That’s A Wrap #31

That's a Wrap
By: David Stephens of

Ousta! Welcome back to the only WrestleView column covering topics both nowhere yet everywhere at once. If you are new to the column you are probably going to hate us for the first couple weeks, but then you are going to hit a point where you say ?oh wait a minute, I think he gets it?. Don?t worry, that’s exactly how it is designed to be. This column is all about gut reactions and traveling thoughts. As the great Andy Kaufman once said: ?I just want real reactions. I want people to laugh from the gut, be sad from the gut, or get angry from the gut?.

Wrestling is gay?

Tying perfectly into a column topic from a couple weeks back, it seems that ?The Village Voice? is proclaiming what few would dare in the industry, wrestling IS gay. Yes, allow me to reproduce the article from WrestleView’s main page:

In its annual “Best of New York City” issue, The Village Voice has given Ring of Honor Wrestling the “Best Place to Watch Straight Me Get All Homoerotic” award reports PWInsider.

Believe it or not, the actual caption reads:

“The legions of black-T-shirt-, black-jeans-clad wrestling fans in this world might take offense to what we’re about to say, but here goes: Wrestling is gay. That’s not an epithet (like we’d ever . . . ). It just is, literally, gay. When a man in ball-outlining shiny undies wraps his crotch around another man’s head, flexes his muscles, and grunts, the activity has more to do with porn than sports. It’s hard to believe how straight the audience can be, but there you have it. World Wrestling Entertainment is that giant conglomerate you probably caught on TV at one time or another, but for even better theatrics in a more up-close-and-personal setting, try to scout out one of Ring of Honor’s New York dates. Usually playing the intimate Manhattan Center, this indie league hosts a variety of highly toned men basically taking part in stage combat?or auditioning for a Michael Lucas film, we’re not sure. If the gay community ever catches wind, wrestling is going to be as popular with the homos as the WNBA.”

Now first of all let me just say, that’s absolutely hilarious. Nothing like taking a long standing joke and giving it a semi-legitimate award. On the other hand, they kind of have a point. This is eerily reminiscent of the feature in ?That’s a Wrap #30? in which my openly gay colleague Jared and I had the following exchange:

David: I can?t help but remember the scene in ?Kayfabe: The Movie? in which a reporter asks the locker room about the homo-erotic themes in the sport. The guys sheepishly look around and then adamantly deny any such possibility. Stemming from that thought, it is kind of amazing when you realize the miracle of what pro-wrestling has accomplished. Straight fans like myself tend to gloss over the overt details, but they are clearly there.

Jared: Ha, I know exactly what you mean. Let me clue in your heterosexual mind. In a standard match you have two guys squaring off against each other in an enclosed ring. They are wearing very little clothing, most in tights that make Speedos look modest. Their bodies are shaved, waxed, and coated in baby oil. The objective of a standard match is to pin your opponent to the mat for three seconds or force him to submit. It doesn?t get much more blatant than that!

Personally, I still see all the gay references as more tongue in cheek than anything else. In many ways it becomes obvious that the bulk of such citations come from those that don?t actively watch the sport. I was able to get in touch with Jared today and he relayed the following:

?The truth is that the ?gay? implications are nothing more than crude jokes. Look you know that I haven?t been anything but candid about my personal sexuality. That being said, I don?t actually think there is anything ?homosexual? about professional wrestling. In fact, the miraculous ability the sport has of treading the line between scantily clad oiled up men and 100% machismo is astounding. I think the South Park episode last night did a fantastic job of showing that the real questioning shouldn?t be for the free expression of the WWE but maybe the uncomfortable nature of amateur wrestling??

Fair enough, Jared. Fair enough.

What’s in the News?
All news is gathered from unless otherwise noted

Jason Powell of is reporting that TNA Wrestling has opted to execute the rollover clause in Kevin Nash’s contract last week and the initial word is that he has signed a new deal with the company. However, one source close to Nash feels the company rolled over his current deal for a second year.
-so either way, Kevin Nash will be sticking around for another year

According to My Fox Memphis, WWE Hall of Famer Jerry “The King” Lawler received 4,044 votes (4%) in the Memphis mayoral race losing out to A C Wharton, Jr. who received 65,491 votes (60%).
-you?d think with his popularity he?d garner a few more votes. It’s obvious now why nobody considered him a serious contender

Nick “Hogan” Bollea is currently training at Rikishi’s pro wrestling school in Burbank, CA reports The Wrestling Observer Newsletter. This is one of the reasons why Rikishi is believed to be apart of the upcoming “Hulkamania” tour of Australia next month. We haven’t been made aware of much regarding Nick’s training and how well it is going so far.
-This might come as a surprise, but I?m actually going to refrain from comment and wait to see what happens down the line

According to a new report by The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, the big push of Drew McIntyre on WWE’s Smackdown brand was largely inspired by Triple H and Shawn Michaels. Both are said to be huge backers of McIntyre and feel he has the potential to be a wrestler the company can build around in the future. McIntyre has already been compared as an Irish version of Triple H back in 1995 in that they have similar height, physique, hair and around the same ability at this stage in his career. There is also reportedly said to be some resentment towards McIntyre’s push on TV among some talent that have been there for around five years who have been told they will be elevated if they bring up their work level. While this could easily be hearsay, one WWE source indicated that as far as things go on the Raw brand that unless you get the personal stamp of approval from Triple H, Shawn Michaels, John Cena or Randy Orton, the feeling is you won’t get past a certain level.
-don?t you just love backstage gossip? This could be completely true, false or half and half but we?ll eat it up either way

In the latest involving the auction of the original NWA World Heavyweight Championship belt, PWInsider is reporting that Highspots may not have actually had the right to sell the belt in the first place. It turns out Flair didn’t technically own the championship belt as a newly uncovered document is now indicating that the belt was previously used as collateral as part of a financial issue between Flair and North Carolina corporation Conbraco. Flair filed a secured loan on August 26, 2008 with the corporation and prevented him from selling it off without settling the debt he had with the company. Conbraco recently approached Highspots to inform them that they would legally pursue any money raised from the sale of the belt. Highspots has removed the listing from its website.
-what better way to hang on to something than using it as collateral in multiple deals!

Backstage at the Bound for Glory PPV was former WWE star Paul London.
-As were his good friend Brian Kendrick and idol Rob Van Dam. I?m going to go out on a limb and say that the three of them probably had a great night!

The upcoming WWE Jeff Hardy DVD titled “My Life, My Rules” is still scheduled for a December 15, 2009 release reports PWInsider.
-no surprise, it will probably be a big holiday seller

TNA’s current group of champions, represents it’s youngest collection of champions in recent history. They also feature all “true” TNA originals, no WWE rejects. Not to mention a lot of fresh faces make up this list. This is AJ Styles first run with the World Title since 2005, like wise this Amazing Red’s first X-Title since way back in 2003, while this is the British Invasions first ever TNA tag title reign. Eric Young was never officially recognized as an X-division champion, so this technically his first singles run as a champ, and lastly the women’s division features talent which first reached stardom in TNA as well.

With this in mind, TNA truly appears to be putting focus and new direction on it’s young, home grown stars. Plus current pushes with Morgan, Hernandez, Homicide, World Elite etc, and the apparent departure of Booker T and possibly Steiner and a reduced roll of Sting all seem to point in a new fresh direction for TNA.

Also as of right now, there are no TNA title holders whom have held the titles for longer then a month. The oldest reign is from September 20th.
-lots of thanks to the WrestleView reader that sent that information. I was at first surprised and then optimistic. Yeah I said it, I?m optimistic about TNA

According to a report by, the word at Sunday’s TNA Bound For Glory PPV was that TNA would not be renewing Booker T’s contract when it expires in November. There was said to be talk that TNA President Dixie Carter would have a change of heart if Booker said the right things, but every indication right now is that he sealed his fate when he refused to job to Matt Morgan at the last set of Impact TV tapings. Creative booked the stretcher angle at the PPV to get him out of the match. Were told there was lots of eye rolling backstage over the way he acted as he was being stretchered out. One TNA source even added, “He’s been such an asshole that most people were just happy to see him go.” The belief is that WWE has interest in bringing Booker back to the company once he is contractually available.
-eh, he should focus on his school and such I have no real desire to see him back in the WWE. That’s just a personal opinion though is reporting that former ROH star and newly signed TNA talent Nigel McGuiness (who will now go by the name of Desmond Wolf) was not offered a deal from WWE after he failed a prescreening test from the company. As a result, WWE pulled their verbal offer and never offered him an official contract.

McGuinness had been telling people at the tapings yesterday that WWE simply took too long to offer him a deal, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. Were told this was not a situation where McGuinness failed a drug test and that it was more of a medically related test that caused WWE to pull the offer. It remains unknown at this time if he shared this information with TNA management as TNA does not have a prescreening process.
-word to the wise, if you rehab your twice screwed up bicep instead of recommend surgery it may hurt you down the line in more ways than one

One of the main reasons NASCAR drivers Kyle Busch and Joey Logano are hosting next week’s October 26 WWE Raw in Buffalo, NY is because WWE is sponsoring Busch’s car, while Logano’s car will be sponsored by the “Smackdown vs. Raw 2010” video game reports The Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
-you gotta love playing into wrestling stereotypes! (See this weeks? fantastic episode of South Park in which they lampooned the WWE for further reference)

RAW 10/12 ? 3.4
ECW 10/13 ? 1.0
Superstars 10/15 ? 0.9
iMpact 10/15 ? 0.94
Smackdown 10/2 ? 2.2

WWE Stock Update
Week Ending October 9th 2009
Open ? 13.59
High ? 14.18
Low ? 13.51
Close ? 13.65
Volume ? 591,544

Quick Results

RAW October 12th
-Unified Tag Team Champion Big Show def. Unified Tag Team Champion Chris Jericho by Count-out
-Jillian Hall def. Divas Champion Mickie James
-Melina def. Divas Champion Jillian Hall
-Cody Rhodes def. Ted DiBiase and John Cena in a Triple Threat Match
-Jack Swagger def. MVP
-Kofi Kingston def. Evan Bourne
-Kelly Kelly, Gail Kim & Maria Menounos def. Beth Phoenix, Alicia Fox & Rosa Mendes
-Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes def. WWE Champion Randy Orton & John Cena

ECW October 13th
-Ezekiel Jackson def. Goldust
-Paul Burchill def. The Hurricane
-ECW Champion Christian & Yoshi Tatsu def. William Regal & Zack Ryder

Superstars October 15th
-CM Punk def. Intercontinental Champion John Morrison by disqualification
-Vladimir Kozlov def. Tommy Dreamer
-Mark Henry def. Chris Masters to qualify for Team Raw

TNA Impact October 15th
-6-Knockout Tag Team Match: The Beautiful People (Velvet Sky, Madison Rayne, & Lacey Von Erich) def. Tara, Awesome Kong, & ODB w/Raisha Saeed
-TNA X-Division Championship: Amazing Red (c) w/Don West vs. Suicide NO CONTEST
-Gauntlet Match: Hernandez def. British Invasion (Doug Williams, Brutus Magnus, & Rob Terry)
-?Fallen Angel? Christopher Daniels def. ?The Pope? D?Angelo Dinero
-Falls Count Anywhere Match: Hamada def. ?Future Legend? Alissa Flash
-Stretcher Match: ?The Boss? Bobby Lashley def. ?War Machine? Rhino
-AJ Styles def. Kurt Angle

Smackdown October 16th
-Dolph Ziggler def. Finlay and Mike Knox (Triple Threat WWE Bragging Rights Qualifying Match)
-Cryme Tyme def. The Hart Dynasty (Tag Team WWE Bragging Rights Qualifying Match)
-Eric Escobar def. Matt Hardy (WWE Bragging Rights Qualifying Match)
-Drew McIntyre def. R-Truth by Count-out (WWE Bragging Rights Qualifying Match)
-Rey Mysterio def. Batista

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So ?that’s a wrap??. Love it? Hate it? Disagree with everything I said? Just want to chat wrestling? I?m always up for reading your thoughts so send them ?em on over.

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David Stephens

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