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 May 2006, we get a glimpse into the top scoops from June of 2006. Featuring the launch of the WWE ECW brand and ECW One Night Stand 2, we see all the big scoops in the world of wrestling at the time.
Reminder that you can find all editions of Dirt Sheet History looking at 2004 and 2005 right here at this very link. Now enjoy June 2006!
* WWE management is said to be high on Bobby Lashley. He has been making waves in the company lately and everyone has high hopes for him on SmackDown. At a time where the brand is plagued with injuries, Lashley has stepped in the eyes of management. The company believes he has made significant progress since debuting in late ‘05 and he will continue to progress by holding a secondary title.
* WWE’s stock closed at $18.54 Friday, one of the highest closing numbers in many years. For those that have asked, Vince McMahon is back to being a real life billionaire and not just a fictional storyline billionaire.
* Hulk Hogan was recently interviewed by The Sun in the United Kingdom. In it Hogan stated:
“I spoke to Vince (McMahon) in New York on Sunday and he’s asked me to come back. He wants to make me the Babe Ruth or Muhammad Ali of wrestling. Next April WrestleMania is back in Detroit, Michigan. Twenty years ago in the same city, at the same event, I bodyslammed Andre The Giant. Vince was saying to me: ‘Oh my gosh, you have to be in the main event 20 years later.’ “We’ll probably end up doing business.”
When asked if the match would be against Steve Austin he said, “I’ve thrown the challenge out there and now it’s up to Stone Cold if he wants to do the match.”
Hogan continued, “I really don’t know why it hasn’t happened already. I thought maybe Vince and Steve had fallen out, but I’ve since found out that they’ve done some sort of deal to keep Austin as part of the company. “So if he’s part of the WWE, I’ve got no idea why Steve wouldn’t want to have a match at WrestleMania.”
He finally concluded, “I don’t know if he has a problem with me personally. When we were in WCW, and he was Stunning Steve Austin, he talked to me a couple of times about different ideas he had to work with me. The ideas were OK, they weren’t home runs but they were pretty good.”
* WWE sent out a message to their Mobile Alert subscribers saying that Kurt Angle has issued an “open challenge for One Night Stand to anyone from any brand.”
The message continues by saying that “he doesn’t care if the person is from a 4-sided, 6-sided, or 8-sided ring.”
The initial challenge was made this past Friday night on SmackDown. Of course WWE owns the brands of SmackDown, RAW, and ECW which all use 4-sided rings. TNA is the only company with a 6-sided ring and UFC uses an 8-sided caged ring.
* The reason that Jerry “The King” Lawler and Tazz worked so stiff a the WWE vs. ECW special is because they knew that they would have to make it as real as possible with the cameras so close up. Some have speculated that the intense aggression could have been from a legitimate real life feud in the past.
Vince McMahon was said to be happy with the way last night special turned out. Talent was said to have also liked the way the show went and liked how Vince made the call to hold nothing back.
Speaking of McMahon, he was the one feeding lines to Tazz and Lawler to continue insulting each other on the air. It is a secret to no one that Vince enjoys people verbal jousting each other.
* The segment where Joey Styles knocked Jim Ross’ cowboy hat off of his head during last night’s WWE vs. ECW show was not planned. Styles made the decision to do it on the spur of the moment, creating more effective television.
* Below are my own personal live notes from the PPV:
– The crowd was white hot all night. There’s nothing like an ECW crowd and this show was no exception. They were very vocal all night long, even more so than how translated onto television. It was very hard to hear anything that was said on the house mic.
– The commemorative ringside folding chairs featured Rob Van Dam‘s picture from the ECW One Night Stand Poster.
– There was a lot of new ECW merchandise for sale, including shirts for RVD, Sandman, Sabu and Tommy Dreamer. The infamous event shirt which leaked on WWE.com this week featuring match spoilers was also for sale.
– The end of the Rey Mysterio vs. Sabu match understandably got a ton of heat. Sabu was very pissed off at the finish, I would imagine the early finish was not planned.
– The audience was dying for Sandman to make the save for Tommy Dreamer during his match while Terry Funk had been taken the back.
– John Cena had an incredible amount of heel heat. I’ve never seen anything like the beginning of the match where he threw his hat and shirt into the crowd and the audience members threw them back at him. Unreal stuff. The crowd was all over every move each guy made.
– After the show went off the air, RVD continued to celebrate with the rest of the ECW roster. The celebration went on for a good 15 minutes. Aside from the performers who had matches at the PPV, other notable celebrants included Justin Credible, Mikey Whipreck, Bill Alfonso, Jason and former TNA Knockout Trinity.
– Overall a very enjoyable show. Not sure how the event came across on television, but the crowd and the atmosphere made an arguably average show a winner for me.
- RVD‘s title win
- Tommy Dreamer and Terry Funk
- Kurt Angle
- John Cena – BY FAR
- Ending of the Sabu vs. Rey Mysterio match
- Randy Orton
* Dave Scherer of PWInsider reports that the reason behind ECW not airing live tonight was because Sci-Fi is uneasy with the language used at the ECW PPV from the audience. The ECW audience is known for being pretty raunchy and Sci-Fi apparently wanted to make sure that was edited out.
* The first rating is out for ECW and it is very good. ECW scored a 2.7 cable rating last night, which is very good for the first show ever on a new network. No doubt that WWE management is very happy about this news.
* Several people in both the WWE and ECW locker rooms have said that all of the talent realizes how much the first show stunk, despite the excellent rating. Everyone realizes that the rating was not drawn off of the show’s quality but general curiously over the new brand.
One source even said that Vince McMahon admitted that the show was a failure, but didn’t make it well known.
There is obviously a lot of pressure to make next week’s show better. The backstage feeling is that a lot of the same audience will tune in again to give ECW a second chance before tuning out for good.
* The ECW show on Tuesday did it’s lowest one hour segment when Edge & John Cena appeared on the show. That either means that ECW fans flipped the channel because they didn’t want to see Edge and Cena or it was just the first segment and not everyone had tuned in yet.
* When asked about Samoa Joe in a recent interview, Goldberg said that he would “break his neck.”
* Justin Credible is expected to be a major factor in ECW down the line. He has been tapped to create a new “Impact Players” tag team. Although he was squashed recently by Kurt Angle, there is no indication of holding Credible down as a mid-carder. Management just wants to establish Angle as an “unstoppable-machine” sort of ala-Tazz from the old ECW days. We’re told by sources that Credible has cleaned up his act in recent years and continues to have a strong relationship with Triple H and Shawn Michaels, so he has a decent shot at being a top superstar in ECW.
* Things seem to be changing in the TNA locker room for Christian Cage after one time being considered the “leader” for rejecting a contract offer from WWE to come work for Total Nonstop Action. Apparently some TNA talents are saying that he is doing what is best for his aspiring movie career instead of trying to be the best draw as a wrestler.
One source inside the TNA locker room compared Christian to Chris Jericho, claiming that his mind was on things other than wrestling.
Needless to say, Christian’s backstage reputation has declined considerably since debuting with TNA in November of last year.
* Paul Heyman and Stephanie McMahon-Levesque are working in offices right beside each and surprisingly have not had any arguments. One source said that Heyman realizes his political enemies and knows that if he fails to remain calm, people are just looking for an excuse to get him demoted. Heyman has went as far as saying that he doesn’t want to end up like Jim Cornette, letting political enemies get the satisfaction of his downfall.
* A fight broke out after the ECW House Show last night at the old ECW arena in Philly. The fight allegedly involving about 10 fans was over the fact that a fan was pro-John Cena at the event and this allegedly upset a group of ECW fans.
The fight happened near the exit way after the main event between Kurt Angle and RVD. It was broken up by security after a chair was thrown in. After that, another fight broke out outside the arena. It was all over the simple fact that someone or a few people were John Cena fans. I will post more details when I get them.
* Despite hopes from hardcore ECW fans, Vince McMahon is going to take full control of the ECW brand after initially giving Paul Heyman a measure of power last week. As with anything, McMahon likes to be the number one guy in charge.
* The mood in the TNA locker room has been said to be very positive as of late. Several talents have said that they feel a certain state of stability in TNA that wasn’t there a year ago. Last year at this time, many wondered for TNA’s future, however, now it appears to be somewhat stable.
Veterans such as AJ Styles and Christopher Daniels without WWE experience are pleased with their push as of late, which boosts the morale of the younger X Division talents.
* Multichannel News recently ran a report talking about TNA Impact averaging slightly above a 1.0 cable rating during its 11:00 pm timeslot on Spike TV Thursday nights.
TNA president Dixie Carter commented, “Wrestling has never been on at this time of night.”
“We’re kind of in uncharted territory, but we’re having a lot of success,” Carter continued.
The 1.03 average cable rating that TNA Impact has been doing is 222 percent above anything that Spike TV had in the timeslot last year.
– Tune back in next time for the July edition of Dirt Sheet History as we see what happens with RVD getting stripped of the ECW title, the future of ECW, DX and more.
Stories are credited from Rajah, PWTorch, PWInsider and The Wrestling Observer. Month name photo art is by Phillip Martin.
Past editions of Dirt Sheet History are found here.