Originally published at Braun Strowman was initially going to win Universal Title at Crown Jewel
If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.
** Isaiah “Swerve” Scott was the latest guest on the ‘Say Less With Kaz, Lowkey and Rosy’ podcast. A conversation came up about finishes in matches changing on a dime. Former WWE writer Kazeem Famuyide shared that back in 2018, Braun Strowman was supposed to defeat Brock Lesnar for the vacant Universal Title at Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. The creative team had an entire Raw planned with Strowman as champion but Lesnar ended up winning the match and the following Raw had to be rewritten.
There was one time where we all thought a match was going — this was — man, f*ck it, I’m not working there anymore. It was in Saudi .
Elsewhere during the discussion, Isaiah Scott talked about the creation of his recent studio promos that have aired on NXT. He said it was Brian “Road Dogg” James who was big on him leaning more into his music on-screen.
There’s a lot going on. There’s a lot literally feels like the Batcave. I’m an evil producer is what I look like. My hair, that’s when I started doing things, changing things on my own. I didn’t ask for permission, I just did it.
** On the latest episode of ‘Unpopular with Jacques Peterson’, Dr. Drew came onto the show. He opened up about his interactions with the late Joanie Laurer, also known as “Chyna”. She was on Dr. Drew’s Celebrity Rehab show. He recalled recently running into Chyna’s mother and they both came to the agreement that Chyna may have had multiple personality disorder.
So Joanie . She… you know, in the documentary you’ll see some of the stuff was happening at the end. She spent months in a locked unit in Japan. Are you aware of this?
And in Japan, she was literally in a psychiatric lock unit for like three months. No, a psychiatric — not hospital, a locked unit, a locked hospital because she was found very psychotic and then she came back here and somebody started to wanna do some sort of reality stuff with her and I was trying desperately to get her to a psychiatrist. I believe she went to this psychiatrist I was telling her to go see and then somebody gave her Opioids and Benzodiazepines which is a deadly combination and again, as prescribed, you don’t have to take much. Look at Prince. He was taking a lot. But that’s what happened to Mike Starr, that’s what happened to Jeff Conaway. A peer of mine gave them a supply of Benzodiazepines and Opioids to somebody with lifelong drug addiction. It’s just insanity that people did that but anyway, so then all of a sudden, Joanie was gone. Joanie was very difficult to work with. She was — I mean she was a very tender, dear person but very rigid and very difficult to get to engage in any kind of meaningful whatever and I had a bunch of encounters with her out in the world where I’d just run across her and I would have these thoughts like, ‘God, she is so different in these contexts. Wonder if she had a multiple personality disorder’ and I had the opportunity to talk to her mother recently and she thought the same thing, because there was the changes from one thing to the next, from wrestler to tender sort of little girl to these sort of provocative — she was all kinds of different things in all different kinds of contexts and the mom was like, ‘Oh my God, that makes so much sense. She may have had a dissociative disorder of some type.’
** AEW’s Blood & Guts show is scheduled for 5/5 and to promote the show, Inner Circle member Jake Hager joined the Wrestle Buddies podcast. Jake stated that there will be 3,000 people in attendance at Daily’s Place this week.
The fact that we’re about to have 3,000 people, 70 percent of the attendance back next Wednesday night for Blood & Guts, it’s gonna feel like 300,000 to us in the middle of the ring. It’s really cool to get you guys back because I think it’s obvious by now, you guys are as much as part of the show as we are. You guys, we need the wrestlers, we need the referee, we need the ring and we need the fans because your reactions, it makes the show and so glad to have it back and so glad to have that refreshing bit of normalcy and I’m so proud of AEW being a leader in society right now and really saying, ‘No, we can have fans, we can do it safely and we can still put on great shows’ and I think once we do that, more and more companies are gonna follow and it’s only gonna be a matter of time.
** Steve Maclin, the former Steve Cutler was released from WWE in February of this year. Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp caught up with Maclin to discuss his time in WWE, his release and more was covered during their conversation. Maclin was candid about the Jaxson Ryker tweets that led to The Forgotten Sons being taken off WWE TV. Maclin said he and Wesley Blake immediately wanted to separate themselves from that.
Listen, everybody has their opinion. Everybody’s allowed to have their opinion. That’s the point of social media. Obviously there’s a two sided coin to everything on how you feel and how you view things. Feel how you want to feel. Say what you want to say. That’s your business, not mine. I’m out walking the dogs with D and I get a bunch of texts. My phone starts blowing up, ‘Hey, what the hell?’ I’m just looking, it’s just screenshots of the tweet. I’m just like, ‘Oh, come on.’ I’m like, ‘I’m doing nothing, I’m literally at home walking my dogs.’ Then it just instilled from there on how everything unfolded and that happened.
We reached out to the office and we went to the Performance Center where Smackdown was taping still at that time, so was RAW. So, Blake and I went in that next day ‘cause Ryker was living in North Carolina at this time. He moved out of Florida about that time. So, Blake and I went in, sat down with Mark Carrano. ‘Hey, you guys are good. Don’t worry about it. Everything’s going to be fine. Just give it a week. It’ll kind of blow over.’ Okay. But, we’ve seen this before. We know the way the company works. Alright, we’re just kind of getting the smoke blown up to us. Everybody talked to us. Big E, Kofi, we just sat and we talked. They were like, ‘You guys are fine. Listen, it’s fine.’ It’s just the way things are type of thing. It’s a shitty situation. ‘Cause it’s just a different time in the world and it’s just shitty because we don’t want to be involved in it because it’s not our business. It’s our business to care for one another, but just keep your words to yourself at this time. Just stick to wrestling in that aspect. But, then again, like I said, you’re allowed to have your opinion. Then, I think, what was worse than the tweet was what resurfaced afterwards, but that’s his business, not ours. That’s where we were like, ‘Listen, this is how we distance ourselves. This is how we feel. This is us.’ Especially me in general, I wanted to distance myself as quick as possible because that’s just because not how I think.
Maclin dove into his release from the company and recalled everything changing once he contracted COVID-19 at a New Year’s Eve party. He was told that Vince McMahon wanted to fire him upon finding out that Maclin tested positive for the virus.
I’m on my way home and then here I am getting texts from Blake. Get a phone call, ‘Hey, do you have heat? Like for something you have done?’ I’m like, ‘I dunno. Why?’ He goes, ‘Ah, somebody’s kind of pissed and a few people said in a meeting that Vince wanted to fire you at that moment,’ and I had a few friends that were in that meeting as well. I was like, ‘Huh. Okay. That’s good.’ So, of course, I send a message to Mark Carrano saying, ‘Hey, I don’t know what’s going on or what’s being thrown around, if there’s anything you need to talk to me about, please call me, text me, let me know what’s up.’ No answer. That’s how I found out, pretty much, I had COVID that day, quarantine for the next week. Kept in contact with writers. Still no answer back from higher of writer team and creative team. Yeah. What a time. So, it’s just one of those moments of loss.
** Tyler Fullington, son of The Sandman, guest appeared on the Front Row Material podcast. While still a child, Tyler was involved in a storyline in ECW with his father and Raven where Tyler and his family were persuaded by Raven to turn against Sandman. Tyler shared that initially, Paul Heyman had the idea of Macaulay Culkin taking on the role but Sandman pitched his son for the spot.
So, the way my dad like, ‘Paul, I got my son right here. He’s the exact same freaking age,’ whatever and Paul’s like, ‘Perfect, we’ll use him.’
** SmackDown Tag Team Champion Robert Roode spoke to Dayton 24/7 Now and was asked about the possibility of being a singles champion. He says headlining a WrestleMania is still a goal of his but he’s happy teaming with Dolph Ziggler and is happy with his spot in WWE.
I mean I would never wanna say no . Obviously like you said, the goal in the business is to be a main eventer and be a champion and one day main event WrestleMania. I haven’t done that yet. So of course that’s definitely a goal. But right now, I’m very happy being a tag team champion. I’ve always, from the beginning of my career back in 1998, I’ve always been — even as a fan, I’ve always been a fan of tag team wrestling, always been a fan. Growing up in Canada, The Hart Foundation, The British Bulldogs and that’s what I grew up on and used to love the psychology, I love the way the matches are done and most of my career, outside of some singles world titles and the United States Championship, I’ve been a tag team champion. I’ve basically been a tag team guy for the better part of two decades so, I’m very happy in the spot I’m in right now. I’m very happy tagging with Dolph Ziggler but, it could always get better, you know? Who’s to say I couldn’t be a tag team champion and possibly an Intercontinental Champion or a U.S. Champion again or a world champion? It’s always something that you strive for and the work is never done.
** Lucha Libre Online caught up with Gable Steveson for an exclusive interview. When asked has WWE made an official offer to him, Gable said he has not signed anything but he and the company are in deep talks. He added that it is just a matter of time before he makes his decision.
We’ve been in deep talks. I mean they’ve known me for a long time now and I’ve sparked interest in them for a long time now. To say that we have reached a agreement is like, I don’t know if I can say that but we’ve been in talks. I haven’t signed on no dotted line. I haven’t done nothing like that but there’s been really deep talks and I know the time’s gonna come soon where I’m gonna make a decision and get the best thing for me and the best thing for them too so, the time’s coming soon, I just don’t know when. It’s just a matter of time.
A photo was taken of Steveson, Paul Heyman and Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 37. Steveson feels that people could one day look back at it as one of the greatest wrestling photos ever.
The picture of me and Paul Hall Of Fame and my time is gonna come and I think that picture right there with us three is gonna live on for a long time just because the accolades that we bring to that picture and the stardom that-that picture brings to the internet.
** Dan Lovranski welcomed Chris Jericho onto the Sunday Night’s Main Event podcast. Jericho dove into his backstage presence in AEW and shared that other than being an in-ring performer, he is a senior advisor to the CEO, Tony Khan. Jericho added that over the past year, people have begun to realize that Khan is the boss opposed to the idea that every final decision needs to be made collectively.
I think I literally have a position. A Senior Advisor to the CEO, I’m not kidding. I think I actually do have a — when they were talking about EVPs and all that sort of thing, I was like, ‘I don’t want to have anything to do with it’ because these guys are doing a lot of work at the beginning. Finding sponsors, going to Cracker Barrel, helping to book towns, doing all this stuff. I was like, ‘I don’t want anything to do with that’ but when you’re talking about the creative side of things, I mean obviously I worry about what Chris Jericho’s storyline is first and foremost and then I don’t know if I have a lot of say as far as — obviously, Tony’s the boss and that’s one thing that’s really grown over the last year is that people understand and I knew it from the start but, I think a lot of the guys thought like, ‘Oh, we’re a big community, a big team.’ It’s like no, there needs to be one boss and that’s Tony Khan and then you go kind of file down from there so, I have some say when I’m asked my opinions. But I also don’t know everything that’s going on-on the show, nor do I want to because worrying about 30 to 40 different storylines is quite a lot of pressure. Tony loves that. He’s a stats guy, he’s a numbers guy, he remembers all of that stuff and I think he really enjoys that and so if he’s looking at a certain section of all of this and asks my advice or opinion or tells me things that he’s doing, I’ll give my feedback but it’s just — I would say, like you said, an advisor is a great way to kind of explain what I do for AEW and not just for Tony Khan but for a lot of the guys.
On the argument of AEW having too many factions, Jericho feels that Tony Khan wants to include as many talents as possible on the show and that is why there are a multitude of groups in the company.
Once again, it’s not something I’ve been privy to but what I think is that Tony Khan likes factions. I mean if you work in New Japan, everyone’s with a faction. Whenever I go there, I feel lonely because it’ll say so and so is a part of this faction, this faction and then it’ll say, ‘Chris Jericho. Solo.’ I got no friends. I think he likes having the factions and here’s the real reason why: My opinion, you’d have to ask him, is I think he likes having people involved and everybody on our show has a purpose and a point and I would never suggest that someone doesn’t get TV time so when you put together, for example, The Factory with QT know who the hell they are and that’s very important when you’re trying to build your company from scratch which is what we’ve done.
** Major League Wrestling is going to be running a show in Dallas on 9/11, as first reported by PWInsider. MLW will hold their first show with fans back in attendance on July 10th at the 2300 Arena.
** The first guest on the Get Funk’d show was Chuck Palumbo. He recounted his experience at the last WCW show and his first time arriving to a venue for a WWF event as a contracted talent. He said the tension was there between WWF and WCW talents and he had a run-in with The Undertaker who instructed him to introduce himself.
. I just never really cared about that part of it. I remember the comradery, hanging out with you guys. That’s the stuff that I remember. But I remember going to get into the building, first thing we do is go into catering. I remember a lot of the WWF guys were in there. Maybe like Glenn Jacobs, Kane, Taker, guys like that, and I remember how standoff-ish everybody was. Wouldn’t look at ya, we’re not welcoming so I remember specifically and Taker and I became friends after that but I remember at the end of the day, I ran into Taker and he goes, ‘Next time introduce yourself,’ and I was a rookie basically and I was like, ‘Alright, no problem.’
Looking back at his time in WCW, Chuck stated that John Laurinaitis brought in a fingerprint machine to ensure that talents arrived to the venues on time. Kevin Nash took issue with this multiple times according to Palumbo.
Do you remember that Johnny Ace decided that he was gonna have a fingerprint machine? Remember, because he wanted guys to be there at a certain time and he had a fingerprint machine. You had to go in there and put your finger on a machine, get your print so you didn’t get a fine. I remember Kevin Nash almost whipping his ass one day. Yeah, a couple times. It was like what is going on here?
Palumbo also talked about making it through the WCW Power Plant. He said Dave Bautista didn’t last and was literally kicked out of the building.
Batista went through and I think he made it a couple hours. I wanna say he threw up or, I don’t know. They kicked him out the door if I remember correctly, literally.
** Scott Fishman of TV Insider caught up with Chris Jericho for an interview. While further discussing his appearance on Broken Skull Sessions, Jericho added that he thinks Vince McMahon may have second-guessed his decision to approve Jericho’s appearance once he saw the rating for Dynamite’s first unopposed show.
It was lightning in a bottle sort of thing with . Once that big Dynamite rating came in though, I think Vince may have had a little bit of second-guessing. Would they do it again? Maybe. I don’t know if you can find anyone with respect and goodwill on both sides that would allow that. If they don’t do it again, it was one of the coolest moments in wrestling history.
Out of the recently released WWE talents, Jericho feels that Samoa Joe is a talent that can always be utilized on a roster.
Our roster is so expansive. We do have Dark and Elevation, which are popular shows on YouTube. We have another show about to start on TNT. That’s in the pipeline, but you can’t keep bringing in talent after talent when we are still building the homegrown guys and girls. If it’s the right place for someone to bring in, we’ll do it. I’m a huge fan of Samoa Joe. You can always use a guy like him on your roster. A lot of guys might have to take the international route or the independent level until they can be at the level to come to AEW. There are a lot of talented people out there and obviously, AEW is where they want to come to.
** Sid Eudy (Sycho Sid) did a virtual signing with Highspots Wrestling Network. Sid stated that he was only in wrestling for the business side of it and was not a fan of wrestling. He was also asked about his WrestleMania VIII match with Hulk Hogan and feels it was horrible and Hogan was not a good wrestler.
Honestly, the WWF, it was such a night-to-night deal, every show was a big show. I know it was WrestleMania, don’t get me wrong but like a year later, I forgot there was a WrestleMania so someone said, ‘You remember being at WrestleMania?’ I went, ‘No.’ Again, and I’m not trying to make anybody mad at me, but I was in this business different than everybody else was. I was in it for just the business. I wasn’t a wrestling fan. I got in it to make money, so I never looked at a booking sheet, I didn’t care what town I was in, I didn’t care who I was working with. I could walk in a locker room and tell you who I was working with because they had — you could tell, especially in the northeast where the babyface was afraid about getting booed a lot. You could tell they were working with me because they didn’t wanna get booed when they went out there so, but again, I didn’t take this like everyone else. I never watched wrestling, never looked at a wrestling magazine so again, it was just business to me. WrestleMania was just the same as if I was working Roanoke, Virginia.
Well yeah Hogan that night too. Hogan was a horrible worker so that’s what made that.
** New York Post ran their interview with Chris Jericho. During the conversation, he explained what is going to separate Blood & Guts from the WarGames matches of the past. Jericho feels that AEW’s storyline going into it is more serious than other lead-ups to WarGames matches.
Our version of kind of the WarGames is why we called it Blood and Guts, it’s just not a copyright thing. There are some differences and we wanted to kind of make it our own version of this classic match, which we obviously have a direct legacy to with Dustin and Cody Tony Khan is a massive fan of that era of wrestling. So, I think he didn’t want to mess with those classic rules. He grew up loving that style of WarGames.
I’ve never been in a WarGames before in my life. A matter of fact, I’ve never even seen one. I watched a couple now to just kind of look at them. The reason why I don’t need to go back and watch any is (because) I’ve been in a lot of first-ever matches that are now kind of mainstream, if you talk about Money in the Bank, if you talk about the Elimination Chamber or Stadium Stampede. We didn’t go back and watch other ones, because there weren’t any. I’m treating Blood and Guts kind of the same way. Yes, there are ideas you can pull, but this isn’t a typical WarGames or a typical cage match. Also, our angles seems to be a lot more serious than some of those teams that were kind of put together and a lot more of a blood feud. I think those rules fit what we’re doing here in that you don’t want to do a of pins and eliminations. It really is submit or surrender because the story that we’ve been telling between these two factions.
** To promote his ‘My World’ podcast, Jeff Jarrett made the media rounds and one of his appearances was on THE KICK OUT. Jarrett shared that on the debut episode of his podcast with Conrad Thompson, they will be covering his Intercontinental Title loss to Chyna in 1999.
On the very first episode of My World, that’s what we’re covering . But it goes without saying. It’s a great question, I’m glad…
Diving into Jarrett’s in-ring career, he discussed his early days in the business while working for his father. He mentioned that WCW wanted him in 1990. Jarrett went to WWF first and then went to WCW in 1996.
Obviously the business had radically changed in a lot of ways but I would work for my father and so, I didn’t really have an input on my character for him. I was Jeff Jarrett. Whatever, he’s the golden boy so, we had a working relationship, my dad and Vince and it goes back to Vince’s father, Vince Sr. so they had a working relationship and so, I knew Vince had taken a look in ‘92 and actually, WCW wanted me to come on board in ‘90.
Man, I felt, I genuinely felt emotional watching that happen, because I’ve spent so many long hours on the road with Bobby , so many crazy nights on the road and talking about where we kind of see him and what his goals were and why he wanted to come back to WWE and it’s just amazing man. Bobby is an incredible athlete, an incredible performer and you know, in my eyes, he is where he should be. He is the top dog of that company in my eyes. It’s cool to see he’s finally got to where he’s always got. Regardless of if whether I’m there or not and I think it’s pretty dope that I texted Bobby as soon as he won and literally, he was definitely still in the locker room, probably talking to so many other people but he took the time out to reach back out to me and text me back and say, ‘Hey man, I appreciate everything that you did for me and hopefully I’ll see you in the future’ so, yeah, incredibly grateful for that partnership and that relationship that I built with him and hopefully this reign will last for a long time.
** Braun Strowman told Bleacher Report that he and Shane McMahon have wanted to work together on-screen in some capacity for several years prior to their WrestleMania match.
It was a seed that had been planted for a while. Shane and I have wanted to do one for quite a few years now. Behind the scenes, we have a very good relationship and, let’s be real, Shane’s a lunatic. That works great with my style because I don’t go out there and think about anything. I just do it. It ended up working out well.
** FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) chatted with ‘Metro’ about AEW Blood & Guts. Harwood feels that if the fellow competitors in the match can meet the level of intensity that he and Cash Wheeler are bringing, it will turn out to be one of the greatest and most brutal matches in wrestling history.
Twitter and social media remind us every single day that we’re not the tallest, we’re not the biggest, we’re not the fastest, we’ve got the worse bodies, we talk in a southern accent. We get reminded of that every day. There’s nobody in wrestling that can match our intensity, our gas tank, what we bring to the table as far as realism goes… I think Blood and Guts is gonna be our coming out party as far as that goes. If we can get the other eight guys to match our intensity, it will be one of the greatest and most brutal matches in the history of professional wrestling.
** U.K. outlet ‘Metro’ conducted an interview with Jeff Jarrett. He recalled the ceiling catching fire during TNA’s Hard Justice pay-per-view in 2006 and the studio had to be evacuated during the live show.
One time at TNA, the pyro went off and the pyro went up into the ceiling and it caught fire! We had to evacuate the entire studio on live television, keep it going. The fire marshal had to come in! Backstage, making the calls on the headsets – just the craziness of behind the scenes!
** While speaking with Simon Hill on the ‘Keep It Locked’ podcast, Ace Austin stated that he is hoping to become a regular in Japan and hopes he can do that while still with IMPACT Wrestling.
I really wanna spend some time in Japan so, I’m hoping that this forbidden door opens up some avenues to go to Japan for a while because that’s definitely what my next — when my time with IMPACT Wrestling is up, I wanna spend some time in Japan whether — and I hope I can do that and still be a part of the company. If I can’t, that’s something I really wanna do is spend time in Japan.
** Fallah Bahh joined Tommy Dreamer on his House Of Hardcore podcast. Fallah shared that he was not able to watch WWE’s documentary on Yokozuna because he can relate to Yokozuna’s life story and it bums him out.
Bits and pieces . It’s hard for me. There’s such a love and there’s such a thing where like, I totally can relate so it kind of bums me but I definitely need to get a chance to watch it.
** Raw commentator Adnan Virk guest appeared on The Masked Man Show.
** AJ Styles vs. Kazuchika Okada from New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s ‘Back to the Yokohama Arena’ event.
** Pro Wrestling NOAH ‘The Ovation’ Results (5/3/21) Korakuen Hall
– Kotaro Suzuki, NOSAWA Rongai & YO-HEY def. Kai Fujimura, Kinya Okada & Yasutaka Yano
– Kendo Kashin def. Masao Inoue
– Katsuhiko Nakajima, Masa Kitamiya & Nio def. Akitoshi Saito, Mohammed Yone & Shuhei Taniguchi
– Kaito Kiyomiya def. Ikuto Hidaka
– Stinger (HAYATA, Seiki Yoshioka, Yoshinari Ogawa & Yuya Susumu) def. Atsushi Kotoge, Daisuke Harada, Hajime Ohara & Junta Miyawaki
– Masato Tanaka def. Yoshiki Inamura
– Masaaki Mochizuki & Naomichi Marufuji def. Kazunari Murakami & Takashi Sugiura
** ‘Her Campus’ is hosting their second virtual graduation ceremony and among the many guests scheduled to appear are Brie and Nikki Bella. Bebe Rexha, who performed ‘America The Beautiful’ at WrestleMania 37 is going to be a part of it as well.
** Trevor Murdoch is appearing at the Lincoln Street block party in Missouri to sign autographs and meet those in attendance.
** Cinta de Oro (Sin Cara II) chatted with Jim Varsallone.
If any of the quotes from the following podcasts or video interviews are used, please credit those sources and provide an H/T and link back to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.