The Wrestling Classic

From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

The Wrestling Classic
PromotionWorld Wrestling Federation
DateNovember 7, 1985[1]
CityRosemont, Illinois[1]
VenueRosemont Horizon[1]
Attendance14,000[1]
Pay-per-view chronology
← Previous
WrestleMania
Next →
WrestleMania 2

The Wrestling Classic was a professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE). It took place on November 7, 1985, at the Rosemont Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois in the United States. It was the promotion's second ever pay-per-view (after WrestleMania).

In the main event, WWF World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan defeated Rowdy Roddy Piper by disqualification to retain the title. The undercard featured a 16-man tournament, where The Junkyard Dog defeated Randy "Macho Man " Savage in the finals of the tournament. The event also included a fan competition for a Rolls-Royce.

Production[edit]

Background[edit]

Following the success of their first pay-per-view (PPV) WrestleMania, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE) scheduled a series of five special pay-per-view airings to be titled "WrestleVision".[2]

In a September 1985 interview with Electronic Media, Vince McMahon stated the first WrestleVision event would feature "the most prestigious wrestling tournament ever devised," and would feature Hulk Hogan and André the Giant. The subsequent four events were announced for January, March, May, and August 1986.[3]

The first WrestleVision event, The Wrestling Classic, was held on November 7, 1985, at the Rosemont Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois. It was the WWF's second-ever PPV produced following WrestleMania. However, unlike WrestleMania, The Wrestling Classic was a one-off event and the remaining four WrestleVision branded events did not take place as announced by McMahon.

Electronic Media stated in March 1986 that "WrestleVision, which followed [WrestleMania] in November, was something of a dud" and quoted McMahon as saying "all of our guns weren't loaded for WrestleVision as they were for WrestleMania" in reference to the remaining four events' cancelations. [4][1]

Storylines[edit]

The promotion of the event began on the October 5, 1985 episode of WWF Championship Wrestling, with Lord Alfred Hayes announcing that there would be a 16-wrestler tournament and that a fan would win a Rolls-Royce. On the same episode, Hayes announced a group of 16 wrestlers. Of the wrestlers announced, 15 of the original appeared in the tournament as initially announced with only Moondog Spot replacing The Missing Link (wrestler). Neither Hulk Hogan nor André the Giant appeared in the tournament as McMahon had announced to the press in September in his interview with Electronic Media.

The main feud heading into Wrestling Classic was between Hulk Hogan and Rowdy Roddy Piper, with the two battling over the WWF World Heavyweight Championship. In 1985, Piper became the top heel of the promotion after he spoke out against the burgeoning Rock 'n' Wrestling Connection, which led to a confrontation with Hogan.[5] In February, they faced each other at MTV special The War to Settle the Score for Hogan's WWF World Heavyweight title, in which Hogan retained his title by disqualification.[6] Their feud led to the development of WrestleMania. In the main event of the first-ever WrestleMania, Hogan and celebrity Mr. T defeated Piper and Paul Orndorff.[7] Hogan feuded with Piper and Cowboy Bob Orton for the rest of the year and often got disqualification victories over them,[8] leading to a WWF World Heavyweight title match between Hogan and Piper at the Wrestling Classic. Despite being for the Championship, this bout was not announced on WWF television until the October 26, 1985 edition of Championship Wrestling, less than two weeks prior to the event and the tournament took precedent in the promotion of the card.

Event[edit]

Other on-screen personnel
Role: Name:
Presenters Vince McMahon
Lord Alfred Hayes
Susan Waitkus
Commentators Gorilla Monsoon
Jesse Ventura
Gene Okerlund (tournament finals)
Interviewer Gene Okerlund
Ring announcer Howard Finkel
WWF President (figurehead) Jack Tunney

The card consisted of fifteen matches and included a 16-man tournament dubbed "The Wrestling Classic".

In the first round of the tournament, Adrian Adonis (with manager Jimmy Hart) defeated Corp. Kirchner with a DDT.

Dynamite Kid then faced Nikolai Volkoff (without manager Freddie Blassie); Dynamite Kid attacked Volkoff, who had just finished his customary singing of the Soviet national anthem, with a missile dropkick from the top turnbuckle and then quickly scored the pinfall in a match that lasted about six seconds (the official time given was nine seconds, equaling the record King Kong Bundy had set at WrestleMania).

Randy "Macho Man " Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) then defeated "Polish Power" Ivan Putski, though Savage had both his feet on the middle rope for leverage.

Ricky Steamboat faced Davey Boy Smith in a rare match pitting two fan favourites against each other. The match moved back and forth until Smith landed in the ropes trying attack Steamboat, but Steamboat sidestepped and Smith injured his groin and was unable to continue, so Steamboat was awarded the match by forfeit.

The Junkyard Dog then faced The Iron Sheik (like Volkoff, the Sheik appeared without Freddie Blassie). The match began with Sheik choking JYD with his jacket. He applied a camel clutch on JYD before releasing the hold. JYD quickly hit a headbutt on Sheik and pinned him to win the match.

Moondog Spot and Terry Funk's (with Jimmy Hart) match was next. It appeared that neither of them wanted to wrestle, so at Funk's suggestion they both left the ring. As Spot started to leave, Funk attacked him from behind and tried to re-enter the ring for a countout win, but Spot prevented him from entering the ring and himself won the match by countout after Funk backdropped him into the ring before the ten count.

WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion Tito Santana then faced Magnificent Muraco (with Mr. Fuji). Muraco appeared to have pinned Santana but as his feet were on the ropes, the match continued and Santana rolled up the surprised Muraco with a quick small package, scoring the pinfall. Santana suffered a groin injury that would hamper him later in the tournament.

The final match of the first round pitted Paul Orndorff against Cowboy Bob Orton. Orton was disqualified after he hit Orndorff with his cast.[1]

The quarterfinals began with Adrian Adonis facing Dynamite Kid. During the match, Adonis accidentally collided with his manager Jimmy Hart. Dynamite Kid took advantage and pinned Adonis to win the match.

Ricky Steamboat then faced off against Randy Savage. The referee was distracted by Miss Elizabeth as Savage took advantage and pulled out brass knuckles from his tights and hit Steamboat before pinning him to win the match.

The Junkyard Dog then defeated Moondog Spot after a head butt. Strangely, there was no referee for this match and JYD counted the 3 himself. Commentators Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura then announced that a judge was at ringside and that JYD's count was legal.

Tito Santana and Paul Orndorff fought to a double count-out, eliminating both wrestlers from the tournament in the process and allowing The Junkyard Dog to advance to the finals. This led to Bobby Heenan's $50,000 storyline bounty on Paul Orndorff not being collected.

Rowdy Roddy Piper challenged Hulk Hogan for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship at The Wrestling Classic.

In the main event, which was a non-tournament match, Hulk Hogan defended his WWF World Heavyweight Championship against Rowdy Roddy Piper. Hogan applied a bearhug on Piper. Piper responded with a sleeper hold. The referee was knocked out and Piper hit Hogan with a steel chair before Hogan applied a sleeper hold of his own on Piper. Bob Orton came out and hit Hogan with his cast. The referee saw this and disqualified Piper in the process. Piper and Orton continued to assault Hogan until Paul Orndorff came out and cleared the ring.[1]

The semi-final match between Randy Savage and Dynamite Kid was next. Dynamite Kid superplexed Savage off the top rope but Savage countered it into an inside cradle for the victory.

As part of the show, a fan competition was held. One of over 250,000 fans won a Rolls-Royce. This segment was cut from the Coliseum Home Video release for time. However, it was restored when the show aired on WWE Classics on Demand, WWE's archival video on demand service, as well as on the WWE Network.

In the finals of the tournament The Junkyard Dog wrestled Randy Savage. Shortly after the match began, Gene Okerlund joined the commentary team. JYD hit a back body drop on Savage off the top rope who landed on the arena floor. Savage was unable to get into the ring and was counted out. As a result, JYD won the match and the tournament.[1]

Aftermath[edit]

Many wrestlers received pushes by this tournament. The Junkyard Dog, the winner of this tournament got a push as he became the man to win the first-ever major tournament in WWF history. Randy "Macho Man" Savage went on to win both the WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship from Tito Santana on February 8, 1986 and the WWF World Heavyweight Championship in a similar tournament at WrestleMania IV in 1988.[9][10] Ricky Steamboat also won the WWF Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship, by defeating Savage at WrestleMania III in 1987.[11] Dynamite Kid and Davey Boy Smith who together were The British Bulldogs would go on to win the WWF Tag Team Championship at WrestleMania 2 in 1986.[12]

Results[edit]

No.Results[1]StipulationsTimes[1]
1Adrian Adonis (with Jimmy Hart) defeated Corporal KirchnerFirst round tournament match3:20
2Dynamite Kid defeated Nikolai VolkoffFirst round tournament match0:09
3Randy Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) defeated Ivan PutskiFirst round tournament match2:45
4Ricky Steamboat defeated Davey Boy Smith by forfeitFirst round tournament match2:53
5Junkyard Dog defeated The Iron SheikFirst round tournament match3:25
6Moondog Spot defeated Terry Funk (with Jimmy Hart) by countoutFirst round tournament match0:27
7Tito Santana defeated Magnificent Muraco (with Mr. Fuji)First round tournament match4:17
8Paul Orndorff defeated Cowboy Bob Orton by disqualificationFirst round tournament match6:28
9Dynamite Kid defeated Adrian Adonis (with Jimmy Hart)Quarter final tournament match6:00
10Randy Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) defeated Ricky SteamboatQuarter final tournament match4:00
11Junkyard Dog defeated Moondog SpotQuarter final tournament match0:45
12Tito Santana vs. Paul Orndorff ended in a double countout*Quarter final tournament match8:00
13Hulk Hogan (c) defeated Roddy Piper by disqualificationSingles match for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship7:00
14Randy Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) defeated Dynamite KidSemi-final tournament match5:00
15Junkyard Dog defeated Randy Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) by countout*Tournament finals match9:00
(c) – the champion(s) heading into the match
  • Following the double countout in the match between Tito Santana and Paul Orndorff, The Junkyard Dog advanced to the finals with a BYE.

Tournament bracket[edit]

Pin – pinfall, Ref – referee's decision, CO – countout, DQ – disqualification, DCO – double countout.

First round Quarterfinals Semi-finals Final
            
Adrian Adonis   03:22  
Corporal Kirchner Pin
Adrian Adonis   06:00  
Dynamite Kid     Pin
Dynamite Kid     0:09
Nikolai Volkoff Pin
Dynamite Kid       05:00  
Randy Savage Pin
Ivan Putski 2:47
Randy Savage Pin
Randy Savage 4:00
Ricky Steamboat Pin
Ricky Steamboat Ref
Davey Boy Smith 2:53
Randy Savage   9:00  
Junk Yard Dog      CO
Iron Sheik Pin
Junk Yard Dog 3:25
Junk Yard Dog 0:45
Moondog Spot Pin
Moondog Spot CO
Terry Funk 0:17
Junk Yard Dog
BYE
Tito Santana Pin
Magnificent Muraco 4:17
Tito Santana 8:00
Paul Orndorff DCO
Bob Orton DQ
Paul Orndorff 6:28

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "The Wrestling Classic results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
  2. ^ ""Professional wrestling getting an additional boost"". Electronic Media. Crain Communications. 1985-09-16. p. 2. Retrieved May 27, 2023.
  3. ^ Tedesco, Richard (1985-09-16). ""PPV wrestling package planned"". Electronic Media. Crain Communications. p. 4. Retrieved May 27, 2023.
  4. ^ Tedesco, Richard (1986-03-10). ""Football players join wrestling event"". Electronic Media. Crain Communications. p. 5. Retrieved May 27, 2023.
  5. ^ Milner, John (2005-03-22). "Rowdy Roddy Piper". Slam! Sports. Canadian Online Explorer. Archived from the original on July 13, 2012. Retrieved 2008-05-25.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  6. ^ "The War to Settle the Score results". Wrestling Supercards and Tournaments. Retrieved 2008-05-23.
  7. ^ "WrestleMania I official results". WWE. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
  8. ^ Cawthon, Graham (2013). the History of Professional Wrestling Vol 1: WWF 1963 - 1989. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. ISBN 978-1492825975.
  9. ^ "Randy Savage's first Intercontinental Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
  10. ^ "Randy Savage's first WWE Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
  11. ^ "Ricky Steamboat's first Intercontinental Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved 2008-05-25.
  12. ^ "British Bulldogs' first World Tag Team Championship reign". WWE. Retrieved 2008-05-25.

External links[edit]