MON. UPDATE: Jackie Fargo vs. Lawler sets city record 39 years ago today, Great Iron Sheik story, New Japan PPV notes, Best TV show, Rock bodybuilding, Keibler tries to set record

By Dave Meltzer
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        We're looking for your thoughts on Saturday's New Japan Dominion and ROH Best in the World iPPV shows, 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 from North Charleston, SC tonight from Raw with the Superstars matches, dark matches and anything else that wouldn't be evident from watching the live show at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   Tonight's advertised main event is Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan, although I doubt that will be put in the main event slot, unless they've gained a lot of confidence is Bryan.  Paul Heyman will also follow up the Brock Lesnar/C.M. Punk angle from last week and they should start focusing on the Money in the Bank matches, likely with qualifying bouts. 
        We're also looking for reports from the WWE house shows Sunday in Savannah, GA and Albany, GA, the Friday show in Mobile, AL, and Saturday's show in Daytona Beach.
        Smackdown and Main Event are taped Tuesday night in Columbia, SC.
        The new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter is up on the web site today, covering all of the changes that were made in WWE with characters as well as the future direction.
        We look at the turns of Alberto Del Rio, C.M. Punk, Dolph Ziggler and why the decisions were made.  We look at the return of Rob Van Dam, why he's in WWE and not TNA, notes on his deal, a huge change when it comes to writing of WWE television, and what happened with Daniel Bryan and Randy Orton on Raw, and Daniel Bryan and HHH backstage.  We've got full details of the injury and the backstage situation.
        We've also got a rundown of the Payback show, with match-by-match coverage, star ratings and poll results.
        We also run down UFC's schedule on PPV for the rest of 2013.  We look at the planned main events, other matches that could be added, the potential 20th anniversary sow, why decisions were made on various matches, what has and hasn't worked when it comes to promoting fights this year and more.  We look at the decision making regarding an announced title match where a new decision may be considered.  We look at the title contender who outright said he was taking the match even though he doesn't deserve it and the other contender in question does.
        We look at PPV predictions for the big fights between now and the end of the year.
        We've also got a rundown on UFC's debut in Winnipeg, with 161 coverage, including where the top guys go from here.  We also have early business notes on the show.
        We also have an update on Fandango, the short-term and long-term situation with Chris Jericho's schedule, notes on SummerSlam for this year, how an off-hand remark led to John Cena making a lot of money, more on the Total Divas reality show, a McMahon family member sells millions in stock, a  funny story regarding a WWE action figure line, the background of Fandango's former dancer, a museum dedicated to a WWE star, Kane talks Daniel Bryan and a WWE star is scheduled for an upcoming trial.
        We also have notes on the upcoming Mid South Wrestling DVD that WWE is producing, more on the Rock's latest movie, Paul Heyman talks a TNA/WWE joint show, tons of developmental news including Gerald Brisco talks recruiting and losing athletes to UFC, jobs in WWE vs. jobs in UFC, Jim Ross talks the main event scene, why people have been let go, ideas for new characters, delayed viewership of Raw notes and business notes and highlights from the weekend WWE shows.
        We've also got coverage of TripleMania from Mexico City
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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 this past week 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:
--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
--Promotion returns
--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)
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*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)
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*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)
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*August 16, 2004 (History of the Olympians in pro wrestling)
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*August 11, 2008 (Ric Flair leaves WWE; Updated history of pro wrestlers and MMA fighters who went to the Olympics)
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Monday's News Update
--Bryan and I will be back late tonight after Raw with Wrestling Observer radio, talking Raw, the New Japan PPV, July schedule and a lot more.
--We will also have a second audio show later today covering the death of Jackie Fargo. 
--I hope WWE gives Jerry Lawler some time on tonight's show to mention Jackie Fargo.  Normally WWE would not acknowledge someone, even of his star power, who passed away unless it's either a family friend or a star who for various reasons couldn't be ignored.  But with the Lawler connection, I'd hope that policy won't hold up tonight.  Fargo was Lawler's idol, father figure, helped break him in and Lawler borrowed so much of Fargo's stuff as both a heel and a face.
--New Japan will be doing two PPV shows in July now.  The 7/5 show from Korakuen Hall will be on iPPV worldwide along with the bigger 7/20 show in Akita (lineup on the front page).    
--On Fuel tonight, there is a Best of Pride marathon from 7 p.m. Eastern to midnight.
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (thanks to Graeme Cameron and Brian Hoops)
1950 - Buddy Rogers beat Bozo Brown for a version of the world title in Akron
1958 - Duke Keomuka & John Tolos beat Pepper Gomez & Larry Chene in Dallas to win the Texas tag team titles
1964 - Tokyo Tom (Kanji Antonio Inoki) beat Joe Blanchard in Houston to win the Texas state title
1964 - Alan Colbeck beat Jack Dempsey to win the European welterweight title
1966 - Pedro Morales & Luis Hernandez (stepfather of Gino Hernandez) beat Buddy Austin & El Mongol for the WWA tag team titles at the Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles
1970 - Ripper Collins beat Sammy Steamboat to win the Hawaiian title in Honolulu
1972 - The biggest pro wrestling show in the history of Texas wrestling up until this point in time took place on this day before 26,339 fans at Texas Stadium with Dory Funk Jr. retaining the NWA title going to a 60 minute draw against Fritz Von Erich.  Billy Red Lyons beat The Spoiler to win the American title and Stan Stasiak beat Red Bastien to win the Texas title
1972 - Abdullah the Butcher beat Ernie Ladd to win the NWF title in Akron
1972 - Johnny Walker (Wrestling II) & Boris Malenko beat The Professional (Doug Gilbert) & Mike Webster to win the Florida tag team titles in Jacksonville
1974 - Jackie Fargo beat Jerry Lawler to win the Southern jr. heavyweight title in Memphis before a city indoor sports record of 11,738 fans at the Mid South Coliseum.  Lawler and Fargo had sold out the week before, and the week after with the blow-off in a cage match which was the period where Fargo passed the torch as the top star to Lawler.
1976 - El Halcon beat Gran Markus in Mexico City to win the Mexican national heavyweight title
1978 - It is listed that Roddy Piper beat Moondog Mayne at the Cow Palace to win the U.S. title on this date.  I've seen a ton of historical listings of this, but I'm almost sure this was a non-title match.
1979 - El Signo beat Bobby Lee for the UWA welterweight title in Tijuana
1984 - Wahoo McDaniel (when he turned heel) beat Ricky Steamboat to win the U.S. title at the Greensboro Coliseum
1984 - Canek beat Dos Caras to win the UWA heavyweight title in Naucalpan
1985 - Chris Adams & Gino Hernandez beat Tommy Rogers & Bobby Fulton in Fort Worth to win the American tag team titles
1985 - Bota the Witch Doctor beat Jerry Lawler to win the Southern title in Memphis
1987 - Cien Caras beat MS 1 in Nezahualcoyotl to win the world light heavyweight title
1988 - Shiro Koshinaka beat Owen Hart to win the IWGP jr. title in Osaka.  That was a great match.
1988 - Johnny Smith beat Chris Benoit in Calgary to win the British Commonwealth mid-heavyweight title in Calgary
1988 - Fabuloso Blondy (Ken Timbs) beat Lizmark Sr. to win the NWA world light heavyweight title in Mexico City
1990 - Los Villanos I & IV & V beat Kahoz & Rambo & Zandokan for the UWA trios titles in Naucalpan
1992 - Rex King & Steve Doll beat Doug Masters & Ron Starr for the WWC tag titles in Dorado,Puerto Rico
1993 - Brian Lee beat Tracy Smothers in the finals of the tournament for the King of Kentucky in Hazard, KY
1996 - Harlem Heat won a three-way over Lex Luger & Sting and the Steiners to win the WCW tag titles in Charlotte
2001 - Edge beat Kurt Angle to win the King of the Ring tournament in East Rutherford, NJ
2007 - Johnny Nitro (Morrison) beat C.M. Punk to win the vacant ECW title and Candice Michelle beat Melina to win the WWE womens' title in Houston
2012 - Kenny King & Rhett Titus beat Shelton Benjamin & Charlie Haas in New York to win the ROH tag titles
--A note from the story on the Mick Foley show in Fairhaven, MA over the weekend.  Men on a Mission were at the fan convention.  The promoter had a room issue and put them in a different room next to the big hall.  It wasn't well explained and not a lot of people saw them, but they were there.  Ashley Massaro was also there, but she did arrive late.  The fan fest was 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and she didn't get there until 1 p.m., but she stayed until 6:30 p.m. (thanks to Pat Laprade)
--Tom Lister, who headlined a few WWF PPVs as Zeus, against Hulk Hogan, turned 55 today.  Adam Pearce turned 35.
--It was six years ago today that Chris Benoit committed suicide at the age of 40.  His tag team partner, Biff Wellington, was found dead in his home at 42 on the same day.  Toni Adams, the ex-wife of Chris Adams, who was an early valet, passed away at 45 on this day three years ago.  Mini star Cowboy Bradley passed away three years ago today at the age of 75. (thanks to Georgia Wrestling History)
Excellent 37.1%
Good 42.9%
Average 8.6%
Fair 5.7%
Poor 5.7%
        59.8% of those responding didn't see the show.  I had heard rave reviews for this episode.
New Japan Dominion 76.7%
ROH Best in the World 23.3%
Raw 71.9%
Impact 11.7%
ROH 6.4%
Smackdown 2.9%
Bellator 2.9%
Fightmaster 2.9%
Main Event 0.6%
RFA 0.6%
--There is a new Foley interview at  talking the Wyatt Family gimmick
--New England Fights returns with a show on 7/12 in Bangor, ME at Darling's Waterfront Pavilion called Nationals Collide:  Canadian Invasion.  The focus is New England fighters against Eastern Canadian fighters.  22 fights in all are scheduled.
--The former Kurrgan, Robert Maillet, talks about all the movies he's doing this summer at
--Former wrestling personality Stacy Keibler is working with Colgate to break the world's record for both people using mouthwash in one place at the same time.  For everyone who comes, Colgate will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish.  It's free admission as long as you're ready to use mouthwash, at Times Square tomorrow morning at 11:30 a.m.
--NWA Anarchy from Saturday night in Cornelia, GA before 100 fans, the normal crowd, even with Scott Hall there.  Corey Hollis & Mike Posey b Jake Coal & Jeremy Foster, Azreal b even, Brandon Parker & Kevin Blue b Shadow Jackson & Nemesis, Seth Delay b Anthony Henry, Cody Hall (Scott's son) b Mike Posey, Bobby Moore & C.B. Gibson & Tommy Penrelli b Najasism & Vandal & Diego Wynn, Slim J b Corey Hollis, Geter b Jeremy Vain-DQ, Brody Ray Chase b Shaun Tampers
--In Your Face Wrestling from Saturday night in Ballston Spa, NY:  Northern Studd b Ronnie Ribbs, Drake Evans b Etanna, C.J. Scott & Damon Ravage b Ian Daniels & Rickety Rocket, Roman Dominguez b Sgt. Fury, Scott Scarsdale & Guillaume deSade b Good Lord Willing & Chip Stetson, Liam McFerran b Elite Terrell, Savage Wolves b Northern Fury, Fronz Roddy b Ricky Williams
--Joanne Calderwood vs. Norma Rueda enter of Greg Jackson's camp was added to the 7/13 Invicta PPV show.  Center was 5-0 as an amateur and 2-0 as a pro.  Calderwood is 6-0, after going 19-2 in Muay Thai where she held both world and European titles in her weight class.
--Absolute Intense Wrestling from 6/30 at Turners Hall in Cleveland is doing an iPPV for $14.99 headlined by Eric Ryan defending their title against Colin Delaney, Tom Donst vs. Michael Hutter, Michael Elgin vs. Josh Alexander, B.J. Whitmer vs. Chris Dickinson, plus Tracy Smothers, Matt Cross, Josh Prohibition, Louis Lyndon, ACH and Johnny Gargano.
--USWO from Sunday in Millersville, TN before 66 fans:   Psycho Medic b Big Time Sexy, Miss Rachel b Heather Owens, Nick Iggy & Kerry Awful b Dyron Flynn & Prince Omar Al-Kazan, Weston Cage b Zack Hartnell, Kevin Weatherby b Josh Crow, Justin Grandberry won three-way over L.T. Falk and TNT Mottley, Chris Michaels b Mike Jablonski.  Next show is 7/21 with Ricky Morton. (thanks to Jimmie Daniel)
--I Believe in Wrestling from the Team Vision Dojo in Orlando last night:  Jesse Neal b Carlos Rivera, Wayne Van Dyke b Rafael Altair, Tim Zbyszko b Chico Adams, Josh Hess b Gabriel Black, Chasyn Rance b Santana Garrett and Jayson Falcone to keep the cruiserweight title, Jesse Neal b C.J. O'Doyle.  Next show is 7/21 (thanks to Al Haft)
--Dhiego Lima vs. Ricky Rainey headlines for XFC on 9/6 in Albuquerque for AXS TV's Friday night shows.
--BANG on 6/29 in Ocala, FL  at the Ocala Hilton Hotel headlined by Dory Funk Jr.
--Tito Santana headlines on Saturday night in Lakewood, NJ at the John P. Patrick Sports Complex for the Funkdafied Wrestling Federation in a  fund raiser for the local little league.
--Metro Pro Wrestling on 7/13 in Kansas City at the Turner Rec Center headlined by Jeremy Wyatt vs. Mark Sterling plus Adam Pearce returns.
--Wrestling Cares Association on 6/29 in Gardena, CA at the VFW Post 3261 has Adam Pearce vs. Adam Page, Johnny Gargano vs. Chase Stevens, Brandon Gatson vs. Willie Mack, D.J. Hyde vs. Drake Younger, Antonio Thomas vs. Alex Reynolds. B.J. Whitmer vs. Shaun Tampers, Timothy Thatcher vs. Oliver John plus Maria Kanellis appears.

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?