TUES UPDATE: Latest on Cena, Punk upset at WWE, Attitude Era DVD out, Linda campaign workers claim they were screwed, lots of ratings including UFC 154 prelims, tons more



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

We're looking for your thoughts on Sunday night's Survivor Series as well as last night's UFC 154, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

We're also looking for reports on Saturday night's Extreme Reunion show in Monaca, PA as well as Thursday night's TNA show in Johnson City and Friday night's TNA show in Knoxville.

Smackdown, Main Event and Saturday Morning Slam will be taped tonight in Grand Rapids. The Miz vs. Dolph Ziggler has been announced as the main event for that show.

THE NEW OBSERVER: LAWLER RETURNS, BUSINESS OF 'MANIA 29 IN NYC

We have several lead stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that will be up on the web site today.  We look at the return of Jerry Lawler, including thoughts on how it was handled on television and why it is emblematic of everything WWE wants the public to think it isn't, and why they can't shake that reputation.  We also look at how viewers reacted to Raw, when they tuned out, when they tuned in and how it made a difference in ratings.  
 
        We also have a new back issue from 1995 up on the site including full coverage of the first ever Nitro vs. Raw head-to-head, which show had the advantage where and attitude coming out of both shows.  We also have notes of the building up of what was at that point in time the biggest grossing pro wrestling event in history.
 
        We also have a look at the business of WrestleMania 29, some of the biggest early advances in company history, notes no tickets that are available, how much Met Life Stadium will hold, will they be able to claim the usual building record with markup and if so what legendary piece of WWE history does that threaten.
 
        We also have a major feature on WWE business, looking at every category, and some notes not talked anywhere else regarding profitability, costs, whether the PPV business really is stronger than in the past, updates on how every PPV show did so far this year, costs of producing Raw, a rough estimate of how much WWE is getting paid for the third hour and how many added PPV buys is that figure worth.  We also look at what looks to be the future direction of where WWE concentrates its business.  We also look at what categories are up and down.
 
        We've got comments by Vince McMahon from the quarterly investors conference, updated numbers on WrestleMania, expenses of the different divisions, what kind of increases WWE should be getting from television with all the new programming and lessons from WCW about programming but also how it is different now.  We also look at the next major show contract coming due.
 
        We also look at how much cash WWE now has on hand, why the trends will change in the fourth quarter, what led to the third quarter increases, how much WWE has gotten in tax incentives, a major lawsuit settlement, how much income WWE has made from all different parts of the world broken down, comparisons of how PPV is doing when you take The Rock and Brock Lesnar out of the equation, merchandise sales, home video sales, video game sales, notes on how much talent is making in licensing money and what WWE movies actually made money at the end.  We also have every major aspect of WWE business and profit margins.
 
        We also have thoughts on the 2013 WWE Hall of Fame including several names people have talked about.  We've got more on what happened in the Linda McMahon campaign including what last second Hillary they tried to throw that didn't happen.  We've got notes on the Tribute to the Troops show for this year, notes on the WWE 13 video game sales and the troubles THQ is in and how that relates to WWE.  We also update WWE talks about a stadium show for next year in the U.K. and why it is so difficult to do a major PPV in he U.K.  We also have early notes on plans for WrestleMania 30, WWE announcing, Roddy Piper, Steve Austin's Redneck Island show, notes on several more new WWE signees, the types of people they are looking for, all the WWE business notes from the past week as well as highlights of the last week of European tour dates.
 
        We also look at the end of the Strikeforce promotion, the move of the top stars to UFC and thoughts on Rousey vs. Cyborg.
 
        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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        In addition, we have full coverage of the three major shows of the past week, the TNA Turning Point show, the New Japan Power Struggle show and UFC from China.  We've got poll results, star ratings for the pro wrestling matches, and business notes for all of the show.
 
        We also have notes on the January 4, 2013 show at the Tokyo Dome and the main event matches, as well as New Japan's tag team tournament and next PPV show.
 
         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:
 
--Son of former WWF star now tag team champion in Mexico
 
--Title match main event announced for AAA's final big show of the year
 
--Pro Wrestling NOAH's Global League tournament with standings and all of the results of the past week
 
--Notes on the joint New Japan/CMLL shows schedule in January
 
--Ultimo Dragon's 25th anniversary show
 
--A city street being named after recently deceased pro wrestling star
 
--Notes on Dynamite Kid documentary
 
--Former WWE headliner pleads guilty to felony mortgage fraud charge
 
--Former WWE star puts up hair in big match against top overseas star
 
--Former WWE performer adjusts to life after wrestling with new job
 
--Dragon Gate USA champion vs. ROH champion match
 
--Jeff Hardy talks upcoming contract negotiations and where they stand
 
--Notes on TNA tapings in January and February
 
--Notes on TNA's U.K. tour
 
--Notes on Sting angle
 
--Update on Kenny King
 
--Notes from the weekend TNA house shows
 
--A look at the next few weeks of TNA television
 
--Lineup for Saturday's UFC show
 
--Lots of new UFC dates announced and thoughts on the show
 
--More on Overeem vs. Bigfoot fight
 
--UFC makes major international partnership and what foreign market they are likely next headed to
 
--Talk of Anderson Silva vs. GSP and Silva's talking about taking nearly a year off
 
--UFC star signs Nike deal
 
--Dan Henderson vs. Machida update
 
--Advance for the FOX show in Seattle
 
--UFC hacker gets sentenced
 
--UFC injury updates
 
--New UFC fights announced
 
--World Series of Fighting business notes
 
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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

-- Doc Young is expected to be back on our show this afternoon talking the latest in his battle against Guillain-Barre syndrome, some fun old-school Wrestling Weekly stories (including the time Sid Vicious flipped his lid on the program) and more. Doc is doing a lot better but is still trying to raise money for a new nose (medication destroyed the old one). You can help by clicking here or by PayPal to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

-- Also, last night's hour-long Wrestling Observer Radio with myself and Dave Meltzer talking Raw and a lot more is up as a free download.

-- WWE: The Attitude Eraalt is out on DVD and Blu-Ray today.

-- Here's a Cena tweet on his fake MRI: MRI was typical good news bad news scenario. I've dealt with knees issues for the past few yrs, ill add one more to that list..... I know the risks of what can happen to me and I'm willing to play the odds. #nevergiveup c u 2nite grand rapids. The whole injury was planned in advance and Cena is wrestling tonight.

-- Speaking of tweets, here's some angry CM Punk tweets from Tuesday:

- Yes, I will be on @AMCTalkingDead on Sunday. Shocking how WWE didn't promote it or get AMC the proper materials in time to announce it.

- This is what happens when you go over everyone's head to hustle and acquire your own outside appearances. #DIY.

#disrespect.

will also be the Grand Marshall in the Chicago turkey day parade. Also not announced or promoted by "my" company. Shocking.

This is what happens when you go over everyone's head to hustle and acquire your own outside appearances. #DIY.

Was promoted on Monday. Wasn't Sunday night when it was supposed to be. Ball dropped. S'okay. I'll pick it up and score like I always do.

-- There is a story here about Linda McMahon campaign workers complaining about not being paid. One person claimed a campaign staffer "handed me a check with a condom in it, told me I was screwed".

-- UFC 154 prelims did just slightly less than 1 million viewers on FX -- the low-mid end of late. Historically, there is very little correlation between prelim numbers and PPV buys.

-- The latest posturing from Firas Zahabi, GSP's trainer at Tri-Star, is that if they want to put together GSP vs. Anderson Silva, Silva needs to come down to 170.

-- Newsday has a story on DDP trying to turn Jake Roberts' life around here. It's a great story and I hope it has a happy ending. The video trailer they have that we put on the front page last week (click the VIDEOS tab) is really amazing.

-- Andre Arlovski vs. Michael Hayes (not the Freebird) takes place December 16th in Moscow for the Fight Nights promotion.

-- Eddie Yagin, a UFC featherweight hospitalized for swelling on the brain, will be fine and back in training after a thirty-day rest period. He didn't feel good one day after training, drank a bunch of liquids, still felt awful and went to the ER where he was diagnosed with the trauma. He didn't need surgery.

-- Booker T clinic with MVP and D-Von is coming up on December 7th.

-- Bellator last Friday did 149,000 viewers, virtually identical to the week prior.

-- Chris Jericho returns to Syfy to work with ROBOTS.

WHO WAS THE BEST OF THESE HALL OF FAMERS?
Bruno Sammartino 47.1%
Lou Thesz 30.3%
Vader 12.1%
Billy Robinson 4.0%
The Sheik 2.6%
Johnny Valentine 2.2%
Masa Saito 1.6%
Dara Singh 0.2%
 
WHAT WAS THE BEST OF THESE SHOWS? 
UFC 154 28.5%
New Japan Kings of Pro Wrestling 24.8%
WWE Survivor Series 10.4%
TNA Bound for Glory 8.0%
UFC 153 7.4%
ROH Glory by Honor 6.1%
New Japan Power Struggle 5.2%
TNA Turning Point 4.3%
WWE Hell in a Cell 2.8%
UFC on Fuel Le vs. Franklin 2.5%
 
WHAT DO YOU CONSIDER THE NO. 2 PRO WRESTLING COMPANY IN THE WORLD?
TNA 44.1%
New Japan 38.5%
CHIKARA 7.9%
ROH 3.6%
AAA 2.1%
CMLL 1.5%
PWG 1.3%
NOAH 0.7%
Dragon Gate 0.4%
 
WHAT WERE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE PUNK VS. CENA VS. RYBACK FINISH?
Liked it because new people were involved 72.7%
Didn't like it 22.3%
Would have liked it no matter who was involved 5.1%
 
IF ANDERSON SILVA IS THE BEST FIGHTER IN UFC, WHO IS NO.2?
Georges St-Pierre 47.5%
Jon Jones 30.6%
Ronda Rousey 6.5%
Junior Dos Santos 2.5%
Frankie Edgar 1.4%
Cain Velasquez 0.8%
Benson Henderson 0.7%
Jose Aldo 0.7%
Renan Barao 0.3%
 
-- Cookin' shit in the microwave with Willie Mac.

-- Pro Wrestling Revolution has come to agreement with Azteca America KMCE TV43 to begin airing its show weekly, starting on December 8th at midnight. The half-hour show features Blue Demon Jr., La Migras, Oliver John, La Parka, KAFU, Mascara Sagrada, El Mariachi, Lady Apache, and many more. The show will air via Azteca America TV43 in Monterey, Salinas and Santa Cruz counties.

-- In this week’s UFC Ultimate Insider on Fuel TV: "Chris Weidman provides an all-access tour of his Long Island, New York roots prior to the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. See what makes this middleweight so tough and so proud. Next, Alexander Gustafsson and host Jon Anik discuss the rapidly changing life of the light heavyweight star on location in San Diego. The Swedish-born fighter is on the cusp of title contention as he faces his toughest test to date in Shogun Rua. The brothers Gracie examine the unique stylings of Nate Diaz from his epic submission of Kurt Pellegrino. Learn why Nate’s jiu-jitsu may be the difference in his title fight against Benson Henderson in this Gracie Breakdown. Finally, watch Chad Mendes’ electric performance from UFC 148 as seen through the eyes of his enthusiastic teammate Joseph Benavidez, who was mic’d up Octagonside in this Full Blast."

-- From Fuel TV: "FUEL TV celebrates Bruce Lee’s birthday with an exciting marathon on Tuesday, November 27 featuring the FUEL TV original series BRUCE LEE LIVES! and three Bruce Lee feature films including Game of Death, Fist of Fury and The Way of The Dragon. Kicking the day off with BRUCE LEE LIVES! at 12:30 PM ET fans will explore the legend’s life with an inside look into his own incredible work through six exciting episodes. Then, viewers will experience three of his greatest films. Game of Death airs at 3:30 PM ET; Fist of Fury airs at 6:00 PM ET; and The Way of the Dragon airs at 8:00 PM ET."

-- IPW Hardcore Wrestling at the Wildwood Rec Center on Saturday, December 1st. Call 912-220-2885 for info.

-- ECWA Pro Wrestling TOYS for TOTS on Sat, Dec 1st in Newark, Delaware at the Boys' & Girls' Club.

-- Latest TCW pro wrestling TV show is here with a supposed new King of Memphis crowned.

-- CHIKARA on Sunday, December 2nd at The Trocadero in Philadelphia, PA.

-- Pro Wrestling Syndicate ring announcer Larry Legend was a guest on The Price Is Right hosted by WWE Hall Of Famer Drew Carey on CBS today. Larry won the opening round, won the spin, and then won the showcase showdown. Congrats to Legend: proud owner of a new fireplace, an exotic vacation and a brand new boat.

-- Ed, Cutrer and Craig talk the most disgusting storylines in wrestling history here.

-- JR has a new blog up here.

-- Canada’s Fight Network has announced a multi-year broadcast partnership with U.K.-based Ultimate Challenge MMA. Fight Network will broadcast 30 events from the Ultimate Challenge MMA archive, which include UFC veterans such as Jimi Manuwa, Brad Pickett, Neil Grove, Tom Watson and John Maguire. Fight Network will also broadcast upcoming Ultimate Challenge MMA cards via tape delay. Ultimate Challenge MMA 31 is set to go down on Dec. 1 at The Troxy in London, England, featuring Neil Grove (11-6-1) against Tomasz Czerwinski (4-6).

-- This week only, NWA Smoky Mountain Promoter and "You Are NOT Getting Booked" creator Tony Givens' e-Book: "Promoting Indy Wrestling" is available for just $3.