This Day In Sports History (March 31st) – Wrestlemania
It was on this day in 1985 that the first ever Wrestlemania took place at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The 19,121 fans in attendance were treated to nine matches, including three with championship belt implications.
Although he would lose his fight to The Junkyard Dog by count out, Greg “The Hammer” Valentine would retain his intercontinental belt because you cannot lose a belt by being counted out. The tag team championship was the next belt up for grabs and The Iron Sheik, with partner Nikolai Volkoff, would defeat the reigning champions, The U.S. Express. Wendi Richter would defeat Leilani Kai to become the new women’s champion.
The main event of the evening was a tag team match with Hulk Hogan and Mr. T taking on “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff. Hogan, who was the reigning WWF champion, and Mr. T would go on to win the match, which was refereed by boxing legend Muhammad Ali.
Here are highlights from Wrestlemania I.
Gordie Howe, NHL – Born March 31st 1928 (age 86) in Floral, Saskatchewan
Pavel Bure, NHL – Born March 31st 1971 (age 43) in Moscow, Russia
Chien-Ming Wang, MLB – Born March 31st 1980 (age 34) in Tainan City, Taiwan