POST NEWS UPDATE: Darius Lockhart talks upcoming NWA debut, Worlds Title, AEW Dark

Originally published at Darius Lockhart talks upcoming NWA debut, AEW Dark

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.

** Darius Lockhart appeared on The Mixed Tag Show’s latest Twitch stream and spoke about his forthcoming debut for the National Wrestling Alliance. Lockhart thanked the supporters who pushed him towards this opportunity and he’s hoping to inspire change from within the organization.

Well, you know, I’m sure I’ll say it there but I’ll say it here now too. First of all, it feels amazing to have people gather behind me. I couldn’t have done it without them. So, like most of the things in my life, without the people I wouldn’t have anything. So I have to give thanks to them. It feels pretty cool to see something so organic come to fruition. I hope we can take it by the horns and go forth and really put my money where my mouth is and Lord knows my mouth can run but I think my hands and my body can keep up with it, you know what I mean? So now that we’re in the door, we can inspire change from the inside. We can do some things. I just hope that people can kind of migrate with me and follow me on this journey, help support, you know? And if you see something you like — see something you don’t like, hold me accountable, you know what I’m saying? I am overall still working for the people. My boss is the people. So, we’re doing that, but other than that, I feel pretty good about it. I’m really hoping that we can see some real change going forward from here. I think this will be an interesting journey for myself and as well for people who follow me.

Before it was formally announced that Lockhart would be coming into the organization, he posted several videos and tweets about wanting to become the second Black NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion. Lockhart is also a native of Charlotte, North Carolina and wants to reimagine the legacy of that title when it relates back to Charlotte.

The elephant in the room of why I got there. I challenged to be — I laid the challenge out to NWA to give me the opportunity to become the second-ever Black world champion, Black NWA Worlds Wrestling Champion. It’s sadly, in 2021, there’s only been one and still, you know, R-Truth, we have to show respect to the OGs… But there needs to be more and bringing it home, bringing that belt not only to the people, letting them see someone like themselves with that title around their waist which is very rare obviously. But also bringing that title home to Charlotte. You know, that belt was made and bled for in North Carolina and to be a Charlotte native and to now know who’s the biggest person in Charlotte and to have the opportunity to not only as a Black man to reimagine what that championship stands for, but also redefine who that championship stands for, I could now — you don’t have to say Charlotte-NWA Title and have such an ugly legacy that’s intertwined with it. Maybe we can now move this on to a better place and have it progress. You know, unfortunately, past NWA champions haven’t always done what’s right but I hopefully can continue and change it, change the course of that and bring some grace back to Charlotte and the community. So those are my goals first and foremost.

I was gonna say and I can’t guarantee that this is gonna happen right away. You know, you gotta get some footing. They know who I am. There is interest. I know that they’re starting a new show based around a certain concept that maybe a little feeling for me so maybe there will have to be more than one thing I do that’s historic there, you know what I mean? I’m gonna have to create more history even beyond the NWA World Title. But creating history is the main thing. I just wanted to get that part across.

Several months ago, Lockhart appeared at the AEW Dark tapings at Universal Studios. He competed against Ricky Starks and said the match was well received by those in AEW.

It was an honor to go in there thing so it was really cool.

** Alicia Atout pushed out her interview with Buddy Matthews and he shared the story of when WWE changed his theme music without him knowing. At SummerSlam 2019, Matthews competed against Apollo Crews on the Kickoff show. While in the Gorilla position, he heard a song playing but did not pay it any attention. He was then alerted that-that was his new theme.

But talking about new music, it was actually in Toronto at SummerSlam , I had the beat like I’d play the drums to the ground and stuff with the beat and then explode with my arms up. But the whole beat was gone so I go down, I’m listening to it going… like I’m just doing my same entrance but the music beat wasn’t there and I was like, ‘Hey –’ the next day I was like, ‘Hey, can you send me the music? I didn’t — the first time I heard it was, you know, when I was in the ring.’ They sent it to me, it wasn’t great but, you know, it was what it was.

Back in 2018, Matthews had a No-DQ match with Mustafa Ali on 205 Live. There were restrictions they had to work around. Ali put out a tweet earlier this year which read that they were not allowed to use traditional weapons or props.

To the general audience, they don’t understand the restrictions for me and restrictions, that’s what makes me better. If you have unlimited time, if you have unlimited resources and you could do whatever you want, you’re gonna have a good match, right? You have the time to do it, you can do whatever, you can let it all happen. But, if you’re restricted and you only have a set amount of time, you can’t do these things, ‘We need this to be the finish.’ Now we’re picking what we have to do to create the art. So to me, that makes the art better is when you have those restrictions and I feel like that comes down to the rules of wrestling, right? The rules of a wrestling match.

While in NXT, Matthews was paired with Westin Blake (Wesley Blake). He said FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) made him love tag wrestling just by being in the ring with them.

But The Revival or FTR drove this into us when me and Blake were wrestling them every week. They made me love tag wrestling for the fact that it’s not just tag wrestling, you’re sharing your spotlight or whatever. It’s a gimmicked match, right? It’s a stipulation match and when you play with the rules, you’re creating more drama, more resources to play with and then that’s working on the art, right? That’s creating that emotional rollercoaster for the match and whatnot so, yeah. It’s all about, you know — the handcuffs are good because it gives you restrictions to use the art and the art’s better.

** AAA is going to make an announcement concerning the Kenny Omega versus Hijo del Vikingo match at Triplemania Regia for the Mega Title. It was noted in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that Omega is scheduled to undergo several surgeries and is off Triplemania Regia on 12/4. Omega has reigned as champion since October of 2019.

** Former WWE talent Maven joined That 90’s Wrestling Podcast and recounted when he almost lost WWE’s Hardcore Championship. Maven went out to celebrate after winning the title. He left the title in his car but parked in a no-parking zone and the car was towed away.

So I win the Hardcore Title and immediately, go and fly home and at this point, I’m just like, ‘My career is at a place I never dreamed it would be,’ you know? A year-and-a-half prior to that, I was teaching sixth grade, coaching high school baseball. Now I’m the Hardcore Champion. So, I’m gonna reap some of the benefits of it, right? What do I do? I have the belt, I go out after I won it for the first time and I’m showing it in a bar to people and you know, people were flipping out, ‘No way!’ So I go and take the belt out, put it in the trunk of my car and have to be on a plane the next morning. So, and of course, me thinking — I’m a dumb kid. I was parked in a non-parking zone so they towed my car with the belt in the back of it. Oh my God. I then had to get the owner of the tow company to come and basically, I had to talk him into coming and letting my car out at 3 in the morning with, you know, $500 dollars left in my wallet, because how was I gonna get on the plane the next day without the Hardcore Championship? You know how in life you learn lessons? There was a lesson, be a little bit more humble. Be a little bit more humble.

While speaking about his ‘Tough Enough’ win, Maven expressed the feeling that had he not had the success he did, that Tough Enough opportunity doesn’t come for future contestants.

I’m in no shape or form gonna argue that I was the most successful Tough Enough contestant. I was not. You got The Miz and John Morrison, Jackie Gayda. You got a lot of Tough Enough contestants, Ryback, you know? Who did a lot more with their chance than I did but, there’s a part of me that thinks they don’t have that chance if I don’t have the success that I have and I take a lot of respect with that.

He then touched on the hypothetical idea of how his career would have turned out had he not won Tough Enough. Maven believes he would’ve stayed in the wrestling business but doesn’t know to what capacity.

Let’s say I wouldn’t have won that night. I probably would have stayed in wrestling but I don’t know to what capacity. I would have had to find a way if they didn’t hire me. I would’ve had to find a way to make some money. So you don’t know which path life is gonna take you on, but, you know, I knew the second that they called my name, my life would never be the same and it hasn’t been. It truly hasn’t been so, yeah. It’s been a gift though. Whether it’s been the good or bad aspects of my wrestling run, it’s all been a gift, all.

** Back in September, WWE ran SmackDown from Madison Square Garden and Zelina Vega was scheduled to compete in a tag match in her hometown. The match was going to take place one day prior to the anniversary of 9/11 Attacks which Vega’s father unfortunately passed away during. Her match was cut, but she told talkSPORT that Vince McMahon called and apologized to her for that and informed her that it was not personal.

A lot of people were really upset, but I felt like a lot of the anger was misguided. I was disappointed, but I also knew it wasn’t a personal thing. If you knew, and obviously a lot of the fans don’t know that the show goes in an order, the way that it went timewise, it got too close and they had to cut it. When it got cut, Vince called me and apologized because he wanted to make sure that I knew, ‘Listen, this wasn’t done to you personally or anything, it was literally just this , I had to make that call and I’m so sorry.’ And people don’t know that side either. I love and appreciate my fans so, so much. I wish I could just squish their little faces. Because sometimes people can feel like they’re part of the machine and it’s no big deal and the fans probably don’t give a crap, but the outpouring of love I felt that day – and a bunch of other days too – is incredible. Without the fans we’d literally be nowhere. Just know it wasn’t something done personally to me. To have a boss to care enough to call you and go, ‘Look I’m sorry’, that’s important.

** WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Rhea Ripley spoke to ‘Metro’ for an interview. She shared that Vince McMahon is happy with what she and Nikki A.S.H. have done as a team.

He was really happy with what we’re doing. They love her Almost A Superhero thing. She comes bursting through the gorilla curtains really excited like she always is, she puts a smile on everyone’s faces. And then he turns to me and he’s like, ‘…Brutal.’ I’m like, ‘Sick! I’m doing my job!’

** BT Sport uploaded their sit-down interview with Drew McIntyre to their YouTube channel. While McIntyre is looking forward to sharing the ring with Roman Reigns again, he does not want that match until he has a great deal of momentum behind him and McIntyre said he does not have that right now.

Oh yeah, we’re gonna revisit it . It’s just a matter of when and not if and it’s cool that everybody’s saying, ‘Oh, it’s Drew and Roman. That’s obviously the match that’s gonna happen’ and I appreciate that and I really hope it just doesn’t happen too soon. Just where he’s at right now, the momentum he’s built, the aura he has, the confidence he has, his head’s visible from space. It’s not the right time for me to go in there and as much as I go in there and I genuinely believe I could take him down right now, that’s not what it’s about. I want that momentum. I want it to feel as big as possible. I want people not just saying this is the match that should obviously happen. I want people clamoring like, ‘We need this match. Please give us this match’ because I’ve got that momentum going, I’ve reached that level where I’m at Roman Reigns logical competitor level and right now I don’t believe I’m there and I need to get that steam going first and I want everybody saying, ‘Give us the match damn it’ and finally when it happens, it’s very special.

** Los Lotharios (Angel & Humberto) guest appeared on D-Von Dudley’s Table Talk podcast. Humberto said he was not a fan of he and Angel wrestling against one another because they are familiar with each other’s moves and it was difficult to come up with something fresh.

Humberto: I hate it when they make us wrestle against each other because he knows my moves and I know his moves. So it’s hard to with something but now that we’re together, we can improve a lot of things and have fun in the ring and that’s the best part of everything.

Angel recalled getting to chat with John Cena while he was on his return run in WWE this past summer. Cena gave both Angel and Humberto feedback and relayed to Angel that the ‘ripping the pants’ spot is very popular with the crowd.

Angel: We met him a couple of months ago when he was working there was watching our match and then when we were walking off, he was there on the monitor and he was like — obviously we went to him and, ‘Okay, do you see something that you’re gonna give us feedback or something?’ And he was like, ‘Both of you guys are great. You can do a lot of stuff that I cannot do. The pants gimmick is so over’ and he started giving us a lot of feedback that we take and yeah, it was incredible for us because we grew up watching him and then right now, he’s giving us feedback. That means a lot for us.

** Highspots Wrestling Network welcomed Scorpio Sky onto their Virtual Gimmick Table show. When asked what’s next for him in AEW, Sky said he’s aiming to win a title. He feels that it’s been too long since he’s been a champion.

It’s not over with The Inner Circle. We gotta settle that score and then I’m looking for some gold. Whether it’d be tag team gold, singles gold, I’m looking for some gold. It’s been two years since I’ve been a champion and I think that’s a little too long so I’m looking for a championship. I don’t know if you noticed, I’m ranked. I’m in the rankings.

** ‘Metro’ published the written version of their interview with Jeff Hardy. He has a new ‘Willow’ mask in the works and while Hardy is still hesitant to pitch things to Vince McMahon, if the Willow idea feels right, he’ll have no problem talking to McMahon about it.

I’m still very hesitant about it .’ It’s all depending on this new Willow mask, man.

Prior to Hardy using ‘No More Words’ again, there was an idea he had to shoot vignettes of him talking to a psychic and she would utter the words “no more words” which would’ve led to Hardy having an epiphany type of moment.

There was one idea before No More Words came back, about me going to this old psychic and kinda like down on myself, not feeling like I was good enough anymore. But then she tells me a story, and ends up saying something like, ‘It’s time for no more words.’ I did pitch that, but it never happened. There’d have been a lot of cool vignettes. It didn’t work out. We got the audience back, they hit the music and it was like nothing had changed from 08, 09.

** Since being drafted to SmackDown, vignettes promoting Xia Li’s debut have aired on the show. SmackDown’s Sasha Banks told The Masked Man Show that she is excited for Xia’s forthcoming debut.

When I got free time, I kind of scroll by . I mean I see Xia Li. I’ve been such a big fan of her since she’s been training down in NXT. I love just stopping by the Performance Center and just seeing who’s next, who’s up and coming, who’s working hard and she’s just someone that I’ve seen just put in the work non-stop. I can’t wait to see her debut.

Banks talked about always wanting to improve in the ring. She said she often goes to Mexico to train to familiarize herself with the style of wrestling there.

Always , so badly that I actually go travel to Mexico so that I can go learn these moves and bring them back to the States. I love learning anything that I can. If I need to go to Japan, I’ll go over there, to Mexico, go train with Amazing Red to learn his style. I’ll learn from everybody.

** Dave LaGreca and Bully Ray welcomed Jerry Lawler onto Busted Open Radio. The topic of animosity between two talents in wrestling was the focus of the conversation and Lawler said it always felt like there was animosity between him and Taz due to Lawler making a light of Taz’s size on TV.

Talking about ECW, I made one little comment on TV when you guys were doing the invasion and with, oh gosh, with Taz and Taz was in the ring and I was doing the commentary at that time with Vince McMahon and it was like we were seeing you guys for the first time on our TV and I just made the comment to Vince, I said, ‘Wow, look at Taz. He looked a lot bigger on the Lucky Charms box.’ That really stuck with him over the years. I mean he’s kind of brought it up to me. I just thought it was a joke. I didn’t mean anything personal by it, but it sounded personal to him obviously and I think that — I don’t know. We worked together a lot but I always felt that there was a little bit of animosity there just because of that one comment that I said about him.

Lawler weighed in on the situation with Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. He compared it to his relationship with Bull Dundee and stated that it could be professional jealousy.

Oh, without a doubt find themselves in right now and I think a lot of that, we don’t want to admit it but it is professional jealously.

He continued to speak about his working relationship with Dundee during their days in the Memphis territory. Lawler said things began to change between him and Dundee when Lawler returned to Memphis and was immediately slotted back into the top spot.

The thing with Bill and I and I don’t wanna make this sound all one-sided, but I’ve always felt that the professional jealously was on Bill’s side. He and George Barnes came into the Tennessee territory and they came in from Australia and they’d been the top dogs down there for a while and Jerry Jarrett actually brought them in while — I had a little beef with Jerry and this was like 1976 I think and I went down to Florida and wrestled down there for a few months and while I was down there, that’s when Jerry Jarrett brought in Dundee and Barnes and he put them right on top in Memphis and then so, our feelings cooled off between Jerry and I-and I came back and of course, I had been on top when I came back, Jerry put me right back on top again and he moved Dundee and Barnes right down and I could tell that’s when the hard feelings started and they never got any better.

** Ahead of WWE Survivor Series, Sportskeeda’s Sid Pullar III caught up with Shayna Baszler at a media junket. Baszler said she views her move to SmackDown as a restart, now that she is back to being a singles talent after the pairing with Nia Jax came to an end.

Yeah, I mean I’ve been on Raw the whole time I’ve been here so, going over to SmackDown and there’s a new locker room and there’s a whole crop of new talent and it’s just like a good — on top of things personally in my career like not in a tag team now. I’ve been in a tag team for a while so, it’s just a good — a good way to look at is that it’s a restart.

** ‘Number Web’ published a feature story about STARDOM’s AZM. She is 19 years of age and is a nine-year veteran in wrestling. She spoke about what it means to have almost a decade of experience at the age of 19.

I’ve settled down now. I never thought I’d be doing this much wrestling. I still think it’s difficult to continue. I want to pat myself on the back (laughs). Next year, when I turn 20, it will be my 10th year as a professional wrestler. It’s amazing, really. (Twin wrestlers) Riminami and Himinami also debuted in the sixth grade, so they may eventually become like me.

** ‘It’s My Wrestling Podcast’ conducted an interview with Charlie Haas (Quotes were passed along). He was asked about Vince McMahon’s views on tag team wrestling and Charlie explained that Vince views it as an added expense.

Here’s what we were told towards the end when we split up – Vince doesn’t like tag team wrestling, he looks at it as an added expense, as paying for an extra guy on the road. Extra guy in the hotel room. He really doesn’t like it and he changed a lot of it over the years. When you’re talking about 2002 with the tag teams I think that was a great time. When I was a kid growing up in the 80s, got to watch Arn and Tully, Rock n Roll Express, Midnight Express, The Fantastics, The Guerreros, The Dynamic Duo. Those tag teams meant something you know? If I’m forgetting anyone, I’m sorry. The tag teams meant something I felt when we were there too, but that’s all passion. I love the Tag Team stuff you know, I was a fan of it before I became one.

During Charlie’s run in WWE, he and Shelton Benjamin captured the tag titles on two separate occasions together. Haas thinks Benjamin will eventually become a coach for WWE and would like for him to get a world title run to cap off his career.

He’s one of my best friends, we talk all the time, he’s the godfather to my daughter and you know, he’s getting paid. So, you know, he’s easy. He survived the cuts. I think in the future he’ll probably be an instructor or coach, especially with them signing all the amateur wrestlers like Gable Steveson, Steiners son, and there’s a couple others that they’ve signed who they may use shortly. So when they decide it’s time for him to retire he’ll coach, if he wants to. I’m happy for sure. I wish they would have ran with the Hurt Business and kept it going instead of breaking it up and then bringing it back. They had a lot of momentum. They really helped the company during the pandemic, so I was really happy to see him and Cedric back on TV. I just want the best for him because he deserves it. I would like to see him have a singles run. I’d love to see him get the World Championship, it would definitely be an extra feather in his cap and would definitely guide him towards the Hall of Fame.

** Reality of Wrestling’s ‘One Night in Vegas’ live stream:

** Queen Zelina spoke to Sportskeeda at the Survivor Series media junket.

** NJPW Best of the Super Juniors Results (11/21) Nagoya, Japan
– Ryohei Oiwa vs. Yuto Nakashima – Time Limit Draw (10:00)
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: Yoshinobu Kanemaru def. DOUKI
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: Taiji Ishimori def. Master Wato
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: Ryusuke Taguchi def. YOH
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: SHO def. BUSHI
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: Robbie Eagles def. El Phantasmo
Best Of The Super Juniors Tournament Match: El Desperado vs. Hiromu Takahashi – Time Limit Draw (30:00)

** MLW World Heavyweight Champion Alex Hammerstone appeared on Wrestling Observer Live.

** Monthly Puroreso has a Q&A on their site with Danny Limelight.

** The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins) guest appeared on MackMania with Evan T. Mack.

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.