Shawn Spears made an instant impact when he showed up in All Elite Wrestling, hitting Cody Rhodes with a massive chair shot that busted him wide open and ultimately required 12 staples in the back of his head.
After the attack on Rhodes, it appeared AEW was set to make Spears a star and give him a spotlight like he had never received before. He was instantly place in a red hot feud, but ultimately fell short in his match against Cody at last year’s All Out pay-per-view. Since that time, Spears has struggled to regain his momentum and finds himself in an all-to-familiar place – being underutilized.
Spears was recently a guest on Sirius XM’s Busted Open radio show and took the time to discuss his relationship with Cody and his current angle involving professional wrestling legend, Tully Blanchard.
“So when we were put together early in OVW, [it was] for one reason essentially. Cody was a brand new, young, up-and-coming baby that lacked experience but was adored by the fan base. I had about 4 or 4 1/2 years of experience under my belt, so I had the experience but was unknown, and no one cared. So it was a perfect pairing because I helped with the experience side of things and, by association, people liked me because I was Cody’s friend.
“So, the tag team in itself worked. I remember one day when Dream (Dusty Rhodes) pulled us aside and was talking to us, and he was like, ‘Just so you know, Cody is destined to be a singles star.’ This was in the middle of our tag team run and I didn’t understand at the time there, but looking back on it now, Dusty, obviously you can’t say enough good things about that guy, but he knew exactly where Cody was going to end up which is where we are today. Now, seeing his progress through the years and seeing what he’s done and overcome, the guy is destined to be a singles star. He’s come into his own and has done everything that those top guys are required to do.
“The problem I have with him is I feel we had the opportunity to do something great together when I came over to AEW, and I feel he made one. I don’t know if he slipped or did it on purpose, and I think that’s the problem. The main issue I have with him is when he said I’m a ‘good hand’, but I’ve been hearing that for too long. You know, he didn’t say sorry, and that’s why I didn’t say sorry for slinging the chair.”
Spears has mentioned in the past that he is aware of the audience’s perception that he’s been underutilized his entire career, but the reason most people bring it up is because he is such a great worker in the ring. He checks all of the boxes when it comes to look, mic skill and in-ring work, so it doesn’t make sense why he always seems to struggle getting in the spotlight. Nevertheless, Spears feels that he is one of the most talented wrestlers in the world.
“I don’t know what you can chalk it up to. You just said it again – people have been saying my praises for years. I’ve never publicly said it myself. Tommy Dreamer just said I’m very talented, many other people have said that I’m very talented.
“I have never publicly, until now, said that I can say with conviction and confidence that I am pound for pound one of the best performers in the world, and I am one of the top performers AEW has right now. I check all the boxes. You have a look, in-ring ability, the ability to speak and communicate. I have all that, plus experience. So, I said it publicly and I believe that ’til this very day.
“Now, to your point Tommy, why? Why is it happening? Why does it seem like I was riding the pine before? Maybe some people think I’m riding the pine now. Again, I’m going to take it back to after almost 19 years. I’m going to focus on what I can control and that is the in-ring product. That is the part I’m in control of.
“When the bell rings in between the ropes, I’m in charge. No one can touch me. That’s my time, no one can touch me. Behind the scenes, I’m not a politicker. I have a very hard time telling somebody they’re right when I feel they’re wrong, and I have a very hard time telling somebody they’re good when I feel they’re not. That’s just me. I’m not disrespectful or unprofessional about it, but I’ll always be honest, which is crazy in the wrestling world.”
Spears finds himself in a story that has a ton of potential, with Tully Blanchard being his manager. That pairing seemed like a head-scratcher with no direction at first, but AEW has proven to be committed to long-term storytelling and it seems like the Spears and Blanchard story is one of those. Each week, it seems like we are getting a little bit closer to some sort of payoff, and Spears is still thrilled about being paired with the legend.
“It’s insane! I was actually talking to a friend of mine last night, and Tully was sitting with us. And I’m not going to namedrop, but Tully was sitting with us. Tully got up and walked away, and I go, ‘Tully – Tully Blanchard is my manager’. It still shocks me because, you know, when I left WWE, I couldn’t even fathom what was going to happen, let alone paired with a legend, paired with a Hall of Famer. Being paired with a guy that, to this day, still teaches me some certain psychological aspects of the in-ring product that I would’ve never thought about.
“And there’s a reason why Tully is who he is. He only had, I think, a 13 year career. I’ve been wrestling technically 6 years longer than he has, but his legacy has lasted over 30. That is a testament to his mind. That is a testament to what him, The Horsemen, that’s what they did. They left a lifelong impression on the industry.
“The first time we hung out, I went to his house. I was at San Antonio for an independent show. I went to his house, I went to the gym, we went out to eat, and I thought like, ‘Okay, this is kind of like one of the first times meeting. This is how we’re going to hang out and, here on end, we’ll be just here and there on the shows.’ No, every time we hang out, we go to the gym. After this, I go in to pick him up, we go to the gym, and we’re going to eat after, and we’re going to the arena.
“So, he still lives at life. He’s still very adamant about staying on top physically and being the best shape he can, and it’s inspiring to me. Guy has got 30 years on me and he is still, I’m like, ‘I can’t keep up. I don’t deserve to be around’. So, it’s inspiring to me. But it’s Tully Blanchard, man. It’s Tully Blanchard.”
Blanchard was unable to show up on AEW programming for quite a while when the pandemic hit and Spears felt the effects, as his already struggling act hit rock bottom in an embarrassing loss at Double Or Nothing. Tully showed up shortly after and questioned Spears about what he wanted his legacy to be, and their story began its upward trajectory. Since then, Blanchard gifted Spears with a black glove, which has a rich history in the professional wrestling business.
“Well, I think after what happened Double or Nothing, I think we had hit the lowest point that we could possibly hit. Tully hadn’t been around in a couple of months due to the whole pandemic. So, you know, travel – I was kind of on my own. I was having a lot of fun. Too much fun to the point where I wasn’t really dialing in, so to speak. I wasn’t focusing on the end goals that we had talked about when we first paired up. So, when he kind of came back, he saw what happened at Double or Nothing against Dustin [Rhodes] and that was kind of the straw that broke the camel’s back, and I kind of needed a stern father figure talking to, and it made sense. It made 100% sense, but he also thought there was something missing.
“So, the in-ring ability was there, like I said. The ability to speak, communicate, all of that jazz was there. He just felt there was something missing, something that needed to stand out amongst the sea of professional wrestlers. In AEW, there’s a lot of great talent. There’s not a lot of landscape. So, everybody is fighting for space, so to speak. We’re not going to over-saturate a show with, you know, 15 different angles that people are having a very hard time keeping track of. You know, we’re going to tell stories as best as we possibly can.
“So that means that some talent – you’re going to have to wait your turn, if your turn comes. So the black glove was introduced, obviously as a throwback. Like you said, Ole wore it, Windham wore it, DiBiase wore it. I’m glad you said that because now people are familiar with it. Google! Go back and watch the history of the black glove. There’s a reason that it’s been brought back by a Horseman of all people. It’s brought back for a reason, and the challenge in 2020, for me, is to get something that is 50-60 years old and bring that to prominence, or at least bring it to the forefront once again with very little television time.
“Normally, when someone is – I don’t want to say saddled, but when you’re given something to get over, or at least attempt to get over, usually there’s some good backing behind it. Alright, well there’s video packages, and there’s vignettes, and there’s television time, and all that kind of stuff. There hasn’t been a lot of that with the introduction of the black glove, which is a challenge that I enjoy. So, now I have to find ways in a digital world of social media and these other ways to collect information out there, I have a way to reintroduce something that has a rich lineage, and hopefully people can kind of get behind it. Hopefully.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Busted Open with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Mehdy Labrini contributed to this article.
How Las Vegas became the world’s casino capital
These days, it’s impossible to think of Las Vegas without the image of the lights on the strip and glamorous casinos coming to mind. But the Vegas we know of 2020 wasn’t always that way; and it took a long, long time to get its reputation for being the world’s casino capital. Let’s take a trip down memory lane and get to the root of how Las Vegas became the city that never sleeps.
A historical journey
It’s hard to believe these days, but the Las Vegas region was once an abundant marshland stock full of rich vegetation. That is, until the marsh receded, and the waters disappeared, transforming the landscape into a desert, with the trapped water underground sprouting life and forming an oasis.
It was during the 19th century that the explorer Antonio Armijo from Mexico foraged the way from New Mexico to California on the first commercial caravan. It was a member of the group, Rafael Rivera who rode west to find water and venture through the desert, setting his eyes upon Las Vegas Springs. Las Vegas was therefore named ‘the meadows’ after the grasses found growing there.
Years went on and both Mormon and Mexican settlers began to filter through. In 1890 it was decided by railroad developers that Las Vegas would serve as a spot along the San Pedro, Salt Lake City and Los Angeles railroad route as well as connecting to major cities along the Pacific Coast. From there on, Vegas boomed with stores, boarding houses and saloons popping up around the area. This was the beginning of the Las Vegas as we know it — with railroad workers and ranchers enjoying the gambling and drinking through illegal speakeasies and bootleg casinos operating despite the ban on gambling in Nevada in 1910.
In 1931 gambling once again became legal in the state, with new casinos and showgirl venues opening up along Fremont Street to entertain the thousands of workers who flocked the city during the construction of the Hoover Dam. The first hotel, El Rancho Vegas, opened up in 1941 along Highway 91. Its success inspired others to open up their own hotels along the highway which would one day become the strip. Tourists began to flock to the city over the next few decades to enjoy the casino scene and see incredible artists like Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra perform.
The birth of the mega resort
It was in 1966 the businessman Howard Hughes purchased the Desert Inn hotel; this was followed by over a dozen more hotel purchases, pushing out the mobster-owned hotels that had previously dominated Las Vegas. The concept of the mega hotel came about in 1989 when Steve Wynn opened the Mirage as the first hotel resort in the city. By 1994, Las Vegas was the home of more than 86,000 hotel and motel rooms with 13 of the 20 largest mega resort hotels in the world. It was during this era that the Strip became populated with more hotels and casinos, with developments inspired by the iconic cities and countries of the globe including Egypt, Paris, New York and Rome.
Las Vegas in the 21st century
The Las Vegas of today is well and truly established as a home for entertainment and casinos — which remain the biggest source of income for the city. However, there’s no doubt that Vegas faces more competition than ever before from the virtual world, with more people than ever before opting to play at an online casino, rather than play in the old fashioned way, but Vegas will always have the advantage. For many, it’s a once in a lifetime trip that an online casino can’t replicate, but do the online equivalents help to increase interest in Vegas?
The bright lights of Vegas is attracting billions of dollars in investment as many try and get a slice of the revenue that the sector has to offer. During 2019 over 42.52 million people came to visit Las Vegas from all around the world. Domestically, it was shown to be the second most popular destination for U.S. traveller’s dream spots after New York.
These days, Las Vegas continues to thrive and be a source of entertainment for millions of visitors from around the world looking to experience what the city has to offer. With new generations becoming interested in casino games — and some incredible musical residencies continuing to be announced — Las Vegas surely will continue to be one best places to go for a unforgettable dream destination for many.
What can people find at some of the biggest land-based casinos in Canada? From Niagara Falls to Toronto, there is something for everyone at casinos in Canada, including table games, slots, roulette, blackjack, and other games. There are also many poker and blackjack tournaments held throughout the year and it is easy to find jackpots or slots with free spins at the casinos. Many casinos also have hotels, bars, and numerous restaurants which are perfect for players seeking some comfort. A relaxing casino experience for all ages can be found in many different places in Canada. Choose one from below.
Choosing a casino depends on your tastes and location within Canada. Do you want to experience the grandeur and splendour of nature while placing a bet? Then head to Niagara Falls. Do you want to see a show? Choose a casino with a show that will be perfect for you. If you are looking for pure relaxation, then check out some of the casinos with spas and world-class dining. Entertainment is also a large part of the casino experience in Canada. Musicians, bands, comedians, and other types of entertainment continue to be found at all of the biggest casinos.
Some Big Casinos Near Nature
Casino Niagara is located in one of the most beautiful places in Canada and the world. People from all around the globe come to experience the best of both worlds at Casino Niagara. Players have access to beauty and scenery while spending time at one of the biggest casinos in Canada. The casino has two floors with over 1200 slot machines, poker, and other table games. There are also many different restaurants and even a comedy club. The sports bar and casino was refurbished back in 2017, meaning that it has not lost any of its charm and shine.
ST Eugene Golf Resort: Casino of the Rockies is a golf and nature lovers’ paradise. The location could not be any more splendid. People can find the casino between the Rockies and Purcell Mountains. Furthermore, the casino has an interesting history after it was converted from an Indian Residential School. It was then opened in the early 2000s. St Eugene has table games, electronic roulette, baccarat, and blackjack. There is also a golf course, restaurant, bar, spa, and hotel that is highly rated in Canada. Overall games are limited so most people come for golfing and betting fun.
Caesars Windsor is famously located on the riverbank in Windsor, Ontario. Visitors from both Canada and the States frequent the casino and hotel. Players can see the Detroit and Michigan skyline from the area. There are two floors of slots, table games, and plenty of poker tables. Blackjack, baccarat, and roulette are also available at the casino. It has beautiful restaurants, a gym, bars, slots, and live sports. Check out the Titan 360™, a 10-foot tall slot machine with 5800 pounds of wins at the click of a button. It’s the largest slot machine in the world and great fun.
- Enjoy the size of Casino de Montreal and Hard Rock Casino
- Enjoy the big and beautiful Casino Niagara or ST Eugene Golf Resort
- Enjoy High Culture at Elements Casino Brantford
River Rock Casino Resort – In Transit
Are you passing through Vancouver Airport and have a long transit? Hire a cab and spend some time enjoying slot machines at River Rock Casino Resort. There are slots galore and the different themes make it an enjoyable visit for all. There is even a Dungeons and Dragons slot for gamers. A fourteen-table game room can be found at the casino and international poker tournaments are held regularly. Other features include a VIP area, spa, live music, 24-hour food and drink, as well as other entertainment. Richmond is also worth a quick visit, especially for some delicious seafood.
Casino de Montreal – The Big Gun
Casino de Montreal is 526,488 square feet of casino excitement. The casino has around 20 thousand visitors each day and is one of the biggest casinos on the globe. If you are still unconvinced about the size of the place, then imagine five floors of slots and table games. 3,000 machines and 111 table games make the casino seem even more mammoth. Casino de Montreal games can be played in a smoke-free environment and many players comment on the user-friendly games and helpful staff. Complimentary drinks and top-rated gourmet food is all part of the experience at Casino de Montreal.
Hard Rock Casino – Another Big One
Hard Rock Casino is another large casino located in Vancouver, British Columbia. The casino is over 80,000 square feet, making it a big one in Canada. Hard Rock has gaming tables, slots, baccarat and a poker room. The casino includes 70 casino tables and 1,000 slots. Private rooms and high roller areas are also available. However, the Hard Rock name is known for excellent food and this is what people love about this casino. Many players comment on the quality of the food here. It even has a 1,000 seat theatre, making it great for dining and a show.
Elements Casino Brantford – Enjoy High Culture
Elements Casino Brantford is a historical gem for culture in Ontario. It is a charity casino that was established last century. It includes the Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts, which is a high society entertainment venue in Ontario. The centre is well known to performing arts enthusiasts in Ontario and Canada. Players come to see a show, enjoy some gourmet food and a game. The casino also has plenty of slots, table games, blackjack, baccarat, sic bo, three card poker, roulette, and other games. There is also a 14-table Texas Hold ‘Em poker room. Enjoy all the excitement.
River Cree Resort and Casino – Sports Lovers
River Cree Resort and Casino is a sport and gaming venue located in Edmonton that should not be overlooked. It has 39 tables of various money limits and over 1,000 slots. There are also a few different places to dine while enjoying a bet and other things to experience. There is a fitness centre, spa and a 200 room resort. However, the most interesting feature of this casino is the two hockey rinks, which are often used by the Edmonton Oilers for practice. It is possible to watch the team practice and go for a meal and some gaming fun.
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Top 8 Online Games That Kids Can Play Without Much Parental Supervision
The gaming industry has been quite widespread since its inception. With the advent of globalisation and technology, this industry is reaching new heights. Kids these days are more inclined to the internet than they are to books.
The internet has more information about everything than anywhere else and is very easily accessible. This further makes some parental control necessary. Most parents are worried about their kids playing violent video games that can further affect their mental health.
Nevertheless, you cannot stop a kid from finding ways to log in to the internet, nor can you keep them away from playing video games. You can always supervise them on their media consumption. But that also gets tiresome after a point. This is when it gets necessary for you to introduce them to games that are not only kid-friendly but are also of their liking.
If you are in a similar situation, looking for a way out, this article will surely help. Further mentioned are a few games that you can let your kid play while you concentrate on your work and well-being.
1. Gummy Drop
Finding games that you can let your kids play without supervision is quite a task. With games like Gummy Drop, you do not have to worry one bit. With beautiful graphics and interesting gameplay, it does not take long for your kid to get hooked to the game.
With new cities and interesting content being added almost every day, this 3 puzzle game is a good choice for your kids to play. It also connects to your Facebook account, letting you play with your other friends. It is also a nice way for your kids to improve their general knowledge and problem-solving skills.
If you were a fan of Pictionary when you were growing up, you should definitely introduce your kids to this game. While the rules of Pictionary remain the same, this game improves on the visual aspect. With all of their friends in the same server, your kid can easily get hooked to this game.
Easy and fun to play – once the server is set up, each player will get a word that they have to draw on the screen. The motive of the game is to help the other players guess your word. Each round chooses players at random. While it is advised that you use a tablet and a stylus to play this, you can always sketch with your finger.
3. Ludo Supreme
A classic in every sense of the word, online ludo needs no introduction. There are some new features that are added in the game version of this app. It lets you connect to your Paytm account and earn real money while playing the game.
Along with such amazing features, you can also play it for fun with your family or friends. It has other versions as well that come in different languages, especially in India, given the diverse nature of the country. You can download the LUDO for your android phones.
There is no doubt that Houseparty has been one of the most popular downloads this pandemic. This is a networking app that lets you add as many as seven friends and play different games face-to-face via video calls.
The novel approach of phone gaming made this a very widely chosen app. While playing games with your friends is always fun, this app lets you see and talk to them as well. Some of the most played games in this app include Heads Up!, Chips and Guac, Trivia and Quick Draw. With such amazing features and games, this is a worthwhile download for your kid.
Monopoly is a very interesting game, which you can get your kids. Along with being fun, it can be played by any age group and is always stimulating your brain. This board game is an all-time classic that is now available on mobile platforms.
The good thing about it being on the phone is that now your kids can play it with their friends as well, and all from the convenience of your home.
6. Rocket League
If you have ever wondered what it would be like to play soccer but with cars, this game is exactly that. You get to pick a car at the beginning of the game in an oversized field with an oversized ball. Then start the five-minute matches where you have to score goals against them.
To make it even more fun, this game allows the player to add up to three friends on the same server. It also has options where you can choose between casual play and ranked online play. Nevertheless, in both gameplays, you can earn new cosmetic looks for the car and get a chance to score more goals.
Another all-time classic, UNO has been a very celebrated game all these years. The original company of UNO came out with the online version that is available on both iOS and Android devices. Since they are the copyright holders, you already know, the gameplay cannot get any better than this.
Nevertheless, since it is a multiplayer game, you can play it both against your friends or strangers. It’s fun aesthetics, and new rules make it more interesting. It now has different modes of play and tournaments as well. You can also partner up and play 2v2 to win together. With servers available all around the world, you can connect to anyone you know.
8. Guess The Word
Very obvious from the name itself, this game is known to be one of the most popular downloads in this list. It not only helps your kids spend some unsupervised time with themselves but also ensures that they learn new things in the process.
The game contains different levels which get harder as your kid progresses, further making it more interesting and attractive. If you have some free time on your hands, you can also jump in and play with your kids.
So, these are the 8 games that kids of all ages can play without any tension. Above all, parents don’t have to panic or keep an eye on them all the time.