With WrestleMania season starting to peek its nose into our lives, I thought it would be fun to go back and look at one of the first ever squashes in its history: King Kong Bundy vs. S.D. Jones at the very first big show. No doubt most of you know of this famous bout, but for those of you that don’t, well, pull up a chair and let Uncle RD give you a little history lesson.
While the first Mania was promoted almost entirely on the back of Hulk Hogan, Roddy Piper, Mr. T, and Cyndi Lauper, it was an opportunity for others in the company to also ply their wares before what would prove to be in many ways a brand new audience. While I wouldn’t classify any match as a ***** classic, there were a few fun encounters. Bundy’s soon to be running buddy Big John Studd battled Andre the Giant in a body slam challenge match that saw Studd get slammed, but instead of giving Andre the $15,000 that was promised, we instead saw Bobby Heenan abscond with the cash and run for the hills like a total scumbag. I will always remember that one as it may have been my very first exposure to the man who would become my all-time favorite wrestling performer. With that in mind, you may be surprised to learn that Bundy did not come to the ring with Heenan, but instead…
…”The Mouth of the South” Jimmy Hart. At this period in the WWF, you’d see weird stuff like that all the time. In many ways, I think the company was just trying to figure out what pieces fit in what holes and had no fear of experimenting with different things. I also believe Hart and Bundy may have been in Memphis at the same time, but I could be a bit off on that.
Bundy’s foe for the big event was of course “Special Delivery” S.D. Jones. For all the static I’ve gotten over the years about being “Real Deal” R.D. Reynolds (and thus my full name being “Real Deal” Real Deal Reynolds), hey, this guy did the exact same thing. Also I never acted like I was pulling a gun and shooting people randomly in the crowd. This guy was postal in more ways than one it seems.
So the match starts and Jones attempts…something. A Thesz press perhaps. Whatever it was, it was a dumb move and failed miserably with Bundy catching him with a bear hug then slamming him into the turnbuckles. This would be of course very bad news as it set things up perfectly for Bundy’s finisher…
…the avalanche. A big ol’ splash follows up and referee Dick Kroll makes the three count. And that kid, is your first ever WrestleMania squash.
Ring announcer Howard Finkel proclaims Bundy is not only the winner, but the time of the bout was only nine seconds. Gorilla Monsoon immediately tells us that history has been made, as this eclipses the former record for a win which was apparently 23 seconds.
Just one problem there. If you go back and watch, you will see that this match didn’t last nine seconds. From the time the bell rings to the time the three count is finalized, it’s about 25 seconds. In the ultimate irony, Gorilla himself is the fountain of misinformation!