– As expected, Kings’ RFA D Drew Doughty did not report to team training camp today. The two sides remain unable to reach an agreement, as Doughty reportedly wants a minimum of $7M annually, with the Kings not wanting to go more than $6.8M, which would keep F Anze Kopitar as the team’s highest paid player.
– According to TSN, Canucks’ F Ryan Kesler (back) and F Mason Raymond (back) remain out indefinitely. F Mikael Samuelsson (abdominal surgery) has been pain-free in his workouts since mid-July and says he’s feeling the best he’s felt in a long time. D Dan Hamhuis (sports hernia) will begin practicing fully, but the team is unsure when they’ll put him in a pre-season game. F Manny Malholtra (eye) has undergone a few procedures during the summer and has been cleared for light contact and is roughly 2-3 weeks away from returning.
– According to the Wrestling Observer, there will be an Edge DVD released in 2012 looking back at his career, where we’ll likely see the 45 minute Edge Appreciation Night in Toronto. The second ladder match DVD is out October 11, 2011 with Christian as host. Finally, Shawn Michels is expected back in some role around Vengeance in San Antonio to push the HBK/Hart DVD scheduled for release October 25.
– According to the Wrestling Observer, WWE recently took out a $200M line of credit with JP Morgan Chase Bank to finance the planned WWE Network and help the company expand its digital library. At this time, WWE has not yet finalized exactly what will air on the network. Of course, the backbone of the network will be WWE’s massive library of television footage spanning multiple decades from almost every major national wrestling promotion in history. There’s also the WWE Studios films that WWE can air at very little additional cost. Beyond that, several ideas have been discussed, including reality shows and scripted sitcoms starring current and past WWE superstars. WWE will be pushing hard to have the network launched by the end of 2012. WWE has been working on trademarking the name “The Network” – a name that was actually considered for the Nexus faction at one point.
– Mick Foley has launched his official website at RealMickFoley.com. Foley is expected to return to WWE in the coming months.
– Beth Phoenix spoke with Busted Open. The highlights:
Beth on working with Goldust: I have nothing but great things to say about Goldust, and really what he brings to us is the time that he spends working with us. He has such a wide variety of opinions and experience on the business, things that like, you know he’ll come to me with advice that I never really would have seen it that way you know. And he has a completely different perspective, and he has really, really put in so much effort and cares about the divas division and I have nothing but glowing things to say about him. If you see what you want to see and your liking what you are seeing, Goldust is a big part of that.
Beth on CM Punk vs. HHH: Well this match, you know, maybe has as much meaning for all of us on the roster as it does for the WWE Universe. Because if HHH loses, he is no longer the COO of the company. And on the other hand, CM Punk has kind of been the one guy to stand up and step up for all of us who have felt pushed aside or under-appreciated, so it really is kind of a conflict of heart. Because I like what HHH has been doing as the COO, he has really you know made some changes in the company that have affected us in a positive way. So um, you know, I understand Punk’s gripes, but at the same time me as a talent, I really like what HHH has done so it’s really a toss up. I think it could go either way, and it’s really going be the match I want to see the most.
Beth on her relationship with Natalya: Myself and Natalya have been longtime best friends in the wrestling business, you know we respect each other and we have very similar stories. I grew up really, you know, idolizing her family so we have a lot of, um, our mission is really what we have in common aside from other things, but you know we are our own thing. It’s unfortunate what happened with Karma because I would have loved to have her as an opponent at some day, at some point, but right now like I said it’s just all about me and Natty and that’s all we are really worried about.
Beth on CM Punk giving buzz to the wrestling world: I think there’s like a feeling of kind of like an anti-establishment growing, you know like a revolution. I think there’s like, there’s a feeling that, you know, that we got back when Stone Cold was standing up to Vince McMahon. I would make comparisons back to that because, you know, CM Punk has basically stepped outside the box and stopped being a nice guy and said what’s on everyone’s mind. But rather than being villainized for it, we all kind of support him on that and saying like wow, thank you, thank you for being the one to stand up and say something. So, there are a lot of us that, certainly over the summer it was probably the hottest topic in wrestling in years, and um I feel like going forward this match is going to be a determining factor in where the company goes as a whole.