Written by: Bob Colling
World Wrestling Federation House Show
From: Philadelphia, PA
Opening Contest: Steve Lombardi vs. Tony Garea: Lombardi works over Garea with strikes in the corner followed by a hip toss. Lombardi keeps Garea on the mat with a headlock. Lombardi shoulder blocks Garea, but Garea comes back with a crossbody for a two count. Garea keeps control with an arm bar. Garea shoulder blocks Lombardi and hits a dropkick after leapfrogging Lombardi. Lombardi forearms Garea against the ropes and counters a backdrop with a kick to the chest. Lombardi drives Garea down with a backbreaker for a two count. Lombardi rakes Garea’s face over the top rope. Lombardi rams Garea face first into the top turnbuckle and delivers a stomp to Garea’s face while he’s laying on the mat. Lombardi nearly wins with an inside cradle. Lombardi scoop slams Garea for a two count. Lombardi scoop slams Garea and heads to the top rope. Garea stops Lombardi with a press slam off the top rope. Garea works over Lombardi with stomps in the corner followed by a dropkick. Garea nearly wins with a sunset flip. Garea atomic drops Lombardi, and Lombardi goes shoulder first into the ring post. Garea continues to beat on Lombardi with right hands in the corner. Garea misses a middle rope twisting crossbody and Lombardi manages to pin Garea! (*1/2. It was a basic opening match, but they kept a decent pace and it didn’t feel like it was dragging along at any point. I’d imagine this is an upset and one of the biggest wins in Lombardi’s career.)
Second Contest: Butch Reed vs. Sivi Afi: Reed shoves Afi to the mat and taunts the crowd. Afi arm drags Reed a few times and keeps arm control on the mat. Afi works over Reed’s left arm with overhand strikes. Afi shoulder blocks Reed and runs into a high knee lift. Reed drops Afi with a thumb strike to his throat. Reed works over Afi with strikes in the corner. Reed knee strikes Afi coming out of the corner and delivers a few elbow drops for a two count. Reed chokes Afi over the top rope and slingshots Afi backwards to the mat. Reed boot scrapes Afi’s eyes and taunts the crowd. Reed elbows Afi and connects with a standing fist drop for a near fall. Reed keeps a front face lock on Afi, but Afi doesn’t let his arm fall three times. Afi powers out of the hold, but Reed eye rakes Afi. Reed delivers several strikes against the ropes. Afi counters a backdrop attempt with a kick to the chest. Afi hammers away on Reed followed by a headbutt to drop Reed. Afi delivers a headbutt to Reed’s lower midsection. Reed decks Afi with a clothesline and comes off the middle rope to hit another clothesline for the win. (*. Clearly an attempt to put Reed over in an extended squash match. Reed looked good, but there wasn’t much going on here.)
Third Contest: Mike Rotundo vs. Brutus Beefcake: Beefcake takes Rotundo down with an arm drag to start the match and taunts the fans. Beefcake scoop slams Rotundo and continues to taunt the fans. Beefcake hip tosses Rotundo and struts around. Beefcake tries for a cheap shot against the ropes, but Rotundo blocks and hits a scoop slam followed by arm drags causing Beefcake to bail to the floor. Rotundo yanks on Beefcake’s arm to maintain control of the contest. Beefcake breaks free and they hook arms driving each other to the mat, but Rotundo keeps control. Beefcake knee lifts Rotundo in the corner a few times and drives his knee into Rotundo’s midsection on the mat. Beefcake controls Rotundo with a chin lock. Rotundo misses a dropkick as Beefcake held onto the ropes. Beefcake stomps on Rotundo to keep control and delivers a scoop slam for a two count. Rotundo tries for a sunset flip and nearly wins the match. Beefcake throat thrust Rotundo and keeps control by choking Rotundo over the ropes. Beefcake lifts Rotundo up and manages to hit a backbreaker despite Rotundo delivering punches.
Beefcake beats on Rotundo with strikes in the corner. Beefcake misses a splash in the corner and Rotundo delivers a boot to the ribs. Rotundo blocks a kick and atomic drops Beefcake into the corner face first followed by an elbow drop for a two count. Rotundo hammers away on Beefcake in the corner. The referee stops Rotundo and that allows Beefcake to deliver a strike and gets a rollup on Rotundo with his feet on the ropes to win the match. (**. A decent match as they held my interest despite really not doing a whole lot. The finish was cheap, but I guess needed to happen. Beefcake plays the heel role fairly well. Rotundo is quite bland as a face.)
Fourth Contest: Honkytonk Man vs. SD Jones: Honky goes to the corner to avoid SD and his attempted jabs. Jones stomps on Honky’s back by delivering a stomp and a scoop slam for the early advantage. SD scoop slams Honky causing Honky to bail to the floor and regroup. Honky shoulder blocks SD but misses an elbow drop attempt. Jones takes some time to strut for the crowd. Honky decides to bail to the floor and walks up the aisle. Jones keeps arm control on Honky for a few moments. Honky decks Jones in the corner and keeps control with a closed fist. Honky elbows Jones to the mat followed by a few forearm drops. Honky pummels Jones with right hands against the ropes. Honky decks Jones with a right hand and dances to taunt the fans. Jones hits a crossbody coming off the ropes for a two count. Honky recovers and stomps on Jones to keep the advantage. Honky scoop slams Jones and leaps off the middle rope to deliver a fist drop for a two count. Honky keeps Jones with a neck vice on the mat, but Jones gets up and hammers away on Honky delivering a headbutt, too. Jones jabs Honky several times and Jones is fired up. Jones headbutts Honky but Honky stops Jones with an elbow strike. Honky plants Jones with a swinging neckbreaker to win the match. (1/2*. Jones showed some fire, but this was again just a match to give Honky momentum.)
Fifth Contest: Dan Spivey vs. Greg Valentine: Johnny V hits Spivey on his injured leg from behind allowing Valentine to get the cheap advantage. The referee sends Johnny V to the backstage area. Spivey continues to sell the injured left knee in the corner. Spivey fights Valentine off with right hands in the corner. Valentine overhand strikes Spivey in the corner. Spivey clotheslines Valentine followed by a snapmare. Valentine and Spivey trade strikes with Spivey getting the upper hand until Valentine knocks Spivey down with a strike to his injured leg. Valentine knee drops Spivey on the knee and a knee lift to his ribs. Valentine stands on Spivey’s knee. They begin to trade strikes again with Valentine sending Spivey through the ropes to the outside. Valentine stomps on Spivey and keeps control with a slow pace. Spivey drops Valentine with a spin kick using his free leg. Valentine regains the advantage with a headbutt to Valentine’s lower midsection. Valentine connects with a vertical suplex for a near fall. Spivey blocks Valentine’s attempt to land on top of him by getting his knees up. Spivey blocks a strike and hammers away on Valentine some more. Spivey drives Valentine into the corner face first and continues with left hand strikes. Spivey clotheslines Valentine in the corner. Brutus Beefcake is at ringside distracting Spivey. Spivey gets a sunset flip for a two count. Spivey hits a running bulldog and decks Beefcake off the apron. Valentine nearly wins with a rollup. Spivey scoop slams Valentine and misses an elbow drop coming off the ropes. Valentine tries for a figure four, but Spivey kicks Valentine into Beefcake and is able to pin Valentine. After the match, Beefcake storms the ring and attacks Spivey. Valentine and Beefcake beat on Spivey. Valentine locks in the figure four leg lock. Mike Rotundo finally comes out with his boot in hand and cleans house to save his partner. (**. It may be the first match to have any real sense of energy and interest in. I enjoyed the action here and Spivey did pretty well selling the knee injury and gets a good win over Valentine in the process.)
Backstage, Blackjack Mulligan is interviewed regarding his match with Jimmy Jack Funk. He says that Funk is embarrassing to his family. Mulligan is going to kick tail and win as best as he can. Mulligan says that nobody can stop him when he’s got his mind right. Mulligan is back and he’s going to do whatever he can to win the matches in short order.
Sixth Contest: Jimmy Jack Funk vs. Blackjack Mulligan: Mulligan gets Funk’s hat and is going toss it into the crowd, but Funk is begging him not to. Mulligan instead stomps on the hat and Funk goes to the outside upset. Funk wants Mulligan to take his spurs off. Funk attacks in the corner, but Mulligan quickly press slams Funk to the mat. Mulligan clotheslines Funk and Funk begs off in the corner. Mulligan continues to stomp Funk in the corner followed by a leaping elbow strike for the win. (NR. It’s less than a minute and it’s Mulligan kicking ass and going home. Mulligan seems to be over with the crowd. This wasn’t bad for what it was intended to be.)
Seventh Contest: Bret Hart & Jim Neidhart vs. Pedro Morales & Tito Santana: Neidhart and Morales kickoff the tag match with Morales getting a headlock on Neidhart. Morales comes off the ropes looking for a shoulder block, but Neidhart doesn’t budge. Neidhart misses a clothesline and Morales delivers a few strikes. Morales tags in Santana and Santana keeps control of the left arm. Santana elbows Hart off the apron and goes back to work on Neidhart. Hart gets tagged in and Santana backs away. Hart taunted Morales and is arm dragged by Santana causing Hart to bail to the floor to regroup. Santana holds onto a hammerlock, but Hart snapmares Santana only for Santana to hang onto the hammerlock. Morales enters and keeps control on Hart before tagging in Santana once again. Hart headbutts Santana, but Santana hits a leaping forearm strike for a near fall. Neidhart has Santana over his knee and Hart delivers a forearm shot for a two count. Hart keeps Santana on the mat with a sleeper hold. Santana gets to his feet and elbows free from Hart to stagger Hart. Hart nails Santana with a forearm strike.
Neidhart enters the ring and beats on Santana with an overhand strike. Neidhart drops Santana throat first over the top rope. Hart keeps a front face lock on Santana to prevent a tag to Morales. Neidhart distracts the referee to make sure Morales doesn’t get tagged in. Santana gets beat on by Neidhart in the corner. Neidhart rams Morales into Hart’s boot in the corner. Hart drives Santana down with a backbreaker and tags in Neidhart. Neidhart misses a slingshot splash from the apron. Morales gets the hot tag and cleans house with strikes. Morales sends Neidhart into Hart and gets a rollup, but Hart breaks the cover. Morales backdrops Neidhart for a two count. Santana hammers away on Hart in the corner. Santana decks Neidhart and Morales puts a Boston Crab on Neidhart. Hart comes off the middle rope to axe handle Morales and Neidhart gets the pin. (**. There was some good energy here and the action wasn’t all that bad, really. I was quite surprised by that, honestly. Santana was really enjoyable here and hopefully isn’t low on the singles bar to get some attention.)
Backstage, Junkyard Dog is interviewed about King Harley Race. Dog doesn’t consider Race to be his king. Dog says that Race would be a champion if he’s a king. Dog reminds Race that he’s in South Philadelphia. Dog will make sure that Race doesn’t go around calling himself a king after tonight.
Eighth Contest: King Harley Race vs. Junkyard Dog: Dog hammers away on Race to fight out of the corner and drops Race with a headbutt. Race bails to the floor to regroup with Heenan. Race shoulder rams Dog in the corner a few times before taking Dog down with a snapmare. Race connects with a falling headbutt, but that impacts Race more than Dog. Dog delivers a few crawling headbutts for a two count. Race gets out of a headlock with a few strikes against the ropes. Race hooks Dog and connects with a belly to belly suplex for a near fall. Race continues with an elbow drop for a near fall. Race knee drops Dog, but Dog fires back with strikes. Dog jacks Race’s head between his legs and continues to deliver rights in the corner. Dog sends Race upside down into the corner and Race topples to the floor., Dog punches Race on the apron and delivers an overhand strike to cause Race to flip back into the ring. Dog puts a sloppy inside cradle on Race for a near fall. Dog punches Race over the top to the floor. Race eye rakes Dog followed by more strikes. Dog tries for a slam and they both fall over the top to the floor. They trade strikes on the floor until Dog sends Race into the ring post face first. Dog rolls into the ring but it looks like both men have been counted out. (*1/4. Not a great match by any means, but the finish was at least different. The suplex spot to the floor was pretty cool and justified the double count-out spot.) After the match, Race beats on Dog after Dog had gotten his crown and was distracted by Heenan. Race delivers a few knee drops. Dog is left laying.
Backstage, Billy Jack Haynes is interviewed regarding his match with Hercules. Danny Davis will be the referee for the match. Haynes thanks Philadelphia for all their support and knows that Davis cost him the WWF Intercontinental Championship. Haynes is going to be dealing with Heenan, Hercules and Davis tonight. Haynes is in the best shape of his life and doesn’t do anything illegal. He’s just trying to make a living and he’s going to do that tonight.
Ninth Contest: Hercules vs. Billy Jack Haynes: Hercules is stalling claiming that Haynes has a weapon in his attire, and Davis checks each time finding nothing in the process. Haynes backs Hercules into the corner, but Davis backs him off and shoves Haynes. Haynes shoves Davis back. Hercules knee lifts Haynes in the midsection and delivers a few strikes. Hercules shoulder blocks Haynes and is met with a hip toss. Haynes connects with a standing dropkick to send Hercules rolling to the floor. Haynes shoulder blocks Hercules, but Hercules cuts off Haynes with a clothesline. Hercules decks Haynes with a clothesline. Haynes and Hercules trade right hands in the middle of the ring. Haynes press slams Hercules rather easily. Haynes elbow drops Hercules for a two count. Haynes hammers away on Hercules with right hands and chops against the ropes. Davis pulls Haynes off of Hercules against the ropes. Haynes accidentally decks Davis while punching Hercules. Heenan is on the apron and distracts Haynes. Hercules clubs Haynes from behind. They trade more right hands. Davis breaks them apart and calls for the bell. Davis has disqualified Haynes. (*1/2. I’m digging Haynes and his presentation. His ability to press slam Hercules without any issue was cool. Clearly this is setting up some kind of showdown between Davis and Haynes.)
Tenth Contest: Iron Mike Sharpe vs. Jose Luis Rivera: Sharpe works over Rivera early on with strikes and a clothesline. Sharpe dumps Rivers through the ropes to the floor. Sharpe rams Rivera face first into the table at ringside. Sharpe misses a splash in the corner hitting the turnbuckles chest first. Rivera fights back with right hands and Sharpe begs off. Sharpe stops Rivera with an overhand strike. Sharpe scoop slams Rivera for a two count. Rivera tries for a rollup, but Sharpe gets out of it. Rivera stops Sharpe with a backslide and wins the match. (NR. Well, I was not expecting that. Sharpe bullied Rivera around and I was liking that. The shock win felt a little flat here for me.)
Eleventh Contest: Cpl. Kirchner vs. Kamala: They run the ropes with Kamala shoulder blocking Kirchner a couple of times. Kamala blocks a slam and knocks Kirchner down with a few strikes. Kamala headbutts Kirchner and chokes him on the mat for a few moments. Kamala delivers a throat thrust to drop Kirchner. Kirchner clotheslines Kamala in the corner. Kirchner misses a dropkick attempt and Kamala delivers a quick big splash. Kamala runs the ropes and delivers another splash for the win. (NR. Kamala dominating and seems to be destined for a push. Fans are clearly buying into the act.) After the match, Kamala goes to the top rope and hits a big splash on Kirchner!
Main Event: WWF World Champion Hulk Hogan vs. Paul Orndorff in a steel cage match: Orndorff attacks before the bell and whips Hogan with the championship. Orndorff tears off Hogan’s t-shirt and chokes Hogan with the shirt along with stomps to the midsection. Orndorff tries to leave through the door, but Hogan grabs his foot. Orndorff continues to stomp on Hogan and drives Hogan face first to the canvas. Orndorff tries to escape through the cage door again, but Hogan grabs his boot again. Orndorff kicks Hogan away. Orndorff misses a few forearm drop attempts. Hogan hammers away on Orndorff followed by an eye rake. Hogan sends Orndorff into the cage face first. Hogan climbs the cage, but Orndorff stops Hogan with a strike. Hogan drops to the canvas as Heenan is locking the cage door. Orndorff delivers another elbow strike. Hogan blocks being rammed into the corner face first. Hogan drives Orndorff face first into the corner several times and Hogan’s fired up. Hogan tries to kick the door, but it’s locked. Orndorff stops Hogan with a knee strike in the corner. Orndorff climbs the top of the cage, but Hogan stops Orndorff on the top of the cage! Hogan punches Orndorff several times and has Orndorff hanging over the top ramming his face into the cage!
Hogan chokes Orndorff with his shirt, but Orndorff eye rakes Hogan to break free. Orndorff clotheslines Hogan and uses the ropes to stay on his feet. Orndorff begins to climb again, but Hogan stops Orndorff with right hands. Hogan decks Orndorff with right hands and chops. Orndorff rams Hogan face first into the steel cage. Orndorff gets rammed into the cage face first. Hogan starts to gets a second wind. Orndorff stomps on Hogan, but Hogan isn’t selling it. They are both bleeding at this point. Hogan sends Orndorff into the cage face first. Hogan sends Orndorff into the cage again. Hogan rams Orndorff into the cage a few more times. Hogan bites Orndorff’s forehead. Hogan drives Orndorff down to the mat with a backbreaker and hits the leg drop, but the camera cut away. Heenan decks the referee and gets in the ring to stop Hogan! Hogan kicks Heenan away. Orndorff climbs the cage, but Hogan stops the challenger again. Hogan yanks Orndorff down and crotches Orndorff over the top rope. Hogan climbs the cage and Heenan tries to stop him, but Hogan drops to the floor before Orndorff can get his feet on the floor through the door! After the match, Hogan punches Orndorff on the floor and sends Orndorff into the cage door! (***1/4. I liked the match and it went under ten minutes. The crowd was hot for it and they did enough to hold my interest throughout. This match happened just a couple days before their televised SNME match.)
There were a few average undercard matches and a couple of fun extended squash matches ending with a heated main event. While the star ratings provided may not indicate this as a good show, I’ll give it an average rating. Kamala and Mulligan performances were fun and nothing felt overly long or dragged. That was likely helped with their being twelve matches on the card.
Thanks for reading.