If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.
** Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, Ring of Honor cancelled all of their events through May 31st. They previously cancelled their ‘Past vs. Present’ and 18th Anniversary shows. Through May, Ring of Honor has their Women’s World and Pure Title tournaments along with the Supercard Of Honor show that was scheduled for WrestleMania weekend in Tampa. Below is the official press release from the company about the cancellation of their forthcoming shows:
“Dear ROH Family,
Pursuant to the latest updates regarding Covid-19, known as the Coronavirus, and in strong consideration of the government’s mandate limiting large gatherings for the next 8 weeks, we are CANCELLING all ROH LIVE events through May 31st, 2020. We appreciate your understanding through these difficult times as we come together as a planet to do our part in slowing and helping stop the spread of this virus. We encourage all fans to avoid large crowds, practice social distancing, and adhere to the continuously updated guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Tickets purchased for all events will be refunded at the earliest possibility. In most cases, refunds should appear within 3-7 business days, but please allow for potential delays due to volume at our ticketing partners and possible delays in processing at various banks. As the pandemic progresses, ROH will continue to provide timely updates related to live touring plans.
For existing HonorClub members, we thank you for your loyalty and we know you subscribed so you can watch ROH events LIVE as they happen. Don’t worry, we got you covered! Starting April 1st, we will extend your current term automatically by a period of 90 days to cover the months of March, April, and May! Please continue to enjoy all of the existing VOD content, new VOD content from our historical library that will be added very soon, and of course the discounts on your favorite ROH merchandise at ROHProShop.com.
The entire Ring of Honor staff, wrestlers, and partners remain committed to providing daily and weekly content on all platforms. Please stay tuned to all ROH digital channels and ROHWrestling.com to keep up with the “Best Professional Wrestling on the Planet.”
** In wake of the news that WWE will broadcast WrestleMania 36 from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, WrestleCon made the announcement that their scheduled weekend of events in Tampa is cancelled. WrestleCon is taking a massive hit financially and the convention’s Twitter page has a photo up of an email they received from the hotel they used to book wrestlers for WrestleMania weekend. Since WrestleCon is an event that is booked over heavy demand dates, the Marriott hotel views that as damage and they added in the email that the liquidated damages due the hotel is 80% of total revenue owed or $114,202.00. WrestleCon added that refunds will be issued and they’ll be back next year for WrestleMania 37 in Inglewood, California.
In an update on the situation, WrestleCon tweeted the following:
“Thanks to Marriott Westshore for agreeing to honor the Force Majeure clause and not holding either our guests or WC responsible for the liquidated damages. The Emergency Declaration by Gov DeSantis to cancel events over the next 30 days was a major factor.”
** WWE issued the following statement about the status of NXT TakeOver: Tampa and the Hall Of Fame ceremony now that WrestleMania is taking place from the Performance Center and here’s what the sports-entertainment company had to say on the matter:
“The WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony and NXT TakeOver will not take place as previously scheduled. We will share further details as they become available.”
Georgia Smith, whose father, Davey Boy Smith was set to be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame this year, tweeted out that she has spoken with WWE and they are postponing the Hall Of Fame ceremony to a later date and are hoping to do it for SummerSlam in Boston.
** WWE issued a statement about tomorrow’s edition of NXT on the USA Network and there will be no live matches on tomorrow’s show. Instead, the show will feature interviews, personality profiles, old footage and will emanate from a studio setting. Also, Dave Meltzer of F4WOnline confirmed that this week’s SmackDown and next week’s RAW are set to air from the Performance Center. The Dickies Arena, which was set to host next Monday’s RAW in Fort Worth, Texas, posted an update on Twitter which read that RAW will air live from the PC and WWE is set to return to Fort Worth on July 31st for Friday Night SmackDown. All tickets purchased for next Monday’s show will be honored at the July show.
**All of AAA’s shows are off until further notice due to the Coronavirus outbreak. The company made their announcement on their social media platforms.
** ‘Post Stock News’ has information up about a lawsuit that WWE is involved in with Tilray, Inc. and Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and both claimed that WWE has made misleading statements about their respective companies. Inovio is involved because they’re claiming WWE made misleading statements about the company’s development of a vaccine for the coronavirus which led to them losing a number of shareholders.
** IMPACT Wrestling officially cancelled their ‘There’s No Place Like Home’ show that was scheduled for WrestleMania weekend. Refunds for the show will be sent out within the coming week.
** Ryan Satin of Pro Wrestling Sheet noted on Twitter that in order to enter the WWE Performance Center, WWE talent, crew and those alike have to pass a screening conducted by a team of physicians.
** GCW The Collective made the official announcement that they’ll be postponing their WrestleMania week/weekend events to a later date. Those events include Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport, GCW For The Culture, EFFY’s Big Gay Brunch, Wrestling With Stereotypes, Black Label Pro and a handful of other shows that were scheduled for that weekend. In the statement released by The Collective, it’s noted that all tickets purchased will be carried over to the rescheduled date and special benefits will come along with that. They added that they are asking the fans to be patient with them and invest in the future of independent wrestling and allow them to finish what they started.
** Raymond James Stadium’s Twitter account has information up about ticket refunds for WrestleMania 36. Refunds for WrestleMania week events are available at the point of purchase and those who purchased their tickets through Ticketmaster will be refunded in 30 days.
** Jared Smith, who is the Senior Vice President of Digital Products at WWE chatted with Sports Video Group for an exclusive interview. Jared spoke about the redesign of the WWE Network and stated that the reception to it has been good and there have also been plenty of suggestions from fans that WWE can use in the future.
“We were. We were really pleased. A project with this level of complexity carries a lot of risk. Also making wholesale changes to user interfaces always carries a lot of risk, but we were pleased with the feedback we heard from fans. Heard a lot of positive feedback from them. Also heard a lot of suggestions and we’re really grateful for those too because we can use those to inform our future road map now.”
** Former WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Nikki Cross guest appeared on the Swerve City Podcast with Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, Teasy and Big Swole. During their chat, Big Swole opened up about stepping out from the shadow of her husband Cedric Alexander. Swole says that to this day, she’s still referred to as the wife of Cedric Alexander but knows it’s up to her to take herself out of that light and be comfortable with who she is professionally.
“I think mine was getting that confidence to do what I do and not what everybody expected me to do. I guess ‘cause coming into this with having a significant other who’s already in it, who’s already a name, it was getting over all the naysayers, the saying that, ‘Oh, she’s just doing this because she’s Cedric’s wife’ or this is only Cedric’s wife. I never used to be called — even now, people still write things about me. They’ll be like, ‘Big Swole, wife of Cedric Alexander who’s a WWE superstar, just had her first match. Oh, and it was also a win.’ Like I’m always a secondary so I think I just have to get over that whole, ‘Everybody’s not gonna see me as my own person,’ but I have to worry about what I think.”
Nikki Cross chimed in and shared some of her hardships and discussed body positivity. Cross stated that early in her career, all she was able to focus on was her torso area and she had to gain confidence within herself and tell herself that she is a beautiful individual.
“I think guys and girls can relate to this. Like you know, the body image and you go through all these — in my early twenties, going through all these crazy diets and just ended up doing these stupid diets that would like — they just weren’t healthy. Mentally or physically they just weren’t healthy. One of the best things [of] the last few years was just getting away from that and being like, ‘I’m a sexy b*tch.’ I would always look at photos of myself because I would wear the two-piece and the only thing I would look at would be my stomach and I wouldn’t look at anything else. It didn’t matter — anything else. I would just always look at that and it was such a paranoia so it was just the getting away from that and the last couple of years, it just — I think as you get older, you realize, ‘Embrace yourself’, as cheesy as it sounds but like, it’s true. I’m sure guys, everyone goes through it in this industry.”
** NXT Cruiserweight Champion Jordan Devlin joined Sheamus for a new edition of Celtic Warrior Workouts:
** ABC 24 caught up with Jerry “The King” Lawler as Lawler arrived in Orlando for WWE RAW at the Performance Center and Lawler stated that he’s never been a part of anything like this but thinks it’s good that WWE is providing some form of entertainment during the Coronavirus outbreak.
“I really don’t know what to think about this. I’ve been in the wrestling business for nearly 50 years and traveled and seen just about everything but I’ve never seen anything like this so far. I think all you have to do is ask anyone who sat on a Sunday with no sports on TV. It was just unbelievable. I don’t know how many times I sat there looking at my TV and said, ‘Oh my gosh, what is happening here?’ I think that it’s a good diversion. It gives people something to take their mind off [of] with all this bad news.”
** Scott Steiner made an appearance over the weekend for the New Era Wrestling promotion in Alabama. It was first reported by Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp that Steiner collapsed during IMPACT Wrestling’s TV taping in Atlanta and was rushed to a hospital. The likes of Tommy Dreamer and Scott D’Amore posted updates throughout the night and noted that Steiner would make a full recovery and that he was in good hands.
** With the news making the rounds that WrestleMania is taking place from the Performance Center, former multi-time WWE Champion and WWE Backstage contributor CM Punk tweeted the following about the news:
“Well that’s one way to make sure Roman finally gets not booed and nobody chants for meeeeeeee.”
** Below is All Elite Wrestling’s ‘Road To’ video to hype up the March 18th episode of Dynamite which will air from a closed set.
** The ‘FlipDaScript’ podcast welcomed Jake “The Snake” Roberts onto the show and the opening portion of the conversation focused in on Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels. Jake stated that the root of Bret and Shawn’s issues with one another derives from Tammy “Sunny” Sytch. Roberts says the Montreal Screwjob all came about from Bret and Shawn because they were tied up in a triangle with Sunny.
“You know what happened there? You got two little b*tches fighting over a girl, fighting over Sunny and both of them sticking it to her and they both hated each other for that. Oh yeah, that’s what was going on and they hated each other for it. They fought over the p*ssy man, and she was giving it away to everybody so whatever. Jesus Christ.
They were fighting over her. I used to be right in Vince’s TV forum, and this was during that era, and he’d say, ‘I gotta talk to those guys [at] about 10:30. He would get on the phone and talk to the both of those fools for two and three hours, begging them to wrestle each other, trying to con them into wrestling each other. ‘Well if I [gotta] wrestle that son of b*tch, I want this and I want that’ and he had to play them and he had to kiss their ass just to get them in the ring together. Now let me ask you this: If you’re paying a man, it’s your company, and you tell that man, ‘Hey listen man, I’m paying you X amount of dollars. I want you to go out and lose tonight.’ Do you have a problem with that? They did. Because of the p*ssy, neither one of them wanted to lose to the other one, because they felt like the winner was gonna get the p*ssy I guess. I don’t know man.”
While speaking about Bret and Shawn’s in-ring careers, Roberts said they both needed championships to become made-men in wrestling. He said they were the worst champions and not that big of a draw.
“Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, those chumps needed titles. Please. HBK? Give me a break. Him with his gruff voice. Nobody ever thought he was tough. Jesus Christ man.
Because nobody paid attention to him. He was in a tag team. Hell, nobody even looked at him. Sure, they were pretty to go out there and make the girls go, ‘Ooo!’ But that’s about it. He [Shawn Michaels] worked his ass off [in the ring]. I’ll give him that. He performs his ass off, but was he ever a good champion? Hell no. Did he put asses in seats? Not that many. You check the books man. Bret Hart and Shawn Michaels were the worst champions of all. They did not put money in the bank.”
Roberts also spoke about racism in wrestling and recalled some of the times where he saw racism in the sport first hand. He said personally, he doesn’t understand racism and added that African-Americans were always the superior athletes in wrestling but white promoters would hold them back.
“There’s always been racism in every walk of life as far as I remember. I mean when I was in the third grade, they integrated and I didn’t know what this black and white thing was and I never have. I don’t understand it today. You know, I don’t understand why the white man was so messed up to pull that bullsh*t. It was wrong, it’s always been wrong. Slavery is not a good thing for anybody. It’s bullsh*t. We’re all eating and breathing. We oughta be able to sit down at a table together. I don’t have no color about me. I never have and never will. I think they’ve always been used. Back in the 70s, whenever I first got into wrestling, I seen that sh*t. They were never pushed to the top, they were always held back, they were the better athletes and it was wrong, and some of them, they bowed down and played the game and went out there and acted like a fool. You know, which is what the white man wanted at the time — wanted to humiliate ‘em. It was wrong man. That sh*t’s always been wrong.”
** The Tennessean has an article up about the Nashville Fairgrounds being torn down. The Nashville Fairgrounds played host to a number of TNA Wrestling, National Wrestling Alliance and countless pro wrestling shows over the years that it was intact.
** NJPW1972.com announced additional content for NJPW World as they are on hiatus because of the Coronavirus. Coming this weekend are specials featuring Kazuchika Okada and both will be stage shows, one of which will be hosted by Tiger Hattori.
** While chatting with Fightful, EC3 opened up about being out of action with an injury and not being happy with how the details of his injury came about. The last time that EC3 wrestled was in September of 2019.
“As far as whatever kept me out, you know, this is the thing about media that I was talking about is who reported that? Nobody asked me. Well, you did, and I didn’t tell you why I was out. I was out and then something reported why I was out. But, then the person that reported it never verified it. I’m very easy to find on Instagram or Twitter or e-mail. But, nobody ever reached out and verified it, so that upsets me. But, yeah, I was out. I was injured.”
** Freelance Wrestling is hosting weekly live streamed events from the Pro Wrestling Tees warehouse in Chicago. WWE’s Mustafa Ali is donating to cover all of the performers’ pay for the first event since the Coronavirus has led to multiple promotions cancelling shows and/or not being allowed to have fans in attendance to see the show. Per Black Label Pro promoter Mikey Blanton, WWE issued a cease and desist to Freelance Wrestling.
** WWN announced that their WRESTLExpo show scheduled for WrestleMania weekend in Tampa has been postponed. In the press release, it’s noted by WWN that they are a small business and they’ve been hit hard by the outlying effects of the Coronavirus outbreak. Here’s the full press release from the promotion:
“With a heavy heart, we must inform you that all WRESTLExpo events have been postponed indefinitely.
WWN is a small business. We have been hit hard by the current climate. We ask for your patience as we work out ticket refunds and other options. We will contract ticket holders over the next few weeks. In the meantime, you can contact us at Help@WWNLive.com for assistance.
We have tens of thousands of dollars in deposits and other expenses we are currently trying to recover. As we recover this, we will issue refunds. It is the best we can do. We understand your frustration and need for a refund. We will eventually make you whole and do right for you. We are humbly asking for some time.
We only survive because of your support. WWN has produced over 600 events since 2002. Your support has resulted in thousands of wrestlers having a platform to launch and enhance their career. Your support has put money directly into all these talenta’ pockets. We were only able to do this because of you. Now we need your support in another way- patience.
Thank you while you wait until we are able to remedy this situation. We are all in the WWN Family together. We will make things right with you.
We will persevere. We will adapt. We will be stronger.”
** WWE’s live event on April 19th in Rockford, Illinois has been cancelled.
** On next week’s Monday Night RAW, both Drew McIntyre and WWE Champion Brock Lesnar will be on the show. Randy Orton is also returning to either accept or deny Edge’s challenge for a Last Man Standing match at WrestleMania.
** Per PWInsider, the truck that Becky Lynch drove to the Performance Center on RAW was supposed to be a part of WrestleMania AXXESS and incorporated into her WrestleMania 36 entrance.
** Sasha Banks took to her Instagram to comment on WrestleMania no longer taking place at Raymond James Stadium and being relocated to the Performance Center:
“It honestly hurts to know that fans, whom a lot of save their money all year to go to wrestlemania, won’t be able to attend. The idea of a parent having to tell their child that they won’t be able to go breaks my heart. Fans make wrestlemania week! All of the events, axxess, they aren’t just there to watch the show, they’re apart of it. But in the end, the world is a scary place right now, and priority number 1 is everyone’s health and safety. So on April 5th, wrestlemania will happen, and we will do our very best to put on a show worthy of our fans. I wish you were there, but I will perform as if all of you are, because it’s what you deserve like a boss. #wrestlemania”
** WWN uploaded NXT Champion Adam Cole and NXT UK Champion WALTER’s match from EVOLVE 107 to their YouTube channel.
** LaToya Ferguson conducted an interview with Mia Yim on behalf of RondaRousey.com. Yim was asked about her TakeOver: Toronto NXT Women’s Title match against Shayna Baszler and Yim stated that if that was her last TakeOver, she’s happy she got to do it with one of her closest friends in Shayna Baszler and having her fellow friends Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke be a part of it as well.
“Well, if I was ever to have a first TakeOver match, I am so glad that it was with her. Me and Shayna wrestled in the indies so it’s cool to see how everything turned out, from where we started to now, and just to even have Marina and Jessamyn involved, it was just… it couldn’t have happened with a better person for me. I already get in my head a lot, so to have Shayna there to keep me calm and to know that we’re going to be okay, and to know that I can hit her, she can hit me, and we’ll still be good with each other. If I was ever to have just one TakeOver match in my whole NXT career, I’m glad that it was with her, just because of the relationship we have outside the ring.”
Yim took a trip down memory lane during the interview and spoke about her time managing Adam Cole while they both were in CZW. Yim stated that Cole was always nice and helpful to her and reflected on how things have come full circle with them both now being in NXT.
“It was awesome. I was nervous at first because I didn’t know if I was managing or being a valet or just being on the side. I didn’t have experience or training in that. So it was a whole new thing for me to learn which, I love to learn all different parts of wrestling, and then Adam Cole has always been very helpful and sweet, and it’s cool because, when we were there, Drake [Wuertz] — the ref, Drake was there at CZW. So, it’s cool to see the people that I grew up with, and we’re all in WWE together. But being Adam Cole’s manager was a lot of fun. A lot of fun. Much more fun than I thought it would ever be. Just being a heel on the side and it getting heat from the crowd, it was fun.”
** A new edition of the NJPW Official English Podcast featuring Will Ospreay was uploaded to New Japan’s English YouTube channel. During Ospreay and Chris Charlton’s conversation, Ospreay talked about his injury from the Fall of 2018 that he suffered at a RevPro show during a match with Chris Ridgeway. Ospreay went for a Pele Kick and ended up spiking himself on his head. When Ospreay got to the back, he collapsed and he was also scheduled to challenge Taichi for the NEVER Openweight Championship in the following days but that match had to be postponed. Ospreay reflected on that period of his career and credited his unbalancing of his weight gain to that slip up.
“Longest time off without any serious injury. The longest time I ever had was back in October 2018. I was meant to challenge Taichi for the NEVER Openweight Title, but I ended up breaking my ribs in England having a match at RevPro, and it is my own stupid fault. I went for the Pele Kick and just landed on my head and I guess — I think it was the same thing. It’s a mixture of exhaustion and where my body put on so much weight and I folded up and it’s no different how I normally fold up. Yeah it sucks but it shouldn’t suck this much, and as soon as I folded up, I felt like my ribs just… I just felt this pop and I couldn’t breathe. So scared. I remember [Tomohiro] Ishii, as soon as I came back, I collapsed backstage and Ishii was passing. He was about to go do his heavyweight title match and he just wants to check on me but he’s like, ‘Ah! I’ve got to go wrestle.’ So like, bless him. Ishii’s a sweetheart. He does look after the boys.”
** To promote their ‘KAYfABE’ wrestling show, Lita and Gail Kim spoke with Cultaholic for an interview. Gail and Lita opened up about their time in WWE, specifically having to do Bra & Panties matches. They were not too fond of the matches and Gail shared that her first house show match in WWE was a Bra & Panties match and she was terrified of what was to come.
Gail Kim: “I was mortified, because I never had to do that on the independents and it was my very first house show match with WWE, and it wasn’t televised, thank goodness. But, it was… I just didn’t even know how to go about it. I had to be told how to do it and it wasn’t my comfort zone. We’ll just say that and so when you’re not comfortable, you’re not gonna perform your best.”
Lita: “I feel like the girls would really bond over that because no one was stoked on it and so when they would go out there, it’s like we would all kind of just run to the back, we’d cover ourselves up and roll our eyes and be like, ‘Moving on!’”
** All Japan Pro Wrestling announced the cancellation of their March 29th event and refund information can be found at this link.
** Inside The Ropes released the following clip from their stage show with Bret Hart:
** Gail Kim joined The Wrestling INC Daily podcast.
** After Monday Night RAW went off the air on the USA Network, the RAW Tag Team Champions The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins) were given Stone Cold Stunners from Stone Cold Steve Austin.
** Tom Colohue of Daily DDT/Sportskeeda conducted an interview with European wrestling fans who’ve had to cancel their trip to WrestleMania 36.
** Big Japan Pro-Wrestling 25th Anniversary Show Results (3/16/20) Yokohama, Japan
– Dark Match: Akira Hyodo, Orca Uto & Takuho Kato def. Hideyoshi Kamitani, Kosuke Sato & Takuya Nomura
– Kishin Kawabata def. Yuichi Taniguchi
– Hiroyuki Kondo, Kazuhiko Matsuzaki & TAJIRI (w/ Katsumasa Inoue) def. Brahman Kei, Brahman Shu & Great Kojika
– Banana Senga, Tsutomu Oosugi, Onryo & Shinobu def. Kazuki Hashimoto, Kota Sekifuda, Tatsuhiko Yoshino & Yuya Aoki
– KAMIKAZE, Ryota Hama & Yasufumi Nakanoue def. Kazumi Kikuta, Ryuichi Kawakami & Yuji Okabayashi
– Four Way Tag Team Deathmatch: Isami Kodaka & Yuko Miyamoto def. Kankuro Hoshino & Masato Inaba, Drew Parker & Masaya Takahashi and Takashi Sasaki & Yuki Ishikawa
– Deathmatch: Josh Crane & Minoru Fujita def. Takumi Tsukamoto & Toshiyuki Sakuda
– BJW World Strong Heavyweight Championship: Daichi Hashimoto (c) def. Daisuke Sekimoto
– BJW Deathmatch Heavyweight Championship: Ryuji Ito def. Abdullah Kobayashi (c)
** Naomi joined Lilian Garcia on a new episode of Chasing Glory. A wide range of topics was covered during the interview including Naomi’s SmackDown Women’s Title win at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando. Naomi stated that her injury prior to WrestleMania was legit as she tore her MCL. She stated that people thought the injury was a work but she cleared up that it was a real injury.
“And that was a tough time because fans thought that was a work. They thought it was a part of the script and they don’t understand, that was real. I really had to vacate it when I didn’t want to. I cried, I was upset because my MCL really was torn. I had a slight tear, and that wasn’t supposed to happen at Mania but, I bust my butt off in rehab. I didn’t even know at the time if I was fully healed but I fought for that and it was rough and it almost didn’t happen but I’m glad it did so, and it all came full circle for me but that was tough. That was frustrating because that’s just the fine line between wrestling. Like, the reality of it, what’s really happening and what’s planned, and sometimes fans don’t know and a lot of times you can’t say like, ‘No! This ain’t no damn storyline. I’m over here struggling, really about to miss out on an incredible opportunity that I waited so long for’ so, but I got through it and you know, it made me better and it made the storyline even better and — but all that was real. It was crazy.”
Last month, Naomi challenged Bayley for the SmackDown Women’s Championship at Super ShowDown in Saudi Arabia. She reflected on that experience and said she initially had her doubts about the trip because of Saudi Arabia’s views on women, but after having a discussion with Natalya, Naomi felt that it was only right that she went.
“It was incredible, and I was really happy I got to talk to Nattie about going because, I had my own perception and reservations about going, and just with personal things like who I am as a woman and a person and what I stand for, what I believe in, I had some reservations about it but I talked to Nattie and after hearing her experience and realizing that me going, was a way bigger impact than me not going, and what that meant and what that represented and how that was gonna continue progression there and just, you know, everywhere. I knew I needed to go and I’m so happy that I went because my eyes were just opened up to so much. There were so many things I was ignorant about. Just with their culture and their traditions and from the time that I landed to the time that I left, it was just a beautiful experience. Everyone was so welcoming and… it was nothing of what I thought and I just learned so much. I feel like I grew from that. Just opening up my mind more and seeing just how much it meant to women to see us there, and even for the men to be accepting and to be so helpful and to be so supportive and to see the kids crying and the women crying and being so connected, and even going out there before the match even started — them chanting for us and having our signs and I’m just like, ‘How do they even know!? How do they even know who I am!?’ But they do and it’s real and it’s just so — it’s big. It’s way bigger than me. It’s way bigger than just a wrestling match. It was just incredible to have the entrance and the pyro…”
Lilian Garcia chimed in on that conversation and shared that five years ago, she and Lana were originally supposed to be the first women of WWE to go to either Abu Dhabi or Saudi Arabia but a week out from that trip, WWE told them that their appearances would not be happening.
“I remember, I think about five years ago, before the women were actually allowed to go to Abu Dhabi, so I don’t know if that’s four or five years but, Lana and I were actually supposed to be the first women to go and we were scheduled and it was ‘cause Lana was not wrestling.” Garcia continued, “They were like, ‘Absolutely no women for wrestling.’ Then they said, ‘We’ll allow Lilian to announce and then we’ll allow Lana to manage’. We were gonna go and then literally, I think it was like the week before, days before, we got the call that no, we couldn’t go. I know, so we couldn’t go and then I think Renee [Young] was the first commentator that was allowed to go or maybe it was Saudi Arabia. I can’t remember. It was one of the two, and then of all a sudden it became, ‘Yes, the women can actually go and wrestle’ and you have where we are now.”
In regard to her spot at WrestleMania 36, Naomi stated that of course she wants to be in a title match but she’ll be happy with just being on the show and won’t let her position on the card damper her spirit.
“Obviously, you know, if it’s a title match or if I’m in that picture, of course. That would be incredible, but it’s not gonna make me feel any less than if I’m in that Battle Royal because I’m gonna show up like I do every year and do my best and give it my all and be featured either way, so that’s just where I’m at. I’m more than happy to… shoot, be put in a bigger position but if I’m not, it’s not going to destroy me. It’s not going to break me and I feel that I’m at a point of my career to where I may not have all the title reigns and the championships but one thing I do have is equity and to me that’s very valuable, and however we want to use that whether it’s me putting over somebody or me being put over, I’m okay with that. I’m at a point in my career where I want to be used and featured regardless because I know I’m gonna shine either way.”
Naomi was candid about what she wants to improve on professionally. Naomi stated that she wants to become better at her promos because that is still a part of the wrestling business that makes her nervous.
“That’s really what I want to do is to develop my character more. We know the glow, we know she’s happy, she’s fun and she’s positive but that’s about it. I would love to be able to get more creative and more comfortable on the mic and in my promos. That’s something that still shakes me to this day and I wanna overcome that.”
** NJPW1972.com published a transcript of a sit-down discussion between SHO of Roppongi 3K and Hiroshi Tanahashi. The two men went in-depth about the landscape of New Japan and their respective careers. SHO spoke about his ‘Low Voltage Talk’ podcast and shared that it was KUSHIDA who proposed the idea of SHO doing his own podcast before KUSHIDA left New Japan to go to WWE.
“It actually came from a conversation with KUSHIDA. This was just before he left New Japan, and there was going to be a gap for a junior heavyweight focused podcast. I asked him what it was like doing one, and he said it was great and I should give it a try. So I went to the office with the idea, and they were saying, ‘Are you sure you can do it without YOH?’ Which put me under a fair bit of pressure,” SHO said.
SHO and Tanahashi were conversing about the current IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Hiromu Takahashi and what SHO needs to do to reach the level of stardom that Takahashi has earned. SHO praised Hiromu, but Tanahashi stated that SHO does not need to be so hard on himself and there are areas that SHO has Hiromu beat in and some fans see those areas.
“There’s a lot of areas, especially in terms of look and power that you are clearly in front of everyone in,” Tanahashi said. “So I don’t think you need to be too down on yourself. But you need to be able to wrestle as the protagonist in your own matches. That comes from being in a lot of different scenarios. Whether it’s with tagging with YOH, whether that’s having Shingo as a rival, or chasing Hiromu, steadily you’ll be able to make yourself the focal point of each of those narratives. Right now, Hiromu is the focal point of his, Naito is the focal point of his. LIJ is the center of this galaxy right now.”
** CHIKARA’s March 28th show has been postponed and moved to another date. The promotion noted that all tickets will be honored at the next event if ticket holders choose not to get a refund.
** According to PWInsider, WWE locked in the day of June 27th to run Madison Square Garden but due to the Coronavirus outbreak, that date was put on hold.
** SPORTbible released another portion of their interview with Samoa Joe and Joe revealed that he’s doing voice-over work for a video game.
** Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp conducted an interview with Moose of IMPACT Wrestling and Moose revealed that NFL Pro Bowl Tight End Gary Barnidge has been in contact with him about a career in pro wrestling. Gary has told Moose that Moose should speak to the higher-ups in IMPACT about that directly and he also wants Moose to be his first match.
“Yes actually, Gary Barnidge, played for the Cleveland Browns and he wants to be a wrestler. Yeah he was a Tight End. I think he made a couple of Pro Bowls actually too and he wants to be a wrestler. He always asks me about, ‘Hey man, you should talk to Scott D’Amore so we could have that match’ because, our good buddy DeAngelo Williams was my tag partner a couple of Bound For Glory’s ago, so Gary thinks he — he actually wants to wrestle and he wants me to be his first opponent so, you never know. You might see Gary Barnidge in IMPACT Wrestling at some point.”
** Dark Side Of The Ring uploaded a teaser for the Chris Benoit episode of their series that premieres on March 24th.
** Marty Scurll uploaded a new video to his YouTube channel which documents Villain Enterprises (PCO, Brody King, Flip Gordon & Marty Scurll) in Las Vegas as Ring of Honor cancelled their weekend of shows in Vegas.
** Booker T took to his Hall Of Fame podcast to react to the news of WrestleMania 36 relocating to the WWE Performance Center:
** Chris Jericho chatted with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated to promote VICE’s Dark Side Of The Ring episode about Chris Benoit that premieres on March 24th. Jericho shared that a great portion of the documentary focuses in on how much Eddie Guerrero’s passing impacted Chris Benoit.
“There was a huge connection between Chris’ life and Eddie Guerrero’s life, and his death, so half the story is the story of Eddie and the other half is of Chris. I think we did the right way of portraying this, reminding everyone there were people behind this, not just sensational murder coverage. There is a story to tell of a friendship and a family, and a guy that was not a monster. This was someone you could trust and that was very respected in the wrestling community amongst his peers.”
** Chavo Guerrero joined The Wrestling INC Daily podcast and he was asked about the Latino representation on Monday Night RAW with Rey Mysterio, Angel Garza, Humberto Carrillo, Zelina Vega and Andrade all being intertwined in a storyline and spotlighted. Chavo thinks highly of all the aforementioned individuals and thinks it’s good that they are able to put money in their pockets as well as bring in money for WWE.
“You know, those guys are all super, uber talented and there’s no hiding that a lot of great talent has come out of Mexico before and not only Eddie, but so many like a Mil Mascaras and all of these people that are box office stars. Not just great wrestlers but drew a lot of money, and that’s kind of what it comes down to really. A lot of people can put on good matches but if no one’s really paying to see it, WWE will not get behind it in a sense because it’s a business. That’s what wrestling is. To see these guys and see Rey [Mysterio] come out and kind of, to me, elevate a lot of these guys and now these guys are just starting to draw money, it’s great to see. It’s great to see that these guys have the opportunity to go out there and not only put on incredible matches, but some money in their pockets and make some money for the organization. I love that. I love to see that. You look at Alberto Del Rio, he was a pretty big draw then. He did alright for himself.”
During his appearance on the show, Chavo also revealed that the filming for Netflix’s GLOW series has been postponed due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
** WWE’s live event on March 21st in Alexandria, Louisiana has been cancelled.
If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.