wrestling / Video Reviews

WWF at Nassau Coliseum (6.10.1989) Review

October 4, 2019 | Posted by Adam Nedeff
Bret Hart Hart Foundation WWF Prime Time Wrestling
3.8
The 411 Rating
Community Grade
12345678910
Your Grade
Loading...
WWF at Nassau Coliseum (6.10.1989) Review  

-The WWF is still on their hiatus from MSG for some reason that I could probably look up, so their monthly televised house show commitment is being fulfilled tonight at Nassau Coliseum.

-It’s June 10, 1989.

-Your hosts are Tony Schiavone and Lord Alfred Hayes. They lead off by announcing some SHOCKING news: Andre’s opponent tonight has been switched to Hillbilly Jim.

JIM POWERS vs. THE GENIUS

-Powers is apparently filling in for Koko B. Ware. The Genius does his poem about No Holds Barred and he’s getting some HEAT here.

-Genius does stretches and stalls for a bit by showing his prowess for perching onto the ropes. He finally agrees to get started and hiptosses Powers a few times, punctuating it with a celebratory cartwheel. A slam by the Genius, and suddenly he surprises everyone by turning it up a notch with hard punches and kicks. Powers finally comes to life with slams and dropkicks sending the Genius to the floor, and the crowd loses it.

-Powers slingshots the Genius back in and backdrops him. Genius retreats to the floor and sells everything, then rolls in and does a kip-up to show off that he isn’t hurt. They criss-cross and Genius outsmarts Powers by just exiting the ring during the criss-cross, and Vladimir gives the Genius a round of applause for how brilliant that was. I’m inclined to agree with Vladimir.

-Genius finally goes back in and gets armdragged right into an armbar. Genius does a backflip to get himself upright but every time he escapes Powers just armdrags him and reapplies the armbar. Genius escapes but this time Powers hits an inverted atomic drop. Powers teases a low blow and Genius wriggles to the floor for an escape.

-Genius trips Powers from the floor and slides back in, unleashing another uncharacteristic barrage of punches and a choke. Powers cradles Genius outta nowhere for two. Genius tries a corner charge, Powers moves, and Genius bumps beautifully from it, landing with his ass on the top turnbuckle.

-Powers mounts an abbreviated comeback, but Genius cuts it off and slams him down. Somersault from the top rope finishes and the commentators sound legit surprised that it wasn’t the finish. Powers rams Genius into the turnbuckles and clotheslines him for two. Suplex by Powers, but Genius hangs onto him during the impact and uses his legs to roll back and hook Powers’ legs to turn it into a pinning combination for three. 1 for 1. That was a total surprise. The crowd was into it like it was the main event, and the two of them delivered something worth that reaction.

-A trailer for No Holds Barred, which I hear is in a theater near me.

THE ROCKERS vs. THE FABULOUS ROUGEAU BROTHERS (with Jimmy Hart)

-Shawn is wrestling with tape wrapped around his neck. Lord Alfred says that he has it on good authority that Shawn has recovered from his injury suffered at the Rougeaus and is “back to 100%.” Tony totally ignores it and doesn’t acknowledge Alfred has even said anything, which is wise given that, ya know, Shawn is wrestling the match with his neck totally wrapped in tape.

-Rougeaus try to stall on the floor, but it turns out that’s bad strategy in a tag team match since you’re running away from two people and both Rockers catch them on the floor and light into them until the referees force them to break up.

-Jacques finally starts the match proper and gets rammed into the turnbuckle ten times. Rockers take turns splashing him and make a show of opting not to pin him because they just want to kick his ass. Raymond tries to make the save but gets double-dropkicked out to the floor. Rockers attempt a double-team but Raymond rescues his brother by deliberately tripping him and dragging him to the floor.

-So Jacques finally tags his brother in and Marty Janetty falls for some distraction by Jimmy Hart. Rougeaus can’t capitalize on it, though, as Marty clothesline both of them and the Rockers whip the Rougeaus into each other to clear the ring. Shawn tags in and the Rougeaus hot shot him onto the top rope, which stops Shawn dead in his tracks due to the neck injury and now he’s in trouble.

-Rougeaus strangle Shawn in the corner with the tag rope, and with him already struggling to breathe, they follow with a double stomachbreaker and Shawn’s life is starting to suck now. Rear chinlock by Jacques. Raymond kicks Shawn clear over the top rope. Back in, Rougeaus unleash some vicious kicks on Shawn in the corner. Raymond tries to finish with the Boston crab. Shawn fights it, so Raymond just leans back and catapults him into Jacques’ fist instead.

-And that knocks Shawn so loopy that he can’t resist, so Raymond gets the hold applied. Jacques comes in and applies a sharpshooter, but Shawn ain’t jobbin’ to that, so Marty comes in and pops Jacques right in the nose to break the hold. Jacques makes the tag and Raymond cuts off the hot tag with a forearm to the back of the head and a “No no no” finger wag at Marty.

-Rear chinlock by Raymond. Shawn gets free but gives him a boot to the face, but Raymond tags out quickly and again the hot tag is cut off. Jacques applies his own rear chinlock. Raymond slips over during a moment of confusion and snaps Shawn’s neck over the top rope for two. Jacques switches to a front facelock and the crowd is getting antsy.

-Raymond tags in and just rams Shawn’s face into the mat again and again. Jacques heads back in with an abdominal stretch, and for the record, his foot looks fine. Shawn is somehow still alive. Front facelock by Raymond. Shawn fights to his feet but Raymond just rams him into the Rougeau corner for double-teaming, and frankly Shawn is out-Mortoning Ricky Morton now.

-Front facelock by Jacques and again, the hot tag is JUST out of reach and the Rougeaus go back to double-teaming. Marty is so pissed off he just comes in and shoves the referee in frustration. Meanwhile, Raymond reapplies the front facelock and we get the false hot tag spot this time. But while the referee is forcing Marty back to the corner, the Rougeaus are bungling a double-team. Jacques crashes into Raymond, and that gives Shawn an opening to make the hot tag for real.

-So Marty’s a house of fire, and in a great spot, he helps with a double team with his last ounce of energy and then collapses on the mat from exhaustion. Top rope fistdrop by Marty, but Raymond breaks the pin. Marty and Jacques go off the ropes and collide. Marty cradles Jacques, but Raymond slips in and reverses it to put his brother on top, and after all that, the Rougeaus get the tainted win. 2 for 2. I need a cigarette.

BRUTUS “The Barber” BEEFCAKE vs. GREG “The Hammer” VALENTINE (with Jimmy Hart)
-For Christmas, I got my brother the Brutus Beefcake issue of Wrestling Spotlight and it actually gave some good backstory for this match. Now, we know these guys were tag team partners, and they had a falling out that was teased for a few months before Valentine finally cut ties with him at Wrestlemania III, but they never explained what the falling out was about. Well, you’ll be delighted to know that according to Wrestling Spotlight magazine, in 1986, Beefcake felt that the Dream Team had stagnated and suggested that the team could gain some extra momentum by doing more crowd-pleasing maneuvers that would put the fans on their side. Valentine resented the suggestion that they try to please the fans, so that’s what caused the rift.

-Beefcake is wearing a bizarre-looking single hair extension tied into a dreadlock. Think Eddie Murphy in Coming to America. They stall for a bit and in Gorilla’s absence, Lord Alfred takes the initiative in explaining Valentine’s need to get warmed up.

-Beefcake atomic drops him and clotheslines him down. Valentine retreats to the floor and gets aggressive when he gets back in, throwing forearm after forearm and wearing Beefcake down with them. Beefcake fights back with a clothesline and slams Valentine down. Choke by Beefcake and he punches Valentine ten times in the corner.

-Beefcake signals for the sleeper, but Valentine gives him a knee to the gut and Beefcake tumbles out to the floor. Back in, Valentine takes a turn setting up for his finisher, targeting Beefcake’s leg and it’s time for the figure four. Or not, because Beefcake kicks him away. Wait, maybe it is because Valentine goes for it again. No, Beefcake kicks him away.

-Valentine goes to the top rope because his ex-partner Ric Flair never warned him about that. Beefcake meets him with a shot to the gut and a series of punches. Sleeper applied, but Brutus gets distracted by Jimmy Hart. Valentine sneaks up with a shot to the back and drops an elbow for two.

-Jimmy Hart gets Beefcake’s bag and stands on the apron, looking through it to find the scissors, but while he’s distracted by that, Beefcake shoves Valentine into his manager and rolls him up for three. 3 for 3. Not a classic but perfectly acceptable.

HILLBILLY JIM vs. ANDRE THE GIANT

-This is technically the main event of this card. Everybody got their Wrestlemania V payoffs at the start of the week and I don’t know what Big John Studd was expected to get for being guest referee in a mid-card match, but he was so insulted that he quit the company immediately. Luckily there were TV tapings this same week and they put a really nice band-aid on it. They shot a segment where Gene Okerlund was interviewing Andre the Giant on the Special Interview platform and Hillbilly Jim showed up, and they basically did the Andre/Duggan angle again, except with a gold horseshoe in place of the 2×4, and they inserted the segment into “Superstars of Wrestling” and “Wrestling Challenge” in all of the cities where Andre/Studd had already been advertised and announced Hillbilly as Andre’s new opponent as a result of the incident.

-Andre steps over the top rope and Hillbilly just calmly shoves him into the ropes and Andre tangles himself, which is a really funny way to start this match. Andre untangles himself and chokes Hillbilly and headbutts him. Is this crowd actually chanting “We want Studd”???

-Hillbilly gives Andre a shot to the ear and he falls to the mat, and the commentators are trying to make that seem like a big deal but the crowd isn’t having it. Andre chokes him but releases to jaw with the fans, and Hillbilly sneaks up and throws punches. Andre applies a standing chinlock, and if I know my deteriorating Andre, we’re going to be in this for a while and he’ll add the singlet strap to make it a choke.

-Yep.

-Hillbilly elbows out. Andre applies a bearhug and the “boring” chant goes up from the crowd that was demanding Big John Studd earlier. Hillbilly counters with a nerve hold. Andre tries ramming him in the corner but Hillbilly counters with a knee. Out comes Haku, the human “go home” signal. Andre headbutts Hillbilly to the floor and Haku takes cheap shots at him until King Duggan marches to the ring to take care of their other problem. You remember that angle from Prime Time that was clearly setting up Studd/Duggan vs. Andre/Haku tag matches for house shows? Yeah, that’s not happening either so here’s the band-aid for that.

-So Haku goes into the ring for no reason and attacks Hillbilly to get Andre DQed, and the faces clear the ring. The far more interesting part is a fan losing a shoving match to a security guard and being dragged out. I’d give the match a point for that, but it wouldn’t be right. 3 for 4.

-Great bit post-match as Andre legit accidentally trips over a camera cable. He finds the cable puller and chokes him out and the cable puller is smart enough to sell it and lie there motionless after Andre leaves.

-Go see No Holds Barred!

-We go back to ringside, where Howard Finkel tells the fans to go see No Holds Barred.

KING DUGGAN vs. HAKU

-Mildly interesting: Duggan is coming to the ring to Harley Race’s version of the “king” music, which was heavier on the brass.

-Haku attacks from behind to start, committing the ultimate insult by hitting Duggan with his own flag, and in a great visual, the American flag flies off the pole from the impact. Haku chokes him out, but Duggan fights right back with a backdrop and a clothesline to the floor. Right hands by Duggan. Haku tries working the arm, using Duggan’s tights for leverage, and Danny Davis harshly reprimands Haku for forcing us to look at Duggan’s ass.

-Chops by Haku. He chokes Duggan over the middle rope and applies the nerve hold. And we stick with that for a while until Duggan elbows out. Three-point stance finishes Haku. 3 for 5. I just do not get this feud at all. Duggan goes around the horn kicking the shit out of Haku, who never looks like a threat to him in any way, but they keep going with it.

SPECIAL INTERVIEW

-Sean Mooney gets in the ring to interview Zeus, who cuts pretty much the same promo he cut in the Meadowlands, but with more slobber. 3 for 6.

SUPERFLY JIMMY SNUKA vs. BORIS ZHUKOV (with Jimmy Hart)
-This is supposed to be the Honky Tonk Man, but Honky was legit injured at a TV taping a few nights earlier. So Jimmy Hart comes out here and announces that Honky has the flu (with the commentators heavily playing up that Honky is faking it to get out of facing Snuka).

-Boris attacks from behind and knocks Snuka out to the floor. Back in, a criss-cross goes Snuka’s way and he bodypresses Boris for two. Boris fights back with a backbreaker for two and goes to a chinlock. And another. And another. Snuka gradually becomes aware that his hands are free and chops out, but an elbow misses and Boris gets two.

-Snuka chops Boris down again and dropkicks Jimmy Hart for good measure, and the top rope splash finishes. 3 for 7.

HART FOUNDATION vs. POWERS OF PAIN (with Mr. Fuji)

-So this would appear to be the end of all four men’s singles pushes for the time being.

-Barbarian shoulderblocks Bret right away. Bret tags out to let Anvil match power. Shoulderblocks, but neither man budges. Anvil finally takes Barbarian down with a clothesline, and with the opposition softened up, he tags Bret back in. Barbarian chops the Hit Man but misses a corner charge. Second rope elbow by Bret, but Barbarian avoids the attempted pinfall and tags in Warlord.

-Harts schoolboy the Warlord. Hit Man goes for a bodypress but Warlord just catches him and makes it a backbreaker. Powers double-team the Hit Man. Barbarian applies a bearhug but Anvil dashes in to break it. Hit Man slips away and makes the hot tag. Anvil TCBs and all four men end up in the ring. And then all four men end up on the floor. Mr. Fuji accidentally hits Barbarian with his cane during the brawl and Hit Man slips back inside to beat the ten-count for the win. 3 for 8. Everybody was mailing it in, and honey, I’m stamping it “return to sender.” (finger snaps)

3.8
The final score: review Bad
The 411
If you can find this one, enjoy that first hour and then go find anything else.
legend