June 12, 1975 - Madison Square Garden - New York, NY

Larry Zbyszko and Dino Bravo defeated Mr. Fuji and Toru Tanaka when Zbyszko pinned Fuji with the Shoulderbreaker in 0:11:16.
Rating: ***

Our opening contest at a historic Madison Square Garden show featured Larry Zbyszko & Dino Bravo taking on Mr. Fuji & Toru Tanaka. This was Fuji's first match back from a torn right biceps that was originally thought to put him out of action for 6 months. Fuji rushed to get back into the ring, and it may have been a mistake as he looked somewhat rusty. Despite being relatively new to the wrestling business, Zbyszko & Bravo showed some seasoned tag team strategy, focusing on the right arm of Fuji. Fuji couldn't get out of the ring to make the tag and eventually fell to the Shoulderbreaker of Zbyszko. This is their first victory as a team, and over former World Tag Team champions is nothing to scoff at.

Ernie Ladd pinned Jimmy Valiant with the Thumb to the Throat in 0:07:57.
Rating: **

Jimmy Valiant of the Valiant Brothers was in a singles match against GCW veteran Ernie Ladd. The odds weren't in Ladd's favor early on as Johnny Valiant & Lou Albano kept trying to distract and interfere, but luckily for Ladd, LARRY ZBYSZKO & DINO BRAVO came down to ringside to even the odds. This completely ruined the strategy of the Valiants, and Jimmy was more or less forced to wrestle Ladd alone. The Valiants have shown themselves to be a great tag team, but haven't proven themselves in singles action yet. Ladd is one of the best we've had in GCW and he showed he still has it by hitting the Thumb to the Throat to get the victory. Albano is blaming Zbyszko & Bravo for this loss and challenged the team to a tag match on July 12 at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY.

Kintaro Ohki pinned Nikolai Volkoff with the Back Suplex in 0:12:25.
Rating: * 3/4

There would be no interference from Captain Lou this time around as Kintaro Ohki took on Nikolai Volkoff. Albano was handcuffed to one of the ringposts for this match due to his interference in the match last month. Albano, try as he might, couldn't get himself involved, and that left Volkoff to fend for himself. To his credit, the big Russian is an impressive physical speciman and bounced the Korean legend around a bit, but he couldn't overcome the experience of Ohki, falling to the Back Suplex, keeping Ohki undefeated in GCW action.

Ox Baker pinned Mr. Wrestling I with the Heart Punch in 0:13:58.
Rating: *** 3/4

Bobby Heenan's monster Ox Baker continues to be a beast, taking on and defeating a game Mr. Wrestling I. Wrestling I managed to ground Baker for a lot of the contest, but once Baker got back to a vertical base, that was all she wrote. A vicious Heart Punch put this one in the books as a win for the Master of the the aforementioned finishing move.

Dory Funk Jr. pinned Billy Robinson after a rolling cradle in 0:26:32.
Rating: ****
(Dory Funk Jr. retained the GCW Intercontinental Title.)

Billy Robinson finally got a chance to get his hands on Dory Funk Jr., a man who surprised us all with the type of person he turned out to be. Sure, Funk is the first ever Intercontinental champion, but the way in which he won that championship is a disgrace, and not the type of legacy we want to get that title started off with. Robinson was looking to make Funk's reign a short one and add a little prestigue to the gold. This was an epic contest that was as heated as they come. After turning against them, the fans were itching to see Robinson dethrone the champ. It looked like we were on our way to seeing that as Robinson suplexed Funk all over the place until that masked man came down to ringside and jumped on the apron. Robinson went after him instantly, but the masked man dropped to the floor. The masked man turned to leave, but Robinson got a hold of him and ripped the mask off! Robinson was in shock, as were the rest of us, to see the masked man was DON MURACO, Robinson's protege! Robinson couldn't believe it, but he couldn't believe it more that Funk surprised him with a rolling cradle, and with a pull of the tights, retained the IC Title. We now know the masked man is Muraco, but why on earth would he do this to his mentor?

The Blackjacks (Blackjack Lanza and Blackjack Mulligan) defeated Jimmy Snuka and Tony Garea when Lanza pinned Garea after a lariat in 0:11:07.
Rating: ***
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Jimmy Snuka.]
[Bobby Heenan interfered against Tony Garea.]

It looks like Bobby Heenan once again has a winning tag team on his hands. Since bringing Blackjack Mulligan into the fold and putting him in a team with Blackjack Lanza, the Blackjacks look to be the team of the future. They continued to look like a team to beat in their second GCW match, getting a tough win over Jimmy Snuka & Tony Garea, but it wasn't easy. Because of the even nature of this match, a return bout has been signed for the Nassau Coliseum next month.

Jack Brisco pinned Hiro Matsuda after a gutwrench suplex in 0:11:04.
Rating: **

Jack Brisco has a new enemy to contend with thanks to Bobby Heenan, Hiro Matsuda. Matsuda is no stranger to GCW fans, having wreaked havoc years ago. Matsuda is working as a hired mercenary for Heenan, which is scary for Brisco because Matsuda's top priority isn't victory, but elimination. Heenan didn't mind that Matsuda lost this match after a crisp gutwrench suplex from Brisco because after the match, Matsuda put a beatdown on Brisco, leaving him having to be helped to the back by officials. These two will go at it again one more time in Uniondale.

Muhammad Ali pinned Gorilla Monsoon with the Knockout Punch in 0:05:08.
Rating: 1/2*

There was a ton of buzz in the air regarding this huge event. For the first time ever, Muhammad Ali was stepping into a wrestling ring. Ali is the greatest boxer in the world, but it was going to be interesting to see how he adapted to the professional wrestling style. Ali was not short on confidence though as shown by the series of press conferences and interviews he's done leading up to this match. Ali has been saying he was going to knock Gorilla Monsoon out in no time flat. Monsoon was fighting to defend the honor of wrestlers everywhere against the bravado of a loud mouth boxer. Ali had the clear cut speed advantage, and he used that to pepper Monsoon from a distance. Monsoon needed to get a hold of Ali to have any chance. Monsoon did get a hold of Ali at one point and picked him up into the Airplane Spin, dumping him to the canvas. But Monsoon couldn't make the pinfall because Ali was too close to the ropes and rolled to the floor. Ali was flustered by this, but it also seemed to make him angry. When Ali got back in the ring, he smashed Monsoon in the jaw with a knockout punch that sent Monsoon lifeless to the mat. Then in a big slap in the face to wrestlers everywhere, Ali pinned Monsoon - using only a foot on his chest. Monsoon is going to have a lot of explaining to do in the locker room for this.

The Texas Outlaws (Dusty Rhodes and Dick Murdoch), Ivan Koloff and Pedro Morales defeated The Graham Brothers (Billy Graham and Luke Graham), Bobby Duncum and Harley Race when I. Koloff pinned Race with the Russian Sickle in 0:32:03.
Rating: ***
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Ivan Koloff.]

Multi-man matches always have the potential to become chaotic, and when you have as many big personalities with such deep seated issues with each other involved in a huge main event at Madison Square Garden, chaos is guaranteed. On one side, World champion Harley Race, the World Tag Team champions Luke & Billy Graham, and Bobby Duncum. The other, Ivan Koloff, Pedro Morales, and the Texas Outlaws. This is how you do a main event. The rulebreaking contingent was having a lot of trouble getting on the same page. Bobby Duncum has become a bit of a lone wolf in 1975 and he didn't seem at all interested in working strategy with Race and the Grahams. The fan favorite team though was firing on all cylinders and they put their game plan into practice beautifully. When Duncum walked to the back after having enough of the match, it let Koloff isolate Race in the ring. With the Texas Outlaws battling with the Grahams on the floor, Race had nowhere to run. Race couldn't tag out, and it let Koloff take him down and pin him with the Russian Sickle. This is the first time Race has been pinned in a GCW ring, and this is particularly huge for Koloff. Race beat Koloff for the World Title, and as of yet, Koloff hasn't gotten the one-on-one rematch for the title. That is all going to change, because on July 12, our main event will be the Russian Bear challenging Race for the World Title!

Card rating: ** 1/2

Match observations:

We will be in Uniondale, NY on July 12 at the Nassau Coliseum, and from the looks of it, it will be a tremendous event!

WORLD TITLE - Harley Race (c) vs. Ivan Koloff
INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE - Dory Funk Jr. (c) Billy Robinson
WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES - Luke Graham/Billy Graham vs. The Texas Outlaws
Jack Brisco vs. Hiro Matsuda
Tony Garea/Jimmy Snuka vs. The Blackjacks
Larry Zbyszko/Dino Bravo vs. The Valiant Brothers

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