September 1983, Monday, Week 1
It’s September 1, which means it’s time to go over the state of the WWF.
It is widely accepted that the WWF reigns in the Tri State area, and it’s not even close. They are in a unique position though, as they are popular enough elsewhere that most companies see them as competition, but they have no TV coverage outside the Tri State area (that changes this weekend as syndication expands into the New England states) and don’t run shows outside the area so they are seen as the bottom of the barrel in literally every other part of the country.
They are still struggling financially. They lost about $6,000 last month and are currently in debt, although not significantly and a good month could help turn their fortunes around. They’re being kept alive by sponsorships, but if the sponsorships disappear, they could be in a lot of trouble.
Then you look at talent. The company still has not really replaced Big John Studd or The Iron Sheik, two men that were seemingly in line for big pushes (the Studd-Andre feud never got going, for example). Several contracts are coming up for renewal. Plus when you look at Adrian Adonis and Don Muraco, who are probably the #2 and #3 heels right now, being given any number of different offers, what does the future hold? Adonis now has an offer from New Japan which would pay him more money for fewer dates, and Muraco has an offer on the table with Atlantic Grand Prix Wrestling. Muraco is expected to turn down the AGPW offer, but he’s already spread thin and hasn’t competed on a non-televised WWF show in months despite his standing as WWF Intercontinental Champion. The extra dates make it virtually impossible for the WWF to properly book his feud with Jimmy Snuka.
In other news, Tiger Conway Jr. has formed a tag team in Mid-South Wrestling with George Weingeroff. They will be known as Malicious Intent.
September, Tuesday, Week 1
A women’s tag team match has been added to the Spectrum show on Saturday, Week 4, as Leilani Kai will team with Women’s Champion Judy Martin to take on Susan Starr and Donna Christenello.
Championship Wrestling taping (September 1983, Tuesday, Week 1)
Ah, how I have a love/hate relationship with Agricultural Hall in Allentown.
The show began with a long interview with Tito Santana, who told Pat Patterson he was looking forward to a shot at the Intercontinental Title. Muraco hasn’t had one match with Snuka and half the roster is asking for a shot at him at this point. This led to a match where Tito Santana defeated Bob Bradley in 4:30 by pinfall. This match needed to be better as they’ve wrestled each other four times in the last few months.
Masked Superstar defeated Chief Jay Strongbow in 3:44 by pinfall. The Grand Wizard did some good work at ringside.
Sgt. Slaughter defeated Frankie Williams in 3:48 by submission with a Cobra Clutch. After the match, Sgt. Slaughter was interviewed backstage by Vince McMahon, hyping his upcoming title match against Bob Backlund later this month in Philadelphia.
Iron Mike Sharpe pinned Swede Hanson in 3:08 with a Running Forearm Smash. Sharpe’s character has gotten real stale real fast.
Tony Atlas defeated Bill Anderson in 2:09 by submission.
Capt. Lou Albano & WWF Tag Team Champions the Wild Samoans were the guests on Buddy Rogers’ Corner, where Rogers mentioned at the close of the segment that he would like to get Albano in the ring at some point. No, just no.
Buddy Rose defeated Rocky Johnson in 1:46 by submission following a distraction from The Grand Wizard. Wow, has Johnson’s star fallen.
Ivan Putski and Invader # 2 defeated Mr. Fuji & Tiger Chung Lee in 4:51 when Invader pinned Mr. Fuji with a Heart Punch.
Vince McMahon interviewed S.D. Jones, who said he would like to team with Rocky Johnson or Invader #2 for a possible shot at the Samoans.
Salvatore Bellomo pinned Johnny Rodz in 2:07 by pinfall with a Pizza Splash. This was there.
I’m begging this company to do a real main event on TV but otherwise this was a good show.
September 1983, Wednesday, Week 1
The taping in Allentown drew the usual sell out of 1,300.
There is at least a tentative plan to have Lou Albano vs. Buddy Rogers in some form before the year is out, likely in a tag team match with Don Muraco and Jimmy Snuka as their respective partners. Their contracts do not call for in-ring work though, so there would have to be some major negotiations done before that could happen.
September 1983, Thursday, Week 1
Maple Leaf Wrestling out of Toronto has made a contract offer to referee Dick Kroll. MLW shows would have little to no effect on his WWF bookings.
September 1983, Friday, Week 1
Iron Mike Sharpe’s going to undergo a minor gimmick change effective with his next appearance, as he’ll be playing more of a street thug. The idea is to give his character more of a violent edge, and it is thought to fit better into his hidden object in the forearm pad gimmick.
Tiger Chung Lee will also be changing his gimmick, as they will be playing more into his martial arts background and less into ethnicity, although he will still be doing his team with Mr. Fuji as a result of both men being Asian. Yes, I’m aware that Korea and Japan have historically hated each other for eons, but that has never stopped a pro wrestling company from lumping them in together before.
September 1983, Saturday, Week 1
Tiger Chung Lee and Ivan Putski have both agreed to contract extensions that will keep them in the WWF until 1988. Putski will probably retire before his contract runs out anyway.
A bitter rivalry between Sandy Barr and Buddy Rose is developing in Portland’s Big Time Wrestling, but this is one going on behind the scenes and not in front of an audience. The two supposedly are barely on speaking terms and only talk to each other when they have to. Supposedly they were in a dispute regarding money but we don’t have any details as to the exact situation.
Don Kernodle recently did an interview with WACK 1420-AM in Newark, New York, and he let slip that he dislikes his first match in a new promotion as he gets nervous and feels it hinders his performance.
September 1983, Sunday, Week 1
TV ratings in the Tri State area remained steady this week. However, the New England markets that are getting TV back for the first time in months drew lower ratings than expected, although the stations themselves were happy with the ratings so it won’t hurt the company, at least in the early going.