WWF February 1988: Yearly Review
World Wrestling Federation February 1988:
WWF World Championship Scene: (held by Hulk Hogan)
At the Main Event on February 5th, the showdown between Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant occurred. At the end of the night, the WWF had quite the controversy. Andre had “won” the championship after pinning Hogan, despite the fact that Hogan had clearly kicked out at the count of one. The referee, who was Dave Hebner’s twin Earl, was part of the screw job which saw Andre win the championship and give the title to Ted DiBiase.
However, due to what happened, WWF President Jack Tunney ended up vacating the championship and sets up a fourteen man tournament to crown a undisputed WWF World Champion. The fourteen wrestlers to compete in the tournament were the following: Hulk Hogan, Ted DiBiase, Andre the Giant, Randy Savage, Jim Duggan, Don Muraco, Dino Bravo, Greg Valentine, Ricky Steamboat, Butch Reed, One Man Gang, Bam-Bam Bigelow, Rick Rude, and Jake Roberts.
It should be noted that Ted DiBiase was billed as the WWF World Champion on several occasions before the title was held vacant. DiBiase retained the title over Bam-Bam Bigelow, who was helping Hulk Hogan fight DiBiase and Andre at various shows.
WWF Intercontinental Championship Scene: (held by the Honky Tonk Man)
Honky Tonk Man ended his feud with Randy Savage at the Main Event on February 5th, as Savage defeated the champion by count-out. Despite not winning the championship, Savage had won the feud.
Honky would start up a feud with Brutus Beefcake on the February 16th taping of WWF Superstars. During a interview segment, Beefcake cut off Honky and proclaimed that he would be not only taking the WWF Intercontinental Championship from Honky but he would also cut off Honky’s ponytail.
WWF World Tag Team Championships (held by Strike Force):
Strike Force battled the Hart Foundation at the Main Event on February 5th in a rematch from the October Saturday Night Main Event. The match wasn’t actually shown in its entirety because of time constraints, but Strike Force were able to retain the titles.
At the February 16th taping of WWF Superstars it was announced that Strike Force would defend the WWF World Tag Team Championships against Demolition at Wrestle Mania IV. Demolition had been on a winning streak ever since their debut in March 1987.
– Ultimate Warrior vs. Hercules was announced for WWF Wrestle Mania IV. They had been feuding since January where Hercules and Warrior had several battles centered around Hercules chain.
– Dino Bravo and Ricky Steamboat fought to several time limit draws on the house show market. After each draw, Bravo would attack Steamboat along with his manager Frenchy Martin until Steamboat was able to clear both men out of the ring.
The Main Event drew a 15.2 rating on NBC