The Flagship is back as Brian, Steve and Michael first get into a heated discussion about our college teams and Steve finally pays up on a bet. Then the guys talk about some promotions within the WWE which are leading to the impending launch of the WWE Network, how exactly the network could work and the many possibilities, Triple H now in charge of the creative team along with Vince McMahon, the WWE TLC 2013 pay-per-view which is less than two weeks away, their disappointment in WWE storylines and if they see that changing anytime soon, the Slammys coming to Raw on Monday and also the possibility of TNA Wrestling original AJ Styles leaving the company.
Brian, Michael and Steve look back at Raw from Monday night including the feud between Triple H and The Big Show and a mini dressed as a bull trying to hump a woman on live TV(!), Rey Mysterio’s return,WWE reverting back to big guys on the top, TNA Wrestling’s latest ruse to fans, if the company is for sale or not and much more.
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There have been many moments in TNA Wrestling history that have left many people befuddled and confused over the years. Choose between booking decisions, strange gimmick matches and especially on big promises coming up flat.
Here is an example of the latter of those choices.
On Tuesday, TNA President Dixie Cater shot a video saying that a former world title holder was returning “home” to Impact Wrestling this Thursday night in Cincinnati.
All of us fool hearted suckers on the Internet fell for it hook, line and sinker. Mission accomplished TNA. People online were speculating who it could be. Ken Shamrock? Maybe Raven? How about Ric Flair? Hulk Hogan” Did he re-sign?
Even Steve and I discussed it on our Tuesday podcast wondering who exactly TNA was bringing back fold. Some big name that would bring viewers to Impact Wrestling even for one night.
Dixie later tweeting that if a tweet of hers got 150 retweets she would reveal this mystery person that was making the big return. That was no problem as she got the 150 retweets. As promised, she gave up the name of the former champ coming home in the video below. Pay close attention to the look to the reaction from both Jeremy Borash and Dave Lagana.
Yep, that’s right – the big reveal is former TNA tag-team champion and current Cincinnati Bengals player Adam “Pacman” Jones! Whoop-ed-e-do!
Of course it was. We all should have known better. And Dixie is just being that crooked woman running the people that people love to hate. She’s a heel folks! And she got us.
Borash and Lagana weren’t the only ones to have a confused look when they found out it was Pacman “make in rain all up in here” Jones as the mystery man. Here is the reaction from others once they saw the big reveal.
And this sums it up.
Brian and Steve recap WWE raw from Monday night including the legal issues between the Big Show and Triple H, holes in the main storyline, going back to the well, Dolph Ziggler being worth 12%, Kane owns a suit, a horny bull making some moves on Renee Young and more. Plus, they talk about the card so far for Survivor Series, the latest on Hulk Hogan, TNA being for sale or maybe not and what former champion is returning on the show this week.
Jason Powell of ProWrestling.net comes on the podcast today to talk about the fallout from WWE Hell in a Cell, the new directions for the company, Triple H on top and where Randy Orton fits in, Shawn Michaels possibly returning to the ring, a possible lost opportunity for Daniel Bryan, rumors of TNA being for sale, Eric Bischoff’s role with the company, Hulk Hogan and more.
Brian, Michael and Steve are back for the weekly Between The Ropes as they talk about the fallout from WWE Raw on Monday night and the Triple H promo to end that show, a preview of this Sunday’s Hell in a Cell PPV and some predictions, Sheamus on his comeback from injury, TNA on the move and a new initiative and more.
Brian and Steve recap WWE Raw from Monday night including the buildup to Sunday’s Hell in a Cell PPV, the finishing segment with the Triple H promo, who looks to be upset about something he said, getting back to a formula on Raw, why Norv Fernum should have been on the show and much more. Plus, they talk about TNA going with a rematch between AJ Styles and Bully on Impact this week and the entire angle.
One half of Bad Influence Christopher Daniels discusses the TNA Bound for Glory PPV on October 20, the EGO Hall of Fame, Walter White, his long tenure with the promotion, rumors surrounding the company and how he deals with that talk, AJ Styles possibly leaving the company, reality in wrestling, taking the show on the road, if they could even return to Orlando or be someplace else on a regular basis, teaming with Kazarian for nearly two years, where he gets his inspiration and more.
Former NWA World Heavyweight Champion Adam Pearce talks about the #7LevelsofHate series with Colt Cabana, the DVD on the series which includes all of the matches as well as a documentary about how it came about and the politics that being involved and altered the series, if any explanation has been given from the NWA ownership about changes made involving him, Cabana and the series, his relationship now with the NWA, the process of putting together the DVD, if he was happy with the series itself, the TNA gut check experience, the #August1Warning spoofs, TNA as a company right now, selling Scrap Daddy booty shorts(!) and more.
You can purchase the Seven Levels of Hate DVD at its official website.
Brian and Steve look back at last night’s Raw including Daniel Bryan being stripped of the WWE Championship, Stephanie and her wicked ways involving with Dusty Rhodes, Paul Heyman and his starry eyes for Ryback, the good guys finally stepping up and helping and more. Plus, they talk about the report that Hulk Hogan’s TNA contract expiring in two weeks and the company possibly taking Impact off the road.
It seems like everyone is always looking for a big man in wrestling. While the business is evolving, the big man – especially a giant – has always been at the top of the food chain, standing out above others to dominate until a worthy contender can slay him.
Right now, there is a big man in wrestling without a home. That is Matt Morgan.
The seven-foot, 300-pound plus “Blueprint” was last seen in TNA Wrestling back on June 13. After being with the company for the better part of six years, Morgan decided a change was needed.
It was time to go. And after several discussions with TNA President Dixie Carter, he was given his release.
“TNA was a company I fell in love with,” Morgan told Between The Ropes in an exclusive interview. “Dixie Carter is someone I love like a family member. But on the business end of it, you want to be in a situation where you feel like you’re still improving and you’re being put in situations that highlight your strengths and hide your weaknesses. Every wrestler wants that.
“But you also want to keep progressing. I was in a spot where if I’m going to be sitting home and just collecting a check, that’s not the kind of guy I am. That’s not the kind of performer I am. I’m a guy who wants to earn his check. More importantly, I want to be a guy who helps put asses in seats and do that, I need to be in the ring wrestling matches.”
Morgan is a man still torn by the decision and you can hear it in his voice. It sounds like it’s straight from a current storyline in that what he did “was best for business”. But when you hear him talk about that, it sounds like a business decision he didn’t necessarily want to be forced to make.
“It was tough to leave because that was my family for a while. TNA really was a good family atmosphere. That’s not even getting into the guy in the locker room who are like brothers to me as well.”
On several occasions, it looked like Morgan was on track for bigger things, a true main-event player. Every time, something happened.
A feud with Hulk Hogan? Well, the Hulkster just can’t get in the ring any more with his health issues?
The feud with Sting? It fizzled out quickly.
There were plenty of other starts and stops along the way when it looked like he was on his way to becoming the TNA World Champion. Even Morgan thought it was going to happen at some point but it wasn’t meant to be.
“From the business side of things, all you can do is bust your ass, whatever they throw at you, and do it to the best of your ability,” Morgan said. “Now, if there was something that I did wrong that prevented that from happening, I’ll take that on the chin. But if it’s something that I can’t control, like that, than no. That’s on decision-makers.”
“That’s on the wave of the business at that moment and what they feel is best for their product and who they think should be the world champion at TNA at that moment. If it’s not me, it’s not me. That doesn’t mean you cry over it. You try to prove them wrong and keep it moving.”
So now he is a giant without a company. There are some that think he would be a better fit in WWE being a big guy. It’s not like that company isn’t familiar with him either since he came up through their developmental system before going to the main roster for several stints before he was released.
Maybe he was brought up to the main roster too quickly. He needed more experience. Now, he’s been in the business for 11 years and has gotten that seasoning working in Japan as well as TNA Wrestling.
So when asked about that possibility, he didn’t shoot it down.
“I’ll put it to you this way,” Morgan replied. I think there is a bazillion and one fresh matchups for me. I think I’d be a hell of an addition to that roster as far as adding some freshness and adding a big man that would be able to go for the next five to eight years easily if needed. And again, a guy that’s never missed a single date in his career. No injuries, doesn’t take steroids, isn’t on drugs and someone that would be a hell of a representative for that company.”
“On my own accord, I do anti-bullying campaigns. I’m part of D.A.R.E. and PAL here in Orlando where I’ve spoken to just 215 schools here in the state of Florida alone, on my own, since I can tell these kids my own stories. I have ADHD for instance. I talk about learning disabilities. I talk about my drug history in the past of being a painkiller abuser and moving past that. I’m a very good story to tell and I think I’d be a hell of a representative as far the company is concerned publicly.”
At the same time, he has history with TNA Wrestling and while he asked to leave, he is keeping the door open for a return.
“Definitely if the timing is right,” Morgan said. “Timing is everything in this sport. I’ve always said that and it’s the truth. But I do not want to go back somewhere where it’s business as usual and let’s do the start – stop stuff again. It’s got to be full guns blazing, let’s do this thing. You’ve got a seven-foot, 330-pound steroid-free monster that is the most durable thing there is right now. Please tell of someone who is my size and hasn’t had an injury in ten years. I’ve never missed time for anything. That being said, let’s go. Let’s just come out of the gates blasting.”
Right now, Morgan is working a few independent shows just so he can stay in ring shape. Priority number one though is taking care of his wife who is more than five months pregnant with their first child in what he says is a very high-risk pregnancy after the couple tried for ten years.
You can tell he misses being in the ring, being away from the brotherhood of wrestlers. He wants to be in the spotlight and given a chance. He undoubtedly has the size. He believes he has the tools. Now, he needs the opportunity.
Morgan says that he won’t have to wait long before he gets that opportunity.
“I’ll put it to you this way without saying too much. I know exactly what I’ll be doing and where I’ll be heading and when I’ll be doing that.”
Will we see him TV before the end of 2013?
“Yes. Yes you will.”
Brian Fritz sits down with Matt Morgan about his time in TNA Wrestling, why he left and how tough the decision was to leave, what could be next in his future including the WWE, his acting career including one interesting role he recently tried out for, his relationship with Hulk Hogan and if he thinks Hogan will return to the WWE, Kurt Angle’s recent issues and coming back from rehab, his battles with painkillers years ago and coming back to wrestling, being around Brock Lesnar and Nathan Jones early in his career, the state of wrestling right now and more including some Breaking Bad discussion.
Follow Matt on Twitter @BPMattMorgan
Brian spends his Friday night talking with Eric Gargiulo of the Camel Clutch Blog as they discuss the current Daniel Bryan storyline, who the best wrestler in the WWE is right now, all of the various possibilities for WrestleMania 30, who could possibly return to the company, the futures of Hulk Hogan, Eric Bischoff, Sting and AJ Styles in TNA and maybe somewhere else, the wrestling television landscape, Ric Flair and more.
Follow Eric on Twitter @CamelClutchBlog
You think of AJ Styles and you think of him being an original member of TNA since the organization started in 2002. Well that run could be coming to an end. PWInsider.com is reporting that Styles’ contract expires next month and TNA has made very little effort to make him an offer.
The former TNA world champion posted this on his official Facebook page early this morning:
Where do fans want AJ Styles to be? TNA? WWE? ROH? Japan? Lots of options. Tough decisions.
Should Styles stay in TNA or take his talents elsewhere?
TNA Wrestling President Dixie Carter announced that the match between Aces and 8′s vs. the Main Event Mafia will not be taking place on this Thursday’s Hardcore Justice event on Impact. Instead, the match has been pushed back a week to the August 22 edition of Impact Wrestling.
Carter posted the following:
— Dixie Carter (@TNADixie) August 12, 2013
The most logical reason for this is because Kurt Angle — who is a part of this match — is currently in rehab following his recent DWI arrest. If this indeed the case for the match being pushed back a week, that would mean Angle would be in rehab for about three weeks before checking out or at least leaving for this match.
You would hope that Angle along with TNA Wrestling is taking his problem very seriously. However, if he stays in rehab for anything less than 30 days, many people will have doubts about his sincerity to battling this issue. There are even those that believe Angle should stay in rehab for as much as 60 days considering this is his fourth related DWI issue although he has either gotten off or had the charges reduced in the first three cases.
Angle is committed to his job and no one can question that. It’s whether or not he has that same commitment to overcoming this personal problem and how serious he is treating it.
Hardcore Justice on Thursday is headlined by TNA World Champion Chris Sabin defending his title against Bully Ray in a steel cage match. Plus, there will be a Bound for Glory series ladder match with Jeff Hardy vs. AJ Styles vs. Austin Aries vs. Kazarian.
UPDATE: The August 22nd edition of Impact Wrestling will be taped after the show on August 15. So, it’s not certain why the match is being pushed back. It could possibly be just to have a big match on that show and not just have one big loaded show on August 15.