Also in this week's issue:
--Hall of Famer getting a Medal of Merit for out of the ring work
--Two stars in auto accident
--A look at the two major Dragon Gate shows of the past week
--An update on the All Japan/Keiji Muto split, and who seems to be leaning in what direction.
--Nobuo Shirashi talks the company's financial condition before he got there
--Jun Akiyama said he's made his decision where he's going
--All Japan announces full show for Sumo Hall
--NOAH announces the top matches on its next big show
--Coverage of Mitsuharu Misawa Memorial Show
--A look at NOAH's upcoming tag team tournament
--Lots of New Japan vs. NOAH matches
--Notes on the next New Japan PPV show
--Prince Devitt vs. Jushin Liger in England
--Zero-One's biggest event of the year
--Early 80s biggest feud returning again
--Lots of notes on the death and autopsy results of Reid Flair
--Notes on the death of Al Green
--Who is Jackie Fargo
--Brad Armstrong Memorial show notes
--A look at the last PWG show with some of the best indie wrestlers in the country
--More on Mark Starr's death
--Wrestling Hall of Famer said to be the biggest omission in Boxing Hall of Fame, makes Tyson sick
--Promotion of the WWC's match between the two biggest native stars in its history
--WCW star talks about returning to wrestling
--ROH next iPPV notes
--Notes on TNA's Destination X show
--Another major TNA exec let go
--Notes on future TNA Gut Check international star
--A look at TNA's weekend house shows
--Update on UFC in Boston
--Advance ticket sales for upcoming UFC events
--The situation with TRT being allowed in California
--Another UFC fighter takes heat for his views
--Dan Henderson talks Chael Sonnen
--Chael Sonnen says why he doesn't like LeBron James
--Jon Jones talks why he doesn't want to face Machida
--Dana White talks the currently filmed season of Ultimate Fighter
--Lots of new UFC fights
--More on Josh Burkman vs. Jon Fitch
--Former UFC fighter sentenced to 13 years in prison
--A seemingly insane attempt on PPV
New subscribers ordering 24 or 40 issues have to let us know what major stories of the past 11 years you are most interested in and we'll send the issue with the best coverage of that story. We've got coverage of every major PPV event and world wide spectacular, every major star switching promotions, histories of companies like FMW, Rings and New Japan, retirement and obit issues of every major star who fits into those descriptions over the past 11 years, as well as our biggest issue every year, the annual awards issue, and our most controversial issue of every year, the Hall of Fame issue.
Our most requested issues in our history are:
*November 17, 1997 (full details of everything leading to the most famous wrestling match finish of modern times at the Survivor Series plus a history of in-ring double-crosses)
*December 21, 1998 (the complete Vince McMahon-Bret Hart conversation right before the Survivor Series match so you'll know exactly what was said--the conversation played in edited form both on the inaugural broadcast of Confidential as well as in Wrestling with Shadows, but everything that was said between the two about the match that was going to take place that same night)
*August 1, 1994 (the most detailed coverage anywhere of the Vince McMahon steroid trial, an issue praised in numerous newspaper article and Sex, Lies and Headlocks)
*March 26, 2001 (death of WCW and history of pro wrestling on the Turner networks)
*October 22, 2001 (why the adult audience has left pro wrestling in such great numbers and what needed to have been done to save them)
*July 8, 1991 (Ric Flair leaves WCW as world champion/Zahorian steroid trial)
*February 8, 1993 (the life and times of Andre the Giant)
*May 13, 2002 (the life story of the most incredible pro wrestling career ever, a look at Lou Thesz, in one of the largest issues of our
*January 27, 2003 (part one of the two-part series covering the career and life of The Sheik)
*February 3, 2003 (Part two on The Sheik including thoughts from people who worked with him and where he stands historically)
*March 24, 2003 (history of the WWWF title, inside behind the Sammartino, Backlund and Backlund era)
*April 21, 2003 (history of WWF continues with the expansion nationally, the death of the regional territories and the rise of Hulk Hogan)
*May 12, 2003 (The life and death of Elizabeth and the rise of fall of Lex Luger)
*June 9, 2003 (Part 1 of history of WWF vs. WCW wars and what many say was the greatest year in U.S. wrestling; plus a look at Fred Blassie)
*June 16, 2003 (Freddie Blassie through the eyes of his biggest rivals and friends)
*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)
*March 8, 2004 (History of Wrestlemania, its greatest matches and best and worst shows as voted both by wrestlers and non-wrestlers and Wrestlemania history books)
*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)
*August 23, 2004 (2004 Hall of Fame issue and biggest issue of the year with huge profiles on Kazushi Sakuraba, Undertaker, Bob Backlund, Masahiro Chono, Ultimo Dragon, Kurt Angle and Tarzan Lopez--this counts as one issue if you are asking for a free issue, but ordered separately, due to size, is $6 in North America and $7 overseas)
*October 4, 2004 (the life and times of Big Bossman; as well as details of the life and times of one of the most influential men world wide in pro wrestling history, Jim Barnett)
*November 15, 2004 (the full story of what happened between Kurt Angle and Daniel Puder, plus coverage of the most important week in the history of TNA)
*January 24, 2005 (2004 Awards issue, Rock and WWE part company)
*March 14, 2005 (the 50 biggest money players in the history of WWF and a look at their Hall of Fame)
*May 9, 2005 (the life and times of Chris Candido)
*June 20, 2005 (The full story behind Paul Heyman and the death of ECW, as well as coverage of One Night Stand, Hardcore Homecoming and behind the scenes of both shows)
*July 18, 2005 (death of Shinya Hashimoto and his records with a look at the fall of New Japan, the Matt Hardy angle, tons of WWE firings, Cornette firing in detail as well as problems of a WWE developmental territory in our biggest news issue of the year which is a double-sized issue and would be $6 on its own and $7 overseas)
*August 24, 2005 (2005 Hall of Fame issue with career profiles of Paul Heyman, HHH and Freebirds plus debut of MMA Hall of Fame)
*September 12, 2005 (History of Mid South Wrestling)
*October 10, 2005 (Life and Times of the Ultimate Warrior)
*November 21, 2005 (Life and Times of Eddy Guerrero and Crusher, double issue $6 on its own and $7 overseas)
*December 5, 2005 (The Eddy Guerrero special issue, double issue $6 on its own, $7 overseas)
*January 9, 2006 (The life and times of Superstar Billy Graham, plus New Year's Eve 2005 coverage)
*January 16, 2006 (2005 Awards double issue, $6 or $7 overseas)
*April 3, 2006 (Story of Ann Calvello and the history of Roller Derby--many called this the best issue of the Observer ever)
*April 10, 2006 (Behind the scenes at the 2006 Wrestlemania/Hall of Fame week)
*July 24, 2006 (The History of the Von Erichs and World Class Championship Wrestling--the most unreal story ever in wrestling)
*September 4, 2006 (The Rise and Fall of Kurt Angle; 2006 Hall of Fame inductions of Eddie Guerrero, Paul Bowser, Masakatsu Funaki, Aja Kong and Hiroshi Hase including tons of wrestling history around the world from the 20s through the 60s, the evolution of working to not working in Japan, and a look at Guerrero in hindsight, double issue $6 or $7 overseas)
*October 9, 2006 (A look back nine years later at the life and legacy of Brian Pillman with tons of inside information about what made him tick as his real objectives)
*November 15, 2006 (History of WCW part one, Eric Bischoff's book and how the industry was changed forever)
*November 20, 2006 (History of WCW part two, Why Jim Ross left WCW, How Bischoff changed the company, signing of Hulk Hogan, Beginning of Nitro, Jesse Ventura, Brian Pillman, Chris Jericho and signing Wrestlemania planned celebrity away)
*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)
*January 22, 2007 (2006 Awards issue, double issue $7 on its own, $8 overseas)
*February 14, 2007 (Life and Times of Bam Bigelow)
*March 5, 2007 (WWE begins plans that will change the business)
*March 12, 2007 (Life and Times of Mike Awesome)
*March 19, 2007 (Life and Times of Ernie Ladd)
*April 4, 2007 (Life and Times of Badnews Allen Coage--which many are calling one of the best issues in history)
*July 2, 2007 (Part one of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 5, 2007 (Part two of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 10, 2007 (Part three of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 19, 2007 (Part four of the Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 23, 2007 (Part five of Benoit double murder-suicide)
*July 25, 2007 (Part six of Benoit double murder-suicide)
*August 15, 2007 (The legend of the God of Japanese wrestling and his influence on MMA, Karl Gotch)
*October 15 (2007 Hall of Fame double issue, $7 on its own, $8 overseas including inductions of The Rock, Tom Packs and the original Strangler Lewis)
*November 12, 2007 (Life and times of Fabulous Moolah and history of U.S. women's wrestling) .
*December 31, 2007 (History of Ric Flair and the heyday of wrestling at the Greensboro Coliseum)
*January 21, 2008 (2007 Awards issue, double issue $7 on its own, $8 overseas)
*March 17, 2008 (Life and times of Johnny Weaver)
*March 24, 2008 (Life and times of Gary Hart)
*April 10, 2008 (Farewell to Ric Flair; My thoughts, Shawn Michaels talks of Flair's meaning to him; Hall of Fame; Wrestlemania double issue, $7 on its own, $8 overseas)
*August 11, 2008 (Ric Flair leaves WWE; Updated history of pro wrestlers and MMA fighters who went to the Olympics)
* September 8, 2008 (2008 Hall of Fame double issue, $7 on its own, $8 overseas; part one of Killer Kowalski bio)
* September 15, 2008 (Life and Times of Evan Tanner)
* September 22, 2008 (The amazing career of Killer Kowalski, one of our most in-depth bios)
You can also order any of these issues on their own for $4 in North America or $5 overseas.
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
For the rest of the world, rates are $16.50 for 4, $44 for 12, $85 for 24, $141 for 40 issues and $183 for 52 .
If you order by mail with a check, cash or money order (P.O. Box 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228), you can get $1 off in every price range.
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.
Saturday's News Update
--Sorry this is up late. We've having major e-mail issues here in the sense that I haven't gotten any e-mails addressed to
since Wednesday night. I was hoping it would be fixed but nobody can seem to figure out what is wrong. For now, if you've got anything to be sent to me, send it to
until further notice.
--If you have sent any correspondence, news, questions or orders since Wednesday night to any of those addresses, please resend to
If you ordered the Observer via paypal, there should be no problem. If you made a credit card order since Wednesday night, it means we wouldn't have gotten it.
--Is also means any questions sent for tonight's radio show with Mike Sempervive and I, we didn't get. Bryan did get me some questions sent today and some people have already sent questions a second time, so we will have questions but not nearly as many as we usually have for these shows since I would have gotten nothing sent on Thursday or Friday and only a few things sent today.
--A note that Jackie Fargo (83) and Dutch Savage (78) are both in very bad shape according to people close to them. Both have been hospitalize the past few days.
--You need to go out of your way to see today's New Japan show. It's a candidate for show of the year. Realistically, it's probably behind the Tokyo Dome, but it was a lot better than WWE's Payback last week. The Osaka crowd was off the charts.
--As for Ring of Honor, the show seemed fine. Very good crowd and mostly good matches. But the Internet problems were really bad. It was okay the first half of the show in the sense there were constant problems, but not at the wrong time. But it was really bad late in the show. I missed two finishes and then, for some reason, it just cut off in the middle of the main event. Hopefully it'll be better when the replay is up but this is really getting old.
--Zema Ion's medical bills campaign was not on Kickstarter as listed here, but GiveForward. With GiveForward, even though they came nowhere close to their goal, Ion will be getting the $6,688 raised. (thanks to Trey Hudson)
--WWE results from last night in Mobile:
Brodus Clay & Sweet T b Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow
Justin Gabriel b Jinder Mahal
Naomi b Brie Bella
Dean Ambrose b R-Truth to retain U.S. title
Daniel Bryan & Kane b Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns via DQ in tag title match
Luke Harper b Alex Riley
Zack Ryder b Drew McIntyre
John Cena b Ryback in a tables match for WWE title
--Randy Couture turned 50 today. Woman wrestler Amber O'Neil turned 39.
--Nancy Benoit is believed to have been murdered six years ago today by her husband Chris.
--Billy Red Lyons, a Toronto wrestling fixture, passed away four years ago today at the age of 77.
WHAT ARE YOU PLANNING ON GETTING?
New Japan Dominion 26.0%
ROH Best in the World 21.4%
60.7% were getting either one
WILL YOU BUY THE INVICTA SHOW ON PPV?
No, won't buy an MMA PPV no matter the price 42.9%
No, don't know enough people on the show 21.4%
No, will not buy an all-women's MMA show 14.3%
Yes, will buy at $14.95, but wouldn't at a more expensive price 8.9%
Yes, have watched Invicta before, like the product 6.5%
Yes, I'm an MMA fan and it's a good show 3.6%
Yes, will buy because I like the Cyborg vs. Coenen main event 2.4%
CAN BELLATOR DRAW WITHOUT A TNA LEAD IN?
No, it can't 57.6%
It can, but the show this week wasn't publicized well enough 37.0%
Yes, it was the NHL playoffs that killed this week 5.4%
POLL ON IMPACT
33.3% of those responding didn't see the show
--There is now CMLL on Galavision this week or next week. In other words, doesn't look like the Sombra vs. Volador Jr. IC title match will be airing here. (thanks to Mark Black)
--Countdown to UFC 162 will air on Tuesday, July 2nd at 11 p.m. on Fuel, right after the usual UFC block. On Fuel means minimal impact.
--FWE results from last night in Corona, NY: Petey Williams b Brain Kendrick, Young Bucks b Jigsaw & Anthony Nese, Winter & Angelina Love b Maria Kanellis & Ivelisse Velez, Paul London b Akio Yang, Rob Van Dam b Tommy Dreamer, John Morrison b Carlito to win the FWE title, Tommy Dreamer won Rumble to get a title shot (thanks to Chris GST)
--Due to my e-mail issues, only a few notes on This day in wrestling history, all foreign, from Graeme Cameron
1967 - Rene Guajardo beat El Santo to win the Mexican national middleweight title
1978 - Steve Rickard beat Toru Tanaka in Auckland to win the British Commonwealth title
1986 - Yukari Omori won the Japanese women's Grand Prix beating Chigusa Nagayo (the most popular woman wrestler of all-time) in the finals while Mika Komatsu & Kanako Nagatomo beat Kazue Nagahori & Yumi Ogura to win the Japanese tag team titles
1996 - Mima Shimoda & Manami Toyota beat Takako Inoue & Kyoko Inoue (who are not related) to win the WWWA tag team titles and Reggie Bennett beat Kaoru Ito to win the Women's All-Pacific title
--Tickets are now on sale for the next WSOF show on 8/10 in Ontario, CA at the Citizens Business Bank Arena headlined by Tyrone Spong vs. Angel Deanda and Marlon Moraes vs. Brandon Hepleman, Ray Sefo vs. Dave Huckaba, Tyson Griffin vs. J.Z. Cavalcante and Nick Newell vs. Keon Caldwell.
--Jim Ross and Gerald Brisco were recruiting wrestlers at the World Team trials today in Stillwater, OK. Somebody let me know if the Kyle Dake vs. Jordan Burroughs final is on the Internet.
--Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Canelo Alvarez have a press conference at 3 p.m. Eastern at Times Square in New York to officially announce their 9/14 fight in Las Vegas. Appearing are both fighters, plus Oscar De La Hoya, Richard Schaeffer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions and Stephen Espinoza, the GM of Showtime Sports. I believe Mayweather will be getting the biggest guarantee in boxing history for what is expected to do the biggest PPV numbers for anything since 2007. The same crew has a press conference Tuesday at 1 p.m. at the Howard Theater in Washington, DC.
--Main Event Wrestling presents the California Cup on 7/14 in Fresno at the Fresno Fairgrounds Gem and Mineral Building. It's a one-night tournament. First round matches are Johnny Gargano vs. Brian Cage, Jimmy Rave vs. TJ Perkins (Suicide in TNA), Adam Thornstowe vs. Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson vs. Drake Younger. $5 from every ticket will go to the Fresno Animal Shelter. You can get $5 off any ticket at http://maineventwrestling.eventbrite.com
--The double main event of Titan & La Mascara & Rush vs. Psicosis & Volador Jr. & Mr. Aguila and Mascara Dorada & Diamante Azul & Mistico vs. Averno & Mephisto & Ephesto airs for free starting at 6 p.m. Eastern time at http://www.terra.com.mx
--La Sombra makes his first defense of the IWGP Intercontinental title, against Volador Jr. this coming Friday night at Arena Mexico.
--Wrestlepazlooza from last night in Minneapolis: Wildcat over Zero Kincaid and Venom, Horace the Psychopath b Renny D, Sheik Arya Daivari b Colt Cabana, Aaron Corbin & John Johnson & Rob James b Brett Gakiya & CJ Esparza & Ryan Cruz, El Chivas Blancas b Chuck /Taylor & Pete Huge & Arik Cannon
--WWE Classics on Demand this week (thanks to Brian Hoops)
Best of King of the ring 5 & 6
Madison Square Garden 6/3/91
WWWF Championship Wrestling 10/29/77
Prime Time Wrestling 11/6/89