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Rumor Look Back: Sept. 28 - Oct. 2, 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 jump right to it.

September 27, 2021

  • AEW and WWE are running Long Island’s new UBS Arena within 10 days of each other in late November/early December. As of last Thursday, WrestleTix reported 2,721 tickets have been distributed for the Nov. 29 Raw. For the Dec. 8 Dynamite & Rampage show, 6,629 tickets have been distributed.
  • Woof.
  • Officials backstage have been happy with the Becky Lynch/Bianca Belair program, per Fightful Select.
  • It culminated last night, with someone winning and/or retaining the belt. (Full disclosure, I wrote this advance and scheduled it before going to Texas for WrestleMania so I have no idea who won the match as of writing this.) Congrats to the winner!
  • According to a WrestleVotes source, Nick Khan was backstage at SmackDown last Friday in Philadelphia, and “Khan being at TV isn’t an everyday thing.” Ringside News however says the WWE President “is becoming a fixture backstage and seeing him is nothing out of the ordinary at this juncture.”
  • I wonder how often he’s there.
  • Regarding speculation about why Rex Steiner is now Bron Breakker, a WWE source told WrestlingNews.co that Vince McMahon has no issue with Breakker’s uncle Scott Steiner, and the reason Big Poppa Pump isn’t in the Hall of Fame is because Steiner’s often said he doesn’t want to be inducted. PW Insider says the name change was just so WWE could control the trademark.
  • They finally went into the Hall of Fame a couple days ago.
  • Despite the issues with concessions, Insider says there is talk of AEW returning to Arthur Ashe Stadium next year. The site mentions the venue would like to have them back even earlier.
  • I can’t imagine a concession issue would prevent them from running the arena again. Hopefully, the stadium will be better prepared next time.

September 28, 2021

  • Alexa Bliss will be off WWE television for “a few months”, says Wrestling Inc. The site doesn’t mention why, but speculation is it will be to move on from the Lilly gimmick.
  • It was a couple months but it was not to move on from the Lilly stuff. (1/2)
  • Vince McMahon is “receptive” to the idea of Dominik Mysterio donning a mask, turning heel and claiming to be superior to his dad, per WrestlingNews.co.
  • This doesn’t necessarily mean it is going to happen. Though I expect a few between dad and son at one point, no matter what Rey says.
  • “WWE is planning up to eight nights of stadium shows globally next year,” tweets Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp.
  • I guess we’ll wait and see. We’ve got two stadium shows for WrestleMania. I’d also count two Saudi shows. And then SummerSlam. But that still leaves three more and I don’t think we get there.
  • While not all of those would be international, one figures to be in the United Kingdom. WhatCulture reports WWE is looking to run an event somewhere in the UK in Sept. 2022. They’re looking for stadiums that hold 90,000.
  • We’ll wait and see about this.
  • Salina de la Renta confirmed she was in talks with WWE about signing earlier this year, but told Fightful “those conversations came to a halt” after former Talent Development exec Canyon Ceman was let go.
  • I guess he was the one pushing for her?

September 29, 2021

  • According to Dave Meltzer on Wrestling Observer Radio, the key guys being drafted have been decided on and the two networks have been made aware by WWE but nothing else is decided at this point and everything could change.
  • I wonder the amount of input the Networks have. I’m sure they have some decent sway, but in the end, it’s still Vince’s call. He just needs to make sure not to continually piss one of them off.
  • He also said there are supposed to be people getting drafted from NXT to freshen up both brands but that, too, could change before the draft actually happens.
  • There were NXT folks like Ridge Holland, Austin Theory, and Hit Row. All of Hit Row was released not that much later. (1/1)
  • Per talkSPORT, WWE is planning to hold SummerSlam 2022 in the United Kingdom, likely at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium.
  • It looks like it’s being held in Nashville. (0/1)
  • According to the Observer, AEW is taping a big match for Rampage at Dynamite this week that is being kept a surprise.
  • Maybe they’re referring to Bryan Danielson vs. Nick Jackson, which was on that show, but that doesn’t feel like a big match that lives up to this rumor. (0/1)
  • For what it’s worth, Ariane Andrew told Wrestling Inc she contacted Vince McMahon personally about returning to the company but it’s unclear if it’s going to happen.
  • She came back just for the Rumble, but not in any other capacity.

September 30, 2021

  • Following up on rumors that Shane McMahon is no longer with WWE, a source told Fightful Select he is still on a talent contract with the company but Shane is “rarely if ever at WWE offices anymore.”
  • He was fired after Royal Rumble.
  • On Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks’ role in AEW management, sources told Cassidy Haynes of bodyslam.net “basically they are EVPs in name only in 2021. They no longer have final say in creative or talent hiring. Any of them. TK [Tony Khan] pulled back on the reigns [sic] and took that power away from all.”
  • That was probably smart not to let them all have too much power. It sounds like that may be one of the reasons that Cody left - that he didn’t have the autonomy that he thought he may.
  • PW Insider reports the reason Alexa Bliss was written off television is because she’s undergoing sinus surgery.
  • She returned for a Saudi show but she doesn’t have a spot at WrestleMania. Being teased to come back just for one match on the other side of the world and no spot on one of two nights of WrestleMania is pretty lame.
  • After he wasn’t on Raw, Wrestling Observer Radio noted Randy Orton also missed a weekend house show. PW Insider adds that word backstage Monday night was that Orton was “not cleared to perform.”
  • He was back working very soon.
  • Hit Row is one of the NXT acts being considered for Raw or SmackDown in WWE’s upcoming draft, according to Jon Alba.
  • They went to SmackDown. Again, ever so briefly. Which is absolutely insane. They were a fresh gimmick and didn’t even get a chance before they were all axed. (1/1)

October 1, 2021

  • Wrestling Observer Live’s Bryan Alvarez said he’s under the impression Bray Wyatt is more likely to sign with Impact Wrestling than AEW.
  • He hasn’t signed anywhere yet.
  • According to Mat Men’s Andrew Zarian, WWE’s upcoming Queen of the Ring Tournament will be now be called the “Queen’s Crown Tournament.”
  • That’s accurate. (1/1)
  • Fightful claims one of WWE’s pitches to Adam Cole involved cutting his hair short to have a new look on the main roster. Cole was not interested in doing that.
  • Maybe he could have made it work, but he shouldn’t have to.
  • Sources told Cassidy Haynes of bodyslam.net that Cody Rhodes “doesn’t really have much of a relationship” anymore with Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks.
  • Word that they weren’t that close had persisted for years.
  • LA Knight is one of the NXT acts being considered for the WWE Draft, per Zarian.
  • He was not brought up. (0/1)

October 2, 2021

  • Wrestling Inc’s Raj Giri claims the FOX network specifically asked for Charlotte Flair to be drafted to SmackDown.
  • Interesting. I guess they see her as a big deal. She has the first feud with Rousey so that feeds into that ideal
  • PW Insider says WWE kept a tight lid on plans for the draft. Several people who would normally be in the know about draft decisions were kept in the dark this time. The wrestlers who switched brands during night one of the draft were notified shortly before air time.
  • Better than the year before when they spoiled the draft by putting the draft list in the order they’d be drafted.
  • Insider also notes there is an expectation that free agent Brock Lesnar will show up on next week’s episode of Raw.
  • That did not happen. (0/1)
  • Per Fightful, some people at the USA network grew tired of WWE using “scapegoats and shortcuts” in response to Raw’s declining ratings. Some of these shortcuts include Brand-to-Brand Invitations and Raw Underground. The network cares more about seeing the consistent quality of the show improved.
  • Well, sucks for them then.
  • Kiera Hogan is not on a full-time deal with AEW, per Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Dave Meltzer writes that unless someone is posted on social media as being All Elite, they’re on a per-appearance deal with the company.
  • That “All Elite” graphic is like back in 2008 changing your Facebook status to “in a relationship.”

This week: 4/9 - 44%

September 2021: 33/51 - 65%

Overall: 4,108/7,244 - 56.7%

Have a great week, everyone.