November 3, 2012
JJ Flamingo

WWF At MSG, January 18, 1982

Commentator: Vince McMahon

Over 18,000 strong pack the Garden for another red hot night of WWF action!


Note: Matches held on this card but not included on this release include:

Rick Martel and Tony Garea over WWF Tag Team Champions Mr. Fuji and Mr. Saito via DQ at 8:58 (Fuji and Saito Retain Titles) (Pat Patterson Special Guest Referee)
Tony Atlas over The Masked Executioner via pinfall at 2:57
Ivan Putski over Killer Khan via Referee’s Decision At Curfew at 2:29

Match 1: Manuel Soto vs Davey O'Hannon

Setup: Parkinson’s Boy comes back to MSG to face a Latino jobber with no credibility.

Match: Things of note here include O’Hannon strutting around the ring like he just shit his pants, an excessive amount of restholds to pad out the match time, and a general bored disinterest from the live crowd as it doesn’t appear that this was what they came to see. Finish comes with O’Hannon hitting a swinging neckbreaker for the pin.

Result: O’Hannon via pinfall at 9:52

Score: 1 (Okay) O’Hannon is a bit of a ghoulish sight, but his opponent had absolutely nothing going for him.

Match 2: Larry Sharpe vs Jose Estrada

Setup: A rematch from the Spectrum between The Pretty Boy and No Way Jose.

Match: Hate to spoil this for those who are eager to watch this one, but this is pretty much a rerun of the Spectrum bout, all the way from the fans whistling at Sharpe when he takes off his jumpsuit to the finish when Estrada misses a dropkick and lands on his head for the quick pin.

Result: Sharpe via pinfall at 8:41

Score: 1 (Okay) If it wasn’t any good the first time, why would this be any better?

Match 3: Charlie Fulton vs Johnny Rodz

Setup: The Unpredictable Jobber takes on a guy looking to earn his Jobber Badge in his own right.

Match: I’ve figured out who the bearded, long haired Fulton reminds me of: the evil villain “Waingro” in the Pacino / DeNiro classic Heat. Rodz is as reliable as always as he carries the match well and tries his best to cover up Fulton’s (many) shortcomings. Finish comes when Rodz goes for a big splash (why I don’t know) and Fulton moves out of the way and then makes the quick cover for the three count.

Result: Fulton via pinfall at 9:28

Score: 1 (Okay) Rodz gets handed some of the worst shit talent imaginable, and can only do so much.

Match 4: Pedro Morales vs Greg Valentine (WWF Intercontinental Title Match)

Setup: Valentine had hurt Pedro’s back by suplexing him on the concrete floor during a TV taping, and now Morales wants some payback!

Match: I watched Morales and his offense closely during the match and yep, it was punch, punch, punch, and (in case that gets stale) kissing his fist before he delivers a punch. The fans are crazy for him though, and they HATE Valentine, so naturally this carries a big match feel to it, though it’s only when Valentine is in control that it actually feels like a wrestling match, what with The Hammer’s wide array of offensive maneuvers. Soon we have a ref bump, and Valentine pulls some brass knucks out and goes to use them, but Pedro gets them away, puts on the knucks, and…punch, punch, punch. However, the referee recovers, and since you can’t punch using brass knucks, calls for the DQ.

Result: Valentine via DQ at 14:43 (Morales Retains Title)

Score: 2 (Good) Certainly a carry job by Valentine, aided by a hot crowd.

Match 5: Jesse Ventura vs Dominic DeNucci

Setup: The Body makes his MSG debut, taking on the Italian Stepdad who surely doesn’t approve of him.

Match: I gotta say, this really shows off Ventura’s ability to carry an opponent, and even more amazing, make DeNucci look good. Jesse utilizes an armbar early on, and blows kisses to the ringside fans. Dominic comes back with his weak, limited offense, but Ventura manages to sell it like a bastard and make DeNucci look strong. Ending comes when Jesse gets him down and comes off the ropes for a flying elbow smash, and Dominic can take no more on this night.

Result: Ventura via pinfall at 10:26

Score: 2 (Good) A testament to Jesse The Body’s workrate and ring style given who he was in there with.

Match 6: Bob Backlund vs Adrian Adonis (WWF World Title Match)

Setup: Main Event Time! And can the newcomer Adonis give The Champ all he can handle?

Match: One thing I found interesting about this was McMahon’s commentary, for given his derisive tone it is clear that he does NOT like Adonis. Nonetheless, Adrian acquits himself beautifully here, matching technical holds with Backlund with relative ease, and using some innovative offensive tactics when necessary, like when Backlund catches him with a flying headscissors and Adonis immediately gets up and (though not in the best of shape) hits one of his own. Soon Bobby’s nose gets busted (and possibly broken) from Adonis’ roughhouse style, but he keeps fighting, even as he and Adrian exchange piledrivers and other high octane offense but neither man can put the other away. Eventully Adonis locks on his patented sleeper (Goodnight Irene) but Bobby lunges away and falls outside the ring. Adrian is waiting for him when he tries to reenter, and rams his head repeatedly into the ringpost. Now Backlund is bleeding worse than he has in a long time, but still tries fighting on instinct as Adonis looks relatively fresh. Suddenly Bob spazes out and starts whaling on Adrian like a psychopath, which leads to the doctor coming into the ring(!), taking one look at Backlund and telling the referee to stop the match for his own fucking safety. Shit.

Result: Adonis via Referee’s Decision at 30:54 (Backlund Retains Title)

Score: 3 (Great) Adonis looked awesome out there matched up with The Champ, and certainly proved his worth as a great star.

Overall Score: 2 (Good) A surprisingly classic World Title Match, plus some other goodies make this one that you might want to seek out from your most trusted online retailer.

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