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Rumor Look Back: Feb. 8 - 14, 2021

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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 8, 2021

  • For whatever it’s worth, Edge told Sporting News that Christian was actually cleared “a few months ago.”
  • Last week we had a rumor saying it was a couple days ago. This week it’s one say a few months ago. They can’t both be right. (1/2)
  • Per WrestleVotes, WWE has been against the idea of using cardboard cut outs in the stands at WrestleMania 37, at least so far.
  • They ended up using them. (0/1)
  • The Wrestling Observer Newsletter says Shinsuke Nakamura has been told his role going forward is to make new stars.
  • They haven’t pushed him but he hasn’t been feuding with many young guns. He has a feud with Apollo now though, one where he just won the Intercontinental title. I wonder if they’ll use that as a vehicle for him to work with some young guys.
  • The Observer notes that Angel Garza’s spot in the Royal Rumble was supposed to be a comedy bit where he would get eliminated quickly but that was ultimately decided against and he was replaced in the match.
  • I mean I guess not being in there is better than being humiliated, but I’m not entirely sure.
  • Fightful Select notes that Kip Sabian has been injured and that’s why he hasn’t wrestled recently.
  • This was prior to the injury that has him out of action now.

February 9, 2021

  • Per WrestleVotes, WWE “will 100% discuss” using cardboard cut outs in the stands at WrestleMania 37, after they liked the way they looked at Raymond James Stadium for the Super Bowl.
  • Well they definitely discussed them because they ended up using them. (1/1)
  • Pretty obvious, but Wrestling Observer Radio confirmed WWE’s plan for WrestleMania 37 is Bad Bunny & Damian Priest vs. The Miz & John Morrison.
  • That was the route. Though injuries to a couple guys had it advertised as Miz vs. Bad Bunny for a few weeks. (1/1)
  • Bad Bunny might be starting a trend, too. Rapper Bow Wow tweeted that he plans to wrestle for WWE after his next album comes out. He wants to team with Rey Mysterio and is already Twitter beefing with RETRIBUTION.
  • That has not happened.
  • In an interview with Forbes, WWE President Nick Khan confirmed the company is interested in bringing Cardi B in.
  • There was rumor that she may host SummerSlam, but her pending childbirth probably nixed any of that.
  • Thea “Zelina Vega” Trinidad’s non-compete will be up next week. Fightful Select says they haven’t heard of anyone interested in signing the former WWE star, but note it’s normal for companies to not want to “tip their hand”.
  • She’s back in WWE.

February 10, 2021

  • The Observer mentions Rhea Ripley could end up on Friday Night SmackDown as a member of its roster. There’s speculation she could show up there as soon as this week.
  • She ended up on Raw. (0/1)
  • Fightful Select says Bad Bunny has already brought in more than $500K in sales for WWE, a big reason WWE wants to keep him around through WrestleMania.
  • Some fans may not have known him coming in, but he has a legit following.
  • Per Wrestling Observer Radio, Steve Cutler’s release led to WWE dropping a planned program that would have seen King Corbin, Cutler and Wesley Blake feud with Rey & Dominik Mysterio and Buddy Murphy.
  • It still amazes me that only Jaxson Ryker remains from the Forgotten Sons.
  • WOR also said it’s unclear why Murphy’s story with Aalyah was dropped and there’s no specific reason for it.
  • Probably because it was very awkward. Murphy really didn’t want to do it, but that probably didn’t play into it.
  • Lars Sullivan posted some concept art on his Instagram that apparently depicts an idea for him while he was still with WWE.
  • It’s similar to what Sheamus is rocking now.

February 11, 2021

  • Toni Storm wasn’t originally scheduled for the Women’s Royal Rumble, per Fightful Select. She was there as an alternate and used because Mia Yim “couldn’t go”. Kacy Catanzaro was also there as an alternate, but wasn’t used.
  • We learned from Keith Lee this week that she couldn’t go because contracted COVID, which happened when she was caring for him.
  • On the Men’s side, Murphy and Cedric Alexander were on standby. Interesting to note Andrade was not listed as an alternate. Fightful wasn’t even sure if he was in the building for the Rumble.
  • Andrade was released about 6 weeks after this rumor, at his request.
  • Cody Rhodes suffered “a slight tear of his left rotator cuff during his tag team match on Dynamite,” according to a statement AEW gave to Wrestling Inc.
  • Ouch.
  • Wrestling Observer reports all of the matches from the Japan side of the AEW Women’s Tournament bracket were filmed at Ice Ribbon dojo in Saitama, Japan. AEW Women’s champ Hikaru Shida oversaw the taping.
  • Makes sense that they wouldn’t have all the Japanese stars come over.
  • WWE is still moving to new headquarters, per The Stamford Advocate, but they’re keeping quiet about when the move will take place.
  • I have not found any information about a new HQ. Maybe it’s in Parts Unknown.

February 12, 2021

  • A source told WrestleVotes that WrestleMania 37 ticket sales are delayed because WWE is still trying to figure out how to safely pull off the event.
  • That makes sense. Especially because a lot of people still weren’t vaccinated by this point.
  • Ringside News indicated that WWE’s current plan is to add a SmackDown men’s Elimination Chamber match to the Feb. 21 pay-per-view. There are no plans for a women’s Elimination Chamber match on the card.
  • This is accurate. No women’s Chambers, just a men’s one from each brand. (2/2)
  • On Wrestling Observer Live, Bryan Alvarez said that even though Cody was injured on Dynamite, he’s expected to be fine for the upcoming match on Mar. 3 against Shaquille O’Neal.
  • That match went forward as planned. (1/1)
  • Alvarez also mentioned that Cameron Grimes really did make “a ton of money” on AMC stock, and that’s the inspiration behind his new GameStop money gimmick.
  • Good for him.
  • PW Insider was told that Bayley’s elimination at Royal Rumble 2021 occurred “a little earlier than originally planned.”
  • That’s always awkward.

February 13, 2021

  • A source told WrestleVotes “the unhappiness and straight up anger backstage [at WWE] is at an all time high level. Everyone from the boys to the road crew are pissed off.”
  • I wonder specifically why. Tired of the ThunderDome? Releases that were already started? We’re getting those rumors specific to NXT now. These rumors always come and go and they’re honestly not one we can ever really verify. Even if one group of people is unhappy, another may be perfectly content. It all has to do with who is talking to whom. But it’s a juicy rumor each time.
  • Fightful Select and PWInsider reported on a meeting with full-time corporate employees (not on-screen talent or wrestlers) where they were told promotions and raises were on hold, presumably due to the decrease in revenue they reported from Q4 2020. Insider says performance bonuses are still in effect.
  • This could be a reason to the anger backstage.
  • Reaction to those meetings, which PW Insider says were done department by department and not with the entire staff at once, was said to be negative, especially because many are doing the work of several people after last year’s furloughs. There’s no word on how long the promotion and raise freeze will last.
  • WWE’s business practices can be pretty shitty.
  • A creative pitch for last month’s Men’s Royal Rumble match would have seen Retribution members ringside to assist Mustafa Ali, per Fightful Select. While that didn’t happen, Omos did something similar of AJ Styles.
  • Retribution was pretty much dead by this point.
  • There’s speculation AEW could do a title change in The Young Bucks/Santana & Ortiz match on Dynamite next week, setting up an Inner Circle grudge match for the belts at Revolution and possibly furthering a Young Bucks/Good Brothers feud.
  • That did not happen. (0/1)

This week: 6/10 - 60%

Overall: 3,837/6,826 - 56.2%

Have a great week, everyone!