We're told that weeks ago there were some conversations involving Triple H internally about wanting to add a little more of a light side to NXT, noting that the show was missing that. It being overt comedy wasn't the direction we'd hear, instead just more light hearted aspects of the program. We saw that with the Broserweights skits of late, and even him on Smackdown CUTTING A RUG.
I spoke to Trey Miguel about the process of him coming into IMPACT Wrestling, where he said that Zachary Wentz actually gave him the news. However, he was asleep when it happened and Wentz only originally mentioned he was getting signed himself, so he didn't really care that much and was instead just mad that he was woken up. He had heard rumblings that they were going to get signed in the weeks before it actually happened, but he couldn't tell anyone, which was very difficult for him. They weren't allowed to "say a single thing," according to Miguel.
He called PWG and IMPACT two different worlds, but said that working PWG was always a goal of his and helped give him another sense of "making it." Making it to the top levels of independent wrestling was a goal of his and hearing the crowd chant "this is awesome" while he looked up at the ceiling of the Globe Theater was one of them. Another goal of his is to get a top contract from a wrestling promotion, which he admittedly hasn't reached as of yet. He finished up by saying that going from unknown to completely familiar in IMPACT is "truly welcoming and validating."
All Elite Wrestling
- Even though the city of Jacksonville tweeted that Daily's Place was off the table for AEW Dynamite last weekend, we're told that was never really the case. A social media manager was just confused, thinking it was a public event, and there was never any issue between the city and AEW running the venue.
- Orange Cassidy was slated for an appearance on ESPN last week, but it was postponed because of the COVID-19 concerns.
- In case you were wondering, WWE Raw from the Performance Center last week was broadcast live, and was not pre-taped. There were several people on the roster who were there and not on the show.
- People that were in the know on Raw Monday afternoon were not optimistic that it would be a good show.
- There were no mass pre-tapes, at least that were in open view.
- WWE Performance Center classes are not taking place this week, as if that were a surprise to anyone.
With Alberto Del Rio saying that he's in talks with WWE for a 2020 return, Fightful reached out to multiple sources within the company. One outright exclaimed "bullshit!" as a response to that.
Another doubled down on a statement they gave us last year, saying "If Paige does nothing for WWE, she's more valuable to have around than anything he could do," and saying the company wouldn't risk making her uncomfortable by having him around at this point, though their current relationship, friendship, or terms aren't known known
I talked to former WWE Cruiserweight Champion Hornswoggle about his new book, which he said he wanted to do all along. After he got released, he was approached by an author to do a book, but it was another guy he got on board who made it happen, and three years later it was released. He doesn't see a correlation to himself as a storyteller to an author, and noted there were plenty of shitty wrestling books out there, but he feels he has a good story. He said he thinks it's the only wrestling book that Dolph Ziggler has ever read, and he liked it.
We talked about some of his classic moments, and he said that he only found out about the angle of being Vince McMahon's son less than six hours before that night's episode of WWE Raw started. He found out he'd be Cruiserweight Champion two days before, which is more standard in this day and age. He still has his copy of the Cruiserweight Championship, which has a name plate on it that reads "Hornswoggle McMahon."
He also took time to rib Ethan Page, who was next to us. He said Page would never make it in the wrestling business.
As of Thursday, the IMPACT Wrestling roster has not been told of any possible rescheduling of the TNA Retro show that was set for WrestleMania weekend in Tampa. However, many were optimistic that it could and would happen based on the buzz the event got. Among the wrestlers we spoke to, they seemed happy about how IMPACT has treated things and handled the situation, despite being disheartened
We heard from one person on the roster that said that they aren't even sure of the direction the company will go with the tapings and moving forward because they had a lot of footage in the can specifically leading to the Rebellion PPV that are "hard to get out of."
- We've spoken to several indie promoters and distribution outlets who told us they were going to rely heavily on their back catalog being uploaded to Youtube to keep their doors open while the quarantines are happening.
Throughout the week ahead of the announcement, Fightful had reached out to several sources about the potential of taping WrestleMania in order to reduce risk of infection of COVID-19. Several sources in WWE said they didn't think there was any way Vince McMahon would allow that and noted that the first week didn't even see the company tape footage for Raw, Smackdown or NXT in the future. That sentiment changed when WrestleMania was announced for two days.
"We have some really cool things planned," a Fightful source in the company stated. "Well, cool for the situation we're in at least. It's not something we want to have to do, but it's where we are. Don't expect this to be like the first Raw or Smackdown you saw from the Performance Center. Based on what I was told, this will be outside the box."