FRI UPDATE: Bret Hart comments on Warrior, DDP on Nancy Grace, weekend schedule, Raw Warrior tribute, Vegas convention, tons more



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

After the last week, we could use a quiet weekend, and it looks like we've got one.

We're looking for reports on tonight's TNA tapings in Orlando.

Bellator tonight at 7 p.m. Eastern on Spike.com from Temecula, CA.

Ricky Rainey (171) vs Andy Murad (178.9) - Yes, the guy missed weight by 8 pounds

Philipe Lins (205.1) vs. Travis Clark (205.1)

Carlos Eduardo (205) vs. Rodney Wallace (205.8)

Ron Keslar (170.8) vs. Karo Parisyan (170.7)

Joe Taimanglo (135.6) vs. Rob Emerson (136)

Brandon Bender (145.8) vs. Mario Navarro (145)

Josh Smith (154.8) vs. Poppies Martinez (155.1)

Dave Vitkay (184.4) vs. Keith Berry (185.4)

Joe Pacheco (185.9) vs. Brandon Halsey (185.8)

Main card on Spike TV at 9 p.m.

Mighty Mo (264.9) vs. Alexander Volkov (235.7) in heavyweight tournament semifinals

Joey Beltran (204.5) vs. Vladimir Matyushenko (205.5)

Nathan Coy (170.6) vs. Adam McDonough (170.9) in welterweight tournament semifinals

Blagoi Ivanov (255.7) vs. Lavar Johnson (245.3) in heavyweight tournament semifinals

WWE has a show Saturday night in Hidalgo, TX, featuring John Cena, Big Show, Sheamus, The Rhodes, Brothers, The Wyatts and Kane. Daniel Bryan and The Bellas are off this weekend since he's getting married tonight.

TNA will be taping an Xtravanganza show, an all X Division show which will feature TNA talent as well as outsiders like Rubix (Jigsaw), Low Ki, Sonjay Dutt, Rashad Cameron, Trent Baretta.

Glory airs at 9 p.m. Eastern Saturday night on Spike from Istanbul, Turkey.

We're also looking for reports on Sunday's WWE show in Chattanooga with John Cena, Big Show, Sheamus, Rhodes Brothers, Wyatts and Kane.

Raw will be Monday night in Birmingham. At this point, Brock Lesnar was not scheduled for the show.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped on Tuesday in Nashville. Batista is booked on the show.

        We've got a new double issue of the Observer up today covering the death of Ultimate Warrior, the end of the streak, WrestleMania, Jeff Jarrett's promotion and all the news in the biggest wrestling news week of the year.
 
        We look at the details of the death of the Ultimate Warrior, his health, was the speech the result of something he knew, did he have a premonition of dying young, the keys who his success in wrestling and why it didn't last and more.
 
        We look at his days as Blade Runner Rock, working in Mid South Wrestling and in Texas, Big Van Vader, how he got over in WWE, the IC title run, Owen Hart, the matches with Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage, why his title run didn't work, people's childhood hero, his bodybuilding fanaticism, his bodybuilding career before wrestling, Sting, his WCW run, his name change, his family, his return to WWE, his projects after wrestling and more.
 
        We also have a piece by Frankie Kazarian talking about growing up with the Ultimate Warrior  as his favorite wrestler.
 
        We also look at the end of the streak.  We look at the match, other matches it compared to, the story of the streak, why the streak ended, and the real choice Vince McMahon made.  We also look at how hard they tried to keep it a secret and if it worked.  We also look at the injuries to Mark Calaway.
 
        We also look at the rise of Daniel Bryan to  WWE champion, the story of this year's WrestleMania, how the stream held up, Extreme Rules, plus match-by-match rundowns with star ratings.
 
        We also have a look at the business of the WWE network, why it will be a success to a degree but the jury is out on it being a game changer.  We also look at how many subscribers WWE budgeted the network to get this year and next year and the acceleration of its growth that is budgeted as well as how many PPV buys they budgeted WrestleMania to do this year.
 
        We also look at satisfaction levels of the network.
 
        We also look at the 25 biggest grossing shows in history in North America.
 
        We also have an in-depth look at the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame ceremony.  We look at the real star of the Hall of Fame this year, the courting of Ultimate Warrior, the Warrior DVD, the Carlos Colon controversy and all of the speeches.
 
        We also examine the beginnings of Global Force Wrestling with Jeff Jarrett.
 
        We've got a look at the New Japan Invasion Attack show, the angle to bring in A.J. Styles, the situation with Prince Devitt, the Gracies, and Naito vs. Ishii feud, the next PPV as well as match-by-match coverage with star ratings.
 
        We also update the Gina Carano vs. Ronda Rousey situation.
 
        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
 
        You can also order by paypal by sending to www.paypal.com and directing the funds to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
       You can also subscribe via check, cash or money order, as well as credit card by mail, by sending to Wrestling Observer Newsletter, P.O. ox 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228.

        We also have a look at the ratings of all the major television shows over the past week, how the segments individually did on Raw and Impact, and results from all the major arena events.
 
Also in this week's issue:
 
--A look at the Dragon Gate USA shows
 
--Build to major New Japan match
 
--New Japan's Taiwan tour
 
--Mid South Fan Fest
 
--History of Mid South Wrestling
 
--WrestleCon
 
--Bill Goldberg and Jim Ross speeches and notes
 
--ROH TV taping
 
--TNA taping schedule
 
--Why people in TNA remain nervous
 
--Several TNA injuries
 
--TNA creative updates
 
--John Gaburick talks about TNA
 
--Why Sonnen vs. Silva was moved
 
--Lots of UFC moves
 
--Cutting of Jake Shields
 
--Tons of new UFC fights
 
--Dana White's latest issues with the Diaz Brothers
 
--UFC star whose career was thought to be over may be fighting soon
 
--GSP update
 
--Lots of show over the next week
 
--Tons of new fights
 
--Ronda Rousey legal issues
 
--Update on Sting
 
--What can be done with Sting
 
--Talks about future WrestleManias
 
--Main Event off Ion
 
--Story behind people out of the company
 
--Update on Shane McMahon and his business and how it's doing
 
--Where was Ric Flair
 
--Legends Roundtable thoughts
 
--Stan Hansen's big moments in Japan
 
--The act that broke up on twitter
 
--Former NFL All-Pro signs with WWE to a unique deal
 
--Rollins talks the rise of Roman Reigns
 
--Fan Axxess
 
--Movie notes
 
--C.M. Punk update
 
Rates are:
 
        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 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   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., $20 for shipping costs to Canada and $25 for shipping costs outside North America. You can order the book the same way you order the newsletter.
 
Today's News, Notes and Links

-- We already have a new show up today with Chael Sonnen talking Ultimate Fighter Brazil, his brawl with Wanderlei Silva that airs this coming Sunday on Fight Pass, what's going on with CM Punk of all things, and more!

-- Bret Hart on Ultimate Warrior: I'm deeply saddened at the sudden passing of Jim Helwig, The Ultimate Warrior. I wish I'd been kinder to him in the last moments that we had this past weekend at WrestleMania 30. We did cross paths once or twice, but we were all so busy. I never went out of my way to see him, but if I could... I'd tell him he looked good. He looked content and he looked like he'd finally found happiness within his children and his wife. He never ever harmed me nor did we really work with one another... I wish we had. His final ring promo breaks my heart. I've many fond memories of times we shared, only now do they pile up in my head. I'd also tell him that he was right, he never was such a bad guy. My thoughts are with his wife and children. I never thought his time would be so short. I know one thing, I will never forget him. - Bret

-- As noted on the front page, WWE will pay tribute to Warrior on Raw Monday.

-- DDP comments on his appearance on Nancy Grace: I went on Nancy Grace last night expecting to discuss Warrior the man. Had I known the only topic discussed would be steroids I would not have participated. At the time I was also unaware of the list that was shown to the viewing audience. To imply that all of the wrestlers on that list died from steroids was wrong and for that they owe the families an apology. Again, my only intention was to discuss Warrior the man and share some stories about how dedicated he was to the wrestling business. I am saddened that was not what happened and my thoughts remain with his family.

-- Tonight, After Dark Radio returns on the Dark Matter Radio Network streaming through artbell.com with special guest Larry Stone, author of Noah: The Real Storyalt. Show airs live at 11 PM Pacific/2 AM ET through the link above or by searching DARK MATTER on TuneIn Radio. If you have questions for the guest send them to me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it with "After Dark" in the subject line, or you'll be able to tweet during the show to @bryanalvarez. He'll be on LIVE so it'll be fun!

-- If you are interested in checking out SummerSlam travel packages, click here. Apparently there aren't many left available so go quick.

-- Another look at this year's Champion Carnival tournament here.

-- Australian story on heart attack deaths in pro-wrestling here.

-- Preview video for TNA heading to the Manhattan Center here.

-- If you plan on going to Vegas for our annual Wrestling Observer/Figure Four Online Convention over July 4th weekend, here is the preliminary info from the Executive Director of Events Ed. He'll have a new Facebook page up soon.

Thursday:
7 PM: Group dinner at Samba's Brazilian Steakhouse (cost usually around $50-60 per person)
9 PM: Some sort of Cirque du Soleil. Others go to find a strip club

Friday:
4 PM (or so) : UFC Weigh-ins
6 PM: Convention banquet/dinner at Buca Di Beppo's. Cost TBD. Must pay for tickets in advance and seating is usually limited to around 50-60
9 PM: Banquet after party at the Riviera. A group usually gets together to do something at this time as well. Last year one group went to Penn and Teller and another went to Dice Clay.

Saturday:
10 AM (or so): UFC Fan Expo (weigh-ins for next day's card later in PM here)
11 AM: Pool party at a location TBD, weather permitting
1 PM: Pre-UFC meal at location TBD 3:30 PM (or so) : UFC Event. Some groups are going to see the event at a bar. Usually at least one group goes and sees some sort of other show
10 PM: Afterparty at Dick's Last Resort at Excalibur

Sunday:
10 AM (or so) UFC Fan Expo
2 PM: Kiss mini-golf just off the strip, close to Hard Rock
5 PM (or so) : UFC Event (TUF Finale)
9 PM: Karaoke at Brass Lounge on Freemont Street

Monday:
11 AM: People that are still around will usually get together for brunch. I fly out at 7AM so I won't make it this year.

-- Learn ring technique, psychology, and character development from former multiple-time World Champion and one of the most impressive athletes of our era, AJ Styles! Taking place this Saturday, April 12 in northwest Pennsylvania at the Meadville Area High School Gymnasium! Cost is $40 to attend, please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or message Joe Dombrowski on Facebook to reserve a spot/get more information or visit IWCwrestling.com.

-- Article looking at WWE stock and more here.

-- A Warrior interview from a few years ago here

-- New interview with Austin Aries here.

-- WWE Studios' Oculus opens tonight so check it out.

-- Some wacky Mania stats from Deadspin here.

-- Story on Mick Foley's show last night here.

-- DID VINCE MCMAHON MAKE THE RIGHT CALL TO END THE STREAK?
Yes 52.3%
No 47.7%

WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON UFC TRYING TO SIGN ROUSEY VS. CARANO?
Great idea, they should fight for the title 40.5%
They would be foolish not to do the fight if available and it will be their biggest fight of 2014 25.9%
Great idea, but should be a catch weight non-title fight 14.1%
Don't like it, Carano hasn't fought in almost five years, should not get a title match 9.6%
Don't have a credibility issue with it, but I don't think it will draw as well as people think 4.9%
Don't like it, Rousey has real challengers who should be getting title fights 4.9%

WHO WAS AMERICA'S GREATEST WRESTLER?
Danny Hodge 43.6%
Dan Gable 21.4%
Cael Sanderson 13.4%
David Schlultz 5.5%
Bruce Baumgartner 5.2%
Rulon Gardner 4.4%
John Smith 2.5%
Bill Smith 1.0%
Kenny Monday 0.8%
Jordan Burroughs 0.8%
Henry Wittenberg 0.8%
Robin Reed 0.4%

-- From Bryan, I gotta say, Robin Reed getting 0.4% means a lot of people need to Google and read about Robin Reed.

-- Ed's post-Mania show is up here. He did a really good job on Figure Four Daily earlier in the week talking the weekend as well.

-- PCW presents The Spring Olympics! Tuesday April 22nd, Actor's Express in Atlanta, GA. Doors open at 7:30, 8:00 PM belltime.

-- Chikara has a new art contest partnering up with the comics sight Project Rooftop. You can check it out here.

-- TONIGHT! FRIDAY April 11, 2014 Berwyn Eagles Club (6309 W. 26th St. Berwyn, IL) Doors: 7:00pm - Belltime: 7:45pm Front Row/Front Row Stage: $20 - SOLD OUT Second Row/General Admission: $15. Jimmy Jacobs works the main event.

-- Today in History with Brian Hoops:

1945 - Earl McCready defeated Dean Detton for the San Francisco Pacific Coast Heavyweight Title in San Jose, California

1955 - Ed Francis defeated Baron Michele Leone in Tulsa, Oklahoma to win the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Title.

1956 - George Gordienko defeated Lou Newman to win the Calgary NWA Canadian Heavyweight Title in Regina, Saskatchewan.

1957 - Don Curtis and Dizzy Davis defeated Great Bolo and Kurt Von Poppenheim for the Amarillo NWA North American Tag Team Title in Amarillo, Texas.

1963 - Buddy Rogers is officially presented the WWWF World Heavyweight Title belt in Washington, D.C., after Rogers won a fictitious tournament in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

1967 - Frank and Jack Dalton defeated Danny Little Bear and Bobby Fields to win the Gulf Coast NWA United States Tag Team Title in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

1967 - Enrique and Ramon Torres defeated Gene and Lars Anderson for the Georgia NWA Southern Tag Team Title in Savannah, Georgia.

1969 - Alfonso Dantés and Mil Máscaras defeated The Black Angels for the NWA Americas Tag Team Title in Los Angeles, California.

1969 - Raul Mata defeated Dr. Wagner to win the vacant Mexican National Light Heavyweight Title.

1970 - Dale Lewis defeated Bob Orton for the Florida NWA Southern Heavyweight Title in Jacksonville, Florida

1973 - Don and Ron Wright defeated The Fabulous Kangaroos (Al Costello and Don Kent) to win the Mid-America NWA World Tag Team Title in Knoxville, Tennessee

1976 - Dr. Wagner defeated Alfonso Dantés for the Mexican National Light Heavyweight Title in Guadalajara, Mexico

1977 - Jerry Lawler defeated Rocky Johnson to win the Mid-America NWA Southern Heavyweight Title in Memphis, Tennessee

1977 - Shinobu Aso and Yumi Ikeshita defeated The Beauty Pair (Jackie Sato and Maki Ueda) to win the WWWA World Tag Team Title in Hiroshima, Japan.

1979 - Perro Aguayo defeated Gran Hamada for the UWA World Junior Light Heavyweight Title in Mexico City, Mexico.

1981 - Jay Youngblood won the NWA Pacific Northwest Heavyweight Title

1982 - Sangre Chicana defeated Atsushi Onita for the NWA International Junior Heavyweight Title in Guadalajara, Mexico.

1982 - Bruce Reed and Sweet Brown Sugar defeated Dory Funk, Jr. and David Von Erich to win the Florida NWA North American Tag Team Title in Orlando, Florida.

1982 - King Kong Bundy and Bugsy McGraw defeated Kerry Von Erich and Al Madril for the World Class American Tag Team Title in Dallas, Texas.

1983 - Bob Armstrong defeated Ken Lucas for the NWA Southeastern Heavyweight Title. This ended Lucas' third reign and began Armstrong's fifth.

1995 - The Rock 'n' Roll Express defeated Dick Murdoch and Randy Rhodes to win the vacant NWA World Tag Team Title in a tournament final in Dallas, Texas.

1999 - At the WCW PPV, Spring Stampede in Tacoma, Washington, Scott Steiner pinned Booker T to win the vacant WCW United States Heavyweight Title in the finals of a tournament. Also, Diamond Dallas Page defeated WCW World Heavyweight Champion Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan and Sting in a Fatal Four-Way match, to win the title.

2010 - Texas Stadium in Dallas, Texas was imploded.

-- Santino Bros Wrestling Academy will host a guest in ring training seminar with Drake Younger Saturday April 26th, 2014. Drake Younger is the KING of Positive Mental Attitude and has taken the West Coast Wrestling scene by storm in such a short time. Incredible match is a understatement to describe what Drake does inbetween the ropes. The Passion that Drake brings not only to the ring but to the locker room is life changing. I consider him a motivational speaker and his #PMA is contagious and will leave you ready to conquer the wrestling world. Drake has wrestled all over the world and will up your Wrestling game with his knowledge. With talent this IN DEMAND it was only a matter of time we would see him signed by WWE. Take this opportunity to expand your knowledge in the sport as Drake will work with you honing your skills and give you tips on what you need in order to strive and thrive as a Independent Professional Wrestler. Don’t miss it! Sign up now.

-- Ed notes: The recent release of the new Ultimate Warrior DVD and Blu Ray are both sold out on Amazon in Canada.

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