Roman Reigns is making some news for a rare fan Q&A he participated in over the weekend at Comic Con in Philadelphia. One comment in particular is creating a buzz in which Reigns shoots down a past claim about who created the Shield.
Reigns took part in a fun Fan Q&A at Comic Con. Before I go further I think Reign’s critics need to watch this to see a side of Reigns they rarely see on television. He is personable, engaging, witty, and seemed like he had a real great time being there. It was refreshing to see this side of Reigns as opposed to the guy created by WWE on Monday nights. The stripped down version of Reigns sans scripts appears to have a lot more potential than the one we are accustomed to seeing.
“So, and this, I don’t know, this will probably blow some people’s minds and then some people will be like ‘oh, you’re full of s***’ but I don’t f***ing care either way: The Shield was my idea. What happened was, at the time the head writer was Eric Pankowski. He called me up one day and he was like ‘okay, uh, nobody knows you’re going to turn heel but we want to stick a stable with you.
I’m willing to do the heel stable thing but why don’t we pick three guys from FCW that are ready instead of using two guys, you know what I mean? They would just be treading water. Who cares? How many times are these guys going to turn?
“The idea was [WWE] were supposed to be my group. Things f***ing change. They like to take other people’s ideas, make it their own idea, and then tout how awesome they are.”
Reigns told the fans at Comic Con the only thing Punk created was the Pepsi tattoo on his shoulder. This is just another instance where another one of Punk’s former colleagues has discredited an account or claim Punk made in his Colt Cabana podcast interview. So keep in mind that while what Punk said made him seem like a real cool outlaw, how much of it is true and how much of it is exaggerated will always be up for debate.
CM Punk is making some waves with some recent comments about his former trade. The former WWE champion who was once a big pro wrestling fan has now to come to despise it and is a lot less impressed with his former skill set than most of you are.
Punk did a lengthy Q&A with SI.com and whether it is the door officially closing on pro wrestling in his household due to his wife retiring, a million-dollar lawsuit, or pressure, he does not have any kind things to say about his pro wrestling career and the WWE. So for you wrestling fans if you think Punk is coming into the UFC and fighting for you, he is here to tell you that he isn’t.
“What does it mean to be a good fake wrestler? That’s an identity crisis that I think I struggled with. It doesn’t matter if you’re the best, someone else picks who they want in the top spot.
It’s fake. People always get offended by that word. ‘No, we like to say it’s pre-determined.’ For whatever reason, people get angry at fake. Pre-determined eases the blow? It’s fake. At the end of the day it doesn’t really mean anything. So after a while, it was, ‘Let’s just really fight and see what happens.’ Now I get to.”
It’s interesting that Punk would go so far as to call it fake. It is what it is but for a guy that admittedly suffered countless concussions and injuries, you would think that fake would be a word that offended him. It certainly offends a lot of his former peers I can tell you that much. It’s not that anyone is trying to say it’s real, it is just that these guys and girls who do it for a living work hard and suffer through quite a lot to make it and sustain their spots. To demean it now that he and his wife are out is a little disappointing.
“Backstage [in WWE] is so shark-infested and political. It’s almost comical. A lot of people are more interested in the backstage goings-on than what they see on television. A lot of ways it’s more fascinating. It’s a competition for sure.
You wonder, Did you really punch me in the face? You say it was an accident but I know you and I think you’re a prick and I’ve seen you do this to other people. Are you doing this to me? Did you kick me in the ribs as hard as you can? In MMA I know the other guy is going to try and kick me in the ribs as hard as he can. No, not maliciously. But I’ve been in the wrestling ring with plenty of guys where I’m wondering, Is he is trying hurt me? Is he mad because he is losing? I don’t have to deal with that bullsh*t any more. It’s a godsend.”
The guy is entitled to his opinion but he’s not real smart here. He is mocking the entire fan base that he is expected to bring with him to the UFC. He wasn’t signed to a UFC contract without one fight under his belt because they thought he’d be a champion. He was signed because he was expected to bring the pro wrestling fan base over with him. Coming out with so harshly against pro wrestling isn’t going to help.
Punk was also asked about other WWE stars getting into the UFC. “Half of them talk about it; none of them do it. They have their little comfortable safety net doing WWE stuff, I guess. I would much rather give it a shot than just talk about it.”
Punk not only angered WWE peers and fans but has probably made several of his UFC peers and many fans made as well when he called being a UFC fighter an “easy job.”
“[In WWE] you’re on the road pretty much every day of the year, at least when you’re in the position I was in. Fly into a town. Find a gym, work out. Go to the building. Stretch. Wrestle. Cool down. Drive to the next town. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Now I’m just training. What an easy job, right? It’s way better for me. I was burnt out on traveling, so over it. People think I’m crazy, living in Chicago and driving to Milwaukee every day to train. That’s the easiest thing in the world! Ninety minutes from my front door and I can be in my own bed every night? It’s a different lifestyle and it’s done me wonders. Amazing. I love it.
The real tough sons of bitches are the guys who train as hard as I do and then have to go to their nine-to-five job. I’m fortunate enough to do this as a full-time job. So I get to train two or three times a day. Things are going to be okay for me.”
I have to hand it to Punk. He alienated two fan bases in one interview. That is quite an accomplishment in a day’s work. While I am sure referring to being a UFC fighter as an “easy job” was not meant as a slight against his peers, it will certainly be taken as such.
There is also something quite sad in the way a guy like Punk who used to love pro wrestling has grown to absolutely hate it and everything about it.
The WWE were body slammed twice this past week. The retirement of AJ Lee became the major conversation online for the majority of late Friday afternoon and evening.
The news of one of the company’s top attractions and one of the more athletic talents the women’s division has had since the days of Lita and Trish Stratus left the majority of readers with their jaws hitting the floor.
The girl with the cute smile, rock hard abs and a penchant for causing all sorts of chaos has left the circus for higher ground.
Sometimes, you just got to love crazy chicks. And with her sudden – yet not so surprising decision, the WWE will now look to Paige to fill the kind of role Lee did – the uneven parallel of a female wrestler who can actually perform and leave her opponent and the fans guessing which character they will see on a nightly basis.
The new crazy chick in town is a Casper-like athlete with a future that is bright – given she allows the company to mold her into the true superstar she is already becoming. That proverbial torch has been passed, and now we anxiously await the coming out party of sorts for a former Divas champion who must step her game up a bit.
If you ask me, Paige is more than ready to keep that flame burning.
The news of AJ Lee’s retirement came the same day the company was dealing with a potentially damaging situation involving former employee Justin Roberts, who claimed the company inducted Connor ‘The Crusher’ Michalek more out of publicity than anything else. Roberts said the WWE used Connor’s battle with cancer as a marketing tool to curry favor with media and the fans at the company’s Hall of Fame ceremonies.
When I read Justin’s blog, a few things ran through my mind. First, the WWE is an organization you can love and hate at the same time. Second, his words seem a bit self-centered – as though he felt he needed some validation from the fans who read the piece since he did not get it working at WWE. Third, Connor was every bit deserving of the award and maybe more so than others. The WWE fans will not identify with the guy who cleans towels. They will identify with wrestlers and characters associated with in-ring action. That is what they pay money to see. Connor’s story grips at everyone. And for the most part, Justin was paid good money to do his job. He may be the nicest guy in the world, but he got to work in a place that is Disney World in terms of wrestling royalty – good or bad.
A boy who has cancer and is welcomed into the WWE family – that is the story of a lifetime. I am a writer of sports and pro wrestling and a CANCER PATIENT. I love the Connor story and its happy (yet unhappy) ending. Roberts’ comments – although they come across as genuine, also seem like a hand ended slap at the award and the care the WWE put into it. Yes, it is a feel good story and was carefully chosen. It was also the right thing to do.
The WWE uses events to gain momentum – and the use of Michalek’s situation should not be viewed as a ploy to sell tickets alone. Roberts outlines in his blog but he also says he fully supported the company’s decision to put the youngster in the Hall of Fame. Sounds like he is talking out of both sides of his mouth and is bitter about the WWE’s decision to let him go.
According to the Washington Post, part of the WWE’s restructuring of the story was to cut Roberts role out completely, despite the fact Roberts introduced the young boy to both Triple H and Stephanie McMahon.
While the Lee situation was bound to happen, mainly because her husband, CM Punk is still a lightning rod for controversy within the WWE and fans still cheer his name at every live event, it is not unexpected.
The comments made by the former employee, although they may be true, were made while the WWE is experiencing a rise in support from the WrestleMania events over last weekend. Hopefully neither eventwill bury any of the momentum the company is experiencing. Both situations may be challenging to Vince McMahon and his brand, but the reality of it is these are things that happen when sour grapes may be involved in the business. The worst thing about all of this isn’t that Lee left the WWE. The sad thing is the reasons why the WWE placed Michalek in the Hall of Fame are being questioned – something that Roberts should be ashamed of for questioning in the first place.
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.
Originally posted April 1, 2012 – It was the old WWE guard that ruled WrestleMania 28. The Rock returned and finally settled his score with John Cena after a year, but it was Triple H and The Undertaker that stole the show and pulled off one of the most dramatic WrestleMania matches in WWE history.
The Rock pinned John Cena in a match that was made by the awesome crowd reaction in Miami. The crowd was about 75/25 in favor of The Rock. The atmosphere alone will certainly make this one a classic. The two opened up trading headlock combinations to a lot of Cena booing. The Rock went for a Sharpshooter early that was countered by Cena rolling out of the ring.
Back in the ring Cena wore The Rock down with a few shoulder tackles and then a clothesline. A “wicked clothesline” according to Michael Cole. Cena then applied an awkward looking bear hug to The Rock. The Rock punched out of it but wound up hitting the floor.
Cena dropped The Rock on the announcer’s table. The Rock was holding his ribs. Cena kicked the ribs and rolled The Rock back inside the ring for a two-count. Cena hit a belly-to-belly suplex on The Rock for another two-count. The Rock powered out but Cena went back to the bear hug. Yes, another bear hug. 1981 called and they want their rest-hold back. The Rock finally hit a DDT to break Cena’s momentum, yet he continued selling the ribs.
The Rock finally hit his usual set of moves and went for The People’s Elbow but was cut off by an STF attempt by Cena. Cena wound up regaining control and dropping a Five Knuckle Shuffle. The Rock slipped out of an A.A. and the two double downed on a clothesline.
Both guys got back up and traded punches. I should point out that Cena was in control for most of the early going here in the match, almost making this look like a squash match. Cena had an answer for everything while The Rock struggled. The fans stayed with it though which kept it strong.
The Rock hit a Rock Bottom out of nowhere for a close fall. Cena recovered again. I don’t even know why they bothered booking the match if they weren’t going to give The Rock much. It really came off like a big squash at this point.
The Rock tackled Cena and applied a Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring. Cena broke the hold on the ropes. Rock went back to the hold. Cena broke the hold again on the ropes. The People’s Champ went to the floor and dropped some elbows and punches on Cena. The Rock sent Cena into the steel stairs. Cena then flipped into the ring and caught The Rock in the middle with an STF.
Once The Rock got out of the STF he hit a Samoan Drop on Cena. Both guys were down. On their feet, both guys traded punches and kicks. The Rock hit a Spine Buster on Cena. It was People’s Elbow time! Cena rolled up The Rock for a near fall. Cena dropped The Rock and hit a slingshot into the turnbuckle, followed by a near fall. The Rock blocked what looked like a Superplex attempt by Cena. The Rock then hit a cross body block off the top, Cena rolled through, hit the A.A. and got a near fall. The crowd went absolutely nuts for this sequence!
Cena then went for a People’s Elbow. The Rock caught him with a Rock Bottom and dropped him for the three-count and the win! The place went nuts for the unexpected finish.
Obviously they are setting up a rematch here. I have to be honest, I have very little interest in seeing that. This was a fun match for the atmosphere alone but the match itself was a bit disappointing to me. To be fair, it is possible that they are saving their best for the rematch.
The Undertaker went 20-0 defeating Triple H in one of the most dramatic WrestleMania matches you will ever see. I can’t rave about this match enough. A bald Undertaker and Triple H started off the match with The Undertaker dropping Triple H with several right hands. They had a nice back and forth in the open in your typical pro wrestling brawl. The explanation about The Undertaker’s bald head was that he cut his hair off until Triple H accepted a rematch.
Triple H was the first to hit the cage as the Dead Man threw him to the fence while both were on the floor. The Undertaker pushed Shawn Michaels out of the way early as Michaels tried to check on Triple H. Triple H took the brunt of the punishment early on. The Undertaker also went “old school” and walked the ropes early as well.
Triple H finally got the upper hand using steel steps that The Undertaker brought into the ring. The Undertaker reversed a Pedigree attempt on the steps. I want to note how great the crowd was during this match. The audience was super hot and popping for everything they did. Hunter regained the upper hand after dropping The Undertaker with a Spine Buster on the steps. The Undertaker then grabbed Triple H in a triangle choke or “Hell’s Gate” as the WWE calls it which Hunter broke by slamming him.
Triple H then proceeded to absolutely brutalize The Undertaker with several chair shots to the back. Michaels told Hunter to cover him but he didn’t. Hunter then shoved Michaels aside and continued pounding The Undertaker with chair shots, telling Michaels to end it or he would. The Undertaker told Michaels not to stop the match as Hunter yelled “stay down!” Triple H finally went for a cover with no avail.
The story here was Hunter continually asking Shawn to end the match or he would. Triple H then brought the sledgehammer into the match and told Shawn he was ending it one way or the other. The Undertaker kicked out of a sledgehammer shot to a big ovation. Michaels finally grabbed the sledgehammer out of Hunter’s hands.
The Undertaker wound up choking Shawn Michaels with the “Hell’s Gate” when HBK went to check on him. The Undertaker did this to stop Michaels from stopping the match. Michaels was out at this point. Now Hunter was caught in the triangle choke but the match had no referee at this point. Hunter grabbed the sledgehammer and dropped it. Hunter was choked out at this point but Michaels was still out cold as well.
New referee Charles Robinson ran out to get into the match and take over. The Undertaker then choke slammed Triple H for a near fall. These guys had great drama going at this point. The Undertaker then choke slammed Robinson. The Undertaker pulled Hunter up for a Tombstone, Michaels nailed Taker with Sweet Chin Music, Triple H Pedigreed him, and Undertaker kicked out in a classic WrestleMania moment.
Triple H then tossed Michaels outside of the ring. The Undertaker nailed Hunter with several shots and dropped him for Snake Eyes and a big boot. The Undertaker Tombstoned Hunter for a near fall in another classic moment. The match was at a level above last year’s at this point and I loved last year’s match.
After a back and forth Triple H nailed a Pedigree for another close three count. They had 60,000+ on their feet. The Undertaker had a chair and Hunter had his sledgehammer at this point. The Undertaker then proceeded to brutalize and pay back a Hunter with chair shots. The chair shots were so hard it bent the chair up. Triple H kicked out once again.
Triple H gave Taker a crotch chop sign and was then immediately dropped by the Dead Man. The Undertaker went for the Tombstone, dropped Hunter, and got the three-count for his 20th WrestleMania win in an absolute classic. I didn’t think they could do it but they topped last year’s match and more. Great match!
Both guys were laid out due to exhaustion as the cage went up. Michaels looked down at both men. Triple H was out cold and The Undertaker could barely get to his feet. Michaels pulled Undertaker up and the two hugged. There was a fireworks celebration that followed to celebrate 20-0. The Undertaker staggered around a bit after the fireworks. He and Michaels pulled up Triple H and walked him to the back.
CM Punk defeated Chris Jericho to retain the WWE championship. John Laurinaitis told CM Punk in the back before the match that he would change the WWE championship if Punk lost his temper and got disqualified. Jericho spent the early portion of the match trying to lure Punk into getting himself disqualified. Eventually the two wound up breaking into a pretty good match. The highlight of the match was Jericho suplexing Punk over the top from the ring to the floor.
The match was really hurt by following the Hell in a Cell match. It was a good match but the crowd really took awhile to get into the match. In all fairness the crowd seemed to be pretty into it towards the end. Punk won the match with the Anaconda Vice in the center of the ring. Jericho tapped out.
Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus for the WWE world heavyweight title opened the show. I loved the choice of going with Bryan vs. Sheamus, great way to set the pace of the show. Behind the scenes it was a great spot for them as they don’t have to worry about match time being cut. Bryan had a ton and I mean a ton of “Yes” signs in the house.
The match was over in a matter of seconds. Sheamus nailed Bryan with a Brogue Kick right after the bell was sounded for the win and the WWE world heavyweight championship in 18 seconds. I hated this. What a waste of one of the best workers in the company here. It reminded me of when I went to see a New Japan show live in the 1990s and was pumped to see Jushin Liger vs. Ultimo Dragon and yet they ended the match in about 90 seconds. I have one word for the booking here, “No!”
Kane defeated Randy Orton in a bit of a surprise. Orton was going for the RKO from the top but was instead chokeslammed from the second rope. I am not sure what is going on with Orton but it almost appears that the guy is getting buried. Quite frankly he was treated much better when he was an undisciplined troublemaker. I wouldn’t call it a bad match but it was certainly a waste of Orton in my opinion.
The Big Show defeated Cody Rhodes to win the WWE I-C title. Not a bad match, but more like your typical television bout. Most of the match saw Show throw Cody around until Cody worked over Show’s knee. The finish came on a second Disaster Kick attempt by Cody who was caught and dropped by The Big Show. Big Show pulled the strap down ala Jerry Lawler and knocked him out with the right hand. Show ends Cody’s 233 WWE intercontinental title reign. Show cried after the match and really put the win over nicely here.
Maria Menounos pinned Beth Phoenix to win the Divas tag team match. This was actually a bit better than I expected, not that I expected much. The biggest disappointment was the unflattering pants attire of Maria Menounos. Hey if you are going to force me to watch her wrestle, at least stick her in a bikini
The Miz pinned Zack Ryder to win the 12-man tag team match. John Laurinaitis will now have total control of SmackDown and Monday Night RAW as the G.M. The finish came when Zack had The Miz set up for the finish and Eve Torres came into the ring. The referee turned around and told Eve to leave. Zack confronted Eve, turned around, and received the Skull Crushing Finale. Eve kicked Zack in the groin after the match. I was expecting a lot more here, although to be fair they were following the Hell in a Cell match.
Overall I’d say it was a one match show. The Undertaker vs. Triple H match was so good that I would recommend the show simply for that. The Rock vs. Cena felt flat to me as a match, although the atmosphere made this at minimum a WrestleMania classic moment. The rest of the card was good but nothing else really stood out to me. I’d rate this one slightly better than last year but that isn’t really saying much now is it?
The elephants in the room here are Batista and Brock Lesnar. It was reported by numerous sources over the weekend that both were at WrestleMania. Most fans assumed that they would be a part of the show, specifically Brock Lesnar. I would be absolutely shocked if Lesnar does not appear on RAW tomorrow night in some major angle. The plan at this point appears to be to announce a big match tomorrow or at least set up a match tomorrow for next year. The WWE would generally shake up RAW the night after WrestleMania in the past with big angles. Look for that this Monday on RAW. Otherwise I have no explanation for the absence of Lesnar and Batista.
Full WWE WrestleMania 28 results & winners… Primo & Epico defeated Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd and The Usos in a Triple Threat Tag Team match for the WWE Tag Team Championship
Sheamus defeated Daniel Bryan for the World Heavyweight Championship
Kelly Kelly and Maria Menounos defeated Beth Phoenix and Eve Torres
Team Johnny (David Otunga (captain), Mark Henry, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, The Miz, and Drew McIntyre) (with Vickie Guerrero) defeated Team Teddy (Santino Marella (captain), R-Truth, Kofi Kingston, Zack Ryder, The Great Khali, and Booker T) (with Hornswoggle)&Aksana vs. in a 12-Man Tag Team match to determine General Manager of both the Raw and SmackDown brands
Kane defeated Randy Orton
The Big Show defeated Cody Rhodes for the WWE Intercontinental Championship
CM Punk defeated Chris Jericho to retain the WWE Championship
The Undertaker defeated Triple H Hell in a Cell match with Shawn Michaels as Special Guest Referee
The Rock defeated John Cena
The Twitter beef between Stephanie McMahon and AJ Lee has taken on a life of its own. Just days after the company slammed Lee’s husband CM Punk, Lee took the offense and humiliated McMahon on Twitter leading to all kinds of speculation from fans and media.
The tweet exchange came shortly Stephanie McMahon sent out a tweet in support of Patricia Arquette’s Oscar speech on women’s equality. Stephanie tweeted…
“Thank You Patty Arquette for having the courage to fight for women’s rights on such a grand platform,” in response to Arquette’s Oscar acceptance speech for winning Best Supporting Actress in the movie “Boyhood.”
Shortly thereafter, the WWE Diva responded with…
“Your female wrestlers have record selling merchandise and have starred in the highest rated segments of the show times. And yet they receive a fraction of the wages and screen time of the majority of the male roster.”
Ouch! Stephanie later tweeted that she thanked AJ for her opinion. According to a story in the new Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Stephanie was downright furious over the tweets. Stephanie felt humiliated and embarrassed. The newsletter also reports that Vince made her respond to the tweet. Finally the report indicates that AJ posted these tweets on her own and not as part of any kind of angle.
Anyone convinced that this is some kind of angle is working themselves into false hope. I don’t believe for a second that this is any kind of angle. I think what you had here was someone torn between her family and her dream job, on the brink of frustration and lashing out. Professional or unprofessional, I don’t think anyone could blame her in this situation.
That said, I would love to understand where she is getting her metrics. I can’t ever recall, at least during Lee’s era, a segment on RAW where the Divas drew the highest rating of the entire show. I have not read any reports of record-selling Divas merchandise as well. As for the wages, I don’t know what she makes but I always groan at entertainers or athletes who complain publicly about their salary. Nobody forced her to become a pro wrestler or work for the WWE. If her salary was that bad, she should go do something else.
On the flip side, Stephanie really opened a huge Pandora’s box with her tweet. Let’s call a spade a spade. Women have not exactly been portrayed in the best light in the WWE. Women are regularly mocked with dumb jokes and tasteless segments. They are booked as filler matches, rarely getting any kind of spotlight or promotion. It is what it is and unless Stephanie hasn’t watched her own show in the last five years, women’s equality is not a cause I’d jump on if I were her.
Regardless, this is just more fallout from the ugly divorce between CM Punk and the WWE. Unfortunately it looks like it is going to end with two of the most talented performers on the roster never to be seen again.
From the Montreal Screw Job to Vince McMahon’s steroid trial to Jeff Hardy wrestling intoxicated, check out the top 10 pro wrestling controversies caught on video.
This interesting video comes from the folks over at WatchMojo.com. Watch this video as WatchMojo.com countdown the top 10 pro wrestling controversies…as they see it.
It’s certainly an interesting video and the crew did a great job of digging up video. I don’t know if I’d necessarily agree with these, but they do get you thinking. Some are a little corny such as the end of the streak so take this list for what it is worth. Check out the video below which runs a little over fifteen minutes.
Here is the list for those of you that don’t want to watch the video.
The Death of Chris Benoit
The Montreal Screw Job
The Owen Hart Tragedy
CM Punk Walks Out of the WWE
The Mass Transit Incident
Vince McMahon’s Steroid Trial
Edge/Matt Hardy/Lita Love Triangle
The end of the Undertaker’s Streak
Muhammad Hassan (the gimmick in general)
Jeff Hardy vs. Sting at TNA Victory Road (Hard wrestles inebriated)
Honorable Mentions: Raven-Sandman Crucifix Angle, Live Edge/Lita Sex Show, Triple H-Katie Vick, The Fingerpoke of Doom, Lex Luger Shows Up on Nitro, David Arquette wins the WCW title
Interesting list but I can think of about a dozen off of the top of my head that were omitted. Also, including something like the end of the streak on a list with two tragedies is controversial in itself. Check it out for yourself and see what you think.
The WWE is fighting back against an Internet icon. The WWE is finally retaliating for statements made by CM Punk on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling. While Punk’s pipe bomb podcast may have been fun fodder, the end result may be some costly hours of entertainment.
Punk broke his silence back in November when he finally spoke out against the WWE on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast. The interview came just weeks after both parties reached an undisclosed settlement. To say that Punk’s interview painted the WWE badly would be a gross understatement. Punk’s allegations towards the company made the WWE look irresponsible, incompetent, and negligent in regards to the health and wellbeing of its performers.
Fans and pundits jumped on Punk’s back and went on the attack against the WWE. Specifically Punk’s statements made against the WWE regarding its doctor’s treatment of Punk were horrifying. Punk alleged that the WWE doctor misdiagnosed fatty tissue on his back which almost cost him his life. He also made severe allegations against the way they handle concussions. Pitchforks were lit, wagons were circled, and many were heavily critical of the WWE as a result of Punk’s allegations.
That was then, this is now. The WWE and its doctor are fighting back and fighting back hard. The doctor filed a lawsuit seeking over a $1 million from Punk and Cabana for what he claims were all false statements made about him on the podcast. The WWE is supporting its doctor and have posted a statement on its website in which they blast Punk.
“In light of CM Punk’s allegations regarding WWE’s medical staff and the subsequent defamation lawsuit filed by Dr. Amann against CM Punk, WWE continues to have the utmost confidence in the ability and expertise of our world-class team of physicians, including Dr. Amann.
CM Punk claimed this past November that during the Royal Rumble pay-per-view event on January 26, 2014 he performed with a baseball-sized, purple lump on his back located near the waistband of his tights. WWE’s investigation has shown the following:
CM Punk did not discuss this alleged condition with WWE’s team of physicians and trainers, nor did he discuss it with anyone in our Talent Relations department.
Subsequently, WWE has no medical records documenting this alleged condition.
The first time WWE was made aware of this alleged condition was when we received a letter from CM Punk’s attorney on August 22, 2014 after WWE terminated his contract.
here is clear video evidence from the 2014 Royal Rumble, which allows all to decide whether there is any appearance of a baseball-sized growth on CM Punk’s back.
The video in question is something to be seen. The video is all slow-motion close-ups of Punk’s back during the Royal Rumble. I will tell you this. I watched the video twice and saw no signs of any fatty lumps on Punk’s back. It should also be noted that comments were disabled on the video. Those could have been fun.
It’s funny because everyone just assumed that everything Punk was saying was the truth on those podcasts. I mentioned several times in blogs and tweets that while Punk’s allegations are damning, we can’t take them at face value. According the WWE he was not telling the truth and that could come back to hurt him.
I can take away a few things from this week. One, I don’t think AJ Lee is ever coming back to the WWE. I feel badly for her in that she appears to be caught in the middle of this crossfire. I just don’t know how you can go work for a company whose own doctor is trying to take a million dollars out of your bank account. That said, Divas generally have a short lifespan in the WWE and maybe she already had her exit plan all worked out.
I also think that it is odd that the company settled with Punk so fast if these claims weren’t true. Many assumed that Punk had the goods on the company with his claims on medical which resulted in a quick settlement. If he didn’t, why did the WWE settle? I can appreciate the WWE conducting a full investigation however before responding to Punk’s initial comments.
This is going to get ugly. It certainly reminds me of the ugliness that went down for years with the Warrior and Vince McMahon. The only difference here is I don’t think there is any way whatsoever we ever see Punk back in the WWE ever again.
CM Punk’s latest pipe bomb may wind up blowing up in his face. Punk along with Colt Cabana are on the opposite ends of a lawsuit as a result of things Punk said during his infamous Art of Wrestling podcast interview.
The lawsuit comes from WWE doctor Dr. Christopher Amann. The Cook County record reports that Amann is suing Punk and Cabana for more than $1 million in compensatory damages and an undetermined monetary amount of punitive damages due to claims that both Brook’s and Colton’s comments on the Nov. 26 episode were false, defamatory and portrayed him improperly.
The good doctor claims that the statements Punk made about the fatty deposit on his back and concussions were false. Punk claimed that the doctor misdiagnosed a fatty deposit on his back that almost cost him his life. He also made disparaging remarks about the way Amann handled his concussions. Amann claims that are neither true. Amann claims that he told Punk to leave the ring after he believed Punk suffered a concussion. He also claims that he never treated Punk’s lump on his back.
If you remember back to the podcast, Punk and Cabana mocked the doctor and the WWE Wellness program several times during the podcast. Cabana is also named in the suit for making the doctor appear lazy. The doctor says that everything both said about him or claimed were fabrications and untrue.
One of the first things I thought of when I read about this suit was Punk’s concussion. Not having anything more than a business law class in my MBA program, I have to think that Punk can use his concussion history as a defense. Maybe Punk says he confused the doctor with someone else, etc? I also have to wonder if this blows up in the WWE’s face somehow with Punk turning around and suing the company for his concussions. That said, I have to think that Punk’s foray into MMA will be used as a defense against him and thus nullify any claims.
This is certainly a case to watch. Punk is well off financially according to those close to him. However, a big settlement is a big settlement and when you aren’t regularly working, that hurts. I also have to think that Dr. Amann has access to better lawyers and this thing never gets to trial. I wish it would but I think it settles far before that happens.
There is also the AJ Lee factor. Here is a situation where the company doctor where she works is suing her husband, essentially suing her. I wonder whether or not we even see AJ back in a WWE ring at this point. This could get very interesting in a hurry.
While watching the segment between Triple H and Ric Flair from Raw on Monday night, I was reminded just how good the rivalry was between the “Nature Boy” and “The Icon” during their wars in WCW.
It also reminds me that if not for an injury to Magnum TA that nearly took his life and put him out of the wrestling business, that rivalry may never have happened.
Timing is everything in the business and injuries are all too real, causing changes in title reigns, opportunities and potential pushes for the promotion’s top stars. Even with the circumstances that had an effect on the emergence of Sting as the top face in WCW for years and the continual push for Flair to remain the top heel, wrestling fans were treated to one of the better feuds in the history of the business.
The fact Ric Flair was able to get under Triple H’s skin, which was a brilliant work by the creative team on Monday night, it showed Flair’s respect for his friend, Steve Borden. It also means when Sting does appear at Fast Lane and stands face to face with the COO of the WWE, sparks will fly.
Personally, I wonder what happens after Fast Lane and WrestleMania with the Sting character. Will he challenge other wrestlers for company supremacy? Who will be willing to give the 55-year old wrestler a feud worthy of two major matches at a pay-per-view? Would Bray Wyatt be the next man up to face the wrestler who fought to save both WCW and TNA?
Or, in this case because of his age and a match with Undertaker is not a viable option, nor is one with someone the caliber of Seth Rollins, will this be the only feud we see Sting appear in a WWE ring for?
TNA’S SPECIAL TALENT
While watching the match last Friday night between Bobby Roode and Austin Aries on Impact Wrestling, I was reminded once again how great both wrestlers are. Roode is the “franchise” of this company, if I may use the word loosely. The comparisons to Arn Anderson, which have been discussed for years, are very real.
Roode originally made his debut for TNA in 2004 as a member of Team Canada and went on to become a two-time NWA World Tag Team Champion with Eric Young. In 2008, Roode formed the tag team Beer Money, Inc. with James Storm and together the two of them went on to become four-time TNA World Tag Team Champions, while also holding the record for the longest reign as champions.
I could watch Roode in matches against Aries or Eric Young or even Jeff Hardy every week and not get bored.
And because Sting has finally joined the rank and file in the WWE, does Roode become the best wrestler never to have competed in the WWE, leaping over AJ Styles?
SUPPORT FOR CM PUNK
While the former WWE World Champion jumped to the octagon and the UFC, he still appears to be connected to professional wrestling as he trains for his new sport.
According to an interview he did with WISports.com, Brooks has spoken with his friend Lesnar, and the popular former NCAA wrestling national champion is in his corner. “I’ve talked to him and he’s offered all his help, even if it’s just bug him with a stupid question,” Brooks said.
“It’s cool to know [Lesnar] supports me. He’s a good guy to know, I think.”
Brooks went on to estimate when he’d be ready to take his first MMA fight, in the UFC. Though he isn’t sure when it will happen, he’s got a timeline for when he and his coaches will evaluate his progress and make a decision.