The History of the Intercontinental Championship: Part One
WWE.com Legacy on Demand Showcase
The History of the Intercontinental Title: Part One
Your host is Jack Korpela. More like Crapola. I’m sorry, that was completely unjustified.
- WWF Intercontinental Champion Pat Patterson vs. Dominic DeNucci – (Madison Square Garden, 12/17/79)
This is the beginning of Patterson’s character change into a babyface as he splits from both Grand Wizard and Capt. Lou Albano. He resists a handshake from DeNucci though, so he hasn’t totally seen the light just yet. DeNucci gives Patterson a clean break off a tie-up. However, Patterson does not. Patterson grabs a front headlock. In a funny bit, DeNucci makes like he’s going to uppercut Patterson in the balls to escape the hold, but doesn’t. The crowd knows it would have been HILARIOUS. Instead, DeNucci places Patterson on the top rope and lets Patterson explode on him. DeNucci headbutts Patterson back and corners him to tease another shot to the balls right in front of the ref. He STILL doesn’t do it though. He whips Patterson across into the opposite corner instead and teases a THIRD stomp to the nuts. Still no ball shot. DeNucci settles for a spinning toe hold. Patterson pulls on DeNucci’s nose to break free and buries some knees in him. That riles up DeNucci as he sets up Patterson for an AIRPLANE SPIN. Cover, 1-2-NO! O’Connor roll gets two for DeNucci, but then Patterson monkey flips DeNucci over into a press for 1-2-3. (6:29) What a tease you turned out to be, Dominic. *½
- WWF Intercontinental Champion Pat Patterson vs. Ken “I AM A STRONG MAN” Patera (w/The Grand Wizard) – (Madison Square Garden, 4/21/80)
Ken Patera was SUCH a heat machine in 1980. Just from that one year alone of what I’ve seen, he’s become one of my favorite heels. The first 5-10 minutes are all armbars as Patterson is in total control. Patera throws Patterson to the floor to gain a breather. He follows Patterson out and throws him into the guardrail just for fun. Patera follows up with a super safe slam on the concrete floor. Ooo, Cheap Trick is coming to Madison Square Garden! Patera continues to keep Patterson down on the floor as he gives him a couple cheap stomps from the apron. Finally he makes it to the apron, where Patera hammers him on the chest and kicks Patterson’s head into the steel turnbuckle connector. In the ring, Patera delivers the double-lift pair of backbreakers for two. He softens up the back some more with knees and a whip into the corner to set up a Bearhug. Just when it looks to be curtains for Patterson, he punches himself loose. Right away, Patera wants the SWINGING FULL NELSON. Patterson says no thanks and heads for the corner to get a break. Back to the Bearhug. Patera tries to sneak around to apply the Full Nelson, but Patterson slips out and kicks Patera back. Patterson mounts a comeback as he brutalizes Patera in the corner. He trips up Patera and posts the knee that apparently has been injured since he didn’t usually wear a knee pad back then. Back inside, Patterson kicks Patera in the back of the knee all around the ring. Now it’s time for the Figure-Four! Patera refuses to give up and makes the ropes. Patterson continues to work the knee. Patera reverses a corner whip and misses a charge as he runs shoulder-first into the ringpost. Slow cover, 1-2-NO! Patera gets his foot on the bottom rope. Patterson thinks he’s won though and argues with the ref. Patera begins to crawl over to him and gets kicked in the head. The ref gets bumped as Patera throws Patterson into him. Patera heads up top and drops a knee on the champ for the 1-2-3. Oh, Patterson had his foot on the bottom rope. Nobody saw it though. (20:49) Ken Patera becomes the second-ever Intercontinental champion. Started out real slow, but those last ten minutes were turning this match into something near epic. ***½
Once again, WWE skips over the Morales title win in November 1981. Will I ever get to see that match?
- WWF Intercontinental Champion Pedro Morales vs. Sgt. Slaughter (w/The Grand Wizard) – (Madison Square Garden, 6/8/81)
This is first time Slaughter has returned to MSG since his Match of the Year award-winning Alley Fight with Pat Patterson. Slaughter reacts negatively to the “Gomer” chants. I don’t know why he gets mad. Gomer Pyle was the star of a successful TV series! Slaughter controls to start, but then gets his head smashed into the top of the ringpost. Morales sends Slaughter into the top of the ringpost one more time. Slaughter tries to sneak something into his elbow pad, but the crowd gets all over him for it, so he decides to wait on that. As Morales punches him into the opposite corner, Slaughter pulls out some object from his tights and stuffs it in his elbow pad. He makes good use of that across Pedro’s forehead. Once he’s nailed Morales, he slips the object into his mouth so the ref can check his elbow pad to make sure there’s nothing it. What a sneak. Slaughter loads up his elbow pad again and heads up top, but Morales punches him down. Pedro pounds Slaughter until the Sarge can’t punch back anymore. Since he can’t beat Morales, Slaughter hops up and punches the ref in the face! That’s a DQ. (6:42) Afterwards, Slaughter puts the ref in the COBRA CLUTCH! WHAT! Pedro has to make the save. I don’t even know what to think of this match. Hardly the kind of match you would think Slaughter would want to have in MSG after his awesome alley fight. *
Final Thoughts: Check this out for the Patera title change if nothing else. I’ve been wanting to see it for a while and I wasn’t disappointed. Maybe Legacy on Demand is what kept a lot of these title changes from appearing on the IC title DVD they put out last fall. Part two will feature the Morales/Muraco feud!