POST NEWS UPDATE: Rene Dupree claims WWE has been looking to bring him back for years

Rene Dupree/WWE, Nikki Cross on her new character, Tony Nese's post-WWE interview, Bollywood Boyz talk Vince McMahon, Martin Casaus/WWE, more

Photo Courtesy: WWE

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.

** The latest edition of Rewind, Recap, Relive featured former two-time WWE Tag Team Champion René Duprée. Duprée departed WWE in 2007 and he shared that the company has been trying to bring him back for years.

Well they’ve [WWE] been looking to bring me back for years. Yeah. But I just mentally, I was just — because I’d have to live in the United States and ah…

On the 2004 SummerSlam pre-show, Duprée went one-on-one with Rob Van Dam. During his matches, René did a dance called the “French Tickler”. He said Michael Hayes was not happy with him doing the dance during the match with RVD because René played the role of a heel and the crowd enjoyed the dance. Hayes threatened to fine Duprée $1,000 for doing the dance.

Well, it was SummerSlam, right. It was the pre-show before [SummerSlam]. It was in Toronto, 2004. It was me and [Rob] Van Dam on the Sunday Night Heat that led into the pay-per-view, and then I did it [French Tickler dance] and it got a huge pop and then as I get — Michael Hayes goes, ‘I want you to quit doing that.’ I was like, ‘Okay!’ So I did it anyway, me being me and then it’s the most weirdest thing because I get to the — it was the following day, a SmackDown taping. So as I go through the Gorilla Position, Vince [McMahon] is there with a big [thumbs up] because all he cares about is reaction and getting over. So I pass him, I’m like, ‘Alright, the guy who signs my check just gave me two thumbs up’ but then here comes Michael Hayes saying, ‘I told you not to do that. I’m fining you a thousand dollars.’ I was like, ‘Okay well, my boss, the man who owns the company just gave me two thumbs up but you’re gonna fine me?’ I think it’s because they wanted me to be a heel and they didn’t want me to get over, you know what I mean? But at that time, I had already been a heel for two or three years and I’d rather be a babyface because then you get merchandising and then you make a lot more money. If I’m gonna be up there and playing by your rules, I want to make as much money as I can, sorry.

Duprée was asked about the table spot where La Resistance dumped Spike Dudley on the outside and his head clipped the table. He said that was Bully Ray’s idea for Spike to take the move and La Resistance was initially against it.

Oh I felt bad. I felt so bad. But the thing is it wasn’t our [La Résistance] idea. We didn’t say, ‘Hey, we’re gonna do this.’ That was Bubba Ray [Dudley’s] idea to do that and he set up the table as well. We didn’t set up the table and we actually said, ‘We don’t feel comfortable doing this’ but they made us do it anyway, then we got so much flack, like on the internet especially about, ‘Oh, these guys aren’t ready.’ That has absolutely nothing to do with wrestling and really, if he would have taken it normally, would anybody be talking about it? No. The fact that he got f*cked up is why everybody still remembers it. So what was it really worth? And again, there’s too much room for error. That has nothing to do with pro wrestling. It’s too dangerous. If you were to do that on a movie set, guess what? They’d have cables and they’d have different takes. There’s some stuff it’s just too dangerous to do and just too much risk involved, you know? But again, it wasn’t our idea.

** Pro Wrestling Illustrated has an interview with Jazzy Gabert. She told the publication that she should not have joined NXT UK because that experience contributed to her having a bittersweet perception of her time in WWE as a whole.

I will always remember and cherish my time at the Mae Young Classic. Like that was the greatest time of my life and looking back now, I should have stopped there. I should never have went to NXT UK. That’s just the truth because now I have a bittersweet memory of WWE. I love the Mae Young Classic, it was professional, everyone was super sweet, super nice. I loved my match, I loved the fans, everything was cool. But then going to NXT UK, well, it is what it is. I [don’t] have good memories about it and it’s really a shame and I try to let it go, you know? Just to say, ‘Well, it wasn’t meant for me’ but of course it’s, again, bittersweet. I’m thinking sometimes, ‘Should I have done something different? Should I have stood up more for myself?’ Oh yeah, well. I remember [the] Mae Young Classic as the perfect night for myself.

** Coming out of his release from WWE, Tony Nese appeared on the Wrestling Perspective Podcast and the interview goes live on July 2nd at 8 PM EST on Twitch and YouTube. Nese looked back on the final stages of his run in WWE and he and Ariya Daivari being locker room leaders of the 205 Live roster.

I think the biggest thing is through the company, one, I increased my professionalism a lot, you know what I’m saying? Presenting myself and being able to talk to people and being able to sell myself and everything. You know, those are different things I definitely didn’t know what I was doing. Not only that, wrestling-wise, I mean I was around some of the greatest minds ever in wrestling and I’m not someone who’s there just sitting in catering and collect[ing] a paycheck. I’m gonna be ringside and picking brains and talking to, you know, whoever I can and everything and I think — I think overall, it made me a lot better, not only as a performer but also as a leader. You know, my role as well as [Ariya] Daivari’s role on 205 [Live] was to lead these guys and to — towards the end, lead these guys and prepare them and get them ready, stuff like that and teach them the way, teach them what WWE wants and all that stuff so, and before the company, I wouldn’t have been able to do that so I think that’s probably one of the best, one of the biggest things I’ve improved on and learned from there.

Nese did spend some time in TNA on a sporadic basis. He explained why he requested his release from the company. Things started off with a great deal of excitement for him but it came to a point where he was not being booked for tapings and making very little money. It was also in his contract that he could not work independent shows that were being filmed.

So the first set of tapings that we actually showed up and signed our contracts and everything, Vince Russo was there and he pulled us aside, he’s like, ‘Listen guys, we’re restarting the whole X Division. So it’s going to be a big thing,’ blah, blah, blah. But he was super excited about it, got us excited about it. He even pulled us aside individually just being like, ‘Listen, let’s start thinking ideas, characters,’ all this stuff. So we were all pretty hyped for it, then I believe it was later that week, he left the company.

So then he leaves then it becomes the, ‘All right, there’s five minutes available on the show for the X Division guys’ so, you know. It was supposed to be like, ‘Listen, the whole first half of the show now is going to be all X Division’ and stuff like that and then it just all of a sudden was like, ‘No, we’re just gonna pick two guys that we wanna push,’ whatever it is, stuff like that. So, and the problem with all of that was the contracts at the time were not really exciting. So, you’re not working, you’re not making money, and then on top of that was the big boom. This was like when wrestling, all of a sudden, every single company in the world was doing iPayPerViews and TNA had a no DVDs and no IPayPerViews [clause] so any shows that were doing that, were recording them, airing them, you couldn’t work so I was not working for them, so making zero dollars from them and then not allowed to work the indies so making zero dollars on the indies. It was really tough so I had to make a decision as well and the big thing was I got offered to wrestle The Great Muta. But the promoter told me, ‘I’m only gonna do it though if it’s iPayPerView. I’m not gonna waste my money on Muta,’ so I reached out to TNA and I was like, ‘Hey listen, I really think I should do this match. I think it would help me a lot and you guys haven’t used me in months’ and all this stuff and after countless emails of ideas and promos and all the stuff that I sent them while being in the company, they answered that email immediately and it was, ‘No, you cannot do it.’ So then it turned into phone call conversations and it was like, ‘Well you can — your options are up in the air’ and stuff and I was like, ‘Well, do you have plans on using me?’ And they were like, ‘Well, there’s not a lot of spots for the X Division guys but we do have an X Division pay-per-view once a year. We’d love to use you on that’ and I was like, ‘So one booking a year huh?’ So I was like, ‘Alright, I’d like my release’ and again, another one, it was probably their second fastest email was my release forms.

Going back to the topic of his time in WWE, Nese formed a friendship with producer Scott Armstrong. Nese was given advice by Armstrong that helped him navigate the highs and lows of his time in the sports-entertainment company.

I would say the biggest one [mentor], like I said because I’d always go around and try to talk with everyone I could and everything but the biggest one for me was actually Scott Armstrong. Scott Armstrong, we ended up becoming pretty close where we would talk all the time and we could sit down for hours and never talk about wrestling once. But, I would always pick his brain, all different things I could. He was the one that gave me some of the best advice. The one thing was — because I remember like after a while being into it, you know how it is, you go through the ups and downs, you start getting used for something and all of a sudden, you’re kind of sitting there and you’re not on the next few shows and you’re like, ‘Alright, what the hell’s wrong? What is this?’ You know? So you start kind of talking to people to see if they know things and stuff and I would always talk to Scotty and I would be like, ‘Yeah, I just don’t know exactly what I need to do,’ blah, blah, blah and he would be like, ‘Listen man,’ he goes, ‘This company especially, think of it like surfing. Most of the time you’re just out there on the board just treading water and just waiting for that wave.’ He goes, ‘Every once in a while, you’re gonna get a nice wave and you’re gonna ride that wave and then you’re just gonna go right back down to just treading water and just waiting.’ It was the biggest thing he [said] is, ‘If you can handle sitting in the water and waiting’ and you don’t let that drive you insane,’ he goes, ‘Then you’re gonna do perfectly fine here’ and everyday I thought about that, all the way to my last day of just — and that’s why I would always just show up to work and I didn’t care what they asked of me or what I needed to do. Whatever it was, I’m there to work and I’m gonna give you the best damn job. If I showed up and they were like, ‘Tony, today you’re just gonna clean the toilets.’ They’re gonna be the cleanest toilets they ever had. That was my mentality walking in.

** The latest guest on El Brunch de WWE was Nikki Cross. Several weeks ago, Cross debuted a superhero-esque character. Cross said that she came up with the idea for the character in January and explained in-depth why she decided to bring that idea to fruition.

So the idea started to form right around the Royal Rumble. For me, I always really took a lot of inspiration, a lot of comfort, a lot of escapism in superhero movies and superhero television shows. You know, growing up in Scotland as a little girl, I would always watch the X-Men cartoon and the Spiderman cartoon so for me, I really wanted to come up with something that was very inspirational to little girls and boys and just something that’s a very positive message. So for me, it’s the whole thing, the whole message is I don’t have super powers, I don’t have super speed, I don’t have super strength, I can’t fly unfortunately. You know, but it’s still — you don’t need superpowers to be a superhero. You can be a superhero by being good to people, to be kind, to always try and look out for others, stand up for those in need and for me that’s a really important message of it is we can always be better, we can always do better and the idea is I put on this cape and I put this mask out, put this outfit on, this lovely, cute little leotard, I put on these wrist gauntlets and I can try anything and I really just want that kind of — that’s the message of almost a superhero, and I’m just so excited and I’m so proud of everything and you know, the butterfly on the outfit represents this metamorphosis, this transformation and then the lighting bolt around the butterfly, that’s a spark. Everyone has a spark. For me, it’s a super charge. It’s like dynamic, energy, positivity, love. It’s all of that and that’s really the core, the heart of the character.

** Former Lucha Underground Champion Martin Casaus guest appeared on Lucha Central’s ‘Masks, Mats & Mayhem’ podcast and shared that he has sent in an application to be a part of WWE’s tryouts in Las Vegas during SummerSlam week.

I definitely am going to be in the squared circle again. There’s an IMPACT tryout coming up. I just actually put in for the WWE tryout that they said. Yeah, I put in for it [Vegas tryout]. I don’t know what’s gonna happen with it so…

Casaus went on to tease that he might be working with Game Changer Wrestling that same weekend.

I might actually be doing something with GCW in Vegas the week of SummerSlam.

Major League Wrestling is introducing the Azteca Underground branch of their show with Cesar Duran, the former Dario Cueto as the figurehead of Azteca. Casaus said he’d be open to bringing Marty ‘The Moth’ Martinez back for Azteca Underground.

Sure [I’d bring Marty The Moth back for MLW Azteca Underground]. I feel like I can definitely bring something to that table there with my history in Lucha Underground so yeah, like I said, my wrestling career is not over for quite a few years so…

Prior to his return to in-ring action this past April, Casaus had been out of action and rehabbing from a number of injuries, including a bulging disk in his back. Casaus explained that if he underwent surgery like doctors suggested, he might not have been able to return to the ring.

I did go to a surgeon and they of course said, ‘Hey, you can do this therapy and there’s maybe a chance it could work but, you’re gonna need surgery.’ I’m like, ‘I feel like if I get surgery –’ because they were suggesting fusion surgery and with fusion surgery, they lock it all down with metal, so now this [middle of his spine] can’t move anymore. It’s not bulging out but it’s not moving anymore and then from everything I did research on, now this one’s [top of the spine] gonna hurt, now this one’s [bottom of the spine] gonna hurt because this doesn’t move anymore so then you gotta go back and get these ones, then you gotta go back and get these ones. I figured if I went back to have back surgery on my back, my wrestling career would be over and I didn’t want to take that. So, it was suggested though. They were like, ‘You’re not gonna get back in the wrestling ring unless you have surgery.’ [Martin gives the middle finger].

** D-Von Dudley welcomed Sarah Rowe, the former Sarah Logan and Mia Yim onto his Table Talk show. Rowe said that she does see a reunion of the Riott Squad happening in the future, but she would like to wrestle against Ruby Soho and Liv Morgan before teaming with them again.

I think it’s great, great odds [that she, Ruby, Liv will reunite]. We’re best friends. Ruby actually lives ten minutes from me now. I brought her and Raymond [Rowe] and tainted them into the farm life. I’m trying to recruit more people. But, I honestly would like to wrestle them before we get back together again. I would love to, kind of, go down that avenue because we’re all great, solid wrestlers and me and Ruby, we grew up in the wrestling business together. She was one of my first matches ever which is horrendous. We watched it back and I laugh, cried so much, not because she’s punching on my face but, I would definitely like to wrestle them before I wrestle with them again, you know? I wanna kind of — it almost happened in WWE, almost, but I’m not satisfied, I want more.

As far as a singles return run goes, Sarah stated that wherever she lands, she would have to be presented as herself. She feels that her life is fine the way it is so if she does come back for a run, it would have to be worth it.

So, in my experience, in my looking at things and assessing how they are and seeing what works and what doesn’t, I think I’d have to come back as like just… to be as humble as I can be, I’m a f*cking badass. I hunt. I have legit combat training, I used to do deathmatches for freaking nachos. I need to come back and be myself because anything that’s like super gimmicky or super that’s out there, it just doesn’t get used that much unless you’re that select few people so like, most of the girls gimmicks that get pushed over the moon, they’re like, ‘I’m badass. That’s my gimmick and I look like this’ so you need to be badass and look different so that’s — I’m just gonna go back and be myself honestly and if that’s not wanted, I’ll just go somewhere else. I’ve kind of… made my life here the way it needs to be so I don’t need anything else really. Like it needs to add to my life now in order to do it, you know what I’m saying? I’ve been without now and I’m fine, so, it’s kind of like a — I think it’s a level-up as a wrestler to get hired and fired and see that your life kind of goes on. That’s kind of dangerous, you know? In my opinion.

During Mia Yim’s portion of the show, she was asked about Keith Lee’s status as he has not been on WWE programming since early February. Here’s what Yim had to say:

He [Keith Lee’s] doing good, he’s doing good. I’m not gonna comment much about it until he says some stuff. But, he’s doing good.

** Sean ‘X-Pac’ Waltman welcomed The Bollywood Boyz (Samir & Sunil Singh) onto his Pro Wrestling 4 Life podcast. The duo was released from WWE in June. Among the many topics covered during the interview was their relationship with Vince McMahon and Samir recalled McMahon seeing them in their pink gear with the accessories and referring to them as “money”.

Samir: Every meeting we had with Vince [McMahon], it was amazing. He was always very kind, appreciative for everything we’ve done and he’d always look at us and I remember the very first time we were working after a while and we came up in our pink gear and glasses, I was wearing a durag and Vince walked right up to us and he’s like, ‘That’s f*cking money’ and I was like — then he’s always so good to us and that’s why we’re so appreciative of — we’re like, ‘Okay, we’re on the right track,’ you know? We’re learning stuff on the fly, we’re getting ready and it was just — they were also great to us in that standpoint.

Their last match in WWE was a tag match and Sunil got through the bout with a dislocated shoulder. Sunil stated that he was determined to see the match through.

Sunil: My last match in the WWE was with a dislocated shoulder. I finished that match with my shoulder hanging out of my socket. My opponent wanted to give me a kick, the kick took my momentum of my arm over my shoulder so, shoulder popped out. I kayfabed the referee. I’m like, ‘I’m good, I’m good, I’m good’ but I’m trying to put my shoulder back into socket and nowadays, you know, the guy would roll out and call it a night but I’m like, ‘F this man. I’m gonna keep going.’ Dude, I wanted to keep it old school. I was like, ‘I’m gonna finish this match’ and those were some of the most painful bumps I ever took so went to the hospital after that, got my shoulder put back in socket but it was off of a bump, you know what I’m saying? To your point, that’s a flat back bump and you just never see it coming but…

Both men heaped praise onto Randy Orton for spotlighting them. Orton took to Twitter after they were released and commented on Samir and Sunil’s work ethic. Samir said that Orton did not have to spotlight them like he did during his feud with Jinder Mahal.

Samir: But the credit is to someone like Randy [Orton] who you think about — look at this Punjabi Prison match. He gave us that little moment in that match. It doesn’t need to be. We could’ve just done a run-in and walked right out, but we talked about it and I’m like, ‘Hey, I don’t mind falling off this 25-foot thing,’ because I know it’ll be good for me but Randy, he could’ve been like, ‘No, it’s gonna take away from the match’ but he was like, ‘No, let’s f*cking do it,’ and he got it approved and he went out of his way to. You can’t just walk up in there and just do it. Somebody with the [pull] like him made it happen and allowed me those ten seconds on a pay-per-view to put a spotlight on me which I love him for that and I think wrestling fans don’t kind of pick up on that kind of stuff where he went out his way to let that happen.

The Bollywood Boyz were affiliated with the 205 Live brand at the beginning and towards the end of their WWE run. Samir feels that the current version of 205 Live is the best because there were people backstage actually watching and giving feedback. When 205 Live was following SmackDown, Samir said nobody was paying attention.

Samir: I would say the best version of 205 [Live] was its recent one, when it switched to NXT and I know because before, it was on after SmackDown and to be honest, nobody was watching it, you know? And just you’re not getting feedback and this time around, it was — we have Terry Taylor, Shawn Michaels, you have all these guys who are watching it and giving you feedback and we as performers, you could see the difference if you watch it from the beginning to this last year. You just see the difference because you’re actually getting feedback and, ‘Hey, don’t do this, do this. Get serious when the bell rings’ or whatever it is. Terry Taylor just sending you a page worth of notes of, ‘This is what I like, this is what I didn’t like’ and you apply it the following week. You can’t help but get better.

** While speaking to PopCulture.com, Shaquille O’Neal expressed his interest in a match with Paul Wight.

I hear Paul Wight’s still talking trash, so I’m going to work out really hard this summer, and maybe we could do something very, very soon.

Last time it was due out of bureaucracy and red tape, now there is no red tape. So, I’m going to go on because I’m still kind of sore from the table, so I’m going to go for it this summer, pump these muscles up here. I’ll be waiting for you, Mr. Paul.

** Peter Rosenberg and Stat Guy Greg welcomed Roman Reigns onto ESPN Cheap Heat. During their conversation, Reigns was asked if he’d be interested in a Shield reunion and he explained why that is not on his radar:

No. Nah, I mean I have a lot of respect for everything we [The Shield] did now but, a lot of that time was really pivotal for me to learn and gain the experience, be around other performers and see how their process is and see how they attack things and how they think about things but where I’m at now, it’s a one-man show. I couldn’t even — you know, I have the family dynamic with my cousins but at the same time, I call the shots. It’s my thumb that’s down on this pole so I don’t think I can share it anymore.

Reigns went into detail while talking about how he wants to be remembered as the best. He feels that with the current storyline involving himself, Paul Heyman and The Usos, they are lapping everyone as far as storytelling goes.

But I think it goes with the similar and every parallel mindset of trying to be the very best every single week and this is some stuff I’ve said to Jey and Jimmy [Uso] on-screen but it’s a shoot, it’s for real is we’re trying to — this is the only way I wanna be remembered is being the hands down, head and shoulders better than everybody else on the show. Everybody else in the world, they’re all trying to catch up. At this point, within a marathon, we’re lapping people because we put so much preparation, so much thought into the detail, the nuance and trying to deliver the most sophisticated, not confusing but very respectful stories as we can but it was something when me and Paul [Heyman] knew we were gonna get together, it was immediate just starting to spitball and we knew it was something that was gonna have to be fleshed out in real time, obviously week-to-week and be put into the situation and know our barriers, know which walls we were gonna have to go over, avoid or just bust right through. But we were game planning everything and I think that was the common denominator is that we just wanted to be special because we both, we’re at points — he’d been on an awesome run with Brock [Lesnar] for what? Ten, 12 years, doing everything that they did and then for myself, I already had four main events at WrestleMania, multiple championship reigns and stuff like that so there wasn’t much that I hadn’t already done in this industry. So I think for both of us, it was just about developing that cherry on top, really solidifying the legacy and cementing this Hall Of Fame portion of our careers.

** Ahead of his match against Adam Cole at NXT Great American Bash, Kyle O’Reilly talked to Vicente Beltran about the inspiration behind his new on-screen character. O’Reilly said it is hard to pinpoint where the inspiration comes from because he’s still finding his character.

It’s hard to really place where the exact inspiration is coming from. It’s more just coming from a place of me trying to be my authentic self and I’m still finding it, I’m still seeing what really works for this character. A lot of this [is] collaboration and throwing stuff at the wall and seeing what sticks. But yeah, I’m just trying to be myself and have fun with it and not stress myself out and that’s what this should be about, right? I’m so lucky to be involved in this business so you try to have as much fun as you can while you’re here.

** Anna Jay and Tay Conti were interviewed by Jessica McKay and Cassie Lee on the latest Oral Sessions podcast. Anna was asked what was the best advice that the late Jon Huber (Brodie Lee/Luke Harper) gave her and here is what she shared:

He [Brodie Lee] always said, you know, whenever I went out there, like basically to treat it like it was real. Obviously don’t hurt anyone but just to go out there and have the mindset of, ‘This is real and it’ll be portrayed that way’ so, that helped a lot.

** Angelina Love told SportsMattersTV that she is interested in transitioning to a backstage role once her in-ring career is over. Angelina is currently with Ring of Honor and has been with the company since 2019.

But then I ended up coming back [to wrestling] and Velvet [Sky] and I started The Beautiful People again in 2014 and then I was pregnant 2015/2016 so, my breaks weren’t like — they weren’t that crazy, you know? I’ve always been busy but now, I turn 40 in two-and-a-half months. So I don’t wanna be doing this when I’m 50, you know? Like physically competing. I still feel fine. My body is great, I can still definitely go. But I do want to transition to some kind of a backstage role, whether it’d be producer, agent, helping people with promos and creative, whatever because I just — I’ve spent over ten years doing TV wrestling too so I know. I worked for WWE, I worked for TNA and I work for Ring of Honor. I know a lot of that behind-the-scenes stuff and I feel like I have a lot to be able to give the future generation of wrestling when I decide that I’m physically done. But nobody knows but you. Like nobody can tell you you’re done. You knowing you, when you feel done and when you wanna be done and stay done because I don’t want to be that person where I’m like, ‘I’m retired’ and then I come back seven times. I don’t want to be that person so, when I’m done, I wanna be done-done and I don’t feel anywhere near done-done yet so…

** Paul “Triple H” Levesque confirmed to the New York Post that WWE is returning to Madison Square Garden for the September 10th SmackDown. That story was first reported by PWInsider.

** Steven Muehlhausen of DAZN conducted an interview with Arn Anderson. Brock Anderson, son of Arn, made his AEW in-ring debut on the 6/18 edition of Dynamite and Brock scored the win for his team. Arn explained how proud he is of his son:

It would be easy for me to try to play a hard ass on this and go, ‘Oh well, business as usual.’ When it’s your son out there, he probably had not enough training yet to be under those circumstances, and I was nervous for him. I was more nervous than he was. He actually was pretty solid all day long. But to see him have his first day in a business that I have loved since I was eight years old — and I tell people, it’s the greatest way to make a living on the earth, it really is. To see him enjoy himself and hold his own and do well. I am a proud papa.

The format of Arn Anderson’s podcast with Conrad Thompson has changed. The two have been looking into the childhood of Arn and his early days in wrestling. They would normally review a WWE pay-per-view that Arn was present for during his days as a producer for the company. Arn felt that he was being too negative when reviewing the pay-per-views, so he decided to switch things up.

Let me just tell you the honest God’s truth. When I got fired from WWE, and was unable to talk about it, but was not sad about it. I was so burnt out at doing that job. The travel was unbearable. The pressure was unbearable. The rules changed day to day. I told myself when I got canned, I was sitting at home, and I went, ‘You can have a new beginning here.’ I’d gotten to the point, to be honest with you, where I did not like the business. I never thought I’d say that. I was just burnt completely out. But I swore I was not going to be that bitter wrestler that had a hell of a career, and if I never, ever am around another wrestling match and it cuts off today, I got no complaints. I’m very fortunate to have spent all this time. It’s 40 years in the business. I don’t want to be that bitter guy that turns around now and starts to kick everybody in the ass and blame everybody, and I don’t want to be that guy.

I want to enjoy what’s left of my career and my son’s career as long as I can and feel good about it. I saw myself week after week critiquing those pay-per-views for WWE, and I’d tell the truth [as] I saw it, but it came across as just b*tching and being bitter. I would read comments from some of the people on our Twitter page for the podcast, and they would go, ‘Why’s he always so negative? He doesn’t sound like he’s having fun.’ It woke me up because I listen to you guys. What you say is what we do. If you don’t do that, you’re foolish. I’m sitting here. I’m not laughing. Conrad’s a guy you could laugh with and laugh at some time. We better laugh at ourselves sometimes. So I decided, I don’t think — because everybody has a beginning, middle, and end in life.

I don’t think we went back and just covered the rough road that I had because it might make some people feel better about themselves that they’re not alone out there and rough childhoods or not having parents and having grandparents step up. And all these things that [had] happened to me growing up as I was very, very poor, and making it to where I can provide a nice living for my family and my children [could] go to college. They didn’t go on scholarships. It came out of dad’s pocket, but it’s the best money I’ve ever spent. I want to stay positive. I want to be a guy that people enjoy listening to and being around. And it’s funny, I’ve gotten more response by just — and we’ve just gotten to about the fourth year in the business. We haven’t got to the Crockett stuff and WWF stuff and back to WCW. We got a long way to go. We’re just now finishing up Pensacola. But you tell me, do you enjoy that more?

** Several months removed from her SmackDown Women’s Title win, Bianca Belair told ‘Metro’ that the victory over Sasha Banks at WrestleMania 37 is still sinking in.

I feel like it’s still sinking in a little bit every step of the way. The way to describe it is that it’s an amazing feeling, but it’s not about my ego or anything. I just feel honored to be the person in this position. There’s been so many women that have laid the foundation and groundwork before me that allowed for me to step into this opportunity. I’m just honored to be the person, alongside Sasha Banks, that was able to deliver that and put that representation out there.

** VICE asked John Cena to give his take on how the cast of ‘F9’ would fare in professional wrestling. Here is an excerpt of what Cena had to say about Ludacris:

There are some wrestling identities that are just lay-ups and, like Vin Diesel, Ludacris is one of them. Ludacris would be great. With hip-hop, not only do you have to be skilled in what you do, you also have to create a personality for yourself, and Lud has done such a good job of creating that personality. Hip-hop superstars do run in very close correlation to WWE superstars, and I think he could literally snap and transition. Another great example of that is Bad Bunny; Bad Bunny came from music, had a performance in WrestleMania, and it’s like he’s been there forever. So I really think that Ludacris would do just fine!

** GLEAT Results (7/1/21) Tokyo Dome City Hall
– El Lindaman def. Hayato Tamura
– Kyoko Inoue def. Michiko Miyagi
– Strong Hearts (CIMA, Issei Onitsuka & Shigehiro Irie) def. Kaz Hayashi, Keiichi Sato & Soma Watanabe
– Ryuichi Kawakami def. T-Hawk
UWF Rules Tag Team Match: Daijiro Matsui & Tetsuya Izuchi def. Minoru Tanaka & Soma Watanabe
UWF Rules: Chihiro Hashimoto def. Maya Fukuda
UWF Rules: Masakatsu Funaki def. Yu Iizuka
UWF Rules: SHO def. Takanori Ito

** Matt Rehwoldt welcomed Tommy End (Aleister Black) onto his ‘Straight Shooting’ podcast.

** Wrestling Inc. did an interview with Rodney Mack.

** Kevin Owens and Ever-Rise (Matt Martel & Chase Parker) were present at the Montreal Canadians game.

** Former NXT correspondent Alyssa Marino appeared on the latest Talkin’ Sass podcast.

** Season 3, Episode 15 of Tyler Breeze and Xavier Woods’ Battle of the Brands’ series:

** Samoa Joe & Daniel Bryan vs. The Briscoes from ROH ‘The Battle Lines Are Drawn’ 2004:

** Jonathan Gresham was announced for GCW Homecoming on July 25th.

** NJPW Kizuna Road Results (7/1/21) Korakuen Hall
– Taiji Ishimori, El Phantasmo & Jado def. DOUKI, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & El Desperado
– Taichi, Zack Sabre Jr. & Minoru Suzuki def. Tetsuya Naito, BUSHI & SANADA
– YOSHI-HASHI def. Hiroyoshi Tenzan
– Satoshi Kojima def. Hirooki Goto
– Tomohiro Ishii def. Yuji Nagata

** Fred Rosser, Anthony Bowens, Brad Slayer and EFFY spoke to BBC Sport about being open and embracing their sexuality.

** Digital Spy has an interview with Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson & James Drake).

** Jordynne Grace was a guest on Wilde On with Taylor Wilde.

** A story about Ben Wild, who is working with WWE and BT Sport on two upcoming advertising campaigns.

** Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling ‘Inspiration’ Results (7/1/21) Tokyo, Japan
– Arisu Endo vs. Moka Miyamoto – Time Limit Draw (15:00)
– Yuka Sakazaki def. Suzume
UWF Rules: Miyu Yamashita def. Mirai Maiumi

** MJF did an interview with Sports Illustrated prior to the 6/30 AEW Dynamite.

** Eric Young chatted with Lucha Libre Online.

** NXT UK’s Trent Seven and Jinny joined talkWrestling to review WWE’s 2021 Hell In A Cell pay-per-view.

** Darren Paltrowitz has an interview on his YouTube channel with Matt Cardona.

** Drew McIntyre spoke to Dayton 24/7 Now.

About Andrew Thompson 2071 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.