There are few genuine success stories when it comes to wrestlers’ lives after WWE – unfortunately, many wrestlers leave the business because they were unable to do it anymore or had outserved what their employers perceived to be their usefulness, and have not planned far enough into the future to make sure they are financially secure. Women are more likely to manage it – Stacy Keibler, Lisa Marie Varon and even Kelly Kelly immediately spring to mind – but few managed to have a great life after leaving the ring more than Trish Stratus.
With a happy marriage, a successful yoga business and getting ready for her first Christmas as a mother, things have gone well for the 38-year old Canadian since she retired from full-time competition in 2006 – and the reason we’re talking about her here is because earlier today she tweeted a picture of her WWE Women’s Championship belt. As a result, we’re posting the video of her final match against Lita at Unforgiven in September 2006, where she won the title for a record-setting seventh time.
Unarguably the most successful WWE Diva in history, she is the person that the company used as a template for its top women for a long time, and has only recently started to move away from that blueprint with the likes of AJ Lee and Paige, for example. However, her success at raising the profile of women’s wrestling in WWE was rewarded with her being allowed to go out as champion in her home city of Toronto. Click the jump to watch the match between two longtime rivals. (more…)
Following an introduction to the festivities with Insane Championship Wrestling: Fierce Females, SHINE 13 and Pro Wrestling Syndicate Bombshells 7 over the last week or so, Open Female Fight Season is upon us and it kicks off with a bumper Sunday, with big cards on both sides of the Atlantic.
The festivities kick off in the UK with an interpromotional card which will also see the culmination of a bitter blood feud…
A long-running score will be settled at Sunday’s Bellatrix: Female Warriors show in Norwich, England when Saraya Knight takes on her heated rival Cheerleader Melissa at part of the Bellatrix 7: Bellatrix v SHIMMER event.
The pair have battled on both sides of the Atlantic and traded the SHIMMER Championship over the last 18 months, with their most recent contest taking place inside a steel cage in New Jersey in April in the main event of SHIMMER Volume 53, where Melissa regained the title. However, their battles began in the English county of Norfolk, with the pair meeting for the first time at ChickFight VII in Great Yarmouth in January 2007. That match was won by Melissa via referee stoppage when Saraya got her neck tied up in the ropes.
In the five contests between them, each has won two, and there has been one no-contest – and it is the inconclusive match from June 17, 2007 in Colchester which is the reason for the bad blood. (more…)
Considering the sudden news about the TNA release of Tara last night – something which she hasn’t publicly acknowledged as of now, it feel appropriate that we delve back into her history of matches spanning more than a decade, where she has been the focal point of both TNA and WWE. For this week’s Retro, we jump back all the way to November 17, 2002.
After a brief period as one of the Godfather’s Hos in the summer of 2000, Lisa Marie Varon was taken off TV for about two years for training and development, and repackaged as Victoria, the unhinged maniac who was given a storyline background with Trish Stratus which was partly based in reality, as both had been fitness models before joining WWE. Victoria re-debuted on the July 7, 2002 broadcast of Sunday Night HeAT, and the pair squared off on pay-per-view for the first time at No Mercy in October, where Stratus – who by this point had won her third Women’s Championship – successfully defended her title. However, the hostilities continued, and it reached the point where it was decided that the pair would face off again under Hardcore Rules at the Survivor Series in New York City’s Madison Square Garden… (more…)
Episode 59 with Ivelisse Velez
This Friday, SHINE Wrestling crowns its first ever champion on iPPV – and if you ask our guest on this show, she’ll be the one holding up the title belt at the end of the night. It’s Ivelisse Velez, everybody! We talk SHINE, and her standout matches with the likes of LuFisto & Athena, experiences in SHINE so far, rule confusion in Mexico for PdM, starting her career as “Sexy Juliette” in Puerto Rico, alternate life plans, moving to Chicago and eventually entering the WWE Tough Enough process. We talk auditioning, the editing process, struggling with injury, the Steve Austin elimination speeches and working with Trish Stratus on the show. Post Tough Enough, we discuss how Ivelisse worked hard at getting her shot in FCW/NXT and her experiences when she got there, an aborted name idea before she was re-christened Sofia Cortez, working with Paige, promo classes, seemingly conflicting advice and some interesting circumstances surrounding her WWE release. We also talk her TNA Gutcheck experiences, her mentality coming in, her on-camera reaction when it was decided she wasn’t going through to the final assessment, and coming back for a couple of taped PPVs that are still to air. We also talk her twice aborted MMA debut and whether that’s still coming. A refreshingly fun and interesting interview. Check it out. (Plus we’ve changed up our Podcast theme for the first time ever!!)
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
Lots to mention from SHIMMER volume 53 on Saturday afternoon, so let’s get into it.
Let’s start with the main event, which had the right result for the biggest show in the promotion’s history (not 93,173 as announced by Joey Eastman but more around a hefty 700+, which is more than three times the maximum attendance at the Berwyn Eagles Club). With nowhere for her enemy to run and with nobody to help her, Cheerleader Melissa soundly defeated Saraya Knight inside a monolithic steel cage to regain the SHIMMER Championship. While the match was OK, the real tale was in the story told, which did not see Melissa eke out a victory with luck, but saw her deliver a super hurricanrana, missile dropkick and Air Raid Crash to convincingly pin her rival of close to six years.
The crowd was quiet for much of the match – part of the reason being that a lot of the crowd may not be completely familiar with their history, or that the action was not the crisp sort of execution as other contests because most of their matches look more like fights than matches – but they came out of their seats for the finishing sequence, which was a simple tale of good punishing evil and the snarling, unfriendly heel finally getting her comeuppance. However, despite her loss, Saraya retained her scary aura, attacking fans on her way out of the ring – and was also put over by Bryan Alvarez, who was getting his first viewing of Knight, pointing out that she was a proper, grizzly, old-school wrestling heel.
One would anticipate that Melissa will enjoy a longer run with the belt during her second reign than with her first – when she dropped the title to Knight on her fourth defence, following wins over Nicole Matthews, Portia Perez and Jessie McKay. While there is no detail on who Melissa will be facing in Berwyn this weekend for the usual two-day, four-DVD taping extravaganza, there are a lot of names to play around with – including one debutante who surprised everyone when she hit the ring… (more…)
As revelations go, it was a pretty big one – at the conclusion of her speech as part of her induction into WWE‘s Hall Of Fame last night, Trish Stratus revealed that she was four months pregnant, and is due in September.
Addressing the crowd at Madison Square Garden in New York City, the seven-time Women’s Champions said: “I just wanted to let you all know that in September, I’ll be delivering a little Stratusfaction.” Afterwards, she told WWE.com, “It was awesome. As a public personality, you wonder what’s the right time to tell everybody. Of course, when I got the news I would be inducted this year, I definitely found out I was pregnant, and so I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, I’ll be four months, I should tell them!’”
She also revealed that it was her inductee Stephanie McMahon who was the one who helped her make the decision to go public with the news at the Hall Of Fame. Indeed, it generated a big positive reaction – which vastly differed from the reaction that the father of baby Stratus received… (more…)
Last week, I repeated my previous assertion that two championships would change hands at NCW Femmes Fatales XI in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on Saturday. Lo and behold, that’s what happened – with the Bellatrix World Championship and the Femmes Fatales International Titles being won by Courtney Rush and Mercedes Martinez respectively.
Martinez’s victory over Kalamity is only part of her story in the show. She continued her cross-promotion feud with LuFisto following her defeat to the Super Hardcore Anime at Women Superstars Uncensored’s An Ultraviolent Affair in February by attacking her foe during LuFisto’s challenge for the SHIMMER title against Saraya Knight. The steel chair attack to LuFisto’s head was enough for Knight to lock in the Bridal Rocking Horse for the stoppage and retain the belt, meaning that no matter what happened with Mercedes’ challenge to Kalamity, the Martinez/LuFisto programme would continue.
As it turns out, the programme will likely feature the International Championship, as the Latina Sensation used a Fisherman Buster onto a steel chair to gain the pinfall and bring The Oncoming Storm’s 17-month reign to an end. (more…)
Ringbelles Roundup (29 January 2013) – Trish Stratus, National Pro Wrestling Day, Pro Wrestling: EVE & more
It was announced during last night’s episode of Monday Night Raw that Trish Stratus would be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame this April as part of the WrestleMania XXIX weekend. As expected, the wave of congratulations came from wrestlers past and present like Lita, Mickie James, Beth Phoenix, Layla, Gail Kim and more, as well as personalities both inside and outside of the business like Jim Ross, Lilian Garcia and Snooki. Indeed, there are a lot of supporters of the Torontarian, and she was quick to react to the announcement:
I still can’t believe it. I’m just so honored to be taking my place alongside WWE’s greatest, as a wrestling fan – I’m kind of blown away! It’s simply amazing.
The 37-year old joins the Fabulous Moolah, Mae Young, Sensational Sherri, Sunny and Wendi Richter in the Hall, and is the most modern Diva to be inducted, though this provided a sticking point for some who felt that while she was worthy of going in, it was ahead of others who they felt should go in first – Leilani Kai, Bull Nakano and Madusa were names which cropped up, as well as Lita, whom Stratus’ career ran parallel with for damn near the entirety of their runs.
Now, while I’m not the biggest Stratus fan in the world, I’m fair – and without a doubt, Trish deserves to be in that Hall of Fame, and as far as the criteria of this particular one is concerned, is more worthy than the others. If we were discussing the Wrestling Observer Hall of Fame or the Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame in Amsterdam, NY, then Stratus would get nowhere near the ballots, but for WWE’s version, all you have you do is get the green light from one Vince McMahon – and when it comes to that element, Stratus was always inevitable, as she was a model WWE employee. (more…)
Happy Thanksgiving to our American readers/listeners, who are spending the day eating roasted birds and things containing pumpkins while watching Gridiron football or the Macy’s parade. As Brits, we’re not entirely clued up on what goes on on this particular Thursday in November, but we have seen a lot of people talking about what they are thankful for. So, in the spirit of the day, we shall do the same.
We are thankful for every single one of you who chooses to visit our website, download an interview or podcast, read an article, leave a comment, share our contributions with others and so on. We are also thankful for women who go step into the ring and work hard to entertain the fans; we’re thankful for promoters who give them the opportunity to do so, and we’re thankful for every fan who spends money supporting the wrestlers and the promotions.
So as a thanks to all of you, we’ve got a series of videos of matches which took place around Thanksgiving, but may not necessarily have a Thanksgiving theme. As a result, we’ve got Trish Stratus v Molly Holly from WWF SmackDown on November 23, 2000; The Pilgrims (Michelle McCool, Layla & Jillian Hall) v The Indians (Kelly Kelly, Mickie James & Melina) from WWE Raw on November 23, 2009; Hannah Blossom v Josie from OVW Thanksgiving Thunder on November 28, 2009; and Winter, Angelina Love & Madison Rayne v Velvet Sky, Brooke Tessmacher & Tara from TNA Impact Wrestling on November 24 last year.
Happy Turkey Day, everybody! (more…)
Funny how the past comes back to haunt you.
In June, while she was still campaigning to be Connecticut Republican candidate for the US Senate, Linda McMahon’s past as the CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment was brought up, including the effect the programming may have had on women and men’s views of how to treat women. One particular incident keeps cropping up – the segment on the March 5, 2001 episode of Raw Is War when Linda’s husband Vince forced Trish Stratus to crawl on all fours, bark like a dog and then strip in the middle of the ring, all in an attempt to humiliate and degrade her.
Even at the time, the event was seen as so offensive that it was never shown in the UK, and it is still great ammunition for opponents of McMahon. Back in June, Linda’s opponent Chris Shays said during a debate: “I think when you force a woman to take off all her clothes in an arena, and get down on the ground and bark like a dog, I think that’s assault on women.” (more…)
While Trish Stratus is the one who is revered as being the golden girl of WWE‘s Divas division, one should not overlook the efforts of Lita. Granted, Lita was not as good a wrestler as Stratus, and did not receive as many strong storylines as her Canadian colleague, but the two debuted at roughly within a month of each other in 2000, quit full-time wrestling within 8 weeks of each other in 2006, and gravitated towards each other a lot of the time, sharing a number of their major moments.
For example, their first feuds were against each other when Stratus was the manager of T&A and Lita was part of Team Xtreme with the Hardy Boyz, teamed up as part of the Invasion storyline to fend off the likes of Stacy Keibler and Torrie Wilson, made their in-ring WrestleMania debuts in a match against each other (and also involving Jazz) and Stratus’ final match of her full-time WWE tenure was her defeating Lita to win a record-setting seventh Women’s Championship. However, their longest storyline took place in 2004, following Stratus’ heel turn and alignment with Christian. (more…)
Stewart Allen is a no-good, low-down son of a bitch. He and his consigliore, Lee Burton drew me in with promises of “interviews” and “exposure” and “we’ll link to your movie!” Then they start in with the, “Come on, man… just check out this one match… all the cool kids are doing it.”
Next thing you know, I’m pushing deadlines to watch Mercedes Martinez and Madison Eagles brawl through an arena. I’m seeing Kana and Hailey Hatred beat the ever-loving hell out of each other instead of working on a pitch. I’m leaping out of my chair when Jenny Sjodin hooks a picture-perfect guillotine on Alpha Female, ignoring my wife when she asks if I’ve changed the cat litter.
It’s a downward spiral, friends. Stew and Lee: they’re bad people. You should click a button on your browser and get out while you can. You don’t want to end up like me.
I’ve been a wrestling fan since I watched Dick Murdoch screw Ted DiBiase out of beating Ric Flair for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in Mid-South when I was nine or ten. Hogan/Piper, Doctor Death Steve Williams, Four Horsemen, Flair/Steamboat, nWo, Austin, Brock, JBL/Eddie, Undertaker/Batista, Joe/Angle, Punk/Cena, Henry’s World Title run. Until recently, these were my touchstones as a wrestling fan.
Two things have happened to my wrestling sensibility since the beginning of 2012.
First, after years of effort Court Bauer got me watching All Japan from the ‘90s (with an assist from the Torch’s Bruce Mitchell and the Observer’s Dave Meltzer). I got hooked immediately – if I’ve seen a better series of matches than Steve Williams vs. Kenta Kobashi or Mitsuharu Misawa vs. Toshiaki Kawada, I must have been on an alcoholic blackout because I don’t remember them.
Second: those rat bastards, Stew and Lee. I did an interview with them to talk about my contribution to the Trish Stratus vs. Mickie James story at WWE and they used their Merry Olde Empire powers of hypnosis to tell me about SHIMMER and Femmes Fatales and EVE. “Just watch Shimmer Volume 37,” they said. “You’ll love it.”
They were right. Now I buy dvds and waste time I can ill afford because of these Ringbelles douchebags. They’ll do the same to you if they can, gentle reader. Get out while you can. (more…)
Trish Stratus‘ first ever pay-per-view appearance was a WrestleMania back on April 2, 2000 – quite a high profile start for a woman who was brand new to wrestling. Her role wasn’t big – just standing there while her team of T&A (Test and Albert) defeated Head Cheese (Al Snow & Steve Blackman). The following year at WrestleMania X-Seven, she played a part in Vince McMahon getting his comeuppance against son Shane and getting revenge on daughter Stephanie in the process, as the Billion Dollar Princess had been lording it over the Canadian for the previous month.
On March 17, 2002 at WrestleMania X8, Trish made her WrestleMania in-ring debut in her hometown of Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the SkyDome in front of 68,237 fans (me included). Unfortunately, her three way match against Lita and Women’s Champion Jazz was given the slot of death on the show, and is largely forgotten as a result…
Trish had claimed her first Women’s Title back at Survivor Series the previous year when she won the vacant belt in a six-way challenge that also featured Jazz’s WWF debut. The two engaged in a feud, with their first high-profile match taking place at the 2002 Royal Rumble which Stratus won to retain the title, though she dropped the belt to the former ECW star on Raw on February 4. When Lita was added to the mix, the Divas match for WrestleMania X8 was set – however, its positioning after Hollywood Hulk Hogan v The Rock and Chris Jericho v Triple H for the WWF Undisputed Championship meant that the contest was showcased in front of a set of deflated fans who struggled to care, even though the girls tried hard. (more…)
The feud between Mickie James and Trish Stratus hit its zenith at WrestleMania 22 (you can see the awesome angle leading up to it following Mickie’s heel turn and the match itself by clicking here), but as discussed in our most recent Women Of Wrestling Podcast with former WWE writer Alex Greenfield, their first match is a forgotten encounter from a couple of months earlier.
Mickie earned her first shot at Stratus’ Women’s Championship by defeating Victoria on December 12, 2005, with the match taking place at New Years Revolution on January 8 in Albany, NY. At the time, the pair were friends – though their relationship was starting to become strained – and Mickie was still a Trish superfan, desperate to be like her idol, and that included becoming Women’s Champ.
Some moments to look out for in the match include Mickie copping her first inappropriate feel on Trish before going for the infamous V-lick; a smattering of chants for Mickie as the fans start to get into her character; the fans getting more into the match as it continues (the sign of a strong match) and; how Mickie’s obsession is her own undoing. Click after the jump to watch… (more…)
“You know, at one time, Mark Chapman was a huge John Lennon fan.” – Jerry Lawler, WrestleMania 22
That line of commentary from “The King” sums up one of the best female feuds in WWE history – the “Obsession” angle between then WWE Women’s Champion Trish Stratus and her stalker fan Mickie James. From October 2005 through April 2006, Alex Greenfield was the producer of all the angles/promos in the feud, and in this unique episode of the Podcast, he guides us through the twists, turns, shrines and kisses of the angle from conception to (injury hastened) completion. Find out the inspiration for the feud and how it changed organically as it got over, who came up with various parts of the angle, and personal opinions on all the major story beats of the story. Not only that, before the Mickie vs Trish stuff, we talk about the return of Kharma last weekend at the Royal Rumble and consider where she’s going on the Road to WrestleMania, and how that ties in to one Beth Phoenix. A fascinating peek behind the curtain of working for WWE.
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
“You know what I like best about Christmas? The surprises. I mean, it’s like you get this box and you’re sure you know what’s inside of it. You know, you shake it, you weigh it, you’re totally convinced you have it pegged – no doubt in your mind. But then you open it up and it’s completely different. You know, wow! Bang! Surprise!” – Go, 1999
Christmas is a time of surprises, so for this week’s Retro, we bring you a match that – on paper, at least – had no right to be as entertaining as it was.
For months, the bad blood between Trish Stratus and Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley had been building. Trish had been cosying up to Stephanie’s dad Vince after the boss told wife Linda that he wanted a divorce, sending her into a catatonic state – that seems so stupid when you read it back, but trust me, it was cool at the time. It escalated at the 2001 Royal Rumble when Trish accompanied then-WWF Champion Kurt Angle to the ring in his title defence against Stephanie’s “husband” (at the time, anyway) Triple H. They were both ejected from ringside after ending up in a fight, and followed it up in the subequent shows by fighting again and again, to the point that a match was signed for them for the excellent No Way Out card, which took place on February 25, 2001 in Las Vegas, NV. (more…)
A couple of days ago, I realised that next year, World Wrestling Entertainment would have been in existence for a decade. On May 5, 2002, the World Wrestling Federation ceased to exist – except in backdated Tagged Classics from Silver Vision and historians who refuse to use revisionist history and still refer to anything before that point as the WWF (and I’m one of them) – and the following day, WWE thrust itself into the forefront, courtesy of a bunch of horrendous vignettes and the infamous – and still confusing – “Get The F Out” slogan which had an accidental secondary purpose of telling fans to bugger off. If you don’t know why the WWF name had to go, it’s because the company played chicken with the World Wildlife Fund, and lost.
Officially, the final WWF show was Insurrextion, an annual UK-only pay-per-view which trotted out second rate stars for the undercard, had decent main events and while observing current storylines, did nothing to forward or develop them. As such, they weren’t worth buying, and eventually, WWE stopped running them and chose to do tours and record Raw and SmackDown in the UK instead. However, even though Insurrextion was the final show presented under the WWF name, it wasn’t the final WWF TV show, as that honour went to Sunday Night Heat, which had its matches taped before the previous Monday’s Raw.
The final Heat was broadcast on May 5, and closed the show with a match between Trish Stratus and Molly Holly, who had turned heel on the April 1 episode of Raw by interfering in a Trish v Terri Runnels Bikini Paddle on a Pole match (oh, how I miss those days) and solidified her new status by levelling Terri with a brutal headshot that would never happen now.
Click after the jump to see that match, and also how the WWE era was also welcomed into existence. (more…)
The cover is dedicated to the interviews with the ReGeneration X tag team of Allison Danger and Leva Bates, though the magazine also chases down Mia Yim for a chat, and there is the second part of their giant interview with former WWE Women’s Champion and Tough Enough trainer Trish Stratus.
Throw in reviews of ACW’s American Joshi Queen of Queens 2011 and AIW’s Girls Night Out 3, and you’ve got 46 pages of great reading. Click the picture to get stuck in.
Last week, WWE was in Toronto, Canada. Not only was it “Edge Appreciation Night,” but hometown girl Trish Stratus made a backstage appearance with Edge and a shorter one with Teddy Long. When talking with Edge backstage, she was getting him to try on a pair of her yoga gloves. Christian came into the frame to talk to his former best friend, but he spared a few words for Trish: “Nice of you to show up when you have something to sell.” Snide, but he has a point.
The thing is, Trish Stratus was and continues to be WWE’s “Golden Girl” as far as the divas go. Whenever they come to Toronto, you can bet that she will be there for a cameo, or for a match. This past year, she was a trainer on the renewed version of Tough Enough, came to Kelly’s aid at the Elimination Chamber pay per view, and was in a mixed tag team match at WrestleMania XXVII. Not bad for a woman who is officially retired. However, my problem with her is this: she gives little back to the division she helped to build. (more…)
Very WWE heavy at the top of this week’s Roundup, as I take a look at the last three shows the promotion has presented on TV, and how the writers have made a complete balls-up of the Kelly Kelly v Divas Of Doom storyline. Personally, I’d have produced things a different way, so I’m going to list what happened, my grievances with it and what I would have done instead. Bear in mind, this is just one man’s opinion, and I’m sure many will disagree with what I say, but I believe that this is logical, and not just the rantings of some fanboy.
On the go-home episode of SmackDown in Toronto before Night of Champions, Beth Phoenix defeated AJ, then delivered a promise to defeat Kelly at the pay-per-view. And that’s it.
Considering hometown girl Trish Stratus was on the show, it was a wasted opportunity. Stratus was only featured in backstage segments with Edge, Christian and Zack Ryder, and had no interaction with the girls. The chance was there for Trish to use some of the superstar status she has to give Kelly the rub (take your heads out of the gutter, you filthy people) and maybe get some heat for Beth at the same time. On goes my fantasy booking hat… (more…)
Over the last few months, we have been telling you about RESPECT magazine – an e-mag which shares an ethos with Ringbelles, in that it wants to showcase the best women’s wrestling from across the planet, no matter what promotion it comes from. Last month, it celebrated its 1 year anniversary. This month, it has undergone a metamorphosis to HONOUR magazine, though the mantra remains the same.
This month’s mammoth 60-page issue heavily features a biopic and interview with former WWE Women’s Champion Trish Stratus, who discussed Tough Enough, her WrestleMania 22 match with Mickie James, her retirement match at Unforgiven 2006 against Lita (though she has wrestled since, most famously at this year’s WM) as well as her yoga and movie ventures.
Elsewhere in the issue, Terra Calaway talks about becoming the #1 contender to the WILD Championship, and there is also an interview with WILD’s Travis Leland about working with former WWE Diva Ashley Massaro. There are also previews to Pro Wrestling: EVE‘s upcoming title match between Jenny Sjodin and April Davids and CHIKARA’s Joshimania, as well as columns from SHIMMER’s Jessie McKay and Allison Danger. Meanwhile, if you’re after reviews of CHIKARAsaurus Rex and SHIMMER‘s latest DVD offerings, you get those too.
Take a read of it by clicking on the image above to support HONOUR.
37 year veteran and former WWE producer/agent Dave “Fit” Finlay appeared on Right After Wrestling last night with Arda Ocal & Jimmy Korderas. Finlay was famous for being the man responsible for training the Divas during the period when they moved from mostly bra & panties matches to actual competent wrestling matches.
When asked about being the Divas trainer, Finlay admitted “I think it was a bit of a joke”. He noted that “I have a reputation of being very tough and working with the girls is like dealing with a bunch of personalities. And working with these girls to work in ‘lingerie matches’ or ‘Thanksgiving gravy matches’ was a little embarrassing for both me and those girls sometimes. But you make the best of it and it really worked and later took off.”
It’s not the first time that Finlay has spoken with some pride about the work he did with the likes of Trish, Victoria, Mickie James and Lita. Earlier in the year, speaking to Fighting Spirit Magazine (and quoted online by The Sun), he said “I got all the girls together one time, and said, ‘Girls, I’m embarrassed doing this stuff, but what I would like to do is teach you how to wrestle, and bring you higher up the totem pole wrestling-wise.”
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…)
The Big News
Two big stories coming out of the UK this week…
It was a rough yet rewarding weekend for Britani Knight. Suffering from what she thought was tonsillitis, the 18-year old member of the Knight Dynasty wrestled 5 matches in 28 hours on route to becoming the first ever Pro Wrestling: EVE champion. However, she was bedridden the next day with what turned out to be glandular fever, causing her to miss a date with her home promotion, World Association of Wrestling. We at Ringbelles wish her congratulations on her title win and also a speedy recovery from a nasty illness.
EVE’s title tournament turned out to be less complicated that the brackets would have led you to believe. Starting with FIVE four corner matches and a Last Chance Battle Royal for the losers to determine the quarter finalists, they were hurried through relatively quickly to leave us with singles matches which varied from fine to good – the standout matches of the first night featured Erin Angel v Nikki Storm and Britani v Jenny Sjodin in the quarters, and Sweet Saraya taking on Blue Nikita in a Last Woman Standing match. The return of Blue Nikita was something of a surprise after her relationship with EVE went sour after the first show – so when she ran in to attack Saraya in the opening match of the evening, it took many by surprise. It also meant that both voluntarily took themselves out of the tournament – Saraya was eligible for the Battle Royal and Blue Nikita never got to compete in her four-way contest due to brawling with Saraya before the bell – to compete in the Last Woman Standing affair, which Saraya won with a sunset powerbomb.
The Project nightclub was a makeshift venue after the Royal British Legion was pulled as a host due to licensing issues and complaints – somebody even called up the local radio station pretending to be EVE management to say the event at the Project had been completely cancelled – but as an environment for the audience, it was great. It was cosy, yet sat the fans comfortably with plenty of space, and felt safe yet anarchic. Apparently it was a little too cosy backstage, as there wasn’t much room for the wrestlers – of which there were around 20 – to change, but that could be changed if EVE decides to return to the venue – something the owners were pretty receptive to. (more…)