Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2021/01/05/post-news-update-jacob-fatu-recalls-aew-wwe-reaching-out-to-him/
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.
** MLW World Heavyweight Champion Jacob Fatu was a guest on Armbar Audio and during the discussion between the two parties, Fatu mentioned that All Elite Wrestling attempted to get in contact with him and it was Jungle Boy who alerted Fatu that AEW wanted to talk to him.
“AEW had tapped in. They came out of nowhere. They came out of nowhere. You know who actually gave me a call was Jungle Boy. Jungle Boy actually gave me a call and said, ‘You know, hey man, they’re trying to get in touch with you.’ That’s my dawg right there. His dad, rest in peace to his father. A good man. Oh man, his dad was a good man.”
Fatu continued speaking about his relationship with Jungle Boy and how much he liked Luke Perry. Fatu recalled hanging out with Jungle Boy and his dad at the Cow Palace in San Francisco and one day after that, Fatu was contacted by William Regal.
“William Regal had called. Check this sh*t out, William Regal had called the next day. Called the next day and it was too late. They’re just asking how long I was signing and that was it. They’re good people though, but wherever it’s at man. Just leave it up to God’s hands, leave it in God’s hands and just pray it on it and man, just keep grinding. That’s it.”
Elsewhere during the interview, he recalled an incident that occurred at a PCW ULTRA show where a fan left from behind the barricade and attempted to fight talents. One of the fans ran into MLW’s Hammerstone and here is Fatu’s recount of what occurred next:
“The fan’s acting up, telling him to back off. The fan ends up hitting one of Hammerstone’s boys. He’s just drunk and he just takes off on his boy and instead of looking out for his boy, his boy is getting ready to swing back and mind you, we’re in Los Angeles so it’s crazy, right? I just seen Hammer just come right behind that brother and put him in a choke lock, in a sleeper hold but the sleeper hold, you guys remember that one look Bubba was looking and he had the hold and they had to tell him, ‘Bruh, brother, brother, let go.’ It was crazy. He just went from having this stare to letting go, got up, didn’t say sh*t to nobody and walked off.”
** Fit Finlay joined David Penzer on the Sitting Ringside podcast to discuss his in-ring career, family and his backstage producer role in WWE. Fit is often credited by a great deal of women who worked for WWE in the early 2000s up until the company shifted into their women’s evolution era. Fit was assigned to help the talents put together Bra & Panties matches and match types of the sort. Although he faced backlash for it initially, he worked with the women on their in-ring skills which was not well received by the powers that be.
“Well I was assigned to the girls and I was there when I had to work with them during Bra & Panties matches and lingerie matches, pillow fights, turkeys and Thanksgiving dinner matches. Musical chairs, the whole thing. So you know who I am, you know what makes me tick. So this is really not in my wheelhouse. It’s not who I am so, I did it and I tried my best at it and the girls were doing good but I was getting embarrassed telling these girls how to strip each other off while doing a sunset flip or whatever, whatever it may be so eventually I got the girls and sat most of them down and said, ‘Hey, I don’t know how you feel about this but let me tell you how I feel about it.’ So I told them I was embarrassed but not the job, but how to talk to a girl about how to take and rip clothes off in a wrestling match. It was a little degrading to them I thought, and we all agreed and hugged and high-fived and stuff and made a plan to go, ‘I’m gonna teach you how to wrestle.’ That’s what we did, and then I got my wrist slapped and I got told, ‘This is not what we want. We don’t want girls wrestling like guys. We want them pulling hair, having cat fights and screaming and yelling and wardrobe malfunctions.’ So, I would back off for a day or two or a week or two and they’d go back to wrestling and it was — stubbornly, I just kept plugging on, teaching them how to wrestle and the girls would come to the ring and be in there for about four, five hours a day just to try and get this going and eventually it went more to wrestling. That’s how it went, and then of course, for whatever reason, when WWE decided they did want a women’s wrestling division, of course it was their idea, right? So, I sort of sparked the flame I guess.”
Fit has a career in wrestling that dates back to the 1970s but a Hall Of Fame induction is not something he’s interested in as he doesn’t want the attention.
“No. I don’t think about that. I think to me that would be embarrassing. I don’t really like people applauding for me. I was always so overjoyed to be a bad guy and have people spit at me and hate me and for people to — I don’t know. I never thought about it but thinking about it now I’m going, ‘Ugh,’ it’s so creepy. That would give me goosebumps, like the wrong way.”
Along with New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s David Finlay, Fit has another son named “Brogan” who’s interested in heading to Japan to wrestle. Fit stated that Brogan is being prepared for a potential move to Japan in May.
“There’s heat between him and David because of their height. Every time we get together, they wrestle on the floor, they would fight. I mean we’ve got a ring at the house and we’ll get in there but I thought the Christmas tree was gonna take a bump over Christmas when we were rolling on the floor, but they’re all interested in it. Brogan, he wants to go to Japan maybe in May. So we’re preparing him for it. He’ll be in the dojo.”
Elsewhere during their chat, Fit dove into his run in WCW and doesn’t feel like neither party did the other a favor in terms of production. He feels that he may have been overshadowed by the more popularized names and doesn’t harbor any bad feelings about it but was shocked he wasn’t involved in much.
“No matter where I went, I wrestled the same. I had my own style I guess. It’s the way I wrestle and that’s what I did and I don’t know… to me I didn’t get over in WCW at all. I think I just floundered there. I think they didn’t know what to do with me. It was a short-lived thing in my opinion and it didn’t work, and Scott Hall and all those guys came in at the same time or just shortly before I did and so, I think I was overshadowed by those guys and rightly so. They were the stars so, but it was a bit of a shock to me that I wasn’t involved very much so I was a little bit depressed because I just wanted to be in the ring, do my thing. I just wanted to be doing what I’d done all my life, not sitting at home because I guess in WCW by that time in ‘97, ‘96, whatever it was, they weren’t running too many shows into the 90s. It dwindled away for the most part. Apart from that little thing with Regal, I did a little run with Goldberg when he first started, getting him ready. I just felt like WCW didn’t do me any favors and I probably didn’t do them any favors either.”
** Tommy Dreamer welcomed Ace Austin onto his House Of Hardcore podcast. There was a point during Austin’s run in IMPACT Wrestling when he was feuding with Trey Miguel and Austin used Trey’s storyline “mother” to further antagonize him. Dreamer shared the original idea that the creative team had for Trey’s “mom” had to do with discovering which one of the older talents backstage was Trey’s “dad”.
“What I wanted to do and we were all gung-ho for it but it sucks because in the society or how we have to be so careful nowadays in professional wrestling. We wanted — because Trey and wanted to do this seriously with me, Don Callis, whoever else we brought in. At one time, we had so many veteran wrestlers and then finally, D’Lo’s gonna come up and be like, ‘Hey Ms. Miguel’ and all the babyfaces, all the older wrestlers, they were gonna start with same line, ‘Hey Ms. Miguel’ and she was just gonna go, ‘Yeah, Trey’s your son’ and D’Lo was just gonna do the head shake and that was the end of the whole angle. But we couldn’t do it. I wish it happened.”
On previous episodes of the podcast, Dreamer spoke to Trey Miguel and Zachary Wentz and told them how they both came close to winning the IMPACT World Championship when the company hosted a tournament to crown a new champion. Ace Austin was also close to winning the gold.
“At one point and I mean I’ve told you this, you have twice come so, so close to being the champ of IMPACT and the first time was, ‘He’s not ready’ and then the second time, it was when Trey Fulton, and it was all really contingent on Trey’s — if he was able to come back from his concussion. So, Trey coming back kind of screwed you from being champion so if you ever see him again, you can basically blame him for you not being champion but you were gonna be the champ.”
Dreamer told Ace Austin that IMPACT Co-Executive Vice President Don Callis thinks highly of and sees a lot of potential in him.
“They’re looking to make new stars and you’re one of those guys and I know Don Callis started seeing a lot in you and your first — I mean you had a lot of — you went literally from like, ‘Oh, he’s an X Division guy’ to, ‘Let’s get him some character,’ and dude when I tell you all these little things you’re telling me like oh, the first wrestler you saw is Shawn Michaels. Don says that about you a lot and when we put Madman Fulton with you, it’s like, ‘Let him be his Diesel to Shawn Michaels.’”
** Matt Jones of Kentucky Sports Radio and Craig Greenberg of 21c Hotels have purchased majority interest in Ohio Valley Wrestling. Matt, Craig and their respective teams will work alongside Al Snow to bring resources to the promotion and grow it.
** Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated chatted with IMPACT Wrestling Co-Executive Vice President Scott D’Amore. One of the questions asked of D’Amore had to do with the relationship between IMPACT and All Elite Wrestling and if D’Amore gets bothered when people ask what does IMPACT bring to the table in the partnership.
“Everyone is entitled to their position. Look, AEW built a great product in a very short period of time. Our hats are off to Tony Khan and his team. I’ve always believed that success in the wrestling business is like a rising tide in that it leads to more success for everyone.
I’m very happy we get to do some crossover stuff with them. Often in wrestling, the question is, ‘Why would we work with someone else?’ This has put eyeballs on both companies. We’re very appreciative, and we think it’s added a buzz for both shows. The collaboration on the talent level creates the potential for a lot of fresh matchups. We’ll see where it goes next, but it is a great time to be a wrestling fan and a great time to be in the wrestling business.”
Don Callis is now a constant on AEW Dynamite alongside the AEW World Champion Kenny Omega since he started managing Omega. D’Amore stated that Don is still a Vice President of IMPACT and as far as speculation about Don’s future in IMPACT goes, D’Amore says that’s up to the public to speculate on.
“Everybody is going to speculate, but that’s a good thing. Speculation can lead to buzz. Don has been a huge part of what we’ve done here. We’ve been friends for the past 25 years. In life and in business, people make changes, but I will say that Don has been an integral part of everything we have done at Impact. Again, we’ll see what comes next, but Don is executive vice president at Impact Wrestling. He’s also the mentor and manager for the AEW world champion, and he’s helped create this crossover and a very special time in the wrestling business.
Whether Don and I are both at Impact Wrestling, or if we’re in different parts of the world or in different industries, there will always be a connection and a friendship. Fans should continue to speculate and enjoy, but don’t let it get in the way of enjoying the ride of some really cool and exciting times.”
Headlining IMPACT’s Hard To Kill pay-per-view on January 16th is Kenny Omega, IMPACT Tag Team Champions Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson taking on IMPACT World Champion Rich Swann and Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin). D’Amore spoke about the forthcoming match and the elements that came together to make it happen.
“A big part of it is what you just hit on. Kenny is a forward-thinker, and he doesn’t think in the confines of traditional wrestling. It’s the same with the Young Bucks and Tony Khan , they’re all forward-thinkers. And we are very proud of what we’re building at Impact Wrestling. Since Anthem came in, the goal has always been the long-term. You can’t do this in a day, a week, a month or a year. Incrementally, we’ve tried to get better, brick by brick. So yes, this is a chance for us to show off our talent.
This isn’t just a chance to see Kenny Omega—it’s a chance to see Kenny Omega reunite with Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows. That’s a Bullet Club reunion, and you’re putting them with Rich Swann, who is showing he can be a great world champion, and one of the most iconic teams in wrestling, especially Impact Wrestling, in the Motor City Machine Guns. They’re a team that constantly gets overlooked for their contributions in revolutionizing tag-team wrestling, and they’re as homegrown for Impact as anyone. This is a match for wrestling fans, you get to watch these six men go at it in the ring.”
** IMPACT Knockouts Champion Deonna Purrazzo talked to Spencer Love of ‘Love Wrestling’ and she spoke about why she chose to not immediately sign with IMPACT upon her return to the company. When the news became public that Deonna signed, she had been Knockouts Champion for several months already.
“Well, I think that, for me, especially like the last – even before WWE and NXT, like, I was contracted to Ring of Honor – and then I left Ring of Honor and I went right to NXT, and there was no breathing room in between that. Now, I just think for me, it was I’ve signed two contracts. I wasn’t ready for what came with those things. I wasn’t necessarily happy with both of those contracts and the way my time had panned out. So, let’s take a step back and let’s kind of take a breather and see what happens and, you know, see, the way that creative sees me and the roles that I’m going to be put in and kind of feel this process out a little bit more now that I have some time.
More than just personally, I mean, we’re still in the midst of a global pandemic, and I think that it’s not just a hesitation on my part. It’s also a hesitation on theirs. Like, ‘Where’s our company stand? Where do we see this person? Are we going to invest in this person in the long term?’ I don’t know why it’s maybe taken this long, but I think if I had to summarize why, it’s just like a mutual understanding of, like, ‘Let’s see and wait,’ and then the world’s crazy. So let’s see and wait (for) what 2021 brings us, you know?
We’ve grown this like mutual respect for each other over the last four months and really developed a great relationship that I can only hope transpires for the next couple years.”
** The Battleground Podcast welcomed Jimmy Hart onto the show. Hart has been a part of the creative process for a number of highly regarding pro wrestling theme songs. One of those themes is the nWo’s Wolfpack theme and Hart dove into how that came to be:
“Well, you know, Scott Hall and Kevin Nash were kind of cool and then Hulk was with ‘em too so, Hulk’s always been my main man so I wanted to make sure I really do something great for him and so we just came up with this song called The Wolfpack and that’s what we call the second tier of the nWo. That’s when they wore the red and black instead of the black and white and so that’s kind of when Nash and Hall kind of split off on their own and did it and so, I took it to Kevin Nash and Scott and they loved it and so, we went with it. I got a good rapper guy used that for his little theme song when he went up to the batting plate. He sure did and several other people used it too but they used it so I was thrilled to have that done.”
** Lio Rush is challenging Myron Reed for the World Middleweight Title at MLW Kings of Colosseum on 1/6. Rush spoke to the New York Post to promote the event. In 2020, Rush was contemplating retiring from wrestling. He discussed what led him to almost making that decision.
“It was a very serious topic of discussion not just with myself, but my wife, my family. Not only getting burned out, again, I was getting discouraged constantly being told, ‘You’re not a star.’ Constantly being told, ‘We don’t see you in a big title picture,’ and that does a lot to someone’s confidence, especially when you’re in the biggest sports entertainment company that there is, and you’ve got all of these people in power saying you’re not good enough for three years straight.”
** NWA Worlds Heavyweight Champion Nick Aldis guest appeared on the ‘Not About Wrestling’ podcast. He was asked who his dream opponent is and Aldis selected Paul “Triple H” Levesque.
“Triple H. He’s one of the people that made me want to get into the industry. In the sense that I was a fan of the business — Bret Hart was my hero. Let’s not get that twisted. Bret Hart is my hero and I wanted to be like Bret as a kid but I just wanted to be cool like Bret. It was more about the overall sort of moral values and stuff that he, you know, work hard and fight for what’s right. But by the time I started articulating like, ‘I think I might want to do this,’ it was like when I started to realize when I was watching Triple H and The Rock feud in 2000 and as big a fan of The Rock as I was and everyone was and people still are, there was a little part of me that was going, ‘It’d be kind of cool to be Triple H in this situation,’ and the way he wrestled and the way he controlled the story, the way he controlled the movement in the ring, the way he — it was very reminiscent of Harley Race and guys like that and that’s obviously what I latched on to and sort of what appealed to me.”
** Following his loss to Kota Ibushi in the main event of Wrestle Kingdom 15 night two, Jay White stated during the post-show presser that he’s “done” with New Japan Pro-Wrestling after New Year’s Dash. NJPW is promoting White’s comments on their website and YouTube channel.
** A biography about Chris Candido is available for pre-order.
** Westside Gunn, Smoke DZA & Wale released a song titled ‘The Hurt Business’ which is a tribute to the current WWE group consisting of MVP, Bobby Lashley, Shelton Benjamin and Cedric Alexander.
** Members of WWE’s production team were getting footage in Elmira, New York for Beth Phoenix’s episode of WWE ‘Icons’ that’s airing on the WWE Network. ‘My Twin Tiers’ has the full story.
** The Guam Daily Post has a feature about Jeff Cobb.
** To promote RAW Legends Night, Jimmy Hart chatted with Sports Guys Talking Wrestling.
** On 12/30, WWE applied to trademark the following names: Diamond Mine, Qiao Liang, The Bridge, Nu Wu, The Witch, Qi Yue, The Covenanter, Quan Tou and Ji Lu.
** The Nightmare Factory showcase premiered on the Nightmare Family YouTube channel.
** Finn Balor vs. Kyle O’Reilly for the NXT Championship at New Year’s Evil will be presented commercial free.
** Miro discussed the passing of Jon Huber (Brodie Lee) during his Twitch stream.
** WrestleZone caught up with MLW CEO Court Bauer.
** El Phantasmo noted on Twitter that his Wrestle Kingdom 15 gear was a tribute to Edge.
** AEW Road to New Year’s Smash:
** Christine Lubrano was named WWE’s Senior Vice President, Creative Writing Operations.
** MLW put out the cold open for their Kings of Colosseum show.
** Here are the results from the latest ROH TV episode:
* Flip Gordon def. Bandido
* Mark Haskins def. Jay Lethal
** Xavier Woods and Shayna Baszler played Back 4 Blood.
** Matt Cardona joined Scrump and Stank on the PWTCAST.
** A catalog of Roman Reigns’ best championship matches in WWE was added to the WWE Network.
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.