Fantasizing about dream match ups is part of being a professional wrestling fan. For years I read magazines like Pro Wrestling Illustrated, Inside Wrestling, and The Wrestler, intrigued by their fantasy match ups. I would then grab my action figures and create my own fantasy tournaments, where I would decide who was the best of all time. It is in that spirit that I write my Fights of Fancy articles. A look inside the arena of imagination where we ask who would win in the match up of…The Super Powers vs The Mega Powers
Whether it is in movies, television series, comic books, or professional wrestling, when former enemies team up together to face a common enemy, it is always an exciting twist to the story. It adds a new dimension to the characters involved and allows the story to go in different directions.
In the 1980’s, both the National Wrestling Alliance and the World Wrestling Federation added such a twist to their programming. On one side we had two men who blindly fought for their respective countries against one another, but changed with the times and learned to fight side by side for moral reasons instead of patriotic ones. On the other side were two men who both coveted World Championship gold, but put their ambition aside in order to stop a man who’s lack of respect for the title made him believe that he could buy his way to the top. Both were huge players in their respective companies, but what would happen if these two teams were to square off against each other? Today we hope to answer that question.
The Super Powers
In 1986, Dusty Rhodes was set to battle Ole Anderson and Tully Blanchard in a cage match alongside his partner, Magnum T.A. Sadly, Magnum was involved in a career ending car wreck that left Rhodes without a partner. To the shock of all in the crowd (and especially the Four Horsemen), Dusty brought out the Russian Nightmare, Nikita Koloff, and the two disposed of Ole and Tully in quick fashion, forming the unbelievable USA-Russian tag team of the Super Powers.
The Super Powers proved to be a very effective team despite their little experience together. Their most significant victory came shortly after their formation, at the 1987 Jim Crocket Sr. Memorial Cup Tag Team Tournament. Many have speculated that the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament currently taking place on NXT is inspired by this very tournament, that Rhodes and Koloff won. That night, receiving a bye in the first round, the Super Powers still managed to defeat an impressive four teams to emerge with the trophy and million dollar prize purse.
It isn’t that hard to see how these two managed to steamroll the competition so quickly into their tenure as a tag team. Nikita Koloff is one of the most powerful wrestlers to ever come through the NWA. His Russian Sickle clothesline rivaled Stan Hansen’s Lariat as one of the most vicious of its kind. His strength was super human, and he could manhandle anyone put in front of him. If Nikita was the offense of the Super Powers, then surely Dusty Rhodes was the defense. Rhodes has had legendary blood baths with the likes of Abdullah the Butcher, Ric Flair, and Terry Funk. Few could absorb punishment like Dusty and keep fighting.
While the Super Powers were incredibly, well, powerful, they didn’t have lots of staying power. The team itself was short lived, but much like their contemporaries the Road Warriors, the Super Powers were famous for charging in, hurting you, and leaving victorious. Technical teams like the Four Horsemen and the Midnight Express would always give them the most trouble because they could tire them out.
The Mega Powers
Since his arrival in the WWF, Macho Man Randy Savage had sought out Hulk Hogan and his WWF World Championship. Always heated rivals, things began to change on October 3rd, 1987 when the Hulkster inexplicably came to the aid of his former foe on an episode of Saturday Night’s Main Event. Savage had been getting beat down by the trio of the Hart Foundation and the Honky Tonk Man, when Savage’s valet Miss Elizabeth went to the back for help. She ended up bringing out Hogan, who saved the Macho Man. One handshake later, and the Mega Powers were born.
In the months to follow, a new threat would emerge in the WWF that would bring the Mega Powers even closer. Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase was on a quest to capture the WWF World Championship at any cost. He tried purchasing it outright, paid off crooked referees, and bought the allegiance of the 8th Wonder of the World, Andre the Giant. The Mega Powers refused to stand idly by while Dibiase used his money to get to the top, and at Summer Slam 1988, Hogan and Savage defeated the Mega Bucks tandem of Dibiase and Andre to score the biggest moral victory of their careers.
Randy Savage was an absolute mad man in the ring. His intensity was unmatched by anyone in the industry at the time, and his unpredictability made him a ticking time bomb against his opponents. Hulk Hogan was undoubtedly the most popular superstar of the 1980’s, and the love of his fans often was the secret weapon he would use to Hulk Up against opponents. This adrenaline surge more often than not, spelled the end for anyone that opposed the Mega Powers. When discussing advantages we also cannot understate the value of their valet, Miss Elizabeth. Her motivation and distractions were at times the key to victory for the Hulkster and the Macho Man.
Of course, many would say Miss Elizabeth was also the downfall of the Mega Powers team. Savage wasn’t just a ticking time bomb for the opposition. He was always one step away from blowing up at Hogan as well, and the team’s volatility meant their levels of success were matched only by their levels of instability. If you could get the fuse lit between Randy and Hulk, it wouldn’t take much else for the Mega Powers to explode.
What makes this such an interesting match on paper is that all four men are very close to equals. The one area the does stand out significantly is the size disadvantage for Randy Savage. After a short feeling out process I could easily see Savage being cut off from Hogan and being expertly worked over by Koloff’s power, and Rhodes’ former tag team experience.
Of course, Randy’s size also gave him significant speed, and if he wanted to, Savage could use that speed to make a fast move on Koloff. Imagine the Russian Nightmare charging in on Savage, only to have the Macho Man move out of the way, sending Koloff crashing shoulder first into the ring post, taking both men out. With both men hurt, both would need to make a hot tag to their respective partners.
This is where things would get very interesting. Hulk Hogan vs Dusty Rhodes is a showdown that would be worth enough for its own Fight of Fancy. So what would happen when these two popular 80’s wrestling icons would lock up in the confines of this tag team match? My guess is, a lot of posing and working the crowd at first, followed by the trading back and forth of fists and elbows.
Both men would tire out quickly, but I have to imagine with Dusty’s inhuman ability to absorb punishment, eventually the Hulkster would fade faster than the American Dream and end up taking a few too many elbows to the head before crumbling to the canvas. Moments later, we would see a Bionic Elbow from Dusty set on ending the match. Instead Hogan would begin Hulking Up and no number of elbows could stop Rhodes from feeling the deadly combo of three punches, a big boot, and a leg drop.
Nikita would rush in to break up the pin, bringing in Savage. All four men would brawl, and eventually end up on the outside, where Hogan would eat a Russian Sickle from Nikita. The lovely Miss Elizabeth would come to check on Hogan, distracting Savage in the ring, allowing Koloff to sneak up from behind and land a Russian Sickle on Savage, followed by a Bioni Elbow, and the victory.
Winners: The Super Powers
Agree? Disagree? Think the match would go another way? Make your voice heard in the comments below and let me know what you think on twitter @AdamContant. Use the hashtag #FightsOfFancy.