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WWF Championship Wrestling- March 29, 1986
by Scrooge McSuck
- Hosted by Vince McMahon and Bruno Sammartino, taped on March 11th from the Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie, NY. This week, we've got "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff, The Funk Brothers, and in a SPECIAL NON-TITLE MATCH, HULK HOGAN WILL BE IN ACTION. Holy crap let me pause the show so I can call my friends and let them know Hulk Hogan is wrestling on TV. Jokes on them, I'm not going to let them know I'm watching a show from 34 years ago.
- There's no way to contain the excitement this week, as we immediately throw things to the Update. WrestleMania 2 is drawing tons of attention, especially those in the entertainment industry. The list of celebrities scheduled to appear includes (*deep breath*) Lee Majors, Ray Charles, Robert Conrad, Dick Butkus, Ozzy Osbourne, Joan Rivers, "Elusive Burger Man" Herb, Joe Frazier, Clare Peller, Susan St. James, Ricky Schroeder, "Chocolate Thunder" Daryl Dawkins, Cab Calloway, Cathy Lee Crosby, Elvira, and G. Gordon Liddy. I know it's hard to compare fame of 1986 to now, but boy are there a ton of flash-in-the-pan celebrities on that list. What, was Roger McDonald unwilling to appear on a show that includes mascots for Burger King AND Wendy's?
"Macho Man" Randy Savage (w/ Elizabeth) vs. Andre Malo:
I wonder if Malo will last longer than Mr. Stetson did a few weeks ago (19 seconds, for those with a short memory). Savage will be defending his Intercontinental Title against George "The Animal" Steele at WrestleMania 2. Lockup into the ropes and Savage drives a knee to the midsection. He hops over the ropes, hanging Malo across the top rope. Back inside, Savage takes Malo over with a suplex and pulls him up at two. Elvira cuts an inset promo about WrestleMania 2 as Savage continues to punish Mr. Malo. He tosses Malo out of the ring and follows from the top rope with a double axe-handle. Back inside, Savage hits a second axe-handle smash. Savage with a power slam and the Flying Elbow finishes at 2:11. McMahon doesn't believe this will happen to the Animal at WrestleMania.
- "Mean" Gene Okerlund is standing by with comments from Hulk Hogan and Mr. T that were clearly recorded from the same day as the press conference highlighted two weeks ago. Mr. T even has the rubber chicken with him. Take a shot every time Mr. T reminds us his momma whooped him when he was six. Hogan says "Clubber Lang" is a wimp compared to the real Mr. T.
"Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff vs. Bob Bradley:
Rita Marie is our referee for this contest. She hung around for much longer than I was led to believe. Orndorff is scheduled to face the Magnificent Muraco at WrestleMania 2. No, there's no official grudge between them, although some fans might create their own narrative that Orndorff is fighting Muraco based on the attack on Hogan at Saturday Night's Main Event. Lockup into the ropes and Orndorff gives a clean break. Orndorff with a side headlock into a hammerlock. Bradley grabs a side headlock of his own, but Orndorff quickly counters. Inset promo from G. Gordon Liddy. Check Wikipedia, I don't give enough of a crap to explain who he is. Bradley runs the ropes and nearly takes out Rita on the way. He rakes the eyes of Orndorff and pounds away with right hands. We're informed that Susan St. James and Elvira will help as guest commentators. Orndorff regains control and tosses Bradley over the top rope. Orndorff brings him back in with a suplex and finishes with the piledriver at 3:50.
- "Mean" Gene Okerlund is standing by to hype WrestleMania 2. The Hart Foundation cut a promo about planning to work as a team in the Battle Royal. Jim Covert (OT for the Chicago Bears) is on hand to comment on the match as well. Did you know he's a recent inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame? We get a pre-recorded interview with William Perry (DT for those same Bears).
Terry & Hoss Funk (w/ Jimmy Hart) vs. S.D. Jones & Ivan MacDonald:
The Funk Brothers have a date with the Junkyard Dog and Tito Santana. The Funks clearly have existing issues with the JYD but throwing Santana in there feels like giving him something to do for the sake of it. Bruno doesn't quite get it and says, "Dory Hoss", forgetting the name "Dory" no longer exists. Terry starts by pounding away on Jones. Whip and Jones catches him with a slam. Hart trips Jones up to cut off his momentum. He gets dumped to the floor and Hoss drops him across the guardrail. We get a promo from Catchy Lee Crosby. She'll have the privilege of working with a "Gorilla" in Chicago. Jones fights out of the corner and tags in MacDonald. Hoss quickly cuts him off, knocking him to the floor. Back inside and Hoss brings him over with a suplex. Terry with a suplex of his own, followed by a leg drop. Hoss with the Cloverleaf for the submission at 3:03. Hart comes in and hits MacDonald with the branding iron as Jones fails to be a decent teammate.
- More hype for WrestleMania 2 with a promo from Bobby Heenan and King Kong Bundy. I'm amazed, after all these years, Vince McMahon hasn't tried a gimmick of having multiple locations for a WrestleMania since this one.
The British Bulldogs (w/ Capt. Lou Albano) vs. Mr. X & Tiger Chung Lee:
At least we're getting a bunch of matches with guys featured prominently at WrestleMania 2. I feel like we see the Bulldogs more often than any other team, and that's a good thing. Dynamite Kid starts. Chung Lee with a side headlock and shoulder tackle. Dynamite catches him coming off the ropes with a back body-drop over the top rope. Back inside and the Bulldogs with a double-team back body-drop. Davey Boy with a whip and dropkick for two. We get an inset promo from Cab Calloway as Davey Boy slams Chung Lee from the top rope. Mr. X comes in and unloads with right hands. Davey Boy shrugs it off and plants X with a powerslam for a near-fall. Dynamite comes back in and takes X over with a snap suplex. Dynamite with a back breaker and Davey Boy cradles him for two. Davey Boy with a hard slam on X before straddling him across the top rope. Dynamite climbs up and brings him down with a back suplex that folds him like an accordion. Suffice to say it's enough for the three-count at 2:55. Always fun to see the Bulldogs squash people.
- We see highlights of Roddy Piper training for his Boxing Match with Mr. T. His trainer is none other than Lou Duva, and the music is set to "For Everybody", Piper's track from "The Wrestling Album." For those who don't get the joke, it's a play on another song that should be titled "F*** Everybody", but damn it, we must market towards little children. Yeah, Piper does some dirty stuff in his sparring sessions, but he's hardly being presented as a major villain.
- Vince McMahon does a 60-second spot where works in all the matches and full list of celebrities featured at WrestleMania 2. We've added George Wells vs. Jake "The Snake" Roberts, bringing our grand total of matches to 12.
- "Mean" Gene Okerlund is standing by for a WrestleMania 2 Update, with comments from many of the participants in the 20-Man Battle Royal.
Hulk Hogan vs. Moondog Spot:
This is our special NON-TITLE appearance of the Heavyweight Champion. It's almost as if the WWF was contractually obligated to feature Hogan in a match once per year on their syndicated programming. Hogan is wearing white trunks with blue pads, and he's sporting taped ribs. Hogan removes the tape to show he isn't afraid. Lockup into the ropes, Spot throws a right hand and Hogan fires back with his own. Whip to the ropes and Hogan with a clothesline, followed by an elbow drop. Spot takes a shot at the ribs, and Hogan's kind enough to sell the blows. That only lasts so long until Hogan goes into B-Mode Hulk up™. He unloads with right hands, knocking Spot backwards into the corner. Whip across the ring and Hogan charges in with a clothesline. Hogan takes Spot over with a suplex and hits the leg drop for three at 1:45. It's a Hogan squash, we got what we needed, and the crowd gets happy.
- Next Week: More hype for WrestleMania 2
Final Thoughts: With the entire card in place and all the celebrities announced (including ones, like Lee Majors, who never appeared), we're just killing time until we get to the big event. Most of the squashes here featured heavily pushed talent, and every segment included some sort of hard-sell for the event, including way too many promos from the celebrities (did we need TWO spots with G. Gordon Liddy on the same show?). Seeing Hogan in action is a rarity, and while short, it was entertaining to see him mix it up with a low-level heel like Spot.
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