July 14, 1973 - Rumble At Wrigley - Chicago, IL

Don Muraco pinned Spiros Arion with the Flying Crossbody in 0:10:13.
Rating: * 3/4
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Don Muraco.]

Our opening contest at our historic night of wrestling at Wrigley Field pit rookie Don Muraco against Spiros Arion. Arion hasn't had a good 1973, but The Grand Wizard planned on using this match against the rookie as a means to get some momentum. What he didn't factor in was Muraco's desire to get his first win under his belt, and that's exactly what he did, hitting a beautiful Flying Crossbody to get the 1-2-3. Arion didn't take the loss well, attacking Muraco afterwards and leaving him lying in the center of the ring. Talk about your poor losers.

Dominic DeNucci and Tony Garea defeated Mr. Fuji and Toru Tanaka when DeNucci pinned Fuji with the Airplane Spin in 0:16:43.
Rating: ***

All teams in the world are looking for the chance to become the GCW World Tag Team champions, and two former championship teams squared off to get an opportunity to go after the straps one more time with Dominic DeNucci & Tony Garea meeting Mr. Fuji & Professor Toru Tanaka. These two teams have had a bit of a rivalry as of late, trading a win a piece in 2 previous matches. The one major advantage the Japanese tandem had is their willingness to cheat, but it backfired in a big way. While the referee was distracted with Garea, Fuji held DeNucci wide open as Tanaka grabbed a handful of the ceremonial salt. Tanaka threw it, but DeNucci ducked and the salt flew into Fuji's eyes instead! DeNucci elbowed Tanaka off the apron, hit the Airplane Spin on Fuji and as a result, DeNucci & Garea will be the next team to get a shot at the tag titles. Now they just wait and see whether it will be Dick the Bruiser & The Crusher or the Cripplers.

Baron Von Raschke defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna by disqualification in 0:08:23.
Rating: **

Lou Albano once again sent Baron Mikel Scicluna after the "ungrateful" Baron Von Raschke, telling Scicluna there would be a "big bonus" if we could get rid of Raschke once and for all. Raschke would have none of it as he was intent on mowing through Scicluna to get his hands on Albano. He got close to Albano, but that was because Albano jumped in the ring while Raschke had Scicluna in the Claw and smashed Raschke in the back of the head with his cane for the DQ. Raschke was only momentarily stunned, and the look on Albano's face when Raschke gave him the death stare was priceless. Albano sprinted out of the ring (well, as fast as Captain Lou can sprint, anyway) before Raschke could get a hold of him.

Bobby Duncum pinned Jimmy Snuka after hitting him with a foreign object in 0:12:33.
Rating: *** 1/4
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Jimmy Snuka.]

Bobby Heenan ran down Jimmy Snuka before our next match, saying that Snuka was the weak link in the Heenan Family all along, but that Heenan found a "far superior replacement." Enter BOBBY DUNCUM. The rough and tumble cowboy from Minnesota was a surprise for Snuka, who couldn't find an answer for Duncum. To make matters worse for Snuka, a Heenan distraction allowed Duncum to clock Snuka with a cowbell to get the 1-2-3. It looks like Heenan has another assassin in the ranks. Snuka wants another match with Duncum in Detroit on August 6, saying that he will be prepared this time.

Billy Graham and Billy Robinson battled to a double countout in 0:18:38.
Rating: *** 1/2
(Billy Graham retained the GCW United States Title.)

Billy Robinson has worked hard to get another shot at Billy Graham and the United States Title, and I can't think of a bigger stage to do so than at the Rumble at Wrigley. Graham has done everything in his power to avoid a rematch with Robinson, but he had himself prepared for the match. Robinson's normally has been able to keep Graham on the mat, but the the Superstar did a much better job at avoiding that this time around and used his power offensive far more effectively. Robinson showed how big his heart is by not cracking under the onslaught that Graham was bringing. Robinson's refusal to stay down let him get back in the match late, ending up on the floor with Graham. The two brawled on the outside, ultimately resulting in a double countout. The Grand Wizard wanted to turn the tide in favor of his charge, and brought out SPIROS ARION to make it a 2-on-1 assault. Robinson received an unexpected assist when DON MURACO ran down to help him clear the ring of the rulebreakers. Robinson thanked Muraco for the assist after the match. In Detroit on August 6, a tag team match has been signed that will pit Robinson & Muraco against US champion Billy Graham & Arion.

Blackjack Lanza made Jerry Lawler submit to the Blackjack Claw in 0:08:55.
Rating: *** 3/4
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Jerry Lawler.]

Jerry Lawler has spent a lot of 1973 getting the tar kicked out of him - let's be honest - but this young superstar has shown he has no quit in him, despite the lingering injuries he is suffering from. The King showed that once more by volunteering to go toe-to-toe with the undefeated Blackjack Lanza, Bobby Heenan's muscle. Lawler kept fighting and kept fighting, almost scoring a huge upset with a series of nearfalls until Lanza cut him off with the Blackjack Claw to get the win.

Ivan Koloff pinned Gorilla Monsoon with the Russian Sickle in 0:03:27.
Rating: * 1/4

Gorilla Monsoon is one of the toughest men in all of wrestling, and he showed it by asking for one more shot to beat the undefeated Russian Bear, Ivan Koloff. If Monsoon is one of the toughest men in wrestling, Koloff may have proved that he IS the toughest as not only did he beat Monsoon again, quite frankly, he DOMINATED him. In just over 3 minutes, Koloff hit the Russian Sickle and that was that. Who can beat this man? As far as Captain Lou Albano is concerned, hopefully nobody.

The Cripplers (Nick Bockwinkel and Ray Stevens) defeated Crusher & Bruiser (The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser) when Bockwinkel pinned Crusher after a flying sunset flip in 0:21:30.
Rating: ****
(The Cripplers won the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Dick the Bruiser.]
[Bobby Heenan interfered against The Crusher.]

Dick the Bruiser & The Crusher made it clear before our next match that this would be the last title opportunity for Ray Stevens & Nick Bockwinkel. Bobby Heenan made sure that the champs knew that The Cripplers wouldn't need another shot. Unfortunately, when you're right you're right, and The Cripplers are the tag team champions for the third time. It wasn't easy though, as Bruiser & Crusher made sure to give Stevens & Bockwinkel their lumps. But Bockwinkel would come flying off the top with a sunset flip and with the aid of his feet on the ropes, got a controversial 1-2-3. Heenan is never going to shut up about this.

Luke Graham pinned Ernie Ladd with the Thumb to the Throat in 0:15:04.
Rating: ***
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Luke Graham.]

Ernie Ladd has spent all of 1973 taunting Luke Graham after having beat him in a match. After that match, Graham took some time off to heal some nagging injuries and get his head straight. Ladd took that opportunity to run the former World champion down whenever he could, claiming to have retired him. Well, Luke Graham is not retired, and he was aiming to shut Ladd up once and for all at Wrigley Field. Despite coming out a house of fire, Graham was a bit rusty, understandable considering he hasn't wrestled a match in months. Ladd beat him down, but the determination and anger of Graham would make all the difference as he floored Ladd with the Thumb to the Throat to get the 3 count, and perhaps silence the loud mouth once and for all.

Pedro Morales defeated Carlos Colon by disqualification in 0:46:57.
Rating: *** 1/2
(Pedro Morales retained the GCW World Title.)
[Lou Albano interfered against Carlos Colon.]

Our main event was highly anticipated, as the Puerto Rican sensation by the name of Carlos Colon got his first opportunity ever to be a World champion, taking on his countryman, the most hated man in wrestling, Pedro Morales. Colon believes that Morales is disgracing their homeland of Puerto Rico, and thinks that the best way to fix that would be to bring the GCW World Title home himself. What we did get is over 45 minutes of fantastic wrestling action between two great Caribbean stars. Morales' new manager Lou Albano played a huge part in this match, getting in cheap shots whenever he could and just all-around being a distraction. In the end, Morales' cheating and general attitude caused Colon to lose his cool, getting disqualified when he stopped listening to the referee's instructions and opened up a huge cut on the champ's forehead. Morales may have won the match and retained the title, but his bloodied up face certainly didn't make him look like a winner. No word yet on if or when Colon will get a rematch, but I doubt this one is over by a long shot.

Card rating: ***

Match observations:

We are heading back to Detroit, a hotbed for GCW action, on August 6, with the following matches already signed, sealed, and ready to deliver!

WORLD TITLE - Pedro Morales (c) vs. The Sheik
WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES - The Cripplers (c) vs. Dominic DeNucci/Tony Garea
Billy Robinson/Don Muraco vs. Bill Graham/Spiros Arion
Jimmy Snuka vs. Bobby Duncum

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