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Rumor Look Back: Feb. 27 - Mar. 2, 2023

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. But first, let’s knock off some outstanding rumors.

December 20, 2014

  • Regarding Hulk Hogan talking about a WWE world heavyweight title run, there’s absolutely no chance of that. A final retirement match, however, is a very real possibility and apparently the idea of teaming with John Cena for a match at WrestleMania 31 was floated at one point.
  • There was no heavyweight run. There was also no retirement match. Fun fact: This the oldest outstanding rumor I have. (1/2)

July 28, 2015

  • Rey Mysterio has said he left WWE on good terms and there is at least a possibility that he goes back one day.
  • He’s their US champion right now. (1/1)

August 28, 2015

  • There’s been renewed talk about Rey Mysterio coming back to the WWE.
  • Mysterio came back, but not until 2018. That’s 2 and a half years later, which I don’t think is in the spirit of the rumor at this time. (0/1)
  • According to the Observer, Minnesota is “pretty much a lock” to get WrestleMania, probably in 2017 so WWE can beat the Super Bowl there.
  • It’s been Dallas, Orlando, New Orleans, New Jersey, Tampa, Dallas, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia since this rumor. (0/1)

OK, onto this week’s rumors:

February 27, 2023

  • Original plans for WrestleMania 39 before The Rock vs. Roman Reigns was taken off the table called for Cody Rhodes or Drew McIntyre to wrestle Seth Rollins for the WWE championship, according to Fightful Select. Once it became clear The Rock wouldn’t make the show, those plans changed.
  • So the plan was for Roman to lose the title to Seth and have Rock vs. Roman a non-title affair? That’s understandable in the sense that’s a feud that absolutely wouldn’t need a title. But getting that belt off Roman prior would weaken him for that massive match. Unless the plan was to split them.
  • is claiming some wrestlers in WWE aren’t happy about “legends and celebrities” taking up slots on the WrestleMania 39 card, meaning they will be left off the show.
  • Lashley wasn’t on the show, but that was more due to the unfortunate situation with Bray Wyatt. Who else (besides the Megastar) was outside looking in? And really, outside Cena, Trish, and Brock, who would you consider a legend on the eventual WrestleMania card? Logan Paul would be the one celebrity on the card. Legends taking space used to be a pretty big issue, but nowadays, it doesn’t feel this way as much.
  • Dave Meltzer in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter said he expects Kenny Omega & The Young Bucks will get big money offers from both WWE and AEW when they become free agents. The Bucks will likely decide based on their families; Omega on if main roster WWE is a career goal of his or not.
  • They ended up sticking around in the company that they helped build.
  • Per the Wrestling Observer, Rey Mysterio vs. Dominik Mysterio will happen at WrestleMania 39, and it’s been planned for months to hold off on their first singles match against each other for this show.
  • That’s the case. That was a good build to that match. (1/1)
  • PW Insider says Zoey Stark worked WWE live events this past weekend so they could “get a look at how she does before main roster audiences.”
  • She was brought up in the draft and is now working with Trish Stratus.
  • San Francisco 49ers Tight End George Kittle told TMZ Sports he would be open to working with WWE when he finishes up his NFL career.
  • Whatever.

February 28, 2023

  • WWE is considering the idea of Finn Bálor wrestling as his “Demon” character at WrestleMania 39, per WRKD Wrestling.
  • He did work as the Demon. (1/1)
  • Their tweet also reminds us that a Demon Finn vs. Brood Edge Hell in a Cell match was planned for Royal Rumble until Edge’s Hollywood schedule got in the way of the build. Fightful Select says there was debate internally at the time about Balor using the Demon gimmick. Some said it didn’t fit with Judgement Day, while others felt the match needed the extra buzz its return would bring.
  • I think both are true. It made the match feel bigger running both men’s most demonic forms against each other. But narratively, the Demon doesn’t fit with that story nor the vibe of Judgment Day.
  • Another WrestleMania change from Fightful which fits with this one they reported earlier: WWE planned to have John Cena wrestle Logan Paul at the show until “things changed pretty quickly” last December, and they started setting up Cena vs. Austin Theory for ‘Mania.
  • I wonder how Logan Paul/Cena would have gone. Cena probably wouldn’t have buried Logan Paul in one promo like he did Theory.
  • Per Alex McCarthy of the Daily Mail, WWE said “general sale” tickets for Money in the Bank at London’s O2 Arena sold out in under a minute last week: “At one point, there was over 30k WWE fans in the queue, and that was just Ticketmaster.” Single holds, premium seats, and other tickets are expected to be made available soon, however.
  • That was a hot crowd. The UK loves their grapplemen.
  • Best Buy currently lists AEW Fight Forever with a March 31, 2023 release date. Fightful’s Will Washington reports talent recently filmed promotional material for the game’s release.
  • It was June 29. (0/1)
  • Vickie Guerrero is expected to leave AEW this summer. Fightful Select reports her contract runs out in July, and she & the company have mutually decided not to renew it.
  • She confirmed this later. (1/1)
  • MLW is working to get their Underground program that airs Tuesdays on Reelz on the Amazon Prime streaming service, according to Fightful Select.
  • That didn’t happen.

March 1, 2023

  • There is endless speculation, including from the likes of Bryan Alvarez, that Vince McMahon is getting more involved in WWE booking, such as the Brock Lesnar vs. Omos WrestleMania match.
  • That Brock/Omos feud really did reek of Vince booking.
  • Trish Stratus’ return was kept a secret this week, as Fightful Select notes she “was not listed internally anywhere.”
  • I appreciate stories of these returns being kept secret from even fellow wrestlers.
  • Fightful also says the script for Monday Night Raw this week was completed a full 24 hours ahead of time.
  • Which hints that Vince wasn’t that involved.
  • On Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer said he presumes Matt Riddle will be back but he’s been gone for almost twice as long as WWE said he would be.
  • Riddle returned after WrestleMania. I honestly thought they may opt to cut bait with him after more accusations came out when he was dealing with a rumored rehab stint. (1/1)
  • WRKD Wrestling claims there have been talks of Chad Gable being pushed as a serious singles wrestler and moving Otis to the comedy role in Maximum Male Models but the duo are “on the fence about splitting up due to their long time, close friendship.”
  • They did not split the Alpha Academy, but at the same time, they’re treating Chad as more of a serious threat when it comes to in ring acumen - hence his feud with Gunther.
  • Per the Observer, even though the wrestlers teased it at the end of Battle in the Valley, there are no plans for Kazuchika Okada/Mercedes Moné to wrestle a mixed tag match.
  • That would be something. (1/1)

March 2, 2023

  • WrestleVotes was the latest to jump into the “Vince McMahon is back in WWE creative” speculation, tweeting that “one specific, powerful person” had the idea for Brock Lesnar vs. Omos at WrestleMania 39 and “pushed it through”, with a GIF of Vince attached.
  • Vince was eventually back for real.
  • Sources close to Lesnar told Fightful Select that it “could be true” McMahon pushed for the Omos match.
  • Even though it certainly felt that way, we never had any confirmation on that.
  • PW Insider reports William Regal’s new role at WWE includes attending Raw and SmackDown weekly, taking notes on matches, and meeting with talents to provide feedback & advice. The general goal to is to improve attention to detail so everyone looks stronger.
  • Regal is an invaluable asset.
  • Following up on their report from last week that WWE’s King & Queen of the Ring PLE would happen in Saudi Arabia, Insider specified the May 26 show would take place in Jeddah.
  • They announced it as such, even though the name eventually changed. It was in Jeddah. (1/1)
  • Insider also says NXT will tape its Mar. 28 Stand & Deliver go home episode in Orlando along with Mar. 21’s live broadcast. That way the team can focus on getting to Los Angeles and getting set up for the brand’s WrestleMania weekend event.
  • That’s accurate. (1/1)
  • Also from PW Insider: Cameron Grimes may be coming out of limbo this spring, as the site claims Grimes is “expected to be called up to the main roster, possibly after WrestleMania.”
  • He was part of the WWE draft. (1/1)
  • The latest NXT parking lot attack on the Feb. 28 episode was cover for a legitimate injury Wendy Choo is dealing with, per Wrestling Observer’s Bryan Alvarez. Choo will miss time, but the undisclosed issue isn’t considered “too serious”.
  • She missed about 2 months, so not that serious. (1/1)
  • Another report from Variety on REELZ streaming on Peacock claims MLW’s deal with the network for Underground “wraps up after 10 weeks.”
  • Looks like it ran for 12 episodes and over 10 weeks. (0/1)

This week: 9/11 - 82%

February 2023: 42/61 - 69%

Overall: 4,716/8,247 - 57.2%

Have a great week, everyone!

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