Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Drew McIntyre has laid down a challenge to the Rangers FC boss. You can read the story in the Scottish Sun here.


On NXT tomorrow you will see Io Shirai and Damian Priest join forces against Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae.


Kenny Omega spoke to Gamespot about a possible AEW video game. He said: “The status of the video game is that it is currently in development. I can’t say too much more other than I am working very closely creatively with a team. And every few weeks, they have very exciting new things to show us. And I believe that we’re on the right track because I think we have a good team backing us with a lot of very, very good hands that are very capable. And when I can more, I certainly will. And I’m really excited to show the first little bit of footage that we have.” You can read the entire interview here.


Hey, remember when David Sammartino was relevant? Trick question, he never was. But for a while in the 80s, he tried to capitalize on his legendary last name. Relive those moments today, his 60th birthday:


Also celebrating is one of our favourites, ECW original Tajiri, who turns 50. Here’s a funny story about him that you may enjoy:


Monday, September 28, 2020

We are not sure why but Zelina Vega is getting a rematch against Asuka on Raw tonight.


In a story that has to be read to be believed, The Hollywood Reporter has a piece on the on-going saga of Randy Orton, 2K Games and the WWE now going to trial concerning the use of a tattoo artist’s work in the WWE 2K games. Tattoo’s that are on Randy Orton’s body. You can read the story here.


 

Marvel Comics’ official site has an interview with WWE’s artist in residence Rob Schamberger, who incidentally has this reporter and lifelong comic book collector blocked on Twitter even though I have never interacted with him. Mighty strange that. Schamberger mentions the influence Jack ‘King’ Kirby has had on his work. “Jack’s boundless imagination, creating things no one has ever seen before and unlocking the minds of so many people for so many generations—I argue that he’s America’s greatest artist. When you look at the body of work and the influence it’s had, you can’t dispute his importance to our overall culture. I hope that the art world is finally coming around to viewing him that way, because there’s a lot to mine there,” he said. You can read the rest of the interview here. See, no hard feelings, Rob.


Squared Circle Comics has announced a YearBox subscription. Readers can sign up via Patreon for exclusive content and a guaranteed copy of every wrestling comic they produce for 12 months.


Nia Jax, Nikki Cross and Shayna Baszler were not medically cleared to wrestle on Clash of Champions last night.  Nia Jax called a WWE announcement “Lies”. What could it all mean?


Angel Garza’s injury from last night is still being evaluated. He could have hurt his hip or tore his quad.


Lincoln News Now reports that Harley Race’s son has faced on uphill battle getting a street to be renamed after his father. You can read about it here.


Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson endorsed US Presidential candidate Joe Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris for the coming election. He interviewed the candidates and posted the session on his Twitter. To date, there has been no response from WWE Hall of Famer Donald Trump, Biden’s opponent for the Presidency. Maybe he and the Rock will settle their differences at WrestleMania 37?


Happy birthday to Ontario-based hardcore princess Jewells Malone (be on the lookout for our interview with Jewells in the near future). Also celebrating is WWE legend Steve Blackman, who turns 57. Re-live some of his classic moments here:


Sunday, September 27, 2020

WWE announced during Clash of Champions, the two-night 2020 WWE Draft will begin on Friday Night SmackDown October 9th on FOX and continue on Monday Night Raw October 12th on USA Network.


Detroit’s Malcolm Monroe II is reporting the death of a local wrestler named Mr Meaner (Russell Redmon), who was in The Fun Lovin Criminalz with Monroe II, and Jaimy Coxxx. He also wrestled as Big Daddy and Big Guy. ” Meaner you will always have a place in my heart. Thanks for everything you did for myself and XICW,” wrote Monroe. Michigan referee Brian Gorie — who briefly ran a women’s wrestling school with Meaner and Monroe II, wrote, “Thank you Russ, for being one of the best friends I’ve ever had. You were truly one of a kind and I cherish the time we got to spend together on this journey. R.I.P. Mr Meaner.” Redmon had two children.


On the pre-show, WWE announced that Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax weren’t cleared for competition at tonight’s Clash of the Champions show, and that the women’s tag team championship match would not be taking place. Nikki Cross was also not cleared to compete, and Bayley will make some kind of statement about their scheduled match later tonight. This may explain why Cross wasn’t on Smackdown on Friday to build hype for the match. They didn’t say these were COVID-related, but one might reasonably assume this is the case.


Jerry Lawler celebrated 50 years in wrestling by teaming with the Rock n’ Roll Express in a steel cage match last night at the Lawler’s 50th Anniversary Celebration at the Ballpark in Jackson, Tennessee. In what was hyped as a Thunderdome Cage Match, Lawler and the Express defeated Doug Gilbert, Matt Riviera and Tommy Rich.


Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer is not confident Nikki Cross will be participating in tonight’s Clash of Champions match against Bayley. She might not make the show for undisclosed reasons. She wasn’t on Smackdown this week to hype the bout.


Roman Reigns took a break from working out to send a message to his opponent tonight, Jey Uso.


The Governor of Florida has announced a state-wide lifting of the restrictions that were designed to control the spread of COVID-19. Local governments may still keep limitations in place, should they decide to do so. This could open up the possibility of wrestling companies holding shows in Florida with live crowds. It is noted that AEW runs in an outdoor arena in Jacksonville, and recently allowed a limited number of fans in the building for their weekly shows. WWE’s Performance Centre – where the company runs its weekly NXT show, and where WrestleMania was held this year – is  located in Orlando. Stay tuned for any developments as they arise.


Impact Wrestling star Ethan Page cancelled his scheduled appearance on Saturday night’s Warrior Wrestling show, as a precautionary measure, since his wife was experiencing some symptoms of a cold and a loss of sense of taste and smell. While neither of them have tested positive for COVID-19, he explained in a Twitter post that he did not want to risk the health of anyone on, or attending, the show.


Warning! There is a new online scam going around that targets Canadian wrestling fans. This one cites a CNN article about an online casino called “Woo Casino” in which the legendary Ric Flair has significant ownership interest. To entice Canadians to deposit money on the site, the article mentions that a strategic business decision mistakenly resulted in the odds being stacked significantly in favour of the players, leading to incredible jackpot payouts. The article goes on to say that this loophole is set to be closed, so Canadians are encouraged to take advantage of this good fortune quickly.

There are numerous red flags that should tip you off to not believe any of this nonsense, including: 1) there is no such article on CNN’s actual website; 2) while there is indeed an online Woo Casino, it is not a Canadian company like the article says, but rather is based offshore in Curacao; 3) a tweet that is embedded in the article is not from Ric Flair’s actual Twitter account (the fake Twitter account used is one letter off of Flair’s verified one); 4) the article references a regulatory body called the Canadian Gambling Commission, which doesn’t exist.

Please don’t fall for this scam.


Saturday, September 26th, 2020

Variety has written an extensive story on why pro wrestling has been on the decline, in particular why the WWE ‘s audience has dropped and bounced around so much. One item the story discusses is: “Exclusive data from pollsters YouGov suggest the main reasons behind the audience decline concern lower-quality writing. If McMahon is serious about storylines getting better, the famed workaholic may need to admit he could do with going to a beginner’s screenwriting class in order to learn about story structure and character arcs to win back the sizable amount of former viewers.” To read the whole story, click here.


Grumpy T-Bar of Retribution had this to say about the WWE still giving them all contracts after everything they have done.


Billy Kidman returned to the WWE last night. He was at Smackdown working as a producer again.


Tessa Blanchard had this to say about her absence from the wrestling world.

View this post on Instagram

I’ve been away for a while, the main reason for that is to focus on my wedding & honeymoon. The past few months I’ve gotten back to the basics & been focusing on the relationships I have with family, friends & myself. The point of this post is because I’m taking back the control of my narrative. I’ve had people weigh in on what I should do, what I should say, what interview to do, where to go.. now, I want to listen to what I want and what’s in my heart. I am so blessed in so many areas of my life & I am so grateful to have such strong people in my life. & I regained control of that mindset.. that I know who I am. At the end of every day I can look in the mirror and say ‘I know that woman, I like that woman, I love who that woman is becoming and what she’s capable of’, that’s all I need. racist? That’s not me, that’s never been me, I don’t have a history of being that way, I don’t have a history of using that language & that’s the end of it, it’s just not who I am. & I’m tired of being called & my family seeing me be called something so hateful. Who I am is a woman that cares deeply about my passion and putting in work. Who I am is a woman that gives 110% at whatever she does whether it was waiting tables, extra curricular school work, the next workout, or in the ring. Who I am is a woman that prefers to be viewed as tough as nails instead of having any form of weakness. Who I am is a woman completely driven by my passion & what I believe God has for me in life. Even with those little details about me, at the end of the day none of it matters.. we are each responsible for taking control of our own lives. I’m taking back control of mine.. 💎 #nosvemospronto

A post shared by TESSA BLANCHARD (@tessa_blanchard) on


Mike Mooneyham has a great tribute to Road Warrior Animal in the Post and Courier today. You can check it out here.


Lucha libre drive-in wrestling? Why not? You can read about the Fight Club OC show here.


Can we get a…Woooooo? Adidas is giving Ric Flair his own sneaker.


Happy birthday to our buddy, PWInsider’s Mike Johnson.

In a Twitter exchange, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson said he would give greetings to Ken Shamrock’s Impact Wrestling Hall of Fame induction video. Shamrock will be inducted on Oct 24 at Bound for Glory.

Friday, September 25th, 2020

Todd Smith — Ivar in The Viking Raiders — posted a health update:


On Smackdown tonight you will be treated to: A Roman Reigns interview, Jeff Hardy versus Sami Zayn and Lacey Evans versus Alexa Bliss.


WDRB in Louisville has a report on OVW thriving during the pandemic. The video features former Big Brother houseguest turned wrestler Jessie Godderz and Al Snow. You can watch the report here.


IMPACT Wrestling announced that its upcoming specials, Victory Road (Sat. Oct. 3), Turning Point (Nov.) and Final Resolution (Dec.) will be only available through the company’s Impact Plus streaming service.


Happy birthday wishes go out to woman wrestler Kaitlin Diemond, and to our own writer, “Trapper” Tom Leturgey. Also celebrating is historian/DEFY promoter Matt Farmer.


Thursday, September 24th, 2020

On the After The Bell podcast Roman Reigns detailed his reasons for not participating in WrestleMania this year. “For me it was about putting my family first. And right there, if I had to retire and that’s what was gonna be asked of me, I was willing to do it. For one of the first times in a long time I put my family—they were 1A. There was nothing that was gonna change my mind. I needed to go away and wait until we were in a place of better understanding of the process and knowing exactly what this virus has done and how it’s affected everybody. And I just feel far more comfortable the way WWE has taken care of me to make me feel safe, make my family feel safe, make my wife feel safe that I’m going out and then coming back in, that’s been huge and critical to get me back in the ring.”


Word is there is a COVID outbreak in AEW with multiple superstars testing positive for the virus. Ben Carter and Lance Archer have revealed they have contracted COVID-19.


Word is that Robert Roode or Bo Dallas could be the mysterious person in that vignette on NXT last night.


Miro spoke to Sports Illustrated about joining AEW and leaving the WWE. He said: People ask me why I’m not bitter. WWE gave me a platform. I have the best fan base in the world and that is where I met my wife. I love her to death. If nothing else came of it, I met my wife so I can’t be bitter. There is no point to that.” You can read the rest of the interview here.


Happy birthday to WWE’s Chief Brand Officer, Stephanie McMahon. She’s not a Billion yet, but rather is only turning 44. Re-live some of Stephanie’s greatest moments with these gems:


Also celebrating is our good friend, wrestler-model April Hunter. For her birthday, why not donate to her GoFundMe to help repair her birthday suit – https://ca.gofundme.com/f/boobgate-project-emergency-replacement.

 


Wednesday, September 23rd, 2020

It’s a part of Bob Kapur’s Impact report, but we wanted to draw attention to Impact’s #Heath4IMPACT video, which is the best use of Cameo ever in pro wrestling. 

The line-up for tonight’s AEW Dynamite is: Jon Moxley, Will Hobbs and Darby Allin versus Lance Archer, Brian Cage and Ricky Starks, Brodie Lee versus Orange Cassidy (AEW TNT Championship), AEW Women’s World Champion Hikaru Shida and NWA Women’s World Champion Thunder Rosa versus Diamante and Ivelisse and Miro wrestles.


On NXT you will see: Kushida versus Cameron Grimes versus Bronson Reed versus Kyle O’Reilly versus Timothy Thatcher in a Gauntlet Eliminator. The winner will get a NXT Championship match at NXT Takeover. A women’s battle royal for a match for the NXT Women’s Championship and Jake Atlas seeks some revenge in his match against Tommaso Ciampa.


On Late Night Dynamite early this morning: Ben Carter fought Scorpio Sky, Anna Jay battled Brandi Rhodes and Shawn Spears took on Matt Sydal.


In a video on his YouTube channel The Rock spoke about the idea of him facing Roman Reigns at WrestleMania. “I have talked about this and it’s so funny how a lot of people always say…If you were to go back to WrestleMania who would be the opponent that you would face?…It feels like the one that would make sense, it would be Roman. In terms of box office draw it would be huge.”


Today would have been the 103rd birthday of Rodolfo Guzman Huerta, better known as El Santo. To mark the occasion, revisit the incredible story that John Molinaro wrote on Santo in 2000: The Legend of El Santo.


Matt Hardy turns 46 today – he’s getting close to the point where they may soon have to call him “Broken Hip” Matt Hardy. Here’s an interview we did with the Hardy Boyz from 2001.

 


Tuesday, September 22nd, 2020

WWE has announced it is launching a wine collection. The two limited-edition offerings will come in numbered bottles branded with designs relating to the Undertaker or the Ultimate Warrior. The wine can be pre-ordered at WWEWines.com (sorry, Canadians, they don’t ship outside of the U.S.). We have assigned our resident sommelier, Dave Drason Burzynski, to take one for the team and try them out.


Expect a Retribution versus Team Raw match at Survivor Series.


Happy birthday to Ole Anderson; best way to celebrate is to order the super-cool T-Shirt, “The Emotions of Ole Anderson” from Scott Teal at CrowbarPress.com.


Today would have been the birthday of the legendary Johnny Valentine (visit our story archive, including John Molinaro’s interviews with Johnny), and of former AWA World tag team champion “Pretty Boy” Doug Somers.


Two notable deaths happened on September 22nd. Jorge Gonzalez, the basketball player turned sorta wrestler as El Gigante and Giant Gonzales, died on this day in 2010. Read our obituary on him. … The other was, by far, the favourite wrestler ever of long-time SlamWrestling contributor Bob Kapur — the one and only Big Bossman, Ray Traylor, who died in 2004. Back then, Bob wrote a heartfelt column about his appreciation for all things Big Bossman.


Monday, September 21st, 2020

The WWE has trademarked “Takeoff To Takeover”. What could it all mean?


We just know you have been dying to check them out. Episodes of Velocity are on the WWE Network.


WWE has struck a deal with Chinese broadcaster iQIYI Sports. WWE’s weekly flagship programming will be released live and in Mandarin to audiences in China’s Mainland starting September 22. Raw and SmackDown, as well as a WWE subscription video-on-demand service featuring all of WWE’s monthly pay-per-view events, including classic matches such as Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam and the Survivor Series will be available.


The Whittler will be arriving on Amazon October 16th, 2020. The film stars former WWE Superstar Al Snow. The cost to rent the movie on Amazon in the USA will be $4.99 or you can purchase the digital copy for just $9.99.  In the film, a young girl and a ghost team-up to thwart a gang of thieves.


Word is Vince McMahon hated the match between Cesaro and Gran Metalik’s on Smackdown so much that he demanded they wrap it up as quickly as possible.


Congratulations to Impact Wrestling’s Kylie Rae, who announced on social media that she got engaged. We didn’t think she could be happier than during her ring entrances, like the one she had for AEW some time back, but apparently she is.

 


Happy birthday to Ricky Morton of the Rock’n’Roll Express, who is the world’s youngest teenager at 64 today. Also celebrating is AEW star Ivelisse, who turns 33. Fans of the Sunday Night’s Main Event radio show will also want to wish Dan “the Mouth” Lovranski a happy birthday today. And for those of you who knew SNME when it was formerly Live Audio Wrestling, one of that show’s original hosts, “Big Daddy” Donnie Abreu.


Today would have been the 79th birthday of NWA World champ Jack Brisco. He died a decade ago. Here’s our https://twitter.com/RealMikeBennett/status/1307487097142599680?s=20Brisco brothers archive.