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 September 2009, we get a glimpse into the top scoops from October 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 October 2009!
Nick Hogan has begun training to wrestle in hopes of working his father’s upcoming wrestling tour of Australia, Hulkamania – Let the Battle Begin. The 19-year-old is training alongside Rikishi, Orlando Jordan, Gangrel and Black Pearl at KnokX Pro Academy in Burbank, California.
Lacey Von Erich, the newest member of the TNA roster, feels Angelina Love wasn’t a good fit in “The Beautiful People” group. The third generation wrestler replaced Love as a member of the group on last night’s episode of Impact.
“I feel like it was made for me, and she [Angelina] wasn’t a good fit for it in my opinion,” Von Erich told the Miami Herald. “I thought that everybody was going to be, `Oh no. Angelina is gone,’ but not one person said that. Nobody really missed her that much. I feel like I can fill the shoes that I’m supposed to.”
People in TNA have been telling her that the role in the group was made for her. “TNA told me this role was made for me, and I feel the same way,” she said. So when I met the other members, Velvet and Madison … we all just felt like we were one group, and the band was completed.”
Von Erich also added that she had not heard good things about Love before joining the organization. “I’ve never met Angelina before in my life,” she said. “After what some people have said, I don’t know if I want to.”
TNA officials are said to very upset with the comments Lacey Von Erich made regarding former performer Angelina Love in an interview published today in the Miami Herald. The word going around is that Von Erich was ordered by management to personally contact Love and apologize for the comments she made about her.
There’s an article that looks at WWE’s transition from TV-14 programming to TV-PG, with quotes from WWE Chairman Vince McMahon.
McMahon explains that despite the success WWE saw during the edgy Attitude era, the time was right to shift towards more family friendly programming. “We just followed our audience and tried to listen to them,” McMahon said. “It’s a more sophisticated product. It’s just the right move business-wise, but more specifically the right move in terms of reaching our audience.”
Since going PG, WWE has picked up a number of new sponsorships, including Pepsi, 7-Eleven stores, Mattel toys and the Army National Guard.
Vince also said by toning down WWE’s programming, they are moving farther away from being in direct competition with mixed martial arts. “You really can’t compete with that,” he said. “Why not deliver a more sophisticated product and not go to those extremes? If the audience wants those extremes, they know where to go and how to get it.”
It’s been noted several times that TNA Knockout Traci Brooks was bumped from the cover of the November 2009 issue of Playboy in favor of the late Farrah Fawcett. As it turns out, the golden-haired sex symbol of the late 1970s is not gracing the cover either.
In a publishing first, the cover of Playboy was given to a cartoon character — Marge Simpson. The November issue is a tribute to “America’s most dysfunctional family” — The Simpsons — who are celebrating their 20th anniversary on television this year.
Mick Foley was the target of some criticism coming out last Monday’s TNA iMPACT! tapings after he used his political clout to have the ending of that show’s main event changed.
In a match that aired on last Thursday’s iMAPCT!, the original plan was for Foley to be pinned in his tag match with Kurt Angle against Matt Morgan and Abyss. Foley argued that instead of him getting pinned, his character should call for Dr. Stevie and Daffney to replace him and Angle in mid-match. Sounds pretty convoluted, but TNA went along with Foley’s plan on Monday night and the match was a disaster. TNA officials decided the Steve & Daffney vs. Morgan & Abyss match was could not air on television, so Foley & Angle wrestled Morgan & Abyss again the next night at Tuesday’s taping, using the original finish with Foley losing. The second version of the match (with Foley losing) ended up airing on Impact.
After his suggestion bombed, Foley didn’t put up much of a fuss over doing the job the following night. Nevertheless, the feeling from multiple sources was that Foley was trying to avoid taking the pinfall. “He’s crafty,” one source stated. “He knows how to hide behind that nice guy image.”
One main event WWE star has boasted to friends about failing for marijuana 14 times. This particular wrestler hasn’t faced the same scrutiny from management as some of the mid-carders whose pushes were stopped due to repeated test failures.
The fine for testing positive for marijuana was recently levied from $1,000 to $2,500 and it now has the offending superstar thinking twice.
Like many wrestlers in the company, he is now using a product sold at head shops (retail outlet specializing in drug paraphernalia related to consumption of cannabis and other recreational drugs) which gives off a similar effect as marijuana, but is legally sold and does not show up in drug tests
Among some locker room circles, both Triple H and Shawn Michaels are two of the least popular wrestlers these days. Even those who appear on SmackDown and have minimal exposure to them feel as though they are abusing their power and standing in the way of WWE elevating new stars.
The overwhelming sentiment among those in the company is that Raw’s “no man’s land” in the sense there are no full-fledged pushes to be had as a result of the strong influence of Hunter and Michaels, as well as Randy Orton and John Cena. Many feel if even one of these main event performers dislikes you enough to badmouth you to management, you won’t be getting a push.
Ric Flair appeared on “Busted Open” on Sirius radio on Tuesday and revealed what Vince McMahon was to him coming out of retirement and wrestling overseas.
“I told Vince McMahon about three months ago that I wanted to back and work and that I’d just work overseas. He said, ‘You know, go for it.”
Flair added, “I’m in good health. I like to sign autographs and I’m really enjoying (non-wrestling projects), but there’s nothing like wrestling. I’ve been working out really hard and I’m looking forward to it. It gives Hulk (Hogan) and I a chance to see if we’ve still got it going on.”
Shane McMahon posted the following statement on WWE.com:
It is with great sadness that I announce my resignation from the WWE, effective January 1, 2010.
I have never even considered a future outside the walls of the WWE. However, sometimes life takes an unexpected turn and while it is the most difficult decision I have ever made, it is time for me to move on.
First and foremost, I would like to thank my father for the incredible education working with him has provided and for giving me the opportunity to play a role in building WWE into the global phenomenon that it is today. I am extremely proud to have been the 4th generation in this business, and I am grateful for everyday I was able to work along side not only my own, but the entire WWE family.
Thank you to all of the WWE Superstars both past and present for your passion, pride and dedication. You are truly the engine of the organization and it has been a pleasure to work with, learn from and get to know all of you. Thank you for the privilege of sharing the stage with you and for allowing me to become but a momentary member of your elite brotherhood. I have so much appreciation for the many sacrifices you endure, both physically and personally, to make this business the success that it is. The respect I have for each of you is immeasurable.
Finally, there are no words to express my gratitude to WWE fans the world over for supporting this company through good times and bad and for your unbridled passion that fuels the Superstars’ performances. I am profoundly grateful to have been able to entertain you both in front of the camera and from behind the scenes. You are the greatest fans in the world.
I will always love this business and will remain a fan forever.
The Bella Twins were moved back to Raw because Vince McMahon was said to have “fallen in love with them” following their guest host skits on the company’s flagship program several weeks back. They are expected to be featured in guest host segments on a regular basis now.
During an interview with the major Mexican newspaper El Universal previewing this past weekend’s tour of the country, Batista said WWE has been wasting the talents of one Rey Mysterio. He feels Mysterio should be at the level of the biggest stars of the company.
In response to Tyler Reks‘ tweet announcing he was getting his own show on WWE Mobile, a wrestling fan wrote the following note to the ECW star: “It will still be boring as sin, just like you.”
Reks was quite rattled over his remark, as he responded with the following: “aaaaaand if I’m so boring, then why are u following me? Oh wait, you’re not – cause I just blocked your sorry ass.”
Edge called into the Bubba the Love Sponge Show yesterday and said the Achilles tendon tear he suffered back in July was the most painful injury of his career yet. He added he does not know yet when he will be able to return to the ring.
During his appearance, Bubba asked him when his contract with WWE expires, to which he replied next June. He said while he’s a homegrown guy, “he likes competition.” However, he then made sure to note that “WWE is the NFL of wrestling.”
TNA announcer Taz posted a message on his Facebook in response to a reader’s comment that TNA should bring in Paul Heyman and put him in charge of the creative team:
“How do u know if Paul would want to even be back in the wrestling biz?”
“How do u know if Paul was happy doing with he’s doing”
“How do you know if Vince Russo and Paul aren’t friends and talk ‘shop’ at times?
How do you know if TNA wants Paul?? How do you know if Paul wants TNA?
How do you know if Paul wasn’t offered to work for TNA already?
You don’t, sir.”
WWE is no longer billing Kofi Kingston from Jamaica because they wanted to market him without the stereotypical accent as the feeling was it was limiting his on-screen character.
Bret Hart said he hates seeing Triple H and Shawn Michaels in their current DX roles during an interview. “When I see them I just want to put my finger down my throat; it makes me want to be sick,” Hart said.
During last night’s Iron Man match at Bragging Rights, a spot where John Cena got busted open caused a lot of commotion backstage.
The incident happened when Randy Orton hit Cena with a microphone and started Vince McMahon ordered Cena to be cleaned up immediately after seeing the blood. WWE’s John Laurinaitis along with trainers rushed to ringside to clean him up, as WWE currently has a very strict “no blood” policy as part of their TV-PG programming initiative.
With their first attempt, Cena wasn’t aware what they intended to do so played babyface and mounted offence against Randy Orton. The cut was finally glued shoot and cleaned up after the next fall.
Cena and Orton were scheduled to work among the crowd and WWE wanted to ensure there was no health issue with a bloody wrestler among fans. If it were to have happened, the issue would have been taken seriously by the Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission and likely used as more ammuniton against Linda McMahon’s senate campaign.
As the blood was unplanned, WWE decided to stop the clock during the bout as it wasn’t known how long the clean up operation on Cena would take.
Triple H was asked which younger wrestlers currently on the WWE roster he sees as having the most potential. “C.M. Punk is obviously already on his way to becoming a big star. Jack Swagger, I like. Sheamus. Evan Bourne is very good. Kofi Kingston,” Hunter said. “They are all moving up, but slowly, which is the right way.” He used the example of Steve Austin making himself a star at the 1996 King of the Ring and against Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13 to show how a good wrestler becomes a star. He said younger talent need to find a way to stand out.
At the end of the interview, Hunter singled out Sheamus as somebody with a ton of potential. “The closest (younger star) to me is probably Sheamus, because we always train together on the road. But I try to watch all the young guys’ matches and give them advice, if they want to hear it,” he said, almost if he had to defend himself for giving advice. “If they take advice to heart and really want to improve, them I am wanting to help. As for seeing some of myself in someone? That’s tough. Sheamus just the other day showed up at a show he didn’t have to be at. He does whatever he’s asked to do without complaining, he goes to every show and is always wanting to work: he does it all, goes above and beyond. That’s what I was like.”
Hulk Hogan has signed a contract with TNA Wrestling and will announce the deal today.
It looks like Hulk Hogan’s role in TNA Wrestling may extend beyond TV appearances and the occasional match.
Radio personality Bubba The Love Sponge, a close personal friend of Hogan’s, has posted some comments on his Twitter page that will be of interest to everybody.
He wrote, “[Hogan] is the boss. Period. Him and Eric biscoff will run the show. Things are going to get interesting. Vince is going to have a shit fit.” He later added, “The boss boss. No work. He wouldn’t go back to only be the work boss. He is the boss boss. Promise”
When asked by one of his Twitter follows what he meant by Hogan being the “boss”, he clarified by saying, “He is the Booker. Period. Saw it in his contract. Terry and Eric won’t make the same mistakes that they made at wcw.”
At this past Sunday’s Bragging Rights pay-per-view, Bucky Palermo, a longtime friend of the McMahons, came to the show and spoke to Stephanie McMahon. He asked to speak to Vince (who eventually spoke to him) and then Shane. When asked about Shane, Stephanie told him, “He doesn’t work here anymore” — as opposed to saying he’s not here and is leaving the company. When asked what happened, she said, “I don’t know.”
A portion of the Knockouts Elimination Match on iMPACT! two weeks ago had to be edited as Lacey Von Erich fell flat on her face when she ran to the ring to do a run-in.
Earlier that day, the third generation wrestler suffered a minor hamstring injury while training at the Impact! Zone and made it known all night that she was in pain. She reportedly told a male trainer to fetch her an ice pack and he ended up walking in on a half-dressed Awesome Kong, who was none too pleased. Kong then reportedly grabbed Von Erich and took her to the trainer’s room, where she proceeded to cut a promo on her in front of Kurt Angle. When Von Erich went to management to complain, they ended up siding with Kong.
In an interview with Time Magazine, Hulk Hogan says that he chose to partner with TNA Wrestling instead of returning to World Wrestling Entertainment mostly because he wants to help the younger generation of wrestlers.
“When I woke up and realized I should be my own man and be responsible for being happy, I realized I still have a lot to contribute to the wrestling business,” Hogan said. “And jumping into TNA and being a part of that company is huge. I have a chance to give back and help these young wrestlers who don’t understand the business and the art form.”
Hogan explains how the business has changed dramatically since the 1980s. “The business moves so much faster now,” he responded. “It used to be if Andre the Giant and I had a feud, it’d probably play out six or seven months later at a big event. Nowadays, if Andre the Giant and Hulk Hogan have a feud at 9 o’clock, it’s usually over by 9:30. It’s a story-telling art form to create emotion and drama and I just think a lot of that is lost.”
– Tune back in next time for more Dirt Sheet History as we continue looking at 2009.
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.