This is the fourth and final part of our TTR Special article, typed up by one of our podcast hosts, James (@GoofyVillain). For the first 3 parts to this article, click HERE, HERE and HERE.
WWE Summer Tour rolled into the UK in September 2010, with WWE only doing 4 shows over here. One of those happened to be at Butlins Skegness, and considering how much it cost for a 3 day break with a ticket to WWE included in the price, we decided to go. Plus, a holiday was needed, so that was a slight bonus. I wasn’t quite sure how they’d do this, considering it’s a holiday park, but they set up a giant circus tent with the ring and entrance inside.
On this show, we saw: MVP beat Jack Swagger, Kelly Kelly defeated Layla, Dolph Ziggler pinned Finlay, Drew McIntyre beat Cody Rhodes, Alberto Del Rio made Chris Masters submit, CM Punk beat Christian, Kane retained his World Heavyweight Title against Big Show.
Butlins holiday sucked, but this show was pretty good. Again I saw a comedy Divas match, with Layla bringing out a swiss ball (big blue keepfit ball) which was used for Layla to do push ups on…or for Kelly to throw off Layla’s head. Deja vu as I saw Dolph Ziggler vs Finlay again, this time the Show Off picked up the win. Now, following his match, “Dashing” Cody Rhodes came down. First off he picked on the fans, before singing the US national anthem. Jack Swagger came out to join in, being the patriotic guy he is. They then began singing Spice Girls “Wannabe” which was hilarious…and suddenly a voice from backstage said “Did you just say you really really really want a ziga Ziggler?!?”…yes, DOLPH JOINED IN. These 3 then proceeded to butcher the US anthem, while I sat there being the only one loving it to be honest. Drew McIntyre stopped it, and stood up for England…yeah, despite hating England a few months earlier. CM Punk and Christian stole the damn show, putting on a long entertaining match, with close falls, and a bit of comedy thrown in. Also CM Punk cut a cool promo, which someone uploaded to youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i26sRL9WC60
But, the best part about this, is I was sat right next to where the WWE have their audio controls. During the 2nd half of the show, Finlay appeared and come and stood near us, watching the show. I took a sign, and asked him to sign it, which he did. Glad he didn’t open the sign fully, it was in support of the guy he lost to earlier on!! Sadly, some dumbass left the sign in the apartment…so I lost Finlay’s autograph. Bugger. 😦
WWE Raw’s World Tour rolled into England and Birmingham once again on November 6th 2010, stopping at the LG Arena. Thanks to a problem with the arena’s seating, my tickets got changed and I was moved to the 2nd row! I was really looking forward to this match, due to knowing it would be my first chance seeing Daniel Bryan! Also wanted to see Wade Barrett too, as he’d really impressed me during his time in the WWE.
Raw World Tour Results were: R-Truth beat Alex Riley, Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov defeated the Usos, Ezekiel Jackson squashed Zack Ryder, Goldust pinned Ted DiBiase, Daniel Bryan retained the US Title against William Regal, Randy Orton retained the WWE Title against Wade Barrett, Gail Kim and the Bella Twins beat Maryse, Tamina and Alicia Fox, Sheamus pinned John Morrison, John Cena defeated The Miz.
I didn’t see the first match due to people standing around the barrier, and some getting to their seat late. They played the Raw GM beep which caused groans from fans expecting Michael Cole to appear to do his “I have an email from the GM” stuff, thankfully Justin Roberts did the announcement (it was just to say Usos vs Marella/Kozlov would open with a dance contest). When they announced it was time for the US Title match, I was excited knowing it was time for Daniel Bryan…only to then hear William Regal’s theme. Unfair WWE putting 2 of my favourites against each other! ;P But they did put on an excellent back and forth match, Regal tapping to the LeBell Lock. It was great to see them respectfully shake hands afterwards. Wade Barrett got the home fan support…until he praised the city where he is from, causing Birmingham fans to boo him. Though, he did slyly smirk as fans chanted the football chant for England at him. Cena came down midway through to “help” Barrett, but it backfired, and he helped Orton defeat the Nexus leader. Speaking of Cena, he put on a good main event with Miz, as well as a funny promo from Alex Riley who admitted he’s happy to “clean and fold Miz’s underwear” as part of his duties to Miz…
2011 started off with the 3rd TNA Maximum Impact Tour, and this time I went to see it on the 29th January at Wembley Arena. This was being advertised as the “Woooo Tour”, so it was obvious Ric Flair would be a part of it somehow. Jeff Hardy was heel and in the main event scene, while Matt had recently joined…so seeing both added to the card was a bonus.
Again, I had Fan Interaction Tickets for this. All week, I was hoping I’d see Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy, Jeff Jarrett, Ric Flair, Mr Anderson or Rob Van Dam…any combination of those and I’d be happy. Well, as it turns out, they had: The Pope, Ric Flair, Beer Money, Kazarian, Matt and Jeff Hardy and Matt Morgan. It was quite amazing to shake the hand of Ric Flair, especially as it was his hand with the hall of fame ring on. The Hardys were fine, as were Beer Money. Pope remembered me from last year and we had a good chat after the signing. Very respectful, and a down to earth guy too.
Onto the show, the results were: Kazarian retained the X-Division title against Chris Sabin and Shannon Moore, Angelina Love, Mickie James and Matt Morgan beat Tara, Madison Rayne and The Pope, Jeff Jarrett beat Johnny Moss (UK wrestler), Beer Money defeated Magnus and Mark Haskins, Rob Van Dam beat Matt Hardy, Ric Flair made Doug Williams tap, Mr Anderson retained the TNA Title against Jeff Hardy.
I didn’t even see the first match, thanks to 3 drunks in front standing for the majority of the match. Thankfully they sat down in time for the women to appear. Mickie James delivered a crazy leap off the shoulders of Matt Morgan onto The Pope, which just looked awesome, before Earl Hebner was his usually perverted self, kissing Madison Rayne. Jeff Jarrett gave a chance to UK wrestler Johnny Moss, and while he gave it a good go, the King of the Mountain came out on top (after using the guitar)….to the delight of me and me alone. Sorry fellow English fans, but I wasn’t going to go against Jarrett! Mark Haskins looked like a little kid against Beer Money, and didn’t look too impressive. Glad to admit, he’s improved so much since that day. Flair vs Williams was okay, and as usual, Flair bled. The ending seem to come out of nowhere, and felt a surprise seeing Williams tap as quick as he did in the figure four leg lock. Hardy vs Anderson was better than their TV matches, and despite Matt Hardy getting involved, Mr Anderson retained. Well worth the money, and the whole trip to London was a great experience for me personally (went to Wembley Stadium next day for a stadium tour which I loved!).
Back to the LG Arena on 16th April 2011, once more for the Wrestlemania Revenge Tour, this time it was the guys and gals of the Raw Roster. This was shaping up to be a great show, especially seeing them advertise John Cena, The Miz, Sheamus, Daniel Bryan, CM Punk, Randy Orton, John Morrison, Dolph Ziggler and the UK Tour debut of the International Sensation, Sin Cara!
The results that night: Evan Bourne, Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov beat Tyson Kidd and the Usos, Percy Watson pinned Primo, Brie Bella successfully defended the Divas Title against Eve, Sin Cara pinned Alex Riley, Randy Orton beat CM Punk in a street fight, John Morrison defeated Dolph Ziggler, Sheamus retained the US Title against Daniel Bryan, John Cena and The Miz went to a no contest, John Cena and Sin Cara beat The Miz and Alex Riley.
I was a few rows from the front, and during the opening match up, was quite pleased seeing Tyson Kidd stood in the corner I was sat….guessing he had to have heard my big gob yelling for him. Percy Watson vs Primo started in the aisles, no one really had any interest in this, and I don’t think many knew who Watson was. I remember hearing Sin Cara’s theme starting and my Dad telling me “get ready for the ramp spot, get a picture if you can”…to which I replied “Dad, it’s a house show…they won’t use the ramp here!!”. 10 seconds later, Sin Cara hits the ramp and leaps over the top rope. He did botch once or twice during his match. Before the interval, R-Truth and Melina came out for a dance contest with fans. They picked four people, and a group of fans near me started chanting “pick one more”…R-Truth said he couldn’t, and they kept chanting…he seemed to get easily pissed off at the fans for this. Deja vu as I saw Morrison vs Ziggler once more, but this match lasted longer, had more cool spots…same result though with a JoMo win. Sheamus and Daniel Bryan fought, and hey, it lasted longer than 18 seconds! It was a stiff, bruising competition with no punches pulled. Was great to see, even if Bryan lost. Meanwhile, The Miz put on a great performance as a heel for the main event. He really worked the crowd, and got them on his back. He also did a People’s Elbow attempt, which backfired. It was entertaining, and the crowd really seemed into the majority of the matches, which was great to hear.
Here’s a choice selection of photos from those events.
Photos include: WWE Summer Tour 2010 – Layla vs Kelly Kelly, Dolph Ziggler, Dolph, Cody Rhodes and Jack Swagger singing, CM Punk vs Christian, Kane vs Big Show. WWE World Tour 2010 – Daniel Bryan vs William Regal, Wade Barrett, Randy Orton, The Miz, The Miz vs John Cena. TNA UK Tour 2011 – Mickie James and Matt Morgan, Jeff Jarrett vs Johnny Moss, Beer Money, Ric Flair vs Doug Williams, Jeff Hardy vs Mr Anderson. WWE 2011 – Dolph Ziggler, John Morrison, Sheamus, Sheamus vs Daniel Bryan, The Miz.
Regular readers of The Top Rope’s articles on here will know, back in January 2012, I was lucky enough to go to the Manchester Evening News Arena to see TNA’s 4th Maximum Impact Tour. There’s no need for me to repeat my thoughts about that show, so I will just re-direct you with the link. Click HERE to read it.
Since that show, I’ve booked up once more for TNA’s UK Tour, and I’ll be heading back to the Manchester Evening News Arena on January 25th 2013 for my 5th consecutive TNA Tour. As well as that, I’ve quite recently booked up for the upcoming WWE UK Tour too. We’re quite fortunate here in Birmingham to have not 1, but 2 shows as the WWE brings the Raw and Smackdown TV Tapings to the LG Arena. On the 5th November 2012, I’ll be 7 rows from the front, near the ramp for WWE Raw Supershow. The following night, the 6th November 2012, I’ll be 5 rows back, behind the announce table to see the Smackdown TV Tapings. I’m very lucky with this, although it’s cost a lot of money for these tickets!!
I’d once again like to thank violentshadows for the encouragement to do these last 4 articles, Ray for allowing this all to be told and put out on WrestlingRambles, Simon and Lee for allowing me to hijack our weekly blog to do this, and everyone who has read the articles and commented. It’s been appreciated very much!
@GoofyVillain of @TheTopRope