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.
Monday's News Update
--Bryan and I will be back tonight talking Raw, SummerSlam fallout, and taking your e-mail questions at
--We have tons of behind the scenes stuff, plans and otherwise on the audio update covering SummerSlam.
--The single most searched for item in the U.S. yesterday was WWE. On Saturday, the single most searched for item was UFC. For those keeping track, there were more WWE searches on Sunday than UFC on Saturday.
--For tonight's show, as of this morning, there were plans for Miz vs. Fandango in some form, The Shield continuing with Mark Henry & Big Show and building up Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton as well as the HHH explanation.
--The bar fight involving Alberto Del Rio and Drew McIntyre took place at about 3 a.m. Saturday night. The story going around last night is that they went to a bar together. Somebody said something to the girl McIntyre was with. Del Rio stepped in and somebody blind sided him with a bottle and the fight was on. McIntyre ended up with a black eye and Del Rio's face was a mess.
--There really isn't much more on Ric Flair from Saturday night. What we were told is that the video game company, 2K Sports, was fine with him but there was tremendous heat from WWE management over the feeling he buried Daniel Bryan, talked about drinking so much, and brought up TNA at a WWE event.
--There is apparently something going on with Eric the Actor of the Howard Stern show and TNA. Stern played a clip of Bobby Roode on his show today, who cut a promo on how much he hated Eric and dared him to come to Bound for Glory. Eric, when asked by Stern, said he wouldn't manage Darren Young (thanks to Jon Zepnick)
--UFC informed Sarah Kaufman today that her 8/28 fight in Indianapolis is off because they couldn't get a viable replacement after Sara McMann pulled out.
WHO WAS THE BIGGEST STAR COMING OUT OF SATURDAY'S UFC SHOW?
Chael Sonnen 57.3%
Travis Browne 22.3%
Conor McGregor 9.1%
Matt Brown 5.1%
Michael McDonald 3.3%
Urijah Faber 2.9%
POLL ON SATURDAY'S ROH TV SHOW
63.9% of those responding didn't see the show
WHAT WAS THE BEST TV SHOW OF THE PAST WEEK?
UFC on FS 1 51.6%
Main Event 0.7%
Fight Master 0.4%
POLL ON SATURDAY'S UFC SHOW
17.9% of those responding didn't see the show
--The New York Daily News ran a story on Maria Menounos wrestling at Fan Axxess yesterday.
--Steve Austin did a three hour podcast with Ric Flair yesterday.
--ROH on 9/6 in Chattanooga has Adam Cole & Tommaso Ciampa vs. Kevin Steen & Michael Elgin involving the final four in the ROH title tournament, plus Bobby Fish vs. Caprice Coleman and Kyle O'Reilly vs. Cedric Alexander, as well as Mike Posey & Corey Hollis vs. ACH & Tadarius Thomas.
--Doug "Rhino" Marshall suffered a broken hand in training so he's out of his Bellator middleweight title bout with Alexander Shlemenko scheduled on the 9/7 season opening show at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT. Shlemenko will now defend his title against Brett Cooper, who lost in the finals to Marshall in the company's last middleweight tournament in the fall of 2012. The three-hour TV show also has Joe Warren vs. Nick Kirk, and the first round of the middleweight tournament with Justin Torrey (7-0) vs. Andreas Spang (8-3), Perry Filkins (7-1) vs. Jeremy Kimball (10-3), Brian Rogers (10-5) vs. Mikel Parlo (9-1) and Giva Santana (18-2) vs. Jason Butcher r(6-0). Patricky Pitbull Freire faces Derek Anderson in the Spike.com main event before TV starts.
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (thanks to Brian Hoops and Graeme Cameron)
1967 - Bearcat Wright beat Skull Murphy in Melbourne to win the IWA title
1990 - Riki Choshu beat Big Van Vader in Tokyo to win the IWGP title and Pegasus Kid (Chris Benoit) beat Jushin Liger on the same show to win the jr. title.
1999 - Lenny Lane beat Rey Misterio Jr. to win the WCW cruiserweight title in Lubbock, TX
2001 - Edge beat Lance Storm at SummerSlam in San Jose to win the IC title on the same show that Rock beat Booker T to win the WCW title and Undertaker & Kane beat Kanyon & DDP to win the WWF tag team titles in a cage.
--Some UFC trivia from Andre Allen. Michael McDonald became the second youngest fighter on Saturday night to reach five UFC wins. Vitor Belfort was the youngest. Chael Sonnen scored his first ever UFC win in the light heavyweight division. Urijah Faber set the UFC record for most fights as a bantamweight with seven, and Joe Lauzon suffered his first back-to-back losses of his career.
--Revolution Pro Wrestling from yesterday in Sittingbourne, Kent, UK: James Davis & Rob Lynch b Kris Travis & Martin Kirby, Marty Scurll b Jay Lethal, Carlito b Sha Samuels, Paul Robinson & Will Ospready b Mark Haskins & Fake El Ligero-DQ, Magnus (TNA) b Andy Boy Simmonz, Zack Sabre Jr. (NOAH) b MK McKinnan in 23/ falls. Announced for 10/19 in York Hall at Bethnal Green in London is Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Mary Scurll, Prince Devitt vs. Ricochet, Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Davey Richards, Dave Mastiff vs. Michael Elgin plus an appearance by Bret Hart. Colt Cabana and Ultimo Dragon appear 10/17 in Sittingbourne. (thanks to Martin Bentley)
--Happy birthday today to Tim Horner (54) and Lilian Garcia (47)
--It was 38 years ago today that arguably the biggest drawing card in the history of U.S. pro wrestling, Jim Londos, passed away at the age of 78. I was talking to Steve Johnson regarding his new book on Babyfaces & Icons in pro wrestling (one that you want in your collection) and they were debating No. 1 between really, Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, Londos, Bruno Sammartino and one or two others. He said that after doing the research, the answer was obvious. Ann Laverne, the grandmother of Steve Nelson and a womans star in the 60s, passed away at 77 on this day in 1999. Kinamitsu Matsunaga, one of the famous brothers who promoted All Japan Women, the hottest women's promotion ever, passed away on this day in 2005 at the age of 63. Nightmare Ted Allen was 54 when he passed away three years ago today. And Skandor Akbar, one of the great enduring characters in the Southwest and a mentor to many, including Jim Ross and Steve Austin, passed away three years ago today at 75.
--Mike Stack at
is looking for a copy of the 2001 Royal Rumble
--The NWA is debuting a new North American title belt on 8/31 in Tampa at the Florida Underground Wrestling show for Tokyo Monster Kahagas.
--USWO from yesterday in Millerville, TN before 36 fans: Sgt. Chavez b Sheik Saluk Al-Kazan, Dyron Flynn & Chris Norte b Josh Crow & Rick Roberts, Psycho Medic b Convict, Kevin Weatherby & Zack Hartnell b Justin Grandberry & Ali Shabazz, David Knox b Big Time Sexy, Gary Valiant b Michael Patrick, Chris Michaels b LT Falk. Next show is 9/15. (thanks to Jimmie Daniel)
--Universal Independent Wrestling from Saturday night in Villa Rica, GA before 200 fans with 150 paid: Frankie Valentine b Josh Storm-DQ, Stupid b Ryan Howe (Tough Enough), Pandora b Jessie Belle, Billy Knight NC Brad Lynch, Luke Gallows b Bobby More, Geter b Bull Buchanan in a street fight to win the UIW title. Doug Somers was at the show. (thanks to Larry Goodman)
--Smash Wrestling from yesterday in Toronto: Taylor KayDeen b Kirk Warmack, Matt Cross b Gregory Iron, LuFisto b Vanessa Kraven, Johnny Gargano won over John Greed, Player Uno, Mathieu St. Jacques and Jason Chase, Brent Banks b Jimmy Korderas & Alex Vega (Korderas, who does wrestling analysis on Sportsnet 360 and is a former WWE ref, was in his pro wrestling debut as a wrestler, and got a big reaction did quite well according to our report), Tyson Dux b Scotty O'Shea under the British rounds system, Sebastian Suave & Josh Alexander b Paul London & Brian Kendrick in a great match. Next month will be a woman's tournament before the Night of Champions PPV at E-Zone in Toronto with LuFisto, Vanessa Kraven, Seleyzia Sparks, Leah Von Dutch, Christina Von Eeerie, Xandra Blace, Candace LaRae and others (thanks to Dave Musgrave)
--Lucha Xtreme TV from Saturday night on Fresno TV: JR Kratos b Jason Johnson, Elemento b Kevin El Divino, Johnny Plinko b Brandon Pinon (thanks to Jon Southerland)
--Colby Primeaux was named Director of Media Communications for the NWA. He had worked for NWA Houston as a freelance correspondent.
--Wrestling Cares from Saturday night in Los Angeles: Johnny Gargano b Drake Younger, Kataraina Leigh (Winter) b Candace LaRae, Papadon b Joey Ryan, Cassidy Riley b Antonio Thomas, Adam Cole b Jamin Olivencia, Pepper Parks b Timothy Thatcher, Steve Anthony b Drew Gulak, Kyle Matthews b B-Boy, Matt Hardy b Shawn Daivari, Adam Pearce b Willie Mack. Next show is 10/12 in Gardena, CA (thanks to Scott Walton)
--Bill Goldberg got some pub for being at the San Diego Padres game yesterday. A lot of the players popped huge when he came into the locker room.
--AR Fox vs. Anthony Nese was announced for the Evolve show on 9/21 in Ridgewood, NY and Fox vs. Ricochet was announced for 9/22 in Brooklyn. There will also be a two-day Battle tournament on those shows.
--AAA at Ginmasio Municipal Neri Santos in El Paso was The Psycho Circus vs. Cinta de Oro & Rocky Star & Crazy Boy 33.
--UWE from Saturday night in Tlalnepantla: Baslet & Big Mama b Black Fury & Dark Lady, Sadico won Torneo Cibernetico over Freelance, Impulso, Pantera, Micke Segura, Seiya and Spider Boy, Eterno & Los Oficiales b Los Bastardos, Chucho el Roto & Iron Love & Terry 2000 & Yakuza b Comando Negro & El Hijo del Pirata Morgan & Pirata Morgan Jr. & Super Mega, Cerebro Maligno b Herejia to win AULL light heavyweight title, Black Terry & Negro Navarro & Pirata Morgan b Gallego & Romano Garcia & Rocky Santana, Perro Aguayo Jr. & Lizmark Jr. b Dr. Wagner Jr. & Tinieblas Jr. (thanks to Kris Zellner)
--A show on 8/16 in Ottawa in memory of Phrank Morin, who died of cancer at 23, raised $11,777 for the Canadian Cancer Society: Jae Rukin & Shayne Hawke b Sexy Eddy & Jodi D'Milo and Chaz Lovely & Craglist Homo, Mathieu St. Jacques & Buxx Belmar b Cecil Nyx & El Hijo del Bamboo, Vanessa Kraven & Jeff Fury and Angie Skye & Gregory Iron, Pinkie Sanchez b Addy Starr, Beef Wellington b Mathieu St. Jacques, Jae Rukin and Shayne Hawke, Paul London & Mike Bailey (subbing for Brian Kendrick who didn't arrive in time) b Super Smash Brothers (thanks to Pat Laprade)