Wrestlemania III - Bigger, Badder & Better
Savage v Steamboat WM3 photo:thecheapheat.wordpress.com

Wrestlemania III was the third annual Wrestlemania pay-per-view event produced by the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). The event was held on March 29, 1987, at the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan. The Wrestlemania III match card saw 12 matches on the card with a wide and varying set of matches. A record attendance of 93,173, the largest recorded attendance for a live indoor sporting event in North America was set and many consider this event to be the pinnacle of the wrestling industry's big boom in the 1980's.

Roddy Piper v Adrian Adonis 

This match was furious from the get go as both Roddy Piper and Adrian Adonis began the match by attacking each other with Piper's belt. Then Adonis would apply a sleeper hold on Piper, but proceeded to release the hold thinking that he had already won the match and was joined by his manager Jimmy Hart,only for Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake to reawaken Piper who then attacked Adonis and won the match with a sleeper hold.

Following the match, “The Barber” lived up to his nickname as he shaved Adonis’s hair while Piper held down Jimmy Hart. After being woken by Beefcake and seeing himself in the mirror he had brought to the ring that Piper was holding, Adonis hit the mirror and chased Piper around the ring before leaving the ring in embarrassment with Hart using his jacket to cover Adonis' head.

Ricky Steamboat v Randy Savage

This match is hailed by many as one of the greatest Wrestlemania matches of all time and it is hard to argue that point as this was a classic before the match ever happened with The  “Macho Man” putting Ricky Steamboat on the shelf with a ruptured Larynx in the months leading up to the event. 

Then came the 15 minute match that had it all. At one point in the match it seemed that Randy Savage was going to try and injure the larynx again with the ring bell, only for George “The Animal” Steele to come down to Steamboat's aid. Savage attempted a scoop slam on Steamboat who reversed it into a small package to win the Intercontinental Championship marking the first time in Wrestlemania history that the title changed hands on “the grandest stage of them all”

Hulk Hogan v Andre the Giant

Billed as “the biggest main event in sports entertainment” Wrestlemania III saw the battle of two former friends, who turned into the most bitter of enemies in Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant. This feud began when Hogan was presented a trophy for being the WWE Champion for three years, and Andre came out to congratulate his best friend and he would receive a trophy of his own for being undefeated for 15 years shortly after.  

Hogan came out to congratulate André,but Hogan quickly became the main focus of attention. Annoyed by this, André walked out during Hogan's congratulation speech and not long after that, on an edition of the interview segment Piper's Pit, Andre informed Hogan that he had hired a new manager and to Hogan’s surprise Andre had turned to Bobby “The Brain” Heenan and Andre would rip the shirt and crucifix off Hogan before making a challenge for a title match at Wrestlemania III, Hogan would accept and the match was set and the Irresistible Force was destined to meet the Immovable Object.

The body slam heard around the world. Photo: tgtmedia.com
The body slam heard around the world. Photo: tgtmedia.com

As Andre the Giant and Bobby Heenan made their way to the ring in a cart there were heavily pelted by rubbish. In stark comparison to the champion Hulk Hogan's entrance, as he made his way to the ring the crowd gave him a standing ovation. As the match began Hogan attempted a body slam on Andre but he failed as he almost lost the match when he dropped Andre into a pinning predicament and the match then went back and forth, until Andre went for a big boot which Hogan avoided and he then proceeded to pick up the 520 pound and body slam him, creating one of the most iconic moments in wrestling history. Hogan would then hit his patented leg drop to retain the WWE Championship, to conclude one of the most memorable 'Mania's of all time.