August 26, 1977 - Madison Square Garden - New York, NY

Bob Backlund pinned Rene Goulet with the Atomic Drop in 0:05:07.
Rating: ** 1/2

The Madison Square Garden crowd was treated to Bob Backlund in our opening match, a man they are solidly getting behind. He has yet to be defeated since coming to GCW, and the next man to try was Rene Goulet, a man who hasn't won since he's come to GCW. Goulet is looking desperate for a win, and Backlund used that desperation to lure Goulet into many mistakes before hitting the Atomic Drop to kick off our evening.

Dominic DeNucci and Dino Bravo defeated Tim Woods and Mr. Wrestling II when Bravo pinned Wrestling II with the Side Suplex in 0:22:25.
Rating: *** 1/4
(Dominic DeNucci and Dino Bravo retained the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)

Dino Bravo & Dominic DeNucci have surprised a lot of people with how successful they've been as a relatively new team, already ascending to the World Tag Team Titles. What we are noticing is that teams are still underestimating them, even though they're the champs. Tim Woods & Mr. Wrestling II were the next team to challenge, and they had a confident swagger to them that made you think they thought this one was in the bag. They tried to single out Bravo, feeling he was the weak link, but Bravo held his own and weathered the storm to hit the Side Suplex and a successful title defense.

Bobby Duncum pinned Johnny Rodz with the Full Nelson Slam in 0:03:17.
Rating: ** 3/4

Poor Johnny Rodz. This was not a good night for him. He didn't even get a chance to do anything unpredictable as his opponent, Bobby Duncum, never gave him the chance. Rodz didn't get in any offense against Duncum and ate the Full Nelson Slam and another loss. Duncum's in ring dominance continues as he keeps making it harder for the Championship Committee to not grant him a title shot.

Stan Hansen pinned Mike Graham with the Lariat in 0:08:39.
Rating: *** 1/4

Mike Graham's mentor and partner, Gorilla Monsoon, was injured last month by Stan Hansen and his deadly Lariat. Mike Graham, possibly against his better judgment, went into the Garden to defend Monsoon's honor. A brave move, but Graham is a bit outmatched Hansen, who steamrolled Graham with the Lariat for the 1-2-3. Graham is lucky to escape injury, but he was definitely sore after this match.

Ivan Koloff defeated Nikolai Volkoff by disqualification in 0:11:03.
Rating: DUD
[Lou Albano interfered against Ivan Koloff.]

Ivan Koloff is now on his own as Captain Lou Albano has severed ties with him and revealed his secret, that he is in the country illegally. As of right now, Koloff's case is pending, so he is allowed to wrestle in the States. Since he doesn't know how long he is going to be allowed to remain in the country, he is looking to get his revenge on Albano and Nikolai Volkoff while he can. The fire in the Russian Bear's eyes as he burned a hole through Albano is a moment I won't soon forget. The match itself was horribly ugly, but Koloff wasn't looking to just win the match. He was looking to take Volkoff out. Koloff was too aggressive at points, and it led to Volkoff dishing out quite a beating. Koloff wasn't going to lose this match though - not a chance in hell. He didn't get the definitive pin he wanted because Albano jumped in the ring and attacked Koloff. The move had little to no effect on Koloff, but it did cause Volkoff to get disqualified. Both Volkoff & Albano hightailed it out of there. Koloff's quest for revenge might have ended tonight. He is scheduled for another immigration court date before our next show on September 17 in Landover, MD.

Chief Jay Strongbow made Hiro Matsuda submit to the Indian Deathlock in 0:12:03.
Rating: ****

Chief Jay Strongbow had a rough return to action in Atlantic City, losing to Don Muraco. He had better luck in the Garden against Hiro Matsuda. Strongbow took the brunt of Matsuda's martial arts offense, but the wily veteran fought past that to get a submission win with the Indian Deathlock. Word has it that Strongbow is interested rejoining the tag team ranks, but no word yet on who his partner might be.

Pat Patterson pinned Terry Funk after a back suplex in 0:34:53.
Rating: **
(Pat Patterson won the GCW Intercontinental Title.)

It took him three tries, but Pat Patterson is the new Intercontinental champion, ending the over one year reign of Terry Funk! The match was grueling, but Patterson finally bested Funk for the championship. Funk tried to take cheap ways out to retain his title on more than one occasion, but referee Willie Webber didn't let him get away with it, letting the match continue. Patterson took advantage of this and after a big back suplex dropped Funk on the back of his head, took the 1-2-3 and his first championship in GCW! Patterson says he will be a fighting champion, and he's already showing that as his first title defense will be on September 17 against Stan Hansen.

The Blackjacks (Blackjack Lanza and Blackjack Mulligan) defeated The Brisco Brothers (Jerry Brisco and Jack Brisco) when Lanza pinned Jack Brisco after a lariat in 0:12:33.
Rating: ****
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Jerry Brisco.]

The Blackjacks are hungry to get another shot at the World Tag Team Titles they recently lost to Dino Bravo & Dominic DeNucci, but they're going to have a tough road to do so because they were matched up with the Brisco Brothers, another team looking to secure the #1 contenders spot. It's hard to ask for a better tag match than this because there might not be two crisper teams in the world right now than the Briscos & the Blackjacks. They are very evenly matched, and up until the final bell, it was impossible to predict which team would come out on top. Bobby Heenan helped his team pick up a controversial victory when he tripped up Jack Brisco, letting Lanza hit a jaw-jarring lariat to get the 3 count.

Because of the evenness of this match, GCW officials have announced that the teams will meet again on September 17 in a 2 out of 3 falls match to determine the new #1 contenders for the World Tag Team Titles!

Dory Funk Jr. pinned Don Muraco after a small package in 0:14:15.
Rating: *** 1/2

An interesting match here as Dory Funk Jr. & Don Muraco are quite familiar with each other, seeing how Muraco was Funk's lackey for a length of time early in his career. Muraco is desperate to break free of the stigma of only being a lackey, and he made a great stride here by taking Dory Funk to the limit. Muraco even had Funk in position for the Tombstone, but Funk countered with a small package and got a quick 1-2-3. Muraco ate the loss, but he showed that he is on his way up in GCW.

Cage Match:
Dusty Rhodes defeated Bruiser Brody by escaping the cage in 0:15:08.
Rating: ** 1/2

Many people were questioning "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes' decision to fight Bruiser Brody in a steel cage match, but the son of a plumber proved all his doubters wrong when all was said and done. These two brawlers almost couldn't be contained by the cage as the two brutalized each other with malicious intent. Let's face it, Brody is a sick, twisted individual, and to survive in a cage with him, you're going to need to get a little sick and twisted yourself. Rhodes went crazy in this match, especially after he was busted open by Brody throwing him into the cage. The sight of his own blood caused him to snap, and that was bad news for Brody, who then got busted open himself. Rhodes tied Brody up in the ropes and pounded away with right hands and elbows before walking out the door to win a bloody battle.

Jumbo Tsuruta pinned Billy Graham after a backslide in 0:15:23.
Rating: *** 1/4
(Jumbo Tsuruta retained the GCW World Title.)

Despite being the World champion and a hell of a competitor, some people feel that Jumbo Tsuruta is holding the gold on borrowed time. One of the biggest proponents of that is "Superstar" Billy Graham, who feels he is the rightful heir apparent to the championship. Jumbo is dead set on proving to everyone that his title reign isn't a fluke and that he is the most credible champion we've ever had. This reputation of being a soft champion still surprises me, considering it was Tsuruta who defeated perhaps our most dominant champion in history, Harley Race. Regardless, Jumbo had his hands full with the Superstar, who has done just about everything in GCW except hold the World Title. Graham's strategy was simple - use his power to wear Jumbo down, injure his back, and go for the Bearhug. Jumbo is crafty though and has a high tolerance for pain. Superstar thought he had Jumbo perfectly set up, but when he went for the Bearhug, Jumbo caught him by surprise with a backslide and got the 1-2-3, successfully retaining the gold! As Jumbo celebrated, a furious Graham grabbed the ring bell from the timekeeper's table and clocked Jumbo in the back with it! Before Billy Graham could dish out more punishment, DORY FUNK JR. ran out and made the save, getting the ring bell from the Superstar and sending him sprawling from the ring. When Jumbo came to, he saw Dory Funk holding the ring bell and became enraged, thinking it was Funk who hit him with the bell! Before Funk could explain himself, Jumbo nailed him with the Jumbo Knee! A huge miscommunication, but it is clear that Jumbo is on edge these days as he tries to keep his grasp on the World Title.

Card rating: ***

Match observations:

On September 17, we make our return to Landover, MD with these matches already signed to take place!

WORLD TITLE - Jumbo Tsuruta (c) vs. Dory Funk Jr.
INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE - Pat Patterson (c) vs. Stan Hansen
#1 CONTENDERS 2/3 FALLS MATCH - The Brisco Brothers vs. The Blackjacks
Ivan Koloff vs. Nikolai Volkoff (If Koloff is still in the country)

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