This Day In Wrestling History – July 4th

Jul 4, 2013 - by Jamie Cruickshank

Title Changes

1981 – Paul Orndorff defeats Jake Roberts to win the MSW North American Title

1983 – David von Erich defeats Jimmy Garvin to win the vacant Texas Heavyweight Title. Also, The Von Erichs (David, Kerry & Kevin) defeat The Fabulous Freebirds (Terry Gordy, Michael Hayes & Buddy Roberts) to win the WCCW World 6-Man Tag Team Titles

1984 – King Parsons defeats Bill Irwin to win the WCCW American Tag Team Titles, and chose Buck Zumhofe as his partner. Also, The Fabulous Freebirds (Terry Gordy, Michael Hayes & Buddy Roberts) defeat The Von Erichs (Kerry, Kevin & Mike) to win the vacant WCCW World 6-Man Tag Team Titles

1986 – Chris Adams defeats Rick Rude to win the WCCW World Heavyweight Title. Also, Buzz Sawyer defeats Brian Adias to win the WCCW Texas Heavyweight Title. Also, Abdullah The Butcher defeats The Great Kabuki to win the Texas Brass Knuckles Title

1988 – Kevin von Erich is awarded the vacant WCCW Texas Heavyweight Title

2000 – on Smackdown, Val Venis defeats Rikishi to win the WWF Intercontinental Title

2006 – The Big Show defeats Rob Van Dam in an Extreme Rules Match to win the ECW World Title

2010 – Taiyo Kea & Akebono defeat Suwama & Ryota Hama to win the vacant AJPW Unified World Tag Team Titles


Happy birthday to former WWF and WCW World Champion Sid and WWE Hall of Famer Barry Windham (both 53)

In Memoriam

On this day in 1988, the wrestling world lost one-time WWF and AWA Tag Team Champion ‘Adorable’ Adrian Adonis aged just 33. Adonis debuted in 1974 under his real name ‘Keith Franke’. Towards the end of the decade, he adopted the Adrian Adonis moniker, initially a stereotypical biker, and formed The East-West Connection with Jesse Ventura. The pair were awarded the AWA Tag Team Titles in 1980 when Verne Gagne was unable to compete and would go on to hold the belts for the best part of a year. In late 1981, Adonis & Ventura began competing for the WWF, with Adonis regularly challenging for the WWF World and Intercontinental Titles. After Ventura’s retirement, he formed a new tag team with Dick Murdoch, calling themselves The North-South Connection. This led to a WWF Tag Team Title run in 1984-85, following which the team separated. Soon after this, Adonis began to alter his gimmick, ditching the biker look in favour of bleached-blonde hair, pink ring gear and copious amounts of makeup, later nicknaming himself ‘Adorable’. His weight also ballooned to over 300lbs at this stage of his career, though he was still a surprisingly agile wrestler. The following year, Adonis engaged in a feud with Roddy Piper, having replaced Piper’s Pit with his ‘The Flower Shop’ segment. This culminated in a hair vs hair match at WrestleMania 3, won by Piper. Adonis left the WWF shortly after the event and returned to the AWA, where he remained a high-level competitor, but failed to win gold. Adonis was killed in a single-car accident; the driver (fellow wrestler William Arko, known as Mike Kelly) swerved to avoid a moose and, blinded by the low sun, careered into a lake. Mike Kelly was the only survivor; Adonis, Victor ‘Pat Kelly’ Arko and Dave ‘Wildman’ McKigney all perished.

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