295 and out! Paige debuts on Monday Night Raw; beats AJ Lee for the Divas Championship

Paige New Champion WWEWe’ve learned not to bet against AJ Lee here at Ringbelles. We’ve predicted title changes a number of times in the last year, and every time she’s managed to keep her title – even last night with 13 simultaneous challengers at WrestleMania – but tonight at Monday Night Raw, AJ Lee’s 295 day reign as WWE Divas Championship came to an end with the debut of the NXT Women’s Champion Paige, and a poorly thought out impromptu challenge match, which ended with a Paige Turner and the creation of a brand new star in the Divas Division.

Following AJ’s post WrestleMania victory promo where she berated the entire Divas division for their inability to beat her, Paige came out, in full gear and with her NXT “Stars in the Night” theme. The internationally skewed audience at Raw reacted to her like a star, chanting her name. It seemed, according to Paige, that she simply wanted to come out and congratulate Lee – which for some reason only managed to irritate the champion, who challenged Paige to a match right there and then, so she could beat her like she’d beaten everybody else. Paige explained that she wasn’t ready yet, but a slap from the champion resulted in a change of mind. In the relatively short match that followed, AJ managed to hook in the Black Widow, but Paige eventually reversed her way out of the move and hit her Paige Turner for the win.

Three counts, and one big pop from the crowd later… a new star was born. (more…)

In Video: Ray & Leon set to return to SHIMMER in Berwyn; Revisit their match with Kurihara & Hamada!

Ray and Leon are set to make their SHIMMER returnsNot an April Fool’s Joke! Not a dream! Not an imaginary story! Masked duo Ray and Leon are due to make their returns to the United States in less than a fortnight as they join the roster for SHIMMER Women Athletes Vols 63-66 in Berwyn, IL on the weekend of April 12-13. While all eyes are on New Orleans this weekend for SHIMMER Vol 62 (available on iPPV as part of the WWNLive Experience) and the big Cheerleader Melissa vs LuFisto 2/3 Falls SHIMMER Championship match, the announcement of the high-flying joshi duo adds a real sense of excitement for the following weekend’s festivities. Although they have only graced one set of SHIMMER tapings in the past (Vols 45-48 in March 2012), their influence that weekend was great – competing in both singles and (memorably) as a tag team. In tag team competition, they defeated the team of Mia Yim & Davina Rose (now Bayley in NXT) at Vol 46 before getting a SHIMMER Tag Team Title shot on Vol 47 against the then incumbent champions of Ayako Hamada & Ayumi Kurihara. The match was incredible – and the SHIMMER Office have seen fit to release the full video of the match as a taster of the sort of action you can expect to see in Berwyn. Click through after the jump for the video… you *won’t* regret it, and if you can possibly get to suburban Chicago by next weekend, get your tickets here! (more…)

SHIMMER New Orleans Main Event Announced: Cheerleader Melissa vs LuFisto go to war, 2/3 Falls

SHIMMER 62 Cheerleader Melissa LuFisto

SHIMMER Women Athletes returns to action on Saturday, April 5th – the eve of WrestleMania XXX – as part of the WWNLive Experience at the McAlister Auditorium at Tulane University, St Charles Ave, New Orleans – and the marquee matchup for Volume 62 has been announced. As seemed very likely coming out of the events of SHIMMER Vol 61 in October (and Femmes Fatales XIII the following weekend), SHIMMER Champion Cheerleader Melissa and the Super Hardcore Anime LuFisto are on a collision course. They will meet in the main event in New Orleans, with the SHIMMER Championship on the line, and with the stipulation that the match be decided as the best two out of three falls, and will be contested under a NINETY minute time limit! (buy your tickets now)

If you remember, coming out of last Fight Season, LuFisto turned out to be the right woman in the right place at the right time. With various talents unable to make the tapings either through injury or travel disruption, and with the opportunity presenting itself, Quebec’s wrestling queen grabbed it with both hands – and with a SHIMMER Championship match against Cheerleader Melissa on Volume 60, managed to ignite a literal blood feud. The two had only wrestled once before in SHIMMER competition (Vol 20, which was later picked as SHIMMER’s Match of the Year for 2008), but with LuFisto additionally defending the honour of recently retired Allison Danger, (who had been assaulted by Melissa on Vol 58), the Melissa vs LuFisto title match on Volume 60 took on even more importance, and was the match that we at Ringbelles at the time, hailed as the best main event of the entire October tapings set. A stray elbow from LuFisto sliced up Melissa’s forehead, causing her to bleed heavily during the match, and after narrowly retaining the title with an Air Raid Crash, caused Melissa to go to the Emergency Room and miss competing in Vol 61 that evening (the first SHIMMER Volume she’s ever missed). Melissa did turn up back at the building for the end of Vol 61, laying out LuFisto with a belt shot to the head and ominously standing over her to close out the Volume. (more…)

WSU – Getting Ready To Rumble this weekend; plus thoughts on

WSU Uncensored Rumble Poster This Saturday sees the return of one of the most well known events on the Women Superstars Uncensored calendar – the Uncensored Rumble. Last year’s Rumble show was the last event run under the old management, so this year’s event is the first one overseen by Drew Cordeiro, and it promises a fresh influx of talent to the promotion to complement the established WSU roster members. We’ve been quietly looking forward to this one for a while too… while the last WSU event was well received by this website, it was a intergender show with CZW male talent, and had the feeling of a placeholder show – so quite frankly, I’m looking forward to a (pretty much) straight-ahead women’s card where we can advance (and settle) some feuds.

We have seven matches scheduled, including the Rumble itself, headlined by a WSU World Title defence by Jessicka Havok, as she goes 2/3 falls with the current #1 contender (and the ‘Queen of the Ring’) Athena. There had been a bit of a logjam of top contenders growing to try and unseat Havok, so I’m glad we’re starting to get somewhere – as underneath the title match, we’ve also got a match between Lexxus (last year’s Rumble winner) and Nevaeh (who defeated Havok in CZW action) to determine the next contender. The only person left out in the cold at present appears to be LuFisto, who had been due a title shot at Havok at the ‘Queen and King of the Ring’ show in May, only to be forced out through injury – but I’m certain the Super Hardcore Anime will be back in WSU action sooner rather than later. (more…)

Full card for today’s SHIMMER Vol 54 released; notes on website coverage this weekend

tumblr_mkund5fymR1rsoj4bo1_500We’re in the calm before the storm that is SHIMMER Weekend, and in a slightly surprising move, the SHIMMER Office have released the entire card for the first of the four tapings this weekend ahead of time – adding a bunch of intriguing new matchups to the three already announced a couple of days ago. Therefore, in a few short hours, SHIMMER Vol 54 will feature the following matches.

SHIMMER Championship: Cheerleader Melissa vs Mercedes Martinez
First ever two time SHIMMER Champion Cheerleader Melissa makes her first defence of her second reign (a week after winning it in the Steel Cage) against “The Latina Sensation” Mercedes Martinez, who last weekend defeated Ayumi Kurihara in Ayumi’s last US match before retirement. A battle between two SHIMMER originals who were part of Volume 1 back in 2005, but have only fought once in SHIMMER competition – when Martinez beat Melissa on Vol 19 in July 2008. Will we get the same result today?

SHIMMER Tag Team Championships: Canadian NINJAs (Portia Perez & Nicole Matthews) (c) vs Global Green Gangsters (Kellie Skater & Tomoka Nakagawa)
During last weekend’s Vol 53 iPPV, it looked like 3G were on course to possibly upset the Canadian NINJAs and walk away as the new SHIMMER Tag Team Champions – however, communication issues (or possibly philosophical differences) between Skater & Nakagawa resulted in Nicole Matthews taking advantage of the situation, spitting water in Skater’s face and Perez rolling up Skater with a handful of tights. A week later, will history repeat itself, and will confirmed friends Skater & Nakagawa be on the same page? (more…)

Alpha Female opens up to HONOUR

HONOUR 26Alpha Female says she doesn’t want any partners for her War Games match at Pro Wrestling: EVE Special Edition II on February 23 against Champion Nikki Storm, Shanna, Rhia O’Reilly and Amazon Ayesha Ray. She tells HONOUR Magazine that after asking Janey Britannico and getting a negative response, she is happy to go it alone, 4 on 1. Also in the interview, the former EVE champ talks about her start, Queens Of Chaos, winning the title, TNA, WWE, Japan and more. It’s a comprehensive read, so it’s worth you checking it out.

Reby Sky is also interviewed, with the topics including Lucha Libre USA, SHINE, being a model-turned-wrestler, and her dealings with Jessicka Havok. Also inside the latest issue is a look at female achievements at past Royal Rumbles, the TNA Gut Check and British Boot Camp, as well as reviews of SHIMMER DVDs, SHINE 5 and WSU‘s Full Steam Ahead.

Click on the picture to your left to have a read.

TNA Knockouts spoiler from London


TNA’s Impact Wrestling is being recorded in London, England at the moment, and a big development with the Knockouts has taken place. However, seeing as it is a spoiler for the show which won’t be broadcast until February 21, you may not want to know. If you DO want to know, click the jump… (more…)

Amazon Ayesha Ray gets the HONOUR treatment

HONOUR Magazine reaches its 25th issue with its current release, with its main feature being an interview with Amazon Ayesha Ray, who has had an impressive 2012, wrestling for WAWW, Pro Wrestling: EVE and more in her native UK, as well as venturing to Australia for PWWA‘s most recent show in October. As part of the interview, she discusses her time in Australia, and also has some words for former EVE Champion Alpha Female.

Elsewhere, there is a look at Beth Phoenix and Kelly Kelly‘s WWE departures, the rise of Allysin Kay and Reby Sky, potential new TNA Knockouts, as well as the usual reviews of iPPVs and DVDs.

There are also the top 10 moments involving women at the Survivor Series, a look at WWE’s recycling of gimmicks, an introduction to Ryo Mizunami, and coverage of Rachel Summerlyn’s ACW Heavyweight Title win. Click the picture to your right to take a read of HONOUR issue 25.

Shine Wrestling 5: Scouting Report

With no show scheduled for December, and Shine 6 already confirmed for January, Shine signs off on 2012 with what appears to be a pretty stacked card topped with an outstanding return, as Amazing Kong returns to the wrestling ring for the first time since the Royal Rumble in January. Kong teams with Jazz in a tag main event vs Mercedes Martinez & Rain. Also on the show, an increasingly desperate Kimberly turns to Leva Bates to help her 0-4 record, and Jessicka Havok & Nikki Roxx renew an old WSU rivalry. Apart from Kong, Shine 5 also brings debuts for 5 other stars, including another former WWE star…

Ivelisse Velez
Big debut for former Chicago area indy star Juliet The Huntress, and more recently Sofia Cortez on WWE’s NXT brand … Competed in last year’s WWE Tough Enough under her given name and impressed with her determination before being eliminated on week 6 due to injury … Signed a developmental deal anyway and went on to become one of FCW/NXT’s most promising Divas, often teaming with Paige … Was released from her WWE deal in August 2012 to many people’s surprise … Has had a dark match tryout with TNA last month, losing to Tara … SHINE 5 will be her first match since the WWE release.


Shine Wrestling 4: Scouting Report

If you skipped Shine 3 last month on the belief that it was likely to be a bit of a placeholder show, shame on you, because it turned out to be a heckuva worthwhile show, with Jazz & Rain delivering in the main event and Jessicka Havok vs Mia Yim winning a lot of match of the night plaudits. But chances are you’re back for Shine 4 anyway, with the influx of SHIMMER related talent, and a SHIMMER Title defence in the main event, as Saraya Knight brings her distinctive brand of belligerence to Ybor City in a battle with former WWE Women’s Champion Jazz… so let’s take a look at Shine’s newbies.

Saraya Knight – SHIMMER Champion
First SHIMMER Title defence for the 20+ year veteran, having defeated Cheerleader Melissa at SHIMMER Vol 48 earlier this year … “The English Rose” is the matriarch of female wrestling in Britain, having won multiple titles and promoted wrestling (WAW) with her husband “Rowdy” Ricky Knight for over 15 years … Now promotes World Association of Women’s Wrestling (WAWW) featuring women from all over Europe … Mother of WWE NXT Diva Paige … Came back from a believed career ending injury in 2008 … Former WOW Podcast guest … Likes to “play” when in the US, so keep your hands to yourself and your words soft and sweet in case you have to eat them.


Shine Wrestling 3: Scouting Report

Tomorrow sees Shine Wrestling return with SHINE 3, live from The Orpheum in Ybor City, FL. As per normal, there are a number of pricing options available from – and it also means it’s time for another Scouting Report. Only four talents are making their debuts on this show, so for background on the competitors not listed here, please refer back to the SHINE 1 and SHINE 2 Scouting Reports…

Luscious Latasha
From “Temptation Island”, pint-sized Latasha stands just 4’11″, but she’s a little firecracker … Trained by (amongst others) similarly undersized Matt Hyson aka Spike Dudley … Best known for her run in WSU, where she was the first ever WSU Spirit Champion, and one half of the tag team champions with Jana … Looking to make an impact with Gabby Gilbert as the tag team “Rainbow Bright” (they’ve even got a joint twitter account) … We talked to Latasha at the start of the year for the first edition of “My Name Is…” where she talked about her desire to work more places this year … Toured with REINA in Japan earlier in the year … Watch out for her Luscious Breaker (neckbreaker) (more…)

Rhia O’Reilly has issues with HONOUR

Sometimes, even with the best intentions, you can still raise the ire of someone, and that’s exactly what has happened with HONOUR‘s article about the new partnership between Rhia O’Reilly and Amazon Ayesha Ray. She took to YouTube to talk about how she is not merely the instigator of fights and leaves them for Ray to finish, displaying her newly-won WAWW British Championship as proof that she can get it done by herself.

Elsewhere in HONOUR’s 2nd anniversary issue – which is now being released on a bi-monthly basis – Nikki Roxx, Athena and Veda Scott are all interviewed, there is a look at SHIMMER‘s latest DVD releases and Mercedes Martinez‘s shoot interview, how AIW‘s Girls Night Out series has grown, and a new feature which will track the progress of eight women – including Brooke Tessmacher, Courtney Rush and Evie – over the next year.

Click the picture to jump to the latest issue, and click after the jump to see O’Reilly’s video response. (more…)

Shine Wrestling 2: Scouting Report

Last month, I knocked up a scouting report to familiarise viewers with the competitors for Shine Wrestling’s inaugural iPPV on WNNLive. It went down very well, so in anticipation of tomorrow night’s return to iPPV (ordering details here), it’s time to meet the new kids on the block for Shine 2…

Former SHIMMER Champion has done it all … Former two time NWA World Women’s Champion as well … Will be teaming with Christina Von Eerie in a team billed as MSEERIE against Made In Sin … Renowned for her extreme flexibility … Eleven year mat veteran … Microbiologist by day … Uses a modification to the DDT called the Desecrator as a finish … In SHIMMER competition in March, teamed with Von Eerie to beat Kalamity & Hailey Hatred … Has suffered a series of injuries over the last few years which have curtailed her career somewhat … Reports suggest she is less than 100% now …


KC Cassidy on training with Lance Storm

KC Cassidy has recently returned from three months training with the Storm Wrestling Academy in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and has offered some thoughts on her experience living abroad.

The former self-professed PWWA Champion – who claims she hails from Bitchville, Australia – wrote a blog for Australian women’s wrestling site NHB Girls about her time. You can click here to read the whole blog, but below are a couple of excerpts:

Lance [Storm] cares so much about his students and that shows when guys who have never trained before are able to walk away with three months of training and are able to confidently wrestle a match. Best decision I could have ever made for my career at this point was definitely going to Calgary to get trained by Lance.

I was able to prove to myself that hard work pays off and for me it paid off in a fantastic way.


Trinity talks to HONOUR

Former TNA and WWE star Trinity has been filling in her fans as to what she has been up to since stepping away from the ring in 2007 as part of her interview in the latest issue of HONOUR. She also looks at some of her memorable moments as part of a Knockout and also as an ECW Vixen when WWE relaunched the promotion in 2006.

Another interview sees Hannah and Holly Blossom answer questions about working in Ohio Valley Wrestling and Pro Wrestling: EVE, as well as what their future may hold.

Elsewhere, there are looks at Cherry Bomb, Mistress Belmont, the resurgence of Jazz, the downfall of the Knockouts Tag Team Titles, female managers and a second blog by CHIKARA‘s Veronica.

For all that and more – including reviews of SHINE 1 and The Wrestlers: Fighting With My Family – click the picture to the left and have a read.

Shine Wrestling: Scouting Report

This Friday, Shine Wrestling debuts with their first of what is planned to be monthly iPPVs through WWN. A sister promotion to SHIMMER, Shine has really impressed with its roster to date – an interesting mix of big names, cult favourites and promising indy stars. As a handy reference tool, we’ve knocked up mini scouting reports for each of the women involved. Keep it to hand when watching the show, and if you don’t recognise somebody, scroll down and you’ll know all you need to know in seconds

Sara Del Rey
Queen of Wrestling … Former SHIMMER singles and tag team champion … almost universally praised as the “Best In The World” … regular in Chikara, where she achieved her career dream of facing (and defeating) Aja Kong at last December’s JoshiMania … earlier this month main-evented for NCW: Femmes Fatales in Montreal … California native now lives in Florida … Originally trained by (amongst others) Bryan Danielson, she has adopted his LeBell Lock as one of her finishers … Master of inter gender matches, Del Rey will challenge Eddie Kingston for the Grand Championship of Chikara next weekend in Portland.

Female Fighting Phenom … Louisiana native is the oldest woman on the active Shine roster … Former competitor in the original ECW and in WWE … Two time former WWE Women’s Champion, defeating Trish Stratus both times … Inducted into WSU Hall of Fame in 2010 … Main-evented WSU’s first ever iPPV ‘Breaking Barriers’ vs Mercedes Martinez in 2010 … Had a memorable brawl with LuFisto at NCW: Femmes Fatales VIII in Montreal in March … Married to former WWE wrestler Rodney Mack, with whom they run a wrestling promotion and training school in Louisiana … Still has a lot to offer.


Aussie invasion in HONOUR

Australia’s Shazza McKenzie is one of the two big interviews featured in HONOUR Magazine this month. The bouncing cheerleader discusses starting out, her relationships with Madison Eagles, Jessie McKay and Veda Scott, wrestling in SHIMMER and also being a part of the Captured Beauty forum – which is the same group which produces this very e-mag. Also, fellow Aussie and NHB Girls founder Rhi Lockwood discusses her love for wrestling and talks about supporting your local promotions.

Allysin Kay is the cover girl, and talks about the Midwest Militia, working in WSU, her feelings on Mia Yim and the broken nose she suffered earlier this year. It’s a pretty candid chat, so it’s worth a read.

Elsewhere, there is a look at Maxine‘s departure from WWE, LuFisto celebrating 15 years in wrestling, intergender rivalries, double standards between women and men, and a preview of SHINE later this month. Click the picture to jump to the magazine and have a read.

In Video: Tara talks TNA Knockouts

Just a quickie today, as there is a big weekend of action starting tomorrow (including a special episode of the Women Of Wrestling Podcast), but we stumbled across this interview with former Fight Like A Girl guest Tara ahead of tonight’s live episode of Impact Wrestling. It is conducted as part of an article by the Miami Herald’s Jim Varsallone which offers a behind-the-scenes look at TNA.

As part of the chat, Tara hints at her training up new talent, getting respect from male wrestlers and fans, and how she, as a 41-year old (and she’s proud of that), keeps up with women half her age. She’s a great ambassador for TNA, and is a great advertisement for strong women, and we like her a lot. Click the jump for the interview. (more…)

HONOUR Top 50 list revealed

Last year, HONOUR magazine – then known as RESPECT – produced its first ever Top 50 list, revealing who it believed were the top female grapplers out there. It was won by then-WSU Champion Mercedes Martinez, who was more than two years into her reign at the time.

Well, it’s time for the 2012 rundown, and there are risers, fallers and new entries galore. You can click the picture to have a read of the latest issue to see if Martinez retained the top spot – and if not, who knocked her from that lofty perch.

Also included in the issue is a look at the importance of WSU’s Uncensored Rumble V next weekend, reviews of SHIMMER Volumes 43 and 44 (the latter of which was reviewed by new women’s wrestling addict Alex Greenfield) as well as nCw Femmes Fatales VIII, and a new fan feature called “Why I Love Wrestling”. Check it all out.

Wendi Richter’s Cauliflower Alley speech online

Last Wednesday evening at the Cauliflower Alley Club‘s annual reunion banquet, two time former WWF Women’s Champion Wendi Richter was amongst the honorees (alongside, in this case, Judy Martin and Lisa Moretti). Save for a couple of brief WrestleReunion appearances in the mid 2000s, Richter (herself the victim of a McMahon “screwjob” twelve years before Montreal ever happened) happily kept her distance from the wrestling world for over 20 years before returning to surprisingly accept an induction in the WWE Hall of Fame Class of 2010. Her speech at CAC was said to be one of the highlights of the evening, and thanks to a transcript by Greg Oliver of SLAM! Wrestling, those not in attendance can get a chance to see what she had to say.

Richter, who has been critical in the past of WWE’s treatment of women (and haven’t we all from time to time?), took the opportunity to explain what she feels is missing from today’s WWE Divas, and where she feels she (and her generation) differ from the current product.

“I’m so proud to have gone to wrestling school to learn the fundamentals, because, without that foundation, you have no concept of psychology or, possibly, respect for this great sport… and I’m so proud, winning this award and the championships, based on my wrestling talent and hard work, and not on acting and T&A.”


Ontario & Quebec dish out their 2011 awards

NCW Femmes Fatales were big winners at the annual Quebec Wrestling Awards for 2011, which were announced yesterday on The French language website celebrates the history of Montreal wrestling as well as recognise the best in current day Quebec grappling – and these awards are now in their eleventh year. Femmes Fatales, which returns to action on March 10th, picked up a number of plaudits. LuFisto‘s feud with current NCW International Champion Kalamity won Feud of the Year in the province, while Femmes Fatales VII: World Summit (from October) won show of the year. Femmes Fatales VII was the show which saw Kalamity beat LuFisto for the title, and feature more international visitors than ever before, such as the debuting Yumi Ohka (who had a highly regarded match with Cheerleader Melissa), Tomoka Nakagawa, Kellie Skater and the return to the ring of Tiana Ringer. For having both feud and show of the year, as well as enhancing the international reputation of his promotion, Femmes Fatales booker Stéphane Bruyère was awarded the Best Booker award.

In other categories, Femmes Fatales placed strongly. The match between LuFisto & Ayako Hamada (which headlined FFV in March) was the runner up for Match of the Year (coming second to Kevin Steen vs Paul London from NSPW only on the basis of “first place votes” cast – and only then by a margin of one vote). LuFisto also placed second runner-up for Best Babyface, while “The Pink Flash” Kira was first runner-up in Rookie of the Year. In related news, Kira’s next challenge was announced today, as she will go one-on-one in an international challenge with “Rate Tank” Kellie Skater at Femmes Fatales VIII next month. (more…)

SHIMMER Front Row sells out in just over two hours

With no matches announced and only three names confirmed for the shows, front row tickets for the March SHIMMER tapings sold out last night in just over two hours on the SHIMMER message board. The tapings, which will comprise Vols 45-48 of the DVD series will be held across St Patrick’s Day Weekend on March 17th & 18th at SHIMMER’s traditional home, the Eagles Club in Berwyn, IL.

Ticket prices of $70 per day for front row (with each day comprising two full DVD tapings) and the promise by promoter Dave Prazak of a pulled back roster (after the excesses of October’s tapings, which featured 49 wrestlers across the weekend) didn’t appear to put off punters, who sold out both days in super quick time. So the bad news is that if you were hoping to go to these tapings, you’re already too late for ringside tickets – but the good news is that if you want to go, you can still purchase general admission tickets from the website. From someone who has been at seven SHIMMER weekends in the last four years, I can assure you that while ringside are the best seats in the house (naturally), the venue is intimate enough that even in the “back” row, you’re still only a few rows from ringside, and still have an amazing view of the action.

Announced so far are the SHIMMER Champion Cheerleader Melissa (who won the belt from Madison Eagles to close the October tapings on Vol 44) and the SHIMMER Tag Team Champions of Ayako Hamada & Ayumi Kurihara (who beat Daizee Haze & Tomoka Nakagawa on Vol 41)

Tomoka topples Kana at SMASH.23 (now with video)

With the WWE Championship having changed hands a near inconceivable nine times since May this year, wrestling fans in the West have gotten used to hot potato title changes. Thankfully, such quick swaps are far from the norm in Japan, but in what one hopes won’t be a regular thing, one of the more “Americanised” puro products (Yoshihiro Tajiri’s SMASH) followed up crowning first ever champions in both the male and female divisions by having both champions lose their titles on their first defences at today’s SMASH.23 event at Korakuen Hall.

While former WWE wrestler (and Divas trainer) Dave “Fit” Finlay captured the SMASH Title from the Lance Storm trained Starbuck, former SHIMMER Tag Team Champion Tomoka Nakagawa took her opportunity and lifted the SMASH Divas Title from the inaugural champion Kana in a fairly brief 8:53 match, avoiding a kick and rolling up the “Most Dangerous” one with a schoolgirl. Quite a surprise, then, to see SMASH’s most prominent and vocal female competitor lose her title on her first defence – but you can’t argue that it’s great to see Tomoka win a major singles title. Somewhat underappreciated by the masses, Nakagawa is long overdue a spotlight. The question is – what sort of a reign will she get? The next main numbered SMASH show will be SMASH.24 on December 30th – and you’d imagine that Kana will want her title back pretty damn quickly.

Click after the jump for a shot taken seconds after Tomoka’s victory, video of the match, and other related results from today. (more…)

Allison Danger hits the UK this weekend

This weekend, SHIMMER co-founder Allison Danger touches down in the UK for her first bookings in England since 2007. The triple header takes in shows for HEW (Herts & Essex Wrestling), WAW (World Association of Wrestling) and “The Return” show for WAW’s sister promotion WAWW (World Association of Women’s Wrestling).

While her match for Sunday’s WAW show remains undecided (with the promotion waiting to see how the land lies after Saturday’s WAWW show), Danger is scheduled to renew her rivalry with “Sweet” Saraya Knight on both Friday and Saturday in one-on-one bouts. This will hardly be the first time the two have faced off in a singles match – In addition to a fabulous old school scuffle during Danger’s last UK tour in 2007 (which you can watch in full here), they two went at it again in a brutal British rounds style match last month at SHIMMER Vol 41 (soon to be released via the SHIMMER website). Both encounters are the scheduled main events on their cards, and on Friday at HEW, they will clash for the newly vacant HEW Women’s Championship – a title most recently held by Britani Knight.