Flashback Friday: PWI, June 1989
By J.W. Braun on 5th May 2023
This week, we look back at an issue of PWI that went to press February 17, 1989 and sold for $2.25 in the U.S, $2.95 in Canada, and £1.50 in the U.K. In this issue, we learn that the Megapowers have exploded, that there’s a new AWA World champion, and we get coverage of a dream match in which the British Bulldogs wrestled the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express. Plus, I toss in some Wrestling Observer newsletter bonus coverage. So let’s get to it.
Let’s kick things off with In Focus with Craig Peters, where Craig tells us Jerry Lawler has been stripped of the AWA World title and banned from the AWA for life after failing to defend the title. Craig says being banned for life in wrestling doesn’t mean much, as it evident by Larry Zbyszko, who had previously been banned for life in the AWA and is now back and flourishing in the organization. Craig mentioned this all to AWA President Stanley Blackburn, who scoffed and said, “Mr. Zbyszko’s attorneys worked for 18 months to lift the ban, and I have to admit I was not happy about it at all, but that’s all I’ll discuss about the situation at this time.” Nonetheless, Craig speculates that the Zbyszko precedent could help Lawler should the King wish to proceed with a lawsuit of his own. Lawler, for his part, says he’s done with the AWA, and he wouldn’t wrestle for them if they paid him. (The real issue here is that Lawler was never paid for SuperClash III and refused to wrestle for the AWA until the check came.)
Craig moves on to talk about World Class, noting that in 1984, over 43,000 fans attended a World Class card in Texas stadium to see Kerry Von Erich wrestle Ric Flair. Today, World Class is having trouble drawing 4,300 fans, let alone 43,000. “The Von Erichs have been at the center of Texas wrestling for decades. Fritz led the way, followed by Kevin, David, Kerry, and Mike. Tragically, David and Mike died. Kerry suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident. Kevin has been troubled by chronic problems related to multiple concussions. I have nothing but sympathy for the Von Erich family, but let’s face it: the days of the Von Erichs ruling Texas Rings are over. Maybe it’s time for World Class to stop trying to recapture glories of the past and start looking ahead to glories that are yet to be.”
Next, an article about the big news: The Megapowers have broken up! It all happened in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at the brand new Bradley Center. (And of course, I was there, as was 3GP, and not to go all Titanic on you, but “The chairs had never been sat in. The china had never been used!” Also, seriously, the ring and surrounding area where absolutely pristine. This was before the days of high definition television, but you could tell the WWF was putting on their “Sunday best.” I’ve been to a lot of events, and usually up close at this time you could see the ringposts were a little scuffed and the mats around the ring were a little worn—but not on this day. I’ll never forget walking through the gate onto the concourse and seeing the beautiful vista of the new arena with a picture-perfect WWF ring in the middle, all shiny and new and ready for prime-time television.) Anyway, the magazine says that when the Megapowers formed in 1987, it never really had a chance to sustain. Yet somehow, Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage persevered as a unit in 1988, with both having a chance to hold the championship and the two teaming up to vanquish the evil doers in the WWF. However, that all came crashing down on February 3 in Milwaukee as wrestling fans watched the breakup live on NBC. In truth, the trouble had been brewing for some time, with tempers flaring at the Survivor Series and the Royal Rumble before everything came to blows at the Bradley Center. Now the two will meet at WrestleMania V for the World Wrestling Federation heavyweight championship.
Next, Between Falls, the mailbag section, where Rhonda from Detroit says she couldn’t be happier that Savage turned on Hogan because now Hogan can go after the belt. Then there’s Jim from Jackson, New Jersey says it was all Hogan’s fault and Macho had no choice. Regarding the AWA, Ryan from Malone, New York says nothing in the organization makes any sense. Why stop the Von Erich/Lawler fight and award it to Lawler? Why strip Lawler of the belt afterward? Why put the belt on the line in a battle royal instead of a tournament? And Vincent from Copaigue, New York praises PWI for its coverage of the sale of the NWA, saying it was so informative, “I thought I was reading a business magazine.” Then there’s Andre from New York who says PWI’s photo of a teenage Paul E. Dangerously with the WWWF heel managers explains a lot.
“So his real name is Paul Heyman, a spoiled kid from Westchester, New York who sneaked his way into the rulebreaker’s locker room. These days you can’t do that.”
Another letter is from Rob from Ultoxeter, England, who says Americans don’t realize how good they have it when it comes to wrestling. “In Britain, all the magazines arrive a month or two after their release, and I am charged up to 2.25 pounds ($4) for one magazine. Worse yet, British wrestling itself, eventless as it is, has just been removed from our TV screens, which leaves nothing except for those living in the midlands who receive 50 minutes of approximately one-year-old WWF tapes.” Then Anthony from Smithtown, New York writes that Bam Bam Bigelow and the wrestling magazines keep complaining that he never got a title shot in the WWF, yet Bigelow was in the tournament for the world title at WrestleMania IV. “Also, Bigelow received several Intercontinental title shots against then-champion Honky Tonk Man. You should know because it was in your ‘Ratings Analysis’ in your October, 1988 issue.” Then there’s Hin-cheng Wang from Lexington, Massachusetts who says Haku proved he’s the real King of wrestling when he defeated Harley Race at the Royal Rumble. Wang thinks Haku will soon win the WWF championship. He says, “Randy Savage will soon learn that he may be champion, but he still must learn how to be King.” Finally, Eric from Toms River, New Jersey says Jerry Lawler is the biggest piece of garbage ever, as he proved when he screwed Kerry Von Erich out of the World Class championship and then refused to defend it, and PWI and the fans should be ashamed for allowing him to win “the most inspirational wrestler” award in 1988.
Next, it’s Ringside with Bill Apter. Bill says it’s hard to believe the Rock ‘n’ Roll Express, once the most popular tag team in North America, has become the most hated team in the CWA. They’ve recently been battling Jerry Lawler and Bill Dundee, and the fans have clearly chosen to back the latter two guys.
In the WWF, everyone is excited about the upcoming Savage vs. Hogan match at WrestleMania V, but Bill looks ahead, saying it will be interesting to see how the match shapes the remainder of 1989. If Savage retains the belt, we will probably see guys like the Ultimate Warrior, Jake Roberts, and Hacksaw Jim Duggan as main eventers challenging for the title. If Hogan wins, look for Bad News Brown, the Big Bossman, and Curt Hennig to get those spots. In Florida, Al Perez is in hot pursuit of Mike Graham’s Florida Championship. Meanwhile, Dusty Rhodes has arrived, and Kerry and Kevin Von Erich are scheduled to start wrestling in the area shortly after defeating the Samoan Swat Team for the World Class tag team titles. In other news, Mike Davis, formerly of the RPMs, and Maso Chono have formed a new tag team called The Japanese Connection. In Canada in the Universal Wrestling Alliance, Timothy Flowers was stunned to discover his opponent, Mongolian Khalka Bater, was actually his brother, Peter Flowers! Peter, the magazine notes, is managed by a youngster named Mauro Ranallo, who would have just turned 19 at this time. (Mamma mia!) In Windy City wrestling, Jim Brunzell has challenged heavyweight champ Lightning Steve Regal for the title. Both men are former AWA tag team champions. Meanwhile Buddy Rose and Doug Somers, former AWA tag team champions themselves, are after Windy City tag champs the Terminators. In World Class, Brickhouse Brown won the Texas championship from Iceman Parsons in Dallas. In the NWA, Michael Hayes is teaming with the Junk Yard Dog and is next in line for a shot for the World tag team belts held by the Road Warriors. (Hayes did a funny promo around this time where he said, “People are wondering how a guy like me and a guy like the Dog can get along. Well, that’s for us to find out and you to know.”) And finally, Milo Steinborn, wrestler, promoter, and operator of several gyms, died at his home in Orlando Florida on February 9. He was 95. And now, you’re up to date!
Let’s take a quick break from PWI here to look at Dave’s Wrestling Observer newsletter!
– Dusty’s replacement as booker of the NWA has been named, and it’s George Scott. This was met with a mixed reaction, with the most common feeling being that while he was booker for a successful promotions (70s Mid-Atlantic and 84 WWF) it was more of a case of being in the right place at the right time. Those who worked with him in the WWF, in particular, describe him as “not living up to his reputation.”
– Oddly enough, Scott had already been hired a couple of weeks ago, but Jim Crockett fired him the same day because of all the bad blood from the promotional war. Then TBS overruled Crockett and hired Scott back again before getting rid of Crockett. The feeling was that they didn’t want another “Dusty situation” by having an active wrestler in charge, so Eddie Gilbert was interviewed but ultimately rejected.
– Dusty himself will be taking Al Perez and Dick Murdoch to Florida with him as his big talent raid. He also wanted Larry Zbyszko but Larry had already returned to the AWA. Larry’s wife Kathy was expecting another child, so Kathy’s father, Verne Gagne, made Larry an unmatchable offer to come back. Dusty also wanted to take Barry Windham (his second-in-command as booker) but Barry figures into big plans for the NWA and they won’t let him go.
– The NWA had been running Bunkhouse Stampede matches, with the finals scheduled for PPV, but with Dusty gone they’re just dropping the concept completely.
– Lex Luger will be taking Dusty’s place against Barry Windham at the PPV (Chi-Town Rumble). They actually wanted Eddie Gilbert for the role because he got over huge in the Steamboat angle on TV, but advertising was already set and when they made the new ads, the angle hadn’t aired yet and Gilbert wasn’t considered a big enough star.
– Dave is just totally confused by the whole AWA title situation. Verne is telling Lawler and Jarrett that SuperClash lost money and thus he can’t pay them, but is telling everyone else that the show made money, so no one trusts anyone. And then Lawler did the title change with Dutch Mantell in Memphis (where Mantell apparently won the AWA Title, only to have it overturned the next week) and Verne was upset about that because no one consulted him before booking a title change. The end result is that Verne is done working with anyone and Larry Z is going to end up with the World title when they finally tape more TV on 2/7, although that might be tough since Lawler has openly said he’s not doing a job for anyone in the AWA.
– Steamboat made his big return on the Saturday show as Eddie Gilbert’s mystery partner, and it was awesome. The original plan was for Steamboat to come out and wrestle under a mask and then unmask after getting the pin on Flair, but George Scott wanted Steamboat to recognized from the beginning. (The mask thing would have been much more memorable.) Flair is already giddy with excitement at getting his wrestle his favorite opponent again.
– Dave thinks that the Flair-Steamboat matches probably won’t draw very well on PPV and that they’ll pretty much have to have a match of the year to not be considered a disappointment. (And what are the odds of that?)
– Over in Dallas, the growing popularity of the Samoan Swat Team is pissing off the Von Erichs, and the SST is going to get turfed soon as a result. (And the NWA would be like, “Thank you very much.”)
– Interestingly, the Financial News Network wanted to back a sequel to SuperClash III headed by Jerry Jarrett in April, but they wanted the AWA involved so Jarrett refused. This pretty much was a dealbreaker for the backers and it didn’t happen as a result.
– In the WWF, Savage is suddenly a huge draw following the heel turn, juicing the advances of his title defenses against Ultimate Warrior.
– The USA Network has announced a three hour special against the Chi-Town Rumble PPV, and now it’s been upgraded to a live MSG show on free TV. (This turned into a show where WrestleMania V opponents debated each other at podiums. No, really!) In response, the NWA decided to go full-on kamikaze by scheduling their own PPV from the Omni opposite Wrestlemania V. The theory is that Turner could exercise his muscle with the cable companies (many of whom have seats on Turner’s board) and force them into exclusivity to shut out Wrestlemania. (This plan would change, with the NWA presenting another Clash of the Champions on TBS instead.)
– Inoki is all gung-ho about this Russian invasion deal, but everyone thinks he’s nuts and there’s no way it’s going to work. Inoki’s plan is to put together a Team Japan, Team Russia and Team America (Rick Steiner, Big Van Vader, Bam Bam Bigelow, Dick Murdoch and Manny Fernandez) and then presumably have a series of battles to find out who’s the toughest.
– The British Bulldogs are working All Japan, but Baba is really disappointed with their declining drawing power.
– Dave wonders about Savage’s role after Wrestlemania V. Most think that Liz will retire and Savage will stay heel. Dave doesn’t see it.
– Harley Race has decided to retire after his Royal Rumble performance.
– Due to Studd’s terrible Rumble performance, the WWF is changing their mind about giving him a big push.
– Kendall Windham turned heel at the last tapings, with the idea of having Kendall and Butch Reed join the Four Horsemen to replace Tully and Arn. Then George Scott vetoed that idea, because he doesn’t like the Horsemen concept, so Flair and Barry will continue as heels managed by JJ Dillon. (But not for long, as Dillon would depart for the WWF, and Flair, Reed, and the two Windhams would all be picked up by a Japanese consortium.)
– Steve DiSalvo and Steve Blackman are quitting Stampede. DiSalvo is going to go back to real estate. No word on Blackman’s future. And Don Muraco, despite being North American champion, has left, and now they have to get the title back from him somehow.
– The AWA has apparently ended their deal with the Showboat in Las Vegas in a cost-cutting move.
– Dan Spivey is headed into the NWA as the newest member of the Varsity Club.
– Bobby Heenan is up for the role of Curley in a movie about the Three Stooges.
Next, back to PWI: from the Desk of Stu Saks, where Stu asks the PWI staff for their predictions on Savage vs. Hogan at WrestleMania V.
- Bill Apter says Savage will win. “Savage has the most to lose, and Hogan doesn’t have the determination he had when he was World champion. Savage will wear down the Hogan and pin the Hulkster in a little over 20 minutes.”
- Dave Rosenbaum says Hogan will come out on top. “Two years have passed since these two feuded, but neither has changed much. Look for the match to last less than 15 minutes with Hogan taking advantage of a mistake and scoring the pin.” Dave also says he expects Elizabeth to disappear after the match. “She doesn’t like being caught in the middle.”
- Andy Rodriguez also says Hogan will win. “He’s got that old fire back. The dreaded eye of the tiger.”
- Bob Smith agrees. “Nobody recovers after they turn on Hogan. Look at Paul Orndorff or Andre the Giant. Macho is a better technical wrestler, but Hogan’s pride will be the difference. The Hulkster is about to join Bruno Sammartino as the only two-time World champion in WWF history.”
- Craig Peters picks Hogan. “This is a tough call. Hogan’s been backed into a corner, and nobody is more dangerous than a determined Hogan when he’s in that position. On the other hand, Savage’s emotions are causing him to reach new levels of emotional intensity and athletic brutality. But too much emotion and not enough calculation could cause the “Macho Man” to make costly errors that Hogan will capitalize on. I have to go with Hogan, and don’t expect a reconciliation when it’s over.”
- Eddie Ellner also picks Hogan. “Brute Savage slain by a gorgeous babe? Hogan will win, not because he is the better wrestler but because he is smarter and will defeat Savage psychologically. In fact, Elizabeth has already done Hogan’s dirty work. She has turned an independent maverick into a sulking, woman-whipped pansy. All Hogan has to say is he’s seen Elizabeth naked and Savage will faint dead away.”
- Stu himself picks Savage. “I’ve seen ‘The Look’ before. That’s the point in the match when Hogan decides he’s had enough punishment. His hands clench at his sides, his eyes bulge, and his lips round off like they’re sucking spaghetti. There is going to come a time in this match when Hogan gets The Look. But this time, Savage will counter it. Hogan is beatable, and Savage will find a way. If he survives The Look, he’ll keep his belt.”
Next, No Holds Barred with David Rosenbaum, where were Dave rakes Tony Atlas over the coals for failing to appear in Puerto Rico to testify in the murder case in which Jose Huertas Gonzalez was charged with killing Frank Goodish, a.k.a. Bruiser Brody. “We tried in all our power subpoena him in Texas,” said prosecuting attorney Danny Lopez-Soto, “but I suppose he was scared to come to Puerto Rico.” Between the murder and the trial, it should be noted, Atlas moved from Texas to Maine. Dave called up Atlas on the phone and asked him if he received the subpoena. Atlas says, “Not to my knowledge. Are you guys gonna keep rehashing this? Brody is dead, and there’s nothing anybody can do about it. Now don’t you want to know about the ICW World championship I just won?” Dave closes the article by saying, “Back in July, Atlas spoke so admiringly about Brody. He talked about the first time they met and how they had been friends. Unfortunately, their friendship wasn’t enough for Atlas to come forward and speak.”
Next, Matt Brock looks at Lex Luger. The big news in the NWA is that Rick Steamboat has returned. Suddenly, Lex Luger is the forgotten man, and Steamboat has replaced the Total Package as Ric Flair’s arch-nemesis. Matt says that in reality, however, Luger had plenty of title shots against Flair in 1988, and he blew them all and is no longer worthy of another. “Let me be the first one to stand up and say it: Lex Luger will not win a world title before the end of the decade.” Brock says Luger is out of place in the NWA anyway. It’s a wrestling organization more befitting men like Harley Race, the Briscos, Ric Flair, and the Funks, not musclemen like Luger. He’s a fish out of water, and his place is the WWF where physique equals success. “I’d put him a notch or two above Hulk Hogan, and way above the Ultimate Warrior. He still has some catching up to do as far as Randy Savage is concerned, though.” Matt says it’s time for Luger to realize where his strengths lie and move on.
Next, Off the Top Rope with Eddie Ellner, who says that with Ted Turner purchasing the NWA, wrestling is about to see the biggest promotional war since Coke versus Pepsi. Onto the mailbag. Felicia from Rayne, Louisiana says she loves the Top Guns and asks Eddie to forward a letter to them: “Hi! I love your awesome, wild bodies! How strong are you guys? You look younger than 24. Are you going to the WWF? I watch wrestling all the time on TV. I think it’s awesome. Do you both have a woman? I would love to meet you in person. I like swimming, roller skating, bowling and much more too. You Top Guns are great. Good luck and write back soon.” Eddie says if this keeps up, he may soon have to announce is resignation as a columnist and become a manager for PWI’s new personal ad department. (Does anyone under 35 even know what personal ads are anymore? You see, kids, before internet dating sites, people looking for dates would write a few sentences about themselves and have it published in the newspaper along with some info about the kind of person they wanted to hook up with.) Meanwhile, Gregory from Brooklyn says Eddie was offbase when he said the Ultimate Warrior was just a lump of muscle. Greg says the Warrior could crush Sting because WWF athletes are superior. He also adds that Hogan is superior to Sting and Lex Luger. Eddie says Hogan spends more time flexing than wrestling, and he should have spent more time aiding his tag team partner in the Megapowers versus Twin Towers match in Milwaukee as opposed to pretending to be a doctor when Elizabeth was injured. Lastly, Ryan “Ace” Wolford from Richland Hills, Texas says Eddie is his idol and says he hopes to one day be a wrestling reporter too. Eddie says Ace better get used to being late with the rent and disappointing his girlfriend. “If you want to be like me, Ace, you’ll need all the aces your sleeve can fit.”
Next, an article about Dustin Rhodes who says, “I have to stand by my father to be a man.” So Dusty Rhodes has returned to Florida, and his 19-year-old son Dustin, who had just joined the NWA the month before, has left the NWA to help his father in the Sunshine State. “My old man was always there when I need him,” Dustin says, “And now he needs me.” PWI notes that Dustin is taking a risk. He could have stayed in the NWA and proven that he could make it on his own. But Dustin insists there’s plenty of time for that in the future. “I can’t turn my back on my dad now. My time will come later. I’m not doing this for myself. I’m doing this because I love my dad.”
We move on to a Press Conference with the NWA World tag team champions, the Road Warriors, who say they’re mad as hell, and they’re not going to take it anymore. They’re in the midst of a feud against the Varsity Club, which the announcers did a good job of selling as a group of privileged, collegiately trained wrestlers versus a pair of street brawlers from the South Side of Chicago. The Warriors say they’ve wrestled scaffold matches with broken bones, and they’re not afraid of any school pansies. Bill Apter, however, points out that the Warriors lost the AWA tag team title to Jimmy Garvin and Steve Regal, a team reminiscent in some ways of the Varsity Club. The Warriors say that was a bogus decision and there’s no way the Varsity Club could replicate that. “We snack on danger and dine on death.”
Breaking news! Larry Zbyszko has won the AWA World title… in a Battle Royal! (It turns out that banging the boss’s daughter has its perks.) So Jerry Lawler was stripped of the AWA championship when he failed to defend it when asked, vacating the championship. The AWA then set up an 18-man battle royal in St. Paul to crown a new champion on February 7, and to the shock of everyone, Larry Zbyszko, who had spent most of 1988 off the grid wrestling in dark matches and was once suspended from the AWA for life, outlasted Akio Sato, Steve Ray, Wayne Bloom, Derrick Dukes, Mike Enos, Tommy Jammer, Pat Tanaka, Tom Zenk, Paul Diamond, Greg Gagne, Ken Patera, Ricky Rice, Wahoo McDaniel, Manny Fernandez, Sgt. Slaughter, Colonel DeBeers, and Mike George to be the last man standing and new AWA champ. (A “who’s who of wrestling” according to the announcers.) Specifically, Zbyszko eliminated Slaughter for what looked like the win, only for Zenk, who was previously thrown through the ropes, to reappear and nearly pin Zbyszko (a valid way to win this battle royal) before Larry threw him out too. “Now I call the shots,” Zbyszko says. “Tell Blackburn to stick that in his pipe and smoke it.” (I watched this battle royal on TV and remember thinking Sgt. Slaughter was going to win the thing. How foolish was I? Can you imagine a major wrestling organization putting the title on an over-the-hill Bob Remus in 1989?)
Next, Media Review: Just imagine: Hulk Hogan versus Randy Savage with no disqualifications, no outside interference, and you’re in control! It’s all possible with the new Nintendo compatible game, WrestleMania, distributed by Acclaim, one of 20 companies licensed by Nintendo to manufacture and distribute games for the system. The game was designed by the Rare Group which studied nearly 40 hours of WWF tapes and chose six wrestlers, which is all the game’s memory could hold: Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, The Honky Tonk Man, Ted DiBiase, Andre the Giant, and Bam Bam Bigelow. (The magazine notes that Bigelow, no longer with the WWF, was chosen because of his colorful outfit and tattoos.) The game can be played by one or two players and even features a WrestleMania tournament. “This is the most complex and realistic wrestling game out there,” says Steve Lux, Acclaim Marketing Manager. (Lux lies. The game “Pro Wrestling,” developed and released by Nintendo two years prior, was way superior, as it included better gameplay, a referee, a camera man, a crowd, and outside the ring action, all of which WrestleMania lacked. Plus, if you worked your way up the ladder and defeated the champion, who looked suspiciously like Ric Flair, you got to defend the championship against everyone once apiece before squaring off against a rival champion, who looked suspiciously like Tiger Mask, to unify the Video Wrestling Association and Video Wrestling Federation championships. And let me tell you, that rival champion was one bad dude.)
Moving on, we learn that WWF’s February 3rd Main Event drew an 11.6 rating and 19 share, which means it was watched by about 10.5 million households. Unfortunately, that put it second in its timeslot and put it in the bottom third of all network prime-time shows. By comparison, the previous week, NBC aired Father Dowling Mysteries in the same slot, and it picked up a 14.3 rating and a 25 share. PWI also grouses that NBC cut away to commercials for nearly five minutes after Hogan brought Elizabeth back to the dressing room for medical attention, and that fans missed much of the action between Savage and the Twin Towers in the ring. (This is true. Today if you watch it, you won’t even realize how much you didn’t see because the original commercial break has been cut, but I remember sitting in front of the Megapowers corner watching the match live, and Hogan was gone a long time.) The magazine concludes the article by saying NBC needs to learn that wrestling isn’t a sitcom, and if they can’t air a complete match without commercials, the sport is better off looking toward independent stations or cable outlets as alternatives. (Raw rolls on.)
Next, coverage of the historic British Bulldogs versus Rock ‘n’ Roll Express dream match that happened in Kansas City. The match was put together by famed promoter Bob Geigel who realized that after the Bulldogs had left the WWF and the Express had left the NWA, he could put both teams together. Going into the match, both teams promised a fast-paced match with incredible action. “Remember,” Robert Gibson said, “Dynamite hurt his back a few years ago. He may say he’s fully recovered, but a few dropkicks to the back and he could be finished.” As it turns out, they instead wrestled to a 30 minute time limit draw in a mat based confrontation full of headlocks that bored the crowd. After the match, the Bulldogs were asked why they didn’t try more high flying stuff. “Let Dynamite and I be the judge of what works,” said Davey Boy Smith. “We knew early that the fancy stuff wasn’t going to work so we made an adjustment.” When the Rock ‘n’ Roll were asked why they changed their game plan, Gibson said, “We just wanted to prove we could match them hold for hold, and that’s exactly what we did.”
Next, Ratings, where Randy Savage is closing in a perfect 100 points in the cumulative ratings (signifying a year at #1) and can likely achieve it with a victory over Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania V.
And onto Arena Reports… featuring a thrilling six-man tag where Hulk Hogan teamed up with Jim Duggan and Ronnie Garvin to take on the Rougeaus and Dino Bravo. (More on this in a future issue.)
And The Wrestling Enquirer…
Jose Gonzalez was found not guilty in Bruiser Brody’s murder case after a jury deliberated for an hour and 25 minutes. Prosecutor Danny Lopez Soto said, “It was not possible to convict Gonzalez without the testimony of [Tony] Atlas.”
Larry Zbyszko says he wants the AWA to lift Jerry Lawler’s ban so the fans can see who the real AWA champion is. Danny Spivey has jumped to the NWA and has joined the Varsity Club. Spivey is a graduate from the University of Georgia.
Roddy Piper will appear in a new talk show, cohosted by the AWA’s Lee Marshall, in which they will take calls from fans. It is scheduled to air on the FNN/Score cable network on Sunday nights. (I think they did one episode.)
In Calgary, Makhan Singh was named Stampede’s Wrestler of the Year in the annual awards given out by the western Canadian federation. Former British Commonwealth champ Johnny Smith won Junior Heavyweight of the Year, and Owen Hart (who has seemingly disappeared from wrestling) won Best Technical Wrestler. In Tokyo, New Japan officials have scheduled the first matches between amateur wrestlers from the Soviet Union and Japan to take place April 24 at the 64,000-seat Korakuen Stadium. And in Auckland, New Zealand, a fan club is trying to convince the WWF to let New Zealand host WrestleMania VI, which would be the first WrestleMania to take place outside the U.S. (Presumably, the Bushwackers would win the tag team title in the main event.)
And finally, this month’s PWI Fan Poll is about the Megapowers breakup. Did Hogan break the tenth commandment which reads, “Thou shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor”?