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WWF @ Maple Leaf Gardens
by Scrooge McSuck
October 21, 1984
- Courtesy of the WWE Network, and I'm sure I've seen this as a "Preview" of what to expect on the old WWE 24/7 On Demand service. Jack Reynolds and Billy Red Lyons are on hand to call all the action (and some of the non-action we are about to witness). This is only half the card presented, and I'm thankful for that, as we are spared the following classics: Rene Goulet vs. Nick DeCarlo, David Sammartino vs. Moondog Rex, "Quick Draw" Rick McGraw vs. Dr. D, Dave Schultz, and Angelo Mosca vs. the Iron Sheik. Pairing up all those matches with what was left in this broadcast... who really booked this card? It's almost impossible to label it a B-Show, if not for Andre being featured.
"Special Delivery" Jones vs. Greg "The Hammer" Valentine:
This is Non-Title, despite Valentine being the reigning Intercontinental Champion, having won the title from Tito Santana, broadcasted only about a week earlier, although he actually won it on September 24th. If this were today, Jones would get a fluke win, and never get a title shot, because the current creative process is a room filled with retarded, smoking monkeys. Lockup, and they fight over working the arm until Jones comes off the ropes with a shoulder tackle. Jones takes Valentine down with a hip toss and keeps working on the arm. Valentine with a snapmare, but he misses an elbow drop. Jones plants him with a slam, follows up with an atomic drop and a pair of headbutts. Whip to the corner, Valentine misses an elbow, and Jones keeps working the arm. Valentine surprises Jones with his head down, leveling him with a well placed boot. He works the leg in a methodical fashion. Jones boots his way out of a leglock, but Valentine continues to dominate. Jones with a handful of tights to block the Figure-Four. Jones with a headbutt to the midsection, followed by a series of lefts, knocking Valentine to the floor. Back inside, Valentine sends Jones to the apron, brings him back in with a back suplex, and that's enough for a three count at 8:55? Looks like Jones kicked out to me. ** This was alright, but wow, was it dull at times.
Rocky Johnson vs. Nikolai Volkoff:
Volkoff gets to sing the Russian National Anthem without interference, but the crowd is kind of "meh" about the whole thing. Maybe Canadian's don't take things so personally when it comes to other people's customs, like us filthy Americans. Johnson peppers Volkoff with rights, prompting him to complain to the referee about clenched fists. Please tell me it's not going to be one of THOSE matches. Volkoff goes low and starts choking the big Johnson... and yes, I made that sound dirty, intentionally. Johnson jives his way back to his feet and uses a series of elbows to escape a rest hold. Volkoff regains control, taking Johnson down with a back drop, but misses an elbow. Johnson goes for a slam, but Volkoff shifts his weight to land on top of him for a two count. Whip, and Johnson with a sunset flip for barely a one count. He sweeps the legs from under Volkoff, but a Boston crab ends up too close to the ropes. They work a test-of-strength, with Volkoff gaining the upper hand. Johnson mounts a comeback, unloading with rights and lefts. Johnson with a pair of dropkicks and a shoulder tackle. Volkoff randomly picks him up, drops him across the top rope, and covers for the three count at 9:06. * This was just stuff happening until the finish.
The British Bulldogs vs. Goldie Rogers & Bobby Bass:
This has to be fairly early in the Bulldogs' run in the WWF, neither wearing matching ring attire or being labeled "The British Bulldogs". Rogers and Bass are a couple of out of shape guys who worked predominently in the Canadian territories, specifically for Stu Hart and Jack Tunney, so no surprise they're here to make the Bulldogs look good. Dynamite starts with Rogers, and immediately showcases his athletic ability. Who would've guessed by the end of the decade, his body would be completely shot? Davey Boy and Bass have a go, with Davey controlling with his usual, including a press slam and ramming Bass head-first into Dynamite. Bass goes for a tag, but Rogers short-arm's him in a hilarious spot. Davey with a slam on Rogers, followed by a missile dropkick. Davey press slams Dynamite across the chest of Bass, but the match must continue. Dynamite with a snap suplex on Rogers, and Davey with the running powerslam.. for two?! Bass and Rogers get some token offense in on Davey Boy, meaning he probably lost the coin flip back in the locker room. Dynamite in, tossing Rogers over the top, onto the ramp. He goes for a piledriver, but it's countered with a back drop. Bass to the top (why!?!), but misses whatever he was going for. Davey in with a Piledriver on Bass, and Dynamite comes off the top with the diving headbutt for the three count at 9:26. ** A bit long for what this was going for (complete squash), but it was watchable.
Steel Cage Match: Andre The Giant vs. Kamala (w/ Friday):
This is our Main Event of the evening. I guess the last time these two met at the Maple Leaf Gardens, there was a Count-Out finish, so there clearly will be a winner here, tonight. Friday is just a different name for the character more often labeled "Kim-Chee". I never really dug the Kamala gimmick, but this should be interesting, just for the sake of it's Andre vs. Kamala. Not the most impressive looking cage, as it's barely taller than Andre, but maybe that's a good thing, selling the point that Andre is, you guessed it, A GIANT. Andre attacks before the bell (which never really seems to ring), and squashes Kamala in the corner with his massive ass. Kamala chops Andre down, and Andre returns the favor by choking Kamala up against the wall. Kamala looks for an exit, but can't quite figure things out. Kamala with more chops, putting Andre on the ground, and comes off the ropes with a pair of splashes. Kamala with more chops, prompting Andre to blade. Andre's best offense remains a solid defense, basically blocking the door and clinging to Kamala's legs for dear life. DRAMA! There's a whole lot of nothing going on. Kamala with more chops, because that's apparently all he can do. Andre mounts his comeback, plants Kamala with a big slam, and drops ass. Then he climbs the ropes and comes off the top with a Super-Sized Ass-Drop. Kamala might as well be declared legally dead, as Andre casually walks out the door for the victory at 13:53. * Way, way, WAY too long, but the last 90-seconds was pretty awesome. Actually, the last 90-seconds would be recycled a few times for Coliseum Video, and for good reason.
Final Thoughts: Not much to check out, here. Andre vs. Kamala is interesting just for the sake of being a rare match-up, but that leaves us with the Bulldogs working an extended squash match, Greg Valentine phoning it in against a top-contender like S.D. Jones, and Rocky Johnson and Nikolai Volkoff sleepwalking through 10-minutes of nothing. Even those the WWE Network trimmed this into an hour program, it's still not something I would recommend watching.
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