The World Wrestling Federation — now known as World Wrestling Entertainment — brought three cards to the Duluth Arena in 1987. The third of them happened 30 years ago today — Oct. 8, 1987. In the video clip above, Randy “Macho Man” Savage declares his enthusiasm for his first trip to the Zenith City.
Announcer Gene Okerlund mentions Bam Bam Bigelow and Nikolai Volkoff in his opening remarks, but neither of them appeared at the show.
Although Perfect Duluth Day did not exist 30 years ago, it nonetheless had three different teenage photographers at the event. So there are plenty of sloppy flash images in the archive.
In the opening bout, Sivi Afi & Brady Boone (above) defeated the Shadows (masked wrestlers who were purportedly Randy Colley and Jose Luis Rivera, below).
In the second match, “Golden Boy” Danny Spivey defeated Special Delivery Jones.
WWF Women’s Champion “Sensational” Sherri Martel defeated Princess Jasmine.
Koko B. Ware defeated the One Man Gang via countout. Below are the least interesting of the One Man Gang photos. The most interesting ones were covered extensively in a PDD Saturday Essay feature: “The Amazing Story of the One Man Gang Middle Finger Photo.”
Killer Khan defeated the Junkyard Dog. There are two photos of Killer Khan, but none of the Junkyard Dog.
It might be the case that JYD came to the ring in a fuzzy dog costume, because there is an image of someone in a fuzzy dog costume.
The Macho Man was unsuccessful in his quest to defeat WWF Intercontinental Champion Wayne “Honky Tonk Man” Ferris. Savage had been a heel character until just a month or two prior to this card. The Honky Tonk Man had declared himself “the greatest Intercontinental Heavyweight Champion of all time,” which Savage took offense to — Honky Tonk Man had held the title only a few months, while Savage had once held it for over a year.
Savage’s former persona, as an abuser of his soft-spoken female manager, Miss Elizabeth, made it a tough transition for him to become a fan favorite in spite of his colorful personality and amazing wrestling ability. Five days before the Duluth card he fought the Honky Tonk Man on national television as part of the NBC show Saturday Night’s Main Event, a series of shows that occasionally ran in Saturday Night Live‘s time slot. In that match Savage won by disqualification, which meant he did not get the championship because the belt only changes hands by pinfall or submission. After the match, Hulk Hogan was hauled out to save the day, joining forces with Savage as the “Mega Powers,” sealing Savage’s transformation into a fan favorite.
In the Duluth match, Savage lost via disqualification. He never did regain the Intercontinental title despite a long feud with the Honky Tonk Man. Instead, Savage ended up winning the WWF World Heavyweight Championship — the title long held by Hogan — after Hogan’s feud with Andre the Giant and “Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase led to a disputed title and a 14-man tournament at Wrestlemania IV to crown a new champion. Savage held that title twice, and the WCW World Heavyweight Championship four times. He retired from professional wrestling in 2005 and died of a heart attack in 2011.
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