Retro Wednesday: The American-Made Bodyslam
On July 4, 1993, Yokozuna issued an open challenge to any American athlete, coined the "Stars and Stripes Challenge," to bodyslam him. WWE stars such as The Steiner Brothers and Crush attempted to slam Yokozuna, but were unsuccessful. Even the Detroit Lion's Bill Frallic made an unsuccessful attempt to put down the super-heavyweight.
When it seemed as if there were no one to gain victory in the challenge, a helicopter landed on the USS Intrepid. Out comes Lex Luger with a new attitude, now determined to represent his country well. After a brief scuffle, Luger used his forearm to daze Yokozuna and managed to bodyslam him to win the challenge. After that moment, Luger became a huge babyface and started the Lex Express campaign to become WWE Champion.
Although he was a co-winner of the 1994 Royal Rumble, he never became a world champion in the WWE. In fact, he was not heavily involved in the main event scene, and the best exposure he had was being the recipient of a Tatanka heel turn and later forming a tag team with Davey Boy Smith called the Allied Powers. Two years after his debut in the WWE, he left to return to WCW on an episode of Nitro.
Lex Luger would have unquestionably been a good babyface champion in the WWE. Unfortunately, he never had the title, and his run for the company fell lower than expected. Regardless, his bodyslam to Yokozuna goes down as an unforgettable moment in WWE history.
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