POST NEWS UPDATE: Hikaru Shida enjoyed producing 2021 AEW Women's Eliminator in Japan, says it was difficult

Originally published at

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.

** Newly crowned AEW Women’s World Champion Hikaru Shida was interviewed by Stephanie Chase. She discussed producing the 2021 AEW Women’s Eliminator tournament in Japan. Shida said it was difficult, but she enjoyed it. She felt she was able to help introduce more Joshi wrestlers to the world. Shida added that she thinks the fans loved it but as far as producing after her in-ring career, she’s not interested.

I produced like 10 shows in Japan so, it was so hard (producing AEW Women’s Eliminator tourney in Japan). But, I really enjoyed that and I’m so happy because I introduced so many Japanese Joshi wrestlers to the world and I think fans loved that so, I was really happy. But it was so hard (she laughed) … No (I do not want to be a producer after my in-ring career is over). I think I’m the person in front of people, not behind (the camera). It was so hard!

From the Japan bracket in the 2021 Women’s Eliminator tournament, she’d like to see Veny come to AEW.

From the (2021) Eliminator tournament, I think Veny should come here (to AEW). She was great. Yeah (she made a big impression) and she’s still young so, yeah, she has so (much) potential I think.

** Joining ‘Wrestling is Life is Wrestling’ was Joe Hendry. He looked back on his Ring of Honor debut and described it as ‘horrible’. Hendry said he had not gotten over in the U.S.A. prior but both him and management thought he’d get a babyface reaction. There was someone in the crowd who shouted, ‘You suck’ at Hendry upon arrival. He said it took months for him to bounce back and gain fanfare. There was a point when he began to worry about his job before he started connecting with the audience.

And I didn’t realize how important first impressions and debuts were. They’re everything. My Ring of Honor debut was horrible! Oh my God… and hey, let’s just say there were multiple factors at play here, right? So it is what it is, maybe the booking could have been different, maybe I could have done something different, maybe my opponent could have done something different but, I was debuting against Dalton Castle who was, despite being a heel at the time, let’s be honest, was an over babyface. I walk out, never having got over in America before and management thought and I stupidly thought I was gonna get a babyface reaction. Walked out and it was like, ‘You suck!’ Just one guy in the back, just one guy on the top floor, ‘You suck!’ And it took me about six months to fight back from that and started to get over and I remember we did one loop, reactions weren’t good. I was worried for my job at one point. Second loop, we’re starting to get over and then the pandemic comes so that was an interesting experience but I learned from that and I was like, ‘I will never do that again.’

** Guest appearing on Insight with Chris Van Vliet was Shelton Benjamin. The three-time WWE Intercontinental Champion said he’s been trying to get his ‘Ain’t No Stoppin’ Me’ theme back since he returned to the company.

So I have been trying (to get ‘Ain’t No Stoppin’ Me’ back). Fans, anyone listening, I’ve been trying. I’ve asked over and over since the day I got back, I’m still trying. I just keep going, please. I was making it very public that I don’t like my theme music. I want my old music. For, you know, for reasons that even I — I don’t know, if I’m even willing to accept that they may be true to me. No, I don’t know if I’m willing to accept that. But, you know, they just haven’t conceded to give me back my own music because I want it too.

He heaped praise onto Chad Gable. Benjamin says Gable doesn’t realize how much respect he has for him. He added that WWE is constantly trying to build new stars, but Gable has it all. Shelton called Gable his favorite worker.

(Chad) Gable, holy cow. That guy is a workhorse, he is such a badass. I don’t think he realized how much respect I have for him. That guy’s badass. And to see him (now), he’s turned on his comical chops. He’s constantly surprising me and he’s a guy, I’m like, this would be a breakout star. We’re constantly trying to develop new talent, but I’m like, man, this guy’s got it all. He’s my favorite worker. Because you can put him in the ring with anyone, he can make him look good. He can toss anybody around, you know? When he tossed Braun Strowman, it’s like, you’re not supposed to be able to do that. But man, I’m so impressed by his work. So impressed.

** Advice from Arn Anderson was recounted by Cody Rhodes during an interview with Robbie Fox of My Mom’s Basement. Rhodes said Anderson told him to be selfish. Rhodes understood it as he was giving too much of himself and giving people the moment when they weren’t ready for it.

It’s gonna sound crude but, I mean it was always something he (Arn Anderson) hit me with was, ‘Be selfish.’ I’ve never really understood what ‘be selfish’ means. I get it and I can point at something and go, ‘Ah, I know what they’re doing here.’ But Arn knew where I was at and I think to a degree, knew where I was going, even without it all happening and knew that I might have been giving too much of myself away. I might have been (giving) too much of my equity away, I might’ve been giving individuals who weren’t for the moment, the moment and that was always great advice that he had about being selfish and it kind of would reel me in for the matches.

** For the last year of Garett Bischoff’s contract with TNA Wrestling, he sat out. He explained on the Refin’ It Up podcast that internal issues caused him to stay home. Later in the podcast, it was clarified that John Gaburick, current WWE V.P. and former TNA V.P. of Creative and Talent Relations, had something to do with those internal issues.

Coming off the Aces & Eights stuff, it was hot. That Aces & Eights run was hot, we were over. Yes, to answer your question, yes. I think there could have been something there to keep going for at least another year or two I would like to think. There was internal issues at that point that kept me home for the last year of my contract. So I never even got the opportunity to try. I would rather have been sent out there and tried and failed than to not even be given the chance to try and I was sent home and basically said, here, ride the last year out and then, you’re done.

It is what it is and it’s the past. It’s no reason to rehash the past but, if you remember, there was an exodus of certain management and a new ‘Big’ — or gentleman came in to play that had it out for… people and you know, there was a reason why that plug got pulled real quick on everything and everybody that left the Aces & Eights got sent home real quick and then… I didn’t get a call back so, it is what it is.

** Bully Ray and Tommy Dreamer welcomed Rocky Romero onto Busted Open Radio. Romero said if his in-ring career were to come to an end, he’d be satisfied with what he’s accomplished. He did not think he’d go as far as he has. Rocky added that he’d love to get a singles match against Chris Jericho and it’d be a big deal for him personally.

I feel satisfied (with my career). If it ended today, I would feel extremely satisfied. Just going back to our conversation before, being ‘vertically challenged’ in a way in an industry in the early 2000s when I started, I didn’t really think that I was going to go this far. So I feel like I definitely have overachieved in my initial thoughts about where I was gonna end up in professional wrestling. But, I still have that hunger and that desire. You guys (Tommy Dreamer & Bully Ray) have been doing this a very long time and how it does feel to kind of, like, people start to put you over in certain ways or you have an accomplishment like win a championship or do something really cool that you’ve always kind of dreamed about. I definitely feel there’s still things I would like to do, there’s still people I would like to wrestle for sure…

Do you know who I really wanna wrestle? Is (Chris) Jericho. I really wanna have a singles with Jericho. He would be somebody who I would love to work with… because that was that generation that inspired me so much and Eddie’s gone unfortunately. I got to wrestle Rey Mysterio so, Jericho in a singles match would be dope for me. That would be such a big deal for me personally. So, and now getting to work with him behind the scenes and getting him over to New Japan in the last few years and kind of how our relationship has kind of developed over the last couple of years, to work with him in the ring would be amazing. I think that would be my guy.

** Burke Magnus, ESPN’s President of Content joined Richard Deitsch’s Sports Media podcast. He dove into why the company wanted Pat McAfee under the ESPN brand. He added that McAfee received a lot of flack after articles circulated in which the content attempted to correlate the acquisition of The Pat McAfee Show to ESPN layoffs. Magnus called that ‘insane’. He stated that ESPN paid for the show and it wasn’t as if McAfee was hired as a talent and then they built a show around him. He already established the show.

Well, couple reasons (why ESPN wanted the entire Pat McAfee brand). One, and I was just out to see him last week. I went out to watch him do his show at his studio in Indianapolis. First of all, I think he’s supremely talented. I think he has tapped into the pulse of younger fans, yes. I don’t even wanna limit it at that but just the contemporary sports fan, he sets the conversation. He’s built a show from a blank piece of paper on his own. The great difference — by the way, I think he also took a lot of flings and arrows undeservedly in a lot of articles where people tried to draw direct correlation between our workforce reductions and the acquisition of his show which is insane. So the big difference in that situation was that we acquired a show. We didn’t hire Pat McAfee as a talent and then build a show around him. He already built a show that is widely successful in the YouTube environment and we’re bringing that show to ESPN and that’s a big difference that was missed in a lot of reporting on that particular deal and the show is the reason we wanted Pat McAfee which is to say, we feel like he has tapped into something that will fit perfectly in our daytime lineup and a flow from Get Up with Mike Greenberg and First Take with Stephen A. Smith and now The Pat McAfee Show. That’s six hours that’s absolutely powerhouse content, Monday through Friday, every single day, every single week on ESPN1 and the various audiences that those three shows appeal to are both the same and very different and so, I couldn’t be more excited about that and it is actually a real priority of mine in this role to try and make our content offerings, broadly speaking, much more contemporary with current, younger sports fans.

** Per Law360, counsel for former WWE talent Levis Valenzuela Jr. (No Way Jose), told a Washington state jury that Alaska Airlines violated a state anti-discrimination law when a flight attendant told him he couldn’t use a bathroom in first class. The airline’s attorney called it a ‘simple mistake’.

** Jim Varsallone conducted an interview with Frankie Kazarian and he expressed how proud he is of Alex Shelley. Kazarian feels Shelley is doing an incredible job as IMPACT World Champion.

I’m so proud of that guy. I’ve known Alex Shelley for, you know, since he was 20 years old, just as he was kind of starting out and we’ve been through a lot together and over the years, when you know somebody that well, you become close so for him to get that opportunity and for him to now run with it, I think he’s doing an incredible job representing IMPACT Wrestling as our World Champion. I’m so happy for him because I know he appreciates this. That guy loves this business. He eats and breathes and sleeps pro wrestling and you know, he’s constantly working on his technique and sharing that technique with young men and women before every show… Sometimes when wrestling gets it right, they really get it right and Alex Shelley being put in this position and earning the right to be the IMPACT Champion, I always say, it warms my black heart. I’m so proud of him, so happy for him and it’s just good to see good things happen to good people sometimes.

** There’s a profile on former NXT Women’s Tag Team Champion Kayden Carter on HBCU Sports’ website. The site got comments from Carter’s coach from when she played basketball at Shaw University. Coach Jacques Curtis detailed how key Carter was to the team’s 2012 NCAA Division II National Championship win.

Curtis: She (Kayden Carter) played a major role in us winning that National Championship. She could get the ball where it needed to be. At the same time, if you didn’t guard her, she could shoot the ball. She could drive and get to the basket. That team was a very offensive-powered squad, so we didn’t need a whole lot from her offensively but when she had to, she could score. She always gave you what you needed because she was playing with other talented players.

As Carter was speaking about her athleticism, she mentioned being in the ring with Ronda Rousey on the 6/5 WWE Raw. Kayden feels she gained a bit of respect from Rousey.

Carter: I consider myself a damn good athlete. I put it out there because people don’t look at me like that. We got gold medal Olympians, football players, rugby players, and UFC fighters in pro wrestling. There weren’t a lot of collegiate athletes when I started. It was awesome [wrestling Rousey]. I got to be in the ring with the ‘Baddest Person on the Planet’, and I think I gained a little bit of respect from her.

** Cody Rhodes appeared on 6abc Philadelphia to promote WrestleMania 40: 

** Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling Results (8/17/23) Shinkiba 1stRING in Tokyo, Japan
– Mahiro Kiryu def. Pom Harajuku
– Saki Akai, Haru Kazashiro & Runa Okubo def. HIMAWARI, Shino Suzuki & Toga
– Mizuki def. Aiger
– Miyu Yamashita def. Shoko Nakajima

** Joining The Babyfaces Podcast was Grayson Waller.

** August 17th birthdays: Danhausen & Saraya.

** FOX 5 DC welcomed The Miz onto the show.

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.