When I looked at the card for the Bull Nakano EMPRESS retirement show, I was surprised at what I saw. Not the card itself, which looked very appealing, but the order in which the matches would take place. Unlike American shows which have a card, but barring the main event, you probably won’t know the exact order of the matches. When it comes to Japan, the match listing is usually the order in which those contests would take place. Surprisingly, the singles match featuring veterans and legends Ayako Hamada and Aja Kong would OPEN the show, while the final match on the card would be between two women with comparatively little experience – one had just three years under her belt, while the other had debuted just 15 months ago.
Having said that, the match between Ice Ribbon’s ICEx60 and International Ribbon Tag Team Champion Hikaru Shida and Wonder Of Stardom and one half of the Goddesses Of Stardom Yuzuki Aikawa put forth a hell of a contest, and proved that they were worthy of headlining the card. Even more surprisingly, 28-year old Aikawa won the match in front of 3000 fans at the Tokyo Dome City Hall – though that could be indicative of the potential influence that she could have on joshi in the future…
Despite being trained in taekwondo for ten years, Aikawa made her living before becoming a wrestler as a bikini model and a singer in a girl group, selling picture books, DVDs and CDs, mostly down to her beauty and curvy figure. However, she packed it all in just over two years ago to make the transition to becoming a professional wrestler – funny, in the western world, it usually works the other way around. A year after making the switch, she debuted on October 31, 2010 as part of her own card which she produced, taking on Nanae Takahashi. You would imagine that considering that it was her own card, it was her first match and that she is a pretty woman, she would be eased into the situation by a veteran of the business.
No such luck. Takahashi defeated her, and as part of the deal, beat the shit out of her. (more…)
Madison Eagles was flooded with messages from both fans and peers on Twitter after revealing on the Women of Wrestling Podcast on Christmas Eve that the knee injury that she is currently sidelined with could be career ending if it doesn’t heal of its own accord. Should it require surgery, she will be unable to wrestle again.
The 27-year old Australian, who spent close to two years as SHIMMER Champion before dropping the belt to Cheerleader Melissa back in October, suffered the injury two days after those DVD tapings while preparing for her match against Kana at CHIKARA the following weekend. She hyperextended her knee while executing a double stomp, causing her to collapse in pain. After having to wait 6 weeks for an MRI, she was put in a brace for the next month and a half, and only had it removed in the last couple of weeks, though the healing process is still agonisingly slow. She told us that the injury could heal naturally, but there is no time frame for a recovery, meaning that the winner of 2011′s PWI Female 50 could spend the bulk of 2012 on the sidelines, unable to capitalise from the extra buzz surrounding her following the win.
Eagles’ character’s descent into madness during her SHIMMER title reign was a joy to watch. She became more and more self-obsessed and paranoid as each show went on, but – uncharacteristically for a heel – won all of her title defences clean, rarely cheated and gave the fans no tangible reason to boo her. As it turns out, despite not being cheered, she received the overwhelming support of the audience at October’s tapings when she was presented with the Female 50 plaque. From there, Eagles received a mixed reaction from the crowd, as it was hard to hate someone who had given and given to wrestling, beating every Diva and Knockout to the top spot and doing so with comparatively little mainstream coverage.
We at Ringbelles hope she enjoys a full recovery so she can return to the ring, but also urge her to take her time, as rushing back could do more harm than good. Normally, we wouldn’t need to say that, but this is a woman who thought she could wrestle through a fractured elbow and wrist last year… (more…)
As 2011 comes to a close, and Christmas is just around the corner, around this time people look back at the year and reflect on their blessings. This is true in wrestling fandom as well as anywhere else. If you are a fan of female wrestling, there was a ton to be grateful for in 2011, although if you concentrated on WWE, I feel bad for you – nothing good, aside from Kong’s debut as Kharma, happened in 2011 in that company. I wanted to take the time to look back and write about what I, personally, was grateful for this year and share with you my thoughts. Feel free to comment and tell me what you were grateful for in wrestling this year.
Thanks to my trips to SHIMMER: Women Athletes, I was able to see a number of women wrestle in person for the first time that I personally admire and look up to.
With her health problems in 2010 and being rotated out of the September ’10 SHIMMER tapings, I had worried I’d not get the chance to see her in person. Fortunately that fear was baseless as Lufi was back and stronger than ever. In April, I thoroughly enjoyed her matches with Tomoka Nakagawa (it’s always a treat to watch her wrestle joshi women), Sassy Stephie, and the four way match with her, Portia Perez, Cheerleader Melissa and Serena Deeb. However, at the October tapings I wasn’t sure she would be there. She had had heart surgery in July to repair a hole in her heart, and with the precautions she now has to take, I felt it doubtful.
To my great pleasure, she was not only there but had some of the best matches of the tapings. The four way between her, Tomoka, MsChif, and Kellie Skater was just plain fun. I popped huge for MsChif’s Freddy Krueger gear (I’ve been a fan of Nightmare on Elm Street for years) but Lufi’s Pink Power Ranger gear was incredibly cute! Her match against Mia Svensson is a personal favourite – you have the up and coming taking on the veteran, giving the former a chance to see what she can do. However, Lufisto was involved in one of the best matches of the weekend, and given the talent that was on display, this is a bold statement but entirely true. In Kana‘s last match, she wrestled Lufi and it was tremendous. Kana pulled out the win, but while everyone else stood, I remained in my seat. I refused to applaud unless Kana shook Lufisto’s hand – I felt that Lufisto had gone toe to toe with her, and unless she also recognised this and shook her hand, I didn’t feel that Kana was worthy of respect. However, she did.
Lufisto is a lady I have so much respect and admiration for, I can absolutely say it was wonderful to see her wrestle in person. (more…)
Since the last Roundup, Allison Danger has received another British stamp in her passport, and her luggage going home was a little heavier, as it contained the World Association of Women’s Wrestling’s World Championship belt. The 34-year old defeated Sweet Saraya for the vacant belt on Saturday – after Blue Nikita was stripped of the title – in the main event of WAWW’s The Return show, which was the promotion’s first card in two years, and its first all-women show in three. Danger won the belt with an armbar with manager Tommy Lee pushing against her for extra leverage out of the referee’s view. It was Danger’s sole win of the weekend, as she was beaten by Saraya the previous evening for the vacant Herts and Essex Wrestling Women’s title and was on the losing end alongside Liberty against Saraya and daughter Britani Knight on Sunday.
That tag team match was also Britani’s last match in World Association of Wrestling – her family’s promotion where the 19-year old made her in-ring debut at the age of 13 back in 2005. Couldn’t tell you what she’s doing next though… (more…)
The photograph to the right is not Rachel Summerlyn moments after slaughtering a pig… although it may look that way. That’s Summerlyn in the immediate aftermath of a bloody battle with Scot Summers in ACW a couple of months ago. The match, which took place on July 17th’s “From Innocence to Insanity 5″ event featured Summers defending his Anarchy Televised Title against Summerlyn, who was already one half of the ACW Tag Team Champions (with Jessica James).
As Jennifer pointed out last weekend, ACW is one promotion who really don’t bother to distinguish between males and females as far as championship contention is concerned, and this match is *absolutely* no exception. As you might expect, given the post match picture, there is quite a bit of claret in this match, so it’s not for the faint of heart.
Leave your thoughts in the comments section.
(WARNING: This Roundup contains spoilers for this week’s Impact show.)
I don’t care about Velvet Sky. She’s a choker, she sucks and Gail Kim is far better because she’s been in WWE. And they’re my thoughts because that’s what TNA’s bookers WANT me to think.
OK, maybe it’s not intentional, but the superpush of Gail Kim to the Knockouts singles and tag team titles in less than a month of her return has sent a signal to the rest of the girls that they aren’t stars unless they’ve been in WWE. Fine – Kim was a star in TNA before her muted three years in New York, but her stock had dropped like her stone since leaving and returning. But not to TNA, oh no. Instead, she was portrayed as the unstoppable force alongside Karen Jarrett and Madison Rayne, beating up Tara (who’s one of the best workers that the Knockouts division has), winning the tag belts and then claiming the Knockouts belt from Sky at Turning Point in what was Sky’s first title defence on either TV or pay-per-view. Sure, now Kim looks like the queen, but as a result, Tara, Sky and in a residual way, Brooke Tessmacher have all had their wings clipped, meaning that there are precious few credible babyfaces to challenge for the belt.
Last week, I wrote a piece about why it was in the best interests of all the Knockouts if Velvet Sky won at Turning Point and retained the title. It would establish her first reign as champion as something credible, and Kim wouldn’t really lose much as she was still the Knockouts Tag Champ and could secure a rematch due to her alignment with Jarrett (which still puzzles me, as why is she still Knockouts VP when it was Eric Bischoff who put her in charge and the company is being governed by Dixie Carter and Sting these days?). However, TNA decided that Sky’s important first run as champ was expendable, as the belts clearly don’t matter – and that’s true, as in the last 100 days, the Knockouts belt has changed hands five different times.
According to Dave Meltzer, the idea is that TNA can now market Sky as the plucky babyface going for the Knockouts belt and overcoming the odds to get it back. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t she do that for FIVE YEARS as part of her quest to win the belt for the first time at Bound For Glory, then won it in a four-way match where Jarrett was the biased ref who was pulling for the heels and wouldn’t give the babyfaces an inch? (more…)
Portia Perez made Anarchy Championship Wrestling history tonight by claiming the promotion’s Heavyweight Championship in the opening round of the promotion’s 6th Annual Lone Star Classic tournament in Austin, TX. Perez defeated Rachel Summerlyn and then-champion Darin Childs to win the match and the title, as the belt would be defended in every round of the tournament, much like the American Joshi belt was in last year’s American Joshi Queen Of Queens tournament – where Summerlyn lost the title to Daffney, who dropped it to Jessica James/Lady Poison, and then Perez won the title and tournament in the final.
As Jennifer Logsdon explained earlier today in the first part of her look at alternatives to Ring Of Honor, ACW is a promotion that prides itself in having the women interacting with the men and proving that both genders can work together to present interesting and absorbing matches and storylines. The result certainly caused a storm on our Twitter feed, with reactions being a mixture of shock, disbelief and joy. Certainly, it is a bold move to put the promotion’s top prize on a female talent, but fans have been conditioned to treat the women as equals, and having Perez hold the title proves it beyond any doubt. (more…)
On September 24th, 2011, Ring of Honor returned to television on Sinclair Broadcast network. Former owner Cary Silkin has stayed on with them as an executive and although Sinclair doesn’t have a channel in many cities, the company sees this as a positive step forward. For those who are unable to see it on television, you can view each week’s episode for free on their website.
However, on September 27th, Sara Del Rey noted on her Twitter:
I just noticed I’m not a part of the ROH roster anymore…boo
In fact, if you take a look at the website, not only is Del Rey not listed as part of the roster, but neither are fellow Women of Honor Daizee Haze or MsChif. The only woman who is listed is Mia Yim, as part of Prince Nana’s Embassy stable. Given that this is considered a new start of sorts for the company with their debut on SBG, perhaps it isn’t that surprising that ROH is choosing to focus on their male talent and grow their audience from there. However, other fans have taken note of this. Over at ROHWorld.com, Dave Wood wrote a piece explaining why he believes a female division in ROH would be a benefit, and gives details on how to re-create one, which you can read here and here.
One consistent criticism was the lack of time given to their matches. Another was that there were no storylines, except for sporadic times (such as last year when Daizee and Del Rey were clamouring for competition). You would have a match every now and again on the HDNet show or on the iPPV with no background attached. It’s hard to be invested in a division that isn’t really given any real focus.
Other companies have taken the ball ROH dropped and ran with it. Two promotions come instantly to mind that have incorporated women into not only a division of their own but have integrated them with the male roster, producing memorable feuds and showing that when booked right, women can have great, credible matches with men. (more…)
I can’t say that I watch a lot of Anarchy Championship Wrestling – though I keep up with storylines and results, as it does well at producing episodic shows – but after watching last year’s American Joshi Queen of Queens tournament, I made a promise to myself that I would buy this year’s event and give it a watch. After all, last year – in its second annual outing – it firmly established itself as being one of the best tournaments in the western world. Even though I covered the results as they happened back in June, I wanted to see how it all went down, so I put my money down at Smart Mark Video and waited in anticipation of its arrival. Last Saturday, it arrived – while I was at a wedding in Italy, no less, so I had to wait until I got back two days later to slap it into the DVD player.
The first thing that you notice is the cover, which is clean and simple, featuring Amanda Fox and Serena Deeb. Last year’s edition featured a full-on Alice In Wonderland spoof featuring the participants taking up the different roles, so it was a nice change to present something different this year around. The discs – while DVD-Rs – also have a professional look to them, with the DVD cover image replicated on them. Thumbs up for first impressions.
There are more compliments to be extended, too. The opening montage introducing the show was very ACW – gritty, raw and emotional – and the official photos in the ring before the tournament was used to produce a nice angle. Portia Perez – looking and acting very different to how she does in places like SHIMMER and Squared Circle Wrestling – attacked fellow participant Lillie Mae with the wrench that she carries around with her, breaking her nose and putting her out of the tourney. Here in ACW, Perez is cold, calculating, devious and dangerous. She is easily the most intimidating woman on the roster. (more…)
Summer’s on its way out, the nights are drawing in and the temperatures will start to drop soon. What better way to cheer yourself up than watching some of the slew of women’s wrestling DVDs which are available for purchase and pre-order right now? No joke – there are stacks of them, and buying them will help support the promotions which can live or die by their sales. From tournaments to marathon matches to crazy brawls to nuclear heat to funny British accents, there is surely something here to whet your appetite. Besides, it’s around $15 for each of these DVDs which last around three hours, and is more bang for your buck than a solitary 4 minute Diva or Knockout match on pay-per-view.
If any of the DVDs grab your attention, just click on the picture and it will transport you through to the order page…
The first offering is from SHIMMER, which released volume 37 a few weeks ago, and is probably the best volume in the promotion’s history – something which we claimed at the time, which shows how it stood out straight away. Notable moments include LuFisto and Tomoka Nakagawa‘s hard-hitting comedy match, Courtney Rush busting out massive suplexes on Mena Libra, the debut of ReGeneration X, Christina Von Eerie holding her own against Sara Del Rey, all the way up to the return of Rebecca Knox and the debust of Saraya and Britani Knight, Daizee Haze and Serena Deeb putting on a wrestling showcase, 3S becoming the most popular tag team and Madison Eagles taking on Mercedes Martinez at her own game, this DVD has everything you could want. Buy it. Just buy it. (more…)
Thursday, July 19, 2001 was a pretty humdrum day in world history. As a frame of reference, the most newsworthy thing was the Code Red virus taking hold of a massive number of computers after being released online 6 days previously.
In the world of wrestling, Steve Austin was on SmackDown, showing “the old Stone Cold” was back when he stunnered everyone in the ring ahead of the WWF Invasion pay-per-view, which was to take place in three days. It would intrigue wrestling fans who wondered what would happen if the WWF and WCW ever clashed on one show. As it turned out, it would be a decent – and high grossing – show which was followed by months of killing the WCW image to the point that it was worthless by November.
However, also on this very day ten years ago at Jefferson County Fairgrounds in Hillsboro, MO, a young lady by the name of Christine was handed her first ever defeat in a mid-card contest at the hands of a debuting wrestler to Gateway Championship Wrestling. That wrestler was MsChif.
Rachel Collins had been asked by her colleague at her human genetics job – the role she had before going into microbiology – what she would love to do more than anything. Concluding that it would be to learn to wrestle, she decided to train at at GCW under the tutelage of Johnny Greenpeace (who was the tough trainer) and Jack Adonis (who was the comic relief), with the black-metal-banshee character naturally evolving while she was learning her craft. Even though she never believed that she would wrestle outside of St Louis, MsChif would go on to win a shedload of top championships including the SHIMMER title, the NWA World Women’s Title and the NWA Midwest/IWA Mid-South Women’s Title – which she held all at one time during 2008 and 2009 – as well as winning ChickFight IV and being ranked 4th in the PWI Female Fifty for 2009.
When asked for comment, MsChif told Ringbelles: “It’s crazy to think I’ve been wrestling for 10 years now. It doesn’t feel like it’s been so long. Wrestling has brought on some very amazing times, places and people. I couldn’t imagine life without wrestling.” (more…)
Following two colossally un-newsworthy weeks, we’re overflowing with talking points in this edition of the Roundup. There were a number of big shows taking place over the weekend, with three big winners coming out of it. Hailey Hatred, who is the new JWP Openweight Champion; Lexxus, who is the new number one contender to the WSU World Title after winning the Uncensored Rumble, and; Rachel Summerlyn, who won the third annual Anarchy Championship Wrestling American Joshi Queen of Queens Tournament.
The first big moment of the weekend took place in Osaka, Japan, when Hatred defeated Leon to not only retain her TLW and IMW titles, but win the J-1 Grand Prix AND become the first American (and indeed, first foreigner) to claim the JWP Openweight title – a belt which has been in existence since late 1992. It’s not only the crowning moment in her 9 year career, but also proves to the world that the rest of the world can keep up – and in some cases, be superior to – the well storied and decorated joshis that have helped to define what women’s wrestling in the modern era should be all about.
Standing a lofty 5’10”, 27-year old Hatred started out fairly quietly, wrestling in smaller promotions and being frequently eliminated in the early rounds of the ChickFight Tournaments. She also wrestled Mickie Knuckles in her very first wrestling match in IWA: Mid South in 2003, almost breaking the rookie’s neck with an errant powerbomb onto the back of an open chair. However, she returned to the promotion three years later to claim the Women’s Title – one of a number of singles titles that she won during her time wrestling in her home country, including the World Wrestling Coalition Women’s title in 2008 and the first Absolute Intense Wrestling Women’s crown in May 2009 by beating Sammi Lane in the tournament final. (more…)
She talked about winning the whole shebang as part of last week’s Women of Wrestling Podcast, and she came through – Rachel Summerlyn went through Christina Von Eerie, last year’s winner Portia Perez and Athena to become the 2011 Anarchy Championship Wrestling American Joshi Queen of Queens.
The tournament’s been known for providing upsets – such as little Jessica James making Sara Del Rey tap out in the opening round of last year’s tournament – and this year was no exception, with Five Star Amanda Fox repeating her success earlier this year by beating Serena Deeb to progress to the semi-finals. However, the shockers didn’t start there – in fact, big angles took place even before the opening bell rung…
Lillie Mae – who was due to wrestle Athena in the opening round – was taken out of action with a broken nose during the group photo with all the tournament’s participants. She was attacked with a wrench by Perez – Mae was replaced by Angel Blue. (more…)
This weekend, Anarchy Championship Wrestling presents its third annual American Joshi Queen of Queens Tournament, featuring some of the best indy talent from around the USA. To celebrate that, we decided to have an Anarchy themed show featuring the bacon *and* the eggs from Rachel & Jessica’s Excellent Tag Team – Rachel Summerlyn & Jessica James. We’re joined first by Jessica for a thoroughly enthralling chat about her career to date. Jessica admits she’s barely on the internet, so she’s one of those wrestlers that there isn’t that much about online. Hear stories about training with Booker T and Sharmell at PWA (and how that compares to Booker’s appearance on Tough Enough), the history and development of Lady Poison, Texas indies, ninja sneaking skills and just how close she is to Rachel. Then it’s Rachel‘s time to specifically plug the Queen of Queens tournament, including what we need to know about lesser known names Amanda Fox and Lillie Mae. We take the chance to ask Rachel about her own debut (in a tournament, no less, at the 2006 Queen of the Death Matches), life lessons learned from Daffney, how she and Jessica came together, her weight loss, Anarchy Championship Wrestling as a whole (ranging from prom nights to thumbtack matches), eliciting emotion in wrestling, future goals and more.
Keep an eye on the website this weekend for coverage of the 2011 American Joshi Queen of Queens!!
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
In last week’s Roundup, I posted a bit of a rambling vent about the booking of the Divas and (mostly) the Knockouts. While it received support, it also received criticism, saying that it implied that all the fault of the poor state of women’s wrestling in TNA and WWE was entirely down to the writers and promoters, and didn’t take into account the actual wrestling ability – or in many cases, lack of it – of the performers involved. So for the sake of fairness, I’m going to put the actual wrestling skills of WWE Divas and TNA Knockouts under the microscope…
Before we go on, there’s going to be a lot of criticism here, and names will be named. I’m just calling it as I see it, and it’s just one man’s opinion. If you don’t agree, that’s fine – I’m not saying that my word is gospel, and you may enjoy what’s presented to you. If that’s you, great, and more power to you. However, we at Ringbelles have committed to being honest, even if it’s not a popular opinion.
And for anyone who may say that I’m in no place to comment as I’ve never been in the ring before, that also means that my compliments are not valid either, as I’ve clearly never been in a ring – unless you count a few ring announcing gigs. (more…)
In 2009, Anarchy Championship Wrestling based out of Austin, Texas started an annual tradition when they promoted the first “American Joshi Queen of Queens” tournament (won by Daizee Haze). I got it and enjoyed it, and really didn’t think much of anything about ACW until the next show came along. This is therefore the first ACW DVD I’ve picked up since then, and the lineup looks stellar – so let’s see if the action delivers.
We start with some sort of skit with a group calling themselves The Submission Squad. I recognise Athena, but I have no idea who the others are. Whoever they are, they are completely annoying. One of them is wearing a belt of some kind, and I assume they’re wrestlers. You wouldn’t necessarily know that to see them. The skit involves someone called Davy Vega who may or may not have had a plane crash and who may or may not have crawled four miles from the wreckage of the plane to get here. One of the guys says “What the hell is going on?”. I agree with this.
Next up is Jessica James backstage. She is apparently a last minute addition to the tourney, and it becomes clear that she’s up against Sara Del Rey. “Crap”, she says. Again, I agree with this comment.
We’re now inside the building, and there are more men that I’ve never seen before talking about things I know nothing about. I hit FF. After three consecutive skits, we get… a skit. This again features Athena and some of the annoying guys from the first skit. All things told, that’s ten minutes of the DVD and I haven’t seen a wrestling ring yet. Oh dear. (more…)
Former SHIMMER Tag Team Champion and ACW Queen of Queens Portia Perez talks to RESPECT magazine about breaking into the business at a young age, working with Nicole Matthews and the reception of women’s wrestling in Canada.
ACW, WSU and SHIMMER wrestler Athena also takes part in an interview with the magazine. The graduate, of Booker T’s PWA training school, talks about wrestling in Texas, being taken as a ‘Diva’ in the locker room and working to establish herself as a legitimate athlete.
As a prelude to the upcoming WSU Uncensored Rumble event on June 25, we look at one of Mercedes Martinez‘s biggest threats – Jessicka Havok (interview provided by DirtyDirtySheets.com). As well as this we review WSU’s 4-Year Anniversary DVD.
To read the latest issue, click the image above.
Follow RESPECT on twitter
Later this month, the third annual Anarchy Championship Wrestling American Joshi Queen of Queens tournament takes place, so as part of this week’s retro, we show the beginnings of ACW’s American Joshi division. Before there was a title, before there was a tournament, there was Rachel Summerlyn (with red hair) taking on Mickie Knuckles.
This contest from January 14, 2007 is essentially a rematch from Summerlyn’s debut match from two months earlier on November 3, 2006 at the IWA: Mid South Queen of the Deathmatches tournament under the name of Rachel Putski – that’s right; Summerlyn’s first wrestling match for money was a Thumbtack Death Match, which she lost after being planted into pins.
Knuckles was the main woman in IWA: MS and was known at the time primarily as a brawler, though this contest shows flashes of the technical prowess which she showed before this point, and since, both under her Knuckles character as also as Isabella Smothers, who along with Jessie Belle Smothers make up the Smothers Twisted Daughters tag team which is currently gaining a name in Ohio Valley Wrestling. (more…)
The Big News
In what was a pretty classy move by WWE, not only did they let Kharma go out there and tell the truth, they also left the door open for her return.
Following a week of speculation – started by the Wrestling Observer/Figure Four Online by saying she would be out of action for nine months – Kharma came clean to the world and revealed her pregnancy on Raw last night.
In a straight promo – much like Edge’s when he revealed he had to retire – she told us about how she had two dreams, the first of which was to be a WWE Superstar (note she said Superstar instead of Diva… telling. Also, she said the word “wrestling” or “wrestler” three times). She talked about applying for Tough Enough 2 back in 2002 – something I’ve documented in the past – and how Jim Ross thought she was too fat to make it. Undeterred, she travelled to Japan, scrubbed floors and earned the right to train and become a star there, as she told to us in the Women of Wrestling Podcast last year.
From there, Kharma also talked about how she had always wanted a family, and officially let us know about her pregnancy – something that received a nice reception from the fans. She described it as a “high risk pregnancy”, which is understandable considering her working environment, thanked the audience for their support and said that she would return in a year.
Of course, with this being WWE, there was an interruption by the Bella Twins who mocked Kharma with some poorly written, and even more poorly delivered, insults. Seriously, if Nikki and Brie were any more wooden, they could have been part of the hull of Noah’s Ark. Perhaps they didn’t fully believe or support the words they were saying, so it came across that way in the promo. Still, Kharma promised that she would be back for them in a year, which makes sure that we haven’t seen the last of her in WWE. (more…)
With less than a month to go before the third annual Anarchy Championship Wrestling American Joshi Queen Of Queens tournament, the first match in the opening round has been announced – it will be Serena Deeb meeting ACW’s upstart antagonist, “Five Star” Amanda Fox.
Like NCW: Femmes Fatales, ACW has a history of putting together matches between wrestlers who either haven’t faced each other before, or putting experienced grapplers against newer faces to help them get more ring time with different opponents who they can learn from. In addition, ACW has thrown up some surprising results – in last year’s QoQ, little Jessica James choked out and defeated Sara Del Rey in the opening round and Portia Perez beat MsChif and Daizee Haze en route to winning the whole tournament and the ACW American Joshi Championship in the process.
Seven names have been announced for the show in Live Oak, TX on June 26 – as well as Deeb and Fox, Christina Von Eerie, Athena, Mia Yim, Lillie Mae and Rachel Summerlyn will participate, and there will be a special appearance from former American Joshi Champion Daffney.
Interested in going? Click here for more information.
The Big News
One of only of a handful of transgendered wrestlers in the world has made history again.
The original WILD Wrestling match scheduled for the show at Insane Wrestling League in Chino, CA, last Friday was meant to be Buggy taking on Allison Danger. When that was announced as no longer taking place, champion Lucky O’Shea was drafted in to face a mystery opponent. That turned out to be “The Bloodthirsty Vixen” Amanda, who defeated O’Shea to win the title.
Standing 5’9” and weighing 140lb and hailing from Long Beach, CA, 28-year old Mariah Moreno started out as a manager, then trained at the Santino Bros Wrestling Academy in Bell Gardens in 2008 before making her debut a year later.
Speaking to the Windy City Times at the end of last year, Amanda described when she started living her life as a woman in her teenage years: “I was born male and, at age 15, I decided to start living my life as a female,” said Moreno, who had breast-augmentation surgery about five years ago. “I plan on going forward with [full transition] surgery within the next five to seven years.” (more…)
The Big News
Daffney is no longer a part of TNA – she issued a statement to Diva Dirt informing us of the situation:
Yesterday my picture was taken down off of the TNA roster page. My contract expires today and TNA did not renew it. I do not know if it has anything to do with it, but I’ve make a Worker’s Comp against them claim due to injuries I’ve sustained in the ring and my lawyers said to not go into anymore details.
Daffney hasn’t been seen in TNA in 2011. She is slated to appear at Anarchy Championship Wrestling Queen Of Queens on June 26 in Live Oak, TX and at a number of signing appearances over the next few months. Check out the We Want Daffney Facebook page to see if there is one near to you.
This situation does add some credence to this article though, which claims that working conditions in TNA are poor, and that you had better hope you never get hurt under a TNA contract, or you’ll be in trouble:
Angelina Love (who, as leader of The Beautiful People, has been one of company’s established ratings draws for years now) noted in a 2009 interview that she had suffered a very serious concussion at the TNA Lockdown PPV that had just taken place. (This was the in the triple threat cage match with Awesome Kong and Taylor Wilde for the TNA women’s championship, in which Love landed wrong, hit her head and was completely out of it for the rest of the match. With things quickly turning into a shambles, Taylor then improvised a finish on the fly, so Love could win the Knockouts title as scripted. Despite the quick-thinking Taylor’s best efforts, the finish still looked awful: Love could barely do anything, and even standing and smiling with the title at the end seemed beyond her.) Love herself confirms this in the interview: “I was pretty much carried by four security guards to the trainer’s office. I was completely blacked out. I don’t even remember winning.” The interviewer then notes that TNA put her in a match two days later. Love, who has a history of suffering bad concussions, confirmed this, as well as noting: “You’ve got to make a living, so I was doing indie shows about 5 days later. It probably wasn’t too safe…” This story threw up several troubling questions in my mind: Why did TNA put her in a match so soon after what was a fairly serious head injury? What doctor in their right mind told her to get back in the ring just two days after suffering such a severe concussion? Did she even go see a doctor? Could she have afforded to see one?
Either way, we wish Daffney a speedy recovery, and good health and fortune for the future. For someone who gave their body to TNA and allowed herself to be put through tables and thumbtacks for our entertainment, she deserves some good fortune.
LuFisto described it as a “dream come true” – a year after they were originally scheduled to wrestle back on February 10, 2010 in the main event of Femmes Fatales II, the Super Hardcore Anime finally got the chance to take on Ayako Hamada at NCW: Femmes Fatales V last Saturday in Montreal. The two engaged in what’s been described a classic encounter over the Femmes Fatales Championship which saw LuFisto retain the title with a Burning Hammer.
Other notable results include Mercedes Martinez beating Kalamity, and Courntney Rush (the former PJ Tyler) defeating Cat Power in a Combat De Rue in what Power later informed us would be her last match. The Windsor, Ontario native is looking to go back to school and is also looking to continue her boxing training. Stew and I talked to Cat last week as part of the Women Of Wrestling Podcast – her final interview as an active wrestler. We at Ringbelles wish her nothing but the best for the future. (more…)
The Big News
Lots of Tough Enough stuff, so let’s go chronologically…
Former Monday Night Raw guest host and current Miss USA Rima Fakih has been announced as the first participant in the reboot of Tough Enough, starting on April 4, the night after WrestleMania XXVII.
The 25 year old’s only appearance on any wrestling show was on November 29, 2010 when she crowned Sheamus as King of the Ring.
That WWE announced Miss USA as the show’s first participant is a decent media coup for the promotion, as it’s got crossover appeal. However, when you consider that WWE put out press releases asking for independent female wrestlers to apply for the show – Mercedes Martinez, Roxie Cotton, Anne Social, Brittney Savage and Sara Del Rey all had a crack – and none of them made the cut while an untrained model did is a little galling to a female wrestler who drives hundreds of miles to wrestle in a dirty ring in front of 40 people for little money. (more…)
Like Sumie Sakai and Roxie Cotton did last weekend, Rachel Summerlyn and Jessica James have made their mark by winning a tag team championship competed for primarily by men.
Rachel and Jessica’s Excellent Tag Team won the Anarchy Championship Wrestling doubles straps by defeating the Children of Pain, Flippy Shit (great name) and Smurf Nation in a four team elimination match.
Also on the card, James’ aleter-ego Lady Poison retained the ACW American Joshi championship by defeating “Five Star” Amanda Fox, and elsewhere Athena pinned Jen Alise.