WED UPDATE: Jericho, Cena media, ratings, Angle wakes up, New UFC main announced, Edge

By Dave Meltzer | This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Chris Jericho will be appearing on Jimmy Fallon tonight.

Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer radio. Our midweek show will feature a lot of Q&A, so if you've got questions on pro wrestling or MMA, today is a good day to send them to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

A replay of last night's UFC Tonight airs on Fuel at 7 p.m., while a replay of last night's Ultimate Insider airs at 7:30 p.m.  UFC 79 will be airing at 8 p.m., while the prelims for the 2/4 UFC 143 PPV air at midnight tonight.

New Observer Alert: Wrestlemania looms, Developmental issues, sad Friday Night Wars

Between coverage of the build to WrestleMania, WWE developmental, the sad results of week two of the Friday night wars, and coverage of Victory Road, All Japan at Sumo Hall, Rey de Reyes as well as part two on the life of Doug Furnas, we've got a double issue of the Observer out this week.

The issue is up on the site today along with a back issue from early 1995 also up on the site this week.

Our lead story runs down the lineup and the promotion of The Rock vs. John Cena match and WrestleMania 28, including notes on the special as well as updates on the show.

We also look at the whole WWE developmental story, how it went down, blow by blow, a look at the FCW history as well as a look back at WWE pulling out of other territories and long-term goals of developmental.  We look at the decision that have been made and experimental tapings that have been done, as well as changes in the current TV structure.

In our feature on Friday night wars part two, looking at Smackdown, Ultimate Fighter, Best of Ultimate Fighter and Bellator, we look at competition, the drop in each show from week one, which show is it worse for and more.

We've also got a look at the Victory Road PPV, looking at what made the show good, what made the show annoying, the Bobby Roode show-ending angle, a look at Lockdown and match-by-match coverage with both star ratings and poll results on the show.

We look at All Japan's biggest event so far in 2012, with the Sumo Hall show headlined by Jun Akiyama vs. Keiji Muto for the Triple Crown, as well as a look at the next Triple Crown match, and notes on the upcoming Champion Carnival tournament.

We also look at next year's WrestleMania, CFO George Barrios talking about company future plans in the TV and movie business as well as talks UFC.  We look at the new WWE movie business strategy, John Cena's car accident, the debut of Lord Tensai and his background and Japanese tenure, a second WWE wrestler says he has gone vegan but won't say it on TV and an update on Ric Flair and the WWE Hall of Fame.

We also look at a new themed PPV, a show that is going to be on a UFC weekend and may suffer for it, Rock's training to get back in wrestling shape, Rock's movie gross, entertainment plans for Mania, Edge talking Hall of Fame and what he had envisioned when he would retire and who he would have been working with this year.  We look at an example of why Undertaker is so respected, as well as Daniel Bryan's road to the world title starting in high school wrestling in his backyard, WWE stock, WWE gets commended by legislature, DVR watching on Raw and does Rock have an effect and more on introducing new characters.  We also look at a WWE star appearing in a foreign movie, notes on more developmental talent and who William Regal says is the best pro wrestler he has ever seen, and it's a name that almost nobody in North America would have ever heard of.  Plus we have notes on all the WWE weekend house shows and business notes.

We also have part two in our look at the life and career of Doug Furnas, talking to his wife, his brother, legendary powerlifter Ed Coan as well as some anecdotes of my own interaction with Furnas during the height of his career in the 90s.  We look at him growing up, college football, powerlifting, WCW, WWF and especially All Japan Pro Wrestling with milestones achieved, why he never headlined Budokan Hall, what he was known for in Japan and the All Japan boom.

We look at the tragedies of that All Japan period, Furnas' life before and after wrestling.  We look at his auto accident that doctors said would end his sports career, and his coming back.  We look at the various choices he made about sports careers and life, whether it be bull riding, football, powerlifting and wrestling.  We look at his training methods to become one of the strongest men in the world, how that hampered his attempts to play in the NFL and what he learned from that and changed to become a pro wrestler.  We look at his foray into the World's Strongest man competition, and where he could have gone in powerlifting if he hadn't retired from the sport at the age of 27.

We look at a unique allergy that actually hurt him as a powerlifter, and why his philosophy on pro wrestling was so different from what pro wrestling was in the American market.  We look at Jim Herd's idea for him, as well as the famous Furnas story from the 1994 Champion Carnival tournament.  We have his career title history, why he left All Japan, what happened in WWE and his unique reaction to what happened at the 1997 Survivor Series.

We've also got a 2011 rundown of every wrestler who wrestled in WWE for the year, even if it was only one match, with win/loss records, who was the busiest, how many matches did everyone have, who was booked to win and lose the most and what two wrestlers worked the most with each other during the year.

We also look at what will be one of WWE's biggest house shows of 2012, the Madison Square Garden show from Sunday.

We've also got a look at the event that is likely to draw the second biggest wrestling crowd of the year in the United States, the NCAA tournament finals and why the names Kyle Dake and David Taylor both have a chance to go down in history as two of the best collegiate wrestlers of all-time.

We've also got coverage of the AAA Rey de Reyes match, featuring Jeff Jarrett, The Rey de Reyes tournament and the road to babyface of L.A. Park.

The Wrestling Observer ranges weekly from 35,000 to 50,000 words covering pro wrestling and MMA internationally. Each issue has coverage and analysis of all the major news, plus every issue breaks major news stories before the Internet sties and has the most complete look at the pro wrestling and MMA business anywhere, plus history pieces available nowhere else.

The Observer is now in its 29th year of being the leading insider pro wrestling publication in the world.  The biggest and most influential names in the pro wrestling and MMA industry, from bookers to promoters to Hall of Fame wrestlers and fighters to the biggest names on camera and behind the scenes, along with thousands of readers in all 50 states and more than 30 countries subscribe.  Many have subscribed for 20 years or longer consecutively.  They get the most detailed and inside coverage of what is going on all over the world.  Everywhere from Wall Street to the major offices to television networks in the U.S. and Japan turn to the Observer for what is going on in the business.

If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can get one free classic issue of your choice sent to you today.  With a 40 issue subscription, you can get two free classic issues sent to you today.  Just sent your Visa or Master Card order with your name, address, phone number, card number and expiration date to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or you can order at and use the This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it address.

You can also subscribe via check, cash or money order, as well as credit card by mail, by sending to Wrestling Observer Newsletter, P.O Box 1228, Campbell, CA  95009-1228.
We also have our in-depth look at the ratings of the national shows, including how every segment of Raw and Impact did, what gained in audience, and what lost in audience.

We also have our weekly features with the results from the major events held around the world over the past week, as well as reviews of the major television shows.

This Week's Issue: Lawsuits, retirements, Vader returns

--One of the world's best wrestlers starts up in Mexico

--Funny winner of the new blood tournament

--More wrestlers moving promotions

--Something unheard of in response to a lawsuit with a legendary wrestler

--Yet another legendary star does a retirement stipulation

--More on independent shows over WrestleMania weekend

--NOAH's big show of the tour

--A look at the upcoming NOAH tag team tournament

--Big Van Vader returns to Japan

--Two Hall of Famers wrestle each other for the first time

--Tatsumi Fujinami's 40th anniversary as a pro wrestler

--The end of a promotion as it officially folds over the weekend

--K-1 legend and MMA star headline a major pro wrestling show

--Former opponents in a publicized MMA fight become a pro wrestling tag team

--Ultimo Dragon's 25th anniversary as a pro wrestler match

--Former WWE performer in negotiations to host a major network TV show

--Nigel McGuinness talks about his career, his documentary, his dreams, his frustrations and his successes

--Update on Oklahoma and its banning pro wrestling and what pro wrestling event is happening

--What's the real story behind the problems

--NWA promoters in court

--NFL star on one of the league's most legendary teams, who was also a pro wrestler, passes away

--Update on Jim Neidhart's legal troubles

--Lucha Libre USA running several major arenas and why this feels like a disaster happening

--Pro wrestler is hero as a knife wielding crazy man was attacking people

--Mike Tyson and Superstar Billy Graham

--Former WWF television announcer sues claiming he was bilked out of life savings by former NFL star

--Perhaps pro wrestling's most famous family feud has two members form tag team

--Bruno Sammartino to make a few appearances at pro wrestling events

--Former ECW star working on a children's book

--First-ever match between two different sets of WWF tag team champions from the first expansion era

--Son of a former champion set to debut in a few weeks

--More legal action involving Hulk Hogan

--Kevin Nash talks about where he'd like to be

--Ring Ka King notes for this week

--Tons of new UFC fights and thoughts on them

--UFC up for one national sports award

--Yet more on Nick Diaz's case with more details of the results of his drug test

--Lorenzo Fertitta talks UFC in Madison Square Garden

--More on UFC threatening to file suit against people who stream their shows

--Major health scare for Zuffa star worsens

--Statistical note on Jones vs. Evans

--Note on weight cutting and how it has changed in wrestling and the rules in place

--Dan Henderson talks his next fight

--Notes on the Ultimate Fighter TV show

--Bellator rundown and what is coming up

--Details on the debut of Super Fight League in India with Bob Sapp as well as plans for the next show

--What 80s WWF name is now the training partner of one of the most famous MMA fighters in the world         

Wednesday's News, Notes & Links

--I want to make mention of the interview up on the site with Nigel McGuinness that was done yesterday.  We've been flooded with comments on it and it was one of the best interviews we've had as he was really open and honest and gave the kind of perspective on his career, its positives and negatives, in a manner that has rarely been done.

--USA Network again won the cable ratings race this week with a 2.4 prime time average over a 1.7 for TBS and 1.6 for Disney.  FX was No. 12 at 1.0 and Syfy was No. 18 at 0.8.  Spike was not in the top 25.  Raw was No. 4 and No. 5 last week, behind Walking Dead, Swamp People and Jersey Shore.  Jersey Shore was only barely ahead of Raw for third.  The second hour of Raw last week was No. 9 in 18-34.  The second hour was No. 4 in 18-49 and first hour was No. 6.

--Kurt Angle went crazy on Twitter last night, insulting fans, tweeting Jim Ross about coming back for one last WrestleMania, then saying he's happy in TNA and making money, that maybe he should go to UFC and beat Jon Jones and how Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin took 15 years to get over while he got over in one year, and while he loved them both, he could beat both in a shoot. Not a mental shoot.

He denied being drunk when fans started questioning his sanity and claimed to have not touched a pill in eight years. Then he woke up and apologized to Michaels and Austin.

--The April issue of Penthouse (which features a girl with giant boobs on the cover) includes a five page article on Angle.  No, the girl isn't posing with him.

--The Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Miguel Cotto fight has become so big in Las Vegas that the Mandalay Bay, Monte Carlo, Circus Circus and Mirage are all doing closed-circuit broadcasts.  Tickets at all the locations will be $75 and go on sale Friday.

--There is an Internet presale going on today for the WWE No Way Out PPV on 6/17 in East Rutherford, NJ, until midnight Friday.  You can get tickets at Ticketmaster using the password WWENEWJERSEY.  They are pushing this as the first PPV at the Meadowlands in five years, with John Cena, Sheamus, C.M. Punk and Big Show as headliners.  Tickets are also on sale for Raw the next night at the Nassau Coliseum using the password WWELONGISLAND.  They are advertising Cena & Punk & Sheamus vs. Chris Jericho & Mark Henry & Daniel Bryan as the main event, not that it isn't going to change eight times between now and that week.

--Jake Ellenberger vs. Martin Kampmann will headline the 6/1 UFC show in Las Vegas in a five round fight. This show also features the finals of the current season of Ultimate Fighter.

--ROH announced that all of its titles will be defended on the 5/12 Border Wars show in Toronto at the Ted Reeve Arena.  Announced for the show are Davey Richards, Jay Lethal, The Briscoes, Kevin Steen, Roderick Strong, Michael Elgin, Eddie Edwards, Kenny King, Rhett Titus, Charlie Haas, Shelton Benjamin, Young Bucks and Tommaso Ciampa.

--Edge did a Minneapolis radio interview and said Christian would be inducting him into the Hall of Fame.  It was widely assumed that would happen, but in previous interviews, Edge had said he has asked for Christian to do so but had not been told by the office if it was approved.

--Dragon Gate USA's WrestleMania weekend will have a $1.99 iPPV on 3/30 at 8 p.m., a regular priced iPPV on 3/31 at 8 p.m., plus a 4/13 Evolve show in Toronto headlined by Fit Finlay vs. Sami Callihan as an iPPV.

--John Cena appears on HLN's Showbiz Tonight at 11 p.m. talking about his match with The Rock. (thanks to Jeff Sheridan)

--Jim Duggan's new autobiography, ghost written by the Observer's Scott Williams, will be out soon.  Duggan is doing a book signing on the Monday after WrestleMania, on 4/2 from 6-7 p.m. at Books & Books in Coral Gables, FL.

What would be the best night of the week to air Ultimate Fighter?
Wednesday 43.8%
Thursday 21.0%
Tuesday 19.3%
Monday 5.2%
Friday 5.2%
Sunday 3.4%
Saturday 2.1%

What would be the best night of the week to air Bellator?
Wednesday 38.6%
Tuesday 24.9%
Thursday 15.7%
Saturday 8.1%
Sunday 7.1%
Friday 3.0%
Monday 2.5%

What was the best segment on Raw?

Punk-Jericho first segment 46.1%
Rock statue interview 29.9%
Undertaker-Michaels-HHH 15.0%
John Cena vs. Mark Henry 5.3%
Miz promo 3.6%

What do you think will be the best match at WrestleMania?
Punk vs. Jericho 46.3%
HHH vs. Undertaker 28.5%
Rock vs. Cena 12.8%
Bryan vs. Sheamus 7.0%
Women 4.2%
Rhodes vs. Show 0.5%
Team Johnny vs. Team Teddy 0.5%
Orton vs. Kane 0.3%

What did you think of RAW?
Excellent 10.2%
Good 50.3%
Average 22.2%
Fair 9.6%
Poor 7.8%
12.3% of those responding didn't see the show

--Ultimate Fighter Brazil won't be airing in the U.S. on TV concurrently with Brazil, where it debuts on Globo on Sundays after Big Brother. However, it will stream at in the U.S. on Sundays at 11:30 p.m. with English subtitles with these fights:

Leonardo Mafra Teixeira vs. Samuel Trindade
Daniel Sarafian vs. Richardson Moreira
Francisoc Drinaldo vs. Charle Maicon
Delson Heleno vs. Gilberto Galvao
Sergio Moraes vs. Thiago Real
Cezar Ferreira vs. Gustavo Sampaio
Joao Paulo de Souza vs. Thiago de Oliveira Perpetuo
Renee Forte vs. Fabio Luiz Vital de Costa

Alexandre Ramos vs. Hugo Viana
Giovanni da Silva Santos Jr. vs. John Teixeira
Marcos Vinicius Borges Pancini vs. Pedro Mobre
Rodrigo Damm vs. Fabricio de Assis Costa da Silva
Rony Mariano Bezerra vs. Dileno Lopes
Anistavio Medeiros vs. Rafael Bueno
Wagner Campos vs. Fernando Duarte Guerra
Godofredo Pepey vs. Johnny Goncalves

--Sandman has been added to Shane Douglas' 4/28 ECW revival show in Philadelphia.  They've also announced Stevie Richards & Blue Meanie vs. Little Guido & Tony Mamaluke managed by Tracy Smothers.

--Mike Pyle vs. Josh Neer has been added to the 6/8 UFC show with the location still not announced.  Pyle released a video announcing the fight.

--Judy Robley, the wife of Buck Robley for more than 40 years, passed away last week due to cancer.  We send our sympathies to Buck on the loss.

--NFL coach Sean Payton has been suspended by Roger Goodell, but Scott Bowden breaks the scoop about a familiar person coming back.

--John Morrison interview here.

--The movie "Gaea Girls" about a former popular Japanese women's wrestling promotion run by Chigusa Nagayo is playing for one night only in New York at the 92Y Tribeca on Hudson St. at 7:30 p.m.  If you've never seen it, it's worth seeing as it shows several women starting out their careers and also features one of the single most amazing dropkicks in pro wrestling history.

--Tennessee Congressman Steve Cohen and Memphis Mayor A.C. Wharton have declared this coming Saturday as Sputnik Monroe Day, with proclamations listing Monroe's achievements both in the wrestling ring and in the local Civil Rights movement in Memphis.

--More odds from using the end of the broadcast rule on the result:

- HHH +325
- Undertaker -475

- C.M. Punk -110
- Chris Jericho -130

--Sacred Heart University has named its new student commons building after Linda McMahon. The Linda McMahon Commons will include a bookstore, a student dining hall and a private dining hall as well as outdoor seating and a lounge.  It was named after McMahon after she made a $5 million donation to the school.  McMahon has also served on the school's board of trustees for a number of years and was able to pull strings to get Vince McMahon speak at the school's commencement several years back.

--Big Daddy V may be booked as part of WrestleMania festivities. There was an indie show in Union City, TN on 3/31 where he was a headliner, and promoter Kimala Jr. said they are moving the show to 4/14 due to him being booked by WWE on 3/31.

--In Canada, the Rock vs. Cena special will be airing on 3/29 on The Score at 4 p.m., 3/30 at 10:30 p.m., 3/31 at 2 a.m. and 4/1 and 4 p.m.

--A two part interview with Chris Masters: Part 1 | Part 2

--The Spin Cycle with Jeremy Borash, Gail Kim, SoCal Val, Robbie E and Robbie T talks about the best and worst dressed in TNA, talking about who they've had affairs with, Gail Kim talks about boyfriend Robert Irvine and Val talks about what non-TNA wrestler she had her first date. The show also airs on Wednesday night son Challenge TV in the U.K. and Fuel TV in Australia.

--Hayabusa will be coming to Mexico for the first time in ten years in May for the annual Lucha fan fest   

--Big Time Wrestling on 5/12 at Newark Memorial High in Newark,CA features Matt Hardy, Bobby Lashley, Shawn Daivari and Chris Masters.

--On ESPN on Monday, there was a show with Jonathan Coachman that aired and they showed something called "Worst Day at Work". They showed Friday night's Brian Rogers knockout of Victor Vianna in Bellator and identified the clip as being from the UFC show over the weekend (thanks to Paul Fontaine)

--Crossfire Entertainment returns to the Nashville Fairgrounds on 5/19 with Matt Hardy, Maria Kanellis, Cassidy Riley, Chase Stevens, Kid Kash, Jerry Lynn, Brian Christopher, Wolfie D and Shane Douglas.

--An interview with Terry Taylor here.

--A note from Monday's update on the MIT pro wrestling class.  It was actually a class from 2007, but it is still listed on the web.

--WPW from Sunday in Santa Ana, CA before 120 fans:  Terremoto Jr. b Microbio, War Hog b Ramtha, Wama & Cianuro b Cyber Ram & Ramtha, Yumi & Amazona b Sean Stryker & Frankie Segura, Infernal & Red Rum b Lil Cholo-DQ (thanks to Roy Lucier)

--The CWE Psychotic Justice event on 4/19 in Winnipeg at the Maples Community Center has been moved to 4/20.  Sid Vicious is advertised as the headliner.

--Friday night results from Tijuana:  Colibri & X-Torm b Chico Tormenta & Scream, Mr. Maldito & Maquiavelico & Platino b  Spyder Black & Tony Casanova & Ursus, Arandu & TJ Boy won four-way over Mortiz & Star Boy, Black Abyss & Psicosis and El Hijo del Fishman & Mr. Tempest, Blue Panther & La Mascara & Valiente b Misterioso Jr. & Negro Casas & Mr. Niebla (thanks to Kris Zellner)

--On last night's episode of Tosh.0, they had Bruce Buffer do introductions for a fight between Daniel Tosh's dogs (thanks to Daniel Short)

--AIW on 4/6 in Cleveland at Turners Hall with AR Fox vs. Uhaa Nation in a 30 minute Iron Man match plus a street fight with B.J. Whitmer & Tim Donst & Johnny Gargano vs. Flexor Industries, plus Colin Delaney, Sugar Dunerkton, Matt Cross and Irish Airborne.

--AIW also has an all women's show on 4/15 at Turner Hall in Cleveland at 4 p.m. headlined by Mia Yim vs. Allysin Kay plus Sara Del Rey appears.

--UWC Championship Wrestling TV show is up.

--Pro Wrestling Phoenix on Saturday night in Council Bluffs, IA at the National Guard Armory.

--Steeltown Pro Wrestling on 4/26 in Arborg, Manitoba at the Biforst Community Centre, 4/28 in Selkirk, Manitoba at the Memorial Hall and 4/29 in Winnipeg at the Royal Canadian Legion.

--Massachusetts' Big Time Wrestling on Saturday in Webster, MA at Town Hall with Bret Hart, Matt Hardy, Reby Sky, Nasty Boys and Shane Douglas at 7 p.m. They also run Sunday at 4 p.m. in Augusta, ME, at the Civic Center with Bret Hart, Matt Hardy, Reby Sky, Nasty Boys, Fit Finlay, Carlito, Lanny Poffo, Bushwhacker Luke Williams and Shane Douglas.

--Big Time Wrestling on 6/1 in Victorville, CA at the San Bernardino County Fairgrounds

--New England Championship Wrestling on Friday night in Blackstone, MA at the Millerville Men's Club with Bobby Fish vs. Chase Del Monte

--Chaotic Wrestling on 3/30 in Lowell, MA at the Polish American Veteran's Club and 3/31 in Woburn, MA at the Elks Lodge

The Most Popular Observers Ever

New subscribers ordering 24 or 40 issues have to let us know what major stories of the past 11 years you are most interested in and we'll send the issue with the best coverage of that story. We've got coverage of every major PPV event and world wide spectacular, every major star switching promotions, histories of companies like FMW, Rings and New Japan, retirement and obit issues of every major star who fits into those descriptions over the past 11 years, as well as our biggest issue every year, the annual awards issue, and our most controversial issue of every year, the Hall of Fame issue.

Our most requested issues in our history are:

*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 broadcast of Confidential as well as in Wrestling with Shadows, but 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 networks)

*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 steroid trial)

*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 Hogan)

*May 12, 2003 (The life and death of Elizabeth and the rise of fall of Lex Luger)

*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 and friends)

*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 Lesnar)

*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 business changed)

*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 the fall of New Japan, the Matt Hardy angle, tons of WWE firings, 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 its own, $7 overseas)

*January 9, 2006 (The life and times of Superstar Billy Graham, plus New Year's Eve 2005 coverage)

*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 week)

*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 overseas)

*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 overseas)

*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 Lewis)

*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 overseas)

*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)

You can also order any of these issues on their own for $4 in North America or $5 overseas.

Rates are:

For the United States, it is $12 for 4 issues, $29 for 12, $55 for 24, $91 for 40 and $118 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $13.50 for 4, $33 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 or 52.  In Europe, you can get the fastest delivery and best rates by sending to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . For the rest of the world, rates are $15.50 for 4, $41 for 12, $78 for 24, $126 for 40 issues and $163 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.

We now 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.

Who is the strongest of these Hall of Fame candidates?


What do you believe is the second most popular promotion right now in the U.S?