Sunday, April 19, 2009
WrestleMania: Day 3-Sunday, April 5th-Part 1
We got off to an early start on the morning of WrestleMania because we had tickets to the opening WrestleMania Axxess session that began at 8 a.m. The main reason we purchased these tickets was because we thought that maybe we would get the opportunity to meet "The Nature Boy" Ric Flair at 10 a.m. To say that my friend is just another fan would be an understatement.
From our experience on Friday night and knowing how HBK, Triple H, and Edge all ended up having a Q&A session, we kinda figured that Flair would probley participate in one of those on Sunday, as well.
"The Charismatic Enigma" Jeff Hardy made his way out to the Main Event ring for the first Q&A session. At this time, we started browsing around, checking out what all was going on. During this time, we met the lovely Maria.
The other superstars that were on hand signing at this time were Goldust, Ron Simmons, The Honky Tonk Man, Candice, Jesse and Festus.
Speaking of Jesse and Festus, perhaps one of the funniest moments ever occurred when the first match of the day got underway. This match featured Paul Burchill and his provocative sister, Katie Lea, in action against ECW's dancing duo, DJ Gabriel and Alicia Fox. You see, Jesse and Festus were signing autographs at a table. They had a pretty long line, too. We were nearby. Well, as soon as the bell rang to begin the match, we heard this wild racket. Guess who? It was "The Corn-Fed Colossus" Festus. He had heard the bell, and suddenly went bonkers at the meet and greet table. Festus stormed through the fans and over the barriers, towards the ring, but right before he was able to get inside, Jesse managed to ring the bell. Festus was calm, again. So Jesse took Festus back to the autograph table, where they continued to meet with the fans, until the match ended and the bell sounded. Festus flipped out, again, and made his way back to the ring. He got in there and roughed up Paul Burchill. Jesse rang the bell to stop him. Then, Jesse rang it, again, while DJ Gabriel and Alicia Fox were dancing to their music. I guess Jesse thought it needed more cowbell. Uh oh! Instead of doing severe bodily harm to both Gabriel and Fox, Festus started dancing! Then, he started doing some hoochie dancing with Alicia Fox. He was throwing that poor girl around like a sack of potatoes. It was hilarious! Very clever on WWE's part to let Festus stay in character. Everybody got a kick out of it. Sim Snuka also wrestled Dolph Ziggler.
Next, I got the "Extreme" honor to do a little play-by-play, alongside the original voice of ECW, the one and only, Joey Styles!
How cool is that? We called the Shawn Michaels/Ric Flair match from last year's WrestleMania. Yes, he did say, "Oh my God!"
While making small talk with Joey, I commended him for his work on WWE.com. Some of you may not be aware that Joey is, currently, the Director of Digital Media Content for WWE.com. I also plugged the Wrestling News Center and gave him one of my cards. Joey said that he would check it out. That was AWESOME!
Ten o'clock came around and they announced that "Nature Boy" Ric Flair would be participating in the next Q&A session. That was a bummer, but I managed to get over it rather quickly because......
I met Gail Kim!!! Thank you, Jesus! Oh happy day! I love me some Gail Kim! She's my favorite. Oh yeah! Eve Torres is smoking hott, too. Wooo Mercy! Just makes me wanna sing. Unforgettable......Ok, gotta snap out of it. Did I mention Gail's my favorite?
The second batch of superstars that were taking part in the meet and greet was "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes, "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase, Sgt. Slaughter, Jack Swagger, Kelly Kelly, and The Great Khali.
We thought it was the perfect time to check out The Undertaker's Graveyard.
That's Not Fair to Flair, but "The Nature Boy" turned that frown upside down when he got to help prepare the resting place for the man that ended his career, Shawn Michaels.
After that, we decided to get a bite to eat at Frenchy's. We went ahead and bought another ticket for the Axxess session that began at 1:00 because we had already spent the twenty bucks to park.
The evening list of superstar appearances included Tyson Kidd, "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan, Harley Race, Nick Bockwinkel, Tito Santana, and a few others.
Check out who else we spotted walking around at Axxess. Linda McMahon!
For all the NASCAR fans out there, here is the number 88 National Guard NASCAR, driven by Dale Earnhardt Jr. Also on hand, were the the No. 4 National Guard IRL car and the custom Patriot Chopper motorcycle designed by the Orange County Choppers. You could also test your climbing skills on the rock wall.
Mr. Kennedy......KENNEDY had a Q&A session. This is actually the only one that I got a chance to listen to because a lot of the people were just getting in town, so the place was getting packed and the lines were long for everything else. Kennedy was a trip. He brought a little kid up into the ring and gave him the microphone to say Mr. Kennedy. Then, he put him up on the turnbuckle so he could finish it with KENNEDY! Kennedy also shared that he would like to do a comedy film, next. When asked who his toughest opponent was, Kennedy said The Undertaker. Then, he followed it with a story. He said that one night, before their match, he asked Taker what they were going to do out there. He said that Taker told him that we would go out there, roll around for a while and then, he would drop him on his head. Kennedy said that's what they did. I thought that maybe Kennedy said a little bit too much, there. Hello, kayfabe. Fun session. While Kennedy made his way to the back, he signed autographs and took pictures with the fans.
Hold up! Wait a minute! Is that? Pete Rose dressed as a chicken?
With that came an end to our WrestleMania Axxess experience. If you're a wrestling fan, you have to check it out. It really is amazing! And believe me, there were people from all around the world there. That's the great thing about it. The fact that wrestling brings people from so many cultures together. That's something that no other sport can really say. What a beautiful thing. I met people from Israel, Australia, Japan, and the UK. There was this one guy that looked just like "Stone Cold" Steve Austin. Hell, I thought it was him, but when we started talking to him, he said, "Hey, Mate!" He was from Australia. After being a part of an event like this, you realize the magnitude of just how huge WrestleMania is. I now know the power and incredible force that is the WWE Universe. That totally sounded like something The Ultimate Warrior would say.
Now, it was time for "The Grandaddy of Them All", "The Showcase of the Immortals", The 25th Anniversary of WrestleMania!
Pictures by Ricky Murphy