Thinking of dream matches between wrestlers of different eras, different companies, or some other circumstance which prevented two stars from meeting in the ring has always been a part of fandom.
Yet sometimes dream matches happened and were simply forgotten. Here are three of them.
3/8/86: Ricky Seamboat vs. Bret Hart
Learning about this match is what motivated to look for some others. Apparently, this match from the Boston Garden is well known in the business and WWE wrestlers often request it from the the tape library.
The story is that Steamboat and Hart were possibly going to be matched up for WrestleMania 2 but the idea was scrapped. As a consolation, they had this match and got more time than would have been possible at WM2.
Both Steamboat and Hart were about a year away from winning their first WWF gold. (IC and tag team respectively)
The match begins at 54:16.
4/15/85: Nick Bockwinkel vs. Randy Savage (managed by Tux Newman)
Savage (32) was in his first of two Southern championship reigns in the Memphis territory. That's the title Jerry Lawler held 52 times from 1974 to 1987. Savage would drop the title and leave for the WWF in June.
Bockwinkel (50) was a former three-time AWA world champion at the time of the match. (eventually four times)
Savage's career started in 1973 but it took more than a decade before he became much of a star. Meanwhile, Bockwinkel's career lasted into his fifties as a top AWA star.
The match took place in Memphis.
2/11/83: Kerry Von Erich vs. Greg Valentine
In the early 80's, the top two regional NWA titles were arguably the Missouri championship (St. Louis territory) and the U.S.championship (Mid-Atlantic territory).
At the time of this match, Von Erich held the Missouri title and Valentine held the U.S. title. The match is in St. Louis (presumably the Kiel Auditorium)
Valentine was probably at the peak of his career. He would hold the U.S. title for most of 1983 and then move on to the WWF and win the Intercontinental title in 1984.
Von Erich was a little over a year from his short NWA world title reign. Though, I've read his peak is probably the couple years after that before he injured and lost his foot in the motorcycle accident.
These two were simply never in the same territory at the same time. Von Erich obviously wrestled mostly in his fathers's World Class Championship Wrestling. Valentine moved back in forth between the WW(W)F and Jim Crocket Pomotions from 1976 until the early '90s.
By the time Von Erich debuted in the WWF in 1990, Valentine's career was coming to a close.
Tomohiro Ishii vs Kota Ibushi - NEVER Openweight Championship match at NJPW's Back to the Yokohama Arena 2014. 5/25/14.
People's first impression of Ibushi is that he's this Japanese pretty-boy that does nice flippy high-flying stuff and is most well-known for wrestling a blow-up doll to an entertaining match. That stated, he has no problems getting physical and delivering hard-hitting shots against a guy like Ishii (whose has a presence that's like "Hard to get me down in one shot, I can withstand any blow with ease, and the first shot I deliver will put you down on the mat.")
At one point in the match, Ishii's left eye got busted opened, but he carried on like it's not a problem at all. It's a very good match, rated highly by Meltzer (gave it a 4.75, but he loves good Japanese wrestling so he's bias like that), but I had a good time watching it.
Here's a good collection of pre-match interviews with Bob Backlund, Hulk Hogan, and the Iron Sheik, the unedited title match itself, post-match fight between Hogan and the Sheik, and post-match interviews/celebrations with Hogan, other babyfaces, and Hogan's parents.
I feel this match has aged incredibly well, the story the tell of an unstoppable monster vs someone who is too dumb to quit is fantastic. The ending with Rollins was just the cherry on top.
Pre-Injury Rollins was a completely different wrestler than the guy who came back from the injury, it really is too bad. Coupled with a motivated Lesnar and the absolute beating Reigns took in this match and I feel this match will be considered a classic the older it gets.
imo that match is a classic. I love that match. Have watched it easily over a handful of times.
Kind of funny with it being WM season people are talking about old matches and tons of people are saying that this match sucked. I think people forget how great this match was and how exciting it was when it happened because lol Roman Reigns is in it and he can't have a great match.
I was just going to fire this match up to finish watching 31 for the WM ranking thread. I've only watched this match from start to finish once, when it was live, so I'm looking forward to watching it again. I have watched parts of it multiple time though, especially where Brock hardways, because there were people after the match claiming that he bladed, and I just wanted to make sure I wasn't going nuts.
Anyway I'll watch this tonight and hopefully have the wrote done by Monday
Well, I was going to watch Jushin Thunder Liger vs Pegasus Kid (aka that guy that did the sinful deed) for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship in August 1990. I believe that match was on a WWE-produced DVD that is not on sale anymore for obvious reasons. I do think I probably can find it on New Japan World, but I sadly cannot afford a subscription, atm, so I'm watching this match now.
Dynamite Kid Vs. Tiger Mask on 7-23-82.
I heard word after the big commotion of the Will Ospreay vs Ricochet match during NJPW's Best of the Super Juniors that people were comparing that match to this certain match and stated that the Dynamite Kid/Tiger Mask matches were its predecessor. Let's see how it is.
Edit: So finished the match. Honestly, people like Vader and Jim Cornette were saying along the lines that matches like Ospreay/Ricochet is killing the business today and with their gymnastics flips and stuff. If people saw a match like Dynamite Kid/Tiger Mask happen today, move by move, the same detractors would probably say the same thing and that match took place 35 years ago with stuff that you wouldn't see at all in the big 3 in the states at the time, but wouldn't look out of place one bit in today's wrestling landscape.
If I had one complaint though it would be this. At one point, Dynamite Kid did a tombstone piledriver on the floor and seconds later Tiger Mask was able to do a backdrop on Dynamite onto the crowd. Honestly, that sort of spot should have resulted in Tiger Mask being laid down there like he was dead from the tombstone. Then again, matches in Japan treats piledrivers a little differently than it would in the states and, especially, in Mexico.