TUES UPDATE: TUF 17 starts tonight, notes from Raw, Kendrick show, Rock worked injury, removal of Dana's ear, Tito teases comeback, tons more

Last Edited: 1.22.12 @ 7 PM EST

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

We're looking for reports on yesterday's TNA show in Dublin, Ireland as well as Sunday's Raw/Smackdown combined show yesterday in Fresno, as well as the Smackdown brand house shows on Friday night in Fairbanks, Alaska and Saturday night in Stockton at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Tuesday is Smackdown, Main Event and Saturday Morning Slam tapings in Sacramento with both The Rock and Ric Flair scheduled.

TNA continues its biggest tour of the year with shows on Wednesday in Glasgow, Scotland, Thursday in Nottingham, England, Friday in Manchester, England where episodes of Impact for 1/31 and 2/7 will be taped, and Saturday in London at Wembley Arena where the 2/14 and 2/21 episodes of Impact will be taped.


A quick note is that if everything goes as planned, the biggest issue of the year, the 2012 Awards issue, will be up on the site this coming week. Anyone who subscribes today to either a print version of the Observer or the web site will get the issue as part of their subscription. It's possible the issue will be in three weeks depending on the volume of news of the week, but given a Jan. 30 released issue would cover both Royal Rumble and UFC on FOX, having that be the awards issue is something that I'd like to avoid. Balloting for the awards ends tomorrow night at midnight Pacific time. The categories are covered in the Dec. 3 issue which is up in the Observer archives section.

With the wrestling season heating up, we've got a ton of news in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that will be on the site today. In addition, there is a new back issue up on the site from 1985.

In a huge WWE news section, we look at an update on Brock Lesnar in WWE, his contract situation, will he be around after WrestleMania, what should be done at Mania, why the most valuable match he could do with the company isn't a slam dunk, thoughts on the HHH program and more.

We also look at the departure of Eve Torres, her background and why she left.

We've got more on the WWE Hall of Fame for 2013 and a very interesting psychological situation regarding the Hall of Fame and people who have not been on Vince McMahon's good side at times, as well as talk about updates on the names that aren't in that have been most talked about.

We've got notes on someone who is back having influence on the television product, as well as an employee behind the scenes who just left the company. We've got notes on El Generico in WWE and his prospects, as well as an update on what is planned for the Royal Rumble including matches not announced, and how significant each match will be, as well as what has not been decided yet.

We've got notes on Ric Flair going forward in WWE, the reason he was on Raw this past week, and if this is or isn't a good thing for The Miz.

We also look at a number of names on WWE radar who are big names on the independent scene who will be looked at in a few weeks, as well as notes on wrestlers the company has just let go.

We look at the 2013 WWE & TNA PPV schedules and have notes on changes and why for both companies, including the change of a traditional date and the reason it makes sense.

We also note the single most successful segment on Raw in 2012, injury updates, Rock appearances, the Main Event TV show, a talked about Mania match that is no longer expected, lots of news on the weird video game front, update on Rey Mysterio, future of Dolph Ziggler, tons of news on developmental including what wrestles shined in recent appearances including a popular international star.

We also have all the weekend WWE business notes and a rundown of highlights from all the company's arena events.

We also have a look at how TNA is approaching the PPV business in 2013, why the changes are being made, the economics of everything, plans for the rest of this year, how this affects television, full rundowns of the first two taped PPV shows, as well as a look at TNA Genesis.

We also rundown the final Strikeforce show, with a look back at some of the highlights, the biggest shows, the worst shows, a list of Strikeforce fighters going into UFC, some early matches including a show on FOX featuring a number of Strikeforce fighters in featured roles. We look at the all-time title history in the promotion, the future of Josh Barnett, Daniel Cormier, MMA on Showtime and Scott Coker. We also have rundowns of all the matches with how much everyone got paid,which in and of itself will tell you about why the promotion had the history in the end that it had.

We also have all the details of the Eddie Alvarez lawsuits with Bellator, his exact contract offer from UFC, his contract offer from Bellator, whether it's really a match, as well as additional money offers he received. We look at the entire story step-by-step as well as the possibilities of Bellator going to PPV.

We also look at annual ratings for every WWE property, recent changes to how many people get the various cable shows.

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.

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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

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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 also have a look at the ratings of all the major shows as well as details of how every segment on Raw and Impact did and what 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.

Today's News, Notes and Links

-- Don't forget The Ultimate Fighter's season 17 with Chael Sonnen and "Bones" Jones debuts tonight on FX. It's a two hour show starting at 8 Eastern and Pacific. On MMAFighting.com, Dave has a lengthy piece on the season with quotes from an interview we did with Chael last week on the site. Jones and Sonnen are also going to be in the WFAN studios together tomorrow on the morning show.

-- We've got a really fun interview with Brian Kendrick for subscribers up talking all sorts of subjects, everything from going to King of Indies to ROH to WWE and TNA to various conspiracy theories including why the sun is, in fact, cold and not hot.

-- Kendrick is appearing on the Saturday and Sunday DGUSA shows on the California swing this weekend. John Morrison is also working on Friday night versus Akira Tozawa, which sounds great. More info on the shows is up at DGUSA.tv with the 26th and 27th shows available on iPPV. The latest DGUSA news update with more is up here.

-- This is surreal. Phillip McKinlay of Tacoma, WA, is trying out for Gut Check on the TNA Gut Check site and his tryout video is a match with me...which, in fact, I won.

RAW & Rumble News

-- If you missed Raw, about a dozen clips from the show including the great promos by CM Punk, Paul Heyman and Rock are up here.

-- If you're one of the people who thought John Cena's promo last night absolutely sucked (I personally thought it was one of the worst WWE promos in a year or so), you're not alone. It was a topic among the wrestlers last night as well. The post-show dark match last night was Cena & Sheamus beating Big Show & Wade Barrett.

-- Monday was the go-home Raw for the Rumble and when it was over, the only confirmed Rumble entrants were Cena, Randy Orton, Sheamus, Dolph Ziggler (at number one or two), Heath Slater, Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre, Antonio Cesaro, Barrett, Ryback and Miz. Most who appeared in the post show battle royal angle are also likely in. Clearly, the company sees this as a one-match show and that ain't the Rumble match.

-- On Twitter The Rock claimed he had internal bleeding in the lungs and a burst blood vessel, but he'll be fine. The angle with The Shield, which was pretty great, is up here.

-- Alan4L's gigantic (and I mean GIGANTIC) 2012 Annual is available for subscribers here. It's a big giant PDF with tons of cool stories, stats, reviews and more from all over the world.

-- There's an nterview with Shawn Michaels here.

-- If you want to watch doctors, as UFC president Dana White put it, CUT OFF HIS EAR, click here.

-- From Mike Tyson, the once feared former heavyweight boxing champion of the world: I’ve never listened to her music but I really like Taylor Swift’s new song, “I knew you were trouble”.

-- There's an interview with Tito Ortiz here where he teases coming out of retirement. He also rattles off a list of injuries and surgeries, so don't hold your breath. He said he would consider BJJ tournaments with his son, who is 10.

-- The latest secret code for buying WWE AXXESS tickets is "ACCESS". Apparently there have been ordering problems all day.

-- This is Santino's daughter, who just won Miss Teen Ontario 2013 and is looking to win Miss Teen Canada.

-- Check out this wacky interview with Antonio Cesaro here.

-- From the press release: The National Wrestling Hall of Fame Dan Gable Museum has finalized the Class of 2013 for the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame. This will be the 15th class inducted into the Hall of Fame.

The George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame weekend will take place July 12-13 in Waterloo, Iowa.

Ric Flair, “Cowboy” Bill Watts, and Chris Taylor (posthumously) were chosen by the selection committee to enter the Hall of Fame. Criteria for induction into the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame include substantial impact on professional wrestling, general respect within the profession, and a strong amateur wrestling background. The selection committee includes all living hall of fame members as well as a select group of wrestling historians.

A special committee also selects four award winners to enter the Hall of Fame. This year’s award winners include Edge (Adam Copeland), Jim Brunzell, Matt Hughes, and George Napolitano.

-- There's a new interview with me on Kayfabe Kickout here.

-- The Galaxy Class Starship of the National Wrestling Alliance aka NWA Dangerous Adrenaline Wrestling Gladiators Returns to the Clayton High School in Clayton, NJ on Saturday Night April 20th with a 7:30pm Bell Time

-- 787 Professional Wrestling’s second event, “ACCELERATION”, will be held on Sunday February 17 at 2:30PM, at the Troy Boys & Girls Club (1700 7Th Ave. Troy, NY). Tickets are just $15 for Front Row seating and $10 for General Admission. Children 12 and under are FREE, with paid adult admission.

-- Hoosier Pro Wrestling "February Fall-Out" Feb. 2nd 2013 4-H Fairgrounds Columbus, IN Bell 7:45PM Open 6:45pm Tickets $12 kids 4 & under free

-- Here's a quick feature on new WWE Hall of Famer Bob Backlund here.

-- Listen to Over the Top Radio with wrestlers vs. law enforcement here.

-- There is video of an irate fan trying to attack Earl Hebner at the TNA house show this weekend here.

-- Today in history with Brian Hoops:

1945 - Danny McShain the Dick Trout to win the World Light Heavyweight Title in Hollywood, California

1959 - Reggie and Stan Lisowski defeated Herb and Seymour Freeman for the Minneapolis NWA World Tag Team Title in Minneapolis, Minnesota

1960 - Lee Henning defeated Bob Ellis in St. Joseph, Missouri to win the NWA Central States Heavyweight Title.

1962 - Gene Kiniski and Killer Kowalski defeated Roy McClarty and Whipper Billy Watson in Vancouver, British Columbia for the Vancouver NWA Pacific Coast Tag Team Title.

1970 - The Spoilers defeated Ron and Don Wright in Chattanooga, Tennessee for the NWA Tennessee Tag Team Title

1975 - Dick Murdoch defeated Blackjack Mulligan to win the Amarillo NWA International Heavyweight Title in Lubbock, Texas

1981 - Jumbo Tsuruta won the NWA United National Heavyweight Title, defeating Abdullah the Butcher in Nirasaki, Japan.

1981 - Bobby Eaton defeated Steve O for the NWA National Television Title in Atlanta, Georgia.

1982 - The Masked Superstar and Super Destroyer (Scott Irwin) defeated Bob and Brad Armstrong for the NWA National Tag Team Title in Columbus, Georgia.

1984 - Angelo Mosca defeated Sgt. Slaughter in Toronto, Ontario for the Toronto NWA Canadian Heavyweight Title

1984 - Kendo Nagasaki (Kazuo Sakurada) defeated Mike Rotundo to win the NWA Florida Heavyweight Title in Orlando, Florida.

1995 - Jeff Jarrett won the WWF Intercontinental Title from Razor Ramon in Tampa, Florida and Shawn Michaels won the Royal Rumble.

1996- Sting and Lex Luger won the WCW World Tag Team Title by defeating Harlem Heat in Las Vegas, Nevada. Randy Savage won the WCW World Title from Ric Flair.


  • Yes, the way it is 6.9%
  • Yes, but not allowed for fighters whose testosterone levels are low from prior steroid use 6.9%
  • No, because you can't really find out if the testosterone is low from prior steroid use 22.3%
  • No, too easy to abuse 63.8%


  • Buy 2-3 shows a year, getting this 31.6%
  • Almost never buy, not getting this 22.5%
  • Usually buy WWE shows, am getting this 16.5%
  • Almost never buy WWE shows, am getting this for Rock vs. Punk 8.4%
  • Usually only buy Mania, not getting this 6.0%
  • Almost never buy, getting this for the Rumble match primarily 3.2%
  • Buy 2-3 shows a year, not getting this 1.4%
  • Usually buy WWE shows, not getting this 0.7%


  • C.M. Punk vs. The Rock 74.8%
  • Royal Rumble 25.2%


  • Pitbull vs. Pat Curran 46.5%
  • Daniel Sarafian vs. C.B. Dollaway 32.6%
  • Rick Hawn vs. Michael Chandler 20.9%


  • New Japan Tokyo Dome show 50.6%
  • WWE TLC 26.5%
  • UFC 155 Dos Santos vs. Velasquez 10.7%
  • UFC on FX Bisping vs. Belfort 4.3%
  • Bellator debut 4.0%
  • TNA Genesis 4.0%

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?