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 - Tim Bland

As the month of January 1980 started, one of the biggest angles in WWF history was about to take place. Larry Zybysko challenged Bruno Sammartino to a match in a televised interview. Zybysko said he would retire if he did not get the match.

On 1/12/80 in Philadelphia, PA, Gorilla Monsoon defeated Swede Hanson, managed by Fred Blassie. Larry Zybysko faced the Iron Sheik, managed by Fred Blassie. Hulk Hogan, managed by Fred Blassie, defeated Tito Santana. Ken Patera, managed by the Grand Wizard, defeated Ivan Putski. Intercontinental champion, Pat Patterson, faced his former manager, Lou Albano in a grudge match.

Bruno Sammartino finally accepted Larry Zybysko's challenge.A frustrated Zybysko turned on Bruno and whacked him in the head with a chair, busting him open. Bruno was stretchered out and Zybysko became the WWF's most hated wrestler.

On 2/9/80 in Philadelphia, PA, Hulk Hogan defeated Dominic Denucci. The Wild Samoans, managed by Lou Albano, faced Tito Santana and Gorilla Monsoon. WWF champion Bob Backlund successfully defended the belt against Texan Bobby Duncum, managed by Lou Albano.

In other notable events in February 1980, NWA Georgia star "Wildfire" Tommy Rich made a trip north to defeat "Unpredictable" Johnny Rodz in Madison Square Garden, NYC. In Baltimore, Ken Patera defeated WWF champion Bob Backlund by count-out.

In March of 1980 in Baltimore, MD, WWF champion Bob Backlund successfully defended the belt against Ken Patera in their rematch. Afa the Samoan faced Dominic Denucci and Larry Zybysko defeated Ivan Putski.  Bruno Sammartino got his hands on Larry Zybysko on the March 1980 Boston, Mass, card. Bruno won by count-out when Zybysko refused to return to the ring.

On the 3/80 MSG, NYC card, Intercontinental champion Pat Patterson defended the belt against Ken Patera. Bruno Sammartino faced off with his nemesis, Larry Zybysko.  More...

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