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Rumor Look Back: Feb. 2 - 8, 2020

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

February 3, 2020

  • Brock Lesnar vs. Drew McIntyre is scheduled to be the main event of WrestleMania 36, says the Observer.
  • It closed the second night, which is as main event as you can get. I bet it would have gotten that spot if it were a one night event in Tampa. (1/1)
  • The Wrestling Observer Newsletter notes that WWE is making drastic changes to its house show business, notably by cutting back on running a large number of shows.
  • It was only 6 weeks later they couldn’t run any shows. I’m curious what that looks like when they can actually run them again.
  • PW Insider notes there had been plans for WWE to release the tiered version of the WWE Network around Royal Rumble. The belief is it’s still coming.
  • The free tier existed when this rumor dropped. They haven’t yet tiered it further with a premium and middle tier. (0/1)
  • Shawn Michaels is big on Jordan Devlin, per the Observer, and the idea is for him to defend the cruiserweight title across all brands.
  • It never got to that. He just defended on NXT and NXT UK, but not Raw nor SmackDown. He’s still the title holder but since he’s stuck in England, so is Santos Escobar. Devlin was also named in the #SpeakingOut movement, so we’ll see if that affects anything when he can return. (0/1)
  • They also say Io Shirai will likely be out for around two months.
  • She return at the end of March, so about that. (1/1)

February 4, 2020

  • More WWE Wellness suspensions are coming, says WrestleVotes. They also hint that there “must be something in that Southern California water”.
  • Samoa Joe was suspended a couple weeks later. (1/1)
  • While Shane McMahon helped put together the Royal Rumble match last weekend, Wrestling Observer reports he’s not working as an agent or producer. In fact, he hasn’t been around much since his feud with Kevin Owens ended in October.
  • I wonder why he’d come in to put together that match then. Unless he was just in town and decided to help out. He’s back now, though, running the Underground.
  • After word got out about WWE telling NXT wrestlers not to call out main roster talent on social media without their knowledge, a source told Fightful another meeting was held telling them not to talk to dirt sheets.
  • This rumor is delicious. The fact that we’re even reading about this second meeting shows how it failed.
  • At that meeting, wrestlers were also reminded they had to provide proof of health insurance to WWE.
  • That makes sense, though they should have their insurance through WWE.
  • Triple H is said to be “obsessed” with NXT UK’s Ilja Dragunov, according to TalkSPORT’s Alex McCarthy.
  • Obsessed as in he’s spying on him from the bushes?

February 5, 2020

  • PW Insider notes that Bill Goldberg’s return to SmackDown, as expected, will be to set up a match at Super ShowDown in Saudi Arabia.
  • Yup, to face the Fiend for the title, which he would win. (1/1)
  • They also say that while there was an earlier push for Sting to wrestle on that show, that doesn’t appear to be the case anymore.
  • Sting did not work that show. (1/1)
  • There’s some speculation going around, apparently starting from Dave Meltzer, that Rey Mysterio could be taking some time off after Raw this week.
  • Looks like a week or two. (1/1)
  • Per Meltzer on Observer Radio, the idea with Angel Garza is to have him work both Raw and NXT while Andrade is serving his suspension.
  • He worked both during the time. (1/1)
  • WWE has signed Aja Perera, according to Squared Circle Sirens.
  • Looks like it was announced the next day officially. She’s a referee. (1/1)

February 6, 2020

  • TalkSport’s Alex McCarthy writes that it’s believed that if it happened, a Sting comeback match would be against Undertaker, and possibly at WrestleMania 36.
  • It didn’t happen. Though if it could happen anywhere, it’s in a Boneyard type environment. It really could only be a cinematic.
  • On Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer said Rusev wasn’t on Raw this week because creative didn’t have anything for him. If nothing else, it’s another sign his program with Bobby Lashley & Lana is over.
  • His WWE career was pretty much over. (1/1)
  • The person who attacked MJF at the end of Dynamite looks to be a member of their roster, with many believing it was Frankie Kazarian.
  • That was weird.
  • WWE seems to have dropped plans to change the name of NXT’s Women’s title. This week on their website and on television, it was back to its original gender-specific name.
  • There was also word that they never officially planned to change it.
  • Add Amazon to the list of companies MLW is talking to about broadcast/streaming rights, according to PW Insider.
  • That did not happen. (0/1)

February 7, 2020

  • R-Truth recently told With Spandex that Brock Lesnar has been pitching WWE ideas about the two working together again.
  • They did stuff in January that was very funny. Who wouldn’t want to work with Truth?
  • Booker T mentioned on his podcast that The Revival turned down $700,000 each to stay with WWE.
  • I don’t know what their offer was.
  • Bryan Alvarez mentioned on Wrestling Observer Live an interesting text he got from someone within WWE about speculation that maybe the company could sell WrestleMania to FOX to air on its channel instead of the Network.
  • That did not happen. I wondered if they’d try during the pandemic because stations were so hard up for fresh content but even then it didn’t happen. (0/1)
  • There’s also speculation from the earnings report that Facebook didn’t renew Mixed Match Challenge because the numbers were so bad.
  • Ouch.
  • Dave Meltzer said on Wrestling Observer Radio that Timothy Thatcher signed with WWE because he couldn’t land a deal in Japan.
  • They’re giving him a pretty nice push in NXT.

February 8, 2020

  • PW Insider says there is not any sort of plan for the WWE Network to shut down and work on a tiered version of it continues.
  • It didn’t shut down but the tiered version still hasn’t happened. (1/2)
  • They also say that Vince McMahon announcing that WWE is open for business as far as selling off streaming rights came as a shock to many within the company.
  • He was making a bunch of moves surprising people around this time, including firing Michelle Wilson and Alex del Barrio.
  • Rusev has been taken off TV due to a contract dispute, says the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • We haven’t gotten that Rusev Talk Is Jericho post shoot WWE interview, have we?
  • They also say the heat Matt Riddle has in WWE is Vince McMahon not being a fan of his going after Brock Lesnar and Goldberg on social media, and McMahon seeing him as someone who “has no respect for the hierarchy of the business.”
  • Riddle disputes this.
  • The Observer says there’s still talk within New Japan of doing a show in Madison Square Garden this summer, possibly August.
  • That will not be happening. (0/1)

This week: 10/16 - 63%

Overall: 3,435/6,107 - 56.2%

Have a good week. Stay safe out there.

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