This Week in ‘E – WWE v. TNA, part 237

Jeff Hardy still hasn’t re-signed with company, while Nick Dinsmore has. Plus SummeSlam gains AXXESS and the company looks to battle TNA at Comic-con.

Opening Witty Banter
I’ve got nothing exciting for you this week. I drank to much this weekend, got some sun in and may have a lock on a new job. So things are looking up for yours truly.

Let’s take some ‘E…

The News of the Week
Jeff Hardy’s current contract expires in three weeks and he still hasn’t come to terms on a new deal with the company. Naturally WWE is trying to persuade him to at least work SummerSlam but he apparently still intends to leave for an undetermined length of time in order to rest. John Laurinaitis has booked the August house shows without him, completing the shows with a battle royal, where the winner would challenge CM Punk for the World Title in the main event.

Hardy is so incredibly valuable to WWE right that I can only imagine the money and perks they will throw at him in order for him to stick around. I honestly don’t see Hardy running back to TNA either, Hardy genuinely seems like a guy who just wants some time off to prevent burn-out. He has been on such a roll lately on SmackDown that I would hate to see him leave as well, but a guy has to do what makes him happy.

WWE sent out the following press release this past wee, announcing WWE SummerSlam AXXESS:

STAMFORD, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–World Wrestling Entertainment® today announced that in addition to SummerSlam® airing on pay-per-view Sunday, August 23rd live from the Staples Center, WWE will hold SummerSlam AXXESS, presented by The Army National Guard, in the Nokia Plaza at LA Live the weekend of August 22nd. The two-day extravaganza will give thousands of fans an unprecedented chance to interact with their favorite WWE Superstars and Divas, witness live WWE action in an official WWE ring, and immerse themselves first-hand in WWE culture.

SummerSlam AXXESS will provide fans the opportunity to get autographs of their favorite Superstars and Divas, create their own Superstar entrance with a keepsake DVD, and participate in several WWE interactive experiences. Additionally, fans can partake in Pepsi Max’s interactive backyard, and the Army National Guard’s simulated games.

The first session of SummerSlam AXXESS will be held Saturday, August 22nd from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM, followed by a second session from 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM. SummerSlam AXXESS continues on Sunday, August 23rd from 12:00 Noon – 4:00 PM. Tickets are $15 per session and available through Ticketmaster by calling 1-800-745-3000 or through www.wwe.com. Tickets will also be available at the Staples Center box office that weekend.

I love that WWE is finally instituting AXXESS for SummerSlam as well. In a crowded pay per view market SummerSlam has kind of lost some of its luster and an AXXESS event will remind fans will that SummerSlam is one of the company’s flagship events, a tentpole card rivaled only WrestleMania and the Royal Rumble.

Speaking of the crowded pay per view market, WWE is apparently still struggling to properly brand their pay per views as the event formerly known as Cyber Sunday was briefly changed to Annihilation only to be changed back to Cyber Sunday. Now it looks as the event will be titled Bragging Rights.

Am I the only one who liked the Cyber Sunday concept? At least it stood out as something different in the crowded pay per view schedule.

Nick Dinsmore has been re-signed by the company. It is currently unknown whether he will be an on-air performer once again or if he will be used in merely a trainer capacity.

I always liked Dinsmore and I hope that he will be used on the air as player/coach, but please don’t make him be Eugene again. He deserves a run in the company without the stupid gimmicks.

Jillian Hall has been off of WWE TV due to illness. She will be cleared to return very soon.

I was wondering what happened to Jillian. I was afraid she had simply been benched for some reason. Her singing schtick is great comedy and definitely sets herself apart from the other Divas on the RAW brand.

TNA Wrestling and WWE both run in Orlando on December 20 as TNA will have a PPV at the Impact Zone, while WWE has a SmackDown/ECW at the Amway Arena that night. The reason behind the WWE show is that they are taping in advance to give talent time off during the Christmas week. They will be taping RAW in Tampa on December 21.

And speaking of TNA and WWE competition, both groups will be apart of this year’s San Diego Comic Con. WWE Legends “Million $ Man” Ted DiBiase, The Honky Tonk Man, Bushwacker Luke, and Virgil are all scheduled to appear. On Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, they are scheduled from 11AM to 3PN, while on Sunday, they are scheduled from 11AM to 2PM. Meanwhile TNA will be sponsoring the “Wrath Of Con” party at the Hard Rock Cafe on July 24th. TNA will be set up a ring and hold matches.

Will Abyss bring balloons and cookies this time too?

The Road to…Night of Champions
World Heavyweight Championship
CM Punk (c) v. Jeff Hardy

WWE Championship
Randy Orton (c) v. John Cena v. Triple H

ECW Championship
Tommy Dreamer (c) v. Christian

Intercontinental Championship
Rey Mysterio (c) v. Dolph Ziggler

WWE Unified Tag Team Championships
Chris Jericho (c) & a mystery partner v. Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes

WWE Divas Championship
Mickie James v. Maryse (c)

rumored matches:
Kofi Kingston v. The Big Show
Melina v. Michelle McCool

Wrestler of the Week
Week of July 13 – 19: Dolph Ziggler
Nobody made more of an impact for their career this past week than Dolph Ziggler. On Superstars he solidified his mid-car position by securing a pay per view Title match for the upcoming pay per view and then on SmackDown he teamed with Chris Jericho in the show’s main event against Jeff Hardy and Rey Mysterio, where he more than held his own. It’s hard to believe that this was the same guy who was a golf caddy and a cheerleader before becoming a one-note joke that didn’t look like he would make it three months. Now thanks to this new push on SmackDown and his ability to step it up on the mic and in the ring, the company has found themselves a solid mid-card heel that can only go up from here.

RAW’s On Tonight!
Tonight RAW’s superstar summer of fun continues as Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill of ZZ Top will be on hand to guest host the flagship live in Raleigh, North Carolina. No matches have been set so far but expect Legacy to some how come into contact with the rockers. Plus Kofi Kingston still needs an opponent for this Sunday’s Night of Champions, so expect that to be rectified as well. All that plus perhaps some honest-to-goodness wrestling matches in between the fun.

On Last Week’s Episode…
Brian Eison has SmackDown covered.

Eison and Marshall provide complete coverage of Superstars.

Innarelli and Bones double cover ECW.

Marshall and Kirschner recap RAW.

How They Rated
Superstars (7.9.09) – .8

SmackDown! (7.10.09) – 1.7

A.M. RAW (7.12.09) –.6

RAW (7.13.09) – 3.5

ECW (7.14.09) – 1.3

This is Boring, What Else is There to Read?
Wheeler continues his fantastic running coverage of RAW.

Wiswell has a fantastic recap of wXw’s 2009 16 Carat Tournament.

For more relevant, interesting and exciting wrestling information from your truly, check out my gig as the Pro Wrestling Examiner over at Examiner.com

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