Originally published at WWE asked Molly Holly to coach at the Performance Center
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.
Cezar Bononi is asking for help as his wife needs a bone marrow transplant for her Leukemia treatment. She needs it on the 1st of April. Bononi’s sister-in-law in Brazil is a match donor but because of Brazil’s currently busy health care system, they are not able to withdraw the bone marrow before April 27th. Bononi and his wife applied for an emergency visa but the request for an interview was not accepted.
** 2021 WWE Hall Of Fame inductee Molly Holly was a guest on the Talkin’ Sass podcast. As the conversation went on, Molly shared that she has been asked by WWE to coach at the Performance Center in Orlando but she’s not interested. She feels that position should go to those who are passionate to the highest degree about wrestling.
Yes they have and I just don’t want to. It sounds terrible but I’m just — I’m so far removed from that world. I don’t want to be this like grizzled, bitter, jaded trainer who is like, I don’t know. They need to have trainers who are passionate about pro wrestling, who love the psychology of it because you can meet certain people on the indies or people who used to work for WWE or people who do work for WWE and they just light up when their creative juices are going and they’re like, ‘Oh, you could do this, you could do that’ and it’s like, those are the kind of people you need to have as a trainer. Even though back in the day, I might’ve had skills or experience as a trainer, I’m not at that place now where I feel excited about doing that type of job.
In 2005, Molly Holly made the decision to step away from WWE. She wrestled sporadically throughout the years but never on a full-time basis. She detailed what led to her making that decision. John Laurinaitis, WWE’s current and then-Head of Talent Relations asked Molly if she wanted to take a break instead of leaving the company as a whole.
About a year before I asked to be let out of my contract, I knew it was just time for me to go. Some of the reasons are that I already accomplished everything there was to accomplish. I had been women’s champion, I’m on trading cards, I have an action figure, I’m on video games, I had a championship match at WrestleMania. All these things that people would hope for in their careers, like I already did all of that and some people are born to be a star. Like they just thrive on the energy of the crowd and they just love entertaining and I don’t really love entertaining. I love hanging out with the people backstage, I love the traveling. It was just the stress of being on live TV and having lack of sleep. I just had all of these things that were beating me down and I started crying every single day at work and I’m like, ‘I am not happy here’ and so I knew that I should leave about a year before I actually did and then it was I had a health scare that was kind of like, I don’t know if you call it nail in the coffin or the straw that broke the camel’s back or however you wanna say it. It was just that thing that I needed to be like, ‘It’s okay for me to walk away. I know I still have time on my contract left, I know that most people would do anything to be in my spot and that away might seem disrespectful to people pursuing their dreams’ or something but I just knew that it was time for me to be done.
And John Laurinaitis was the Talent Relations guy at the time and he called me the next day after I asked Vince if I could be let out of my contract and he was like, ‘Are you sure you don’t just want like a break? Because you know you can still get paid taking a break’ and I was like, ‘No, I’m just done’ and it’s nice to know that I left on good terms and obviously I’ve been on the show a few times since I’ve left so that feels good that they still want me to be a part of what they’re doing. The first time they had me back for some Legends thing, I was like, ‘Oh, I’m a legend? I consider myself like a has-been.’ I was like, ‘Oh, they’re having a has-been back’ but they’re like, ‘You’re not a has-been, you’re a legend.’ I was like, ‘Oh! That’s so nice.’
She last wrestled at the 2020 Royal Rumble pay-per-view. Molly Holly talked about how nervous she was about wrestling again because she didn’t want to slow down the paces of the current in-ring talents.
It’s flattering, it feels good to be honored and I always feel a little bit embarrassed because when I do actually have to get in the ring, I just think, ‘Ugh, I’m going to be holding them back.’ Like if we have to do an interaction, I’m just like, because I’m not conditioned currently to be a pro wrestler, I’m like, ‘Ah, they’re going to have to slow their pace a half-a-step or a full step to match mine since I can’t keep up with them’ and I was nervous because I thought, ‘Oh, I don’t want them thinking, oh, this old lady is wrecking our show’ but everyone was like, ‘No, this is awesome’ and they all seem super nice and they all took care of me. They tried to make sure that they could make up for my weak areas and yeah, it’s been fun.
** Susan Levison, WWE Senior Vice President and Head of WWE Studios was a panelist on The Female Quotient’s ‘Equality Lounge’. She spoke about WWE’s series on A&E that premieres on April 18th which features Paul “Triple H” Levesque and Stephanie McMahon along with NXT talent A.J. Francis searching for the company’s most iconic memorabilia. Susan talked about some of the ideas that have been discussed for season two of ‘WWE’s Most Wanted Treasures’.
I mean, I think we probably have ten percent of the collection out there in our possession and there’s still 90 percent out there. I would just love to answer an earlier question of what we wanna look for and see on season two. We spent a lot of time thinking about it just in case as you can imagine. Rey Mysterio’s first lucha mask that he ever wrestled in would be amazing and so meaningful to so many people if we could find that. Some of the belt buckles that Roddy Piper wore in sort of his kilt outfit that he wore when he hosted Piper’s Pit would be amazing and there’s also some female superstars and legends that we wanna track down their memorabilia. Trish Stratus and Lita, when they headlined Raw, there was a facemask that was worn. That was a very iconic moment for the history of women in the WWE so that’s something we wanna track down. There’s a whole WrestleMania set of collectibles that is out there, just related to WrestleMania which is such an amazing, iconic element to WWE. So, you can see I’m very excited. There’s so much more to find. Now that we know kind of how to do it, I think we can track down a lot of stuff so we’re excited.
** On the latest edition of D-Von Dudley’s Table Talk podcast, he shared that he has undergone several minor surgeries recently. D-Von added that he is doing okay now.
I’m just grateful that he gave me the time to be able to rest and heal and do what I gotta do man. These surgeries have been crazy and I thought they were little surgeries until after I was done. I was like oh my goodness, you know? It was kind of like a shockwave going through my body but I’m okay now so no big deal.
** At the conclusion of NWA’s Back for the Attack pay-per-view, members of the roster and crew paid tribute to Joseph Hudson (Jocephus/The Question Mark) who passed away in February. Aron Stevens, friend and on-screen partner of Hudson’s, joined the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling podcast and shared that he was in communication with Hudson on the day of his passing.
Yeah, I communicated with him earlier that day, and then I get a text message saying that he is no longer with us. That was — still very surreal, and it’s funny because I never had a Facebook but I had to get one the beginning of this year just for some Hollywood casting stuff, and then it’s funny, a bunch of people kind of found me and I’m like alright, accept the friend request and I’m still Facebook illiterate but, he was someone, we found each other on Facebook, okay cool and we would talk all the time. We had each other’s number, we would use it, we’d text, we talked and the last thing he posted on Facebook, that was the day he passed was a picture of the two of us, and I remember I commented on that and he commented back and I’m like yeah, cool and I get the call that he’s gone. So I still — it still hasn’t fully sunken in with me. I don’t know when it will. It is bizarre, it really is bizarre. It’s tragic, it’s sad and in the wake of everything, I think the GoFundMe that his mother had which in two hours, hit the goal and then has more than doubled since. That’s just testament to the kind of human being that Joseph Hudson was. So…
** The latest guest on Metal Injection’s Squared Circle Pit podcast was Damian Priest. He recalled getting the chance to learn from The Undertaker during his visit to the WWE Performance Center. Priest did get to mix it up in the ring with Undertaker and while explaining something to those who were also a part of the session, Undertaker almost punched Priest in the nose.
And then what wasn’t on it , throw some blows with him and I remember he was showing somebody something and he threw a punch and he was just explaining something so he wasn’t actually trying to hit me, but he threw it full speed and it touched my face and he pulled back, I mean just before he broke my nose and I was like — and I looked around and I was like, ‘Man! That was awesome, do it again.’ So cool. Again, the fan in me couldn’t help it.
Priest spoke about his first WWE tryout in 2014 and reaching out to the company again following that. Both instances did not turn out how Priest wanted but he’s grateful for the journey he’s had.
I had a tryout with WWE in 2014 I believe, and at the time, they liked me. They all said, ‘You’re a yes for the company,’ that, ‘You’re the type of guy we’d wanna hire but there’s just nothing for you right now’ and then I said, ‘Oh okay’ and then I spoke to one of the scouts and coaches and he was like, ‘Go make a bigger name for yourself.’ He goes, ‘And make yourself undeniable to the company.’ I said okay and that’s what I did. I started making a bigger name for myself and then I kinda contacted the company a year after that, and again, it was just like, ‘Nothing for you now’ and then I kind of wrote it off as far as, ‘I’ll probably never work there but it’s okay. I’m okay with that and I’m not gonna stop working as hard as I am. I’ll continue working hard and keep improving and just having fun, enjoying what I love doing’ and then a year later they called me which is crazy. They’re like, ‘Hey, would you be interested?’ And I’m like, ‘Of course I’m interested.’ You know, my contract had came up. I was working for Ring of Honor at the time, my contract was up and they called me at literally a perfect time and they were like, ‘Hey, are you under contract?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah, until the end of the month.’ They’re like, ‘This month?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah,’ and they’re like, ‘Oh, would you mind if we give you a call then?’ And I was like, ‘No, okay’ and that’s what they did. They called me like the same day. They called me and we made it work, crazy.
** NWA Powerrr returns on 3/23 and the show is airing on FITE TV. To promote the company’s Back for the Attack pay-per-view and Powerrr, Nick Aldis joined the Battleground Podcast and explained why the National Wrestling Alliance decided to put Powerrr behind a paywall when it was previously free on YouTube.
It was something that we had sort of discussed internally about putting this show basically forking out, at this point he’s basically in for a couple million, you know? To create and help revitalize this brand and show a proof of concept of a show that is completely different to anything else that’s being offered, and deliberately so and we got to a point where we said, ‘Hey, we have a strong, loyal and very passionate fanbase now and the really cool thing about the NWA fans is that they genuinely want to support the organization. They understand that there’s a — if they want to see certain guys and they want to see us stay with the NWA and they want us to be presented in only a way the NWA can do, then the NWA has to make money and it’s kind of like, that’s pretty much the long and short of it. We feel like we’ve created enough value in the product now that for $4.99 a month, I feel like it is a bargain at twice its price.
Continuing on the topic of NWA’s deal with FITE, Aldis said there was another streaming platform who wanted the NWA content but he threw the idea out there of FITE possibly being a partner. Aldis then went into detail about the deal being finalized.
It was just one of those things where there was an offer on the table from another streaming platform, a sports streaming service who were very interested and who made an offer for the NWA content, and I just sort of threw it out there. I said, ‘Hey, maybe we oughta see if FITE’s interested,’ just based on what a great year they had and I know they really like working with the NWA. I said, ‘Well –’ it was literally a case of, ‘Well, couldn’t hurt,’ you know? And sure enough, I helped sort of connect Mike and they went to the table and obviously I stepped back. I wasn’t privy to all the different ins and outs of the boardroom stuff but yeah, next thing you know, Billy turns around a few days later and says, ‘I think we got ourselves a deal with FITE’ and that was that so I’m stoked about it because obviously, from a synergy point of view, it helps me as far as the established relationship and being able to continue to sort of spread my wings but really more than anything just because, it’s so important when it comes to a broadcast partner that you have someone who really wants you to succeed and is kinda very acutely aware of your time and kind of what you stand for and your culture and everything like that and in that respect, Mike Weber’s ideal for us as a partner because he knows me very well, he’s worked with Billy now for a couple years since the NWA’s been under his control and man, it’s so great to not have to kind of establish the relationship like that. We can just get right to work and we can communicate very honestly and openly with each other and it’s just great because we all want the same thing. We all wanna make some money, sell some pay-per-views and now sell some subscriptions to FITE for NWA Powerrr.
** Prior to their Unsanctioned Lights Out match on AEW Dynamite, Thunder Rosa joined Busted Open Radio. Rosa feels that she and Britt Baker need each other for their story to turn out the way it has.
Yes and no main event. We should have time on national television. I’ve been showing this. Myself and my partners, whoever’s in the ring with me when we are on Dynamite that we can do it. So, it’s time and it couldn’t be a better time for me to do this, and I am so blessed.
** WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon joined ‘Moose and Maggie’ on WFAN Sports Radio. The topic of Stephanie’s children possibly getting into the wrestling business came up and Stephanie said if they want to join WWE, they will have to earn it that much more and she will make sure it isn’t an easy ride.
So I think it’s really important to work from the ground up, no matter what profession they choose to go into. They are 14, 12 and ten. I am so proud of them and whatever it is they wanna do in life that they’re passionate about, that’s what I wanna support but it’s gonna be harder for them to get into WWE if that’s the path they ultimately choose.
We’re gonna make it harder for them because they’ve got to earn it that much more.
** While speaking to GIVEMESPORT, Bianca Belair presented she and Sasha Banks’ case as to why their SmackDown Women’s Title match should headline night one of WrestleMania 37:
I’ve been seeing a lot of fans putting it out there, saying, ‘Oh yeah, Bianca and Sasha are going to main event night one of WrestleMania.’ They’ve been putting that out to the universe so I hope it happens. I would love to be in the main event. That’s the dream in WWE. What more could you ask for in that moment? It’s a dream I’ve always had. We’re already creating history by being the first two Black females to have a title match at WrestleMania, so it’s just amazing. We represent two alpha-females and to do it on the grandest stage of all, in the main event… why not?
** Ring of Honor’s Jonathan Gresham was a guest on the Wrestling Perspective Podcast. Gresham dove into his time in ROH and presenting ideas in his mind to the powers that be. Gresham stated that communication between him and booking isn’t always great but he’s learning to roll with the punches.
So on the indies, I could control my story, like what I say, what I do and if I didn’t wanna take a booking, I didn’t have to but now in Ring of Honor, it’s a different experience, a learning experience for me now in trying to translate what’s in my mind and verbalize it to people so they understand and I’m pretty much just selling my ideas, you know what I mean? Because at this point with Ring of Honor, what’s really cool, I’ve never been to WWE but we don’t have ‘writer writers’ so they don’t just like, I guess, shove stuff in your face and tell you to do this so you kind of have to have your own ideas and hope that it makes sense for what the promoter has going forward and that’s really difficult for me because I don’t always know. Communication with booking isn’t always great, for me anyway. So it’s very difficult to like translate what is in my mind across. At first it was very difficult but now I’m learning to roll with the punches a little bit more and that is the same thing with promos.
Gresham is the current ROH Pure Champion and he found out he was winning the title the day prior to it happening. He thinks that had the initial Pure tourney took place as scheduled without the pandemic occurring, he wouldn’t have won the tournament.
I had found out I was winning it I think the day before. I was told on a call. But, I don’t know. Since I got to Ring of Honor, I was always like putting over — whoever would listen, whether it was Todd Sinclair or one of the boys, I would always talk about how like Pure wrestling would differentiate the company from everyone else and just give us something that’s ours and that nobody else could do or nobody else would be doing and I just kept preaching that. Somebody in the office said I spoke it into existence. Not just for myself but just to have a variety show, I don’t know. That’s what wrestling is supposed to be. But no, I didn’t know and I don’t know if it was set up for me, I don’t know. I play with this idea because I’m always negative with myself with things is like I think I was the last resort, the last choice because you gotta think about the names that were in the tournament before. I like to think there was no way I was gonna have it. Just like, COVID kinda happened.
The ongoing relationship between IMPACT Wrestling and All Elite Wrestling came up. Gresham stated that he has enjoyed it and would like to see ROH get involved.
That’s really cool man. I was really happy to see that happen because I mean, we’re supposed to be trying to make the fans happy the most, you know? And them doing that, the fans are getting a lot of dream matches hopefully soon. But, as far as Ring of Honor, I’m not sure. I would really like to. I can only just keep my fingers crossed and just hope so man. I don’t know anything that’s happening but I haven’t heard anything. So, I probably won’t until it happens. But, a match that I would want out of that or an impact I would make, I think for the most part just bringing the Ring of Honor style of Pure wrestling to like a big television audience like that, whether it’s with IMPACT or AEW is something I would really enjoy being a part of. So, that’s pretty much the impact. I don’t really have matches or titles or anything but that would be really cool I think.
** While chatting with Tommy Dreamer and David LaGreca on Busted Open Radio, AEW President Tony Khan discussed how pleased he is that AEW has been able to have fans in attendance and there being zero COVID transmissions amongst fans that he is aware of.
Well we’ve done it safely. It’s nothing, it means nothing and it’s all really counterproductive if you’re gonna try and be the first in the past year unless you did it safely. So, we came out and found a safe way to put on shows and we’ve been putting on shows now for eight months for fans with zero known transmissions and I’m really, really proud of that-that we’ve found a way for people to come to these outdoor shows. I came on your guys’ show a few times and equated it to a drive-in movie, where everybody sits outside in their area with their loved ones or their friends and they have to kind of stay in a pod, but you’ve got this huge amount of space, there’s nobody anywhere near you, you don’t have to worry about other fans coming up to you, bothering you or sitting on top of you, space people outdoors. We were told there was 99 percent less risk of transmissions outdoors than indoors. So we’ve been running outdoor shows for about eight months now. With fans coming in, we’ve slowly ramped up to where we’ve gotten over 25 percent capacity and we’ve had not one complaint from a fan ever that they didn’t feel completely safe and like I said, zero known COVID transmissions in this entire time. Fans have been coming into Daily’s Place.
** Episode 81 of AEW Dark:
** Lucha Libre Online conducted an interview with former WWE talent Ho Ho Lun. Ho Ho left WWE in 2017 and returned to China to spend time with his mother who was diagnosed with cancer. Lun’s mother unfortunately passed away the following year but it’s a decision that Lun does not regret making.
I think what you read in the report is quite true. I remember back in about June or July in 2017, I had about a week holiday, so I went back to Hong Kong, you know, see my family and things like that. My mother told me that she actually got cancer. So after discussion with all my family members, I decided to return to Hong Kong and try to spend more time with my mother and very luckily, I spent six, seven months with her in Hong Kong. That’s the last stage of her life which I have no regret at all . At the same time, after coming from the WWE to Asia, career-wise, that’s a lot of media, I draw a lot of attention from the media. I’ve also been able to encourage companies in Vietnam, in Thailand and Philippines. Encourage them, you know, how to run pro wrestling shows, how to run a promotion and also hands-on, fly over there to help them, give them some advice because I already made a lot of mistakes because nobody told me what to do when I first started ten years ago. So, I think this sort of experience, I try to help them to fast track their way to success.
** On the AEW Revolution go-home show of Dynamite, J.J. Dillon accompanied Tully Blanchard and FTR (Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler) to the ring for their match. As Dillon was making his exit to the backstage area, he ran into Tony Schiavone who was about to do an interview and exchanged a few words with Schiavone. Tony then responded, “You don’t get paid extra for that.” During his appearance on the Rasslin’ with Brandon F. Walker podcast, Schiavone stated that he felt bad about that remark.
Yeah it did. It made TV and it made social media big time. Someone made a GIF out of it. I felt bad about that because that was just kind of an adlib line and J.J. .
** The Los Angeles Times covered the news of Bad Bunny going one-on-one with The Miz at WrestleMania 37.
** GIVEMESPORT published an article from their interview with Ember Moon. Moon further spoke about the process of her return to NXT and her conversations with Paul “Triple H” Levesque about confirming the move.
I started just looking and I was like, I don’t know if I fit in on RAW, I don’t know if I fit in on SmackDown – but NXT, that’s someplace I fit in. So I went and I had a meeting and I just told him how I felt. And he was just like, ‘Okay, if this is something you really want to do, F-yeah, I would love to have you back. But we got to see, because we all know that they really love you up there.’
** SunSport caught up with Damian Priest for an exclusive interview and he spoke about his pairing with Bad Bunny. Priest heaped praise onto Bad Bunny and added that he really loves being a part of WWE and the business as a whole.
Bad Bunny’s not doing it because he thinks it’s just a good idea today. He’s said many times that he wants to be a part of this business. He really loves this stuff and it shows. He’s not just there because he got an opportunity to promote an album. He uses a lot of wrestling in his music and he’s done crazy wrestling things – like spitting water onto a basketball court like Triple H and getting in trouble for it.
Priest recalled interacting with Scott Hall at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando. Hall jokingly made fun of Priest for using the “Razor’s Edge” finisher and not getting the individual taking the move high enough.
‘That’s as high as you can get him? That’s it?’ Keith Lee was there and he lost it laughing. He knows how big of a fan I am of Scott’s, so he knew how nervous I was. He thought it was funny that Scott was roasting me – Keith Lee wouldn’t stop roasting me after because of that.
** Drew McIntyre spoke to WFLA News Channel 8 about WWE’s COVID vaccination PSA.
** Teddy Long spoke to Wrestling Inc. for an interview and discussed CazXL (Big Cass’) arrival to SWE Fury in Texas. Long explained his thought process behind giving Caz a chance to rebuild his wrestling career.
Well, I did have a long talk with him, and believe me, he is clear-headed. And what makes me understand Caz very well is because I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. A lot of guys won’t admit it and say it, but we’ve all been there. We all had problems back in the day, but some of us were able to rehabilitate ourselves and to come out of that and to start all over again.
A lot of people don’t have a chance to do that. A lot of people don’t make it. Some people, they just go all the way out to the end and just destroy themselves, but I’m just happy that Caz was able to catch it. He was able to come back, make a name for himself on his comeback, and that’s what we’re going to start doing for him is helping you make that name and be exactly what he’s supposed to be. And with me being there, done that and been part of his struggle, what he’s been through, I can understand. I can sympathize with him. So why not give him an opportunity? Why not give him another chance? I was given an opportunity. I was given another chance. So I just enjoy being able to help guys like that that have fallen along the way. They pick themselves up. Now they need another chance, and if I’m the guy to help him get that other chance, then that’s going to be what I’m gonna do.
** Former WCW World Tag Team Champion Big Vito spoke to Ringsiders Wrestling and during the interview, his start in WWE was discussed. Vito said it was Nunzio who helped him get into the WWE.
Well I know Nunzio from back home. He was in New Jersey, I was in Staten Island so we kind of came up the same way, and we wrestled together in ECW and then when I took off for WCW and then when him, the night we won the Cruiserweight Title and Nunzio finally became champion, I was his right-hand man so, it’s a great thing.
** Bianca Belair was a part of the ‘Fridge Tour’ series hosted by Women’s Health.
** WrestleZone’s Dominic DeAngelo spoke with Doug Williams.
** Big Kon and Vik, formerly known as The Ascension won the Wrestling Atomic Tag Team Championships which are the tag titles of a Florida-based independent promotion.
** The following video is from the UpUpDownDown YouTube channel:
** Chris Bey is competing at Game Changer Wrestling’s ‘Draft Day’ show on May 15th in Clark County, Nevada.
** A clip was uploaded to the Reality of Wrestling YouTube channel of Booker T talking about Bow Wow’s potential career in pro wrestling.
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.