With OVW being named earlier this week as the new Developmental Territory for TNA Wrestling (which we covered in this week’s Roundup), it’s probably apropos that we dedicate this weekend’s “In Video” segment to a few of OVW’s women’s division. It remains to be seen whether TNA will actually pick new Knockouts from this existing talent pool or they’ll “sign” indy prospects and assign them to OVW for training – but for the last five years or so, Danny Davis and OVW have had a Women’s Title that can claim former champions such as Beth Phoenix, Serena Deeb and Katie Lea (now TNA’s Winter) as former champions. Lee’s Roundup shone the spotlight mostly on the STDs and the Blossom Twins (including biographical details on all four), so where better to start than a tag team match featuring those two teams?
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. (more…)
It was always going to be a pretty ambitious start, but it seems like it has paid off for Amber O’Neal’s ArenaChicks project.
Throw together the elements of a midnight start, the fact that it was on the first evening of the Gathering of the Juggalos festival at Cave-In-Rock, IL featuring tens of thousands of visitors, and that it was the first real card that the promotion has ever put together, and the makings were there for it to fall over. However, it appears that everything went according to plan, and the best part about is that we won’t have to pay to see it. (more…)
It’s been a pretty successful 8 days for Izza Belle Smothers. After winning the AIW Women’s Championship last Friday at Girls Night Out 4 as her alternative character Mickie Knuckles, Smothers went into Ohio Valley Wrestling‘s Saturday Night Special to challenge Lady JoJo for the Women’s Championship that she had held since August 28 last year. It was being billed as a big deal, as OVW was pre-selling the show with the main hype being Izza Belle v JoJo, though you can still pick up an autographed copy if you’re fast.
Presented to a sold-out crowd in Louisville, KY – so packed that extra chairs had to be brought in – Ringbelles‘ Jennifer Logsdon also swung by to see the match.
In Izza’s corner was her sister Jessie Belle, and in Lady JoJo’s corner was Taryn Shay. The match saw Izza getting the upper hand at first but after interference from Taryn, JoJo dominated for the most of the match. The crowd was hot the whole time and there were dueling chants for both women. Finally Jessie took out Taryn and Izza capitalised with a pump handle slam into a sit out power bomb to get the three count. Solid match.
ArenaChicks promoter Amber O’Neal has revealed the card for the promotion’s first ever show, which is due to take place at midnight on Thursday August 11 as part of the Insane Clown Posse’s 4-day long Gathering of the Juggalos 2011 event at Cave-In-Rock, IL.
Throughout 2011, O’Neal has worked a number of the Juggalo Championship Wrestling shows, and has formed a strong working relationship with the ICP, which has led to her gaining a slot at a festival which pulls in an average of more than 100,000 fans every year.
Previously, the matches compiled for the debut volume of ArenaChicks were amalgamated from a number of different shows hosted by CWF Mid-Atlantic Wrestling, based in Burlington, NC. This will be the first full-blown card put together by the promotion, with five matches announced for the twilight show, and it looks to be a strong lineup:
Amber O’Neal v Jessicka Havok
Sassy Stephie v Brittany Force v Allysin Kay
Angel Orsini v Josie (Sojo Bolt in TNA, and Lady JoJo in OVW)
Epiphany & Jenny Star v Taryn Shay & CJ Lane
Jazz v Izza Belle Smothers
Sara Del Rey beat Claudio Castagnoli at CHIKARAsaurus Rex: King Of Sequel, night 2 in Philadelphia on Sunday.
Billed as BDK v BDK, the co-leader of the faction was taken down by a crucifix as part of the round robin tournament known as the 12 Large: Summit to crown a CHIKARA singles champion. The main story about it is that Del Rey and her buddy Daizee Haze are starting to recognise the contributions that they bring to the table of Die Bruderschaft des Kreuzes and refuse to bow down to their so-called superior. Castagnoli and fellow BDK leader Ares urged Del Rey to “do the right thing” and lay down last Sunday so Claudio could get the easy win and put himself in a better position in the tournament. Refusing to dampen her strong spirit for competition, Del Rey fought for 13 minutes before getting the pinfall, putting her in a strong standing, considering she beat Icarus last month in Chicago.
Please note: NOWHERE in that storyline does it once mention that Del Rey is a woman fighting a man, and that this is a battle of the sexes. This is CHIKARA – where men wrestle women, and nobody bats an eyelid. It’s a showcase of the best athletes – which is why Del Rey is part of the tournament in the first place. She has proven that she is one of the most skilled grapplers in the promotion, and has earned her spot not due to (or in spite of) her gender, but because she is excellent at what she does. Likewise, Haze beats up the guys on a regular basis, and she is treated as a threat because of how she is presented. Her gender is irrelevant in the promotion, as the guys have no problem throwing her about just as much as she lays into them.
The problem I have is when it’s claimed that Del Rey’s win on Sunday is a victory for women over men, as it isn’t. It’s a victory for one wrestler over another. (more…)