Welcome to the latest installment of Joe’s 411: B/R Pro-Wrestling News. Because there is so much to get to today, there is no time to waste, so let’s get started.
Umaga Release Update
As many of you know, Umaga (Eddie Fatu) was released by World Wrestling Entertainment just weeks ago. As a matter of fact, he was released shortly after the test results for the Wellness Policy were revealed Monday after the Extreme Rules PPV, which he failed.
This was his second failure of the Wellness Policy and because of that the WWE was going to make him go to rehab. When he refused, he was released. This was not a decision the WWE wanted to make.
They wanted to keep him on the roster, because they knew he was one of a kind for his size. The fact was, he refused rehab and that meant the WWE had no choice but to let him go.
This happened with Jeff Hardy a few years back. He failed a drug test, and the WWE wanted him to get help, to go to rehab. Hardy refused, and because of that, Jim Ross, who was the main guy in charge of talent relations, had to let him go.
They begged him to reconsider before the release, but because he didn’t want to go, the release was enforced. Same with Umaga.
The story going around now is that Umaga quit and was not fired, but I beg to differ. He said that because of the WWE wanting him to go to rehab, he quit. He also said he was unhappy there to begin with and this was the last straw.
I have to wonder why Umaga was in the middle of contract negotiations before his release then, because he seemed to be pretty happy if he wanted to stay with the company.
TNA has expressed interest in getting him back on the roster, he was there for a short while around the time he was released from the WWE. He left TNA because the WWE had expressed interest in signing him back.
So even though he left TNA for the “better” company in WWE, I am sure TNA won’t take too much offense seeing, as they are foaming at the mouth to see an Umaga/Samoa Joe feud.
TNA has also expressed interest in signing former WWE Superstar Ken Kennedy, real name Ken Anderson. Anderson has expressed interest in signing with them, too, so I am sure both parties will figure out something in the near future.
Both Fatu’s and Anderson’s 90-day no compete clauses expire around the middle of September, which could help to set up some nice rivalries for TNA’s Wrestlemania in Bound for Glory.
TNA could really use the two, but I believe they still have a lot of work to do to compete with the WWE.
Now more than ever, the WWE is trying to get rid of people they really don’t need. Both Candice Michelle and Sim Snuka were released yesterday by the WWE.
Snuka was last on TV at Wrestlemania as the cameraman during the Taker dive on Shawn Michaels, which was botched. We hadn’t heard from him since, and because the WWE had no real need to keep him on the roster, they let him go.
A lot of people seemed surprised to see Candice Michelle released; I certainly was not. She has not done anything on TV in some time, if she has, it has just been a few backstage spots.
The WWE was planning on turning her heel and having younger talent go over on her, something they did with Victoria.
She was nursing a hurt ankle for some time, but before the injury there was still nothing done with her on TV. She was going to be cleared to return to the ring this month, which would have allowed her to do the role the WWE planned to begin with.
Candice really had not expressed interest in re-signing with the WWE as she was planning to leave after her contract expired around October to model and/or act. I’d stick with acting, Candice, because modeling is behind you.
She had gained noticeable weight over the past few months, some say she hasn’t been in a gym in quite some time.
The WWE was planning on just letting her contract expire and not renewing it, but because she is getting paid for nothing there was no real reason to keep her around. So they let her go to save money.
It was a good business move, and even Candice was not shocked about it at all. She is still doing some work with GoDaddy.com and has been looking for acting work, so we could see her doing that in the near future.
She tweeted out after the release and said “I am free to grow ” Lets just hope she doesn’t mean weight. We like the other Candice, not the one we are currently seeing. She is a far cry from her Playboy and Women’s Championship days.
She has expressed interest in being a Bond Girl, but what Hollywood Starlet hasn’t, right? Still, no matter what, she needs to get back in the gym.
Kurt Angle’s WWE Return
TNA Wrestler Kurt Angle recently did an interview on the Busted Open Sirius Satellite Radio show and mentioned that his TNA contract is set to expire soon. Around September is what reports are saying.
He mentioned that he was doing movies lately and really wanted to get more involved in that, also he said he wrestling career is not over. So if he wanted to re-sign, he probably would.
The WWE has expressed interest in getting Angle back, and Angle has expressed interest in the past in going back. He mentioned on the show that he has not burnt any bridges with the WWE, and could go back if he wanted to.
The main reason Angle left before was because of the schedule the WWE put him through. He told Vince McMahon straight up that he was unable to work the schedule, and if Vince wanted to keep him around, he would give him a lighter schedule.
Vince said he couldn’t do that, and Angle said he had no choice but to leave. He was the No. 1 guy at the time in the WWE, so when he left for TNA it hurt them a bit. They soon got back to the normal WWE ways, but TNA got a shot in the arm if you will.
Vince will do what is right for business, so the WWE has told Angle that if he came back he would get a lighter schedule, like he wanted to begin with.
It would be similar to the Undertaker’s, which seems to be the one all of the older wrestlers in the WWE want.
Angle knows that the WWE would pay him more money and would allow him to have a lighter schedule now. So obviously he is thinking about going back. He wants to act, and because the WWE has WWE Films, it is possible he could be in one of the films.
He was said to be starring in a WWE Films movie before he left, so if they were going to use him then, they probably would use him now.
That gives him everything he wants if he wanted to go back.
Think about this though, TNA tries to resign their wrestlers months in advance of the contract expiring. Angle has yet to sign or even talk much about a deal with them. It is certain TNA has met with Angle about resigning because he is their top guy.
But if he has not signing any deal by now, I could pretty much guarantee he won’t re-sign. We will have to wait and see, but it seems highly unlikely that Angle would re-sign after waiting so long.
If he really wanted to stay, I’m sure he would have re-signed the first time TNA brought anything up about him re-signing with them. So don’t be surprised if he ends up showing up in the WWE one day.
WWE interested in signing TNA star
We all know the WWE has interest in signing Angle back, but the Sheik?
It looks as if the WWE is very interested in getting Shiek Abdul Bashir back in the WWE. If you remember, he was under the name Daivari there. He really didn’t do much with them other manage.
I am sure he was tired of that and when his contract expired he left for TNA. Right now, he looks as good as he has ever looked. His contract with TNA is set to expire sometime this summer, but from what reports are saying it looks like he will resign with them.
If I were Bashir, I’d stay in TNA. Why? Because TNA offers way more to him than the WWE. He was a champion right off in TNA, but in the WWE, I can’t even remember him holding one.
TNA will use him better, plus they have the X-Division. And because Bashir is not the biggest guy in the fight, he would die in the WWE. He would have nowhere to go really, and he would most likely go back to what he use to do.
Before TNA, I didn’t even know this guy had wrestling talent. TNA is the best fit, so in my opinion, he should definitely stay.
Monday Night RAW update
From what reports are saying, the “Trump buying RAW” storyline may work out for the WWE ratings wise. Since it was all over entertainment sites, people other than wrestling fans saw it and became intrigued.
USA Network actually had to send a press release out saying it was storylined and not real because it was so easy to believe. If you don’t follow wrestling, I guess it would be.
Many people have mixed feelings about the idea of Trump owning RAW. They feel the storyline is stupid, but they feel it will get ratings. If it gets ratings, I must ask, how is that stupid?
If it works, it works. That is all I have to say about it.
Sure, it seems doubtful if you’re a wrestling purist who knows it is impossible for Trump to do something like that. But it is storylined people, if you’re a wrestling purist you should know that right?
The sense of realism is not so much important to the WWE as getting ratings in, if you haven’t noticed by now.
Eric Bischoff mentioned it was a dumb storyline, yet it would work if they brought Ric Flair in to be the GM to sort excite the other crowd who is against the Trump purchase of RAW.
Bischoff is on to something obviously. Trump cannot be at RAW every single week, and the whole prerecorded segments are a bit dumb if you ask me. So he will need someone there for him to help run things, that is where Flair comes into play.
He is still set to be the new RAW GM, as I previously said in past 411s.
Now, the WWE wanted to surprise us in Charlotte, N.C. Obviously everything played to a Flair GM announcement on RAW that night.
Flair was even asked to be in the back on Monday to make sure sites picked that up instead of picking up the Trump buying RAW angle.
Flair was in the back that night, and it wasn’t a bother because he does live in the area of course.
You have to admit that despite how you feel about the storyline, it was a big surprise to everyone other than the people who planned it.
Many of the superstars were said to be surprised by it too, because Vince and a few others were the only ones who knew about it. So it didn’t get out to any moles who give info to websites.
Because Trump owns RAW means nothing to who will be running things when he is unable to be there naturally.
Therefore it is fairly certain that Flair will be announced as the new RAW GM by Trump possibly Monday or the next week.
Hell in a Cell PPV?
It looks as if the WWE wants to be copy cats of themselves and TNA. As we know, the WWE decided to have an all submission PPV, which will be called Breaking Point. It is set to be taking the spot of Unforgiven.
Now, the WWE has decided on doing an all Hell in a Cell PPV. This seems more interesting than the all submission PPV, however it does copy that of TNA.
As we all know they do a PPV every year called LockDown, which is where they have all their matches in a Steel Cage.
The WWE has asked for feedback on names for the PPV, if you get a WWE survey, you can vote for them. Here are the 4 names
- WWE Hell in a Cell
- WWE No Escape
- WWE Lock Up
- WWE Rage In A Cage
I personally like Rage in a Cage, but you never know what name they will go with. We could possibly see this taking the place in 2010 of Judgment Day or taking place of Armageddon this year.
There has been no word on when just yet, but if they decided to go through with it, it is a possibility that they will be one of those two. They could pull a 180 on us, and decide something different.
I feel they should definitely do this PPV, this is way more interesting than an all submission one if you ask me.
TNA roster update
It was recently found out that former WWE Superstar Elijah Burke finally had his dark match with TNA. Now, this does not mean he is signed to the TNA roster. It is more so a try out match.
If he did well, then he would probably get a contract.
He must have done well, because he tweeted out this:
“Pope feels renewed, and fresh! No longer a line for me to cross. Just a cross for me to bear. It’s my Destiny!”
He may be close to a deal with TNA, but nothing has been signed as of now. So don’t expect him to be on iMPACT next week or anything.
Former adult film star Trina Michaels has been signed by TNA according to sources within the company. Like Burke, don’t expect her to be on iMPACT right away. They could be holding off on having her debut.
They do need more female wrestlers on the roster, and she is pretty good as some have claimed. She has been trying to break into the business for over a year now, and her mic work seems to be very good.
The WWE has been said to have even ripped off one of her promos for Vickie Guerrero’s departure angle. It was basically the same as Trina’s, just with a few word changes here and there.
She would never be able to be signed by the WWE, as much as they have claimed to like her. Obviously because of the adult film past. TNA has no issue with it what so ever, which is why they are bringing her in.
They dropped a hint at it on iMPACT this past week in the Jeremy Borash/Mick Foley segment. They were talking and Foley asked what was the hottest thing in the Internet and Borash said, “Trina Michaels videos?”
So we may see her in TNA as soon as next month if TNA wants her in by then.
If you want to get a better look at Michaels, you can google her obviously. But fair warning, viewer discretion is advised.
Amazing Red, Raven, Shane Douglas, and Jessie Neal have been added to the TNA roster on the company’s website.
Amazing Red signed a deal with TNA a week or so ago, before then he was just getting paid cash when they decided to have him on according to sources. But because he had done so well, and they knew they could work with him, they signed him up.
Kane recently said in an interview that before wrestling, he was studying to be a teacher. Imagine that, the Big Red Machine teaching a class. If you act up, he would chokeslam you through your desk instead of sending you to the principal’s office.
Stephanie McMahon has been said to have dyed her hair blonde again. There is no real reason for the change, she just prefers it blonde. She may be doing an angle in the future with WWE by the way. She could be involved in the Trump owning RAW storyline.
All McMahons are said to be involved in the angle, except for Linda. There is no time table for the storyline, but it is pretty easy to figure out that McMahon will get one over on Trump before to long to own RAW again.
Chris Jericho finally finished the recordings for the new Fozzy album. He said he can’t wait to hear the whole thing when it is put together.
In a funny note, Paul London basically turned down his TNA opportunity to do a Pizza Hut Commercial? Its true, he just got done filming a commercial for them. He has been wanting to break into the acting scene for a while now.
I hope it is not SNL, because like Jimmy Fallon, he would laugh at all his jokes. We all know the dude smiles way too much. Now, he did not turn down TNA just to do this, but obviously he wanted to do acting instead of wrestling. And its funny that a former champion in wrestling would rather act, which was something he wasn’t good at to begin with.
If he was good, then I could see him leaving for it. Like The Rock for instance, great actor right? Not the case with London. He barely even spoke in the WWE.
Jacqueline and Rhaka Khan are said to be working with TNA again, both wrestled each other under the TNA banner in Michigan recently. They were said to have been released, apparently TNA is bringing them back. They have been off the road since March.
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