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   Sun, September 17, 2006


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Stratusfaction comes to an end
Hard to say goodbye, Trish has no regrets
By TIM BAINES - Ottawa Sun
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(c) 2006 World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

When that catchy Lil' Kim ditty blasts out of the Air Canada Centre tonight, when Trish Stratus walks to the ring with thousands of cheering fans giving her a sendoff fit for the queen of the divas, she's bound to have a tear in her eye.

Whoa! It's time to rock n' roll,

This time I'm in control.

There've been so many memories, so many highlights stuffed into a six-plus-year WWE career ... and this will be her final night. It's much more than a storyline. Trish is leaping out of her career and right into marriage ... in real life ... saying "yes" to her high-school sweetheart Ron on Sept. 30.

"Really, I'm trying not to think about it because I might burst into tears," says Patricia Anne Stratigias over the phone. "I'm happy, I'm sad and I'm anxious. Next time I retire, remind me not to get married at the same time.

"It's been such a crazy ride. These people became my second family. It's a textbook story with a fairytale ending."

And what a career it's been. She's a six-time women's champ and a Diva of the Decade, a blonde bombshell with beauty and brains ... and a girl whose ambition not so long ago was to be a doctor.

"I'm ready to take a break," she says. "I've been on the road for the last 10 years of my life.

"I've missed going out to see my nephews' hockey games ... I've missed my girlfriends' weddings and the birth of their kids. I want to stop and smell the roses and enjoy life.

"I haven't had a chance to enjoy the process of being a bride yet. My fiance and I have been together for 14 years. He grew up with my cousins in East York. Then he moved to Richmond Hill and I met him on a school bus in Grade 8.

"We became best friends, then boyfriend and girlfriend when we were 17.

"I'm going to be a professional vacationer for awhile. I've been everywhere, but I haven't really seen anything. So we're going to start in Greece and end off (the honeymoon) with fish and chips in London."

Trish says the wedding will be big: "I'm Greek, he's Italian." And among the guests will be diva buddies Lisa Moretti (Ivory) and Nora Greenwald (Molly Holly), who will soon embark on the KickAss for Gas: The Wedding Tour. The former WWE divas will embark on a drive of more than 2,000 miles in a Scamp camper, appearing at wrestling shows along the way.

Trish would love to leave the WWE on a high note tonight, with a win over Lita ... and her seventh women's championship.

"It's been a wonderful ride," she says. "There's not one moment I would change. And hopefully I can walk away from Sept. 17 and retire as a seven-time champion."

Trish will maintain her home-town roots by moving right around the corner from her mom in Richmond Hill.

RELATED LINKS

  • More on Trish Stratus

    - Here's what we expect to happen tonight at Unforgiven (other than Trish's match, of course): Edge vs. John Cena (tables, ladders and chairs match, if Cena loses, he's bound for Smackdown!); The McMahons and The Big Show vs. D-Generation X (Hell in a Cell); Johnny Nitro vs. Jeff Hardy; The Spirit Squad vs. The Highlanders; Randy Orton vs. Carlito; and Kane vs. Umaga. The buzz going around is that Cena will not leave RAW, meaning he would have to win the title again. Now, I'm a Cena fan ... but it'd be a mistake to take the belt off Edge ... who gets better and better each week.

    - The Supershow Monday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal will be a blast. WWE will tape Smackdown!, then go live with RAW. The ECW show was taped last night in Niagara Falls, N.Y.

    - Here's the lineup for Tuesday night's Smackdown! live event at Scotiabank Place in Ottawa: Batista vs. Booker T; Rey Mysterio vs. Chavo Guerrero; Lashley vs. Fit Finlay and William Regal; Paul London and Brian Kendrick vs. Idol Stevens and Casey James; Matt Hardy vs. Mr. Kennedy; Funaki vs. Sylvester Terkay; Jillian Hall vs. Krystal; Vito vs. Sylvain; and Jimmy Yang vs. Gregory Helms. Bell time is 7:30 p.m.

    - Cryme Tyme? Black hoodlums? Let's see, we've had black pimps, headhunters and voodoo men, but C'mon Vince ... this is embarrassing. WWE, for its part, says the characters Shad Gaspard and JTG will be parodying racial stereotypes. Uh huh, just like Triple H sleeping with a corpse was ... well, it was bad taste.

    - Country star Toby Keith was at RAW.

    - The scuttlebutt is The Rock wants no part of his nickname anymore -- he soon may be referred to as simply Dwayne Johnson for his movie roles.

    - The Wrestling Observer reported that Greg Gagne got the boot from his position as trainer/booker with Ohio Valley Wrestling and Deep South, training grounds for WWE.

    - Rage Wrestling Entertainment is scheduled to hold an event at the Carleton Place Arena in Ottawa on Sept. 29 at 7:30 p.m. Drake Styles vs. MVP is the main event. Check out www.ragewrestling.net for more details.

    - Mecca Pro Wrestling was going to put on a show, Redemption, on Oct. 14 at the Metcalfe Centre in Maxville. Problem is the promoters say they got no co-operation from the town ... so they'll instead host monthly shows in Cornwall, beginning Nov. 11.

    - Winnipeg's Premier Championship Wrestling presents Back to School Bash Sept. 21, at 9 p.m., at the LID Nightclub in Winnipeg. The main event is AJ Styles vs. Kenny Omega. Other matches include a three-way dance with TNA superstar Samoa Joe vs. Antonio Scorpio Jr. vs. Mike Angels. See www.PCWaction.com for updates.

    - Here are the results from Independent Wrestling Manitoba's Sept. 12 show at the University of Manitoba: Jon Cutler beat Kevin Chevy; Beautiful Bobby Jay beat Chris Raine; TJ Bratt beat Gibby G; Wavell Starr and Zack Mercury battled to a no-contest; Moses Luke beat Justin Tyme and Cory Diamond in a triple threat match; and Cutler and Mercury beat Starr and Chevy.


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