WWE wrestler Austin Creed, also known as Xavier Woods, has spoken out about his reaction to a Wheel of Fortune contestant’s guess that many perceived to be lewd.
During Monday night’s edition of the popular game show, professional wrestlers Carmella, Creed and Drew McIntyre were paired up with wrestling superfans as they took part in the inaugural episode of a tournament that concludes on Friday.
At one point in the broadcast, McIntyre and his competition partner, Tracina Jones, were tasked with solving a word puzzle under the category “Fun & Games.”
With just a few letters added—leaving the clue reading as “_L_ _ _ _ _ _ _T_ _ _LLS”—Jones guessed that the answer was “playing with balls.”
Following Jones’ incorrect answer, the camera panned to Creed and his playing partner, Mike Bozzuffi, who snickered as they struggled to contain their laughter.
Creed’s team eventually guessed the correct answer as “playing with dolls.”
A clip of the moment was shared on Wheel of Fortune‘s verified Twitter account with a direct address to McIntyre that read: “@DMcIntyreWWE come get your girl.”
Creed, who wrestles on WWE’s SmackDown brand under the name Xavier Woods, responded to the tweet: “How was I supposed to react?!?!?”
How was I supposed to react?!?!? #WheelOfFortune https://t.co/eQ0WcltNsQ— Austin Creed (@AustinCreedWins) March 28, 2023
Cartoonist Kris Straub commented that Creed’s amused moment “was a [very] tasteful chortle,” prompting the wrestler to respond: “Thank you sir. I definitely displaced a rib holding it in.”
For his part, McIntyre weighed in on his game partner’s eyebrow-raising guess on the show, tweeting alongside a laughing emoji: “Wasn’t quite sure where she was heading with this.”
Wrestling has been something of a theme in recent episodes of Wheel of Fortune, with Sajak putting one contestant in a headlock on the show earlier this month.
Professional wrestler Fred Fletcher-Jackson, who also works as a drama teacher, said he “loved” the moment that Sajak grabbed him in the “chicken wing” move.
Fletcher-Jackson made it to the bonus round on a recent Hawaii-themed show where he correctly guessed “His mind is wandering” in the puzzle round to bring his total prize winnings to $75,800.
Overcome with emotion, he held his head to his hands and was congratulated on stage by his dad who’d come to join him, before Sajak ran over to tackle him. Even as a younger man with pro wrestling experience, Fletcher-Jackson admitted Sajak, 76, was strong and he couldn’t get out of the hold.
“As a pro wrestler, and as you know, a guy who is in showbiz and as the guy that he was putting in that hold, I loved that moment,” Fletcher-Jackson told TMZ. “L O V E in capital letters. Like that was one of the biggest highlights of the show.”
Addressing the criticism Sajak received online for his wrestling move, Fletcher-Jackson said he thought the detractors’ takes were “a little unfair.”
“I was the one who was put in the hold, and I was perfectly okay with it,” he said. “In fact, I loved it. I don’t think they should get any more upset than I’m getting because I was the one who was affected.
“If it’s not your sense of humor, you know, I can understand that… but to call it ‘cringe’ and the call for his retirement, that’s taking it a little bit too far.”
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