By Dave Meltzer |
We're looking for reports on tonight's Team Cena show in Buffalo and Team Punk in Glens Falls, NY (Daniel Bryan, Wyatt Family, Shield, Punk) as well as TNA in McMinnville, TN (Magnus vs. Samoa Joe for TNA title, Sting vs. Bully Ray, Bro Mans vs. James Storm & Gunner for tag titles, Chris Sabin vs. Austin Aries for X title, Gail Kim vs. Madison Rayne for Knockouts title) at
We're also looking for reports on last night's WWE house show in Wilkes-Barre, PA.
Evolve iPPV tonight in Orlando from the Downtown Rec Center at 8 p.m. Eastern
Rich Swann & ? vs. Young Bucks
AR Fox & Uhaa Nation vs,. Johnny Gargano & Jon Davis
Chris Hero vs. Anthony Nese
Bravado Brothers defend Open the United Gate tag titles against Dos Ben Dejos
Chuck Taylor vs. Maxwell Chicago
Su Yung vs. Mia Yim
Caleb Konley vs. Lince Dorado
Sunday has Team Cena in Montreal and Team Punk in White Plains.
Evolve iPPV on Sunday in Jacksonville from the Edge Concert Hall at 8 p.m. Eastern
Johnny Gargano vs. Friday night's Fray winner for Open the Freedom Gate title
Chris Hero vs. Chuck Taylor
Rich Swann vs. Jon Davis
AR Fox & Ricochet vs. Anthony Nese & ?
Matt Jackson vs. Harlem Bravado
Nick Jackson vs. Lance Bravado
Trent Baretta vs. Caleb Konley vs. Jay Rios vs. Eddie Cruz vs. Johnny Vandal vs. Maxwell Chicago
Lince Dorado vs. Uhaa Nation
Raw is Monday in Providence, RI with Daniel Bryan & Bray Wyatt vs. Usos as the one match announced.
from Osaka as day one of Fantastica Mania, a joint show with CMLL
Titan & Bushi vs. Taka Michinoku & Taichi
Stuka & Rey Cometa & Fuego vs. Vangellys & Shigeo Okumura & Niebla Roja
Jushin Liger & Maximo vs. Gedo & Jado
Tetsuya Naito & Volador Jr. vs. Kushida & Mascara Dorada
Rush & La Sombra vs. Ultimo Guerrero & Shinsuke Nakamura
Mistico & Hiroshi Tanahashi & Desperado (Kyosuke Mikami) vs. Mephisto & Rey Escorpion & Kazuchika Okada
Smackdown and Main Event will be taped on Tuesday night in Worcester, MA.
A look at the rebuilding of pro wrestling's No. 2 promotion in the world, New Japan Pro Wrestling, tons more on Jeff Jarrett, Toby Keith, rumors and what that would entail, the Daniel Bryan turn and a look at history and timing, plus all kinds of health updates on WWE talent are among the major stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that has been on the site since Wednesday.
As New Japan completes its biggest event of 2014, the Tokyo Dome show, we look at its key personalities, what it's reminiscent of, if it can match 2013 and why, what WWE and UFC can learn from the New Japan presentation, usage of legends, as well as the company's big show schedule between now and August.
We've also got a complete rundown on the Tokyo Dome show, with match-by-match coverage, poll results, star ratings, match stories and more.
We also look at UFC 169 and the injury to Dominick Cruz and replacement of Urijah Faber in the 2/1 match against Renan Barao.
We also look at the Daniel Bryan situation with the Wyatt family and what it's all about. We also look at the timing of it.
We've got an update on the Royal Rumble, a former headliner at Mania suggests a main match for his return, WWE surveys, Kaitlyn leaving WWE, former star reached an agreement, notes on how Chris Benoit will be handled on the network, details behind Ric Flair giving the 49ers their pep talk and media discussion, notes on Batista's deal, Dwayne Johnson update, Jake Roberts notes, Dolph Ziggler concussion update, the 2014 PPV show schedule, more on the new TV deal in Japan, the next video game, update on Chris Jericho, update on Ezekiel Jackson, reaction to Ryback, current star doing a second autobiography, final Raw before WrestleMania, update on Bruno Sammartino documentary and statue, as well as a look at the WWE business this past week and highlights from all the house shows.
We also have a look at some of the biggest events in pro wrestling history, looking at the shows that had the most pro wrestling Hall of Famers on them. We look at some of the biggest territorial spectaculars, multi-promotional shows, and look at the WWE show with the most Hall of Famers, the longest tour with the most Hall of Famers, Japanese shows, WrestleMania, WCW and more.
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
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We also have a look at the ratings of all the major shows.
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:
--New 18-year-old wrestler starting to get a national push
--A look at the Leyenda de Plata tournament and the veteran who has been stealing the show
--A look at several tournaments in Mexico
--All Japan regular going independent
--Two newcomers to All Japan
--Annual All Japan Battle Royal
--Next All Japan big matches
--NOAH star out with surgery
--A look at Takeshi Morishima beating KENTA for GHC title
--New Japan owner talks current plans
--Cards for Fantastica Mania over the next week
--New Japan's internal awards
--Full rundown of the "day after Tokyo Dome" event at Korakuen Hall
--Return of Ryusuke Taguchi
--A look back at the late Scott Epstein
--A.J. Styles update
--A look at the next month of ROH on television, angles, crowd reactions and direction
--Jeff Jarrett's situation and what looks to be happening
--Jim Ross gives reaction
--Who is available
--More info regarding A.J. Styles
--Notes on the next two TNA PPV shows
--TNA overdoing another gimmick
--A look at the TNA weekend house shows
--Future of Anderson Silva
--Prospective dates for what should be UFC's next big money show
--More on the impending Vitor Belfort controversy
--All the business numbers for UFC 168
--More details on Fight Pass
--Next UFC live event details
--Lots of new UFC fights
--Promotion of the next UFC PPV in Las Vegas
--Andy Foster of CSAC talks about MMA judging criteria using idea I suggested
--Story behind a tease of what would be UFC's biggest live event of the year and a stadium on hold and that is the current hold up
--Story behind a new signee whose twin is already in UFC
--Diego Brandao admits threat to Dustin Poirier
--Matt Brown update
--Lots of new UFC fights
--Tito Ortiz arrest
--Lou Thesz pro wrestling gimmick being used in MMA, full details and proposed event
--A name to look out for in the future for both the Olympics and MMA
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)a
*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
--A note on Mae Young. Contrary to reports, Mae Young was not on life support this past week.
--TNA is giving away one childrens ticket for every adult ticket purchased for Thursday's Genesis show from Huntsville, AL.
--Maxim is doing a bunch of voting right now. There is a vote for the cover of the magazine which includes both A.J. Lee and Miesha Tate in the running. They also are having a reader vote for the 100 hottest women in the world. Among the names nominated are Arianny Celeste (UFC), Brittney Palmer (UFC), Eva Marie (WWE), Gina Carano, Kendra Perez (UFC), Maria Menounos, Miesha Tate (UFC), Ronda Rousey (UFC) and Stacy Keibler.
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY
1901 - Tom Jenkins beat Dan McLeod in Cleveland to win the American heavyweight title
1954 - Wilbur Snyder beat Mr. Moto to win the International TV title in Hollywood, CA
1957 - Buddy Rogers beat Johnny Barend to win the Eastern States title in Akron, OH
1957 - Dr. Jerry Graham beat Chief Big Heart in Atlanta to win the Southern title
1962 - Cowboy Bob Ellis & Johnny Valentine beat The Fabulous Kangaroos to win the U.S. tag team titles
1963 - Rip Hawk beat El Medico II in Houston to win the Texas title
1965 - Don Leo Jonathan & Gene Kiniski beat The Fabulous Kangaroos to win the Canadian tag team titles
1966 - Mario Milano & Len Rossi to the Southern tag titles in Memphis in a three-team tournament over the Masked Medics and Kanji (Antonio) Inoki & Hiro Matsuda
1968 - Ronnie Etichison & Klondike Bill beat Bulldog Bob Brown & Bob Geigel in Kansas City to win the North American tag team titles
1974 - Mr. Wrestling II beat Ron Fuller in Atlanta to win the Georgia title
1975 - Dick Steinborn beat Carlos Colon in Caguas, PR to win the WWC jr. heavyweight title
1979 - Dale Valentine (Buddy Roberts) beat Tully Blanchard to win the Southwest TV title
1979 - Ron Bass beat Ray Candy in Little Rock to win the Arkansas state title
1980 - Mr Hito & Mr Sakurada beat El Halcon & Jose Lothario in Houston to win the American tag team titles
1981 - Bruiser Brody & Kerry Von Erich beat Gino Hernandez & Gary Young in Dallas to win the American tag team titles
1984 - Mike Rotundo & Mike Davis beat Ron Bass & One Man Gang in Tampa to win the U.S. tag team titles
1985 - The Midnight Express beat The Fantastics in Dallas to win the American tag team titles
1985 - Ole Anderson & Thunderbolt Patterson beat Bill & Scott Irwin in Columbus, OH to win the National tag team titles
1986 - Sam Houston beat Krusher Khrshchev in Atlanta to win the Mid-Atlantic title
1987 - Jeff Jarrett & Billy Travis beat Mike Davis & Tommy Lane in Memphis to win the Southern tag team titles
1991 - Ric Flair beat Sting in East Rutherford, NJ in a blizzard to break Harley Race's record for most NWA title reigns
1993 - Dustin Rhodes beat Ricky Steamboat to win the vacant U.S. title
2009 - Alex Shelley beat Chris Sabin to win the X title at the Genesis PPV and Beer Money of Bobby Roode & James Storm won a three-way over Jay Lethal & Consequences Creed (Xavier Woods) and Matt Morgan & Abyss to win the tag titles
--Lots of questions from talent regarding how or if royalties will work, since WrestleMania is the biggest payoff event of the year by leaps and bounds and PPV could be way down this year.
--On the WWE Bottom Line show that aired in the U.K., the entire Jake Roberts segment on Raw was edited out (thanks to Andrew Quirke)
--WWE has listed looking for the following positions:
Vice President, Current Programming - To work with Kevin Dunn in overseeing shows, series and developmental projects and work as a key decision maker, come up with ideas for new shows, develop the creative, talent section, episodic breakdown, collaborate with writers to improve scripting
Manager, Network PR: Pitch stories to the press on the TV shows, write press releases, media alerts, develop media strategies using local, regional and national press and manage talent at public functions.
Live Events Marketing Manager for the West Coast: Come up with ticket prices for 30 West Coast house shows per year, develop a media and ad campaign, build relationships in the markets with the political and business community as well as local businesses and sponsors
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF WEDNESDAY'S MAIN EVENT?
72.3% of those responding didn't see the show
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IMPACT?
38.5% of those responding didn't see the show
IF YOU WERE A CABLE COMPANY, HOW WOULD YOU HANDLE CARRYING WWE SHOWS?
Carry them because PPV is going to die so make all the money you can over the short term 31.4%
Carry Mania, then drop WWE 26.0%
Drop WWE, focus on boxing and UFC 21.4%
Carry WWE even with the risk of losing revenue because of the precedent it sets for UFC and boxing 21.2%
--St. Louis Anarchy Wrestling from last night in Alton, IL: Devin & Mason Carter b Matt Knicks & Chris Castro, Brandon Espinosa b Mat Cage, Alex Castle won six-way over Bradley Charles, Geek Singh, Kenny Sutra, Steve Fierce and Jake Parnell, Alex the Big Owl & Jordan Lacey b Jeff O'Shea & Mallaki Matthews, ACH b B-Boy, Bolt Brady b Mike Sydal, Michael Elgin b Jojo Bravo, Kyle O'Reilly b Evan Gelistico, Adam Raw b Ricky Starks, Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett b Gerald James & Jeremy Wyatt (thanks to Patrick Brandmeyer)
--Valkyrie Womens Wrestling debuts on 5/24 in Brooklyn with an all women's promotion.
--NWA Southern All-Star Wrestling from last night in Millersville, TN: LT Falk b Josh Crow, Mayhem b Charles Alexander & Kevin Weatherby, Jason Kincaid b John Wayne Murdoch, Miss Rachel b Jessie Belle, Chris Michaels b Hot Rod Biggs, Lance Erikson DCOR Jocephus Body (thanks to Lekisha Oliver)