POST NEWS UPDATE: Joe Koff Responds To Kelly Klein, Talks Concussion Protocol
** Sports Illustrated has an in-depth feature up on their site about former Women Of Honor World Champion Kelly Klein and her situation with Ring of Honor. Klein spoke out about the company not having a proper protocol in place after she suffered a concussion during a match on an overseas tour in October. This was brought to the public eye by Adam Birch, also known as Joey Mercury who worked with Ring of Honor. Birch took to social media and shared messages between himself and ROH GM Greg Gilleland along with sharing mishaps that have occurred with higher-ups in the company. Specifically, on the topic of Kelly Klein, she is still recovering from her concussion and she told Sports Illustrated that she does not regret speaking out. Kelly Klein’s husband, BJ Whitmer who is a former Ring of Honor employee noted on Twitter that Klein was fired by Ring of Honor while recovering from her concussion. ROH told Sports Illustrated that they informed Klein in November that her contract would not be renewed which expires on December 31st because Klein shared confidential documents and emails with another contractor.
Klein claims there were no medical personnel at ringside when she suffered her concussion. ROH C.O.O. Joe Koff had the following to say about the situation:
“The protocol is just this: We recognize the dangers that are inherent in professional wrestling. More specifically, the possibility exists of a wrestler suffering a concussion during a match, and we take all injuries very, very seriously. When we are alerted or when we feel there is an injury, we immediately defer to the medical professional on staff. I wasn’t there, but I was made aware that Kelly did not realize she was concussed until sometime after the match. That hour could very well be a true lapse of time. But as soon as she reported she was concussed, she received immediate attention. Kelly declined the option to go to the hospital at that point. Ring of Honor had management present at the event, including the hired operating agent for the tour. I will tell you that as soon I learned about it, I texted her and she told me she appreciated my text and told me she was fine.”
Minutes passed before Klein received medical attention and Koff was asked were mistakes made by ROH officials and he declined to comment because he was not there. Ring of Honor is reimbursing Kelly Klein for medical bills related to the concussion. Kelly Klein met with Joe Koff at the ROH headquarters in November and suggested the following to him:
“I suggested that we could develop independent contractor standards, similar to an employee handbook, but it would apply to independent contractors, and Joe Koff told me that my contract was my handbook,” said Klein. “I said that the contract did not have any information on how we handle these situations or who I talk to. Joe said, ‘If I was there, I’d always tell you to seek medical help.’ But Joe wasn’t there. Our general manager did not see me. No one from management [at the venue] told me to go to the hospital.”
Joe Koff confirmed that the meeting did take place in November but it was before Klein was informed that ROH was not going to renew her contract. Koff said that ROH has always had a good rapport with Klein but her sharing private emails and information was a breach of her contract. When asked about ROH blocking Kelly Klein on Twitter, here’s what Koff had to say:
“That was not a company decision,” said Koff. “It was a lapse of judgment from one of our administrators who emotionally wanted to prevent our company from further attack [from people on social media supporting Klein]. We never would condone this, and we apologized immediately privately to Kelly and remedied the situation as soon as I found out about it.”
To close the discussion, Koff responded with, “I don’t know” when asked if the relationship between Kelly Klein and Ring of Honor could be repaired before December 31st.
** Coming out of WrestleCade, IMPACT Wrestling’s Jordynne Grace tweeted out that The Sandman came up to athletes that were about to main event a show at WrestleCade and told them that women main-eventing is wrong. The four athletes closing that night were Jordynne Grace, Rosemary, Su Yung, and Taya Valkyrie. After the match, Tessa Blanchard came out to the ring and addressed the comments directly and expressed that she thought the comments were a “crock of horse sh*t”. Tessa concluded her statement by pointing out the athletes that just finished competing and said that she couldn’t think of anyone else better to main event.
The Sandman made an appearance on Busted Open Radio with Bully Ray and David LaGreca to give his side of the story. Sandman admitted that he made the comments but doesn’t think any of the backlash he received was called for.
“Yeah, I did [cause controversy on social media]. But I didn’t think any of it was warranted at all, and so, my kids are calling me yesterday like, ‘You’ve been trending for like two days since Sunday’ or whatever the day was dude, and I’m trending for telling somebody — to me it’s not important… the bottom line is, all I said was I don’t think that most fans are ready for girls to be in main events. With that said, there are so many girls that totally deserve to be main eventers in all different kinds of organizations. WWE to AEW. Dude, they’re so good right now it’s absolutely incredible, but no, I absolutely do not think like that, and that’s just the way it is so I don’t know where that girl got her information but I know that I never talked to that girl.”
Sandman said he was not talking to a group of people and was only talking to Taya Valkyrie. Sandman claimed that he never talked to Jordynne Grace and went on to tell his side of what transpired between himself and Taya Valkyrie. He added that he does not watch any of the current product:
“I was not talking to four women, ever. I don’t even know who that girl is. Never talked to that girl.” Sandman said that he made those comments but not directly to the four female athletes involved in the main event match at WrestleCade. “Well yeah dude, after it originally happened, yeah I was talking about it to more people but originally, I was talking to John… dude, I am so bad with people’s names. What’s Johnny Morrison’s girl? Yeah, his girl [Taya Valkyrie]. Wasn’t she in the match? Dude, I was just walking by her, working the room, saying hi to everybody. She asked, ‘Hey, what’s going on?’ I say, ‘What number are you tonight because I like watching the matches and helping out anyway I can’, and I was talking to her. Not talking to four people at all.”
Jordynne Grace then called into the show to give her side of the story. She stated that herself, Tessa Blanchard and Taya Valkyrie were all talking as a group. Sandman approached them, asked Taya what match she was in and questioned her being in the main event. Jordynne said Tessa went back and forth with Sandman and she [Jordynne] shared additional claims that were made by Sandman:
“Okay, so he did not just say it to Taya and that’s not the only thing he said. I didn’t go into the whole conversation on social media because it was about a ten minute back and forth thing that went on. It was me, Taya and Tessa all standing around talking. The Sandman comes up to Taya, asks her what match she was in. She said she’s the last match. He said, ‘The main event?’ And she said, ‘Yeah, the main event’ and he said, ‘Excuse me?’ And we all just kind of stared at him because I didn’t know if he was joking or not, and then he said, ‘You know that’s wrong right?’ Looked at every one of us, then he started talking about the WrestleMania women’s match and how bad it was, and then Tessa, she’s a little bit more outspoken. I was in shock, and she tried to start talking, he cut her off, stuck out his hand and said, ‘Oh, I’m The Sandman by the way.’ She said, ‘Oh hey, I’m Tessa Blanchard’, and he says, ‘Oh, I respect your family so much.’ Continues to complete sh*t on women’s wrestling. Him and her start going back at it, back and forth. Rosemary walks up, we tell her what Sandman just said. We’re all standing there listening to him argue about women’s wrestling with Tessa. He throws up his hands, walks away. Two minutes later, comes back and says, ‘Excuse me ladies, I just went around to the locker room and I pulled a bunch of people with over 200 years of wrestling experience. Women main-eventing is wrong.’ So, that’s exactly what happened. Tessa and him went back at it a little bit more. She told him how disrespectful he was. He clearly didn’t care. He came on here [Busted Open Radio] and he’s completely lying through his teeth to try and save face now.”
** During his appearance on WWE Backstage, Seth Rollins joined the show and talked about his Twitter exchange with Will Ospreay and that possibly being where the shift in his fan-base began. Seth expressed that he did not enjoy competing under the red lights in matches with Bray Wyatt. He added that the lights distracted him and were not a fan of it. Rollins said that he was unaware that the red light was going to stay on during his Hell In A Cell match with Bray Wyatt in October. During ‘The Satin Sheet’ portion of the show, it was clarified that Dio Maddin stepped away from the RAW commentary desk because he still wants to compete in the ring and is back at the Performance Center. Samoa Joe will continue to be a member of the RAW commentary team until he is cleared to return to the ring. Also, it was confirmed that John Morrison has signed a contract with WWE. This past September, PWInsider first reported the news that the former Johnny Impact signed a contract to return to WWE but he took to social media shortly afterward to deny the report. CM Punk is set to return to WWE Backstage next week.
** During an exclusive interview with Sun Sport, former WWE Champion Kofi Kingston said he would’ve loved to have a longer WWE Championship match with Brock Lesnar on the premiere episode of Friday Night SmackDown on FOX. Kofi added that he realizes it’s just business but that also does not mean that he didn’t fight to have a longer match with Lesnar.
“I was in the same boat as everybody else. You never know what is going to happen that day when you get to the building. I would have loved to have a longer match because I feel like the story that Brock and I could have told could have been a lot more compelling than it was. At the same time, you realize it is a business and what the boss wants at one point is what the boss wants. I let go of trying to control what I couldn’t control a long time ago. That’s not to say I didn’t try to fight for a longer match or a more compelling story, but that’s not the route they wanted to go. That’s the nature of the business. You can be mad and complain and come to work miserable, but I had a six-month title reign, which is few and far between. I got to achieve my dream and I’m all about pushing forward, to strive to achieve great things rather than dwell in this dark space of negative energy. That’s not me. I want to maximize my time here to achieve as much as I can.”
** According to Tokyo Sports, former Sendai Girls World Champion Sareee will wrestle in WWE in 2020. Squared Circle Sirens ran a story and noted that at Sareee’s self-produced show on December 3rd, she announced that she’ll be competing in STARDOM soon. This past July, Paul “Triple H” Levesque met with Sareee while WWE was in Japan for a string of live events.
** Here are the results from the self-produced show:
Sareee’s Special Night Results (12/3/19) Tokyo, Japan
– Zap I & Zap T def. Madeline & Miyuki Takase
– Jenny Rose def. Hibiki
– Aja Kong def. Nanami
– Ayako Sato & Jaguar Yokota def. Haruka Umesaki & Sakura Hirota
– Three-Way Match: Kyoko Inoue def. Chihiro Hashimoto and Kaoru Ito
– Mayu Iwatani & Takumi Iroha vs. Sareee & Syuri go to a 20-minute time limit draw.
** Stephen Amell noted on Twitter that he was not able to do his ‘Promo School’ segment on WWE Backstage due to a pinched nerve in his back on top of being under the weather.
** On the most recent edition of Eric Bischoff and Conrad Thompson’s ’83 Weeks’ podcast, Bischoff was the focus of a Q&A session and was asked about former TNA President Dixie Carter possibly bringing Paul Heyman into TNA and Bischoff stated that it is not a rumor and Dixie did have conversations with Paul Heyman.
“It wasn’t a rumor. I think she did have conversations with Paul [Heyman]. I wasn’t a part of them and I don’t think we talked about them. Dixie let me know. It wasn’t like she was doing it behind our back. I had worked with Paul in WWE and despite the storied legacy of the hatred and back and forth and the competition and all the things that went on between Paul and I, some of it, highly fabricated. Some of it is true. I got along with Paul. I thought Paul was brilliant. Still do by the way. I think probably more now than I did even when I worked with him in WWE because I’ve had a chance, the last four or five months or three or four months to spend more time talking to him in-depth. Paul’s an amazingly talented guy. He really, really is. I’ve got nothing but the highest respect for Paul and even when Dixie was talking to him and suggesting to bring him in, I was fully supportive of it.”
** Officials in Orange County, Florida have approved $125,000 in funding to help bring two WWE events to the area according to ‘Click Orlando’. Commissioners voted to use tourist development tax dollars to lock in bids for Orlando to host a future SummerSlam or Survivor Series event. The board approved $75,000 for SummerSlam in 2021 or 2022. An extra $50,000 was approved to make a bid for 2020, 2021 or 2022 Survivor Series pay-per-view.
** Tito Ortiz and Alberto El Patron were guests on WrestlingINC’s WINCLY podcast.
** Rhino and Billy Gunn are wrestling on December 26th at a charity event in Michigan to raise money for the Fraternal Order Of Police. Also wrestling at the event will be former IMPACT Wrestling talent Nate Madsen.
** Digital Spy conducted an interview with Eric Bischoff. Bischoff was asked how the job as Executive Director of SmackDown came about and he shared that it was through Bruce Prichard name-dropping his name during a meeting.
“Well, Bruce Prichard and I have been friends really since my tenure at WWE as a talent, going back to 2002, and we remained very close friends during that period of time, and shortly after Bruce [came back] to WWE, we were chatting. He said, ‘Hey, do you mind if I drop your name? Would you be interested in perhaps coming back to work for WWE?’ I said, ‘Sure. Feel free’, and a couple months later, I was packing my bags and moving to Stamford.”
Bischoff talked about the idea of him being offered a gig with All Elite Wrestling and would he accept that position. He did not say he’d accept or decline but stated that chemistry would be a major factor when it comes to making a decision like that:
“You know, I don’t know. I still like the wrestling business. I still have an interest in it and an affection for it. I think I’m pretty good at it. If the right situation came along, and by right, I mean a situation where I felt – specifically after my recent stint with WWE, the chemistry has to be there. Chemistry is 90% of it. If you’re working with a team where you all have the same goals, you may see things differently, and you may have different approaches at things, but if it’s a constructive, positive kind of approach and you really enjoy the people you are working with, then yeah, it would be a lot of fun.”
** Ronnie 2K (Ronnie Singh), who is the Digital Marketing Director at 2K is hosting a new WWE-based show titled ‘Off The Ropes’ which debuted on December 3rd on the ‘Caffeine’ streaming service. He spoke with Sportskeeda to promote the show and thanked WWE, Caffeine, and FOX for making the opportunity happen.
** Former WWE 24/7 Champion Kelly Kelly is set to sign autographs and take photos in Utica, New York as a part of Utica City FC’s open practice session. Kelly Kelly is also appearing at the Syracuse Crunch Hockey Club on December 7th.
** Here’s the latest video from EC3’s YouTube channel:
** WWE Hall Of Famer Gerald Brisco will be scouting talent for WWE at MWF’s ‘Project X’ show on December 28th in Melrose, Massachusetts. Brisco is set to host his own training seminar at the event as well.
** Jerry “The King” Lawler cut a promo for the ‘Championship Wrestling of Arkansas’ promotion to promote his career versus title match against Arkansas Heavyweight Champion Matt Riviera on January 18th:
** Dolph Ziggler’s comedy tour is stopping through Vancouver, British Columbia on December 4th.
** Per PWInsider, all plans for the ‘Hidden Gems’ section on the WWE Network have been put on hold. A source told the site that although WWE is no longer moving forward with ‘Hidden Gems’ does not mean that the content in the playlist won’t be used down the line or that the current situation won’t change.
** Magen Boys Entertainment Inc. filed to trademark “Soul Train Jones” which is the name that Virgil has been using while a part of All Elite Wrestling programming.
** AEW uploaded Joey Janela and Jon Moxley’s unsanctioned match from Fyter Fest to their YouTube channel:
** Deadline is reporting that John Cena is starring in a new comedy film titled ‘Vacation Friends’.
** Bob Backlund chatted with FOX to give his thoughts about CBD oil.
** Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson did a sit-down interview with Wall Street Journal Magazine.
** Ring of Honor backstage correspondent Quinn McKay was the most recent participant of ROH’s 10 Questions series.
** Episode nine of AEW Dark premiered on the All Elite Wrestling YouTube channel as Santana and Ortiz took on Marko Stunt and Jungle Boy. Sonny Kiss went one-on-one with Shawn Spears, and Brandon Cutler faced Jimmy Havoc. Nyla Rose was on commentary for this installment of AEW Dark.
** New Japan Pro-Wrestling World Tag League Results (12/3/19)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr. (14 pts) def. Manabu Nakanishi & Yugi Nagata (2 pts)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: David Finlay & Juice Robinson (20 pts) def. Toru Yano & Colt Cabana (16 pts)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: KENTA & Yujiro Takahashi (14 pts) def. Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma (6 pts)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: Minoru Suzuki & Lance Archer (16 pts) def. Toa Henare & Hiroshi Tanahashi (4 pts)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale (10 pts) def. YOSHI-HASHI & Tomohiro Ishii (16 pts)
– Kota Ibushi, Jushin Thunder Liger & Tiger Mask def. Kazuchika Okada, SHO & YOH
– World Tag League Tournament Match: EVIL & SANADA (22 pts) def. Karl Fredericks & Hirooki Goto (4 pts)
– World Tag League Tournament Match: Guerrillas Of Destiny (Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa) (20 pts) def. Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan (8 pts)
** Pro Wrestling NOAH ‘Starting Over’ Results (12/3/19) Korakuen Hall
– Hajime Ohara, NOSAWA Rongai & Kinya Okada def. Hi69, Junta Miyawaki & Minoru Tanaka
– Dragon Bane def. El Hijo de Canis Lupus
– Atsushi Kotoge, Kotaro Suzuki & Yoshinari Ogawa def. RATEL’S (Daisuke Harada, Tadasuke & YO-HEY)
– Hitoshi Kumano, Kaito Kiyomiya, Naomichi Marufuji & Shuhei Taniguchi def. 50 Funky Powers (Mohammed Yone & Quiet Storm), Akitoshi Saito & Masao Inoue
– GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship: HAYATA (c) def. Chris Ridgeway
– Hideki Suzuki, Kazuyuki Fujita & Takashi Sugiura def. Kenou, Masa Kitamiya & Yoshiki Inamura
– Go Shiozaki def. Katsuhiko Nakajima
** Glenn “Kane” Jacobs did an interview with Sporting News and talked about staying fresh and lasting in professional wrestling. Jacobs spoke highly of Daniel Bryan and their time as a tandem in WWE:
“That’s what I would attribute my longevity to, frankly, is the ability to reinvent myself, and I think that’s true for anyone who has a long career. They never stay the same character, quite the same character, the whole way through. Speaking about Daniel Bryan specifically, that was a blast and some of the most fun I had in my entire career because it was an absolute departure from the character that I played earlier. If you asked people in 1998 and again in 2004 would Kane be comic relief on the show, they would have looked at you like you were crazy. All of that was amazing. I hope that I was able to show people that I wasn’t just somebody who had a mask and didn’t talk all the time. There was some depth and I could do some different things and was hopefully a more well-rounded performer than people probably initially thought that I would be.”
** At IMPACT Wrestling’s ‘Hard To Kill’ pay-per-view on January 12th, Jordynne Grace will challenge Taya Valkyrie for the IMPACT Knockouts Championship. On the 12/10/19 edition of IMPACT on AXS, Sami Callihan is taking on Ken Shamrock, Tessa Blanchard is facing Madman Fulton, and Rhino is taking on Rob Van Dam in a ‘Old School Rules’ match with Tommy Dreamer as the Special Guest Referee. Also, there will be a ‘Tag Team Open’ match featuring Rich Swann and Willie Mack, Dezmond Xavier and Zachary Wentz, Jake and Dave Crist, and Reno Scum (Adam Thornstowe and Luster the Legend) and the winners will go on to ‘Hard To Kill’ to face Ethan Page and Josh Alexander for the IMPACT World Tag Team Championships.
** For those in Sunrise Manor, Nevada, Sam’s Town Live is hosting a viewing party of WWE’s TLC pay-per-view on December 15th.
** Charlotte Flair spoke with The New Indian Express for an exclusive interview and shared her thoughts about the difficulties of being a woman in professional wrestling.
“My dad was always pushing me to be competitive when I started wrestling. I had no idea how hard it was for women. I knew that they were mostly looked at as eye candy or secondary storylines. But when I started, I was like, well, I’m just as good as he is. I never felt that I am just a female and that I’m not going to get these opportunities. It just really depends on the storyline, the match or the talent that I am facing.”
** Bull James, formerly known as “Bull Dempsey” was the most recent guest on The Steve Austin Show podcast.
** Dana Brooke has started using the “Batista Bomb” finishing maneuver and asked Dave Bautista through Instagram does he mind her using it.
** Hannibal TV conducted an interview with former 5-time ECW World Heavyweight Champion Sandman:
** WWE is coming to South Africa for a string of live events in different cities on April 29th, April 30th, May 1st, and May 2nd.
** Rhea Ripley joined the Swerve City podcast with Isaiah Scott, Big Swole and Teasy. At the age of 23 years old, Rhea stated that she has been burned out on wrestling several times throughout her career but clarified that it is not the in-ring portion that burns her out but the outside noise:
“I’ve already burned out a few times to be honest. It’s what happens. I’ve been wrestling for like seven years now. I started when I was 16, and there’s been so many times where I just like, stopped caring and was like, ‘I’m gonna quit wrestling. What am I doing with my life?’… Mostly people in wrestling,” Rhea said, after being asked what leads to those stressful moments. “It’s never the actual wrestling. I love going out in front of everyone and performing and doing what I do best but it’s people [behind the scenes]. They get in your head and they make you hate yourself and that’s the one thing that I dislike about wrestling.”
** Alberto El Patron did an interview with Darren Paltrowitz.
** Jim Varsallone of the Miami Herald chatted with Alberto El Patron for an exclusive interview ahead of El Patron’s MMA bout against Tito Ortiz on December 7th. El Patron said during the interview that this will be his last MMA fight. He also shared that the likes of Rey Mysterio, Chavo Guerrero, Dominick Mysterio, and Sin Cara have confirmed to him that they will be in attendance for the fight.
“Well I have a lot of people coming to this fight. Sin Cara has already confirmed, Chavo Guerrero. Rey Mysterio texted me like three days ago. He said he wants to come with his son. Of course it’s gonna be an honor for me if we can have him. He asked me and of course I said yes. I’m just waiting for him to send me his confirmation, and we, just now, before coming into this room for this interview, I got the text from the son of Mexico’s President saying that he will be attending the fight on Saturday, which is fantastic. I also invited the President. Back then, two months ago he said he will try to come. Unfortunately, he’s too busy leading our country of Mexico and he’s not gonna be able to make it but his oldest son is gonna be here in McAllen, [Texas].”
Alberto El Patron’s former personal ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez could be introducing El Patron on December 7th. Patron said he has spoken to Rodriguez and is awaiting confirmation.
“That’s the thing. I want to have my good friend Ricardo Rodriguez. That would be something fantastic for everybody, including me of course. I know he’s been busy. He’s helping his family in the family business and also taking some bookings here and there but he decided to put pro wrestling on the side for a while and focus on other stuff. I talked to him already. He said yes. I’m just waiting for his confirmation and if he does, it’s gonna be amazing.”
** Poppy and Io Shirai did a joint-interview with Revolver Magazine.
** Here’s a video of The O.C. (AJ Styles, Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows) doing WWE impressions:
** WWE Hall Of Famer Stone Cold Steve Austin appeared on ‘Gettin Better With Ron Funchess’.
** On February 24th, Monday Night RAW will broadcast live from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.
** The XFL posted a video of the uniforms that each team will be sporting this upcoming season:
** IMPACT Wrestling’s Ethan Page uploaded a new vlog to his YouTube channel:
** The latest edition of NJPW President Harold Meij’s diary is up on NJPW’s main website.
** Ten years ago on December 4th, former two-time WWE Intercontinental Champion Edward Fatu Smith (Umaga) passed away.
** In the opening round of MLW’s Opera Cup, Davey Boy Smith Jr. will clash with Low Ki.
** WWE put together a playlist of John Morrison’s best moments in the company:
** Here’s the newest episode of WWE’s ‘The Bump’ featuring Ricochet, Rey Mysterio, Dana Brooke, and Keith Lee. Joining the show next week will be John Morrison. It was announced that Damian Priest is not medically cleared to compete on the 12/4/19 edition of NXT and will not be facing Killian Dain. Also, KUSHIDA is making his return to the ring on the 12/4 episode of NXT as he has not wrestled since the October 9th episode. KUSHIDA has been out of action with a hairline fracture on his wrist.
** Former enhancement talent Chris Curtis joined the ‘Wrestling With History’ podcast.
** Corey Graves started off the latest edition of WWE After The Bell by recapping RAW, NXT and SmackDown. Graves shared his opinion about how Charlotte Flair has been faring over the last several weeks and months on WWE TV. Graves believes that Charlotte has lost a bit of momentum and is in a bit of a dry period and stated that he just wants The Queen to return.
“In my opinion, Charlotte Flair has never felt less important than she does right now. Now hear me out: This is Charlotte Flair we’re talking about okay. She has a resume a mile long and in a few short years, has already cemented herself as one of, if not the greatest female superstar in WWE history. By the time it’s all said and done, I’m pretty certain we will be referring to the queen as such. But something about what’s been happening lately just feels off. This whole tag team thing with Charlotte finding a different partner week after week. It just doesn’t click. I’m not feeling it and it looks to me like Charlotte’s not feeling it. You can see it on her face. Charlotte Flair looks like she’s going through the motions and getting through the night, and again, I don’t mean this as an insult. She is a close friend of mine. I have all the respect in the world for Charlotte Flair. I am not in any way saying anything negative about her ability. I am saying what is happening around Charlotte Flair has made her feel less than Charlotte Flair. For some reason, despite the fact that they spent the better part of last year trying to kill one another, she and Becky are all of a sudden just pals? Charlotte Flair and Asuka at WrestleMania a couple of years ago was maybe the match of the year. Charlotte Flair is one of the most exciting talents in all of WWE. Maybe the best athlete in the entire business. Charlotte Flair has the ability to be consistent. We heard Roman Reigns talk about the importance of consistency on this show. Last week, Kevin Owens talked about how his passion for what he’s doing on television truly matters because it means he has something to live up to, something to deliver, and I feel like, maybe, Charlotte Flair is of the same ilk. Let’s be perfectly honest here, Charlotte Flair carried the main event of WrestleMania this year. Yes, The Man Becky Lynch won. Yes, Becky got all the spotlight and accolades and deservedly so, but let’s be honest.”
“If Charlotte Flair was not in that Triple-Threat match at WrestleMania, there is no way that-that match is nearly exciting or successful as it was, period. I will argue that point to the death. Charlotte Flair to me, was the star of that match-up, because she is a pro. She is highly talented, and when she’s motivated, dare I say untouchable. I miss The Queen, my queen. The villainous that just kicked everybody’s ass because she was superior. I don’t know how you bring it back. I don’t think it’s a tough thing to fix. Either that, or let Charlotte Flair take a little bit of a break. Let her take some time off and disappear from public eye for a few months. Let everybody remember why they miss Charlotte Flair, why she is who she is, and I know I have to explain myself ad nauseum, so allow me to reiterate once more: I want The Queen back.”
New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) joined the show. While discussing Kofi’s reign as WWE Champion, Big E chimed in and said he feels like Kofi Kingston handled his WWE Title loss professionally as most probably would’ve reacted differently after feeling like they were wronged in that manner:
“Kofi’s a lot more level-headed than maybe anyone else I’ve ever met in the business, because everyone else would’ve reacted… I was irate when I found out about it, and I think that’s a testament to Kofi because I’m not gonna say, ‘No one else in the industry’ but very, very few people would have the same approach and be able to move on and not have this feeling of sour grapes and that they were wronged.”
** Dark Order (Stu Grayson & Evil Uno) did an interview with Jeremy Lambert of Fightful. The duo was asked about the reactions that they’ve received thus far in All Elite Wrestling and both feel that publicly, the reactions have been mixed but it’s all about patience.
Evil Uno: “Publicly, it’s been mixed, but anything professionally has been very good. We’re here for the long run. It’s only been six weeks of TV. Of course you don’t know much about us now, but that’s by design. We’re supposed to be mysterious. Just wait and see and I promise there will be answers eventually.”
Stu Grayson: “It’s a question of patience. Most fans want to know who we are and everything we’re going to do. But it’s just starting. In the first few episodes of season one, you can’t have the spoiler of season ten. There’s so much to come. If you’re confused now, be confused. That’s okay.”
** Over The Top Wrestling released a portion of its 2020 show schedule.
** Florence Pugh chatted with The Wrap about the preparation for her role in Fighting With My Family and the interview features quotes from Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
** Rhea Ripley did an interview with Brian Fritz of Sporting News ahead of the 12/4/19 episode of NXT. Rhea shared that prior to her new look and on-screen attitude, there were some mental struggles that she had that led to her change in appearance and that led to her becoming the “Moshpit Kid” on-screen:
“Man, there was so much that happened in that little space of time. To be honest, I have a lot of mental demons in life and wrestling has definitely helped me out with that. Yeah, to see where I was a year ago let alone two years ago… I don’t want to say I’m a different person. I’m the same person; I just take a lot less crap these days. I’ve finally come into my own and I know what I deserve and I know what I want. I’m here to take it. Yeah, before the second Mae Young Classic I went through a breakup with my partner who I was with for a few years and he moved here with me. Him moving back to Australia and us fighting, of course, just made me not really care about too much and I was, just like, salty at the world. I guess it sort of made me sit down and realize exactly what I want in life and exactly how I’m going to do it. It made me start figuring out what I’m going to do and something in my brain just snapped and I was like, ‘I don’t care. I don’t care. I’m going to do it. I’m going to do what I want. I don’t care.’ I guess I just stopped caring about what everyone thought because I had so many negative things coming my way. I just started blocking it and was like I don’t care. Then I went out in the Mae Young Classic, the second one, and had that, ‘I don’t care’ attitude and everyone seemed to really get behind it, you know? I kept with it. I don’t like calling it a character or a gimmick because it is 110% me. It’s just the side of me that I don’t like showing on a daily basis because, you know, I’m a bit snarky. It is me. It’s me when I go to a concert and I’m in a mosh pit. That’s how I act. I turn into a whole different human, an animal to be honest. I just go out there and I do what I want and I take what I want, and I don’t care.”
Rhea said that from the get-go, the new look felt amazing and she accepted herself. She also said that her match with Io Shirai from the 2018 Mae Young Classic tournament is probably the best match of her career:
“Yeah, definitely. I felt amazing. I felt like I finally accepted myself and I didn’t care if anyone else did or not. I accepted myself. I looked in the mirror and was like this is me. I feel comfortable now. Then I went out there and did what I did. Man, I had one of, if not, the best match of my entire career at the Mae Young Classic 2 against Io and that match wasn’t even supposed to happen. It was absolutely insane how confident I was with that new gimmick even though it’s not a gimmick. I just felt confident within myself and I knew that I could pretty much do anything.”
** The first-ever NXT U.K. Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley spoke with Newsweek and the publication asked her about what her body has been through over this recent stretch. Rhea pin-pointed having broken two of her nails and how painful that was. She said while in WarGames, she shook her hand to relieve some of the pain and people in the back thought she flipped off Bianca Belair:
“It was tough definitely. It was travel that got to me. Sitting on the bus and airplanes, it just messes you up a little bit. But I was just living in the moment and not thinking about that stuff. I think the worst thing that happened was when I went to get the trash cans and chairs at WarGames, I broke two of my nails, and that hurts, you know? I broke them right down the middle, and I legit started bleeding everywhere, and I’m like, ‘Damn, I didn’t even step in the cage yet. I didn’t know that’s why they call it WarGames, my God.’ I remember going to the back afterwards and people saying, ‘Did you flip Bianca off?’ And I’m like, ‘What do you mean did I flip Bianca off? No. What did I do?’ And they told me that I started shaking my hand and put my middle finger up, and I was so confused, but it was because I broke my real fingernails and I was shaking it in pain. So it looked like I was flipping her off.”
** Yahoo Sports published their interview with Rhea Ripley.
** Taeler Hendrix chatted with Jim Varsallone of the Miami Herald for nearly an hour.
** Connor Casey of Comicbook.com conducted interviews with Rusev and WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth:
** Bleacher Report conducted an interview with AEW Chief Brand Officer Brandi Rhodes. Rhodes spoke about the ratings that AEW has received since they began on TNT and said AEW does pay attention to them and TNT has been pretty happy with how things have turned out thus far.
“We definitely pay attention to the ratings. Numbers can fluctuate, of course, for various reasons here and there. But one thing that hasn’t fluctuated is the target demographic and that has been very strong for us from day one. TNT watches all of that and pays attention to it. They’ve been pretty happy with how we’ve fared, and that’s all you can really ask for. When they’re happy, that’s a good thing.”
** Charlotte Flair did a sit-down interview with ‘Femina.in’.
** This coming Sunday, Mandy Rose, Big Show and Mick Foley will be present at the New York Jets game at MetLife Stadium.
** Squared Circle Sirens confirmed that Arissa Le Brock will be partaking in the WWE tryouts at the Performance Center on December 5th. Le Brock is the daughter of actor, producer, and screenwriter Steven Seagal.
** House Of Glory Wrestling announced that two-time WWE Hall Of Famer Ric Flair is no longer appearing at their December 7th show due to “unforeseen circumstances”.
** Former SmackDown Live Women’s Champion Carmella did an interview with ‘Parade’.
** Sheamus will be presenting awards at the NASCAR Cup Series Awards ceremony at Bridgestone Arena.
** Matt and Reby Hardy welcomed their third child into the world. POST Wrestling would like to send our congratulations to the couple.
REWIND-A-WAI #50: WWF Royal Rumble 2000 (Patreon)
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWF Royal Rumble 2000 headlined by Triple H (c) vs. Cactus Jack in a Street Fight for the WWF Championship in Madison Square Garden. Plus, a tables match between The Dudleys vs. The Hardys, Tazz’s WWE debut, and a Miss Royal Rumble Bikini Contest.
RAR 12/2/19: “Calm, Cool, Collected”, AEW-NXT Ratings
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE Raw featuring Seth Rollins’ apology and Lana & Lashley getting arrested. We also discuss last week’s delayed AEW and NXT ratings and the rest of the day’s news.
THUNDERSTRUCK: Jushin Thunder Liger vs. El Samurai (April 30, 1992)
WH Park and Dylan Fox of The Eastern Lariat podcast have a fun discussion on the finals of the Top of the Super Junior III tournament from April 30, 1992, between Jushin Liger and El Samurai.
BRITISH WRESTLING EXPERIENCE
Martin & Jamesie are joined by JP Houlihan of GRAPPL Spotlight to discuss all the European representation over Survivor Series Weekend including Pete Dunne’s two matches and WALTER. JP gives his live report from the Rev Pro British J Cup.
Café Hangout – Nov. 28, 2019
John Pollock and Wai Ting open up the phone lines for an entire hour taking your calls about any current topics in wrestling and MMA. We then review this week’s WWE NXT following up on the brand’s dominance at Survivor Series.
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