WRESTLING GLOBE NEWSLETTER
Friday January 1, 2010
Wrestling Globe Newsletter by Mike Aldren – All the latest professional
wrestling news, gossip and occasional opinion direct to your mailbox.
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WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
Appologies for the lack of updates over the holiday period. Keeping it
short, I was very sick. I’m almost back to a hundred percent. It’ll take
a couple more days of Meds for me, but we’re back in business, and good
to go for 2010. I am still way behind with email but I want to thank
everyone who contributed by way of news tips or donations in 2009. I
sincerely wish you and yours a happy and prosperous new year. Mike
Smackdown TV tonight features Beat the Clock matches for a title shot
against The Undertaker at the Royal Rumble. Those matches are CM Punk
vs. Matt Hardy; Batista vs. R-Truth; Rey Mysterio vs. Chris Jericho; and
Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler; plus Mickie James vs. Beth Phoenix; The Hart
Dynasty & Natalya vs. Jimmy Wang Yang, Slam Master J & Maria; and The
Great Khali vs. The Carolina Panther.
Shane McMahon is officially gone from WWE effective today. Last week
before leaving he cashed out $897,000 of his exec stock options but
still controls a vast amount of family stock valued at around $55
Tommy Dreamer requested his release which caught a lot of people off
guard as he signed a new multi-year contract this past June. The deal on
Tuesday’s episode of ECW was his legit farewell speech. Dreamer, 38, who
is married to former ECW valet Beulah McGillicutty, told friends that he
wants more family time now his twin daughters are growing up. The
assumption is that he is TNA-bound for a less arduous travel schedule.
Dreamer was the last of the “ECW Original” wrestlers to have left the
company since the initials were revived in 2005. A trivia note is that
his daughters played the niece of Tony Soprano in the sixth season of
Melina suffered the worst injury of her career with a ruptured ACL at
the December 29 house show in Manchester, NH. One would assume she is
dropping the Divas title in some fashion at Monday’s Raw in Dayton.
Bret Hart has signed a short-term contract with the company that expires
just after Wrestlemania 26. As previously noted, his start date is
January 4 in Dayton in the guest host role. The current plan is for him
to feud with Vince McMahon leading to a street fight type deal at
Shad Gaspard of Cryme Tyme noted on his Twitter that his girlfriend was
pregnant with his first child. His girlfriend is Siliana Chanel, a
23-year-old model from Houston.
Superfly Jimmy Snuka’s daughter Sarona was signed to a developmental
deal. She was trained by Afa.
Incognito, a Luchador from El Paso, was offered a developmental deal
following a tryout in Texas. He is likely relocating to Tampa pending
Joe Hennig (son of Curt) and Brett Dibiase (son of Ted) are working as a
tag team in developmental called The Fortunate Sons.
The Briscoe Brothers spent the week before Christmas training with FCW
in Tampa. Both are still believed to be under ROH contracts but waiting
for them to expire so they can sign here.
CM Punk ripped on Hulk Hogan during an interview on Seattle radio. When
asked about TNA competing with WWE, he said: “I have a lot of friends
that work [for TNA] and I do watch the show, but I seem to watch it on
perpetual fast forward. I hope, I really hope that something comes of
it. But I have zero faith in Hulk Hogan as a man, who is what, 60
years-old? And tries to dress like he’s 18 and lives on the Jersey
Shore. For a guy I’ve never met, I’ve formulated enough opinions about
him… I really trust that he’s not in this for TNA and he’s not in this
for the business. He’s in this for himself. Hulk Hogan, I hope you prove
me wrong. I hope there’s competition because when there’s competition
[WWE] steps up, everybody makes more money, and I think it makes the
business healthier and that’s what I’m looking forward to, but I don’t
have much hope.”
Hogan and Mick Foley were recently edited out of the Raw TV opening
montage. A Hogan sound bite which said “Hulkamania is running wild” was
replaced with “Everybody has a price” from Ted DiBiase, which was 100
percent intentional, for those wondering.
The court battles between WWE, THQ and Jakks Pacific are finally over
after working out a settlement in their dispute over the WWE video game
license. THQ agreed to pay WWE $13.2 million and also pay Jakks $20
million to get out of their joint agreement.
WWE and THQ will now be doing business together moving forward without
any involvement from Jakks. They just signed a new 8-year deal to
develop and publish video games based on WWE content.
WWE was granted another extension until January 5 to respond to Jody
Hamilton’s lawsuit against them for breach of contract after severing
ties with Deep South Wrestling as a developmental group in 2007.
Jim Ross agreed to a short-term contract extension. He noted on his blog
that doesn’t expect to be back on television until around March.
Maria Kanellis is planning to release an album in April which coincides
with her run on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice.
Mike Tyson is scheduled to guest host Raw on January 11 in Minneapolis.
Raw that night goes against a live UFC Fight Night special on Spike.
Tyson just got off the hook for jabbing a photographer at LAX due to
insufficient evidence. Tyson’s lawyer, Shawn Chapman Holley, told
TMZ.com: “The City Attorney’s office made the right decision given the
harassing conduct of the paparazzo.” The photographer was reportedly
taken to the hospital and stitched up following the alleged altercation
Former NWA star Magnum T.A. was backstage visiting at the Smackdown show
in Charlotte on December 28. He is the Godfather of Cody Rhodes, son of
his long-time friend Dusty Rhodes.
Savannah (Angela Fong) has replaced Lauren Mayhew as ECW ring announcer.
She was being groomed for the position before Mayhew was signed by Kevin
Dunn. Fong, 24, is a former model/cheerleader from Vancouver who made
the final 50 of the 2007 Diva Search.
John Cena is now the fifth longest reigning WWE champion of all-time
with 863 days as champion behind only Pedro Morales (1,027 days), Bob
Backlund (2,138 days), Hulk Hogan (2,185 days), and Bruno Sammartino
Edge recently purchased as new house in the mountains of North Carolina.
Tiger Woods’ wife on Raw a few week’s ago was played by Beverly Mullins
aka Courtney Taylor from developmental. She is a former Hooters Girl who
was recruited to WWE by Lou Maggio, a TV producer who works with the
Christian of late has been training in MMA at Randy Couture’s DoJo in
Steve Austin appears on a hunting show called Drop Zone on the Outdoor
Channel on January 3 at 11am ET. Apparently he will be in pursuit of
A crazy world we live in… The Great Khali’s mother-in-law was arrested
last month in India on a charge of abetting the suicide of her husband.
She had reportedly cheated on him and he couldn’t live with the shame.
TNA wrestlers, plus Dixie Carter, were hanging out with WWE wrestlers
following the December 20 Smackdown taping in Orlando. TNA taped the
Final Resolution PPV in Orlando on the same night.
TOTAL NONSTOP ACTION WRESTLING NEWS
Bobby Lashley is scheduled to fight a TBC opponent on the January 30
Strikeforce card in Sunrise, FL. He must be borrowing Hulk Hogan’s time
machine as TNA has him advertised for all their UK tour dates the week
leading up to his fight, including a show in London at Wembley Arena on
the same night he is due to fight in Florida. TNA even sent out a press
release to all the buildings specifically hyping Lashley as part of the
tour. Lashley has told people he won’t be doing the tour.
The February tour of Australia was canceled. TNA told the buildings the
cancelation was due to a change to their TV taping schedule and that
they would announce new dates later this year. For what it’s worth
advance ticket sales were very poor according to reps from two of the
Ric Flair has still not signed here at press time. However, that could
change in the next day or two. The hold up is said to be money in that
he wants TNA to better the WWE offer of $250,000/year for an ambassador
The word making the rounds is that Rob Van Dam has agreed to a
short-term appearance deal.
Scott Hall and Sean Waltman are likely returning here on January 4.
Neither have been offered contracts. Hall has told people he will be
working per appearance and coming in for January 4.
Sting returns on January 4.
Kip James and Cody Deaner were let go. James had been working behind the
scenes and was hoping to land a job as an agent. Deaner is a victim of
the new regime, which is surprising considering Hogan wants to develop
characters, and Deaner had one the best characters on the roster.
Sheik Bashir (Shawn Daivari) quit the company. His final appearance was
the Feast or Fired match at Final Resolution. The original finish for
that match called for Daivari and Deaner to grab the briefcase at the
same time leading to another match on a future Impact where the winner
obtains a pink-slip. However, the finish was changed when Daivari asked
for his release citing creative frustration.
Nikki Roxx (Roxxi) broke her ankle in two places in the Knockouts
tournament taped back on December 21. No pun intended but that’s a bad
break for her as she just returned to the company after the Rakka Khan
debacle earlier this year.
Scott Steiner hurt his knee which is already in bad shape at Final
Resolution in the Last Man Standing match with Lashley.
April Hunter, Lorelei Lee, Amber O’Neal and Lizzy Valentine all had
tryouts at the December 21 tapings. Lee and Valentine are also part of
the upstart Wrestlicious group funded by teenage lottery millionaire
Velvet Sky was involved in a car accident a couple of week’s ago
traveling to an autograph signing in New York. She was okay but her
truck was different story.
Austin Creed had laser eye treatment just before the holidays.
Christy Hemme announced her retirement from the ring but will remain
with TNA in a non-wrestling role. She has replaced Lauren Thompson as
the backstage interviewer who has left the company. Hemme noted that she
had found herself nervous about the possibility of re-injuring her neck
since her return in August. She herniated two discs during wrestling
practise back in January and underwent neuro cranial realignment. She
said her neck feels great now but doesn’t want to risk long-term health
Hemme just got engaged to her boyfriend Charley Paterson. He popped the
question during a Christmas break at his families cabin in Oregon.
Mark Madden’s name was brought up recently as a potential new announcer.
Nobody seems to have taken the suggestion seriously, least of all
Madden, who did color for WCW during the late 90s. He currently pens a
weekly column for WrestleZone.com where he has written some very
disparaging comments aimed at Dixie Carter.
Referee Earl Hebner has been telling people lately that he plans on
In a case of Déjà Vu, TNA, in conjunction with the Bubba The Love Sponge
radio show, are holding a parade for Hulk Hogan on January 3 in Orlando
at Margaritaville in City Walk at Universal. Spike TV cameras will be on
Before the Bell, a new TV show produced by TNA, debuts on January 11 on
DirecTV Ch. 101. The show will be akin to UFC’s Countdown to help drive
more PPV purchases.
Dixie Carter signed Matt and Nick Massie, The Young Bucks, following a
tryout against the Machine Guns at the last tapings. Matt Morgan has
been pushing for the company to sign them for months. The Bucks had
several fantastic bouts in 2009 working for Ring of Honor, Dragon Gate
USA, and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla in California.
And finally today in TNA news, due to human error the Spike TV Canadian
feed listed last night’s edition of Impact as, “New Year’s Kockout Eve.”
OTHER WRESTLING NEWS
We are sad to report that “Dr. Death” Steve Williams passed away on
Tuesday night after suffering multiple heart attacks. He was 49. It’s
believed the heart attacks were related to cancer that he had been
battling for some time. He and his son had relocated to Denver a few
months ago to take care of his mother who is not doing well. Williams
was one of the top wrestling stars of the late 80s and early 90s
enjoying the majority of his singles success with All Japan Pro
Wrestling. Argubly he was one of the most successful foreign athletes of
any sport in Japanese history. He also had successful tag runs with the
late Terry Gordy and Ted DiBiase Sr. He was recruited into pro wrestling
by Bill Watts in 1982 after Watts discovered him at the University of
Oklahoma during the late 70s where he was a lineman for the football
team and a four-time All-American wrestler. Williams acquired his
nickname following an incident where he had to wrestle in a hockey
goalie’s mask and was jokingly labeled “Dr. Death” by one of his
coaches. Jim Ross, who was one of Williams’ best friends, wrote a
touching blog in tribute at www.jrsbarbq.com. He wrote about bringing
Williams to the WWE in the late 90s with the idea of him working on top
with Steve Austin. But that never came to be due to the ill-fated
concept of the Brawl For All: “Doc never really recovered from the
‘Brawl for it All’ from an internal perception stand point and I think
that his close relationship with me also did him no favors. We both
talked about that situation on many occasions over the years but
overwhelmingly agree that our friendship that began in the 70′s was more
important that any run with WWE or any other company would ever have
been. We had both been in the business long enough to know that lasting
friendships were a rare commodity in the wrestling game.” Ross said if
he ever commits to writing a book one day he would dedicate an entire
chapter to Steve Williams. “Without question, Steve “Dr. Death” Williams
comprised an important aspect of my professional career but more
importantly Doc was one of my best pals and who will hold a special
place in my heart until the day that I die.”
Ole Anderson, 67, was hospitalized for a few days over Christmas due to
kidney stones and an infection in his leg. He was released and is now
convalescing at his home near Atlanta. A funny story here. Ole confided
with the nurse at the hospital that he hadn’t felt as much pain in quite
some time. “Have you ever felt worse pain?” she asked him. “Sure I
have,” he told her. “What could have possibly caused you more pain than
a kidney stone?” she asked. “Danny Hodge,” he replied. The nurse didn’t
get the joke.
Bobby Heenan made it home for the holidays after he was recently
hosptalized in Florida with an infection in his jaw due to cancer.
Battery and criminal trespass charges against Sean Haire aka Sean
O’Haire were dropped in Savannah, GA. Back in September it was alleged
by Haire’s girlfriend that he went crazy and “began to choke her while
calling her a bitch and a whore.” According to the arrest report,
Haire’s girlfriend said she “does not know what caused the sudden
attack, but that it has happened in the past on several occasions.” She
eventually escaped his grip, ran outside and called the cops. Haire was
charged and later released on $4,600 bail.
The Kingston, TN Times at http://tinyurl.com/ydt9mjt reported that
former WWE/TNA wrestler David Cash (Kid Kash) was arrested in Johnson
City on Decemnber 23 on charges of forgery, identity theft, and theft of
property. He allegedly used the credit card of a female acquaintance on
four occasions without permission before cops busted him. Kid Kash via
his Facebook page claimed the David Cash arrested wasn’t him but some
other guy with the same name living in the same town. Detective Thomas
Dillard of the Johnson City Police Dept told us the man arrested in the
Kingston Times story told him he was a professional wrestler. A court
house hearing is scheduled for January 4.
The World According to Dutch, the autobiography of Dutch Mantel, is now
online and available for purchase at www.dutchmantell.com.
Booker T is heading to Puerto Rico on January 6 to work the IWA’s
Histeria Boricua event. Other notable names on the card include Savio
Vega, Shane Sewell (formerly TNA) and Bushwacker Luke Williams, who is
currently booking the promotion.
Ken Anderson, the former Mr. Kennedy, along with Carlito and Primo are
booked for WWC’s January 16 show at the José Miguel Agrelot Coliseum,
the biggest indoor arena in Puerto Rico. Anderson is telling friends he
is focusing on acting right now and has no real interest in TNA or
returning to WWE.
Jazz, Carlene Moore-Begnaud, who had a good run in WWE 2001-07 returned
to the ring on December 12 for Women Superstars Uncensored in the
Northeast. This was her first match in almost two years after giving
birth to twin girls last November. She is married to the former Rodney
Mack in Lafayette where the couple run a gym together.
Sting was announced for the 2010 Mid Atlantic Legends wrestling reunion
in Charlotte in August. More info on the convention at
Torrie Wilson is running in the Houston Marathon on January 17.
Today’s Diva of the Day is Michelle McCool at
Nicole Matthews is looking to end Cheerleader Melissa's SHIMMER reign early, will she be successful?