Northeast Wrestling

My top four favorite wrestlers of all time are: John Cena, Batista, Rey Mysterio, and Eddie Guerrero (but not necessarily in that order). Last night I met Rey Mysterio – in my hometown of Bristol, Connecticut – and it was one of the best nights of my life. As a kid, I was never taken to a wrestling show, so I would have never imagined that I would be able to shake hands with – and HUG – my favorite superstars. I am still in awe right now. The entire show was fantastic and so impressive. The crowd was electric. The atmosphere was intimate. It was truly an unforgettable experience.

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We were second in line for the event, but first in line to meet Rey Mysterio. He was running a little late, and we saw him arrive, and then enter the locker room to put his bag away and get ready. A few minutes later, he came out, and the first thing he did was go over to Kevin Nash (who was sitting down), jump on that little brick wall you can see in the picture above, and hug him from behind. He was such a normal person! After greeting Nash, Mysterio came over to us and said, “Sorry about that,” to which I replied, “It’s okay, you can do whatever you want, you’re Rey Mysterio!” We bought a photo of him which he autographed. He asked our names to write them on the photo, and I said my name (Emily) which he misheard as “Emma.” He asked, “Emma?” and so I repeated, “Emily,” and then he said my name out loud! I leaned over to my boyfriend and said, “Oh  my god, Rey Mysterio just said my name!” After he signed the photograph, I told him that he is one of my favorite wrestlers of all time, and he replied, “Thank you so much.” After, we took the photo with him, and before we were about to leave I asked him if I could have a hug. He said, “of course,” and then I hugged Rey Mysterio! And if I stood there another minute I would have cried ugly, happy tears.

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Next, we met Kevin Nash. He didn’t seem to be in a very good mood – he was very quiet. However, he came out to address the crowd and apologized. He said that he was recovering from his 32nd surgery, and was medicated. Upon learning this, we were even more impressed, because he showed up anyway, even though he was in pain, and it was uncomfortably hot outside.

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After we met Nash, we stood in line to meet Jack Swagger, who had not yet arrived. We were second in line to meet Swagger. When he showed up, he apologized for being late. I said, “That’s okay! You’re Jack Swagger! Better late than never!” and he said he liked my attitude. At this point, I turned to my boyfriend and said, “Jack Swagger likes my attitude!” To which Swagger replied, “Aw, you’re going to make me blush. I like Connecticut!” You guys, I made Jack Swagger like Connecticut. And oh my god, I didn’t notice he had his hand on my shoulder!

Here are some other highlights:

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Hacksaw Jim Duggan performed in a six-man tag team match.

We were impressed by the athleticism of some of the other wrestlers, who we did not know beforehand. Flip Gordon, a very talented individual, competed in a triple threat match and had us with our jaws on the floor. The Young Bloods were also impressive. Ryback was supposed to compete, but his flight didn’t land in time. He was supposed to fill in for Jerry the King Lawler, who had to cancel his appearance a few days before the show.

The coolest part about sitting front row was the interaction that we had with the wrestlers, the host, and even the referee. Flip Gordon, who got knocked outside of the ring, asked us to let him know when his two opponents were both down so that he could go back into the ring and get the pin. Wrecking Ball Legursky’s manager came out and took the mic from the host, Kurt Adonis, and Adonis started a chant that the manager’s breath “smelled like poop.” Then he turned to us, and said, “It really does smell like poop,” and the referee looked at us and nodded in agreement. When Adonis was announcing a new match, he said, “This match is scheduled for one fall,” and of course, the crowd chanted, “one fall!” and the ref looked at us again and asked, “One fall, not two? One?” and we laughed and said “one!”

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Rey Mysterio competed in the main event of the show. The entire crowd chanted “619” the entire match. He won the match after a 619 and a frog splash off the top rope. After the match, Rey grabbed the mic and thanked us all for coming out. He said that every time he comes to CT the 619 will be renamed the 860. After the match, and after he addressed the crowd, he walked around the entire ring to touch all of the hands that were out.

It was truly an amazing experience to attend this show put on by Northeast Wrestling. I started to feel emotional at the end of the show, thinking about the entire crowd coming together to enjoy the same experience. No matter our differences, we all came together because of our love of wrestling.

Wrestlemania: Orlando 2017

Like many of you, I have mixed feelings about Wrestlemania. I had some high expectations for WWE’s biggest show of the year due to recently following Wrestling Rumors on Facebook. I realize that predictions posted on Wrestling Rumors are just speculation, and it would have been very difficult for them to meet all of my expectations. However, I wanted all of the rumors to be true so badly. The origin of WWE rumors remains unclear. At times, it seems that fan sites latch onto niblets of a looming WWE storyline. They follow other wrestling companies’ story lines, habits of former and current superstars, they use context from WWE history, and they over-analyze diction and syntax. Maybe they even have someone in the WWE leaking information. Other times, I think WWE searches fan sites, like Wrestling Rumors, looking for an idea of what the people want to see happen. To my delight, some of those rumors came to fruition.

The Hardy Boyz return made my heart stop. The New Day’s announcement that a fourth tag team would enter the ladder match for the Raw tag team titles was beautiful. I love how WWE knows the rumors that are spinning, and caters to them (occasionally). The New Day so clearly knew that fans were on the edge of their seats, expecting, or at least hoping for, the Hardy Boyz. I’m not sure if this is a quality of the New Day themselves (they’ve done it on numerous occasions, including recently addressing Xavier’s sex tape), or WWE script writers, but the group always seems to address reality, breaking the fourth wall that can sometimes feel like a thick, impenetrable barrier between the WWE and the WWE Universe. The New Day’s delivery of the announcement left us suspended for a few moments. They teased us. Dressed in their wrestling gear, doubt seeped into the minds of the people that were so sure that the Hardys would return in the match that they’re most famous for. It was a terrifying few moments as we wondered, “WWE knows what we want. Would they really not give it to us?”  Thankfully, I think the New Day knows that we’ve seen enough of them for now.

John Cena proposed to Nikki Bella last night at Wrestlemania, even though he said he never would. Even though I’m a romantic, I’m not satisfied with this turn in events. It feels like a lie to me. The lie isn’t that John Cena is pretend-marrying Nikki Bella. I’m sure that they’re getting married for real, and they’re in love, and they’ll live a happy life together. The lie is that John Cena swore to us, countless times over the last few years, that he did not want to ever get married again. He was adamant. If there was one thing we knew about John Cena, it was that he was not the marrying type. Now, all of a sudden, he is? What changed? The other thing that bothers me is that there was no reasoning behind this change of heart. He stated that he knew he wanted to marry Nikki a year ago when she went into surgery for her injured neck. He apparently asked her to marry him when she was drugged up. That story does not ring true to me. Why would he ask her to marry him when she was loopy? He knew she would say yes. She has made her intentions more than clear – unless her feelings about marriage are a total lie, too. I’m sure that they will get more into this on the next season of Total Bellas, but they should not have had this segment unless they were going to do it right. You cannot un-do what he’s said for the last two years (?) in like ten minutes. I understand that there was a time constraint (don’t know how – the show was like 7 hours), but if they didn’t have time to do it the way they should have done it, with John Cena explaining why he changed his mind about marriage and declaring his love for Nikki, they shouldn’t have done it at all. Some people are claiming that he actually proposed to her months ago, and they’ve just kept it under wraps, which I can understand and respect, but they needed to have some respect for the WWE Universe, too. They owe us more than what they gave us.

Now onto my disappointments. Finn was nowhere to be found. He has been performing at house shows over the last few weeks, so I was sure he was going to be at Wrestlemania. I didn’t care if he didn’t compete, I just wanted him to make an appearance, to announce his intentions for his future.

The Smackdown Live’s women’s championship match did not have any returns. It was speculated that Kelly Kelly, Maria, or Lita would enter the match for the women’s title. This rumor felt increasingly hopeful when the night was nearly over, as WWE usually places their best content at the end of the show. Also, the way that the match stipulation was worded. “All available women on the Smackdown Live roster,” were scheduled to compete. It would have been too easy to have one of the above-mentioned women come out at the very end of the entrances, and say, “I’m now part of the Smackdown Live roster,” and then join the match and win the belt.

While I did face some disappointments last night, according to gossip, some surprises are in store for us the week after Wrestlemania. I can only hope that this will mean more returns, and some call-ups from NXT.

 

What did you all think of Wrestlemania? What was your favorite match? What are your storyline predictions?

David Otunga: Worst WWE Commentator in History

When one searches: “David Otunga WWE Commentator,” the first result that pops up is “Worst WWE Commentator in History.” Actually, it doesn’t say that, but it should. Instead, the headlines read, “David Otunga Temporarily Taking Over Commentary Duties for Jerry Lawler” and “David Otunga Has Found His Calling as a WWE Commentator.” Actually, wrestling rumors.net, I hope you’re right that Otunga’s role as a commentator is temporary. Thank you for giving me hope. As for Otunga finding his “calling” as a commentator (hiddenremote.com), you guys obviously wrote your article before you heard David Otunga commentate. It is amazing how bad Otunga is at commentary, considering that he barely even commentates. Every time he does speak, however, I face palm my forehead, cover my eyes, and will myself to be temporarily deaf.

When I Googled Otunga to see if anyone else noticed his lack of commentary skills, I came across a YouTube video of the Don Tony and Kevin Castle show, which, for the record, I have not heard of until today. The segment I am referring to is called “Why David Otunga’s Commentary is BRUTAL on WWE Smackdown!” and was posted by TVTraX.

Here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EUuufBjN9U

In the show, Don Tony claims Otunga’s commentary sounds like “somebody on a soundboard, and on the soundboard they have 500 phrases of David Otunga…and when somebody does something in the ring, I could press one button, and it would say something and the way it was said, the energy, and the lack of thought behind it…he’s horrendous.”

However, some people believe Otunga is receiving too much criticism for his commentary. The top comment on the video says, “You guys are overdoing it. I literally never remember that he’s even on commentary.” This comment received 28 “likes.”

So what do you think? Is David Otunga really as bad as some people (myself included) seem to think? Should we cut him some slack and hope he improves? For the record, I REALLY do hope he improves, but I’m not sure I’m patient enough to wait for that to happen. Some people are not cut out to commentate, even if they did wrestle. Should WWE replace him and save themselves and Otunga further embarrassment?

 

*I wanted to share clips of Otunga’s commentary to prove my point, but I couldn’t find any and didn’t want to break any copyright laws. I also wanted to watch all of the episodes of Smackdown since the WWE Draft (via Hulu), and list the dumb things Otunga has said, but that would take a really long time and I’m not sure anyone would want to read all of it. If you have the time to go back and listen to Otunga, do it. If anything, when you watch Smackdown Live, pay special attention to Otunga. You’ll see what I mean. You’ll get a good laugh, but you might also be a little frustrated like I am.

*On a side note, have you guys ever noticed the creepy look Otunga gives the camera?

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