Daniel Bryan to have neck surgery, return time not known

Daniel Bryan informs the crowd of his injury Image credit: WWE.com

WWE World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan announced on RAW that he is to have surgery on his neck on Thursday 15 May.

Due to the surgery, Bryan will be out of action for a short amount of time. As of now, WWE have not stripped him of the title.

The timing of this injury could not have been worse for Bryan, having finally won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania 30 last month.

Daniel Bryan has been fighting against the WWE machine for almost a year now and just as he conquers The Authority, this injury threatens to knock him back a few steps.

Fortunately it does not seem that the WWE will strip Bryan of the title due to the short term nature of the injury.

WWE pay tribute to Connor The Crusher

WWE have released a touching tribute video honouring Connor Michalek, a 7-year-old WWE fan who has died of cancer.

During the final year of his life Connor met WWE World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan and even got to go to WrestleMania.

Connor seems to have left a fantastic impression on WWE stars like Daniel Bryan, AJ Lee and Dave Batista.

The video is a touching, emotional tribute to a young boy who demonstrated a lot of courage and hope even with a life threatening disease.

Rest In Peace, Connor.

 

Hulk Hogan announces Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal but it is Daniel Bryan who steals the show

Hulk Hogan WWE

Image credit: WWE.com

Hulk Hogan’s teased announcement on RAW was that at WrestleMania 30 there will be an Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.

30 men will compete in the Battle Royal, which is named after the larger than life legend, and the winner will receive the Andre the Giant Memorial Trophy.

So far Big E and Ryback have confirmed their entry into the Battle Royal, with John Cena teasing a possible entry if he gets through his match with Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania.

It remains to be seen if the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal will become a WrestleMania tradition that can elevate new or young talent, but the inaugural event will certainly be interesting.

The Undertaker’s promised announcement was merely an obligatory “Rest In Peace” promo for Brock Lesnar delivered via Paul Heyman. Heyman discussed how iconic Taker’s streak was and Undertaker followed that with a few words on the fear of death being worse than death itself. Nothing as shocking as speculated yesterday.

Elsewhere on RAW, Daniel Bryan stole the show with not one but two huge moments. Firstly, he began #OccupyRAW, where he entered the ring, along with what looked like hundreds of fans all in their YES Movement gear to occupy the ring and force Triple H into accepting a match against Bryan at WrestleMania. This scene was something special, with all the fans in YES uniform chanting in unison along with their hero Daniel Bryan.

Daniel Bryan YES movement

Image credit: WWE.com

Triple H eventually caved and accepted a match with Bryan, but Bryan pushed further and added a stipulation to that match; if Bryan beats Triple H, he is added to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match at WrestleMania along with Randy Orton and Batista.

Bryan then went on to pin Randy Orton in the tag team main event of RAW when Bryan teamed with Big Show to face Orton and Batista.

Finally, it seemed like everything the fans have been asking and wishing for over the past number of months had come true on RAW. Not only does Bryan get the chance to have a special match with Triple H at WrestleMania 30, he also gets his chance to become the champion again on the same night.

After months of getting screwed, it finally seems like WrestleMania will be Daniel Bryan’s crowning moment.

WrestleMania 30 announcements coming from Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker tonight

Undertaker WWE

Image credit: WWE.com

WWE have announced that both Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker will be making announcements regarding WrestleMania 30 tonight on RAW.

Hogan’s announcement was promoted last week on RAW, but The Undertaker’s announcement has been revealed in the new Raw Five-Point Preview on WWE.com.

Undertaker’s announcement could be that he will inducting Paul Bearer into the WWE Hall of Fame the night before WrestleMania 30 but given how little Taker breaks character, this seems unlikely.

What is more likely is that The Undertaker will announce that the match at WrestleMania 30 will be his last. Undertaker (real name Mark Calaway) is 48-years-old and currently has an extremely light schedule due to nagging injuries and pains in his body after such a lengthy wrestling career.

Hogan’s announcement, on the other hand, is anyone’s guess. Since Hulk Hogan is hosting RAW the announcement could be anything from certain guest stars set to appear at the show to a new match being added to the card.

Come back to Pro Wrestling Is Fake tomorrow to find out what the announcements are.

NXT ArRIVAL announces the stars of NXT to the WWE Network

Cesaro and Sami Zayn embrace as a sign of respect. Image credit: WWE.com

NXT ArRIVAL took place last night as the first ever live-streamed show on the newly launched WWE Network.

Being the first ever live-streamed show on the Network, the show didn’t go without any troubles, but the show itself announced the wrestlers on the card to every WWE Network subscriber.

Headlining the show was Cesao vs Sami Zayn IV, Bo Dallas (c) vs Adrian Neville for the NXT Championship and Paige (c) vs Emma for the NXT Women’s Championship.

Cesaro vs Sami Zayn IV kicked off the show and did not disappoint. Both men put in stellar performances with Cesaro continuing to show his skillset that sees him as one of the top stars in the WWE at the minute. Sami Zayn, an NXT favourite, might have been unknown to many of the WWE Network subscribers watching, but not for long. Zayn, with the fans firmly behind him, gave Cesaro a run for his money and showed how versatile of a wrestler he is but fell just short. Expect to see Zayn on the main roster soon.

Paige vs Emma was kicked off by Stephanie McMahon, signifying how important WWE see these two Divas from NXT. Paige is a very different Diva to the Divas you see on WWE TV every week and backed up her unique look with some unique moves rarely seen from WWE wrestlers, never mind Divas. These two had a very good match that put all of the Divas matches on WWE TV to shame and showed the fans that Emma is more than just a comedic sidekick for Santino Marella. Paige retained the title.

The last of the three big matches on the NXT ArRIVAL card was Bo Dallas vs Adrian Neville for the NXT Championship in a ladder match. As good as Bo Dallas and Adrian Neville are, this match was always going to have a hard time living up to the ridiculously high standards set at the outset by Cesao and Zayn. This is not to say that this match was bad by any stretch of the imagination; Neville’s high-flying and Bo Dallas’ cunning character traits meant this match was equal parts interesting and action packed. Adrian Neville defeated Bo Dallas to become the new NXT Champion after delivering his spectacular finisher, the Red Arrow.

Elsewhere, Mojo Rawley defeated CJ Paker, the NXT Tag Team Champions defeated Attitude Era favourites Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty and Grandmaster Sexay) and Alexander Rusev attacked Tyler Breeze and Xavier Woods, dominating the two wrestlers that were scheduled for a match.

NXT ArRIVAL was just the start of NXT on the WWE Network. While a lot of fans have been watching NXT for a while, there is doubt that more people now have access to it through the WWE Network. The Network should give NXT the attention it deserves and a continued place for the stars of tomorrow to practice their craft before being called up to the main roster.

Check out videos from NXT ArRIVAL here.

Elimination Chamber, WWE Network, Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker return. Analysing a very busy few days in the WWE.

The Undertaker strides to the ring, glaring at Brock Lesnar. Image credit: WWE.com

What a few days it has been in the WWE. First the Elimination Chamber, which provided a number of big talking points, then the long-awaited WWE Network launched and then WWE bought back the legendary Hulk Hogan and the iconic Undertaker on RAW. Time to analyse all of the big talking points from the last two days.

Elimination Chamber: The Shield and The Wyatt Family tear it up

Wow. What a match we were treated to on Sunday night at the Elimination Chamber PPV. The anticipation and expectation had reached a fever pitch, even before the match had begun. After both teams made their respective entrances and engaged in a pre-match stand-off, the fans began chanting “this is awesome” before the match had even started.

Once the match started though we were treated to a fantastic match. Each individual character shone brightly at different stages in the match; Ambrose’s volatility boiled over in a pre-match brawl, Rollins’ high flying athleticism was showcased in a great spot with Luke Harper and Reigns’ power and strength was demonstrated throughout. As for The Wyatt Family; Rowan provided the craziness, Harper showed a degree of athleticism never seen before from The Wyatts and Bray Wyatt, the leader of the cult, showed that he is not just a character; he can wrestle, too.

The match was a brilliant clash of two brilliant teams and with the crowd duelling with themselves chanting each team’s name, the match had a fantastic atmosphere to boot.

The Shield face off against The Wyatt Family. Image credit: WWE.com

Elimination Chamber: Daniel Bryan screwed again

Elsewhere at the Elimination Chamber PPV, Daniel Bryan had the match won before Kane interjected, distracting Bryan and allowing Randy Orton to RKO Bryan for the win. This left the fans smarting and booing the finish, but really there was no other outcome. Randy Orton was always going to retain and go on to the WrestleMania title match against Batista. However, that did not soften the blow. Bryan had been screwed over again, a theme that has been running since SummerSlam last year. Orton vs Batista remains the main event of WrestleMania 30 while Daniel Bryan looks elsewhere for challenges.

The WWE Network

At 9am EST on Monday the WWE Network finally launched. At $9.99 a month and with a one week free trial you get to watch all of the PPVs WWE produces in the year, as well as a massive on-demand library of past WWE, WCW and ECW shows, live, original programming and weekly WWE TV Shows. The only catch is it is currently only available in The United States of America.

I did find success in using a friend’s American address to sign up for the free trial, though, and I found the content available very exciting. As a wrestling fan there is so much content for you to sink your teeth into that it actually becomes a task in itself simply deciding what to watch. The on-demand content streamed fine and in good quality on both a laptop and an iPad, but the live content was unavailable to watch from the UK. The WWE have since blocked all UK users using this method to access the Network, but with the live programming an issue anyway, it may be worth holding off on the Network until it officially launches in the UK and other territories later this year and early next year. If you do want to access the WWE Network, you can subscribe to a DNS-changing service and it does work that way. 

What the WWE Network does is changes the dynamic of how wrestling is provided to fans. Currently, WWE’s TV shows will take a while to be able to watch on-demand on the Network, because of the current TV deals the WWE has in place. Even so, the sheer amount of content available, with more being added as time goes on, is mind-blowing. There’s WCW, ECW and WWE content spanning years and there is something for everyone to watch. It really is a game-changer.

Hulk Hogan is all smiles on RAW. Image credit: WWE.com

Hulk Hogan and The Undertaker return on RAW

With the WWE Network out to the masses, Monday Night RAW was always going to be huge in terms of turning viewers into subscribers. Enter Hulk Hogan, who returned to the WWE after a long hiatus and a stint in TNA. Hogan opened the show to a huge ovation, and provided all the classic Hogan-isms that the fans wanted to see, brother. Hogan plugged the WWE Network, and reminded everyone that he will be the host of WrestleMania 30 and then went on his way.

Later in the night, Brock Lesnar was in the ring with a contract for a WrestleMania match. Then, all of a sudden, the famous gong went off and The Deadman returned. The Undertaker has been missing from WWE since a brutal beatdown from The Shield last year, and as it is WrestleMania season, it was time for The Undertaker to return. Taker strode to the ring, pointed at the WrestleMania sign, signed the contract for a match with Brock Lesnar and then proceeded to chokeslam Lesnar through a table. Drama, excitement and a very simple way to announce a WrestleMania 30 match.

WrestleMania 30 begins to take shape

So Hogan has returned and announced he will be the host of WrestleMania 30. The Undertaker has returned to challenge Brock Lesnar. Daniel Bryan, as I mentioned earlier, is looking for a challenge. On RAW, Bryan challenged Triple H to a match at Wrestlemania, which The Game shrugged off and disrespectfully declined; don’t let that fool you though. Bryan vs Triple H will surely happen at WrestleMania as it will give Daniel Bryan the chance to finally get back at the authority figure that has been holding him down and screwing him over for months. It should provide a good WrestleMania moment for Daniel Bryan, even if it’s not the title win that the fans have been clamouring for for months.

WrestleMania 30 will take place on Sunday, April 6th at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy trailer featuring Batista

The first trailer for the Guardians of the Galaxy is here, starring WWE superstar Batista as Drax the Destroyer.

I know Batista returned to boost WrestleMania XXX, but I have no doubt that starring in a big Marvel movie helped.

The trailer comes via a world premiere on The Jimmy Kimmel Show. Guardians of the Galaxy will be released on 1 August 2014.

Lita to be inducted into WWE Hall of Fame

Image credit: WWE.com

Attitude Era favourite and one of the greatest WWE Divas of all time, Lita, will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame class of 2014.

The announcement was made on Monday Night RAW with the following induction video:

A blog post was also put up on Lita’s official website which you can read here.

Lita tweeted the following after the announcement was made on RAW:

Lita is one of my all time favourite Divas as her unique arsenal of moves and attitude made her stand out during the Attitude Era. Alongside Matt and Jeff Hardy, she constantly revolutionised WWE and was involved in fantstic storylines during her career, especially the Edge and Matt Hardy love triangle.

Watch current WWE Divas talk about Lita in this episode of Backstage Fallout:

The WWE Hall of Fame 2014 induction ceremony takes place on Saturday April 5, the day before WrestleMania 30.

CM Punk leaves WWE

Image credit: WWE.com

WWE superstar CM Punk has left WWE, following a meeting with WWE officials at RAW this Monday.

CM Punk reportedly told Vince McMahon and other WWE officials that he was going home and not coming back, possibly due to WWE’s plans for him at WrestleMania where he was due to face Triple H. Punk is under contract with WWE until July.

In a recent interview with Ariel Helwani, CM Punk noted that he does not know what he’s going to do yet [regarding his contract] and he seemed to express a lack of enthusiasm for the gruelling schedule of WWE.

TMZ says that Punk was “livid” after learning Batista was set to win the Royal Rumble match because he feels Batista is not in great wrestling shape.

Punk tweeted this on Monday, just before he would have told WWE officials he was leaving.

After Punk notified Vince McMahon of the change, RAW re-writes began, but details are conflicting at this time. PWInsider notes that one of their sources claimed Punk was due to wrestle Antonio Cesaro and lose via interference from Kane, who Punk is currently feuding with.

With Punk gone and seemingly not coming back, WWE are now changing plans for WrestleMania and are instead said to be going with Daniel Bryan vs Triple H at WrestleMania.

As ever with professional wrestling, this could all be a big work, so keep an eye on Pro Wrestling Is Fake for updates.

Sources: ProWrestlingNetPWInsider, TMZ.

WWE Royal Rumble: Batista wins but the fans are left wanting Daniel Bryan

Image credit: WWE.com

Batista made his return to the WWE a successful one when he won the Royal Rumble match last night.

Batista entered at #28 and went on to win the match by eliminating Roman Reigns, who put in a stellar performance himself.

But Reigns’ dominance is another story for another time. Sure Batista won, but the real story here though was the fans’ desire to see Daniel Bryan not only enter the Royal Rumble match but to win it, setting up a WrestleMania match. Bryan, who competed earlier in the night against Bray Wyatt (a match which featured some fantastic back and forth wrestling and a great story,) did not enter the Royal Rumble match. This left the fans in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania livid as they booed entrant #30, Rey Mysterio simply for not being Daniel Bryan.

The fans had been chanting for Bryan throughout the night, even in the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match which saw Randy Orton retain his title, beating John Cena. But the final straw for the thousands of Daniel Bryan supporters was the fact that he wasn’t even entered into the Rumble match when commentator JBL, retired Kevin Nash and even El Torito, a Lucha Libre bull, all found themselves in the match.

WWE Hall of Famer, Mick Foley, expressed his dislike for the finish on Twitter in a scathing tweet he sent out minutes after seeing Batista have his hand raised.

After the event had concluded, Batista was pictured giving a fan the finger on his way backstage, as well as mocking the Daniel Bryan ‘YES’ chants that had echoed throughout the arena all night long.