It’s time for the WWF Wrestling Classic What If Tournament, the imaginary event that envisions 32 of the world’s greatest wrestlers competing in a titanic tournament to determine the winner. Unlike the WWF Wrestling Classic from 1985, this one features wrestlers from a variety of promotions including the American Wrestling Association (AWA), various territories from the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA), Japan, and the World Wrestling Federation (WWF_. It also ups the stakes by awarding the winner a Rolls Royce (much like one lucky fan who ordered the pay-per-view did) along with a title shot against the NWA, WWF, or AWA World Heavyweight Champion. The tournament also features a main event tag team match with “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and “Nature Boy” Ric Flair teaming up to take on Magnum T.A. and WWF Champion Hulk Hogan. Hogan, who is scheduled to meet Flair at Starrcade ’85, will meet Flair in the ring for the first time.
The matches will be held under traditional WWF rules which means you can win by count-out, disqualification, pinfall, or submission. There is no disqualification for throwing your opponent over the top rope, unlike other promotions. The matches in rounds one and two matches have a 20-minute time limit while rounds three and four have a 30-minute time limit. The fifth and final round will be a one-hour time limit. Just as was the case with the 1985 Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup, the tournament will feature randomly selected referees from a pool of referees from every promotion that is sending competitors.
The event will be held over five nights with the first eight matches of round one taking place on Thursday November 7, at the famous Boston Garden. Your announcers for the show are Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse “The Body” Ventura. Gorilla welcomes the fans to the historic event which features wrestlers from around the globe. Monsoon tells Jesse the fans are literally hanging from the rafters as a capacity crowd is on hand. Gorilla asks Jesse why he isn’t in the tournament to which “The Body” replies that persons who remained nameless asked him not to participate since it would greatly reduce the number of wrestlers willing to compete. Monsoon tells Jesse “Gimme a break!” before sending things over to the ring where Howard Finkel is going to introduce the first match.
Antonio Inoki vs. Nikolai Volkoff (w/ Classy Freddie Blassie)
The match starts with Howard Finkel informing the fans that Mr. Volkoff has asked that the fans stand while he signs the Soviet national anthem. The fans boo loudly as Jesse Ventura says he can’t believe the disrespect being shown for this international star and a former WWF Tag Team Champion. Carl Fergie from Memphis’s Continental Wrestling Association (CWA) is your official for this bout. Gorilla Monsoon points out that Fergie didn’t do much of a pre-match inspection and Ventura asks Gorilla if he’s insinuating Nikolai Volkoff would cheat. Gino says he’s not insinuating, he knows he’ll cheat. Ventura laughs and says there are referees from around the world and they’re apparently given a bit of discretion. Volkoff locks up with Inoki and uses his power advantage to gain the upper hand. Volkoff clubs Inoki’s back with devastating forearms then whips him into the ropes, coming off with a big knee to the gut.
Bodyslam by Volkoff followed by a falling knee. Volkoff picks up Inoki and whips him into the
corner as Freddie Blassie waves his cane. Volkoff clubs Inoki with more forearm shots then
unloads with punches as Carl Fergie starts a five-count. Inoki spins Volkoff around and unloads with several knife-edge chops as Volkoff staggers out of the corner. Snapmare on Volkoff followed by a front facelock as Inoki is merciless in wearing Volkoff down. At one point the referee checks Volkoff to see if he’s still conscious. The big Russian manages to get his leg to the ropes, forcing a break. Volkoff is woozy and Inoki whips him into the ropes, going for a back body drop. However, Nikolai catches him with a big boot to the head. Volkoff rallies and lifts Inoki up, dropping his neck across the top rope. Cover but Inoki kicks out at two.
Over the knee backbreaker by Volkoff followed by a stomp to the back. Jesse says he knows where this is going. Volkoff whips Inoki into the ropes and catches him with a bear hug. Inoki is trapped with no apparent way out as Volkoff has both of Inoki’s arms trapped. Volkoff applies the pressure as Inoki seems to fade. However, the talented Japanese star manages to slip an arm free as the fans rally behind him. Volkoff applies more pressure but Inoki is rallying. He gets the other arm free and delivers a double chop to the shoulders. Volkoff smiles and applies more pressure as Inoki’s arms drop. The referee checks Inoki’s arm as it falls once, twice, no, Inoki raises his arm. He’s not done yet. Inoki boxes Volkoff’s ears and the big man releases the bearhug. Ventura questions the legality of the move. Gorilla says you said yourself the referees are given latitude. Big chop by Inoki. Volkoff fires off a punch but Inoki blocks it. Inoki goes to throw a kick but Nikolai catches his leg. However, Inoki catches Volkoff with an enziguri, staggering the big man. Inoki slams Volkoff then climbs to the top rope. A flying kneedrop by Inoki followed by a cover and it’s all over for Nikolai Volkoff.
Winner: Antonio Inoki
Tito Santana vs. The Magnificent Muraco (w/ Mr. Fuji)
Jesse complains to Gorilla that it’s a crime that Intercontinental Champion Chico Santana is being allowed in this tournament. Not only is he being selfish by taking someone else’s spot, but he should be defending his title, not wrestling. Gorilla says how can this be a tournament with the best of the best without the Intercontinental Champion?
Championship Wrestling from Florida (CWF) referee Stu Schwartz is here to maintain order. Mr. Fuji gets in Tito’s face and starts talking trash. As he does, Muraco hits a knee to the back, knocking Santana out of the ring. “Pearl Harbor job!” Monsoon says as Muraco argues with the referee. Mr. Fuji takes his cane and blasts Santana in the gut. Muraco goes outside the ring and rolls Santana into the ring. Muraco rakes Santana across the back then runs Santana’s face across the top rope. Muraco climbs to the second rope and jumps off, driving his taped thumb into Santana’s upper chest or was it his throat? Gorilla says it was his throat but the referee isn’t sure and Jesse says if the referee didn’t see it, it doesn’t matter. Russian leg sweep by Muraco and a cover for a two-count.
Backbreaker by Muraco followed by a suplex. Another cover but Tito gets his foot on the rope. Muraco yells at the referee, questioning the count. Muraco picks up Santana and goes for a bodyslam but Tito counters with a small package, getting a two count. Muraco gets to his feet first and stomps Santana. Whip into the ropes as Muraco goes for an elbow to Santana. Santana ducks and comes off with a high cross bodyblock. Cover for a two. Santana lifts Muraco up for a reverse atomic drop. Santana drops an elbow onto Muraco’s leg then delivers another one. Santana is going for the figure four leglock! However, Muraco kicks Santana, knocking him down. Muraco hits another taped thumb then lifts Santana for a suplex.
Santana blocks the suplex and hits one of his own. The two men get to their feet and begin
slugging it out as Stu Schwartz warns them about the closed fists. Muraco whips Santana into the ropes and Santana counters with a flying forearm! Cover on Muraco for the 1-2-3.
Winner: Tito Santana
Crusher Jerry Blackwell vs. Larry Zbyszko
Your referee for this match is the WWF’s own Gilberto Roman. Zbyszko waves the nunchaku around as Gorilla Monsoon protests Zbyszko bringing a weapon into the ring. Jesse says it’s part of Larry’s heritage and it would be wrong to deny him the chance to proudly share it with the fans. Zbyszko sets the nunchaku on the mat apron in his corner and locks up with Blackwell. Blackwell powers Larry backwards, knocking Zbyszko on his back. Tremendous show of power Gorilla notes. The two lock up and Blackwell knocks Zbyszko down again. Zbyszko tries a side headlock but Blackwell throws him into the ropes. Zbyszko charges the big man but Blackwell slams him down. Zbyszko rolls out of the ring. Jesse says Zbyszko is going about this all wrong as Blackwell is too big to get into a shoving match with. The referee counts until nine as Blackwell claps his hands, rallying the fans. Zbyszko rolls in at the last minute. Another lock-up but this time Larry rakes the eyes. Zbyszko throws several karate chops, but they seem to have no effect.
Zbyszko kicks Blackwell in the knee, slowing him down momentarily. However, Blackwell
grabs Zbyszko and shoves him down to the mat. Blackwell drops an elbow on Zbyszko is dazed as Blackwell lifts him and slams him to the mat. Jerry bounces off the ropes and goes for a big splash, but there’s no one home. Zbyszko stomps Blackwell in the head then applies a front facelock. Jesse tells Gorilla this is what Zbyszko needs to do. Now that the big man is off his feet, he needs to wear him down. Zbyszko maintains the facelock for several minutes but the fans begin chanting Blackwell! Blackwell! And the big man rallies, getting to his feet before throwing Zbyszko off him.
Blackwell gets his bearings as Zbyszko goes for another eyerake, but Blackwell counters throwing Zbyszko into the ropes, landing a beautiful dropkick. Cover on Larry, but he’s close to the ropes and gets his boot on the rope, saving himself from a certain loss. Blackwell isn’t letting up though and whips his opponent into the corner. Blackwell runs in, but Zbyszko gets out of the way at the last minute and Blackwell crashes hard into the corner, bouncing out and glancing referee Gilberto Roman. Roman goes down as Blackwell staggers around the ring. Zbyszko grabs the nunchaku and blasts Blackwell in the head with them several times. Jesse says the big man looks like he’s out on his feet as the blood begins to pour down
Blackwell’s head. Zbyszko grabs the nunchaku and drives them into Blackwell’s throat,
knocking him to the ground. Roman begins to stir as Zbyszko covers Blackwell. Gilberto
sluggishly makes the three count but Jesse says Blackwell is out and Zbyszko could get a thirty-count. Monsoon says the fans have witnessed a complete miscarriage of justice.
Winner: Larry Zbyszko
A number of referees come in to check on Blackwell. The big man doesn’t move for several
minutes until he finally stumbles out of the ring. “Special Delivery” Jones and Swede Hansen
assist Blackwell to the back.
Greg Gagne vs. Tully Blanchard (w/ Baby Doll)
It’s time for our fourth match as two second-generation wrestlers face off—Jim Crockett Promotions' Tully Blanchard and the AWA’s Greg Gagne. WWF referee Dick Woehrle is officiating this bout. Gagne is wearing a camouflage shirt, part of his new training program with AWA star Sgt. Slaughter. Jesse questions why Gagne has a camouflage shirt when he never served in the military. Gorilla says you’ll have to take that up with Gagne. Collar and elbow tie-up as Blanchard gets Gage in a side headlock. Gagne escapes and throws Blanchard into the ropes where the two collide with a shoulderblock. Neither man goes down. Blanchard whips Gagne into the ropes as Gagne comes up, leapfrogging over Blanchard and bouncing off the ropes, landing a dropkick on Tully. Tully charges Gagne only to get arm-dragged down to the mat.
Blanchard charges Gagne and is arm-dragged again. Blanchard rakes the eyes and bodyslams Gagne. Blanchard goes to pick Gagne up only for Greg to kick him backwards and down onto the mat. Blanchard slams his hands on the mat apron. Blanchard gets up as the two men circle each other. Blanchard extends his hands for a fingerlock and Gagne is game. The two struggle in a battle of leverage and strength as Blanchard gains the upper hand (no pun intended), forcing Gagne down to the mat. However, Gagne isn’t done and begins getting to his feet, only for Blanchard to kick him in the gut. Tully rams Gagne’s head into the turnbuckle then knees him in the gut. Tully unloads with a big right hand as Woehrle warns him about the fist. Bodyslam by Tully followed by a knee across the head. Blanchard covers Gagne but barely gets a two-count.
Baby Doll is screaming encouragement to Tully as Blanchard delivers a beautiful vertical suplex to Gagne. Lateral press for a two-count. Blanchard drops a series of elbows onto Gagne. Another cover for a near-fall. Blanchard drops a knee on Gagne’s head then rests his knee on Gagne’s throat as Dick Woehrle makes a five-count. Blanchard breaks as Gagne rolls around on the ring.
Jesse asks Gorilla if he ever had a goldfish jump out of the fishbowl. That’s what Greg Gagne
looks like right now. Blanchard picks Gagne up and whips him into the corner. Gagne bounces out as Blanchard goes for a back body-drop, but Gagne hits a Sunset Flip. 1,2… Blanchard kicks out. Blanchard whips Gagne into the ropes as Greg ducks under an elbowsmash and comes off the ropes, locking in the Gagne Sleeper! Gagne has it locked in and both men are in the center of the ring. Gorilla wonders if Gagne has enough gas in the tank to make the hold effective. Apparently he does as Blanchard falls to one knee. Gagne continues the hold as Blanchard is struggling to escape but he’s too far from the ropes. Dick Woehrle raises Tully’s arm and it drops. The referee goes to check a second time, but Baby Doll is on the mat apron yelling at Gagne. Gagne hears the words nepotism and drops Blanchard going over to confront Baby Doll.
The referee tries to separate the two as Blanchard reaches into the tights and produces what looks like brass knuckles. As Dick Woehrle argues with Baby Doll, Blanchard spins Gagne around and clobbers him with the brass knuckles. Baby Doll jumps off the mat apron as Blanchard covers Gagne for the 1-2-3.
Winner: Tully Blanchard
That’s it for this time fans. Join us next time for matches five through eight as the WWF Wrestling Classic What If Tournament continues, exclusively at Wrestling Merchandise and Memories.