Sean O’Mac: Pullin’ No Punches – The Last Word On Candice Michelle


Welcome to this weekâ<80><99>s edition of Sean O’Mac’s Pullin’ No Punches (PnP for short). Each week you’ll find Sean’s opinions on one or more topics in the WWE world as well as letters from readers. Remember that you, too, can chime in with your thoughts anytime. I like the props, but love the debates and disagreements too. Just keep them brief or I’ll be choppin’ ya down!

Although it may be dying down now, there certainly was a lot of talk following Candice Michelleâ<80><99>s injury in her match against Beth Phoenix on the Oct. 22 episode of Raw. Lord knows my initial reaction to the event drew plenty of e-mails from you readers out there, and I certainly did my best to make amends for what was a bad first reaction on my part.

However, I still feel there are some areas that either need to be addressed as it pertains to this event, and some others that have been addressed that I feel must have a counterpoint.

The First Move

As most of you know, immediately following Michelleâ<80><99>s fall and injury, she was drug to the middle of the ring and pinned to end the match. At first, I jumped the gun and pointed a finger at Beth Phoenix for doing so, but upon further review noted that she was following the instructions of referee Mike Chiota.

Now, donâ<80><99>t get me wrong. I have no doubt that Chiota was concerned first and foremost for Candice Michelleâ<80><99>s well being. He knew that a refereeâ<80><99>s job includes ensuring the welfare of the competitors and took action to end the match as quickly as he saw possible.

There is both a fortunate and unfortunate side to that.

Fortunately, Candice had not experienced the â<80><9c>worst-case scenarioâ<80> that could have easily occurred with that fall, a neck injury. Thus, her injury was not worsened by her being moved to the center of the ring for the pin by Phoenix.

Unfortunately, this sort of thing may happen again in the ring â<80>” either to a male or female athlete â<80>” and the prognosis could be much worse.

We all know that in the wrestling world, keeping things “real” is paramount. Everyone involved in a match knows that if unforeseen things happen, everyone must do their part to make sure the story continues to play out as best as is possible. There is a line, however, that Iâ<80><99>m sure none of them believe should be crossed â<80>” keeping the story going at the cost of someoneâ<80><99>s life or quality of life.

So now we hear that new policies are being discussed in the WWE to deal with such situations. In that spirit, it is this writerâ<80><99>s opinion that it couldnâ<80><99>t hurt to add a basic First Aid/CPR or First Responder course to the training given to performers and referees.

Anyone with medical training knows that someone with even a possibility of a neck injury should not be moved, rather they should be completely immobilized with the proper tools. Move them, or allow them to move, and you risk causing permanent paralysis or death.

Itâ<80><99>s no longer time to lay blame or point fingers in regards to what happened to Candice Michelle. In fact, we can thank God that her injuries were mild compared to what could have happened. But, WWE folks, letâ<80><99>s make sure to review with everyone how to treat such a possibly severe injury and ensure that preserving the story or match never supercedes the welfare of such talented â<80>” and in this case beautiful â<80>” performers.

The Best Moves?

I want to take this opportunity to state my belief: Women make excellent athletes.

I have watched sports for many years, and know that there are just some things that male athletes can do that most women canâ<80><99>t. You wonâ<80><99>t see a lot of slam dunks in the WNBA. You donâ<80><99>t see NFL teams clamoring to draft female quarterbacks.

By the same token, I have seen female athletes make moves and do things in gymnastics that seem much more graceful than any of their male counterparts. And, for lack of too many other sporting analogies, I have personally fought fires alongside women and watched women take â<80>” or dish out â<80>” punches as well as any man.

Now before you get the wrong idea, Iâ<80><99>m not in total disagreement with those who cite differences between men and women. There are certainly some things that male athletes can do that women should not or canâ<80><99>t. But with the proper training, or lack thereof, a woman has just as much ability to pull off stunning acrobatic moves â<80>” or get terribly injured â<80>” as a man.

What happened that night was both frightening and terrible, and could have been much worse. But I donâ<80><99>t have any problem stating my belief that if a male counterpart, such as Jeff Hardy or Paul London, fell the same exact way as Candice did that night â<80>” weâ<80><99>d be waiting for them to heal up for the next few weeks as well.

And now, I’m done with this topic.

The Punching Bag

Itâ<80><99>s your turn again! This is where, each week, youâ<80><99>ll find e-mails and feedback from wrestling fans on my Takes and opinions. You’re welcome to send yours, good or bad, to But be warned – the WWE isn’t the only ones I won’t pull punches for!


In regard to the ‘false advertising’ of dated WWE ad’s for Cyber Sunday, JR confirmed in a recent blog that WWE do indeed issue a new advertisement to all TV stations etc when they make a change to a PPV but companies will often not upload the newer one and use the first version they got. I assume these stations dont know any better and wont change the ad unless times of dates changes.

– Barry Hannon, Ireland

Thanks for the note, Barry. I really enjoy J.R.â<80><99>s blog, but I donâ<80><99>t always get the time to go read it. Letâ<80><99>s all collectively slap television stations for not doing their job right.

When Smackdown aired in the UK last night, the minute the Save_Us promo had aired I was straight online (admittedly to IMDb!) to announce my findings!! due to me having a good 4 hours on the USA! I announced the whole extra part of the promo about the Cyber Sunday part and all i got was “didn’t see that” or “troll” etc etc etc! Well thank god for you Sir! You have proved that i am not weird nor a troll. I did start to doubt my sanity lol! Anyways sorry for being so random here!


– Mike

Heâ<80><99>s no troll, folks. For the record, I did report that I had spotted a flash of Cyber Sunday at the end of the Save_Us promo that aired on last weekâ<80><99>s Smackdown! But, as we know now, it was probably just a graphical mistake that had nothing to do with the promo.

While I didn’t watch and hardly ever watch Smackdown due to the terrible talent on that program, I can say that I would like to see more storylines that tie into the show from the past to the future. As well, Y2J should be back from things I hear though his relationship with the WWE is severly strained with his sudden decision to dissappear and begin writing a book. Jericho is a great draw don’t get me wrong but, why in gods green earth would Vince McMahon ever even consider bringing him back after his appearance to TNA? Jericho doesn’t = ratings and never will. While I can understand Jericho’s need to use the WWE again for his book sales I can’t understand why he would be wanting to come back to a company that seems to be imploding. For that reason I see this strictly as a Stone Cold Esque cheap pop to promote and be gone.

– Michael S.

I can’t say I agree with your appraisal of the talent on Smackdown!. Of course, our opinions on what makes a wrestler talented may differ. As far as Y2J’s relationship with the WWE goes, he’s said he has no problem with Vince and if he returned to wrestling would only go to the WWE. I don’t remember his exact words, but that was the gist of it. I don’t think Jericho’s return will be a fleeting one just to promote his book. I subscribe to the belief that when he does return, you’ll be seeing him on for a while.

Was the ECW title match so horrible that it doesn’t even get a mention? There was a huge story in the The Miz, of all losers, won the vote. And that’s with the huge push Van Nitro gets from the real Big Daddy V. It may show that Vince is not quite as sharp as he once was. I know that’s the understatement of the year, but it may be time for Mrs. HHH to take over the whole show.

– Will in Tuscaloosa, AL

I did mention the ECW Championship match in my Take on Cyber Sunday. Granted, it wasn’t a lot – but I was frankly bored by the match. As far as “Mrs. HHH” taking over the whole show – well, I’m sure she has plenty of control and input and will be running things completely soon enough (with a little help from her husband, of course.)

Sean O’Mac, get some sleep man!!! I have this firm belief that the reason Matt Hardy did not fight MVP was that an MMA match was chosen as the stipulation and the WWE needed a way out. Obviously, Matt’s real life injury helped them with this. What are your thoughts?

– Michael

I finally did get some sleep, thanks! I really don’t think Hardy was medically cleared to participate in the match at Cyber Sunday, but that’s an interesting theory. Personally, though, I think if the MMA match was chosen (which, I’ll confess, I voted for) they would have allowed it just to see how well it played with the crowd. I’m sure Hardy and MVP were preparing themselves well in advance for the possibility, and WWE had to know that MMA would be a popular choice.

Is this really sean o mac, I doubt you’ll even have time to respond, but thanks for taking the time to read this if you have the time! I haven’t been able to watch any wwe ppv as of late, although I caught a few here and there on youtube and at my friends house when Im in town at my buddies place.. now straight to what I have in mind

1. I was lookin forward to the new hart foundation reforming! so what happend?

2. ancient history but I thought I heard you or the media talk about bringin in the great muta, Im a huge fan of the great muta! Ever still thinking of bringin or trying to bring the great muta in?

3. Will the wwe have halloween havoc ppv, I especially like the “spin the wheel make the deal roulette”

4. Ever think of the towers of doom still cage? 3 cages, one on top of the other like in wcw?

5. why dont the wwe ever have heels vs heels, it would be nice to see mark henry vs kali vs big daddy v! (just a thought)

hope to hear from ya if you could!!

– Lee

Yes, I really am Sean O’Mac. And while the sadistic side of me felt like having some fun while answering your questions, I must clarify that I’m not SHANE McMAHON. I’m Sean McGuinney. In case you’re not familiar with the name, Sean is pronounced the same as Shawn. It’s a good Irish name.

Sean “O’Mac” McGuinney’s day job is as a newspaper editor. He has been a journalist for nearly 10 years and has covered everything from government to sports. The wrestling? Well, that’s just been enjoyed since he was a kid. Don’t ask how long ago that was.

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