June 11, 2011
Matt D & Vic
Legion of the Damned
Demolition © vs Colossal Connection - Huntsville, AL - 12/13/89 (Aired Superstars 12/30/89)
Vic: Now this I can write about. As I said on Day 2, I Remember this match vividly. It was just a ordinary episode of Superstars. Maybe it was announced the week before, I can't remember. Anyway its announced that Demolition will defend the belts against Bobby Heenan's new team the Colossal Connection consisting of Haku and Heenan Family cornerstone Andre the Giant.
The Brainbusters had imploded weeks before with Demolition destroying them to win back the belts. Then a few days later things melt down between Tully and Bobby on Saturday Nights Main Event. So the Connection is really the Demolition Revenge Squad.
Demolition comes to the ring. Fans lose it once their theme song starts. But they get to the ring and it ends suddenly. Demos rush Andre and Haku. Smash gets the best of Haku but Andre destroys Ax with a few headbutts.
Demolition never recovers from this. Haku gets on Ax and beats him down with chops. He takes Ax and drives his head into Andre's skull. Andre having the hardest skull in all of wrestling. Then Andre takes a cheapshot kicking AX in the gut.
Smash gets frustrated and runs in the ring. Allowing Andre to choke AX. This is a brand new world for Demolition. Heels might cheat to keep them contained but they do not flat out get their asses kicked. Not by the Powers of Pain not even the Twin Towers.
Andre kicks AX in the back. AX tries to fight back but Haku rakes his eyes. AX does a big kick out after a back breaker. Andre is finally tagged in and pops AX between the eyes. He takes the straps from AX's gear and chokes him. Then starts shoulder blocking him in the gut. Andre goes and tags back in Haku. AX tries to sneak away but Andre throws him back in the corner.
Haku goes for the three point stance and charges AX but AX moves. Andre thinks it worked and walks over to taunt Smash. At this point you would expect the hot tag. But Haku stops him. Haku charges AX again and AX hits a back elbow. Again you would expect the hot tag, but Haku stops him again.
AX hits Haku with an atomic drop but Haku gets the blind tag. Andre comes in and headbutts AX twice and starts choking him. Thats all Smash can stands and he can stands no more. He runs in and starts hitting Andre ho shrugs it off. Haku attacks Smash but Smash starts beating Haku in the corner. Referee forces Smash out allowing Haku to hit the thrust kick into AX followed by the Andre elbow for 3. New tag team champions.
Now this match really really upset me as a kid. I was 8 years old and could not understand why Demolition were beaten so easily. How AX never tagged once. Demolition got destroyed. This would be upsetting in any promotion but in WWF world it was devastating.
Matt D: This is a pretty strange match. I've said it before but I didn't start watching wrestling until Spring/Summer 1990, so I didn't see it as a kid. It's okay, though. I wouldn't have been a Demolition fan anyway so I wouldn't be traumatized. I would have probably been annoyed that two "slow" teams were fighting for the titles when the Rockers and the Harts were RIGHT THERE. But hey, I was 8 in 1989, so deal with it.
At 28, what do I think? Well, it's a squash where Smash never even gets into the ring. Compared to literally every other Demolition match we've looked at, that's insane, right? It shouldn't make any logical sense. The reasoning behind it is simple. Tully Blanchard got the boot. Arn was leaving shortly thereafter. They had to set something up for Wrestlemania and hey, this way Andre gets a legitimate title win and gets to go out a face when Heenan berates him later on. That's that, though. Let's see what the heck the story is here and if it makes sense.
Smash goes after Haku and Ax immediately goes after Andre at the bell. Let's take a look at this because it's so pivotal for the match. Andre cost the Demos the belts vs Brainbusters back in the summer. They got some measure of revenge in the Summerslam six-man tag and then when they won the belts back, certainly, but there was little actual Andre/Demolition interaction in the match. It was more of a Towers/Demos thing. Moreover, they went up against the Towers for the brunt of the summer and the key against Bossman and Akeem was to take it right to them. Were this a Towers match, Ax's strategy would work and they could start working on the big guy's arm and controlling him and all would be well.
Andre is not Akeem. Andre is not Bossman. Andre is a force of nature. Ax charges him. Andre catches him a few hits later with a choke and nails two King Ghidrah sized headbutts and it's all but academic at this point. Still, Ax is Ax and he shall fight back to the end. Of course Haku immediately going for the throat doesn't help matters. Nor does the fact he's HAKU and can realistically stand up to Ax's strikes as well as anyone. There's a nasty spot where he brings Ax into his own corner and slams Ax's head onto Andre's. The Connection keep Ax in their corner, with Haku (or Smash) distracting the ref allowing Andre to get plenty of choking in. Smash even gets distracted by chasing Heenan (who was a non-factor in the Brainbusters loss where Demos regained the title) around the ring. They hone in on Ax's back, including a good backbreaker by Haku. Whenever he fights back, Haku is quick to go to the eyes or something similar.
Andre gets tagged in and everything he does is just devastating. A punch, shoulders in the corner. Finally, he pins Ax against the corner with his body and Haku hits the 3-Point Stance and goes for a charge, but Ax gets out of the way? Hot Tag? This easy in a Demolition match? Of course not. Andre, thinking Haku hit it, taunts Smash(and it's great) as Ax makes it towards the corner, but Haku cuts him off. He pummels Ax in the corner a bit before an irish whip and another charge in. Ax nails him with a back elbow and THIS is probably where the hot tag would come in a normal Demolition match. But Haku gets in the way and pushes him back towards the Colossal Corner. Ax ducks a chop and hits an Atomic Drop and THIS is where the tag would finally have to come. But while Ax had Haku up in the air, Andre slapped his partner with a blind tag, so as Ax crawls towards his corner, he's unaware that Andre is on his way. Andre chokes him from behind and hits machine gun headbutts. Smash gets angry and comes in. Haku meets him. The ref pulls Smash back. Andre holds Ax so that Haku can hit the thrust kick. Andre drops the elbow and Smash comes in but is unable to move the big man, so that's the match.
It's logical, well built and very different than how the Brainbusters won the title. You still want Demolition to get revenge, but they'll come into the next match as underdogs which is a very strange place for them to be. This match set it up believably though. It's undoubtedly a "Demolition match," despite the fact that they lose so soundly.