Category: WWF 1980s angles

Savage began his first WWF Heavyweight Title reign 25 years ago at WrestleMania IV

It was 25 years ago today in 1988 that the WWF Heavyweight Title tournament took place at WrestleMania IV.

The tournament came about after the infamous title switch during which Andre the Giant pinned Hulk Hogan and then attempted to bequeath the belt to the “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase. Then-WWF President Jack Tunney ruled that while Andre had indeed won the title, he could not hand it over to someone else, and thus had vacated the belt. Tunney ordered the champion to be determined at Mania IV.

These days, title tournaments are commonplace, but in 1988 in the WWF, there had not been a championship tourney Continue reading

Andre beat Hogan for the title – and gave the belt to DiBiase – 25 years ago today

On February 5, 1988 – 25 years ago today – I and tens of millions of others saw Hulk Hogan lose the WWF Heavyweight Title to Andre the Giant on NBC.

It was a huge moment, as Hogan had not been pinned since he returned the federation and won the belt in January 1984.

I was working at JCPenney outlet store in Billerica, MA, on a Friday night shift, and it killed me that I couldn’t see this big match on TV at home. But luckily, the store had a home electronics section, so I made my way over to the TVs when the match came on. About a dozen other people, mostly shoppers, also watched.

Andre, who had lost to Hogan the year before at WrestleMania III, got his revenge thanks to what at the time was a unique angle involving Continue reading

Two Christmas memories I have from the WWE

I don’t really associate pro wrestling with Christmas. Boston didn’t have holiday shows the way Dallas or other territories did.

However, having grown up watching WWF wrestling in the 1980s, there are two incidents that I do recall that occurred near Christmas: Continue reading

Jake “The Snake” got hurt for real during his babyface turn

The babyface turn of Jake “The Snake” Roberts in 1987 wasn’t known for a particularly inventive angle or hot feud, but rather for a series of shots that were brutal by even old ECW standards.

And the incident actually legitimately injured Roberts.

At the time, Roberts was hosting an interview segment called the Snake Pit. Original, huh? Typical of wrestling, after the runaway success of Piper’s Pit, the WWF went back to that well over and over. We had the Snake Pit, the Body Shop with Jesse Ventura, the Flower Shop with Adrian Adonis, Blackjack Mulligan’s BBQ Pit, and the Brother Love Show.

Back to my original point: Roberts had the Honky Tonk Man as a guest, and during the skit Continue reading

Lawler has a real heart attack; Fritz and Andre had fake ones

This world of wrestling we watch sure is a weird form of entertainment sometimes.

On Monday Night Raw, Jerry “The King” Lawler was taken out on a stretcher during the live broadcast after suffering a real-life heart attack.

Lawler’s woes are serious health concerns, and Michael Cole’s updates were somber.

But wrestling’s foolishness at times is brought upon by itself, so it’s no wonder that given Lawler’s very real circumstances, I am still thinking about the fake heart attack gimmicks I remember: Continue reading

The day the Islanders kidnapped Matilda, mascot for the British Bulldogs

For a brief period, Brock Lesnar appeared to have kidnapped Shawn Michaels this week on Monday Night Raw, before showing up at ringside with a broken Michaels over his shoulders.

The kidnapping angle brought back memories of perhaps the most famous heist in WWF history in 1988, when Bobby “The Brain” Heenan and the Islanders stole Matilda, the canine mascot of the British Bulldogs.

Heenan is hilarious during the Continue reading

Hacksaw Jim Duggan: Knocking out Andre in ’88 made me a main eventer

In a recent online radio interview on the Wrestling Observer website, Hacksaw Jim Duggan remembered his feud with Andre the Giant in 1988 as the biggest point of his career. The start of the program occurred when Duggan KO’d Andre with his 2×4 on TV.

“Knocking out Andre with a 2×4 Continue reading