May 4, 2013
Justin Rozzero
The Place to Be

Madison Square Garden House Show
New York, NY
November 26, 1984

Announcers: Gorilla Monsoon & Lord Alfred Hayes

1) S.D. Jones defeats Charlie Fulton with a Headbutt at 10:39
Gorilla calls Fulton “maligned” for some reason, but doesn’t expound on it at all, so we don’t know why. Jones starts with a take down and then an arm drag for another take down and 1 count. Lock up and Jones lands a side headlock, but Fulton is up quickly and begs off a bit. Gorilla calls Jones a big favorite, even though it isn’t his hometown. We get another lockup and another side headlock takedown. Fulton gets two off a roll up, but Jones rolls back to the side headlock. Fulton is able to push Jones to the ropes for a break and then puts Jones down with a shoulderblock and follows that with a clothesline when S.D. gets up. Fulton locks in a reverse chinlock as Gorilla and Alfred are discussing the Snuka/Piper/Tonga Kid issue at great length. Jones tried to fight out with a series of elbows, but Fulton drags him back down into the chinlock. Jones fights up and sends Fulton into the ropes, but puts his head down gets a boot to the skull. Fulton with a big Legdrop for a close count and he goes back to the chinlock. Gorilla is surprised that S.D. was outsmarted there by putting his head down, despite his experience, and goes on to blame the travel. Fulton with an elbow to Jones’ head for another two count and then goes right back to the chinlock. Jones up and sends Fulton to the ropes again, Fulton criss crosses and Jones drops down three consecutive times and then catches Fulton for a slam, but Fulton shifts his weight and falls on top of S.D. for a two. Another stiff elbowdrop gets another near fall and Fulton goes back to the chinlock yet again. Alfred thinks Jones’ foot got caught in a crease in the apron as S.D. fights to his feet again, this time grabbing a bear hug and nailing Charlie with a reverse Atomic Drop and then an Atomic Drop. Fulton struggles to his feet, but Jones pounds his back and then kicks the back of his leg to put him down. Fulton with a headbutt to Jones’ gut, but S.D. lands one to Fulton’s head in retaliation. Jones with two more headbutts and a big right to put Fulton back down as the crowd starts to rally a bit. S.D. rams Fulton into the buckle and lands a punch, but Charlie gouges the eye and lands an axehandle. The two trade punches and Jones goes to the eye, but Fulton repays the favor and pushes him into the corner. Fulton whips Jones across into the other buckle and charges, but S.D. moves and lands a huge headbutt for the three count. This was a solid enough opener that was good when the guys were actually moving around, as the shots were basic, but quite stiff, however it lagged too much with that reverse chinlock of Fulton’s. Grade: 1.5

2) Moondog Spot defeats Jose Luis Rivera with a Clothesline off the Second Turnbuckle at 9:15
Gorilla and Alfred ponder how anyone can be from Parts Unknown, especially considering they need to complete a form to get their license and then discuss Spot’s nasty bone. Lock up and break to start and Spot ends up missing a running elbow and Rivera takes control with an arm wringer, landing a couple of punches to the arm. They continue to jockey for position and Spot takes Rivera down but misses another elbow and Rivera goes back to work on the arm some more. Spot attempts to break the hold, but Rivera continues to lock it in. Spot finally is able to Irish Whip Rivera, but puts his head down and Rivera gets a sunset flip for 2 and then back to the arm. Spot out of it and sends Rivera to the corner, but misses a charge and Jose goes back to the arm wringer yet again. Gorilla hits quite the understatement by saying Spot’s arm must be sore and then pines for a short arm scissors, as he hasn’t seen one in quite some time. Spot out, but gets taken down with a shoulderblock for a 2 count and then Rivera goes right back to the arm. Spot with an Irish Whip and finally gets some offense in with a shoulderblock and a kick to the gut. Spot with a nice knee lift to Jose’s face, sending him flying back. Spot to the 2nd buckle and hits a nice splash for a near fall, but Spot pulled him up. Spot whips him to the buckle and hits an uppercut for another 2 count. Shoulderbreaker gets another 2 and Spot follows up with a reverse chinlock. The announcers discuss Spot’s surprising speed and agility as Spot drills a nice stomach breaker for a 2. Spot with a really nice slam, as he just flings Jose to the mat from up high and then follows that up with another splash from the second buckle. That gets two as Spot pulls Rivera up again and goes to the eyes. Spot sends him to the floor and then blocks him from getting back in with a couple of rights to the head. Rivera lands a shoulderblock to the gut and fights his way into the ring where he hits a standing dropkick. Rivera with a whip to the buckle, but the charge leads to a stiff knee in the face and Spot heads up to the second buckle and hits a really sweet Bret Hart style clothesline for the win. I must say, despite the repetitive working of the arm early, this match was actually a pretty fun battle. Spot was really a beast and his offense was so crisp and stiff that it makes me wish he got a bigger heel push at some point. Rivera sold and bumped nicely too and made a couple of good comebacks, keeping some intrigue in the match. Grade: 2

3) Bobby Heenan defeats Salvatore Bellomo with a Punch to the Head at 8:54
Bellomo is in the ring to start as Bobby Heenan enters Madison Square Garden for his MSG wrestling debut with the WWF. Gorilla brings up Alfred’s past against Bobby and Hayes puts him over as both a wrestler and a manager, saying that people sell him short but that they should not. Heenan shakes Bellomo’s hand as Gorilla says Bobby’s claim to fame is that he currently manages Big John Studd. The announcers discuss Studd’s Bodyslam Challenge and Monsoon riffs that the bounty is almost enough to bring him out of retirement. We get a couple of lock ups to start things, both ending in a clean break, which confuses Bellomo and Hayes. A third lock up leads to a cheap shot right hand by Bobby, who begs off when Bellomo charges him. Lock up leads to a side headlock and another right hand by Bobby, who again bails when Bellomo chases, this time to the apron. Bellomo returns the favor now, sending Bobby barreling into the corner. Bellomo follows and drills Bobby into the buckle and then whips him into the opposite corner, where Bobby takes a Slaughter like bump off the buckles and then bails to the floor. Bobby walks it off and then climbs back in for another lock up. Bellomo with a nice hiptoss and then a flying headscissors and dropkick send Bobby shoulder first into the post and Bellomo kicks him out of the ring, pumping up the crowd big time. Bobby shakes it off again and takes him time getting back in as Gorilla puts over his intelligence. Bellomo lands with a couple of rights but Bobby goes to the eyes and then lands a boot and another gouge to finally slow Salvatore up a bit. Bobby goes the reverse chinlock to slow things down. Salvatore out and lands a shoulderblock, but Bobby catches him with a really high back body drop. Heenan lands a pair of jumping knee drops to the back and then taunts Bellomo a bit. Sal is up and catches a headlock and Irish whip, but the two collide on the rebound, taking both men down. Ref is counting, but Bellomo crawls over and lands a series of headbutts to Bobby’s stomach. Sal is fired up and hits a snap mare and then rams Bobby’s head into the mat until Bobby stops him with an eye poke. Bobby sends him to the floor hard and gets booed loudly for it. Heenan meets him coming in and lands a couple of boots and Sal goes back to the floor to regroup. Sal back to the apron and Bobby catches him, snaps his neck on the top rope and sends him back to the floor. Bellomo back up and hits a shoulderblock and goes for a sunset flip into the ring from the apron, but Bobby is able to stay up and grab the top rope. Bobby then rears back and pops him with a big right hand and falls on top for the three count. Not a bad match as Sal played the fired up jobber to the stars role nicely and Bobby worked some nice heel psychology, but the action was choppy and a little too much stalling to really come in at a higher rating. Grade: 1.5

4) Angelo Mosca defeats Mr. Fuji by Disqualification when Fuji throws salt in Mosca’s eyes at 8:01
Gorilla is excited for “King Kong” Mosca’s big return to the Garden for the first time in three years, and it will end up being his last match here as well. Mosca is out to a pretty warm response by the crowd and has a big smile on his face as well. Hayes talks about Mosca’s Italian temperament as Fuji tosses the salt and prepares to start the match. Gorilla quips that Fuji probably has another 5 to 10 pounds of salt hidden on him. Lockup and a clean break leads to a cheap shot chop by Fuji, but Fuji plays dumb with his little smirk. Another lockup and Mosca breaks clean and then chops him back in retaliation. Arm bar by Fuji and Mosca flips out of it and grabs a single leg takedown. Both men up and trading chops and blows, but Mosca wins the battle and tosses him into the buckle and then mockingly bows to Fuji. Mosca wants a test of strength, but Fuji has a hard time reaching. They finally lock and Mosca forces “the Oriental to his knees”, in the words of Gorilla. Mosca stomps on Fuji’s hands, but Fuji is able to come back with a karate kick to the inner thigh to take Mosca down. Fuji lands a kick and then the Banzai headbutt to the lower abdomen, leaving Mosca on the mat writhing in pain. Mosca tries to fight back, but Fuji kicks him again and then locks in the dreaded Oriental nerve hold. Mosca is battling up as the crowd is heating up big time. Shoulderblock takes Fuji down, but Fuji bounces up and lands a big chop to take Angelo back down. Fuji goes back to the nerve hold as the crowd is trying to rally Mosca back up. Angelo struggles to his knees, but Fuji drives him right back down. Alfred provides interesting analysis of this hold, claiming that you are aware of everything around you, you can see and breathe OK, but you are just paralyzed. I really enjoy the old school commentary of explaining these simple and basic moves and explaining why they work. Mosca battles to his feet again and lands a right hand a series of forearms to the face. He sends Fuji to the corner and nails a big shoulderblock. Fuji turns and goes into his tights and is about to toss the salt, but Mosca catches his hand and throws the packet to the floor to a huge pop. Fuji begs off on his knees and the crowd is in a frenzy. Mosca attacks and eventually locks in a sleeper. Fuji goes into his kneepad and breaks out another packet of salt and drills Mosca in the eyes with it to draw the DQ. I guess Gorilla was right after all about Fuji’s endless supply of salt. This was about as basic as basic can be, but the crowd was hot and helped carry things for sure, adding some excitement to an otherwise bland bout. Grade: 1.5

5) Bob Orton defeats Swede Hanson with a reverse splash and forearm from the top rope at 8:49
Orton is just a Cowboy here, and not yet the Ace. Hanson is awfully rough looking at this point and is looking like he just walked out of a bar. Gorilla and Alfred give a history lesson, talking about Slaughter Creek, NC, the home of the Big Sweder. Gorilla claims it is well known from the Revolutionary War, but a quick check on the internet does not mention anything about that city during the war. Oh well. Swede with a go behind and turns it into a big bear hug as Hayes talks about Hanson’s rough childhood and how he went to the school of hard knocks. Orton breaks out, but walks into a standing wristlock. Orton gets to the ropes and Hanson breaks the hold. The Sweder grabs a side headlock and Gorilla schools us on the differences between inside and outside wristlocks. Looks like I was wrong before, as Gorilla lets us know that Orton is indeed known as Ace now, as he is officially Roddy Piper’s bodyguard. Glad to hear that the Ace stuff confuses Alfred as much as it does me. Orton fights out of the headlock with a bear hug and lands a big reverse Atomic Drop and follows with a big forearm to the throat and a series of elbows to the chin. Hanson tosses Orton off of him from the ground to Orton’s feet. Cowboy goes for a snap mare, but Swede blocks it and reverses it to a front face lock. Bob escapes and the two trade right hands. Orton collapses back to the corner and Hanson lands a giant headbutt. Swede sends Orton to the corner and then lands a big kick to the face and follows up with a big boot and then a knee drop to the chest. Hanson locks in a reverse chinlock as Gorilla says that Swede should have gone for the pin, because the longer the match goes, the edge goes to Cowboy Bob. Orton battles out and goes to whip Swede to the buckle, but Swede reverses it. Orton floats over a charging Hanson and then drills him with a shoulderblock, sending Swede to the mat. Bob lays in the boots in the corner and then goes for a choke and some right hands and also hits a couple of nice knee drops. Orton works him over and goes for a cover, but Swede grabs the rope to break. Bob rams him into the buckle a couple of times and then lands a few more rights to the head as Gorilla praises Orton’s conditioning. Bob lands some more rights, but Swede won’t go down and just stares at him, daring him to do it again. Swede blocks an attempt and lands a huge chop and a bigger right. Hanson lands four headbutts to the temple and then a big scoop slam. Hanson to the second turnbuckle, but Orton knees him in the gut on the way down. Swede is hurting as Orton goes to the top and lands an awesome Vader Bomb, but compounding it by drilling his forearm into Swede’s grill. That quite clearly finishes things and gives the Cowboy the big win. That match was very pedestrian for the first six and half minutes or so, but once the finish came it rocked. Swede’s facials and stare down during that last exchange was great stuff and Orton’s finisher was executed perfectly. Grade: 1.5

6) Roddy Piper and Tonga Kid battle to a Double Disqualification at 7:00
Oh, this should be lots of fun for sure. Orton is in Piper’s corner and Snuka is backing up Tonga Kid. Snuka gets a huge ovation here and the Garden is rocking. This is Snuka’s return to MSG from a vicious beating put on him by Piper on the August 25 MSG card. Piper teases that he is leaving, but heads back to the ring as the crowd is just rabid. Snuka has a great “I Want Piper” shirt on. Hayes is still caught up on the Ace stuff as the four men are just staring each other down and the crowd is just going nonstop. Alfred lets us know that Tonga Kid is 18, and a quick check of his bio shows Alfred was quite close, as the Kid would have just turned 19 on October 11, 1984. Still a very impressive nugget by Hayes, who I have grown to love more and more with each of these old house shows and TNT episodes. Alfred and Gorilla agree that this would be the worst loss of Piper’s career. The bell rings and we are ready to go. We start with a stare down and Piper lands a few slaps on Tonga, but the Kid returns the favor and lands some slaps, headbutts and right hands to start off on fire. Piper tries to escape, but Tonga drags him back in by his hair and is all over him as the crowd is just insane. Tonga with a side headlock and lands a shoulderblock off an Irish whip. Piper lands a double leapfrog and hits a chop to slow Tonga down. Piper mocks Snuka with the “I Love You” gesture, but Tonga sneaks from behind and lands a chop. The two trade punches, but Piper catches him with a nice back suplex to finally gain some control. Piper tosses Tonga to the floor, but he climbs back in and Tonga is tossed out again. Piper goes out after but sees Snuka and gets right back in the ring. Roddy is now choking Tonga on the top rope while taunting Snuka in the corner. Tonga taken down with a double chop to the throat and Piper gets 2 with a lazy cover. Piper gets a kneelift for another 2 as he remains in control of the young Kid. Roddy whips him in and catches a sleeper, which draws Orton to his feet in celebration. Tonga is fading as Piper wrenches in the sleeper, but the crowd is trying to rally the Kid. Ref tests but Tonga keeps his arm up and battles to his feet. He breaks the hold with three elbows and then drops down and clotheslines Piper on the top rope. Roddy tries to ram his head to the buckle, but we all know that will do nothing. Tonga starts dancing and landing more rights and headbutts to get the crowd up and roaring again. Piper is able to catch a charging Tonga and dump him over the top. Orton attacks the Kid on the floor and when Snuka goes to save, Piper reaches out and clocks him. Piper grabs a chair, but Snuka makes the save. Piper rolls in and Snuka and Orton follow as all hell breaks loose. They double team a bit, but Snuka tosses them off and Tonga comes in to help. The crowd is batshit crazy as Snuka and Tonga clean house, sending Orton to the floor. Piper takes off before he gets beaten down and the crowd is reining boos on him. Man, the match was about as basic as they come, but the heat and pace were off the charts and pump the grade up a bit. This whole feud was just awesome and could have really made Tonga a major star if they had followed it up well. Grade: 3

- Now we head backstage where Barry Windham is with a mike and talking about his big MSG debut. He says he heard all about MSG growing up and then discusses his opponent tonight and tells him he will show him what its like to be in the ring with a wrestler.

7) Barry Windham defeats Moondog Rex with a Running Bulldog at 12:52
Let’s see if Rex can live up to Spot’s great performance earlier. Windham gets a nice ovation for his debut match in the Garden. Gorilla and Alfred put Barry over for his ability and demeanor. Gorilla says that Windham could put on at least 100 lbs. and still carry it well. He definitely fulfilled that prophecy…and then some. Rex doesn’t want to put his bone down, but the ref finally convinces him to put it in the corner. Lock up to start, which Rex wins. Another lock up and Barry tries for a clean break, but Rex shoves him and Barry comes back with a charge and then a dropkick to send Rex down. Rex and Barry trade arm wringers, with Barry eventually taking control and ends up with an armbar. Rex fights his way up and tries to land a right, but Windham blocks and nails one of his own, sending Rex into the ropes. Rex lands a knee to the gut and grabs a side headlock. Barry out and hits a shoulderblock and scoop slam and then goes into a sitting side headlock. Rex rolls him over for a couple of times, but Barry rolls back through to control both times. Rex stands up, but Barry drags him right back down to the mat, still holding the headlock. Rex finally gets to the rope and is able to step over the top. Barry doesn’t break and instead drags him over the rope and then drops him flat on his face to a good pop. Rex is cowering in the corner as Barry awaits him in the middle of the ring. Rex lands a boot and some punches to the head. He takes him down with a snap mare and drops a knee on his forehead before going to a front face lock/armbar combo. Rex whips him in and just drills Barry in the stomach with a right hand. Barry fires back and Rex is rocking a bit and is eventually sent flying through the ropes. Rex trips Barry from outside and then slides in and pounds Barry in the face before gnawing on it. Rex whips him in again and lands a back elbow, sending Windham crashing to the floor and into the railing. Barry tries to get back in, but Rex knees him in the gut. Windham finally is able to climb in, but Rex lifts him high in the air and drops him neck first on the top rope. Barry tries to fight back, but Rex drills him back down and then lands a backbreaker for a 2 count. Rex picks Barry up on his shoulder and then tries to ram him back first to the buckle, but doesn’t release him at the right time and Barry just sort of falls back into the corner. Good idea but poor execution there. Rex locks in a bear hug and Barry is fading as we close in on 10 minutes. Rex is wrenching in the hold and Barry just can’t find a way out as Alfred claims that all the wrestlers in the back have their eyes on Windham tonight. Barry with a series of rights to Rex’s grill finally breaks the hold, but Rex clubs him back down with an elbow. Rex locks in a Jesse Ventura style backbreaker, but Barry slips down and lands a backdrop. Barry up now and lands a shot to the gut and the chin and then the two trade blows. Barry whips him and goes for a dropkick, but Rex holds the ropes and Barry lands hard on his back. Running elbow gets two for Rex and he heads to the middle rope, but is caught with a punch to the abdomen. More right hands to Rex, but the Moondog reverses a whip and sends Barry to the corner. Rex misses a charge and Barry locks a side headlock and nails a big running Bulldog for his first win at MSG. This was a fun back and forth match as you can never go wrong with a Moondog working the solid and crisp power offense and a young, vibrant face Barry Windham selling like a champ. Grade: 2

8) Tony Atlas defeats the Executioner with a Military Press Slam and Big Splash at 1:52
Tony is pacing the ring maniacally and looking insanely jacked up as the introductions go down. Executioner jumps Atlas to start and we are off. Executioner lays into Atlas in the corner and then stays on him as they move around the ring. Executioner with a side headlock, but is whipped into the rope and eventually caught with a pair of dropkicks. Tony hits some chops to neck and chest and then hits Executioner with a nice delayed military press slam and big splash for the 3. Tony tries to pull the mask off after the pin, but Executioner is able to escape with his hidden identity in tact. Not much here at all as it was just a glorified squash for Mr. USA. Grade: 1

9) David Schultz defeats Rocky Johnson with a roll up at 9:24
Well, this should an interesting little battle as Dr. D is always quite the dickhead in the ring. Schultz extends his hand to Rocky, but Johnson doesn’t fall for it. The two continue to jaw as Gorilla says it is amazing that Rocky stays in such good shape between spending so much time with his family and charity work. Rocky is starting to get pretty upset at all of Schultz’ mind games, as Dr. D keeps feigning like he wants to box Rocky behind the ref’s back, but the ref keeps getting between them and David backs off whenever Rocky gets aggressive. Gorilla doesn’t believe that Schultz even has a real doctorate even though I must say he is schooling Rocky in heel psychology right now. We are hitting the three minute mark and they have yet to touch each other even once. Gorilla is all over the referee’s case, but Alfred is defending him, saying he is just trying to keep order. I really don’t get what he is doing either, but it seems as if he wants a clean lockup and doesn’t like how aggressive Rocky gets with his fists. We finally get a lockup at 4:15 and the ref tries to break it up as they go to the corner, but Schultz takes the opportunity to slug Rocky to the mat. Schultz is in control as Gorilla continues to shit all over the poor job by the referee. Schultz is in control, but Rocky hits a right hand and the ref is on Rocky’s case again about using the fists. The crowd is even getting pissed at the ref now. Schultz with a side headlock but Rocky pushes him to the ropes and is ready to drill Dr. D with a right, but the ref hooks Rocky’s arm and warns him again. Dr. D keeps playing this all up as he acts innocent in front of the ref but antagonizes Rocky behind his back. The crowd bursts into a loud “Rocky” chant. Schultz grabs the arm of Rocky and lands a kick to the gut. Arm wringer by Dr. D but Rocky flips out and kicks him off and starts dancing as the ref gets in his face again. Schultz is able to sneak in and jump Johnson again to take control of the match. Rocky is on the mat in the corner and Schultz works him over with boots and fists. Alfred is still defending the ref, which also annoys Gorilla. Schultz locks in a choke, which Rocky breaks with a right hand and the ref, once again, separates the two. Rocky gets Schultz in the corner and lays into him with a series of rights, even pushing the ref aside at one point. I thought for sure we would get a DQ there, but we didn’t. Rocky goes for a scoop slam, but Schultz hangs on and rolls through for the flash pin. Man, talk about a match with very little physical contact. There was barely any action here, but I will give the three men credit for really building the anticipation and anger to a peak as even I was starting to get pissed at the ref. While there minimal wrestling, this was a decent little education in ring psychology and could have been the build to an epic hot match if it featured a heel or face with stronger heat. Grade: 1

10) David Sammartino defeats Ken Patera by Disqualification when Lou Albano interferes at 12:33
We head backstage to a quick stand up by Bruno Sammartino before the bout begins. Bruno, bedecked in a suit, says he ecstatic to be back at MSG and that he will be in his son’s corner to keep an eye on Lou Albano. He thanks the fans and we head back to the ring where Patera and Albano await. David gets a very warm welcome from the MSG crowd, but his Dad gets a monster pop as Fink puts him over big time as a Legend. According to Graham Cawthon’s website, this is Bruno’s first MSG appearance in 4 years, which explains his promo earlier. Gorilla discusses the resemblance in the Sammartino family and then takes shots at Albano’s physique. Alfred wants to know why Patera has hired Albano as his manager and then Monsoon runs down his credentials in Lou’s defense. The ref tries to get Albano and Bruno out the ring as Gorilla discusses Bruno’s legendary World Title reign. Lockup to start and we are underway. Patera wins it and sends David back into the buckle. David grabs a side headlock, but Ken picks him up and puts him right onto the top turnbuckle with ease. Patera now grabs the side headlock, but David returns the favor by picking Ken up and placing him in the corner. Patera to the headlock, but David whips him in and a shoulderblock sends him down hard. Another whip leads to a big press slam by David and he just tosses Patera down and Ken bails to the floor. Man that was pretty impressive as David is deceptively strong. Patera is back in the ring and a little weary of locking right back up. He goes for a kick, but David grabs the boot and spins him around and lands a few rights. Patera is able to gain control and hits a snap mare and a pair of elbows to the face. Patera with a nice headlock take down for a 1 count. David blocks a right and hits a few of his own and eventually hits a big uppercut to send Ken down to the mat. Patera begs off into the corner, but David follows and puts his boot to Ken’s throat and then stomps on him. Albano heads over but Bruno cuts him off as Patera rolls to the floor. Ken back in and is able to land a cheap shot and send David to the floor. Ken follows him out and slams him hard on the concrete floor. Patera gets back in and David follows shortly, but Ken catches him coming in and lands a big club to the back and follows up with a knee and some punches. David trips Patera, but Ken lands a knee to keep control. Patera scoops David up and just tosses him across the ring with a slam. Ken with a really nice suplex for a 1 and then goes to the bear hug. David is trying to elbow out of it and finally does on the 3rd attempt. Patera is able to grab the bear hug again as Albano is causing havoc on the floor. David claps the ears of Ken and breaks the hold again and the lands a big double boot from the corner. David is fired up and the crowd starts to stir as David continues to pound on Patera with kicks and knees. David charges, but Patera headbutts him low and then goes for a right. David ducks it and hits a weak reverse atomic drop and then lands a knee to the head and gets a 2 count. David is pounding away on Ken’s head and lands a big boot to the gut off an Irish whip. Small package gets 2 for David, but Patera pops up and regains control with a few rights. Sunset flip gets another 2 for David. David whips Patera into the corner and charges, but Ken moves and then lands a few shots in the corner. David catches Ken’s foot and as he tries to leave the corner, Albano hooks his leg, tripping him and causing a DQ covered in weak sauce. Albano comes in the ring, but Bruno is right behind him to a big pop. Albano and Patera escape as the Sammartinos celebrate in the ring. The match itself was just an OK power match, but David was pretty limited in there. I am always amazed at pre-incarceration Ken Patera, as he was really good in the ring and a great heel, but when he came back from the jail time he was just a shell of what he once was. Anyway, a decent match that had some good heat thanks to Bruno’s return. Grade: 1.5

11) Tito Santana battles Greg Valentine to a curfew draw at 22:18; Greg Valentine retains WWF Intercontinental Championship
Tito is in the ring first as Fink lets us know that the match is for the Intercontinental title. The Champion enters second to a chorus of boos as Gorilla gives the Hammer full credit for being a deserving champion. Valentine shows off the belt and Gorilla says he loves being champion for the money and glory. Alfred says this is the best Tito has looked since his successful knee surgery. Valentine bails but Tito follows him right outside the ring and forces him back inside. Tito is looking to lock up, but the Hammer keeps backing off into the corner. Valentine bails to the apron again, irritating the crowd as well as Santana. We finally get a lock up and Valentine lands a series of forearms, but Tito hits a big clothesline off an Irish whip. Tito smashes Greg’s face into the mat a few times and then into the turnbuckle as well. Gorilla drops some interesting analysis as he says that the Hammer lets his opponents beat on him and the suckers them in and eventually takes control. Tito grabs a front facelock and takes Greg down to the mat. Tito continues to wrench in the hold as the announcers are really putting over Valentine’s intelligence, as well as Tito’s conditioning. Tito gets a 1 count with the facelock wrenched in and then rams Valentine’s head to the mat a few more times. Back to the front facelock and Tito forces Greg to his back for another 1 count as Alfred gushes over the hold. Valentine battles to his knees, picks Tito up and drops him neck first on the top rope and then just kicks him down to the mat hard. He drapes Tito on the apron and then lands a couple of elbows to the back of his head. Both men to the floor now and Valentine tries to ram Tito into a chair, but Tito blocks and rams Valentine into it instead. Tito back in and he drags Valentine in by his hair. Tito lands a right and Valentine is out on his feet before flopping to his face. The crowd is wild as Tito continues to pound on Valentine. Santana hits a nice neck snap and then grabs Greg’s foot, but Valentine hops to the ropes and goes to the eyes to break it. Valentine scoops Tito up and lands a nice Shoulderbreaker and follows with a kneedrop to the throat for a close 2 count. Greg pins Tito down by his arms, but Tito tries to bridge out, but is unable to. Greg slams his head down the mat and then begins to set up the Figure 4 with an elbow to the upper thigh. Valentine chokes Tito on the bottom rope, rubs his face hard into the mat and goes right back to Tito’s surgically repaired knee. Valentine picks Tito up off the mat and hits him with a stiff stomach-buster for another 2. He follows that up with a measured elbow to the face for another 2. Valentine goes for the Figure 4, but Tito kicks him off into the buckle. Santana tries to get to his feet but is having a hard time standing. Greg shoots him into the ropes, but Tito nails him with a huge flying forearm. He got really high on that one. Valentine rolls under the ropes and clings as Tito tries to drag him back into the ring. Tito reverses field and slides outside. He drags Valentine to the post and slams his left leg hard into the post. Tito breaks the count and then grabs a chair and slams it hard into Valentine’s leg. Both men back in and Tito is kicking Valentine’s knee and the crowd is off the hook. Tito continues to work the leg, stretching and jumping on it. Tito locks in a step over toehold, but Greg grabs the tights and yanks Tito to the mat. Valentine stomps on Tito and nails a nice double underhook float over suplex. An elbowdrop gets a close 2 count and Greg goes to the reverse chinlock to slow things down. The crowd busts out a big “Tito” chant as Santana breaks the hold, but the Hammer lands an elbow and goes back to the chinlock. Tito fights to his feet, but Valentine knees Tito in the back of the head and drops him to the mat. A pair of elbows gets another close 2. Tito is trying to battle back, but Valentine whips him into the corner and follows with a hard shoulder to the gut. Greg goes for another charge, but Tito drops down and flips him onto the top of the buckle and into the post with his feet. Tito then kicks him off the top and to the apron. Both men are down and trying to battle back up. Tito with a huge boot to the head and another sends Valentine crumbling to the mat. Valentine is busted open as Tito continues to just kick him in the face and then slams him face first to the mat for a 2. Valentine is up, but out on his feet. Tito whips him and lands another Flying Forearm but can only get another 2 count. Man, the crowd thought that was 3 for sure. Valentine tries to escape, but Tito pulls him back in and drills a reverse atomic drop. The bloodied Valentine is down and Tito splits his legs and just drops on his body for a 2. Valentine and Tito are just pounding on each other on the mat now and Tito gets another near fall. Tito drags him to the center of the ring and continues to work the leg. Valentine heads to the apron and Tito lands a nice suplex to take Greg back into the ring, but he can’t make the cover. Tito whips him in, but puts his head down and Greg lands a kick to the head. Valentine crawls over and pounds on Tito’s leg some more, pulling off Tito’s kneepad. Tito turns the tables and pounds on Greg again. Small package gets a really close two for Tito. Valentine is able to crawl out to the floor, but Tito drags him right back in and grabs an Abdominal Stretch as the bell rings for curfew. Valentine bails as Tito is trying to go after him, but the ref won’t let him as we fade out. Goddamn, that was an epic war. I loved the back and forth aspect of it, as neither man controlled things for too long. You could feel the desire from Tito as he moved non stop and the desperation from Valentine at the end. This was just a great match and all out war from two of the all time best. Grade: 3.5

Final Analysis:
Well, this was as basic a house show as you will see. There no really bad matches and we got a great match to close out the show. The heat for Piper/Tonga was tremendous as we saw the Piper/Snuka feud push along. The undercard was solid enough and we saw some good performances out of Orton, Windham and the Moondogs. We also witnessed some history in Bobby Heenan’s MSG debut match and Bruno Sammartinos’ MSG return after a 4 year absence. The commentary was rock solid as always as I always enjoy the Monsoon/Hayes combo. They provide a nice mix of levity and analysis. I am still aggravated by that damn ref in the Schultz/Johnson match, so I guess that was a success as well. The Main Event was a friggen war and is worth checking out if you have access to this show. Final Grade: B-

MVP: Greg Valentine & Tito Santana
Runner Up: Roddy Piper, Bob Orton, Tonga Kid & Jimmy Snuka
Non MVP: Referee in the David Schultz/Rocky Johnson match
Runner Up: Rocky Johnson

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