February 14, 1987
From the Sundome in Tampa, FL
Your hosts are Bruno Sammartino, Jesse Ventura, and Vince McMahon.
Tonight, we will find out if Hulk Hogan has accepted the challenge from Andre the Giant for a match at WrestleMania. Plus, the Can-Am Connection, Junkyard Dog, and Demolition will be in action. Also, we will find out about the other matches that have been signed for WrestleMania.
Clips of the Hart Foundation winning the Tag Team Titles last week from the British Bulldogs.
Craig DeGeorge is backstage with Jack Tunney, who has an announcement to make about Danny Davis, who runs by on his way to the ring. Tunney chases after him as Davis goes into the ring and shoves the other official down. Tito Santana, who is in the ring for a match, almost comes to blows with Davis but Jack Tunney then grabs the mic and announces that Danny Davis has been suspended for life. The crowd goes nuts then Jimmy Hart runs out and takes Davis with him.
Terry Gibbs vs. Tito Santana
Gibbs attacks Tito right after the bell but Tito comes right back and puts him away with the flying forearm (0:20).
Thoughts: Crowd was still jacked after the match as they were still high on the news of Davis getting suspended.
WWF Update with Gene Okerlund. This week’s subject is WrestleMania III and how the Pontiac Silverdome won a bidding war to host the event. Gene says that the indoor attendance will be broken for this show.
Cowboy Bob Orton & Don Muraco vs. Leo Strohein & “Leaping” Lanny Poffo
Poffo’s pre match promo is about the Andre/Hogan saga as Jesse believes that Hogan will duck Andre. Orton looks pissed after a miscommunication spot when Strohein went for an armdrag as Orton ran through him. Strohein gets destroyed in the corner as Orton & Muraco maintain control of the match. Muraco no-sells a few punches as Vince tells us that Roddy Piper has a lot of movie offers from Hollywood then we get an insert promo from Hillbilly Jim playing the guitar before saying how Hogan will accept the challenge from Andre and win the match too. Orton hits a suplex then Muraco puts away Strohein with a tombstone piledriver (3:23). After the match, Orton and Muraco destroy their opponents some more.
Thoughts: Orton & Muraco looked good here but they no longer had the heel heat they once had and fans didn’t seem to care.
Okerlund is with Hogan and asks him about Andre the Giant. Hogan says that those who doubt his chances against Andre will be in for a surprise then talks about the 6-man elimination match in Boston where he will be teaming with Piper & Billy Jack Haynes up against Paul Orndorff & Hercules & Adrian Adonis. Hogan says this is the tune-up he needs for WrestleMania III. Hogan all but said he was facing Andre at WrestleMania here so that about clears up whether or not he will accept Andre’s challenge. I will be reviewing that Boston show on the blog.
Adonis said that he heard from “Crazy Larry” that Piper will be retiring as he cannot take the punishment like he can. Adonis compares himself to a Veg-o-Matic as he will slice and dice Piper. After ignoring that feud on TV for the past few weeks, they are going back to pushing it on TV.
John Valkower vs. Junkyard Dog
Valkower is billed at 420 lbs. That seems about 50lbs too many. Lots of stalling to start. Valkower pushes JYD against the ropes then backs off as Vince and Jesse hype WrestleMania. JYD headbutts Valkower, who bumps like he got hit by a mack truck. JYD hits some sorry excuse for a shoulder tackle as Valkower bumps around like he is Dolph Ziggler. An insert promo from the U.S. Express is shown as Rotundo thinks Hogan will accept Andre’s challenge but Spivey does not believe that he will. JYD then picks up Valkower and hits the powerslam for the win (2:03).
Thoughts: Man, for a big fat guy Valkower could bump like a motherfucker. That is really the only thing to take away from this match.
Okerlund is with the Rougeau Brothers, who will be facing the Hart Foundation in Boston for the Tag Team Titles. Jacques says that they deserve the titles and since they beat them the last time they wrestled in Boston that they will indeed win the belts. This was a bad babyface promo, actually. They came off as a couple of lame-ass losers.
Mario Mancini & Sivi Afi vs. Demolition w/ Johnny V.
Barry Darsow is in the Smash role permanently now after debuting on the 2/8/87 edition of “Wrestling Challenge.” The face paint of Demolition still looks terrible though. Afi bounces off of Smash a few times before getting caught with an inverted atomic drop. Mancini tags and Ax beats him down. Demolition uses quick tags to destroy Mancini until they finish him off with the Decapitation (1:19).
Thoughts: Darsow was so much better than Culley and it made Demolition look even more badass. They completely dominated the match.
Piper’s Pit with guest Hulk Hogan. Before Hogan comes out Piper recaps the past few weeks of what happened between Hogan and Andre on the Pit. As Piper talks, Hogan comes out, looking dejected and holding onto his shirt in one hand and his cross in the other. Piper asks him what is going on between him and Andre. Hogan said that he doesn’t understand as he worshipped Andre and thought he was his best friend. even patterned his life after him because of how good he was in and out of the ring. Hogan said that they used to fight for the same things but that Heenan got into Andre’s head and when he tore off his shirt and cross, he really tore out his heart. Piper then asks Hogan point blank if he will fight Andre at WrestleMania III for the title and he screams “yes” as he crowd goes nuts. Another tremendous segment, although Hogan’s interview with Okerlund from earlier pretty much confirmed he was accepting the match.
Jimmy Hart is with Danny Davis. Hart says that Davis is now a wrestler and the newest member of the Hart Foundation. Hart says that he can team with the Hart Foundation, wrestle in a tag team, or even in singles competition. And this was the climax of the Davis evil referee storyline. It ended well.
Hollywood Laxton vs. Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat
Hollywood is some pudgy jabroni billed from Tennessee. Ventura takes offense at Laxton for calling himself “Hollywood.” He takes over Steamboat with a headlock then grabs a front facelock. Steamboat fights back with chops as we get an insert promo from George Steele on how he likes Steamboat then says some other stuff that no one can figure out. We will learn just exactly what was said later on in this show. Laxton knocks down Steamboat but misses a crossbody and falls outside. Steamboat then follows out with a flying body press then rolls Laxton inside and hits a flying chop for the win (2:02).
Thoughts: The Steamer sold a lot here but the real story here was what Steele said and the announcers were trying to figure out what he meant.
We get a vignette of Jimmy Hart and the Honky Tonk Man looking at one of Elvis’ old planes. Honky says that he will be flying around in a 747, unlike this old piece of junk.
Can-Am Connection vs. Tiger Chung Lee & The Gladiator
Zenk works over Lee as Vince breaks the news that Ricky Steamboat will be facing Randy Savage at WrestleMania III and will have George Steele in his corner. Jesse thinks that Steamboat has made a mistake taking that match. The CAC use quick tags to beat on Lee as we get another insert from Don Muraco & Bob Orton making fun of Zenk & Martel and how they will beat them at WrestleMania III. Gladiator pulls down the top rope on Martel as he crashes outside then beats on him for a bit. Martel gets his knees up on a charge then makes the tag. Zenk runs wild on both guys then catches The Gladiator with a powerslam and takes Martel, who gets the win with a slingshot splash (3:19).
Thoughts: The action was okay but the big news was that they announced two matches that would take place at WrestleMania III.
Okerlund is with Bobby Heenan and Hercules. He asks him about the six-man elimination match in Boston. He calls Haynes “Billy Jerk” several times throughout the interview. Hercules then talks about Haynes going crazy and attacking Heenan so he had to hurt him.
Next week, we will find out whether or not Roddy Piper is going to retire. Plus, the Hart Foundation will defend the Tag Team Titles against the Islanders. Also in action will be King Harley Race, Koko B. Ware, and Billy Jack Haynes. And we will find out what other matches have been added to the WrestleMania III card as well.
Final Thoughts: Another good show. The official announcement of both Hogan and Andre and Steamboat vs. Savage taking place at WrestleMania III was big news. Also, Davis getting suspended for life as a referee ended that several month long storyline too. Nothing else here sucked as the WWF still continues to produce awesome shows leading up to WrestleMania III.