FRI. UPDATE: Huge weekend, Dana won't talk crap on Vince, New movies with wrestlers, star out of retirement, commission won't drug test fighters, Rousey on Conan, Hall of Fame, and a rematch that maybe nobody wants to see
Friday, 03 August 2012 13:42
By Dave Meltzer
We're looking for reports from tonight's ROH TV tapings in Baltimore (Kevin Steen vs. Homicide for the ROH title, Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin for the TV title, Sara Del Rey vs. Mia Yim, Q.T. Marshall vs. Tadarius Thomas and a six-way match with the winner getting a shot at the TV title on 9/15 plus the first round of the tournament for the vacant ROH tag titles with Mark & Jay Briscoe, The Young Bucks, Ruckus & Jeez, Guardians of Truth aka Headbangers under a mask, Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander, Lance & Harlem Bravado, Rhett Titus & ? and a mystery 8th team), tonight's WWE Raw house show in Jacksonville (John Cena vs. Big Show cage match, C.M. Punk vs. Daniel Bryan WWE title, Chris Jericho & Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler & The Miz), tonight's XFC show in Charlotte (details below) and tonight's TNA show in Enid, OK (Battle Royal for a shot at Austin Aries in the main event) at
There are no Smackdown house shows this weekend because they are going to Japan and China right after TV on Tuesday. Punk and Bryan are both on the Raw tour because Randy Orton is returning on the Smackdown tour.
Smackdown tonight on Syfy:
Sheamus vs. Tensai
Santino Marella vs. Antonio Cesaro non-title
Chris Jericho & Christian & Kane vs. Daniel Bryan & Dolph Ziggler & The Miz
Ryback vs. Jinder Mahal
R-Truth vs. Darren Young
Randy Orton vs. Alberto Del Rio
We're also looking for reports from tonight's XFC Charlotte Showdown which airs at 10 p.m. tonight on AXS (formerly HDNet) from the Grady Cole Center, built around handicapped undefeated fighter Nick Newell. with:
Johnny Buck vs. Rick Rainey
Lawson McClure vs. Keith Richardson
Joe Elmore vs. Kevin Forant
Shane Crenshaw vs. Jason Hicks
Nick Newell vs. David Mays
Felice Herrig vs. Simona Soukupova
Roger Carroll vs. Nicolae Cury
The big show on Saturday is UFC on FOX. It's five straight hours of televised UFC fights starting at 5 p.m. Eastern
Fuel at 5 p.m.
Ulysses Gomez vs. John Moraga
Michihiro Omigawa vs. Manvel Gamburyan
Phil De Fries vs. Oli Thompson
Josh Grispi vs. Rani Yahya
Phil Davis vs. Wagner Prado
Cole Miller vs. Nam Phan
At 8 p.m. on FOX
Mike Swick vs. DaMarques Johnson
Joe Lauzon vs. Jamie Varner
Lyoto Machida vs. Ryan Bader
Shogun Rua vs Brandon Vera
Saturday also has Raw in Albany, GA and TNA in Oklahoma City at the Bricktown Coca-Cola Events Center.
The G-1 Climax tour on Saturday hits Nagoya's Aichi Gym with Karl Anderson vs. Yujiro Takahashi, Shelton Benjamin vs. Toru Yano, MVP vs. Hirooki Goto, Kazuchika Okada vs. Rush, Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Lance Archer, Togi Makabe vs. Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Yuji Nagata vs. Naomichi Marufuji and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Satoshi Kojima.
Sunday is TNA TripleMania from the new Arena Ciudad in Mexico City
Fenix & Fabi Apache & Octagoncito & Pimpinela Escarlata vs. Dark Dragon & Sexy Star & Mini Charly Manson & Yuriko
La Parka & Psycho Circus vs. El Texano Jr & Octagon & Semental & Toscano
Joaquin Roldan's hair vs. Dorian Roldan's hair: L.A. Park & Electroshock vs. Kurt Angle & Jeff Jarrett managed by Karen Jarrett
Jack Evans & Teddy Hart vs. Extreme Tiger & Halloween vs. Joe Lider & Psicosis vs. Juventud Guerrera & Chessman
Mesias (with Cibernetico in his corner) vs. Perro Aguayo Jr. (with Hector Garza in his corner) for the AAA Mega heavyweight title
Dr. Wagner Jr. vs. Mascara Ano 2000 Jr. in a mask vs. mask match
Sunday also has Raw in Dothan, AL and TNA in Tulsa at the Convention Center for a 6 p.m. show.
The New Japan iPPV (as best I can tell it is not available outside of Japan) is from Osaka on Sunday with Yuji Nagata vs. Yujiro Takahashi, Rush vs. MVP, Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Lance Archer, Shelton Benjamin vs. Karl Anderson, Minoru Suzuki vs. Toru Yano, Togi Makabe vs. Tetsuya Naito, Kazuchika Okada vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Naomichi Marufuji.
The live Raw TV show is Monday in San Antonio. It has been promoted locally as Shawn Michaels Appreciation Night. That doesn't necessarily mean any tributes to Michaels will be on Raw.
Smackdown will be taped on Tuesday in Houston.
The G-1 tournament on Tuesday in Miyagi has Tetsuya Naito vs. Rush, Shelton Benjamin vs. Yujiro Takahashi, Satoshi Kojima vs. Karl Anderson, Hirooki Goto vs. Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Kazuchika Okada vs. Lance Archer, Shinsuke Nakamura vs. MVP, Minoru Suzuki vs. Naomichi Marufuji and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Toru Yano.
Our twice annual look at the most popular figures in pro wrestling, MMA and boxing, broken down with an extensive look at the U.S. market, the world market and the Canadian market is one of the lead stories is a news packed issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter out this week.
We also have updates on WrestleMania and UFC 148 business and where PPV is falling into.
We've got a popularity chart, including currently active participants and legends, with notes on how pro wrestling, boxing and MMA differ when it comes to both current and enduring popularity. We also have a chart listing the rankings at this point with those of the past three years so you can see who is gaining and losing steam.
We look at people over pushed, under pushed, the difference between boxing enduring legends, who have become the biggest new stars this year, who have faded, the current value of UFC and WWE championships in making stars, do UFC fans by and large want to see smaller guys and who is pro wrestling's most enduring legend worldwide.
We also have a piece on the history of wrestling on television following up last week's story on the longest lasting TV shows in wrestling history. We look at Georgia television wrestling prior to TBS, as well as how Ronald Reagan changed television and how that changed pro wrestling from the 70s to the 80s and paved the way for Vince McMahon's changing of the business. We also look back at how Gordon Solie got to be the national voice of wrestling.
We also look at the surgery Great Khali underwent, why John Laurinaitis was demoted from his real position and how the talent department has changed in recent months and different people who have replaced Laurinaitis at his job. We also look at how Laurinaitis got to WWE and became head of talent relations. We have an update on SummerSlam, a look at the Linda McMahon campaign, how much the McMahon family has lost in the last two years as well as Linda McMahon taking credit for WWE but not wanting to talk about it. We've got more notes from backstage at Raw 1,000, what happened between Bruno Sammartino and Steve Austin, Another WWE tryout camp coming, update on WWE 13 the video game, more on Chris Jericho's schedule as well as updated plans for Raw and Smackdown house shows and who will be on what tours after SummerSlam.
We also have our monthly business rundown of live attendance, DVDs, web site numbers and more.
We also have notes on next week's Raw, AW, Tensai, NXT tapings, a WWE developmental wrestler arrested, someone who just arrived in developmental, as well as a rundown of the weekend business and the weekend house shows.
We also have a look at the business of women's MMA and some staggering figures if one chooses to believe them regarding Invicta Fighting Championships.
Our look at Olympians who became pro wrestling stars looks at a 1940 name, Ed Virag, who was for a brief period of time, Sam Muchnick's headliner after World War II when he first got started and was an early NWA world champion.
We also have a look at how No Way Out did on PPV with a comparison to last year.
The issue will be up on the site today if you are a web site member. We also have a new back issue on the site from 1995 just put up talking about the financial effects of the PPV business at that time and the back story behind the relationship and announcement of the engagement of Kensuke Sasaki and Akira Hokuto.
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Also in this week's issue:
--What happened to this week's Friday night TV taping in Mexico City
--History of Arena Mexico having to cancel wrestling including how one of the most famous matches in history led to a several week period when no matches are allowed in the arena.
--Several anniversary shows honoring veteran wrestlers
--The last TV taping before TripleMania and what famous angle did they reprise
--A look at TripleMania
--Notes on the annual Lucha Libre fan fest and who isn't going to be involved this year
--A look at the Dragon Gate USA weekend shows
--All Japan plans its next big show and what decision is being made right now regarding the Triple Crown
--A look at the finals of the All Japan annual junior heavyweight tournament and standings
--All Japan opening up a new market
--More on TNA stars in Japan
--New Japan enters iPPV business and lineup
--What Olympian is already getting looks from a major pro wrestling company and why
--A look at the star power of wrestlers in Japan
--Hall of Famer undergoes back surgery
--A look at the life of a pivotal figure in the history of women's pro wrestling as well as country music
--Lots more on the situation with Davey Richards, Kyle O'Reilly and Tony Kozina
--Questions ROH has to ask about Richards
--ROH tag team tournament notes
--Notes on TNA contracts
--More on the Aces and 8s identities
--Current TV taping schedule for TNA
--Update on Hardcore Justice PPV card
--Notes on who is Sam Shaw and thoughts on TNA Gut Check
--TNA house show notes for the weekend
--More on Jon Jones sentencing
--A look at the FOX UFC card
--Dana White's talk about the next light heavyweight title contender and evaluating all the leading candidates
--A look at UFC booking between now and the end of the year with the big fights expected
--How Kurt Angle's name came up in UFC this past week
--Tons of new UFC matches
--Thoughts on Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz
--Who got pulled from a TV slot because of a prior offense
--An arrest of a former world champion after a brawl at a rave
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*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)
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*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)
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*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)
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*August 11, 2008 (Ric Flair leaves WWE; Updated history of pro wrestlers and MMA fighters who went to the Olympics)
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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.
Friday's news update
--Mike Sempervive and I will be back tonight talking UFC on FOX, G-1 Climax, Smackdown, Impact, WWE financials, Kamala and other subjects late tonight with a special edition of Wrestling Observer radio. Bryan and I will be doing our weekend show tomorrow night after the UFC show.
--The Olympics last night did a 22.8 rating in prime time based on the fast nationals. It peaked at 10 p.m. (27.2 rating) but that was after TNA ended.
--WWE and 20th Century Fox invented a new way to lose money, a remake of the fabulous "12 Rounds" franchise. Randy Orton will replace John Cena in the lead role. In this case, instead of a vengeful man from his past threatening to kill his wife unless he goes through 12 rounds of scary tests, you have a vengeful men from his past threatening to kill his wife unless he goes through 12 rounds of scary tests. The movie starts filming in late September which means that Orton is going to be off the road toward the latter part of the year. Orton will play a bad ass EMT that hates wearing pants.
--Matt Hamill is coming out of retirement on the 9/22 UFC show in Toronto where he'll face the debuting Roger Hollett. Hollett had been fighting in Bellator.
--The Ontario commission has decided not to drug test anyone on the show, so UFC is going to have to do the drug testing at the show.
--Ronda Rousey will be on Conan O'Brien on Wednesday night.
--Ariel Helwani asked Dana White yesterday about the comments Vince McMahon made about UFC ratings being abysmal. It seems Vince is the only guy who can talk shit about UFC and White doesn't respond. He said he doesn't understand why McMahon said what he said but he just figures he's wired that way and how he'll talk shit about boxing because they are doing things wrong but he doesn't see WWE as the same business. He said he could talk shit about pro wrestling but he doesn't know anything about it and doesn't follow it. But he said Vince gets killer TV ratings.
--For UFC coverage on Fuel TV today, the weigh-ins will be at 7 p.m. Eastern. Fuel will be airing the prelims starting at 5 p.m. and the post-fight show after the FOX show ends at about 10 p.m. Weigh-ins will feature Karyn Bryant, Rashad Evans and Ariel Helwaini. The team for the prelims will be Jay Glazer, Rashad Evans, Chael Sonnen and Helwani along with Mike Goldberg & Joe Rogan doing the play-by-play. Post-fight analysis will be Glazer, Sonnen, Evans and Helwani.
--They will be debuting a ref cam as part of the 12-camera set-up for tomorrow night's show.
--ESPN in the U.K. announced this schedule for 8/11, which is UFC 150 coverage from Denver headlined by Ben Henderson vs. Frankie Edgar. MMA Live will air at 2:30 a.m. and the PPV starts at 3 a.m.
--The Detroit News at http://www.detroitnews.com/
has an article today pretty negative on the FOX show tomorrow night. (thanks to Mike Malasev)
--As best I can tell, the New Japan iPPV which is on Sunday (late Saturday night/early Sunday morning U.S. time) is only available in Japan. New Japan sent out a tweet stating that a few days ago.
--Dwayne Johnson and Gina Carano are currently in Surrey England at Shepperton Studios filming for "Fast and Furious Six." (thanks to James Stanios)
Who do you expect to win this fight?
Joe Lauzon 61.3%
Jamie Varner 38.7%
Who do you expect to win this fight?
Mike Swick 53.1%
DaMarques Johnson 46.9%
Which of these man most deserves a spot on the Hall of Fame ballot?
Ultimate Warrior 26.2%
Kerry Von Erich 21.2%
Trish Stratus 18.4%
Lance Storm 9.9%
Rob Van Dam 8.9%
Earthquake John Tenta 4.5%
David Von Erich 4.0%
Sid Vicious 2.1%
Terry Taylor 1.3%
James Storm 0.8%
Which August show will do the most domestic PPV buys
UFC 150 37.4%
--Some notes regarding Raw in Germany. Sky Sports will be airing the show live from 2 a.m. to 5 a.m. in Germany. However, all the replays are being edited to about one hour 45 minutes. For Raw 1,000th they cut out the Brodus Clay vs. Jack Swagger match, the entire Heath Slate segment with the legends and more. If you live in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and you used to watch Raw on replays, you should instead DVR the live showing as it will be the only complete airing. (thanks to Markus Gronemann)
--wXw runs 8/11 and 8/12 in Oberhausen, Germany with Fan Appreciation Night. Scheduled in are El Generico, Davey Richards and New Japan's Prince Devitt (who is off the G-1 Climax tour). They will be taping for a TV pilot on the 8/11 show with a Johnny Moss vs. Jon Ryan loser leaves town I Quit match, El Generico defends their world title against Tommy End, Axeman vs. Richards and Bad Bones vs. Big Van Walter. On 8/12, they have a four-way for their world tile, with the winner of Moss vs. Ryan, Generic vs. End, Axeman vs. Richards and Bones vs. Walter the night before, plus Devitt vs. Emil Sitoci. They also debut 8/18 in Hamburg, Germany with Walter vs. Zack Sabre Jr and Jay Skillett vs. Devitt.
--Tommy Dreamer's House of Hardcore promotion has its first match announced for 10/6 in Poughkeepsie, NY at the Mid Hudson Civic Center with the Young Bucks vs. Paul London & Brian Kendrick.
--The One Fighting Championships based in Singapore announced today that Matt Hume has been hired as Vice President of Operations and Competition. He will be heading up matchmaking, talent recruitment, rules, and regulations. The group's next show is 8/31 in the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City, Philippines.
--The fourth match of Tim Sylvia vs. Andrei Arlovski is the main event of that show. Sylvia beat Arlovski in two of three matches in the UFC years ago. Arlovski won a quick submission the first time. Sylvia was just about knocked out when he connected in a great comeback punch in the first round in fight two. Sylvia won a decision in the third fight where Arlovski injured his leg and the fight ended up lasting something like five years. Or at least it felt like it.
--Styles appeared last night on 360, a live Australian Football show that airs on pay TV channel Fox Footy. He came off well, like a star and very likeable. He had a TNA championship belt with him. They showed a lot of footage of him and the hosts seemed impressed but didn't know much about pro wrestling (thanks to Chris K)
--Tommy Dreamer and Thea Trinidad (Rosita in TNA) will be in a horror movie called "Self Storage," a horror movie that stars Eric Roberts of The Expendables and Michael Berryman of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Next. The movie is currently filming in East Greenwich, RI. The plot isn't that a veteran sidekick looks at the books of the company he broke his body for, picks up on a hot girl devastated by simultaneously playing a patriotic New Yorker whose father was killed in 9/11 and an anti-American Mexican ON THE SAME TELEVISION SHOW and they try to start a wrestling company booking more of the stupidest angles possible while clueless as to why business doesn't improve.
--Jim Neidhart turns 57 today. Family member Harry Smith turned 27.
--60s star Argentina Apollo passed away 28 years ago today at the age of 46 (thanks to Georgia Wrestling History)
--Magic Mike, which features Kevin Nash, debuted at No. 2 in Australia with a $3,819,593 gross last week. (thanks to James Stanios
--Absolute Intense Wrestling Girls Night Out takes place tomorrow night in Cleveland at Turner's Hall headlined by Mia Yim vs. Allysin Kay, Sara Del Rey vs. Hailey Hatred and Veda Scott vs Courtney Rush.
--EWF tonight in Covina, CA at the Knights of Columbus Hall has Joey Ryan vs. Famous B for the EWF title plus 8/11 in San Bernardino has a six match show at the Sports Academy Fight Club.
--MWF has its 11th anniversary show on 9/22 in Melrose, MA at Memorial Hall
--Among the names available for bookings, for wrestling, seminars and autograph shows or any other appearance through Bill Behrens at www.sbibookings.com
include Jimmy Rave (Atlanta), Joey Ryan (Los Angeles), Mike Posey & Corey Hollis (Birmingham, AL), Patrick Bentley (Pisgah, AL), Amazing Red (New York), Christopher Daniels (Los Angeles), Jay Lethal (Tampa), Delirious (Philadelphia), Alex Koslov (Los Angeles), Doug Williams (Tampa), Gunner (Greensboro), Robbie E (New York), Shannon Moore (Raleigh, won't wrestle), Shane Helms (Raleigh- limited wrestling), Sonjay Dutt (Washington, DC), Eric Young (Nashville), Young Bucks (Ontario, CA), Jesse Neal (Orlando), Nunzio (New York), Tommy Dreamer (New York), Devon (Orlando), Scott Norton (Houston), Billy Gunn (Orlando), DDP (Los Angeles, no wrestling), Kevin Nash (Daytona Beach), Steiners (Atlanta), Al Snow (Louisville), David Taylor (Atlanta), Robert Gibson (Atlanta), Jerry Jarrett (appearances and seminars, Nashville), Vince Russo (Denver), Big Daddy V (Memphis), Dutch Mantel (Nashville), Steve Corino (Philadelphia), Boogeyman (Denver), Kenn Doane (Boston), Paul Burchill (Louisville), and tons more.
--Ring Wars Carolinas tomorrow night in Lumberton, NC at the Indoor Flea Market.
--The NAAFS promotion will have its first Hall of Fame inductions on 8/17 as part of the 6th annual Rock N Rumble in Nautica, OH at the Jacobs Pavilion. The group has a TV deal with Sports Time Ohio and recently struck a deal with The Fight Network in Canada.
--In Your Face Wrestling tomorrow night in Whitehall, NY at the Whitehall Athletic Club.
--There is a pro wrestling show tonight in Sheridan, CO at Red and Jerry's at 1840 West Oxford Ave. and tomorrow night in Grand Junction, CO at the Mesa Theater.