WRESTLING GLOBE NEWSLETTER
Wednesday December 9, 2009
Wrestling Globe Newsletter by Mike Aldren - All the latest professional wrestling news, gossip and occasional opinion direct to you. WGN is read by industry power players, many top wrestlers and thousands of fans from all around the world.
WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
The 12/7 Smackdown/ECW show in Beaumont, TX had Undertaker over Kane in the main event after Kane won an earlier battle royal. We didn't receive any other results.
12/8 ECW TV results from Houston, TX: Vance Archer over Tommy Dreamer; Caylen Croft & Trent Baretta over Mark Franks & Danny Vaughn; and Christian, Shelton Benjamin & Yoshi Tatsu over William Regal, Kozlov & Ezekiel Jackson. Pre show dark match was Goldust over Kaval (Low Ki).
The Sun at www.the-sun.co.uk/wrestling has a story on today's revelations from the Brain Injury Research Institute that Andrew "Test" Martin may have suffered serious brain damage from thousands of bumps to the head. A lot more on these findings are expected to come out over the next few week's. My personal feeling on this is that WWE as the industry leader should ban needless impact moves that can harm the brain, chairshots being the best example. Sunday's Tables, Ladders and Chairs pay-per-view should make for interesting viewing in light of all the negative press WWE is receiving as a result of today's ESPN report, and their dismissal of the Brain Institutes latest findings.
Jim Ross at http://tinyurl.com/yl79xyr is also calling for chairshots in wrestling to be banned: "Concussions are a big issue in sports today and let's not forget that pro wrestling/sports entertainment or whatever in the hell one wants to call it doesn't have the franchise on this dilemma. However, chair shots to the skull should be forbidden in wrestling. Period. End of story. Bottom line."
We have a letter in today's mailbag from former WWE wrestler and President of the Sports Legacy Institute Chris Nowinski who is encouraging past and present pro wrestlers to donate their brain after death for research that could lead to a treatment and cure for CTE.
Charlie Haas is said to be devastated by the death of Umaga. Together they owned a nutrition store in the Houston-area. There were rumors a few weeks ago that Haas asked for his release over a money issue but cooler heads prevailed. The story making the rounds was that Kurt Angle tried to recruit Haas to TNA.
Scott Stanford, a New York sports anchor with WNBC 4, is now hosting some syndicated shows for WWE.
Little People's Court with DX and Hornswoggle has been dropped for now.
Alicia Fox suffered a shoulder injury at a recent house show and will be sidelined for a couple of weeks. She is still coming to television tapings and also went to Iraq last week for Tribute to the Troops.
A few of our readers in Ireland are upset with Michael Cole on Raw for referencing Sheamus as from the UK, when in fact he is from Dublin, which is the Republic of Ireland.
Mark Cuban's "security" on Raw were local workers Kristopher Haiden, Ryan Davidson, Danny Matthews, and Mark Vaughn.
An FCW/WWE tryout camp in Tampa just wrapped up. There were some interesting names at the camp, which we can't report on just yet, including a Ring of Honor wrestler.
Welshman Barri Griffiths, who was Goliath on the UK TV series of Gladiators, is working his last UK indy this weekend before moving to the U.S. to start in WWE developmental.
A new "After the Bell" segment on WWE.com teases that Dolph Ziggler may be Vickie Guerrero's latest toyboy.
Linda McMahon is reportedly spending two days this week meeting with GOP leaders in what press are describing as a media charm offensive in Washington, DC. She is fielding questions from concerned Senators about her campaign in Connecticut. Danny Diaz, the advisor for Rob Simmons, her main primary rival, told one reporter: "Simmons has spent his entire career as a public servant and [McMahon] has spent her entire career at the WWE and doesn't even want to discuss it. She is, in fact, distancing herself from her single credential. I think the stature gap in between the two is going to be so readily apparent that the electorate, by large, is going to support Simmons."
IGN.com at http://tinyurl.com/yl4nu6d reviewed The Marine II with Ted DiBiase Jr. which is released on DVD on December 29. They gave the movie 6/10 and said of DiBiase: "While we wouldn't expect Shakespeare any time soon, Ted DiBiase obviously has sufficient acting chops to carry the film. That said, the wrestler-turned-action star lacks the kind of distinct and intimidating visual presence of somebody like [John] Cena." That is probably the kindest review this movie is going to get based on a few others floating around... Ted Jr. is interviewed about the movie at http://tinyurl.com/yamysr9. He said he did all his own stunts apart from one scene jumping off an exploding boat. "I begged and begged to do it," he said. "But I understood it wouldn't have looked too good if I'd gotten blown up."
WWE Studios optioned two more movies which they plan to shoot next year in New Orleans. Big Red is a coming-of-age drama set in the 1960s about a 12-year-old boy who is forced by his teacher to partner with the school outcast on a project. The working title of the other movie is A Chance for Both Barrels but no further information on that one at press time.
Batista visited the Philippines over the weekend to launch a new energy drink called Xplode. The Philippine Star ran a story on his visit at http://tinyurl.com/yjncgyq. When asked to describe the drink he said it was "explosive." Good one. He did a ton of media in country putting over Manny Pacquiao as his friend and also UFC fighter Brandon Vera.
Kelly Kelly on her Twitter noted she is moving from Tampa to Miami.
TOTAL NONSTOP ACTION WRESTLING NEWS
The update we have on Hulk Hogan as of a few hours ago was that he is very sick and holed up in his hotel room in Canada. His PR people are hoping he can resume his book tour tomorrow but there is concern on how he would look on live camera. He did some radio interviews from his room this morning but is hacking up and has a fever. Jimmy Hart and his soon-to-be-bride Jennifer McDaniel are both with him. The current plan is to rig up an interview set for press to come to the hotel and interview him...
Hogan was a studio guest on Monday's Bubba the Love Sponge radio show. He talked about being a big fan of Jeff Hardy and would love to recruit him to TNA. He also said he is trying to reach out to Rob Van Dam, Scott Hall and Randy Savage. When asked about Vince Russo, he said they haven't talked to each other yet, but was adamant he is the booker now, not Russo, but may listen to some of Russo's ideas. He said if the current TNA wrestlers feel they need Russo to get them over then they can quit and "go work up north" where they script everything.
Eric Bischoff wrote on his Twitter yesterday: "Expecting WWE to come out with guns blazing on Jan 4. Love making them "sell". That's when you know you're doing it right!" Not exactly sure what he thinks WWE has reacted to.
The New Years Eve four-hour Impact is being billed by Spike as "New Year's Knockout Eve" which is the tag title tournament we alluded to earlier today. The company is looking at bringing in some indy girls for the tournament.
The Miami Herald interviewed Daniels at http://tinyurl.com/yl4od5u mostly putting over matches with AJ Styles and Samoa Joe.
The National Football Post at http://tinyurl.com/yz8bolf paid tribute to Lacey Von Erich, Christy Hemme, and Angelina Love in their Eight in the Box feature.
OTHER WRESTLING NEWS
Stacy Keibler did a Twitter chat with fans on her website. She said the only people she still keeps in touch with from wrestling are Torrie Wilson, Gail Kim, Maven Huffman, Lilian Garcia, Shane Helms and Matt Hardy. She said she doesn't watch wrestling on TV any more but put Kim over as the best female worker in WWE. She also noted her 42 inch legs are insured for $1 million.
There is a kayfabe interview with Bob Zmuda who has a book out on Andy Kaufman at http://tinyurl.com/yds8uqo. An interesting recollection on the 1982 Memphis Wrestling feud between Kaufman and Jerry Lawler.
Linda Claridge, Hulk Hogan's ex-wife, through her publicist sent out the following statement this morning in response to Hulk's recent court filings in which he wants Linda to pay for damages caused when she removed items from their Bellaire mansion: "(Terry) knows I’m using the wooden toilet seat as frame for his picture ever sense (sic) I found out he is a serial cheater and liar. Once he comes clean and starts to be honest, he can have it back." So there you go...
Lauren Mayhew is interviewed about her new movie Frat Party at http://tinyurl.com/yjghqpq.
Alicia Webb, the former Ryan Shamrock, is competing in Jennifer Tilly's 2nd Annual 'All In for CP' celebrity poker tournament along with actors Dean Cain, Ken Davitian, Shannon Elizabeth, and Glenn Morshower, TV personality Montel Williams, and Simpsons creator Sam Simon. The event takes place in Las Vegas at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Saturday, December 12 from 2pm. The tournament is a charity event to raise money to ease the lives of those who suffer from Cerebral Palsy.
Today's Diva of the Day is Dawn Marie at http://www.thewrestlingpress.com/DailyDiva.
WRESTLING GLOBE MAILBAG
I am sending a select few wrestling writers this letter because I respect your work and the way you have handled the brain trauma issue. If you are so inclined, please help me get the message out there and to wrestlers and fans through your websites. Feel free to add your own commentary.
To the professional wrestling community:
I was saddened today, but not surprised, to learn that Andrew “Test” Martin was suffering from Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a progressive degenerative brain disease caused by repetitive trauma, when he passed away. I had the honor of wrestling Test on multiple occasions and he had my respect both as a performer and as a person.
Most wrestlers and wrestling fans are aware that since retiring from WWE due to multiple concussions, I have dedicated my life to the study, treatment, and prevention of CTE. Our non-profit Sports Legacy Institute (SLI) was responsible for the diagnosis of CTE in Chris Benoit in 2007, the first professional wrestler diagnosed with CTE. In 2008 I teamed up with the top researchers in this field to start the Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy (CSTE) at the prestigious Boston University School of Medicine. Along with Dr. Ann McKee, Dr. Robert Stern, and Dr. Robert Cantu we have now analyzed the brains of over twenty athletes, and are beginning to develop an advanced understanding of this disease
More importantly over 225 active and retired athletes have volunteered to be part of a longitudinal study on CTE. By enrolling in our CONTACT study at the CSTE at Boston University School of Medicine, they will be committing to donating their brain to CTE research after death. CONTACT members also agree to update their medical and trauma histories annually with the CSTE by phone. This study will enable the CSTE to obtain more accurate and detailed histories of donors and compare them to future pathological findings, eventually allowing us to understand the specific risk factors and clinical course of CTE.
Over 20 wrestlers have already enrolled or recently pledged to join the study, including Rob Van Dam, Matt Morgan, Lance Storm, Ken Kennedy, Molly Holly, Tony Garea, Antonio Thomas, Dawn Marie, Kevin Fertig, and other big names who at this point choose to remain anonymous. The only group of professional athletes so far with a greater commitment to this research is NFL players, with over 60 current and retired players involved.
Considering how the CSTE’s research combined with SLI’s advocacy were able to convince the NFL last month to completely change their approach to both concussions and lower-impact repetitive brain trauma, Test’s tragic death provides an opportunity to create change and to prevent this from happening to others.
I would like to encourage current and former professional wrestlers to become part of the research that we expect will eventually lead to treatment and a cure for CTE. I am enrolled and will be donating my brain to help my former colleagues. I hope you will choose to join me and over 20 other members of our fraternity in this important endeavor.
To enroll, call
Megan Wulff, MPH
To learn more, visit www.sportslegacy.org