TUES UPDATE: More from Raw, a look inside UFC contracts, Diaz's promotion, US, Russia and Iran teaming up tomorrow, latest Bellator fun, tons more
By Bryan Alvarez |
We're looking for live reports tonight's from Smackdown and Main Event, which will be taped tonight in Wichita. The Main Event headliner is Kane vs. Seth Rollins. The only thing announced for the Smackdown show is a Highlight Reel where Chris Jericho has Big Show and Randy Orton as guests.
We're also looking for reports on these weekend shows:
- Sunday Raw in Fort Worth
- Sunday Smackdown in Amarillo
- Saturday Raw in Beaumont
- Saturday Smackdown in Odessa.
THE LATEST OBSERVER
We've got two issues of the Observer up on the web site, both the current issue, with the most detailed look anywhere at the current WWE business and future business, and a back issue from 1996 looking at the beginning of the story of Scott Hall and Kevin Nash leaving WWF for WCW, the build to the 1996 WrestleMania, return of the Ultimate Warrior, Vince McMahon lashes back at WCW's skits and a lot of craziness just as the business was starting to turn around.
The new issue is also available by mail with details below.
The issue goes in depth on the current business. We update on the network plans, why this can't be compared to anything on television, why profits were down as we look at each category, as well as why the stock price is improving.
We also look at the PPV business, how it changes, how much profit WWE made on PPV last year and what is being risked.
We look at the movie division, the value of Dwayne Johnson and Brock Lesnar to the product, why their names are never mentioned on investors calls, where business is up, and down and why in places where it is up are profits still down.
We look at how business has changed over the past two years in every part of the world, as well as have a chart on every revenue stream and the profit margin, and the surprise of where more money is made then anywhere else.
We also look at how much extra talent was or wasn't paid with buy rates up, a ballpark on what Dwayne Johnson earned for Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber, and how talent payoffs are done in WWE when it comes to big shows.
We also look at what category WWE believes its revenues can significantly increase in. We also look at what continually declining aspect of business that had a big quarter.
We look at house show business both at home and overseas, as well as the average company cost to produce a show. We also look at the changes in revenue from PPV, including how much the company took in for Rumble and Elimination Chamber, as well as the chart for the two PPVs for the last three years.
We also look at the return to wrestling of Jerry Lawler, another project by Dwayne Johnson, how Johnson's movies are doing, new movies coming out starring wrestlers, thoughts on Kingston vs. Cesaro, the Extreme Rules card, why Fandango has two rotating dancers, as well as teases on the Kaitlyn secret admirer angle.
We also have more on the "Total Divas" show, a look at the return of several wrestlers from injuries and another who has disappeared, as well as those on the independent scene who are being considered.
We also have tons of stuff from developmental, as far as tapings, who new guys are, backgrounds, El Generico, football players, wrestlers and more who are starting on television.
We've also got business notes from the past week as well as highlights from all the WWE house shows of the past week.
We've also got a look at the retirement of Shane Carwin and his famous fight with Brock Lesnar. We look at his background, pre-UFC days, and why he is retiring.
We've got a complete rundown of New Japan's Wrestling Dontaku show held this past week in Fukuoka. We look at the top three matches, the next New Japan PPV show, who is returning, the Prince Devitt heel turn as well as the full rundown of the Best of the Super Junior tournament that starts in two weeks.
We also have a match-by-match rundown of the show with star ratings.
We also have full coverage of the ROH Border Wars PPV. We talk about the experiment of shooting television the day after the house shows in the same market. We look at ROH's new iPPV, and a look at the entire card with match-by-match rundowns.
We also look at the elusive Ronda Rousey vs. Cris Cyborg fight and why it hasn't happened yet. We have why Liz Carmouche got the first UFC title shot, if the problem really was the weight class and what is next for Cyborg.
We also have coverage of the Dragon Gate Dead of Alive PPV that was held over the weekend that include several U.S. wrestlers and was one of the company's biggest shows of the year.
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
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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.
Also in this week's issue:
--Foreign pro wrestling group claims they are running a 50,000 seat stadium and will be loaded up to get ready
--How a different group was planning on dong the match his year
--Longtime Mexican star announces retirement
--Pro wrestling star tabbed for international version of Survivor
--Dragon Gate planning its annual King of Cage tournament, as well as a second ticket
--Full-time Canadian pro wrestling stars this weekend
--Seiya Sanada getting big matches
--Ryo Saito essentially in the same position
--Kenta Kobashi retirement show notes
--What legend KENTA wants to defend his GHC title against
--Wrestling to return to one of his most famous locations
--Notes on the next four weeks of ROH television
--Dixie Carter looks at plans for early next year
--King Mo in pro wrestling
--TNA house show notes
--Wrestler who doesn't exist wins poll for a title shot
--Notes on UFC's new television deal in the U.K.
--When the deal goes into effect
--What will Wednesday on FS 1 look like
--Early PPV numbers for UFC 159
--Thoughts on what the numbers say
--How UFC PPV business is doing so far this year
--What to look out for on the July UFC show
--What's behind Anderson Silva's fine
--Lots of UFC cuts
--Lots of Ronda Rousey notes
--Early Mayweather vs. Guerrero PPV numbers and the fallout form it
For the United States, it is $13 for 4 issues, $32 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $14.50 for 4, $35 for 12, $67 for 24, $111 for 40 and $144 or 52. In Europe, you can get the fastest delivery and best rates by sending to
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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.
TUESDAY NEWS, NOTES AND LINKS
-- The radio show issues with the RSS feed should be resolved by the time most of you read this. We apologize for the troubles.
-- In a correction from last night's radio show, I don't believe Chris Jericho's dancer was under contract to Dancing with the Stars, so that wasn't the reason the dance-off didn't actually take place.
-- For those emailing about the new F4W Empire T-shirts, Craig posted this on Twitter: The F4W shirts haven't come back from the printer, but I expect them very soon. They will be mailed out in the order received!
-- One of our readers has FOUR UFC tickets for the July 4th weekend event that he needs to sell. If you are interested, contact Ed at
and he'll put the two sides together. That weekend is also our annual Figure Four Online/Wrestling Observer Convention and banquet. All the info on the banquet dinner is up here. If you have questions, don't hestitate to email Ed at
-- The US, Russian and Iranian wrestling teams are all meeting in New York on Wednesday for an exhibition attempting to showcase the sport in the hopes that the IOC will bring it back into Olympic competition when they meet to make the final determination on which sports to add this fall. Wrestling was dropped earlier in the year amid great controversy, given it was one of the original sports in the Greek Olympic Games.
-- Big story here from Jonathan Snowden taking a look at UFC contracts with thoughts from both the UFC's Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta, their lawyer, agents and a labor contract expert.
-- NICK DIAZ PROMOTIONS -- WAR. CSAC has confirmed that Diaz is in the process of trying to apply for a promoter's license.
-- The latest Bellator fun comes from Ben Askren, who in response to an article about how Bellator fighters don't fail drug tests noted that it's pretty hard to fail a drug test when you never have to take tests. He said he'd been tested once in eight fights. Someone put up the Bjorn Signal.
-- Stephen Espinoza of Showtime made it very clear yesterday that they'd love to have MMA back on their station. He said they need to find the right promotion and the right mix, and that it probably wouldn't be happening before the end of 2013 or early 2014.
-- Wife Swap with Roddy Piper and Ric Flair airs June 23rd on ABC at 8 PM. That'll be something to see. Flair isn't married, by the way, so it's a wife/girlfriend swap.
-- ROH has a new Kevin Steen Best Of DVD out today here. It's a shoot interview DVD that also includes 12 matches.
-- WWE TK14, the new WWE video game that will be out in October, will be available for the PS3 and XBox, and apparently not on the Nintendo Wii.
-- Story on Vitor Belfort, Luke Rockhold and TRT from USA Today up here.
-- Full card for the June 22 House of Hardcore event promoted by Tommy Dreamer including Dreamer with Terry Funk vs. Lance Storm (out of retirement again, we'll talk about that on the show with him this week), 2 Cold Scorpio vs. John Morrison, Paul London & Brian Kendrick vs. Young Bucks, plus appearances by Ric Flair, the Steiners, Mike Bennett and Maria, and more. That sounds like a hell of a show.
-- FUEL TV airs the half-hour original UFC FROM ALL ANGLES: ANDERSON SILVA on Tuesday, May 14 (9:30 PM ET). Host Karyn Bryant takes you behind the scenes with one of the UFC's biggest names, current Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva, to discuss all things inside the Octagon and out. Filmed at Silva’s new Muay Thai College in Torrance, California, the top-ranked pound-for-pound fighter chats about his focus, why he opened his martial arts training center and his legacy.
The show begins with Bryant talking with Silva about the key points in his career, including his first fight for the UFC title against Rich Franklin. “Rich Franklin is the best in this category for a long time,” he says. “I respect Rich Franklin for giving me the chance for the belt.”
Silva then opens up about how he has maintained the longest title defense streak: “It’s not so easy,” he adds. “I’m the champion now. A lot of people talk to me, ‘Ah, you’re the best, go to the party.’ These aren’t real friends. You need your real friends. A lot of people love you, but you need to keep your focus... It’s not easy.”
Silva expands on the level of competition in the UFC and how he’s had to work hard to achieve what he’s done. “I train more. It’s not easy. Rich Franklin is good. Chael Sonnen is good. Dan Henderson, for a long time, was the best. These guys are the best in the world. This is my time. One day comes when another guy is the best in the world. I’ve trained for a long time. Maybe god has the big plans for me because I talk to kids and they talk to me. I have a chance to change a lot of kid’s lives. This is more important for me. God has given me the chance to change the lives of a lot of people.”
Other topics Silva touches on include how people need to respect the sport of MMA more, his secret to his success, why the Nogueira brothers mean so much to him, if he’s a funny person and his legacy in the sport.
-- FRIDAY June 21st, 2013 Pabst Blue Ribbon Presents; “WRESTLEPALOOZA II” First Avenue Minneapolis, MN Tickets - $18 Doors Open at 7pm Show Starts at 8pm 18+. Scheduled to appear "The Anarchist" Arik Cannon, Colt Cabana, The Flamboyant Fighting Goat: El Chivas Blanco, Sheik Ariya Daivari, "Playboy" Pete Huge, Horace The Psychopath, The North Star Express (Darin Corbin & Ryan Cruz), The Charismatic Canine: Yellow Dog, The Crime Fighting Feline: Wildcat, & MUCH MORE!
-- From Golden Boy Promotions: Early today, Six-Time and Four-Division World Champion Robert Guerrero appeared in New York State Supreme Court for Queens County where all firearm possession charges were dismissed in connection with hisMarch 28 arrest at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City. Guerrero pled guilty to disorderly conduct, a violation and not a crime, was fined $250 and ordered to complete 50 hours of community service which he will be allowed to perform in his home state of California. Guerrero was arrested on March 28 when checking in his luggage at JFK while returning to training camp in Las Vegas following a press tour in connection with his May 4 fight against Floyd Mayweather.
"As he was checking in, he made sure to advise authorities that they needed to be aware that he had a firearm, which was unloaded and in a locked safe box within his luggage which was to be checked. Guerrero was carrying no ammunition and was within his legal right to possess such firearm in the state in which he resides. "I'm pleased that the District Attorney's Office considered my case carefully and resolved it fairly," said Guerrero. "I never intended to violate New York law, but I know that ignorance of the law is not an excuse. Lesson learned. I'm happy this incident is behind me and looking forward to returning to the ring as well as serving my community as ordered by the court."
-- James notes: In today's (Tuesday) Leader newspaper in Sydney, Australia there is an article on UFC fighter Robert Whittaker. The Leader is aimed at residents in the southern suburbs of Sydney. Whittaker fights Colton Smith in UFC 160. Whittaker lives in the southern Sydney suburb of Menai.
-- There is a Sgt. Slaughter interview on FOX Sports Radio here.
-- Hard-hitting upstart Wayne Barrett (1-0, 1 KO) of Queens, N.Y. will compete on the biggest stage of his young professional fight career when he faces off with fellow undefeated Muay Thai stylist Mike Lemaire (9-0, 3 KOs) of San Diego, Calif. in a middleweight (187 pounds/85 kilograms) Superfight contest at the first-ever GLORY championship series kickboxing event in the U.S. at Hammerstein Ballroom in New York, N.Y. on Saturday, June 22.
-- Over the Top Radio with Part 2 of their World Title discussion is here
-- Slow day in history per Brian Hoops:
1964 - Gene Kiniski & Cyclone Negro defeated Toyonobori & Michiaki Yoshimura to win the All Asian Tag Team Title in Yokohama, Japan.
1974 - Giant Baba won the 2nd All Japan Champion Carnival tournament by defeating Mr. Wrestling in the finals of the elimination tournament. Baba defeated Curtis Iaukea and Mark Lewin to reach the finals, while Mr. Wrestling defeated Mattie Suzuki, Thunder Sugiyama, and Jumbo Tsuruta to reach the finals.
1983 - Carlos Colon defeated Ox Baker in San Juan, Puerto Rico to win the WWC World Heavyweight Title
DO YOU THINK THE UFC VELASQUEZ VS. SILVA PPV NUMBER TOPS 425,000?
DO YOU THINK EXTREME RULES TOPS 140,000 DOMESTIC?
WHO SHOULD WIN THIS MATCH?
John Cena 57.7%
WHAT SHOULD BE THE RESULT OF THE STING VS. BULLY RAY MATCH AT SLAMMIVERSARY?
Bully Ray should win clean 70.3%
Bully Ray should win with outside help 16.4%
Sting should win clean 7.6%
Sting should win with help from Hulk Hogan 5.8%
WHO IS THE BEST PROMOTER RIGHT NOW OF THESE CHOICES?
Dana White 42.8%
Takaaki Kidani 29.5%
Vince McMahon 16.5%
Dixie Carter 4.4%
Sinclair Broadcasting 2.1%
Nobuo Shiraishi 1.5%
Roldan Family 1.5%
Ryu Nakata 0.8%
Paco Alonso 0.6%
Bjorn Rebney 0.2%
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