Welcome to the April 9th, 2009 edition of Ask WrestleView! If you don’t see your question answered this week, make sure to check back next week as I will always pull questions from past emails. Just because you sent it in within the last week does not mean it will never appear here on Ask WV.
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All questions were answered by WrestleView’s Chief Historian, Ryan Droste
What ever happened to Rikishi? and why was he released from WWE?
He was released from the WWE in 2004 for a couple of reasons. WWE had wanted him to cut down his weight for a long time, and he had failed to do so. They also just happened to run out of ideas for him and the Rikishi character had run its course. He has since competed in Japan, American independent companies, and TNA in the fall of 2007 as “Junior Fatu.” As recently as this past month, he wrestled for Revolution Lucha Libre.
Why does Teddy Hart, who has such incredible abilities, have such a bad reputation in the wrestling business?
I can’t speak from experience, as I’ve never met Teddy, but it has been said that he has attitude problems. This was given as the reason he was released from the WWE in the past (he had had more than one stint with the company on the developmental level). Hart was actually the youngest person ever signed to a developmental deal by the WWE, when he was signed in 1998. He was released within a year for attitude problems. Hart has also had problems working for Ring of Honor and TNA.
Could you tell me more about the TNA backstage interviewer, Lauren? Had she done something in the wrestling world before, as she looks somewhat familiar?
Her current stint with TNA is her only history working in the wrestling business. She has appeared in commercials before, specifically for TrimSpa. She’s also been in a couple of music videos, Jason Aldean’s “Hicktown” and Sevendust’s “Praise.”
1) Back when I was a kid watching various editions of Wrestlemania, I found the run up to the show so exciting. One of the reasons for this excitement was due to the ‘Countdown to Wrestlemania’, which would run 30 to 60 minutes prior to the show, and feature backstage segments/interviews, whilst the little countdown timer in the corner of the screen told us how long it was until kick- off. timer in the corner told us how many minutes it was until kick off. When did they stop doing this for live PPVs, and why did they stop doing it? It really added a certain epicness to the programmes.
This eventually became what they called the “Free For All” show, which aired for free on the Preview Channel 30 minutes prior to PPVs in the mid 90s. From my memory, that lasted a few years and the Free For All show ended around 1998 when Sunday Night Heat started on USA Network. Sunday Night Heat was then used as a countdown type show on weeks where there were PPVs. Heat would often feature an exclusive match about 10-15 minutes before the PPV would go on the air, live in the very arena the PPV was about to take place in (they did this on the Free For All show as well). This lasted a long time until eventually Heat went off the air a couple years ago and became an internet only show. If you order a PPV now, there still is a pre-show that basically shows all the build-up videos for the matches on the card, but that’s about it. And it’s a prerecorded deal filmed in Stamford, with no live coverage from the arena like the old days.
That’s all for this edition of Ask WrestleView.
As always, don’t forget to check out my personal wrestling blog, Droste’s Double Shot. My 5 part series counting down WrestleMania’s top 50 matches will be completed later today when the 5th edition is published, featuring the ten best matches from WrestleManias XXI-XXV. Make sure to check it out!