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This Day in Wrestling History (June 15)

Happy Father's Day to all the dads (and moms playing dads) out there. Happy Sunday to everyone else. Let's get to the history lesson. Heavy on the WCW influence for this day in wrestling history, but first, bodybuilding gone wrong.



23 years ago today, Gary Strydom won the first World Bodybuilding Federation Bodystars Championship. A brief story about the WBF: the World Bodybuilding Federation was created in 1990, first as a denied rumor (covering it up as nothing more than a bodybuilding magazine). In September of that year at the Mr. Olympia event in Chicago, Vince McMahon and company unleashed the Trojan horse, handing out press releases announcing the formation of the WBF, promising the richest prizes in professional bodybuilding. The thirteen signees were revealed in a stylish press conference in January 1991; among them, Gary Strydom, who had signed for $1.2 million over three years, far more than the IFBB (International Federation of Bodybuilders)'s contracts, said to top out at about $50,000 per year. The first event was held at the Donald Trump-owned Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic City. Strydom won the wrestling-style infused event and with it the largest portion of the $275,000 prize pool. Reaction was mixed, but generally negative. Less than two weeks after the event, George Zahorian, a Pennsylvania physician appointed by the state, was found guilty of twelve counts of selling anabolic steroids and sentenced to three years in prison. That put the heat on Vince McMahon, one of Zahorian's clients, and would announce the next month that the WWF would institute a stringent drug testing policy to take effect that November. Following a second WBF Bodystars Championship in June 1992 (won once again by Gary Strydom), the WBF folded after recording $15 million in losses and its former stars were allowed to return to the IFBB, though McMahon paid out one of the contracted stars, Eddie Robinson's contract in full.


17 years ago today was WCW's Great American Bash (WWE Network link) from the Mark of the Quad Cities in Moline, Illinois. Attendance was 9,613, with a gate of over $142,000 with about 220,000 homes making the PPV purchase, which is 50,000 more than the 1996 edition.

  • Akira Hokuto defeats Madusa in a Title vs Career Match to retain the WCW Womens Title and force Madusa to retire
  • Chris Benoit defeats Meng in a Death Match
  • The Outsiders (Kevin Nash & Scott Hall) defeat Ric Flair & Roddy Piper to retain the WCW World Tag Team titles
  • Randy Savage defeats Diamond Dallas Page in a Falls Count Anywhere Match


11 years ago today was AAA's TripleMania XI from Naucalpan, Mexico.

- Electroshock & Lady Apache defeat Gran & Faby Apache, El Brazo & Martha Villalobos and Chessman & Tiffany in a 4-Way Tag Team Match to win the AAA World Mixed Tag Team Titles

- Rayman & El Zorro defeat Juventud Guerrera & Mr Aguila by DQ

- Heavy Metal defeats Pirata Morgan, El Texano & Sangre Chicana in a Hair vs Hair Match. Pirata Morgan was pinned, so he was shaved bald

- Lizmark Sr, La Parka, Octagon & Super Calo defeat Abismo Negro, Cibernetico & The Headhunters (A & B)


11 years ago today was also WWE's first brand-exclusive PPV, Bad Blood (WWE Network link) from Houston, Texas. The B-show PPVs were split among RAW and Smackdown (and ECW briefly) until Backlash in April 2007. The event grossed an even $500,000 at the arena from 10,000 tickets sold, with 285,000 homes buying the event.

  • Scott Steiner defeats Test to acquire the services of Stacy Keibler as manager
  • Booker T defeats Christian by DQ (Christian retains the WWE Intercontinental Title)
  • La Resistance (Rene Dupree & Sylvain Grenier) defeat Rob Van Dam & Kane to win the World Tag Team Titles
  • Goldberg defeats Chris Jericho
  • Ric Flair defeats Shawn Michaels
  • Triple H defeats Kevin Nash in a Hell In A Cell Match with Mick Foley as special guest referee to retain the World Heavyweight Title




10 years ago today, two championships changed hands at the Smackdown taping in Rosemont, IL: The Dudley Boyz defeat Charlie Hass and Rico to win the WWE Tag Team Championships. The win made the Dudley Boyz the first team to win both RAW's and Smackdown's tag team championships in WWE since the brand extension in 2002, and their 18th tag team championship overall. Also, Rey Mysterio defeats Chavo Classic (Chavo Guerrero, Sr.) to win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship. This gave Mysterio his third cruiserweight title since joining WWE and his eighth (and last) overall.


7 years ago today, WWE Hall of Famer "Sensational" Sherri Martel passes away from an accidental drug overdose at her mother's home at age 49. She initially approached Grizzly Smith for training, but was turned down. After around 5 years, her interest in wrestling piqued again and she began training under Butch Moore in Memphis. She underwent further training at The Fabulous Moolah's school (during which time she wrestled in Japan) but was kicked out for a supposed attitude problem. In the mid-80′s, she joined the AWA and would go on to win 3 Women's Titles in the promotion before being signed by the WWF in 1987. On her debut with the WWF, she ended Moolah's year-long reign as Womens Champion and eventually turned to a manager role when the WWF phased out its women's division at the turn of the decade. She managed Randy Savage, Ted DiBiase, Shawn Michaels, Marty Jannetty and Tatanka before her release from the WWF in 1993. She had short stints in ECW and WCW in 1993 and 1994 before quietly disappearing from the wrestling scene. She continued to make occasional appearances in a variety of promotions, most notably in the WWE in 2005, contributing to the feud between Kurt Angle and Shawn Michaels and on TNA Impact in 2006, offering her managerial services to Robert Roode, which would be her final televised appearance. Sherri is a member of the WWE Hall of Fame class of 2006.



5 years ago today, Randy Orton defeats John Cena, Triple H, and The Big Show in a fatal four-way match to win the vacated WWE Championship at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, NC. This, by the way, was the same show where it was announced that Donald Trump had not only become the new general manager of RAW, but he had bought the RAW brand itself.

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