Welcome back TJR readers! Did you spend all day Friday getting as many Cameo calls from WWE superstars as you could and missed Smackdown? Perhaps you spent all day Monday deleting your search history after Googleing “All Out” and “Full Gear”, causing you to miss RAW. Worry not, for I have returned with another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week to catch you up.
10. WWE Releases Gerald Brisco
One of the longest-tenured employees for WWE was let go this week. WWE Hall of Famer Gerald Brisco was released after 36 years with the company. Brisco was one of many employees that were put on 90-day furlough back in April. This week, however, Brisco was made aware that he is no longer needed with the company. The almost 74-year-old Brisco has served many roles with the company including, wrestler, agent, recruiter and of course, on-screen “stooge” for Vince McMahon. It is unknown what is next for Brisco, although with such a long tenure with WWE, Tony Khan will likely try to bring him in and make him a champion. (TJRWrestling)
Ok, want to get this out the right way. Last night I received a call from @wwe Chairman Of The board @VinceMcMahon to let me know after 36 years of dedication to @wwe i an no longer needed. I’m ok withthis. I will still be around to help talent. More info will follow. Thanks
— Gerald BRISCO 🤼♂️ (@Fgbrisco) September 10, 2020
9. AOP Released From WWE
WWE’s already diminished Tag Team Division is down another team. WWE came to terms on the release of AOP (Akam and Rezar) this week. The former Raw and NXT Tag Team Champions have not been seen on television since March when Rezar suffered a Torn Triceps. One could spend hours trying to figure out the logic behind releasing a promising Tag Team when your tag division is already suffering, but it is probably best to just use the Occam’s Razor method. (TJRWrestling)
8. Matt Hardy Injured at All Out
This past Saturday, Matt Hardy and Sammy Guevara competed in a Broken Rules Match at All Out, with the stipulation being that Hardy would have to retire if he lost. Early in the match, Hardy and Guevara went on a raised scissor lift, with Guevara spearing Hardy off of it. Two tables were below them, but Guevara and Hardy missed the first completely with Hardy landing hard on the concrete. The match was stopped, and a doctor evaluated a clearly out of it Hardy. Right when it looked like the match was going to end right there however, the doctor cleared Hardy and the match continued. The match only went for a few more minutes before Guevara was thrown off some scaffolding and Hardy was declared the winner. Hardy was taken to the hospital after the match, and stayed overnight for observation. Hardy being allowed to continue wrestling received a lot of criticism, including from Matt’s wife Reby who tweeted the following.
Let me be absolutely fucking clear.
There is NOTHING entertaining about a concussion. Shame on everyone in that goddamn building. pic.twitter.com/ujdOU9Z60I
— Reby Hardy (@RebyHardy) September 6, 2020
Hardy did appear on Dynamite this week, stating that when he is cleared, he wants to get back to wrestling matches and try to win his first AEW title. Hopefully before Hardy decides to come back, he will
concuss discuss it with his wife first. (TJRWrestling)
7. Bayley Attacks Sasha Banks
The partnership between Bayley and Sasha Banks is no more. After Banks and Bayley lost their WWE Women’s Championship rematch against Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler on Smackdown, Bayley suddenly attacked Banks. Bayley attacked the already injured knee of Banks, while also using a chair around Banks’ neck. This attack led to Banks leaving the arena in an ambulance. I personally believe that this may have been the most shocking moment of all of 2020. I mean, someone left in an ambulance during a Nia Jax match, and Jax was no way Involved! (TJRWrestling)
6. Retribution Finally Speaks
Retribution finally broke their silence on Monday Night RAW this week. Towards the end of a match between The Riot Squad and Nia Jax, lights started going out and the LED rows of virtual fans in the ThunderDome disappeared. A white Retribution symbol then appeared on the LED boards before Retribution appeared on the Titantron and began to speak. Two members speaking in disguised voices stated that the “This ThunderDome is only a facade. Behind this mountain of screens is the same foundation, the same WWE as before.” They stated that they have been mistreated and discarded by the WWE, promising to “lay waste to every WWE superstar and fan.” Once hearing that the group is made up of people who are disgruntled with the WWE, the identities of Retribution were able to be narrowed down to anybody who has ever been on Chris Jericho’s Podcast. (TJRWrestling)
5. Jey Uso to Face Roman Reigns at Clash of the Champions
Cousins are set to collide at WWE Clash of Champions on September 27th. Big E was scheduled to compete in a Fatal 4-way Number One Contenders Match for the WWE Universal Championship on Smackdown. Sheamus brutally attacked Big E earlier in the night, however, removing him from the match. With the help of his cousin Roman Reigns campaigning for him, Jey Uso was chosen to replace Big E in the match. Uso ended up winning the match, and will now go on to face Reigns for the Universal Championship at Clash of Champions. Some would argue that Jey hasn’t earned this opportunity, as this was his first singles match win on television since 2018. Jey was able to drive to the arena without incident, however, so that should be worth something. (TJRWrestling)
4. WWE Tells Employees to Stop Using Names and Likenesses for Third Party Platforms
WWE Superstars are going to have one less revenue stream very shortly. An edict from the WWE came out this week stating that WWE employees are no longer allowed to use their names and likenesses for third party platforms. This means that WWE employees who use sites like Cameo or Twitch to make extra money, will have to discontinue those practices in the next 30 days. This, of course, upset a number of WWE Superstars, past and present, and even got the attention of former Presidential candidate Andrew Yang who tweeted the following:
If I’m not the Secretary of Labor I’m pretty confident I’ll have his or her number to talk about the ridiculous classification of WWE wrestlers as independent contractors while controlling their name and likeness for years, even for something as benign as Cameo.
— Andrew Yang🧢⬆️🇺🇸 (@AndrewYang) September 5, 2020
Classifying professional wrestlers as independent contractors has been a controversial topic for many years, with John Oliver recently bringing it to light during a segment on his show. I, for one, do not see why everyone is so upset; although they may not be able to use Cameo or Twitch they can still use MySpace and Tout. (TJRWrestling)
3. Miro Debuts for AEW
Rusev Day was held this past Wednesday on AEW Dynamite. Former WWE Superstar Rusev, now wrestling under the name Miro, debuted for AEW this week. After being revealed as the Best Man for the upcoming Kip Sabian and Penelope Ford wedding, Miro gave a passionate promo in the ring. Miro stated that he was finally free after spending ten years “under the same house, under the same glass ceiling with an imaginary brass ring.” Miro then stated that his former employer can “take that brass ring and shove it up your ass.” Hopefully for Sabian’s sake, Miro does not give his wedding ring a similar treatment. (TJRWrestling)
2. New AEW Tag Team Champions Crowned
New Champions were crowned this past Saturday at AEW All Out. FTR were able to defeat Kenny Omega and Adam Page to become the new AEW Tag Team Champions. After losing a hard-fought match that went almost thirty minutes, Omega chose to leave the arena alone, leaving his partner in the ring. On the following Dynamite, Omega stated that he was done wrestling in the tag division, planning on now focusing on a singles career. It is unknown if this will mean that Omega will now try to get hired and then subsequently fired by WWE so he can finally get an AEW Heavyweight title shot. (TJRWrestling)
— Uncle Dax FTR (@DaxFTR) September 10, 2020
1. Finn Bálor Wins the NXT Heavyweight Championship
It took two weeks, but NXT finally has a new Heavyweight Champion. Last week on NXT Super Tuesday Night One, Finn Bálor and Adam Cole ended up in a 2-2 tie last week in the Fatal 4-Way Iron Match to crown a new champion. Cole and Bálor broke the tie this week at the beginning of NXT Super Tuesday Night Two. Finn Bálor ended up getting the win, becoming now a two-time NXT Heavyweight Champion. For the sake of America, let’s hope that the next Super Tuesday can be settled in one night, and with a little less violence. (TJRWresting)
That will conclude another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week. As always, if you like what I do, please follow me on Facebook and Twitter @BackseatBookers and listen to my podcast The BackseatBookers. (Please be aware that it is explicit as I drop more F-bombs than Reby Hardy did watching her husband wrestle at All Out.)