This is going to be the start of a weekly look at some of the wrestling news stories that have come out in recent days. It could include any sort of news or rumors from the wrestling world and what my take is on those stories. I will avoid writing about outright spoilers, however. If there's a grey-area, I'll be sure to let you guys know at the beginning in case you don't want to read it.
** The first bit of news is that WWE officially announced the locations for two 2015 pay-per-views. The Royal Rumble will be held in Philadelphia, at the Wells Fargo center. This had been rumored for quite a while, since late spring. The bigger news to come from that announcement is that the main event will be the Royal Rumble, which will include 40 wrestlers. This is only the second time that it's had that many, with 2011 being the other. This is likely being done so they can include more of the NXT roster.
** WWE also announced is that SummerSlam will be held at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. During this year's SummerSlam, WWE announced that next year's event would be held in the New York-New Jersey market. While several venues had been discussed, the WWE decided to play it safe at hold it at the IZOD Center. At different points, they were discussing possibly having it at a stadium, either MetLife Stadium (home of the Giants and Jets, which heosted WrestleMania 29) or Red Bull Arena, the MLS stadium. It seemed to be a sign that the WWE really wanted to start promoting SummerSlam as an event almost on-par with WrestleMania. While that didn't happen this time, it will be interesting to see if they think about an outdoor venue again next year.
** WWE released ring announcer Justin Roberts after RAW on Monday. I think this is going to be a bigger loss than some are making it out to be. Justin Roberts was a guy whose value was bigger to the live shows than necessarily came across on TV. His enthusiasm always shone through in every spot he was part of, whether it was introducing Cena for the main event or simply reading off signs during a commercial break. A true fan of wrestling, you could tell he truly enjoyed his job, which made the announcement that the WWE wouldn't renew his contract a sad one. As to who will take that role now, it seems likely that Lillian Garcia and Eden will split the RAW-Smackdown duties. However, don't be surprised if recent hire Arda Ocal (now known as Kyle Edwards in the WWE) finds his way into the mix.
** WWE announced that they will start putting limited commercials on the Network. Based on the email they sent all Network subscribers, commercials will be shown between shows on the continuous streamand will be included at the beginning of on-demand shows. This seemed like an obvious move for the company, one I was a bit surprised they hadn't taken before. As long as the commercials don't become intrusive (by say, putting a commercial in the middle of an on-demand pay-per-view), I don't think this will affect anyone's enjoyment of the Network.
** PWInsider reported that the WWE had reached out to Kurt Angle now that his contract with TNA has expired. The report stated that Angle declined the offer because they only wanted him if he would wrestle a full-time schedule. Dave Meltzer refuted this claim, saying that the WWE would never want Angle to wrestle a full-time slate.
I tend to believe Meltzer in this situation. The whole reason that Angle left WWE in the first place was because they were worried about his workload and wanted him to get help for his body. He's still been going at a tough pace in TNA and has needed more surgeries in the past few years. And it's hard to imagine that Vince McMahon or the other powers that be in the WWE would have such a huge change of heart that they'd only want him in a full-time role.
However, if even part of this rumor is true, it is notable that the WWE would be looking to bring back Angle in some role, though unsurprising. Even throughout his TNA run, Angle had been extremely complimentary of the WWE and openly talked about wrestling another match with the company. It would not surprise me if he comes back in some fashion, whether it's for one last short-term run, or a schedule similar to Rob Van Dam's.
** Finally, a report came out that Daniel Bryan's recovery continues to go slower than expected. It had seemed for a while that he would likely return for the Royal Rumble, but that no longer seems to be the case. However, he is still expected to return in time for WrestleMania.
As this injury lingers, though, the question about Daniel Bryan's career has to come into play. One has to wonder if his career is going to end up like Mick Foley's, where he reaches the pinnacle and then a year later he is forced to retire because all his previous wrestling has taken its toll. It's still premature to say that to sure, but it's certainly disheartening the longer he's forced to stay out of action.
Questions? Thoughts? Leave them below or find me on Twitter: @TheAOster