FRI UPDATE: McMahons to make good on $1 million owed from 70s, huge weekend schedule, UFC notes, Cena update, Orton doing stunts, Jones vs. Dana, tons more

By Bryan Alvarez

Bryan Alvarez: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


We've got a full schedule highlights by UFC 152 this weekend.

First, we're looking for reports from last night's TNA house show in Salem, VA, as well as tonight's Raw show in State College, PA (C.M. Punk managed by Paul Heyman vs. Big Show), tonight's TNA show in Winston-Salem, NC (Austin Aries, Jeff Hardy, Bobby Roode, James Storm, RVD, Samoa Joe and Magnus scheduled) at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

As always, we are looking for reports from all the shows listed below other than UFC 152 which we'll have live coverage from..

Also tonight is a Shine 3 iPPV from Ybor City, FL at 8 p.m. Eastern on Daffney is the hostess and the top matches are Jazz vs. Rain, Allysin Kay vs. Christina Von Eerie, Jessicka Havoc vs. Mia Yim, Mercedes Martinez vs. Jayme Jameson, Tracy Taylor & Su Yung vs. Gabby Gilbert & Luscious Latasha and more.

There is also an interesting name main event tonight on iPPV at for a promotion that is actually called the XFL (Xtreme Fight League) from Tulsa at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino headlined by former UFC stars Anthony Johnson vs. Jake Rosholt at light heavyweight. Johnson is the former giant middleweight who got fired for continually missing weight. Rosholt is a three-time NCAA champion wrestler who is now 12-4. Rosholt noted that the cut to 185 was too difficult for him and he never felt 100%.

UFC 152 is Saturday at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto.

Facebook fights starting at 6:30 p.m. Eastern time

Charlie Brenneman vs. Kyle Noke

Mitch Gagnon vs. Walel Watson

Seth Baczynski vs. Simeon Thoresen

Prelims on FX at 8 p.m.

Jim Hettes vs. Marcus Brimage

Lance Benoist vs. Sean Pierson

T.J. Grant vs. Evan Dunham

Vinny Magalhaes vs. Igor Pokrajac

PPV fights at 10 p.m.

Charlies Oliveira vs. Cub Swanson

Matt Hamill vs. Roger Hollett

Michael Bisping vs. Brian Stann

Joseph Benavidez vs. Demetrious Johnson to create the first UFC flyweight champion

Jon Jones vs. Vitor Belfort for the light heavyweight title

Saturday also has Raw from White Plains, NY at the Westchester County Center, Smackdown in Sarnia, ONT at the RBC Center and TNA in Raleigh at the Red Hat Amphitheater.

Also Saturday night is Northeast Wrestling at Dutchess Stadium in Fishkill, NY (Hulk Hogan and Roddy Piper appear; plus Matt Hardy vs. Sami Callihan, Rosita & Madison Rayne vs. Velvet Sky & Angelina Love with Lita as referee, Vader vs. Tony Nese, Matt Taven vs. Brian Anthony, Joe Ausanio & Dustin Runnels vs. Luke Robinson & Romeo Roselli and more).

ROH will be doing a television taping Saturday night in Baltimore at the Du Burns Arena.

Kevin Steen vs. Rhett Titus for ROH title

Steve Corino & Jimmy Jacobs vs. Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander for tag titles

Mark & Jay Briscoe vs. Lance & Harlem Bravado

Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin appear

Plus the Survival of the Fittest tournament

Mike Mondo vs. Kyle O'Reilly

Roderick Strong vs. Homicide

Adam Cole vs. Tadarius Thomas

Jay Lethal vs. QT Marshall

Michael Elgin vs. Rhino

Davey Richards vs. Mike Bennett

The six winners advance to a six-way final.

Sunday has Raw in Worcester, MA at the DCU Center and Smackdown in London, ONT at the John Labatt Center

Raw will be Monday night in Albany, NY while Smackdown will be taped on Tuesday night in Buffalo at the First Niagara Center.

        The rich history of the Jerry Lawler era in Memphis wrestling is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer.  The issue is currently up on the web site as well as a new issue from 1995 covering the first Ken Shamrock vs. Dan Severn UFC fight and the debut of Tank Abbott.  That issue looks back at a huge weekend where I attended UFC, AAA and WCW major events in a three-day period with notes on all the shows, as well as the build to the debut episode of Nitro.
        We update Lawler's health, his future wrestlers who have come back from heart attacks including one who was a major star in expanding the popularity of pro wrestling in a hotbed area within a year of suffering a heart attack.  We also look at WWE medical care, and look back at Lawler's career starting with his first major big arena headline role in his tag team with Jim White, through his multi-year world title quest, through the ups and downs of Memphis wrestling during its glory days.
        We look back at the Lawler vs. Fargo rivalry, Lawler's first sellouts as a singles star, the booking of Jerry Jarrett in building Lawler for his match with Jack Brisco and look back at the match.  We also look at how Jarrett and Lawler successfully were able to take the publicity from Ali vs. Inoki in 1976 and create a major box office success.  We also look at why such booking would be impossible today.  We also look back at the Lawler vs. Dundee years, the success of hair vs. hair matches, the creation of Jarrett Promotions and the end of Nick Gulas, Jimmy Hart getting into pro wrestling, Lawler's in-ring psychology and where it came from, as well as Hulk Hogan's first big box office program.
        We look at the story behind Lawler vs. Dundee and the most unique television pro wrestling show in history, as well as a rundown of the Andy Kaufman feud.  We look at the original match, Letterman, the classic angle in the Lawler vs. Nick Bockwinkel match, the Lawler vs. Austin Idol feud, the Curt Hennig win and the death of local Memphis wrestling.
        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.
        We also have a note on the changes in television, most notably the decline in television homes while the population increases in the U.S., why this is happening, and the most important television markets.
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        We also have a look at WWE's Night of Champions show, along with plans for Hell in a Cell, background of Cena's elbow and ankle injuries, updates on WWE announcing.  We've got a lot of notes on the show, as well as business notes, and match-by-match coverage with star ratings.
        We also have notes on how WWE edited Raw last week due to what happened to Jerry Lawler, but other edits taken out of the show.  We also have more of a reaction backstage when the Lawler thing happened.  Bret Hart talks his return to Montreal in a WWE ring.  He also talks Jerry Lawler and Vince McMahon.  We look at WWE removing clips from the Internet, the heated Linda McMahon senate campaign, update on Rock's schedule, indie talent getting tryouts, Eve Torres engagement, and funny "Did You Know" stuff on WWE television.  We also look at Paul Heyman's house show schedule and the role of Brad Maddox in WWE.  We also look at a recent business change, Ric Flair's daughter in WWE, former WWE star documentary on life after wrestling and business notes from the past week and WWE's house show notes.  
        We also run down the CMLL 79th anniversary show, regarding the oldest pro wrestling company in history and its biggest show of the year.
        We also look at the problems with Ring of Honor and iPPV, the company's reaction, where things screwed up, the next attempt, a better way to handle things, as well as a rundown of the Death Before Dishonor show.
        We also look at Pro Wrestling NOAH's major show of the month, which was the 20th anniversary of the debut of Jun Akiyama.  We look back at Akiyama highlights, as well as results from the show and where NOAH is going with its next big show.  We've also got notes on TNA talent returning to Japan to defend their tag titles.
         We also have a look at the ratings of all the major shows and complete details on how every segment of Raw and Impact this past week did.  We look at what segments gained and lost viewers
        We also have results from all the major league arena events over the past week as well as a look at all the major television shows.
Also in this week's issue:
--A bad sign regarding Shocker
--A look at AAA's last TV taping and latest interpromotional idea
--Dragon Gate has a Japan only PPV this week and a look at the card
--Updating NOAH's junior heavyweight tournament
--New Japan announces tag team tournament
--More on mentality of guys working when they are hurt
--Update on Tammy Sytch
--Former major league baseball player debuting this week
--Several contracts expiring in ROH
--Notes on next ROH TV tapings
--More on Impact schedule for the rest of the year
--Lots of news on Bound for Glory
--Why Jeff Hardy is getting the big push right now
--Devon talks leaving TNA
--More on Matt Morgan's return to TNA
--A look at the weekend TNA house shows
--A look at the remade UFC 153
--Update on Jose Aldo
--More fights falling apart in UFC
--Update on ticket sales to upcoming shows
--How UFC got a lucky sports break this week
--Update on Chael Sonnen
--DirecTV UFC discount package being offered
--Lots of new UFC fights    

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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.
 Today's News, Notes and Links

-- Big story hereabout how, after controversy regarding how the McMahons never paid back more than $1 million in debt from their 1976 bankruptcy filing even after they made hundreds of millions of dollars in pro-wrestling, Vince and Linda are now searching out the creditors and will pay them back with interest. I guess it wasn't until hearing these criticisms during the campaign did they realize that, in fact, they might still owe some money. Many creditors are dead, but others, including a 96-year-old man, will be getting payments soon.

-- WWE handing out money left and right. Geraldo Gutierrez, presumably unrelated to Rey Mysterio, was awarded a $10,000 scholarship at the NXT tapings last night. He's a Full Sail University student. The scholarship will be applied toward Gutierrez's studies in the Recording Arts, Bachelor of Science Degree Program.

-- John Cena, as promised, showed up sling and all at the NXT tapings last night. He said he was disappointed that he couldn't wrestle, but promised to return when he could. He said he had a special person who had agreed to come in tonight as a replacement. It was Sheamus, who beat Antonio Cesaro with a brogue kick. US Title not on the line, although it was earlier in the evening when Cesaro defended against Tyson Kidd.

-- Cena, of course, has vowed to be at Raw Monday. He won't be wrestling.

-- Despite a report online, it appears from talking to others who were at last night's NXT taping that John Cena did NOT say he would be back wrestling on October 11th.

-- Randy Orton on Twitter said that he's doing his own stunts in the new 12 Round Reloaded film.

-- I don't know what happened, but as we were putting together this update Jon Jones was having his first meeting with Dana White since the UFC 151 disaster went down. Dana decided to schedule it just before Jones had to go onto the scale and weigh in, pretty much the worst possible time for a human being to have a discussion with their boss. Twice this week Jones claimed that Dana never told him 151 would be canceled if he refused to fight, and Dana has claimed that Jones was made well aware of the consequences. Will be a very interesting next two days.

-- The word from backstage last night is that as stiff as it looked, Evan Markopoulos didn't have a mark on him after the match with Doug Williams.

-- As noted yesterday, Alex Riley underwent surgery this week on both his knee and elbow.

-- I will be on for 30 minutes with Jack Encarnacao on his new wrestling radio show Saturday (tomorrow) at 9 p.m. (time may change) on NBC Sports Radio 1510 AM Boston. The show is called "Mouthpiece Wrestling," on Twitter @mouthpieceradio.

-- Just wanted to once again thank everyone for all the site-improvement suggestions that have been sent to either my Twitter (@bryanalvarez) or my email ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ). I won't be able to respond to all of them but I am reading them all. Long story short, if the suggestion makes sense we're going to do our best to get working on it, and if for whatever reason it doesn't make sense or for whatever reason it's not possible to do it, well, we won't. You are welcome to keep sending in ideas, we've gotten a lot of good ones!

-- Jesse Ventura once again teasing that he'll run for President in 2016.

-- Speaking of Ventura, brand new RF Video shoot interview with him on sale now here.

-- Q&A with Chris Nowinski heretalking concussions, etc., in advance of his new documentary out today.

-- Story on Eric Young's Animal Planet show here.

-- Training with Jon Jones working wonders for Aussie Kyle Noke

-- Brand new interview at SLAM Wrestling with Jinder Mahal.

-- Chikara King of Trios is already shipping (has been for days, actually, they have a remarkable turnaround time), and you can order the DVDs here. Lots of rave reviews for the weekend.

-- Add NWA Wisconsin, now Wisconsin Pro Wrestling, and Mach-One Pro Wrestling in California to the list of groups that have pulled out of the NWA afer the recent ownership shake-up.

-- Steve Austin is about to start work on Season 2 of Redneck Island.

-- Dave has a very good article on the issues with Ultimate Fighter here. Last week's season opener was by far the lowest-rated and least-viewed TUF in history, and they have a big hole to dig out of.

-- Regarding the huge Northeast Wrestling show scheduled for tomorrow with appearances by Hulk Hogan (signing, not wrestling) and a bevy of others, the promotion issued the following statement today: Due to the possibility of rainfall later in the evening the meet and greet start time has been moved up to 2PM. Northeast Wrestling, the Hudson Valley Renegades, Hulk Hogan, Roddy Piper and all the superstars and our sponsors are dedicated to ensuring that all our fans have the most enjoyable time possible. Matches will immediately follow the meet and greet. All other event details remain the same. Don’t miss this great event. It’s going to be a beautiful day at Dutchess Stadium with Hulk Hogan, Matt Hardy, Amy Dumas fka Lita, Vader, Goldust, The Beautiful People and all the stars. Great Seats are still available – you can pick up tickets tomorrow at the stadium box office. Pre-orders that have not been mailed are available for pick up at the box office (please bring ID). Meet and Greet and items with all the superstars are available for purchase tomorrow at the event. Come out and share this once in a lifetime opportunity as Northeast Wrestling and the Renegades welcome Hulk Hogan and Roddy Piper as they make their return to the Hudson Valley.

-- A story on the big show is here.

-- And another here.

-- Former New York Yankee Joe Ausanio debuts on that show.

-- Brutal Bob Evans' second opponent for his upcoming Iron Week (Iron Man Matches every single day in different cities with different guys) is Delirious. Adam Cole was the first announced opponent.

-- Pro Wrestling Phoenix runs this Saturday 9/22 at the National Guard Armory in Council Bluffs, IA headlined by Hype Gotti vs Branden Juarez in a Street Fight.

-- Philadelphia's Preston and Steve show was just discussing a story about kids running up their parents phone bills by buying a ton of apps without permission. This led to a discussion about the whole 900 number craze. They were reading from a report, that according to AT&T, the Hulk Hogan call-in line was the most lucrative number from 1991 - 1993. I'll tell you what was not the most lucrative hotline during the mid-90s – The Figure Four Newsletter Hotline.

-- JBL is on Opie and Anthony today.

-- Would a TNA lead-in help Bellator's ratings? Yes, similar audiences 57.8%
No, different audiences and will make no difference 39.1%
No, it will hurt Bellator's ratings coming after wrestling 3.1%

If John Cena can't make it for Hell in a Cell, who should face C.M. Punk?
Daniel Bryan 23.1%
Sheamus in a champion vs. champion match 21.1%
Randy Orton 21.1%
Pay Lesnar a premium and turn him face against Heyman 11.8%
Dolph Ziggler 10.0%
Big Show 4.6%
Alberto Del Rio 3.5%

How many buys does UFC 152 get
Under 300,000 24.0%
301-350,000 13.3%
351-400,000 14.3%
401-450,000 13.8%
451-500,000 8.7%
501-550,000 10.7%
551-600,000 6.6%
601-650,000 2.6%
651-700,000 2.0%
More than 701,000 4.1%

-- Josh Nason has a new article up here titled 10 UFC Events Left In 2012, 10 Fighter Storylines To Watch. $10 says this will be a hilarious read three months from now.

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?