Does anyone remember the live Piper’s Pits that occasionally were held during house shows in the 1980s?
One of my favorites that ended up on TV on WWF Prime Time Wrestling featured Piper, Cowboy Bob Orton, Paul Orndorff, and Salvatore Bellomo from the former Meadowlands Arena (now the Izod Center) in East Rutherford, NJ.
The house shows Pits tended to be a bit looser in language, as this clip shows Piper insulting Bellomo’s ethnic background in addition to that of the Junkyard Dog. But Piper is also hilarious, particularly when he gushes over the arrival of Orndorff.
Watch for Orndoff, Piper, and Orton exchanging what I like to call the “wrestling hug” — an exaggerated embrace that usually includes men slapping each other on the back. I’ve taught my three-year-old kid the wrestling hug. I intend to instruct the young lad on the proper form of Ivan Putski’s Polish Hammer next.
The clip also features a rare color commentary performance by Howard Finkel, who joins Gorilla Monsoon at ringside at the Meadowlands.
Probably the rowdiest of the house show Piper’s Pits involved Bruno Sammartino at Madison Square Garden, which had interesting implications for subsequent Boston Garden cards in 1986. More on that later.