See that shirt? Antonio Cesaro! Love it. That's what CM Punk wore at the WrestleMania press conference on Thursday. You can tell that he's showing support for his friend that is the US Champion and that is off the WrestleMania card for some strange reason.
Hello my friends. I'm filling in for Andrew Johnson, who usually has Friday Headlines duty, but he can't do it because he's in the New Jersey/New York area for WrestleMania weekend. I'm actually taking over Monday Headlines starting next week too for the departed Jacob Lindsey, so you'll be getting a lot of me this weekend. Hopefully we don't get sick of eachother huh?
CM Punk Interview with ESPN.com Talking WrestleMania 29
The aforementioned CM Punk spoke with ESPN.com's Jon Robinson about WrestleMania. Here are some interesting excerpts from that. I'll use italics for their parts and then throw in some comments immediately after.
The Rock took your title and broke one of the most historic championship streaks in years, then is too busy to attend every Raw leading into WrestleMania. Do you think it’s bad for the company when the champion isn’t even on the show?
I do, yeah, but it’s not my company, so that’s where we are with that. [laughs]
He's got a point. And I'm a huge Rock supporter. I don't know if Rock needed to win the title in the first place, but I'm sure WWE's viewpoint is that it's a way to get it onto John Cena. At least they can go back to Cena vs. Punk for the title with the idea that they've had classic matches and they could have more of them down the road.
Paul Heyman is acting as an advisor to both you and Brock Lesnar. Are we ever going to see you guys join forces in a tag team?
I’d love to. That’s actually something we’re discussing, yes.
As somebody that's a huge fan of Punk, Lesnar & Heyman that's something I'd love to see. That Punk/Lesnar duo would be outstanding together. It's not like they have to team for a long time. It could be one or two matches depending on Lesnar's part-time schedule.
Looking at the WrestleMania 29 card, when the show is over, what do you think people are going to leave MetLife Stadium talking about the most?
My match. I’m out to prove people wrong again. I don’t think it’s a secret that I wanted to be in the main event at WrestleMania and I don’t think it’s a secret that people are like, “But you’re in one of the main events, you’re wrestling The Undertaker.” But I’m not one for consolation prizes. I’m out to steal the show, and I’m out to do the improbable. If I’m able to do that, that remains to be seen, but we’ll find out.
He's never been short on confidence and I love that about him. Hopefully in the next year or two he'll be in the actual WrestleMania event because this year Cena vs. Rock is going on last again. Punk deserves it as much as anybody, though.
Your match against John Cena on Raw a few weeks ago was one of the best matches I’ve seen this past year. I like how he busted out the hurricanranna and you busted out the piledriver … it made the match feel special with these big moves. Can we expect something similar against The Undertaker?
Absolutely, especially with me. [laughs] You never know what I’m going to do.
Isn’t the piledriver a banned move? Did you get in trouble for doing it on Raw?
I sure did.
How did the move get banned? It’s something that has been in wrestling for years.
It has a bad history of injuries and accidents, so it’s better safe than sorry. It’s really sort of not worth it, but I wanted to show that I was really trying to win that damn match.
Funny how doing a move that is banned ended up working in your favor and giving the match a more epic feeling.
Funny how that works out sometimes.
I think that is Punk's way of saying that even though the move was banned, it made the match better. And he's absolutely right. I understand not using a piledriver as a regular move. However, I think it's okay once in a while as long as the performers trust eachother to do it right.
I posted most of the interview, but if you want to read the rest of it you can head to ESPN.com right here.
IN OTHER NEWS
- Speaking of CM Punk, he doesn't tweet much anymore, which is a shame because he's awesome. Despite the lack of tweeting in general, he did reveal a nice piece of news regarding WrestleMania.
It's great to know that we'll get a live performance of Cult of Personality during Sunday's event. It should be a memorable
I'm sure that Living Colour is sitting somewhere thanking CM Punk for this because I really doubt that they were getting a lot of high paying gigs these days.
I'm also sure that Tone Loc is sitting hoping somebody chooses Funky Cold Medina as their theme song. I would if I was a wrestler, Tone Loc. Trust me.
- To kick off WrestleMania weekend, WWE held a press conference at Radio City Music Hall in New York City with a lot of the big names in attendance. I watched it while editing the WrestleMania preview yesterday, but there wasn't a lot said that was exciting. Here's a cool pic courtesy of WWE.com.
That's the Great Khali on the left. I want to see of him walking up there. I'm easily amused that way.
You can read about the press conference on WWE.com.
- New WWE Hall of Famer Trish Stratus spoke to Diva-Dirt.com about her Hall of Fame induction this weekend. Here's where she talked about picking her Hall of Fame inductor Stephanie McMahon-Levesque.
"Getting a nod to be in the WWE Hall of Fame, it's a look back at your career and at the end of the day, there would have been no career, no opportunity, no revamping of the women's division if Stephanie wasn't behind it all. When we feuded, there's something about when you have an experience with someone that you bond with them. When we had our feud, we bonded then and we remained close ever since. She's just always supportive of showcasing a strong, powerful woman. There would be no division and none of the women would have gotten the push that we needed, or the encouragement we needed.
"She and I have remained friends. I've watched her evolve into a businesswoman. We were at the same level — green workers having fun wrestling and then she really just got behind the scenes and became a businesswoman. It's very empowering to see the position she has now. I retired and went into the business world and with all my endeavors, it's a tough world for a woman. I admire her greatly and respect her greatly."
Honestly I was surprised it wasn't Lita. Even if Trish wanted Lita to do it, WWE could have told her it was going to be Stephanie and there wasn't anything Trish could say about it because they run the company. Trish and Stephanie did have that entertaining match at No Way Out 2001 that surprised me with how good it was. It's just that the Trish/Lita rivalry is a bigger deal. In the end it doesn't really matter, I guess.
I regret not writing a Trish Stratus career column before her Hall of Fame induction at WrestleMania. I guess I could still do it after WrestleMania. It would be 95% photos, by the way.
- The Honky Tonk Man revealed on his Facebook page that he's back in WWE. Or at least he will have some association with WWE:
"I am honored to be back with the WWE and am very excited to be teaming up with WWE again for some more Shake, Rattle and Roll. HTM"
That probably means a Legends deal that a lot of former talents have signed. I've never been a huge fan of Honky Tonk Man, to be honest. Good for him, though. He's old and should try to cash in while he can.
- This has nothing to do with WrestleMania. This is about Daniel Bryan being awesome because that's what he is. It's a video of Bryan when he was doing commentary on Saturday Morning Slam. What was the subject? Bears!
Honestly that’s one of the funniest things I've seen on a WWE show in a very long time. That man is great!
- Meanwhile in TNA…
We will be hiding tix to tomorrow night's NY show & @tnadixie signed action figures! 1st stop... LaGuardia in the morning. Details coming!— IMPACT WRESTLING (@IMPACTWRESTLING) April 5, 2013
They're giving away the action figure of the owner of the company because she's delusional enough to think people want her action figure. For what exactly? I don't know. And you wonder why their company is where it is. Well I don't. But you might.
Final WrestleMania plugs
Sunday is the big show. All week I've been be writing and/or talking about this show. So here are all the links in case you missed them.
Here's my column that has 29 Questions & Answers about WrestleMania.
On Tuesday night I was on MMASucka.com radio with my buddy Trevor Dueck talking about WrestleMania. Skip to the 39 minute mark to hear my part.
On Wednesday I was on TALKSPORT Radio in the UK talking to Joe Amphlett. It's a 15 minute chat where we talk about WrestleMania and other happenings in the wrestling business.
Also on Wednesday I joined John Corrie of Status Radio to preview WrestleMania. We also spent a good portion of the interview talking about my favorite baseball team the Toronto Blue Jays because I'm a man of many interests.
Finally, I wrote a WrestleMania preview along with TJRWrestling's Andrew Johnson & Christian Michael. It was a lot of fun to write as always. All my picks are there. I don't expect to go 100% with the picks, but I think most of them are going to be right.
That's all from me. I'll see you again Sunday night at 6pmET for the live coverage of WrestleMania 29 right here on TJRWrestling.com. Or you can read it after the show. It's up to you! Until then I may try to avoid anything wrestling related because WM29 and Raw the next night are going to be busy nights for this guy.
I'm looking forward to Sunday, though. It only comes once a year. I always try to enjoy it.
Now, somebody hit my music!