Monday, June 15, 2009

A few missed notes from last week, + RAW

This weekend was quite busy so while I got to watch SD etc. I didn't get much of a chance to post, or check up on the offscreen news of the pro wrestling world. So imagine my surprise when I found out yesterday evening that Mitsuharu Misawa, a Japanese wrestling legend, died during a match in Hiroshima.

My condolences go to Misawa's family, friends and coworkers - while it's almost become an accepted occurence in wrestling that there's a certain mortality rate, it's never pleasant as fans to hear and I'm sure it's only less fun for the men and women involved in the sport, and their loved ones. Especially when such a thing occurs in-ring, as a reminder that while 'fake', this sport is indeed a dangerous one and the risks everyone takes in the ring are real.

On another unfortunate, although less mordid and permanent, I also hadn't realized until yesterday that Umaga, formerly aka Jamal, had been released from the WWE earlier this week. Too bad - I hadn't been a big fan when he started out but he grew on me and by the end I was enjoying him very much - he was out a few months injured, and I was hoping his return against CM Punk etc. was going to be the start of a new push. Whether this is related to personal choices made by Umaga (perhaps HE was the major name supposedly out on an unannounced Wellness break?), or simply a parting of the ways, I do wish him the best in his future endeavours - one of the better 'big men' style wrestlers to come out of the woodwork in awhile.

Tonight was a major Raw as well. We'll discuss this in more detail Wednesday, but as this is supposed to be a blog as well as simply the dumping ground of my ITVR podcasts, a bit of a recap: the highlight of the night was by far the announcement that Vince McMahon had 'sold' the Raw brand to Donald Trump. His announcement that he'd sold the brand was intriguing and caught my attention; however, I have to admit upon learning it had been sold to Trump, I was less interested (although I'm more a 'wait and see' type than some and we'll see what Trumps involvement in the weeks ahead turns out to be). It has potential, but less so than if it were one of the McMahon kids, or Ric Flair, or someone who'd been in and around the business with a significant history with McMahon (although Vince DOES have some history with Trump, Trump at the end of the day has his own work and holdings to go back to).

Otherwise the big stories of the night would be Randy Orton's winning the vacated WWE Title in a Fatal Four Way, and two major announcements by new Raw owner Trump: 1. that next week's Raw would be commercial-free, and that Triple H, who had just won the right to face Orton for the belt at The Bash in two weeks (! - but more on that on Wednesday), wouldn't have to wait for the PPV but would get a shot next week. The other brands were also featured on Raw, particularly in world title matches; however, both champions in those cases retained.

Again, a great show that Ari and I will be discussing in much more detail Wednesday evening - along with the 'every 3 week' pay per view trend that seems to be flaring up again despite WWE cutting back on PPVs in the last 1-2 years (although we'll be going 4-5 weeks until Night of Champions and then the same to Summerslam so I suppose that's some comfort to the wrestling fan's wallet). Be sure and tune in then for all the action! Be well.


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