Pittsburgh Plunge (fisherman’s buster) for
the pin.
So to recap, Shane Doulgas is back from ECW to cut out the cancer
known as Ric Flair for holding Shane down in ways he never has the
time to explain and he starts by having issues beating Scott Putski.
I’ve never been a Douglas fan and this is yet another reason of why I
feel justified in that thinking.
US Title: Chris
Benoit vs. David Flair
Naitch is refereeing and Benoit is challenging of course. Benoit
easily takes him down to start and rips David’s chest off with chops
to send the champ to the floor. David tries to leave but Robinson
tells him to keep going. Back in and more chops have David
screaming, followed by a backbreaker and Liontamer. The champ taps
but Robinson just lets him suffer. The Swan Dive sets up the
Crossface, only to have DDP come in with a belt shot to give David
the pin.
Do I need to explain this one? Again, I actually like the idea
behind Flair as they’re openly acknowledging that he’s horrible and
only there because his dad was the boss but…..wait why can they
still get away with this cheating with Sting in charge now?
Shouldn’t that have stopped immediately?
Malenko, Saturn,
Douglas and the rest of the Triad run in for a big brawl.
Title: Chase Tatum vs. Rick Steiner
a No Limit Soldier, comes out to heavy metal. Steiner just mauls him
in the corner with right hands and knees to the back. A shoulder
drops Rick for a few seconds but another suplex sets up the Steiner
Bulldog to retain.
Hogan/Sting vs. Kevin Nash/Sid
course it’s Sid, because that’s the least logical option outside of
Randy Savage. Somehow that means this could be worse if you can
actually believe that. Hogan doesn’t bring the belt with him for no
apparent reason. Speaking of no apparent reason, there is no reason
for either of these teams to trust each other given their recent and
distant histories. Again, Sid tried to MURDER Nash a few months back
and it’s just forgotten here. By the way, average age of the people
in this match: 43, with Sid as the young pup of the group at 38.
tries to take Hogan into the corner to start but Hollywood takes him
in instead with a series of right hands. An atomic drop puts Hogan
down but Sid is nice enough to help him up. Hogan and Sting get Sid
caught between them for a barrage of right hands but Sid blocks a
slam. It’s Sid slamming Hogan though, only to miss an elbow drop.
Everything breaks down and the good guys clean house.
in and Nash slows things down but misses the framed elbow. Sting
tries to jump over Nash in the corner but gets caught in Snake Eyes.
It’s back to Sid who rakes the eyes to stop Sting’s comeback and we
hit the chinlock. Sting fights back again but his splash hits knees
and it’s back to Nash. Another comeback is quickly stopped though as
Nash knocks Hogan to the floor, leaving no one for Sting to tag.
Nash sends him into the
corner and Sting tries another jump, only to have Nash stay in the
middle, leaving Sting to just crash into him. Now we get the hot tag
to Hogan as everything breaks down again. The referee takes the
Stinger Splash by mistake so here’s Rick Steiner to blast Sting with
a chair. Hogan cuts his forehead, starts bleeding, and then gets hit
in the head to bust him open, giving Nash the easy pin.
Were you expecting anything else here? This was your standard main
event tag but the things like Sting just crashing into Nash or Hogan
clearly blading in the middle of the ring and bleeding before anyone
hit him in the head took away any fun this match could have had.
Also, anytime Rick Steiner gets closer to the main event, the match
loses more of its value.
comes out for the save but gets beaten down as well to end the show.
This show wasn’t horrible actually as the wrestling and story
advancement carried it to a decent enough performance. Things have
actually settled down over the last few weeks and a lot of the
insanity has gone away. Unfortunately a lot of the ability to
remember plot points from week to week has gone away as well, making
a lot of the story developments mean absolutely nothing. At least
the wrestling helped things out here though, which is better than
what you get most of the time anymore.
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Thunder – July 22, 1999

Date: July 22, 1999
Location: Mark of the
Quad, Moline, Illinois
Attendance: 6,754
Commentators: Larry
Zbyszko, Mike Tenay
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Thankfully (I think?)
we’re back to a live show this week as we’re getting closer to Road
Wild. The main story coming out of Monday is Kevin Nash turning on
Hogan for no apparent reason other than the script suggests that we
need a heel vs. face title match. Other than that we have Sting in
control of the company now, which I barely remember whatsoever.
Let’s get to it.

The announcers do their
usual intro/hype.
Hammer vs. Kaz Hayashi
Glacier gear is gone. Kaz’s headlock goes as well as you would
expect it to and Hammer hits a nice looking gorilla press. Now Kaz
tries to slug it out to similar results so he finally dropkicks the
knee twice in a row for one, but the kickout sends him flying through
the ropes. Hammer runs him over with a Vader clothesline before
throwing him right back to the floor. Back in again and Kaz goes
after the knee to take the big man down. An elbow drop gets two but
Hammer trips his legs to get a breather.
A big old beal sends
Hayashi flying and we hit a chinlock. That goes nowhere so Hammer
suplexes him down for two but Kaz comes back with every strike he can
throw. Kaz actually tries a powerbomb which works as badly as you
would expect. Hammer comes back with Snake Eyes and a big boot for
two more as frustration is setting in. Back up and Kaz hits a quick
bulldog and missile dropkick, only to miss a quick backsplash. A
spinebuster and the cobra clutch slam are enough to end Kaz after
longer than you would expect.
WHAT THE HECK WAS THAT??? Kaz and Hammer just had a good match that
I was actually liking. Granted it’s completely in spite of whatever
WCW was trying to do with it as no one is watching this show and it’s
in the opening match slot. This was actually entertaining and I had
a good time watching it. It had to happen at some point.
Lenny and Lodi are
upset about something they have to do later.
The announcers talk
about the issues between Savage’s girls.
Alexander vs. Miss Madness
is officially “off the independent scene”. Madness is wrestling
in a short version of the dress she wears to the ring as a valet.
The fans are entirely behind Madness here as she takes Brandi down by
the arm. Some dropkicks send Alexander out to the floor and claims a
pull of the tights. Back in and Brandi hammers away before throwing
Madness across the ring by the hair in a good looking spot. It looks
so good that she does it again with Tenay spending way too much time
talking about Madness’ long blonde hair.
hard shot to the face keeps Brandi in control before a clothesline
gets two. The fans aren’t pleased with Brandi choking on the ropes
but they don’t mind a Boston crab nearly as much. That goes nowhere
so Brandi goes up, only to get slammed off the top. A side slam gets
two for Madness and a bad looking headscissors sends Brandi down
again. Larry: “You gotta get vicious! Pretend there’s a sale!”
Madness grabs a suplex but bridges up like a northern lights for the
The match wasn’t bad and was a few light years ahead of what the WWF
was doing with its girls at the moment, but it still wasn’t all that
great. Miss Madness would get much better as Molly Holly whereas
Alexander hasn’t done anything that I can find outside of this and
two more matches with Miss Madness later in the year.
A Goldberg video to
Crush Em brings out Curt Hennit, who says the Rednecks are much more
popular than Goldberg. He’s willing to prove that tonight but thinks
we should wait until Monday.
Hennig vs. Chase Tatum
muscular Chase shoves Curt off to start and knocks him to the corner
with a hard shoulder. The Rednecks offer a distraction and Hennig
gets in a cheap shot from behind to take over. There’s the Hennig
Necksnap and Curt rips at Chase’s eyes for good measure. Curt nails
his knee lift and puts on a sleeper but Chase powers out of it again.

cranks on the leg on the mat as the other Rednecks offer some
assistance. Back up and a kind of pumphandle powerslam gets two on
Curt but he sends Chase to the floor for a big beatdown. Swoll comes
in with the heart “punch” but hits Chase by mistake, setting up
the HennigPlex for the pin.
It takes a lot to make Curt Hennig look bad but that’s exactly what
Chase just did. Tatum wasn’t anything of note and a generic power
guy who probably got this job based on his look. With some more
training and experience, he might have fit in with the Natural Born
Thrillers in a year or so.
comes up to Lenny and Lodi and wishes the luck in their match
tonight. The brothers ask Jimmy Hart for help but he just suggests
having a doctor at ringside.
We get a clip of Booker
T. saving his brother from the Triad on Monday.
Guerrero/Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Psychosis/Juventud Guerrera
and Juvy get things going but Guerrera quickly tags out. Mysterio
tries to deck him as he leaves so Juvy gyrates a lot on the apron.
Juvy comes back in without Psychosis doing anything and they trade
wristlocks. It’s quickly off to Psychosis again who misses a charge
and hits the post to give the good people an early advantage. Eddie
comes in and takes Juvy down to the floor before backdropping Rey
into a moonsault for an awesome spot. Back in and Eddie throws
Guerrera outside again, only to have to bail out of a dive.
take a break and come back with Rey in Psychosis’ abdominal stretch.
That boring hold is upgraded by Psychosis loading him up for an
Outsider’s Edge and Juvy coming in with a guillotine legdrop for two.
Back to Psychosis who charges into Rey’s boots, allowing Eddie to
come in and clean house. Everything breaks down and Rey nails Eddie
by mistake, only to have Eddie throw him at Juvy for a headscissors.
They’re not done yet though as Rey puts Psychosis on top and throws a
charging Rey up for a super hurricanrana and the pin.
Total spotfest here and there’s nothing wrong with that. Guerrero
was basically just a guy there to throw Rey around for the high spots
though, which is kind of a waste as the team got together because of
Eddie having issues with the other luchadors. Still though,
entertaining stuff with some great high spots.
We see Lex Luger,
Savage and Gorgeous George on Arliss this coming Sunday.
are Savage, Miss Madness and Gorgeous George with something to say.
Savage asks for our votes in the 2000 election but quickly moves on
to Rodman, ripping on him for wearing women’s closing and hitting him
with a purse. Miss Madness is fired for trying to upstage him,
meaning Savage rips off her sash. She gets down on her knees and
begs for her job but Savage fires her anyway. Savage hasn’t
forgotten about Nash either.
Title: Rick Steiner vs. Sick Boy
is defending if that’s not clear. Before the match we get the usual
catchphrases from the champ and he wants a piece of Goldberg. They
circle around each other for a bit until Rick nails a hard Steiner
Line. A release German suplex sends Sick Boy flying and Rick rips at
his face on the mat. The Steiner Bulldog ends this quick.
recap the Nash vs. Hogan stuff from Monday.
Nash calls in to the
show and challenges Hogan to a tag match this Monday with partners of
their choice. Kevin’s partner is a buddy of his that he’s known for
nine years. Of course they’re hinting at Hall and I’d be stunned if
it was actually him. Nash brings up his history with Hogan and says
he only let him into the NWO so he could keep an eye on Hulk, because
Hulk has a history of being a backstabbing jerk.
Video of Sting beating
Flair with Bischoff counting the fall.
Vicious vs. Lenny/Lodi
chokeslam plants Lodi in ten seconds and Lenny takes a boot to the
face. Sid hits a cobra clutch slam on Lenny, which is another way
for Sid to do a chokeslam. Powerbombs for both guys set up a double
pin. So the gay brothers are getting beaten up by a monster for no
apparent reason. I’m sure this will be well received.
Malenko vs. Ric Flair
start faster than you would expect with Dean getting dropped by a
shoulder, only to have him take Flair down with a quick drop toehold.
An early Cloverleaf attempt doesn’t work so Dean hammers Ric out to
the floor for a breather. Back in and Dean hammers away in the
corner but gets suckered into a thumb to the eye. Ric snapmares him
down, only to miss the knee drop. Dean channels his inner Flair and
slaps on the Figure Four, only to crawl over to the ropes for a
up and Dean is sent to the floor as we take a break. We come back
with Malenko in full control and sending Ric into the corner for a
Flair Flip. Dean works him over on the floor until Asya offers a
distraction, allowing Ric to take over with a cheap shot. A Figure
Four attempt is countered into a small package but Asya has the
referee. Flair counters everything Dean throws at him, including a
belly to back suplex to break up a headlock.
Another Figure Four
attempt is blocked and Malenko comes back with the leg lariat. Flair
tries to bail but runs into Benoit and Saturn. This brings out
Bigelow and Kanyon for a brawl but Dean puts on the Cloverleaf. Page
comes in from behind to break it up but gets shoved into Asya, only
to have Flair grab a rollup for the pin.
This was fine due to the talent level in there and I liked the idea
they were going for with Flair being more experienced and polished
than Malenko, allowing him to counter everything Dean threw at him.
The ending was overbooked but at least Dean didn’t lose entirely
At this point, Thunder can only really be judged on what happens in
the ring. In this case, the wrestling was watchable enough to get
through two hours but there’s almost no reason to care about
anything. Considering that the matches are almost never referenced
on Nitro and nothing here mattered, it basically boils down to
whether or not you liked the wrestling. It was decent enough this
week so we’ll go right in the middle.
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