- The Elite Deletion match was filmed about a week before Full Gear, and had heavy input from several wrestlers involved. It got positive feedback and reaction backstage.
- Numerous attendees of the close by football game were able to sneak looks at the set before the show.
- There were some associated with AEW requesting that photos of the set that emerged online prior to the show be removed.
- We've had several ask if the ring at Daily's Place stays up full-time since AEW runs there every so often and multiple times last week. The ring was taken down immediately after Full Gear.
- Many of the wrestlers were there for a ten-day loop of filming in Jacksonville.
Prichard, who has a new podcast, told me that one of the reasons he left WWE is because of their ideologies in training stars then. He felt that the training method of WWE was too cookie cutter, and stressed how that doesn't work for everyone. There are days when certain exercises or drills aren't clicking, and he wanted to switch it up, but WWE wanted to have a set itinerary in order to make things go in a more predictable manner. Prichard confirmed to Fighful that he had not been contacted by WWE to make a return since Bruce came into power
We've learned about the deals that several of the incoming or recent WWE signings are on. The initial deals are worth $60,000 downside guarantees, with added $500 bonuses with each episode of television that they end up on. We're told that some of the original short-term agreements jump up to $80,000 in January, and the bonuses will increase significantly, possibly even tripling for television appearances.
Several within WWE were happy that WWE had moved to shorter-term agreements to help the company avoid stockpiling and hoarding talent without using them as we've seen them do in the past.
Killer Kelly spoke with us and told us that she made a concentrated effort to not publicize her departure from NXT UK. She wanted to keep the news quiet and build intrigue and even a little confusion as to what she was doing and how she was able to work certain shows when nobody really knew that she was out of the company.
She thinks that WWE flat out forgot about her Killer Kelly name, and that was the reason that she ended up being able to keep it during her run there. She was fearful she'd have to change it, as it means a lot to her, but when she got her contract she was relieved it had "Killer Kelly" mentioned.
Kelly confirmed to me that one American company has shown interest in her (it ended up being IMPACT), but due to visa and travel issues things have been very slow moving for everyone. She isn't sure if she's going to relocate to the United States, but plans on being here until December at least. She was able to get into the United States by flying to Mexico, quarantining for 14 days, and crossing the border.
Kelly told me that Imperium's Alexander Wolfe got her booked for Josh Barnett's Bloodsport, and personally put in a call to his doppleganger Barnett to help make it happen. She'd only done roughly a month of MMA classes in the past, so didn't have the same background as a lot of people involved in that. Kelly said she'd open to training more (especially amateur wrestling) and even the possibility of fighting if things go well, but spoke highly of her Bloodsport appearance.
Brass Ring: Dexter Lumis
Dexter Lumis was one of a few NXT names that was mentioned as working hard to improve, based on our Brass Ring series. His name was actually brought up to us before his NXT push, but he was nominated based on his willingness to work to get on the show to begin with.
After he got the push, we asked several wrestlers about Lumis, all of whom agreed he'd delivered in the opportunity he was given. One told us "it would have been really easy for him to give up on himself or the gimmick because he wasn't on TV for five years. He did a lot of different stuff and people don't realize how multi-talented he is."
Lumis is an artist, and has also done voiceover work in the past for NWA.
Backstage News On Zelina
We've gained reactions from all across the wrestling world, from every major company in America on the Zelina/WWE split.
Most were looking for information themselves, as details are few and far between. Most everyone is shocked, but one person on Smackdown did tell us that if one person was going to stand their ground on the third party situation, they felt like it would be Zelina. However, we aren't sure that she actually did that.
Several AEW talent were surprised about the move, with one even noting that WWE doesn't realize what they have in Zelina, and they'd "lost their minds."
An IMPACT wrestler told us they would push for her to come back to the company as she has history there, and would be good for the rebirth of the Knockouts tag team titles
Phantom Call up
Yet another "phantom call up" has happened in WWE. Fightful has learned that Santana Garrett was "called up" to the WWE main roster this past summer, but never debuted. Garrett appeared on Raw, Main Event and NXT throughout the spring, before vanishing after May. She reappeared on the July 1 episode of NXT, but hasn't been seen on TV since. We've heard that there were several creative pitches involved with Santana Garrett, including being involved in a tag team, but the pitch never made it through in the end. Earlier this year, Chelsea Green was called up and not used until November, and Vanessa Borne was called up as far back as February and not used.
In case you were wondering, the Byron Saxton line about Asuka vs. Nia Jax being "WrestleMania Main Event Worthy" was scripted and instructed to him completely. There was no ad libbing on his part for that line, and was a total directive from WWE.
No Way Jose
In asking talent both inside and outside of WWE, we've been told that the company had interest in bringing back No Way Jose. Many on the NXT roster were under the impression that a trademark filing was intended for the former Jose, though we can't confirm that specifically, though the speculation did lead to us learning that WWE was interested in bringing him back. The 32-year old has been wrestling as "Levy Valnez" on the independent circuit since his release, and was well liked within both the NXT and WWE Raw locker rooms according to those we spoke to.
We have reached out to WWE on the matter, and can not confirm that he's signed or is coming in, but there is interest.
Chelsea Green was slated to win the Survivor Series qualifying match last week, before her injury. A pivot was made to have Liv Morgan win on the fly.