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WWF Championship Wrestling- May 31, 1986
by Scrooge McSuck
- Hosted by Vince McMahon and Bruno Sammartino, taped on May 13th from the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie, NY. This week, we'll see Paul Orndorff, Bob Orton and the Magnificent Muraco, The Funk Brothers, Tito Santana and Pedro Morales, and MORE! I guess sweeps are over since we don't have a feature match after 5 weeks straight with one.
Corporal Kirchner vs. Bob Bradley:
I guess Kirchner counts as "and More". It amazes me that Bradley stuck around, on and off, with the WWF for about 8-years and NEVER IMPROVED. Even Steve Lombardi was slightly better in 1988 compared to 1985. Lockup and Kirchner grabs a waist-lock. He switches to the arm, but Bradley goes to the ropes to force the break. Kirchner with a pair of deep arm drags. Whip to the ropes and he takes Bradley over with a back body-drop. He brings Bradley back in from the apron with a sling shot and grinds away with a standing side headlock. Whip and Kirchner with a shoulder tackle. Bradley aggressively rakes the eyes and throws a series of right hands. Bradley with a slam and jumping leg drop. He drops down with a headbutt and grabs a front chancery instead of going for the cover. Whip to the ropes and... I don't even know what the hell that was. Another whip, and Kirchner with a sunset flip for three at 3:54 despite Bradley kicking out at two. Post-match, Kirchner hits the Fallaway Slam and gets another three count at 4:11. Someone fire that referee.
- UPDATE with "Mean" Gene Okerlund. The topic for this week is George "The Animal" Steele (managed by Captain Lou Albano). Okerlund claims he's on a role in the squared circle and we see a clip of him cradling an out-of-shape enhancement geek for a three-count. That clip is at least three months old. Steele has an eye on winning, the Intercontinental Title, AND Elizabeth. Suddenly, the same stagehand from last week shows up and offers Gene a snack. "You've got to be ribbing me." The segment closes to the instrumental of "No Easy Way Out." Steele chasing the Intercontinental Title feels like old news.
Hoss & Jimmy Jack Funk (w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. Leaping Lanny Poffo & Chris Duffy:
For some reason, we cut immediately to Poffo reading a poem that disparages the Funks and reminds us of another dated feud, the one between the Family Funk and the Junkyard Dog. Jimmy Jack and Poffo start. Duffy is an enhancement geek that would pop up for years, but never advanced past that level. Lockup to the ropes and Poffo backs Jimmy Jack up with a right hand. Poffo with a pair of hip throws and dropkicks on both of the Funk's. Duffy comes in and takes a knee to the face. Jimmy Jack sends him to the corner and Hoss throws him over the top rope. Jimmy Jack sends him into the guardrail before getting him back in the ring. Whip to the ropes and Hoss with an elbow. Poffo gets the tag and brought in with a snap mare. Whip and Poffo with a cross body press for two. Poffo with a power slam but the moonsault meets knees. Duffy tags back in and runs into an elbow. GEEK. Whip and a double forearm from the Funk's. Jimmy Jack with a powerslam and Hoss finishes with the Cloverleaf at 2:37. Post-match, they hog-tie Duffy and continue to put the boots to him. Where's Lanny to make the save?
- Ken Resnick is standing by to promote the card at the Boston Garden on June 27th. Danny Spivey and Mike Rotundo will be in action, the Junkyard Dog faces King Kong Bundy, Mr. Wonderful takes on The Magnificent Muraco, Ricky Steamboat battles Jake "The Snake" Roberts, and in a RETURN BOUT, Hulk Hogan defends the WWF Championship against Randy Savage. Speaking of, Hulk Hogan steps into the picture to hype the match with his usual wackiness.
"Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff vs. Dave Barbie:
Babyface Orndorff needs to go away as soon as possible. He's got zero direction ever since they abandoned the dueling casts between himself and Bob Orton, way back in February. Lockup and Orndorff doesn't waste time going to work on the arm. The Fink jumps in with hype for the return to the Boston Garden. Usually these voice-overs hyped the lesser shows, so color me surprised. Whip to the ropes and Orndorff connects with a dropkick. He hooks a front chancery, but Barbie gets to the ropes. Orndorff continues to dominate, putting on a wrestling clinic. Barbie goes to the eyes and throws some soft forearms across the back. Orndorff counters having his eyes raked across the rope by taking Barbie down with a back suplex. He tosses Barbie through the ropes a little recklessly. Back inside, Orndorff hits a clothesline and finishes with not one but TWO piledrivers at 3:32. That seemed unnecessary for a babyface.
- Ken Resnick standing by with Bobby Heenan and King Kong Bundy to promote the card at the Boston Garden.
Bob Orton Jr. & The Magnificent Muraco (w/ Mr. Fuji) vs. Scott McGhee & Don Driggers:
Quite a unique team here with Orton and Muraco that would carry on through 1987. If you're thinking something is wrong, yes, Orton is out there with someone that isn't Roddy Piper, who'll remain MIA for a few more months. Orton grabs a side headlock on McGhee and comes off the ropes with a shoulder tackle. Crisscross and McGhee with a hip toss, forcing Orton to beg off in the corner. Orton fires back with a knee to the midsection but is caught with a monkey-flip out of the corner. CAPTAIN LOU IS STANDING BY WITH NEWS ON ANDRE THE GIANT. Albano confirms Heenan's story from last week. ANDRE THE GIANT HAS BEEN SUSPENDED. Albano disputes what happened, saying he was told the match was off and his appearance was no longer needed. Orton takes a shot from the apron, allowing Muraco to work McGhee over. Muraco with a slam but he misses a pair of elbows. Driggers gets the tag and Muraco quickly cuts him off. Orton snaps Driggers across the top rope and feeds him back to Muraco. They position Driggers on the turnbuckle and Orton hits a Super-Plex for three at 3:07. There seemed to be some confusion from Muraco and Orton on the finish, but this could be a fun tag team. Oh, and Andre the Giant is suspended. Good to see matches play background noise to this slow-burn announcement.
- Jimmy Hart & "Adorable" Adrian Adonis are standing by from the Flower Shop with Captain Lou and the reigning WWF Tag Team Champions, The British Bulldogs. Adonis calls the Bulldogs a bunch of thieves (and the British PUPPIES. Sick burn). Adonis reminds us that Lou's a 16-time manager of Champions, but that means he lost 15 times. Oh my God, we're STILL talking about the finish at WrestleMania 2 and the "controversy" of two referees. Adonis asks if Albano is still protesting the Vietnam war, drawing Lou's ire as the segment wraps up. Davey Boy and Dynamite said nothing the entire segment.
Tito Santana & Pedro Morales vs. Mad Richard & Primo Manzello:
Fink pronounces "Richard" as "Re-shard" if you're curious (And yes, he's from Quebec). PRIMO MANZELLO? That's the soft-bodied goof "Mike Angelo". Poor Tito, went from the Intercontinental Champion (TWICE) to teaming in pointless matches with a washed-up, disgruntled Pedro Morales. Morales starts with the Mad (Dog) Richard. Lockup and Morales grabs a side headlock, followed by a shoulder tackle and small package for two. Manzello tags in, and I'm anxiously awaiting the burial of him for his physique. Morales goes to work on the arm. Whip and a double clothesline knocks Primo down "like Moby Dick." Vince McMahon wins the fat joke lottery, of course. Whip and Morales with a fist to the midsection. "He almost lost it in that bulbous physique!" Richard tags back in and gets swept off his feet. He fights out of an arm bar but VERYY SLOWLY hits his own partner with a high knee. Morales in, doing his 1972 shtick. Whip and an ugly back body-drop. He scoops up Richard and finishes with a back breaker at 3:20. Yawn.
- Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat is standing by to let us know that he doesn't tangle with DRUGS. They're bad news, and they can KILL. SAY NO TO DRUGS, AND YOU'LL BE THE WINNER.
Jake "The Snake" Roberts vs. Ricky Hunter:
Roberts is riding a wave of momentum now, after splattering Steamboat's skull on the concrete at the recent Saturday Night's Main Event
. Lockup and Hunter grabs an arm bar, only for Roberts to shrug it off with a yank of the hair. Hunter goes to the arm again, and Roberts escapes with the same game plan. Roberts grabs a side headlock but is caught showboating and planted with a slam. RICKY STEAMBOAT is sitting in on commentary for a front row seat. Roberts takes control, working the arm. Hunter with a hip toss, but Roberts rolls through with the arm bar. The match is playing background noise to Steamboat cutting a promo and Vince pushing the rivalry they've established between the Dragon and the Snake. Hunter teases a comeback, but Roberts cuts him off with a knee lift. DDT finishes at 4:19. Roberts goes for the bag, but Steamboat makes a mad dash for the ring and hits Roberts with a bell-to-belly suplex before unloading with mounted right hands. The referee accidentally leaves Steamboat open for a cheap shot, but Steamboat shrugs it off and sends Roberts out of the ring with a flurry of chops. Long squash for the sake of getting Steamboat and the storyline over on commentary.
- Ken Resnick with one more set for the Boston Garden, this time talking with Randy Savage.
Final Thoughts: Once again, there's two storylines worth pushing: Ricky Steamboat out for revenge on Jake Roberts, and the mysterious suspension of Andre the Giant. The Bulldogs are shown zero respect as Champions, with interview segments still harping on WrestleMania 2 and no interesting challengers on the horizon. Tito Santana is wasted in meaningless tags with a check-out Pedro Morales, and Paul Orndorff is still a terrible babyface. Muraco and Orton as a team could be entertaining, but we'll see how that relationship develops over the next few months.
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