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Rumor Look Back: June 16 - 22, 2018

Welcome to the weekly Rumor Look Back, where we look at the rumors from six months ago and see which played out as originally predicted. Let’s get right to it.

June 16, 2018

  • According to the Observer, there are “lots of rumblings about WWE making moves on opening communication with talent in New Japan.” Apparently that also includes talent who are announced for All In.
  • Interesting. They didn’t really sign any.
  • Advertising seems to indicate that WWE will be going to the Daniel Bryan vs. The Miz feud sooner rather than later.
  • They ran a Team Hell No story first but they were there by SummerSlam. (1/1)
  • The expectation is that James Ellsworth is indeed returning to WWE at Money in the Bank and he will help Carmella retain the SmackDown women’s title against Asuka.
  • This is true. It wasn’t a long stay. He’s since returned to the indies, but then scandal involving an underage girl has pretty much halted all his bookings. (1/1)
  • Pro Wrestling Sheet is saying AJ Styles will be on the cover of WWE 2K19 and Ronda Rousey will be a pre-order bonus character.
  • That’s accurate. (2/2)
  • Per Post Wrestling, Authors of Pain haven’t been used recently due to a visa issue but that’s apparently been worked out.
  • They eventually won the tag titles and then retained them due to urine before losing them.

June 18, 2018

  • Despite being advertised for their Australian supershow in Oct., per Wrestling Observer, Daniel Bryan still hasn’t signed a new WWE deal. PW Insider says they want him to sign a five year contract.
  • I don’t know what the specific length of his current contract is.
  • On Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer said Velveteen Dream was on “the list to be called up after ‘Mania”. He commented he wouldn’t be surprised to see the NXT star moved up to the main roster now.
  • He’s still in NXT. He didn’t even get called up with the latest crop of talent just announced last week. (0/1)
  • Dean Ambrose was at The Performance Center last week, according to PW Insider. It’s not clear if he was in the ring at all, but he’s still not expected back until after SummerSlam.
  • He was back just prior to SummerSlam. (0/1)
  • In the latest Observer Newsletter, it’s noted Ring of Honor’s plan for Madison Square Garden is to run it on April 6, 2019, which is WrestleMania weekend against NXT TakeOver.
  • They are running it April 6. It’s not against TakeOver though as that’s been moved to Friday the 5th. (1/1)
  • WWE is going “all out” for the 2019 Royal Rumble, says, and will seek to make the show at Phoenix’s Chase Field rival the 2017 edition in San Antonio’s Alamodome.
  • I guess we’ll see. I’m curious what the baseball stadium set up will be like.

June 19, 2018

  • AJ Styles won his feud with Shinsuke Nakamura despite Nakamura getting over as a heel because WWE wanted him to be champ when the 2K19 cover was announced, a source told Wrestling Observer Live.
  • That makes sense. Didn’t help Nakamura though.
  • Original plans called for Money in the Bank’s main event to be Nia Jax vs. Ronda Rousey, including Alexa Bliss’ cash-in, according to PW Insider. The decision was made to go with the men’s ladder match instead ‘at some point over the weekend.
  • Braun winning that briefcase was the biggest waste.
  • Insider says that change led to some members of the women’s roster being “bummed” Nia and Ronda weren’t closing the show. Fightful says their sources told them Jax and Rousey “got a lot of praise coming through the curtain” after their match.
  • They had another good match just last week.
  • That site also reports talk of bringing James Ellsworth has been going on since Greatest Royal Rumble. There was a pitch to have him compete in the 50 man Rumble in Saudi Arabia.
  • Did MBS specifically ask for him?
  • No word on if Ellsworth is signed long-term or if he’s just back for a quick angle, but he is scheduled for SmackDown tonight.
  • It was a brief run. He was on that episode of SmackDown. (1/1)

June 20, 2018

  • The Observer notes that Vince McMahon called a meeting at SmackDown and that’s when he fired Big Cass.
  • There hasn’t been much of an update on Cass since he had that seizure at a House of Hardcore show. Hopefully he’s doing well.
  • Sports Illustrated is saying “personal conduct issues” are to blame for his release, notably drinking on the European tour and having a bad attitude while doing so but also being very public about it.
  • He owned up to his release, saying he’d release him too.
  • Lastly, WWE was apparently impressed with Cass and how he performed at Money in the Bank but his issues were too much to save him from being released.
  • His match with Bryan was pretty good.
  • Jason Jordan is expected to make his return to WWE TV at any time.
  • He’s still working his way back. (0/1)
  • Per PW Insider, William Regal will be back with NXT this week.
  • I don’t see him listed in the spoiler report but at the same time, he could have been backstage. It’s one of those rumors that I’d grade correct if he were in the spoilers but wouldn’t be able to grade if he weren’t. It’s the type of thing that slightly skews the numbers favorably.

June 21, 2018

  • Sounds like Big Cass’ release was a result of a multitude of issues. In addition to the accounts of being intoxicated in public mentioned here yesterday, Pro Wrestling Sheet says they heard of multiple times where he “rubbed people the wrong way” in the course of normal life on the road, such as incident on a tour bus where he thought he was being ribbed (he wasn’t) and broke down the bathroom door.
  • That tour bus thing probably pissed off a lot of people.
  • WrestleVotes says they’ve learned Cass had “voiced some frustration” about “creative differences over the past few months”, which combined with the other stuff made his departure unsurprising. PW Insider said a fan sent them a report of his arguing with producers at a house show in Waco after he “spat on the front row”.
  • Sounds like it was destined to happen.
  • Wrestling Observer clarified their report that Big Cass was fired on Tuesday in a pre-SmackDown meeting to say he was informed of his release privately and the roster told about it in that meeting.
  • Firing the dude in front of everyone would kind of be cruel.
  • Talk of a Big E singles push is again making the rounds, and it appears New Day will operate as a stable of solo wrestlers more than a tag team for a while.
  • That still hasn’t happened. They’re still mainly a tag team. I’d like to see it though. (0/1)
  • Triple H teased a “huge announcement on women’s wrestling coming very soon” while doing press in the UK. It’s believed to be an official confirmation of taping dates and talent for the second Mae Young Classic tournament.
  • There weren’t any other big women’s announcements outside the MYC. (1/1)

June 22, 2018

  • WrestleVotes notes that Big Cass refused to rehearse a promo before doing it live on SmackDown and this upset Vince McMahon & Kevin Dunn, likely contributing to the decision to release him.
  • This man sounded needlessly obstinate.
  • According to the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter, independent promoters are already talking about trying to reunite Cass with Enzo Amore (as real1) on the indie scene.
  • That hasn’t happened yet. While Big C has returned to the ring, nZo has not. (0/1)
  • Per Dave Meltzer, WWE has had discussions about running a show in 2019 that would feature wrestlers from outside the company.
  • Interesting...
  • Toni Storm, Rhea Ripley, Mia Yim, and Mercedes Martinez were apparently played in a clip for the next Mae Young Classic at this week’s NXT TV tapings and are expected for the tournament.
  • All four were in it. (4/4)

This week: 11/16 - 69%

Overall: 2,516/4,570 - 55.1%

Have a great holiday, everyone!

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