WWWF: All Star Wrestling (01.28.78)

WWWF: All Star Wrestling
January 28, 1978
Hamburg, PA
Hamburg Fieldhouse

Your current WWWF champions are as follows:
WWWF Heavyweight Champion: Superstar Billy Graham (4/30/1977)
WWWF World Tag Team Champions: Mr. Fuji & Professor Tanaka (10/1/1977)

Pop Culture #1s of the Time:
#1 Movie of the Week: Saturday Night Fever starring John Travolta

#1 Song of the Week: Baby Come Back by Player
#1 TV Show of the 77-78 Season: Laverne & Shirley starring Penny Marshall & Cindy Williams

Follow along if you have the WWE Network!

The following wrestling exhibition requires discretionary viewer participation. CHECK IT OUT! New funky theme music for 1978!

Your host is Vince McMahon. RIP Antonino Rocca.

Tony Garea handles this week’s juvenile diabetes PSA. Boy, I wonder what ended up happening with these kids. It’s creepy for some reason.

  • Ken Patera (w/Captain Lou Albano) vs. SD Jones

SD tries to get his hands on Captain Lou because he’s annoying everyone with that whistle. Patera escapes a standing headlock and high knees Jones down to apply a headlock down on the mat for the worst camera angle ever. Jones is able to return to a headlock of his own and keeps Patera grounded. Patera grabs the hair and buries a knee to get away and applies a chinlock. Jones elbows out and goes WILD on Patera — even delivering a HEADBUTT. Patera went to his knees, but then grabbed a charging SD Jones and threw him over the top rope to the floor to win via countout. (5:46) After the bell, SD Jones gets some measure of revenge with a HEADBUTT on Albano. Patera then jumps Jones from behind leaving him laying to end the segment. Crowd wants Backlund. They are about to get him. ¾*

  • Bob Backlund vs. Baron Mikel Scicluna

Backlund is weeks away from winning the WWWF championship from Superstar Billy Graham. Scicluna doesn’t use his foreign object to the throat like we’ve been seeing in MSG, but he still tries to choke Backlund. He escapes an armbar from Backlund with gouging the eyes and starts hammering him in the corner. Backlund headbutts out of the corner and twists the neck using his feet. He takes Scicluna back to the mat for the armbar. Scicluna rakes the eyes and catches Backlund with a knee off the ropes. He starts to slam Backlund, but then Backlund reverses to an inside cradle for the win at 5:04.

Vince interviews Tony Garea and Larry Zbyszko by the ring about their upcoming match tonight against Larry Sharpe and Jack Evans. He asks some mundane questions about the differences between tag team wrestling and singles wrestling psychology.

  • Mil Mascaras vs. Jose Estrada

They show Mascaras creatively getting out of various holds. It’s all real exciting stuff. Mascaras then gives Estrada dropkicks after dropkick and finishes him off with an abdominal stretch on the mat at 4:44.

  • Spiros Arion (w/Freddie Blassie) vs. Frank Williams & Ted Adams

Some kid came and got the autograph of Frankie Williams, which cracked me up. No tagging out in this handicap match. Arion takes them both on at the same time. Of course there are moments where these ham and eggers are able to do damage to Spiros and other times where they get owned. At one point, Spiros ties Adams up in the ropes and smashes Frankie and Ted’s heads together. Arion rips away the turnbuckle pad and smashes both their heads on the exposed metal. Frankie seems to understand that he should sell it more than a typical turnbuckle smash, but Adams doesn’t. To end the match, Arion slams Frankie on top of Adams and pins them both in a “humiliating defeat”, says Vince in 3:46.

  • Tony Garea & Larry Zbyszko vs. Pretty Boy Larry Sharpe & “DY-NO-MITE” Jack Evans

Garea and Evans go corner to corner with tie-ups to start. Once that’s over, Garea hammers Evans and takes him down with a headlock. Evans pulls the hair to get out and tags in Sharpe. He applies a chinlock on Garea, but Garea elbows out only to run into a knee. Now Sharpe puts Garea in a stepover armbar. The left arm of Garea becomes the story now as Evans comes back inside and runs his shoulder into the corner. The pretty boy blondes continue to cut the ring off on Garea. This match is kind of proof that the WWWF had zero great tag matches until the national expansion. I don’t mean to make it sound like this one is bad because it’s okay, but it’s very formulaic and one you could see on any studio wrestling show in any territory at the time. Hot tag to Zbyszko, he hiptosses Sharpe out of the corner, but then misses a corner charge. Evans gets a tag and pounds away on Larry Z. Zbyszko answers with a backdrop and tags Garea. He lands a dropkick and tags in Zbyszko again to backdrop Evans again. Zbyszko follows up with a crucifix cradle and gets the win. (8:25) Sharpe is PISSED about the way this one ended, but it doesn’t really matter because he LOST. Larry Zbyszko and Tony Garea never really got their due at this point as the tag belts will soon go randomly to Dominic DeNucci and Dino Bravo. Garea and Zbyszko will have to wait until yet another heel tandem (the Yukon Lumberjacks) get a run with the tag titles first. As I said earlier, formulaic but not bad as Sharpe and Evans showed some promise. They actually were doing this same Hollywood Blondes tag team gimmick down in Puerto Rico where they were more successful winning the NWA North American tag titles – TWICE – in 1977 and 1978. **¼

That’s all for this week. Until next time, so long for now.

Posted on April 13, 2019, in WWE and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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