- We're still working on the details but as of this writing Beth Phoenix intends to leave WWE when her contract expires next month. As always, nothing is 100% until it actually happens but word coming out of this week's TVs is she has given her notice she won't be seeking a new contract.
- Wrestling News World reader Tim attended Friday's WWE Raw live event in State College, PA and sent in the following notes:
- In questionable creative calls, Dean Ambrose went under to Michael McGillicutty and Justin Gabriel pinned Damien Sandow.
- Big Show returned against WWE Champion CM Punk in the main event as a babyface. He got a lot of love from the crowd as they seemingly forget he was a heel. Show won the match via disqualification after Punk hit him with the belt thus Punk retained. Paul Heyman was not with Punk.
We'll have quick results for the entire show online shortly.
- Wrestling News World reader Logan Walker sent word that WWE posted an article here on dot com about two new features in WWE '13.
- Politico has more on the McMahon family paying off creditors from their bankruptcy back in the 70s. You can read their coverage at this link.
- Jim Ross has a new blog on his official website at this link.
- Times Record News out of Wichita Falls, Texas has a new article online featuring quotes from WWE Intercontinental Champion The Miz. Click here to read it.
- While not exactly top story news, Wrestling News World reader Logan Walker sent word that the Twitter accounts of John Cena, The Uso's and John Morrison were hacked over the weekend.
- The latest regarding Beth Phoenix is her contract runs through October. She is booked at shows through the month but as of this writing, is leaning towards leaving WWE when it expires.
- Ezekiel Jackson is back in Guyana, where he was born, for the first time since achieving fame in WWE. You can read more about Jackson's visit home at this link.
- Last night, John Cena posted a picture of his right arm, five days after having surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow, to his Twitter account. The picture is available from his tweet below:
— John Cena (@JohnCena) September 23, 2012
- WWE announced a new multi-year agreement on Monday with Hulu for their programming to appear on the Hulu Plus platform. Below is the official press release:
STAMFORD, Conn., September 24, 2012 – WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced an exclusive, multi-year agreement that will bring WWE programming to Hulu Plus. Starting today, Hulu Plus will offer WWE fans unlimited instant streaming access, additional content and programming on-the-go, as it becomes the exclusive home for next-day access to all WWE TV programming. Hulu Plus subscribers can also go to Hulu Latino to see WWE’s popular digital show, WWE En Español, the Spanish-language magazine program that recaps WWE’s most exciting moments each week.
Hulu Plus delivers one more way for WWE fans to access content and experience the WWE, offering the chance to relive or catch up on all of the action from WWE’s weekly television programs the next day. Subscribers can access content across mobile phones, tablets, PCs, internet-connected TVs, set-top boxes and gaming consoles. In addition, the Hulu Plus subscription service offers hit TV shows and award-winning movies anytime in HD when available for $7.99/month.
“As a clear leader in digital content delivery, Hulu is an ideal partner for WWE,” said Vince McMahon, WWE Chairman and CEO. “Hulu delivers more ways for our fans to experience WWE programming than ever before.”
For more information, visit www.WWEonHulu.com.
- Dot com has a funny article online looking at "The 20 Most Impressive Physiques in WWE History." "Ravishing" Rick Rude tops the list at #1 and John Cena is #2. You can check out the article at this link.
- WWE Champion CM Punk is scheduled to appear at the Wizard World Ohio Comic Con this weekend on Saturday, September 29th from 6-6:30 PM EDT. As a result, Punk will not perform at Saturday's WWE Raw live event in Topeka, Kansas.
- Edge appeared on WWE television last week to promote "Haven" and has not agreed to a new contract with the company.
- Brian Soscia recently interviewed Daniel Bryan. In the interview, Bryan reveals he is no longer a vegan because he developed a soy intolerance and without it, it become impossible to get a desirable amount of protein in his diet. Bryan clarified he's not "eating loads of meat" and eats mostly eggs for protein.
- After this week's WWE Raw went off the air, World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus beat WWE Champion CM Punk via disqualification in a non-title match. The referee called for the bell when Punk used the WWE title belt to hit Sheamus in the head. After the match, Paul Heyman proclaimed Punk was still WWE Champion and the best in the world.
- The UK Sun interviewed WWE Champion CM Punk about his heel turn and working with Paul Heyman. Click here to read it.
- The latest WWE Studios movie release, "Barricade," is out on DVD and Blu-Ray on Tuesday. You can read more about the film here on Redbox.com.
- For those that missed it on this week's WWE Raw, Alberto Del Rio pulled up the mask of Sin Cara. We have a photo here on our Facebook page.
- There was a lot of chatter backstage at WWE Raw on Alberto Del Rio pulling up the mask of Sin Cara (pictured here). I'm told there has been "insane heat" on Cara lately and Del Rio has been one of the main guys complaining about him. The two have had heat with one another since their time in Mexico. In fact, one source with knowledge of their past, told me there was an incident where Sin Cara allegedly pulled a gun on Del Rio. Back to Monday, I'm told backstage after the match Del Rio claimed to producers that pulling up the mask of Cara was an accident. No one believed him but there isn't heat on him because of the amount of heat on Cara. Some feel Del Rio even scored points with the office for doing it. The same observer says they wouldn't be surprised if someone quietly put Del Rio up to it. All and all the vibe backstage was Del Rio intentionally pulled up the mask of Sin Cara and more guys may start to mess with him until his attitude changes.
- Material will be taped for WWE's newest show, WWE Main Event, at next week's TV tapings. The show premieres next Wednesday on ION Television. If you missed the initial details on the show, click here.
- The Stamford Advocate has an article online titled "Edgy WWE videos are back -- after Election Day" and mentions WWE's decision to pull edgier footage from its digital platforms only to release an Attitude Era DVD after Election Day. Click here to read it.
- The final shot of Ryback starring at WWE Champion CM Punk to conclude this week's WWE Raw was not shown on the big screen to the live audience.
- ESPN's Skip Bayless said on Tuesday's episode of "First Take" on ESPN that the NFL has turned into WWE after the horrendous call that ended this week's Monday Night Football game between the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks.
- WWE announced here on dot com that Larry King will be the Social Media Ambassador for next week's Raw.
- Big Show, who returned to WWE television on this week's Raw, visited an Albany, New York high school on Monday. You can read an article about the appearance at this link.
- To clear-up the massive amount of questions we've received regarding Beth Phoenix, she is booked through WWE Raw on Monday, October 22, 2012 from the Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. You can view the official details for the show at this link. I am under the impression because of this that her WWE contract runs through October as she will reportedly be leaving the company when her contract expires. Speaking of Beth, she wrote on Twitter she will work at this week's Smackdown TV tapings from her hometown of Buffalo, New York.
- TMZ is reporting that Cameron (real name Ariane Andrew) entered a plea of "not guilty" to charges of Driving Under the Influence in the state of Florida on Tuesday. A pre-trial hearing has been scheduled for October 23, 2012. Cameron was arrested in August for allegedly Driving Under the Influence in Tampa, Florida. She registered a BAC of .20… more than twice the state's legal limit and allegedly offered one of the police officers $10,000 to "let her go because she would lose her job." Making matters worse, she listed her employer as Wells Fargo, didn't notify WWE officials of her arrest and subsequently was suspended for 15 days.
- TMZ has a story online on Justin Roberts receiving two traffic tickets in two weeks while on his way to WWE shows. The first ticket was in Toronto when he was cited for making an illegal left turn and fined $52. The second one was in Pennsylvania when we was stopped for driving 74 MPH in a 55 MPH zone. That cost him $160. You can read coverage by TMZ at this link. This week at Raw, Roberts doubled as event staff when he tackled a fan who jumped the crowd control barrier and was going for the ring.
- Mister Saint Laurent reporting:
WHAT WAS SAID IN A MEETING BY VINCE MCMAHON THAT DIRECTLY CONFLICTS WITH JOHN CENA'S POSITION ON HIS SURGERY
This week on MLW Radio, available right now on MLW.com, Court Bauer joined Konnan and Mister Saint Laurent to discuss the friction between Vince McMahon and John Cena stemming from Cena's surgery last week in Birmingham, AL:
"John Cena has this procedure done in Birmingham, AL. WWE.com puts out there that he'll be down for only two weeks and that life will go on. It was basically like removal of fragments and bone spurs in his arm or his elbow, which if you follow sports, baseball players have it done all the time, usually in the offseason. NFL guys will have it done here or there. It's a pretty easy deal. So, I don't think anyone was thinking it was going to be this long stretched out thing, but then the reports came out about how long John Cena was going to be down for. John Cena then took to Twitter saying that WWE.com got the story wrong and that he's going to be out for a full six [weeks] and he just buried WWE.com and all the guys over there. The story obviously then switched to 'now he's out six weeks.'"
"From what I know, Vince McMahon himself, in the agent meeting, the producers meeting, told everyone straight up the dude is out for just two weeks, 'we dodged a bullet and that he's very much in the mix moving forward.' That was Tuesday, he said that. Then Cena had very different things to say and I understand WWE.com did talk to James Andrews [Cena's doctor], who WWE and Cena did give them the blessing to talk to. That's standard protocol at WWE. They always try to interview the doctor, get insight so they can have the news. Sometimes it's a kayfabe site and sometimes it's a legit news site. Sometimes it's a TMZ site, but that's the story. They interviewed him and Dr. James Andrews did say he'd be out just two weeks."
"So you have to wonder if Vince and the doctor said it and Cena is saying six weeks, there is an interesting issue there. Is it that John Cena wanted the full six weeks out? Was John Cena then told something after Tuesdays that conflicted with this? But it was very quickly thereafter they reported it on the website that this was not in fact the situation. The reality of it is, John Cena is coming off a divorce, he's beaten up. He's got a bad neck, a bad hip, bad everything. He's closing in on 36. The wear and tear of a guy like that, that goes, goes, goes and is a company man, you gotta think about."
"And if you're Vince McMahon, you look at the clock, you look at the calendar and you think, is it time to build the next John Cena?"
The new episode of MLW Radio is available for free at: http://www.mlw.com and on iTunes (search: MLW Radio)
- We've received a lot of questions about popular indy names signing WWE developmental contracts. Below is the updates:
- PAC has completed the pre-screening process and passed his physical. He is scheduled to report to NXT Wrestling in Tampa, Florida shortly.
- The same can be said for Sara Del Rey as she has pass her physical and is set to report to developmental in Tampa.
- Matt Taven had a problem that prevented him from being signed thus he was let go from his contract.
- Wrestling News World reader Gesus Oliver sent this in… I watched this week's WWE Raw on Hulu an there were a series of edits. The show went from CM Punk's opener to Punk and Mick Foley, then Ryback vs The Miz, Anger Management, Jerry Lawler the midway through the 6-man tag.
- The Miz is scheduled to appear on "Pair of Kings on Disney XD on October 1.
- For those looking to obtain tickets to WWE Raw from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey on December 10th there is a presale taking place Wednesday. The password is WWECENANJ.
- Ricardo Rodriguez worked this week's WWE Saturday Morning Slam television taping under a mask as El Lo Cal. He faced Sin Cara in a match that is scheduled to air on this week's telecast. Rodriguez, who was born in California, was a regular on the state's independent scene before being signed by WWE which is the reason for the nickname. As for WWE using him as a masked talent, Vince McMahon considers the Saturday morning audience of children a "merchandising dream" to market masks.
- We reported earlier this week that WWE Champion CM Punk was scheduled for the evening session at the Wizard World Ohio Comic Con on Saturday thus wouldn't be at Saturday's WWE Raw live event in Topeka, Kansas. Punk has since been moved to the morning/early afternoon session from 10:30 AM to 2:30 PM on Saturday, making him available for Saturday's show in Kansas.
- WWE Hall of Famer, Edge was interviewed on The Matthew Aaron Show. The interview ranges from his appearance on Haven to his book. Edge talks about the reaction he got when fans saw his hair cut, joining Twitter, his favorite bands, but most importantly he talked about his physical condition. Edge reveals that his back is in excellent condition but he is going in for neck surgery November 8th. He has been holding it off since he retired in 2011. The surgery is to relieve pressure on his spinal column. Edge discusses his upcoming surgery at the 30 minute mark. On a side note, he talks about being the last person to fight Owen Hart.
- Wrestling News World reader Graham Spector interviewed Zack Ryder about his social media success at this link.
- Democrat Chris Murphy is pulling ahead of Linda McMahon in the Connecticut Senate race. You can view the latest poll at this link.
- We are able to confirm there has been a considerable amount of drama lately between Vince McMahon and John Cena. As we've previously reported, WWE keeps promising John time off but keep changing their minds. He was originally slated for time off after Wrestlemania XXVIII but he ended up agreeing to work Brock Lesnar at Extreme Rules. I'm told he wanted to put CM Punk over at WWE Night of Champions and take time off to not only get his elbow cleaned out but to rest his ailing hip. Vince insisted he work Hell in a Cell in October so Cena's answer was to take off between Night of Champions and Hell in a Cell to get his elbow cleaned out as well as take some time off the road to heal up. I'm told John felt it was a convenient time to try and get his elbow taken care of in addition to taking time to heal. Usually John doesn't stand up to Vince, so Vince decided he would give Cena two weeks off after the surgery but no more. Vince specifically told the office he would be back in two weeks but didn't tell John, assuming he would do whatever he said. Cena was extremely upset when he found out and things got pretty heated with Cena even threatening not to work Hell in a Cell. My source says they comprised last Friday on how many appearances he would do between then and the pay-per-view, however, this was after Cena appeared at the WWE NXT taping on Thursday. Backstage at NXT, I'm told Cena tried to be professional about it but was clearly not happy at the show. Vince actually made sure that anything Cena taped at NXT would be immediately sent to him for his approval. This led to Vince making Cena re-tape a lot of segments and bumpers because Vince felt Cena seemed "pouty" in them, further upsetting Cena.
- WWE announced in their key performance indicators that SummerSlam, headlined by Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar, did approximately 350,000 buys. This number is up big and has a lot of people singing Lesnar's praises. I'll have much more later.
- WWE dot com added former ECW World Champion, Sandman, to their Alumni Section. His profile can be seen here.
- Shaul Guerrero, the daughter of Eddie and Vickie Guerrero who worked as Raquel Diaz, has left WWE. Her profile has already been removed from the NXT Wrestling website. Guerrero signed a WWE developmental contract in 2010 and is believed to have requested her release.
- The new WWE Studios production 12 Rounds: Reloaded starring Randy Orton is slated for an R rating for violence and language. The original film starring John Cena was rated PG-13.
- I am able to confirm that Christian underwent surgery on his shoulder to take care of lingering issues since haws told he wouldn't be used much on WWE programming until after he makes a scheduled appearance at TNA Bound for Glory next month. Many, including me, had speculated the story of Christian undergoing surgery was a cover-up put out by WWE to prevent TNA from accusing them of an act of bad faith regarding their agreement for a quick talent swap. While some of that may be true, Christian did indeed undergo the knife.
- I'm told Vince McMahon attributes this week's lackluster Raw rating to John Cena's surgery and him not working. The problem with this logic is Cena was in the final segment and the show posted its lowest viewership in hour three. Further, a large portion of the audience wouldn't have known Cena wasn't going to be working because it wasn't announced on television the week prior. I'm told some of the quarter numbers sent some company officials screaming and the overrun ended up being the lowest rated since the 90's. The obvious answer is viewer fatigue has set in and it's time to return to two hours. Basically the pro to remaining three hours is the additional revenue from advertisements against the cons of a burned out writing team, a lack of talent, lackluster storylines, poor ratings and "nuclear" backstage rapport. It's gotten to the point where complaints just aren't going to Vince but many are saying it's just not worth it.
- Remember the criticism from the Stamford Advocate regarding WWE pulling edgier footage from its digital platforms only to release an Attitude Era DVD after Election Day? Well it looks like plans for the project due out in November may have been called off. WWEDVDNews.com is reporting that listings for WWE: The Attitude Era on DVD and Blu-ray formats have been removed from internal schedules for both the United States and Australia. The DVD is still listed on some retail websites but at BestBuy.com, the standard version is no longer available for pre-order. As of this writing there is no confirmation the DVD has been canceled but it certainly looks like the criticism has caused a reaction from the company.
- WWE announced Friday here on dot com that Kelly Kelly has been released. Below is the official statement:
WWE has come to terms on the release of WWE Diva Kelly Kelly as of today, September 28, 2012. WWE wishes Kelly Kelly the best in all her future endeavors.
- Former WWE Divas Champion Kelly Kelly had the following to say about her release on Twitter:
Had an amazing 6 years with wwe made great friends and have the most loyal and amazing fans in the world thanks for the never ending support
— Kelly Kelly (@RealKellyKelly) September 28, 2012
Have exciting things in the works can't wait to share them with you stay tuned
— Kelly Kelly (@RealKellyKelly) September 28, 2012
- WWE played up Alberto Del Rio's beating on Randy Orton after this week's Smackdown via their mobile albert service. They sent out a text, promoting the fact Del Rio "ruthlessly assaulted" Orton once the show went off the air. This obviously took place at the taping on Tuesday. You can view video footage on dot com at this link.