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.
** Since Cody Rhodes’ back-to-back losses to Malakai Black, Rhodes has had some miscommunication on-screen with Arn Anderson and fellow members of the Nightmare Family. On the 9/29 Dynamite, Arn Anderson trended on social media after making a comment on about pulling out a Glock if someone attempted to rob him. He joked about the segment during the latest ARN podcast.
Well times are a-changin aren’t they? Attitudes are a-changin. No, no [I’m not packing heat]. I may be carrying a little heat but I don’t know. Who knows, you know? Old people, you can only push ‘em so far and they get dangerous.
He added that some attitude changes are necessary for himself and Cody Rhodes. On the most recent Dynamite, there was a video package featuring Cody at the Nightmare Factory school and the likes of Red Velvet, Brock Anderson and Lee Johnson gave him a rough time.
I did not name him Brock [Anderson] because of that. Incorrect and Glocks are purely, as long as everybody gets it, are defensive mechanisms, only. But it has — there’s been some attitude changes necessary, mine for one to begin with, Cody [Rhodes’] for another and we’re starting to get a little different feel when we talk and strategize and we’ll see. It’s gonna be very, very interesting the next month.
Arn went on to say that his new attitude derives from how he presented himself during his full-time in-ring days. He said the old Arn Anderson is back and it’s going to be his way or the highway.
Absolutely not, absolutely not [Arn said in response to if people will see him pull out a gun on the throwback Jim Crockett Promotions episodes] but I can tell you this; there is a new attitude coming from a place long ago. Those that remember, you can hear some stuff like in these promos. You know, that was everyday occurrence of toeing the line, you know, on promos back then. But there wasn’t such an emphasis on, ‘Oh, you can’t say that. Oh my God, you’ve crossed the line.’ But the old Arn Anderson is back, if only for a brief time. Attitudes are gonna change around me and it’s my way or the highway and the t-shirts reflect it.
** WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon was the guest on episode eight of Adweek’s Most Powerful Women in Sports series. Stephanie looked back on her time as a part of WWE creative and said that position is one she loves the most. She remembered becoming the head writer and being told it was a sink or swim scenario for her.
So the creative is what I love the most. I am a storyteller at heart and I think that most marketers, most people in brand understand that, right? Because Maya Angelou has this beautiful quote, ‘People will never remember what you said. They’ll never remember what you did but they’ll always remember how you made them feel’ and storytelling is about feeling. It’s about generating an emotion and an emotional connection with your audience. That’s one of the key lessons that I learned on the creative writing side and it applies to absolutely everything in business. But when I left sales to go work on the creative writing team, I was told by Vince [McMahon] — I call him Vince in business, he’s dad at home. It was weird at first, it’s not anymore. It’s super helpful but, I was telling him at that time — or he was telling me rather, ‘Look, I know how much you love the creative. Maybe in a couple years, you’ll become a manager and you’ll work your way up’ and I — honestly, manager never even crossed my mind. I was just happy to be a part of the team and especially the core, the creative, that’s everything and within two weeks, the head writer quit and I was told, ‘Congratulations.’ I was taking over the team. I had never managed a team before, never managed people, a lot of learning on the fly there and so that’s what happened and I was told, ‘You’re either gonna sink or swim and it’s trial by fire.’ I remember those two expressions very clearly and we went from there.
Stephanie has competed in a total of 24 sanctioned matches throughout her career. She said initially, she was forbidden from training to wrestle.
Well I was forbidden to train because I think there was a feeling, a concern, a legitimate concern that I was gonna get hurt but as I became an on-screen character and I really became this villain, you know, which is the way the audience wanted to take me. They love to hate me, I hope that first part is true. But I needed to learn how to fall appropriately without hurting myself because what we do requires a tremendous skill set and eventually I was able to convince them [WWE] and I started training and I’ve been in, you know, maybe a dozen matches throughout my career. I wouldn’t call myself an accomplished professional wrestler. I’ve had some very high-profile matches because of my persona, the character I play is the boss’ daughter but I play like a super evil version of the boss’ daughter that’s taking advantage of everybody.
She went on to tell the story of when she first told Vince McMahon that she wanted to be involved in the wrestling business. Vince was pleasantly surprised that Stephanie wanted to go that route.
I was learning more than I realized at the time. Also, just even watching our [WWE] programming, I was learning about the psychology of the in-ring product itself, because I’ve always been a fan first and foremost. But absolutely, I had a choice [to get in the wrestling business or not] and I remember I was walking around — we have a pool and I was walking around the pool and I was about 16, 17 and he said, ‘So, you’re gonna be going off to college soon. Have you thought about what it is you wanna do for the rest of your life for a living?’ And I looked at him like he had three heads and he said, ‘Why are you looking at me like that?’ I said, ‘Dad, I wanna be a part of the business. I’ve always been a part of the business. I worked reception while I was in high school… I wanna be here’, and he was surprised and he says to this day he doesn’t know why he was surprised but pleasantly so, thank goodness.
** Highspots Wrestling Network welcomed Bret Hart onto their Virtual Gimmick Table show. Hart gave his thoughts on CM Punk and Darby Allin giving an ode to he and Sean Waltman’s singles match from 1994.
I do [keep up with AEW]. I know there was a salute to it [Hart vs. 123 Kid]. I really liked it [CM Punk & Darby Allin’s tribute at All Out] and I got a text from The Kid, Sean Waltman and he loved it and it was a nice little salute. I really did appreciate that.
Bret went in-depth while speaking about holding up his reputation over the years. He admitted that he has made mistakes but those were not things that were overly embarrassing or to the point where it cost him on a business or personal level. When it comes to the topic of how people have treated women or how wrestlers have treated women, Bret said one can make excuses but imagine if that was your daughter involved in the situation.
Well, you gotta keep your pants on, for the most part. Both [literally and metaphorically]. But I think you do the crime, you do the time. In a lot of ways, sometimes you do stuff, crazy stuff when you’re younger you did a long time ago, but if you did it, it can come back many years later and bite you in the ass and I say that, knowing that I’ve done a lot of crazy, stupid things in my lifetime but whatever the craziest and stupidest things I ever did, I don’t think will come back and bite me in that kind of way where I think I’m pretty safe, you know? I lived, I spent six years with Jim The Anvil Neidhart and you know, I have some kind of a guilty conscience, but at the same time, you always have this idea in your head that there could be a camera on or a picture. Back in those days in WWE, you get fired for the smallest thing. Takes the smallest, little thing to get fired and those days, I had so much at stake. I had a mortgage on a house that I was mortgaged to the hilt on and everything could come crumbling down really fast with one mistake somewhere and I was lucky and I’m not saying I didn’t make mistakes in my career but I made them and luckily for me, I never made any that were huge, big, embarrassing mistakes that really can come back on you and I know that some of the wrestlers I know that I love and respect have made mistakes and I feel real bad about those things and there’s a lot of that sort of, ‘That was in the days of the boys’ and, ‘The wrestlers having fun’ and stuff like that and you can make excuses but, then again, if that was your daughter that was in the room and somebody did that to her or something, you gotta look at both sides of it and sometimes the optics don’t look good years later to say, ‘Okay, that’s what you did’ and I understand that and it’s kind of a different time right now. But I think the truth is-is that your wrestling character is one thing. For a lot of people in wrestling, they have their wrestling character and then they take that off and they go home. But for me, and maybe this has been what’s my problem is I was always Bret Hart.
I’ve always loved being who I am and I’m proud of who I am and I always tell people if your kids were watching me when I was wrestling, it was time well spent. I was a good hero to watch. I wasn’t the kind of guy — I never have been a guy to suddenly get an impaired driving ticket I hope, or get caught shoplifting or [being too] drunk on a plane and punching a stewardess or it’s like, you won’t hear — there’s no headlines about me doing stupid stuff because I don’t do stupid stuff because that’s not something I would do and I say that knowing that I could walk out of here today and something really bad, misfortunate could come back and really bite [me] on the ass. ‘Hear about Bret Hart? He hijacked a plane to Cuba’ or something. But you know, it’s all about being able to look yourself in the mirror and I’m proud of who I am, I’m proud of what I represent and people are fans of mine and come up and tell me how much of an impact I’ve had on their life, all that stuff, it means something to me and I don’t take it for granted and go out and do something stupid minutes later. I take pride in who I am.
** East Coast Autograph Auctions hosted a virtual signing with Kris Statlander and Kaleb with a K (Caleb Konley). Statlander said she would like to start wrestling alongside Orange Cassidy, Wheeler YUTA and Chuck Taylor in AEW but doesn’t think that will happen.
Well they [AEW] don’t really let me wrestle with the group ever. That’s kind of still just by myself. I would like to do a tag match with all my Best Friends but, I don’t think that’s ever going to happen.
** Chris Van Vliet welcomed IMPACT Wrestling’s Moose onto his podcast. They did a deep dive into Moose’s career in pro wrestling and Moose looked back on his days working for Gabe Sapolsky. Sapolsky offered Moose a three-year contract that would pay Moose $50-$75 dollars. Moose did not sign the contract, but he continued working for Gabe for $50-$75 dollars.
Did those shows for free because it was just tryout matches, didn’t get paid for it. Did the other shows for free, wrestled or whatever and then like a couple weeks after, Gabe [Sapolsky] told me, he was like, ‘Yeah, every time we have a show, come to the show and I’m not gonna pay you, but I’m gonna have a spot for you.’ So, that’s when the connections started coming. Okay, I get to work for Dragon Gate USA and I’m not gonna get paid but I’m gonna do the show so I end up — not signing a deal but verbal agreement working with Gabe with Dragon Gate USA and I remember after one of the weekends we did the show, he offered me a contract, which the contract was probably like a three-year deal or whatever but I was only going to be making maybe $75 bucks a show. It wasn’t gonna be that much. It was maybe $50 bucks a show. In my mind I was like, ‘Why would I sign a three-year deal only making $50 dollars? That doesn’t make sense.’ So I [told Gabe], I said, ‘Hey man, I don’t know if I wanna sign a deal. Let’s just keep it as what we have, the working relationship or just still pay me the $50 dollars. I’ll take the $50 dollars. But I don’t wanna sign any contract. But I will happily take $50 dollars a show’ and he was like, ‘Okay, cool.’ So we had a working agreement which I agreed to Gabe paying $50 dollars, $50-to-$75 a show, whatever it was.
Moose spoke about his run in Ring of Honor. He said he took the more difficult road to success of making the long drives and paying his dues so there wouldn’t be the ‘ex-athlete’ stigma hovering over him. His first ROH deal was for $125 per show and his second offer was for $20,000.
I think coming from a football background helped me in that aspect because I know in football, as a rookie, [you] always wanna prove yourself and I knew if I didn’t do it the right way and with wrestling, I was gonna have that stigma that, ‘Oh, he only came this far because he’s an ex-football player’, blah, blah, blah, blah. So I already knew that in my — I had that mindset. I already knew what people was gonna say if I didn’t do it the right way so I erased that right away by making the long road trips, driving everywhere I could drive and you know what I saying? Doing shows for free and flying myself to every Ring of Honor show without getting a dime for it. You know, and people don’t realize this, I did the tryout with Ring of Honor, I wanna say in 2013 maybe? I wanna say it was November 2013 and I got signed with Ring of Honor in July of 2014. So it was almost a full year of me flying myself to different Ring of Honor shows and helping out and setting up the ring and doing airport rides and picking the boys up and getting the boys food and taking them to get food or whatever Hunter [Delirious] needed me to do at this point before I got signed. So yeah, I did my young boy stuff for almost a year.
I don’t know how I got on IMPACT Wrestling’s radar. That’s the funny thing is I remember I signed my first deal with Ring of Honor which was, like I told you, one year deal in July for maybe $125 a show which was nothing, and then my contract was up and they offered me a salary going into my second year which wasn’t really much. It was probably like $20 grand maybe, which to me, like I said, I got to do what I loved doing and they were using me and I was wrestling some of the best wrestlers in the world which I kind of used as a learning curve because I would get to wrestle Jay Briscoe, I would get to wrestle Adam Cole, I would get to wrestle Roderick Strong, I would get to tag with AJ Styles. I was wrestling all these great wrestlers, you know what I’m saying? And most of these wrestlers now are working in New York or working in AEW and making boatloads of money and these are guys that I was working with on a weekly basis in Ring of Honor because we were running pretty much every week or every other week or something like that, you know what I’m saying?
Prior to beginning his wrestling training, Moose had a tryout for WWE that did not go well. This was after Moose’s NFL career wrapped up and he received that tryout because his former teammate, NFL linebacker James Laurinaitis put in a word for him. James is the son of the late Road Warrior Animal and nephew of John Laurinaitis.
Because I actually did a tryout with WWE before I even started [going] to [a] wrestling school and I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. I had never taken a bump. I got this tryout because my teammate, James Laurinaitis, his dad is — rest in peace, [Road Warrior] Animal and his uncle is John Laurinaitis with WWE so he got me a tryout with WWE after I was done with football and during that tryout, I hit my head on the ground doing a headlock takeover and kind of got like real loopy or whatever.
Moose will be competing in the Call Your Shot Gauntlet at Bound For Glory. He feels that he is a name that when people think of IMPACT’s current product, his name comes to mind.
I mean, obviously I’ve been here [IMPACT Wrestling] what? Six years now. Still haven’t technically won — I haven’t done anything if you think about it. I’m like one of those guys if you mention IMPACT Wrestling now, I’m one of the first names that come up that you think about but if you really think about it, I haven’t really done anything. It’s off of looking scary.
** Daniel Garcia chatted with Fanbyte and discussed his experience in AEW so far and being able to share the ring with CM Punk. Garcia said he is learning a lot about TV wrestling and feels viewers can see his growth from his first few matches on Dynamite to his bout against CM Punk on Rampage.
They’re teaching me a lot about TV wrestling and they’re teaching me a lot about capturing moments and saving moments. I think you could see the difference in me performing for such a live crowd on my first couple of matches on Dynamite to my last one at Rampage.
While on the topic of wrestling Punk, Garcia felt like he belonged and did not feel out of place. He also reacted to Punk’s comments from a Sports Illustrated interview during which Punk said Garcia is everything he could want in a wrestler on a TV show.
Honestly, being in the ring with him felt really natural. I didn’t feel out of place, I felt like I belonged there. To be able to get that validation and that credit from somebody at his level who’s been at his level for so long, that meant a lot to me.
Garcia feels he has the potential to be a major player in AEW. He added that AEW has handed him the ball and he does not plan on dropping it.
I really think that I have the potential right now to be a major player in AEW in the very near future. I feel like they handed me the ball and I just keep running with it. I haven’t dropped it yet, and I don’t plan on dropping it any time soon.
** During AEW President Tony Khan’s appearance on Z100 New York, he threw out some names who he could see headlining the All Out event in 2025.
I think there’s a lot of people it could be [who could headline All Out in 2025]. There’s so many great stars in AEW right now. The champions are Kenny Omega and Britt Baker and I think they could still — they could be the champions for a long time, Kenny and Britt. They’re both great champs and they both had great runs already and I’m not ready to say anybody’s going to beat either of them any time soon so you could easily have either of the champions, Kenny or Britt. You know, and I think that would be a great answer and either of them could be defending the title and we have a lot of great new challengers. I mean of course Bryan Danielson, CM Punk and now the top contender is Hangman Page and I think Hangman Page’s return in the Casino Ladder match was a huge part of the anniversary show. We did a huge rating for that Casino Ladder match and I really believe there’s a ton of interest in him and he’s gonna be a great challenger, that’s gonna be a great match, Kenny versus Hangman for the title and who knows? It could be either one of them or it could be Darby Allin who you just talked about, Britt Baker’s such a great champion.
** The most recent guest on Cultaholic’s ‘Desert Island Graps’ show was Ethan Page. Page is currently aligned with Scorpio Sky and American Top Team’s Dan Lambert. He said this current run is probably his favorite thing that he’s done in his career thus far.
That was all credit to Tony Khan [pairing with Scorpio Sky & American Top Team]. It was his brainchild to put me and Scorpio together and I’m happy to admit that when I heard it first, I was just like, ‘Oh that’s interesting. I don’t know how that’s gonna work’ and now I’m like — I dove right in. It’s probably my favorite thing I’ve done in my career just because of the natural chemistry we have. We’re so like-minded but different and we play off each other, we compliment each other. I don’t know if you watched a bunch of our matches but we’ve never done a tag move and no one’s noticed. Think about how good of a team we are that-that doesn’t stick out. It’s because it’s not about the moves. I think people are really into it, the way we present ourselves, how we package ourselves, how we market ourselves, our characters, the presentation of it and we don’t mind being the most hated in the room. It’s fun for us so, I think we click really well.
Ethan Page debuted for AEW at the Revolution pay-per-view. He explained how nervous he was leading up to his debut and shared the supportive words that were given to him by The Blade that calmed him down before making his entrance.
It was the most stressful, anxiety-inducing day I’ve ever had in my career. I hadn’t wrestled in four months. So the way IMPACT tapes their things is like I filmed in November what aired in January. So there was a point where I was not wrestling and this is also during [the] pandemic so I’m not doing any independents. I shut down all my social media accounts to disappear because I knew I was gonna end up debuting at the pay-per-view eventually so, I hadn’t had any ring time other than private lessons which I did two classes with Space Monkey where we just kind of wrestled and fooled around just so I could get the mobility back and kind of the muscle memory back. But I remember standing at the curtain, ready to go out for this Ladder match and you could see it on my face, like the panic and, ‘I can’t believe I’m gonna wrestle this Ladder match. I haven’t had a match in four months. Now I gotta go do this grueling match with five other crazy, best wrestlers in the world’ and The Blade came over and he like put his fist out and he’s like, ‘This is exactly where you’re supposed to be. You deserve it’ and I fist bumped him and I was like, ‘Woof, okay. That’s what I needed’ and then I went out there and the rest is history.
** The IInspiration (Jessica McKay & Cassie Lee) will be making their IMPACT Wrestling debuts at Bound For Glory and are challenging for the Knockouts Tag Team Titles. McKay and Lee appeared on Busted Open Radio and explained that it was IMPACT’s tag division that drew them in.
McKay: 100 percent [IMPACT Wrestling is the right fit for The IInspiration]. It took — Cass and I, we spoke about this a lot. Where the possibilities were, where we could end up and it really came down to IMPACT having such an amazing tag team division first and foremost. That’s what we wanted to do, that’s where we feel like we fit the best and when we made the decision to join IMPACT, it just felt right and after WWE, having that feeling of, ‘Okay, this feels really good’ was so important to us. We’ve heard nothing but incredible things about IMPACT so we’re just…
Lee: We’re super excited to join the locker room and just be a part of it.
They were asked about the differences between their presentation outside of WWE versus their presentation as a team in WWE. McKay answered and feels that The IIconics were more of a comedic team but now, they have full control and she is excited for people to see what’s to come.
McKay: I think it’s the perfect evolution, because The IIconics were somewhat seen as a comedy tag team and nothing wrong with that, we loved doing that but we never really — for a brief time, we got a chance to show both sides of our competitiveness and comedy but I feel like The IInspiration is taking that to a whole other level. We have full creative control from our outfits, from our hair and makeup, from our entrance music that we got professionally done. We’ve got a music video dropping. Like we’ve gone all out and created this whole world for The IInspiration and I’m so in love with it and I’m so excited for people to see what we’ve come up with because it really is the evolution of The IIconics.
** Paste Magazine spoke to Ricky Starks for an interview. Ricky was asked if Hook has seen any of the hype for him on social media. Ricky said Hook has never brought it up.
You know, he’s never brought it up to me, but I would think he is, man. He has to be. He’s never talked to me about it or said anything about it. Kind of makes me wonder.
Starks is a member of the AEW Rampage commentary team. He doesn’t consider himself a true commentator in comparison to some of the greats that have filled the role, but he is trying to make the best of what he’s doing.
Oh, man. I’ll be straight with you: I have studied some people, before I started doing commentary, but there isn’t one specific person that stood out to me [as an influence]. I think what it is, is—and I’ve talked about this a lot—there are people from New Orleans that I always pull on, in terms of my cadence or the way I speak, so when I was growing up there was always one of my mom’s friends who always talked in a very laid back way. He didn’t say a lot but when he did it was funny, or just so out there that you’d laugh. I kind of just do that. Also, dude, that’s kind of how I am in real life. You’ve got to pick your battles with certain things, and no point trying to over talk someone, especially when there’s four of us! [Laughs]
Also keep this in mind, man: I know that I’m doing commentary. But I’ve never considered myself a ‘commentator.’ My idea of what a commentator is like the King [Jerry Lawler], Jim Ross, Jesse Ventura, Bobby Heenan, those kinds of people. And it’s hard for me to wrap my brain around that I’m doing what they essentially did. Although nowhere near as good as them. But I am trying, and I’m trying to make the best of it.
Damn, dude, that’s so hard. Honestly, a personal highlight would obviously—because no one else has done this in a while—is having a match, a live tryout match on national TV, and then getting signed off of that. I think that is, when I have to look at things from a total view, I think that’s really cool and endearing. It speaks to my younger self— ‘You know, man, you are good at something, obviously, because you got this.’ So I think that would be the biggest highlight, just personally.
Professionally, I would have to say a big highlight would be getting to wrestle with Sting after six of seven years of him not wrestling at all and coming back from his neck injury. Those two things stack up there pretty high.
** It has been confirmed on several ends that Marina Shafir was supposed to be a part of the original Diamond Mine in NXT. While speaking to WrestleZone, Marina said she had ideas mapped out in her head of how she wanted to present herself as a part of the group. She also touched on how helpful Roderick Strong and Brian Kendrick were/are to her.
Going into that and when it became official that week that I was going to be part of it, I think even before Roddy said anything, what I pictured for myself was I was finally able to bring to the table what I had been preparing in the kitchen for so long. It’s a collective idea in this household. Roddy was very much a part of my growth as a professional wrestler and because he knew me so well, we worked on the things that I wanted to bring forward.
Once the coaching changed a little bit at the PC, it was cool because I got to work with Brian Kendrick, and he’s just a f-cking genius. I don’t [know] if I can swear, but I’m swearing, he’s just a f-cking brilliant genius. And the way he made me — not even made me, the way he encouraged me to just change my perspective a little bit about how I do things alongside with my husband tailoring the small stuff, it started to become this beautiful storm for myself.
Everything’s crazy and unpredictable and you never know what’s going to be thrown at you, literally, like [I] didn’t know what would be right around the corner, but it didn’t change the course of the storm if that makes any sense. All of that was just too perfect, all of that felt too good, and the culmination of all the ideas and the inspiration of what could be started to fuel me in the creative sense. I’ve felt a bit of responsibility, I felt more pride in the stuff that I was learning about myself, just understanding the magic of professional wrestling and being able to get something across without having to say a f-cking word. I love that and I think that is something that is lost, and I just wanted to bring something and share my opinion without saying a f-cking word.
** ‘A Pro Wrestling Podcast w/ Matt & Friends’ has an interview with Anthony Henry. During the conversation, Henry talked about the thought of quitting wrestling on multiple occasions. Henry added that as of the interview recording, he’s the worst he’s ever felt physically but said that just comes with the territory of being a wrestler for as long as he has.
Yeah, I mean it’s been a couple of times [when I felt like I should stop wrestling because I’m beat up], and not even necessarily just due to that but you know, just mentally it can be tough as well. Sometimes I still have those thoughts in there in my mind now. The problem there is that I feel like there’s a lot that I have left on the table that I haven’t tapped into yet and a lot of stuff that I just still need to do. Physically, I’m probably worse off than I’ve ever been and that just comes with the territory, it comes with doing this for 20 years. So I’m banged up, I’m beat up and sometimes you’re just like, ‘Maybe I should think about things’ but you know, you just have to be smarter, you just have to make better decisions. But yeah, there’s been a few times that I came really, really close to quitting. In fact, I was quitting before I got signed to NXT and then of course as soon as the release happened, the thought re-enters my mind. ‘Well, maybe I should go back to the original plan of quitting’ but again, I’m stubborn and in my head, I still have a lot left to offer so as of right now, this very moment, those plans are off the table. Right now, I’m in it to win it.
** Sandra Toffoloni, sister of the late Nancy Benoit, guest appeared on Vickie Guerrero’s podcast. Sandra has never spoken to WWE about the idea of Nancy being inducted into their Hall Of Fame. She said the only time she’s seen WWE representatives is in court.
No, because I don’t contact them [WWE], at all. They didn’t reach out to us. I’ve only seen them in court. So, I figure that’s not the place to bring that up [Nancy Benoit going into the WWE Hall Of Fame], like, ‘Hey!’ The funny thing is that interestingly enough, Nancy never took a paycheck from Vince [McMahon] so Nancy never technically worked for WWE ever. She was a wife and she managed Chris [Benoit’s] career like for real. It wasn’t a work and a gimmick to the ring and everything. Wolverine Sports Incorporated was Chris, but it was Chris and Nancy. It was Nancy’s merchandising, she was Woman, it was them together and Nancy ran that business at home.
She shared a moment from the funeral of Nancy and Daniel Benoit. While Sandra was giving her double eulogy, thunder hit and knocked the lights out. Sandra’s priest looked at Nancy’s picture, looked back at Sandra and told her to wrap it up.
But sidebar, can we tell everyone how weird it was during my double eulogy that there’s a storm and everyone knows we’re in a Catholic church. There was a storm and right in the middle of my eulogy or towards the end of my eulogy, my long-winded eulogy, the lights went out. Thunder crashed and the lights went out in our entire sanctuary. I looked at my priest and he looked up and he looked over at my sister’s picture [Nancy Benoit] and he goes, ‘Wrap it up. Wrap it up’, and I looked up and I told the audience, ‘Okay Nance, I’m almost done’ and all you guys just kind of started laughing. It was like this break of, ‘Enough nice, weird things about me. Let’s get it moving. Let’s get over to the hotel, to the cocktails can we please? To the party.’
Dark Side of the Ring recently profiled the late Luna Vachon. Sandra said it was Nancy who gave Vachon the name ‘Luna’ and it was also Nancy’s idea to shave her head for her on-screen character.
[It] was my sister’s [Nancy Benoit] idea for her to be called Luna. Yeah, Luna owes Nance ‘Luna’ and it was Nancy’s idea to shave Luna’s head.
** Lita was the focus of an East Coast Autograph Auctions virtual signing. She recalled not being able to have skulls on her WWE merchandise because Stone Cold Steve Austin was the only talent that could have skulls on his merch.
The classic skull top which I was later not allowed to wear because only Stone Cold [Steve Austin] wore skulls. So you’ll see that just photoshopped out in a lot of artwork, that’s why, because I’m not Stone Cold.
** Fightful pushed out their interview with Marina Shafir who was released from WWE in June. Shafir will be in action at Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport event and was a part of the Championship Wrestling from Atlanta television tapings. Shafir said there was a period when she was emotional about her release from WWE but she continued to train. D-Von Dudley gave her access to his ring.
Honestly, I knew I was going to be doing something. That was too much garnered energy that I worked for. I didn’t take it personal, getting released. I have more good memories at NXT than bad. There’s no personal feelings towards that. I get that there’s sides to this business that you just can’t take personal. I signed that agreement long ago. I think two weeks after I got released, Barnett called me. First, we were just talking about how everything went down.
But then he was just like, ‘I’m gonna indirectly ask you to stay in shape. Just take care of yourself and we’ll be chatting in a couple of weeks.’ I said, ‘Yep. Gonna go train now. See you later. Talk to you soon. Bye,’ and I left. ‘Cause I was in my own little emotional bubble for a little bit. Then a few weeks went by and I stayed training. D-Von Dudley gave me access to his ring and I’ve just been going there every week since I got let go. Every single week I try to make it at least once a week into the ring just to stay fresh. I also wanted to see if it made me feel anything. ‘Cause I never want bitterness. I stayed in shape and we chatted. He asked me. He didn’t tell me who my opponent was. He asked me if I wanted to do it. I immediately was like, ‘Fuck yeah. Let’s go.’
Elsewhere during the interview, Shafir admitted that it has been difficult to establish connections on the independent scene. She does not view that as a negative because now she is forced to get adjusted.
Difficult, but in a good way because I feel like I’m forced to learn. I have a different learning curve than a lot of other people because of the experience that I have. Understanding when my overall mixed martial arts experience matters for matches. That’s always an interesting conversation to have with each person I work with. It’s been interesting. That’s really the only way I can put it. I’m trying to think of a scenario where I can talk about. Just making sure that it makes sense. As in life, I just want it to make f*cking sense. I just want it to be easily read and all that stuff.
She shared that there have been points when she has been judged for having learned how to wrestle at the WWE Performance Center. She brought up an experience she had recently when an individual mentioned that she is “NXT bred”.
Yeah. I still get that disdain. I was training with someone the other day and they’re like, ‘Oh, yeah. It’s because you have this little cloud over you because you’re NXT bred.’ I’m like, ‘Ah. Okay. Whatever. Cool.’ I’ve gone through the times of being judged by what gym I was out of—in judo, in jujitsu, in MMA. Like, okay. It’s now come full circle. Even when you think things are different, things are never gonna be really different. It’s all gonna be the same.
I still feel it. I think I’m gonna still feel it for a while. That’s fine. It’s just gonna push my product and what I want to exude in there, show everything that’s culminated in the last couple of years of what it’s about. It’s gonna be exciting because I love surprising people with what they don’t expect. That’s what that’s all about. I just really want to prove people wrong. Not even wrong, I want to give them a different perspective on where the f*ck I come from and what I’m capable of and it doesn’t matter how I got here. I haven’t disrespected anybody. I haven’t shot fire on the politics of all this bullsh*t. No.
What do I do? I sit down with one of the greatest minds in wrestling, my husband, and he is my devil’s advocate. I want to sometimes scream because he just knows. He knows what questions to ask, what subjects to talk about to get that reaction out. It doesn’t matter how I got there. What doesn’t change is the fact that I’m a student. I’m a very good student. I learn really fast. The more that I’ve gotten to know of myself because of that system because I’ve been forced to get to know who I am in order to be a better performer, I just hope that it resonates. That’s really it.
** The ‘XeniaDidThat’ YouTube channel has an interview with Dolph Ziggler. He explained how he’s been able to obtain the amount of leeway he’s garnered in WWE when it comes to outside projects and ventures. He feels that WWE trusts him to not go on a public platform and say something that could hurt the company.
It’s weird. A lot of people have different — if you’ve earned their trust and respect over 15 years — I used to have to ask, ‘Hey, I’m going on to FOX News. Is this okay that I do this in two weeks?’ And I got to a point where I built the trust. They sent me on PR tours to different countries; Romania, Turkey, they sent me different places and they trust me. Two weeks, I’m by myself with a handler and I’m just constantly doing PR for WWE and over 15 years, I clearly earned the ability to be like, I don’t have to tell them I’m going to do something because I’m not gonna be like, ‘Vince McMahon sucks. That’s why we should get out of Syria.’ Like there’s no reason for that. I’ll be like I can give an educated answer, I can make a snarky joke, I can change the subject, I can do any of it and that’s why — for ten years, it was myself, Miz, Kofi [Kingston], Sheamus, they sent us to everything and we got so sharp at it, they go, ‘Hey, we gotta get some other guys to get these reps in’ so I’m allowed to have this long leash and get whatever the hell I want. I mean, I also back it up in the ring so like, what are you gonna do?
** Ahead of IMPACT Wrestling Bound For Glory, ‘Gimme A Hull Yeah’ conducted an interview with Trey Miguel who’ll be competing on the show. Trey spoke about the three-way at PWG from 2019 involving himself, Jungle Boy and Jake Atlas. He praised Jungle Boy for being there and then immediately going to see his father Luke Perry in the hospital. Luke passed away just several days after.
Jungle Boy is a great friend of mine and I’ve only had the pleasure of working him, working with him one time and it was for PWG which is one of my two favorite independent promotions to wrestle — one of three favorites. I have three favorites. I won’t put ‘em out there, that way people keep guessing and always think it’s theirs, but, that place means so much to me and I remember the night that I had to wrestle Jungle Boy, he had to leave early so that way he could go see his father [Luke Perry] in the hospital that night and I just remember admiring him so much because of everything he was going through and his dedication to still show up to one of the biggest indies with all that pressure on top of wanting to be there for his dad and what ended up being some of his last moments unfortunately. That was one of the most admirable things I think I’ve ever witnessed in wrestling and I think he deserves all of the bonuses past the people just show[ing] up, you know what I mean? But if I could share a ring with anyone all over again through that forbidden door, it’d be him first.
** The latest Talk’n Shop podcast with appearances from Earl Hebner, Heath and Brian Myers.
** WWE supplied media outlets with quotes from an interview they conducted with Roman Reigns.
** Episode 278 of Being The Elite:
** The MLW Opera Cup finals are taking place on November 6th at MLW’s TV taping at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia.
** Drew McIntyre did a Q&A with BT Sport:
** Wrestling Headlines’ Joey G spoke to IMPACT Wrestling talent John Skyler for an interview.
** Houston Texans defensive end Jonathan Greenard talked to Big News Network about being a fan of WWE.
** Sports Illustrated spoke to Josh Alexander ahead of IMPACT Wrestling Bound For Glory.
** Yuji Nagata versus Keiji Muto from the 2001 NJPW G1 Climax final:
** nZo, the former ‘Enzo Amore’ called into Busted Open Radio.
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.