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   Sun, January 18, 2004



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T.O. chasing Summer Slam
By TIM BAINES -- Ottawa Sun


There's no doubt Summer Slam is one of the majors on the wrestling calendar -- following on the heels of The Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania (if there's a fourth, it's Survivor Series).

And after hosting Wrestlemania two years ago, Toronto is a hot candidate to be the site of this year's Summer Slam.

Sources say Toronto is on a short list of as few as three cities to host the event.

WWE Canada president Carl DeMarco has his fingers crossed.

"It's not a done deal, but I'd love to see this for the fans in Canada," he said. "We brought people from around the world to see Wrestlemania. It was phenomenal.

"It's too soon to tell if it'll be here. I'm lobbying. I'm doing everything I can. I'm hoping we'll get an answer within 90 days. I don't think we'll know before Wrestlemania."

If you'd like to voice your support for Summer Slam in Toronto, fire off an e-mail to canadianfeedback@wwe.com or send a letter to World Wrestling Entertainment Canada Inc., 2 Lansing Sq., Suite 1003, Toronto, Ont., M2J 4P8.

DeMarco has a lot on his plate these days. Edmonton will host the Backlash pay-per-view April 18, followed by a RAW show in Calgary the next night.

As the WWE boss in Canada, DeMarco's in a good position. The product remains strong north of the border.

"The dollar is going up and the buildings here are very aggressive to get our events. Plus, the talent loves coming to Canada. It's special to them. The fans are diehard, loyal supporters. They've always been like that, through thick and thin."

- The Federal Court of Canada has issued an injunction to stop bar owners who are showing WWE pay-per-views without paying for them. Each bar found guilty must pay WWE damages, plus court costs.

"It's like the person who goes into a retail store and shoplifts. It hurts the consumers,"said DeMarco. "If everyone is stealing, prices go through the roof. This sends a real clear-cut message that you can't steal. We will defend our intellectual property. We're going to keep prosecuting."

- Okay, it's out of the bag. Toronto is scheduled to host a Smackdown! show on June 1. Montreal hosts RAW on May 31 and Kingston gets a house show May 29. Keep in mind, these dates are tentative and could change.

- Philadelphia Flyers star Jeremy Roenick felt like he'd been in the middle of a No DQ match earlier this week. "(NHL commissioner Gary Bettman) forgot that the NHL merged with the WWF and we hide razor blades in our pockets and cut ourselves so we can get calls," Roenick told the Camden Courier Post.

- Adam Lebow reports that ESPN Canada will be showing episodes of RAW on Wednesdays at 7 p.m., with replays during the week. This is a replacement for the two-hour block of Classic Wrestling.

- Jon Dalton (Jonny Fairplay of Survivor: Pearl Islands fame) will sign his deal with NWA:TNA on Wednesday night's pay-per-view.

- Brian Kendrick (Spanky) asked for and got his WWE release. Being an undercarder must have worn on him and he'll now perform in indy events and Japan's Zero-One.

- Add Diamond Dallas Page to Acclaim's Legends of Wrestling video game that will be released in April. He joins others including Ultimate Warrior, Jake Roberts, Ricky Steamboat and The Sheik.

- Turns out The Big Show is a bit of a lounge lizard at heart. The WWE star admits he's a Rat Pack fan -- with Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr. and Dean Martin on his must-listen-to hit list. "I love their music," he told wwe.com. "It either hits me with the rhythm, or the words might mean something to me, or the singer's voice might have an effect on me. Dean Martin especially, he just has that groove. Anything he sings sounds good."

- Jimmy Hart told an Arkansas radio station he and Hulk Hogan are looking at starting a wrestling promotion based out of Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla.

- Trish Stratus is scheduled to sign autographs Feb. 7, at 1 p.m., at Sunrise Records in the Oshawa Centre (419 King St.).