Ultimate History of Pro Wrestling - A Time Line of Every Major Event in Pro Wrestling History - 1981

By: Karl Stern (@wiwcool)

1981

01-01-1981: In Atlanta, GA Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan on a Georgia Championship Wrestling card.

01-02-1981: Mike Graham & Barry Windham defeated Bobby Jaggers & R.T. Tyler to win the Florida tag team titles in Orlando, FL.

01-03-1981: At the Capital Centre in Landover, MD Sgt. Slaughter defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by DQ.

01-12-1981: Barry Windham wins the NWA Florida title in West Palm Beach from Dory Funk, Jr.

01-13-1981: At a TV taping in Allentown, PA for the WWF, Sgt. Slaughter issues a $5,000 Cobra Clutch challenge to anyone who can break his Cobra Clutch. Jim Duggan, who has been appearing in WWF as an enhancement wrestler tries and fails to break the hold.

In Mobile, AL Dennis Condrey & Randy Rose defeated Bob & Brad Armstrong for the Southeastern tag team titles.

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01-16-1981: Steve O (Steve Olsonoski) wins the NWA National TV title from Kevin Sullivan in Atlanta, GA.

Rick Martel suffers an elbow injury in Pittsburgh, PA which requires surgery. Martel & Tony Garea had retained the WWF tag team titles over The Moondogs (Rex & King) by DQ.

Ernie Ladd defeated Jake Roberts to win the Mid-South Louisiana title in Shreveport, LA.

01-18-1981: Shohei “Giant” Baba defending the PWF title battles Verne Gagne, defending the AWA World heavyweight title, to a double count out in Tokyo, Japan.

01-20-1981: Jerry Stubbs is stripped of the NWA U.S. Junior title and a tournament is held in Mobile, AL at Expo Hall to crown a new champion. Brad Armstrong wins the tournament and the title which also featured Oki Shikina, Roy Lee Welch, Ricky Fields, and Robert Gibson. On the same show Jerry Stubbs defeated Les Thornton for the NWA World Junior heavyweight title.

01-22-1981: Sgt. Slaughter defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by countout in Freehold, NJ.

Bobby Eaton wins the NWA National TV title from Steve O in Atlanta, GA.

01-23-1981: Steve O regains the NWA National TV title from Bobby Eaton in Atlanta.

01-24-1981: In Dothan, AL Les Thornton regains the NWA World Junior heavyweight title from Jerry Stubbs.

The first NWA World heavyweight champion Orville Brown dies. Orville Brown had been a multi-time Mid West champion and the group’s promoter and was awarded the NWA World title to become the first champion in 1948. He was scheduled to meet the National Wrestling Association world champion Lou Thesz on November 25, 1949 to unify the titles but 24 days earlier he was seriously injured in an automobile accident, thus Thesz was awarded the unified title.

Pat Patterson wins the final Cow Palace battle royal in San Francisco, CA by tossing Dick Slater to win.

01-26-1981: Ted DiBiase & Stan Frazier win the NWA National tag team titles from The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael Hayes & Buddy Roberts) in Augusta, GA.

Volador, Jr is born.

01-27-1981: Roddy Piper defeats Ric Flair for the NWA U.S. title in Raleigh, NC. Roddy Piper was the reigning NWA TV champion and vacates that title to hold the U.S. belt.

In Tampa, FL at the Ft. Hesterly Armory Mike Graham defeated Dick Slater to win the Southern (FL) heavyweight title.

01-29-1981: Junkyard Dog & Killer Karl Kox defeated Ernie Ladd & Leroy Brown to win the Mid-South tag team titles.

01-31-1981: The Fabulous Freebirds (Michael Hayes & Buddy Roberts) regain the NWA National tag team titles from Ted DiBiase & Stan Frazier in Atlanta, GA.

The Grappler (Len Denton) defeated Killer Karl Kox to win the Mississippi title in Greenwood, MS.

01-1981 (unspecified): Big Time Wrestling out of San Francisco promoter by Roy Shire ceases operation.

02-01-1981: Ernie Ladd & Leroy Brown defeated Junkyard Dog & Killer Karl Kox to win the Mid-South tag team titles in Lake Charles, LA.

02-03-1981: Dick Slater defeated Mike Graham in Tampa, FL to regain the Southern (FL) heavyweight title.

02-04-1981: Sweet Brown Sugar (Skip Young) wins a tournament final over The Assassin (Tom Renesto) to win the NWA Southern (Florida version) title in Ft. Myers, FL.

02-06-1981: Dick Slater, Terry Funk, and Tully Blanchard are injured in a car accident in Houston, TX. Slater is reported to be the worst injured but is wrestling again in about a week. Terry Funk does miss at least one match with a leg injury sustained in the car accident.

02-07-1981: On Southeastern Championship Wrestling television Ron Fuller vacates the Southeastern heavyweight title and announces he is leaving the area for a while after his cousin Jimmy Golden turned heel on him.

Mr. Fuji & Genichiro Tenryu win the NWA Mid-Atlantic tag team titles from Dewey Robertson & George Wells in Greensboro, NC.

02-08-1981: UWA holds it’s 6th Anniversary show at El Toreo de Naucalpan in Naucalpan, Mexico. Results: Perro Aguayo & Dr. Wagner & El Canek defeated Angel Blanco & Fishman & Enrique Vera… Chabela Romero defeated Irma Gonzalez to retain the UWA World Womens championship… El Solitario battled Villano III to a time limit draw to retain the UWA World lightweight title.

02-09-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 9,007 Jerry Lawler defeated Hulk Hogan by DQ. Hogan is managed by Jimmy Hart.

02-12-1981: Ox Baker appears on the TV game show The Price is Right as a contestant.

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02-15-1981: Dusty Rhodes & Andre the Giant defeated Bobby Jaggers & R.T. Tyler (Rip Tyler) for the Florida tag team titles. The tag titles are soon abandoned.

02-16-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 20,808. Results: Killer Khan defeated Dominic DeNucci… Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated Johnny Rodz… Hulk Hogan defeated Rick McGraw… The Hangman (Neil Guay) defeated Frank Savage… SD Jones defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Pedro Morales defeated Sgt. Slaughter by DQ to retain the WWF Intercontinental title… WWF champion Bob Backlund battled Stan Hansen to a draw due to blood from both men… Pat Patterson & Rick Martel & Tony Garea defeated The Moondogs (Rex & King) & Capt. Lou Albano in a best 2 out of 3 falls match.

02-19-1981:  Tye Dillinger (Ronnie W. Arneill) is born.

02-21-1981: On Memphis wrestling television Dutch Mantel defeated Koko Ware for the CWA TV title.

On Southeastern Championship Wrestling television Paul Orndorff & Norvel Austin defeated Dennis Condrey & Randy Rose to win the NWA Southeastern tag team titles.

02-22-1981: Ray Stevens & Ivan Koloff defeated Paul Jones & Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) for the NWA World tag team titles in Greensboro, NC.

02-23-1981: In Louisville, KY Jerry Lawler defeated Jimmy Valiant to win the Southern heavyweight title.

02-24-1981: Don Muraco makes his WWF debut at a TV taping in Allentown, PA defeating Steve King. On the same show Pat Patterson finally accepted the Cobra Clutch challenge of Sgt. Slaughter and escaped the hold only to be attacked by Slaughter.

02-25-1981: Jaguar Yokota defeats Jackie Sato to win the WWWA World Womens title. Mimi Hagiwara wins the All Pacific Womens title from Yumi Ikeshita.

Manny Fernandez defeated Baron Von Rashke in Tampa, FL to win the Florida TV title.

02-28-1981: Paul Orndorff & Norvell Austin vacate the NWA Southeastern tag team titles on television following an injury to Norvell Austin.

02-1981: International champion Pierre Lefebvre is sentenced to five days in jail for punching a fan in Montreal and breaking his jaw.

03-01-1981: In Pensacola, FL Dennis Condrey & Randy Rose win a tournament to win the NWA Southeastern tag team titles.

Steve Keirn wins the NWA National TV title from Kevin Sullivan in Atlanta, GA.

03-02-1981: Lance Cade (died 2010) is born.

03-03-1981: Paul Lloyd, Jr. (AKA: Justin Gabriel) is born.

03-07-1981: Ringo Rodriguez, age 26, once a member of the lucha libre tag team the Legionairos was killed in a car accident in Mexico. He was trained by Rene Guarando.

Jimmy Garvin defeated Ernie Ladd for the Louisiana title in Shreveport, LA.

Mike Graham defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race by DQ in Ft. Myers, FL.

03-09-1981: At Boutwell Auditorium in Birmingham, AL Bob Armstrong defeated Mr. Saito to win the Alabama title. Stan Lane defeated Brad Armstrong to win the NWA U.S. Junior title and Harley Race defeated Ken Lucas to retain the NWA World heavyweight title.

03-12-1981: In Lexington, KY Bill Dundee & Tommy Rich defeated Austin Idol & Dutch Mantel for the CWA tag team titles.

KENTA / Hideo Itami (Kenta Kobayashi) is born.

03-14-1981: WWF at the Boston Garden in Boston, MA with attendance of 15,300: Pete Doherty defeated Fred Marzino… Johnny Rodz defeated Joe Crugnale… Frank Savage defeated Angelo Gomez… Bruno Sammartino defeated Stan Hansen in a steel cage match… The Moondogs (Spot & King) defeated Pedro Morales & Dominic DeNucci… The Hangman (Neil Guay) defeated Steve King… Hulk Hogan defeated John Callahan… SD Jone defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna.

03-15-1981: WWF at the Capital Centre in Landover, MD: SD Jone defeated Larry Sharpe… Tony Garea defeated The Hangman (Neil Guay)… Rick Martel defeated Bulldog Brower… Pat Patterson defeated Lou Albano via DQ… Yoshiaki Yatsu defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… The Moondogs (Rex & King) defeated Rick McGraw & Dominic DeNucci… Johnny Rodz defeated Frank Savage… Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan by pinfall… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Sgt. Slaughter in a lumberjack match.

03-16-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 21,000+. Results: Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… SD Jones defeated Johnny Rodz… Moondog Rex defeated Rick McGraw… Dominic DeNucci defeated Larry Sharpe… Stan Hansen defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by count out… Pedro Morales defeated Moondog King… Andre the Giant defeated Sgt. Slaughter by DQ… Rick Martel defeated The Hangman (Neil Guay)… Tony Garea defeated Bulldog Brower… Tony Atlas defeated Hulk Hogan by pinfall.

In Birmingham, AL at Boutwell Auditorium Ken Lucas defeated Jimmy Golden for the Southeastern heavyweight title with Buddy Fuller as special referee.

03-17-1981: WWF TV taping in Allentown, PA The Moondogs (Rex & King) defeated Tony Garea & Rick Martel to win the WWF tag team titles.

03-20-1981: In Altoona, PA at the Jaffa Mosque Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan.

03-21-1981: WWF at the Spectrum in Philadelphia, PA with an attendance of 17,678: Moondog King defeated Rick McGraw… Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan by pinfall… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Sgt. Slaughter in a steel cage match… Stan Hansen defeated Tony Garea… WWF Intercontinental champion Pedro Morales defeated Moondog Rex… SD Jones battled Bulldog Brower to a double DQ… Rick Martel defeated The Hangman (Neil Guay)… Larry Sharpe defeated Frank Savage… Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Dominick DeNucci defeated Johnny Rodz.

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03-22-1981: Several WWF talents appear on a Jim Crocket Promotions show at the Coliseum in Greensboro, NC. Results: Jim Nelson defeated Ricky Ferrara… Don Kernodle defeated Kurt Von Hess… Bruno Sammartino, Jr. defeated Gene Lewis… Mr. Fuji & Genichiro Tenryu defeated Sweet Ebony Diamond & George Wells… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Bobby Duncum… Ricky Steamboat defeated Jimmy Snuka to win the Mid-Atlantic title… Paul Jones & Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) defeated Ray Stevens & Ivan Koloff to win the NWA World tag team titles… SD Jones defeated Capt. Lou Albano.. WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Sgt. Slaughter in a Texas Death Match… Tony Garea defeated Davey O’Hannon… Rick Martel defeated The Hangman (Neil Guay)… Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan by pinfall.

03-26-1981: Perro Aguayo defeats El Gran Hamada in a tournament final in Shimizu, Japan to become the first UWA WWF lightweight champion.

03-27-1981: WWF in Pittsburgh, PA at the Civic Arena with a crowd of 15,000: A steel cage match between Bruno Sammartino and Stan Hansen was cancelled.

03-28-1981: In Old Saybrook, CT at the Senior High School Andre the Giant defeated Hulk Hogan.

03-30-1981: In Scranton, PA WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Hulk Hogan by count out.

In Birmingham, AL at Boutwell Auditorium Ron Bass defeated Ken Lucas to win the Southeastern heavyweight title.

At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN Masa Fuchi & Mr. Onita defeated Bill Dundee & Dream Machine (Troy Graham) to win the Southern tag team titles. On the same show Jerry Lawler defeated Dory Funk, Jr. by DQ with Jimmy Hart suspended above the ring. Attendance 7,382.

The Mid-South tag team titles are declared vacant following a match at the New Orleans, LA Municipal Auditorium when Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdock defeated Ernie Ladd & Leroy Brown with Bill Watts as special referee.

04-01-1981: The International Grand Prix (IWGP) committee is formed. It would still be over two years before they would crown their first IWGP World champion. The original idea was for Antonio Inoki to hold a multinational tournament using champions from Japan, United States, and Europe to create one “super” world title. Most of the tournament is fictional until the famous finals in Japan where Hulk Hogan defeats Antonio Inoki to win.

04-03-1981: EMLL holds it’s 25th Anniversary show for Arena Mexico in Mexico City. Results: Ringo Mendoza defeated Sangre Chicana to win the NWA World Middleweight title… Americo Rocca & Divino Roy defeated Aguila India & Gran Cochisse in a hair vs hair match… Tony Salazar defeated Alfonso Dantes. Dantes retains the NWA World light heavyweight championship.

04-06-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 25,302 plus 3,334 at the Felt Forum. Results: Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated Terry Gunn… Killer Khan defeated Dominic DeNucci… WWF Intercontinental champion Pedro Morales defeated Moondog Rex… Pat Patterson battled Sgt. Slaughter to a double DQ… Mil Mascaras defeated Moondog King… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Stan Hansen in a steel cage match… SD Jones defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Fabulous Moolah & Lelani Kai defeated Jill Fontaine & Suzette Ferriera… Tony Garea & Rick Martel defeated Johnny Rodz & Larry Sharpe.

At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with an attendance of 8,147 Bill Dundee & Dream Machine (Troy Graham) defeated Mr. Onita & Masa Fuchi to win the Southern tag team titles. In the main event Jerry Lawler & Plowboy Frazier (Stan Frazier) defeated Dory Funk, Jr. & Terry Funk in a Texas Death Match.

04-07-1981: At a WWF TV taping in Allentown, PA George “The Animal” Steele returns defeating Jack Carson. He is managed by Fred Blassie. Also on the card Mil Mascaras pins the future King Kong Bundy Chris Canyon and Tony Atlas later pins him as well.

04-08-1981: Dory Funk, Jr. is awarded the NWA Florida title when champion Barry Windham is injured in a car accident along with Manny Fernandez.

04-11-1981: On Southeastern Championship Wrestling television show it is announced that Paul Orndorff is the new Alabama champion (possibly a phantom title change).

04-13-1981: The NWA orders Kintaro Ohki (Kim Ill) to vacate the NWA International title which he has been defending on and off since 1972.

04-14-1981: Don Kernodle is injured in a car accident and misses a few dates.

04-16-1981: Ivan Koloff wins the Mid Atlantic title from Ricky Steamboat in Norfolk, VA.

04-18-1981: In Landover, MD at the Capital Centre Tony Atlas defeated Hulk Hogan by pinfall and Killer Khan defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by DQ.

Mid-South wrestling at the New Orleans Superdome with an attendance of 22,000. Results: Coco Samoa defeated Larry Booker… King Cobra defeated Bull Ramos… Cowboy Lang defeated Little Tokyo… Carl Fergie defeated Kelly Kiniski… Luke Graham defeated Chick Donovan… Mid-South tag team title tournament: The Grappler (Len Denton) & Super Destroyer (Bill Irwin) defeated Jimmy Garvin & Jake Roberts… Andre the Giant & Dusty Rhodes defeated Afa & Sika the Samoans… Ernie Ladd & Leroy Brown defeated Tony Charles & Don Diamond… The Freebirds defeated Buck Robley & Coco Samoa… Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch drew a bye… The Grappler & Super Destroyer defeated Andre the Giant & Dusty Rhodes… Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch defeated Ernie Ladd & Leroy Brown… The Freebirds drew a bye… Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch defeated The Freebirds… The Grappler & Super Destroyer drew a bye… The Grappler & Super Destroyer defeated Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch to win the Mid-South tag team title.

04-21-1981: Sgt. Jacques Goulett (Rene Goulett) wins the NWA Southern (Florida) title from Sweet Brown Sugar (Skip Young) in Tampa, FL.

04-23-1981: All heavyweight titles in New Japan are abandoned as wrestlers prepare for the first International Wrestling Grand Prix tournament. Tiger Mask (Satoru Sayama) makes his debut defeating Dynamite Kid sparking one of the most revolutionary feuds in pro wrestling history. Antonio Inoki defeats Stan Hansen in the last defense of the NWF title.

Giant Baba wins the annual All Japan Champions Carnival Tournament over Bruiser Brody for All Japan.

04-25-1981: Johnny Valiant defeats Dick the Bruiser for the Indianapolis WWA World title.

In St. Petersburg, FL Dusty Rhodes defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race in a non-title steel cage match.

04-26-1981: Andre the Giant seriously injures his ankle in a fall which requires surgery. In storyline the injury was blamed on an attack by Killer Khan but Andre actually twists his ankle underneath him getting out of bed.

04-27-1981: Tommy Rich defeats NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race in Augusta, GA to win the NWA World heavyweight championship.

In New Orleans, LA at the Municipal Auditorium Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch defeated The Grappler (Len Denton) & Super Destroyer (Bill Irwin) to win the Mid-South tag team titles.

04-29-1981: Sweet Ebony Diamond (Rocky Johnson) wins the NWA TV title over Greg Valentine in a tournament in Raleigh, NC.

04-30-1981: Dory Funk, Jr. is awarded the NWA International title after tournament finalist Bruiser Brody is unable to wrestle in the finals due to injury. Dory Funk, Jr. then defends the title against his brother Terry Funk and retains the title.

05-01-1981: UWA wrestling in Mexico City, Mexico at El Toreo de Cuatro Caminos: Billy Robinson & Fishman & Gran Hamada defeated Ray Mendoza & El Escorpion & Strong Kobayashi… El Canek defeated Tatsumi Fujinami to retain the UWA title… WWF champion Bob Backlund went to a draw with NWF champion Antonio Inoki.

Harley Race regains the NWA World heavyweight title for the 6th time by defeating Tommy Rich in Gainesville, GA.

Gene & Ole Anderson defeat Paul Jones & Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) for the NWA World tag team titles.

Super Destroyer (Bill Irwin) defeated Jimmy Garvin for the Louisiana title in Shreveport, LA.

Don Muraco defeated Manny Fernandez in Orlando, FL for the Florida TV title.

05-02-1981: On the CWA Memphis wrestling television show Kevin Sullivan & Wayne Farris defeated Bill Dundee & Dream Machine (Troy Graham) to win the Southern tag team titles.

05-03-1981: Chief Jay Strongbow & Jim Wilson defeat Afa & Sika the Samoans for the IWL tag team titles in Atlanta, GA. Jim Wilson and Thunderbolt Patterson were running outlaw shows against the Georgia wrestling promotion at the time.

05-04-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. 24,000+ attendance: It is announced that Andre the Giant has a broken ankle… SD Jones defeated Johnny Rodz… The Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated The Hangman (Neil Guay)… WWF Intercontinental champion Pedro Morales defeated Killer Khan… Dominick DeNucci defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Peter Miavia defeated Rick McGraw… Angelo Mosca defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by DQ… Pat Patterson defeated Sgt. Slaughter in an Alley Fight match… The Carolina Kid & Farmer Jerome defeated Sky Low Low & Kid Chocolate… Tony Garea & Rick Martel & Gorilla Monsoon (substituting for Andre the Giant) defeated Stan Hansen & Moondog Rex & Capt. Lou Albano.

05-08-1981: Abdullah the Butcher, who has been working for All Japan, appears on a New Japan show beginning a promotional war between the two companies.

05-09-1981: On CWA Memphis TV wrestling show Kevin Sullivan defeated Dutch Mantel to win the TV title.

05-10-1981: Carlos Colon defeated Killer Karl Krupp in Bayamon, Puerto Rico for the WWC North American title.

05-12-1981: In Tampa, FL at the Ft. Hesterly Armory Mike Graham & Steve Keirn defeated The Assassins to win the North American tag team titles.

05-13-1981: WCW and WWE wrestler Jimmy Yang is born.

05-16-1981: On Southeastern Championship Wrestling television from Dothan, AL, Jerry Stubbs debuts his Mr. Olympia gimmick defeating Stan Lane by DQ. Mr. Olympia would go on to be a top star in SECW, Continental, Mid-South, and elsewhere.

In Tulsa, OK Ricky Morton & Eddie Gilbert defeated Jerry Brown & Ron McFarlane for the Tri-States tag team titles.

Kim Sung defeated Tommy Gilbert in San Juan, Puerto Rico for the Caribbean title.

05-17-1981: Tommy Rich defeats Greg Valentine in a tournament final in Atlanta, GA to win the Georgia heavyweight title.

05-18-1981: At a WWF TV taping in Scranton, PA Moondog Spot (Larry Booker, AKA: Larry Latham) debuts replacing Moondog King who is unable to return to the United States due to legal issues and has missed numerous dates. The Moondogs remain WWF tag team champions as Rex & Spot.

At Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 5,718 on hand Bill Dundee & Dream Machine (Troy Graham) defeated Wayne Farris & Kevin Sullivan to win the Southern tag team titles. Also on the show Terry Funk & Dory Funk, Jr. defeated Jack Brisco & Jerry Lawler.

At Boutwell Auditorium in Birmingham, AL Bob & Brad Armstrong defeated Dennis Condrey & Randy Rose for the Southeastern tag team titles.

05-19-1981: Verne Gagne retires for the first time following a successful defense of the AWA World heavyweight title against Nick Bockwinkel. Gagne retires as champion and vacates the title which is then awarded to Nick Bockwinkel.

05-21-1981: Jackie Sato retires.

05-22-1981: Daniel Bryan / Bryan Danielson (Bryan Lloyd Danielson) is born.

05-25-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum Kevin Sullivan & Wayne Farris defeated Bill Dundee & Dream Machine (Troy Graham) to win the Southern tag team titles.

At Boutwell Auditorium in Birmingham, AL Mr. Saito defeated Ken Lucas to win the Southeastern heavyweight title. Mr. Olympia (Jerry Stubbs) defeated Stan Lane for the NWA U.S. Junior title.

In Tokyo, Japan Kevin & David Von Erich defeated Great Kojika & Mr. Okuma for the All Japan All-Asian tag team titles.

05-29-1981: Steve O defeats the Mongolian Stomper for the NWA National title in Atlanta, GA.

05-30-1981: Mr. Olympia (Jerry Stubbs) vacates the NWA U.S. Junior heavyweight title due to being over the weight limit and wanting to move up to heavyweight.

Jake Roberts defeated The Grappler (Len Denton) in Shreveport, LA for the North American title.

05-31-1981: Jake Roberts defeated The Grappler (Len Denton) to win the Mid-South North American title in Shreveport, LA.

06-01-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 7,000 Bill Dundee defeated Stan Lane to win the U.S. Junior title.

At Boutwell Auditorium in Birmingham, AL Jimmy Golden defeated Ken Lucas to win the Alabama title. Dennis Condrey & Randy Rose defeated Bob & Brad Armstrong to win the NWA Southeastern tag team titles.

06-03-1981: A big show featuring NJPW and WWF talent takes place in Nagoya, Japan. Results: Yoshiaki Fujiwara defeated Hiroyuki Saito to win a 13 man battle royal… Yoshiaki Fujiwara defeated Akira Maeda… Osamu Kido defeated Kuroneko… Riki Choshu & Kengo Kimura defeated Kantaro Hoshino & Haruka Eigen… Tatsumi Fujinami defeated Chris Adams… Seiji Sakaguchi defeated Mike Masters… Stan Hansen battled Tiger Jeet Singh to a double count out… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Hulk Hogan by DQ due to the interference of Stan Hansen… Antonio Inoki & Dusty Rhodes defeated Sgt. Slaughter & Bobby Duncum.

06-04-1981: Antonio Inoki wins the annual New Japan Madison Square Garden League tournament over Stan Hansen via count out. The final tournament standings are: 1) Antonio Inoki, 2) Stan Hansen, 3) Tiger Jeet Singh, 4) Hulk Hogan, 5) Seiji Sakaguchi, 6) Tatsumi Fujinami, 7) Riki Choshu, 8) Bobby Duncum, 9) Sgt. Slaughter, 10) Chris Adams, 11) Mike Masters.

06-04-1981: Wrestling Star Wars is held by NWA Big Time Wrestling at Reunion Arena in Dallas, TX. Known results: Kerry Von Erich defeated Ernie Ladd for the NWA American title… Bruiser Brody defeated Great Kabuki in a Texas Death Steel Cage match… Fritz Von Erich defeated Gary Hart in a steel cage match.

06-07-1981: Terry Taylor defeats Les Thornton in Roanoke, VA to win the NWA World Junior heavyweight title.

06-08-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 24,000+. Results: Curt Hennig defeated Johnny Rodz… Larry Sharpe defeated Rick McGraw… Don Muraco defeated Rick Martel… SD Jones defeated Frank Savage… Dusty Rhodes defeated Killer Khan… Tony Garea defeated Man Mountain Cannon (King Kong Bundy)… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated Angelo Mosca with special referee Pat Patterson… The Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) & Tatsumi Fujinami defeated WWF World tag team champions The Moondogs (Spot & Rex) in a best 2 out of 3 falls match but did not win the tag team titles… Pedro Morales defeated Sgt. Slaughter to retain the WWF Intercontinental title.

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06-10-1981: Ted DiBiase & Steve O win the NWA National tag team titles from the Fabulous Freebirds (Michael Hayes & Buddy Roberts).

06-11-1981: Akio Sato & Takashi Ishikawa defeated Kevin & David Von Erich to win the All Asian tag team titles.

06-12-1981: Ken Patera wins the Georgia title from Tommy Rich in Atlanta, GA.

06-13-1981: Twins Pat & Mike Kelly win the WWA tag team titles from Wilbur Snyder & Spike Huber in Indianapolis, IN.

06-14-1981: The Highfliers (Greg Gagne & Jim Brunzell) defeat The East West Connection (Adrian Adonis & Jesse Ventura) for the AWA World tag team titles in Green Bay, WI.

06-15-1981: In Owenton, KY Lanny Poffo & George Weingeroff defeated Doug Vines & Jeff Sword for the ICW tag team titles.

In West Palm Beach, FL Jack Brisco defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race by DQ.

06-16-1981: The Highfliers (Greg Gagne & Jim Brunzell) defeated the East-West Connection (Adrian Adonis & Jesse Ventura) in Green Bay, WI for the AWA World tag team titles.

In Tampa, FL The Assassins (Jody Hamilton & Tom Renesto) defeated Coco Samoa & Tommy Gilbert in a tournament final to win the North American tag team titles.

06-17-1981: In Miami Beach, FL at the Convention Center with a crowd of 4,787 Charlie Cook defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race by DQ.

06-18-1981: In Kansas City Bob Sweetan & Terry Gibbs defeated The Freebirds to win the Central States tag team titles in a tournament final.

In Jacksonville, FL Charlie Cook defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race by DQ.

06-19-1981: In Orlando, FL Jack Brisco defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Harley Race by DQ.

06-20-1981: WWF at the Philadelphia, PA Spectrum Don Muraco defeated Pedro Morales to win the WWF Intercontinental title.

Les Thornton defeats Terry Taylor for the NWA World Junior title in Roanoke, VA.

06-21-1981: Dusty Rhodes wins the NWA World heavyweight title for a second time when he defeats Harley Race in Atlanta, GA. On the same show Ken Patera defeated Tommy Rich for the Georgia title.

06-22-1981: In Memphis, TN at the Mid-South Coliseum with a crowd of 5,918 Jimmy Hart defeated Jerry Lawler for the Southern heavyweight title with Wayne Farris and Kevin Sullivan as special referees.

06-23-1981: In Mobile, AL at Expo Hall Brad Armstrong defeated Stan Lane to win the NWA U.S. Junior title but had to vacate it due to injury.

06-24-1981: One of the biggest shows of the year is held by New Japan Pro Wrestling. Abdullah the Butcher, who had surprised everyone by jumping to New Japan a month earlier, appears for the first time on a show with Stan Hansen. Abdullah the Butcher & Stan Hansen defeated Antonio Inoki & Yoshiaki Yatsu… Tiger Toguchi defeated Killer Khan by DQ… Tiger Mask (Satoru Sayama) defeated Villano III… Tatsumi Fujinami defeated Black Cat. After Abdullah jumps ship to New Japan, Giant Baba doubles Tiger Jeet Singh’s pay to jump from New Japan to All Japan.

06-27-1981: Nikolai Volkoff & Chris Markoff managed by Lord Alfred Hayes win the NWA Mid Atlantic tag team titles from Dewey Robertson & Johnny Weaver.

In St. Petersburg, FL at the Bayfront Center The Assassin (Jody Hamilton) defeats Sweet Brown Sugar in a mask vs mask, Texas Death match. Sweet Brown Sugar is unmasked as Skip Young.

06-29-1981: The Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN draws a crowd of 10,129 to see the following card: Mr. Onita & Masa Fuchi (managed by Tojo Yamamoto) defeated Sonny King & Koko Ware… Chick Donovan defeated Steve Keirn by DQ… Wayne Farris defeated Roy Rogers (AKA: Johnny Rich)… Dream Machine (Troy Graham) defeated The Nightmares (Ted Allen & Danny Davis) in a handicap match… Kevin Sullivan defeated Dutch Mantel by DQ… The Nightmares (Ted Allen & Danny Davis) defeated Bill Dundee & Dream Machine… Jerry Lawler defeated Jimmy Hart in a no DQ lumberjack match… Loser’s battle royal featuring Wayne Farris, Kevin Sullivan, The Nightmares, and Jimmy Hart with Dutch Mantel being the final loser.

At Boutwell Auditorium in Birmingham, AL Ray Candy defeated Jimmy Golden for the Alabama title in a Lumberjack match.

07-03-1981: Tiger Jeet Singh, one of the top stars of New Japan Pro Wrestling, appears on an All Japan show.

07-04-1981: Mid-South Wrestling at the New Orleans, LA Superdome. Results: Junkyard Dog defeated Paul Orndorff in a lights out match… Kerry Von Erich defeated The Grappler (Len Denton)… Dick Murdoch & Junkyard Dog defeated Afa & Sika the Samoans… Paul Orndorff defeated Jake Roberts to win the North American title… Super Destroyer (Bill Irwin) defeated Tommy Rich… Jimmy Garvin defeated Frank Dusek… Great Kabuki defeated Don Diamond… Kim Duk defeated Tony Charles… King Cobra defeated Carl Fergie… Ken Mantell defeated Buddy Landell.

07-06-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 7,340 Steve Keirn defeated Ron Bass for the Mid-America title.

Terry Gordy & Jimmy Snuka defeat Ted DiBiase & Steve O in Augusta, GA for the NWA National tag team titles.

07-07-1981: In a tournament in Mobile, AL at Expo Hall, Tommy Wright wins the NWA U.S. Junior title in a tournament over Roy Lee Welch, Mike Jackson, and Mr. Junior America (Michael Norris).

07-17-1981: Dusty Rhodes defeats Terry Funk to retain the NWA World heavyweight title and Jerry Lawler defeated Hulk Hogan in St. Petersburg, FL.

07-18-1981: At the Nashville Fairgrounds arena The Nightmares (Ted Allen & Danny Davis) defeated Dutch Mantel & The Dream Machine where the Dream Machine was unmasked as Troy Graham.

On Portland, OR television Matt Borne revels that Buddy Rose has married Borne’s sister and the two feud over this. At one point they get into a legitimate fight over Rose’s alleged abuse of Borne’s sister.

In Shreveport, LA Bob Roop defeated Super Destroyer (Bill Irwin) to win the Louisiana title.

07-20-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 22,091. Results: Johnny Rodz defeated Terry Gunn… SD Jones defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Curt Hennig defeated Strong Kobayashi… Sgt. Slaughter defeated Dominic DeNucci… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated George “The Animal” Steele… Pat Patterson defeated Angelo Mosca by DQ… WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco battled Pedro Morales to a 20 minute time limit draw… Andre the Giant battled Killer Khan to a double DQ… Tony Garea & Rick Martel battled WWF World tag team champions The Moondogs (Rex & Spot) to a time limit draw.

In Memphis, TN at the Mid-South Coliseum with an attendance of 9,284 a tournament was held for the Southern heavyweight title. Results: Bugsy McGraw defeated The Dream Machine (Troy Graham)… Bill Dundee defeated Mr. Onita… Ron Bass defeated Jerry Lawler… Steve Keirn defeated Mr. Fuchi… Steve Keirn defeated Ron Bass… Bugsy McGraw defeated Bill Dundee… Steve Keirn defeated Bugsy McGraw to win the Southern heavyweight title… The Nightmares (Ted Allen & Danny Davis) defeated Ricky & Robert Gibson… Bullwhip on a ladder match: Dutch Mantel defeated Tojo Yamamoto… Steve Keirn & Bill Dundee defeated Mr. Onita & Mr. Fuchi in a hair vs hair match.

07-21-1981: At the WWF TV tapings in Allentown, PA Rick Martel & Tony Garea defeated The Moondogs (Spot & Rex) to win the WWF World tag team titles. On the same show Mr. Saito made his WWF debut teaming with Mr. Fuji to defeat Curt Hennig & Terry Gunn. Later in the show they also won over Steve King & SD Jones.

In Portland, OR The Destroyer unmasks and reveals he is David Sierra who would go on to do several other masked gimmicks in the area.

07-24-1981: Bobo Brazil defeats Johnny Valiant for the WWA World title in Indianapolis, IN.

07-25-1981: Finn Balor / Prince Devitt (Fergal Devitt) is born.

07-26-1981: Afa & Sika the Samoans defeated Junkyard Dog & Dick Murdoch for the Mid-South tag team titles in Monroe, LA.

07-1981 (unspecified): At an AWA TV taping for AWA All-Star Wrestling and then at the house shows in July, Hulk Hogan turns babyface. Crusher Jerry Blackwell attacks Brad Rheingans and Hulk Hogan makes the save. Hogan is managed at the time by Jerry Valiant who sides with Crusher Blackwell.

08-03-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 11,600. Results: Jerry Lawler & Mystery Partner (Jimmy Valiant) battled to a no contest with Dream Machine (Troy Graham) & Bugsy McGraw managed by Jimmy Hart… Koko Ware & Roy Rogers (Johnny Rich) defeated Jim Dalton & Tom Stanton… Plowboy Frazier battled to a no contest with The Phantom (Sonny King)… The Nightmares (Ted Allen & Danny Davis) defeated Bill Dundee & Steve Keirn by DQ… Rick & Robert Gibson defeated Mr. Onita & Mr. Fuchi… In a Judo Jacket Match Dutch Mantel defeated Tojo Yamamoto by DQ.

08-06-1981: Bob Orton, Jr. defeated Don Diamond for the Mississippi title in Greenville, MS.

08-08-1981: Wahoo McDaniel wins the NWA U.S. title from Roddy Piper in Greensboro, NC.

08-09-1981: IWE Japan holds it’s last show. Might Inoue, Goro Tsurumi, Hiromichi Fuyuki, Ashura Hara, and Nobuyoshi Sugawara join All Japan Pro Wrestling.

Tommy Rich wins the vacant Georgia title over the Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) in Atlanta, GA.

08-11-1981: In Tampa, FL at the Ft. Hesterly Armory The Assassin (Jody Hamilton) defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Dusty Rhodes by DQ. On the same show Charlie Cook defeated Dory Funk, Jr. for the Florida title.

08-12-1981: Buddy Austin (Francis Gabor) dies.

In Miami Beach, FL The Assassin (Jody Hamilton) defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Dusty Rhodes by DQ.

08-14-1981: Kofi Kingston is born.

08-16-1981: In Jackson, TN Dream Machine (Troy Graham) defeated Steve Keirn to win the Southern heavyweight title.

08-22-1981: Nick Bockwinkel retains the AWA World heavyweight title over Tito Santana in Milwaukee, WI. In a handicap match Hulk Hogan defeated Adrian Adonis & Nacho Berrea.

08-24-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 22,000. Results: Curt Hennig defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Dominic DeNucci defeated Frank Savage… SD Jones defeated Johnny Rodz… El Canek defeated Jose Estrada… WWF champion Bob Backlund battled WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco to a 60 minute time limit draw… Pedro Morales defeated Angelo Mosca by DQ… Andre the Giant defeated Killer Khan in a Texas Death Match with Pat Patterson and Gorilla Monsoon as special referees… Tony Garea defeated Bulldog Bower… Rick Martel defeated Moondog Spot… Tony Atlas defeated Moondog Rex.

At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 8,089 Jerry Lawler defeated Dream Machine (Troy Graham) to win the Southern heavyweight title. Also on the card Bugsy McGraw defeated Steve Keirn to win the Mid-America title.

08-25-1981: In Tampa, FL Jack & Jerry Brisco defeated The Assassins to win the North American tag team titles.

08-29-1981: NWA National champion Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) defeated NWA Georgia champion Tommy Rich to win both titles in Atlanta, GA.

In St. Petersburg, FL Jerry Brisco defeated The Assassin III and unmasked him as Mr. Saito.

08-31-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with an attendance of 9,110. Results: Bill Dundee & Jerry Lawler defeated Dream Machine (Troy Graham) & Jimmy Hart where Hart lost the fall and must leave town… Ricky & Robert Gibson defeated The Nightmares (Danny Davis & Ted Allen) and Ted Allen must leave town after losing the fall… Roy Rogers (Johnny Rich) defeated Buddy Wayne… Koko Ware defeated The Assassin I (Jim Dalton)… King Cobra defeated The Assassin II (Tom Stanton)… Dutch Mantel defeated Tojo Yamamoto… Dutch Mantel & Koko Ware & King Cobra & Roy Rogers defeated Tojo Yamamoto & Buddy Wayne & The Cuban Assassin & Iranian Assassin… The Heartbreakers (Joey Cagle & Rocky Sortar) defeated Plowboy Frazier… Ricky Morton & Eddie Gilbert defeated Mr. Onita & Mr. Fuchi to win the Southern tag team titles… Bugsy McGraw defeated Steve Keirn by DQ.

In Birmingham, AL at Boutwell Auditorium Dennis Condrey defeated Ray Candy for the Alabama title.

An episode of the Phil Donahue show airs devoted to pro wrestling featuring AWA wrestlers including a match between Greg Gagne & Jim Brunzell against Jesse Ventura & Adrian Adonis.

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09-06-1981: Ron Bass defeats Greg Valentine for the NWA TV title in Asheville, NC.

09-07-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with an attendance of 7,236 The Heartbreakers (Joey Cagle & Rocky Sortar) defeated Eddie Gilbert & Ricky Morton to win the Southern tag team titles… Steve Keirn defeated Bugsy McGraw to win the Mid-America title…. The Dream Machine (Troy Graham) defeated Jerry Lawler in a match where Lawler had to leave town.

In West Palm Beach, FL The Assassin (Jody Hamilton) defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Dusty Rhodes by DQ.

09-13-1981: Jerry Brisco wins the NWA World Junior heavyweight title from Les Thornton in Orlando, FL.

09-14-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with an attendance of 7,371 Ricky & Robert Gibson defeated The Heartbreakers (Joey Cagle & Rocky Sortar) to win the Southern tag team titles… Jimmy Valiant won a 14 man elimination battle royal to win the Southern heavyweight title.

09-17-1981: Ric Flair wins the NWA World heavyweight title for the first time when he defeats champion Dusty Rhodes in Kansas City, MO.

09-18-1981: EMLL holds it’s 48th Anniversary show at Arena Mexico in Mexico City. Results: Fuerza Guerrera defeated Negro Casas… Halcon Ortiz defeated Herodes in a hair vs hair match… Espectro, Jr. defeated El Vengador and El Supremo in a three way match with their masks on the line.

09-21-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 20,920. Results: Great Yatsu (Yoshiaki Yatsu) defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Mr. Saito & Mr. Fuji co-won a 20 Man battle royal which included Rick Martel, Bulldog Brower, Ron Shaw, Curt Hennig, Baron Mikel Scicluna, Steve O, Jose Estrada, Great Yatsu, Mil Mascaras, Pedro Morales, Angelo Mosca, Killer Khan, Johnny Rodz, Roberto Soto, Larry Sharpe, Tony Garea, SD Jones, and Dominic DeNucci… Steve O defeated Ron Shaw… Mr. Fuji defeated Curt Hennig… Killer Khan defeated Dominic DeNucci… Mr. Saito defeated Roberto Soto… WWF champion Bob Backlund defeated WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco in a Texas Death Match… Pedro Morales defeated Larry Sharpe… Mil Mascaras defeated Bulldog Brower… WWF tag team champions Tony Garea & Rick Martel defeated Johnny Rodz & Jose Estrada.

09-23-1981: Andre the Giant battles Stan Hansen to a wild no contest in Tokyo, Japan.

Eddie Mansfield defeated Tommy Gilbert to win the Florida TV title in Tampa, FL.

09-25-1981: Great Kabuki defeats Kerry Von Erich in Lawton, OK for the World Class American title.

09-26-1981: In Memphis, TN at the Cook Convention Center Stan Lane & Sweet Brown Sugar (Koko Ware) defeated Rick Gibson & Bill Dundee (substituting for Robert Gibson) to win the Southern tag team titles… Dutch Mantel defeated Steve Keirn to win the Mid-America title… Jimmy Valiant defeated Dream Machine (Troy Graham) in a match that allowed Jerry Lawler to return to Memphis.

09-27-1981: Michael Hayes & Otis Sistrunk win the NWA National tag team titles from Terry Gordy & Jimmy Snuka in Atlanta, GA.

09-28-1981: Tommy Rich defeats Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) for the NWA National title in Augusta, GA.

10-04-1981: WWF make their debut at the Meadowlands in East Rutherford, NJ and the show features what is billed as Bruno Sammartino’s last match as a full time wrestler and he defeats George “The Animal” Steele.

Sgt. Slaughter wins the NWA U.S. title from Wahoo McDaniel in Greenville, NC.

10-08-1981: Former IWE wrestlers Rusher Kimura, Animal Hamaguchi, and Isamu Teranishi join New Japan Pro Wrestling.

Jack & Jerry Brisco defeated The Assassin (Jody Hamilton) & Bobby Jaggers to win the vacant North American tag team titles in Jacksonville, FL.

10-09-1981: For the first time as NWA World heavyweight champion, Ric Flair comes to Japan and retains the world title over Jumbo Tsuruta. Also Bruiser Brody defeats Dory Funk, Jr. for the NWA International title in Tokyo, Japan.

10-10-1981: Ricky Steamboat regains the Mid Atlantic title from Ivan Koloff.

10-11-1981: Blackjack Mulligan defeats Bobo Brazil for the WWA title in Indianapolis, IN.

10-12-1981: At the Mid-South Coliseum with an attendance of 6,000 TV star Andy Kaufman took on four women from the audience in a $500 challenge.

10-15-1981: In Jackson, MS Junkyard Dog & Mike George defeated Afa & Sika the Samoans for the Mid-South tag team titles.

10-16-1981: After a successful title defense against Steve Travis, WWF World Junior champion Tatsumi Fujinami vacates the title in order to move up to the heavyweight division.

Les Thornton defeats Jerry Brisco for the NWA World Junior heavyweight title in Knoxville, TN.

10-19-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 18,120. Results: Curt Hennig defeated Joe Cox… Tony Garea & Rick Martel defeated Mr. Fuji & Mr. Saito by referee stoppage… Pedro Morales defeated WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco due to referee stoppage due to blood. Muraco retained the title… Dusty Rhodes defeated Ron Shaw… WWF champion Bob Backlund went to a no contest with Greg Valentine. This match had a controversial finish. Backlund pinned Valentine but dazed referee John Stanley gave the title to Valentine and raised his hand by mistake. The State Athletic Commission became involved and held up the WWF title pending an investigation though Backlund continued to defend the title on other WWF shows… Pat Patterson defeated Angelo Mosca… Dominic DeNucci & SD Jones defeated Jose Estrada & Johnny Rodz… Tony Atlas defeated Killer Khan via count out.

10-23-1981: La Fiera defeats Lizmark for the NWA Welterweight title in Mexico City.

10-24-1981:  Big Time Wrestling holds another Star Wars card at Reunion Arena in Dallas, TX.  Results: Frank Dusek defeated Jesse Leon... Terry Orndorff defeated Richard Blood (not Ricky Steamboat)... Chan Chung (AKA: Kendo Nagasaki) defeated Big Daddy Bundy (AKA: King Kong Bundy) by DQ... Junkyard Dog defeated Armand Hussein... Ernie Ladd defeated Jose Lothario to retain the Texas Brass Knux title... David Von Erich defeated Killer Tim Brooks in a Bunkhouse match... Kerry Von Erich & Terry Orndorff defeated Great Kabuki & Chan Chung to win the NWA American tag team titles... Al Madril defeated Bill Irwin by DQ to retain the NWA Texas title.

10-26-1981: Dutch Mantel defeated Dream Machine (Troy Graham) to win the Southern title at the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN.

10-31-1981: Roddy Piper joins Gordon Solie as the color commentator for Georgia Championship Wrestling. The show also saw the return of Austin Idol under a mask attacking Michael Hayes. Also returning are Ivan Koloff and Gene & Ole Anderson.

11-01-1981: Roddy Piper wins the Mid Atlantic title from Ricky Steamboat in Greensboro, NC.

Dory Funk, Jr. defeats Bruiser Brody to retain the NWA International title.

In Lake Charles, LA Ted DiBiase defeated Paul Orndorff to win the North American title.

11-03-1981: In Mobile, AL Jimmy Golden & Randy Rose defeated Robert Fuller & Jos LeDuc to win the NWA Southeastern tag team titles.

Ivan Koloff defeats Ron Bass for the NWA TV title in Charlotte, NC.

The Spoiler (Don Jardine) wins the NWA Florida title from Charlie Cook in Tampa, FL.

11-07-1981: At the Boston Garden in Boston, MA WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by countout.

11-16-1981: Early 1900s World champion wrestler Ali Baba (Arteen Ekizian) dies at the age of 80.

11-18-1981: Mike Graham defeated NWA World heavyweight champion Ric Flair by DQ with special referee Pat O’Connor.

11-21-1981: In Baltimore, MD at the Civic Center Greg Valentine defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by DQ.

11-23-1981: WWF at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Attendance 21,104. Results: Mr. Saito defeated SD Jones… Rick Martel defeated Hans Schroeder… Tony Garea defeated Baron Mikel Scicluna… Dominic DeNucci & Curt Hennig defeated Johnny Rodz & Jose Estrada… Pedro Morales defeated WWF Intercontinental champion Don Muraco in a Texas Death Match to win the title… Haiti Kid defeated Little Boy Blue… Bob Backlund defeated Greg Valentine to win the held up (in New York) WWF title… Dusty Rhodes defeated Angelo Mosca by count out… Mil Mascaras defeated The Executioner (Ron Shaw)… Tony Atlas defeated Mr. Fuji… Greg Valentine defeated Manuel Soto… WWF Intercontinental champion Pedro Morales defeated Jerry Johnson… Tony Atlas defeated Victor Mercado.

At the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis, TN with a crowd of 5,393 fans Andy Kaufman again wrestled four women from the crowd, defeating three and going to a draw with a fourth.

11-25-1981: Masked Superstar (Bill Eadie) defeats Tommy Rich to regain the NWA National title in Atlanta, GA. Also on the show Bob & Brad Armstrong win a tournament final over Mr. Fuji & Mr. Saito for the vacant NWA National tag team titles.

12-02-1981: Wahoo McDaniel defeated Eddie Mansfield in Miami Beach, FL to win the Florida TV title.

12-04-1981: NWA World champion Ric Flair wins a battle royal and defeats Jack Brisco in St. Louis, MO.

12-07-1981: Years before they became one of the most successful tag teams in history, Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane team together at the Mid-South Coliseum in Memphis. Bill Dundee & Steve Keirn defeated Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane by DQ.

Junkyard Dog defeated Great Kabuki in New Orleans, LA at the Municipal Auditorium to win the Louisiana title.

12-10-1981: Bob Sweetan defeats Tommy Martin for the Central States title in Kansas City.

12-12-1981: Bruiser Brody & Jimmy Snuka defeated Terry & Dory Funk, Jr in the finals of the All Japan annual tag team tournament in Tokyo, Japan. The finals were also notable for the All Japan debut of Stan Hansen who had secretly jumped from New Japan.

12-14-1981: Bob Brown replaces an injured Tommy Martin against Bob Sweetan in Wichita, KS and wins the Central States title.

12-21-1981: Sports Illustrated magazine runs a multi-page feature story on Andre the Giant.

12-25-1981: Big Time Wrestling holds it’s third Star Wars show from Reunion Arena in Dallas, TX. Results: El Negro Assassino battled Richard Blood to a draw… Tiny Tom defeated Little Tokyo… Jose Lothario defeated Ernie Ladd to win the Texas Brass Knux title… Blue Demon & Al Madril defeated Arman Hussein & Carlos Zapata… El Solitario defeated Killer Tim Brooks to retain the UWA World Junior Lightweight title… Great Kabuki defeated Fritz Von Erich in a Texas Death Match… Kerry & Kevin & David Von Erich defeated Frank Dusek & Bill Irwin & Ten Gu (AKA: Kendo Nagasaki)… Big Daddy Bundy (AKA: King Kong Bundy) wins a two ring battle royal which included Al Madril, Armand Hussein, Bill Irwin, Blue Demon, Carlos Zapata, David Von Erich, Frank Dusek, Jose Lothario, Kerry Von Erich, Killer Tim Brooks, El Negro Assassino, Richard Blood, and Ten Gu.

12-26-1981: David Von Erich (managed by J.J. Dillon) wins the Southern (Florida) heavyweight title from Jack Brisco in St. Petersburg. Also on the show, Eric Embry wins a tournament final for the Florida TV title.

12-31-1981: Mr. Wrestling II (Johnny Walker) defeated The Spoiler to win the Florida title in Jacksonville, FL.

1981 (exact date not known): Steve “Dr. Death” Williams sets a record at the University of Oklahoma for the fastest pinfall in wrestling by pinning Perr Kaufman in 20 seconds. Williams is named an All-American.

Wrestling Observer Newsletter Wrestler of the Year 1981 - Ric Flair

Pro Wrestling Illustrated Wrestler of the Year 1981 - Ric Flair

Tokyo Sports Wrestler of the Year 1981 - Antonio Inoki

Tokyo Sports tag team of the Year 1981 - Antonio Inoki & Tatsumi Fujinami

Movies - Mexican lucha libre legend El Santo released two movies in 1981: Santo Contra el Asesino de la T.V. (Santo vs the Television Killer) and Chanoc y el Hijo del Santo vs Los Vampiros Asesinos (Chanoc & The Son of Santo vs the Killer Vampires)






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