Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the WWE Universe.
Stephanie McMahon Comments on AEW
WWE has largely avoided mentioning All Elite Wrestling since its inception in January, but WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon commented on the upstart company Friday.
When asked about AEW in an interview with WrestlingNews.co, McMahon offered a positive outlook:
"You know, I think it's going to force everybody to be the best that they can," McMahon said.
AEW's debut pay-per-view, Double or Nothing, was heralded as a major success last month, and there is a great deal of excitement surrounding the All Out pay-per-view on Aug. 31, which will see AEW crown its first world champion and will also feature Jon Moxley vs. Kenny Omega.
With AEW set to debut a weekly television show on TNT later this year, AEW may be WWE's biggest competition since the closure of WCW in 2001.
The Attitude Era is considered by many to be the best time in wrestling, and the catalyst for it was the weekly competition between WWE and WCW, which later became known as the Monday Night War.
WCW beat WWE in the ratings for 83 weeks until WWE pulled ahead and eventually bought the company. AEW hasn't even debuted its weekly programming yet, but there is plenty of hope that it can push WWE to strive to be better, which would make the wrestling landscape as a whole far more enjoyable.
London Reportedly Under Consideration for Future WrestleMania
WWE is reportedly considering the possibility of holding WrestleMania outside of North America for the first time.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Marc Middleton of WrestlingInc.com), WWE issued a marketing study on possible future WrestleMania locations, and London was on the list.
Other cities listed were Chicago, Las Vegas, Houston, Dallas, Philadelphia, Toronto, Santa Clara, California; Jacksonville, Florida; Miami; Orlando, Florida and Tampa, Florida.
Los Angeles was not listed, but Meltzer noted that WrestleMania 37 in 2021 or WrestleMania 38 in 2022 is expected to be held at Los Angeles Stadium at Hollywood Park in nearby Inglewood, California. WrestleMania 36 is already scheduled for Tampa next year.
There has long been talk about WWE going overseas for WrestleMania due to the rabid wrestling fanbase in the United Kingdom, but logistical issues are considered the biggest sticking point since WWE would likely be forced to air WrestleMania during the day in the United States if it is held in London.
WWE does have some experience holding a big event in London, as SummerSlam 1992 emanated from Wembley Stadium in London with over 80,000 people in attendance.
Wembley and the brand new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium are likely the top candidates to host WrestleMania if WWE does decide to hold it in London.
Nikki Bella Speaks on Health Following Retirement
Nikki Bella provided a health update Friday after confirming her in-ring retirement Wednesday on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.
During her appearance on The Tonight Show, Nikki said that a herniated disc and a brain cyst essentially forced her into retirement:
"I herniated the disc above where I had surgery, I have all this inflammation around the metal, and then I have a cyst on my brain," Nikki said. "So, they were like, 'You're done, no more, you're out.' So, I didn't get a choice, which sucks."
In an interview with TMZ Sports, Nikki offered a somewhat positive update by noting that the cyst on her brain is benign:
"I'm bummed. It's something that, like...I think sometimes people don't see me competing in the ring and they never understand why, but it's because I can't compete. Brie and I really wanted to go back for the tag titles and be a part of the women's tag team division. It's such a cool time for women in WWE, but unfortunately because of my neck, and then they found a cyst on my brain, which thank God it's benign."
Nikki has been outspoken lately about the desire she and her sister, Brie Bella, had to return to WWE in an effort to vie for the Women's Tag Team Championships.
Neither of them have wrestled since October 2018, and the final match of Nikki's career as things currently stand was a loss to Ronda Rousey in the main event of Evolution, which was the first all-women's pay-per-view in WWE history.
While Nikki is not cleared to compete in the ring, she is still a significant part of WWE due to her place on the E! reality television series Total Divas and Total Bellas.
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