WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
2/22 Raw TV results from Indianapolis, IN: Maryse over Gail Kim to win the vacant Divas title; Kofi Kingston, Evan Bourne & Yoshi Tatsu over Randy Orrton & Legacy; Christian over Carlito in a MITB qualifying match; ShoMiz over Mark Henry & MVP to retain the tag titles; and John Cena over Batista via DQ. Dark match was Vladmir Kozlov over Silas Young, a Midwest indie wrestler on a tryout from hell.
The Smackdown tapings are tonight in Milwaukee including Michelle McCool vs. Mickie James for the Women's title with Vickie Guerrero as referee. It's also the premiere of NXT on Syfy. We're looking for reader reports to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kayfabe is alive and well, apparently... Following the angle last week where Bret Hart's leg was "crushed" on Raw, Midwest Ambulance Service, that covers the Des Moines metropolitan area, received a number of phone calls from worried wrestling fans enquiring about Bret's health. The group even posted a message on it's website which read: "ATTENTION: Please do not call 222-2222 regarding the condition of Bret 'Hit Man' Hart. Contact the WWE for updates. Our number is for emergency calls only. Thank you." This isn't anything new with wrestling fans. One of Jerry Lawler's most famous feuds in Memphis involved an angle between himself and the late Eddie Gilbert where Eddie and his brother Doug were fired from the promotion, but in retaliation hit Lawler with their car. This prompted some fans to call the police and report what they had seen as vehicular assault. Lawler had to tell the cops what was going on and was forced to appear on television (while selling his "injuries") out of concern that Gilbert would have been arrested if he didn't show that he was all right.
Wendi Richter was announced for the WWE Hall of Fame, to be inducted by Roddy Piper. During a video package they recognised her as a 5-time Women's champion so presumably they are now counting AWA and WWC title reigns. She is one of the most recognizable names from the Rock-n-Wrestling era. She has actually been on good terms with the company for a while now and they invited her to be part of the Diva battle royal last year at Wrestlemania. She is the fourth female to be inducted following the late Fabulous Moolah and Sherri Martel, and Mae Young. Richter was also the first "screw job" victim of Vince McMahon after he doubled crossed her during a Women's title match at Madison Square Garden in 1985. McMahon brought in Moolah under a mask [as The Spider Lady] to do the deed because he claims Richter had refused to sign a new contract. Richter, however, claims she was still under her original five year contract, but that she regularly had disagreements with McMahon about her pay checks. After that match, Richter left MSG still in her wrestling gear, took a cab to the airport, booked herself on a flight out of New York, and has never spoken since to McMahon. You can watch the match in question at http://tinyurl.com/ybv4ck6.
The Ultimate Warrior was asked and has apparently turned down a Hall of Fame invitation this year in Phoenix where he resides, according to those who would know. It could still happen but there is an issue over money. The standard rate is $5,000 although certain people have been paid more in the past.
Gail Kim busted her lip open last night during the Diva's title match with Maryse who may also have injured a breast. No idea what went wrong but that match wasn't pretty.
Sheamus suffered a mild concussion during the chamber match on Sunday night. The original plan was for him to face Cena on Raw for a Wrestlemania title shot at Batista, but he wasn't medically cleared. Batista worked the match in his place.
TNA purchased some ad time on local cable during Raw to push the March 8 Impact. The ad stated, "Be there when TNA takes over wrestling on Monday nights."
Four matches are now official for Wrestlemania 26: Batista vs. John Cena for the WWE title [likely with Vince and Bret in respective corners]; Chris Jericho vs. Edge for the World heavyweight title; The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels in streak vs. retirement; and Christian vs. 7 others TBA in a Money in the Bank match.
The annual draft takes place on April 26 in Richmond at the Coliseum which will be a three-hour show with both brands. The Smackdown tapings that week are the following night in Hersey, PA.
THQ are recording some voice overs for the new WWE video game this afternoon; including that of the former Paul Bearer, Percy Pringle.
Bryan Danielson was on Seattle-radio this morning promoting the debut on NXT. He said he's fine with the name change to Daniel Bryan and feels most WWE fans don't know who he is anyway. "To them I’m always going to be known as Daniel Bryan. I think that will be okay. It’s just that the WWE is an enormous corporation and it’s smart for them to have the rights of anybody they put on TV," he said. "It doesn’t matter if the person is successful; I’m successful and they own the rights and that helps them and their merchandising and that sort of thing. I don’t think it’s really a big deal; it’s a pretty standard thing." Regarding The Miz' blog on the WWE website about him looking like an accountant: "[The Miz is] very charismatic, he’s gone out there, he’s really good at making people hate him. How I’ve gotten by is a little bit different. I’ve been doing this for over ten years now and what I’ve gotten by and how I made my name is by being excellent in the ring, but that doesn’t mean what he’s saying isn’t partially correct... There is this huge aspect there where for me it’s always been what goes on in the ring. And with the WWE, that’s a big part of it, it’s presenting yourself as a superstar. And when he said I look like an accountant, I kinda do!"
The St. Louis Riverfront Times ran a story on The Undertaker getting burned at the pay-per-view. Robert Zimmerman, a spokesman for WWE, claimed Taker was only allowed to perform after being cleared by a ringside physician. How anyone can actually believe that is beyond me. Zimmer also claimed Taker's injuries amounted to sunburn and he was fine. When asked if the incident will cause the WWE to review their procedures for having pyro as part of their productions, he added, "I don't know. I haven't spoken to anyone to find out what was the cause, if it was timing, if there was something wrong with whatever. We have to go back and investigate and make a final determination."
Taker has now been removed from advertising for the European tour in April.
On Google.com today the No. 1 and No 6 hot topics are Undertaker and Ric Flair.
The Turtle Company out of New Jersey has filed a lawsuit against WWE for allegedly violating a patent they hold for adjustable book covers. They are seeking an injunction to prevent WWE and it's book partner, ABC Corp, from producing similar book covers. WWE reps said they are aware of the suit and described it as "small stuff."
As far as roster changes go with the death of ECW, Raw has acquired Christian, Yoshi Tatsu, William Regal, Zack Ryder and Rosa Mendes; Smackdown has Ezekiel Jackson, The Hurricane and Shelton Benjamin. Trent Barreta, Caylen Croft, Tyler Reks, Vance Archer, Abraham Washington, Tiffany and Savannah are back in FCW for now although they are still coming in for television along with announcers Byron Saxton and Josh Matthews. The same goes for Tony Atlas.
Melina did an autograph signing at Autorama in Dallas this past weekend. She told people she expects to return to television after Wrestlemania. She tore her ACL in a freak accident during a house show match back in December.
Calgary's Tiger Raj Singh was offered a developmental deal after he passed Wellness tests. Greg Oliver has a story on Singh at http://tinyurl.com/yhl4trz where he says he is waiting on a work visa before he can relocate to Tampa. He recently paid $1,000 to tryout at FCW. "I think they needed an Indian guy, they were looking for one. We had matches and stuff and all the wrestlers came in their gimmicks. Well, I came out wearing a turban and had my full outfit on, and spoke Punjabi in my promo, and they liked that. They like guys who speak different languages and have different looks," he said. "My wrestling was pretty good, I had some pretty good matches. I did good at the drills and everything."
The Sun at http://tinyurl.com/yj2lu93 posted a NSFW photo of Angela Fong [WWE's Savannah] from the low budget movie she did before signing with WWE. The blurb and photo was one of the Sun's most-read items yesterday and did more traffic than soccer stories and even a major story on the British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, according to their most-read module.
A band called The Wrong Door have created an awesome music video in tribute to referee Charles Robinson at http://tinyurl.com/ygnr22e. This may well be one of the greatest music vids you ever watch.
The latest shenanigans between Rob Simmons and Linda McMahon is at http://tinyurl.com/ylohzaq.
TNA WRESTLING NEWS
The story on the arrest of Ric Flair's wife, Jacqueline Beems, for assault on Sunday night in Charlotte, made press across the country yesterday largely due to reports from the Associated Press and TMZ. Flair’s agent, Melinda Morris Zanoni, of Legacy Talent and Entertainment, released this statement to media: "Ric and his wife had an unfortunate disagreement late last night, which led to his wife being arrested and charged with assault. Ric has done nothing wrong. Contrary to certain media reports, Ric has not been hospitalized in connection with this incident. Ric finds this matter unsettling and is committed to correcting any issues in his personal life. The important thing to remember here is that we have some very exciting professional announcements for Ric in the near future."
Flair said that he and his wife were watching hockey at a sports bar a few blocks from their apartment on Sunday night. He was drinking and being the Nature Boy. There was an argument. She slapped him. They went home and another argument ensued, and Beems' 20-something daughter, who lives with them, called the cops [the police report states Flair made the call] because she was concerned the argument was getting out of control. When the cops showed up they arrested Beems. Flair is now worried the negative press will cost him existing endorsement deals.
The Baltimore Sun has a Q&A with Mick Foley at http://tinyurl.com/yd2zxd6. On WWE's reaction to Impact going head-to-head against Raw: "I [Vince McMahon] will no-sell it publicly for a while. I think it has to be a concern to him internally, if only because so many of the people who were big stars on his show are now working for the competition. I would say honestly with the exception of their top six or seven guys that we have a lineup that fans are really more familiar with." He also says the new regime has learned from their past mistakes. "I think Hulk wants to really show what he can do on this side of the business. And I think Eric Bischoff, who has always been a bright guy, wants to show that he has learned from the past and he’s going to apply all the positive things he brought to the table without repeating some of the mistakes that were made in the past."
Foley was on the Opie & Anthony radio show this morning. He noted he watched the WWE PPV on Sunday because his kids begged him to order it. You know, it still amazes me the amount of TNA people who don't regularly keep up with WWE TV, especially those in power. It seems to me more WWE people watch the TNA product than the other way around. Foley also told a story about giving his time for the Obama election campaign last year in Scranton, PA. He said Obama's people sent him door-to-door in a poor neighborhood. You know, because wrestling fans supposedly live in such areas. He said he knocked on one door, and an African American woman answered, and screamed, "You that n***a that threw himself off the cage!" Foley joked how that was the first time anyone had called him that word.
Dixie Carter at http://tinyurl.com/y97uy6v and Hulk Hogan at http://tinyurl.com/y96j8td talk the move to Monday nights.
SouthPeak Interactive, who recently acquired the TNA video game license from the ashes of Midway, has extended it's credit line through November 30 to $8 million. "The loan extension improves our flexibility in managing our capital structure and provides added security for executing on our growth strategy," said SouthPeak president and CEO Melanie Mroz. In 2009, SouthPeak reported losses of $12.1 million and they are currently being sued by one of their partners for allegedly withholding royalties and breach of contract. They are planning to release TNA Impact: Cross The Line for PSP and Nintendo DS later this year.
Jimmy Hart talks his love for music at http://tinyurl.com/yjgr92n. He says he recently recorded some entrance music tracks for TNA.
OTHER WRESTLING NEWS
Former ring announcer and commentator Ron Martinez died in his Tampa home last week following a fatal heart attack. Ron, along with the late Jack Reynolds, covered NWF and IWA wrestling out of Cleveland. He was a brother-in-law of the late wrestling great Ilio DiPaolo and was the son of the late wrestling promoter Pedro Martinez. His dad was the first promoter to amass old wrestling footage and license it to television. Ron later pioneered the home video market for old wrestling film converted to tape.
Canadian wrestler George "Red" Eakin passed away on Sunday at age 81 after a battle with cancer.
Faster, starring Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, is filming this week at 2632 E Washington Bl [St. Lukes] in Pasadena, CA. They may be looking for some extras.
Brian Kendrick has been added to the Dragon Gate USA shows during Wrestlemania weekend in Phoenix.
RVD Radio on Wednesday night at www.robvandam.com has Sabu, Bill Apter, Bill Alphonso and Bruce Jingles on call to discuss role models, abuse of authority, wrestling, and much more. You can call in 9-11pm at (347) 308-8754.
NWA Southwest runs its 12th Anniversary show in Robstown, Texas at the 3000-seat Central Pavilion at the Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds on February 26. Doors open at 7pm. The event includes Blue Demon, Jr. and Kevin Northcutt, along with Mexican mini Pequeno Pierothito, Luchadores Eric Snake and Sicodelico, Jr., and many others. More info at www.myspace.com/nwasouthwest.
There is a legends show in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada at The Factory with The Iron Sheik, Kamala, The Honky Tonk Man, Bushwhacker Luke, Virgil, and many more to benefit breast cancer on March 25. To find out more you can call 905-513-6464 or email email@example.com.
NWA Main Event runs on Thursday in Nashville [413 Veritas St off Nolensville Rd] with an 8pm belltime. You can get free tickets at www.nwame.com.
Savio Vega has a try out on Saturday at his gym and wrestling academy. Areglando Los Luchadores. He is also available for bookings at firstname.lastname@example.org. Serious enquiries only.
CBS New York reporter Kate Sullivan talks Yoga with Diamond Dallas Page at http://tinyurl.com/y8fslwc.
Today's Diva of the Day is Gail Kim at http://www.thewrestlingpress.com/DailyDiva.