If you haven’t heard it already, check out our weekend edition of Talking Sheet where Hugh and I cover an epic week in pro wrestling news coverage, including how the Hulk Hogan fiasco broke, the situation regarding Daniel Bryan in WWE, and whether they’ll ever clear him of his concussion injury. Then, Sealia Bloom returns to the show to look at the WWE Divas scene, her review of Divas reviews, examining Bruce Mitchell’s PW Torch article and more. Hugh offers his views for the week, plus power rankings. Plus we look back on the Wrestling Observer Newsletter from April 6th, 1987, recapping Dave Meltzer’s review of WrestleMania III.
You can check out our feature article tracing how the Hogan story broke, from Thursday night through Friday. Thanks again for all the fantastic feedback I’ve received for it.
Walt Rushin’s look at the Best and Worst in the Hogan coverage is also up on the site.
Let’s do the wrestling news roundup.
Monday News Recap
** Big story coming out of Monday, and the weekend, is how all of the main wrestling news writers turned to life coaches, imploring Hulk Hogan to get off twitter and simmer down.
** Dave Meltzer wrote: “Somebody let Hulk Hogan know that anything he does in public is not going to be good for him today, or any time in the next few days.”
** Jason Powell from ProWrestling.net had his take in an article looking at Jim Ross’s take from a recent blog entry
Hogan needs to stay away from Twitter. He is right to seek out public relations advice, but he eventually needs to get out there and address the issue in his own (albeit well-coached) words.
** This came on the heels of Wade Keller advising Hogan to do the same on his VIP Hotlines over the weekend, and a lengthy blog post this afternoon citing Hogan’s retweet of a fan’s note comparing Obama’s use of the N-word to Hogan’s:
“Bi-racial President Obama uses N word, is applauded and keeps his job. @HulkHogan uses N word, is vilified and loses his job.”
** Keller went on to write in one of his VIP Blogs:
Hulk Hogan should not make money as a celebrity ever again, based on those words. His celebrity is based on two things, primarily – being a comic-book style action hero to kids and being a role model dad who “knows best.” His words, captured during a genuine moment when he didn’t have his public face on and was self-editing, reveals a vile, bigoted side of Hogan that should, without a doubt, relegate him to the place most people on this planet live – out of the celebrity spotlight, quietly and humbly to live out his remaining years.
** Bryan Alvarez got into the action earlier today on Wrestling Observer Live to reiterate Keller and Meltzer
** The kicker, of course, may have been PWInsider proprietor Dave Scherer, when he took to twitter with the following:
— Dave Scherer (@davescherer) July 27, 2015
Someone that isn't really sorry apologizes when they get caught. Someone that is really sorry apologizes before they get caught. @HulkHogan
— Dave Scherer (@davescherer) July 27, 2015
** All the major sheets also had follow up stories on the Hogan situation on the heels of “new” information leaked in the Enquirer and Radar online…
Hogan used the term “f***in n*****”. It wasn’t clear if he meant the billionaire or Foxx. He then complained about Brooke, saying that she “f**ed up a $10 million deal” she had with “the Saudis” and how he told Cole that Brooke told him “f*** you, Dad” and flipped her off. He then complained about his family, saying how they have a huge house in Miami but they all went to Los Angeles.
** Dave Meltzer was also on CNN’s Newsroom with Brooke Baldwin. Have yet to find a video of it, and was unable to watch myself, but Colin Vassallo over at pro-wrestling.com has a great recap of the segment.
Meltzer added that its a huge deal both for Hogan and WWE and Hogan now loses the ability to film commercials and endorse products since no one wants to be associated with him. The fact that he admitted that hes racist will be tough to come back from.
Before ending the segment, Baldwin asked Meltzer who is the biggest name in pro wrestling now. Meltzer said that overall, The Rock is, however when it comes to full time wrestling, John Cena is the king.
** PW Torch’s Caldwell reports on Hogan’s personal life from the recently released new transcripts
Regarding his personal life, Hogan talked about feeling alone since his marriage to Linda Bollea was on the rocks and his children moved away from him. “I have this huge (f’n) house in Miami. My family never comes home. They went to L.A. F— them,” Hogan said, sounding hurt and defiant. Hogan and Linda divorced one year later.
“That’s not who I am,” Hogan replied to a Twitter follower. “I hit rock bottom 8 yrs. ago and made a mistake for that I am eternally sorry only love my brother.”
** On the process of getting cleared, Bryan notes:
“They take a baseline test when you are 100% healthy, testing your neurological capabilities,” said Bryan. “The first thing you do after a concussion is take another impact test. It’s a pretty thorough process. The issue for me is that, after the concussion, my symptoms stayed a little longer than they should have. Typically the symptoms only stay about a week, but mine stayed for over three.”
** Sean Ross Sapp has a rundown of the same interview here, but picks out entirely different talking points
The two best wrestlers in the world today:
“Cesaro in the ring is as good as anybody out there in WWE. If you’re talking the entire wrestling world, there is a guy in New Japan that I really love watching named Shinsuke Nakamura. He’s awesome and really fun to watch. But in terms of the WWE, in ring, I love watching Cesaro.”
** He also pulled out some quotes on whether Vince McMahon and Triple H like him, and whether it bothers him that he’s not McMahon’s prototypical star.
** John Cena had his nose busted up by Seth Rollins during their main event match for the US Title Monday night
John Cena suffers REAL broken nose on Monday Night Raw and it's nasty. pic.twitter.com/0BjdG06Qs6
— Jimmy Traina (@JimmyTraina) July 28, 2015
— Cesar (@theredstandard) July 28, 2015
** It was announced on Raw that Stone Cold Steve Austin podcast returns to the WWE Network next week with special guest… Paige.
** Jason Powell from ProWrestling.net has his live Raw coverage here
WWE really drove home the “first time ever” theme tonight. It tells me that they are aware that fans are groaning over some of the same old matches they have been presented with. There’s only so many “first time ever” matches you can give away on a regular basis, but hopefully the idea is to shake things up a bit. I enjoyed the overall show and felt they filled the three hours nicely. I’ll be back with my audio review later tonight, and on Tuesday with the WWE Raw Hit List. Thanks for watching along with me.
** James Caldwell has his news & notes takeaways are here
** Caldwell’s live Raw coverage at PW Torch is here
** Richard Trionfo’s 3 page recap is here on PWInsider
** Jeff Hamlin’s Raw… whatever it is he does is here
** Get those ballots ready, kiddos, because Jeff thinks Cena’s time is now.
“It’s now at the point where Cena should be in the argument for the Flair/Thesz Award because he’s doing it against a wide array of opponents. Otherwise, this was an ordinary show.”
** Which is actually interesting timing, given Dave Meltzer’s F4Wonline daily update, wherein he also wants you all to consider the following:
A question to ponder as Hall of Fame season comes close. What current wrestlers that aren’t in belong in?
Good advice, Dave.
** But hey, before you start praising John Cena for his performance tonight, just remember
I like John Cena but no way he's a better big match performer than a number of people.
— Dave Meltzer (@davemeltzerWON) July 28, 2015
** In case you missed it, WWE announced that SummerSlam would be a four-hour this year starting at 7pm Eastern on 8/23
** Dave Scherer offers his take on the recent story of ROH losing its primetime slot on Destination America
There is no positive way to look at this move. If the network were happy with and committed to the Wednesday night wrestling block, they would not have started testing shows in the 8 p.m. time slot. They would have left the night in tact. The fact that they are doing this is telling. It’s no secret that since bringing TNA on earlier this year, the network has felt that wrestling has underperformed and not met their expectations in terms of viewership vs. dollars paid for the programming
** Marc Middleton of WrestlingInc. has a report on Twitter rumors swirling that Adam Rose could be joining up with Bray Wyatt for the rumored six-man tag match heavily insinuated to involve Sting teaming with Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose to take on Wyatt, Luke Harper and a third man
** Rob McCarron is back with his video recap of night 4 & 5
** McCarron also has a great recap of weekend news and events, including CHIKARA results, PWG Threemendous results and more
** Greg Parks looks at how SummerSlam should be a launch pad to get Raw back on track after it has slid in the ratings over the past several weeks.
This sets Summerslam up to be an important event, and one WWE needs to use as a stepping-stone to get Raw back on track. Utilizing Lesnar, Undertaker, and Cena in prominent positions is tantamount to expending all of their ammo. If the increased star power doesn’t attract more fans to the product, then WWE may be headed for real trouble as Summerslam turns the corner into NFL season.
** PW Torch’s James Caldwell has the WWE Network Kliq Week schedule