WED. UPDATE: Bagwell, New UFC fights, Ratings, Rock public office, Michaels signs new deal, Overeem



By Dave Meltzer This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
        UFC Tonight replays at 7 p.m. tonight on Fuel, while UFC Insider airs at 7:30 p.m. and UFC 137 (B.J. Penn vs. Nick Diaz) airs at 8 p.m.  The prelims from Saturday's UFC show are replayed at midnight and Friday's episode of Ultimate Fighter airs at 2 a.m.
 
        A look at booking Brock Lesnar from Extreme Rules and into WrestleMania, the most in-depth look at the Alistair Overeem hearing and the decision made by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, the changes in major UFC shows over the past week including, full coverage of UFC 145 and the Cauliflower Alley banquet are just some of the major stories packed into the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.   
 
        The issue will be up on the site tonight along with a back issue from early 1995 also up on the site this week,
 
        Our lead story concerns Brock Lesnar's return to PPV with WWE this week.  We look at the buildup, a comparison with last year's biggest "B" show, numbers "B shows have been doing and how well Lesnar's return can perform.
 
        We also look at why the goals of the wrestlers in this match should be completely different from a usual WWE PPV main event, and why.  We also look at the difference between this Brock Lesnar and the one that was in WWF in 2002-2004.  We look at the Extreme Rules show, keys to the show, the decision to put prelims on You tube and the flaw that was shown by another organization with the same idea. 
 
        We also look at ideas for both SummerSlam and WrestleMania and one idea currently floated for SummerSlam.
 
        We also have full coverage of the Overeem hearings and decision by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.  We look at how the decision went down, the testimony, the background of Dr. Hector Molina and media criticism of the decision.
 
        We also look at how the UFC shows have changed with the Overeem and Chael Sonnen situation evaluating the new main events, update on the Brazil show, and what show company officials are talking like they expect to do a monster number with.
 
        We also have full coverage of UFC 145 from Atlanta, with the business notes including early buy rate info, the key parts of the show, match-by-match coverage, payoffs and poll results on the show.
 
        We've also got a look at the 2012 Cauliflower Alley Club banquet and the speeches by people like Steve Austin, Jim Ross, Ricky Steamboat, Wendi Richter, Sgt. Slaughter and others.  We look at the awards, we go back to the famous Slaughter & Kernodle vs. Steamboat & Youngblood mach in Greensboro, how Steamboat started as a pro wrestler, where he got his name, his altercations with Verne Gagne and more. 
 
        We look at Jim Ross talking about his friendship with Steve Austin, while Austin talked about breaking in as a wrestler and the psychology of doing a match, as well as the possibility of wrestling again.
 
        We also look at Chris Jericho's tenure in WWE, the story behind Nikki Bella winning the Divas title and where it goes, more on the current planned start date of the network and a show they are working on, the release of Andy Leavine, David Otunga, the new philosophy in the WWE movie division, why Edge was on Raw, WWE business numbers, Austin talks Mania, change in a finishing move and why WWE champs defending in another promoting, next show in New York, new signing, as well as a look at the final shows of the recent European tour.
 
        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.

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        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've got our weekly Friday night ratings notes.
 
        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.
 
        Also in this week's issue:
 
--Yet another new idea for a pro wrestling tournament
 
--Arena Mexico 56th anniversary show
 
--Update on All Japan Champion Carnival tournament
 
--Update on NOAH tag team tournament
 
--Tatsumi Fujinami 40th anniversary show
 
--A look at highlights of Fujinami's career
 
--Two Japanese sports legends meet in the ring for the first time
 
--President of one of the biggest wrestling companies in the world works as a heel manager on a minor show
 
--Former MMA heavyweight champion signs to make pro wrestling debut next month
 
--Update on Buff Bagwell's injuries
 
--Famous anniversaries in recent weeks
 
--The latest ECW revival attempt
 
--U.S. Olympic trials
 
--New books coming out
 
--Former WWE wrestler now fighting MMA
 
--ROH back on the road
 
--Lockdown PPV estimates
 
--PPV main event being tried out on the road
 
--The last episode and the future of Ring Ka King
 
--Looking at taping TNA television on the road
 
--Update on James Storm
 
--Notes on upcoming TNA television
 
--TNA house show notes
 
--Update on Nick Diaz
 
--UFC signs a champion from Bellator and details behind it
 
--Update on MMA legalization in New York
 
--A look at the next Fuel live special
 
--Update on B.J. Penn
 
--In hindsight, what actually killed Strikeforce as an independent group
 
--Decorated wrestler who once beat Ben Askren signs with UFC
 
--Lots of new UFC fights
 
--Coverage of one of the biggest fights in Bellator history
 
--Fedor's next fight updated
 
--Gina Carano tag teams with The Rock
 
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Wednesday's News, Notes & Links
 
--TMZ reported that Buff Bagwell called his wife from his jeep shortly before his accident and told her that he was about to have a seizure. 
 
--The Observer will be up later tonight or possibly early tomorrow.  The sheer volume of news, combined with me being out of town three days this past week and teaching at Stanford yesterday really did a number on it.
 
--Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer radio covering the latest news.  We'll also be taking e-mail questions that you can send to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  (thanks to Tom Mehs, Andy Schnorr and many others)
 
 
--Cheick Kongo vs. Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira was announced for the UFC 149 show on 7/21 in Calgary in a heavyweight bout.   This is Nogueira's first fight back since shoulder surgery from his December loss to Frank Mir.
 
--The next UFC on Fuel event will be on 7/11 as we first reported.  We were told the 7/11 date, and then it was noted to us that Fuel president George Greenberg in a press conference said it would be 7/14.  So evidently it was at first 7/14, but it's a live show on the Wednesday after the Sonnen-Silva show from Las Vegas.  Mark Munoz vs. Chris Weidman will be one of the fights on that show.   
 
--In the cable ratings for last week, USA was again in first place with a 2.1 prime time average with Disney in second place at 1.7.  FX was No. 10 at 0.9, so Ultimate Fighter is just under the station average.  Syfy is No. 12 at 0.9.  Spike once again failed to make the top 25.  Raw was No. 4 and No. 5 last week.  It was No. 5 and No. 10 in 18-34 and No. 2  and No. 5 in 18-49.
 
--G.I Joe:  Retaliation, featuring Dwayne Johnson, debuts in Australia on 8/2 (thanks to James Stanios)
 
--Fox News has a story on Dwayne Johnson possibly going into politics (he has talked about this before) at http://www.foxnews.copm/entertainment/2012/04/25/rock-in-chief-dwayne-rock-johnson-on-whether-or-not-will-pursue-politics/?intcmp=features (thanks to Jeff Gagliardo)
 
 
--There was a very good story in today's Buffalo News on Dick Beyer at http://www.buffalonews.com/city/article826403.ece  Beyer is being honored tomorrow night at 6:30 p.m. with the Japanese Counsul-General's Commendation at DiPaolo's restaurant in Blasdell, NY for his going to Sendai, Japan after the earthquake and tsunami.
 
--Shawn Michaels has signed a merchandising deal with Eyeblack, which will produce a Michaels product line with phrases like Showstopper, Mr. Hall of Fame, on camouflage in conjunction with Michaels' Outdoor Channel TV show "MacMillan River Adventures."
 
--Jay Glazer was a guest on Dan Patrick's radio show today.  He never mentioned UFC by name, since Tuesday Patrick kind of ripped on UFC, but did say that Chuck Liddell was such a superstar in Las Vegas at one point that walking with him was like walking with Elvis.  He said how Liddell always signed every autograph and would take an hour to walk 100 yards in Las Vegas talking to fans.  He said that once he and Liddell were at a restaurant and Liddell went to the bathroom.  Glazer picked up his cell phone and sent a text message to Randy Couture.  In the message, he wrote, pretending to be Liddell, that before their second fight, he took a Viagra tablet and wanted to take their relationship to the next level.  Then he erased the message from Liddell's phone.  However, Liddell came back too quick and quickly noticed his phone was gone, and Couture wrote a nasty message back right away. (thanks to Charles Parker)
 
Do you believe Alistair Overeem's story?
Yes 6.5%
No 93.5%
 
What was the best of these matches?
Undertaker vs. Michaels 4-5-09 31.1%
Cena vs. Punk 7-17-11 13.9%
Misawa vs. Kobashi 3-1-03 11.5%
Kobashi vs. Samoa Joe 10-1-05 10.6%
Benoit & Angle vs. Edge & Mysterio 10-20-02 7.4%
Danielson vs. Morishima 8-25-07 6.4%
Undertaker vs. Michaels 3-28-10 5.9%
Muto vs. Tenryu 6-8-01 3.0%
Dragon Kid & Ryo Saito & Genki Horiguchi vs. Cima & Naruki Doi & Masato Yoshino 3-3106 2.8%
Michaels vs. Jericho 10-5-08 2.7%
Atlantis vs. Villano III 3-17-00 2.6%
Kobashi vs. Akiyama 7-10-04 1.8%
 
Will Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena top 200,000 buys in North America?
Yes 53.4%
No 46.6%
 
How should Lesnar vs. Cena end?
Lesnar winning quickly 56.1%
Lesnar winning 15-20 minutes 36.0%
Lesnar winning a long match 3.4%
Cena wins 15-20 minutes 1.9%
Cena wins long match 1.5%
Cena wins quickly 1.2%
 
What should be the primary goal of Lesnar vs. Cena
Lesnar over strong, sacrifice Cena short-term, build long-term storyline of Cena coming back 83.8%
Should not have a clean finish, build for an immediate rematch 5.1%
Lesnar wins an even match, goal to have the most exciting match possible 4.8%
Cena wins a match Lesnar dominates until the finish 2.7%
Cena goes over strong, message that WWE guys are stronger than UFC guys 2.5%
Lesnar wins a match Cena gets most of the offense in 1.0%
 
Poll on Raw
Excellent 5.1%
Good 30.0%
Average 30.3%
Fair 17.7%
Poor 16.9%
        14.8% of those responding didn't see the show
 
--Mick Foley's comedy show runs on 5/3 in Columbus, OH at the Wooland Tavern and 5/4 in Cleveland at Grog Shop with Rev. Bob Levy as a co-headliner.
 
--MMA Fight Corner is a new TV show that debuts this coming Friday night in the 6-7 p.m. time slot of Ch. 5 in Las Vegas.  It already airs on Fox Sports radio in Las Vegas, hosted by Billy Mira, Phil Devine, Joey Varner and Heidi Fang.
 
--There is a kickstarter campaign to raise money for an artist who is planning on doing a painting of every major world champion in wrestling history at http://www.pitch.com/plog/archives/2012/04/25/the-art-of-wrestling-kc-artist-rob-schamberger-wants-to-paint-all-208-pro-wrestling-champions  David Arquette found out about it and wanted to buy his painting.  Rob Schamberger is  hoping to raise $20,000.

 
--Chris Harrington of our web site board is starting a kickstarter campaign at http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mookieghana/indeedwrestling/ to do fundraising for a proposed book of wrestling statistics.
 
--Masked Republic is looking for editors for their upcoming television show and other media projects.  They are looking for people who have worked in editing with non-wrestling projects in particular.  For more info you can e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
--HWA Heartland Cup night two on Saturday night in Hamilton, OH:  Quarterfinals for Heartland Cup:  Jake Crist b Remi Wilkins, B.J. Whitmer b Alex Colon, Gerome Phillips b Drake Younger, Steve Corino b D.J. Hyde, Dustin Rayz b Jesse Emerson, Four corners match with DNA, Trent Killers, Heavyweight Heroes and Gavin Thorson & Jonathan Crane was a no contest, B.J. Whitmer b Jake Crist in a semifinal, Gerome Phillips b Steve Corino in the other semifinal, Chad Collyer & Ron Mathis & Jeremy Madrox & Chrisjen Hayme & Reed Bentley b Dave Crist & Matthew Taylor & Dre Jacobs & American Wrestling Warriors, Germone Phillips b B.J. Whitmer to win Heartland Cup.  D.J. Hyde then broke the trophy over Phillips head and announced CZW will be on 6/9 in Hamilton, OH at the Great Miami Event Center.
 
--Future Stars of Wrestling on Sunday in Las Vegas before 500 fans:  Sikou & Jefe b Bryce Harrison & Jack Manely, Brandon Gatson b Willie Mack, Johnny the Bull b Shawn Daivari-COR, Jay Garland b Michael Modest in a strap match, Rush b Kid Vegas, Remy Marcel b Kenny King, Tyshaun Prince b Jayson Cash, Hater Nation b Von Dooms, Remy Marcel b Sergio Vega, Shaun Ricker b Roderick Strong, Alkatrazz NC Tyson Tyler.
 
--Randy Smith will be the opponent for Tim Sylvia when he debuts in his home state of Maine on 6/16 in Lewiston, ME at the Adroscoggin Bank Colisee for New England Fight Night III.  They expect a big crowd for this show.
 
--Roger Deem is working on a book on the history of the Missouri State title and is looking for photos of the various champions, particularly Harley Race in his later reigns and Dory Funk Jr..  He can be reached at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
--IWA East Cost on 5/4 in Clendenin, WV with Rhino vs. B.J. Whitmer plus Mad Man Pondo, Drake Younger and Chance Prophet.
 
--Steve Corino vs. D.J. Hyde headlines for CZW on Friday night as Glasgow High School in Newark, DE.
 
--Platinum Championship Wrestling on 5/5 in Porterdale, GA and they will run there the first and third Saturday of every month.
 
--ECWA on 5/5 in Newark, DE at the Greater Newark Boys and Girls Club with Papadon vs. Kekoa the Flyin Hawaiian.
 
--There is a bus trip with stops in Queens, NY (at the White Castle on Queens Blvd.), New York (Hammerstein Ballroom) and Rahway, NJ (at the Rec Center) for Saturday's Extreme Reunion show at the Pennsylvania National Guard Armory in Philadelphia.  Trip is $133 which includes round trip, a GA ticket to the show, a Q&A session and photos with talent.  You can send to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for more info.
 
--Hoosier Pro Wrestling on 5/5 at the 4-H Fairgrounds in Columbus IN with Rob Conway, Flash Flanagan and more.
 
--WSU all women's show on Saturday night in Deer Park, NY at the Sportatorium for a double DVD taping.
 
--Matt Hardy will be a guest on Shane Helms show tonight at 7 p.m. Eastern at http://www.geekweek.com/live
 
--Lucha Libre Rudos Promociones on 4/29 in Minneapolis at the  Boys and Girls Club at 3 p.m.
 
--Wrestling for Charity from Saturday night in Sunnyvale, CA before 286 fans:  Synn b Victor Sterling, Will Wood & Boyce LeGrande b Rik Luxury & Ryan Von Kool, Davina Rose b Brittany Wonder, Chupacabra over Mikey Jay, Aaron Solo, Sheik Kahn Abadi and Matt Carlos, Mr. Massacre & Joe Sloan b Chicano Flame & Marty Flamez, Miss Over the Top Toplif b Cousin AC, Kimo b Adam Thornstowe, Dave Dutra b Matt Cross, Vennis DeMarco b Rikishi-DQ (thanks to Robert Haugh)
 
--UWC TV show for this week is up at http://www.youtube.com/UWCWrestlingVideos
 
--Traditional Championship Wrestling TV show featuring the return to wrestling of Ken Resnick is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NM2SYgcKc&feature=player_embedded  Their TV show will go to one hour in July, airing on stations in Arkansas.
 
--Ed, Craig and Cutrer talk with Beau James at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/cutrer/201...f-the-week

Who had the best show?

 

Who won the night?