Tuesday, June 22, 2010

(WGN) June 21: FFW notes, Batista on MMA, Jeff Hardy banged up, Kurt Angle talks TNA creative, awesome ROH PPV, Awesome Kong returns to national TV, more...by Mike Aldren


6/19 Supershow results from New York City: Kofi Kingston over Drew McIntyre; Christian & MVP over Luke Gallows & The Mystery Man; Kane over CM Punk; The Miz won a four-way over Mark Henry, R-Truth & Evan Bourne; Jack Swagger over Big Show in a no-DQ match; The Bellas & Eve Torres over Maryse & LayCool; Randy Orton over Edge; and John Cena over Sheamus. The show was sold out and did a $800,000 gate. Hot crowd. They crapped all over the women including a chant of "This is stupid!" Following the main event, Cena talked about Wrestlemania returning to the Garden in four years, which is pretty much expected based on history. Vince McMahon missed the show and John Laurinaitis was steering the ship instead. Berry Skaaland, the widow of Hall of Famer Arnold Skaaland, was sat front row.

6/20 Fatal 4-Way PPV results from Long Island, NY: Kofi Kingston over Drew McIntyre to retain the IC title; Alicia Fox won the Divas title in a four-way over Eve Torres, Gail Kim & Maryse; Evan Bourne over Chris Jericho; Rey Mysterio won the World title in a four-way over Jack Swagger, CM Punk & Big Show; The Miz over R-Truth to retain the U.S. title; The Hart Dynasty & over The Usos & Tamina to retain the tag titles; and Sheamus won the WWE title in a four-way over John Cena, Randy Orton & Edge. Dark match was hometown boy Zack Ryder over MVP. Nassau Coliseum was far from a sell out.


TMZ cameras filmed Dave Batista over the weekend during which he alluded to an offer to fight for Strikeforce. When asked who he will be fighting, he said, "We'll see. I know but I'm not telling you." He did say he wants no part of Fedor Emelianenko. Several MMA websites have already jumped the gun on this story to the point that Strikeforce spokesperson Mike Afromowitz denied that Batista had signed a deal. Video is at http://tinyurl.com/2w3jrfz.

WWE confiscated some Bryan Danielson and Daniel Bryan fan signs last night at the pay-per-view. Danielson has just opened a new website at www.bryandanielson.tv.

Chris Jericho on his match with Evan Bourne last night via Twitter: "Had the best match I've had in months tonight. Bourne is the real deal... and I must destroy him."

Maryse had a major wardrobe malfunction last night when her breast popped out as she was pinned at the conclusion of the Divas title match.

Some trivia. Sheamus winning the WWE title again marks the 100th recognized time that the title has changed hands.

WWE has filed to trademark the term, The Nexus, possibly as a name for the NXT rookie group.

The company is working on a Bobby Heenan DVD which is slated for release just before the holidays in December. They are also putting together a "100 Craziest Moments" set that will also go on sale in December.

Ricky and Richie Steamboat teamed together at FCW's Father's Day show on 6/18 in Fort Myers. Sr. did most of the work since Jr. is not too long removed from knee surgery. Results: Yoshi Tatsu over Tyler Reks; Wes Brisco & Lucky Cannon over Curt Hawkins & Vance Archer; Donny Marlow over Rudy Parker; Naomi Night over Liviana for the Women's title; Eli Cottonwood over Derrick Bateman & Leo Kruger in a 2-on-1 handicap match; Hunico & Dos Equis over The Usos for the tag titles; Alex Riley over Husky Harris to retain the FCW title; and Ricky & Richie Steamboat over The Dudebusters.

FCW announced its 2010 Talent Evaluation Clinic from 7/30-8/2 at its facility in Tampa. More info at www.fcwwrestling.info.

A trailer for the WWE Studios film Legendary with John Cena, Patricia Clarkson and Danny Glover is online at http://tinyurl.com/2vqcsb6.

Superstars last Thursday night, bumped late due the NBA playoffs, did a dismal 0.35 rating and 308,000 viewers.

The Charleston Gazette has a story on Jerry Lawler at http://tinyurl.com/362cq7s who notes in four decades of wrestling he's never suffered a major injury, broken a bone or needed knee surgery. He also talks about his new group in Memphis. "It's a good looking show, but there's not a lot of money in independent wrestling," he said. "It's a labor of love."

The New Haven Register at http://tinyurl.com/34h4nv2 has a story on Linda McMahon which focuses on WWE's drug testing programs during her tenure as CEO. Linda was asked to comment but declined. The reporter did talk to her Senate campaign spokesperson Ed Patru, WWE attorney Jerry McDevitt, Dr. Joseph Maroon, medical director for the WWE’s wellness program, and former wrestler Marc Mero. The story noted that several high profile wrestlers died after WWE dropped it's drug policy in 1996 to compete with WCW. Brian Pillman, however, was the only wrestler to die on WWE's watch, although the Register mentioned Rick Rude, Curt Hennig, Davey Boy Smith and Louis Spicolli as former WWE names who later suffered drug-related deaths. Patru used the ridiculous line of, "there is no competitive advantage for someone to use steroids," when really, almost everyone with half a brain now understands that pro wrestling is a cosmetic business as much an athletic contest.


6/18 house show results from Columbus, OH: Velvet Sky over Sarita; Douglas Williams won a four-way over Jay Lethal, Homicide & Shannon Moore; Madison Rayne over Taylor Wilde; Mr. Anderson, Jeff Jarrett & Kurt Angle over Eric Young, Matt Morgan & Abyss; Rob Terry over Orlando Jordan; and Jeff Hardy over AJ Styles. Columbus was said to be a weird deal as they shared the Nationwide Arena with a Glen Beck political rally. Apparently all kinds of wacky extremists were outside the arena preaching and promoting various causes. Show was well received by fans. From one reader, "Overall, this was my first time seeing TNA live and although I'm not a big fan of the television show, I had a pretty fun time at the house show tonight. Some of the matches weren't the best, but they were given time and most of the wrestlers were pretty cool about trying to meet up with fans."

We didn't get any reports from Saturday night in Fort Wayne which marked the company's eight-year anniversary. We do know the show drew approximately 1,400 people.


The Miami Herald has a story on Kurt Angle at http://tinyurl.com/36vhjhn. He talked about taking a month off recently to rest nagging injuries, but had actually hoped for two or three months off. "It was one of those things where 3 ½ years straight, and you didn't really take any time off. I didn't really spend a lot of time with my family," he said. "At the same time I felt a huge gigantic responsibility to helping TNA get more popular and elevate them. I was doing overseas tours. I did a lot of media. I was pretty much the media guy for two, three years. So even if I wasn't wrestling three or four days a week, the other two or three were on the road doing something for TNA. They pay me really well, and I earn my money.'' He was kind of critical regarding booking, both here and in WWE: "I like (creative) to look at an individual and say all or nothing. In other words, push him to the moon or don't push them at all. No halfway. Let's ride them as far as you can ride them, and then maybe get somebody else. Once they rise to stardom, God willing, then maybe we can do another one as well. It's going to take a little time. We need to follow through with our characters. We were getting there with AJ Styles. He was just at that elite status. He was very close. Then we kind of pulled the title off. AJ, in my mind, still is the best wrestler today. His championship run was a little short." He also touched on some recent free agents that he would love for the company to bring in: "I think Batista is an incredible wrestler. I think he has improved more than any wrestler in the past three years. I like to see some younger fresh talent from Ring of Honor. Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas, I've been knocking on the door for them for probably a year now. I'd love to bring back Team Angle, from a babyface perspective first. Then we could spread off. We never really had an ending. We just split off, when I got injured. They are two really solid wrestlers. They've both been wrestling for over 10 years. If anything, they could help elevate these younger guys."

Impact last Thursday night did a 1.0 rating and 1.2 million viewers which they are thrilled about considering heavy competition from the NBA playoffs.

Jeff Hardy was banged up following the weekend loop and is visiting a chiropractor today to look at his neck.

Hardy's upcoming court date, which was scheduled for 7/6 in North Carolina, has been postponed to 7/8.

The location for October's Bound For Glory pay-per-view will be announced later this week. As of a few week's ago we had heard they were looking locations in Charlotte, but we are now hearing San Antonio or Houston, TX which is the home base of TNA's card maker, TriStar.

The company will also be announcing a live event in India soon. Two words: Sonjay Dutt.

The Baltimore Sun has a Q&A with Jim Cornette at http://tinyurl.com/323yugt. He was promoting ROH but when prompted made some valid points about TNA booking: "You’ve got to have a plan and a vision, and Vince Russo’s got such ADD, he can’t even remember what he wrote last week. I don’t mean to make this a whole knocking Russo thing, but he’s emblematic of the whole problem of outside people that have been let in the wrestling business that have no respect for the business, or the people in it, or the traditions of it, or the way that it’s done, or the fans. If the fans like his stuff then he goes, 'Yeah, that’s because I’m great,' and if the fans don’t like his stuff – which is the majority as I’m sure you’ve gathered – he blames them. 'Ah, it’s these wrestling fans.' Well what are you in the wrestling business for if you don’t like the wrestling fans? He actually made this statement: He wants to write wrestling shows for people who don’t like wrestling. He thinks, 'Well, I’ll just write this show that everybody can be entertained by and the wrestling fans will like anything as long as it’s in a ring.' No! I don’t like golf. I don’t care if they play golf in the nude and the 18th hole is surrounded by flames. I’m not going to watch golf because I don’t like golf. So he writes wrestling for people who don’t like wrestling. And the people who like wrestling are insulted by it, and the people who don’t like wrestling – guess what? – they ain’t watching it because they don’t like wrestling! He’s an idiot."

Roxxi, the abused girlfriend of TNA, wrote a
classy blog at www.healthhugsandheadlocks.blogspot.com to thank fans and well-wishers for their support saying that she feels good about leaving the company with her head held high. She also says she's going to compete at the next NPC Jay Cutler Classic in Boston.

Brooke Adams (Miss Tessmacher) has been going to wrestling practice of late.


ROH Death Before Dishonor VIII (on PPV for $14.95 at www.gofightlive.com) Saturday night in Toronto got some rave reviews, especially for the Davey Richards-Tyler Black main event, which was a bonifide match of the year candidate. I haven't talked to anyone that did not love this show.

Dick 'The Destroyer' Beyer attended the Friday night ROH show in Hamburg, NY.

Awesome Kong just taped a show for Lucha Libre USA which will air this summer on MTV2 and MTV Treś. This is her return to wrestling on national television which she teased on Twitter.

Japan's SMASH promotion (Tajiri’s group) has booked Mickie James, Scotty 2 Hotty and U-Gene Dinsmore for their SMASH 5 and SMASH 6 double taping on 7/24. SMASH is the follow up to the old HUSTLE promotion that seemed to parody WWE style.

Brock Lesnar talks training with UFC legend Randy Couture ahead on his fight on 7/3 with Shane Carwin at http://tinyurl.com/3xz4dgu.

April Hunter competed in the annual NPC Junior Nationals Bodybuilding, Fitness & Figures Show that took place this past weekend in Chicago. Despite a partially torn quad she finished 16th out of 48 in her tall class. Photos are online at www.aprilhunter.com.

Today's Babe of the Day is Francine at http://www.thewrestlingpress.com/DailyDiva.