ASK WV (9/27/03): WM III attendance, Hart/HBK, Sting/4 Horsemen, & More

Reported by Paul Nemer of
On Saturday, September 27, 2003 at 4:32 PM EST

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The following questions were answered by Paul Nemer.

Was the Wrestlemania III attendance really 93,173? I've heard from several credible sources that it was a work, and that the actual number is closer to 78,000. Can you guys clear that up?

That's an excellent question. At times I use to believe it was 93,173 and now I believe it's less. First of all, here is what it says on (The Pontiac Silverdome's official website):

The two highest attended events at the Silverdome were in 1987 when 93,682 people visited the stadium to hear Pope John Paul II conduct mass and 93,173 fans packed the stadium for Wrestlemania III in 1987.

Football, Soccer, Supercross, Monster Jams: 80,325
Political Rallies, Religious Crusades: 90,000
Concerts: 22,000 to 55,000

Some sources have said that this isn't the legit attendance for WM III. It was 78,000, some say under 80,000, but around that. Here is a picture if the WM III attendance "record" Now I look at that, and look at the legit SummerSlam 1992 attendance which was 82,000 fans in Wembley Stadium, and I rarely see any difference.

Here is a detailed answer written by WV's co-webmaster Ryan Droste:

OK....this has been debated for so many years, but the number is definitely 78,000. I think Dave Meltzer was the first one to call this to peoples attention. Here's the facts as to why it was 78,000 (I'm writing this with Meltzer as a source). First of all you have to understand that the WWF back in those days routinely lied about attendance numbers on TV to make them bigger than they were. Zane Bresloff was the man whom promoted WrestleMania III for McMahon in Michigan. He and Dave Meltzer had a conversation on the phone years later about WrestleMania III. Bresloff was quoted as saying something to the effect of that the WWF has been quoting that 93,000 attendance number for so long, he thought they were starting to believe it themselves. Meltzer asked him whether or not 93,000 was the real attendance figure, and Bresloff said no. He later sent Meltzer a fax of the official statement from the building from back in 1987. This gave the attendance as being just over 78,000 with 2,3000 comps. Meltzer had never even questioned the 93,000 number before, and the actual gate (money made from ticket sales) was the same on the fax as the number given to Meltzer by the WWF back in 1987 when he didn't even question the 93,000. Meltzer also was doing an article on WWE history where he had to research attendance, and officials let him go through records of all of their major shows (all the stadium WrestleManias, SummerSlam '92, etc.) In almost all the cases, the attendance numbers he found on the official records were different from the announced attendance figure on TV. They recently started announcing figures that weren't as inflated and pretty much accurate, starting with their big Royal Rumble at the Alamodome in 1997. Meltzer asked Vince McMahon himself why they used to inflate the numbers, because the shows were sold out themselves and the real number was impressive enough. Why add a few thousand? Vince was quoted as saying what appears on television people should consider for entertainment purposes. This actually isn't exclusive to WWE, as other forms of sports and entertainment often lie about the actual attendance to make it sound impressive. Such companies I could name as examples would be Pride and K-1. So in conclusion, the reason the WWE gave this inflated 93,000 attendance number was because they wanted to proclaim and all time indoor attendance record, and they had to beat an attedance number done by the Pope, while at the same time having an attendance figure that nobody would ever beat.

I am ashamed of myself, for not remembering this very recent history. But, I cannot for the life of me remember what the stable of Benoit, Guerrero, Malenko & Saturn was called. It's been on the tip of my tongue for days now and it's beginning to get on my nerves. I know there was a similar group earlier in WCW featuring Shane Douglas in place of Eddie Guerrero called the Revolution, but the latter groups name eludes me. Thanks in advance for saving my sanity.

The Radicalz -:)

I recently purchased the Survivor Series 96 and was very suprised to see Diesel and Razor Ramon on the card (Diesel/Razor/Vader/Farrooq vs. Savio Vega/Flash Funk/Yokozuna/Jimmy 'Superfly' Snuka) as I was sure that they had left the WWF/E earlier in the year. My suspicions were comfirmed when I got to the match and they looked different from the Diesel/Razor Ramon I am used to seeing. Is my eyesight/memory going funny or was it really different actors playing the two.

No they weren't the original characters. Scott Hall and Kevin Nash were in WCW by that time. The person who was playing the fake Razor Ramon was Rick Bogner, and the person playing the fake Diesel was none other than Glen Jacobs, who currently wrestles as Kane.

When was Sting in the 4 Horsemen?

January 2, 1990, the Four Horsmen reunited (Ric Flair, Arn Anderson, Ole Anderson and Sting). Sting only last a month with the 4 Horsemen. Here is what happened with the storyline break-up. Ric Flair was World champion back then, and everything was going good until Sting demanded a title shot against Ric Flair, which Ric Flair didn't like. On February 6, 1990, a 6-man tag match was set, where Ole Anderson gave his spot to Sting, so he can give him his moment to shine. Right before the match, the Horsemen turned on Sting.

Why did the Iron man match start the real-life rivalry between Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels?

I wasn't backstage to find out what day or year the rivalry started, but I will give you some informaton based on what I know. The match itself didn't really start the rivalry. Bret and Shawn have been feuding since 1992. I believe it all started in late 1995. Shawn and his "Clique" were pretty much in control backstage, which many wrestlers didn't like, especially Bret Hart. Hart knew months before the Iron man Match that Shawn was scripted to win the title. That was "mild" heat so to speak. I personally believe that the real heat all started in 1997. Early 1997, Shawn forfeited his title because he didn't want to return the favor and drop the belt to Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13. Then after that, many things happened that made the two hate each others guts. To read more about it visit our FAQ section.

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