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Rumor Look Back: March 5 - 11, 2021

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All Elite Wrestling

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 jump right to it.

March 5, 2021

  • Wrestling Inc’s Raj Giri confirmed that Christian is signed with WWE, which makes it unlikely that he is the “huge, huge star” who is signing with AEW at Revolution.
  • This was soon backtracked as Christian was the big signing. It was still a bit surprising since it was very possible he’d want to stay with Edge and have their twilight run together. But I think he made the right choice. (0/1)
  • According to Fightful, WWE’s original plan was for Lacey Evans to defeat Asuka for the Raw women’s championship at Elimination Chamber. Evans’ feud with Charlotte Flair would have continued into WrestleMania 37.
  • That would have been something, but surprising is not it.
  • Fightful also indicates that higher ups in WWE were very impressed with the match between Drew McIntyre and Sheamus on this week’s (Mar. 1) episode of Raw. Sheamus’ recent in-ring work received especially high praise.
  • Sheamus has been booked rather well.
  • Mustafa Ali revealed that he’s currently wrestling with a torn PCL.
  • Ouch.
  • While discussing Jimmy Uso’s return to WWE, Jey Uso told Sportskeeda that the “Uso Penitentiary will be opening soon.”
  • It was a couple months later. (1/1)

March 6, 2021

  • The Wrestling Observer Newsletter notes a story went around about WWE fining wrestlers for thigh slaps and a memo was sent out to NXT talent about it and nothing has come up since.
  • That didn’t stop them for long.
  • They also say WWE is aware of age issues on the roster and a new doctrine says to only sign developmental talent if they’re under the age of 30, except for special situations.
  • Sounds like that’s they way they’re trending.
  • The WON also says the plan is for NXT to introduce women’s tag team titles.
  • They did that. Raquel González & Dakota Kai were the first champions - but it didn’t last long. (1/1)
  • According to Wrestling Inc, Jimmy Smith, a former commentator for Bellator and UFC, auditioned for an announcing job with WWE before SmackDown this week.
  • I don’t know when he auditioned, but he’s calling Raw now after Adnan Virk didn’t cut it.
  • Per the Observer, WWE has been talking to the Yuengling Center at the University of South Florida in Tampa, which could be a new home for tapings.
  • That was where they held the post WrestleMania ThunderDome. (1/1)

March 8, 2021

  • According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the WrestleMania 37 match card is still undergoing changes, as Vince McMahon apparently thinks the show needs to be bigger and abandoned original ideas.
  • Word has it part of that was adding Daniel Bryan into the main event.
  • In an interview with Complex, for whatever it’s worth, Bobby Lashley mentioned wanting to add a female member to The Hurt Business and having someone in mind for it.
  • That has not happened. Instead they cut two members from the group. (0/1)
  • PW Insider notes WWE is trademarking the term “NXT TakeOver: Stand and Deliver” and speculation is it will be the name for the two night event before WrestleMania 37 this year.
  • That was the name of their Mania TakeOver, a great one when you want to get pumped about wrestling and calculus. (1/1)
  • Per the WON, Kazuchika Okada is working through a lower back injury right now and that’s why his matches have looked basic of late.
  • Back injuries are tough.
  • Impact’s Hard to Kill pay-per-view brought in the most buys — outside of one show — since the Spike TV deal ended in 2014, says the Observer.
  • Their partnership with AEW gets more eyes on the product, even if they were dumping on them for awhile.

March 9, 2021

  • On Wrestling Observer Live, Bryan Alvarez said AEW tested Revolution’s show-closing explosion ahead of time and it worked. The “bomb” used on the PPV broadcast just happened to be “a dud”.
  • That was a tough ending but clearly didn’t cause any long term issue.
  • Alvarez also said Kenny Omega was “furious” about how the finish came off.
  • That’s understandable. It was the main talking point from an overall good PPV.
  • Some WWE higher ups “were let down” that Christian jumped to AEW, per Fightful Select, but acknowledged it was on the company for not locking him into a deal.
  • Christian would probably have been taking losses to all of Edge’s future opponents if he re-signed, though I’m bummed we don’t get that E&C tag run.
  • WWE’s hired Mike Heller as a lead writer, according to Ringside News. Heller spent six years working on MTV’s Ridiculousness as a writer/producer.
  • I wonder how much impact the lead writer has given everything still has to go through Bruce Prichard and Vince McMahon.
  • The Verge reports that WWE events on Peacock won’t have match markers and will be uploaded as one long video. You also won’t be able to search for specific wrestlers or matches, at least at first.
  • It wasn’t the finest start. (1/1)

March 10, 2021

  • Per Justin Barrasso of SI, tonight’s NXT announcements will be for women’s tag team titles and a two night TakeOver event with night one on USA and night two exclusively on Peacock.
  • Accurate on both accounts. (2/2)
  • Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus in a Last Man Standing match is the working idea for Fastlane, according to Bryan Alvarez on Wrestling Observer Live.
  • It was No Holds Barred, not Last Man Standing. But the match happened at that show. (1/2)
  • For whatever it’s worth, Dave Meltzer said on Wrestling Observer Radio that WWE has a mentality that the titles are props and a tool to draw ratings, and that’s likely why they booked a Miz vs. Bobby Lashley rematch this week, because it was successful ratings wise the week before.
  • They don’t have too many major title matches on TV.
  • He also says the idea now is Shane McMahon is supposed to be the heel and Braun Strowman is supposed to be the babyface in their feud.
  • That makes sense with the story being about Shane bullying Strowman. (1/1)
  • A feature article on Yahoo mentions the possibility of WWE returning to live road shows by July.
  • July 16 was their first back on the road. (1/1)

March 11, 2021

  • There’s concern backstage about WWE bringing John Laurinaitis back as head of talent relations, according to Fightful Select. One wrestler told the site they’re worried he’ll bring back his past approach of prioritizing “‘diva’ style performers over in-ring acumen”.
  • Understandable worry, but I don’t think this has happened overall. They had too many talented women doing well to go so far in reverse.
  • Other wrestlers told the site that Laurinaitis’ predecessor Mark Carano was easy to work with, but hard to trust. Last April’s releases were said to be when trust in Carano, and the company, “eroded”.
  • He was pretty much a fall guy, whether he deserved to be fired or not.
  • Fightful Select also reports that Shane McMahon’s stupid promo from Raw went as scripted. His taking forever to get to the point was part of WWE’s plan to ensure Shane McMahon is “less likeable”.
  • It’s a way to get the heel turn where they need it to.
  • A tweet from AEW’s Dax Harwood has led to speculation Chad Gable’s WWE contract will be up soon.
  • He’s still working with them. So it either wasn’t up that soon or he re-signed.
  • WWE’s filed trademarks for “Symbiosis” and “Franky Monet”.
  • Franky Monet is the former Taya Valkyrie but I’m not sure what Symbiosis is or will be.

This week: 10/13 - 77%

Overall: 3,872/6,872 - 56.3%

Have a great week, everyone!