R.I.P. Andrew â€œTestâ€ Martin
Opening Witty Banter
While writing this I am watching the roast of Larry the Cable Guy and it is much, much funnier than I anticipated. Also I have gotten into Danny McBrideâ€™s â€œEastbound and Downâ€ on HBO and on the show Will Ferrell does a killer Ric Flair imitation as BMW car salesman Ashley Schaffer, right down to the blonde mullet and â€œWooo!â€ See, everyone wants to be like Ric Flair.
Letâ€™s take some â€˜Eâ€¦
The News of the Week
More sad news came out of the wrestling world this week as Andrew â€œTestâ€ Martin, 33, was found dead in his apartment in Tampa, Florida on Friday evening. It was confirmed by Tampa, Florida, TV station WTSP that it was indeed Martin, and that he died on Friday. A neighbor who said that she could see into his apartment and that he appeared motionless for several hours called police. An autopsy will of course be conducted, but at this time police do not suspect foul play.
Despite announcing his retirement from pro wrestling in December 2007 he continued to work sparingly. He did some wrestling recently in Japan, and was scheduled to work in Europe, leaving this coming week, according to Mike Johnson at PWInsider.
Johnson also reported that Martin had been dating World Wrestling Entertainmentâ€™s Kelly Kelly, but broke up about 6-8 weeks ago.
Originally born in Whitby, Ontario Canada, Martin was discovered randomly by then-top WWF star Bret Hart in a restaurant. Hart offered to train Martin (who was a legit 6â€™6 and 300 lbs at the time) for the business and break him in. Martin trained for eight months under Hart and Leo Burke in Calgary.
At the time of his death Martin was only four days from his 34th birthday. Wrestling fans have already leaving numerous messages on Martinâ€™s MySpace, as well as Kelly Kellyâ€™s.
Martin worked for WWE from January 1999 until November 2004. He returned to WWE from March 2006 until February 2007. He made a few appearances in TNA Wrestling in August 2007 but disappeared shortly thereafter.
I would like personally express my condolences to the friends and family of Andrew Martin in this time of distress.
On March 9, wwe.com announced that Kizarny has been released. Kizarny was a journeyman who has been wrestling since 2000 and signed with WWE in 2007. He was called up from the developmental leagues in October 2008, but didnâ€™t actually get into the ring until January 2009. Unfortunately management wasnâ€™t impressed with him once he actually stepped in the ring and his initial momentum was stalled almost immediately.
Kizarnyâ€™s last blog on the WWE Universe (which has already been removed by WWE) was about his plan to get WWE boss Vince McMahon to dress as Doink the Clown so they could go after the Tag Team Championships.
Was he just acting for his release with a comment like that?
Shortly after RAW went off the air last week the cat came out of the bag in regards to the Triple H-Randy Orton house brawl. Turns out they werenâ€™t actually in St. Louis, that house wasnâ€™t actually Ortonâ€™s, the whole thing was taped the night before in Florida and that wasnâ€™t Ortonâ€™s real wife. It was some Playboy Playmate named Lara Croft. The cops that arrested Triple H were a couple developmental guys named Mike Hutter and Matt Walsh.
I actually believed that everything was on the legit while watching it. I believed Orton would have a nice house like that and figured his wife really was that hot and vapid. And everyone already stole all the good â€œTomb Raiderâ€ jokes days before I got a hold of it.
WWE has started work on a Jimmy Snuka DVD, which as of now will be titled â€œSuperfly: The Jimmy Snuka Story.â€
Well aside from the witty title for the DVD it could be a good pick-up.
In other DVD news this week, Jim Ross let the cat out of the bag in one of his blogs about how the company is working on a â€œRise and Fall of WCWâ€ DVD, complete with extensive biography portion.
Seriously to do that disc justice the biography portion itself needs to be at least three hours long like the ECW one was. Speaking of that, thereâ€™s a DVD I havenâ€™t watched in a long time. Might to have pop that in sometime when Iâ€™m lying around recovering from a hangover.
The Road toâ€¦WrestleMania XXV
Triple H (c) v. Randy Orton
World Heavyweight Championship
John Cena v. The Big Show v. Edge (c)
Undertaker v. Shawn Michaels
Jeff Hardy v. Matt Hardy
Money in the Bank V
CM Punk v. Kane v. Mark Henry v. MVP v. Shelton Benjamin v. Kofi Kingston v. Christian v. Finlay
25 Diva Battle Royal
Maryse, Melina, Michelle McCool, Nikki & Brie Bella, Maria, Eve Torres, Kelly Kelly, Mickie James, Beth Phoenix, Rosa Mendes, Layla, Alicia Fox, Natalya Neidhart, Katie Lea Burchill
(rumored participants: Sunny, Jackie Gayda-Haas, Torrie Wilson, Wendi Richter, Mae Young, Trish Stratus)
Tag Title Unification Match
Carlito & Primo Colon v. The Miz & John Morrison
Evan Bourne v. Jack Swagger (c)
JBL v. Rey Mysterio or Vladimir Kozlov
Rey Mysterio or The Great Khali v. Vladimir Kozlov
Chris Jericho v. â€œa legendâ€
Class of 2009 Hall of Fame
Stone Cold Steve Austin
Terry Funk & Dory Funk, Jr. (inducted by Dusty Rhodes)
Ricky â€œThe Dragonâ€ Steamboat (inducted by Ric Flair)
â€œCowboyâ€ Bill Watts (inducted by Jim Ross)
â€The Birdmanâ€ Koko B. Ware (inducted by Honky Tonk Man)
Wrestler of the Week
Week of March 9 â€“ 15: JBL
JBL continued on his run as â€œThe Wrestling Godâ€ this past week by winning the Intercontinental Championship, one of the few titles that has eluded him in his WWE career. With his Intercontinental Title win he joins the elite Grand Slam club populated by other top stars like Shawn Michaels, Rob Van Dam and Chris Jericho. He, like Van Dam and Jericho, also held the Hardcore Championship. Add in a US Title reign and Bradshaw has become one of the most decorated superstars in WWE history. Not bad for olâ€™ â€œBlackjack.â€ Now with the possibility of actually giving us an Intercontinental Title match at WrestleMania JBL continues to overshoot his coverage, by a long ways.
RAWâ€™s On Tonight!
RAW will be main evented by Shawn Michaels and Undertaker taking on JBL and Vladimir Kozlov, because we canâ€™t have a face versus face match at WrestleMania without the two guys having to team and then fall apart just weeks before the show. Hell, this is the third year in a row that is happened with Michaels alone. Iâ€™m more intrigued by their opponents. Is this going to be the catalyst to turn Bradshaw in a flag-waving babyface in his last months as an in-ring performer as he fights a dirty Commie on the grandest stage of them all? Plus Chris Jericho is challenging Ric Flair to come out of retirement to fight him. I think this is the definition of what the pro wrestling industry calls a â€œbait and switch.â€ Plus with Koko B. Ware being announced as a Hall of Fame inductee, fans wait with baited breathe on this weekâ€™s induction. My money is on Iron Mike Sharpe.
ECW (battle royals rule!)
How They Rated
SmackDown! (3.6.09) â€“ 2.0
A.M. RAW (3.8.09) â€“ .75
RAW (3.9.09) â€“ 3.65
ECW (3.10.09) â€“ 1.34
This is Boring, What Else is There to Read?
Wiswell gives a preview of the Ring of Honor shows that are already over, but itâ€™s still a good read.
Marshall covers TNAâ€™s recent fortunes, including striking a deal to make their content available on XBOX, PS3 and a whole assortment of other new fangled media devices.
For more relevant, interesting and exciting wrestling information from your truly, check out my gig as the Pro Wrestling Examiner over at Examiner.com.