June 1, 1972 - Maple Leaf Gardens - Toronto, ON, CA

Mr. Fuji and Toru Tanaka defeated The Minnesota Wrecking Crew (Gene Anderson and Ole Anderson) when Fuji pinned G. Anderson with the Thrust Kick in 0:15:06.
Rating: *** 1/4
(Mr. Fuji and Toru Tanaka retained the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)

On the power of being 2-time former World Tag Team champions, the Minnesota Wrecking Crew were granted a title shot against Mr. Fuji & Professor Toru Tanaka. The Andersons haven't been able to recapture the magic they had when they first came to GCW, but they are a tremendous team and can beat anyone on any given night. The Andersons came excruciatingly close on several occasions, but the craftiness of the Japanese champions won out in the end, giving Fuji & Tanaka another successful title defense.

Nick Bockwinkel pinned The Crusher with the Piledriver in 0:13:53.
Rating: ***

I understand that Bobby Heenan makes more money if his charges win, but is making The Crusher angry in order to do so really worth it? Heenan proved he will do anything to help his men win, distracting The Crusher and eating a huge Bolo Punch for his efforts to allow Nick Bockwinkel to hit the Piledriver to get the duke. It may not have been the smartest thing with Heenan having a match against Jimmy Snuka later tonight, but he did show the loyalty to his men. Now, will he be able to handle what's coming to him from The Crusher?

Dominic DeNucci and Tony Garea defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna and Baron Von Raschke when Garea defeated Raschke by countout in 0:14:01.
Rating: **
[Lou Albano interfered against Tony Garea.]

It didn't take long for Dominic DeNucci to find himself a new tag team partner as he joined forces with Tony Garea to try to get revenge against Baron Mikel Scicluna & Baron Von Raschke. Wrestling these two isn't recommended if you're a well-seasoned veteran team, let alone if it's your first time teaming ever. DeNucci & Garea took their lumps and it looked dire, but these two have a certain "never say die" attitude that can't be explained. This resulted in them putting together a comeback and getting what has to be considered a huge countout win over Lou Albano's charges. The Captain is irate, promising that the Barons will end the careers of DeNucci & Garea just like they did Johnny Weaver. Albano is going to have to wait to attempt that though, as DeNucci & Garea have been granted a shot at the World Tag Team Titles on June 27 in Charlotte.

Jerry Lawler pinned Ray Stevens after a sunset flip in 0:01:58.
Rating: **

Jerry "The King" Lawler continues to impress everyone each time he steps in the ring. One man who wasn't impressed going in was his opponent tonight, Ray Stevens. Stevens took the rookie lightly, and it bit him on the backside in a hurry. Stevens dominated the very early going, but he nonchalantly went for a backdrop, telegraphing it big time. Lawler made a veteran move by countering with a sunset flip, catching Stevens by surprise and getting the flash 1-2-3. Stevens went after Lawler as the King took a powder to the floor. This is a huge win in the young career of Jerry Lawler.

Interview:
Bill Watts offers one more challenge to the High Flyers.

An interview with Bill Watts along with his partner Johnny Valentine was next. Watts said that he was embarrassed that in subsequent matches, he has been defeated by a couple of "scrawny rookies" in Greg Gagne & Jim Brunzell. Watts mentioned that he is a former World champion and deserves much better than this. Watts said it was going to end one way or another as he & Valentine wanted one more match with the High Flyers, adding that if he was beaten this time around, he would leave GCW forever! Valentine looked surprised by this but went along with it. We have since been given word that the match has been signed and will take place in Charlotte.

Chief Jay Strongbow and Billy White Wolf defeated Pedro Morales and Wahoo McDaniel when Strongbow made Wahoo submit to the Indian Deathlock in 0:15:03.
Rating: ** 1/2

US champion Wahoo McDaniel said he would find a partner to take on Chief Jay Strongbow & Bilyl White Wolf, and it looked like he found himself a winner when he brought out PEDRO MORALES with him. Morales is one of the top men in the world, and came within an eyelash of being the man to end Bruno Sammartino's lengthy World Title reign. Morales also has a huge chip on his shoulder because of this, and he wasn't in the mood to work with Wahoo. Wahoo started the match and he would also end the match as Morales refused to tag in whenever Wahoo would try. Wahoo eventually got angry to the point that he shoved Morales and asked what his problem was, to which Morales simply responded with a hard slap to the face and yelled, "Don't like foreigners, do you!?" Strongbow caught a stunned Wahoo with a back suplex before locking on the Indian Deathlock to get the submission victory. Wahoo McDaniel reportedly was furious backstage, destroying a locker room in the process. McDaniel asked for a match against Pedro Morales as soon as possible (non-title of course) and the match has been signed for Charlotte.

Jimmy Snuka and Bobby Heenan battled to a no contest in 0:01:08.
Rating: 3/4*

Sometimes when you have a young wrestler who is desperate to make an impact and become a huge star, you can't fully explain why they do what they do. That was the case tonight with Jimmy Snuka. The youngster has been ultra-impressive in GCW, forming an alliance with Gorilla Monsoon & Arnold Skaaland who both agreed to take the high flier from Fiji under their wing. Snuka was scheduled to wrestler Bobby Heenan, the loud mouth manager of the Cripplers, in a singles match. It looked like Heenan had uncorked a plan when right away in the match, RAY STEVENS & NICK BOCKWINKEL jumped in the ring. The trio cornered Snuka in the ring, and it didn't look good for the youngster until GORILLA MONSOON came down to even the odds. The Cripplers & Heenan backed away… until Snuka clobbered Monsoon from behind! This was a setup from the word go! All four men put a beating on Monsoon that not even a 400-pounder could withstand. Arnold Skaaland jumped in to save Monsoon, but with it being 4 against 2, he suffered the same fate. It took a host of officials to finally break this one up. Jimmy Snuka has joined forces with Bobby Heenan, but all we can do is ask why.

Dick the Bruiser made Stan Stasiak submit to the Stomach Claw in 0:14:21.
Rating: * 1/2
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Dick the Bruiser.]

Dick the Bruiser wanted to settle his issue with Stan "The Man" Stasiak once and for all, and it looks like he did that with a hard fought but decisive win. Stasiak tried to set up Bruiser for his dreaded Heart Punch, but it would be Bruiser's Stomach Claw that would spell the end of Stasiak.

Luke Graham defeated Ernie Ladd by disqualification in 0:12:43.
Rating: * 3/4

Eddie Graham has his brother Luke firing on all cylinders and ready to make another run for a singles title. Luke would have to get by Ernie Ladd first, which is not an easy task under any circumstances. Ladd was also wrestling with a huge chip on his shoulder after losing his "King" moniker to Jerry Lawler and wanted to make an example out of the former World champion. When Luke Graham is on top of his game, there is no wrestler on the planet who can go toe to toe with him, so Ladd resorted to cutting every corner he possibly could. He would get himself disqualified though when he wasn't as smooth as he thought he was when he tried to conceal a foreign object he had punched Graham with in his tights. The fight continued after the match, and there is clearly some unfinished business here to take care of, and they will try to do that in Charlotte.

Bruno Sammartino pinned Billy Graham after a powerslam in 0:18:35.
Rating: ** 1/4
(Bruno Sammartino retained the GCW World Title.)
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Bruno Sammartino.]

In our main event, "Superstar" Billy Graham had the biggest match of his young career as he challenged Bruno Sammartino for the World Title. Say what you want about The Grand Wizard, but he's not stupid, and he hammered home the importance of this opportunity to Graham. After all, there's no guarantee that you'll ever get another title shot so you had better make the most of it when you get one. Billy Graham's strategy was simple - work over Bruno's back to set him up for his vicious Bearhug. There aren't many opponents of Sammartino that can outpower him, but Graham is one of those men. As a result, Sammartino trained light for this match, dropping a bit of weight to be quicker and faster in the ring. It would pay off as he overcame Graham's early offensive onslaught and wore the big man down. Sammartino lured Graham into making a mistake as the Superstar went to the second rope, a place we don't normally see him. Graham jumped off and Sammartino countered into a powerslam, driving the air out of the Tower of Power's lungs to retain his heavyweight title. Graham had a great strategy, but the veteran champion simply had a better one. I don't think this will be the last we see of Billy Graham in the main event, however.

Card rating: * 3/4

Match observations:

Charlotte, I hope you're ready, because GCW will be returning to the Charlotte Coliseum on June 27, bringing the following matches:

NON-TITLE - Wahoo McDaniel (United States champion) vs. Pedro Morales
WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES - Mr. Fuji/Toru Tanaka (c) vs. Dominic DeNucci/Tony Garea
Dick the Bruiser/The Crusher vs. The Cripplers
Luke Graham vs. Ernie Ladd
The High Flyers vs. Bill Watts/Johnny Valentine
Jerry Lawler vs. Jimmy Snuka

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