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WWE WrestleMania 31 Predictions and Preview

March 27, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

WrestleMania 31 is finally here and the big event will go down this Sunday March 29. The WWE card is arguably the most shallow in years, yet there are a few matches to get excited about. Topping last year’s event will be a heavy feat yet the lineup has the potential to certainly exceed expectations.

The beauty of this year’s WrestleMania show for WWE management is that expectations are probably lower than they have been in years. There is no real dream match or scenario to get excited about nor is there a compelling storyline that has fans waiting for a conclusion. Yet the roster is solid and in terms of excitement, I have a feeling most will come away from Sunday night feeling that they got their $9.99 worth.

Let’s take a look at how the main card shapes up, breakdown some matches, and make some predictions for the biggest WWE event of 2015.

Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE world championship – We all think we know how this one is going to play out yet it could go in a few different directions. Now that Brock Lesnar has re-signed with the WWE, a world of booking options have opened up. The WWE dodged a real bullet by avoiding a lame duck WWE champion situation at Mania.

I think the match itself could be better than people expect. A lot of it comes down to what it follows. If it is following Sting vs. Triple H and Hunter and Sting deliver a fantastic ending, this match could be D.O.A. If there is a buffer between the main-event and the other big matches, I think fans will be more receptive to it. The match placement is critical to this one like no other on the show.

Roman Reigns is expected to win the title here. The win over the Undertaker last year was used to put Brock in a spot to give Roman the ultimate win here. Yet I don’t think anyone will argue that Reigns is not over and could be set up to be a dismal failure as WWE champion. There are also the rumored heel turn scenarios out there which I think are stronger now that Brock is staying.That said, I think the WWE wants to keep Brock heel looking ahead to a potential Rock vs. Brock match next year. I think WWE take the unpredictable route here which is Brock retaining in a hard fought match. I think the Reigns heel turn is coming but it isn’t going down at Mania. I think the idea here is that Reigns is elevated just by going toe-to-toe with Brock in a hard fought war. Brock retaining is a bit anti-climactic, however I think the idea of Brock going over is that they can buy some time with Reigns and shoot that angle later…even the following night on RAW.

Triple H vs. Sting – Don’t be mistaken. This is the real main-event. For better or worse, this match has far more interest going into Mania than any other match on the show. Even I wasn’t interested in this match back at the Survivor Series, yet I have been drawn in over the last few weeks. Sting’s promos have sealed it for me over the last two weeks. Plus no matter what this looks like on paper, Triple H has delivered excellent matches on the last five WrestleMania shows. I can’t imagine him taking a match with Sting if he wasn’t confident he could pull it off.

I would not be surprised to see some kind of interference from a big ex-WCW star. Maybe it’s Ric Flair or maybe it’s Bill Goldberg, but I think WCW is playing into the match on Sunday. This is a tough one because Sting really should win his first match in a WWE ring. However, Sting’s future is dependent on his performance in the ring so there is no guarantee he wrestles ever again past Sunday. For that I think Triple H goes over, although for all of Hunter’s critics he is 2-3 in his last five Mania matches. My gut tells me that Hunter gets the win here but I think this match turns into the show-stealer.

John Cena vs. Rusev for the U.S. championship - I never would have predicted that this feud would be so hot. This feud is so hot that Cena has actually been cheered in recent weeks. These guys have great chemistry together and Rusev has been booked solid for a year leading up to this match. Quite honestly you couldn’t ask for better booking on paper sans the goofy “Russian” lawyer last week on RAW.

Does Cena go over Rusev? That is the real question here. We all thought that Bray Wyatt was beating Cena last year and were stunned when Cena pulled off the upset. I think the money in Rusev is challenging for the WWE world title as the undefeated U.S. champion. That would mean that Rusev beats Cena here and beats him again at Extreme Rules. Cena did put Lesnar over three times but that is Brock Lesnar and he did beat Lesnar once at Extreme Rules 2012. If Roman Reigns is leaving Mania with the belt a championship program with the undefeated Rusev makes the most sense. For that reason I predict that Rusev pulls off the upset here and beats Cena clean at Mania.

Bray Wyatt vs. The Undertaker - I never like the idea of keeping an opponent off of television but I have to admit that keeping the Undertaker off of TV has worked in this one. It has created a ton of intrigue and speculation that you wouldn’t have if he was on TV even just once. I haven’t been a big Bray fan but the promos here have been better but the storyline is just kind of odd to me. The idea that Undertaker would return to answer Bray’s challenges and yet completely ignore the taunting and mockery of Paul Heyman for an entire year makes absolutely no sense to me whatsoever.

I think the match will be fine. I don’t think it will be great but I don’t think it will be bad either. The Undertaker is reportedly in much better shape than people think and he looks ready to go. It’s important that he can still go here as there are a ton of reports that they want him for something much bigger next year at 32. for that reason I think Undertaker wins although I think it may be better for business for Bray to win. I think setting up Bray with a win as Reigns’ first challenger is the better path but I can’t see Taker dropping two in a row at Mania.

Bad News Barrett vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Luke Harper vs. R-Truth vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Stardust vs. Dean Ambrose in a Ladder Match for the intercontinental title – Get ready for a wild match here! I am going to keep this one short because we all know what to expect in this one. I would be shocked to see anything less than a great match. I’d expect Bryan and Ziggler to steal the show, although Ambrose certainly has the talent to make his mark as well. Bryan losing to Ziggler twice certainly leads me to think he is winning the match. It makes sense as the WWE can placate his fans by giving him a title, albeit a low-level belt. Regardless, we’ll get a great match, a Yes chant, and a belt around Bryan’s waist. Everyone wins!

Full WWE WrestleMania 31 card and matches…
Brock Lesnar (c) with Paul Heyman vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE World Heavyweight Title Match:
Rusev (c) vs. John Cena for the WWE United States Title Match
Dolph Ziggler vs. R-Truth vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper vs. Stardust vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Bad News Barrett (c) in a Ladder Match for the WWE Intercontinental Title
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
Sting vs. Triple H
AJ Lee and Paige vs. The Bella Twins
Seth Rollins vs. Randy Orton
Bray Wyatt vs. The Undertaker
The Usos vs. Los Matadores vs. Big E and Kofi Kingston vs. Cesaro and Tyson Kidd in a Fatal 4 Way for the WWE Tag Team Titles

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Roman Reigns Talks WWE WrestleMania 31, Boos, Brock Re-Signing, and More

March 26, 2015 By: Category: Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Roman ReignsRoman Reigns is heading into his first WrestleMania main-event Sunday night as he’ll be challenging WWE world champion Brock Lesnar. Reigns took a small detour on the way to WrestleMania 31 and stopped by the Camel Clutch to speak about WrestleMania 31 and a lot more in this CCB exclusive.

Roman Reigns will be one of a very few WWE superstars on Sunday to make his WrestleMania singles debut in the main-event. Reigns will earn that honor on Sunday amidst more controversy and criticism from Daniel Bryan fans and media. Facing more pressure than anyone in the industry, Reigns remains cool, confident, and prepared to prove the doubters wrong and conquer the challenge of Brock Lesnar.

Reigns was gracious enough to give me some time just days before the big match in conjunction with a SNICKERS “Who Are You When You’re Hungry?” contest. We hit on several hot topics including the pressure of making that historic WrestleMania leap on Sunday, the booing, thoughts on the Mania card, his Mania dream match, Brock Lesnar re-signing, and more in this CCB exclusive.

You are just days away from headlining WrestleMania 31 against Brock Lesnar for the WWE world championship. What is the pressure like to have your first WrestleMania singles match in the WrestleMania main-event?

Well you know if we’re going to call it pressure I’d say it’s exciting. I’m pumped! This is an opportunity of a lifetime. You know you can’t write stories like this, well I guess you can. It just feels real good, it’s great to be out here on the west coast in San Francisco in the San Jose area. I was at Levis Stadium yesterday just looking around, I got to tour their facilities and everything. It’s just an awesome opportunity and I couldn’t be any happier.

Coming from a family with Sika, Rikishi, the Rock, have you gotten any advice from your family, peers, or other veterans about the WrestleMania main-event experience?

Absolutely and that is something that I am so fortunate to have are those resources that you kind of just tapped into there. For me it’s all about gaining as much experience as fast as I can so with my family I am just communicate and talk, ask questions. It seems like the consensus is to just live in the moment, have fun, and regardless of whatever happens this is the biggest opportunity I am ever going to have so just live in it, practice humility, and just represent our family.

Has the booing gotten to you at all?

It’s one of those things, it does a little bit. I am not going to lie. I care a lot about what I do, I have a deep passion for wrestling, sports entertainment, and just performing in front of a live crowd in general. So obviously you want things to be positive and support you but at the same time I really firmly believe that the fans, they have a choice, they pay their hard-earned money, it’s their opinion, and we live in a great country where you can voice that so it’s on them. No matter what happens I’m going to work my butt off, I’m going to go out there and perform to the best of my ability and the rest will take care of itself.

Are there any other matches you are looking forward to watching at WrestleMania 31?

“I am. That’s the great part of WrestleMania, it’s the grandest stage of them all. Some of the best matchups, it’s not like other sports where it’s just one game. There’s so many different games being played and with that being said I’m really pumped for Triple H and Sting. I have to say that there’s another unique opportunity for a younger talent in Bray Wyatt taking on the Undertaker and as we saw last year the beast Brock Lesnar broke the streak so I am very curious to see how Undertaker bounces back, how he uses his wisdom and his experience to get back on track. With that being said the younger guys, the I-C ladder match is going to be as physical as there is going to be a matchup for WrestleMania.

What is a WrestleMania dream match of yours against anyone past or present?

I’m doing it man, it’s happening for me this year, Brock Lesnar the beast incarnate, a guy who carries so much respect not only in the UFC world but in sports entertainment world as well and just such a great athlete, he’s a proven competitor, I’m looking forward to showing what I can do and proving my abilities.

What is it about the Samoan blood, the intangible that has made not only so many good pro wrestlers, but successful professional wrestlers?

Well thank you for that, I think the main thing is it’s our blood. We have it in us, that intensity, that aggression we can tap into, I think it’s extremely believable. It’s something we are able to get lost in and I think not only for myself I am able to do it but there’s going to be a long line of more family members of mine coming up. If there is one thing we can do is reproduce.

I tell a story about being scared as a kid after watching an interview with the Wild Samoans. What was it like for you to bring your friends to your house and meet your father (Sika the Wild Samoan)?

It was awesome, you know like you said it’s a bit of a scary persona and a larger than life out there persona. A lot of times when I’d bring friends over or other kids from the neighborhood they’d be really shocked at just how laid back and cool he was. Most of the time when you come off of the road you’re tired so he’d just be super calm. The big thing is when you’re the only kid with a wrestling ring in your backyard, that’s a huge distraction so I think he could have been just terrifying but they’d still love him because he had a wrestling ring in his backyard.

Did you ever consider MMA along your trajectory to the WWE?

You know I didn’t. One thing I am kind of throughout my sports days is I never got into amateur wrestling. Growing up in Pensacola, Florida football and baseball were kind of the big sports and what I was pushed to do. Amateur wrestling never popped up and I thought that would have been a really nice segue as I got older into the Mixed-Martial Arts so I’m a little bummed I didn’t ever get to dabble in that side of athletics but I think my path happened for a reason and I am pretty happy where I am at.

Roman’s thoughts on Brock Lesnar re-signing with the WWE.

“I think it’s great, I think it’s great. Anytime we can lock down top talent, Brock is a proven veteran, he’s been in the ring and he’s performed at the highest levels and he’s going to do so again Sunday so I think it’s awesome and it’s just another guarantee that he’s going to show up Sunday.”

Can you talk about the SNICKERS “Who Are You When You’re Hungry?” contest?

That’s something that I am very proud to be a part of, to partner up with SNICKERS you know that’s the question. Who are you when you’re hungry? As we know anything can happen when you’re hungry so for me I was able to show a different side than most people were expecting, a bit of a questionable, insecure side of me and you take one bite and everything’s better and you can see it in the commercial where I snapped out of it, a bit of a kick-out if you will, and I was back to the regular me.

Your personal favorite match up to this point in your career?

You know there’s been a lot. I tend to favor the ones that are on the higher level or the more prestigious matches which are usually on a pay-per-view or a WrestleMania setting. With that being said I think thus far it’d have to be either the SummerSlam match against Randy Orton or the Fastlane match against Daniel Bryan. They were both awesome matches, great guys to compete against, and hopefully they’ll be many more down the road.

WWE: The Destruction of the Shield

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The Rock Interested In Brock Lesnar WWE WrestleMania 32 Match

March 25, 2015 By: Category: Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

The WWE has a lot of seats to fill in 2016. WrestleMania 32 will emanate from AT&T Stadium and will need some heavy hitters to fill the building. The Rock is one of those heavy hitters and he isn’t ruling out a return to his wrestling roots.

The Rock has been long rumored to be on the WWE “wish list” for WrestleMania 32. The WWE has had Rock penciled in the last two years to wrestle Brock Lesnar in one of the most anticipated rematches in WWE history. The rematch would come 14 years later and could go down as the biggest rematch since Andre vs. Hulk Hogan drew a record rating on the Main Event in 1988.

Rock was asked about the possibilities of the match in a recent interview and while he isn’t committing to anything, he certainly hasn’t shut the door on the option.

In Dallas? Possibly. There’s a lot of things that are up in the air. Lot of things are up in the air. We’ll see. I would love that rematch, I would love… whatever it is, you want to create something that’s going to be special, memorable, especially in Dallas at that stadium you have a shot at breaking the attendance record. It’s got to be special.

This also explains the stress and anxiety that Vince McMahon felt trying to re-sign Brock Lesnar. Keeping Lesnar is bigger than just keeping him away from the UFC or booking him on SummerSlam. Lesnar held the key to the city because without Lesnar under contract there is no Rock rematch. Without the rematch there may be no Rock and there aren’t a whole lot of special matches available to fill the large stadium. Vince got his man so the match is in play.

This is the one component I think most have missed when breaking down the Lesnar-WWE negotiations, including myself. Lesnar is critical to next year’s show. If the WWE can’t pull off Rock vs. Lesnar, Steve Austin vs. Lesnar is another possibility that has been rumored. Again without Lesnar, the WWE is without a dance partner for Rock and Austin and without the right dance partner, both are likely less interested in coming back.

I have always felt that the WWE have already penciled in a Rock vs. Triple H match at Mania 32. That promo they did together on SmackDown 15 was a huge tease in my eyes for the match. I was convinced when I saw it that Rock already committed and it was the first seed to be planted. However, I have to think that a match with Brock is much more appealing to Rock who wants the biggest match possible.

There is already a great story to be told in Rock vs. Brock. Brock beat Rock for his first WWE championship. Rock never got a rematch. Plus if you do re-sign Brock, you could have him beat Roman Reigns this year and use that match as part of an angle to set up next year. Maybe Paul Heyman dubs Brock a “Samoan Killer”, he taunts the Samoans for a few months, and Rock returns to avenge the honor of his family and the Samoan heritage. There is a lot the WWE could do here and I think the match would be enormous. Unfortunately for them they haven’t been able to pull it off for the last three years and the timing may be one year too late.

The Rock also teased an appearance at WrestleMania 31 this year so stay tuned…

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Brock Lesnar Re-Signs With WWE, Retires From MMA

March 24, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Vince McMahon got his man! WWE world champion Brock Lesnar has signed a new deal with the WWE which will keep him around after WrestleMania. The new deal has also shut down any chance we’ll see Brock in the UFC ever again.

The news came Tuesday night on ESPN Sportscenter. Brock appeared on the program to announce his future. It was there that Brock broke the news that made lots of pro wrestling fans very happy, while disappointing those interested in seeing a Lesnar vs. Frank Mir trilogy.

“Last night, old Vince McMahon put on the offer on the table that I couldn’t refuse. It really comes down to business and money and health and well being, I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum. I’ve been in a bad position with my health. I’ve been in a bad position with my money. Now I’m in a great position with both and I’m happy. I love what I’m doing. I work part time with full time pay like everybody wants but you can’t have. Just me. So I’m happy.”

It was widely reported that Monday night was a self-imposed deadline for Vince McMahon to get a new deal with Brock done. Vince reportedly wanted to lock up Brock before he hit free agency but more importantly, before Brock walked into WrestleMania as a lame duck champion. The new deal opens up a lot of possibilities regarding the WrestleMania main-event.

Brock spoke more about his decision not to return to the UFC as opposed to why he re-signed with the WWE. Lesnar just felt he had nothing to prove and his heart was not in a return to the octagon.

“For the last two months I’ve been training, I’ve been training to get back in the Octagon. I felt physically great, but something lacked mentally,” Lesnar revealed. “That’s not good. I talked to (UFC president) Dana (White), I talked to (CEO) Lorenzo (Fertitta), I talked to my wife, I talked to my friends. I had many sleepless nights on what to do. At the end of the day, it weighed heavily in my heart I was born to be an entertainer. I have fun doing it.

I could go back to the Octagon — what am I going to gain? I was the UFC heavyweight champion of the world. Due to my illness my career got cut short, and that’s God’s telling you it’s time to move on. As years went by it wore on me so much that the fighter inside of me didn’t want it to end that way. I didn’t want to leave the UFC on a losing streak. That’s just the competitive guy inside me.

You can’t force somebody to get into the cage and fight. That’s not the business,” Lesnar said. “That’s where I was. Was my heart and my head really into it? What are the reasons I want to get in there? Because I don’t like the way it ended or really what is it?”

“At the end of the day, I’m really happy where I’m at with the WWE.”

Lesnar is happy with his decision. “The older you get, the wiser you become and I didn’t want to be that guy that retired and came back. So there was a lot of different things that went through my mind. This was a long, heartfelt decision. You weigh out the pros, you weigh out the cons,” Lesnar said.

But what about Lesnar’s next contract negotiation? According to the WWE champ, that dance is over.

I’m officially closing the door on MMA,” Lesnar said. “It was hard. I re-signed last night with the WWE. We came to a conclusion last night. The offer on the table, I just could not refuse.”

This is a huge coup for the WWE. For starters, losing Brock to the UFC would have been a public relations disaster. With CM Punk and Brock going to the UFC, shareholders would have had a cause to be concerned. Two, the scene at WrestleMania could have been downright ugly. We already saw how that worked out at WrestleMania XX when the fans knew Brock was leaving. Third and I think most importantly, Brock is now available for WrestleMania 32. Vince McMahon has a lot of seats to fill in Dallas, TX. Having Brock on the roster opens up all kinds of possibilities for big matches with The Rock, Steve Austin, or even an Undertaker rematch. Without Brock, the WWE would have had a very difficult time booking something special in Texas next year. Quite frankly I think WrestleMania 32 was really the driving factor here.

WrestleMania 31 just got real interesting.

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No, No, No! Daniel Bryan Must Not Win the WWE Intercontinental Title at WrestleMania 31

March 24, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

I’ve got good news and I’ve got bad news. The good news is that Daniel Bryan is in a WWE title match at WrestleMania 31. The bad news is that it’s an intercontinental championship match, a match he would be far better off losing than winning.

A year ago wrestling fans all united around Daniel Bryan, emotionally investing in his quest for WWE gold at WrestleMania. We need to unite around Daniel Bryan once again this year in hopes that Bryan does not win his title match this year. The I-C title has become a career killer and a reign as champion would mean the end of the Yes Movement as we know it.

15 years ago we would be excited to see Bryan in the I-C title hunt. I grew up at a time when the I-C title was the “workers” title. It all started with Magnificent Muraco for me and evolved to Randy Savage, Ricky Steamboat, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Curt Hennig, and so on. That lineage took a dark turn about six years and has been on the road to ruin ever since.

I was inspired to write this blog by a blog I read elsewhere which demanded Bryan win the intercontinental title at Mania. I read the headline and thought to myself, “My gosh, this guy is officially toast if he wins the I-C title”. Any objective look back at the last few years of intercontinental champions will conclude that the title that was once used to elevate rising stars has been nothing more than an anchor and albatross to those that appeared to be on the ascension.

You need not look further back than at your current I-C champion Wade “Bad News” Barrett. Barrett returned a couple of months back with a ton of momentum. Barrett reclaimed the title he vacated due to his injury back in January. Just in the last four weeks alone, Barrett has gone 0-4 on RAW. The pattern is predictable as every champion before him becomes an immediate loser the second they get the title. Dolph Ziggler before Barrett came out of the Survivor Series with a ton of steam only to be jobbed out constantly after he won the I-C title. It’s an epidemic and Daniel Bryan needs to stay as far away from this title as possible.

I can understand the initial reaction from fans who want to see Bryan win. Heck at this point you just want something to cheer about. But your wishes are selfish. Sure it would be fun to get up on your feet and chant “Yes, Yes, Yes” during Bryan’s match at WrestleMania. However, a true Bryan supporter would be standing on his or her feet yelling, “No, No, No” any time he climbs the ladder to retrieve the intercontinental belt.

I’d love to know how this happened. How such a prestigious championship has turned into a legitimate curse. What is the logic in taking someone with a little momentum, giving him the title, and then jobbing him out? What is that really accomplishing. Sure, you can argue that Bryan is too talented to be jobbed out by the belt. Unfortunately the dark power this belt has over creative is greater than even the force known as Daniel Bryan.

So whatever you do when you are watching WrestleMania, chant for Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes, Dean Ambrose, Luke Harper, R-Truth, Michael Cole, or anyone but Daniel Bryan to win the intercontinental title. A win at WrestleMania for Daniel Bryan is a curse that even the Yes Movement can’t survive.

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CM Punk Talks Chances of WWE Return, Regrets, and More

March 23, 2015 By: Category: Sports, UFC | Mixed Martial Arts, WWE | Pro Wrestling

CM Punk may wish to put his WWE career behind him but it will always be a topic of conversation with the former WWE champ. Punk was recently asked about his WWE career and had some interesting reflections on the past and the future.

Punk is now removed from the WWE for over a year and training diligently for a career in the UFC. While Punk may prefer to focus on the future, his sudden departure from the WWE is still a fascinating topic. Punk recently stopped by Fox Sports Wisconsin for a Q & A that started with MMA questions but took a sharp left down the pro wrestling radio.

Punk on making the move to the UFC at this point in his life. “Because I’m not getting any younger. I’m the kind of guy that jumps at an opportunity. I’m sure you’re going to ask, and I understand all the criticism levied towards myself and UFC, but at the end of the day I’m the one getting in there, I’m the one putting my neck out on the line. If I fail, I fail in front of the entire world. To me that’s the juice, it’s all about the action. I’ve been thinking about doing it for a very, very, very long time. The opportunity presented itself, so I’d be a fool to say no.

I think it is interesting to look back at 2011 and the path Punk’s career took that summer. All of the rumors up to that point were that Punk was leaving the WWE when his contract expired. It is interesting to ponder whether Punk was seriously considering the move then. The MMA landscape was different and I am fairly certain he wouldn’t have gotten a UFC deal at that time. I am not sure if he has been asked but it is an interesting thought regarding whether he would have shifted to MMA in 2011 had he not stuck around.

Punk was then asked some WWE questions. Punk was asked whether he still watches the product. “None. I don’t watch wrestling anymore. I’ve tried to, but I have an aversion to it. You do something like that for however many years I did it, and it’s like a lifetime. I’ve seen enough.

The interviewer jokes, “So no NXT for you then?” Punk responds, ” No, no. I lived it.”

That is a very common answer I hear among former pro wrestlers who retired. Many don’t watch it anymore and why would they? It was their job and Punk has obviously lost his passion for it. He does mention that he’ll watch his wife’s matches when she recommends them.

Punk was asked whether the WWE was his dream job when he signed and he offers an interesting answer. “I signed in ’05. My dream job was always wrestling in Japan. I looked up to guys like Bruiser Brody, Stan Hansen. I was huge All Japan Wrestling guy, so a guy like Kobashi. I loved Eddie Guerrero, because they were stars in a foreign land. There’s something about that that appealed to me. I liked the style a lot better than American wrestling, or WWF at the time. That was my dream job. That’s what I always wanted to do, was go over there, wrestle for four weeks, come home for two weeks, go there for five weeks, come home for one week. That was the dream. But the way things work, your goals change and your priorities change and I had already gotten to a level where I thought I needed to prove that I could draw money. And the only way to do that, because foreigners aren’t really given a chance in Japan, was to go to WWE.

What is interesting about that answer is that Punk was always using the WWE to get to Japan, or so he says. It certainly adds context to him leaving and being burnt out when that wasn’t necessarily his end goal. It does make you wonder though whether Punk would entertain a modified schedule working for a Japanese company. Of course the Japanese landscape was much different in 2005 and the timing wouldn’t have worked out for him if that was his goal.

Punk was then asked whether he regretted signing with the WWE. “Well, yeah, of course. Like I said, I don’t live my life with regrets. I don’t even think there’s really situations where I wish I would’ve handled myself a little bit differently. I wish I would’ve punched one or two people in the face. But, no, I wouldn’t change a damn thing. Absolutely not.

Punk was asked about the chances of ever working in the WWE again? “Zero.

I would recommend reading the entire interview as Punk offers more insight into his WWE departure, highs and lows, UFC preparation, and more pro wrestling talk than he has engaged in anywhere else since the Colt Cabana podcast.

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Chris Jericho Talks WWE WrestleMania 31 and Bray Wyatt Feud

March 23, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Chris Jericho has always been one of the most outspoken WWE superstars when it comes to media. That is why it is always newsworthy when the Ayatollah of Rock and Rolla speaks including some very interesting insight on WrestleMania 31 and the current WWE landscape.

Jericho is out doing publicity for his new WWE home video release, “The Road is Jericho: Epic Stories & Rare Matches from Y2J”. Jericho spoke to Scott Fishman of the Miami Herald about a variety of topics including WrestleMania 31, his feud with Bray Wyatt, and more.

Jericho spoke about his feud with Bray Wyatt. “In this day, most of the guys are newer,” he said. “That’s just the cycle of wrestling. I’m fortunate enough to be doing this for 25 years and can still do this at a high level. I’m still Chris Jericho. As far as years in the ring, I have more than Triple H. I have more than Kane. I think only Goldust and Undertaker really have as many years in the ring. Just to stay in the company and continue to work, you have to work with the younger guys. I think that is important to do that.

This is why I included the Bray Wyatt match on the DVD because I thought it was a great match. I think the Randy Orton match I had was a great match. I don’t always want it to be a career retrospective just based around 1999 to 2004 or whatever. I’ve had great matches every year in my career, so I think it’s important to support that and continue to remind people of that. I’ve enjoyed working with Bray Wyatt. I think the cage match we had on Raw was tremendous. One of the best ones I’ve done. I think the match I had with Orton at [Night of Champions] is the best one we’ve ever had.

Jericho also offered his thoughts on WrestleMania 31 with an interesting proposal for what he’d like to do if he returned. “I like the concept. It amazes every year. It’s always good,” Jericho said. “Of course, I want to see Triple H and Sting. I know what kind of match it’s going to be because I’ve seen Sting in TNA for the last 10 years. It’s not like he is going to come back and be different in the ring. The storyline is what counts. I’m excited for Brock [Lesnar] and Roman Reigns. I’m a big Reigns fan. I’ve been a supporter of his for years. I think the [Intercontinental championship] ladder match will be great. There is a lot of stuff on there. I think it’s pretty cool NXT is doing a big building before WrestleMania as well, 5,000 seats.

“There are a lot of guys there I would like to work with. I would like to work with [Finn] Bálor. I would like to work with Sami Zayn and [Adrian] Neville. Even [Dean] Ambrose, [Seth] Rollins and Reigns I would like to work with. I would like to work with Daniel Bryan as a heel. I think I can bring something out of him that he hasn’t been seen. It is one thing the company really doesn’t have is strong heels. Maybe they have strong heels, but not the way Jericho would be if the circumstances were right. That would be interesting to come back as a heel.”

I think that Jericho is onto something there and I think he’d be a great investment for the company. Sticking Jericho with the up and coming NXT guys on the road and on big shows would payoff big for those guys. Jericho has found something of a niche of being the established guy who works with these up and comers from Bray Wyatt to Dolph Ziggler to CM Punk to Randy Orton to John Cena when Cena was getting hot and I think all of those guys came out of those programs better for it.

Check out the entire interview where Jericho talks about his DVD, his role in Sharknado 3, Fozzy, and more.

WWE: The Road is Jericho, Epic Stories & Rare Matches from Y2J

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Upcoming Jerry Lawler WWE DVD Misses the Mark

March 20, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

My favorite pro wrestling territory of all-time was Memphis wrestling. Jerry Lawler captivated fans with his emotional interviews and gritty battles. Sadly none of this will be captured on an upcoming WWE home video on the King.

The WWE will paying tribute to the King with an upcoming DVD chronicling their version of his career for WWE fans. An early look at the matches is highly disappointing as there is very little of Lawler at his best. If you didn’t know better you’d think that Lawler’s greatest came in WWE ring which is unfortunate for a guy whose best came elsewhere.

It’s early but Wrestling DVD News revealed the content listing for the upcoming Lawler DVD. The UK website released a few matches every day on the upcoming WWE compilation. The full content listing according to the website looks like this.

DISC 1:

Documentary:

Intro
Early Years
High School
Growing up a Memphis Wrestling Fan
Father Passes Away
Jerry’s Art Teacher
Jerry’s Start in Wrestling
Passing the Torch
Family Life as a Wrestler
Building a Star
A New Beginning for Memphis Wrestling
Andy Kaufman
Memphis Wrestling in the 1980s
Jerry’s Start in the WWE
Announcing Career
Running for Mayor of Memphis
Leaving & Returning to the WWE
Hall of Fame
1st WWE Title Match
WrestleMania XXVII
Heart Attack
Closing

DISC 2:

Empty Arena Match
Jerry Lawler vs. Terry Funk
Memphis Wrestling • April 25, 1981

Jerry Lawler vs. Andy Kaufman
Memphis Wrestling • April 5, 1982

No Disqualification, Loser Leaves Town Match for the Southern Heavyweight Championship
Jerry Lawler vs. “Superstar” Bill Dundee
Memphis Wrestling • June 6, 1983

Jerry Lawler vs. Eddie Gilbert
Pro-Wrestling USA • October 20, 1984

Jerry Lawler vs. Curt Hennig
AWA Championship Wrestling • March 12, 1988

Jerry Lawler on Being AWA Champion
AWA Championship Wrestling • May 29, 1988

AWA & WCCW Championship Unification Match
Jerry Lawler vs. Kerry Von Erich
World Class Championship Wrestling • September 24, 1988

Jerry Lawler’s WWE Debut
Prime Time Wrestling • December 7, 1992

Jerry Lawler vs. Jim Powers
RAW • April 5, 1993

King’s Court with Giant Gonzales
Wrestling Challenge • May 23, 1993

Jerry Lawler interrupts Bret Hart’s coronation
King of the Ring • June 13, 1993

King’s Court with Tiny Tim
RAW • July 19, 1993

Jerry Lawler vs. Owen Hart
Wrestling Challenge • July 25, 1993

Bret Hart vs. Bam Bam Bigelow
RAW • July 26, 1993

King Foolish
RAW • April 11, 1994

King’s Court with “Rowdy” Roddy Piper
RAW • June 6, 1994

Jerry Lawler vs. “Rowdy” Roddy Piper
King of the Ring • June 19, 1994

Casket Match
Jerry Lawler vs. The Undertaker
White Plains, NY • September 28, 1994

DISC 3:

King’s Court with William Shatner
RAW • January 9, 1995

Kiss My Foot Match Training #1
RAW • June 5, 1995

Kiss My Foot Match Training #2
RAW • June 12, 1995

“Kiss My Foot Match”
Jerry Lawler vs. Bret Hart
King of the Ring • June 25, 1995

Jerry Lawler vs. Al Jackson
Superstars • March 23, 1996

Jerry Lawler vs. Jake “The Snake” Roberts
SummerSlam • August 18, 1996

The Great Debate – Jerry Lawler vs. Paul E. Dangerously
RAW • March 10, 1997

Jerry Lawer & Rob Van Dam vs. The Headbangers
Shotgun Saturday Night • June 14, 1997

Jerry Lawler vs. Tommy Dreamer
ECW Hardcore Heaven • August 17, 1997

Jerry Lawler & Brian Christopher vs. Flash Funk & Scott Taylor
Shotgun Saturday Night • October 14, 1997

Jerry Lawler vs. Tazz
SummerSlam • August 27, 2000

Legends Match
Jerry Lawler vs. Ric Flair
RAW • November 29, 2004

Jerry Lawler – Hall of Fame Induction
Hall of Fame • March 31, 2007

TLC Match for the WWE Championship
The Miz vs. Jerry Lawler
RAW • November 29, 2010

Jerry Lawler vs. Michael Cole
Special Guest Referee: Stone Cold Steve Austin
WrestleMania XXVII • April 3, 2011

BLU-RAY EXCLUSIVES:

Stories:

Meeting Jimmy Hart
Jerry’s First Match
The King Gets His Crown
Mid-South Coliseum
Life on the Road
Sam Bass
The King vs. The King?
Living Clean
Jim Ross
Brian Christopher: Mexican Shooter

NWA World Heavyweight Championship Match
Ric Flair vs. Jerry Lawler
Memphis Wrestling • August 4, 1982

Wrestler vs. Boxer & Manager Match
Jerry Lawler vs. Andy Kaufman & Jimmy Hart
Memphis Wrestling • November 21, 1983

King’s Court with Jerry Lawler interviewing himself
Wrestling Challenge • June 27, 1993

Jerry Lawler & Nova vs. The Prototype (John Cena) & Sean O’Haire
OVW Wrestling • June 28, 2002

After Raw Birthday Celebration
RAW • November 29, 2010

The Lawler vs. Kaufman stuff is great but it needs all of Kaufman, Jimmy Hart, and Lawler’s promos to be truly appreciated. I was pleasantly surprised to see the Lawler vs. Dundee Loser Leaves Town Match on here. The same goes with the Lawler vs. Terry Funk Empty Arena Match. Maybe they are all there but my gut tells me no. Documenting Lawler’s feud without including matches, videos, and promos from classic feuds with Jimmy Hart, Austin Idol, Eddie Gilbert, (that PWU match is nothing more than a glorified squash match) and Nick Bockwinkel is quite honestly pointless.

Don’t get me wrong. I am glad Lawler is getting a payday out of this and it is always nice to be featured in a WWE documentary. That said, re-telling his story with your own spin is not what I’d call a tribute. If you really want to see Lawler at his best, you are better off going on YouTube or looking through forums for Lawler compilations from Memphis. There are plenty that are more worth your time than this disappointing production.

WWE: It’s good to be the King: The Jerry Lawler Story

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Vince McMahon Trying To Sign Brock Lesnar Before WrestleMania

March 19, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Brock Lesnar is a lucky man! The WWE world champion is about to become combat sports’ hottest free agent. Vince McMahon is up against the clock as he hopes to mitigate a potential public relations disaster.

We all saw it coming…well everyone but Vince McMahon. When Brock Lesnar returned to the WWE in 2012 with a contract that would come due after WrestleMania, most predicted that this would blow up in Vince’s face at some point. Yet for some reason Vince ignored the warnings and did the unthinkable, booked Brock as an unbeatable champion going into Mania without a contract renewal.

This is much different than the Montreal Screw Job. Vince had Bret under contract and allowed Bret to go negotiate a new deal. The WWE was involved in a ratings war with WCW and the business was just much different. Bret wanted to stay but Vince wanted him to go. Vince wants Brock to stay and Brock wants to test the waters. Again, how did nobody see this coming?

Brock’s unstoppable reign as WWE champion is one year too late. Brock renewed his contract in 2013 and signed a two-year extension. This storyline could have been booked going into WrestleMania 30 with none of the ramifications that Vince faces in 2015. Was the timing right? Probably not with the Daniel Bryan explosion, but Brock was locked up for another year. This is bad for business and great for Brock.

Dave Meltzer on his latest F4Wonline.com podcast reported that Vince is working feverishly to re-sign Brock before Mania. Meltzer speculates that Brock will probably play it out and hit free agency. With the UFC and Bellator salivating at the chance of bringing Lesnar back to MMA, the WWE champion has several options. The only leverage Vince has in enticing Brock to re-sign is to keep the title on him post-Mania. However, most reports indicate that Brock isn’t the kind of guy to get excited about an extended WWE title reign.

In an incredible twist of irony all roads lead back to CM Punk. Yes that CM Punk. If it were not for CM Punk walking out of the company last year and signing with the UFC, there would be less of an urgency to keep Brock. In today’s WWE economic model it may not necessarily make sense to keep him from a dollars and cents standpoint. However, thank to Punk, Vince does not want to give investors the impression that he is losing his big stars to the UFC. Vince, Triple H, and many WWE executives have told their shareholders for years that the UFC is not a competitor. That can’t be said anymore if he loses two of his biggest stars to the rival organization in less than a year.

My gut feeling is that Brock walks out of WrestleMania a free agent. No matter what Vince offers him, it makes no sense for Lesnar to re-sign before talking to the MMA groups. Even if he doesn’t want to fight, the negotiations will only earn him leverage for a new WWE deal. Unless Brock is really enticed by a path which includes retaining the WWE title at 31, it makes no sense for him to re-sign.

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Kevin Nash Expected To Round out WWE 2015 Hall Of Fame Class

March 18, 2015 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

The final entry into the WWE Hall of Fame is expected to be announced Monday night. The final entrant is scheduled to close the show, surely creating controversy as always. Let the political conspiracy theories begin!

Former WWE and WCW world champion Kevin Nash is scheduled to be inducted into this year’s WWE Hall of Fame. The official announcement is slated to come on the next Monday Night RAW. Shawn Michaels is scheduled to induct Nash and the two will close out this year’s festivities.

Like him or not you can’t argue with the choice. Nash is a former champion of both organizations but it is his impact on the business overall that earns him the nod. Nash’s jump to WCW in 1996 along with Scott Hall was the catalyst for the biggest economic boom in the history of pro wrestling. While he continues to be a polarizing personality, Nash is certainly deserving of the honor.

The controversy lies in the close of the show. Nash will likely close out a show which features the induction of Randy “Macho Man” Savage. It was expected by many that Hulk Hogan inducting Savage would headline the festivities. I am a much bigger Savage fan than I am of Nash’s, however you can certainly argue who drew more money and had a bigger impact. That isn’t a slight on either, as I am just trying to look at it through objective eyes.

I don’t think anyone is surprised that Nash is entering the Hall. I am a bit surprised it’s happening now. This would seem to indicate that his in-ring career is officially over. It is also surprising given Nash’s recent difficulties with the company. The company suspended Nash after he was arrested on a domestic abuse charge. Nash was reportedly furious and it appeared the relationship was in jeopardy. I would have expected the WWE to wait another year when Nash’s outside issues aren’t as fresh.

In comparisons to recent Hall of Fame events, this year’s show is probably one of the weakest. Nash is fairly polarizing and I can’t imagine that there is a large base of fans excited to watch him get inducted. Savage on the other hand is another story. There is a lot of excitement surrounding Savage’s induction into the WWE HOF. Yet once word gets out that he will be playing second fiddle to Nash, I wonder if that news will result in any public backlash.

Here is a look at this year’s complete list…
Kevin Nash (TBA)
“Macho Man” Randy Savage
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Rikishi
Tatsumi Fujinami
The Bushwhackers
Alundra Blayze
Larry Zbyszko

It’s not a bad class but I wouldn’t call it one of the best. It’s a little disappointing that there are no US old school inductees, especially with rumors of Ray Stevens going in. Between Hogan inducting Savage, Michaels inducting Nash, Arnold going in, and Bruno Sammartino inducting Zbysko it will be fairly star-studded. Yet in the end it’s hard to complain about anything when the Macho Man is finally getting his long awaited due.

WWE: The Destruction of the Shield

The Randy Savage Story DVD

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