Fri News (04/01): Dusty Rhodes Honored At AXXESS, First Entrants For Cruiserweight Series And More!

Yesterday at WWE AXXESS, members of the Rhodes family and friends – Kevin Owens and Triple H among others – revealed the bronze statue of Dusty Rhodes to the world. Below is the official statement and video from WWE:

Dusty Rhodes statue unveiled at WrestleMania Axxess

DALLAS — The late WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes was officially ushered into immortality at WrestleMania Axxess with the unveiling of a bronze, life-size statue of “The American Dream.”

The WWE Universe in attendance at the first night of WrestleMania Axxess, alongside the entire Rhodes family and NXT roster, were the first to witness the statue’s presentation, which drew the raucous adulation of the crowd in Dallas’ Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center.

“I looked to him as a mentor and an inspiration and a creative force behind the scenes. I cannot put into words how much he meant to me and how much he meant to this industry,” said WWE World Heavyweight Champion Triple H, who emceed the presentation after an introduction from Corey Graves and Tom Phillips.

“[He’s] already a Hall of Famer in every way possible,” said The Game of Rhodes, who, along with Triple H, helped to mentor the Superstars and Women of NXT to stardom. “This is just another step to immortality.”

“The American Dream’s” entire family shared the ring with The Game at the time of the statue’s unveiling, which Triple H performed alongside Rhodes’ sons, Dustin and Cody.

“It’s been a tough year for our family,” Dustin said after the unveiling. “Dad was an amazing man, but to us he was just ‘Pops.’ And he was a common man who became ‘The American Dream’ because he had a dream and he captured his dream. I want to say thank you to the fans who supported our father one hundred and ten percent over the years and continue to support Cody and myself.”

“Right now,” he continued, “I can guarantee you Dad is in Heaven getting funky like a monkey with the angels, looking down, very proud of all this.”

Brandi Rhodes, who performs as WWE ring announcer Eden, followed up.

“I only had the opportunity to be one of Dusty’s daughters for about two years,” she said, before thanking the rest of the family for allowing her to share in their moment. “It’s an awesome thing that he was able to be shared with all of us collectively.”

An emotional Cody closed out the proceedings with a pair of stories. One was a fun anecdote about Rhodes’ WWE Hall of Fame induction. (Question: “Who’d you ever beat?” Answer: “Everyone on that stage, baby.”) The second was a more heartfelt one about the elder Rhodes’ time running a promotion and calling up to offer condolences to a performer whose father had passed and made time to ask about what kind of man he’d been.

“Dusty Rhodes was famous for talking but he was a hell of a listener,” said Cody. “If you come to this statue, take a picture. Don’t be shy. Talk to him. Tell him how your day is going. Tell him who you think is going to win at WrestleMania. Tell him everything, because I have to believe that this special group of people that comes to WrestleMania, comes to Axxess, comes to NXT, people that love sports-entertainment, that echoes in heaven and earth.”

As Triple H departed to leave the Rhodes family alongside their father figure’s monument, the strains of Dusty’s theme song, the iconic “Common Man Boogie,” played “The American Dream” off into eternity.

The Rhodes' Family unveils the new statue of "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes

WWE Reveal First Seven Global Cruiserweight Series Competitors

zack-sabre-jr

During a conference media call yesterday, Triple H announced the first seven entrants of the eagerly awaited Global Cruiserweight Series that will be filmed this summer. They are:

Zack Sabre Jr. (PWG/RPW Champion)

Rich Swann (NXT)

Tommaso Ciampa (NXT/PWG)

Noam Dar (ICW/PCW/Progress Wrestling)

Johnny Gargano (EVOLVE Tag Team Champion/NXT)

Ho Ho Lun (MKW)

Akira Tozawa (Dragon Gate)

As I have previously reported ,there will also be qualifying matches from different promotions around the globe to determine more entrants.

Final Card For Tonight’s NXT Takeover: Dallas

Takeover Dallas

NXT Takeover: Dallas is live from the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, tonight at 10EST. Below is the final card for possibly the most awaited Takeover in NXT history:

WWE NXT Title Match
Finn Balor (c) vs. Samoa Joe

NXT Women’s Title Match
Bayley (c) vs. Asuka

NXT Tag Team Title Match
The Revival (Dash and Dawson) (c) vs. American Alpha (Chad Gable and Jason Jordan)

Sami Zayn vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Austin Aries vs. Baron Corbin

Apollo Crews vs. Elias Samson

In case you needed to be hyped up any more than you already are, here is a promo video for Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe 2:

Samoa Joe challenges NXT Champion Finn Bálor at TakeOver: Dallas

In Other News

*There have been reports from a lot of fans in the Dallas area saying that there are posters around the area that feature graphics for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match between Triple H and Roman Reigns as a No Disqualification match.

As of the time of writing, the match is still being advertised by WWE as a normal single fall championship match with no stipulations added. There’s always the possibility that the new stipulation could be announced during the Wrestlemania 32 pre-show or main show.

In addition to seeing posters in Dallas and at Wrestlemania Axxess, there are official t-shirts on sale showing the same stipulation for the championship match:

Tshirt

*Not just the British wrestling scene, but the scene around the world came together yesterday after the passing of one of Britain’s shining stars, Kris Travis.

Kris, 32, had been battling stomach cancer for the last two years and incredibly returned to the ring for Progress Wrestling, at their Chapter 21 event “You Know We Don’t Like To Use The Sit Down Gun”, after having surgery to remove the tumor, followed by 18 weeks of chemotherapy.
 
His return was short lived though as one month after returning he announced his retirement:
“I’m going to put this out there right now….. I won’t ever be wrestling ever again. Gutted yes. But I have to accept this. Lots of love. X”
The outpouring on social media has been heartfelt as you can see by these tweets:

https://twitter.com/JimmyHavoc/status/715530544700723201

https://twitter.com/FightOwensFight/status/715526442231025664

Blogs were written by the promoters of two of the UK’s biggest promotions, Progress Wrestling and Preston City Wrestling. Both can be viewed here and here.

All of us here at TJRWrestling send our heart felt condolences to Kris’s family and friends #ThankYouTravis

 

*As I talked about above, Triple H held a conference media call yesterday. As well as the Cruiserweight series news, he also announced that NXT will be touring the UK once again.

The tour will kick off at this year’s Download music festival on June 12-14, and then travel to Belfast, Dublin, Liverpool, Bournemouth and Plymouth.

I have a few friends that attend the Download festival every year, and last year they saw Progress Wrestling there. this year they will now be seeing NXT. It’s also nice to see that places like Bournemouth and Plymouth will be visited by NXT. They are places that usually don’t get chance to host anything along these lines, and just goes to show that Triple H is following the model he’s using for the States, taking the brand to the less traveled towns and cities.

 

Read Our Stuff

*Mike Holland has been very busy as of late. He is now on entry six of his March to WrestleMania series. This time he looks at one of the most awaited Divas (UGH! Monday can’t come soon enough!) matches in history. The Triple Threat between Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch for the Divas Championship.

*A Matter Of Interest marks the return of Matty J Douglas looking forward to this years WrestleMania. Like the last four years, he grades each match by how much he is anticipating it. I’ve loved the last four editions, and again, I love this one.

 

Last Orders

Well that’s it! The last news update before the “Grand Daddy Of Them All” takes place this Sunday. The near five hour event (if you watch the pre-show) can sap the energy and good will from anyone, and with that in mind I give to you…….The WrestleMania 32 Super Score Board!!

Mania Scorecard

As you can see, the Tag Titles aren’t actually on the line at WrestleMania this year, so I imagine this was made before they removed them from the card, but with that one small “blemish” this could liven up the five hour event and maybe even make you excited for the smaller matches like the five-on-five Divas tag match, if there’s points or even cash involved (TJRWrestling does not take any liability for lost friendships due to the outcome of these scorecards).

I’m hosting my annual WrestleMania party again this Sunday, and there will be about 15-20 of us playing this to get us through the small hours (12am start for us Brits). As long as there’s a happy outcome at the end of the PPV I’ll let you all know on Monday how it went on.

If you are throwing a WrestleMania party, attending one, a sports bar, whatever, feel free to take pictures and send them to us here at TJRWrestling and we’ll show them in a future news update.

Now with that in mind, I’m now off to get ready for NXT Takeover: Dallas. Have an awesome weekend dudes and dudettes! See you on Monday!