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WWE brings Raw to new MTS Centre
By CYRUS
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Lots of news to catch up on this week, so we will devote the whole column to getting up to speed on breaking news: The WWE returns to Winnipeg on Sunday, Jan. 16 for a Raw brand afternoon show at the brand new MTS centre. The lineup is headlined by the following matches: Tag elimination match: Jericho and Benoit vs HHH and Batista, (with Ric Flair), Kane vs. Snitsky, Shelton Benjamin vs. Christian, Edge vs. Randy Orton (two out of three falls), Tag team title match featuring Eugene and Regal vs. Conway and Sly, plus a Divas tag match. Tickets go on sale Dec. 4 at all Ticketmaster locations and the MTS Centre box office.

Bob Holly was fined and punished for punching Rene Dupree in the back at a show. The dispute was supposedly over a rental car incident where Dupree got a ticket with Holly's vehicle and never told him, which caused a problem for Holly. Given the fact that Holly was apparently fined $10,000 he may have wanted to pursue a different course of action, especially since ten grand is a lot more money these days then it used to be five years ago in the business. You may recall that Holly is the same wrestler who roughed up a Tough Enough competitor and in an unrelated incident was muscled up on a power bomb by Brock Lesnar and suffered a broken neck.

Speaking of Lesnar, he is currently appearing in a low end TV commercial which you can see on the Minneapolis channel ... Shinya Hashimoto's Zero-One promotion folded in Japan this past week which is bad news for those North American wrestlers who were making good paydays overseas ... WWE is currently taking some heat for their Arab wrestlers' gimmicks. This is hardly surprising given the current political environment.

Speaking of not spending much time trying to come up with something original, WWE parodied the Terrell Owens commercial that caused so much controversy in the NFL a week back as well as the basketball brawl between the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons. I was waiting for the joke, I went to a wrestling match and a basketball game broke out. Hey, it's no worse than most of what passes as humour on these shows.

Speaking of humor, Randy Savage, who had been challenging Hulk Hogan for years to a "real fight," most famously in his rap single Be a Man, was so distressed by Hogan confronting him at a TNA pay-per-view backstage, that he has now got it put into his contract that he must have two bodyguards with him backstage at all times. This is NOT a gimmick. By the way, his two bodyguards are Bryan Adams (formerly Crush in WWF) and Ron Harris (formerly 8Ball in WWF). Combined height: more than 13 feet, combined weight: almost 700 pounds. Randy should be safe but this is ridiculous.

Dusty Rhodes is the new booker of TNA, replacing Jeff Jarrett. Rumours have abounded for weeks that Jeff's dad Jerry Jarrett was trying to get control of the book from Jeff. I have also heard that Jeff wanted to step back. Dusty was WCW booker for years.