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By Mike Johnson on 2017-04-21 08:00:00

April 21st

On this day in history in ....

1973 - Giant Baba defeats Mark Lewin in the finals of the first ever All Japan Pro Wrestling Champion Carnival tournament.

1979 - Mike George defeats Jerry Stubbs in New Orleans, Louisiana for the Mid-South Wrestling Louisiana Heavyweight Title.

1980 - Ken Patera defeats Pat Patterson for the WWF Intercontinental Title in Madison Square Garden in New York City. This is the first time the IC Title is decided in the ring, as Patterson, the first champion, "won" the belt in a fictitious tournament in Rio De Janeiro.

1984 - Ricky Steamboat defeats Dick Slater for the United States Heavyweight Title in Greensboro, North Carolina, starting his third title reign. It would be over a decade before Steamboat wins this title again.

1998 - Scott Steiner was arrested for threatening an Atlanta Department Of Transportation Worker and then hitting him twice with his Ford pickup truck when the worker, who was directing traffic, wouldn't let Steiner drive down a lane that was being worked on in Cherokee County. The worker was not seriously injured.

2002 - WWF Backlash was held, headlined by Hulk Hogan winning his sixth WWF World Championship over nine years after his fifth reign had ended. Tim Whitehead wrote the following report:

WWF's Backlash turned out to be a disappointing show, at least to me. It came off almost like a WCW PPV, with a much stronger undercard and weaker top matches. Up until the Steve Austin vs. Undertaker match I would have given the show a clear thumb's up. But Austin vs. UT was ridiculously long to the point it became boring. The Hulk Hogan vs. Triple H main event also left a lot to be desired. Having Hogan win is an interesting experiment, but the match itself was very weak by WWF main event standards and, while there was great heat at first, and also at the end, the middle of the match saw the heat die. It's pretty clear that Vince McMahon wants to take advantage of the revived Hulkamania while it's still hot, which makes some sense, but only if they get the belt off Hogan the moment the nostalgia starts to fade.

This was the first WWF PPV in Kansas City since the death of Owen Hart. The only hint made was when Jim Ross noted that there were a lot of emotions in the building for a variety of reasons. Overall, JR & Jerry Lawler's commentary was average. Crowd heat was mostly okay.

TAJIRI beat BILLY KIDMAN to regain the Cruiserweight Title in 9:08. Torrie Wilson wore the geisha outfit again. They opened with some good stuff. Kidman hit a dropkick off the second rope for the first near fall. Tajiri took control on the floor and laid in the kicks. Kidman got tied up in the tree of woe and hit with a baseball slide. The pace slowed a little. Tajiri did the tarantula. In a neat move, Tajiri went for the handspring elbow and Kidman caught him with a dropkick. They went to a series of good near falls. Kidman missed on the shooting star press when Tajiri rolled clear. Lots of crowd heat by this point. Kidman hit a powerbomb off the second rope. Kidman got Tajiri up for another powerbomb but Tajiri misted him and scored the pin to regain the title. Afterward, Tajiri did an interview in Japanese and led Torrie off. Good opener. They're saving the Torrie turn for later.

SCOTT HALL beat BRADSHAW in 5:43. They did a deal before the match where Bradshaw and Faarooq saw each other for the first time since the split. X-Pac came out wearing Kane's mask. Hall & X-Pac were about to double on Bradshaw when Faarooq came out for the save. The match was mainly sluggish brawling. Hall looked pretty bad. Bradshaw hit his lariat and went for the pin but X-Pac helped Hall reach the ropes. Faarooq posted X-Pac. Hall then hit Bradshaw with the weakest low blow of all time and scored the pin using the tights. This one sucked.

Vince barged into Ric Flair's office with a smirk on his face. Vince remarked that Flair was now learning what it's like to be an owner, noting that whatever you do the wrestlers aren't satisfied, they're ungrateful, and distrustful. He said by making himself the special ref for the Austin vs. Undertaker match, Flair was either a fool or a genius. Vince sarcastically said he was beginning to relate to Flair. Flair said he'd never be like Vince, to which Vince responded that Flair could at least try. Flair refused to shake Vince's hand.

JAZZ beat TRISH STRATUS in 4:28 to retain the Women's Title. Molly Holly came out and said the fans want a champ who is pure and wholesome, not one like Trish who cheats and flaunts her body. Molly then walloped Trish with the microphone, threw her from the ring, and rammed her back into the stairs. Jazz arrived and dominated the wounded Trish. Trish made a comeback and scored a two with a neckbreaker. Jazz regained control and scored several near falls before finally forcing Trish to tap out to an STF. Of course, it was sold that Trish's back was injured from Molly's assault. Decent WWF women's match.

BROCK LESNAR defeated JEFF HARDY in 5:31 by TKO. Jeff replaced brother Matt, who was "still injured" from Lesnar's assault on RAW. Lita came out and looked totally helpless. Paul Heyman kept saying that it was Lita's fault that the Hardys were being mauled. Jeff dropkicked Lesnar off the apron at the start and did a crossbody off the top but Lesnar simply caught him. Lesnar pounded Jeff and tossed him across the ring with released suplexes. He gave Jeff three backbreakers. Jeff mounted a comeback with a corkscrew moonsault which surprised Lesnar. He gave Lesnar a low blow and hit the swanton but Lesnar kicked out. Jeff swung a chair and missed. Lesnar then did his trademark drop on Jeff on the chair. He gave Jeff three powerbombs and the ref stopped the match. JR & Lawler agreed that Heyman may be right when he says Lesnar is the next big thing. This was an effective match to put Lesnar over.

KURT ANGLE beat EDGE in 13:23. This was the best match on the show. Good crowd heat, too, including the requisite "Angle sucks" chants. Edge hit some lariats that had Angle reeling. Angle bumped out. After returning to the ring, Angle hit a suplex. They traded chops. Angle hit some more suplexes and scored some twos. Angle hooked a sleeper. Edge came back with a big suplex. Edge did some good stuff and got some near falls. Angle hit a killer released German suplex. Edge blocked an ankle lock attempt. Angle hit the repeat German suplexes. Angle got vaulted out and Edge hit him with a crossbody on the floor. Edge hit a missile kick for a near fall. Angle scored two with his Olympic slam. Edge did a great reversal to escape an ankle lock, getting a near fall. Angle got a chair. He swung at Edge but hit the ropes and the chair bounced back into his own face. Edge slammed Angle but only scored two. Edge went for the spear but Angle kicked the hell out of him and won clean with the Olympic slam. Great match, and probably Edge's best showing ever as a single.

Tazz polled six fans at WWF New York, who split three-three over who would win the HHH vs. Hogan main event.

Chris Jericho came out. He bitterly complained that only a month ago he was the Undisputed Champion, headlining Wrestlemania XVIII. Yet tonight, he didn't even have a match on the card and was reduced to being a common spectator like the jackasses in the audience. He noted that even Kidman, Trish, and Maven were given matches, but he wasn't. He said he was offended and insulted, and his feelings were hurt. He told the fans they would be disappointed later when Hogan fails to win the title, insisting that Hulk wouldn't be a worthy champion. Jericho then said he was leaving the arena, which guaranteed he wasn't.

Undertaker visited Flair. He didn't say a word. He just glared at him menacingly and shook his finger in his face.

EDDIE GUERRERO beat ROB VAN DAM to capture the IC Title in 11:42. Lawler asked JR who the first guy was in the WWF to use the frog splash, and he said D-Lo Brown. RVD flipped Guerrero across the ring and hit a kick. Guerrero came back with fists. RVD scored some twos with kicks and the rolling thunder. Guerrero did a neat roll-up for a near pin. RVD hit a moonsault off the apron and dropped his leg on Guerrero on the security rail. Guerrero did a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker and locked RVD in some nice submission holds. Guerrero hit a huracanrana. He also did a lightning fast sunset flip spot that really sent RVD hard to the mat. There was a ref bump. Guerrero took advantage by giving RVD a neckbreaker on the title belt and then frog splashing him. The ref revived and Guerrero got the pin. Good match, though somewhat in the shadow of the Angle vs. Edge bout. The show sort of went downhill after this.

A Scorpion King promo aired. JR & Lawler reported that the film had a huge opening weekend, breaking the record for an April release.

UNDERTAKER defeated STEVE AUSTIN to become the #1 contender to the Undisputed WWF World Heavyweight Title in 26:57. They should have shortened this by half and given the time to Bubba Ray Dudley, Booker T, Chavo Guerrero Jr., or, for that matter, anybody. Flair came out in red shoes like legendary referee Johnny "Red Shoes" Dugan. They opened with a lot of spots where they were supposedly playing mind games, but were actually stalling to stretch the match out. You know, spots where they would act like they were about to tie up, and then didn't. Austin got in some decent offense for a few minutes after the stalling stopped. They went to the floor where they brawled around slowly and then went into the crowd. Austin took a backdrop on the floor. Flair was pretty non-descript as a referee. Hall & X-Pac (in the Kane mask) came out and watched from the ramp. That was pointless. UT did the long, slow offense on Austin. UT blocked a stunner and hit a lariat. UT also did his flying clothesline. There were flurries of action here and there but overall it was just twice as long as it should have been. Austin got a big bruise on his thigh, apparently from a bump into the stairs. The crowd heat began fading and didn't revive until the closing sequence. Flair got bumped and naturally Austin then hit the stunner on UT. There was no ref to count Austin's pin. UT recovered and chokeslammed Austin but only scored two when Flair revived. UT got a chair but Flair took it from him. Flair then got bumped again when UT blocked a stunner. UT got the chair and walloped Austin with it. Flair revived and started counting but Austin kicked out at two. This drew a pop and revived the crowd. Austin got the chair but UT kicked it into his face. He then covered Austin for the pin. Austin got his boot up on the rope but Flair did the three count anyway, giving UT the win. JR & Lawler debated whether or not Flair saw Austin's boot on the ropes. Austin gave UT a stunner afterward but Flair got out of there. Backstage, Jonathan Coachman showed Flair a replay of the ending, and when Flair saw that Austin's boot had been on the ropes he acted upset that he had made the wrong call, and said, "Oh sh*t!"

BILLY & CHUCK defeated AL SNOW & MAVEN to retain the WWF World Tag Titles in 5:57. The champs doubled on Maven until he hit an enzugiri and tagged Snow in. Lawler said Billy & Chuck go to Victoria's Secret stores and ask, "Do you have this in my size?" Snow did a little offense and then tagged Maven back in. The crowd did a "you suck" chant aimed at Billy & Chuck, in which they specified what it is that they allegedly suck. Rico kept interfering. Snow chased him off and, guess what? Maven got doubled on and pinned. Not much to the match.

HULK HOGAN defeated TRIPLE H in 22:01 to capture the Undisputed WWF World Heavyweight Title. Both guys got big pops and there was a Wrestlemania style "Hogan" chant at the start. But unlike at 'Mania, the heat didn't hold up after the first few minutes. They did the spots early where they traded power moves and tests of strength. These came off okay as long as the crowd was alive. But it soon became a slow and plodding match. And at 22:01, that wasn't good. HHH slapped Hogan, causing him to lose his cool and go on a slow offensive. HHH bumped out and Hogan suplexed him on the floor. With no crowd heat by this point, this came off looking bad. Hogan scored some twos. HHH clipped Hogan's knee and worked on it for a few minutes. HHH put Hogan in a figure four and used the ropes for leverage until Hulk reversed it. HHH quickly made the ropes. HHH hooked a sleeper but Hogan made a lukewarm comeback, hitting the boot to the face and legdrop. But as the ref started the count, Jericho ran in and walloped him. Jericho then hit Hogan with a chair. HHH didn't appreciate Jericho's "help", so he beat him up and threw him from the ring. Hogan made another Hulkamania comeback but this time missed on the legdrop. HHH hit a pedigree where he protected Hogan big time. Undertaker then ran in and walloped the ref. UT hit HHH with a chair and rolled Hogan on top. Hogan didn't go for the pin, but instead beat UT up and disposed of him over the ropes. Hogan hit the legdrop on HHH, who was still down, and scored the three count for the title change. HHH, who was bleeding, shook Hulk's hand afterward. There was a big pop at the end but overall this match couldn't even come close to the Hulk vs. Rock bout at Wrestlemania. So we now have Hogan vs. UT, which will have nostalgia interest and some heat as long as Hogan stays over, but it won't produce a good match.

2007 - Ric Flair filed a lawsuit alleging that his former business manager and several partners bilked both he and ex-wife Beth out of $500,000 when they made an investment in The Forum at Ballantyne Commons office building in Charlotte

2007 - WWE ran Vienna, Austria.  Marco filed the following results:

From the Wiener Stadthalle
in Vienna, Austria

1. Match
WWE Cruiserweight Championship
Chavo Guerrero def. Jimmy Wang Yang via Frogsplash

2. Match
Tommy Dreamer def. Matt Striker
After the Match the Boogeyman came to the Ring and attacked Matt Striker.

3. Match
WWE Tag Team Championship - Triple Threat
3 Way Dance Tag Team Match
Deuce & Domino def. Paul London & Brian Kendrick, William Regal & Dave Taylor
4. Match
Nunzio def. Gregory Helms

5. Match
WWE United States Championship
Chris Benoit def. M.V.P. via Crippler Crossface Submission

6. Match
Sabu & Rob Van Dam def. Elijah Burke & Marcus Cor Von
7. Match
Special Guest Referee: Kristall
Michelle McCool def. Jillian Hall
8. Match
Undertaker, Batista & Kane def. Mr. Kennedy, Mark Henry & Finlay

2008 - World Wrestling Entertainment cut developmental talents Chris Gray, Tommy Taylor and Ryan Bishop yesterday.

2008 - WWE broadcast Raw.  Ed Shirreffs filed the following TV report:

The April 21st, 2008 edition of Monday Night Raw brings back the King of the Ring in a three hour event hailing from Greenville, South Carolina.  We also get messages from the candidates!

According to the open of the show, the match between Hillary and Obama is still on.  Oh my.

The first two participants of the King of the Ring tournament are...

KOTR First Round Match:  Chris Jericho vs. MVP

MVP kicks Jericho and aggressively takes Y2J to the mat.  Jericho fires back and kicks MVP in the head.  MVP punches back.  Jericho kicks out of the corner and suplexes MVP onto the top rope.  He then hits a baseball slide when MVP goes to the floor.  MVP knees Jericho in the head when Y2J tries to get back in the ring.  MVP brings him back in with a reverse DDT for two.  MVP works the back and elbows Jericho in the head.  Jericho gets up and knocks MVP down a couple times.  MVP counters with a release belly to belly for two.  Jericho ducks some punches and hits a Northern Lights Suplex for two.  MVP gets two with a back slide, then hits a big boot for another near fall.  MVP gets Jericho in the Fireman's Carry position and drops him to the mat.  He charges off the ropes, but Y2J hits a lariat for two.

MVP with a thrust to the throat and a facebuster.  He misses a splash in the corner and Jericho hits a bulldog.  Jericho misses the Lionsault.  MVP goes for the Playmaker, but Y2J turns it into the Walls of Jericho.  MVP, heading into his big match with Hardy at Backlash, taps to the guy who doesn't have a match Sunday.

Your winner, Chris Jericho!

Jericho goes to the throne and sits in it.

CM Punk is in the back getting ready for a match.  Commercial.

KOTR First Round Match:  CM Punk vs. Matt Hardy

Punk throws a couple kicks that don't connect.  The two lock up.  Hardy with a wristlock.  Punk punches him in the face.  Hardy throws a forearm.  Punk elbows out of the Side Effect then gets a one count with a swinging neckbreaker.  Punk knocks Hardy to the mat for two.  Chinlock on the mat by Punk.  Side headlock takedown to Hardy.  Punk with some knees in the corner.  He sits Hardy on the top rope, but Hardy fights him off.  Hardy with a double axe handle from the second rope.  Hardy whips Punk into the corner and goes for a bulldog, but Punk counters and hits a running knee in the corner followed by his bulldog for two.

Punk springboards into a Side Effect for a near fall.  Hardy gets ready for the Twist of Fate, but Punk counters into a Go 2 Sleep.  Hardy tries to turn that into a Sunset Flip, but Punk sits down and hooks the legs for the win.

Your winner, CM Punk!

Punk will face Jericho in the semi-finals.  Commercial.

The show a clip of a CAW Smackdown vs. Raw Barack Obama doing a Batista style entrance.  Hillary comes out like Mickie James.  They are good as far as CAWs go.  The highlights of a CAW match include Hillary chokeslamming Obama.

JR announces that the WWE Championship match is now an Elimination Match.  They are still billing it as a Fatal Four way even though it should be called a Battle Royal.

JBL cuts a promo in the back about making it in NYC.  He also made the cover of the New York Times business section for his sex potion.  I heard it did wonders for Buck Woodward.

KOTR First Round Match:  The Great Khali vs. Finlay

Finlay quickly kicks Khali's leg, then hits some shots to the chest.  Khali manhandles him, then scoop slams Finlay.  Finlay dodges a leg drop and dropkicks Khali in the head.  He punches his opponent, but Khali pushes him into the corner.  Khali kicks Finlay as he comes off the ropes.  Hornswoggle gets in the ring with the shillelagh but Khali takes it away from him.  Finlay makes sure he gets out of the ring.  Khali chops Finlay in the head, then slams his leg against the ring post.  The referee tells him to stop, but Khali doesn't, so he gets disqualified.

Your winner, Finlay!

Khali keeps up the attack on the leg.  Big Show comes out and walks towards Khali.  Big Show gets in the ring.  Khali does not do the same and they just stare at each other.  Commercial.

Back from the break, Finlay is being helped to the back as the final competitors are announced.

KOTR First Round Match:  William Regal vs. Hornswoggle

Regal forces Horny to get in the ring.  Regal wastes no time in pushing Horny to the mat and applying the Regal Stretch for the win.

Your winner, William Regal!

Finlay gets back in the ring, but Regal kicks his semi final opponent in the leg.

The semi final matches are Punk vs. Jericho and Finlay vs. Regal.

Shawn Michaels is shown walking in the back.  Commercial.

Clips of WWE's tour of Europe is shown.  The outdoor arena in Spain seems really cool.

Shawn Michaels comes to the ring.  HBK has a question for Batista, and he wants to ask it face to face.  That brings out Big Dave.  This is the first time in awhile that I've seen Batista come out in an interview without a nice outfit.  The jeans and t-shirt look suits him better.  HBK mentions how Jericho asked a question on Smackdown that Batista didn't answer.  Michaels wants to know if Batista really wanted to be the man to face Ric Flair at WrestleMania.  Batista wants to know if it would make HBK feel better if he said yes?  He says he won't do that since it isn't about Flair anymore.  It's about Batista and Michaels.  Dave respects Michaels place, but he doesn't respect how he got there.  Since he is sick of talking about it, there is only one more thing he has to Backlash he will finish this.

Michaels appreciates Dave's honesty.  He confesses he is everything Batista says he is.  The Heart Break Kid, the Showstopper, Mr. WrestleMania, the Man.  HBK acknowledges the blood on his hands.  He calls the casualties 'collateral damage'.  He tells Batista that the man he thinks he is morally superior to, the guy who takes any advantage to win, is the guy who he is facing at Backlash, so good luck, cause Batista will need it.  Shawn offers his hand.  Batista takes it, then pulls HBK in for a closer face to face.  Batista smiles and drops his mic.  He walks by Michaels and makes a point to brush up against him with his shoulder.  Batista walks out of the ring.  Pretty good segment.

(The real) Hillary Clinton cuts a promo.  She calls herself Hill Rod.  She says the last man standing may be a woman.  Hill Rod talks about all the difficulties are next president will be facing.  She's been knocked down, but has always gotten back up.  She says she may have to deliver the People's Elbow.  Promising to stay in politics, she tells Randy Orton he is safe...for now.  She's ready to Royal Rumble...or something.

Carlito w/ Santino Marella vs. Hardcore Holly w/ Cody Rhodes

Holly with a shoulderblock.  Carlito with a hip toss.  Holly kicks him off, then slams Carlito.  Knee drop by Holly for two.  He tosses Carlito into the corner and pounds away.  Carlito blocks a charge, but runs into an inverted atomic drop.  Clothesline by Holly for two.  Knee to the gut by Carlito.  He kicks Holly on the mat, then punches him.  Back suplex by Carlito for one.  Holly fires back with some rights.  Carlito dropkicks Holly for two.  He hits a forearm to the kidney area, then knees him there in the ropes.  Carlito charges Holly into the corner and gets a one count with a body slam.  Carlito keeps working the back.  Holly starts to get up, but Carlito gets him into the corner again.  Holly dodges a chare.  He and Carlito trade punches.  Holly with a running forearm and a clothesline.  He hits his picture perfect dropkick.  Carlito stands up and leans on the ropes.  Holly hits the Nutcracker.  He goes for the Alabama Slam, but his back is too injured and Carlito nails him with the Backstabber for the win.

Your winner, Carlito!

Santino calls Cody the boy friend of Holly.  He says they will put the titles around their bellies.  Rhodes wants to know if Santino ever shuts up.  He wants to know how to say "If you say one more word, I'm going to smack you with this microphone in Italian".  Santino takes exception, so Cody hits him with the mic.  Holly and Rhodes clear the ring of their opponents.

It's Triple H's turn for a promo in the back.  He says one will emerge knowing he is best of the best.  One will emerge as champion.  Trips says that will be him.  It's up to Orton, JBL, and Cena to "prove me wrong."  Uh oh.  That line will set some people off.

KOTR Semi Finals:  Chris Jericho vs. CM Punk

The two lockup.  Jericho quickly gets a side headlock takedown.  He then knocks Punk down.  The two come out even.  Punk with some kicks to the leg.  He charges Jericho to the corner.  Y2J with a low dropkick.  He suplexes Punk onto the top rope, but misses the springboard dropkick.  Y2J counters Punk's springboard by kicking the ropes.  Backbreaker by Jericho.  Punk kicks Jericho to counter a back body drop, then takes down Jericho for two.  Jericho with a rana for two.  Jericho and Punk exchange near falls.  Punk counters the Walls of Jericho into an inside cradle for two.  Enziguri by Jericho for two.

Powerslam by Punk for two.  Punk hits some knees.  Jericho blocks a charge in the corner.  Jericho counters out of Go 2 Sleep and hits a bulldog.  Punk gets his knees up on the Lionsault, but Jericho is able to turn it into the Walls of Jericho.  Punk is able to make it to the ropes.  Jericho stomps Punk in the back.  Punk stops Jericho from making it to the top rope and hits Go 2 Sleep for the win, advancing to the finals of King of the Ring.

Your winner, CM Punk!

It's Barack Obama's turn.  He says it is a historic moment, and he's not talking about Randy Orton's reign coming to an end.  He's talking about the special interests and the nation's dividers time coming to an end.  Do you smell what Barack is cooking?  His promo was less clunky, as he didn't try to shoehorn as many wrestling cliches in.

KOTR Semi Final:  William Regal vs. Finlay

Regal tries to go after the injured leg.  Finlay kicks him off, but Regal looks to get it again.  Finlay counters with a one legged monkey flip.  Regal throws Finlay's injured leg into the ring steps.  Back in the ring, Regal hangs up Finlay's leg on the ropes and knees it.  Regal continues to work on the injured leg.  Finlay punches back and throws Regal into the ringpost.  Finlay rolls him up for two.  Finlay with a sit down splash to Regal.  Finlay with a forearm.  Regal kicks the leg.  Knee lift by Finlay.  Finlay takes down Regal by the hair for two.  Regal knees Finlay to the mat and applies the Regal Stretch.  Finlay's arm is in a position so that Finlay can't tap out and the referee calls for the bell.

Your winner, William Regal!

It's Regal vs. Punk in the finals.

McCain is on now.  He says the Mac is back in South Carolina.  Whatcu gonna do when John McCain and all the McCainiacs run wild on you.  He offers to introduce Osama bin Laden to the Undertaker.  He wants bigger individuals.  Is he against the wellness policy?  He asks if you can sell what the Mac is cookin'?  It sounded A LOT better when Barack used the line.  A lot.  I'd say more, but there's a no politics policy in place.

Cena, in the back, of course, says people are talking.  We heard from tycoon JBL.  Cena says if he keeps talking, he'll knock his teeth out.  We heard from an 11 time champion who wants the opponents to prove him wrong.  We've heard the one man dynasty say he's got a grip on the title.  Cena's message is they have to go through him to get to the title, and he plans on making them earn it.  He's locked, loaded, and ready to bring down the thunder.  I really hope that's not his new catchphrase.

Hillary Clinton w/ Bill Clinton vs. Barack Obama

The lookalikes come out to Real American.  Hillary cuts a promo, and I am seriously thisclose to just quitting the recap.  Bill does some mannerisms like the Hulkster.  She takes him aside and says it is her time.  I think the crowd is chanting Monica.  Barack comes out to The Rock's theme song, naturally.  His impersonator has giant ears.  What a wonderful way to treat the candidates who actually acknowledged the wrestling audience for a change.  Ugh.  Barack does all of the Rock's catchphrases and tells "Bill" it doesn't matter what he thinks.

Barack charges, but Hillary takes him down and punches him.  Hilary kicks Obama and hits a scoop slam.  Leg Drop of Doom by Hillary for two.  Knee to the gut by Obama.  Barack Bottom by Obama.  Bill trips Obama on the People's Elbow attempt.  Before it can get any worse, Umaga comes out, and I've never been so happy to see him.

Umaga puts down Obama, then scares off Bill, leaving his wife alone.  Umaga hits a Samoan Drop on Hillary.  Hey Vince, next time you wonder why the candidates won't come on your show for a Smackdown Your Vote deal, remember this segment.

Maria leads all the good divas to the ring to celebrate Mickie James upset win over the Glamazon, Beth Phoenix.  Ashley calls Mickie James to the ring.  Mickie says she proved everyone wrong last week.  This brings out Beth and the heel divas.  This is like West Side Story, with more breasts!  Stay cool, Beth!

Beth says the heels wanted to break up the pathetic party.  Beth says the question isn't if, the question is WHEN Beth will win the title back.  Michelle slaps Beth in the face.  The sets off a brawl among the divas.  The faces stand triumphant in the ring, as the heels stare at them in the entranceway.

Mr. Kennedy returns from shooting a Direct to DVD movie next week.

KOTR Finals:  William Regal vs. CM Punk

They lock up and Regal shoves Punk to the corner, where he fires away.  Punk gets out and charges Regal, then kicks him in the face.  Charging knee in the corner, but his delay on the bulldog allows Regal to hit a back suplex for two.  Regal applies pressure to the back of Punk.  Punk fights back and trades shots with Regal.  Regal applies a chickenwing like hold to Punk.  Punk is wearing different trunks for the third straight match, by the way.

Punk lights up Regal with punches, back fists, and well placed kicks for two.  Punk puts Regal on his shoulders for Go 2 Sleep, but Regal holds on to the ropes, and knees him in the head.  He goes for the Regal Stretch and locks it in.  Punk taps.  I honestly don't know what to say.

Your winner and the King of the Ring, William Regal!

Regal goes to the throne and takes his place as King.  No promo, for some odd reason.

Randy Orton cuts a promo before the big tag main event.  He says his actions do the talking, so he has nothing to say about this weekend's title match, except No Mercy, Armageddon, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble, No Way Out, and WrestleMania 24...all the PPVs where he had successful championship victories.  He plans on remaining WWE Champion after Backlash.

Randy Orton, JBL, Chavo Guerrero, Edge vs. The Undertaker, Kane, John Cena, & Triple H

JR amazingly points out that there are 31 World Championships between all the competitors.  Orton looks to start with Taker, but Edge attacks from behind,  Taker blocks a charge, then nails a leaping lariat.  Taker goes Old School on Edge.  He then knocks his opponents off the apron.  Commercial.  I could go into a rant about intros not taking place during other commercial breaks, but I won't.

Back from the break, Guerrero is pinning Trips, but The H kicks out.  Edge tags in and looks for a spear, but he runs into a spinebuster.  Cena tags in and hits a Blue Thunder Driver on Edge.  He goes for the 5 Knuckle Shuffle, but gets low bridged by Chavo.  JBL rolls Cena in and Edge stomps him.  Orton tags in and keeps Cena from making a tag.  JBL tags in and hits a Side Russian Leg Sweep for two.  JBL boots then lariats Cena for two.  Edge tags in and keeps Cena down.  Cena powers back to his feet, but runs into a big boot.  Orton covers for two.  Orton puts a head lock on Cena.  This turns into a sleeper.  Cena stands up and backs Orton into the corner.  Orton and Cena clothesline each other.

Kane tags in and cleans house.  He hits a back body drop on Chavo, then knocks some opponents down.  Side slam to Chavo.  Kane with a Flying Clothesline off the top for two when JBL and Orton interfere.  Taker and Trips come in to take them out.  Chavo plants Kane with a DVD.  He climbs to the top, but Kane goozles him.  Chavo gets him off, but jumps into a chokeslam.  Before Kane can pin him, Edge hits a spear for the win.

Your winners, Edge, Chavo Guerrero, JBL, and Randy Orton!

Cena gives Edge an FU after the match.  He and Triple H start fighting.  Triple H goes for a Pedigree, but JBL hits a Clothesline from Hell.  Orton RKOs Cena.  Orton and JBL stand off.  Undertaker hits a double chokeslam and stands alone in the ring.

2008 - TNA issued the following press release:

TNA Wrestling Launches 'Cross the Line' Campaign to Challenge Fans Across the World to Change the Future of Professional Wrestling

NASHVILLE, Tenn., April 21  -- Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling today officially announced its launch of "Cross The Line," a worldwide marketing campaign to brand TNA as a call to action for fans of professional wrestling.

"Cross The Line" will encourage fans who have never watched TNA to try it, current TNA fans to recruit others, wrestling stars from around the world to cross the line and join TNA, and it's the official launch of TNA's revolution to call out the competition. The "Cross The Line" will be supported by a multi-layer advertising and marketing campaign including
electronic and print placements and a variety of interactive initiatives.

During its first-ever live telecast of "TNA iMPACT!" March 27 on Spike TV, TNA premiered "Cross The Line" with a 30-second commercial, a new opening ID tag, and new graphics. Wrestling fans who attended from around the globe became the first to symbolically "Cross The Line" over yellow TNA "caution tape" as they entered into the "iMPACT Zone" at Universal Studios Orlando. "iMPACT" drew capacity crowds for both the live event and two additional shows throughout the weekend, with thousands more fans being turned away.

"TNA iMPACT!" has grown viewership of its original weekly episode airing to 1.5 million viewers on average per week, which more than doubles the original total average viewership from its debut shows on Spike TV in October 2005.

"We have been overwhelmed by the support and passion of TNA fans. Their demand for TNA can't be silenced, and that energy is what 'Cross The Line' is all about. Nothing challenges the establishment of professional wrestling more than the sound of millions of wrestling fans chanting 'TNA,'" said TNA President Dixie Carter.

"TNA iMPACT!" is now available in over 120 countries worldwide and will debut on major channels in Spain, Australia and Germany in 2008. Beyond television, fans can literally become part of the interactive experience with the "TNA Live!" tour. In just under a year since its launch, "TNA Live!" has toured across the United States, Canada and Japan, with more than 60 dates scheduled for the remainder of 2008 in North America, the United Kingdom and Asia.

Anticipation is building as this summer brings TNA's biggest licensed product ever with the debut of Midway Games' "TNA iMPACT!," a next-gen console video game. With more than 25 TNA superstars and the most realistic game play and graphics to date, the video game media have dubbed "iMPACT" the most eagerly awaited pro wrestling game ever. That same buzz is building around TNA action figures, as Jakks Pacific, the worldwide leader in wrestling action figures, shocked the world at ToyFare 2008 by announcing it would produce the exclusive line of TNA action figures for 2010.

Cross the line to TNA Wrestling, the most innovative experience in professional wrestling today. Join Olympic Gold Medalist Kurt Angle, "The Icon" Sting, Samoa Joe, A.J. Styles and the no-limits X-Division inside the six-sided ring of "TNA iMPACT!" every Thursday from 9:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT only on Spike TV.

2009 - WWE broadcast ECW on SciFi.  Richard Trionfo filed the following TV report:

We are live from London, England and your announcers are Matt ‘Cyrus’ Striker and Josh ‘Intersect’ Mathews.

Hornswoggle comes out and he is accompanied by his father, Fit Finlay. Finlay says that his son Hornswoggle was drafted to Raw last week so tonight is his last night on ECW. Finlay gives the mic to his son and he has learned to speak. He says that he wants to wrestle. Finlay says that he wants Tiffany to put Hornswoggle in a match tonight. Hornswoggle gets the mic back but he is interrupted by Tyson Kidd and Natalya.

Tyson has the mic and he says the little midget wants to come out and say goodbye. Tyson says good riddance. Without Hornswoggle it means more time for him. Finlay calls them Teletubbies. He calls his son a leprechaun and says that Tyson is the midget.

Natalya takes the mic and he says that Tyson was trained by his family in the Hart Dungeon. She says that her uncle Bret lied when he said that he was the best that will ever be. That is for Tyson. Natalya says that Tyson would not wrestle him. Natalya says that she could even beat him.

Hornswoggle bites Natalya in the rear end and Kidd and Natalya leave the ring. Natalya challenges Hornswoggle to a match.

Match Number One: Hornswoggle with Fit Finlay versus Natayla with Tyson Kidd

Hornswoggle shakes the ropes and Natayla wants a test of strength but Hornswoggle comes up a bit short. Natalya pie faces Hornswoggle but Hornswoggle goes for the rear end again. Hornswoggle with a spear and a seated splash for a near fall. Kidd gets on the apron and Hornswoggle throws his jacket at him and then Finlay trips Kidd on the apron. Natalya yells at Finlay and Hornswoggle gets a rollup and the three count.
Winner: Hornswoggle

We are back and Tiffany is in her office and Natalya and Tyson interrupt her meeting. Natalya points out that she is a third generation Diva and probably royalty. She is incensed at what the gnome did and she wants Hornswoggle fired. Tiffany demands respect. She will not let Tyson and Natalya storm into her office. Tiffany says that Tyson and Natalya will face Finlay and Hornswoggle. Tyson refuses the match but Tiffany says that it is on. She reminds us that Hornswoggle will be gone next week.

It is time for the Raw Rebound.

Match Number Two: Evan Bourne versus Paul Burchill with Katie Lea

They lock up and Burchill with a body block but Bourne with a drop toe hold and a baseball slide to Burchill. Bourne avoids Burchill and hits a drop kick and gets a near fall. Burchill pulls Bourne off the turnbuckles and then he kicks Bourne to the apron. Bourne with a kick to the midsection followed by an Irish whip but Bourne with a kick. Burchill with a back breaker to counter a tilt-a-whirl move from Bourne and Burchill with a near fall. Burchill with a Dragon Sleeper on Bourne and then he hits a short arm clothesline. Burchill with a rear chin lock. Burchill with a butterfly suplex and then he hits a running double knee to Bourne’s chest. Burchill with a suplex and a near fall. Burchill with a rear chin lock. Bourne with kicks but Burchill grabs the leg and hits a suplex. Burchill with a knee drop for a near fall. Burchill with a reverse chin lock with a body scissors. Bourne gets to the ropes but Burchill pulls Bourne back into the center of the ring and keeps the hold applied. Bourne escapes and he kicks Burchill. Burchill with a back body drop and he returns to the neck. Bourne with punches but Burchill with a forearm. Bourne with a kick to the chest and then he punches Burchill followed by a leaping kick to the head. Burchill with a forearm to the back but Bourne with a knee that sends Burchill to the floor. Bourne with a rollup for a two count. Bourne follows that with a spinning heel kick. Bourne with a clothesline for a two count. Burchill catches Bourne and hits a uranage slam. Burchill channels Rikishi but he misses with a double knee charge and Bourne gets a near fall. Bourne pulls Burchill into the corner and Burchill stops Bourne as Bourne sets for the Shooting Star Press. Bourne with a reverse rana and then he goes up top for the Shooting Star Press and gets the three count.
Winner: Evan Bourne

We have a video package for Vladimir Kozlov and he destroys bottles with his feet and fists.

We are back and WWE sells a lot of tickets in Europe or runs small buildings.

Match Number Three: Vladimir ‘Bottle Breaker’ Kozlov versus Frankie Sloan

They lock up and Kozlov with a take down. Sloan with a waist lock but Kozlov with a hip lock take down. Sloan tries for a forearm but Kozlov with a head butt to the chest followed by the head butt as Sloan comes off the ropes. Kozlov with a spinebuster for the three count.
Winner: Vladimir Kozlov

Jack Swagger is walking very slowly in the back and he has his title belt with him. We go to commercial.

There is a table in the ring and so is Tiffany, your interim ECW General Manager. Tiffany welcomes us to the official contract signing. She brings out the challenger first and that man is Christian. Out next is the other man who will make this match possible, ECW Champion Jack Swagger.

Tiffany asks them to sit down and then she points out that the contracts have been reviewed in her office so it is time to sign them in public because it is not possible to do it in private. She will also give them a chance to make their final comments. Christian signs the contract first. Before he signs it, he wonders why Christian hasn’t made any witty one liners or comments about his suit or the way he talks? Swagger signs the contract and the match that has been announced for a week is official.

Jack tells Christian that he comes back to the WWE after being gone for years, and he expects to pick back up where he was? Since he has been gone, a new class of WWE Superstars emerged and the man at the top of that class is the All American American Jack Swagger. He gives Christian credit for winning the Elimination Chase. He figures that Christian felt good after winning on Thursday night because he thinks he has the chance to be a champion again. Jack says that he can see that those feelings are gone when he looks in his eyes. He says that Christian’s brain is telling him that he cannot beat Jack Swagger. That is why Christian has nothing to say.

Christian has something to say. He says that he would like nothing better than to have some fun at his expense. He comments on Jack’s suit, his haircut, and his speech impediment. Christian asks what it will do for him at the end of the day. It doesn’t mean anything because this time, Swagger can be the one to run his mouth and focus on being bigger, stronger, and faster. Christian says that he will focus on Backlash and he will focus on making Jack the biggest, strongest, and fastest former ECW Champion in history.

Tiffany thanks them in a very robotic manner and then Swagger holds the title belt in Christian’s face. Swagger tosses the belt at Christian and then they start fighting. Swagger takes Christian down and then he hits a Doctor Bomb through the table. Swagger puts his jacket back on and we go to credits.

2010 - After being trapped in Europe for volcanic ash in the air, The Raw crew boarded a flight to Hartford, CT from Scotland.

2011 - TNA broadcast Impact.  Stu Carapola filed the following TV report:

Welcome to the TNA Impact Report here on!

We open the show with a look back at Lockdown and the physical nature of the Jarrett-Angle match and Lethal Lockdown matches and the outcome of the World Title match.

We head to the Impact Zone where AJ Styles kicks off the show in a cage, surrounded by tables and chairs and kendo sticks, and tells Bully Ray that he thought he got rid of him, but he was dead wrong. He came back for one reason: to take Bully Ray out, and he was lucky he didn't get wheeled out to the hospital like Ray did to AJ. AJ says that he wants Bully Ray to come out and, for once, face him like a man. Bully Ray comes out to the ring and asks AJ if he's serious, and asks if he knows who he's talking to. Ray says he's the man who put him in the hospital for a month and powerbombed him off the stage. He could come in the ring right now and make sure AJ never wrestles again because he's a man and AJ's a boy. He's telling AJ right now that if he comes down to the ring, he won't go easy on him like last time, and this time he'll powerbomb him from the stage to the concrete and split his head open, then go to his house and take care of his wife and kids. Ray comes down the ramp, but stops outside the cage and says that AJ wants him in the cage real bad, and says he has nothing left to prove to him (crowd tells Ray he sucks), and he could take him out again. He tells AJ to stand in the ring like a loser and he'll take care of AJ on his own time and to go to hell.

Ray turns to leave, but Christopher Daniels comes down the ramp and beats Ray into the ring where AJ beats him down and repeatedly rams him into the cage before knocking him silly with the Pelle kick. AJ takes a garbage can and bashes it right over Ray's head, knocking him out. Gunner comes running out to ringside and brawls with Daniels, and they fight to the back as AJ lays Ray on a table and then climbs up to the top of the cage. AJ is WAY up in the air, but Ray suddenly comes to and quickly slides out of the cage and tells AJ he'll never get to do that to him.

We look back to the bloodbath Ric Flair experienced at Lockdown, then Immortal's music hits and Rob Terry and Murphy come out and Terry says that if AJ Styles wants to play games, Immortal can play games as well, and Beer Money may have won their match at Lockdown, but they want payback for what they did to Ric Flair and they challenge Beer Money for the TNA World Tag Team Title and they want to take the title off of them right now. Beer Money comes out and Roode says that if they want a match for the title in a cage right now, let's ask the fans what they want. The crowd cheers of course, so Storm tells them he's sorry about their damn luck, and we'll kick tonight's show off...after this commercial break!

We're back and the match is already under way...

TNA World Tag Team Title Match/Cage Match: Beer Money vs Rob Terry & Murphy

Immortal beat Roode down in the corner and then Terry hits a backbreaker for 2, then Murphy comes in and they hit a double team for another 2. Murphy with repeated forearms to the back of Storm, then Terry tags in, rams Roode to the cage, and turns him inside out with a clothesline for 2. Finally, Roode hits a clothesline and tags in Storm, who goes right after Rob Terry and hits a running clothesline in the corner and a Codebreaker on Murphy, followed by a DDT on Terry for 2. Roode with a Spinebuster on Terry, Storm with a superkick to Murphy, and a double vertical suplex on Murphy. They do the Beer...Money! Thing and hit the DWI on Terry for the win.

Winners: Beer Money

Solid opener and I'm glad to see some action to start the show instead of 45 minutes of promos.

Jeff and Karen Jarrett are on a carriage ride (filmed earlier today), and they're really happy about how they won that match together. Tonight, Jeff's going to officially coronate Karen the Queen of the Mountain, and they're going to make Prince William and Katte Middleton's wedding look like a cheap Las Vegas affair.

Meanwhile, Hulk Hogan is backstage, and he's...BRANDISHING A PIPE!

Hogan is out to the ring and tells us that the man who made professional wrestling is right in front of us, and he wants RVD to get out here, brother. Van Dam joins him and Hogan says everyone knows he's a few fries short of a happy meal because he had the chance to join Immortal at Lockdown, and just like Ken Anderson, he's going to pay for it, brother. RVD asks if he remembers before he was such a heel, everyone gave him mad love for being the guy who carried the ball, but now he changed because he cares about ratings and they just want him to get out of the business. Everything RVD does, he did for respect. Wrestlers today can't make a living doing a legdrop and things have changed, but RVD sure as hell won't. He throws his mic at Hogan and gives him a challenging stare, but Hogan asks if he's ever set attendance records or slammed giants. He says RVD has always been a big fish in a small pond and his career has always been mediorce, and without Hogan's help, all he's ever going to be is a midcard player.

Sting comes out to join the party, and asks if Hogan said RVD is a mediocre midcard wrestler. He says he heard that RVD is not a main eventer, but that's got to be difficult for everyone in this building to digest because RVD's challenging him for the title in the main event of Sacrifice. Hogan asks if Sting's smoking the same stuff RVD is and says he wants some, but Sting says he came back because the Network put a clause in his contract that if he won the title, he could choose his opponents and he's now choosing Rob Van Dam for Sacrifice. Hogan says the Network doesn't have the guts to get in his face because he runs the show around here. Sting says the execs will be here and he'll be able to say it to their face then, so Hogan says since Sting is here right now, he'll say that this dream match at Sacrifice won't happen because since the Network isn't here tonight and he runs the show, Sting will be facing Matt Hardy, while RVD will take on Abyss.

We go backstage to Kurt Angle, who's looking for Jeff and Karen. Some backstage fellow says he saw them in the parking lot in a horse drawn carriage, and Angle goes to find them.

We go backstage and Tara and Madison Rayne are sniping at each other again, and Madison says Tara cost her the title at Lockdown and accuses her of being in cahoots with Mickie James. Madison says the only way she may be able to get back in her good graces is to win the Knockouts Tag Team Title tonight, and anything less will be unacceptable.

Kurt Angle finds Eric Young backstage feeding horses and Angle asks if he's seen Jeff and Karen, but Eric talks about his buddies Mongo and Sid, the two best Horsemen of all time. Eric feeds the horses some beans, and Angle says if he keeps feeding them beans, they're going to **** all over the place. Eric goes to get some buckets, and suddenly Angle has an idea.

But first, another title is on the line...

Knockouts Tag Team Title: Sarita & Rosita vs Madison Rayne & Tara

We go to commercial, and when we come back we see Rosita hit a flying headscissors on Tara. Madison starts screaming at Tara, who tags her in forcefully and Madison falls victim to a back suplex from Sarita. Sarita with a series of kicks in the corner, but Madison hangs her up in the ropes and dumps her, then hits a running boot and shrieks at Sarita as well before getting in Rosita's face. She then goes back over to Tara and screams at her some more, so Hernandez and Anarchia distract the ref while Rosita and Sarita hit a double clothesline on Madison and Sarita pins her for 3.

Winners: Sarita & Rosita

Madison is stunned that Tara let her lose like that, but Tara casually starts to walk off. Madison grabs her and starts yelling at her again, but Tara starts walking off on her again as Madison follows her, shrikeing like a banshee all the way.

Jeff and Karen Jarrett are backstage, and they're...WALKING!

Wow, that was a short segment.

It's now time for the moment we've all been waiting for...

The Coronation Of Queen Of The Mountain, Karen Jarrett

Jeff says that Karen's actions at Lockdown brought a tear to his eye, for a woman sacrificing herself for her prince was an act of true love. Tonight, he wants to share that true love with the whole world as he, the King of the Mountain, crowns his bride and princess, his entire universe, the Queen of the Mountain. Jeff would like everyone in the Impact Zone and at home to stand up, salute, and stand at attention as he announces, for the first time, the Queen of the Mountain...Karen...Jarrett. Jeff picks up the fancy crown he had sitting on a pedestal and places it on Karen's head. Karen is super excited and starts waving at the fans until horse dung starts falling on her from above. She's totally covered with it and says some naughty things that need to get bleeped out, and then Kurt Angle comes into the ring and stalks Jeff, who tries to back off but Angle grabs him and hits an Angle Slam into Queen Karen's throne. He tells Karen that if she thinks she's in a world of s*** right now, wait until he sees what he has planned for her next. He would never lay a hand on the mother of his children, but he knows someone who will. She's all about pain and no pleasure, and she can't wait to meet Karen. One last thing: Karen might want to get that s*** off her face before she leaves here tonight.

Hogan is backstage with Abyss, and Hogan says that tonight, they're going to finish this business. He walks about five feet to Ken Anderson and tells him he blew his chance to be in Immortal and wants to know who the power behind Immortal is. Anderson says he's been getting screwed by the Network and Hogan for months now, and Hogan has to be ribbing him. Hogan says Anderson is the only person around here that he hates, and eight back surgeries ago, this would have ended right now. Anderson challenges him to fight now, but Hogan says he'll do it on his time. Anderson says he's bored with Hogan's tired threats, so if Hogan will excuse him, he has to go be an asshole. Anderson walks off as Hogan walks back to Anderson all pissed off, and says now it's time to take care of RVD.

Abyss vs Rob Van Dam

RVD goes right after Abyss, peppering him with punches and smashing up Abyss' teeth with a springboard jumpkick. RVD stops for a couple of seconds as he realizes Abyss is hurt, and hits Rolling Thunder for 2. Hogan grabs RVD's boot from the floor and Abyss boots him in the face, then unloads on RVD with hard rights in the corner. Abyss with a big charge in the corner and, with blood running out of his mouth, locks RVD in a neck vice. RVD escapes and knocks Abyss on his ass with a kick to the head, then hits Rolling Thunder again and follows up with a top rope thrust kick. Hogan swings the pipe at RVD from the floor and RVD goes after him, but referee Jackson James leaves the ring and gets between then as Hogan tosses the pipe to Abyss behind Jackson's back. RVD comes back in and picks Abyss up, but Abyss nails him in the gut with the pipe and hits the Black Hole Slam for the win.

Winner: Abyss

Abyss is clearly in a lot of pain from that kick to the mouth at the beginning, but he picks RVD back up and starts beating him down again. Hogan goes to nail RVD with the pipe, but Crimson runs out and spears Abyss, and Abyss and Hogan bail out of the ring.

Sting is backstage saying he's first in line to say he's fighting to get Jeff Hardy back into TNA, but Hogan is all flustered over the stuff with the Network, and he makes fun of Hogan for making him do what he does for a living: wrestling. He's not afraid of Matt Hardy, because IT'S SHOWTIME!

Matt Hardy is backstage with Jeff's crappy belt and he says that this belt meant the world to Jeff, but Sting ended all that for him, and tonight he will destroy Sting for everything he is.

Matt Morgan comes to the ring and says that at Lockdown, he finally put the exclamation point on the end of the Hernandez sentence, and with that behind him, it's time to get back on track with his quest for the TNA World Title. Since everyone's handing out title matches lately, he has some advice for the decision makers: Matt Morgan needs to be at the top of the list because the waiting game is over. He's sick of waiting for his time to come, because his time is now, and if he doesn't get it, he's going to take it. Scott Steiner's music hits and he comes out to the ring and says that whenever he wakes up, it's in a good mood but it never fails and it pisses him off because Morgan claims to be the DNA of TNA, but if he had Morgan's DNA and genetics, he'd shoot himself. No wait, he'd kill himself, then he'd hang himself because Morgan will never have arms as big as him and he'll never be as ripped as Steiner, and the first thing that pissed Steiner off was that he came out here demanding a title shot. Steiner calls him a piece of s*** and says the line for World Title shots starts behind him because he's been World Champion and he's beaten guys bigger, badder, and stronger than him. He's the genetic freak and Morgan is beneath him just like his girlfriend was last night. Morgan says Steiner's got it wrong because he does respect him: Steiner was the pioneer All-American collegiate who went on to pro wrestling. He's also the first guy to bring words like athlete, sports, and competition between those ropes. But he tells Steiner never to confuse Morgan's respect as a sign of weakness because there isn't a damn thing on his seven foot, 330 pound frame that's weak. If Steiner and the fans want to see this, then Steiner can write the next chapter in his autobiography. Morgan extends his hand to Steiner, so Steiner takes it and kicks Morgan in the nuts, then hits his version of the Flatliner and locks Morgan in the Steiner Recliner while yelling at Morgan to tell him who the man is and who has the largest arms in the world. Excellent segment!

Miss Tessmacher is backstage saying it's been a while since she's been around TNA, but the thing that hasn't changed is her desire for the title. She's been training this whole time, and she wants the bitches to know that Miss Tessmacher is back!

Sting is backstage, and he's...WALKING!

Velvet Sky is backstage saying she's not sure what to do because she's been best friends with Angelina for so long and she knows Angelina's not under her own control...but Angelina went too far by coming after her last week. Winter comes in and says Velvet can start by quitting the whining and complaining, and she doesn't like that Velvet's accusing her of stuff. Velvet tells Winter she knows that she's drugged Angelina, and the only reason she hasn't gone to the authorities is because she wants to enjoy taking care of Winter herself. Angelina comes from behind and nails Velvet, beats her down, and rams her into the wall. Winter says they'll finish cleaning this mess up next week and tells Angelina to follow her.

It's main event time! But wait...Bully Ray and other members of Immortal try to go after Sting on his way to the ring, and Fortune comes out and starts brawling with them as Sting casually steps around and goes after Matt Hardy. Suddenly, Gunner comes from behind Sting with a pipe, nails him in the knee, and rolls him into the ring to officially start the match.

TNA World Title Match: Sting vs Matt Hardy

Hardy wore his brother's stupid belt to the ring, and he goes after Sting's leg, but Sting kicked him off and unloaded with chops. Hardy ducks a wild swing and hits a neckbreaker followed by the yodeling legdrop for 2. Matt goes for a moonsault but Sting moves out of the way and then hobbles over to Hardy and puts him in the Scorpion Deathlock, but his knee gives out and Hardy powers out of the hold and clips Sting's knee again and covers for 2. Hardy gets a half crab on Sting in the middle of the ring, but Sting kicks his way out of the hold as we go to commercial.

We're back and Sting is firing back on Hardy, but Hardy rams Sting into the corner and stretches the bad leg around the ropes, then kicks his leg out of his leg. Hardy with a seated crab, then turns around and decks Sting right in the face. Hardy sets up for the Twist Of Hate, but Sting shoves him off. Hardy goes to the second rope, but Sting grabs the ankle and yanks Hardy off onto the mat, then starts running him over with clotheslines. Hardy dodges the Stinger Splash, but Sting elevates Hardy face first onto the top turnbuckle and hits the Scorpion Deathdrop for the win.

Winner: Sting

Ken Anderson slides into the ring as Sting celebrates and hits the Mic Check, then pulls Hardy to his feet and gives him the Mic Check as well. He goes for his microphone and tells Sting that in case he didn't know, he's not going anywhere anytime soon. He just hit the Mic Check on Sting and soon it's going to be 1-2-3.

We wrap up with TNA Reactions: Karen and Jeff Jarrett are backstage and Jeff is hurt as Karen screams about Kurt ruining her coronation and Jeff yells that Kurt doesn't know when to quit. Hogan's on the phone with Anderson saying he got his message loud and clear, and now he'll get his. Anderson had a chance to become Immortal, but Lockdown was his final chance and he's brought his demise on himself. Also, he is tired of the Network because he runs the company and Dixie is hiding out in Tennessee, and they have to show their face because if you're in control, you have to show your face and they'll soon realize how much they screwed up. Anderson says he just dropped the Mic Check on Sting and Matt Hardy because he doesn't like too many people and if their heads were on fire, he wouldn't piss on them to put them out. Sting asks who cares who the execs are and asks if we just saw what Anderson did because that's what on his mind right now...that, and revenge.

That wraps it up. Much better episode than anything we've gotten in months, still some dumb stuff but they did a lot of things right tonight. Just a quick reminder: Dave Scherer and I aren't recording the Impact Postgame Show until tomorrow afternoon due to a scheduling conflict, so don't stay up all night waiting for it if you were planning to. Thanks for reading, and see you next week!

2012 - WWE ran Glasgow, Scotland.  John McGovern filed the following live report:

The event incorporated the new WWE House show setup. I was impressed with the new screens and "Light sabre" entranceway.

Lillian Garcia is introduced. Then we a get the "Yes sir this is entertainment" on the big screen. This was cool.

Jinder Mahal vs. The "Funkasaurus" Brodus Clay.
Mahal out first to the usual boos. Brodus is out and he introduces us to his mascot who is Hornswoggle. Hornswoggle is dressed like Clay, as he was on Smackdown. The exact same tracksuit and hat. An elaborate squash match. By that I mean a Raw match extended by five mins. Brodus gets the win this match with the big splash.

Curt Hawkins, Tyler Reks and Percy Watson vs. The Usos and Mason Ryan.
Mason was over before he hit the ring. The heels already in the ring were selling his size. The Usos and Mason worked over Tyler early. This switched when Percy hit an Uso with outside interference. The heels then worked over the Uso in the ring for a while. Percy was never in the ring it was all Hawkins and Reks. The crowd wanted Ryan in. Hot tag to Ryan. Mason cleans house and gets the pin fall on Hawkins. Hawkins sells the finisher after the match whilst Reks and Watson argue and shove each other all the way back behind the curtain.

Bryan Daniel promo on the big screen. This is the pre tour promo that they play in every city. It was still cool though.

Alberto Del Rio vs. The Great Khali.
Next out was Ricardo Rodriguez. This was the mark out moment for me. He won me at the Rumble. Ricardo introduces ABR. Out next is Khali. All I can say is yes he is tall. Del Rio works the legs mostly. Khali gets a small comeback then it is over to ADR to work the legs again. Alberto into the armbreaker takes us to the finish. ADR is the victor.

Divas Match.
This was my beer break. SORRY. Anyway it was Alicia Fox vs. Nattie Neidhart. Alicia won.

Cody Rhodes vs. The Big Show.
Cody comes to the ring and cuts a promo on "What has Scotland done?". Cody says "He has nothing left to lose he will be the NEW WWE intercontinental Champion". Big Show hits the ring. Back and forth match with Cody working the legs. Big show calls Lillian to the mat to hold the mic whilst Big Show gives Cody a Ric Flair chop. Rhodes works the legs some more. Including putting the big man into a figure four. Greeted by big wooooooos. Cody with two spring kicks to head and a kickout later. We have Show ready to knock-out punch him. This ends up a Chokeslam and 1,2 and 3.

Intermission. Lillian giving away a program and a tour t shirt.

Drew Galloway vs ???

Drew came out and cut a promo on how great it was to be home. Massive pop. Whilst Drew thanked his mom and Dad, Christian comes out and cuts him off. He tries to insinuate that he will beat in a handicap match with Mark Henry. Booker T makes the save.
Drew Galloway and Booker T vs. Christian and Mark Henry.
Just to put this out there right now. Mark Henry is mammoth. The heels work Drew for most of the match. Hot tag to Booker. Booker comes in and cleans out house. To quote the seven to eight year old behind me Booker is on Fire. Booker scores the pin with an Ax kick. The spin a roni sees out this match.

Randy Orton vs. Kane. Falls count anywhere.

Kane out first. Randy gets a great pop. The match is a basic match match until Kane exits the Ring. Randy is clobbering him now on the entranceway. Back to the ring and Kane is now in control. Kane look under the ring apron. Out comes a Kendo stick. Kendo stick on Randy s legs. near fall. Kane throws the Kendo stick to the outside. Randy some how makes a come back and gets the kendo stick and whacks Kane's back a few times. Further back and forth moves until Kane gets the advantage and moves back under the mat for a steel chair. Randy cuts him off outside DDT to the steel chair and with the crowds help we are looking at the RKO on steel. Randy wins here.

Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus. World Title Match.
Daniel is out first. Yes, Yes and Yes. B Daniels cuts a great promo on the crowd. A true heel promo. I was loving it. Sheamus out next. loud pops and to and fro crowd chanting. This is wrestling. A real back and forth match with emotion from everyone in the arena. When it comes down to it. he great White walks away with the old for Sunday. Role on Sunday so I can chant Yes again and the belt is restored to "real" worlds Champion.



2013 - TNA ran Barre, VT.  Jon Smith filed the following TV report:

Just got back from the TNA show in Barre, Vermont.  My first live wrestling show in over 10 years and my first major brand experience.
The show has been advertised for the BOR Ice Arena, which is a tiny rink, but the show was in the Municipal Auditorium, which shares a parking lot but is much larger in comparison.  The crowd was amazing, loud, into every match and promo.  Someone got thrown out after throwing water on Devon a few seconds after Devon watered a different section of the audience.  Socal Val and the rest of the live crew did an amazing job getting everyone hyped and loud, these people knew what they were doing.

Match #1: Kenny King def. Rockstar Spud with his finisher.
Spud is tiny.  Mostly a comedy match with no high spots or big bumps.  Funny spots with Spud hyping the crowd and timed reactions from King.

Match #2: Velvet Sky def. Gail Kim by rollup.
Gail did a promo telling Sky to drop the title due to her injured knee, which she sold throughout the match.  Gail attacked it the entire time but lost to a schoolboy.  
*Before the event began, Sky walked through the crowd to get to the entrance for autographs.  Even with the auditorium half-full, no one noticed it was her except for the people waiting in line for her.

Match #3: AJ Styles def. Magnus with his leg submission.
Magnus did the which side promo before the match, which ended with shoving then the actual match.  

Match #4: Devon w/ D'Lo def. Joseph Park after a low blow.
Devon and D'Lo did a Park is a joke promo, Park never hulked up or anything.

Match #5: Matt Morgan def. Hernandez with the Carbon Footprint.
We live in a tiny dirt town according to big money Morgan.  He was very animated during his promo and even after the match.  Covered Hebner with Hulk's robe and was joking around during Hernandez' entrance.  Very different compared to what we see on TV.  Only risky spot of the night started this match, with Hernandez jumping over the top to land on Morgan on the floor stopping his promo.

Match #6: Bully Ray def. Kurt Angle after a chain to the face.
Bully is the king of the mic.  Worked the crowd very well, while never getting creepy or dark.  Very lighthearted and fun playing the 'don't let Angle touch my belt' and other games with the crowd calling him a baby.  Telling Angle to not repeat spots and fighting with an old lady after the match too.  Classic, fun, entertainment.

They teased a 4v4 streetfight between Bully, Devon, D'Lo, & Doc versus Magnus, Angle, Park, & Hernandez, but it never happened.  Still got the crowd hot though.

The crowd was into everybody and the only heel heat was against Bully.  Hernandez got a real nice pop, but Angle's reaction was unbelievable.  It was a fantastic show despite a small venue, and the combination of a great crowd and TNA's mic people was the reason why.

2013 - WWE ran Sheffield, England.  Chris Mawson filed the following live report:

Hi there, just a quick round up of the Sheffield house show tonight in the UK; results very similar to dates earlier in the week.

The Motorpoint Arena was pretty full, not too many clusters of empty seats with only a small section curtained off. Audience largely made up of children and their parents; Cena and Ryback shirts were definitely the most popular although neither appeared here.

Lilian Garcia introduced proceedings before somewhat successfully attempting to lead the crowd in a chorus of God Save the Queen.

1. Santino, Alex Riley, Jinder Mahal & Drew McIntyre def. Prime Time Players, Epico & Primo

The opener was a basic comedy match with the crowd eating up Santino's bumbling antics. Besides popping for Marella's involvement, the audience were fairly quiet for this, although they warmed to A-Ry in particular, who got a decent reception. The finish saw the two members of 3MB (working as faces here) clearing the ring of the heels for Santino to hit the Cobra on Primo for the win.

Post-match, the Shield beat down the babyfaces before Dean Ambrose cut a promo on Sheamus and the New Age Outlaws, who'd they'd face later in the evening. Highly entertaining segment and it's clear Ambrose has great potential on the mic.

Lilian announced a Twitter poll to determine whether Zeb Coulter would be banned from ringside during the Jack Swagger vs. Alberto Del Rio match later.

2. Fandango def. Ted DiBiase

Pre-match, Fandango teased playing up to the crowd before cementing himself firmly as a heel, getting each section to pronounce his name before insulting them for some decent heat. The actual match was short but some decent back-and-forth action before Fandango got the win with his reverse STO finisher.

There were some "Fandangoing" attempts throughout this match and others from pockets of the crowd, but it failed to catch on as heavily as one might expect given the success of the theme over here.

Post-match, we saw a pre-taped Mark Henry promo where he vowed to put The Great Khali in the Hall of Pain tonight.

3. Natalya def. Alicia Fox [Hornswoggle guest ring announcer]

Not much to say here, Nattie got the win with the Sharpshooter after another short match.

4. Mark Henry def. The Great Khali

A five-star match of the year contender it was not; I actually felt sorry for Khali and his immobility. A glorified squash, with Henry getting the win with the World's Strongest Slam right after Khali had managed a two-count with a brain chop.

We then had a Sheamus pre-tape, where he confirmed the Outlaws as his partners for the show's main event.

5. Alberto Del Rio (w/ Ricardo Rodriguez) def. Jack Swagger (No DQ)

Swagger came out with Coulter, who did his usual anti-immigration pre-match speech with a few local references thrown in for cheap heat. But hey, it worked, with the duo getting the biggest heel heat of the night so far. Surprise, surprise - Coulter was banned from ringside following the fans' poll. The crowd ate up Ricardo's Rodriguez's ring introduction, and ADR got a nice pop as well. The end of the match came after Swagger had been working Alberto over with a kendo stick and put him through a table (which the crowd reacted well for), before Del Rio managed to lock in a flash cross armbar for the submission win.

6. Wade Barrett def. Justin Gabriel (Intercontinental Title match)

After a bit of an underwhelming first half of the show, things really picked up after a short interval. In arguably the best match of the night, Barrett caught Gabriel coming off the top with a Bull Hammer for the win. These two had real chemistry together and their early exchanges in particular were fast-paced and flowed well; blending Gabriel's high-flying and Barrett's brawling styles effectively together. The crowd, as you'd expect, were firmly behind Barrett for this one.

7. Randy Orton def. The Big Show

Orton came out to a huge ovation; easily the loudest pop of the night and he clearly looked pleased with the reception. A slow match with Show stalling early on, frequently rolling out before the bell could be rung. In a nice closing exchange, Randy had an RKO countered into a chokeslam for a 2-count, before reversing a WMD into the RKO for the win.

8. Sheamus & The New Age Outlaws def. The Shield by DQ

The older fans in attendance popped huge for the Outlaws' entrance... while thousands of youngsters looked on confused. Road Dogg managed to just about get through his pre-match shtick despite clearly suffering from a sore throat! Sheamus came out to probably the second best reaction of the night behind Orton. Billy Gunn and Dean Ambrose started it out, with Gunn looking as though he hadn't missed a beat and working the majority of the match. He was clearly having fun out there.

Eventually the Shield managed to isolate Road Dogg in the ring, before he got the hot tag to Sheamus. The Irishman cleared the ring and hit White Noise on Ambrose before Reigns interrupted the fall with a steel chair shot to give the DQ win to the faces. The Outlaws and Sheamus recovered, with a Fameasser followed by a Brogue Kick on Rollins to send the crowd home happy.

2013 - World Wrestling League debuted in Puerto Rico with a live iPPV.  Jose Perez filed the following live report:


All the hype, expectation and anticipation regarding the newly formed wrestling company, World Wrestling League (WWL), finally came to an end as they presented their debut event “Idols of Wrestling” this past Sunday April 21st at the “Coliseo de Puerto Rico” in San Juan, PR.  I have to say that the show delivered on every production and performance level.  The producers definitely made good on their promise that they would give the fans an experience unlike anything they had been presented in the past by any other promotion locally.

As advertised, doors opened at approximately 1:00PM for fans that had purchased Red Carpet and ringside tickets.  At 1:30PM these fans had the opportunity to be a part of a “meet and greet” with pretty much all the talent that was going to participate in the show.  Fans had a chance to get autographs and take pictures with anyone they wanted.  The organization was key for the session to be a success and it showed.  There was a specific order in which each and every fan was able to visit with their favorite wrestlers and the crowd enjoyed this type of access quite a bit.  The session lasted for about 45 minutes and then the fans were asked to take their seats for them to enjoy the three exclusive dark matches.

The first dark match saw Strong Vigilante taking on Guapo Torres and “License to Thrill” Nick Romano.  This was an entertaining match to warm up the crowd.  Vigilante came up with the victory. 

Out next was Panama-Jack Daniels who faced Monster Pain w/ Mistress Glenda Lee.  Panama-Jack was accompanied to the ring by his tag team partner “Mega Star”, who caused a DQ after they double-teamed on an attack against Pain.  “Los Mamitos”, Sexy B. & Mr. E., came out for the save, thus furthering their feud for later in the evening. 

The last dark match saw King Voodoo and Mark Spectro facing Joseph “El Profeta” and his disciple Havok.  The match started a bit slow but made progress.  Unfortunately the match ended when Joseph received the hot tag and tried to jump over the ropes to come in to the ring, only to land very awkwardly and dislocating his knee.  He was in pain the building just went silent for a few minutes as the ref stopped the match giving the dreadful “X” sign to the back.  After that, Havok was attacked by Ash, Spectro and Voodoo while the refs tried to help Joseph.  Finally they cleared the ring and Joseph was helped to the back.  I cannot express how bad the knee looked as he was being taken out to the back in order to be rushed to the hospital.  Our wishes for a speedy and full recovery go out to him.

After the 3 matches were over, there was a good 20 minutes before the main show would start.  All of the sudden Colt Cabana and Adam Pearce came out to the ring side area to take pictures with the fans and interact with them.  Because of their travel schedule they had not been able to make in time for the meet and greet and they wanted to make sure they fans had that opportunity.  Great effort on their part to give fans that little extra they were not expecting.

It was then time for the show to begin.  And begin they did…  A play of lighting and full display of pyro gave the audience the first impression of what was to come throughout the evening.  The following is a complete rundown of the card with comments regarding each match:

    Cruzz retained his MidWest USA title after defeating “License to Thrill” Nick Romano.  Really good match to begin the show,  as it set the pace for the rest of the card.  As soon as Cruzz’ music hit and he appeared on the ramp the crowd popped.  Even though he has been away from Puerto Rico for a while, he is still very well liked by the fans in the island.

    “La Real Fuerza Aerea de Mexico” (Hombre Sin Miedo, Stelaris & Laredo Kid) defeated Noriega, Lince Dorado & “Mr. 450” Hammet in what was a match set up that people were interested because of all the high flying spots that all the talent involved have been known for.  All of them had their moment to shine.  Unfortunately, Hombre Sin Miedo was hurt while receiving a diving “Mr. 450” on the outside.  He was bleeding heavily from the mouth and was taken to the back before the match was over.

    Hercules Gomez retained the Pennsylvania WXW Heavyweight title when he defeated “Face of Fear” ASH.  Good showing from the big men here.  Gomez showed potential, as even with his size (the guy is big!!) he has agility and moves very well in the ring.  Looking forward to seeing more of him in the future.  ASH also worked a good match.  King Voodoo and Spectro interfered after the match, but were dispatched fairly quick by Gomez.

    S.A.T. (Spanish Announce Team) w/ Hugo Savinovich defeated Michael Tarver & Erick Scorpion via countout after putting Scorpion through a table.  S.A.T.’s and Savinovich had a mic and were making comments throughout the match, even yelling at the referee in a couple of instances.  Entertaining to say the least.

    In a “Fatal Four Way”, for the Zero 1 Mexico Title: Sicodelico Jr. retained the title after defeating Hijo de Rey Mysterio, Octagon Jr. and Axel - “El Nieto del Santo”.  This was the much expected spot fest with a few blown spots at the beginning of the match, but picking up the pace as the match moved along.  Sicodelico, Mysterio and Octagon Jr. show their experience.  Axel, although he had a nice showing, still shows a bit green.  I have to say that they all did a good job of giving the crowd what they wanted in the match.

    DWE Heavyweight Title Match: Rico Cassanova retained after defeating “Tokyo Monster” Kahagas.  Not much to write home about on this one.

    The mini’s in action, when Mini Pierroth defeated Mini Chupacabras via submission.  This was a really fun match where kids were very entertained by these two performers.

    Colt Cabana defeated Steve Corino in what was a very fun match with a lot of comedy spots at the beginning on the part of Cabana.  Corino and Cabana are really good in this type of environment.  Both men worked hard and had the crowd eating every move they made.

    Monster Pain w/ Mistress Glenda Lee defeated Giant Dementus.  This was billed as “the battle of the giants” and indeed it was.  A little slow but definitely served its purposed as both men work a hard hitting match, which was expected by the fans.

    “Mega 10” Panama-Jack Daniels & Mega Star vs “Los Mamitos” Sexy B. & Mr. E. went to a double countout.  This storyline has potential and it seems that they will continue to build on to it.  The finish was not what people necessarily wanted, but again, the story is just starting and they looked really good here.

    Blue Demon Jr. became the new PWR champion after he defeated “El Patron de la Migra” Oliver John in a very well fought match.  Personally, this was one of the matches that I was very interested to see.  I had seen some Oliver John matches online and he seemed good.  Well, apparently if you pair him up with Demon Jr. and he is an even better worker.  Both men worked really hard and were able to get the crowd behind them.  Oliver John created such heat with the fans through his character, that even some of the fans that did not know who he was were hot.  The outcome of the match was completely unexpected and the crowd popped for it.

    PWR Women’s Title Match: Ivelisse Velez became the new PWR champion after defeating Alyssa Flash.  This match was one of the better women’s matches I have seen live in a very long time.  Ivelisse was in front of her home crowd and she had them in the palm of her hand since the moment she came out carrying the Puertorican flag.  Flash had the match won at least twice, went for the pin only to break the count herself both occasions.  Ivelisse locked her into a small package for the win.  The crowd counted with the ref 1-2-3 and immediately erupted in a loud cheer for Ivelisse.  What a surprise it was for the fans.  Ivelisse was very emotional after the match.  Really cool moment.

    Battle Royal to crown the first WWL Heavyweight Champion: Bobby Lashley, Jacob, Mr. 450 Hammet, Lince Dorado, Sexy B., Mr. E., Mark Spectro, Ash, Hercules Gomez, Colt Cabana, S.A.T.’s, Giant Dementus, Mega Star, Panama-Jack Daniels, Joe Don Smith, Kahagas, Noriega, Michael Tarver, Akbar Farat were the participants.  The end came when Bobby Lashley eliminated Hercules Gomez with the “finger poke of doom”.  Gomez was standing on the apron posing for the crowd after eliminating someone himself.  Then it was Lashley and Pain alone in the ring, until Mistress Glenda Lee interfered by jumping on and then kissing Lashley, thus distracting him for Monster Pain to be able to throw him over the top rope for the win.  That way Monster Pain becomes the first ever WWL World champion.  Lashley and Pain got into a brawl after the match while the referees tried to keep them apart.  This may have been the beginning of a feud going forward.

    The main event of the evening was “The Rematch of the Century”, when “El Texano Jr.” retained AAA’s Heavyweight Mega Championship after defeating “El Mesias” Ricky Banderas in what without a doubt was the match of the night.  These two gentlemen literally stole the show.  The crowd was hot all throughout the match.  At one point Texano was on the outside and Banderas went for a running dive over the top rope.  Banderas barely connected Texano and actually landed on the second row of ring side.  He stood up immediately and the crowd went into a loud “holy s#&%” chant.  They kept going back and forth, at times brawling and mixing in some cool high spots.  Towards the end of the match there was a ref bump.  Banderas was able to connect the “x factor” on Texano Jr. He went up to the top rope and hit his version of the “frog splash”.  He had the match won but there was no ref to count.  He went to check on the ref, which gave Texano a little bit of time to recuperate.  He hit Banderas with a low blow and then hit his finisher for the win.  Again, just a well rounded match that delivered on all fronts.  This match sent off the iPPV audience, but there was still more action in store for the live crowd.

    TNA Impact stars “Cowboy” James Storm defeated Bobby Roode via DQ after interference from Bad Influence – Christopher Daniels & Kazarian.  Out to make the save were Samoa Joe and Adam Pearce, which led to our last match of the night…

    “Cowboy” James Storm, “Scrap Iron” Adam Pearce & Samoa Joe defeated Bobby Roode and “Bad Influence” – Daniels & Kazarian in a very fun match.  Great back and forth with really good tags and action in and out of the ring.  The end of the match saw Samoa Joe pin Kazarian after a muscle buster to send the fans home happy.

Overall, I have to say it was a great evening of fun and exciting wrestling matches and a very good showing.  It seems the foundation for what could potentially be in the cards for the future of this new company was well placed with this event.  Yes, there were mistakes made and things that they have to work with in order to correct for the next shows.  However, they are very much aware of those weaknesses and have already started to focus on those things already.

Some of the things that they will need to work on for future shows:

    Unfortunately they were not able to fulfill their expectations with regards to the amount of people attending the event.  The crowd was estimated between 1,500 and 1,800, which for any other medium size arena in PR can be a good attendance.  However, this was not what they anticipated when they booked the largest and most impressive venue in the island.

    There were several miscues with the entrance music and videos.  I have not seen the iPPV feed and do not know if it was noticeable on it, but live it was very obvious and at times confusing.  In speaking with someone close to the production crew, this is something that can be fixed right away.

    The show ran very long.  16 matches was a lot to take in for one evening.  Add to that the three exclusive dark matches before the show and the total goes to 19 matches.  I can tell you that I was exhausted when the show was over.  I would suggest no more than 10 matches for future shows.

    Ticket pricing may have been too expensive for it being the first event.  Unfortunately the venue in which they were presenting their show kind of dictates how tickets will be priced.  Believe me when I say, the “Coliseo” is not cheap to rent; plus you have the amount of talent that participated in the show and that also impacts what you charge.

Positives coming out of the event:

    In talking to people in the crowd, everyone seemed to be very pleased with the show.  Those who were present enjoyed the show in its entirety.  Those that did not show up truly missed on a great experience.

    The pyro, stage and ramp gave it a big time feel and the crowd had not seen that in a very long time.  There were a lot of people in the crowd that were amazed by the environment that was created just by adding these elements to the show.  Also, the fact that most of the talent had their own music and entrance video contributed to that feeling too.

    The talent worked really hard all throughout the show, which in turn helped maintain the crowd alive even though, as stated earlier, it was a very long show.

    They left the fans wanting more…  To me, this was the best part.  It was a long show, but at the end the people were talking about it and already making plans to attend the next event.

No return dates were officially announced, although in talking to company officials, there are plans to run another show in the summer at a different venue.  Also, San Antonio, Sacramento, Chicago and NYC were mentioned as areas they are looking to run shows in the very near future.  More details as soon as they are made available.

On a last note…  I want to take a moment to thank WWL officials for the attentions they had, not only with me personally, but also with all the press that was present at the event.  The organization was really good backstage and the access to all the talent was praised by everyone.

Overall, a really good effort put forth by this new promotion during this debut event.  Only time will tell the fate of this venture, but I do believe there is potential.  If they take this first show as a starting point, they could continue to build on it going forward.  The people that were there enjoyed it quite a bit; and those that were not there and were criticizing from the outside now know that everyone is talking about it.  Lets see where they go from here.  

2015 - Tennessee wrestling legend "The King of Kingsport" Ron Wright passed away.  He had been moved to hospice over the last several days before his passing.

Best known for his time in the Knoxville territory, Wright was one of those talents who didn't move a lot around the territories on a regular basis. He performed in other areas (he even competed several times at Madison Square Garden based on my records) but the lion's share of his career saw Wright remain in the Tennessee area. He had a run of several months in Florida and popped up in other areas but never stayed long. He'll always be at the top of lists that fans make of talents who "could have succeeded" elsewhere had they ventured out for a long period of time.

Wright broke into the business in the late 1950s, working for Nick Gulas and Mickey Barnes. In the 1970s, Wright bought portions of the territory and promoted in Johnson City, Bristol, and Kingsport, TN.

Locally, however, he will be forever linked with the late Whitey Caldwell. Wright played the mouthy villain to oppose the likable Caldwell and when they hit the ring, there was often a big brawl with a lot of blood. The feud was so big and Caldwell such a loved babyface that when he passed away in a 1972 car accident, wrestling in the area immediately suffered a huge blow that took a long time to recover.

In the ring, Wright held the Tennessee version of the NWA Tag Team titles on numerous occasions with different partners, including Don Wright and Tommy Gilbert and held the Southeastern Wrestling championship belt.

Wright was last seen in the 1990s as a regular for Jim Cornette's Smoky Mountain Wrestling, Wright played a tremendous role initially as a heel manager who feigned needing to be in a wheelchair to get heat when he interfered or lied about needing help to anger the fans. Wright provided a bridge of legitimacy from the past to the then-present and credibility for his charge, The Dirty White Boy.

Wright returned to the ring for several tag matches when the act was turned babyface in 1994. He last wrestled in 1995 at the 1995 Fire on the Mountain event promoted by SMW, where his long-time charge Dirty White Boy had his choice of any dream match. DWB picked his mentor and then laid down for him in the ultimate show of respect.

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