What the World Was Watching: The Action Zone – March 19, 1995

Doink and Bam Bam Bigelow cut promos on each other for today’s feature match.  Doink says he is going to win and let Lawrence Taylor know all of Bigelow’s secrets.  Bigelow rebuts that he thought he got rid of Doink for good at WrestleMania X but will finish things today.

Jim Ross and Todd Pettengill are doing commentary and they are still taped from North Charleston, West Virginia.

Opening Contest:  The British Bulldog (7-3) pins Chic Donovan after the running powerslam at 3:31:

Donovan was a veteran wrestler, competing in Southern territories against the likes of Jerry Lawler and Tommy Rich, and then wrestling for the American Wrestling Association (AWA).  He stands out from many jobbers due to his bigger frame and the wearing of tassels on his arms, thereby identifying him with the late 1980s/early 1990s in wrestling historiography.  Donovan showcases his Memphis roots by stalling and berating the fans for much of the match, but the Bulldog absorbs a few punches to the stomach and hits the powerslam – which comes across nicely because Donovan kicks his legs throughout the move as if he is trying to escape – to win.

Clips of Men on a Mission doing a post-match beatdown on the Smoking Gunns after losing a WWF tag team title match on last week’s show are played.  The Men on a Mission’s manager Oscar is shown apologizing to the crowd for his team’s behavior.

Mantaur (w/Jim Cornette) (9-1) beats Bob Hayes after a belly-to-belly suplex at 2:35:

Ross makes fun of the jobber’s name, joking about how it is “Bullet” Bob Hayes, who was a gold medalist in the 1970 Olympics.  However, this Bob Hayes is white that Hayes was a black sprinter and football player.  Mantaur beats the tar out of Hayes, picking him up several times before a three count, before finishing him with a belly-to-belly suplex, which looks a lot better than other finishers that he has tried thus far in his brief WWF career.

Footage of Bam Bam Bigelow making fun of Lawrence Taylor’s training regimen for WrestleMania XI at a press conference in Los Angeles is shown.  Bigelow says that WWF Champion Diesel is training Taylor but it is not going to matter.  Taylor responded by saying he is not a wrestler and that he picked Diesel as a trainer because Diesel is from the Bronx (despite Diesel actually growing up in Detroit) and knows how to brawl.

The New Headshrinkers (w/Afa & Captain Lou Albano) (2-1-2) defeat Barry Horowitz & The Brooklyn Brawler after Fatu pins Horowitz after a top rope splash at 3:58:

Considering our last segment, it was probably better that Taylor got Diesel to train him for WrestleMania instead of the Brooklyn Brawler, who is teaming with fellow long-time enhancement talent Horowitz today.  Although the Headshrinkers are no longer heels – and these squashes do not convey the same brutality as a result – Afa is maintaining his gimmick of eating food at ringside, munching on a hot dog as his guys dismantle Horowitz and the Brawler in short order.

Footage of Shawn Michaels beating Adam Bomb on Superstars a month ago is recapped as Ross and Pettengill announce that both men will have a rematch on next week’s show.

Call 1-900-737-4WWF to hear about two young superstars with great collegiate backgrounds that will make their WWF in-ring debut today!  To save you $1.49 a minute, the two people Ross was talking about were Erik Watts and Chad Fortune, who would become Tekno Team 2000.

Shawn Michaels (w/Sid) (3-0) beats Chuck Hunter after Sweet Chin Music at 1:34:

Hunter tries to get a jump on Michaels, but he quickly fights back, launching himself all over the ring and being cheered as a result.  After the bell, Sid tosses Hunter out of the ring and works to get Michaels hyped up, helping to build Michaels “aggressive streak.”

Ray Rougeau interviews Michaels in the aisle, with Michaels saying that Sid is not around to help him win matches, just to help watch his back.

Ross and Pettengill provide the WrestleMania XI Report.  Reggie White, who was interviewed by Ross at his home, says that he is excited to team with Lawrence Taylor instead of having to compete against him.

Lawrence Taylor reiterates that he is not scared of Bam Bam Bigelow in a quick video package.

Bam Bam Bigelow (w/The Million Dollar Team) (4-0) beats Doink (w/Dink) (4-0) after a powerslam at 7:55:

Dink quickly gets involved in the match and allows Doink to sunset flip the big man for a near fall so Kama chases the him to the locker room.  That is the lone highlight of the match until the big finish as Bigelow works chinlocks and Doink works in some small, ineffective technical holds.  The last few moments are good, with Doink suddenly acting like he is the Ultimate Warrior with two clotheslines and a body press, but a high-risk maneuver fails, allowing Bigelow to hit a powerslam out of nowhere for the win.  Rating:  **

After the match, Bigelow gets into a three-point stance and tackles Doink.

Tune in next week to see Adam Bomb square off against Shawn Michaels!

The Last Word:  While having Bigelow struggle with Doink in the main event might be puzzling, the announcers did enough to justify it by saying that Bigelow was overlooking him due to his big WrestleMania match with Lawrence Taylor.  The rest of the show was fine, with all of the squashes adequately putting over talent that will be important for future matches or WrestleMania.

On Wrestling Challenge there was an additional bout that was not included on this show:

*The Heavenly Bodies (3-2) defeated Todd Morton & Larry Santo

The house show circuit saw the WWF return to Madison Square Garden and do a tour of Canada.  Here were some of those cards and results (courtesy of historyofwwe.com):

Toronto, Ontario, Canada – The Maple Leaf Gardens – March 18, 1995:  Henry Godwinn pinned Barry Horowitz with the Slop Drop…Hakushi pinned Aldo Montoya with a running senton bomb…WWF Women’s Champion Bull Nakano pinned Alundra Blayze after a powerbomb and using the Flair pin…Bret Hart defeated Owen Hart via submission to the Sharpshooter in a No Holds Barred match…King Kong Bundy defeated The British Bulldog with the Avalanche…The Blu Brothers defeated The New Headshrinkers after Fatu was pinned following a clothesline…The Undertaker defeated Kama via disqualification when King Kong Bundy interfered…Diesel & Razor Ramon beat Shawn Michaels & Jeff Jarrett when Diesel pinned Jarrett after the Jackknife.

New York, New York – Madison Square Garden – March 19, 1995 (15,000; 10,000 paid):  Bam Bam Bigelow as interviewed by Todd McDonald for Sports Extra on Fox Channel 5 for his WrestleMania match with Lawrence Taylor…Erik Watts & Chad Fortune defeated The Heavenly Bodies when Watts pinned Tom Prichard…Henry Godwinn pinned Barry Horowitz…The Smoking Gunns defeated Tatanka & Kama when Bart pinned Tatanka after Kama was knocked to the floor…Bob Backlund defeated Adam Bomb in a submission match after using the crossface chicken wing…Diesel & Razor Ramon defeated Shawn Michaels & Jeff Jarrett via disqualification when Sid interfered.  During the match, the Roadie clipped Ramon and forced Diesel to wrestle alone, but shortly after that Michaels and Jarrett were counted out and Diesel and Michaels faced off in a singles match.  When Sid attacked Diesel, the Undertaker made the save…The Undertaker defeated Bam Bam Bigelow via count out when Bigelow headed to the locker room…Hakushi pinned the 1-2-3 Kid with a flying headbutt.  The Kid suffered another concussion (his second in ten days)…Bret Hart & The British Bulldog defeated Owen Hart & Jerry Lawler when the Bulldog pinned Lawler after the running powerslam.

Backstage News*:  Brian Adams, who works for the WWF as Crush, was arrested on March 13 after steroids, marijuana, a stun gun, and an unregistered semi-automatic handgun were found in his home.  Crush appeared headed for a new push after finishing third in the Royal Rumble but due to this arrest the WWF would later terminate his contract.  Crush also pleaded no contest to charges that stemmed from the arrest and received five years of probation.

*There are several rumors about who Owen Hart’s partner could be.  Some speculate that the WWF might bring in ECW talent Chris Benoit, while others are speculating that it could be Yokozuna, who has not been seen since losing a casket match to the Undertaker at Survivor Series.

*While West Coast house shows have done poorly, the recent Madison Square Garden show collected a large gate of over $200,000, which makes it the biggest since last year’s SummerSlam.

*Chris Candido will be receiving a gimmick change before he appears on television after his superhero gimmick flopped.  The new gimmick will make he and Tammy Fytch fitness instructors and they will be heels.

*News items taken from the March 27 edition of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer.

Up Next:  Monday Night RAW for March 20!