Take a trip back to a memorable timeline in sports entertainment with the most important stories reported as fact in the journalistic world of pro wrestling dirt sheets.
Following the timeline of the last Dirt Sheet History looking back at November 2009, we get a glimpse into the top scoops from December of 2009 as we read Dirt Sheet History.
Reminder that you can find all past editions of Dirt Sheet History looking at 2004 through 2008 right here. Now enjoy December 2009!
There’s a storyline that’s already underway involving Hulk Hogan’s involvement with TNA Wrestling. The original plan was for Hulk Hogan to lead the younger, homegrown stars of TNA against the “old guard” of established WWE & WCW castoffs, led by TNA president Dixie Carter. Hulk Hogan’s recent comments that he’ll be “in charge” of TNA are all part of the storyline (Hogan will have a great deal of power in TNA, but his comments are the start of this angle). Dixie Carter was going to be a big player in the “Hulk Hogan joins TNA” angle, but there was a recent decision to cut back on Dixie’s role and have Mick Foley is now expected to be the leader of TNA’s “old guard” movement. Dixie Carter will still be involved, but will not have the same role as originally planned.
Kurt Angle is said to have a high opinion of TNA newcomer Desmond Wolfe following their pay-per-view match last month. Angle actually laid the entire match out but claimed that after his back went out in the first minute they had to change plans and work on the fly until the finish.
The WWE website issued the following statement this evening:
Written: December 4, 2009
WWE would like to express its deepest condolences to Mr. Fatu’s family, friends and fans on his tragic passing. Mr. Fatu was under contract with WWE at various time periods and most recently performed under the name “Umaga.” Mr. Fatu’s contract was terminated on June 11, 2009.
TNA Wrestling has announced that they’ll be airing a special 3-hour live edition of TNA iMAPCT! on Monday night, January 4th. The show will go head-to-head with WWE Raw for the first time ever.
TNA President Dixie Carter posted a message on her Twitter page with a comment that implies more moves like this are on the way. She wrote:
“Hogan to debut Jan 4 in a live 3 hr iMPACT! special up against Raw. How’s that for a 1st shot? Spread the word.”
As seen this past Thursday on iMPACT, Kristal Lashley cut a promo ripping Scott Steiner, specifically noting that she’s never been harassed at her husband’s MMA events. “I guess things are a little bit different around here,” she said.
This was the start of a new storyline where she plays the role of a snobby person who looks down on professional wrestling. Her character has her thinking pro wrestlers are low-class individuals.
Eric Bischoff, who is joining Hulk Hogan in partnering with TNA Wrestling, has posted a message on Twitter hyping the upcoming Monday Night iMPACT! special on January 4th with a little jab at WWE. Bischoff wrote, “Was anxious to make the announcement about the Jan 4 debut. Been in the works for more than a month and a tough one to keep quiet..s*its on!”
From talking to people in WWE, there is said to be “pretty much no concern whatsoever” in regards to TNA’s iMPACT! going head-to-head with Monday Night Raw on January 4, 2010. There is such little concern about TNA that WWE is not even looking to move Raw to three hours, though there is talk of lining up a strong guest host for the first two weeks of the new year.
Among those in WWE, the general feeling is that TNA president Dixie Carter is “incredibly naïve” and that TNA is in for a massive disappointment come January 5th when the ratings come in.
Hulk Hogan said that he really pissed off WWE CEO Vince McMahon when he held his TNA press conference at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
“I don’t think he’s too happy. Knowing Vince the way I do and holding the press conference at Madison Square Garden…I know some people in house at the WWE and I know he didn’t respond favourably. There’s been nobody in the Garden for about 100 years really except Vince, his dad, his grandfather and his great grandfather promoting events and I kind of slipped in there and made the press conference for TNA. Then the other night I announced we’re going head to head with WWE on Monday nights.”
Hulk Hogan teased a big nWo reunion on the three-hour TV live Impact.
WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart has signed a short-term talent contract with WWE that goes into effect on January 1, 2010 and runs until April 10th, approximately two weeks after WrestleMania 26.
Kevin Nash has had conversations with Mark Madden in hopes of convincing him to join TNA as an announcer. Reportedly, Nash dislikes Taz as an announcer and was complaining loudly when he replaced Don West.
There was a half hour meeting at an Impact taping a few weeks ago where the wrestlers were told to go back to working holds and telling stories with their matches as opposed to the assorted “highspots” accustomed with the product.
It’s interesting to note that the one and only Britney Spears was one of the last people to spend time with Edward “Umaga” Fatu before he died just one week later.
The pop singer bumped into “The Samoan Bulldozer” when they shared a flight from Australia to the United States.
Spears remembered Umaga from a wrestling storyline he took part in with her ex-husband Kevin Federline on Monday Night Raw three years ago.
She was returning from a series of concerts Down Under, where the grappler had also been in action as part of Hulk Hogan’s Hulkamania – Let the Battle Begin wrestling tour.
Taylor Wilde accidentally cut herself at home last week while cutting vegetables and simultaneously talking on her cell phone. As a result, her finger needed to be stitched up.
Teddy Hart is telling people he’s joining World Wrestling Entertainment alongside his uncle Bret Hart.
World Wrestling Entertainment updated its Wellness Policy last week to officially note that any positive test for marijuana will result in a $2,500 fine. Previously, it was a $1,000 fine.
The levied fine was in response to pot usage running rampant throughout the company. With that being said, usage is said to be way down among those on SmackDown, but still reportedly “out of control” among Raw talent.
In the case of alcohol, the policy states that WWE performers are prohibited from “using or consuming alcohol at any time within a twelve hour period prior to any WWE event or WWE scheduled performance.”
While plugging the annual Tribute to the Troops show during a radio appearance on The Opie & Anthony Show last week, Raw Superstar Montel Vontavious Porter (MVP) admitted his fondness for marijuana.
During the radio show appearance, he relayed a story from his recent trip to Iraq where one of the soldiers noted that a lot of marijuana is grown in Afghanistan. He then expressed his disappointment in WWE not going to Afghanistan this year.
MVP also said that while he enjoys smoking pot, he no longer does because the $2,500 fines started to stack up.
Matt Hardy continues to taunt his ex-girlfriend Amy “Lita” Dumas as he has posted an image on his Twitter account labeled “The NEW & IMPROVED Team Extreme” with two women dressed up as the former WWE Diva. He then posted the following regarding the image: “So who’s better.. the original Lita, or my new Lita? HAHA!!”
Cody Deaner is concerned, his future with the organization appears to be in doubt considering TNA originally planned on having him lose the match. Sources have indicated that Hulk Hogan feels Deaner’s gimmick makes the company look “low budget.”
It would appear that Batista is not particularly high on WWE’s “champions of tomorrow” as he feels that other wrestlers of his generation are a dying breed.
“We’re dinosaurs in this age of instant gratification. We are not just athletes, we are also storytellers and I don’t see that in the newcomers,” Batista said in an interview.
Eric Bischoff posted a new blog entry discussing this Monday’s 1/4 live Impact special. Bischoff acknowledged WWE bringing in Bret Hart and says the timing is no coincidence. Bischoff says WWE is “reacting to the competition”, but is happy for Bret, who “will be able to put a painful and personally traumatic part of his life behind him.”
Bischoff admits that it will be difficult at first fighting against a major international corporation:
“Clearly TNA is up against a Wall Street mega-corp bully with a billion dollar bank account and a Chairman that thinks only he should have any meaningful market share of the professional wrestling business (even though he’s embarrassed to admit he’s in the professional wrestling business). It will be an up-hill battle for TNA indeed.”
WWE is big, but he thinks the current product is crap and the time is right for TNA to strike.
“Based on the mind-numbingly stupid Raw I had the misfortune of dropping in on last week, perhaps the fact that TNA stepped up and is at least taking a swing at the bully was enough to make McMahon realize that he could not afford to take his audience for granted and continue to shove tripe down the throats of his Goliath “universe” while David was reaching for a stone.
“This Monday Night…win, lose, or draw I have to give credit to the folks at TNA and Spike. They could have taken the easy path and put their best foot forward un-opposed. That would make the most sense to many people. But by at least getting into the fight, TNA is most likely going to gain the awareness and respect of a completely different audience.”
With both WWE and TNA gearing up for a Monday night to remember, Bischoff says the real winner will be the wrestling fans.
“Wrestling fans are not only going to have a choice this Monday night, they will most likely see a higher quality product all the way around. And for that they should thank TNA.”
– Tune back in next month for more Dirt Sheet History as we start 2010.
Stories are credited from Rajah, PWTorch, PWInsider and The Wrestling Observer. Month name photo art is by Phillip Martin.
All past editions of Dirt Sheet History are found here.