FRED BLASSIE vs. JOHN TOLOS Olympic Auditorium ORIGINAL Wrestling Program 1971
In May 1971, while he was excepting a wrestler of the year award, Fred Blassie had powder thrown into his eyes by his hated rival John Tolos. Blinded by the attack, Blassie wasn’t seen for two months. On July 30, 1971, after Tolos defeated Don Carson, Blassie ran in and attempted to attack Tolos. The Olympic security took Blassie down and handcuffed him to restore order; handcuffing the badass face nearly three decades before WWF did it to Steve Austin. The crowd went nuts for it all. Promoter Mike LeBell immediately signed a rematch between the two, but not for the Grand Olympic like usual. They needed an even bigger building for this match. The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum was decided for the venue and the match was set for August 27, 1971. Blassie had all the reason he needed for revenge already, having been blinded by Tolos, but Tolos gave him even more reason a week before their big match. Blassie once again found himself handcuffed, this time to the ring post, while Tolos administered a beating. After Tolos got done, he destroyed Blassie. The Los Angeles fans wanted to see Blassie kill Tolos by this point. The Coliseum event drew a crowd of 25,847 and a gate of $142,158.50, both California records. In addition to these achievements, it was one of the first pro-wrestling cards to be shown on Closed Circuit Television. Blassie and Tolos split the first two falls, with Blassie winning the third fall by TKO. Since the match between Blassie and Tolos in 1971, there has not been a pro-wrestling crowd in the area that has even approached its attendance. In fact, there has only been one attempted in the past 50 years to even try to break it, when WWF scheduled WrestleMania VII to take place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. That event would ultimately be moved to the Los Angeles Sports Arena due to poor ticket sales, where it had no chance of getting near the record.