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.
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We also have a look at the ratings of all the major television shows over the past week and results from all the major arena events.
Also in this week's issue:
--Update on CMLL's Gran Alternativa tournament
--Wrestlers on TV weekly who want to go back to their gimmicks from years ago
--Jeff Jarrett goes to Mexico
--AAA star in a major reality show
--Dragon Gate big show coverage
--Notes on this year's Champion Carnival tournament
--Update on All Japan jr. tournament
--Outsider captures major world title
--Update on KENTA and Pro Wrestling NOAH
--Update on Prince Devitt
--Hall of Famer hints at retirement after putting over protege
--Pro wrestling world title put up in a shoot match
--IGF announces its plans for the next several months
--Adam Copeland (Edge) talks about leaving wrestling, growing up as a fan and more
--Chavo Guerrero Jr. talks Chris Benoit on Chris Jericho's show
--CZW has big show
--Pro wrestling trivia note as it relates to one of the biggest celebrities of the last 100 years
--Update on the original Sin Cara
--Someone does a pro wrestling and pro wrestling match on the same day
--Latest from Puerto Rico
--Notes from the heyday of San Francisco wrestling
--Former TNA wrestler slowing down
--Whatever happened to???
--Notes on pro wrestling documentaries in discussion
--Former UFC fighter and former WWE star in international TV commercial
--ROH weekend show and what matches are being built for
--Vince Russo and TNA, an update
--How the TV has changed
--Notes on the next few TNA PPV shows
--What PPV show said to be really good
--Lots more backstage from the European tour
--A look at the TNA shows this past weekend
--More on Ronda Rousey in Hollywood
--Story behind her latest movie roles
--Details on the Jessica Eye situation
--The situation with the fighter on Ultimate Fighter who will not be going to UFC no matter what happens on the show
--More on UFC changing its bonus structure
--A look at the next show
--Dana White's latest TV show
--More on UFC prosecuting those who steal their PPVs
--Update on Anderson Silva
--Tons of new fights
--What UFC fighter is a Roller Derby coach
--New Bellator title fight
--Update on three-way TV battle in two weeks
--New promotion with national TV about to debut and notes on who is involved with the show including UFC's first superstar and a major name in pro wrestling
--Update on Ben Askren
--What boxing champion is interested in 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.
SUNDAY'S NEWS UPDATE
--Very little talk coming out of last night's UFC show. Lyoto Machida said after the fight that he believed he suffered a broken foot in the third round of his fight with Gegard Mousasi. Ronaldo Jacare Souza said he had problems with his arm with floating particles in his elbow for the last several weeks, considered pulling out of the fight, but he asked God and God told him to fight. I wonder if he texted him or e-mailed him. If it was e-mail, it could be a poser.
--Bonuses of $50,000 last night went to Machida and Gegard Mousasi for best fight along with Erick Silva and Charles Oliveira for best performance.
--Erick Silva wasn't hit with one strike for the third time in his UFC career, a modern record. Of course that's easier when your average fight time is the shortest of any active fighter and you've had four fights last under 71 seconds.
--The WWE on its web site stated Trinity Fatu (Naomi) would not need surgery for her fractured orbital bone but would be out four to six weeks.
--In predictions last night, Mike Sawyer and I went 5-0, which puts him at 95% for the year and I'm at 90%. Josh Nason, Jason Pollock, Steve Juon, Oliver Copp, Frontrow Brian and Mike Sempervive went 4-1 (all picking Viscardi Andrade) and Todd Martin and Lance Storm went 3-2 (picking Andrade and Gegard Mousasi to win).
ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY (thanks to Brian Hoops and Graeme Cameron)
1968 - Gorilla Monsoon beat Spyros Arion in Sydney to win the IWA title
1971 - Jack & Jerry Brisco beat The Infernos in Tampa to win the Florida tag titles
1974 - Mariko Akagi & Junko Sasaki beat Jackie West & Sharon Lee to win the WWWA tag titles
1984 - Ashura Hara & Takashi Ishikawa beat Jerry Morrow & Thomas Ivey to win the All-Asia tag titles in Nagasaki
1997 - Bret Hart won a four-way over Steve Austin, Vader and Undertaker to win the vacant WWF title in Chattanooga
2002 - Dan Severn beat Jonny Moss in Bray, UK to win the UK heavyweight title
2002 - Tadao Yasuda beat Yuji Nagata in Tokyo in the tournament finals to win the IWGP heavyweight title. Minoru Tanaka beat Masahito Kakihara on the same show to win the IWGP jr. title
2004 - Booker T & Rob Van Dam beat Ric Flair & Batista to win the WWE tag titles in Bakersfield, CA
2005 - Satoshi Kojima beat Toshiaki Kawada in Tokyo to win the Triple Crown
2007 - Hector Garza & Perro Aguayo Jr. & Mr. Aguila beat Ultimo Guerrero & Tarzan Boy & Atlantis in Mexico City to win the CMLL trios titles
--wXw from yesterday in Paderborn, Germany before 230 fans: Karsten Beck b Maxi Schneider, Michael Schenkenberg b Sha Samuels, Freddy Stalh & Big Van Walter b Vincent & Robert Schild, Toby Blunt & Mike Schwarz b Sasa Keel & Aaron Insane, Chris Rush b Kim Day, Karsten Beck b Michael Schenkenberg to earn a spot in the 16 Carat Gold tournament, Axel Dieter Jr. & Da Mack b Bad Bones John Klinger & Absolute Andy. (thanks to Markus Gronemann)
--Regarding a comment made on our radio show last night, Netflix allows two users at the same time for the $9.99 per month price. If you want four users at the same time, the price would be $11.99 per month. (thanks to Brian Hoops)
--The World MMA Awards air on Fox Sports Net today. Check your local listings.
WHAT DID YOU THINK OF SMACKDOWN?
35.0% of those responding didn't see the show
SHOULD UFC MATCH BELLATOR'S OFFER FOR GILBERT MELENDEZ?
Yes, he's top five in the division, could be in line for a title shot, if they want the best they should match the offer 45.2%
Depends on the offer 25.2%
They should sign him just to make sure Bellator doesn't get top talent 1.8%
No, they shouldn't be bulled and should hold the line on pay 12.9%
No, agreeing to a Bellator deal defied UFC and they should let him go out of principle 2.9%
IF ROUSEY VS. CYBORG IS MADE AT 135 POUNDS, WHO WINS?
IF ROUSEY VS. CYBORG TAKES PLACE, WILL IT BE THE BIGGEST NON-BOXING PPV IN THE U.S?
Possibly if everything hits late, but most likely no 14.3%
Probably, depends on how Mania does 9.2%
Yes, if it's a title match, not if it's a non-title catch-weight fight 5.1%
WHO DOES THE BEST JOB OF BOOKING A WORLD CHAMPION?
New Japan 59.7%
Dragon Gate 2.0%
--Kotaro Suzuki beat Masaaki Mochizuki in Fukuoka to win the Junior Battle of Glory, a tournament put on by All Japan Pro Wrestling.
--Southern Illinois Championship Wrestling before a sellout of 345 fans in East Carondelet, IL: Joker b Jason Carosello, Frankie Wyatt b Daniel Eads, Gary Jackson b Purple Passion, AX b Bobby D, Heath Hatton DDQ Dave Vaughn, Ironman Kasa b Jim Hoffarth, Ron Powers & Jake Dirden b Ricky Cruz & Flash Flanagan (thanks to Larry Matysik & Patrick Brandmeyer)
--SPW tonight at the SPW Arena at 620 McMahon Dr. in Sacramento has Drake Younger vs. Mike Hayashi for the Extreme title 2/3 falls, Jeff Cobb vs. Mustafa Saed and Jeckles vs. Drake Frost.
--Dave Batista wrote on Twitter how much he loves house shows. Last night in Phoenix was his first house show in four years. He's booked in Las Vegas today as well.
--Miguel Torres, who a few years back was in the discussion for the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, defeated Giovanni Moljo via decision on a show in Hammond, IN at the Civic Center, his first win in two years.
--Ricky Martinez was announced as the fifth entrant in this year's ECWA Super 8 tournament in Newark, DE, which takes place on 4/5 at the Greater Newark Boys & Girls Club