The Rock Set To Return To WWE But Has He Wrestled His Last Match?, E! Announces New WWE Divas Series, Top ROH Star To WWE?, Rosa Mendes Sent Home, Title Change At Extreme Rules?, Jericho’s Next WWE Date, Punk’s Return Pushed Back, WM29 Buys


WWE News

- Wrestling News World reader Dustyn sent word that Mick Foley will be performing his standup comedy routine on May 29th in Edmonton and May 30th in Calgary. WWE will tape Smackdown in Edmonton that same week on May 28th.

- The official theme song for next month’s WWE Extreme Rules is “Live It Up” by Airbourne.

- This week’s episode of “Backstage Fallout” Smackdown is now online at this link.

- UFC President Dana White spoke about meeting Jim Ross earlier this week at the UFC on Fox 7 press conference on Saturday. White said Ross was a really good guy, was “cool,” and it was the first time they have met. He said there wasn’t anything to CM Punk appearing last weekend at the Ultimate Fighter Finale and he was there as a fan. White also said that Brock Lesnar approached him about signing a UFC contract after he had already returned to WWE, not the other way around. As we know, this was all a work and there was not much of a chance of Lesnar returning to UFC.

- WWE will tape both Raw and Smackdown in Manchester, England in November. The dates are as follows:

WWE Raw on November 11th from the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England
Smackdown on November 12th from the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England

Tickets for both shows go on sale April 26, 2013.

- The Rock will indeed have to undergo from his injuries suffered in the WWE title match against John Cena at Wrestlemania 29 a couple weeks ago. Rock wrote the following on Twitter:

The injury occurred early on in the main event bout against John Cena as it’s estimated The Rock worked 15 minutes in intense pain. He ended up suffering torn abdomen and adductor muscles that he tore off his pelvis as well as a hernia.

Dr. Lee Kaplan of the University of Miami examined Rock on April 8, 2013 and it was believed he would be able to rehab the injuries without surgery. Rock immediately resumed training and began physical therapy last week.

Time is of the essence as The Rock is scheduled to begin filming “Hercules” in less than six weeks in Budapest.

- Zack Ryder posted a new video on his YouTube channel at this link on Saturday that has his fans clamoring for a heel turn.

- Sheamus didn’t work Friday’s WWE Raw live event in Dublin as he was touring with Smackdown in Newcastle. The former WWE Champion Tweeted his apologies for not making it home:

As seen in the poster Tweeted by Sheamus, he’s officially advertised for the November 7th WWE live event in Dublin.

- WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley (wow, that has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?) played the “what if” game with Twitter followers this weekend. Foley Tweeted:

Foley was actually advised by doctors not to wrestle again and he’s stated in previous media interviews he would risk long-term damage to his health if he worked again.

- As previously reported here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com, The Rock is scheduled to begin filming his role in the upcoming motion picture “Hercules” later next month in Budapest, Hungry.  He has the starring role in Brett Ratner’s film as he’ll play Hercules.

Filming is expected to take four and a half months, which will take him into the fall.  The former WWE Champion has spent several months with a dialect coach, working on his accent for the role. He’s currently dealing with injuries suffered at Wrestlemania 29 as we reported on Sunday he’ll need to undergo surgery.

- CM Punk and his real-life girlfriend Amy “Lita” Dumas were at UFC on Fox 7 Saturday from the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. Punk made headlines last weekend when he and Dumas were at the Ultimate Fighter Finale in Las Vegas. Punk, who is friends with UFC’s Chael Sonnen, attended the shows as a fan.

- Peter Rosenberg interviewed The Rock to promote his upcoming reality series called “The Hero” on TNT. In it, he talked exclusively about the injury he suffered at Wrestlemania 29 and whether or not this was his last match.

Rock said when he sat down with Vince McMahon to negotiate his return [to WWE], the plan was for three Wrestlemania’s back-to-back-to-back (Wrestlemania 27, 28 & 29). He said in the end it didn’t matter if he lost or did the job because there is no better way to give back to the business than to do the honors.

He said Hulk Hogan did it for him but Hogan was on his way out. Rock said there were never plans for a “rubber match” against John Cena at Wrestlemania XXX in New Orleans. He confirmed the original plan was to work Brock Lesnar at the show next year. However, he said those plans changed when he was unable to work Raw the Monday after Wrestlemania in New Jersey.

Rock said he talked to Vince, Triple H, Cena, CM Punk and others Sunday night after his match at the pay-per-view. He saw WWE’s “ortho guys” and they knew he was injured. Rock said he let Vince know he wouldn’t be able to make it to Raw. Later on Monday he received a call from one of WWE’s writers, asking if he wanted to give a message or some type of injury update. This is when the Tweets were worked out to be included on the broadcast.

You can listen to the interview in its entirety at this link

This goes along with everything we have reported since before the pay-per-view. We reported here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com the panic the next day was a result of communication breakdown. While Vince and top officials knew, writers and producers were surprised when they were told segments involving The Rock had to be re-written.

Last Monday, we posted a detailed exclusive on Rock’s relationship with WWE souring just days before the pay-per-view. Rock was originally in the plans for Extreme Rules next month but he informed company officials to finish up his current run at the pay-per-view. The company urged him to shoot an angle the following night to plant the seed for a program at Wrestlemania 30 against Brock Lesnar but we’re told Rock didn’t want to commit to it.

- WWE officially announced that John Cena will defend the WWE Championship against Ryback at Extreme Rules next month.

Already announced for the show is Dolph Ziggler defending the World Heavyweight Championship in a triple threat match against Jack Swagger and Alberto Del Rio.

WWE Extreme Rules 2013 will take place Sunday, May 19, 2013 from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.  We’ll have exclusive live play-by-play coverage here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.

- According to Steve Austin’s friend Paul Lazenby, Austin would entertain the “right offer” for one more match and he’s in better shape then most might think. We’ll explore this a little more in detail later. Speaking of Austin, he has a new blog entry available at this link.

- E! is teaming up with WWE for a new reality series called Total Divas. The show, set for the network’s summer lineup, explores life beyond the ring for seven WWE Divas who “must wrestle with the challenges of life in the spotlight, a grueling work and travel schedule, and the intense competition for prominence in a career that leaves little time for a personal life.”

The following Divas will be highlighted on the series – Brie and Nikki Bella, Naomi, Cameron, Natalya, Eva Marie (a developmental prospect, official Twitter account) and Jo-Jo Offerman (new from developmental).

Below is the official press release issued here by WWE:

Los Angeles, CA – April 22, 2013 – Adored by millions of fans, the gorgeous women called WWE Divas have earned their places as sports entertainment icons through more than just their pretty faces and red hot figures. It takes a lot of work and guts to enter the competitive WWE family, where youth is golden. This summer, E! will take viewers into a whole new world of drama when “Total Divas” explores life beyond the ring for seven WWE Divas who must wrestle with the challenges of life in the spotlight, a grueling work and travel schedule, and the intense competition for prominence in a career that leaves little time for a personal life.

“I’m thrilled for E! and WWE to join forces and pull back the curtain on one of pop culture’s most fascinating arenas,” said Suzanne Kolb, President E! “With tens of millions of weekly fans at their disposal, these glamorous, entertaining and powerful women prove that behind the glitz of the spotlight, the locker room drama and the jockeying for position within the organization, they are all drawn to one thing: stardom.”

“We are excited to work with E! on the launch of ‘Total Divas,’ a series that will showcase the professional and personal lives of WWE’s multi-talented female performers,” said Kevin Dunn, Executive Vice President, Television Production, WWE. “There is no series on the air that can rival the charm, beauty, larger than life personalities, drama and glamour that this show will deliver.”

The series will focus on a select group of seven women from the ranks of the WWE Diva corps. Five are established Divas who are no strangers to the life, and two are newbies, girls who have entered into the Diva training program, but have yet to prove themselves worthy of the title. Throughout the series, we will see these women attempting to establish their own pecking order, as the new girls attempt to handle the jealousy and pressure that comes with working your way up the ladder for the most airtime, ring time and top celebrity status. With no two days alike and juggling their constant demands, the Divas definitely find time to celebrate their star status by traveling the world for their various charities, appearing in feature films, attending star-studded red carpets and glamorous photo shoots. Through it all, the everyday challenges of maintaining relationships with their boyfriends, as well as their families, in their over the top lifestyles start to take their toll on the girls.

Appearing in the series are the Bella Twins, Brie and Nikki, a pair of seasoned veterans who have reached superstar status in the WWE ring and earned their places in the spotlight. The duo will work harder than ever to maintain this level of excellence, whether the newbies like it or not. Naomi and Cameron are two knockouts whose dance routines have made them stars on the tour. When conflict and success collide head on between these two, will both be left standing? They don’t call them Divas for nothing! Natalya is a third-generation sports entertainment star who knows the ropes and knows them well. She’s seen lots of doors open for other Divas, but often finds herself left behind when it comes to achieving superstar status. Can she continue to soldier on as a perennial “bridesmaid”? And tagging into the ring as the newest member of the Divas is Eva Marie, a passionate, sexy, extremely competitive force that wants stardom more than anyone else. Also joining in on the action is Jo–Jo Offerman, an entertainer at heart, young and energetic who will no doubt be a charismatic force in the ring.

The show kicks off with an unprecedented look inside the most-anticipated WWE event of the year, WrestleMania®, marking the first time that any television series was granted exclusive behind-the-scenes access to WWE. Following the drama, the series heads to WWE’s flagship television program, Monday Night Raw®, with a match between the Bellas in one corner, and Naomi/Cameron (aka “The Funkadactyls”) in the other. They bring on the drama from the very start, and alliances are quickly formed on the road as the new girls choose sides. And with some WWE Superstars vying for the romantic attention of the girls, the drama comes to a boil quickly, and shows no sign of slowing down.

Total Divas is produced by WWE and Bunim-Murray Productions. Jon Murray, Gil Goldshein, Jeff Jenkins and Russell Jay are Executive Producers for Bunim-Murray Productions.

- WWE announced the appointment of Michael Pine as Senior Vice President of Global Sales & Partnership Marketing on Monday. Below is the official press release:

STAMFORD, Conn., April 22, 2013 – WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced the appointment of Michael Pine as Senior Vice President of Global Sales & Partnership Marketing. Pine, who previously held senior level sales positions at Turner Broadcasting, UFC, World Triathlon Corporation, and most recently IMG, will report directly to WWE Chief Marketing Officer, Michelle D. Wilson.

As head of WWE’s Global Sales & Partnership Marketing division, Pine will be a key member of the company’s senior management team. He will be responsible for providing strategic vision for WWE’s sales operation and ensuring revenue growth is aligned with company objectives and values.

Pine brings 15 years of experience in strategic sales and marketing across a variety of major sports properties and brands. Prior to joining WWE, Pine was IMG’s Vice President of National Sales for the company’s College Division. In this role, he was responsible for the daily development of national sales for IMG’s College and NCAA corporate champions, and their partner programs with Turner and CBS business units. He managed IMG College’s two largest national corporate partnerships, UPS and MillerCoors, accounts which exceeded $100 million.

Formerly, he held the position of Global Chief Sales Officer at Ironman – World Triathlon Corporation, where he oversaw all global sales, marketing, licensing, PR and digital media sales business verticals.

While at UFC, Pine oversaw and executed advertising, sponsorship, digital media and marketing operations. He secured key deals with Bud Light, Bacardi Cazadores, Harley-Davidson and Burger King, to name a few.

Pine was a U.S. Air Force Captain and served from 1993 – 1999. He earned his M.B.A. from Golden Gate University in San Francisco, California and his undergraduate degree in Behavioral Sciences from the U.S. Air Force Academy.

- WWE has announced a November 9th live event from the LG Arena in Birmingham, England.

- WWE introduced two new Divas in their press release for the upcoming E! reality series called “Total Divas.” The Divas are as follows:

Eva Maria – Real name Natalia Eva Marie, who is described on Twitter as a 2012 Powertec Fashion Model Winner, Entrepreneur, Actress, Model all american athlete (soccer), Mexican/Italian and SF GIANTS FANATIC.

She is on Instagram at this link where we have compiled the following photos of her:

Jo-Jo Offerman – Real name Joseann Alexie Offerman, who has a background in singing and dancing. She is of Dominican descent. She is on Instagram at this link where we have compiled the following photos of her:

- I spoke with Davey Richards regarding his contract status and can confirm that he is under contract with Ring of Honor until September 2013. He’s “very happy” being employed there but WWE is obviously an opportunity he would be interested in. However, any reports indicating that he has signed are unfounded.

- The Miz spoke with The UK Sun about how the European crowds are always the rowdiest. You can read his comments at this link.

- WWE Raw will take place from the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York on July 15, 2013. This is the first episode of Raw in the building as it played host to WWE TLC 2012 last year.

- WWE will host a pay-per-view from the CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh next year, however, the exact event is unknown.

- The Rock is featured in a new video for TNT’s coverage of the 2013 NBA Playoffs. Rock is hosting an upcoming reality series on TNT this summer called “The Hero.” You can watch the video at this link.

- Jim Ross has a new blog entry online where he touched on The Rock’s comments of Wrestlemania 29 possibly being his final match. Below is an excerpt:

Has the Rock, @TheRock, wrestled his last match due to injury? Seems as if Rock has left that matter open for speculation depending on the results of the surgery and his non stop schedule, etc. However, knowing Dwayne as I do, I would think that he would want to go out differently and be remembered for one, last major bout. If I had to make a wager, I’d say we haven’t seen the last of @TheRock. The one wild card may be his movie partners who may not want to risk their franchise player stepping back in the ring. That’s all TBD. I would speculate that if Dwayne can’t do WM30 for any reason that he may be closer to done than many want to see.

JR also comments on the shape of Steve Austin, the new WWE Divas reality show and more. Click here to read his latest in its entirety.

- In a story we’ve been trying to gather more details on, Rosa Mendes has been sent home from WWE’s European tour. Messages left with WWE in attempt for comment were not immediately returned.

The gist of the story is that Rosa had displayed outlandish behavior throughout the trip and it was time for her to return home for her own well-being. Wrestle Zone, who first broke the story, claimed the behavior had to do with being intoxicated throughout the entire loop thus far.

Rosa has had a limited role on shows, appearing at Smackdown live events with Primo and Epico.

Begin update – April 22, 2013 at 4:00 PM EST

The company has issued the following statement regarding Rosa Mendes:

“Milena Roucka (Rosa Mendes) left the international tour for personal reasons.”

End update

There was a similar story involving Mendes, whose real name is Milena Roucka, that happened last August.  It was then she was traveling from her home in Las Vegas, Nevada to San Antonio, Texas for WWE Raw when she was found distraught in the women’s restroom at the San Antonio International Airport.

She told police her fiancé at the time, former WWE talent,Jackson Andrews (real name Stephen Andrew Slocum),was a habitual woman beater and “hit her several times at their shared residence in Las Vegas” prior to her flight.

Mendes was observed at the airport as to being very intoxicated, stumbling and having a hard time walking.  She was taken from the public women’s restroom to a private security room where police filed the battery report and took pictures. Mendes was then transported from the airport to a local hotel.

Mendes has since moved onto an apparent relationship with Bijan “RythmiK” Williams according to this photo on her Twitter account. She has not Tweeted since leaving with WWE for the European tour.

- Rosa Mendes provided the following explanation for leaving WWE’s current international tour on Twitter:

WWE issued a statement regarding Mendes, saying she “left the international tour for personal reasons.” We have more details online at this link.

- Last week’s Smackdown did an average viewing audience of 2,590,000 viewers on SyFy. The show ended up doing a 1.92 cable rating.

- Brie and Nikki Bella were in New York City Monday for the E! Upfront party. This is why they weren’t featured on this week’s episode of WWE Raw. They Tweeted the following photo with Ryan Lochte along with a “message” for AJ Lee:

The Bella Twins were representing WWE as the E! network has ordered a new reality series that highlights WWE Divas called “Total Divas.” Daniel Bryan Tweeted that he’ll be appearing on the show:

- The Shield, Fandango and Summer Rae pulled double duty on Monday as they worked the Smackdown live event in Cardiff, Wales (results here) before flying via helicopter to WWE Raw in London, England.

As was seen on this week’s Raw, WWE filmed the arrival of The Shield for inclusion on the broadcast.

While The Shield has been working in the main event of Smackdown live events, they worked first followed by Fandango so they would be able to make it to London for Raw.

- This week’s episode of “Backstage Fallout” Raw is now online at this link.

Backstage news from WWE Raw in London…

- There was talk of putting the WWE Divas Championship on AJ Lee. While it hasn’t been officially announced, the title match is expected to take place at next month’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view. One of the supporters of strapping AJ stated it would be of value for both her and Dolph Ziggler to hold singles titles.

- It was Kevin Dunn’s idea to include footage from The Shield’s helicopter landing in London.

- While Undertaker is known for not being very verbal backstage unless it directly involves him, he was vocal after his match with The Shield. We’re told he praised the trio “in front of everyone” and put over Daniel Bryan for his work. One observer said Undertaker thought they all did “great.”

- William Regal was selected as the opponent of Fandango to do the best possible job at trying to keep Fandango heel with the European audience. WWE was expecting a pop, so they fought fire with fire.

- Following this week’s episode of WWE Raw, below is the updated lineup for Extreme Rules:

WWE Championship Match
- John Cena © vs. Ryback

Triple Threat Match for the World Heavyweight Championship
- Dolph Ziggler © vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger

Steel Cage Match
- Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar

WWE Extreme Rules will take place Sunday, May 19, 2013 from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

- Following his appearance on this week’s episode of WWE Raw, Chris Jericho will re-join his band Fozzy on their European tour. Jericho is set to return to WWE at a Raw live event on May 11th from the Ford Arena in Beaumont, Texas.

Jericho wrote the following on Twitter:

- Summer Rae made her WWE Raw debut on this week’s episode as Fandango’s dancer. Summer has been appearing with Fandango since early last month when she appeared with him at the Wrestlemania 29 press conference. You can view her developmental profile at this link.

- The Rock underwent successful surgery on Tuesday to repair three hernial tears. Rock Tweeted:

- When one thinks of Steve Austin the word yoga probably doesn’t come to mind but Diamond Dallas Page told The Temple News that his good friend Stone Cold has agreed to give it a try for a month while filming “Redneck Island.”

“One of my very good buddies, Stone Cold Steve Austin, has agreed to do it for a month while filming ‘Redneck Island,’” Page said. “His Hollywood stunt man swears by DDP Yoga. Steve lifts weights and does cardio for an hour a day, five days a week. I told him you only need to do my workout 20 minutes a day for three days a week and it will replace your cardio. He had to ask others for confirmation, even though the son of a gun lived with me.”

Click here to read the article in its entirety.

- We reported here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com that Shawn Michaels has been added to upcoming WWE live events in May. He revealed on Twitter that he’ll be appearing with The New Age Outlaws. The following is from the official Twitter account of Shawn Michaels:

- John Cena will team with Ryback on next week’s episode of WWE Raw to face The Shield. The show will take place from the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. We’ll have exclusive live play-by-play coverage here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.

- The Rock’s mother, Ata Johnson, told Arda Ocal that her son will “always come back to wrestling.” You can watch her comments at this link. Of course this interview was conducted a couple weeks ago at the Cauliflower Alley Club Reunion in Las Vegas before it was known he needed surgery.

- Mick Foley paid tribute to Paul Bearer at an indy show at the Cauliflower Alley Club Reunion in Las Vegas a couple weeks ago. You can watch it at this link.

- This week’s episode of WWE Raw did an average viewing audience of 4,400,000 viewers on the USA Network. Below is the by hour breakdown:

Hour one – 4,190,000 viewers
Hour two – 4,650,000 viewers
Hour three – 4,360,000 viewers

The show ended up with a 3.14 cable rating.

- E! Online covered the news of The Rock’s successful hernia operation.

Their piece notes the surgery caused Rock to miss the Pain & Gain premiere in Los Angeles where director Michael Bay issued his well-wishes and joked from the red carpet.

“Dwayne’s hurt tonight,” Bay told E! News on the red carpet. “He was pushing it too hard. [ He] needs to grow up and stop wrestling 300-pound men.”

- There has been a development in CM Punk’s return to WWE following the “walk out” angle on Raw a couple of weeks ago. Originally scheduled for next week’s Raw in Columbus, Ohio, dot com has pulled Punk from all upcoming shows.

His new return date is the May 27th episode of WWE Raw from the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. While the feeling was Punk was off Extreme Rules, the possibility was still there with him being advertised for shows prior to the pay-per-view. With him now removed from the schedule, it appears he’s certainly off next month’s event.

Punk has been Tweeting photos from various baseball parks across the current during his time off.

You can follow on Punk on Twitter @CMPunk. Make sure to follow us at @wnwnews.

- Which WWE Superstars are the worst at keeping secrets? Who should be inducted into the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame? Your questions answered in this week’s episode of WWE Inbox at this link.

- WWE posted a brief clip of Dolph Ziggler promoting “Pain and Gain” starring Mark Walberg and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson at this link.

- Jim Ross posted his thoughts about this week’s WWE Raw from London, England in a new blog posted on his official website at this link. In it, he says he hopes to work with WWE until he dies and he has no intentions of retiring.

- The Rock used Twitter to poke fun at the publications that took director Michael Bay’s quote about him out of context. Rock Tweeted the following on Wednesday:

As we noted here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com, Bay wished Johnson well on the red carpet of the “Pain and Gain” premiere on Tuesday night and had a little fun at his expense. One of the themes throughout the night was constant jokes about Rock’s injuries.

Rock had to miss the premiere in Los Angeles as he recovers from emergency hernial surgery.

5:05 PM EDT Update – Michael Bay actually had to issue a statement (here on his official website) because of wrestling fans taking his joke seriously.  Below is his statement in its entirety:

Wrestling fans, it was a joke said on Entertainment Tonight–with a laugh. You can see the clip for yourselves. The most important person to see the on air joke was Dwayne. I love seeing The Rock wrestle. I hope he wrestles 10 more years. I joked on air because Dwayne was not at our LA premiere due to his injury.

Michael

End update

- As previously noted here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com, director Michael Bay had some fun at The Rock’s expense by jokingly saying the former WWE Champion needs to “grow up” and stop wrestling while on the red carpet at the premiere for “Pain and Gain” in Los Angeles on Tuesday night.  Rock had to miss the premiere due to emergency hernial surgery related to injuries suffered at Wrestlemania 29.

Video of Michael’s comments were featured on Entertainment Tonight and can be seen at this link.

Some publications unfairly took the comments out of context, playing the comments like Bay made a snide comment about The Rock or pro wrestling in general.

Rock made reference to the comments on Twitter and Michael Bay issued a statement.

- WWE announced on Thursday that Wrestlemania 29 was their highest-grossing “Wrestlemania” of all-time. The event earned $72 million, with that figure including ticket sales and pay-per-view buys. Last year’s Wrestlemania XXVIII did $67 million in Miami.

Early buy rate estimates have the show at 1.2 million, which is less than the reported 1.3 million sold for Wrestlemania XXVIII last year but that number could increased as total purchases are still being tabulated.

Variety has more at this link.

Below is the official press release from WWE:

STAMFORD, Conn., April 25, 2013 – WWE® (NYSE:WWE) today announced that WrestleMania 29, held Sunday, April 7 at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, grossed an excess of $72 million, the highest grossing event in WWE history. In addition, WrestleMania 29 will once again exceed 1 million global pay-per-view buys and attracted a sold out crowd of 80,676 fans from all 50 states and 34 countries at MetLife Stadium.

New Orleans, Louisiana will be the site of next year’s WrestleMania, which will take place Sunday, April 6, 2014 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Ticket information will be announced later this year.

- Cody Rhodes vs. Morgan Freeman? It’s a match Rhodes would welcome, according to comments made to Sowetan Live. So why Freeman?

Cody explained, “because I feel like I could win because he’s old; although I’m sure he’s tough. But then we could sell it and he could narrate the match, like he narrates everything. He could explain everything because he’s such a great storyteller he could tell the story of me beating him. That would be wonderful.”

- USA Today interviewed The Rock and Mark Wahlberg about their roles in “Pain & Gain.” In it, they talked about bulking up for their roles and maintaining it for continuity. You can check it out at this link.

- There is no longer any question within WWE about the legitimacy of The Rock’s injury but there remains a lot of uneasiness because of him being unwilling to commit to a match at Wrestlemania XXX next year.

We’re told The Rock has promotional commitments with WWE this fall for the new WWE 2K14 video game, which is part of his deal to be on the cover. This could lead to an awkward situation where he briefly returns to promote the game but never has a match.

Some feel that if Rock doesn’t come back to work Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania XXX that this could finally be the catalyst that brings Steve Austin back to WWE for one more match.

Triple H has been trying to make a name for himself by inking “impossible” deals, with obviously his biggest to date being Bruno Sammartino agreeing to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. We’re told Hunter has already tried to “no sell” the departure of Rock by commenting internally that if Rock doesn’t come back, he’ll finally get a deal done with Austin and it would be just as big, if not bigger.

One observer commented this could be a more than desirable backup plan given the fact Rock has worked three Wrestlemania’s in a row and “one last match” for Steve Austin would be a huge spectacle.

- The Rock used Twitter on Thursday to thank Steve Austin and Kevin Nash for their kind words regarding his latest injury:

- Wade Barrett is featured in the latest “Behind the Match,” when he regained the WWE Intercontinental Championship from The Miz on WWE Raw. You can watch it at this link.

- WWE taped a new episode of WWE Hangout with Howard Finkel and Tyson Kidd on Thursday. This is something they did at Wrestlemania Axxess and the new episode is online at this link

- Ariel Helwani interviewed Chael Sonnen about his fight at UFC 159 on Saturday. Chael said CM Punk will be in the locker room prior to the fight but he doesn’t believe he’ll be part of the walk-out, however, he is welcome to. Sonnen said Dana White gave Punk front-row seats, where he’ll be sitting at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. You can watch the interview at this link.

- Jerry Lawler was in attendance at Thursday night’s Los Angles Clippers at Memphis Grizzlies NBA Playoff game. Lawler performed a body slam on a fan that was wearing a Clippers jersey. Video of the spot is now online at this link. Remember when Lawler gave a fan a piledriver around this time last year? You can check out our coverage at this link.

- John Cena and Daniel Bryan celebrated Kane’s birthday with him at Friday’s WWE Raw show in Russia. Below is a Tweet from Justin Roberts with a photo:

We heard many workers were putting over the Russian crowd.

- This week’s episode of The JBL & Cole Show is online at this link.

- E! Online’s public relations department Tweeted the following photo of The Bella Twins at the E! Upfront party on Monday in New York City:

- The Rock did a Q&A on Twitter Friday evening. In it, he continued with the rhetoric that his match at Wrestlemania 29 could have been his last, talked about his future schedule and confirmed he was asked to be in Transformers.

The following is from Twitter:

Download Our Free App

Download our FREE App! Dirt Sheet for iPhone, Android and iPad.

Connect With WNW

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn!