1.This Saturday, CM Punk makes his UFC debut as he faces off against Mickey Gall at UFC 203 on pay per view. While I honestly will be shocked if he makes it out of the first round, I applaud him for following his dreams and wish him the best on his MMA debut. Entering the sport of MMA at his age (and I hate saying that because I am older than him.) is a pretty difficult task, not even taking into account the various injuries he’s sustained over the years as a wrestler. Whether this is his only MMA match or if he’s able to make a go at it, he’s a living example of not caring about any obstacle that prevents you from achieving your dream.
2.Billy Corgan posted a video on the Smashing Pumpkins Facebook page discussing some of the recent activity at TNA. He confirmed that his title as President is legitimate, that he’s the head of creative at TNA, and most surprisingly, that he’s looking into purchasing TNA out right. While he made it very clear that there is no deal yet and that it may not happen, this is encouraging news for the beleaguered promotion. Despite losing most of their audience with the recent moves from Spike to Destination America and now to Pop TV, they have a core group of talent that are consistently putting on good shows of late. Some of the veterans of the group, especially Matt and Jeff Hardy, are showing they’re not long in the tooth yet, especially with the insanity that is The Final Deletion. I hope Mr. Corgan is able to purchase the company so they can finally get the stability they deserve.
3.Variety announced that Lexi Alexander, the director of the criminally ignored Punisher: War Zone, will help the movie Crossface, the story of the Chris Benoit murder, suicide. Lexi is an amazing director so I can’t wait to see what we have in store with this movie. My only hesitation on a personal level will be where they go with the story. There are some dangers involved in the world of professional wrestling without a doubt. For years the industry asked for a certain body type to present to their audiences. Benoit felt the need to take an insane amount of personal enhancement drugs to get to a shape he felt was expected of him. He also went above and beyond in the ring what his body could stand, resulting at one point with a broken neck. At the end of the day, despite what was expected of him physically by the promoters he worked for, he was responsible for his own actions. I hope we see a balance in this movie, not just two hours dedicated to how wrestling is bad. Regardless, with Lexi at the helm of the movie, the results will be great to watch.
4.Alberto Del Rio has parted ways with the WWE again. Seems when he signed his latest contract he had an out clause which, after the Wellness Suspension he received a month ago on top of rumors reported by Dave Meltzer and others that WWE officials were encouraging his girlfriend Paige, a star in the Women’s Division, to break up with him, he decided to use. There are also rumors that Paige herself may be on her way out as she reportedly has contacted a lawyer to potentially get herself free from her contract which has her obligated to work for them till at least 2019. I never understood the contracts WWE make with their performers. As independent contractors, they are not full fledged employees of the WWE, meaning the WWE doesn’t have to offer them insurance or pay taxes on them, but these employees sign these contracts that pretty much make them indentured servants. I understand that the WWE has business reasons for doing what they do but I suspect one of these days they’re going to see the end of their ability to label their performers independent contractors.
5.Backlash, the first WWE event of the new Brand Split, is this Sunday on the WWE Network. The Main Event of the show will be AJ Styles vs Dean Ambrose for the World Heavyweight Championship. AJ Styles, in my book, is the best performer in the business today. He can compete with anyone and have a five star match. I’ll bet I could face him in the ring and he’d make me look like a million bucks and I have the athletic ability of a walrus on acid. As far as Dean Ambrose, if Roddy Piper and Brian Pillman had a baby, it would be Dean. For my money, this has the potential to be a match of the year candidate so get subscribed to the WWE Network to watch it.