• Brad Ward’s BlogaMania: Part III (Axxess All Areas)

    Wrestling superfan Brad Ward takes us on a trip; HIS trip. From Canada to New Orleans, enjoy Brad’s daily antics leading up to Wrestlemania 30 with Brad Ward’s BlogaMania. Take it away, Brad!

    Welcome to my Wrestlemania week blog, where I will detail, star rate and fill your eyes with pictures and sometimes videos of New Orleans. Wrestlemania week is more to me then WWE’s biggest show of the year. It is seeing an entire year of stories and superstars build to one week to see who is going to be the next new star. It is the chance to see friends and colleagues. It is seeing Superstars live and just taking in what you talk about for a year in front of your own eyes.

    This is Wrestlemania week, it’s time to be cool and eat fruit.

    THURSDAY: The WWE Superstore, Jim Ross and Captain America.

    Tonight is the night that there is a midnight launch for Captain America, so I had to bring along my Captain America t-shirt! I start off the day with some breakfast and play some WWE 2K14. I check my messages, Twitter and Facebook to see if anything new has broken about Wrestlemania week.

    captainamericaselfie

    We then head down to the WWE Superstore and I get a program featuring the WWE Superstars and Legends, which doubles as a Hall of Fame program as well. There is a signing with Booker T, so we wait in line for his autograph and then head back into the WWE Superstore to get the preliminary Wrestlemania and WWE swag for the week.

    wweshophaul

    A last minute decision is made and we decide to wait in line to meet Fandango and Summer Rae for the WWE Shop Superstore signing. We first wait to get wristbands and then queue up the lineup and wait. While we are waiting, some WWE camera crew are filming us for a future project. We get to meet Summer Rae and Fandango and both were very cool and approachable.

    ringsidejr

    We made it to the House of Blues for An Evening with Jim Ross. A pretty packed place overall, the first thing the House of Blues reminds me of is the house from Saints Row IV. It is set up like one of those acoustic performances or stand-up comedian type gimmicks. The show with Jim Ross was in association with Court Bauer, John Pollock and Wai Ting.

    Friends of mine from England who are here for Wrestlemania (Emma, Tara and Will) who I met for the first time on Wednesday, also attended the show. At first I thought we could sit together but we were split up a bit. Here are some of the things I thought stuck out from the show:

    • JR talked about his early life.
    • Talks about early work in business.
    • Talks about driving legends and rolling joints.
    • He talks about wanting people to call it in the ring.
    • Story about Dick Murdoch and having issues with a transsexual.
    • Flair story about him whipping his dick out and two girls bouncing and saying it works 50% of the time.
    • Talks about Lawler doing good, and his girlfriend is almost 26, makes joke about car insurance.
    • Talks about Bell’s Palsy not defining him. Says to always keep the passion.
    • Put over Ted Dibase SR and says he should be world champ.
    • Puts over Watts and Ladd for putting guys of color in top spots.
    • Cornette came out and asked about Leroy McGirk and wanting him to get kill Ted Dibase
    • Q&A ran a bit short imo.
    • Fun show overall.

    We then go head to to the AMC Theatre (or maybe someday the WWE Theatre… though probably not) for the midnight launch IMAX 3D showing of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Not a lot to say about Captain America; I enjoyed the scene with Batroc played by GSP though I did not enjoy much else in the movie. It did have its decent share of scenes toward the end but I found it to be anti-climactic.

    We made it back to the hotel and it is then 2:30 AM and I have to be up at 8AM the next day for the Cemetery Tour, so I pretty much went to sleep more or less as soon as I got back since I wanted to be rested for all of the haunted stories action recommended by Emma.

    FRIDAY: Cemetery Tour, Axxess and the Hard Rock Cafe

    Today I am up at 8AM to get ready for the Cemetery Tour in with friends in our hotel group. I meet up with Emma and Tara at the Hard Rock and we make it over to where we pay for the Haunted Stories tour. I really enjoyed the tour and it was a great pick by Emma. The basics of it are the guy does his intro, he takes us to certain places to lay the groundwork for the cemetery. He talks about how there was money embezzled and that New Orleans is the real ‘Sin City’, not Las Vegas.

    CemetaryTour

    We go to a visitor’s center where we can get information and details overall on New Orleans. We are shown a map talking about how the entire city’s travel is focused on the river and the water. They talk about washing bodies down the river instead of burying them.

    We go to the St. Louis Cemetery and we get a back-story on how the tombs work and how they are different from graves. We are shown different types of tombs and talk about some celebrity tombs and that wraps up the tour. From there we head to this place called Bayou Burger, a place recommended by Emma, Will and Tara.

    Emma and Tara head back to the hotel, myself and Will head to the New Orleans Convention Center area to pick up his Wrestlecon tickets and then I head to the Convention Center to relax a bit and then queue up for Axxess. I get there and there is a huge lineup for Cesaro, so I grab a Diet Coke and chill for a bit.

    Axxess

    Emma is seeing John Cena as part of a VIP package; she is a huge fan and part takes in Cena’s ‘Change Time’ project, which I am starting myself very soon. So, Tara, Myself and Will wait to get into Axxess. This is Tara’s first ever time to go to an Axxess – she loves watching matches up close, so we went to the NXT ring and they start by hyping the crowd. We check out a match between Sawyer Fulton and Baron Corbin vs. Tye Dillinger and Jason Jordan. Dillinger and Jordan work like a amateur wrestlers who use the Angle Slam and Frog Splash as their two-punch finisher combo.

    NXT Match

    Tara goes to look for Emma and I head to the washroom and grab a drink in the fountain. From there we walk around and check things out and look at the superstore. By that time its looking around 8:30PM or so and we head out to Hard Rock Cafe for dinner. We have a fun night of drinks, food and desert. I have a club sandwich, a frozen Margarita and some type of Chocolate cake. I then head back to the hotel and say goodbye to @Emmastern, @DieRubberDucky and @WillECW for the night.

    Star Ratings

    Poboys: ★★★★

    WWE Superstore: ★★★★

    Fandango: ★★

    Summer Rae: ★★★★

    Evening with JR: ★★★

    Captain America: ★★★

    Axxess Setup: ★★★★★

    Baron Corbin & Sawyer Fulton vs Tye Dillinger & Jason Jordan: ★★ ½

    Hard Rock Cafe: ★★★★★

    Come back on Monday for my thoughts on NXT, Smackdown, Superstars, WWE Axxess Day 2, Harrah’s Casino experience, heartbreak and triumph, WWE Hall of Fame, Wrestlemania, heading into the final day with Raw and more!

    – Make sure to follow me on Twitter @BradWardFGN for more updates throughout Wrestlemania week!

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