Torch Flashbacks PWTORCH NEWSLETTER FLASHBACK - 1st WWF Summerslam (08-29-88): Keller's report on Hogan & Savage vs. Andre & DiBiase, Warrior wins IC Title from HTM, Sugar Ray
Aug 18, 2012 - 3:37:22 PM
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First-Ever WWF Summerslam PPV Report
August 29, 1988
New York City at MSG
Report by PWTorch editor Wade Keller
(1) The British Bulldogs and the Fabulous Rougeaus fought to a 20-minute draw. The match was a typical well-worked tag team encounter. It was nothing special, but above WWF standards. The Bulldogs "crotched" Raymond over the top rope. Then, Davey Boy pressed Dynamite over his head and tossed him head-first on top of Raymond. Before the referee could start a count, the bell rang signaling that the time limit had expired. The Bulldogs chased the Rougeaus back to the dressing room, setting up a series of bouts around the horn. (Grade B+)
(2) Bad News Brown pinned Ken Patera clean in the middle of the ring after a Ghetto Blaster. Bad News attacked Patera before the bell. Patera made the comeback and tried to get heat from the crowd. He got none. Patera went to hus Full Nelson, but Brown quickly took over and went on to victory. There was nothing wrong with the match, except for Patera, but it was nothing special either. (Grade D+)
(3) Rick Rude defeated Junkyard Dog via DQ when Jake Roberts interfered. Late in the match, JYD was on the mat and Rick Rude scaled to the top rope. Rick pulled his trunks down (the ones with paintings of JYD on front and back) to his knees, revealing a second pair of trunks - this pair with Cheryl Roberts painted on it. Rude came down on the Dog, but Jake Roberts soon rushed to the ring and attacked Rude, causing a DQ and assuring us that there will be more matches between the two. (Grade D)
(4) Powers of Pain (w/Baron Von Raschke) pinned The Bolsheviks. The Powers looked very good for the national audience, but they're still not up to par with the Warriors. In the end, Warlord powerslammed Boris, who was then met with a flying headbutt from the Barbarian, who pinned him. The Powers posed after the bout. (Grade B)
(5) Ultimate Warrior pinned The Honky Tonk Man in less than 30 seconds to win the Intercontinental Title. It was announced earlier that Ron Bass injured Brutus earlier in the week and that Beefcake would not be able to wrestle. HTM then challenged anyone else to try to take his title. Ultimate was the replacement and won after a clothesline and bodysplash. HTM went down for three. The fans popped when Ultimate ran to the ring and they popped at the end of the match. (Grade No Rating)
Next came Brother Love's long awaited segment with his special guest who had never been in Madison Square Garden before. Out came none other than Hacksaw Duggan. Yes, that's it. A guy who has wrestled at MSG dozens of times. Duggan shouted to the crowd for several minutes and then forced Brother Love back to the dressing room. Obviously, whoever they planned to have didn't show up and Duggan was a last-second replacement. The segment was entertaining, but certainly not a bombshell.
(6) Dino Bravo pinned Don Muraco clean in the middle of the ring after a sideslam. No heat. Little action. Missed moves. (Grade D-)
(7) WWF tag champions Demolition defeated Hart Foundation when Smash Darsow pinned Bret Hart. Hart had Smash set up for a piledriver, when Jimmy Hart, at ringside with Mr. Fuji, gave his megaphone to Axe Eadie, who hit Bret with it from behind. Darsow fell on top of Hart for the three count to retain their titles. The match was about as good as the Bulldogs-Rougeaus opening match. The Hart Foundation played total babyfaces. (Grade B)
(8) Big Bossman pinned Koko B. Ware in less of a squash than was expected. They let Koko get over to a certain extent, and he even nailed Bossman with a perfect top rope dropkick. However, Bossman threw off Koko at two and then went on to "Bubba Slam" Koko for the three count. (Grade C)
(9) Jake Roberts pinned "The Designated Jobber" Hercules Hernandez after executing his DDT. Jake seemed to be over big and owned the crowd. (Grade C)
(10) Randy Savage & Hulk Hogan defeated Ted DiBiase & Andre the Giant in the main event. Jesse Ventura was referee and played it straight until the last second of the match. Before the bout, Savage and Hogan had an argument over who should start, hinting at an eventual turn. Savage finally opened the ropes for Hogan to leave. The match was good and just as expected. Near the end, both Savage and Hogan were out of the ring. Jesse was in the middle of the ring counting them out when Elizabeth climbed on the ring apron. Jesse, seeing the threatening figure on the apron, stopped the count to get her on the floor. Liz then pulled her skirt off revealing her bikini shorts. DiBiase and Andrew watched in amazement as Heenan protested the count stoppage. Hogan and Savage then "mega-shook hands" and re-entered the ring. In the end, Andre was out of the picture and Ted was on the mat. Hogan put his foot over DiBiase's throat and Savage came off the top rope with his elbow. Then, Hogan rebounded off the ropes and leg-dropped DiBiase. Hogan covered DiBiase. Jesse very slowly slapped the mat two times, and then Savage forced Jesse's hand to the mat for the third time. Hogan and Savage posed for the crowd. The match was well-coordinated and the script was interesting. (Grade B+)
NOTES: Overall, the card was too long, but kept my interest a lot better than WrestleMania Four. I liked the HTM-Warrior angle. The reason I called it Summerslamadvertisement is that during interrmision, they plugged Titan Sports's next PPV venture - the Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Don Lalonde boxing match in November. Vince McMahon is in charge of the PPV end of this event, and he took advantage of every second he had. Sugar Ray was interviewed and highlights were shown o each man. They also hyped Survivor Series II for Thanksgiving. ... Superstar Graham and Gorilla Monsoon did commentary. Superstar was bearable, but still not good at all. ... The card was enjoyable, but too long. However, it's numbers that count and I'm sure the PPV gross was very good. (***)
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