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SummerSlam is a professional wrestlingpay-per-view (PPV) event, produced annually in August by professional wrestling promotionWWE. Dubbed as “The Biggest Party of the Summer,” it is one of the original “Big Four” pay-per-view events of WWE (along with WrestleMania, Royal Rumble and Survivor Series) and considered the WWE’s second biggest event of the year behind WrestleMania. The inaugural SummerSlam took place on August 29, 1988 at Madison Square Garden in New York City and was broadcast via pay-per-view. From 2009–2014, SummerSlam was held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. From 2015–2018, the event took place at the Barclays Center in the New York City borough of Brooklyn.
In the 1980s, Vince McMahon‘s World Wrestling Federation (WWF)’s main competition in the professional wrestling industry was from the Charlotte based Jim Crockett Promotionswho was a member of the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA). McMahon countered Jim Crockett‘s successful Starrcadeclosed-circuit television event, which began airing in 1983, with the WrestleMania franchise in 1985 and eventually forced Crockett to sell his company to Ted Turner, who renamed it World Championship Wrestling (WCW). The WWF continued to replace its closed circuit programming with pay-per-view programming and added more pay-per-views to the lineup to capitalize on the success of his previous events. In addition to WrestleMania in March and Survivor Series in November, McMahon added a third pay-per-view for August, which he named SummerSlam. To keep the WWF from having a pay-per-view market monopoly, WCW began airing monthly pay-per-views, and both companies began bringing in hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue. The first SummerSlam was held on August 29, 1988 in Madison Square Garden in New York City. SummerSlam became one of the WWF’s (and later WWE’s) most successful events and one of the “Big Four” pay-per-views, along with WrestleMania, Survivor Series and Royal Rumble.[