July 19, 1976 - The Spectrum - Philadelphia, PA

Billy Graham pinned Tony Garea after a powerslam in 0:05:10.
Rating: ** 1/2

"Superstar" Billy Graham looks bigger, stronger, and more focused since parting ways with The Grand Wizard, and Tony Garea was the unfortunate recipient of a beating from the Superstar. After Graham was done toying with him, he put Garea away with a powerslam.

Jumbo Tsuruta pinned Don Muraco with the Jumbo Knee in 0:10:46.
Rating: *** 1/2

Jumbo Tsuruta made a grand debut a month ago, but he had a tougher task this time against Don Muraco. Muraco can match strength with Jumbo, but the amateur wrestling background of Tsuruta helped him keep Muraco off balance before hitting the Jumbo Knee that put this one in the books.

Billy Robinson pinned Hiro Matsuda with the Double-Arm Suplex in 0:10:24.
Rating: ***

Billy Robinson wanted a rematch with Hiro Matsuda after the cheap way Matsuda had defeated him in Baltimore, and that rematch took place next. A good wrestling match again between these two mat generals, but again, Bobby Heenan tried to be sneaky and grabbed a handful of salt to throw in Robinson's eyes. Robinson was prepared this time though and ducked the throw, causing the salt to hit Matsuda instead! Robinson capitalized on the miscue with the Double-Arm Suplex and that was all she wrote.

The Blackjacks (Blackjack Lanza and Blackjack Mulligan) defeated Larry Zbyszko and Dino Bravo when Lanza made Bravo submit to the Blackjack Claw in 0:21:18.
Rating: *** 1/2
(The Blackjacks won the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)
[Billy Graham and Bobby Heenan interfered against Larry Zbyszko and Dino Bravo.]

History was made here in Philadelphia as we saw the crowning of brand new World Tag Team champions! Gold has finally returned to the Heenan Family as THE BLACKJACKS now carry the prestigous tag team championships. And they owe it all to the newest member of the Family. This was a solid tag team match that was highly competitive, your prototypical back and forth affair. The crowd was really into it and cheering loudly for Zbyszko & Bravo to retain, but they got an unexpected surprise when BILLY GRAHAM stuck his nose into it all. While Bravo was in the ring, Graham pulled Zbyszko off the apron and threw him into the ring post! Zbyszko was knocked out and bleeding from the forehead. Then while Heenan distracted referee Dick Kroll, Graham got in the ring and nearly clotheslined Bravo's head off! This let Lanza put on the Blackjack Claw, and once he gets that in tight, that's the end. Your winners, and new tag team champions (with a HUGE assist from Billy Graham), the Blackjacks. Zbyszko & Bravo are entitled a rematch, but Zbyszko has stated he wants to get his hands on the Superstar, so that match will take place first on August 7 at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY! Bravo meanwhile will meet Blackjack Lanza one-on-one.

Luke Graham pinned Ernie Ladd with the Thumb to the Throat in 0:07:20.
Rating: ** 1/2

Before this next match started, Ernie Ladd grabbed the microphone and announced that he would be leaving GCW after the night was over. It would have been a great story had Ladd, one of GCW's originals and a 2-time United States champion, left on a winning note. Unfortunately, real life doesn't always have a happy ending, and it didn't for Ladd, who took a loss to Luke Graham, one of his old bitter enemies. After the match, Ladd grabbed the mic again and thanked the fans for their support, and said they might see him again in the future. Then, in a despicable act, Luke Graham attacked Ladd, hitting him with the Thumb to the Throat! If that wasn't bad enough, he kept pounding on Ladd like a mad man, busting him wide open! The attack was getting disgusting before JIMMY SNUKA, who was wrestling in the next match, ran out and floored Graham with a dropkick, knocking him to the floor! Not the way Ladd expected his last night in GCW to go, I'm sure. Luke Graham is an embarrassment to sportsmanship.

Jimmy Snuka pinned Dory Funk Jr. with the Superfly Splash in 0:07:18.
Rating: *** 3/4

Jimmy Snuka was still fired up over what just happened, which didn't bode well for his opponent, Dory Funk Jr. Funk rode the initial wave of the Superfly's aggression, and decided that he needed to do something drastic to slow Snuka down. Funk took the top turnbuckle pad off, looking to send Snuka crashing into it. Problem was, when he tried to whip Snuka into that corner, Snuka reversed it and Funk nailed the exposed steel instead! Snuka followed with a jumping headbutt to knock Funk down and hit the Superfly Splash for the 1-2-3, an absolutely HUGE win for Snuka.

After the match, LUKE GRAHAM tried to get down to the ring, but officials cut him off before he could get there. Snuka was looking to fight though, and jumped OVER the officials and began nailing Graham with right hands! The skirmish was quickly broken up, but it's clear that these two want to tear each other to bits already!

Chain Match:
Dusty Rhodes and Peter Maivia defeated The Russians (Ivan Koloff and Nikolai Volkoff) when Dusty Rhodes pinned Volkoff with the Bionic Elbowdrop in 0:08:18.
Rating: ***

You expect for a chain match to be a hard-hitting match, but not like this. The match didn't last long in terms of time, but it had to have felt like an eternity for Dusty Rhodes, Peter Maivia, Ivan Koloff, and Nikolai Volkoff. The only one who escaped bleeding was Koloff, but he took his share of a beating as well. All four men took advantage of the rules and used the chain as a weapon, and they all have the welts and scars to prove it. In the end though, the sight of his own blood sent Rhodes into a frenzy, and he used that to propel him to smashing Volkoff with the chain, and then with the chain wrapped around his arm, hitting the Bionic Elbowdrop for the pinfall victory in a bloody match.

The Dirtbags (Dick Murdoch and Stan Hansen) defeated Gorilla Monsoon and Sgt. Slaughter when Hansen pinned Slaughter after a power bomb in 0:08:44.
Rating: *** 1/4

The Dirtbags picked up a big win in the tag team division by getting past Gorilla Monsoon & Sgt. Slaughter after a vicious power bomb from Stan Hansen knocked the wind right out of Slaughter. After the match, Monsoon gave Slaughter a stern talking to, saying that they need to step it up if they're going to be a competitive team in GCW. Slaughter did not look pleased with the scolding.

Mr. Wrestling I defeated Jack Brisco when Jack Brisco passed out in the Sleeperhold in 0:15:18.
Rating: *** 1/4

There was a TON at stake in this match. For Mr. Wrestling I, the mask that he cherishes and having to reveal his identity to the world. For Jack Brisco, his career in GCW would be over if he lost. With the stakes as high as they were, both men wrestled with that extra fire. There was no question who the fans wanted to win, strongly lending their support to Brisco. Brisco not only wanted to get Wrestling I's mask, but he wanted to cause him great physical harm in doing so. Wrestling I appeared to be in a great deal of trouble when he pulled an object out of his trunks and slid it into his mask. When Brisco came after him, Wrestling I blasted Brisco with a loaded headbutt, causing Brisco to drop like a sack of bricks! To make it look 'on the level,' he locked Brisco in the Sleeperhold. Brisco was out cold, and the referee called for the bell. The crowd was in shock, but Brisco had just LOST to Mr. Wrestling I, his career over. Mr. Wrestling I got out of the ring in a hurry like the thief he was, which is a good thing because it looked like the crowd was ready to murder him. When Brisco came to, he had to be told what had happened, that his career in Global Championship Wrestling was over. He was understandably angry, but he saluted the crowd and thanked them for their support before leaving to a standing ovation.

Terry Funk defeated Bobby Duncum via referee stoppage in 0:17:08.
Rating: ** 3/4
(Terry Funk won the GCW Intercontinental Title.)

The doctors advised Bobby Duncum not to take this match given the condition of his neck, but there was no stopping Duncum as he signed a waiver to get his hands on Terry Funk. This was Funk's first match since coming back, and he had the chance to win the Intercontinental Title. Duncum wasn't going to go down without a fight, but he clearly had a big bullseye on that injured neck. You could tell Funk expected this to be a far easier match than it was, underestimating the fight in Duncum. But once Funk got to working over that neck, it was over. Funk escaped the Full Nelson Slam late in the match when Duncum grabbed his neck in pain, letting Funk hit a piledriver. He could have went for the pin, but instead hit a SECOND piledriver! Duncum was clearly out of it and injured, but Funk set him up for a third piledriver anyway. Referee Terry Taranova stepped in and called the match - he had no other choice - and awarded it to Funk. Terry Funk is your new Intercontinental champion. Funk pretended like that would be all, happy he got the title, but for good measure he hit a THIRD piledriver before taking his new championship and going to the back, being pelted with trash the whole way back. A stretcher had to be called to take Duncum to the back and to the hospital. His career may very well be over at the hands of Terry Funk.

Harley Race's mouth again gets him into trouble.

If the mood in the arena wasn't negative enough, World champion HARLEY RACE came out at the end to do an interview. He first poked fun at the injury to Bobby Duncum, which is just an absolutely disgusting and deplorable thing to do. If that wasn't enough, he made fun of Jack Brisco having to retire and said that nobody will miss him anyway. After that unpleasantness, he went on another one of his arrogant rants, talking about how nobody is ever going to get the World Title from around his waist. "The only person who will get the title from me is Harley Race when I retire." Race was feeling great about himself, again offering an open challenge for the show in Uniondale, mentioning how "easily" he handled Jimmy Snuka when he answered the challenge (those matches were anything BUT easy). Race was then interrupted by the man answering the challenge, a former World champion himself, PEDRO MORALES! Morales wasn't there to chit chat though as he immediately hit Race with a dropkick, a bodyslam, and then finally a clothesline before Race bailed out of the ring and retreated to the back! This could be the time where Race has bit off more than he can chew!

Card rating: ***

Match observations:

The card for the August 7 show at the Nassau Coliseum is PACKED, and this isn't even what the full card will be!

WORLD TITLE - Harley Race (c) vs. Pedro Morales
Jimmy Snuka vs. Luke Graham
Dusty Rhodes vs. Ivan Koloff
Larry Zbyszko vs. Billy Graham
Dino Bravo vs. Blackjack Lanza
Jumbo Tsuruta vs. Hiro Matsuda

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