POST NEWS UPDATE: Shawn Michaels says Kazuchika Okada would adjust “fantastically” in WWE

Shawn Michaels heaps praise on Okada, Arn Anderson talks Caristico's attitude, Mike Chioda on Attitude Era pay, Nick Aldis-IMPACT-AEW story.

Photo Courtesy: New Japan Pro-Wrestling

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.

** Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated has an extensive feature up with a number of wrestlers sharing their favorite matches. Kazuchika Okada said one of his favorites is Shawn Michaels versus Chris Jericho from WrestleMania 19. Michaels responded to Okada’s praise of the match and touched on the idea of Okada being in WWE and Michaels said he’d adjust fantastically.

I’m so incredibly appreciative of that. I’ve always admired the style in Japan, and here’s a guy that admires my style. Someone once asked me how Okada would adjust if he were ever in the WWE, and I know the answer to that—he’d adjust fantastically, because he’s a fantastic talent. It’s like me. People would say, ‘Well, you only wrestled in the WWE,’ but I could have wrestled anywhere. When a guy is talented, he’s talented. So I’m thankful that Okada, this unbelievably talented young man, gained one or two things from my match.

** Longtime pro wrestling referee Mike Chioda was a guest on ‘Insight with Chris Van Vliet’. As the conversation rolled on, Chioda talked about the pay scale for referees throughout the years. He said during the Attitude Era, he made $350,000 a year.

I made that years ago. During the Attitude Era, with the ring crew and the refereeing, I was making $350,[000] a year, and I was getting things paid for because I was doing crew stuff too so, but when I became sub-contracted, when JR turned me into a full-time ref, I became a subcontractor totally, and that was roughly about 15 years ago.

Several years before being let go by WWE, Chioda had a conversation with Paul “Triple H” Levesque and Levesque told him that he doesn’t want to see him like Earl Hebner, as far as still refereeing at the later stages of life.

Actually, Cody [Rhodes] got in touch with me a few weeks ago so I’m waiting to hear something. So, there’s still hope and I got a good two, three more years left in me, you know?

Yeah I do [have more years left in me] but I don’t wanna be that — you know, Triple H came to me a few years ago and said, ‘Hey,’ he’s like, ‘Hey Chioda, move you in a different direction in the company,’ yada, yada, yah and, ‘I don’t wanna see you like an Earl Hebner, being in the ring [at] 60, 65 years old.’ I said, ‘No, I don’t wanna be that way either.’ I feel like I’ve accomplished everything I can in this business. Would I like to work with new upcoming talent: Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns and all these — sure. Kevin Owens and all that. But I said, ‘Yeah, whenever my time is’ and that’s why — my wife got cancer, took a while because we had some good MD Anderson hospitals in Houston, so it took a while for me to get down to Florida, but when I got down to Florida, I got released so I had no idea. I thought I was gonna make a transition and go to the [Performance Center] in Orlando, and train the referees which I was doing when I got hurt.

Edge and Randy Orton competed at Backlash in what WWE dubbed as the “Greatest Wrestling Match Ever”. Mike Chioda shared that WWE called him to referee that match, which was two months after he was released from the company.

They called me a month later [after my release] to do Edge and Randy Orton’s match, and Randy had texted me and he really wanted me to do this special match they were having. But at that point, the pandemic was going on a little while, my wife couldn’t get in to get tested. She had some complications, with maybe her cancer coming back. It was the same problems that she had when she got diagnosed with cancer. So the doctors weren’t opening up the Moffitt here in Tampa so we had to — I said, ‘You know what? Let’s see if we can get in to your original Doctor [Eric] Haas in Houston. So she did, she got an appointment, so we drove up there and as I’m driving, I get a text from Mark Carrano. So I get a text, it said, ‘Hey, there’s an extra payday here for you’ and I’m like, ‘Payday? For what? You’re paying me until July 17th — August. So what’s going on?’ Randy’s texting me, ‘Hey, can you do –’ I’m in Texas right now. I’m in Louisiana at this time, traveling, driving.

Back on the topic of pay scale for referees, Chioda said the average official is making $125,000 a year and expenses and taxes have to be factored into that.

You gotta remember, the average referee probably makes $125,000. Now I’m not saying — that is great money, that’s great money. But if you consider $30,000 a year as far as hotel, car, fuel, food, so forth and then taxes, you’re coming to about 60 grand.

** IMPACT Knockouts Champion Deonna Purrazzo guest appeared on the Women’s Wrestling Talk podcast. In early February, Deonna noted on social media that she and Steve Cutler, former WWE talent and her significant other contracted Coronavirus in January. During her podcast appearance, she talked about what it was like for her to deal with COVID.

I was one of the lucky people that had no symptoms, and I had been tested three or four times before my test came back positive so, as big a shock to me as it was to everyone when I said it of like, I didn’t feel any different, I didn’t feel sick and I was completely fine until I was positive and then I was like, ‘Oh crap, we have to start this quarantine process’ and my boyfriend [Steve Cutler] and I really tried to — once we found out we had been exposed, try to get tested as much as possible and then once we were unfortunately positive, stay home and do everything we could to not continue spreading the virus and do quarantine and there’s so many different outcomes for it, there’s so many different things floating around that we really tried to get as much information as we could [about] what a quarantine is without symptoms. Is it seven days? Is it ten days? Is it the 14 days? And what do we do to make sure that when we go back to the real world and we’re healthy and we’re not spreading anymore, you know?

Deonna was asked for her dream match and she would like to team with Britt Baker, Chelsea Green and Karen Q to take on Sasha Banks, Bayley, Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch.

I feel it’s a cliché answer but I also feel like each of us individually have a dream match with these people so I feel like us four versus The Four Horsewomen, Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks, Bayley and Becky [Lynch]. Those four, I think we each would like to wrestle one day. If that opportunity presented itself, it would be a dream match for us so I’m gonna go with — whether that’s cliché or not, that’s my answer. Me, Britt [Baker], Chelsea [Green] and Karen [Q] versus The Four Horsewomen.

** The Independent conducted an interview with Lana. Her first match for WWE took place in a tag match on the WrestleMania 32 Kickoff show in Arlington, Texas. Lana said prior to that, WWE wouldn’t allow her to wrestle.

I have been trying to get this opportunity way before [it happened]. I was training at live events or maybe working at live events but not being able to get that spot on television. Now I’ve been given that opportunity and [I’m] trying to make the most of it and trying to run with it. I believe that luck is when opportunity meets those that are prepared. So I was constantly coming in early, training at live events and not seeing television, hoping that one day, I would get that opportunity and that, when I do, I’m as prepared as I can be. The cool thing for me is that I can take the WWE Universe with me on my journey… it’s really wild, my very first match in my entire life happened at WrestleMania, it happened in front of you. WWE wouldn’t allow me to have a match before WrestleMania, so [it was] in front of 101,000 people. Early on I had to accept that I was going to fail in front of you guys, and that I was going to have to fail in front of you many times. That was really hard for me because I don’t like failing, I want to be good. As an in-ring competitor I had to accept that I’m going to learn as I go, that I’m going to fail and that’s going to be part of my journey. I hope to encourage people that it’s okay to fail as long as we learn and don’t make that mistake twice. [I] really had to change my mindset to go on this journey and I just hope to encourage others to chase their dreams – and to know that when you fail, you’re not alone.

** Nick Aldis was a guest on a recent edition of the Keepin It 100 with Konnan podcast. At one point during the discussion, the topic of AEW’s relationship with IMPACT was the focus point and Nick mentioned that he has talked with some talents in IMPACT Wrestling who feel some AEW talents have attitudes.

I will say this: I won’t say who, but I have friends in virtually every major company in the business, and obviously we [Mickie James & himself] live not far from Nashville, so often when the guys come to tape IMPACT, some of them come to the house or we go to hang out or whatever. So I got a few good, very good buddies who work there and the word was that some of the AEW guys that had been showing up there had a little bit of an attitude about them. That was kind of the overall word out. I’m not into all that, but it’s interesting because it correlates to — and I’m only bringing that up because it kinda tracks with what I’m hearing about this thing [Sammy Guevara/IMPACT story]. This sort of, perhaps, a little bit too big for their britches.

** Scorpio Sky, who is competing in the Face Of The Revolution Ladder match at the AEW Revolution pay-per-view, shared on his Wrestling with the Week podcast that he is coming back from a torn meniscus. Sky last wrestled on a January edition of AEW Dark.

Face Of The Revolution Ladder match, March 7th, Revolution pay-per-view. For me, first match back coming off a torn meniscus. You know me, I like to dive into deep water and see if I could swim without getting wet. Listen, I’m really excited for this. I realize that today a lot of people kind of think of it as a TV business and the TV matches are the most important ones and that sort of thing but as an old school guy, pay-per-view is still where it’s at for me and I’m extremely excited to be back on pay-per-view in a marquee match and it’s a huge opportunity.

** WWE Elimination Chamber 2011 was the focus of Arn Anderson’s latest podcast. He detailed his experiences working with the original Sin Cara character, Carístico. Arn expressed that he was not a fan of Carístico’s attitude.

This guy didn’t show me anything. Not a damn thing. He had a bad attitude. If he spoke English, he acted like he didn’t. Now we’re not talking about Hunico, that guy. We’re talking about the original, and he just, he was one of those guys that flat just brought the Mexican style. That’s what he brought to our product. Our product was not ready for that lack of contact, lack of selling, all those things, just the Whirlybird stuff that had no psychology behind it. I don’t know. I like Rey Mysterio because of several reasons. He is small but he figured out a way to work his matches where he used every bit of his body to knock you down or chip away at you and get you in a position that he could do a springboard or whatever it was and knock you down so at the end of the day, he spent most of the match selling. He had one flurry that made sense that was able to get him almost to winning or winning, but in a way that made sense. None of that reasoning was in this guy’s toolbelt. He thought he would just bounce guys around twice his size, very little selling, just pop up out of nowhere. Everything I had been taught about this business and everything the audience loves, the storytelling, the selling, the underdog, all that stuff was lost on him. But it came from the top, we had to have a star so those of us that had these feelings and relayed these feelings just got heat. Just like everything else, when you point out the obvious to the brain trust some places, they don’t like the fact that once they hear it, they go, ‘You know, he’s right. It’s right. He’s slapping me in the face with it and I don’t like it. I don’t like the fact that he’s slapping me in the face with it’ when all you’re doing is pointing out the obvious.

** Bleacher Report Live uploaded their interview with AEW President Tony Khan. He was asked if there are any nerves about Sting competing at the Revolution pay-per-view and here was Tony’s response:

No, I feel great about it and if I had any nerves about it, I wouldn’t have let him go out there and be in a position to take a powerbomb, and he was ready to do that. He’s been working out, he’s been competing, he’s been training with Darby [Allin] before Darby had gotten hurt so, he’s been regularly competing in a ring for a while. He hasn’t had a live match, he hasn’t had a professional match in a while but he was ready to get in the ring and wrestle and he is ready to get in the ring and wrestle on pay-per-view so I’m very excited for it and he’s been ready to go for a while now.

** The newest episode of Mauro Ranallo’s MAUROLOGUE.

** Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson welcomed Don Callis onto their Talk’n Shop podcast. Callis touched on the IMPACT Wrestling Hard To Kill pay-per-view and Moose’s performance in the match. Callis feels that Moose is the best athlete in wrestling.

Moose, I said to Moose, I go — Moose is the best athlete in pro wrestling to me, because he does stuff that guys Ricochet’s size do but Moose is 6’6 and 260.

He was doing it [Spanish Fly] every match. We finally got him to stop doing it every match. Now he hits the Spanish Fly on Kenny [Omega] and it was like, ‘Woah!’ I got him right after. I said, ‘Dude, that’s why you don’t do it every match. So then it means something, you know what I’m saying?’

After ECW went out of business, Callis said that he and Joey Styles were going to be the commentators for WCW if Eric Bischoff acquired the company in 2001.

In 2001, when ECW was about to go out of business, I had a gig lined up with [Eric] Bischoff. Joey Styles and I were gonna go and be the commentators for [WCW] Nitro, because I was gonna make more money than I had ever made.

Elsewhere during the podcast, Karl Anderson told the story of when he and Gallows recently wrestled two IMPACT talents. Anderson told the two individuals to not hurt him.

What did I say right before we went out to wrestle somebody on IMPACT recently? We won’t say their names. Before we went to wrestle, I looked at [Doc] Gallows and I go, ‘Alright guys, high five, thank you very much. You guys good? Let’s be safe. Anyways, most importantly, don’t hurt me motherf*ckers.’ Everyone kind of popped, but it was kind of uncomfortable. Don’t hurt me.

After Callis’ first go-around in wrestling, he began working as President and CEO of Manitoba Trade & Investment. Prior to that, he was told by the WWF that he’d have a job for life.

I had an eye-opening experience in 1999 when — or ‘98 when I was fired from my dream job two weeks before Christmas by Bruce Prichard, and it was an eye-opener in a good way because frankly, it told me — I’d been told I was gonna have a job there for life. They had said to me three times, ‘Move to Connecticut, write TV’ and this was before there was quote unquote — this was before they hired a bunch of marks and called them writers. This was when it was like Pat Patterson, it was Pat, Vince Russo and Jim Cornette and Vince [McMahon] and it was like, three times they offered me this, I turned it down. But I thought I would have a job there for life because I could do a lot of things. I could wrestle, I could manage, I could commentate. Raven is similar. It’s a good, you know — so it was an eye-opener. It was like there’s no job security in this sh*t and you guys [Doc Gallows & Karl Anderson] know that. They call tell you whatever, right?

** During his appearance on Wrestling Observer Radio, Jon Moxley gave his take on the ‘forbidden door’ in wrestling and doesn’t believe such thing exists.

Yeah and hopefully it kinda shows people that there’s no — I think the pandemic too because people have had to get more creative in the way they run shows and bring in talent and all this stuff with all the challenges. But that’s created — maybe make people think outside the box more, which maybe might lead to more stuff like we’re doing a thing with IMPACT [Wrestling]. That’s great. I mean it’s easier to facilitate stuff with New Japan now. That’s great too. Like everybody’s talking about this door. I don’t know nothing about no door. I’ve been walking back and forth whenever. There’s never been a door for me. I’ve been working both the whole time. I would’ve worked the whole year had it not been for the pandemic, you know? So there’s no — the door’s not really there. You’re imagining it, so it’s like what if KENTA came to AEW? Cool, easy, like that. It’s like, ‘So, oh, imagine –’ now that we’ve shown how easy it is for two sides to work together, imagine what else could happen, you know? And I don’t think it’s gotta like — I don’t think any of these companies, be it IMPACT or AEW, New Japan or whatever, no one needs to be married to each other, because they are all different products and having their own separate identity makes them cool. That’s what makes inter-promotional stuff cool because all of them are different, separate entities.

** Bleacher Report caught up with The Miz coming off of his WWE Championship win. Miz was asked if there could be another “Hate Me Now” video package ahead of his title defense against Bobby Lashley and he said he’s already on it.

I’ve already texted Adam DeNucci, who did my ‘Hate Me Now’ vignette for WrestleMania and said, ‘Ready for Part 2 whenever you are!’ He did an absolutely incredible job. To this day, I don’t think there’s a vignette that showcased a period of someone’s career in such a short amount of time. Literally, I think the thing was three minutes long, and you can see the ascent of my career, and he just showcased it perfectly and did an amazing job.

I’m very thankful that he made that because honestly, when I was going out there, I don’t think the audience was fully invested in me, but when that ‘Hate Me Now’ vignette aired, I think people were like, ‘Woah, OK.’ I think it got people behind me 100 percent and that was the icing on the cake that I needed. I was very thankful for that, and I’m hoping we can do another one.

Continuing on the topic of Miz’s WWE Title win, his father George Mizanin immediately asked Miz when is he going to lose it.

My dad was like, ‘Wait, you won? It’s the world championship, right, Mike? The big one?’ I said, ‘Yes.’ He goes, ‘Oh, that’s great. When are you going to lose it?’ I said, ‘I don’t know, Dad. Can you pat me on the back for a little bit while I have it?’ But yeah, it’s really cool and my mom is always immensely proud of me with everything that I do.

Elsewhere during the interview, Miz spoke about the fresh faces that have joined the WWE and how that motivates him. Miz feels he’s in his prime.

You can’t just put it out there. You have to work towards it. You have to do everything in your power to get where you need to be. For me, it’s getting all the right tools. The new up-and-coming Superstars who are here in WWE right now are more athletic. Some of the things they do are absolutely incredible, and I have to make sure I can keep up. Not only keep up, but also excel and be better than any of them. The youth coming into WWE always keep me young and it’s funny saying that because I remember when I was 25 just coming into WWE and I sit here at 40 as the WWE champion. I feel like I’m in my prime. I’ve never been better. I’m able to talk, do so many different things in the ring, and able to captivate an audience unlike any Superstar WWE has.

** ‘Metro’ ran their interview with WWE United States Champion Riddle. As the conversation between the two parties rolled on, Riddle compared wrestling to a high school in terms of the gossip that takes place with lack of direct face-to-face conversation.

Pro wrestling is the most outlandish high school you’ll ever go to. Monday Night Raw is just like, ‘What’s gonna happen this week?’ If anybody has a problem with anybody, nobody says it. It’s always like, ‘Pst pst.’ I’m like, why are we hearing stuff like this? Say something, do something! I’m not saying you have to go The Undertaker route and fight each other and be men about it! I’m saying let’s talk about it. But hey, it is what it is!

** David LaGreca spoke to Jimmy Rave.

** talkSPORT caught up with The Miz and he shared that there have been multiple occasions over the past several years when he was told he was close to winning the WWE Championship again.

I have been told many times – 2016, 2017, 2018 – there was a bunch of times where it’s like, ‘Oh, we’re almost there’ and then I get drafted or something else would happen.

Certain things happen and the juggling is always happening. Sometimes you’re there and it’s like, ‘Ah, it actually happened!’ And other times it’s like [sighs]… I have [to] work harder. I have to be better, do better, keep elevating myself to get to that moment. And here we sit; that moment took a little while but it’s kind of incredible.

** Daily DDT chatted with Karrion Kross for an exclusive interview. He reflected on his shoulder injury at NXT TakeOver: XXX that led to him relinquishing the NXT Championship after winning it. Kross detailed how the injury occurred and what went through his mind after it happened.

I was really [full of adrenaline] at that time and as soon as I hit the canvas, I heard and felt a crunch. Immediately when it happened, I went to grab it instinctively and I felt something was out of place. If you go back and watch it, I tried to shove it back in. I was like, ‘Oh, I don’t want them to see that; they’re going to stop the match. Whatever this is sticking out, I’m going to try to shove it back in, and hopefully, it stays in.’ My first reaction [was] I was so mad. I was like, ‘This is happening right now? Are you kidding me?’ I tried shoving it back in and of course, it didn’t shove back in. There’s no way I’m quitting, there’s no way I’m stopping. This is the top of the pay-per-view. We had a Ladder Match and people flying through the air. We’re finishing this. This is what I do for a living.

On the topic of a potential move to Raw or SmackDown, Kross feels that the decision should be made at the demand of the fans.

The end goal for me was just to come back and be just as good as I was before the injury happened. I’m very, very happy in NXT. I love the environment. The crew there is awesome, from producers to writers to the boys in the locker room. Everything is awesome there. I have zero complaints about it. However, when it’s time to go up, I’ll be ready to do that. In my opinion, it should be done at the demand of the people. Admittedly, I am a people-pleaser, so I guess we’ll have to see how that all plays out. I’m interested in being a part of all of it. I want to do everything while I’m here.

** Jordan Oliver is challenging Jacob Fatu for the MLW World Heavyweight Championship on the 3/3 edition of FUSION.

** Sonny Kiss joined Sippin’ The Tea TV with Ariane Andrew and Matt Dillon.

 

** Ric Flair turned 72-years old today.

** AAA’s Psycho Clown was interviewed by Sports Illustrated and he said he’s hoping to wrestle more in North America.

The United States is a territory I want to conquer. Psychology is different there than it is in Mexico, but I love to fight and I love to wrestle. There is the same rhythm in the ring, the same desire to capture your attention, and I want to conquer the hearts of all the fans in the USA.

** Ring of Honor celebrated Black History Month with the following video:

 

** ABC 6 covered Drew Kasper signing to WWE and reporting to the Performance Center in Orlando.

** In 2018, Willie Mack captured the NWA National Heavyweight Championship. He was surprised by the crowd reaction from the fans in attendance and explained why during his appearance on the Wrestling Perspective podcast.

Yeah, because it was the NWA and you thinking like, ‘Hell nah, my Black ass ain’t gonna get over there, and Nashville Fairgrounds, went up in there, all of them folks, once they heard that three count, they were like, ‘F*ck yeah. Willie Mack done did it. I told you he was gonna do it.’ They were shaking each other and sh*t, and I’m like, ‘Damn, all these country ass white folks like my Black ass?’ F*ck yeah. I’m like, ‘Damn, I ain’t think they were gonna give a f*cking two shakes of rat’s ass about me.’ But, here we go, nice.

** A story about Big E and Charlotte Flair talking to patients at the Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Hospital.

** Chris Jericho joined the KTLA Morning Show.

 

** SPORTbible chatted with NXT UK Champion WALTER.

** ‘Metro’ ran their interview with The Miz. He spoke about two of his biggest supporters in Maryse and Vince McMahon.

I honestly think my biggest supporter is my wife. There’s no one that supports me more. Whenever she is outside – when she was outside the ring and being my manager, she motivated me, she made me better. Honestly, whenever you have a beautiful wife and she’s staring at you and your in a Speedo, you kinda stand a little taller, to be honest!

If I’m really talking about it as well, I’d say my wife and you know who else? Vince McMahon. Vince McMahon has always been a big supporter of me. I think he enjoys my work ethic as well as my talents. I think he sees the ability that I have, and is able to showcase me in Raw, SmackDown, pay-per-views, commercials. Whatever WWE needs, I am a guy that can do it and do it to an elite level talent, and be a main event caliber superstar who represents this company like it should be represented.

** Paul “Triple H” Levesque chatted with SPORTSNET to promote NXT airing live on Sportsnet360 in Canada.

 

** Miro took to his Twitch channel and reacted to the news of Paul Wight (The Big Show) joining AEW.

** GameSpot ran their interview with Danhausen.

** Shayna Baszler put a video up on her YouTube channel, displaying how to lock in the double wrist lock.

 

** Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp chatted with Sean Maluta.

** Vicente Beltran caught up with Angel Garza.

** Sami Zayn spoke with Comicbook.com.

** On his ‘Hall Of Fame’ podcast, Booker T spoke about Cesaro’s performance in the SmackDown Elimination Chamber match this past weekend.

** The newest episode of Battle of the Brands with Xavier Woods and Tyler Breeze:

 

** Rikishi joined Mickie James, Lisa Marie Varon and SoCal Val on GAW TV.

** Arab News has a story about WWE talents that have played college and/or pro football.

** Miro was interviewed by Bleacher Report Live.

** Maria Kanellis-Bennett turned 39-years old on 2/25.

** TV Insider ran their interview with Shane Taylor. Shane also appeared on Bakersfield Now, which is FOX’s California affiliate.

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.

About Andrew Thompson 1348 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.