May 30, 1971 - Civic Center - Baltimore, MD

Chief Jay Strongbow and Billy White Wolf defeated The Minnesota Wrecking Crew (Gene Anderson and Ole Anderson) when Strongbow defeated G. Anderson by countout in 0:19:36.
Rating: ** 1/4

A spirited tag team contest kicked off the show in Baltimore with Chief Jay Strongbow & Billy White Wolf taking on the Minnesota Wrecking Crew. The Andersons have been disenchanted since a near miss at becoming the tag champs earlier this year, and the frustration has reached the boiling point. The Andersons feel that they are the most technically sound team in GCW, and on that count, they may very well be right. But it hasn't translated to many wins in recent months. Gene Anderson's frustration in the team's inability led to him walking out for the countout and subsequently throw a tantrum. Ole did his best to calm his older brother down, but it was futile from what we saw. Regardless, a big win for Strongbow & Wolf to establish themselves in the tag team division.

Eddie Graham pinned Wahoo McDaniel with the Atomic Kneedrop in 0:07:06.
Rating: **

Wahoo McDaniel was still suffering the ill effects from the Indian Strap Match earlier this month as evidenced by the faint marks left from the leather strap. McDaniel couldn't have been at 100% going into this match with Eddie Graham. Graham blitzed Wahoo from the opening bell and didn't let up, getting the pin with the Atomic Kneedrop. Rumor has it that Wahoo is not handling this loss well.

The Cripplers (Ray Stevens and Nick Bockwinkel) defeated Dominic DeNucci and Karl Gotch when Bockwinkel pinned DeNucci with the Piledriver in 0:17:35.
Rating: ***
(The Cripplers retained the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)

The Cripplers felt they had the clear advantage over Karl Gotch in their specialty - a tag team match, so they wanted the United States champion in the ring with their tag titles on the line to prove that they were better. Gotch kept his partner under wraps until the match, and he picked a good one in recruiting the former 2-time tag team champion, DOMINIC DENUCCI! We hadn't seen DeNucci since January of '70 when he lost a loser-leaves-town match, but since Stevens & Bockwinkel agreed that Gotch could have ANY partner, DeNucci was allowed to return. The Cripplers had not expected that seeing how DeNucci is a tag team specialist, and they nearly lost the titles right off the bat. The end result would be in the champions' favor though as they're extensive tag team experience allowed them to single out DeNucci, let Bockwinkel hit the Piledriver, and get a successful title defense. After the match, Gotch thanked DeNucci for being his partner and has offered DeNucci a shot at the US Title for his partnership. This match will take place in Philadelphia on June 19.

Stan Stasiak pinned Arnold Skaaland with the Heart Punch in 0:03:50.
Rating: 1/4*
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Arnold Skaaland.]

Stan Stasiak's reign of fear continued as tonight he took on Arnold Skaaland. Though Stasiak has shown a meanstreak in all of his matches, the Man was particularly aggressive against the Golden Boy, beating him in just under 4 minutes with the Heart Punch. After the match, he hit Skaaland with one more Heart Punch, assuring that Skaaland would not be in Bruno Sammartino's corner in the main event. When we realized that the main event was Bruno defending the World Title against another one of The Grand Wizard's charges, "King" Ernie Ladd, it all made perfect sense. Sammartino is going to have a huge disadvantage in the World Title match.

Billy Graham pinned Johnny Valentine after a clothesline in 0:12:16.
Rating: ** 3/4

This match has to be considered the upset of the year so far in 1971! Billy Graham showed tonight that he has really taken to the teachings of his older brothers, Luke & Eddie, and he used that to surprise Johnny Valentine with a thunderous clothesline and get a flash pin. BILL WATTS hit the ring in a hurry and with Valentine back on his feet, they had Billy Graham cornered in the ring. Luckily for the Superstar, LUKE & EDDIE came to the ring. Watts & Valentine wisely retreated to the back without further incident.

The Half-Ton Team (Gorilla Monsoon and Haystacks Calhoun) defeated Crusher & Bruiser (The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser) when Calhoun pinned Crusher after hitting him with a foreign object in 0:12:47.
Rating: * 1/4
[Lou Albano interfered against Haystacks Calhoun.]

Sometimes when you're dealing with people who won't hesitate to break the rules, the only way you can compete is to fight fire with fire. That's exactly what The Half-Ton Team did against Dick the Bruiser & The Crusher. Bruiser tried to use his steel chain like he has so many times before, but Haystacks Calhoun one-upped him by catching him with the horseshoe for the 1-2-3. As a result of this win (along with being undefeated since returning as a team), Monsoon & Calhoun have earned a shot at the World Tag Team Titles in Philadelphia!

Pedro Morales pinned Baron Mikel Scicluna after a backbreaker in 0:15:17.
Rating: **
[Lou Albano interfered against Pedro Morales.]

With every passing month that Pedro Morales doesn't get the World Title shot he feels he so richly deserves, he seems to get that much more intense. Ask Baron Mikel Scicluna. Scicluna has been one of the top stars the last couple years in GCW, and by the end of this match, Morales had completely dominated him, hitting him with three backbreakers before taking the pin. With the massive improvement in Morales, Sammartino may be secretly hoping Morales never gets that title shot.

Cage Match:
Tony Garea pinned Lou Albano with the High Cross Body in 0:11:58.
Rating: * 1/2

Tony Garea got Lou Albano inside a steel cage to shut him up once and for all. Albano has made it his sole mission in life to make Garea's life hell since Garea beat him a few months ago, but Garea has thwarted him every time. Albano got in a lot of cheap shots in this match, but quite frankly, Garea is just a better wrestler, and he showed it by bouncing Albano around the ring en route to getting the pin. Garea didn't get to have much of a celebration though as a large scary looking man made his way out from the back and came to the ring. This man looked at the cage, got to the door, and ripped it right off! Garea threw a couple of punches to thwart this man, but they were shaken off and a monstrous clawhold was locked on Garea, putting him down and out! Albano later informed us all that this mystery monster was Baron Von Raschke and he would destroy anyone who messed with Albano, starting with Garea.

Ernie Ladd defeated Bruno Sammartino by countout in 0:16:02.
Rating: **
(Bruno Sammartino retained the GCW World Title.)
[The Grand Wizard interfered against Bruno Sammartino.]

Bruno Sammartino defended the World Title against "King" Ernie Ladd. The history between these two is well established, but tonight's match had a new wrinkle. Ladd had The Grand Wizard in his corner, as usual, but Sammartino's manager Arnold Skaaland was absent due to the beating he took from Stan Stasiak earlier. The Grand Wizard distracted at every turn, and with no Skaaland to stop him, he was doing so at will. It got so bad that referee Dick Kroll went over at reprimanded the Wizard, allowing STASIAK to come down to the ring and nail Bruno with the Heart Punch! The force of the blow was so great that Bruno fell out of the ring and was counted out on the floor. Ernie Ladd wins, but he doesn't win the title. Bruno has demanded a match against Stasiak in Philly, and the title will be on the line.

Card rating: * 3/4

Match observations:

Our return to the Spectrum in Philly on June 19 should be a huge night with a lot of great action, including all 3 titles up for grabs!

WORLD TITLE - Bruno Sammartino (c) vs. Stan Stasiak
UNITED STATES TITLE - Karl Gotch (c) vs. Dominic DeNucci
WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES - The Cripplers (c) vs. The Half-Ton Team
Luke Graham/Eddie Graham vs. Bill Watts/Johnny Valentine
Tony Garea vs. Baron Von Raschke

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