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Daily Update: Paige & Del Rio, Tokyo Dome week events, Raw

THE ROUND-UP

The Latest from the F4W Staff

NEWS

AUDIO

We're looking for your thoughts on UFC 207, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst fight to dave@wrestlingobserver.com. We'll also be doing a poll on the Tokyo Dome show on late Tuesday/early Wednesday.

Raw is tonight in Tampa with Braun Strowman vs. Sami Zayn in a last man standing match announced plus the return of Bill Goldberg. There is no Smackdown house show on Monday night so it actually would make sense for Smackdown talent to be on the show teasing the Rumble match. It also would have made a good night for the Slammys since most Mondays you can't have the Smackdown talent at the show.

Smackdown and 205 Live are Tuesday night from Jacksonville. The Miz vs. Dean Ambrose for the IC title is on Tuesday.

NEW JAPAN WRESTLE KINGDOM 11 FROM THE TOKYO DOME ON NEW JAPAN WORLD IN ENGLISH AND JAPANESE STARTING AT 2:30 A.M. LATE TUESDAY NIGHT EASTERN TIME    

  • New Japan 20 man Royal Rumble rules match
  • Tiger Mask W (Kota Ibushi) vs. Tiger the Dark (ACH)
  • Young Bucks vs. Rocky Romero & Trent Baretta for IWGP Jr. tag titles
  • Gauntlet series for trios titles with Satoshi Kojima & Ricochet & David Finlay (champions), Seiya Sanada & Evil & Bushi, Yoshi-Hashi & Will Ospreay & Jado and Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi & Hangman Page
  • Cody the American Nightmare vs. Juice Robinson
  • Kyle O'Reilly vs. Adam Cole for ROH title
  • Tama Tonga & Tanga Roa vs. Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii vs. Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma for IWGP tag team titles
  • Kushida vs. Hiromu Takahashi for IWGP jr. tag title
  • Katsuyori Shibata vs. Hirooki Goto for Never Open weight title
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi for IC title
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Kenny Omega for IWGP title

FIGURE FOUR WEEKLY: Figure Four Weekly 12/26/2016: Is WWE violent enough?

A couple years ago, I was working on an article for Fighting Spirit Magazine about how lopsided WWE was in terms of having too many babyfaces and not enough heels, as well as the company's heel/face divide in general. One of the people I interviewed for the article was Kevin Sullivan, who spoke at length about how he felt that WWE heels were inherently limited because they couldn't "commit a violent act" due to WWE's "PG" content restrictions... Subscribers click here to continue.


WRESTLING OBSERVER NEWSLETTER: January 2, 2017 UFC 207 preview, Wrestlemania's rumored matches, more

A look at Ronda Rousey going into what will be the fight that determines a lot of her legacy is the lead story of the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Find out why this fight will be looked back on as a key to her career, why it could be her last fight, and the psychological issues going into this fight. There is also a look at other aspects of the show including Cain Velasquez not fighting, and the last show for two of the longest-tenured UFC employees, booker Joe Silva and announcer Mike Goldberg. Plus, look at the ramifications of the show.

This issue also has an update on WrestleMania 33, with the three matches confirmed for the show and several others likely, plus the latest on the Undertaker situation and the different ideas Vince McMahon has been talking about, and also look at where other top stars are fitting in.

Preview the Kenny Omega vs. Kazuchika Okada match and the Tokyo Dome build, and find out what to look for from a business standpoint as well as a history standpoint. Also, have a look at the rest of the show and what to expect and a look back at some history of January 4th at the Tokyo Dome.

Mick Foley's hip surgery situation and why he's not having it just yet, notes on the 2017 Money in the Bank show, a look at the past 11 years with what WWE stars headlined most often and what WWE matches drew the best with a lot of surprises, inside this issue. Also, look at exactly who owns WWE right now. Find out what WrestleMania main event poll that was taken down, and also look at the situation in the U.K. Examine the NXT TV specials, Hulk Hogan, a college class on a former WWE champion, WWE and Matt Riddle, how a WWE Network special was edited, as well as stock notes, and the most watched shows of the past week on the WWE Network... Subscribers click here to continue.


ORDERING INFO: Order the print Wrestling Observer right now and get it delivered via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer, or by using PayPal directing funds to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com
 
Rates in the United States are $13 for 4 issues, $32 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $14.50 for 4, $35 for 12, $67 for 24, $111 for 40 and $144 or 52. In Europe, you can get the fastest delivery and best rates by sending to moonsault@mediaplusint.com. For the rest of the world, rates are $16.50 for 4, $44 for 12, $85 for 24, $141 for 40 issues and $183 for 52. If you order by mail with a check, cash or money order (P.O. Box 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228), you can get $1 off in every price range.)

If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can choose one free classic issue, or two free classic issues with a 40-issue subscription.

WON BACK ISSUE: December 12, 1999: WWF slightly tones down product, Vince Russo on WOL, more - After a week of bad publicity which sent sponsors running and sent its stock plummeting, the kinder, gentler WWF came back with a toned down Smackdown and a slightly toned down, although you'd have to examine to closely to notice, Raw show... Subscribers click here to continue.


MONDAY NEWS UPDATE

Bryan and I will have a show tonight talking Raw and the latest news. You can also send questions to tonight's show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com.

Paige and Alberto Del Rio were at the Raw show earlier today. Del Rio came to pick her up. She was backstage being talked with about how her recovery from her neck surgery is going.

Regarding the contract issues with Spectrum Cable and NBC, where the contract expired on 12/31 and the sides were apart in talks, both sides are still carrying the shows right now to keep service uninterrupted, so Raw will be available in the same amount of the country as usual.

Steve Corino and Kevin Kelly are in Japan to announce the New Japan events, which start late tonight after Raw with the matches at the Fan Axxess show at Differ Ariake in Tokyo. The Tokyo Dome show starts at 2:30 a.m. Eastern time late Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. The press conference airs starting at 10 p.m. Eastern time tonight on New Japan World.

Cheeseburger from ROH is in Japan so he'll likely be in the Rumble, like he was last year.   

WWE

  • Enzo & Cass vs Rusev & Jinder Mahal was added to tonight's Raw lineup.
  • "Moana," starring Dwayne Johnson opened at No. 2 in Australia with a $5,115,137 gross. In the U.S., even though it's been out six weeks, it was still No. 4 this past weekend. (thanks to James Stanios)
  • Lilian Garcia sang the national anthem at the Los Angeles Rams game yesterday.
  • Tajiri will return on 205 Live tomorrow night.

Some new WWE live events

  • 2/18 in Bakersfield
  • 2/19 in Long Beach
  • 2/20 in San Diego (this will be a Smackdown Monday night house show)

Some new NXT house show dates are:

  • 2/9 in Philadelphia at the Tower Theater
  • 2/10 in Asbury Park, NJ at Convention Hall
  • 2/11 in Albany, NY at the National Guard Armory

MISCELLANEOUS

  • EWA had a year-end show in Leoben, Austria on Friday night before a virtually sold out crowd of 1,000 fans. The big draw on the show was Alberto E Patron, who came with brother El Hijo del Dos Caras. Alberto the promoter Chris Raaber have been friends since they met working in WWE developmental in 2009. Alberto helped Raaber win the EWA title, and stopped Joe Doering from using a belt shot on Raaber. He cut a promo praising the EWA and its fans and burying WWE. He also thanked fans for supporting real wrestling and that he was not a sports entertainer but a pro wrestler. Tommy Tornado & Timmy Torpedo & Christian Meixner b Leon & Nico Narciso & Robert Dreissker, Michael Jartiz b Dennis Zinner, Amber Rox b Andrea Haid, Michael Kovac b Hakeem Waqur, Rock & Rolla b Red Scorpion, Alberto El Patron & El Hijo del Dos Caras b Chris Bolen & Demolition Davies in 15:00 when Alberto tapped out Davies with an amrbar. Chris Raaber b Joe Doering to win the EWA title in a no DQ match. Raaber came out with seven other belts that were at stake. Alberto did another promo saying that Raaber was his best friend and the only guy in developmental in WWE who would talk to him and help him with his English. He said that pro wrestling was a business of back stabbers and people in WWE will try and hold you down, but here you can just have fun. He then challenged Raaber for a match and the two shook hands about it.
  • A look at Evolve in 2016 is here.
  • Volador Jr. defends his NWA Historic welterweight title tonight in Puebla against La Mascara. Atlantis & Caristico & Maximo vs. Cavernario & Gran Guerrero & Negro Casas is the semi. The show will air live on the CMLL YouTube channel starting at 8 p.m. Eastern time. 
  • Bellator has a Chael Sonnen-Tito Ortiz press conference tomorrow to promote their 1/21 show in Los Angeles.
  • IWF on 1/7 at 7 p.m. at the IWF Centre in Nutley, NJ.
  • The World Series of Fighting show aired live on WFAN, the No. 1 sports station in the country, on Saturday afternoon. They used the same feed that NBC did with Bas Rutten, Todd Harris, Renzo Gracie and Kayla Harrison announcing. (thanks to Burt Turelli) 
  • Cross Body Pro Wrestling on 1/7 in Kitchener, ONT at 69 Anges St.
  • Empire State Wrestling on 1/21 in North Tonawanda, NY featuring Braxton Sutter and JT Dunn. 
  • MCW on 1/28 in Joppa, MD at the MCW Arena with Matt & Jeff Hardy, King Maxel, Queen Rebecca and Senor Benjamin. Also on the show are Melina and Lio Rush.
  • NWA Smoky Mountain Wrestling on 1/7 in Kingsport, TN at the Civic Auditorium. Chase Owens was on the show.
  • Mike Tyson and Sting will be the headliners for The Big Event autograph signing on 3/4 in Queens NY. Also appearing are Jerry Lawler, Billy Gunn, Road Dogg, Cody Rhodes, Sean Waltman, Kamala, Demolition, Gene Okerlund, Lita, Sid Vicious, Abyss, Crazzy Steve, Rosemary, Melina, and Koko B. Ware.

Today in Professional Wrestling History (1/2): Arn Anderson wins the NWA TV title


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