WWE Vintage Collection Report (09/21/08)

WWE Vintage Collection Report: 21st September 2008
By Shaun Best-Rajah.com Reporter
Hosted by: Mean Gene Okerlund

Welcome aboard. This week, we have five matches from different eras of the 1980s. A mixed bag indeed. Let’s get things started and send it to our first MSG bout.

December 1984
Commentators: Gorilla Monsoon & Howard Finkel
“Mr Wonderful” Paul Orndorff w/Bobby Heenan vs The Junkyard Dog
Dog utilizes several side headlocks, with Orndorff’s body hanging off the ropes during one exchange. Orndorff crashes down and goes outside to regroup with Heenan. Orndorff briefly gets the advantage, before Dog reverses head rams in the corner to knock Orndorff silly. Dog delivers a snapmare and several dogbutts to send Orndorff back outside. Dog gets Orndorff in another side headlock, but Orndorff manages to counter with a side suplex. Orndorff rubs a foreign object into Dog, which was thrown in by a fan. Orndorff methodically works over Dog’s throat area. Orndorff lands a shot from the second rope, but on a second attempt, Orndorff catches a shot to his own throat. Dog makes a brief comeback with punches and a snapmare, but Orndorff manages to dodge a falling headbutt. Orndorff goes back to work and executes his patented piledriver. Dog rolls to the outside. Orndorff stops the referee from counting Dog out by going out to slam Dog on the floor. Orndorff sends the Dog off the apron with a running knee. Orndorff goes to slam Dog back in, but Dog rolls through and hooks the leg for the surprise 1-2-3. Here is Your Winner: THE JUNKYARD DOG. Slow opener. Orndorff sold well and did the best he could with the limited Dog.

February 1987
Commentators: Gorilla Monsoon & Jimmy Hart
Jake “The Snake” Roberts w/Damian vs King Kong Bundy w/Bobby Heenan
At this time, Jake was embroiled in a feud with the Honky Tonk Man. This explains why Honky’s manager, Jimmy Hart was doing commentary, scouting Jake. Jake starts with a side headlock before running into a slam. Bundy goes to work with an elbow drop, backelbow and kneedrop. During this, Damian pops up from a hole in Jake’s bag. Bundy traps Jake in a chinlock. Jake rakes the face to escape. Bundy pounds the back, Jake comes back off the ropes with a running kneelift. Bundy thwarts a DDT attempt with a backbodydrop. Bundy misses an elbow drop, but counters a second DDT attempt, running Jake into the corner. Jake falls to the outside, Bundy pounds him with punches. Bundy tosses Jake back in, but as he gets in, the referee calls for the bell. Bundy didn’t beat the ten count. Bundy Irish whips Jake, who dodges an avalanche charge and unleashes Damian. Bundy and Heenan quickly get out of dodge, before Jake chases Hart back to the locker room, with Damian draped on his shoulders. Here is Your Winner via Countout: JAKE “THE SNAKE” ROBERTS. Always good to see Jake in the ring. A short match to further the problems between Jake and Jimmy Hart.

December 1984
Commentators: Gorilla Monsoon & Howard Finkel
Bob Orton Jnr vs Superfly Jimmy Snuka
Time for a look at Randy Orton’s father and Roddy Piper’s sidekick of the 80s. This match was the start of a legendary feud between Orton and Snuka. It was one year before the infamous 1985 match where Snuka broke Orton’s arm, which led to Orton wearing the everlasting cast on his left arm. Orton attacks Snuka from behind as Snuka folds his ring attire. Snuka reverses an Irish whip and Orton takes an upside down bump in the corner. Snuka snapmares and drops a forearm onto Orton’s head. Snuka chops, snapmares again, then lands a fistdrop from the second rope. Snuka rams Orton’s head into the corner a couple of times, then chops him down off the ropes. Orton begs off, as he suckers Snuka into an inverted atomic drop. Both men exchange fists. Snuka stings Orton with a headbutt. Orton catches a cross body attempt and both men take a spill over the top rope to the floor, where the fight continues. The referee counts both men out as they continue to hammer away on one another. After we see a replay of the ending, Orton shoves the referee out of the ring. Orton goes for a superplex on Snuka, who manages to headbutt Orton onto the mat. Orton scrambles out of the ring to avoid the Superfly’s splash, as he lives to fight another day. Here is Your Winner: DOUBLE COUNTOUT. More of a backdrop to the start of a feud than an actual match. Orton bumped well for Snuka.

February 1987
Commentators: Gorilla Monsoon & Slick
The Honky Tonk Man w/Jimmy Hart vs Pedro Morales
Pedro Morales was the first triple crown winner in the old WWWF and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1995. This match is joined in progress. Honky has control and is working over Morales, who gets stomped to the outside. Morales pulls Honky out and rams his head into the steel guardrail and ringpost. Honky gets up onto the ring apron, Morales runs him around the ring, ramming his head into a couple of turnbuckles. Honky steps back in and rakes the face to regain control. Honky delivers a vertical suplex and slam. Honky misses an elbow drop from the second rope. Morales comes back with gut punches, a headbutt and wind-up punch. Honky reverses off the ropes, Morales ducks a clothesline, nails another gut punch and small package for a nearfall. Big backbodydrop by Morales. Morales uses a double leg takedown to apply a boston crab. Jimmy Hart gets on the apron to cause a distraction. Morales swings and misses at Jimmy, before focusing back on Honky. Honky uses a double leg takedown and cradle with his feet on the ropes for the 1-2-3. Here is Your Winner: THE HONKY TONK MAN. Uneventful and a cheap ending. Worst match of the show.

April 1989
Commentators: Tony Schiavone & Lord Alfred Hayes
Bret “Hitman” Hart vs Mr Perfect
What a Main Event this should be. Coming off WrestleMania V, these two engaged in several matches and this one from MSG I think is included on the upcoming Mr Perfect DVD. This is the match which was briefly advertised for WWE 24/7 on Raw a few weeks back. We get a standoff, before Bret chucks his sunglasses into the crowd. A couple of lockups lead to a stalemate. Bret uses several side headlocks and shoulder tackles to begin. Perfect tries to sweep the leg, but Bret jumps to avoid contact. Bret hits a cross body off the ropes, Perfect throws him off to the outside. Bret comes back in with a battering ram to the gut and sunset flip for a nearfall. Bret scores with several side headlock takedowns, using a crucifix pin attempt in-between holds. Bret catches a boot attempt, trips Perfect and teases the Sharpshooter, before booting Perfect in the gut. Perfect manages to reverse an Irish whip. Both exchange slams and kicks to the face. Bret throws Perfect face first into the mat and clotheslines him over the top rope. Following a commercial break, Perfect has the advantage, as he slams Bret then applies a spinning toehold. Bret uses his other foot to kick Perfect into the corner. Perfect favours his arm and cowers to the corner. Bret stalks before wrapping Perfect’s arm in the top rope and pounding away with punches. Bret rams Perfect shoulder first into the corner, before continuing to punch. Bret exposes the shoulder as he delivers a slam and legdrop. Bret applies an armbar on the mat before driving a knee into the arm. As Bret continues to focus on Perfect’s shoulder, Perfect uses Bret’s hair to reverse a throw off the ropes. Perfect counters Bret’s crucifix pin attempt with a samoan drop. Perfect gathers himself and drives some knees into Bret’s back. Both men go back and forth at trying to apply an abdominal stretch. Bret looks like he has it locked on, but Perfect immediately hiptosses free. Bret reverses off the ropes, Perfect slips behind to avoid a slam and he rolls Bret up off the ropes for a nearfall. The momentum of Bret’s kickout sends Perfect out of the ring. Bret lands on top of Perfect with a plancha over the top rope. Bret tosses Perfect back in for an inverted atomic drop and vertical suplex for a nearfall. Bret delivers a backbreaker and elbow from the second rope. Bret covers but the bell rings. The time limit is up. Perfect smiles and leaves as the match is ruled a draw. Here is Your Winner: DRAW. Great wrestling, entertainment and drama from two of the best. Fittingly, Perfect gave Bret most of the match to really establish Bret as a WWE single, as at this point Bret was seen as a Tag Team wrestler. This was also a great way to end the show.

Okerlund wraps things up to end the show.

Best match: Bret “Hitman” Hart vs Mr Perfect.
Worst match: The Honky Tonk Man vs Pedro Morales.
Show verdict: Thumbs up for the Main Event alone. That being said, I also enjoyed the work of Bob Orton, Paul Orndorff and Jake Roberts on this week’s show. See you next week. Shaun.

If anyone wants to sound off, chew the fat or talk wrestling get in touch. Comments/praise/feedback/criticism/discussion points please direct to shaunmb1@hotmail.com.