Thursday, April 28, 2016

Random Wrestling: "The Cleaner" Kenny Omega

Welcome to another edition of Random Wrestling and in this edition we are featuring "The Cleaner" Kenny Omega.  Omega debuted in his home country of Canada in December 2001 and in 2005 was signed to a developmental deal with the WWE.  In mid 2006 he asked for his release returning to the independent scene where he has stayed.  Omega has made a big splash in Japan where he is the current leader of the Bullet Club and is the current IWGP Intercontinental Champion.

Kenny Omega is one of my all time favorite wrestlers.  He has shown his unbelievable diversification having some of the most amazing wrestling matches I have ever seen.  Whether he's wrestling a 9 year old girl, a blow up sex doll, proving he is the Master of the Anywhere match, or proving he is the one of the best in the world with a 30 minute five star match with Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kenny Omega really is the effing man.

I've never has the opportunity to see him in person, I certainly hope to one day.  Perhaps it will be at the Ring of Honor Pay Per View in Lowell, MA on September 30, 2016  I can only hope.

Currently The Young Bucks, my favorite tag team, and Omega have formed "The Elite" and post some absolutely ridiculous videos practically weekly, they are amazing. They show three guys who are genuine friends that like to have a great time.

Here are a few links of videos that feature some of Omega's finest!
On July 24, 2011 Kenny Omega wrestled 9 year old Haruka to a 3 minute time limit draw at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan for the Stardom promotion.  In researching this I discovered that Haruka had been wrestling for several months at this point.  Also in Japan a few other promotions have featured young children wrestling.

Kenny Omega is the Master of the Anywhere Match -
I was directed to this match by none other than Nick Jackson of the Young Bucks.  If you recall my blog back in July of 2015 RandomWrestling: Nothing but the Bucks! I highlighted the Nick Jackson Birthday Brawl and when I met Nick Jackson at Northeast Wrestling Under the Stars in Lowell, MA I asked him what that video was about.  He told me that this match was his inspiration.    I couldn’t find out what inspired Kenny Omega to do this video other than for fun.  The match itself is quite entertaining.

Kenny Omega vs. Hioshi Tanahashi -
This match was for the vacant IWGP Intercontinental Championship.  It took place February 14, 2016 in Nagaoka, Japan on the New Beginning in Niigata card.  A thirty minute masterpiece that shows just how good Omega is, and even though he likes to have fun in the ring, he is not to be taken lightly.

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Later Readers!

Friday, April 22, 2016

House Show Title Changes

With Samoa Joe winning the NXT Championship tonight at the house show in Lowell, a show I wanted to go to but decided against because of other issues but my friends went and now I'm way more jealous that I already was, it lead to a couple of discussions in regards to there are hardly any title changes at house shows.

Ultimately one or two always come to mind, Diesel beating Bob Backlund and Edge defeating Jeff Jarrett, so it got me wondering just how often it happens.  The answer is not often at all.

Obviously back in the day all title changes happened at house shows and never on Television because TV was just a marketing tool to get people to come out to the matches.  So the parameters for this list are very simple, the birth of Pay-Per-View.  That really changed it all so I'm only counting house show title changes that happened after WrestleMania for WWE and Starrcade 1987 for the NWA/WCW.

I'm counting the NWA / WCW & WWE United States Championship as one title

The WWE & WCW Light-Heavyweight Championships are separate from the WCW / WWE Cruiserweight Championship.

With 229 Title Reigns in it's less than four year existence the WWE Hardcore Championship doesn't count.

NWA World Championship is only counted when part of Crockett & WCW as well as TNA

In the end it was longer than I thought it would be, but I have this issue with being thorough.

Active Championships

WWE World Heavyweight Championship

October 12, 1992 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
Bret "Hitman" Hart submitted "Nature Boy" Ric Flair - this was Bret's first title run

November 26, 1994 Madison Square Garden
Diesel defeated Bob Backlund who had won the title 3 days prior at Survivor Series

WWE Intercontinental Championship

June 6, 1993 Albany, NY
"Heartbreak Kid" Shawn Michaels defeated Marty Jannetty

May 19, 1995 Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Razor Ramon defeated "Double J" Jeff Jarrett in a ladder match

May 21, 1995 Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, Canada
"Double J" Jeff Jarrett defeated Razor Ramon

August 10, 2003 Des Moines, IA
Christian defeated Booker T

WWE / WCW United States Championship

May 22, 1989 Bluefield, WV
"Total Package" Lex Luger defeated Michael "PS" Hayes

August 25, 1991 Atlanta, GA
Sting defeated "Stunning" Steve Austin  - tournament final for vacant championship
The title was vacated back July 14th when Lex Luger won the WCW World Heavyweight Championship at the Great American Back.  Why they held a non-televised tournament I couldn't tell you, but this has future blog post written all over it.

November 13, 1995 Tokyo, Japan
Kensuke Saski defeated Sting

September 22, 2000 Amarillo, TX
Terry Funk defeated Lance Storm

September 23, 2000 Lubbock, TX
Lance Storm defeated Terry Funk - neither title change was recognized by WCW however WWE does acknowledge them.

There are no house show title changes in the WWE

WWE Tag Team Championships

January 15, 2012 Oakland, CA
Primo & Epico defeated Air Boom: Evan Bourne & Kofi Kingston

NXT Championship

April 21, 2016 Lowell, MA
Samoa Joe pinned Finn Balor

NWA World Heavyweight Championship

January 11, 1991 East Rutheford, NJ
"Nature Boy" Ric Flair defeated Sting

September 15, 2005 Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Jeff Jarrett defeated Raven

TNA X-Division Championship

September 23, 2010 New York City
Amazing Red defeated Jay Lethal

September 25, 2010 Rahway, NJ
Jay Lethal defeated Amazing Red

TNA King of the Mountain Championship
aka Global & Television

January 27, 2010 Cardiff, Wales
Rob Terry defeated Eric Young

Inactive Championships

WCW World Heavyweight Championship
Active January 11, 1991 - December 9, 2001

January 11, 1991 East Rutheford, NJ
"Nature Boy" Ric Flair defeated Sting

December 30, 1992 Baltimore, MD
Big Van Vader pinned Ron Simmons

March 11, 1993 London, England
Sting defeated Big Van Vader

March 17, 1993 Dublin, Ireland
Big Van Vader defeated Sting

WCW/ WWE Cruiserweight Championship
Active March 20, 1996 - March 3, 2008

March 20, 1996 Nagoya, Japan
Shinjiro Otani defeated Wild Pegasus (Chris Benoit) tournament final

March 30, 2000 Baltimore, MD
Billy Kidman defeated The Artist

March 31, 2000 Pittsburgh, PA
The Artist defeated Billy Kidman

November 15, 2005 Rome, Italy
Nunzio defeated Juventud Guerrera

WCW Light Heavyweight Championship
Active October 27, 1991 - September 2, 1992

December 25, 1991 Atlanta, GA
Jushin Thunder Liger defeated Brian Pillman

July 5, 1992 Atlanta, GA
Brad Armstrong defeated Scotty Flamingo

WCW World Television Championship
Active February 27, 1974 - April 10, 2000

January 26, 1988 Raleigh, NC
Mike Rotunda defeated Nikita Koloff

March 31, 1989 Atlanta, GA
Sting defeated Mike Rotunda

September 3, 1989 Atlanta, GA
The Great Muta defeated Sting for the vacant championship

December 4, 1990 Gainesville, GA
The Z-Man defeated "Enforcer" Arn Anderson

January 14, 1991 Marietta, GA
"Enforcer" Arn Anderson defeated The Z-Man

February 17, 1996 Baltimore, MD
Lex Luger defeated Johnny B. Badd

February 18, 1996 Norfolk, VA
Johnny B. Badd defeated Lex Luger

April 30, May 1 - 3, 1998
Chris Benoit & Booker T traded the title back and forth
4/30 Benoit beat Booker Augusta, GA
5/1 Booker beat Benoit Greenville, SC
5/2 Benoit beat Booker Charleston, SC
5/3 Booker beat Benoit Savannah, GA

WWE World Tag Team Championships
Active June 3, 1971 - August 16, 2010

February 7, 1992 Denver , CO
Money Inc: Ted DiBiase & IRS defeated The Legion of Doom: Hawk & Animal

July 20, 1992
The Natural Disasters: Earthquake & Typhoon defeated Money Inc: Ted DiBiase & IRS

June 14, 1993 Columbus, OH
The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott defeated Money Inc: Ted DiBiase & IRS

June 16, 1993 Rockford, IL
Money Inc: Ted DiBiase & IRS defeated The Steiner Brothes: Rick & Scott

June 19, 1993 St. Louis, MO
The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott defeated Money Inc: Ted DiBiase & IRS

January 17, 1994 Madison Square Garden
The Quebecers: Jacques & Pierre defeated The 1-2-3 Kid & Marty Jannetty

March 29, 1994 London, England
Men On A Mission: Mo & Mabel defeated The Quebecers: Jacques & Pierre

March 31, 1994 Sheffield, England
The Quebecers: Jacques & Pierre defeated Men On A Mission: Mo & Mabel

August 28, 1994
Two Dudes with Attitudes: Diesel & Shawn Michaels defeated The Headshrinkers

May 19, 1996 Madison Square Garden
The Godwinns: Henry O & Phineas I defeated The Bodydonnas: Skip & Zip

January 16, 2005 Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
La Resistance: Rob Conway & Sylvain Grenier defeated William Regal & Jonathan Coachman who was substituting for in injured Eugene

September 5, 2007 Cape Town, South Africa
Paul London & Brian Kendrick defeated Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch

September 8, 2007 Johannesburg, South Africa
Lance Cade & Trevor Murdoch defeated Paul London & Brian Kendrick

December 13, 2008 Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
John Morrison & The Miz defeated CM Punk & Kofi Kingston

WCW World Tag Team Championship
Active January 29, 1975 - November 18, 2001

September 10, 1988 Philadelphia, PA
The Midnight Express: Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane defeated "Enforcer" Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard

October 29, 1988 New Orleans, LA
The Road Warriors: Animal & Hawk defeated The Midnight Express: Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane

January 16, 1992 Jacksonville, TN
"Enforcer" Arn Anderson & "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton defeated Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat & "The Natural" Dustin Rhodes

May 3, 1992 Chicago, IL
The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott defeated "Enforcer" Arn Anderson & "Beautiful" Bobby Eaton

July 5, 1992 Atlanta, GA
Terry "Bam Bam" Gordy & "Dr. Death" Steve Williams defeated The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott

July 24, 1996 Cincinnati, OH
The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott defeated Harlem Heat: Booker T & Stevie Ray

July 27, 1996 Dayton, OH
Harlem Heat: Booker T & Stevie Ray defeated The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott

February 12, 2000 Oberhausen, Germany
The Harris Brothers: Ron & Don defeated The Mamalukes: Johnny The Bull & Big Vito

February 13, 2000 Leipzig, Germany
The Mamalukes: Johnny The Bull & Big Vito defeated The Harris Brothers: Ron & Don

WCW United States Tag Team Championship
Active September 28, 1986 - July 31, 1992

August 24, 1990 East Rutherford, NJ
The Steiner Brothers: Rick & Scott defeated The Midnight Express: Bobby Eaton & Stan Lane

WWE Women's Championship
Active September 18, 1956 - September 19, 2010

November 25, 1985 Madison Square Garden
The Spider (The Fabulous Moolah) defeated Wendi Richter

July 3, 1986 Brisbane, Australia
Velvet McIntyre defeated The Fabulous Moolah

July 9, 1986 Sydney, Australia
The Fabulous Moolah defeated Velvet McIntyre

July 24, 1987 Houston, TX
Sensational Sherri defeated The Fabulous Moolah

November 20, 1994 Tokyo Dome
Bull Nakano defeated Alundra Blayze

April 24, 2007 Paris, France
Mickie James defeated Champion: Melina & Victoria in a Threat Match

Melina defeated Mickie James was awarded and immediate re-match as Mickie James had pinned Victoria to win the title

Active / Inactive Championships With No House Show Title Changes

Women's Champion April 3, 2016 - present

NXT Tag Team Championships January 23, 2013 - present

NXT Women's Championship April 5, 2013 - present

TNA World Heavyweight Championship May 13, 2007 - present

TNA King of the Mountain Championship October 23, 2008 - present

TNA World Tag Team Championships May 17, 2007 - present

TNA Knockouts Championship October 14, 2007 - present

TNA Knockouts Tag Team Championships September 20, 2009 - June 27, 2013

World Championship September 2, 2002 - December 15, 2013

European Championship February 26, 1997 - July 22, 2002

Light-Heavyweight Championship December 7, 1997 - November 30, 2001

WWE Diva's Championship July 20, 2008 - April 3, 2016

WW-ECW Championship June 13, 2006 - February 16, 2010

WCW Hardcore Championship November 21, 1999 - March 26, 2001

WCW Women's Championship December 29, 1996 - September 20, 1997

WCW Women's Crusierweight Championship April 7, 1997 - September 20, 1997

WCW Cruiserweight Tag Team Championship March 18, 2001 - March 26, 2001

WCW World Six-Man Tag Tea Championship February 17, 1991 - November 30, 1991

The only TNA Championships to change hands at a house show was the X-Division & Global

Thanks for reading, please leave a comment and like my blogs Facebook page.

Later Readers!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Random Wrestling: "Mr. Athletic" Jeff Cobb

Limitless Wrestling, based out of my home state of Maine, recently announced that Jeff Cobb was appearing at there next show on May 28th, "No Dropkicks in the Living Room!"  I had never heard of Cobb and decided to take to You Tube and the internet to learn more, and I was pleasantly surprised what I learned.

Cobb is a former Olympian representing Guam at the 2004 Summer Olympics.  He began his pro career in 2009 wrestling in Hawaii for Action Zone Wrestling.  Since then he has spent the majority of his pro career in Hawaii & California.  He recently debuted for Lucha Underground as the masked Mantanza.

In his debut match for LU airing March 23, 2016 he competed in Aztec Warfare 2 eliminating nine other wrestlers, including Fenix, Prince Puma, Joey Ryan, and Rey Mysterio Jr. to win the Lucha Underground Championship.  He went on to wrestle and defeated Fenix and Pentagon Jr in subsequent title matches. 


 I have provided for you some You Tube links for your viewing pleasure so you too can better familiarize yourself with “Mr. Athletic” Jeff Cobb.

Lucha Underground 3/23/2016 - Aztec Warfare 2
Lucha Underground 3/30/2016 Champion Matanza vs. Pentagon Jr.
Lucha Underground 4/6/2016 Champion Matanza vs. Fenix

Top 10 Moves of “Mr. Athletic” Jeff Cobb – posted June 23, 2014

“Mr. Athletic” Jeff Cobb vs. Timothy Thatcher – posted January 23, 2016

The match with Thatcher is a wrestling clinic, fantastic!

I for one can’t wait to see who Cobb’s opponent will be on May 28th at “No Dropkicks in the Living Room!”

Learn more about Limitless Wrestling here:

Thanks for reading, please take a moment to leave a comment, like my blogs Facebook page at 

Later Readers!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

WrestleMania XXIV Weekend

This was originally posted in 2008 on a Facebook note, thought I would re-share it here.

UXW, HOF & WM 24: My Weekend in Orlando

April 7, 2008 at 9:46pm
My WrestleMania Weekend:

This year my buddies Jay, Rood, and myself made the journey to Orlando from Maine for WrestleMania XXIV. We bought packages back in June of 2007 based on the rumor that Ric Flair was going to retire at Mania and be inducted into the Hall of Fame. As we all know that indeed did happen. It was a bittersweet moment as I was glad to be there for Flair’s last match and Hall of Fame induction, however, deeply saddened that he has retired. I realize it was inevitable, but it’s still sad. More on that later.

We bought the silver packages at $641 each for triple occupancy which included 3 nights lodging at The Doubletree Hotel at the entrance to Universal Studios, Midday Madness Meet & Greet, Exclusive Souvenirs, 2 day pass to Universal Studios, ticket to the Hall of Fame, and ticket to WrestleMania XXIV. We bought an additional night’s lodging at $165 and flew in on Thursday instead. I’m glad we did because it was mad house on Friday with huge lines and long waits.

Thursday was all about getting down there and getting our room. Nice non-stop flight from Portland to Orlando on Jet Blue. Took just under 3 hours to get there. We rented a 2008 Toyota Highlander SUV, it had a sun roof. Driving down the highway to the Doubletree in 80 degree weather with the windows down and sunroof open was like heaven compared to the 40 degree weather we left in Maine.

The hotel was spectacular! Our room was nice, a corner room on the 4th floor with 2 queen beds and a pull out couch. When you check in they give you warmed cookies as a way to make you feel at home. The hotel had Direct TV and didn’t carry Spike TV so we couldn’t watch Impact Thursday. We did walk over to TGI Fridays for dinner, which was pretty good.

Friday started out good as Rood and I took an early morning trip to the grocery store to keep some soda in the room and buffet breakfast at Ponderosa. WWE was slated to start handing out the travel packages at noon, so we got inline just before 9am, they didn’t start until near 12:30. We figured better to wait before than to wait after: glad we did because by noon time the line was huge and we would have waited a hell of a lot longer on the other end.

Once we got our packages, all I cared about was where were my WrestleMania seats? We ended up with Section 109, Row A, seats 30, 31 &, 32. For Hall of Fame we got section 112, Row B seats 14, 15 &, 16. Both sets of tickets turned out to be spectacular seating. We also got our tickets to Midday Madness, Programs, and the Exclusive Souvenirs was a leather bound photo album with the WM 24 logo on the front that holds 36 photos, and a 5 X 7 black picture from with the WM 24 Logo on the top and date and location on the bottom. Both very nice. I was very unhappy with the program though. It wasn’t anything special and I could have purchased it at the Smackdown!/ECW house show in Bangor, ME the previous July. It was old and outdated, not to mention highlighted several wrestlers that were no longer in WWE. (While waiting inline I made friends with several blokes from the UK that I am still Facebook friends with to this day)

One of the blokes, Chris with Lillian Garcia, he was lucky enough to be in the other room, you'll read more about that later.
 We decided to go to Universal and check out Fan Axxess and possible get into the TNA taping which was advertised to be at 5pm. We had no problem using to passes from WWE included in the packages and got right into Universal. Fan Axxess was kind of lame. There was a trivia area, get your photo with a replica of the spinner belt; make your own entrance to a select list of WWE entrance music, and an autograph session. There was also some TV’s set up playing clips of matches with merchandise not for sale in glass cases underneath.

The signing line was huge and the people signing while we were there was Victoria, Jesse & Festus, and Armando. Festus stayed in character with a blank stare with his tongue sticking out.

I went over and stood inline for TNA, and let me just say it was an experience I could have done without. Eventually staff set up the waiting area in 3 sections, VIP, wheelchair accessible, and General Admission. I got inline around 2 and told my friends to come back for 3 and we would switch off. With a 5pm taping it was listed that doors would open at 4pm. There was no resemblance of a line, just a mob of people that squeezed in closer and closer to the front guardrails.

The crew at the front of the VIP line were clearly TNA regulars and went out of their way to verbally bash anyone wearing a WWE t-shirt including one guy that was extremely loud and overbearing getting in anyone face that was younger than him and screaming obnoxiously that "we like real wrestling, not entertainment!" Not to be outdone there were a few WWE faithfuls that compared TNA to WCW and were just as obnoxious. The combination of this childish behavior, heat, and the fact they pushed the start of TNA back to 7pm made me leave the mob and forget about going to Impact.

On a side note, Don West came out and signed autographs and took pictures with the fans as did Earl Hebner. Several others walked by but didn’t come down including; Brother D-Von, Frankie Kazarian, Christian, and David Penzer.

It was a beautiful day at Universal, extremely hot though. If you get a chance to go you need to check out Beetlejuice’s Graveyard Revue, it’s great! At the NASCAR Grill for supper they put Smackdown! On the big screens. Periodically an employee gets on the PA system and tells everyone what is on the TV’s. He kept calling Smackdown! WrestleMania.

Saturday we had Midday Madness, which started at 9am. We got inline at 7am and were close to the front. Good thing because words can’t describe the length of the line. It wrapped around the ballroom so much that at one point the end of the line was by the front of the line, until it curled back towards the other side of the ballroom again. (While waiting in line I made friends Meagan and Sandra from Quebec.  Meagan and I would go on to write emails talking about wrestling for several years and are facebook friends to this day.)

Sandra and Meagan, photo is from them at WWE Breaking Point 9/13/2009 Montreal
Once the event started the brought us down a hallway and funneled us into a room. In the room was The Coach walking down the line the and doing autographs and photos and talking to the fans, Big Show & Mark Henry were sitting in chairs at the front of the line where you got to pose for a very fancy Polaroid picture, then around to the other side of the room to Nunzio, Ashley, Melina, and Santino Morella. Everyone was real nice and talked took whatever time was available to talk to the fans. Especially Big Show, who didn’t stop talking the whole time, on the other hand Mark Henry didn’t say one word.

Rood with The Coach
We get out of that room and next door is Edge & Chavo doing Polaroid pictures, Lillian Garcia is working the crowd, and at the table signing is Snitsky, Victoria, William Regal and Kofi Kingston. We tried to go in there but we were stopped and told no, we went in the other room so we can’t go in this one. Come to find out there are three rooms all set up the same way, you can’t choose which room you go into it is randomly selected for you. I have no idea who was in the 3rd room, but I feel cheated. Edge & Chavo had their belts, and I’m a huge fan of Regal and would have loved to have meet him.

We left the hotel dejected and had brunch at Cracker Barrel, they have spectacular thick cut bacon. We then made our way to the Central Florida Fairgrounds for the UXW show. UXW has been around a few years, they’ve run shows in New York and Florida since 2001. Also at the Fairgrounds that day was a flea market, that opens at 4am!, a gem & mineral show, and a gun show.

The venue for the show was neat; it had a roof but sported and open air concept and was right next to a small lake so a nice breeze rolled through the building during the event. A nice looking spring steal ring sat in the middle on the venue on a dusty concrete floor surrounded by metal guard rails and wooden folding chairs. It was $30 for Front Row and $20 General Admission. Jake "The Snake" Roberts was out selling photos, signing autographs, and taking pictures. Also milling around was Big Vito or Skull Von Krush, Ralphus – former head of Jericho’s security in WCW, and eventually Abdullah the Butcher. Abbie would not personalize any autographs at all; his handler stated it was because of previously signed contracts he was not allowed to, whatever. The advertised talent that wasn’t there was Steve Corino, Disco Inferno and Demolition Ax & Smash.

Jake wasn’t in the best of shape and wrestled in Pink Floyd Pajama Pants. Health wise he looked good, and appeared to be sober. He cut a good promo and his match wasn’t a squash, it was actually competitive and ended with the DDT, Jake had a 10 foot python that he threw out scaring a few at ringside.

The semi-main event was AWA World Tag Team Champions: The Heartbreak Express: Sean & Phil Davis with Amy Vitale defeated Jon Davis & Bruce Santee in a wild and bloody 2 out of 3 falls match. Fall 1 HBX pinned Jon Davis. Fall 2 Santee & Jon Davis made Sean submit. The final fall last man standing, Jon Davis was unable to answer the 10 count after getting a fireball thrown into his eyes.

Jon Davis had the back of his head busted open and the blood gushed from the wound, rumor was he lost 4 pints of blood. Rumor or not, paramedics were called in to attend to him and he was transported to the hospital.  Later on I read on line in an interview he did that he had 13 staples to close the wound.

After returning to the room to freshen up we made out way to Amway Arena for the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. We had to park nearby for $10 and walk a short distance to the building. We had great seats in the second row of section 112 diagonal from the stage.

The Rock came out first, and did a great job pumping the crowd up. His mother spoke from the heart when inducting her father, High Chief Peter Miavia, and the crowd became quite emotional.

Ric Flair spoke for close to an hour and a half, and would have gone on longer but was wrapped up by the production people. He had the crowd and all the wrestlers in tears as he spoke about his career and his thoughts on his peers in the wrestling business. He thanked everyone on the production crew by name and stated that Ricky Steamboat was his greatest opponent ever. I can’t do him justice you need to see the complete and unedited speech that will be on the WrestleMania XXIV DVD.

After the Hall of Fame we grabbed a quick bite to eat at Whataburger then retired for the evening. Whataburger is a small fast food chain located in the southeast that specializes in burgers. Their big thing is their mustard sauce, it’s pretty good.

On the way to Whataburger Jay asked us to drop him at the hotel because he wanted to go to the bar.  Now we were driving on a divided highway that had 4 lanes both ways.  To get to Whataburger we had to drive a short distance past the hotel, take a left at the traffic light, drive for 1/2 mile and we would be there, so we were less than 5 minutes away.  To drop Jay at the hotel an go to Whataburger would have been over 20 minutes.  So I told Jay no and he could wait.  Well he started acting like a child and I got annoyed so when we were in front of the hotel I slammed on the brakes and told him the get out.  Next thing Rood and I knew Jay was out of the Highlander, jumping the cement divided and dodging 4 lanes of 70 mph traffic!

Sunday was finally here, and WrestleMania XXIV was upon us. We got ready and stopped off at Hooters for lunch. Rood loves the Hot Chicken Wings. They have deep fried pickles, not spears but chip cut, and they are wicked addictive!

We got to the Citrus Bowl and are pre-paid parking area around 1:30pm. It was a very short jaunt across a playground to the stadium. There were vendors outside selling beer and food, including a foot long corn dog. Also official WWE Shop Zone stands, I ended up getting a WrestleMania XXIV T-shirt and program. Program is real nice, much better than last years left over’s they gave us in our package deal.  The cover was the WrestleMania XXIV logo and inside highlighted the matches taking place that day plus a Hall of Fame section.  A very nice souvenir of the day.

We got into the Fan Axxess they had set up, but it was nothing worth looking at. We brought our stuff back to the truck and relaxed in the air conditioning of the Toyota Highlander for a while.

Hung out with a few guys waiting to get into the Citrus Bowl and watch the goings on around us. Teddy Hart was standing around drinking a beer being filmed and filming fans for an unknown reason. Also a couple of other crews were their filming for various reasons. One person said they were making a documentary.  Jay was filmed in all his heavily buzzed glory doing his best Ric Flair impersonation.

I think one of my favorite parts of the whole weekend is meeting other wrestling fans, mostly while standing around waiting. For instance the guys we met waiting to get in to the Citrus Bowl were from the Carolina’s I believe, and were pretty cool. Waiting to pick up our Mania packages meet a Rick and Chris from the UK and a few their friends, one sporting a vampire like complexion. At midday madness hooked up with a few people from California, a guy from Australia on the Great American Vacation, and Meagan & Sandra from Montreal. Everyone was real nice and the one big thing we had in common is our love for wrestling and the spectacle that is WrestleMania!

The event itself was in a word; phenomenal! We got into the Citrus Bowl and after a stop at the head made out way to our seats. I cannot complain at all. We had the front row, aisle, in the first section off the field. Spectacular view of the ring, and unless someone put a sign up, had no problems seeing anything.

The set and entrance way was monstrous and the arena was decorated all over from top to bottom with WrestleMania banners and flags. Over the ring was a structure that would keep the ring dry if it really rained and eights "legs" came down to the ground with LED lights all down them. Having no roof on the stadium made for spectacular fireworks displays and the weather held off. Although cloudy with two passing sprinkles, it couldn’t have been more beautiful. Short and t-shirt weather and a constant breeze made it such a comfortable evening.

Show kicked off at 6:30 with a 24 Man Battle Royal that Kane won. He went on later to face Chavo Guerrero for the ECW Championship, more on that later. At 7pm the PPV telecast began with a fly over and then John Legend singing America the Beautiful.

Opening contest saw JBL defeat Finlay with Hornswoggle in a Belfast Brawl. CM Punk defeated Chris Jericho, MVP, Mr. Kennedy, Shelton Benjamin, & John Morrison in a Money in the Bank ladder match. Matt Hardy ran in and hit MVP with a twist of fate off the ladder. Batista pinned Umaga in a battle of brand supremacy. Kane pinned ECW Champion Chavo Guerrero in 8 seconds to win the title. Shawn Michaels pinned "Nature Boy" Ric Flair in a career threatening match forcing Flair to retire. Women’s Champion Beth Phoenix & Melina defeated Maria & Ashley in a BunnyMania lumberjack match. Snoop Dog was the master of ceremonies. WWE Champion Randy Orton defeated Triple H & John Cena to retain the title. Floyd Mayweather defeated The Big Show by knock out. Undertaker pinned World Champion Edge to win the title.

It was a great show from beginning to end with the crowd, and myself, getting very emotional when Ric Flair lost. I honestly don’t see how you couldn’t. Also it was a surreal moment after Michaels pinned Flair the crowd was silent. It’s almost as if everyone was in stunned silence while Michaels walked back to the dressing room. Once his music stopped and Flair got up the crowd started responding with a huge ovation for Flair. I can’t wait to see this on DVD to see how it came across on the PPV. I felt bad for the ladies match having to follow Flairs retirement. Emotionally I wasn’t into it, and I don’t think most of the crowd was either.

After the Flair match Jay said he was going go get a drink, when he didn't come back I checked my phone and found a text message stating that he had seen what he came to see and had taken a cab back to the hotel.  Rood and I couldn't believe that he didn't stay for the whole event!.

When the show was over we got to our rental pretty quick and managed to zip out onto main roads before the major flow. I avoided I-4 and took side roads everywhere during the weekend. I saw and heard about others being stuck in gridlock and am glad I know how to look at a map and have a good sense of direction.

Monday brought the end of our journey as our noon flight got us home in Maine by 3pm. I ’m sad that Ric Flair has retired, I realize at 59 years old it was inevitable, but I’m glad I got to be there for his final match.

Of course we all know that Flair returned to wrestling doing a tour in Australia jobbing to Hogan and then did a stint in TNA with his last match being September 12, 2011 in Orlando again this time at the impact zone losing to Sting via submission.

Also I, apparently, posted a blog about this on my non-wrestling blog back before I started The Wrestling Insomniac, you can read that here:

Thanks for reading, please take a moment to leave a comment, like my blogs Facebook page at 
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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

WrestleMania 32 Review

I always get excited for WrestleMania every year and leading up to it this year was no different.  Sadly though I must have watched a different show than others in my Facebook food because I didn't watch a show that was awesome, insane, spectacular, amazing or any other accolade that makes a blanket declaration stating the entire show was tremendous, because it wasn't.

The pre-show started at 5pm with the first match starting around 5:45pm and the main event ended about 10 minutes of midnight.  That's pretty near a 7 hour event which is very long.  I'ts a good thing I had coverage at work until 1am and not midnight.  

Including pre-show and the Rock's impromptu match the card featured 12 matches.  The three pre-show matches were better than I thought they would be.

United States Champion: Kalisto defeated Ryback

10 Woman Tag: Team Total Divas: Brie Bella, Paige, Alicia Fox, Natayla, & Eva Marie defeated Team Bad and Blonde: Lana, Tamina, Naomi, Summer Rae, & Emma when Brie made Naomi tap out to the Yes Lock.  It also seems as thought it's Brie's last match. 

The Usos: Jimmy & Jey defeated The Dudley Boys: Bubba Ray & Devon

As much as I hate to admit this, the sequence that Brie used to set up the Yes Lock was actually really, really good.  Lana makes her in ring debut, didn't do a lot boy she looks different with her hair down.

The main show was kicked off with the 7 Man Ladder Match for the Intercontinental Championship.  It was a good match, the last guy I thought was going win it did in Zack Ryder.  He's worked hard for the company for a long time and deserves to have this big moment at WrestleMania.  I can't imagine he'll have a very long title run. (Note: He lost it to the Miz the next day on Raw.)

It's was bullshit that Jericho got the win of Styles.  First off it looked like Jericho purposely had a bad match.  It was more than just the timing was off, or they weren't clicking because when it came time for Jericho to look good he was spot on.  However when it was Styles turn Jericho was slow and off a step.  This is their 4th singles match, one we didn't need to begin with, so does this mean we have to watch them have 1 more match together at the next PPV, god I hope not!

League of Nations beat New Day, it was Four on three they should win.  As much as I loved seeing HBK, Austin, & Mick Foley come out and beat down the League it basically made their win look worthless.  I will say I marked out big time seeing HBK in his wrestling gear. 

Brock Lesnar defeated Ambrose in a Street Fight.  Not much of a street fight, some chairs, a kendo stick, and a whole bunch of suplexs.  It was basically an extended squash.

Triple Threat Match: Women's Champion: Charlotte defeated Sasha Banks & Becky Lynch when Becky tapped to the Figure-8.  In my opinion this was the best wrestling match of the night.  It was damn good and it stole the show.  Charlotte came to the ring with the Diva's Championship and left with the Women's Championship officially ending the Diva's name that I have hated since they started it.  Sasha got the big entrance with her cousin Snoop Dog rapping her to the ring.

Hell In A Cell: Taker beat Shane, I found surprising because storyline wise it seemed Shane was destined to win so he could take over Raw.  If you take out the part where Shane jumped off the top of the cage to elbow drop Taker on the announce table, it wouldn't be as good of a match.  It was a spectacular spot and I really enjoyed the match but it wasn't great.

I would never guessed that Baron Corbin would win the Andre the Giant Battle Royal, he had no build up, just walked to the ring with the others that were unannounced and came away with the win.  I wonder if this means he is on the main roster now?

Rock had a really long segment where he announced the attendance of the event.  Then the Wyatt Family interrupted which lead to an impromptu 6 second match where Rock beat Eric Rowan.  Then Cena made a surprise return aiding Rock in yet another Wyatt Family beat down. I could have done with out the whole segment.

Roman Reigns beat Triple H for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, of course that's not a surprise to anyone.  The crowd booed Reigns after his win and during his celebration.  The only pop for Roman is when he accidentally speared Stephanie, because if there is anyone they hate more than Roman is Stephanie McMahon.

I realize there are a lot of people that really like WrestleMania, and that's cool, I just don't agree.  There were aspects that I really liked about it, aspects I didn't like at all, It has nothing to do with the outcomes not being what I wanted them to be.

The best part about Mania was Paul coming over and us watching it together and that chat group with the other guys.

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Monday, April 4, 2016

NXT TakeOver Dalls review

 Over the years there have been few shows that have stood out in my mind as being awesome from top to bottom.  More specifically there was not a bad match on the card, and that's hard to do as usually a card will produce a few good matches but not every match.  For the longest time SummerSlam 2002 has been the show that was the best as every match on the show was outstanding.  Granted I haven't watched the whole thing in a few years, but it's been the measuring stick.  Friday night April 1st, NXT TakeOver Dallas surpassed it.

Now some of you will argue that with only 5 matches on the card, whereas SummersSlam 2002 featured 7 matches,  it shouldn't be as hard for them not to have a stinker, but anyone can have a bad night or their timing off and can have a bad match.  For whatever reason everyone on the show Friday was on top of their game.  The crowd was hot all night long as well, which definitely helps the matches.

American Alpha: Chad Gable & Jason Jordan defeated Tag Team Champions: The Revival: Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder to win the championships.
This is what a tag team match is all about.  Cutting off the ring, double team moves, frequent tags, blind tags, hot tags, yeah!  It was legit like watching tag matches from the hey days of the Jim Crockett promotions.  The emotion that Gable and Jordan showed post match really showed just how much becoming champions meant to them.

Austin Aries defeated Baron Corbin
Even though he worked several house shows this was Aries official NXT debut.  This was the weakest match on the card it was a still a great match.  Baron looked strong in the match and Aries got the quick roll up pin for the win.

Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Sami Zayn
WOW!  In a post match interview Nakamura announced that Strong Style has arrived and he was right.  The match was hands down the match of the night.  Simply phenomenal! Nakamura 's entrance music is great, his entrance is awesome.  I've been saying for years just how good he is and he proved it against Zayn.  Both men put on a hell of a match bringing the crowd to their feet several times including a standing ovation when it was over.

This match was Zayn's final NXT match before he goes full time to the main roster.  You could tell from the beginning that it was a very emotional time for him.  Post match he was given a hero's send off with a massive ovation and "Oley" chant.

Asuka defeated Women's Champion: Bayley to win the NXT Women's Championship
These two woman put on an incredible, fast paced, and hard hitting match that had a very powerful finish as Bayley refused to submit while trapped in the Asuka Lock forcing the referee to stop the match.  It seems like Bayley will be heading up to the main roster soon, mostly likely to feud with Charlotte.

NXT Champion: Finn Balor defeated Samoa Joe
Joe was busted open from an incidental headbutt which lead to the doctors stepping in over the next several minutes trying to stop the bleeding.  Which lead to several very heated chants from the crowd of "Fuck PG" and more.  Somehow they managed to keep the flow of the match going and turned out another killer match to top off the card.  I was surprised that Balor got the win because I had heard so much about him going to the main roster with Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows.  It could still happen.

If you haven't seen this show yet you need too!  Sign up for WWE Network just to watch this show!

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Friday, April 1, 2016

WrestleMania 32 & Takeover Dallas Predictions

Austin Aries vs. Baron Corbin
This is Aries first big show match on NXT, I see Aries walk away with the win.

Tag Team Championships: The Revival: Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder vs. American Alpha: Jason Jordan & Chad Gable
Revival has had a good run but it's time for American Alpha to take the titles to show that they are the dominant team.

Apollo Crews vs. Elias Samson
Crews needs this win, he had a good push at first but hasn't been able to get the wins on the big matches.  Samson is extremely boring and the win would be a waste on him. Creed with the win and he will go one to feud with Joe.

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Sami Zayn
No way Nakamura is going to lose his debut match, just not happening.  Should be the match of the night.

Women's Champion: Bayley vs. Asuka
I think Bayley is going to get the win for two reasons.  First Balor is going to lose his match to Joe because he's going to the main roster, and they can't have them both lose their belts in the same night.  Second, Bayley will either get called up as Champion to feud with Charlotte, because even though she is over huge with NXT fans Vince probably thinks she needs to belt to show she deserves to be thrust into the WWE Woman's title picture.  Or she will drop it to an interim heal for Asuka to beat for it.

NXT Championship: Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe
Joe is going to win, Balor is getting called up to be with Anderson & Gallows. Joe can go on and feud with Apollo Crews and Austin Aries.


United States Championship: Kalisto vs. Ryback
Ryback will win when Sin Cara cost Kalisto the match, in the end though, who cares.

The Total Divas: Brie Bella, Paige, Natalya, Alicia Fox, & Eva Marie vs. BAD & Blonde: Lana, Summer Rae, Naomi, Emma, & Tamina
Total Divas will win, gotta keep plugging that show

The Dudley Boyz vs. The Usos
Dudleys for the win!


Andre The Giant Battle Royal
I'm not going to wager a guess, one theory I heard was Mark Henry because he's retiring.

Tag Team Champions: New Day: Kofi Kingston, Big E, & Xavier Woods vs. League of Nations: King Barett, Sheamus, Alberto Del Rio, & Rusev
Non-title match but New Day is still walking away with the win.

AJ Styles vs. Chris Jericho
Styles will win and end this feud with Jericho so he can move on to someone else, perhaps Ryback and the US Championship.

Ladder Match Intercontinental Championship: Kevin Owens vs. Sami Zayn vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder vs. Sin Cara vs. Miz vs. Stardust
This match should be Zayn vs. Owens and the US Championship match should be the ladder match.  That being said I see Owens retaining and going on to feud with Zayn.

Diva's Champion: Charlotte vs. Becky Lynch & Sasha Banks
Charlotte is going to walk away the winner, she'll feud with either Bayley or Brie Bella next.  

Street Fight: Brock Lesnar vs. Dean Ambrose
I have no doubt that Brock is going to win, but Ambrose is going shine in this match.  It won't be a squash both guys are going to tear it up.

Hell in a Cell: Undertaker vs. Shane McMahon
This is the toughest match for me to call.  Knee jerk reaction is that Taker wins, because it's Mania and it's Taker.  However, there is no streak any more so anything could happen.  I can see for storyline purposes that Shane McMahon wins and he will take over Raw.  I don't think Shane will win single handed, there will be a swerve of somekind, but Shane wins.

NO DQ WWE Champion: Triple H vs. Roman Reigns
Reigns wins, it's too obvious, who cares.  I just hope it's not the last match on the card.

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