50 Years Ago Today Championship Wrestling Came To Fenway Park

On this night, June 28, 1969, 17,000 people streamed into Fenway Park to watch the first wrestling night held there since the 1930's. With ringside seats going for $10 a pop, the infield was jammed on a hot, steamy night as fans roared for George "The Animal" Steele, Victor Rivera, Slave Girl Moolah, Vivian Vachon, and the Boucher Sisters. But the main attraction was Bruno Sammartino fighting for the championship against his arch enemy, Killer Kowalski. This would be their third Boston match of the year (Sammartino won the first round, in April, while Kowalski took the World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF) title in a controversial win in May, both of those taking place at the Boston Garden.

But on this night, the championship was on the line at Fenway Park, in a no holds barred, no referee, "Sicilian Stretcher Match." Early on it looked bad for the crowd favorite as the Killer used his "Claw Hold," but when Kowalski went to use his dirty chair trick, Sammartino turned the tables and beat him with the chair until he was unconscious...or dead. As they brought Kowalski through the infield, fans poured beer on him and chanted, "Killer's a bum!" This apparently revived him, as he rolled off the stretcher and attacked again. However, Bruno was not about to let the belt slip away on this night as he vanquished the villain and the crowd went berserk!

 
 

On another historical wrestling note, 21 years ago today The Undertaker nearly killed Mick Foley...

 
Chuck Nowlin

Chuck Nowlin

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