We're also looking for reports on today's WWE show in Adelaide, Australia, as well as Saturday night's TNA show in Pensacola, FL, Saturday and Friday night's Smackdown show in Atlanta.
Raw was taped this past Monday in Laredo, TX:
*Usos & Mark Henry vs. The Shield
*Rob Van Dam vs. Fandango
*A.J. Lee vs. Kaitlyn non-title
*Dolph Ziggler vs. Big E Langston
*Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian non-title
*Cody Rhodes vs. Wade Barrett
*Daniel Bryan vs. Kane
*Natalya vs. Brie Bella
*Curtis Axel vs. R-Truth non-title
*John Cena vs. Ryback non-title tables match
Tuesday has WWE Raw in Perth, Western Australia and Smackdown in Capetown, South Africa (Alberto De Rio, Randy Orton, Rob Van Dam, Dolph Ziggler)
An update on what is going on in TNA is the lead story in this week's issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
-- At the upcoming 2013 annual Association of Boxing Commissions meeting, they're going to discuss revamping the "downed opponent" rule. In order to avoid getting kneed or kicked in the head, fighters have placed one finger or a hand on the ground, because that means you've got three points of base touching the canvas and are then considered a "downed opponent". Obviously, by doing so intentionally, it's become a strategic tactic, and a person doing so is in no way a legitimate downed opponent. If the rule change goes through, avoiding knees and kicks in such a manner will be a thing of the past.
-- Jesse Sorensen worked a tag match for NWA Florida Underground this past weekend. He did an interview a while back and from the sounds of it, his doctor told him he should never ever wrestle again, but Sorensen was determined to do so. Keep in mind he has not received medical clearance to return to the ring.
-- Total Divas did a 1.1 and 1.3 million viewers for its debut on E! last night, which is actually a little less than I'd predicted (1.5 million). The good news is that it was strong in the demos they're looking for (adults 18-49) and was the highest-rated debut since August, though I'm not sure how many debuts E! has had since August. The bad news was that its lead-in, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, did 2.8 million viewers, so there was a giant plunge (1.5 million viewers) when Total Divas started.
That tells me that your casual E! viewer isn't interested in the WWE Divas, so the show will live or die based on whether it can attract WWE fans in week two and beyond without the giant media push that the show got last week. I thought the show was fine. The backstage stuff was interesting but a lot of the participants did not come off as likable at all, and it wasn't great enough nor enough of a train wreck to really make me excited to see week two. Aside from our board, most of the feedback I got, including from people inside the business, was negative. Full review on last night's new Bryan & Vinny Show (we've added Sunday nights) here.
-- UFC on FOX 8 averaged 2.04 million viewers from 8-10 PM, which, all things considered, is fine and not anything above or below what one would have expected. These are overnights and more accurate numbers will be available tomorrow.
-- Also on last night's B&V, we reviewed Joe Rogan's new TV show, which actually was really good per the standards of that genre and also got a great debut rating (also 1.3 million viewers and the highest debut for Syfy in five months, which tells me the key to a hit TV show is for someone to create a program where the WWE Divas look for Sasquatch), as well as the new NXT show with Paige winning the Women's title.
-- Speaking of Bigfoot, by the way, Spike TV, home of Impact Wrestling, is offering a TEN MILLION DOLLAR bounty to anyone who finds one.
-- Impact also did 1.3 million viewers this week.
-- I should also note we have an awesome interview with Harry Smith up on the site from Saturday morning here. Tons on the G-1, some great Minoru Suzuki stories, and more.
-- Speaking of, unless something changes, I'm hugely disappointed to announce that it appears you cannot buy the New Japan G-1 Climax Tournament shows individually on U-Stream. They're running nine shows in eleven days and the only way to see them is to buy the entire nine-show package for $150. We'll see if that changes but it's not looking good.
-- Michael Chiesa apologized to his fans on Twitter for storming out of the cage after his loss at UFC on FX 8, a fight that saw him tap out with one second left in the round.
-- Congratulations to UFC fighter Mike Pyle and his wife on the birth of their son. Best of luck to the child as well, who they named MAXIMUS.
-- Did you know that TNA has a mystery man debuting on Impact on Thursday? Yes. They didn't make any mention of it at all on Impact last Thursday, which did well over 1 million viewers on national television, but they have been doing videos on the Internet.
-- Colt Cabana is in Scotland the entire month of August performing midnight comedy shows at the world famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Everything you ever wanted to know about it including ticket availability is available here.
-- Here's a story on Mick Foley's comedy appearances here.
-- Lucha notes from Kris Zellner: "Horus who has been working opening matches for EMLL for the past few years announced on Facebook on Friday that he was leaving the promotion to pursue other options in the business and made his debut for TxT last night. Horus said that he had no ill will at EMLL but they liked pushing family members over other deserving talent. Horus was at one point Hijo del Faraon and was getting a small push as part of the Generacion 75 in 2008 but he had some personal issues and injuries that hampered him and he was repackaged as Horus then relegated to opening matches."
-- Andrew writes: Action Arcade Wrestling 2 will be available to download on July 29 as an Xbox Indie title. The game costs 240 Microsoft Points ($3). You can check out the trailer here.
-- Jared Papazian replaces Joe Murphy due to injury and will face John Robles at World Series of Fighting 4 on August 10th in Ontario, CA. Papazian fought in the UFC three times, amassing an 0-3 mark.
-- Sad to report the death of Nagaharu Imai, 53, a former All Japan Women and Big Japan Pro Wrestling announcer after a long battle with cancer.
-- Platinum Championship Wrestling returns to Porterdale, Georgia, this Saturday at 6 PM.
-- New podcast interview with Bruce Buffer here.
-- BANG TV and Stuff The Bus Charity for Homeless Children present Support Your Troops 94 this Friday at the TV Sound Stage in Ocala, Florida.
-- Interview with Jim Cornette here.
-- Mike Mooneyham talks the Mid-Atlantis Fan Fest here.
-- Matt Hardy and Reby Sky will be married October 5th, and you can see their wedding site here. Best wishes to them both.
-- JR has a new blog, unfortunately missing paragraph breaks, here.
-- TMZ has before and after photos of Jake Roberts here. He's down 70 pounds and is still talking about doing the Royal Rumble this year.
-- These folks think Ric Flair should be President of the United States of America. You think we have problems with the national debt now.
Today in History with Brian Hoops and Andrew Murphy:
-- 1964 - Lord James Blears & Neff Maivia defeated Mr. Moto & Nikita Mulkovich for the NWA Hawaii Tag Team Title in Honolulu, Hawaii
1971 - Bobo Brazil beat the Sheik for the NWA US title (Detroit version) in Detroit, MI.
1976 - Tiger Jeet Singh defeated Seiji Sakaguchi to become the first NWF Asian Heavyweight Champion (a New Japan title) in Osaka, Japan.
1977 - Ric Flair defeated Bobo Brazil in Richmond, Virginia to win the NWA United States Championship
1980 - Bill Dundee defeated Paul Ellering for the Southern Heavyweight Title in Louisville, Kentucky
1985 - Jerry Lawler defeated Bota The Witchdoctor in Memphis, Tennessee for the Southern Heavyweight Title
1988 - Stan Hansen & Terry Gordy defeated Jumbo Tsuruta & Yoshiaki Yatsu in Takasaki, Japan to win the All Japan Tag Team Championship (PWF World & NWA International Titles).
1988 - Yoshihiro Asai defeated Ray Richard in Mexico City, Mexico for the UWA World Welterweight Title. Asai would go on to become better known as Ultimo Dragon.
1989 - Super Medic I defeated Chicky Starr for the WWC World Junior Heavyweight Title in Caguas, Puerto Rico
1991 - Awesome Kong defeated Jerry Lawler for the USWA Unified World Title in Memphis, Tennessee