THURS. UPDATE: Lots of changes in TNA, New Japan jr. tag tourney tonight, UFC TV special, Rock signs new TV contract, Jericho debuts new TV show, Dragon Gate stars to US, Best tag team, Daniel Bryan promo
By Dave Meltzer |
We're looking for reports on tonight's TNA show from Salt Lake City, particularly the second show that will be taped after the live show airs at
We're also looking for feedback on the New Japan iPPV from Tokyo's Korakuen Hell which airs live at 5:30 a.m. Eastern and 2:30 a.m. Pacific time called Road to Power Struggle:
Lineup for the show:
First round of Junior heavyweight tag team tournament
Taka Michinoku & Taichi vs. Rocky Romero & Alex Koslov
Valiente & Bushi vs. Yohei Komatsu & Kushida
Young Bucks (New Japan debut) vs. Trent Baretta & Brian Kendrick
Gedo & Jado vs. Jushin Liger & Tiger Mask
Minoru Suzuki vs. Sho Tanaka
Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Captain New Japan vs. Manabu Nakanishi & Tomoaki Honma
Hiroshi Tanahashi & Togi Makabe & Yuji Nagata vs. Toru Yano & Takashi Iizuka & Tomohiro Ishii
Tetsuya Naito & Kota Ibushi vs. Yujiro Takahashi & Masato Tanaka
Kazuchika Okada & Shinsuke Nakamura & Yoshi-Hashi vs. Prince Devitt & Karl Anderson & Bad Luck Fake
If you are into history, this is the time to be subscribing to the Observer because it's Hall of Fame season. The original Hall of Fame issue will be up next week, and the 2013 Hall of Fame issue is also coming with the balloting now closed.
The new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter will be up on the site today with analysis pieces of where the UFC & TNA both stand coming out of the weekend and going forward.
Our lead story looks at while profits are high and business is overall good for UFC, there are some causes for concern in recent weeks. We look at the move to FS 1, ratings, PPV vs. boxing and what has 2013 in UFC shown about what does and doesn't work on PPV.
We also look back at UFC 166, how the top stars come out of the show, view polls on the close fights, the show as a whole and full match-by-match coverage.
We also look at TNA coming out of Bound for Glory, its biggest show of the year. Unlike with UFC, profits are not high and business is not good. We look at the changes on the horizon for 2014, how the new goals have to be different from the old goals, Hulk Hogan & Sting, TV tapings in Orlando, the PPV business, the house show business, injury updates and full coverage of Bound for Glory. We have poll results and star ratings on the show as well.
We also talk WWE network, WWE stock prices, WWE Hall of Fame, a WrestleMania match where the first angle was shot three years ago now on the books, update on Rey Mysterio, why he wrestled and why he wasn't on Raw. We look at the next PPV, the Big Show angle, updates on all WWE angles, former WWE wrestler accuses others of keeping her out, Jim Ross talks Undertaker's streak, time limits and no DQ tag matches.
We also update the 2014 PPV schedule and changes for the new year, sports executives on how UFC, WWE and boxing are doing, Nowinski talks why WWE was awarded, changes in this past week's Raw show, the HHH interview and what may have been clever and what was counterproductive, what WWE is looking for with prospective new talent, Daniel Bryan talks Hall of Fame, training with Shawn Michaels, wrestling Shawn Michaels, the best wrestler he ever wrestled against and the name will surprise you, favorite opponents and who he credits for getting him over. He also talks what he thinks about Total Divas.
Chael Sonnen talks a recently signed WWE wrestler who he trained with, as well as business notes and highlights from the Mexico and U.S. tours from this past week.
We also look at AAA's big event of the past week, the Heroes Inmortales show, the surprises, the jump and the enemies that became partners.
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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:
--The hard to explain and even harder to make sense situation out of what CMLL did on its big show this past week
--Updates on an international group getting U.S. TV and plans
--Major Dragon Gate show and how that leads into the next major show that will air around the world on iPPV
--A look at newcomers to the promotion
--All Japan prepares 41st anniversary show
--Tokyo Dome ticket notes
--New Japan officials come to the U.S., notes on seminar and business discussion
--Update on next New Japan major show
--Wrestler critical of New Japan tournament feeling the top stars need to be in and aren't
--Notes on Hiroshi Tanahashi and Bret Hart together in the U.K. over the weekend
--A look at New Japan talent in the U.S. and U.K. over the past week
--Business discussions with New Japan in the U.S. market
--Notes on Michinoku Pro in the U.K.
--More on Dos Caras' Japanese retirement match
--Still active wrestling star turns 70
--Notes on the career of Dennis Hall
--Pointed comments made regarding the death of Calvin Knapp
--A look at a new attempt for indie groups to work together and goals
--Update on Low Ki
--Update on Tammy Sytch
--A look at the next major ROH show, a unique angle and Jesse Sorensen
--Kurt Angle talks rehab and follow-up
--Angle talks Hogan
--Background of new TNA TV announcer
--More on plans for UFC Super Bowl show
--Thoughts on UFC going to Mexico
--More on Chael Sonnen vs. Wanderlei Silva
--Mike Pierce injuries
--More on secret meeting for Fedor vs. Lesnar
--New arena being talked about being built that would be the home of the biggest UFC shows going forward
--Notes on the next season of Ultimate Fighter
--Update on Ben Askren
--UFC signs some major foreign names including one of the world's most exciting fighters of the last decade
--Pro wrestling talk in TUF house
--Promotion of Bellator PPV
--Update on Bellator's last show and next show
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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.
THURSDAY'S NEWS UPDATE
--Just want to thank everyone for the nice birthday wishes. It is really appreciated
--I saw the UFC 20 year history special that will air from 9-11 p.m. on 11/5 earlier today. The history was accurate and it's quite a story when you see it put together the way it is. There is a lot that isn't in there, but with the team restrictions that had to be the case. There is a lot about the early days, the early marketing, the court cases, how Dana White & The Fertittas got involved and all the problems and money losses from the early years. It's worth going out of your way to see.
--Eric Bischoff is not at today's TNA tapings. I wonder what that means for creative going forward.
--TNA in trying to spin the move back to Orlando as a positive announced nonstop social media coverage on the web site, social channels, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram with Universal Studios as the hub. They are billing it as 24/7 "Action Never Ends." The idea that these companies need to produce more product that they aren't getting paid for at this stage of the game is working against them, not for them. But they're on the inside looking out, as opposed to being on the outside looking in.
--TNA has signed a multi-year deal with Ma Chaine Sport (MCS) in France to continue airing the show at 9 p.m. on Friday nights with repeats on Sunday and Wednesday afternoons, as well as continue to air the monthly specials
--Dwayne Johnson has signed with TNT for a new reality show called "Wake Up Call." The eight-episode series will debut next year. Johnson will be a motivating force for people who are facing challenges in their lives, such as deadbeat dads, sports teams that lose, or business owners struggling to survive.
--Notes on the Chris Jericho web series called "But I'm Chris Jericho." It's a TV show on the web where Chris Jericho plays something similar to who he is. He plays the role of Chris Jericho, a former world champion in pro wrestling who is struggling to become an actor. After being a superstar in one field, he's at the bottom rung in a new field trying to make it. Andy Kindler (Bob's Burgers, Last Comic Standing) plays Jericho's bumbling agent and Scott Thompson (The Kids in the Hall) plays his acting coach. The show debuts Tuesday at www.youtube.com/actiontv
--The Ultimate Fighter recap show last night did 476,000 viewers, by far the lowest rated episode in the history of the series, but that was predicted given it was a throw away show against the World Series.
--UFC weigh-ins are 11 a.m. Eastern and 8 a.m. Pacific time tomorrow live on FS 2, since everything in the U.S. is out of whack when things are done Greenwich time. As in Greenwich, England, not Greenwich, CT.
--If you didn't see Jones vs. Gustafsson and live on the West Coast, it replays at midnight tonight Pacific time on FS 2.
--Masaaki Mochizuki, Jimmy Susumu and Genki Horiguchi from Dragon Gate are all on Dragon Gate USA shows on 11/16 in the Queensboro Elks Lodge in Elmhurst, NY and 11/17 in Brooklyn at the Lyceum. Also on the shows is Johnny Gargano, Young Bucks, AR Fox, Ricochet, Rich Swann, Trent Baretta, Chuck Taylor, Jon Davis Anthony Nese and more.
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (thanks to Graeme Cameron and Brian Hoops)
1956 - Mitsuo Surugaumi beat Michiaki Yoshimura to become the first Japanese jr. heavyweight champion
1967 - Paul DeMarco & Lorenzo Parente beat Kurt & Skull Von Stroheim to win the world tag team titles in Tampa
1970 - Lonnie Mayne beat Mr. Fuji to win the Pacific Northwest heavyweight title
1974 - Nick Bockwinkel & Ray Stevens beat Crusher & Billy Robinson in Winnipeg to win the AWA tag titles
1976 - Alfonso Dantes beat Carlos Plata in Guadalajara to win the NWA world light heavyweight title
1979 - Ricky Steamboat & Jay Youngblood beat Paul Jones & Baron Von Raschke to win the NWA tag titles in Raleigh
1979 - Bobby Eaton beat Dutch Mantell in Nashville to win the Mid American title
1980 - Tiger Jeet Singh beat Antonio Inoki in Okinawa to win the UWA heavyweight title
1980 - Tony Atlas beat Dennis Condrey to win the Georgia title in Atlanta
1981 - Steve Regal (not William Regal) beat Buddy Rose to win the Pacific Northwest title
1982 - Jumbo Tsuruta beat Harley Race in Kitani to win the United National title
1983 - Jimmy Garvin beat Chris Adams to win the Texas TV title in Fort Worth
1984 - Fit Finlay beat Marty Jones in Hull to win the world mid-heavyweight title
1987 - Mayumi Ozaki beat Rumi Kazama in Tokyo to win the JWP UWA women's title
1993 - Lance Storm beat Hiroyoshi Yamamoto (now Tenzan) to win the CWA jr. heavyweight title. Yes, Tenzan was originally a junior heavyweight. Larry Cameron & Mad Bull Buster (Pitbull Gary Wolfe) beat Mile Zrno & David Taylor to win the CWA tag titles on the same show
1993 - Nasty Boys beat Marcus Bagwell & Too Cold Scorpion to win the WCW tag tiles and Vader beat Cactus Jack in a Texas death match at Halloween Havoc in New Orleans
1994 - The Moondogs beat the Phantoms to win the USWA tag title in Memphis
1998 - Dudleys beat Rob Van Dam & Sabu to win the ECW tag titles in Cleveland
1999 - Rick Steiner beat Chris Benoit to win the WCW TV title, Bill Goldberg beat Sting to win the WCW title (which was overturned the next day) and Harlem Heat beat Konnan & Billy Kidman (subbing for Rey Misterio Jr.) and Hugh Morrus & Brian Knobs in a falls count anywhere street fight match to win the WCW tag titles all in Las Vegas.
--One Fighting Championship returns to Manila, Philippines on 12/6 headlined by Koji Oishi vs. Honorio Banario for their featherweight title
--Warriors of Wrestling on 11/9 at Funstation USA in Staten Island headlined by Al Snow vs Aaron Stride and Demolition vs Diamond Exchange, Joey Ace & Steve Sterling.
--Kaitlyn in WWE has now gone to full dark hair instead of the blond streak.
--MexPro's Bleed Los Angeles show on 11/2 at 6 p.m. with Homeless Jimmy vs. Necro Butcher in a fans bring the weapons match with barbed wire, rat traps, light tubes, thumbtacks and more. The show is at 7962 Sale Lake City Ave., in Huntington Park, CA. Joey Ryan, Willie Mack, Eric Watts and others also appear.
--A comic book on Andre the Giant will be out in the spring called "Andre the Giant: Life and Legend." It is a scholarly biography of Andre Roussimoff told in comic form.
--Chris Jericho clearly having fun on Twitter wrote: "Watched TNA Bound For Glory and it was great! Never been in Ultimate X match-looks amazing! RealBully5150 is the real deal." (thanks to Himanshu Doiphode)
--Iowa indie wrestler Levi McDaniel is selling tattoo ad space on his body for $2,000. So far no takers. He said he got the idea from Buck Zumhofe. The Des Moines Register ran a story on it. It would be a permanent tattoo. He said he'll give $1,500 to the family of his aunt Linda who died of cancer and the rest to charity. If it works, he said he'll do it again, with second set of money going to the Wounded Warrior Project. Story is at http://www.desmoinesregister.com/
(thanks to Matt Burrows)
--Mattel just came out with a new Bruno Sammartino action figure. The bio on the back claims that Sammartino "In 1963, he defeated Nature Boy Buddy Roberts to became the first WWE champion." He was actually the second champion, and Buddy Roberts didn't start wrestling until a few years after 1963 (he beat Buddy Rogers).(thanks to Josh Sites)
--The subject of weight cutting will be featured tomorrow night on Inside MMA as they show Tim Boetch dropping from 215 to 185 for his fight last Saturday against C.B. Dollaway. Gilbert Melendez will also be on the show.
--On 11/16 at Kowloon's Restaurant in Saguas, MA, there will be an event featuring autographs, dinner, an auction and a Q&A.
IF YOU ORDERED EITHER JONES VS. SONNEN OR SILVA VS. WEIDMAN AND DIDN'T ORDER EITHER JONES VS GUSTAFSSON OR VELASQUEZ VS. DOS SANTOS, WHY?
Too many shows 38.5%Lost interest in the product 21.9%
Watched the shows via illegal stream 15.6%
Neither main event sold me, but am buying other UFC shows this year 11.5%
Watched at a friends house or another location 10.4%
Competing PPV entities 1.0%
Didn't like the card overall 1.0%
IF YOU WERE REGULARLY WATCHING UFC ON TV A YEAR AGO, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS RIGHT NOW?
Still watch almost all the TV fights 41.1%
Picking and choosing which ones to watch 28.5%
Lost interest, not watching anymore 12.1%
Losing interest, still watching some 8.9%
Keep forgetting when the shows are on 7.5%
Lost access with the move to FS 1 1.9%
WHO IS THE BEST TAG TEAM IN THE WORLD?
The Shield 36.8%
Daniels & Kazarian 21.4%
Rhodes Brothers 7.0%
Richards & Edwards 5.9%
Killer Elite Squad 5.0%
Fish & O'Reilly 2.6%
Tenzan & Kojima 2.4%
Storm & Gunner 0.9%
Evans & Angelico 0.2%
--UIPW announced Davey Richards for the 11/3 show in Scarborough, ONT at Rockpile East. Richards faces Brent Banks in a first round match in the King of Toronto tournament.
--Funkdafied Wrestling on 11/1 in Hopatcong, NJ at the St. Jude's Parish Hall with Tito Santana and Robbie E.
--Devon Dudley vs. Hernandez for River City Wrestling on 11/2 in San Antonio at the Aztec Indoor Soccer Arena.