Also in this week's issue:
--Title changes in Mexico
--New Japan stars headed to Mexico including a debut of one of the G-1 heroes
--Big legends match with every wrestler in a trios match being a 30 year or more veteran
--All Japan Open tournament
--NOAH's biggest singles tournament
--New Japan financials and where and show business is changing
--Debut of Keiji Muto's promotion and what has been announced
--Zero-One Fire Festival coverage
--Pro Wrestling Guerrilla celebrates its 10th anniversary
--HBO working on a pro wrestling story
--New wrestling history book coming out
--Promotion shutting down and why
--British star announces retirement
--Ric Flair update
--Two indie wrestlers whose careers are in jeopardy
--Both wrestler and MMA fighter this week arrested for domestic violence
--Update on B.J. Whitmer
--Notes on the ROH show in New York
--Nigel McGuinness talks about why he retired from wrestling
--McGuinness talks about TNA fan voting for title shot
--Update on the TNA Hardcore Justice television show and new details
--A Hulk Hogan bio movie and what is and isn't real according to him
--More on TNA star being off TV for a while
--TNA talent in OVW
--King Mo's upcoming MMA fights
--More on Jesse Sorensen
--Upcoming UFC shows
--UFC employee inducted into a boxing Hall of Fame
--Problems in holding a UFC event in Boston
--Who is behind the problems
--A lot at the Boston market for UFC
--Will UFC return
--Notes on UFC 163
--Story of Nik Lentz and his bonus money
--Ronda Rousey talks her MMA future
--Dana White talks Vitor Belfort vs. Lyoto Machida
--Update on T.J. Grant
--Lots of new UFC fights
--Four UFC fighters competing in a different sport
--Notes on the arrest of Jason Mayhem Miller
--Big fights coming up with week in MMA
--Bob Sapp resurfaces
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
--Regarding various rumors, Ric Flair is in Los Angeles, was already at Fan Axxess and will be at a special 2K Sports party. Ultimate Warrior is in Los Angeles as well for things for 2K Sports, but he was not scheduled for anything related to WWE, at least as of yesterday. Rey Mysterio is there for the 2K Sports party. Hulk Hogan is also not scheduled for anything as a mystery surprise. I guess the Brooke Hogan firing led to rumors since Hogan is one of the main players in the new video game.
--There was a full page article on page 2 of Le Journal de Montreal, the biggest newspaper in the province and one of the biggest in the country, today, about Darren Young.
--John Cena told TMZ congratulations to Darren Young and then said that his own brother is openly gay and said he knows how hard it can be to admit it.
--C.M. Punk in an interview with yahoo said first time drug offenders in baseball should be banned from the sport for life. "Absolutely," he said. "That way I don't have to sit and listen to any b***** apologies."
--If you set up your DVR for Speed Channel from 6-11:30 p.m. for the UFC, check and redo it because it may not work.
--Austin Aries pinned Ken Anderson to win seven points last night in Roanoke in the Bound for Glory series. Aries moves to 28 points, second to Magnus at 39.
--Larry King is at SummerSlam interviewing talent for his TV show.
--Want to thank Brett Wilson for the awesome work he's done over the past few years covering Ultimate Fighter and Fight Master for the site. Hopefully he will be back soon. He's going overseas for the next six months so is going to be off from this point forward and missing the Rousey-Tate season of TUF.
--The seven women from Total Divas are all miked up with camera crews following them all over this weekend.
--It's 90 degrees in Los Angeles and the matches at Fan Axxess are outside. At least Sheamus isn't booked.
--Part of the show Sunday is still being formatted.
--Regarding SummerSlam, there is a lot of talk regarding the Divas tag match at Fan Axxess leading to something in some form on the regular show, and RVD vs. Dean Ambrose will lead into something with Big Show, Mark Henry, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns. If it doesn't happen, it's a last minute switch. The John Cena vs. Bryan Danielson match as it stands is to lead into a major storyline, obviously involving the McMahon family. I don't know that Randy Orton cashes it in, but Randy Orton was scheduled to be involved in the finish. Everything obviously subject to change.
--Mick Foley has his whole family around him.
--James Soubasis and Terence Brennan of Legends of the Ring sent out a release claiming that Jose Gonzalez was never booked for their convention, only Invaders I & II. The Invaders are no longer at the convention. They lashed out at people saying Gonzalez was going to be there. Wait a minute, you book the Invaders tag team, and Invader I, and now blame people for saying Jose Gonzalez was going to be there. That's like billing Rey Mysterio and getting mad if people think Oscar Gutierrez is going to be there.
--A ton of people were logging into the UFC web site and the FS 1 web site today trying to find out where FS 1 would be appearing on their local cable system. The TV fights start at 6 p.m. Eastern and 3 p.m. Pacific.
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (thanks to Graeme Cameron and Brian Hoops)
1927 - Bert Willard defeated Jack Reynolds for the World Welterweight
Title in Columbus, Ohio,
1951 - Duke Keomuka defeated Ray Gunkel in Houston, Texas for the NWA
Texas Heavyweight Title.
1953 - Baron Michele Leone defeated Danny McShain in Memphis, Tennessee
to win the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Title.
1955 - Yvon Robért defeated Don Leo Jonathan in Montreal, Quebec for the
Montreal Athletic Commission World Heavyweight Title
1956 - Don and Red McIntyre defeated Eddie Gossett (Eddie Graham) and
Art Neilson to win the Georgia NWA World Tag Team Title in Atlanta, Georgia.
1956 - Gene Kelly (Kiniski) defeated Pepper Gomez to win the NWA Texas
Heavyweight Title in Houston, Texas
1960 - Verne Gagne and Joe Scarpello defeated Killer Kowalski and Tiny
Mills for the AWA World Tag Team Title in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
1962 - The Alaskan (Jay York) and Tarzan Tyler defeated Jerry and Nick
Kozak in Houston, Texas to win the Texas NWA World Tag Team Title.
1966 - Skull Murphy beat Mark Lewin in Brisbane to win the IWA title