Posts Tagged ‘WWE’

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Taz and The Honky Tonk Man are now rumored for the 2019 WWE Hall of Fame Class.

Honky Tonk is apparently a lock for this year’s class while Taz is not for sure, according to a new report by @Wrestlevotes.

It looks like The Hart Foundation (Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart, Jimmy Hart, Bret Hart) will also still be inducted this year. There was some speculation on their induction as a group after WWE confirmed DX (Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Chyna, “Road Dogg” BG James, Billy Gunn, Sean “X-Pac” Waltman) as the headliners, but apparently they are inducting two groups this year.

The 2019 WWE Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place on Saturday, April 6 from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn during WrestleMania 35 Weekend. Tickets went on sale today.

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WWE’s lack of star power is a common criticism, and everyone has an opinion as to why the company don’t create headliners on the same level as John Cena, Hulk Hogan, and Steve Austin anymore, most of which stem from Vince McMahon and his creative team’s booking methods.

It’s interesting, then, that the Chairman’s own anxiety towards his promotion’s lack of top stars may have been one of the driving forces behind this week’s NXT call-ups.

This is according to Dave Meltzer on a recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio. He claims that McMahon feels his current crop of wrestlers “aren’t gonna be Superstars,” and that the Raw and SmackDown product has become stale, so he asked Triple H to send him four of developmental’s finest.

Thus, Johnny Gargano, Ricochet, Tommaso Ciampa, and Aleister Black were called up and immediately booked to go over a number of established stars. They were pushed strongly out of the gates, and this will likely continue over the coming weeks and months.

A fair appraisal from Vince, but odd, given that he is almost entirely responsible for creating these problems in the first place.

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The fact that Degeneration X is going into the WWE Hall of Fame certainly isn’t a surprise considering the mark they left on pro wrestling. But the fact that Chyna is included among the six members being inducted is a bit of a surprise given her contentious relations with WWE before her death.

Chyna stood out from the other women’s wrestlers or divas of her time, and that’s something that Paige can relate to. She has billed herself as the anti-diva and says that some of that motivation comes from the trail that Chyna blazed.

The Mirror caught up with Paige where they revealed to her that Chyna would be going into the Hall of Fame as a part of D-X’s enshrinement.

“Oh my gosh, I’m so excited,” said Paige. “I was always like the biggest fan of Chyna.

“My brother actually had the biggest crush on her when we were younger too – sorry he’s here right now standing next to me, ha ha. Yeah I was always a big fan of her work, she was one of the original anti-Diva looking girls.

“She was definitely different and I loved that about her. I just thought it’s about time really isn’t it, like she just deserves it.”

Paige’s own wrestling career lasted much shorter than she hoped for due to a neck injury, but she also has her sights set on being a Hall of Famer one day.

“It’s a pretty cool life that I’ve had so far, I’m very thankful for what I’ve done,” stated Paige. “But I mean, I just want to be in the Hall of Fame one day ha ha.

“Put me in the Hall of Fame. That’s something in your wrestling career you definitely need to tick off, it’s the biggest reward that you can get.”

Paige was the inaugural NXT Women’s Champion and a two-time Divas Champion, including the youngest ever winner. Though her in-ring career is over, at 26 she still has many years left in this industry as a manager, on-screen authority figure or any another role.

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Tuesday morning brought news that main roster newcomer Lacey Evans had been earmarked as a potential WrestleMania 35 opponent for SmackDown Women’s Champion Asuka, prompting surprise around the fanbase, given her lack of tenure and seasoning.

Now, it looks like WWE’s plans for the recent call-up extend far beyond a single ‘Showcase Of The Immortals’ title match.

Per Dave Meltzer on a recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, certain WWE officials see Evans as the women’s division’s answer to Roman Reigns, prompting talk of a monstrous long-term push. On top of this, they see her as the ideal candidate to take Ronda Rousey’s spot whenever she leaves, forming a new “big three” with Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair.

This is quite insane. A green, inexperienced performer of only five years, Evans has potential, and her ‘Lady Of WWE’ gimmick is strong, but never stood out in NXT and flubbed her big Royal Rumble opportunity, botching a kip up during an early exchange with Natalya. That was her only main roster match to date, and she didn’t deliver.

Considering the likes of Asuka, Sasha Banks, and Bayley exist, this news won’t go down well. Turns out Vince McMahon still loves pushing blondes.

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With his brand new Dirty Details Tour up and running and the Snake Pit open for business, WWE Hall of Famer and timeless wrestling legend Jake “The Snake” Roberts stops by The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling to discuss his new road show and some of the classic moments from his illustrious and infamous career. In the following excerpt from the 45-minute interview, Jake reveals the details behind his cancelled program with Hulk Hogan and what was the worst match of his career. The full episode can be downloaded at this link.
PLEASE CREDIT The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling FOR THIS TRANSCRIPTION

Cancelled program with Hulk Hogan:

“People started chanting DDT, DDT because they believed in that maneuver and rightfully so, they had just seen me kill Steamboat with it. It damn near killed him. Now they are going to go after Hogan and I dropped Hogan on the set and my God the guy is down and I split his skull too. That was one thing they just could not get through their heads and that is you cannot do that DDT on concrete or on a stage set because that would just don’t give much.”

Was it Hulk Hogan or Vince McMahon worried that Jake may overshadow The Hulkster:

“It was Vince. He just said that’s it. He said Oh my god I can’t believe this. After I walked through the curtain he told me to stand right there and that he wants me to hear these people start chanting Hulk and he’s going to come to his feet and he’s going to rip his shirt off and do all of this and you guys are going to make money for a long time and blah blah blah and we waited and waited and started looking at each other and at Pat Patterson and said I don’t know what is going on here and all of a sudden the people started slow at first going DDT and started chanting DDT and Vince looked at me and said wow, well that’s the end of that. He said he’s not going to split his marketing up and that was the whole thing. Vince made his money in marketing and not the wrestling shows. We were on the road to spread the marketing out there and for people to buy the marketing and to make us icons because he made stars out of so many people and sold so much and how many billions of dollars did the marketing make? I don’t know how many people were in the arena, not at all so that was a very expensive lesson to learn and cost me a lot of money.”

Why wrestlers wanted to work with Jake:

“I think most guys wanted to jump on the Jake train anyway. Dibiase for instance, when we wrestled we never said a word. He let me guide the ship and take us to where we needed to go and most guys have been that way with me. They let me run it and that is just being smart because you can’t have two guys out there that both want to run it and if you do you are going to have a cluster f*ck so to speak and are going to have a mess. You’ve got to have a captain and the rest of the guys are just soldiers and are following and they are going to react. My job is to sell it in a big way and I always tried to make my opponents and a lot of people don’t know how to do that. I’m going to go to that ring and if I’m going to lose that match than I am going to make this guy look good enough to beat me, if I am going to win the match than I am going to make him look like he is twice as good as I am because I don’t want to beat a guy that I’ve beat down. I want a beat a guy that had a clear edge to him because that is what makes Jake better than everybody else, was that I would go out and make my opponent and make my opponent a star that way I beat a star I didn’t just beat Joe Blow the popcorn carrier, I beat a star every time.”

Match with Randy Savage years prior to the snake-biting incident:

“It was unexpected for a lot of people to see that happening and I remember that night really well. Hogan was off doing a movie and Vince and the gentleman from NBC (Dick) Ebersol pulled us in a room and said that we are going to be on longer than anybody has ever been on a Saturday Night Main Event and this is the first time that we’ve ever done it without Hogan and we want you to know that if the numbers drop when down when we go to commercial break the chances are you will be back in Poughkeepsie working for some minor league promotion. I laughed but Savage went freaking nuts. He said that we’d have to do something spectacular or something they’d never expect and I said just lighten up man. I said Randy; lets just use what got us here. Don’t change and go off the wall with some fly by night seed of your pants thing that may not work, lets just go with what got us to the dance. He argued that point but I remember that match really well because for the first five to seven minutes I basically just had to block and block everything that he was throwing because he was throwing some taters. Rights and lefts and just zinging them in because he was pumped up and going for it all at once right there in the beginning and just going with everything and I was like we’ve got to make them wait. I finally blew him and he settled down once he blew up and than he was fine and we got back to working the match and everything was great. I remember one of the greatest compliments that I’ve ever got in this business was his father (Angelo Poffo) approached me in Tampa one night and told me that was the best match of Randy’s career by far and thanked me for putting it out there. That was a hell of a compliment because I myself never graded my stuff and I just wanted to have the best match that I could all the time. That doesn’t mean going out there and doing all this crazy stuff, it just means going out there and putting together a great match and to have an old timer like that come up and tell me that made my day, my year, my career actually.”

Spin The Wheel Make The Deal match in WCW:

“Great thing the commercials were good because that was it. The match stunk and so did the idea. That was such a horrible thing to choose. What in the hell man. I’m not climbing no pole, are you serious Bill (Watts)? That is the best thing that you could come up with? I thought it was ridiculous and the match was one of my worst matches. Sting wasn’t very excited to wrestle back then and he had gotten tired of being the guy that everybody depended on to bring in the big house and he was getting lazy because he had that contract and that is the bad thing about contracts is that guys get lazy and are like well, I’ll get all my money anyway. That is the wrong way to look at it brother, those are the guys that hurt wrestling. Those contracts and they didn’t go out there and put out and they didn’t push it and he went out there and did just enough to get by. Well, that is just not how you do it, that is not how you wrestle and never will and same goes for these shows that I’m doing now. I go out there and I gut it and it is kind of crazy but after an hour or an hour and twenty minuets out there on stage I feel like I worked a damn match and I am using that energy and I pour it out. I empty the damn bucket and by the end of the night I have to get out of there because I am exhausted and ready to collapse because I put everything I can into it and that is how much I believe in it.”

 

As noted, WWE has announced D-Generation X as the headliners for the 2019 WWE Hall of Fame Class. The induction will see Triple H, now-two-time WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels, Chyna, Sean “X-Pac” Waltman, Billy Gunn and “Road Dogg” Brian James go in together.

In the video above, Waltman talks with TMZ Sports about the induction. Waltman said the call caught him completely off-guard and blew him away. Waltman called it the honor of a lifetime and said more importantly, his former fiancee Chyna is finally getting the recognition she deserves.

“It caught me completely off-guard and I’m blown away,” Waltman said. “Wrestling is my life. This is a honor of a lifetime for me. And to be going in with DX, with my friends, the people that I had the greatest time of my life with. And more importantly, Chyna finally gets the recognition she deserves going into the Hall of Fame.”

Many fans are speaking out about how Chyna should be going in by herself first, not with a group. Waltman agreed that Chyna deserves her own induction, but he said this is still a win. He also pointed to her run with New Japan Pro Wrestling.

“Well, I totally understand where they’re coming from,” Waltman said. “Of course, she deserves to go in by herself. Her accomplishments that she made, even after leaving WWE, were huge. She fought a man in the Tokyo Dome for New Japan Pro Wrestling. Women never, ever, never before or since, ever wrestle in a New Japan ring. I mean, that’s huge. Of course she deserves to go in by herself, but there’s only so many spots per year for the Hall of Fame, because it is a show that people watch. The thing about me and my career, I’m just grateful to be going in. And I hope that the people that think that about her are still grateful she’s going in. Because this is a win, and sometimes we should take the win.”

Waltman was also asked how he thinks the induction would feel to The Ninth Wonder of the World and if it would mean a lot to her. He said he believes she would be very grateful to be going in with DX.

“Oh, of course. It was huge for her before she passed. This was one of the things that was most important to her. There was a big campaign. I think that she would be very grateful to be going in with all of us,” Waltman said.

The 2019 WWE Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place on Saturday, April 6 from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn during WrestleMania 35 Weekend. There’s no official word yet on other 2019 Hall of Famers but it’s rumored that The Hart Foundation (Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart, Bret Hart, Jimmy Hart) will still be inducted as a group.

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Last night, Tye Dillinger revealed he asked for his release from WWE. Dillinger had been working on the SmackDown brand since 2017, however was never pushed heavily during that time.

It’s not yet known if WWE has officially given his release, but numerous WWE Superstars have been tweeting kind words to Dillinger since his announcement. One of those outside of WWE who sent Dillinger a message was AEWExecutive Vice President, Cody Rhodes.

“Fearless. I can’t wait to see what you do next,” Rhodes wrote. “I wish you all the happiness in the world old friend. Don’t settle.”

Going back to 2016, Cody Rhodes did an interview with Colt Cabana on The Art of Wrestling, after his own departure from WWE, where he spoke highly of Dillinger. The two trained together in OVW in 2006-2007.

“Greatest human being alive,” Rhodes said. “Still in developmental. He’s in developmental. I’m afraid of—all the time I want to tweet stuff about Tye Dillinger and I’m afraid if I do, someone will be like, because I’m not in the best graces with the office currently, I’m afraid someone will be like—because of my love of him.”


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