Sunday night marks a battle that pro wrestling fans have been waiting on for months. At TNA Slammiversary, TNA World Heavyweight Champion Bully Ray takes on challenger Sting in a no holds barred contest. Should Sting lose, he will never be able to have another shot at the TNA World Heavyweight Championship.
With all of that riding on his shoulders, it would be easy for Bully Ray to crumble under the pressure of the limelight. However, they say that the golden rule is that the one with the gold rules and Bully Ray’s confidence certainly reflects that.
During a press call for TNA Slammiversary, Bully Ray discussed the implications of this matchup with a legendary figure in the game; “I’m up against one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all-time in Sting. This is probably the biggest match of my singles career and I think one of the biggest matches of my career to this point. Looking forward to it. Proud of the fact that I am main eventing TNA’s second-largest pay-per-view event of the year, probably.”
While Sting maintains a lofty level of prestige that few will ever touch, many have pondered whether or not the aging icon presents a threat to anyone inside the squared circle. For Bully Ray, this isn’t even a question that deserves much thought. “No matter what, Sting will always be a threat. I’ve heard rumblings like, ‘oh, Sting doesn’t deserve to be in the position’ or that maybe Sting is too much of a veteran to be in this position. You know what I say to those people? ‘Go to hell!’ Sting can still go! I’m the one in the ring with him! I’m the one who trades punches with him! I’m the one who leans into him and he leans back into me! The guy has it one thousand percent. He’s one of the toughest guys I’ve been in there with,” Bully explained. “When he comes out there, the people love him. Does he deserve to be standing across the ring from me for the world heavyweight title? Absolutely! And we’re gonna deliver. Well, at least I know I’m going to deliver! I’m going to beat his a**!”
Regarding the stipulation of this match, Bully made no bones about it. He wants to eliminate Sting from the title picture and continue his reign of dominance. “As far as Sting not being able to compete for the title again, it’s a very important stipulation. From a personal point of view, I do want that notch in my belt. I do want to be able put him on my trophy wall and say, ‘look, there’s Sting! I’m Bully Ray and I’m the guy who made sure he could never wrestle for the world heavyweight title again.’ I want him to have to lace up his boots knowing that I’m the guy that ruined his title aspirations for the rest of his life.”
With all eyes on the main event, many were curious to know if the kingpin of TNA has his eyes on any other matches. The man with TNA’s penultimate belt and the leader of one of the most vicious stables in professional wrestling has to keep his eyes open at all times and it seems that Slammiversary’s card is no exception. “From a personal point of view, my brother, Devon, versus Joe Park. From a pure, morbid interest point of view, I want to see what goes down between AJ and Kurt,” Ray said. “Another one that has a little personal interest with me is Sam Shaw versus the Jay Bradley guy because Sam Shaw is a graduate of the Team 3D Academy. I’d like to see him win this match and join the Bound for Glory qualification!”
Bully further elaborated on his intrigue with the Styles versus Angle match, discussing the rocky relations between Styles and Aces & Eights. “Well, I thought he’d be a good fit in the Aces & Eights! As of last week, it didn’t go exactly the way I planned. I think AJ is content on doing his own thing right now. He is totally on his own,” Bully explained. “Not only did he stab the Aces & Eights in the back, but he stabbed Kurt Angle in the back. I don’t think anyone knows where AJ’s head is at right now. Maybe you should call him?”
The most intriguing discussion involved the men behind the man. Everyone knows that the Aces & Eights are not the most friendly bunch. They don’t often play nice or within the confines of any rules. Bully explained the effect Aces & Eights have on fans with a rather pleased tone; “”Aces & Eights are on the tip of the tongue of everyone in the wrestling world.”
Bully Ray’s legacy is on the line Sunday night. A man usually is defined by the challenges he overcomes with his own strength and willpower. Unfortunately, many are unsure whether Bully Ray is sincerely committed to handling Sting on his own. The last question on everybody’s mind is if Bully believed that he would have Aces & Eights at ringside for his match. While Bully was not particularly declarative in his answer, anyone who watches TNA knows what likely will happen based on the motto that was echoed.
“You never walk alone.”