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Wrestling Weekly

Ken Kidney is back with a roundup of all this week’s news in the world of wrestling.

On Saturday I travelled to Waterford to film part of my documentary with the Munster based wrestling promotion, Celtic Championship Wrestling. The group had their big SummerBrawl show in debuting in Waterford at The Forum There was a great turn out for the showpiece event which boasted the best talent Ireland has to offer.

I got to see the action first hand and I really liked what I saw. The action was hard-hitting and fast paced and I was thoroughly entertained throughout the impressive card. It’s great family entertainment but also has something for the hardcore wrestling fan and has a very fan friendly atmosphere.

You can check out their shows for yourself on YouTube on their official channel and find out more about them by visiting their official Facebook page or following them on Twitter @CCWrestling1.

I also recently filmed at their wrestling school in Blackpool, Cork and their facilities and training program are second to none. If you are interested in getting into the business in any capacity check out the official CCW Pro Wrestling Academy Facebook page. You can also watch this short promo to see for yourself what the school is all about.

It’s great to see a growing independent wrestling company in the south of the country. The more companies that do well the healthier the will be and hopefully, in time, we will see more Irish wrestlers emulating the success of Sheamus.

Dublin’s own Sheamus will have surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left should which will see the him out of action for 4-6 months. He sustained the injury in the Money in the Bank All Star ladder match last month when he was thrown off the top rope and crashed through a ladder at ringside, landing hard on his left side.  It seems that the injury has only worsened in recent weeks. Sheamus came back full-time after only a couple of weeks off and participated in the WWE’s overseas tour of South Africa.

While on tour, he started to notice that he had a limited range of movement in the left shoulder and was experiencing sharp pains. An MRI confirmed a cartilage tear and the decision was made to have him undergo arthroscopic surgery to repair the damage.

The Celtic Warrior, real name Stephen Farrelly, has been relatively lucky with injuries throughout his career and the op will mark his first major surgery which is unusual for someone who has been wrestling for over a decade.

The first ever Irish-born WWE champion remained light-hearted about the long layoff, tweeting, “Well. @WWE will be a lot less Cetlic for up to half-a-year, me #MITB shoulder is banjacked… No tears. It’s not me drinking arm”. He later added, “Shoulder rehab includes repeatedly lifting a 1lb weight OR 16 fluid ounces. A pint of Guinness is 16oz. An Irish cure @WWEDocSampson?”.

Sheamus has been on the road with WWE constantly for nearly three years now and has been one of their most used performers so I think the rest and recuperation will be good for him in the long run. I also think it will be no harm to give his character a rest as he has been treading water in recent months and was in danger of the viewing audience becoming complacent with his character. I for one would like to see him come back with a brand new persona and character as I find his current one to be a bit stereotypical and one-dimensional. I think we have seen enough of the carefree Irishman who “loves to fight”. I don’t think we will see any major changes which is a pity because adapting and freshening things up is something Sheamus was known for early on in his career and is the key to longevity in WWE.

Staying with the injury trend, John Cena seems to be carrying a pretty serious elbow injury at the moment which could become a cause for concern for both WWE management and the reigning WWE Champion.

Cena acknowledged what appeared to be a severely swollen and injured elbow at Raw this past Monday, even going as far as to show it to the fans in attendance. This was unusual for Cena who usually attempts to gloss over injuries he is carrying and never talks about them openly.

WWE addressed the status of his imminent WWE Title defense against Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam next Sunday.

An  excerpt from a WWE.com article reads, For now, it does not appear that Cena’s title defense is in any danger, nor is his eligibility for SummerSlam. He can and has fought back through worse. As for whether he’s truly at 100% when he puts his title on the line? That, at least, is no longer a given.” The statement seems scripted but does indicate that Cena is not 100%.

Cena himself would deny this but he is, in fact, nowhere near 100% anymore. Add back and hip troubles to name but a few to his ailing elbow and it paints a picture of a man who is not in good shape.

I have addressed this in Wrestling Weekly before and noted that Cena just isn’t willing to take the time off and WWE can’t afford to lose their marquee name due to being so low on big name talent that can draw and attract pay per view buys. I commend Cena for his loyalty to the company and more importantly, to the fans. However, he has been on top for nearly ten years and going non stop for nearly all that period, I just don’t know how much longer he can hold out. Nobody, no matter how well-trained or physically strong can withstand the kind of schedule he endures year after year. For Cena’s sake and their own WWE need to make more viable stars and they needed  to do it yesterday!

In TNA news, DirecTV has dropped the TNA One Night Only PPV’s, beginning with TNA 10, and the satellite will no longer be offering the monthly events. The decision to pull the events entirely indicates the low amount of purchases for the PPV’s, which began back in April of this year.

This is yet another blow to the company that has also been experiencing dwindling live event attendances and stagnant TV ratings. Their viewership has been stuck around the 1 million mark for a long time. TNA has been shedding a lot of talent and personnel recently and are barely coping with the cost of taking Thursday night  Impact on the road every week. Each set of tapings is said to cost between $600-700 thousand dollars, which equates to £17-18 million dollars a year. The cost is enormous due to the need to rent and 18 wheel truck to transport their equipment, gas, travel expenses for a crew of in excess of 150 people, renting an arena and flying the roster in for the show.

The company then relies on ticket and merchandise sales to “break even” which they are far from doing at the current time. Arenas are often half empty and merch sales are nowhere near high enough to cover the sum.

Taking Impact on the road is what the fans wanted and ultimately what they need to do to have any chance of being successful in the long run but combined with the other negative factors, it’s most likely put them in the red financially. Taping at the Impact Zone in Orlando, Florida was economical and convenient but the crowd often made up of the same people every weekly resulting in them becoming overly familiar and complacent with the product. I often watched fans sit on their hands in silence at 5 star matches. This reflects badly on the company and sends the wrong message to the viewing audience.

I don’t think TNA is in danger of going out of business because their TV product is well received internationally and they have a growing number of TV deals overseas that should keep them afloat. It is an interesting topic though as they have tried nearly everything to reach the next level with little success. I might revisit this topic in the future in an article of it’s own because it is an interesting topic and there has been much coverage of TNA’s past mistakes and speculation about the long-term future of the company.

As I mentioned, “big four” pay per view, Summerslam is next week. The card is shaping up nicely with 6 matches announced. I will provide a full preview and review next week but I will say that I am very hopeful this years event. Summerslam events have been very poor in recent years and nowhere near the level that fans had come to expect from the Summer spectacular. Summerslam used to be a treat that every fan circled on their calendar but poor cards and matches in recent years have seen fan interest and consequently, buy rates, decline steadily.

The current line up for the 26th edition of Summerslam looks like this:

WWE Championship

John Cena (c) vs. Daniel Bryan.

World Heavyweight Championship

Alberto Del Rio (c) vs. Christian.

Ring of Fire Match

Kane vs. Bray Wyatt.

CM Punk vs. Brock Lesnar.

Cody Rhodes vs. Damien Sandow.

Dolph Ziggler and Kaitlyn vs. Big E Langston and AJ Lee.

I will be back next week for another edition of Wrestling Weekly and a special Summerslam review. Also, be sure to look out for the second part of Wrestling Rewind mid-week. In the meantime let me know your thoughts about this week’s Wrestling Weekly via the comments section below or send a tweet my way @KenKidney. Be sure to follow Sport is Everything on Twitter @SportsInsiders and like our official Facebook page to be sure that you don’t miss any wrestling news and rumours.

Sport is Everything, Ken Kidney.

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