Wrestling-Online Newsletter #1924
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/ _ \| \| | | |_ _| \| | __| Issue #1924
| (_) | .` | |__ | || .` | _| Monday January 3rd 2005
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>> OPENING WORDS FROM THE EDITORBy Colin Vassallo, [Editor@...]
Hello fans. Welcome to 2005! We hope you enjoyed your NY's Eve party. I
spent it with my close friends and apart from drinking a lot we had a
blast. The year for me personally was OK, although it did suck a bit in
a way. It certainly didn't end the way I was hoping it will but hey,
sh!t happens. But 2005 looks bright, a new job is waiting for me after
six years with the same company. This time I will be working for the US
government, yes, overseas and getting paid with your taxes my dear
American friends :-) I will be joining the US Embassy here in Malta on
the 24th of this month and I'm really excited about it. So hey, when you
have a holiday, guess what, I will too! :-)
Anyway, that's all for today, we'll be back tomorrow.
The Rise & Fall of ECW - Over 6 hours of ECW action on 2 DVDs!
Buy it now from http://www.wrestlingmegastore.com
>> WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT NEWShttp://www.wrestling-online.com/news
> RAW PREVIEW- With one week to go from New Year's Revolution, tonight's RAW will
have the fall out from last week's blockbuster announcement of Shawn
Michaels being the special guest referee for the Elimination Chamber
match. Also tonight a debate will take place featuring Muhammed Hassan
and Khosrow Daivari against Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross. With Kane
appearing at a live event last week and his match against Snitsky just
days away on PPV, chances are the Big Red Machine will also return on
the show tonight.
> RAW LIVE IN THE UK STARTING TONIGHT- RAW will be airing live starting tonight in the United Kingdom on Sky
Sports 3 at 2AM GMT. This will be the first time that RAW airs live in
the UK. Sky Sports 3 has a 6 hour WWE line up starting with Bottom Line
at 10PM, Afterburn at 11PM, Velocity at Midnight, Heat at 1AM and RAW
live at 2AM.
> RAW & SMACKDOWN TAPINGS IN JAPAN- W-O Newsletter reader Steve Alleyne sent us a note saying that the WWE
International website has updated its Japan page with news on the
upcoming TV tapings in the Land of the Rising Sun. RAW and Smackdown!
will be taped at the Saitama Super Arena in Tokyo, Japan on February 4th
and February 5th respectively. Tickets go on sale Saturday January 8th
at 10:00AM local time.
> LIVE EVENT REPORT FROM HOUSTON, TX., KANE RETURNS- W-O Newsletter reader Eric Flores attended the live WWE event in
Houston, TX., on 30th December and sent in these results. William Regal
& Eugene defeated Christian & Tyson Tomko; Tajiri defeated Val Venis;
Simon Dean defeated The Hurricane; Lita defeated Trish Stratus; Chris
Benoit defeated Edge; Mohammed Hassan defeated Rhyno; Shelton Benjamin
defeated Batista; Randy Orton defeated HHH. After the Lita/Trish match,
Kane came out to confront Gene Snitsky and fought all the way to the
> STOCKS- Stocks closed the day at 12.00, a 1.07% decrease over the previous
closing. The day's range was 12.00 - 12.14.
>> KNIVES OUTBy Ian Hamilton, [ian.hamilton@...]
Twelve months ago, at the end of my 2003-in-review column, I gave my
picks for "those to be cut in 2004". To save you going back, here they
"My tips for the cut this year are: Kanyon, Sean O'Haire, Ivory, Ultimo
Dragon and Zach Gowen."
Well, Ultimo's future is questionable, and Ivory is nowhere near a
wrestling ring - so I guess three out of five isn't bad. Normally, it
would be a decent success rate. until you consider that WWE have let go
almost forty different wrestlers, developmental talent and such like.
It's been a busy year for wrestling - and we're going to relive it
(sorry). Sit back, put your feet up, get the Kleenex, and prepare to cry
as we recap 2004 in all of it's glory.
Kevin Nash started the year unemployed, as his WWE deal expired at the
turn of the year. He was the first of many to leave WWE. Melina Perez
joined WWE and was assigned to OVW. She'd end up on Raw before the year
was over. WWE Originals was released. Jason Clevett absolutely loved
Kurt Angle rapping on that CD. Spanky handed in his notice to WWE, and
left the company. WWE announced that the Hall of Fame would return for
the WrestleMania 20 weekend (with tickets costing $200 each). former
on-screen president Jack Tunney passed away at the age of 68. Rumble
winner Chris Benoit switched to the Raw brand, as he prepared to go for
the World title at WrestleMania.
The PPV - Royal Rumble: Chris Benoit won the 30-man event to earn a
title shot at WrestleMania 20. Triple H and Shawn Michaels' last man
standing match for the World title ended in a draw. Brock Lesnar
squashed Hardcore Holly in his WWE title defence. the much-hyped Eddie
vs Chavo match lasted a few minutes, which Eddie won.
The Rock started filming his new movie, Be Cool. Zach Gowen was released
by WWE. as were Chris Kanyon and Ernest "The Cat" Miller (who had been
given some sort of push by WWE after debuting in late-2003). Mark "How
the hell am I still employed?" Henry injured his shoulder in a televised
match with Chris Benoit. Maven was given time off after his "mom"
(actually his aunt, but if you saw Tough Enough, you'll know what we
mean) passed away with cancer. The Monday Night Wars DVD was released,
chronicalling the Raw vs Nitro feud - and sold out in double quick time.
WWE's post WrestleMania tour of the UK sold out.
The PPV - No Way Out: Eddie Guerrero somehow transformed from being a
Rumble undercarder to WWE champion in the space of a month. A run-in
from Bill Goldberg caused Brock Lesnar to drop the belt to Eddie, as
Goldberg/Lesnar was set up for WrestleMania. On the undercard, Kurt
Angle beat Big Show and John Cena to become the #1 contender to Eddie's
title, while Shaniqua was written out of the storylines via a Rikishi
The month was dominated by three events: WrestleMania, Brock Lesnar
quitting, and a certain Rob Feinstein. We'll start with ROH:
On March 3, an NBC affiliate in Philadelphia broadcast a story with the
PervertedJustice.com website, where Feinstein appeared to have contacted
an underage minor for sex. Although no charges were ever filed, the
story caused massive damage to Feinstein and his Ring Of Honor promotion
- which led to Feinstein (eventually) parting ways with ROH. You could
have been forgiven for thinking that the crisis with ROH was just a
storm in a teacup - as their first event since the incident (on March
13, in Elizabeth, NJ) drew a crowd of 1,800: a record for the company.
On that card, labelled "At Our Best", ROH champion Samoa Joe beat Jay
Briscoe in a bloody cage match. Among the fall-out from the Feinstein
incident, TNA put the kibosh on their contracted talent working for ROH
- which severely hit the roster ROH had to work with.
Back to WWE: with a few Wrestling-Online staffers in New York City for
WrestleMania, a huge bombshell was dropped on the company. On March 9 -
just days before the PPV - Brock Lesnar told the WWE at the SmackDown
tapings in Bridgeport, CT, that he wanted to leave the company, to
pursue a career in the NFL. The story leaked out, and on Brock's next
public appearance - at a press conference on March 11, at Planet
Hollywood in Times Square - the fans let him know what they felt. It was
a taste of things to come. also, Former WWF mid-carder Hercules passed
away. WWE announced plans for their 24/7 service - a video-on-demand
channel which would see WWE show old wrestling footage from a myriad of
promotions, including WWF, ECW, WCW, Smoky Mountain Wrestling, Jim
Crockett Promotions and the AWA.
The PPV - WrestleMania XX. Where it all begins again. 18,000+ fans from
around the world packed into Madison Square Garden, to see the WWE's
biggest supercard to date and watch Chris Benoit walk out of New York
City as the World Heavyweight Champion, as he made HHH tap out in the
main event. Elsewhere on the show, the fans totally crapped on Goldberg
vs Lesnar, as chants of "you sold out" and "goodbye" rang around MSG.
For the record, Goldberg won in his last WWE match - but Stone Cold (who
left WWE shortly afterwards as well) gave both of them Stunners after
the match. John Cena won the US title by beating Big Show in a passable
opener, while Molly Holly had her head shaved bald after losing a
four-minute hair vs title match with Victoria.
Elsewhere in March: Paul Bearer returned alongside the Undertaker at
WrestleMania. Ron Simmons (aka Faarooq) was fired by WWE, after he was
fired in the storylines, when the APA lost to Scotty 2 Hotty and Rikishi
at a SmackDown taping in (snowy) Boston. After the APA split, Bradshaw
appeared on TV with a new gimmick - JR Ewing rip-off John "Bradshaw"
Layfield, or JBL, for short. WWE announced the creation of two new PPVs
- one in June, and another in October, with the latter being held on a
Tuesday night. The post-WrestleMania "draft lottery" saw a lot of
movement in the mid cards, with Rene Dupree, Mark Jindrak, HHH, RVD,
Teddy Long and Spike Dudley going to SmackDown. Shelton Benjamin, Nidia,
Rhyno, Tajiri, Edge and Paul Heyman went to Raw. Heyman later quit (in
the storylines), and the ensuing trades while Kurt Angle was appointed
SmackDown GM saw Chuck Palumbo and A-Train hop to Raw (in exchange for
Jackie and Rico); while HHH went back to Raw, in a swap for Booker T and
Rumours started flying over the location of SummerSlam. Tampa, Toronto
and Manchester (England) were supposedly on the shortlist - although the
rumoured location of Manchester United's Old Trafford soccer stadium
were dismissed when people realised that Manchester United would be
playing soccer there on SummerSlam weekend. Of course, it was our April
Fool's joke - but some newspaper columnists took it seriously.
Terri Runnels and Sean O'Haire left WWE. Stone Cold was next, after a
contract dispute with WWE over the ownership of the "Stone Cold" name.
"Confidential" was dropped by WWE. Jim Ross was promoted to "Executive
VP of Business Strategies", while Johnny "Ace" Laurinaitis took over
JR's old role in talent relations. WWE announced that the Great American
Bash would return in June, as a SmackDown PPV. Brian Christopher
returned to WWE, jobbing to Kane on his Raw return. Ultimo Dragon was
given a hiatus by WWE, as he returned to Japan to sort out some
"business". His planned return as the mask-less "Asai" has yet to
materialise. Travis Tomko (from OVW) debuted on Raw as the green,
musclebound Tyson Tomko. a war broke out among certain W-O Columnists,
which all started with one throwaway remark at the ROH show in March.
WWE tried to bring back Jeff Hardy. Big Show underwent knee surgery.
Lance Storm announced his retirement from wrestling, and started
working s a trainer for OVW. Kurt Angle had more neck surgery. Nick
Dinsmore made his debut on WWE, as the "special" nephew of Eric
Bischoff. His name: Eugene.
The PPV - Backlash: Chris Benoit returned home to defend his World
heavyweight title, in a replay of the WrestleMania 20 main event. Benoit
retained the belt, beating HHH and Shawn Michaels. Elsewhere on the
card, Chris Jericho beat Christian and Trish Stratus in a handicap
match; Randy Orton retained the Intercontinental title over Mick
Foley/Cactus Jack in a brutal and bloody "no holds barred, no DQ" match
and Edge pinned Kane in a dull match which marked Edge's return to PPV.
Another match up saw common sense lose to the @$$hole security guards in
Edmonton, as chants of "you blanked Bret" got some fans thrown out of
the arena, for swearing (answers on a post-card.)
And that's it for part one. we'll be back soon with part two, covering
the summer of 2004, including a PPV which didn't quite go to plan for
the WWE - and the clusterf**k that was the Diva Search.
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