POST NEWS UPDATE: JJ Dillon weighs in on Vince McMahon being investigated by WWE’s Board, talks history with Vince

JJ Dillon talks Vince McMahon investigation, Miro wants the Ishii singles match, Brian Kendrick notes, Statlander-Cargill, Kevin Kelly chat

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.

** While doing a virtual signing for K & S WrestleFest, J.J Dillon was asked about Vince McMahon being investigated by WWE’s Board of Directors for misconduct. Dillon worked in WWE’s Talent Relations department in the late 1980s/early 90s. He said he is not perfect and his daughter, who was present for the signing, has seen him in moments when she could have been judgmental. Dillon added that he has heard stories pertaining to what he was asked but said that in life, a lot of things can either be true or false.

WWE became a highly successful and to my knowledge, the only highly successful global brand in professional wrestling and it was — they call him ‘junior’, Vince Jr., who had that vision and actually spread it out and made it global so, he’s someone and he started back with the Cape Cod Coliseum, was willing to risk his own money to take something and get the full potential out of it. We don’t live in a perfect world and I, almost over half-a-century around the wrestling business, saw a lot of things. Some that was not meant for me to see it but I saw it and so nothing shocks me, let’s put it that way and you know, I look at people who are successful in our industry and I put Vince McMahon Jr. right near the top of the list and I hate to see someone like that have their name… tarnished or whatever because of people talking about things with their personal life and I, like I said, there isn’t — I’ve seen it all [Dillon laughed] and I’ve done my share and my daughter’s here sitting in the same room with me, who’s my first-born daughter who started back when she was in high school and was on breaks and went on the road with me and road in my old Dodge van on road trips so, she — there isn’t much that she hasn’t seen and hasn’t experienced, some of which I’m not — she may have seen her father in situations where some people may not have been proud of him but — the other person — but she’s never been judgmental, she’s seen a lot and I feel the same way about Vince McMahon. I started with the father, I had great success. I was the Senior Vice President of Talent Relations for Vince Jr. and he took that brand and went global with it and stepped on a lot of toes doing it because all these other promoters that had their little things and produced their own TV, Vince had a vision of going global and used his money to do it and so, have I heard stories? Absolutely, and I’ve learned that a lot of times when you hear something, especially in this business, a lot of it’s true, a lot of it’s not true. People tell things on other people, whatever their thing is whether it’s jealousy or thinking that they’re gonna demean somebody and get even with them for something, whether they were slighted or what but, I have nothing but the highest respect for Vince Sr. That started it all with me and for Vince McMahon Jr… and add my name to the list [of people who aren’t perfect]. My daughter’s sitting right here in the room with me and she’s seen me at times where she could have been very judgmental and maybe not been proud of me but, she’s always been beside my side, travel with me and like I say, she’s seen it all.

** As far as what’s next for Brian Kendrick after videos resurfaced of his conspiracy theories which led to his AEW debut being scrapped, he told K & S WrestleFest during a virtual signing that he is not looking to get back to an AEW or WWE and wants to open his own wrestling school.

I don’t have a goal or a plan to make it to either of those companies [WWE & AEW] like I have in the past, you know, driven to… my hope and my goal is to have a successful wrestling school. To be able to do that, to be able to teach kids and be able to sustain through that financially for my wife and I, to be able to just train kids wrestling, that’s where I find myself to be happiest. If I can get independent bookings throughout the week to go out there and perform, that’s what I’d really like to do as well. Those jobs, they’re demanding, those contract jobs and the jobs that they would want me for, probably backstage, it’s a fantastic job but I guess if I had my dream, I’d rather teach my own students at home. But I’ll see where the world takes me, yeah.

Kendrick played a role in training Eva Marie. He recounted when they first met and he told her to not try to convince him that she loves pro wrestling. He felt she should lean into the idea of her on-screen character using her looks to get ahead.

I will say it was an absolute pleasure [training Eva Marie] and the way I attacked it… yeah, so when I first met with Eva Marie and talked to her, I said, you know, ‘Please don’t try to convince me that you love professional wrestling. Let’s take this for what it is.’ What I don’t like hearing with any of these students is, ‘Oh! This is my passion, this is my’ whatever and — but I know you’re lying. If this was your passion, this is your dream, you would have pursued professional wrestling instead of acting and modeling. So my approach was, ‘Let’s lean into what you are. You’re here because you’re beautiful’ and so I wanted that to be the deal, because you’re not gonna get as good as Bayley. Bayley’s been obsessing about this since she was a child, she’s been working on it since before she was 18 and she’s off and doing it so, ‘You can be the girl who’s here because you’re beautiful and that’s the nasty nature of this business is Bayley, you had to work so hard to get good at this and all I had to do was be pretty’ and I thought there was legs with it and stuff like that but, I think she started to put together some good matches, you know, for what that was. She isn’t gonna be Bayley, but then ultimately, sh*t hit the fan backstage with her and wellness policy and stuff unfortunately. Whether she got the raw end of the deal or whatever. It’s just that she got chewed up and spit out and that’s where she’s at now.

Towards the back end of Kendrick’s time in WWE, he served as a coach and producer for NXT and at the Performance Center. He started off with cruiserweight talent and then had a women’s class which he said he enjoyed the most.

So they’re kind of all over the place [as far what Kendrick did at the Performance Center]. I had different groups. At first, it was cruiserweights, anybody that was a cruiserweight but most cruiserweights are trained wrestlers. There wasn’t — they weren’t scouted athletes so it was — they were easy to train. Then I moved over to women’s class. That was my favorite, that’s who I had for the longest, about six months with them and they were women who were recruited from Brazil, they were good at Judo and they never watched pro wrestling to women who have made a living doing this and getting signed. So their experience levels are really all over the place.

** Before being sidelined with an injury, Tomohiro Ishii was scheduled to be in the AEW All-Atlantic Title four-way at Forbidden Door. Miro told WhatCulture that he was looking forward to sharing the ring with Ishii but hopes to have a singles match with him in the future and is open to going to Japan for it.

Whenever he [Tomohiro Ishii] thinks he’s got good wheels or good enough wheels or he thinks he’s not afraid to face ‘The Redeemer’ and the consequences that come with it, if he’s okay bending for a ‘Game Over’, that’s gonna happen… I have no issue. If I have to fly to Japan if you will to have to work him there, I’m okay with that as well. I have plenty of miles on my card so, it’s not a problem for me. Flying there, beating his ass, five-to-ten minutes and flying right back. So people are gonna see it. At the end of the day, one day, people are going to see ‘The Redeemer’ as an All-Atlantic Champion or World Heavyweight Champion at that point, versus ‘The Stone Pitbull’ Ishii.

Miro later added that he is not interested in an extended stay in Japan. He can see himself staying for several days but does not want to be there for a month despite loving the country and its culture.

No, that’s way too long for me [Miro responded when asked if he’d like to do a tour of Japan for a month]. I need to come home to my pickles, I need to come home to my dogs. I’m not going anywhere for a month. I’m gonna go there for one day, beat somebody up, two days tops and I’m coming right back home to my sweet wife. There’s no — I love Japan, don’t get me wrong. I love the food, I love the culture, I love everything about it, but there’s no way I’ll be stuck there for a month.

** While speaking to Jaychele Nicole, Kris Statlander commented on the idea that she could be the first person to beat Jade Cargill in AEW. Statlander appreciates the support and added that if the scenario doesn’t pan out, she’ll be fine.

I’m gonna say you’re gonna see Jade’s toughest challenge ever — yet — ever, maybe, we’ll see. But um, I appreciate everyone that’s supporting the idea of me being the first one to beat her. That would be really cool, but we gotta get the match booked first. So don’t don’t get your hopes up until we see that graphic, okay? That’s all I’m gonna say is, if it happens, it happens. If it doesn’t, don’t get your panties in a twist over it. Life goes on. I’ll get something one day, maybe one day will be my time to shine, but if not…

She went to discuss the crowd reactions she has been receiving since altering her on-screen character. She cannot explain the recent reactions because she feels she has not changed much of her move-set but encouraged the fans to keep it going.

I don’t know. I don’t know why it’s happening because I feel like a lot of what I’ve done in the ring isn’t very different from what I’ve done before with any other way of presenting myself. I think if there’s one thing I can take away from just being there in the moment in front of the crowd with alien Kris, I feel like people were like, oh, yeah, she’s fun, she’s cool, we like her. Then, I have to get like halfway into my match for people to be like, oh, damn, we actually want her to win. But now that, ‘Oh damn, we really want this person to win’ is happening just from my entrance and maybe it is the different presentation. Maybe it’s me taking myself more seriously. Maybe, I don’t know, maybe people are just finally giving me a chance. I don’t really know why it’s happening. I’m very grateful for it though. Believe me, it means the world to me. Like I said, I feel like, I’m not really doing anything so much different. At least like in the ring, but as far as my wrestling goes, I have the same moves, have the same finish. The only thing major is that I’m not booping people, which, you know, it’s always some harmless fun, that’s all. Yeah, I don’t know why it’s happening. But keep it up everyone. Keep the noise coming.

In 2020, Statlander underwent surgery for a torn ACL. She still sports the knee brace while wrestling and said she’s grown tired of wearing it. She shared that one is more likely to re-tear their ACL if the proper precautions aren’t taken such as sporting the brace.

Yeah, I don’t want to wear it anymore, but I’m forced to. I hate it. I hate wearing it. It is just a precautionary thing. You’re more likely to retear your ACL if you don’t take the proper precautions. So I do have KT tape on under the brace, and then I have the brace on but that is just strictly just to make sure that it doesn’t explode in there again. It’s fine, I’m healed. It’s just it’s more to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

When I’m trying things out, a little bit. Like when I’m thinking about it, yes. It feels like my legs might have outgrown the brace. Also, I might have to get resized for a new one. But, in the match, in the moment, I don’t really think about it. And it never really seems to be a problem. The only time it’s a problem is if I’m not wearing tall boots because the tall boots help it from sliding down. I was wearing boots for a little bit and the brace would just slide down my leg every single time. So, I have to wear tall boots. But besides that, it’s that I just try not to think about it too much because then I don’t like to get in my head. I’d like to just focus on the wrestling.

** New Japan Pro-Wrestling commentator Kevin Kelly guest appeared on The Wrstling Podcast and expressed his thoughts about KUSHIDA’s return to NJPW.

It’s an exciting time. After wrapping up the Best of Super Juniors tournament and then Dominion where a new world champion was crowned in ‘Switchblade’ Jay White, then we move to the New Japan Road, we have a spectacular main event with Taiji Ishimori outlasting Hiromu Takahashi when all of a sudden, who returns? KUSHIDA. So again, that’s just one of the many stories that are going on in wrestling right now with a shift away from WWE as the true power and dominant force in garnering always the best wrestling talent in the world and now there are so many other options. KUSHIDA coming back home at the perfect time.

And it’s one of those things where he’d accomplished everything he could accomplish and wanted to kind of complete his wrestling journey. I always believed he would come back, but then you never say, ‘Oh, well now is the time’ and then of course, you know, when he stepped away, we had hoped, we had thought maybe but didn’t know when and now all of a sudden he’s back and a challenger for Taiji Ishimori and who knows what will happen in the future but it was so exciting.

Throughout his commentary career, Kelly has worked with several different broadcast partners including Caprice Coleman. Kevin feels that his work with Caprice helped set the stage for what Ian Riccaboni and Caprice would do as a duo in Ring of Honor.

So having had different voices [to work with] all throughout the years, you know, Caprice Coleman was a part of it and now, I — some of what me getting to work with him I think set the stage for what he and Ian [Riccaboni] were doing in Ring of Honor and I hope they get to continue when Ring of Honor gets relaunched again.

** Lucha Libre Online caught up with ESPN host Charly Arnolt, the former ‘Charly Caruso’. She spoke about how her professional career has been going since departing WWE. Charly also shared that she’ll be working an event for UFC in July.

I’m doing great, everything’s amazing. Things with ESPN are going really well. I’m actually going to be working an event for UFC in July so, everything’s going well, happy to be here [at a convention], reuniting with all of the, you know, WWE and wrestling fans so I have no complaints.

For me to transition was okay because I was already working for ESPN at the same time I was working for WWE. So I just left WWE and well full-time to ESPN so for me, easy transition but, you know, I’m so happy to have spent so many years working in the wrestling business with WWE and now, having moved on, for me, to what I consider to the next step of my career.

** On the 9/2/21 episode of IMPACT Wrestling on AXS, Jake Crist made his return after becoming a free agent in December 2020. Crist was a guest on Gregory Iron’s ‘Iron-On Wrestling’ podcast and reflected on that return to IMPACT. He is hoping to get back to the company.

You know, it was… out of the blue [his return to IMPACT Wrestling in 2021]. I got a message and it was like, ‘Hey, would you like to make a return?’ And I was like — I sat on that for 30 minutes because legit, this was about a year-and-a-half in the making of dedicating, dieting, working out, getting my health back, quit drinking. You know, I’ve been two years sober now — well in October, it’ll be two years so that’s really awesome. So I went from 240 down to 169 is when I walked in shredded. I wish I would have had hair because I was going through my Britney Spears stage of going crazy and have to shave my head so like, yeah, I was kind of finding myself through there but, that’s the only thing I kind of regret. I wish I had this cool mohawk that I have now at IMPACT but I felt like me and Josh killed it. Me and Josh Alexander have awesome chemistry. He’s one of the best wrestlers in the world in my opinion, and so I was just really, really happy to come back and challenge him for the X Division Championship and the welcoming home to IMPACT by the fans was just heartwarming and amazing and it just made me wanna work extra hard to try to get back there. So I would love to go back to IMPACT, you know, and to be honest, I really, really enjoy what I’m doing here at Circle 6 and Wrestling REVOLVER.

** While on the ‘Drinks With Johnny’ podcast, Keith Lee touched on his team with Swerve Strickland, stating that he has not been in a tag team that has competed on this level since his days in Ring of Honor where he tagged with Shane Taylor. Lee said he’s going to do everything in his power to ensure that he and Swerve become tag champions in AEW.

I haven’t been in a tag team that competed at this level since Ring of Honor. So, obviously, you know, big fan of Swerve [Strickland] and I want to do everything in my power to assist him in kind of capturing that first piece of gold for both of us, you know? We’re both super new here [in AEW]. He actually came in after me so, he’s been here even less time than me so he’s making some big moves and hopefully we can make it happen man.

** After losing the IMPACT Knockouts World Title, Tasha Steelz told The Asylum Wrestling Store that she is looking to return to the NWA and challenge Kamille for her World Women’s Championship.

I’m trolling Kamille right now, okay? I’ma go back to the NWA real quick and troll her and have her put that Women’s Championship up on the line. Everybody else is going through these forbidden doors, I figure I’d pick the locks of the windows of those doors. I don’t like to go through doors so I’ll pick the locks of the windows. I’m from the hood, that’s what we do [Steelz smirked].

** Xia Li guest appeared on El Brunch de WWE and looked back on her journey to WWE. Li is the company’s first female Chinese wrestler.

To be the first one, I’m so proud, you know? [Xia said about being the first Chinese woman to wrestle in WWE] To represent my country, my people and make my family proud. I still think about everything. I still can’t believe I’m here, you know? I’m the first WWE Chinese superstar. So, I made it, I told myself. It’s been very hard to be here. I think right now, almost like six years. I remember I first got here, I couldn’t speak English and I don’t know, I [didn’t] have any wrestling experience. So starting was very difficult, but I’m good right now [Xia smiled]. I’m here.

** On July 3rd, Tetsuya Endo is going to be appearing at DDT Pro-Wrestling’s Korakuen Hall event to share news with the fans. Endo suffered a concussion at CyberFight Festival and as a result, had to relinquish the KO-D Openweight Title. He has not wrestled since suffering the concussion on 6/12.

** Shinsuke Nakamura and Kazuchika Okada sent flowers to the venue that hosted the wake for Makiyo Shimada, the wife of Genichiro Tenryu. Shimada passed away on 6/24 due to lung cancer.

** The press conference for the 2022 NJPW G1 Climax tournament takes place on July 14th. The tournament begins on July 16th.

** Mai Sakurai, Saya Iida and Ami Sourei secured their spots in STARDOM’s 5 STAR Grand Prix tournament.

** Ahead of AEW Blood & Guts, The Detroit News published a feature story about AEW and interviewed Excalibur for the piece.

** Andrew Everett is going to be in action for DDT Pro-Wrestling on 7/3 and 7/7.

** Coming out of TripleMania XXX: Tijuana, John Morrison was interviewed by Lucha Libre Online.

** Highspots welcomed Konosuke Takeshita onto their Virtual Gimmick Table show.

** SwerveCity Podcast released the latest Teasy’s Table episode with Brian Cage as a guest.

** Sonya Deville hosted an episode of WWE and Cricket Wireless’ ‘Small Business Superstars’ series.

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 4631 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.