September 1, 1976 - Madison Square Garden - New York, NY

Number-One-Contenders-Match:
The Dirtbags (Dick Murdoch and Stan Hansen) defeated Dean Ho and Tony Garea when Murdoch pinned Ho with the Gourdbuster in 0:17:08.
Rating: *** 3/4

The opening contest here at MSG would determine the next challengers for the World Tag Team Titles. The budding rivalry between Dean Ho & Tony Garea and the Dirtbags has led to some great matches, and this one was no exception. The two teams bring out the fire in each other, and a chance for a title shot made this all the more exciting. After a terrific match including a fantastic final few minutes, it will be Dick Murdoch & Stan Hansen getting the title shot in Providence on September 25!

Jimmy Snuka pinned Luke Graham after a small package in 0:10:47.
Rating: ** 1/2

For the second match in a row, Jimmy Snuka has pinned Luke Graham! Much like what happened last time, the story of the contest was Luke beating the tar out of the Superfly, but Snuka refusing to stay down before he caught a cocky Graham off-guard with a small package to get the win! Again, Luke Graham lost his cool post-match and nearly destroyed the ringside area. Luke Graham is going crazy.

Killer Kowalski defeated Johnny Rodz when Johnny Rodz passed out in the Stomach Claw in 0:02:32.
Johnny Rodz injured his right knee. He will be out for approximately 2 months.
Rating: ***
[Jumbo Tsuruta interfered against Johnny Rodz.]

Killer Kowalski has had a legendary career and has made a career out of decimating people. Johnny Rodz got to experience that first hand as Kowalski destroyed Rodz, injuring his knee in the process.

Dory Funk Jr. defeated Terry Funk by disqualification in 0:04:55.
Rating: ** 1/4
(Terry Funk retained the GCW Intercontinental Title.)
[Don Muraco interfered against Dory Funk Jr..]

Brothers Terry & Dory Jr. haven't wrestled each other in nearly 6 years, but the sibling rivalry is still as strong as ever as the two fought for Terry's Intercontinental Title. The match didn't last long, but both men were winded from how fast and furious they went at it. Dory ended up getting the upperhand in the fight, which prompted DON MURACO to hit the ring and help beat down Dory, his former mentor. Terry Funk loses the match, but he keeps the IC Title around his waist, and his brother Dory got a beating.

Billy Graham pinned Sgt. Slaughter after a powerslam in 0:01:02.
Rating: **

The destructive path of "Superstar" Billy Graham continued with a drubbing of Sgt. Slaughter. Slaughter has improved over the course of his rookie year, but let's face it - Billy Graham is about as dominant as they come right now. Graham gets the win in a little over a minute.

Billy Robinson pinned Nikolai Volkoff with the Double-Arm Suplex in 0:08:47.
Rating: ** 1/4

Billy Robinson had a tough mountain to climb tonight in the form of Nikolai Volkoff, but Robinson never feels like he is out matched. He is not the strongest guy in the world, but he is such a skilled grappler that he often turns that disadvantage of strength into his advantage with superior technique. That's exactly what he did with Volkoff tonight, frustrating the powerhouse into a few mistakes before Robinson hit the Double-Arm Suplex to get a big victory in the Garden.

Jumbo Tsuruta and Dino Bravo defeated The Blackjacks (Blackjack Lanza and Blackjack Mulligan) when Tsuruta pinned Mulligan after a power bomb in 0:24:34.
Rating: *** 1/2
(Jumbo Tsuruta and Dino Bravo won the GCW World Tag Team Titles.)

Dino Bravo was entitled a World Tag Team Title shot against the Blackjacks due to the rematch clause in the contract when he lost the titles, but his former partner, Larry Zbyszko, is no longer with GCW after suffering a broken leg at the hands of Billy Graham. Bravo was allowed to choose a replacement partner, and he was wise to keep who that partner was quiet until match time, a clear disadvantage for Lanza & Mulligan. The reigning champions were less than thrilled to find out the mystery partner was JUMBO TSURUTA, who has looked terrific in his rookie year with GCW. The teamwork of Bravo & Tsuruta was crisp and they weren't at all intimidated by the experience and skill of the Blackjacks. Bobby Heenan pulled everything he could out of his bag of tricks, but the inability to prepare for Bravo & Jumbo as a team proved to be too much to overcome. Jumbo floored Blackjack Mulligan with a power bomb, driving the air out of his lungs and allowing the crowning of brand new World Tag Team champions! Heenan is already demanding a rematch for his men, citing the unfair nature of the mystery partner, but he will have to wait in line as the Dirtbags get the first crack at the new champs on September 25.

Mr. Wrestling I pinned Gorilla Monsoon after a dropkick to the knee in 0:04:22.
Rating: **

Mr. Wrestling I made the mistake of getting on the bad side of Gorilla Monsoon by trying to make an example out of Monsoon's protege, Sgt. Slaughter. Wrestling I knew he was a dead man if he let Monsoon get a hold of him, so he used a hit and run technique that proved to be quite effective. Wrestling I targeted Monsoon's knee with great malice, getting a pinfall after a dropkick to the knee buckled the Monster From Manchuria's leg. Mr. Wrestling I is a mammoth jerk, but it's hard to argue with the results this attitude change is getting.

Ivan Koloff pinned Dusty Rhodes after a small package in 0:14:31.
Rating: ** 1/4
[Lou Albano interfered against Dusty Rhodes.]

Dusty Rhodes is wanting to beat Ivan Koloff in the worst way, but thus far, he has seen no success. There's no shame in that, as Koloff is a former World champion and one of the overall meanest dudes on the planet. Rhodes' popularity continues to grow every show, and it's hard to ignore the amount of cheers he is receiving each and every time he steps into the ring. These cheers were clearly bothering Koloff, who used to be the recipient of the crowd's love before joining forces again with Lou Albano. Rhodes took the fight to Koloff, and nearly had him defeated on more than one occasion, but it was not meant to be as the aggressiveness of Rhodes came back to haunt him. Koloff trapped Rhodes in a small package, and three seconds later had won the match. Close for Rhodes, but yet still so far.

Harley Race defeated Pedro Morales by referee stoppage in 0:25:34.
Rating: ** 1/2
(Harley Race retained the GCW World Title.)

Harley Race shouldn't be the World champion any more after what happened tonight! A very controversial call led to him retaining his title in the main event against Pedro Morales. Morales wrestled a great match and he seemed to be in great position to become a 2-time World Heavyweight champion. Unfortunately for Morales, circumstance said otherwise. Earlier in this match, Race opened up a cut on Morales' forehead that progressively got worse as the war waged on. The cut didn't seem to be slowing Morales down though, instead motivating the fiery competitor from Puerto Rico to really take it to Handsome Harley. The blood was pouring profusely from his face as Morales locked on the Boston Crab, and it looked like Race was going to have no choice but to submit. The crowd exploded in cheers when the bell rang, thinking Morales had made Race submit, ending his title reign and his undefeated streak. The crowd nearly rioted when it was announced that referee Dick Kroll had stopped the match due to concerns for Morales' health, and awarded the match to Race! Kroll had to be led out of the arena by several police officers. In all fairness, the cut on Morales' head was deep and did require stitches, but he had this match all but wrapped up. Morales has DEMANDED a rematch in Providence, and he wants it to be a cage match where there is no way that the match will be stopped due to excessive blood. If you asked me, Harley Race's days as champion are numbered.

Card rating: ** 1/2

Match observations:

September 25 will be our next show in the Providence Civic Center in Providence, RI, with these great matches already announced!

WORLD TITLE CAGE MATCH - Harley Race (c) vs. Pedro Morales
INTERCONTINENTAL TITLE - Terry Funk (c) vs. Dory Funk Jr.
WORLD TAG TEAM TITLES - Jumbo Tsuruta/Dino Bravo (c) vs. The Dirtbags
Dusty Rhodes vs. Ivan Koloff
Jimmy Snuka vs. Mr. Wrestling I

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