WED. UPDATE: Mania tickets available tomorrow, UFC free fights on site, Ratings, Foley, Rampage
Wednesday, 10 November 2010 09:39
We're looking for reports on today's WWE house show, with Raw in Innsbruck, Austria and Smackdown in Brussels, Belgium at
The tour continues tomorrow with Raw in Nantes, France and Smackdown in Nuremberg, Germany. Friday has Raw in Geneva, Switzerland and Smackdown in Cologne, Germany. Saturday has Raw in Milan, Italy which is the closing date of the Raw tour, and Smackdown in Mannheim, Germany. The WWE's European tour ends on Saturday with Smackdown in Istanbul, Turkey.
The next-to-last WEC show takes place tomorrow night in Las Vegas at the Pearl at the Palms Hotel, headlined by Urijah Faber vs. Takeya Mizugaki, Chad Mendes vs. Javier Vazquez and Joseph Benavidez vs. Wagnney Fabiano.
Ultimate Fighter airs tonight at 10 p.m. on Spike.
The new issue of the Wrestling Observer was just put up earlier today on the site, featuring the most in-depth look at every facet of the current WWE business. We not only run down the quarterly report, compare each category with last quarter and last year, but look at a lot of things behind-the-scenes and in some cases, hidden from view.
We look at the current profit margin, what financial figure is the lowest in modern company history, an updated look at the ten lowest purchased modern PPV shows, how government tax credits have greatly impacted the WWE's profitability, a look at how the Mattel deal has impacted the bottom line, updates on how shows, merchandise, PPVs, both domestic and overseas, a real interesting note about the price increase, how many buys makes PPV profitable, and how much revenue WWE itself has taken in from its recent PPV shows.
We also look at the current television deals, how much, on average, WWE spends to produce an episode of Raw or Smackdown, what few segments are up, where costs have been cut, what segment does the apparent increase in volume be misleading, how many magazines does WWE sell, and the first profit/loss look at "Legendary.
We also have a chart looking at the profitability of every aspect of the WWE business, as well as from a geographical standpoint, where the WWE revenue comes from, and a percentage breakdown showing how important each revenue stream is to profitability.
We also have a full rundown on the Turning Point PPV, including very notable poll results, problems with the show, what did and didn't click as well as match-by-match coverage with star ratings.
Besides the issue, we will have a new back issue up tomorrow, as well as another back issue just put up a few days ago from the summer of 1993. You can also get the Observer delivered by mail, with details below. For those who are web site subscribers, not only do we have issues once and in big news weeks, twice every week, but also release one back issue from 1993 each week.
We also have a look at Dragon Gate USA, its most recent shows, as well as the future of Internet PPV.
We also have updated news on all the major WWE injuries, who had surgery, who isn't having surgery, plus an update on Survivor Series, a look at the three-hour Raw coming up, Steve Austin addresses rumors of his being on Raw, more thoughts about WrestleMania and William Regal's future.
We also have a ton of interesting notes about who attended WrestleMania this past year, including from what age group, which is completely different than the perception. We also have an in-depth breakdown of who watches Raw, which will also go almost completely against the belief of who watches it, including a study that yielded some very bad results for WWE.
We look at the future of Mr. McMahon, future of NXT, future of regulating pro wrestling, the end of an 82 year pro wrestling tradition in a city, , notes on developmental, a new WWE signing, if Linda runs again, fallout of Linda running, Jim Ross back announcing and the background of it, and a full rundown of the current WWE tour of Europe.
We also have a biography of the longest lasting fixture in Japanese wrestling, Joe Higuchi, who in his prime was lauded as the greatest referee in the history of pro wrestling. Higuchi, who passed away on 11/8, was more than just a referee, but played an important role in four different major league promotions. We look at his legacy, how he was remembered by American wrestles, as well as his forgotten background as a pro wrestler.
We also have an in-depth look at the ratings of all the national shows this past week, including how every segment on Raw and Impact did, as well as a look at what audience was retained and changed in the Smackdown move to Syfy.
We also have our usual weekly features with results of the major arena shows from around the world, and the major TV show rundowns and reviews.
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Also in this week's issue:
--Injury to a main event name landing on his head taking a huracanrana off the top
--One of the most famous fat men in wrestling is fat no more, or at least, not as fat
--Shortest main event in modern history of one of the world's most famous wrestling arenas
--Mexico ratings over the past two weeks
--Major star on the verge of leaving now looks to be staying with his group
--Promotion gets a short-term TV deal on a minor U.S. network
--Several ex-WWE stars headline a successful show in Mexico
--Another retirement announcement
--Promotion announces first ladder match in its history--title shot going to the winner
--World tag team champions from two different promotions set to meet in a few weeks on a major show
--Complete rundown of this year's G-1 Climax tag team tournament
--Start of a junior heavyweight tag team tournament
--Hall of Famer faces his protege in a few weeks
--Former pro wrestling superstar, Olympic wrestler and even Pride fighter, starts retirement tour
--One of the biggest pro wrestling stars of the past 25 years undergoes heart surgery
--Updates on Bruno Sammartino movie, including what stipulations he has for it to be made and a look back at his childhood
--Lots of former WWE stars starting overseas tour
--Changes in Hulk Hogan's life
--Changes starting in TNA and why
--Update on Jeff hardy's legal situation
--Tivo viewership and Raw, Smackdown, Impact and Ultimate Fighter
--Wrestling woman star in bikini contest
--Background of Robbie E
--UFC fires fighter after steroid test positive
--The making of the heel Josh Koscheck
--Back story of what happened in the issue with Koscheck and the male nurse, Brad Tate
--Update on UFC 121 PPV and comparisons with Lesnar vs. Carwin
--How did the Velasquez marketing work out
--All-American wrestlers who became UFC heavyweight champions
--UFC promoting Velasquez
--Update on Shogun Rua and Rashad Evans
--Lots of new UFC fights
--A look at Herschel Walker's next opponent
--A PPV fight that has been proposed
--Ken Shamrock to fight again
--Another former Olympian goes into MMA
--MMA show that included four pro wrestlers and a former boxing world champion
--K-1 gets terrible news from the ratings Gods
--K-1 Max World Grand Prix notes
--Judo gold medalist vs. former pro wrestler match
--Update on the annual New Year's Eve show
New subscribers ordering 24 or 40 issues can get free issues from the last 18 years. You can get 2 free back issues by ordering 40 or more
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*November 17, 1997 (full details of everything leading to the most famous
wrestling match finish of modern times at the Survivor Series plus a
history of in-ring double-crosses)*December 21, 1998 (the complete Vince McMahon-Bret Hart conversation
right before the Survivor Series match so you'll know exactly what was
said--the conversation played in edited form both on the inaugural
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everything that was said between the two about the match that was going
to take place that same night)
*August 1, 1994 (the most detailed coverage anywhere of the Vince McMahon
steroid trial, an issue praised in numerous newspaper article
and Sex, Lies and Headlocks)
*March 26, 2001 (death of WCW and history of pro wrestling on the Turner
*October 22, 2001 (why the adult audience has left pro wrestling in such
great numbers and what needed to have been done to save them)
*July 8, 1991 (Ric Flair leaves WCW as world champion/Zahorian
*February 8, 1993 (the life and times of Andre the Giant)
*May 13, 2002 (the life story of the most incredible pro wrestling career
ever, a look at Lou Thesz, in one of the largest issues of our
*January 27, 2003 (part one of the two-part series covering the career
and life of The Sheik)
*February 3, 2003 (Part two on The Sheik including thoughts from people
who worked with him and where he stands historically)
*March 24, 2003 (history of the WWWF title, inside behind the Sammartino,
Backlund and Backlund era)
*April 21, 2003 (history of WWF continues with the expansion nationally,
the death of the regional territories and the rise of Hulk
*May 12, 2003 (The life and death of Elizabeth, and the rise of fall of
*June 9, 2003 (Part 1 of history of WWF vs. WCW wars and what many say
was the greatest year in U.S. wrestling; plus a look at Fred Blassie)
*June 16, 2003 (Freddie Blassie through the eyes of his biggest rivals
*July 28, 2003 (Part 2 of the history of the WWF vs. WCW war and the
plans to make new superstars in the early 90s, what happened, and the
night where the three biggest wrestling companies in the world combined
for a joint show and what happened)
*August 25, 2003 (2003 Hall of Fame issue with huge profiles on the
controversial career of Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit as well as
historical features on Earl Caddock and Francisco Flores)
*September 22, 2003 (Part 3 of the history of the WWF vs WCW war with the
seeds that caused the collapse of the industry in the 90s,
Zahorian trial, Gulf War controversy, Flair leaves WCW while holding
world title and much more)
*October 27, 2003 (The fascinating life of Stu Hart plus the story of
Road Warrior Hawk)
*January 19, 2004 (2003 Awards issue)
*February 2, 2004 (History of Toronto wrestling, Jack Tunney life story,
Royal Rumble and Battle Royal history)
*February 23, 2004 (History of Guerrero family with Eddy's win over Brock
*March 1, 2004 (History of WWF continues with the period that brought the
company down in early 1992, the mistakes, the real stories and how the
*March 8, 2004 (History of Wrestlemania, its greatest matches and best
and worst shows as voted both by wrestlers and non-wrestlers and
Wrestlemania history books)
*July 5, 2004 (A look behind the scenes and Ric Flair's book and his
background with Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan)
*July 12, 2004 (A look at more on Ric Flair's book and his comments on
Bruno Sammartino, Bret Hart and Mick Foley)
*August 16, 2004 (History of the Olympians in pro wrestling)
*August 23, 2004 (2004 Hall of Fame issue and biggest issue of the year
with huge profiles on Kazushi Sakuraba, Undertaker, Bob Backlund,
Masahiro Chono, Ultimo Dragon, Kurt Angle and Tarzan Lopez--this counts
as one issue if you are asking for a free issue, but ordered separately,
due to size, is $6 in North America and $7 overseas)
*October 4, 2004 (the life and times of Big Bossman; as well as details
of the life and times of one of the most influential men world wide in
pro wrestling history, Jim Barnett)
*November 15, 2004 (the full story of what happened between Kurt Angle
and Daniel Puder, plus coverage of the most important week in the
history of TNA)
*January 24, 2005 (2004 Awards issue, Rock and WWE part company)
*March 14, 2005 (the 50 biggest money players in the history of WWF and a
look at their Hall of Fame)
*May 9, 2005 (the life and times of Chris Candido)
*June 20, 2005 (The full story behind Paul Heyman and the death of ECW,
as well as coverage of One Night Stand, Hardcore Homecoming and
behind the scenes of both shows)
*July 18, 2005 (death of Shinya Hashimoto and his records with a look at
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Cornette firing in detail as well as problems of a WWE developmental
territory in our biggest news issue of the year which is a double-sized
issue and would be $6 on its own and $7 overseas)
*August 24, 2005 (2005 Hall of Fame issue with career profiles of Paul
Heyman, HHH and Freebirds plus debut of MMA Hall of Fame)
*September 12, 2005 (History of Mid South Wrestling)
*October 10, 2005 (Life and Times of the Ultimate Warrior)
*November 21, 2005 (Life and Times of Eddy Guerrero and Crusher, double
issue $6 on its own and $7 overseas)
*December 5, 2005 (The Eddy Guerrero special issue, double issue $6 on
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*January 9, 2006 (The life and times of Superstar Billy Graham, plus New
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*January 16, 2006 (2005 Awards double issue, $6 or $7 overseas)
*April 3, 2006 (Story of Ann Calvello and the history of Roller
Derby--many called this the best issue of the Observer ever)
*April 10, 2006 (Behind the scenes at the 2006 Wrestlemania/Hall of Fame
*July 24, 2006 (The History of the Von Erichs and World Class
Championship Wrestling--the most unreal story ever in wrestling)
*September 4, 2006 (The Rise and Fall of Kurt Angle; 2006 Hall of Fame
inductions of Eddie Guerrero, Paul Bowser, Masakatsu Funaki, Aja Kong and
Hiroshi Hase including tons of wrestling history around the world from
the 20s through the 60s, the evolution of working to not working
in Japan, and a look at Guerrero in hindsight, double issue $6 or $7
*October 9, 2006 (A look back nine years later at the life and legacy of
Brian Pillman with tons of inside information about what made him
tick as his real objectives)
*November 15, 2006 (History of WCW part one, Eric Bischoff's book and how
the industry was changed forever)
*November 20, 2006 (History of WCW part two, Why Jim Ross left WCW, How
Bischoff changed the company, signing of Hulk Hogan, Beginning of Nitro,
Jesse Ventura, Brian Pillman, Chris Jericho and signing Wrestlemania
planned celebrity away)
*November 27, 2006 (History of WCW part three, When Bischoff challenged
McMahon to fight; Truth and fiction around Bret Hart signing with WCW and
why it didn't click)
*December 6, 2006 (details behind Pride's offers to sell promotion and
Part four of History of WCW part four, Hogan-Goldberg match and why
there was no rematch, WCW loses NBC network deal in 1999 and the real
reasons the company fell apart)
*January 22, 2007 (2006 Awards issue, double issue $7 on its own, $8
*February 14, 2007 (Life and Times of Bam Bam Bigelow)
*March 5, 2007 (WWE begins plans that will change the business)
*March 12, 2007 (Life and Times of Mike Awesome)
*March 19, 2007 (Life and Times of Ernie Ladd)
*April 4, 2007 (Life and Times of Badnews Allen Coage--which many are
calling one of the best issues in history)
*July 2, 2007 (Part one of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 5, 2007 (Part two of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 10, 2007 (Part three of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 19, 2007 (Part four of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 23, 2007 (Part five of Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 25, 2007 (Part six of Benoit double murder-suicide)
*August 15, 2007 (The legend of the God of Japanese wrestling and his
influence on MMA, Karl Gotch)
*October 15 (2007 Hall of Fame double issue, $7 on its own, $8 overseas
including inductions of The Rock, Tom Packs and the original Strangler
*November 12, 2007 (Life and times of Fabulous Moolah and history of U.S.
women's wrestling) .
*December 31, 2007 (History of Ric Flair and the heyday of wrestling at
the Greensboro Coliseum)
*January 21, 2008 (2007 Awards issue, double issue $7 on its own, $8
*March 17, 2008 (Life and times of Johnny Weaver)
*March 24, 2008 (Life and times of Gary Hart)
*April 10, 2008 (Farewell to Ric Flair; My thoughts, Shawn Michaels talks
of Flair's meaning to him; Hall of Fame; Wrestlemania double issue, $7 on
its own, $8 overseas)
*August 11, 2008 (Ric Flair leaves WWE; Updated history of pro wrestlers
and MMA fighters who went to the Olympics)
*September 8, 2008 (2008 Hall of Fame double issue, $7 on its own, $8
overseas; part one of Killer Kowalski bio)*September 15, 2008 (Life
and Times of Evan Tanner)
*September 22, 2008 (The amazing career of Killer Kowalski, one of our
most in-depth bios)
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We also have available personally autographed copies of Tributes II, our latest book, as well as a DVD that comes with it talking more about
the subjects in the book. The book covers the life stories of Lou Thesz, Wahoo McDaniel, Elizabeth, Fred Blassie, Road Warrior Hawk,
Andre the Giant, Curt Hennig, Johnny Valentine, Davey Boy Smith, Terry Gordy, Owen Hart, Stu Hart, Gorilla Monsoon, The Sheik and Tim Woods. To get all of those biographies as back issues of the Observer would be a $60 value today. This is a collection of some of the best Observer articles of the past several years in a hardcover, full-color format that is 239 pages. There is also a foreword by Bret Hart. The book price is $12.95 plus $3.50 for shipping costs in the U.S., $10 for shipping costs to Canada and $12 for shipping costs outside North America. You can order the book the same way you order the newsletter.
--The Internet pre sale for WrestleMania starts at 10 a.m. Eastern time tomorrow and lasts until Friday at 10 p.m. You can order tickets at www.ticketmaster.com
using the password ATLANTA. Tickets go on sale to the public on Saturday at 10 a.m.
--UFClive.com is airing a collection of free fights the next few days, through Saturday, featuring the fighters that are on Saturday night's UFC 122 show. The nights being shown are Nate Marquardt vs. Demian Maia, Yushin Okami vs. Evan Tanner, Jorge Rivera vs. Kendall Grove, Alessio Sakara vs. Joe Vedepo and Krzysztof Soszynski vs. Shane Primm.
--ESPN led the cable ratings this past week with a 2.6 prime time average to 2.3 for Fox News (election coverage) and 2.2 for USA. Syfy was down to 0.8 and the No. 20 spot even with Smackdown. Spike was No. 21, with an 0.7 average prime time rating. Raw was No. 14 and No. 17, largely due to all the election coverage.
--Mick Foley will be a guest on the Daily Show tonight, promoting "Countdown to Lockdown." I'm not finished with the book, but it's really good.
--Ted DiBiase Sr. has been officially added to the list of those appearing on Monday's Old School Raw show from Hershey, PA. His name had been talked about unofficially for two weeks.
--Jerry Lawler's infection is a staph infection. At first it was believed to be a non-staph infection. Ross wrote today on Twitter that it was confirmed as a staph infection and it's possible doctors may need to cut the infection out.
--Quinton Jackson will be a guest tomorrow night on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS, promoting his fight with Lyoto Machida on 11/20 in Detroit.
--Poll on Raw
24.0% of those responding didn't see the show.
--Of these active wrestlers, who would you say was the best wrestler over their career?
Kurt Angle 44.5%
Rey Mysterio 9.4%
A.J. Styles 3.9%
John Cena 33.%
Randy Orton 2.8%
Samoa Joe 1.4%
Jeff Hardy 0.2%
--Poll on ROH TV on Monday
66.7% of those responding didn't see the show
--Jeremy Stephens once again got to book his own match, as he challenged Marcus Davis, who is moving to lightweight. The fight has been agreed to but is not official, for 1/1 in Las Vegas.
--Chris Jericho suffered a pulled abdominal muscle while performing with Fozzy recently according to his twitter.
--OVW announced there will be four shows in four nights from 12/8 to 12/11 at the Davis Arena in Louisville. There will also be a tryout session on 12/4 and 12/5 put on by OVW with Jim Cornette and John Laurinaitis scouting talent. The first show is 12/8, an OVW TV taping, which will include Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas returning to the promotion. 12/9 and 12/10 will be ROH TV tapings, with Haas & Benjamin, Roderick Strong Chris Hero, Claudio Castagnoli, Eddie Edwards, Briscoe Brothers, Christopher Daniels, Homicide and more. The OVW singles title and tag titles will be defended on the ROH tapings shows. There will also be another OVW show on 12/11. If you have a ticket stub for the ROH shows, you can get $3 off any ticket price. They have a special for $37 where you can get tickets to all four shows. For those coming from out-of-town a special rate has been set up at the Springhill Suites by Marriott in Louisville. If you ask for the ROH rate, you can get a $79 per night rate.
--Austin Aries vs. Chuck Taylor, Homicide vs. Jon Moxley, Kyle O'Reilly vs. Bobby Fish, Ricochet vs. Adam Cole and Jimmy Jacobs vs. Johnny Gargano headline for Evolve on 11/20 in Union City, NJ at the Ace Arena. To win a pair of tickets to this show you can e-mail to
There will be a drawing for free tickets. Please only enter if you can attend this show. The winner will be drawn on Friday.
--The new WWE release on the career of Bobby Heenan had listings. It's mostly a series of skits and angles, including some AWA stuff from the 70s, but mostly WWF and WCW. It includes Heenan matches from the AWA against Lord Al Hayes, Greg Gagne, teaming with Nick Bockwinkel against Hulk Hogan, as well as WWE matches with Sal Bellomo and Ultimate Warrior
--When WWE returns to England in April, the TV tapings will be 4/18 and 4/19 at the O2 Arena in London.
--Cain Velasquez appeared today on Opie & Anthony.
--Vinny Magalhaes, who went to the finals a few seasons back in TUF, will debut with M-1 Global against Alihan Magomedov on the 12/10 show in Moscow, Russia.
--NEW on 11/13 in Shelbyville, IN at the Boys Club.
--Rodney Wallace will replace Glover Teixeira on Friday night's MFC show in Edmonton at the River Cree Coliseum, facing David Heath. Teixeira had visa issues coming from Brazil. Wallace is a former UFC fighter. The show airs live on HDNet.
--On Pawn Stars Monday night, a man came in wanted to sell a copy of the original script from the movie "Goldfinger," a James Bond classic. He said it was the copy owned by Harold Sakata ("Oddjob" in the movie), who was a major pro wrestling star in the 50s and 60s as Oddjob Tosh Togo, as well as an Olympic silver medal winning weightlifter. The script sold for $500.
--Championship Wrestling International on Saturday night in Caledonia, ONT before 1,000 fans: Rip Impact b Anthony Darko, Tyson Dux b Doink the Clown, Rico Montana b Colin Delaney, Turcan Celik b R.J. City, X-Pac b Sebastian Suave, Flatliners won three-way over Highlanders, Hell Razors and Billy Gunn & Road Dogg, Steve Corino b Michael Elgin, Jim Duggan b Big Daddy Hammer, Tatanka b Tyson Dux, Scott Steiner b Brutus Beefcake. Sid Vicious was advertised to face Beefcake but wasn't there. (thanks to Steven Ashe)
--Announced as undercard fights for the 12/4 Strikeforce show in St. Louis are Fernando Bettega (doing a NXT gimmick, his pro is Jacare Souza), Max Matyniouck (pro Gegard Mousasi) and Patrick Cummins (pro is Mayhem Miller). Bettega faces Wayne Phillips of San Jose's AKA team, Martyniouck faces Justin Lawrence, Cummins, who wrestled at Penn State, faces Terrell Brown. The show features Dan Henderson vs. Renato Babalu Sobral for the next light heavyweight title shot, Paul Daley vs. Scott Smith, Robbie Lawler vs. Matt Lindland, Antonio Silva vs. Valentijn Overeem (former pro wrestler and older brother of Alistair) and Herschel Walker vs. Scott Carson.
--John Alessio vs. Phil Collins takes place on the Taichi Palace Fights show on 12/2 in Lemoore, CA, which also features Isaac DeJesus vs. former WEC star Micah Miller as well as former WEC fighter Tim KcKenzie, former UFC fighter Jay Silva and even former New Japan pro wrestler Jimmy Ambriz.
--NWA Florida on Saturday night in Fort Pierce drew around 545 fans: Vordell Walker b Kazuchika Okada, Dark City Fight Club b Guidos, Lince Dorado b Christopher Gray, Sinn Bodhi b Dagon, Tommy Taylor b Shawn Spears (Taylor then announced his retirement from wrestling after a great match), Craig Classic b Mike Quackenbush to win the NWA jr. title, The Sheik b Phill Shatter-DQ
--Shark Boy headlines on 11/13 in Monessen, PA for MVP Wrestling
--Eddie Kingston vs. Homicide headlines for CHIKARA on 11/21 in its final event at the Arena in Philadelphia for this year.
--Shane Douglas will be doing a seminar on 11/26 as well as wrestling on the Classic Championship Wrestling show in Lebanon, PA that night.
--UWC on Saturday night in Browns Mills, NJ at the Firehouse and they have a 12/4 Toys for Tots show in Pemberton,NJ at the Burlington County College.
--WSU and NWS are doing a joint show on 12/11 in Dunellen, NJ at the Knights of Columbus with Alicia vs. Nikki Roxx (Roxxi in TNA), plus Little Guido appears.
--GWN Championship Wrestling on Sunday in Hamilton, ONT at theGermania Club
--All Star Wrestling on Friday night in Tampa at Strokers Billiards.
--Pro Wrestling Phoenix on Saturday night in Council Bluffs, IA at the National Guard Armory.