SHINE 12 has been and gone, and I got to thinking of the last 12 months or so on the promotion.
Before SHINE Wrestling existed, my connection to the wrestling overseas was limited. I mean, sure I had DVDs but it wasn’t really the same. The events came recommended to me always with the tag line of “You really have to see xxx v xxx it’s AMAZING!” Nothing is quite like experiencing a liveshow with your friends.
That’s the beautiful thing about SHINE – the concept that I can watch this show with the guys from Ringbelles, who are in a completely different country and we can all react to the same thing at the same time is incredible. I know, technology right? Whodathunkit? I can chatter about the shows excitedly on social media (mostly Twitter) and connect with so many like-minded (or not so!) individuals around the world, which makes the shows so much more exciting for me.
SHINE weekends have become a highlight for me. Catch up with good friends and watch great wrestling. Thank goodness for Skype & Twitter – I’d be totally lost without them. (more…)
We at Ringbelles became big fans of Thunderkitty at the last SHIMMER tapings back in April, especially during her victory over Sassy Stephie on volume 57, where she got the win with a sleeperhold.
The great thing about her style – which would be considered modern in her mentally-defined era of the 1950′s – is that her fundamentals mean her matches can stick to the KISS principle of Keep It Simple, Stupid. In addition, how can you dislike anyone who has “Ladies champion of lady midget-tossing in Ohio at 11 feet and 3 inches” and “Rumored to win a battle royal against 15 grizzly bears in the old territory days” as other notable accomplishments on her own website?
We’ve got a couple of Thunderkitty matches for you – her SPARKLE match from last October where she wrestled Montreal’s Angie Skye, and a contest from Millennium Pro Wrestling in 2011 against NY Knockout Nikki. (more…)
Another 6 episodes of Total Divas have ordered by E! for a season extension. The current 8 episode run ends on September 15, with the next half dozen starting on November 17. The show has been a big hit for E! so far, with audiences rising between episodes 1 and 3. Starting out with 1.3 million viewers, it rose to 1.52 million the following week and reached 1.67 million last week.
However, numbers dropped a little for Sunday’s most recent episode to 1.35 million – though that’s still higher than the premiere episode. One of the reasons may be is because it clashed with SummerSlam – though anyone who watched the pay-per-view will see that despite Total Divas being a hit, it’s not caught the imagination of many wrestling fans. In fact, it could be argued that the crossover audience isn’t as big as you may imagine. (more…)
Melanie Cruise is a tough woman to pin down. After circumstances meant that our opportunity to talk to the statuesque 6 footer from Illinois fell through, it’s taken us a while to get the chance to speak to her. Why? She’s rushed off her feet with wrestling – something which she discusses in our latest Fight Like A Girl.
The 26-year old talks to us about being the sole woman in Blitz Pro Wrestling and what she has planned for this Saturday’s show in Joliet, IL, being overrun with bookings so close to her home, how she has changed over the last year and which former SHIMMER Champion has helped her with that, adjusting for working against men or women, as well as the concussion she suffered earlier this year. Melanie Cruise has a lot going on and is excited about the future. Listen to the interview and find out why.
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It had been speculated, considering the SHIMMER Champion was billed to appear on the show and she is currently in possession of the belt with no scheduled defences between now and then, but it’s just been made official – Cheerleader Melissa will be the first travelling member of the SHIMMER roster for the October 6 Bellatrix 7 show in Norwich, England.
The appearance will be Melissa’s first in the UK for more than five years – her last booking was in Ipswich for ChickFight TV tapings in May 2008 where she wrestled Wesna Busic twice (winning one and losing one) and also took on Jetta, winning via DQ.
Since then the 13-year veteran has worked in TNA as Alissa Flash ascended to the top of SHIMMER’s ranks to become the reigning two-time champion, and was victorious in the main event of SHIMMER’s biggest show in its history, defeating Saraya Knight in a cage in front of more than 700 fans on volume 53 to begin her second run with the belt. (more…)
It was right around the time that SHINE Wrestling was crowning its first champion that SHIMMER posted up the deciding match to determine its first titleholder.
The first weekend in June 2007 saw SHIMMER hold a 16-woman tournament, with Sara Del Rey and Lacey making it to the finals. The American Angel made it to the last match by beating Cindy Rogers, Alicia and Dark Angel Sarah Stock, while the Minnesota Home Wrecking Crew member got there by turning around a pretty crummy win-loss record up to that point to defeat Eden Black (remember her?), Nikki Roxx and Daizee Haze.
Of course, it was Del Rey who emerged victorious to become the first SHIMMER Champion, though if you don’t have volume 12, you can watch the final here – which also sees involvement from Rain, Allison Danger and Roxx. Click the jump to watch the full contest. (more…)
Participant number 4 has been announced for Bellatrix 7 – and just like LuFisto, Christina Von Eerie and Bellatrix World Champion Courtney Rush, it is someone who will be wrestling for the first time on British soil.
12-year veteran Mercedes Martinez has a huge litany of great matches, and ostensibly has tenure in some of the biggest all-women promotions in North America. She is a SHIMMER Original – helping to put the promotion on the map with her 20-minute draw with Sara Del Rey on volume 1 – was Women Superstars Uncensored‘s Champion for close to three years, is tearing up the scene for SHINE Wrestling and is currently the NCW Femmes Fatales International Champion, defeating Kalamity for the belt at Femmes Fatales XI back in March.
In recent years, the 32-year old has scaled back the number of promotions she wrestles for, but she is still a huge star – and as she discussed with us on an early Women Of Wrestling Podcast, was a fingernail away from signing a deal with WWE. he has also racked up stamps in her passport, competing in Australia and Japan in recent years. Incidentally, she was a fingernail away from debuting in the UK in March last year for the first Bellatrix show, but she wasn’t allowed access to the country. (more…)
It was late 2011 when I watched my very first SHIMMER. It was Volume 37 and I am not going to lie, it was a bit of a blur. I marveled at the fact that this show catered for women’s wrestling, that the women… *actually* wrestled. There were no fart jokes, there was no nonsense timing of matches, this shit was serious and it was bloody awesome. I had always been a fan of women’s wrestling, but it was more aimed toward the Australian local scene (and with talents such as Madison Eagles and Kellie Skater, who could blame me?), I was used to seeing short matches on a card stacked with men, so to see SHIMMER match that went against the very grain of everything I knew, well: mind blown.
The main event for that show was Eagles v Mercedes Martinez. I think it’s pretty obvious in my third instalment of this column, that I am a pretty huge fan of Madison’s work and naturally this match was no exception. To see her in that match amongst her ‘own kind’ was spectacular and I was blown away with the high calibre of wrestling shown throughout the entire show. It was then I quickly realised, SHIMMER was the grand mecca of women’s wrestling. THIS was the place to be if you are a female wrestler and are damn serious about it. (more…)
The third representative of the SHIMMER roster which will travel to the UK for October 6′s Bellatrix 7 iPPV was announced moments ago, and it’s someone who – like Bellatrix World Champion Courtney Rush, who was announced at the Bellatrix 6 show last month – is someone who has always expressed a desire to wrestle in UK.
It’s LuFisto, who made her return from the exploded kneecap which she suffered at SHIMMER Volume 53 at last Saturday’s NCW: Femmes Fatales XII show in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. She’s not exactly easing herself back into things either – she was half of a physical contest against Kimber Lee on that show, and this Friday, could potentially wrestle up to four matches as part of the SHINE 11 iPPV, where she has replaced Taylor Made in the four-way qualifier to see who makes it to the quarter finals of the SHINE Championship tournament. (more…)
This one seems so damn obvious, I’m almost apologetic at even including her. She’s the woman who was the best female wrestler in the world before she was struck down with a career threatening knee injury in late 2011, and she’s the woman who came back earlier this year and immediately laid down a marker that she’s *still* the best female wrestler in the world. She’s possibly part machine, and certainly lubricated by coffee – but whatever she is, she’s already a strong front-runner for 2013′s Wrestler of the Year award. She’s Madison Eagles, and let’s take a look at her 2013. (more…)
Episode 58 with Allison Danger
Our first ever podcast guest Allison Danger returns for the latest edition of the Podcast, and it’s in the wake of her retirement earlier this year – a retirement that was punctuated by the news that she’d suffered a stroke in January and subsequently had discovered lesions on her brain. About three months after her emotional sendoff, we caught up with Danger to find out the full story on her health issues, how it all went down, when she found out about it and how it’s affecting her everyday life. Some pretty heavy stuff. We discuss whether the stroke was caused by wrestling, discuss her matches on that last weekend and why young wrestlers need to work smarter to avoid the problems she’s facing. Speaking of young wrestlers, we discuss several of Danger’s tips for the future, and how she’s most happy when she can help mould a young talent. We discuss family matters, Danger explains why all talent can’t (and shouldn’t) be booked everywhere and how the age of instant gratification means that some fans just can’t see the big picture. Quite the show – simultaneously some the most serious topics we’ve ever talked about mixed with trademark Danger wit. A must listen.
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Our next selection for our “good half year” series isn’t someone who has won a major title this year, nor is she someone who is particularly well known in the wider wrestling world (yet) – but looking objectively about who has come really far in the first half of 2013, you really can’t deny that Heidi Lovelace has had a cracking six months. When we talked to her for a Fight Like A Girl show back in April, our first question was to ask her how excited she was about her wrestling life in 2013 on a scale of 1-10. Her reply? “Probably about a 15!”. Quite so – and things have gotten even more interesting since then. Let’s take a look at 2013 for Heidi Lovelace. (more…)
The untimely death of Matt Osbourne got me to thinking. In his role as the original Doink The Clown, he took what immediately appeared to be a bit of a lame gimmick and turned it into something quite special – a dark character with a painted on smile, exacting sadistic actions to wrestlers and fans alike, while also working as a skilled technician in the ring. Check out his matches with Mr Perfect and Bret Hart for some of his best work in mid-1993.
Osbourne’s run as Doink came to an end in the latter part of the year as he was fired from the WWF for re-occurring drug issues, and with it, the character then becoming a lame babyface which lacked the edge or sparkle of the original portrayal. However, it was a great example of making chicken salad out of chicken guano, and is relevant to a couple of women who are plying their trade in WWE today.
Before we get to that, it’s worth pointing out some of the other gimmicks in mainstream wrestling over the years – including which had mileage and which crashed and burned… (more…)
This weekend in Montreal, Quebec is NCW: Femmes Fatales XII – a show that promises to feature one of the biggest matches in the career of our own favourite Winnipegger – Courtney Rush. Re-arranged from the original planned match of Rush vs Kalamity, she now goes one-on-one with Cheerleader Melissa in a #1 Contender match for the Femmes Fatales International Title – a rematch of the main event of SHIMMER Vol 55 earlier in the year, and a match between the current Bellatrix Champion and the SHIMMER Champion. We talk about that match, her match with Allison Danger at Femmes Fatales XI earlier in the year and her thoughts on having one of Danger’s last matches. On the subject of Bellatrix, with the news that Bellatrix 7 in October will feature SHIMMER vs Bellatrix matches and feature the UK debut of Miss Rush herself, we get her thoughts on achieving another career dream. We also discuss Las Vegas and just where is that pesky fourth episode of Rush Hour?
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A bit of a weird one this, I’ll grant you. Considering earlier this year, the 28 year old joshi puroresu standout announced her retirement from the sport due to nagging injuries (citing her 2007 clavicle injury in particular), you’d think Kurihara would be as far away from a discussion like this as it is possible to be – and while, yes, seeing a superb young talent being struck down in the prime of her career is a terribly sad thing, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anybody go on a more joyful final retirement road. Kurihara’s last six months in the business have seen her experience so much, achieve so much and do it all with a huge smile on her face. If she’s leaving wrestling, she’s packing an entire career’s worth of memories into 2013. (more…)
There is a feeling of deja vu with this, considering the Rate Tank was also singled out for praise at this time last year too, but credit where credit is due – Kellie Skater has had a storming first six months of 2013.
As with in 2012, the Australian started her year in Japan restrengthening the ties which she had built during her first extended trip there, wrestling in both WAVE and Stardom, straddling the battle lines which exist between the two promotions – though it was in the latter promotion where she primarily competed during her visit, and also experienced new accomplishments… (more…)
Eight days ago at Bellatrix 6, we were informed that the first named as being part of the Bellatrix v SHIMMER show taking place in Norwich, England would be the promotion’s World Champion, Courtney Rush. Earlier today, the second name was revealed, and it’s someone Saraya Knight has developed a problem with on recent SHIMMER tapings…
Following a shoving match during the interval of the first day of tapings in Berwyn, IL back in April, Knight and Christina Von Eerie squared off on volume 55, with the former SHIMMER Champion seemingly getting the win after knocking the punk rocker out with a foreign object, only to see the decision reversed to allow Von Eerie to get the decision via DQ. The fortunes were reversed during volume 57 where Von Eerie pinned Knight in a six-woman tag match – with her using a foreign object for the KO and getting away with it.
There is always the possibility that the pair will cross paths at Bellatrix 7 on October 6 and continue their hostilities, though the roles may be reversed with Saraya being beloved and can (legitimately) claim that she was wronged on volume 57, which may cause hostility towards Von Eerie from the fans. From an impartial standpoint, both have wronged the other and may be looking for a decisive victory over the other. Alternatively, there are others who Von Eerie can test herself against – with a wealth of European talent, whoever she is lined up against will be a curious encounter. (more…)
It was interesting to see the Bellatrix roster after the Bellatrix 6 card. Out of their wrestling gear, they got dressed again into their branded t-shirts and glammed them up with shorts, skirts, blazers and the like to meet and greet the fans, sign autographs and pose for photos. In every photo, the Bellatrix logo was visible, pushing the brand and getting the recognition out there. Coupled with the gigantic wall hangings, Bellatrix: Female Warriors has ascended to be the most professional looking promotion in the western world.
Granted, a lot of joshi promotions in Japan have branded gear, and Ice Ribbon & Stardom have had workout gear too – but it is rarer to see in the English-speaking countries. However, it is something that other promotions would do well to adopt in the future.
Since rebranding from the World Association of Women’s Wrestling in January, Bellatrix as a brand has been ascending at a rapid pace, and it’s being noticed. Ahead of Sunday’s card, promoter Saraya Knight was interviewed on F4Wonline.com, the BritWresChat podcast and the BBC radio station serving Norfolk – the county which Bellatrix is based. In addition, hype was posted on a number of websites and also in the local print media, which led to an audience of more than 250 coming along to the show to make a lot of noise and generate a proper atmosphere. As far as exposure goes, Bellatrix has taken big steps forward – however, as Saraya explained during the interview with Bryan Alvarez, the end goal is not to have the promotion as the main focus; instead, it is being used as a way to point eyes towards the wrestlers on the show. (more…)
Episode 57 with Erin Angel
The Women of Wrestling Podcast returns as we welcome 10 year pro and one of Europe’s finest, Erin Angel, to the show. Erin has just returned from a 22 day tour (no days off) with Atlantic Grand Prix Wrestling over in Canada’s Maritime provinces and this weekend will be in one of the major matches at Bellatrix VI on iPPV, where she challenges Rhia O’Reilly for the Bellatrix British Ladies Championship. We talk about both of those things, of course – but given that much of Erin’s career has taken place under the internet radar, we take the chance to dig into her career so far – from starting on the British camp circuit and training on the job, to who is most responsible for training her, right up through to extensive touring with All Star Wrestling and international travel (including an ambulance ride during her first ever booking in France) and right up to date. Erin talks about her experiences in Pro-Wrestling EVE (including getting to wrestle Japanese stars), previews her Bellatrix match, discusses working on over 18s shows like ICW:Fierce Females and lays out her future goals. We even hear how she effectively saves children’s lives during her other job. Truly an Angel. Enjoy!
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We haven’t even had Bellatrix 6 – coming this Sunday on iPPV, and you can click here to order the show – but the hype for the next Bellatrix show later this year has begun. Speaking on today’s Figure Four Daily show, Bellatrix promoter Saraya Knight finished off a great interview by making this announcement:
We will have a SHIMMER roster coming over to fight Bellatrix girls. I’m not going to release who’s coming over but they’ve all okayed it; they’re all ready to come over, we’re sorting out work visas right now.
I’ll be letting you know exactly who is coming over – but there is five SHIMMER girls coming over for Bellatrix on October 6.
Speaking later on the BritWresChat show, she also informed us that one of the names will be the SHIMMER Champion, whomever that may be – which, if things don’t change by then, means Cheerleader Melissa will return to the UK for the first time since ChickFight in 2008. In addition, you would imagine that Bellatrix World Champion Courtney Rush must be in the frame. (more…)
Sometimes the negativity on wrestling can overwhelm why we love watching wrestling in the first place. As a result, we have decided to inject some positivity into the proceedings by having a look at things that we love about women’s wrestling. Rhi Lockwood, Editor in Chief and Webmistress of Australian women’s wrestling site NHB Girls, is the person who we feel can turn our occasional frowns upside down.
For her first piece, Rhi has selected a wrestler close to her heart. As we progress, other wrestlers will be highlighted…
The very first time I saw Madison Eagles was over ten years ago at the Australian Wrestling Supershow in Sydney that was telecast on FOX Sports on subscription TV. She accompanied one of the wrestlers to the ring, and halfway through the match intervened – climbing onto the top rope – and made her mark. I had heard of her, so to finally see her in action even if it was for a brief second, was just inspiring.
Over the years I’ve seen her wrestle here in my home town of Melbourne and every time she has gotten better, sharper & more of a force to be reckoned with. She seemed to be the type to really make things happen for herself, setting goals and going for it, surpassing these aspirations completely. She headed to the US & made a splash in SHIMMER, Ring of Honor & Chikara, just to name a few – and in a way she went out and made such a tremendous path way for so many women in Australia & New Zealand overseas. It was no surprise to me when she defeated Mschif to become the SHIMMER Champion on Volume 31. (more…)
Ringbelles Roundup (11 June 2013) – Kaitlyn’s secret admirer, Kalamity, Brittney Savage, Gorgeous George and more
So Kaitlyn’s secret admirer was Big E Langston, as many originally assumed it would be. However, there was a sting in the tail, as Langston was sending the notes as a way to build up the Divas Champion to knock her down as part of a nefarious plan with AJ Lee.
Last night on Raw, Kaitlyn took the ring to ask for whoever had been sending her the notes and gifts, and had a look of bewilderment on her face as it was Big E who was revealed to be the one behind it all. He pointed out that it does appear to be a bit weird and awkward, but softened her with his words. As he moved closer for a kiss, he learnt her back for a romantic smooch, but let her fall to the floor. At that moment, AJ’s music hit and she came skipping to the ring to reveal that it was all one big head game ahead of their title match this Sunday at Payback.
AJ’s reasoning for doing it was that she felt that Kaitlyn had not supported her enough after Daniel Bryan dumped her last year and she went off the rails, and was more focussed on winning the Divas Championship. What Lee is leaving out is that Kaitlyn actually was there for support and to get her back on track, but AJ slapped her on two separate occasions before the friendship fell apart. The pair briefly reunited at the end of last year before AJ turned full-blown heel at TLC and aligned herself with Dolph Ziggler, but it was never meant to last.
AJ became the number one contender to the Divas strap by winning a battle royal on April 22, and since then it has been pushed to one side when it wasn’t convenient to address it. The pair had a backstage set-to at Extreme Rules, but that has been the only real storyline development until last night. (more…)
Ringbelles Roundup (28 May 2013) – Florida’s popularity, Ice Ribbon, Taeler Hendrix and Heidi Lovelace & more
Florida. It’s the home of WWE’s developmental territory, was the base for TNA’s Impact Wrestling show, and also has a lot of indie promotions dotted around the state offering wrestlers the chance to step into the ring on a regular basis, and also train with a range of different names. It has also become the home to one of the most exciting women’s promotions in the United States, and it has caught the attention of a number of female grapplers.
SHINE Wrestling held its 10th show at the weekend – main points can be found below – and is on the verge of crowning its first champion. Considering this time last year the promotion didn’t exist, it is remarkable that many are ranking it as one of the top all-women promotions in the country – and for good reason. It is presenting shows on a monthly basis – save for a couple of breaks, like the one happening next month when no show is being presented – it is on internet pay-per-view, meaning the wrestlers are showcased to the entire world at the same time as the fans in attendance at Ybor City’s Orpheum, and many of the roster also increase their earning by spending the weekend in the state to work extra shows or work a Slammin’ Ladies custom shoot or two. It’s all great experience for women who may only wrestle a few times a month to get some extensive ring time. It also has some pleasant weather, so that must also be an attraction.
This has not gone unnoticed by some wrestlers. Names like Mia Yim, Luscious Latasha, Brittney Savage, Solo Darling, Jessicka Havok and more have either moved or are in the process of moving to Florida to put themselves in a more advantageous position when it comes to the local promotions like Battling Bombshells, Florida Underground Wrestling, World Xtreme Wrestling, I Believe In Wrestling and more. After all, why would a promoter pay to fly someone in when a similarly impressive talent is a short drive away? It cuts expenses and makes for a better bottom line. Great wrestlers can get regular work, while ones looking to get more experience have the chance to work with names who may have more matches under their belt, and are also in a prime place to be spotted by and to tryout for WWE. It’s a beneficial opportunity for all, and everybody wins. Right? (more…)
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…)