WWWF From Madison Square Garden – February 2, 1976

Coming two of about two weeks removed from the last All Star show, we go to MSG for this house show. Our main event is Bobo Brazil & Tony Parisi facing Crusher Blackwell and Bugsy McGraw, which should be good. Nothing has changed in the title picture so far this year, but never know what happens in New York City. Let’s go to the ring.

1. Frank Monti v. Pete Sanchez

Pete Sanchez was impressive in the match with Ernie Ladd a couple weeks ago, let’s see how he does with someone about the same size. Monti gets a cheap shot in as the ref was checking Pete, and that sure angers the crowd. Sanchez gets chokes on the ropes and clobbered by Monti, who keeps the pressure on the popular Sanchez. The crowd able to get Sanchez back in the match and he dropkicks Monti then a clubbing blow to the midsection takes Monti down. Monti tries to beg off and is able to slow the match down, but Sanchez still keeps the advantage. Monti with a side headlock, but get shot in and comes back with a shoulderblock to knock down Sanchez, Monti off the ropes and eats a dropkick. Sanchez takes Monti down with a side headlock and pops him one across the face. Vince McMahon is very quiet sometimes on commentary, unlike now where the commentators never shut up. Flying headscissors from Sanchez and right back to the headlock, Monti gets tossed into the turmbuckle, which really makes the ropes shake. Funny how loose the ropes were back then, as Monti gets a shot in to break the headlock and unloads on the fan favorite. Monti chokes Sanchez on the top rope and slingshots him down for a near fall. Monti misses a dropkick and that’s what Sanchez needed to make his comeback, backdropping Monti and unloads on him. Sanchez tosses Monti to the corner and charges in. but runs into the big boot and gets pinned!

1. Frank Monti pinned Pete Sanchez 2.25/5

A good opening match but the end came out of nowhere, which seemed odd. Good start to the show though as we move on to our next match.

2. Francisco Flores v. Louis Cyr

Francisco is recognized as the Mexican champion, according to Vince, while Louis is called the strongest man in the world. Guess Dino Bravo was a huge fan. The referee orders Blassie out of the ring, as the bell rings, and we’re underway. Lockup and Cyr powers Flores to the ropes and nails him hard, Flores comes back with an top wristlock, Cyr pulls the hair to take Flores to the mat and the referee separates them. Flores sweeps the leg and almost steals the pin, as Cyr didn’t realize his shoulders were down. Cyr again powers out and a shoulderblock sends Flores down, a second attempt fails as Flores catches him in a hiptoss. Cyr takes Flores down a series of rights, and unloads on him, Flores meets the turnbuckle hard and gets choked on the mat. Flores has had enough and delivers a series of forearms to stagger the bigger man. Cyr shot hard into the turnbuckle but catches Flores coming in and takes him down again. Cyr stomps the midsection of Flores and then pulls him, sends him into the ropes and a headbutt to the midsection leads to a slow two count. Flores comes back with a series of headbutts and a big splash gets a near fall as the crowd explodes. Cyr whips Flores in and gets a big knee in, and repeats the spot, then slams Flores but misses a flipping splash. Flores off the ropes and misses a splash of his own. Flores sent into the ropes and eats the big boot and follows up with a shoulderbreaker for the world’s slowest three count.

2. Louis Cyr over Francisco Flores **

A slow moving match, but not bad. The super slow counting referee was annoying though. What was the point of that?

3. Spiros Arion v. Kevin Sullivan

Sullivan is a lot smaller then Spiros who towers over him as the bell rings. Sullivan with a side headlock and Spiros makes the ropes to break the hold. Right back to the headlock and gets sent in, we get the classic criss cross and Sullivan with a hiptoss. A slam sends Spiros to the mat, and Spiros looks surprised by that. Back to the headlock and Spiros gets him in the ropes and unloads on Sullivan but Sullivan fires back and knocks Spiros down. Another side headlock from Sullivan who hammers the back of the neck of Spiros. Sullivan sends Spiros to the corner and charges in, but runs into the boot. Spiros with an atomic drop and scores the pin.

3. Spiros Arion pinned Kevin Sullivan *

Lots of side headlocks, and not much else to the match. No botches at least, but not exciting at all.

4. Domenic Denucci v. Ernie Ladd

Denucci is best known for training Shane Douglas and Mick Foley. Ladd does his best stalling job, as he slowly removes his ring jacket while jawing with front row fans. They finally lock up and make the ropes, and we get a clean break. Domenic fires off with a series of rights and lefts sending Ernie to the corner. Ladd slowly gets up and they lock up, Ladd hiptosses Domenic down and chokes Denucci. Ladd hammers Denucci in the corner but Denucci reverses and unloads. Denucci rams Ernie’s head into the turnbuckle, but the ref pulls him back and allows Ladd out of the corner. Denucci with an armbar and works over the arm, but makes the ropes and Ladd trips Denucci before choking him again. Ernie Ladd continues to work over Denucci with forearms and chokes but gets caught by the ref. Denucci in all sorts of trouble as Ladd is beating him around the ring, but Denucci makes the comeback with a series of shots in the corner. Referee pulls hum out of the corner, as Ladd pulls the foreign object from his rights. Denucci charges in and Ladd pops him then pins him with his feet on the ropes.

4. Ernie Ladd pinned Domenic Denucci ***

A good match that went back and forth, better then I anticipated with Denucci. Ladd was always good in the ring and would’ve been a huge star nowadays.

5. Ivan Koloff v. Ivan Putski

Koloff accompanied to the ring by Captain Lou Albano, is a former champion now relegated to a Putski match. Lockup and Koloff into the ropes, both men collide and no one moves. Koloff off the ropes and a shoulderblock on Putski, but he doesn’t move. Koloff powers Putski to the ropes but gets shoved across the ring by Putski. Test of strength and Koloff with a shot to the midsection takes Putski down, but Putski returns and goes down again. Putski just lifts Koloff up with ease and plants him on the top turnbuckle before knocking him down. Koloff has had enough and unloads on Putski before stomping him to the mat, Koloff rams Putski into the turnbuckle multiple times. Putski comes back and does the same to Koloff, Koloff sent to the opposite corner but Putski takes to long and eats a boot, but Putski comes back and unloads on him. Snapmare into a rear chinlock allows Putski to control the Russian. Koloff powers out and locks on the bearhug to try and squeeze the power out of Putski. Putski reverses the hold but Koloff rakes the eyes and Koloff goes to the apron. Both men slugging it out on the apron, and Putski slammed into the ring post as the bell rings.

5. Ivan Koloff and Ivan Putski goes to a double countout *

A very slow moving boring power match. Was Putski ever entertaining in the ring?

6. Billy the Kid & Little Johnny v. Coco Kid & Little Louie

A midget match, and even worse it’s two out of three falls. I have no interest in watching and don’t care. This is the only time I fast forward these shows.

6. Little Louie & Coco Kid over Billy the Kid & Little Johnny NO RATING

7. Superstar Billy Graham v. Bruno Sammartino (World)

Joined deep in progress, Network says technical difficulties. Superstar has Bruno down on the mat in a double shoulder hold. So we get the entire midget match, but the World Title match is glitched, awesome. This goes on for a while as Bruno tries to reverse the hold, and after a couple tries he’s able to do it. Superstar makes the ropes and Bruno breaks the hold. The crowd is loud, as always for Bruno, one of the biggest stars in NYC of all time. Superstar gets back in the ring and Bruno unloads on him, a huge backdrop and Bruno just clobbers the daylights out him. Superstar whipped to the corner and Bruno charges right into the knee of the Superstar, who begins to work the left leg. Superstar slams Bruno’s knee into the steel ring post and continues to stomp on the fallen champ. Snapmare from Superstar who then climbs the ropes, but misses the diving knee, this allows Bruno to attack and Superstar tangled in the ropes. Bruno pulls Superstar to the post and does the same thing back to him. Back in the ring and Superstar again begs off, as we clip a bit to Superstar with the full nelson on the champion. Bruno makes the ropes to break the hold, and we get a lockup, with Superstar using his height to wear down the champion. Bruno gets slammed hard in the middle of the ring, and Superstar stomping away. Irish whip in and Superstar catches him with a back elbow before ascending the ropes. The flying elbow misses and now Bruno comes back, sending Superstar to the apron, he then smashes him into the post, splitting Superstar wide open. Back in the ring and a slugfest ensues, Bruno with the advantage hammers the challenger and the ref separates them. Bruno goes right back at him and the fight continues, the crowd is rabid as the bell rings and the match is stopped.

7. Bruno Sammartino over Superstar Billy Graham ***1/4

A good brawl, but a cheap ending. A clean ending would’ve brought the match up even higher. The crowd was into the whole match, and loved everything Bruno did.

8. Baron Mikel Scicluna v. Pat Barrett

Mikel attacks before the bell and rams Pat into the buckle then stomps the daylights out of him. Referee tries to pull Mikel back, which doesn’t last long as Mikel right after him. This match has been all stomps from Mikel, like he’s Mario and Barrett is a Koopa! Barrett tries for the leg, but Mikel just continues to unload. Barrett blocks the shot to the turnbuckle and rams Mikel in, then makes a comeback with shots to the midsection and kneelifts. This has been boring, as Mikel sends Barrett into the corner and covers him for the win. Glad that’s over.

8. Baron Mikel Scicluna defeats Pat Barrett DUD

Boring match with nothing more then stomps, kneelifts and shots to the turnbuckle. Lame followup to that really good World Championship match.

9. Bobo Brazil & Tony Parisi v. Crusher Blackwell & Bugsy McGraw

Before the match Joe McHugh goes over next months MSG show, and announces Ric Flair versus Pete Sanchez, as Flair makes his MSG debut. Crush Blackwell faces Bobo Brazil, Moolah defends against Susan Greene, Tag Champions Louis & Tony defends against Ivan Koloff and Superstar Graham, plus Ernie Ladd battles Bruno Sammartino for the World Title. I hope that’s on the network, sounds awesome. Nice they can announce an entire card for a month from this one, meanwhile nowadays they can’t even get the entire PPV announced a week before. After the announcements Joe introduces the participants for the final match of the night. We start with Bobo and Blackwell, neither man can get an advantage to start. Bob off the ropes and shoulderblock moves neither. Side headlock on Crusher, and Bugsy comes in, Bobo takes both down. Tony tagged in and side headlock on Blackwell, Parisi shot in, comes back with the side headlock. Tag made to Bobo, who maintains the side headlock, Blackwell picks up Bobo, who pops him and maintains the headlock. Blackwell forces him to the corner and Bugsy holds Bobo, for the avalanche and Bugsy in now and unloads on Bobo. Bobo fights back but caught by Blackwell and double teamed. In the corner and Bugsy continues to hammer Bobo, who fights back and kicks Bugsy in the head. Blackwell back in and locks on a bearhug on Bobo, Split screen shows the bearhug and Bugsy in the corner, weird to do that. The bearhug is held for a long time, until Blackwell sends him to his corner and they double team Bobo. Bugsy uses the tag rope to choke Bobo and the ref calls for the bell? Bobo and Parisi take the first fall, wait this is two out of three falls? News to me. Second fall starts and Bobo headbutts Blackwell and Bugsy, then tags in Parisi who stomps and elbows Blackwell for a near fall. Bobo back in and cocobutt takes down Blackwell but Bugsy breaks the pin. Double backdrop takes down Blackwell, Parisi slams him and hits the splash (off camera) for the win.

9. Tony Parisi & Bobo Brazil over Jerry Blackwell & Bugsy McGraw **3/4

A good match, although an odd disqualification for the first fall hurt it. I wonder if it had to do with the time, as the show seemed to go long. Either way, still a fun match and good ending to the show.

MATCH RECAP

1. Frank Monti pinned Pete Sanchez 2.25/5

2. Louis Cyr over Francisco Flores 2/5

3. Spiros Arion pinned Kevin Sullivan 1/5

4. Ernie Ladd pinned Domenic Denucci 3/5

5. Ivan Koloff and Ivan Putski goes to a double countout 1/5

6. Little Louie & Coco Kid over Billy the Kid & Little Johnny NO RATING

7. Bruno Sammartino over Superstar Billy Graham 3.25/5

8. Baron Mikel Scicluna defeats Pat Barrett DUD

9. Tony Parisi & Bobo Brazil over Jerry Blackwell & Bugsy McGraw 2.75/5

All in all a fun show, with three good matches, and the two hours just flew by. The world title match, main event and Ernie/Domenic matches were worth sitting through the couple bad matches. Sadly the next MSG show is not on the network, as we jump to August for the next one, but first we have three more All Star Wrestling shows.

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