Vintage wrestling t-shirts ain’t no joke! For my entire life I’ve always heard that wrestling is “corny” and “cheesy.” The same people who used to criticize me for watching such “garbage” are the same ones who are secretly scouring eBay for an original Don “The Rock” Muraco t-shirt. Good luck paying anything less than $100 bucks for that one! Wrestling tees used to mean a lot more to the fans since the superstars weren’t given a new t-shirt to promote every month like they are now. Back in the ’70s and ’80s the guys were known to make their entrance with the same style shirt for years.
Hulk Hogan had “Hulkamania,” Rowdy Roddy Piper had “Hot Rod,” and many years later Steve Austin was known for his “Austin 3:16” shirt. Even a fairly short lived tag team like The Powers of Pain had their own shirt that can be found on eBay for a pretty penny. How much is a pretty penny you ask? Oh say about $150 bucks!
Collectors and sellers know that you can’t roll down to your local Target store and buy an original, vintage wrestling tee which is why they hike up the prices. No wonder eBay has got the corner on the market. It’s more about nostalgia nowadays and even pro-wrestling naysayers just want a piece of these shirts to be hip and old school. Well screw those people, they don’t deserve to be near a shirt as great as this. But back to the matter at hand, one store specifically, dirt_road_trading, offers an original 1989 Summerslam t-shirt.
The WWF’s summer extravaganza was only in it’s 2nd year and emanated from the Meadowlands Arena in East Rutherford, NJ. There’s no better time to discuss this shirt than now since WWE is presenting their next installment of Summerslam this Sunday and it’s being billed as the 25th anniversary of the event.
I remember back in the day, getting a t-shirt that was specially produced for a Pay-Per-View event was a big deal since it usually had the main event and some matches printed on the back of it. A commemorative t-shirt meant the event was huge! During that time the WWF put a little more effort and quality into their products by offering more than just a tee with a Summerslam logo on the front. I bet the tee was about $15 bucks back then, $20 at most if it was an adult size. Now it’s going for $100 dollars so that’s quite a jump. Be careful though, if you buy it and put it on, it might turn to dust!
This shirt kicked ass, and it was probably better than the event itself! Wait a second…the event was August 28th, 1989? The event was on a Monday night! What a downer! It’s hard enough to get through the work day coming off a weekend let alone the anticipation of seeing one of the top events in the wrestling industry adding to it! Although Summerslam ’89 didn’t quite live up to the previous year’s event, it still had a few strong points. You can read my synopsis of the ’89 Summerslam HERE and it’s program/event card HERE.