POST NEWS UPDATE: Kamille was not originally going to have in-ring face-to-face with Leyla Hirsch on AEW Dynamite

Original idea for Kamille/Leyla Hirsch segment, Axel Tischer on pre-TakeOver meetings, Julia Hart talks eyepatch, Jim Ross/Danielson, more

Photo Courtesy: All Elite Wrestling

If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.

** To set up the NWA World Women’s Title match between champion Kamille and challenger Leyla Hirsch at EmPowerrr, Kamille appeared at AEW Dynamite: Homecoming to confront Hirsch. Kamille told ‘Insiders Edge: A Pro Wrestling Podcast’ that the initial idea was for her to be on the outside of the ring and stare down Hirsch. It was changed by someone who thought they should roll with the idea of an in-ring face-to-face.

At first, they just wanted it to be like Leyla [Hirsch] in the ring (at AEW Dynamite: Homecoming) and then me come to the side and it be us kind of far apart and that’d be it and then someone was like, ‘No! Get in there and be face-to-face’ and I’m so glad, because I wanted to do that, but like I said, I was new so I didn’t want to go, no, let’s go face-to-face after they just said not to. But then someone changed it and thank God they did because that image that they got of us face-to-face and her almost just in my breast area, you know? (Kamille chuckled) Was such a good image and made for some good memes and stuff online and all of that so, it was a really good time.

Kamille’s time in the National Wrestling Alliance began with her being Nick Aldis’ ‘insurance policy’. While she is grateful for that period of her career, she does think it made it difficult for her to transition into becoming a “legitimate wrestler”. She went on to add that after matches, she is sometimes told that she gives too much to her opponents but Kamille wants to make sure everyone looks good coming out of her matches.

And don’t get me wrong, very grateful for how I came into the NWA as Nick Aldis’ insurance policy. But the thing is, I think people kind of looked at that as me being a valet type of role and when people see that as their first initial thought of you, it’s kind of hard to go from a valet type of role to now, you’re an in-ring competitor and I think that it almost — like I said, while I’m very grateful for the role and that’s how people knew me at first, I also think it made it a little bit harder to become a legitimate wrestler in people’s eyes because it was just like, well, she’s a valet. What is she doing wrestling? And so, when I first started wrestling, I think there was a lot of doubt or criticism or questions about is she gonna be able to do this? Then, winning the title on top of that, how is she gonna handle this? Is she gonna be able to have these lengthy matches with people? And people can’t carry her, quote-unquote, because she’s green. All those things you hear and see and I think the fact that this run, I’ve just been proving myself over and over and over again that I can have a good match with not just the best, with anybody, with anybody in there and like you said previously… I don’t go into business for myself. I’m already a champion, I’m already so confident in where I am. I want the match to be entertaining for the people watching and like you said, get the other person over even in defeat and I feel like that’s something I have accomplished. I mean, I’ve gotten a few times from people in the back, ‘Oh, you give them too much stuff,’ you know what I mean? But at the end of the day, I want to make sure that they’re also walking away and they’re elevated by their experience with me.

Over the course of her 587-plus day reign as NWA World Women’s Champion, she feels the talent she’s had the most in-ring chemistry with is Taya Valkyrie.

The most chemistry with, I would say is Taya Valkyrie and that goes to her, the fact that she’s been doing this for a very long time and she’s wrestled all over the world and many different styles and so Taya’s one of those people, she can have a good match with anybody and her pacing is so good and just the way we communicate in the ring together, it’s great working with her and she’s just a fantastic person outside of wrestling and so the chemistry there, every time that I have a match with her — I have anxiety before every match but my anxiety’s a little bit less with Taya just because I know that, like we talked about, the chemistry is there and I trust her 100 percent.

** Former NXT Tag Team Champion Axel Tischer (Alexander Wolfe) spoke to Steve Fall of the Ten Count podcast and while looking back at his time with NXT, he recounted the pre-TakeOver meetings that would take place. He said it would be instilled in talents to make it difficult for WWE’s main roster to follow TakeOver. That mindset was reinforced by Shawn Michaels.

They made us be competitive in that part and that was a great thing (Tischer said about the weekends in WWE when there would be a main roster PPV and a TakeOver). I remember we had meetings before the NXT TakeOvers, [they] just said, ‘Hey,’ for example, ‘Today is the day. Today, TakeOver,’ X, Y, Z. ‘Tomorrow, make them hard to follow that. Make it hard for them to follow that.’ Always have this competition because that set of mind, they kind of trained us with this. Like Shawn Michaels for example, just coming back after a match and follow that motherf*ckers kind of, in a healthy competition way because then, everybody delivers. Everybody has to put asses into the seats but better way, just doing it together so just make you guys kind of compare to each other. Of course not every match is the same match but mentality-wise, always come back with follow that motherf*ckers and that’s what TakeOver was all about. You had like five matches or maybe six matches and every match was top notch. You had awesome guys who had wrestling experience before who knew how to deliver or you had NXT, WWE Performance Center prospects, they got trained very well under the best trainers ever and yeah, it was a special moment and of course, when we had a TakeOver and everyone was on the card, we knew, okay, we have to make those guys work harder tomorrow because everybody will watch NXT TakeOver today and will watch — I don’t know which pay-per-view was on at the time and they will compare it for sure and you [interviewer] said it in a very cool way that it was the AEW before AEW existed. The idea was not only just to get WWE fans included but also, people who do not want to watch maybe the main roster shows because they’re not too much into the sports-entertainment thing and in my opinion, pro wrestling is sports-entertainment but you can have a technical match or you can have a match which is more storytelling, more character driven. But NXT was everything but a little bit more like the wrestling, technical, cool moves, telling a story with actions in the ring product.

** As Julia Hart was doing a virtual signing with Captain’s Corner, she explained how difficult it was to wrestle with an eyepatch on. She said it was her least favorite thing to do and added that her vision was impaired by it in the ring.

That was definitely, probably my least favorite part (was wearing the eyepatch). It was so hard to see, gave me a headache and I would get itchy and sweaty and I was just sitting on the steps and it was really hard to wrestle in. Anytime I’d run the ropes… I felt like I was stumbling and the first time I wrestled was that match with Jade [Cargill], was the first time I wrestled with the eyepatch and I just couldn’t see and I remember just being like, I can’t see. I think she literally kicked me in the face or something and I was like, I don’t care because I can’t see so, whatever happens, happens… It was really hard to wrestle in that. So hard.

If she had the opportunity to form a team in AEW’s women’s division, she’d be interested in tagging with Abadon or forming a group that consists of herself, Adabon, Penelope Ford and The Bunny.

Abandon (is who I would team with if AEW created a women’s tag division). Abadon, or like me, Penelope [Ford] and Allie [The Bunny] could be trios. Or it could be us four of me, Penelope, Allie and Abadon. ‘The Weird Sisters’ or something… To me, it’s very witchy (the ‘Weird Sisters’ name).

** For episode #196 of the Grilling J.R. podcast, WWE’s 2003 Royal Rumble event was the focus. Before that pay-per-view, Bryan Danielson wrestled on an episode of Velocity. Ross shared that he played a role in getting Danielson to Shawn Michaels’ wrestling school and went on to mention what WWE thought of Bryan at the time when it comes to his size.

He [Bryan Danielson] went to Shawn Michaels’ school. He’s one of those guys that I helped facilitate to go to Shawn’s school and you know, the eyes of the WWE were firmly on a lot of things I did but, ‘He’s too small, he’s 5’8.’ His character was about 6’6, his integrity was about seven feet and he’s a huge addition to the AEW roster…

On a December 2002 Monday Night Raw, J.R. tagged with Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler to face William Regal and Lance Storm. Ross credited Regal, Storm and Lawler for the match going smoothly and feels it was the best utilization of him as an in-ring talent. Ross had six more matches in WWE following that.

This (tag match I was in on Raw in December 2002) was in Oklahoma City, as you [Conrad Thompson] may have mentioned that and the pep band, for lack of better term, turned out to play the entrance. I thought that was a nice gesture by the WWE. I also think it was a way to get them out of the building and on their way back to Connecticut a little earlier, because when I got to the back, nobody was there. So, so much of the celebration. Oh, good job J.R., you pulled it through and look, a lot of credit for how that match was perceived and executed goes to [William] Regal, Lance Storm and [Jerry] Lawler and so I just kind of followed along and tried to stay out of the way and did my little part, whatever that was gonna be. But I do remember the crowd left feeling good, the ovation was outstanding, that was very cool for a fat ole’ announcer to get that kind of deal and The Dudleyz doing their thing and hoisting me up on their shoulders so I’m just glad they didn’t get hernias and stuff from lifting me, or drop me. I was ready for that too, because you never know what Vince [McMahon] is gonna say. If you drop J.R., it might not be a bad thing (Ross laughed). You never know. Ha, ha, ha! So I’ve always thought it was a way to get those guys to the airport so they could fly back to Connecticut a little bit earlier so, but fine, it was alright. But the presentation, I thought was pretty decent. That was probably the best use of J.R. as a wrestler — I use that term very loosely — that we ever did while I was there.

** Mickie James, Lisa Marie Varon and SoCal Val welcomed Alisha Edwards onto GAW TV. Edwards discussed her venture into being a content creator for IMPACT Wrestling. She helps behind the scenes and does not have an issue with her position in the company.

I’m trying to be a content creator for IMPACT because I feel like we can be better at it and there’s a lot of times where I’m not in the pictures for the titles or being used in the wrestling thing which I have no complaints whatsoever because going back to the whole thing, I wasn’t into the wrestling. I’m more behind the scenes and I always have been I feel like and I think at this point in my career and life is I’m just looking for the longevity of the business. What am I gonna do when wrestling is really over? Wrestling is gonna be there forever, we’re not going to and I’m just kind of moving in that direction so I’m trying everything and anything I can get my hands on and trying to make it my own.

When it comes to IMPACT’s on-screen product, Edwards feels they are on the same level as WWE and AEW. She feels if IMPACT had that same financial backing, they would be viewed in that same light from a public perception perspective.

National television like Spike [TV]. If we could get Spike back… I feel like with AEW and WWE and IMPACT, I feel like we’re on the same level as them and our product is as good as them. It’s just that we don’t have the eyes. We don’t have, obviously, the money, right? Because obviously, with TNT and USA, they’re paying them to do what they do. We don’t have someone giving us millions of dollars to do what we want with and I feel like if we had someone paying us a million dollars, we could do as great as AEW and WWE is doing. So, if that’s what we can do in 2023, that would be great and I mean, that’s kind of what the entire roster wants which is always good to see too. We don’t have a group of people that are just kind of bringing us down.

** While doing a virtual signing for K & S WrestleFest, Primo and Epico Colón looked back on the ‘WeeLC’ match between El Torito and Hornswoggle at WWE Extreme Rules 2014. Primo stated that when he found out what they had planned for the match, he knew Swoggle and Torito were going to “tear the house down”.

Epico: Oh, that was unbelievable (WeeLC match) … That was pretty crazy.

Primo: Chicago crowd’s (are) pretty consistent so you can actually engage and I know what these guys were cooking up the day before or the day of when we were going through it… I said if they do this right, if they have everything the way that it’s set up, they’re gonna tear down the house and they did and it was the first match so the crowd was usually pretty hot. I said, ‘They’re gonna eat it up.’ I know it was easy for us because we didn’t have to take one bump.

Epico: Oh, we did take a bump.

Primo: We did?

Epico: [El] Torito’s idea too.

Primo: He found a way (to get us involved).

** ‘TEAM Housework & Childcare’ conducted an interview with Kazuchika Okada about parenthood. He stated that he’d be hesitant to let his son become a pro wrestler. Ultimately, if his son wanted to pursue it, he’d allow it but would put pressure on him to take a safer job.

Also, fans may expect it, but if my son wanted to become a pro wrestler, I think I would oppose it. It’s a tough world, and he would inevitably attract attention. Well, if he really wants to do it, I will let him. I’ll give him a lot of pressure though. I really want him to have a safer job (laughs).

** On the latest episode of WWE After The Bell, Corey Graves and Kevin Patrick welcomed L.A. Knight onto the show. He discussed the early stages of his career and spoke about his time as a part of Championship Wrestling from Hollywood. It was there when things started to click for him and added that although there may have been a small number of people watching, it was an opportunity for him to wrestle on TV.

Obviously, the best move I ever made was getting my ass out of there (Ohio) and going to California, and California’s indie scene wasn’t super great but you throw in Championship Wrestling from Hollywood… It was creatively such a good time for me and the locker room atmosphere was always great and easy and it was amazing footage to send around and you’re on local TV in L.A. which you know, probably three people are watching but at the same time, it’s like, it’s a cool deal. Hey, I wrestled on TV.

Like I said, when I got to L.A. and I was doing Championship Wrestling from Hollywood, they gave me a lot of time to kind of just do my thing and it was like, ‘Hey, alright, talk about this’ and there was no real time given to me. I usually just kind of edited my own time. If it went one minute, if it went three minutes, tried not to get long-winded because I know that gets boring so it’s like, let me just do this and that freedom just allowed me to really flourish, explore some stuff and then see what people responded to and I felt like I was just on a roll and that’s when things actually, finally started happening.

** Tampa Bay Times published a feature story about the National Wrestling Alliance and its current owner Billy Corgan. In the piece, Corgan stated that when he first got involved in pro wrestling, some within the music space disapproved of him venturing into wrestling but seeing that reaction is what made him want to further engage.

The moment I saw rock ‘n’ roll disapprove of my love of wrestling, I was all in. I’m a contrarian. I caught the bug and learned about the business.

** Sonny Onoo is scheduled to be in Japan on January 22nd for The Great Muta’s six-man tag match in which he’ll be teaming with Darby Allin and Sting.

** Keiji Muto (Great Muta) and Pro Wrestling NOAH are collaborating with Sneakerwolf to release merchandise.

** Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling ‘Futari wa Princess’ Max Heart Tournament Results (1/15/22) Otemachi Mitsui Hall in Tokyo, Japan
– Shoko Nakajima def. Wakana Uehara
Three Way Match: Hyper Misao def. Mizuki and Pom Harajuku
– Miu Watanabe, Rika Tatsumi & HIMAWARI def. Arisu Endo, Suzume & Kaya Toribami
Futari wa Princess Max Heart Tournament First Round: Juria Nagano & Moka Miyamoto def. Mahiro Kiryu & Yuki Kamifuku
Futari wa Princess Max Heart Tournament First Round: Saki Akai & Yuki Arai def. Raku & Yuki Aino
Futari wa Princess Max Heart Tournament Second Round: Maki Ito & Miyu Yamashita def. FreeWiFi (Hikari Noa & Nao Kakuta)

** Joining Sheamus for a recording of Celtic Warrior Workouts were Seth Rollins and Becky Lynch.

** Video featuring Dakota Kai from the UpUpDownDown YouTube channel: 

** Former IMPACT Wrestling Digital Media Champion Joe Hendry appeared on Busted Open Radio.

** TMZ caught up with Alexa Bliss.

** January 15th birthdays: Kelly Kelly.

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 6008 Articles
A Maryland native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.