FRI UPDATE: Latest on death of fighter during weigh-cut, show canceled, weekend schedule, Henry re-signs, famous WWE lawyer gets new role, tons more



By Bryan Alvarez | This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it | @bryanalvarez

We're looking for reports from tonight's WWE house show in Denver (Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan, C.M. Punk vs. Curtis Axel) at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tonight's Smackdown TV show:

Alberto Del Rio vs. R-Truth non-title

Prime Time Players vs. Antonio Cesaro & Jack Swagger

Dean Ambrose vs. Dolph Ziggler for U.S. title

Ziggler & Rob Van Dam & Kofi Kingston vs. The Shield

Santino Marella vs. Heath Slater

Randy Orton vs. The Miz

Bellator tonight from Portland, OR:

Live on Spike.com at 7 p.m.

Dave Vitkay (12-12-1, 185.6) vs. Tyson Jeffries (10-7, 183.8)

Austin Springer (3-0, 134.8) vs. Zach Skinner (7-9, 134.7)

Jeremiah Riggs (7-7, 181.2) vs. Peter Aspinwall (3-3, 186)

Marcin Held (15-3, 155.7) vs. Ryan Healy (23-12-1, 154.4)

Andy Uhrich (9-3, 170) vs. Nathan Coy (12-4, 170.5)

Scott Thometz (6-2, 155.9) vs. Brent Primus (2-0, 155.5)

Live on Spike TV at 9 p.m.

Saad Awad (14-5, 155.9) vs. Martin Stapleton (12-1, 156) in the first round of the lightweight tournament

Ricardo Tirloni (15-4, 155.5) vs. Rich Clementi (45-22-1, 155.5) in the first round of the lightweight tournament

John Alessio (34-16, 155.6) vs. Will Brooks (10-1, 155.3) in the first round of the lightweight tournament

Marcus Davis (22-9, 156) vs. Alexander Tiger Sarnavskiy (23-1, 155.4) in the first round of the lightweight tournament

Joe Warren (8-3, 135.7) vs. Nick Kirk (10-2, 135.7) in the first round of the bantamweight tournament

There will be live wrestling starting at 9:30 p.m. Eastern time from Arena Mexico at www.terra.com.mx It appears they will air the first few matches but not the main matches.

We're also looking for reports on these Saturday shows:

*WWE in Dallas, TX (Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan; C.M. Punk vs. Curtis Axel)

*WWE in Huntsville, AL (Alberto Del Rio vs. Rob Van Dam)

*ROH in Hopkins, MN at the Eisenhower Community Center (Honor Rumble, winner faces Adam Cole for the title later that night, Matt Taven vs. Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong for the TV title, Jay Lethal & Michael Elgin vs. ACH & Tadarius Thomas, Mark Briscoe vs. Silas Young, Kevin Steen vs. Jimmy Jacobs, Eddie Edwards vs. Michael Bennett, Kyle O'Reilly & Bobby Fish vs. Josh Alexander & Ethan Page)

Sunday's big event is the New Japan Destruction PPV that airs at www.ustream.tv/channel/njpw/1972 live from Kobe. It starts at 3 a.m. Sunday morning Eastern time and midnight Saturday night Pacific time.

Tiger Mask & Bushi & Takaaki Watanabe vs. Takashi Iizuka & Yujiro Takahashi & Yoshi-Hashi

Alex Shelley & Kushida vs. Taka Michinoku & Taichi for the No. 1 contendership for the IWGP jr. tag titles

Rob Conway vs. Jushin Liger for the NWA heavyweight title

Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma & Captain New Japan & Mascara Dorada vs. Karl

Anderson & Bad Luck Fale & Tama Tonga & Rey Bucanero Minoru Suzuki vs. Toru Yano

Yuji Nagata & Manabu Nakanishi vs. Kazushi Sakuraba & Katsuyori Shibata

Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Prince Devitt in a Lumberjack match

Masato Tanaka vs. Tetsuya Naito - Never championship vs. Tokyo Dome title match main event

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Shelton Benjamin for IC title

Kazuchika Okada vs. Satoshi Kojima for IWGP heavyweight title

WWE also runs Sunday at the Lakefront Arena in New Orleans with Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan and C.M. Punk vs. Curtis Axel.

Raw will be Monday in Biloxi, MS. The big angle will be the Rhodes family's confrontation with the McMahon family to set up the Rhodes Family vs. Shield match down the line.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped on Tuesday night in Baton Rouge, LA.

        We've got two new issues of the Observer on the site today.  We've got a back issue talking about the Monday Night Wars and the UFC debut of Mark Coleman from 1996, as well as everything that was going on in pro wrestling around the world at the time.

 
        The new issue out today looks at how WWE has marginalized so much of the roster and what the results have been, including a report on how SummerSlam did financially, a look back at how it did dating back to the early 90s, the push of Daniel Bryan, how business indicators for pro wrestling have changed, complete monthly business breakdown, the plight of Dolph Ziggler, Rob Van Dam, why Van Dam was used the way he was, and recent injury scares.
 
        We also look at the Battleground show as it stands, and what title match is dead.
 
        We also look back at the lessons of Mayweather vs. Alvarez, with a complete business rundown on the biggest combat sports event ever in the U.S.  We look at early PPV projections, how much Mayweather is expected to make with all his revenue streams from the fight, the biggest PPVs in  history, how Alvarez is being protected in Mexico, and why this event turned out as big as it did.
 
        We also look at UFC 165, and the Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson instant classic fight.  We examine the judging, the fight stats, look back at key moments in the fight, including what won Jones the fight.  We look at the business indicators and the obstacles this show had.  We've also got match-by-match coverage with poll results on the show, as well as who readers thought won the main event.
 
        We've also got a look at ROH's latest attempt to stream their show live, what went wrong this time, a look at who has succeeded and failed when it comes to streaming iPPV shows, as well as a complete look at the Death Before Dishonor show in Philadelphia.
 
        We also have more on the Jim Ross situation, timing of the release, why so few have publicly talked about it, and his future.
 
        We also look at what happened with Dolph Ziggler, Steve Austin responds to questions about next year's WrestleMania, the original plan for him and how it has changed and a minor twist on all of that.
 
        We also have more on the medical treatment Rey Mysterio is going through, his current condition and when his return is now targeted. 
 
        We also look at NXT, comments by Chris Jericho about the current angles, a release that went under the radar, reason behind other releases and business notes and highlights of all the weekend events.
 
        We've also got a story on Angelo Savoldi, who was the oldest living pro wrestler when he passed away at the age of 99 this past week.  We look at his time as a stockholder in the WWWF, how he broke into pro wrestling, where the Angelo Savoldi name came from, as well as his pro wrestling heyday in Oklahoma.  We look at his most famous program with Danny Hodge, including the night Hodge's father stabbed Savoldi in 1960.
 
        We also have a feature on Hall of Fame candidate Pedro Morales, a former WWA and WWWF champion who was honored this past week in Puerto Rico.
 
        We also look at the WWC 40th anniversary show in Bayamon, including how the show was promoted, media coverage, how the debut of Sting went and match-by-match coverage.
 
        The Wrestling Observer ranges weekly from 35,000 to 50,000 words covering pro wrestling and MMA internationally. Each issue has coverage and analysis of all the major news, plus every issue breaks major news stories before the Internet sties and has the most complete look at the pro wrestling and MMA business anywhere, plus history pieces available nowhere else.
 
        The Observer is now in its 31st year of being the leading insider pro wrestling publication in the world.  The biggest and most influential names in the pro wrestling and MMA industry, from bookers to promoters to Hall of Fame wrestlers and fighters to the biggest names on camera and behind the scenes, along with thousands of readers in all 50 states and more than 30 countries subscribe.  Many have subscribed for 20 years or longer consecutively.  They get the most detailed and inside coverage of what is going on all over the world.  Everywhere from Wall Street to the major offices to television networks in the U.S. and Japan turn to the Observer for what is going on in the business.
 
       If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can get one free classic issue of your choice sent to you today.  With a 40 issue subscription, you can get two free classic issues sent to you today.  Just sent your Visa or Master Card order with your name, address, phone number, card number and expiration date to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
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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:
 
--CMLL business post-anniversary show
 
--One of the reasons CMLL fans boo La Sombra
 
--Notes on the latest tag team tournament
 
--New foreigners in AAA
 
--Brother of WWE performer debuts in Dragon Gate
 
--Former wrestler turned senator does a run in at a house show
 
--Update on Keiji Muto's Wrestle-1 promotion
 
--Notes on All Japan's attempt to put together a show at Sumo Hall in October
 
--The latest on Low Ki being out of a promotion
 
--Pro wrestler nearly has a physical confrontation with MMA fighter
 
--A look at Pro Wrestling NOAH's loaded big show lineup
 
--A look at this year's Global League tournament with key outsiders coming in
 
--A look at this week's New Japan PPV show and buildup
 
--Date for New Japan's December PPV show
 
--What former MMA superstars does Kazushi Sakuraba want to bring to New Japan and which one can't do it any time soon
 
--Why the L.A. Park vs. Dr. Wagner Jr. mask match didn't take place and why it's been so difficult to put together
 
--The lame cover reason given
 
--One of year's biggest indie shows and notes including a former member of the New York Yankees wrestling
 
--Pro wrestler battling illness for years wants to come back and do MMA and wrestle in the Olympics
 
--More on the arrest of former WWF wrestler Duke Droese
 
--Latest wrestling wedding
 
--Update on the Briscoes in ROH
 
--A look at upcoming ROH television
 
--More on the Dixie Carter/A.J. Styles angle
 
--A look at the first time Hulk Hogan was supposed to come to TNA
 
--More TNA departures
 
--Dana White predicts upcoming show will break UFC 100 records
 
--A look at UFC's next card on FOX
 
--More on this season's Ultimate Fighter show and ratings of the show
 
--Notes on how Ronda Rousey has come across on the show
 
--Tons of new UFC fights
 
--Update on Dominick Cruz
 
--Worth of the Fertitta brothers and where they rank among the richest men in the U.S.
 
--Chael Sonnen gets nailed for remarks on TV sport show
 
--Dana White says upcoming fight on 20th anniversary show will be loser out of the UFC
 
--Nate Diaz says he can't fight on his next scheduled date because of high school reunion
 
--Former NCAA heavyweight runner-up signs with UFC
 
--A look at a ton of different TV shows Bellator will have on Spike in October
 
--Update on Fight Master's future
 
--Bellator PPV talk
 
--Update on Ben Askren's contract situation
 
--A look at Bellator's international deal
 
--Bellator talks doing shows outside North America and where they are targeting for next year
 

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        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.
 

Today's News, Notes and Links

-- Following the death of Leandro "Feijao" Souza during weight-cutting yesterday, Shooto officially canceled today's show in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The official cause of death was listed as a stroke.

--UFC cut former title contender Yushin Okami today.

-- If you are an ROH fan you should check out the interview with CEO Joe Koff on the front page today. We'll talk everything you ever wanted to know about company business, including what's up with the iPPVs, potential solutions, what ideas just can't feasibly work at this time, and more.

-- We also have a bunch of new FREE shows available, all of which are always linked on the right-hand side of the front page.

-- Look who's new General Counsel for WWE: WWE today announced the appointment of Laura A. Brevetti as Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Secretary, reporting directly to WWE Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Vince McMahon. Brevetti brings extensive legal and management experience to WWE and will be a key member of the senior executive team. As General Counsel, Brevetti will be responsible for overseeing the legal and business affairs of the company and serving as the principal legal advisor to the Chairman, CFO, and management team. She will also serve as Corporate Secretary to WWE's Board of Directors. Brevetti is a highly accomplished attorney with 30 years of experience in federal and local government, as well as private practice. A noted trial attorney, she has tried cases and arbitrations in both state and federal systems, holding positions that include the Attorney-in-Charge and Special Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, and the Assistant District Attorney for Kings County, New York. Most recently, Brevetti was in private practice with K&L Gates. Brevetti is often quoted in the media, commenting on current legal issues and events, and is frequently sought to participate in bar and industry seminars. She has also authored numerous legal articles and has served as an adjunct professor of trial advocacy at Fordham Law School and New York Law School. Brevetti graduated with a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and an A.B. from Barnard College.Brevetti led Vince's legal defense team during the early 90s steroid distribution trial. This was not mentioned anywhere in the press release.

-- How about that, a new Konnan interview on WWE.com.

-- Mark Henry did an interview on Jay Mohr's podcast and said he'd signed a new deal with WWE that takes him through 2016. So that'll be a 20-year WWE in-ring career.

-- Sinclair buys eight new stations.

-- Wacky milk commercial with HHH and Steph here, complete with an outtake.

-- Andrew writes: Comedian Mike Lawrence made mention of the Hulk Hogan sex tape on the 9/24 episode of Conan O'Brien. Lawrence said in the sex tape Hogan had a very hard time opening the condom wrapper at which point he probably wished condom wrappers were made of yellow t-shirts.That's actually hilarious.

-- IMG Media, a division of IMG Worldwide, the global sports, fashion and media company has signed a three year agreement to globally represent and distribute all media rights for the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) events put on by World Series of Fighting (WSOF). Plans are in place to expand the number of WSOF events to 8-10 for 2014/15 and for the shows to be staged internationally in venues such as Vancouver, Brazil, the UK, and Eastern Europe. To date, all WSOF events have been hosted in the US - in Las Vegas, Ontario, and Atlantic City - with upcoming events to be hosted in Miami, Chicago and Houston. NBC, who has shown the first five WSOF events live on NBC Sports Network in primetime, have a multi-year deal for exclusive coverage in the US.

-- Security Guard Dies After Collapsing During High School Brawl. He was well-liked and the students called him Hulk Hogan because of the physical similarity. Thanks to Paul.

-- Video herewith Chris Weidman talking about how beating Anderson Silva for the UFC middleweight title has changed his life.

-- If you've never seen the Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez fight, today is your lucky day.

-- Also, a PPV commercial for Rampage vs. Tito.

-- Kane has an appearance on Ron Paul's podcast here.

-- East Coast Wrestling Association (ECWA) LIVE! ECWA WITCHING HOUR II Sat, Oct 5th, 2013 Greater Newark Boys' & Girls' Club 109 Glasgow Drive, Rt. 40 & #1 Positive Place Newark, DE 19702 (302) 836-6464

-- WHO IS THE STRONGEST OF THESE HALL OF FAME CANDIDATES?
Big Daddy 21.0%
Dr. Wagner Jr. 17.6%
Vampiro 16.0%
Giant Haystacks 10.9%
Dr. Wagner Sr. 10.5%
Kendo Nagasaki 9.2%
Villano III 5.9%
Jackie Pallo 2.9%
Horst Hoffman 2.1%
Jim Breaks 1.7%
Huracan Ramirez 1.3%
Billy Joyce 0.8%

SHOULD UFC SIGN ROXANNE MODAFERRI?
Yes 63.0%
No 37.0%

WHO SHOULD UFC HAVE PUT AGAINST JON JONES?
Alexander Gustafsson 56.5%
Glover Teixeira 43.5%

POLL ON MAIN EVENT
Excellent 10.0%
Good 30.0%
Average 43.3%
Fair 3.3%
Poor 13.3%
65.1% of those responding didn't see the show

POLL ON ULTIMATE FIGHTER
Excellent 46.8%
Good 35.4%
Average 11.4%
Fair 0.0%
Poor 6.3%
34.7% of those responding didn't see the show

-- Today in History with Brian Hoops:

1977 - On a WWWF Championship Wrestling taping in Philadelphia, PA, Prof. Toru Tanaka & Mr. Fuji (w/ Freddie Blassie) defeated Larry Zbyzsko & Tony Garea to win the titles in a best 2 out of 3 falls match.

1986 - The Fantastics (Bobby Fulton & Tommy Rogers) defeated Eddie Gilbert & Sting to win the UWF World Tag Team Championship in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

1993 - The WWF announced on Monday Night Raw that Shawn Michaels had been stripped of the Intercontinental championship.

1994 - Norio Honaga defeated Wild Pegasus (Chris Benoit) to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Title in Osaka, Japan.

1995 - Harlem Heat defeated WCW World Tag Team Champions Marcus Alexander Bagwell & Scotty Riggs to win the titles.

2012 - Samoa Joe defeated Mr. Anderson to win the TNA TV Title.

-- GOUGE returns to Raleigh and another food Truck rodeo this Sat at 6 PM, live music from the Olympic Ass Kicking Team and then rasslin with Seymour Snott vs Gluteus Maximus, Jimmy Jack Funk Jr vs Shawn Alexander, Mickey Gambino vs KFC, a 4 man Lucha Libre tag match and Otto Schwanz and mod more. Rebus Works 301-2 Kinsey Street, Raleigh, North Carolina

-- Lewiston, Maine (September 27, 2013) – New England Fights Mixed Martial Arts (NEF MMA) today announced that coaches and trainers will face off when Central Maine Brazilian Jiu Jitsu’s (CMBJJ) Jesse “The Viking” Erickson (1-1) will meet MMA Athletix’s Ryan Cowette (0-2) at a catchweight of 160-pounds at “NEF XI” on November 9th at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston, Maine.

-- Big Guam BJJ tourney, Guam Marianias Open 2013. Sept 28 at FD. F4W competitor and Yankees Grappler founder PeachMachine competing in the blue belt ranks for the first time. He stands alone taking on the middleweight blue belts. Peach will also will be competing in the openweight after. We expect Peach to bring home the gold in his first blue level attempt, otherwise his forum on the board may be renamed. Check him out, the sole F4W empire member beating ass in the South Pacific. Good luck Peach!

-- Some interesting responses to some interesting questions here.

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Which of these main events would draw the best?

 

What are you planning on watching on Friday?