Yesterday, TNA announced that they were forming a working relationship with Ohio Valley Wrestling to be a “training and developmental facility”, much like the setup that OVW had with WWE until 2008.
In a statement, TNA declared:
NASHVILLE, TN (November 7, 2011)– TNA IMPACT WRESTLING announces that they are entering into an exclusive relationship with Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), effective immediately, as the official training and developmental facility for TNA’s current and future stars of TNA IMPACT WRESLTING. Former wrestling star and OVW owner Danny Davis will work closely with TNA SVP of Programming and Talent Relations Bruce Prichard in the development of the talent through training, live events, and weekly television production allowing talent to explore every aspect of the business.
“OVW is the best of the best as far as training and nurturing potential superstars. Their track record speaks for itself. Whether looking to develop brand new talent or to fine tune existing talent, OVW has the talent and program to fit our needs.” says TNA’s Prichard. “TNA is providing developmental talent the opportunity to hone their craft in an environment that will allow them to grow and prosper.”
TNA talent will be arriving soon at the facility to begin an extensive training program with the industry’s leading experts. The program is akin to a college scholarship program where talent is provided a scholarship style agreement with TNA to learn the craft. The talent to attend the program is selected by TNA’s Prichard and TNA officials who will be monitoring the progress of each wrestler at camp and the live events.
Now, nonwithstanding the fact that TNA’s press office can’t spell “WRESTLING” – even though it matters – this will be a good opportunity for many aspiring young talent in TNA. Quite frankly, it’s something both WWE and TNA need, as the limited number of approved places for wrestlers to get more experience in either company is pretty slim. However, this is also a two way street, as some wrestlers who currently consider Louisville, KY their main base could use it as an opportunity to make contacts and get spotted – or re-spotted, in the case of the former Sojo Bolt, AKA current OVW Women’s Champion Lady JoJo.
For example, if TNA wants to give its tag team division a bit of a revival (yes, I realise what I just said) then there are two potential teams waiting to go. The first would be the combination of the Smothers Twisted Daughters, comprised of Izza Belle and Jessie Belle Smothers – the latter of which really is the daughter of the awesome Tracy Smothers.
The pair started teaming up at the start of the year – with former IWA: Mid South Women’s Champion Mickie Knuckles obtaining an alter-ego to align herself with Jessie Belle to form the STDs – and began tearing up promotions as a team, with the gimmick that Jessie Belle was the excitable, happy go lucky sister, while Izza Belle was the more aggressive, eyes-on-the-prize sort of girl. Think Pinky and The Brain or Crash and Hardcore Holly and you’re pretty close to the pin.
By the summer, the pair had started accepting regular bookings with OVW, where Izza Belle was primed for a shot at the Women’s Championship, which at the time was held by JoJo. A nice run at the belt followed, and led to Smothers winning the title at the promotion’s Saturday Night Special on August 6. However, the reign would be short lived, as JoJo would regain the belt a mere 18 days later, meaning that barring two and a half weeks, JoJo has held the championship since August 28, 2010. One would think that she has outgrown the role of top lady in OVW, and should be looking to spread her wings further.
Since that defeat, the STDs have been put on the backburner somewhat, with Izza Belle’s push stalling, and Jessie Belle leaving the promotion – coincidentally, she recently relocated to Florida to train with her boyfriend, Tough Enough 2011 contestant Ryan Howe, so she is already in a prime position to work in TNA. Still, having an established team who have a gimmick, a history and some heritage – no matter how convoluted – and could easily make a mark on TNA TV. Plus, it would give Izza Belle a second bite at the cherry in TNA.
Back in June 2008, Mickie Knuckles debuted for the promotion as the muscle behind the original Beautiful People. Renamed Moose, she debuted at Slammiversary where she, Angelina Love and Velvet Sky were beaten by ODB, Roxxi and Gail Kim, with Moose taking the fall (of course, it’s the perfect way to get new talent over). She bounced back on the subsequent episodes of Impact, defeated ODB and Roxxi (Nikki Roxx) in Bimbo Brawls, but then came unstuck at an IWA:MS show where she broke her right femur bone in a match against Sara Del Rey. The long recovery saw her released from TNA before she had even put a run together, and was quickly forgotten. However, TNA’s new relationship with OVW could put her back on the radar, and at the perfect time. With the new gimmick, new vigour and new attitude, Izza Belle Smothers would be a great fit into the Knockouts Division, and would benefit from having the ditzy Jessie Belle by her side for comic relief.
The other tandem would be the Blossom Twins, Hannah and Holly, who have been wrestling in stints at OVW for the past two years. The British 23-year olds won the Women’s Championship from Epiphany in their debut match, with Hannah wrestling the initial portion of the match and then switching to identical sister Holly to get the pinfall before the audience were aware that Hannah had a twin, much like how the Bella Twins were introduced in WWE. However, unlike the Bellas, the Blossoms are as cute as cupcakes and play up the girly girl schtick, rather than going out to be sexier than sexy.
Hailing from Manchester, England, Hannah and Holly debuted back in 2005, wrestling primarily in the north, but also appeared on some of the latter ChickFight shows in 2008, winning in their debut against Maya and Jade, but then being defeated by Jetta and Wesna Busic on the following taping. However, it is in Louisville that the Blossoms have… blossomed, picking up the title on three occasions between them – their first reign was considered a joint one, with Hannah winning the belt in December 2009 and Holly picking it up for herself in July last year. Like the STDs, they are a bonafide tag team, have a look, a gimmick and offer something unique to the Knockouts Division. They go for the cute angle – even when they are heels – and have their gimmick down to a T. After all, they’ve been together since birth, so they have had a lot of time to get it right.
With Tara and Brooke Tessmacher hopefully staying as a unit, Winter and Angelina Love still together and Sarita and Rosita still about, the introduction of the STDs and the Blossoms would rejuvenate the tag team division that has been stagnant as all hell for more than 18 months. If TNA wanted to take a punt with them, the promotion would have nothing to lose.
The best of the rest
Finnish transsexual wrestler Jessica Love will be part of SMASH 23 on November 24… Kelly Kelly told Maxim magazine that Vince McMahon gave her direction on how to strip for her WWE TV debut… Misaki Ohata made an appearance in Ice Ribbon on Thursday… Nikki Roxx replaced Cheerleader Melissa for the FULL show in Mexico on Tuesday… Cindy Rogers is the first of five people who will go into the WSU Hall Of Fame next March… Meiko Satomura will holding a seminar with CHIKARA on December 2 as part of Joshimania. There’ll be scouts from WAVE, OZ Academy, JWP and Sendai Girls there… Gail Kim and Madison Rayne are the new Knockouts Tag Team Champions. Considering that they already have the rub by being aligned with the authority hate figure, did they really NEED the belts, and if so, how does it look for Tara and Brooke Tessmacher that they lost the titles to a duo that only teamed up for the first time that night?… Holly Dee (a rookie wrestler with an awesome Batman-inspired tattoo sleeve) replaced Jemma Palmer at NSW in Birmingham on Friday. Jemma was at the Big Brother house to see her sister Faye being evicted a week before the final… Makoto and Cheerleader Melissa made the news because of their worked brawl to hype their match for All Japan in Taiwan at the weekend, which was the first women’s match ever to be held in the country. Melissa won… Rosa Mendes says she wants to be WWE Divas Champion. Good luck with that. She, Nikki and Brie Bella were in Miami on Saturday as part of the WrestleMania XXVIII ticket presale party… Sunny’s relisted her Hall Of Fame dress on eBay. I guess it didn’t sell last time or the winning bidder didn’t pay up… Alicia Fox has a new finisher, which is a somersault legdrop. Rumours are that the axe kick was dumped because Booker T is returning to the ring for a programme against Cody Rhodes… Command Bolshoi missed this week’s JWP show due to a back injury… LuFisto is taking the rest of the year off after getting injured at Saturday’s nCw show. She posted a blog the day before discussing how she was tiring of wrestling… Tasha Simone lost the NWA World Women’s Championship to Tiffany Roxx at the weekend… Marcela defends the CMLL World Women’s Title against Ayumi Kurihara in Tokyo later this month… Maria Kanellis appeared at the Crossfire show in Nashville at the weekend to announce that she was bringing women’s wrestling to the promotion… Mia Yim made her ROH wrestling debut on Sunday, losing to MsChif… Hailey Hatred will defend her JWP Openweight, Hybrid Fighting and TLW Women’s Championships against Gail Kim on November 25 at an AIW card in Cleveland, OH… Chyna wrote a letter to WWE pitching a return the company. It went as well as you’d expect… Shelly Martinez has cleared the air with Batista. The pair had issues stemming back to Martinez’s days in WWE.
November 1: FULL (Monterrey, Mexico) – Difunto II, Mascarita Dorada, Nikki the NY Knockout & Octagoncito b Mr. Aguilita, Nikki Roxx, Pequeno Monster & Potro Jr.
November 1: Indy (Pachuca, Mexico) – Chik Tormenta, Nosawa, Scorpio Jr. & Super Crazy b Ángel o Demonio, Io Shirai, Malefica & Shitara
November 1: WWE NXT (Greenville, SC) – Kaitlyn b Tamina
November 2: Ice Ribbon (Saitama, Japan) – Tsukasa Fujimoto v Kurumi went to a time limit draw; Dorami Nagano b Mochi Miyagi; Ribbon Takanashi b Nasu Kotaro; Ray b Hikaru Shida
November 2: JWP (Yokohama, Japan) – Kaori Yoneyama b Moon Mizuki; Rabbit Miyu b Lady Afrodita; Morley & Nana Kawasa b Sachie Abe & masu-me; Kayoko Haruyama & Tsubasa Kuragaki b KAZUKI & Morley; Hailey Hatred, Kaori Yoneyama, & Kyoko Kimura b Leon, Hanako Nakamori, & Misaki Ohata
November 2: WWE (Dublin, Ireland) – Beth Phoenix b Eve Torres
November 2: Ohio Valley Wrestling (Louisville, KY) – Epiphany b Hannah Blossom
November 3: OZ Academy (Tokyo, Japan) – Hiren b Sakura Hirota; Mio Shirai b Nao Komatsu; Manami Toyota, Carlos Amano, & GAMI b Mayumi Ozaki, Chikayo Nagashima, & Hiren; AKINO v Hiroyo Matsumoto to a 30 minute time-limit draw; Aja Kong & Tomoka Nakagawa b Ran Yu-Yu & Yumi Ohka
November 3: WWE (Bilbao, Spain) AJ & Alicia Fox b Natalya & Tamina
November 3: WWE (Nantes, France) – Beth Phoenix b Eve Torres
November 3: Florida Championship Wrestling (Tampa, Florida) – Audrey Marie b Naomi
November 3: Yuzupon Matsuri (Tokyo, Japan) – Arisa Hoshiki b Saki Kashima & Yoshiko in a 3-way; Nanae Takahashi & Hiroyo Matsumoto b Yuzuki Aikawa & Shuri
November 3: Impact Wrestling (Macon, GA) – Gail Kim & Madison Rayne b Brooke Tessmacher & Tara to win the Knockouts Tag Team Championship
November 3: Ice Ribbon (Saitama, Japan) – Tsukasa Fujimoto b Dorami Nagano; Kurumi & Tsukushi b Emi Sakura & Mochi Miyagi; Ribbon Takanashi b Choun Shiryu; Misaki Ohata b Hikaru Shida
November 4: TNA (Battle Creek, Michigan) – Velvet Sky b ODB
November 4: Fight Club Finland (Hämeenlinna, Finland) – Aurora Flame & Dr No b Ricky Vendetta & Sara Elektra; Jessica Love b Ibo Ten
November 4: WWE (Graz, Austria) AJ & Alicia Fox b Natalya & Tamina
November 4: WWE SmackDown (Greenville, SC) – Alicia Fox b Natalya
November 4: 19 Pro (Saitama, Japan) – Kurumi & Tsukasa Fujimoto b Dorami Nagano & Emi Sakura
November 4: Pro Wrestling Alliance (Liverpool, Australia) – Shazza McKenzie b KC Cassidy
November 4: Melbourne City Wrestling (Tullamarine, Australia) – Eliza Sway b Kellie Skater
November 4: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Austin, TX) – Ricky Romida, Bolt Brady, ACH & Rachel Summerlyn b Portia Perez, Jojo Bravo, High Roller Hayze & Johnny Axxle; Athena b Jessica James & Lillie Mae in a 3-way
November 4: PWA Queensland (Melbourne, Australia) – TJ Star b Baby Devine to win the PWA Queensland Women’s Title; Baby Devine b TJ Star to regain the PWA Queensland Women’s Title
November 4: Grand Pro Wrestling (Wigan, England) – April Davids b Jenny Sjodin
November 4: New Scene Wrestling (Birmingham, England) – Alpha Female b Holly Dee & Shanna in a 3-way
November 5: German Stampede Wrestling (Marburg, Germany) – Blue Nikita b Liss Austria
November 5: BattlARTS (Tokyo, Japan) – Kana b Aki Shizuku
November 5: NWC (Longueuil, Quebec, Canada) – Sweet Cherrie b Deziree via DQ
November 5: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Austin, TX) –Sky de Lacrimosa & Jason Silver b Rachel Summerlyn & Jessica James, Just Willie & Chingo Del Santo and Johnny Axxle & High Roller Hayze in a 4-way to win the ACW Tag Team Championship; Angel Blue b Portia Perez
November 5: All Japan Pro Wrestling (Taiwan) – Ultimo Dragon, BUSHI & Makoto b Dark Dragon, MAZADA & Cheerleader Melissa
November 5: TNA (Toledo, OH) – Velvet Sky b ODB
November 5: WWE (Wien, Austria) AJ & Alicia Fox b Natalya & Tamina
November 5: WWE (Manchester, England) – Beth Phoenix b Eve Torres
November 5: Lucha POP (Tlalnepantla, Mexico) – La Vequerita b Yuki Star; Black Mamba & Vaneli b Angel del Misterio & Felina Metalica and Big Mama & Bugambilia del Norte
November 5: NWA Top Rope (Lebanon, TN) – Tiffany Roxx b Tasha Simone to win the NWA World Women’s Championship
November 5: Extreme Canadian Championship Wrestling (Vancouver, BC, Canada) – Nicole Matthews b Sammy Hall
November 5: Top Rope Promotions (Bellingham, MA) – Alexxis Nevaeh b Luscious Latasha
November 5: International Wrestling Cartel (Clearfield, PA) – Sassy Stephie b Sara Feeny
November 5: Northern Championship Wrestling (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) – Kalamity & LuFisto b Mathieu St-Jacques & Thomas Dubois
November 6: No Limit Wrestling (Bray, Ireland) – Katey Harvey b Lucy
November 6: TNA (Windsor, ONT, Canada) – Velvet Sky b ODB
November 6: Ring Of Honor (Collinsville, IL) – MsChif b Mia Yim
November 6: WWE (Cardiff, Wales) AJ & Alicia Fox b Natalya & Tamina
November 6: WWE (Sheffield, England) – Beth Phoenix b Eve Torres
November 6: DDT (Osaka, Japan) – Sanshiro Takagi & Hikari Minami b Danshoku Dino & Makoto Oishi
November 6: All Japan Pro Wrestling (Taiwan) – Cheerleader Melissa b Makoto
November 6: Southside Wrestling Entertainment – Jenny Sjodin b Super Janey B
November 6: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Austin, TX) – Athena b Barbie Hayden, Portia Perez, Rachel Summerlyn, Jessica James & Lillie Mae in a scramble
November 6: Noodles Pro (Tokyo, Japan) – GAMI b Mika Iida; Misaki Ohata v Sachie Abe went to a time-limit draw; Manami Katsu b Rabbit Miyu; A*YU*MI & MI*SA*KI b Kaori Yoneyama & Leon and Ramen Woman & Roasted Pork Filet Woman; Kaori Yoneyama won a Ramen Rumble
November 6: New Scene Wrestling (Birmingham, England) – Shanna b Alpha Female
November 6: Sendai Girls (Sendai, Japan) – Eiger b Sakura Hiroto; DASH Chisako b Miyako Morino; Kaori Yoneyama b Sendai Sachiko; Aja Kong b Kagetsu; Meiko Satomura & Ryo Mizunami b Mayumi Ozaki & Hiren
November 6: NWA Championship Wrestling from Hollywood (Los Angeles, CA) – Lucky O’Shea & Mikey O’Shea b Todd Chandler
November 7: WWE (Birmingham, England) – AJ b Tamina
November 8: Ice Ribbon (Saitama, Japan) – Tsukasa Fujimoto & Tsukushi b Kurumi & Dorami Nagano; Hikaru Shida b Neko Nitta; Hiroyo Matsumoto, Muenori Sawa & Ken Ohkab Emi Sakura, GENTARO & Ribbon Takanashi
November 11: PWA Queensland (Chermside, Australia) – Baby Devine v Niki Nitro
November 12: New Age Wrestling (Albion, Australia) – Nikita Naridian v Lowzen v Vixsin
November 12: Purely Obsessed Wrestling World (Villa Park, IL) – Taylor Made & Melanie Cruise v SeaMan & DeeMan; Nikki St John v Sassy Stephie
November 12: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Austin, TX) – Darin Childs v Portia Perez v Rachel Summerlyn
November 12: Stardom (Tokyo, Japan) – Arisa Hoshiki & Mayu Iwatani v Saki Kashima & Tomoka Nakagawa; Yuzuki Aikawa & Yoko Bito v Yuu Yamagata & Eri Susa; Yoshiko v Hiroyo Matsumoto; Nanae Takahashi v Natsuki*Taiyo
November 13: TNA Turning Point (Orlando, FL) – Gail Kim v Velvet Sky; Ink, Inc & Toxxin v Mexican America & Sarita
November 13: CHIKARA High Noon (Philadelphia, PA) – Sara Del Rey v Jakob Hammermeier
November 14: Anarchy Championship Wrestling (Live Oak, TX) – Portia Perez v Rachel Summerlyn
November 19: World Association of Women’s Wrestling (Norwich, England) – Sweet Saraya v Allison Danger; Queen Maya v Amazon; Destiny v Miss Mina; Busty Keegan v Nikki Knight; Liberty v Penelope; Lucy Clayden v Skarlett
November 19: International Wrestling Cartel (Meadville, PA) – Traci Brooks v Gail Kim
November 19: Newcastle Pro Wrestling (New Lambton, Australia) – Bombshell Bo v Shazza McKenzie
November 19: New Age Wrestling (Mulgrave, Australia) – Nikita Naridian v Lowzen v Vixsin
November 19: Women Superstars Uncensored (Long Island, NY) – Jetta & Rain v The Boston Shore; TBA v Melina; Mercedes Martinez, Alicia & Brittney Savage v Jessicka Havok, Allysin Kay & Sassy Stephie; Nikki Styx v Violet v Mo’Nique v Jessie Brook v Barbie v Rick Cataldo; Jennifer Cruz v Niya; Jana & Latasha v Tina San Antonio v Marti Belle
November 24: SMASH (Tokyo, Japan) – Makoto v Aki Shizuku; Syuri v Lin Bairon; Takuya Kito, Mio Shirai & Konoka=Pehlwan v Keizo Matsuda, Katsuki Hirano & Kiyoko Ichiki; Kana v Tomoka Nakagawa; Tajiri & Ultimo Dragon v Jessica Love & Hajime Ohara
November 25: SMASH (Osaka, Japan) – Takuya Kito & Mio Shirai v Hajime Ohara & Jessica Love; Tomoka Nakagawa v Lin Bairon; Syuri & Makoto v Kana & Aki Shizuku
November 25: Absolute Intense Wrestling (Cleveland, Ohio) – Mickie Knuckles v Mia Yim; Hayley Hatred v Gail Kim
November 25: NWA Pro Australia (Adelaide, Australia) – Shazza McKenzie v Kellyanne English
November 26: Ayumi Kurihara 6th Anniversary show (Tokyo, Japan) – Marcela v Ayumi Kurihara
December 2: Impact Championship Wrestling (Elmhurst, NY) – Mia Yim v Angel Orsini
December 4: Joshimania (Manhattan, NY) – Sara Del Rey v Meiko Satomura
December 25: Ice Ribbon ‘Ribbon Mania’ (Tokyo, Japan)
January 4: Ice Ribbon ‘New Year Ribbon 2012′ (Tokyo, Japan)
January 7: Ice Ribbon ‘Sendai Ribbon’ (Sendai, Japan)
January 8: Bull Nakano retirement show (Tokyo, Japan)
March 3: Women Superstars Uncensored (Deer Park, NY) – Mercedes Martinez v Jessicka Havok; Sassy Stephie & Allysin Kay v Brittney Savage & Alicia
March 10: nCw Femmes Fatales (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
March 17-18: SHIMMER Women Athletes (Berwyn, IL)
Got any news, results or upcoming events that you want to tell everyone about? Are you a female wrestler looking to secure more bookings? Let us know by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get the message out there.
– Lee Burton