THURS. UPDATE: Bagwell update, legislating MMA, White on Silva, Angle in SI



By Dave Meltzer This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
        We're looking for reports on tonight's TNA house show in Kennewick, WA (Bobby Roode vs. RVD, Jeff Hardy vs. Kurt Angle, Austin Aries vs. Zema Ion, Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley vs. Christopher Daniels & Kazarian, Gail Kim vs. Velvet Sky and Matt Morgan vs. Gunner) as well as Saturday night's show in Wenatchee, WA to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  
 
        Impact tonight:
Devon vs. Bully Ray for the TV title
Jeremy Borash vs. Eric Bischoff
Kurt Angle vs. Anarquia
Alex Silva vs. Robbie E
Gail Kim vs. Brooke Tessmacher non-title
Samoa Joe & Magnus vs. Jeff Hardy & Mr. Anderson for tag tiles
        The main event segment is the Eric Bischoff farewell party
 
        MMA Uncensored will air after Impact.
 
        Superstars tonight
Kelly Kelly vs. Maxine
Alex Riley vs. The Miz
Usos vs. Hunico & Camacho
 
        On Fuel, UFC Tonight airs at 8 p.m., Ultimate Insider at 8:30 p.m. Best Of Pride at 9 p.m., and last Friday's Ultimate Fighter at midnight.
 
        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.

        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 www.paypal.com 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 a look at what material caused Anheuser-Busch to come down on UFC and what UFC's response was, as well as the originators of the situation and why it was inevitable.
 
        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
 
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)

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history)

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*August 16, 2004 (History of the Olympians in pro wrestling)

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Thursday's News, Notes & Links
 
--An update on Buff Bagwell is that he is in need of neck surgery since his neck was broken in two places in a car accident on Monday night.  TMZ.com ran a tape of the 911 call made by Bagwell's wife after he called her up while driving saying he thought he was about to have a seizure.  She called and told them what her husband had said, and said that it could have been because of a change in his medication, saying he's trying to cut back on pain pills. 
 
--There was testimony in Sacramento yesterday for Assembly Bill 2100 that would prevent MMA promoters from negotiating merchandising rights with fighters that would continue after the term of the contract, prevent such things as championship clauses (where the champion is tied to the promotion until he loses the title), rights to match offers (where the promotion can keep a contracted fighter if they choose by matching an existing outside offer) and make it illegal for a promotion to keep any sponsors for sponsoring fighters.  It would also tax all PPV revenues on events in the state 5%, the same percentage that caused UFC to stay out of Oklahoma and threaten to sue the state.  UFC sent people including Ronda Rousey, Chuck Liddell, Matt Hughes, Marc Ratner and attorney Laurence Epstein to testify against the bills, but it was still passed by a 5-3 margin.  Ironically, the most persuasive speaker of all was Frank Shamrock, who announces for Zuffa-owned Strikeforce, but testified for the passage of the bill.  Also testifying for the bill was former UFC fighter Antonio McKee.
 
--An article on Globo.com quoting Dana White saw him note that Anderson Silva was insistent on fighting in Brazil, feeling Chael Sonnen needed to be taught a lesson in that country.  But White insisted it be held in Las Vegas, because they couldn't run it in Rio outdoors and didn't want the biggest fight of the year to be held in a place where the buy rate would be minimized and at an indoor arena.
 
--Chandler Jones of Syracuse University, the younger brother of Jon Jones, is expected to be chosen in the first round of the NFL draft.  There is a story on the Jones brothers at the yahoo.com web site in the NFL news section.
 
--CNN ran a story today on immigration and interviewed pro wrestlers Blue Demon Jr. and R.J. Brewer (who does an anti-immigration gimmick that has gotten an unbelievable amount of media publicity). (thanks to Shiloh Robinson) 
 
--The new issue of Sports Illustrated had a scorecard note regarding Kurt Angle not going to the Olympic trials as well as Rulon Gardner not making weight to compete.
 
--A look at TNA's Fight Night concept that begins tonight is at http://youtu.be/kDMUXeftPmY
 
--The Press-Enterprise in Riverside County at http://www.pe.com/iguide/movies-and-tv/ has a story on Lisa "Tara" Varon, who is from Rialto, CA and will be on the 5/4 TNA show in Ontario.  The story said that Varon would be facing another California girl, Winter.  I'm not sure.  England, Luneberg, Germany, California, all kind of the same I guess.
 
--To show how well the India based Super Fight League is really doing, for its third show, headlined by Bobby Lashley vs. James Thompson, on 5/6 in New Delhi, they are running IGI Stadium and giving all the tickets away.  They sold virtually no tickets for the first two shows.  
 
--There is no live Bellator show tomorrow night.  Instead they have a special at 8 p.m. on MTV 2 running down the season so far and previewing the last few weeks.  They will return on 5/4.
 
--The Maiquel Falcao vs. Andreas Spang fight with the two guys who had the pull-apart on Friday, will take place on 5/25.
 
--TNA returns to MCU Park in Brooklyn for a house show on 7/21.  They've run the stadium the last few summers, drawing their two biggest house shows crowds in the U.S. of the last two days for the BaseBrawl concept with wrestling and fireworks.  
 
--Bill Moody (Paul Bearer) on his Facebook page said that he wasn't called about doing Raw until Saturday morning.  He said he was happy to be back, but has no intention of gong back full-time for any wrestling company right now.
 
--Urijah Faber's mother stopped a burglary recently by pulling out a pellet gun, which looked like a real gun and scared the robber into submission until the police arrived. 
 
Will Silva vs. Sonnen on 7/7 beat Mania's North American numbers?
Yes 44.8%
No 55.2%
 
Will Extreme Rules beat the numbers Survivor Series got?
Yes 61.2%
No 38.8%
 
Will Jim Miller vs. Nate Diaz beat a 2.1 rating?
Yes 16.4%
No 83.6%
        Going to be some very unhappy people if this turns out to be the case.
 
Who should face Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam?
C.M. Punk 43.1%
Randy Orton 25.3%
HHH 24.7%
John Cena 6.9%
 
--An interview with Adam Cole talking ROH and saying how they want to be more like UFC than like TNA and WWE is at http://www.sportstownchicago.com/fightclub    
 
--Crossfire Entertainment presents wrestling at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds in Nashville on 5/19 headlined by Matt Hardy vs. MVP, Reby Sky vs. Jessicka Havok, Kevin Sullivan vs. Hammerjack, Cassidy Riley & Chase Stevens vs. David Young & Sigmon, Jerry Lynn vs. Kid Kash, Brian Christopher vs. Wolfie D in a loser leaves town match, and Shane Douglas vs. Arrick Andrews.
 
--An interview and story on Domenic DeNucci is up at http://bit.ly/IKEaaj
 
--NZWPW in Ngairo, New Zealand on Saturday:  Nic Silver b Tuff & Soove, Lilli Lane b Scarlett, Ben Mana b Danny Jacobs, Misty b Evie, Elias b Brother T, Johnny Idol & James Shaw & Dal Knox & Brian St. James & Jakob Cross b D-Hoya & Taylor Adams & Mikey Rave & Liam Fury & Travis Banks. (thanks to Steve Ogilvie)
 
--WPW from Sunday in Santa Ana, CA before 130 fans:  Jalapeno Lopez b Microbio-DQ, Red Spider b Pantera Azteca, Ramtha & Cyanuro b Private Frankie Segura Jr. & Sgt. Sean Stryker, Super Nino won four-way over Lee Steel, Terremoto and Angel Guerrero Jr., Lil Cholo & Mariachi Loco b War Hawg & Drew Sheppard (formerly Jacob Novak in WWE), Cyberram b Super Nino (thanks to Roy Lucier)
 
--CMLL from Monday night in Puebla:  Asturiano & Black Tiger & Lestat b Espiritu Maligno & Fuerza Chicana & Sauron, Nitrito & Pequeno Olimpico & Pequeno Black Warrior b Bam Bam & Mini Fantasy & Pequeno Halcon, Fuego & El Hijo del Fantasma & Sagrado b Cancerbero & El Hijo del Signo & Raziel, Black Warrior & Blue Panther & La Sombra b Dragon Rojo Jr. & Rey Escorpion & Ultimo Guerrero, Volador Jr. b La Mascara (thanks to Kris Zellner)
 
--AAA Monday night in Nuevo Laredo:  Anubus & Mini Laredo Kid b Mini Histeria & Mini Psicosis, Fabi Apache & Hiedra b Poly Star & Sexy Star, Fenix & Relampago & Super Fly b Dark Dragon & Rio Bravo & Tito Santana, Sobredosis b Perseus to keep Northern Mexico middleweight title, Cibernetico & Daga & Dark Ozz b Psycho Circus (thanks to Kris Zellner)
 
--After selling the building out last month, El Hijo del Santo's Todos X Todos promotion returns to Juan de la Barrera Gym on Sunday for a show headlined by Santo & Huracan Ramirez vs. Angel Blanco Jr. & Fuerza Guerrera.
 
--Los Payasos Tricolor vs. Damian 666 & Bestia 666 &  X-Fly headline Friday night at the Auditorio in Tijuana.
 
--There is a Lucha Libre show on Saturday night in El Paso at the County Coliseum headlined by Atlantis & Mascara Dorada vs. Mephisto & Ultimo Guerrero.
 
--There is a photo in the 4/30 issue of Star Magazine showing John Morrison wrestling with Jessica Alba on page 48. (thanks to Sam Batts)
 
--Former pro wrestler Steve Chamberland handed over a $5,000 check to two girls yesterday to help some of the payment for prosthetic legs that would allow them to walk.  The two girls were Gabby DeSouza, who lost her leg in a  boating accident, and Carmen Touma, who lost her leg in a car accident.  Chamberland, who lost his own leg in a motorcycle accident in the 90s, has started a charity called "50 Legs" and hopes to get people to donate to allow people to walk again.  Story is at http://www.wpbf.com/news/south-florida/Palm-Beach-Country-News/Pro-wrestler-helps-amputees-with-new-legs/-/8815578/11883754/-/tthe0n/-/index.html
 (thanks to Paul Kacprzak)      
 
--Shane Douglas joins Mister Saint Laurent in talking Saturday's ECW Reunion show and how Dixie Carter's treatment of former ECW wrestlers led to his idea to start a promotion at http://traffic.lbsyn.com/mlwradio/shanedouglasmlw.mp3
 
--More Kansas City wrestling artwork is at http://battleroyalwithcheeze.blogspot.com
 
--Joey Villasenor vs. Donnie Liles headlines Jackson's MMA on 6/2 at the Hard Rock in Albuquerque.   

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