This week’s top piece is about a storyline which is ongoing, so I may be jumping the gun with my feelings on the matter, but I feel that more eyes should be directed towards what is happening, as it has the potential to do something really positive.
On Ohio Valley Wrestling TV between January and the end of April, Taeler Hendrix had been receiving gifts from a secret admirer. Considering the flirting which had taken place between the pair previously, the former Women’s Champion believed that the presents were coming from Ryan Howe, who had captured her attention since her OVW debut, much to the disappointment, anger and frustration of her put-upon boyfriend Dylan Bostic – who was not as cool, edgy or exiting as the long-haired newcomer sporting an electric guitar.
Things escalated to the point that on March 23, Hendrix and Bostic took on Howe and fellow former Women’s Champion Heidi Lovelace which ended in a no-contest when the men’s fighting got out of control. The following week, Hendrix came to ringside during Howe’s TV Title match against Rockstar Spud, which prompted both Bostic and Lovelace to come out, causing Ryan to be counted out of the ring. On the April 27 episode, Howe insisted that it was not he who was sending Taeler the gifts, leading a confused (and somewhat hurt) Hendrix to wonder who was showering her with these presents.
As it turns out, it was Heidi Lovelace, who came out to reveal the truth before leaving the ring. (more…)
Back in the 1980′s, many of the big wrestling promotions like the World Wrestling Federation, World Class Championship Wrestling and Jim Crockett Promotions were trying to make their mark with supercards, especially around the early times of pay-per-view. The American Wrestling Association was also getting involved – it had already drawn 20,000 fans with its Super Sunday show in 1983, and in 1986, had its next foray into supercards with WrestleRock at the Hubert H. Humphrey (HHH) Metrodome in Minneapolis, MN, which opened with a fabulously bad rap, proving that Shawn Michaels really isn’t musical…
23,000 AWA fans watched the 16 match show at the venue, with the promotion’s women taking part in a battle royal as part of March 8, featuring Joyce Grable, Kat LeRoux, Sensational Sherri Martel, Rose Divine, Taylor Thomas, Despina Montega, Misty Blue Simmes, Debbie Combs, Luna Vachon (amusingly introduced an Leona Vachon by ring announcer Gary Capetta), and then-Women’s Champion Candi Divine. (more…)
As noted in recent editions of the Ringbelles Roundup, veteran female grappler Joyce Grable has been announced as being inducted into the Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame in Amsterdam, NY (the only bricks and mortar pro-wrestling Hall of Fame in the world) as part of their Class of 2013 alongside such luminaries as The Assassins, Dick Murdoch, Bill Watts and El Santo. Born Betty Wade, she will join fellow female inductees Mildred Burke (2002), The Fabulous Moolah (2003), Mae Young (2004), Penny Banner (2005), June Byers (2006), Cora Combs (2007), Betty Niccoli (2008), Donna Christianello (2009), Kay Noble (2010) and Judy Grable (2011) (the last of whom was Joyce’s childhood idol and trainer – and who, along with Fabulous Moolah, bequeathed the ringname “Joyce Grable” to her) in the Hall. The PWHOF induction will be on the back of induction into the NWA Hall of Fame this year, an iPPV appearance at Shine 3 and a Cauliflower Alley Club award in 2010.
Seemed like an opportunity to dig up one of Joyce’s old matches for a Retro, eh? Indeed – and in a week where we’ve been discussing intergender wrestling on the site at length, how apropos that we managed to turn up a genuinely historic little gem with Joyce and her partner Judy Martin proving that intergender wrestling isn’t just something invented recently – as they compete against male tag team Steve O and Jerry Roberts (an early ring name for the future “Mountie” Jacques Rougeau Jr) in the first round of the National Tag Team Championship tournament on Thanksgiving night at Atlanta’s Omni in 1980. Nineteen Eighty. Yes, around the time Andy Kaufman had declared himself the world’s first intergender wrestling champion in Memphis (and making a bit of a mockery about it, until Jerry Lawler shut him up), Grable & Martin were doing their bit to advance the cause. It’s not a full match, but it’s a nice historial curiosity. (more…)
While being interviewed for the new WWE 13 video game, Amy “Lita” Dumas explained the difference between the Divas now and the ones from the Attitude era:
I think the women of The Attitude Era really did a good job at figuring out who they were and what they wanted to portray to the fans. So each woman was such an individual — you were never going to get Lita and Ivory confused. You’re not going to get the two confused, as opposed to now, is it the hot athletic girl with the short shorts on? No, it’s the other hot athletic girl with the short shorts on.
It’s harsh, but fair, and she has a point.
There are eight women on the main roster who are considered wrestlers rather than valets or managers, and for the most part, they are interchangeable curvy shapes with little character to speak of. The obvious exception which jumps out is AJ Lee, who despite being tiny, geeky and – compared to the others but probably not in real life – could be considered mousey or plain, is the most developed personality of all the women who step into the ring… and that’s something that Dumas pointed out:
I think it’s interesting to see the Divas of today and to see who the fans are attaching to. Obviously, right now, it’s AJ Lee, who’s not the strongest; she’s not one of those classically hot chicks. But she sets herself apart, and you have emotion when she’s out there and you get a sense of who she is, and so I think that’s really cool to see the kid that wasn’t supposed to make it being the one that’s out there, and that’s who the fans want to know more about.
SHINE Wrestling announced yesterday that it would be honouring wrestling legends, though exactly who it would be were not revealed by the time yesterday’s Roundup was published. However, we now have the names – they’re Sabrina, Diane Von Hoffman, Joyce Grable and Leilani Kai, all trained at some point by the Fabulous Moolah.
Now, most of you will know who Leilani Kai is – former WWF Women’s singles and tag team champion, participated at WrestleManias I and X and also won the NWA World Women’s Title in 2003 at a TNA show. Joyce Grable adopted the name as she bared a resemblance to the original who retired in 1974, and won the NWA World Women’s Tag Team Championship on four occasions.
Von Hoffman still wrestles occasionally today – she originally portrayed herself as a German Nazi and then as Moondog Fifi, teamed with Kai and also made two tours of Japan in the early 1980s. Finally, there’s Sabrina, who still laces up the boots once in a while. She started wrestling under the name of Susan Stirling before changing her moniker and also held the NWA tag straps in 1982 with her partner Princess Victoria. (more…)