Monday, 27 June 2011 12:58
Lots of TV over the next few days. WWE will be taping two episodes of Raw tonight, both the live Raw roulette show and taping the July 4th Raw afterwards from Las Vegas. TNA will be taping Impact tonight with Bound for Glory tournament matches with A.J. Styles vs. Gunner and Samoa Joe vs. Devon as well as Mickie James & Tara & Miss Tessmacher vs. Madison Rayne & Winter & Velvet Sky.
We're also looking for reports on Saturday night's WWE show in Dallas, Saturday night's TNA show in Troy, OH, and yesterday's Raw show in Houston and Smackdown show in Laredo.
Tuesday is Smackdown and NXT tapings from Phoenix while TNA has a second night of tapings from Orlando. Another Smackdown taping takes place on Wednesday in Tucson which will be for the 7/8 show.
We've got coverage of all the major shows of the past week in one of the year's biggest weekends, from WWE, Strikeforce, All Japan, New Japan and AAA as the lead stories in the newest issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
We look at C.M. Punk and the intrigue for the Money in the Bank PPV, as well as coverage of WWE's Capitol Punishment, with star ratings and poll results.
We also look at the texting problems at the WWE Power of the People show, what is claimed and what seems to have gone wrong.
We've got full coverage of Strikeforce, including where the heavyweight tournament stands, what person's stock dropped the most, Josh Barnett and pro wrestling, polls and match-by-match coverage.
We also look at the latest failure of MMA to get legalized in New York.
We look at TripleMania, as well as the AAA/TNA relationship, an update on Perro Aguayo Jr., the timing issues that caused one of the biggest matches not to air on PPV, changes in the company and notes on all the matches.
We also look at the situation where there was nearly a picket line before CMLL's Juicio Final show, and a look at the name of the next guy to hit WWE, after Averno lost his mask in the main event.
We also look at the first tag team in history to hold two of Japan's major three companies tag team titles at the same time. We also look at both the New Japan and All Japan major shows this past week.
The issue will be up on the site tomorrow. A new back issue from early 1994 was put up earlier in the week and another will be up today. Between the Observer and Figure Four Weekly, we have about 14 issues put up every month and dozens of new audio shows for web site subscribers including coverage after the shows of every major pro wrestling and MMA event.
You can also order print copies of the Observer with details below.
We also have notes from a conversation with Batista, including his thoughts regarding returning to WWE, his giving notice, his frustrations with the direction, his new goals, what happened with his contract negotiations with Strikeforce and why he opened up a gym.
We have notes on a promo already cut for SummerSlam.
We've got notes on Shane McMahon who has been getting exposure in two different non-wrestling related ventures, as well as him talking about his leaving WWF, and why one of the business is on the ground floor of something that could be gigantic.
We also note what two projects that have been talked about for Shawn Michaels in WWE as well as which one is taking place this week.
We've also got more on the changes in the WWE drug policy, which is a major issue to a segment in the locker room, plus the return to TV of HHH, what wrestler company officials are saying they dropped the ball on and why, former tag champ returning to WWE, and what happened behind the scenes as John Laurinaitis read the riot act to one of the Tough Enough fighters.
We also have an update on what Bill DeMott is doing nowadays, as well as his comparisons of the 2004 and 2011 Tough Enough, and the future of Andy Leavine.
We also note the funny things about the Little Jimmy line, as well as who got Kong pregnant, what WWE wrestler's father was a well known sportscaster and also was a former roommate in college with an old AWA star. We've got notes on what percentage of viewers don't watch live anymore. We also have a rundown of all the weekend house shows as well as business notes on the show.
We also look at the first ratings for the replay of Impact on Spike and what it means, as well as why this is happening.
We also look at a law that is being discussed which will cost WWE and UFC seven figures in lost sponsorships.
We've got ratings of all the national shows including how every segment on Raw and Impact did and what viewers came and left.
We also have our usual weekly features with results of the major arena shows from around the world, and the major TV show rundowns and reviews.
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Also in this week's issue:
--Update on CMLL referee Rafa El Maya
--NWA Historic light heavyweight champion decided
--52nd anniversary of pro wrestling in an arena that has multiple shows per week and a look at the first main event
--How the Mesias kidnapping story came to be
--Major nostalgia night with a main event that would have headlined big 22 years ago
--Juventud Guerrera resurfaces
--Former AAA star complains about the change in Mexican wrestling
--Dragon Gate title match weekend in Sapporo notes with a couple of changes
--Dragon Gate star has knee surgery
--Next title matches for All Japan and New Japan
--One of the world's most respected and famous referees is now a free agent
--One of the biggest head-to-head shows of the year coming in late August, and details of the major stars being brought in from other sports for a wrestling show.
--Dick Togo's one year retirement tour after he retires in Japan at the end of the month.
--Hall of Famer having knee surgery this week.
--Notes on what should have been the final legal action related to the Benoit tragedy and why it still may not be done.
--Notes on Scott Hall going to jail
--Full details of the incident that led to Hall's conviction and jail time
--More on a major television station doing a feature on Hall
--Notes on a new pro wrestling television promotion and its goals
--Former member of WCW creative writes an autobiography, devotes a chapter to WCW including a story of a well remembered world title change and how the booker had a private conversation with one of the wrestlers in the match about the finish that nobody else was supposed to know about.
--Update on two of the 80s biggest stars and health issues
--A 90s star gets married for the third or fourth time
--And what No. 1 song from about 40 years ago inspired an indie wrestler's gimmicked name
--Notes on Sunday's Best in the World iPPV show
--Update on Chris Hero & Claudio Castagnoli, how their WWE tryout went
--More on ROH going forward
--TNA stars going overseas to different major shows for other promotions
--Story behind the Tuesday night replay of Impact
--Notes on the suspension of Matt Hardy
--Full details on the Bound for Glory tournament including who is in it and how the scoring works
--How the tournament is going to be done
--Notes on the next major episode of Impact
--Note on the X Division tournament in TNA
--Notes on an indie wrestler passing away
--Future of Jeff Jarrett in TNA
--Paul Heyman talks Dixie Carter
--Gabe Sapolsky talks about a booking plan of Heyman had he gone to TNA last year
--Update on Desmond Wolfe
--A look at TNA weekend house shows including the show in Buffalo with Hulk Hogan and some surprise weekend results
--Upcoming UFC does immediate sellout business
--Business notes from UFC 130 including early PPV estimates
--Best markets for UFC 130
--A look at the UFC and Strikeforce show this week
--Update on Cain Velasquez and his updated planned return date
--A look at many of the UFC champions
--Update on Strikeforce vs. UFC matches
--Drug testing in UFC looks too be getting tighter
--New UFC signing
--A hoard of new UFC matches
--Return of Bellator to TV this week
--Dream bantamweight tournament update
--More info on when Affliction folded and a back story behind it, which also includes aspects of Fedor Emelianenko's contracts
--What could be a major story to look out for at the latter part of this year
--Update on SummerSlam
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--Nate Marquardt claims he will make a statement tomorrow about what happened and why he is suspended indefinitely from competition in North America. There are a lot of unanswered questions. If this was a situation in California or Nevada, this would all be out in public but the Pennsylvania commission claims they are operating under stricter HIPPA laws and can't discuss it, and Dana White also could not discuss it although you could tell that he would want to. Joe Rogan on the air called on Marquardt to come forward, as did White. Marquardt at first was going to say something on Sunday, but opted for making a release on Tuesday, which I'm guessing will be a formal media release without taking questions as he would have had to have taken had he gone on the air. There are still a few details that don't add up but unfortunately with nobody discussing it, the idea that the Pennsylvania commission didn't red-light the fight six weeks ago is hard to ascertain, as well as how Dana White wasn't aware of it until Thursday is another issue and I could see why he'd be furious about it. White praised the Pennsylvania commission for how it handled it, saying he felt they were the best commission in the country. But there are some real unanswered questions here and if Marquardt comes clean tomorrow, it will probably raise more questions.
--Jeff Hardy is expected to be back in court today in Moore County, NC on his drug possession and distribution charges from 2009.
--Hulk Hogan on twitter today said that Impact would start taping on the road in August. The schedule will be on PPV weekends they will then tape Monday and Tuesday in Orlando. The tapings between PPVs would be done on one night, with two shows taped, in mid-sized arenas. Considering how different the Fayetteville shows came across, this is not a complete game changer, but it's something that will definitely help the perception of the company as the stars will come across as bigger stars unless Fayetteville was an aberration.
--A few notes from the weekend. If you haven't already seen the Cheick Kongo vs. Pat Barry fight, it's a short fight worth going out of your way to see. Versus will be replaying the show on Tuesday at both 9 p.m. and midnight Eastern, which because Versus doesn't stagger its feed, means 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. Pacific. In addition, the Davey Richards vs. Eddie Edwards match and post-match was in its totality match of the year caliber and absolutely worth going out of your way to see on a PPV replay. We talk about both fights on the radio show which is up.
--The Kongo vs. Barry highlight on ESPN. com has a headline of "Stone Cold Stunner" (thanks to Ben Miller)
--The Raw roulette wheel tonight includes Lumberjack match, Blast from the Past, flag match, falls count anywhere, tornado tag team match, Strange Bedfellows (Parejas Increibles), Player's Choice, Blindfold match (Oh god not that one again), Body Slam match, Pole match, No DQ, tables math, guest referee, trading places match, submission rules, singing and dancing contest, cage match, and pillow fight match.
--The Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission is going to be examining the finish of the Charles Oliveira vs. Nik Lentz fight. Oliveira threw an illegal knee on Lentz which set up the choke finish. UFC has held up awarding Oliveira the winner bonus until the commission makes a ruling. I would presume if all was fair that even though Oliveira was winning the fight up to that point, because a foul led to the finish the match probably should be ruled a no contest.
--The Countdown to UFC 132 airs at 1:12 p.m. on Wednesday. Not exactly prime time.
--Homicide suffered a cracked rib in his match with Rhino. Homicide may work another show with the promotion since he won the match, but he's not in their plans and it's possible last night was his final match.
--Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin have signed with ROH according to a release sent out by the promotion, which is notable because at one point Benjamin was under consideration by WWE.
--Poll on Bellator
72.4% of those responding didn't see the show
Best TV show of last week
Voice vs. Badr Hari 8.2%
Strikeforce Challengers 6.2%
Inside MMA 4.1%
MMA Live 2.7%
--Stephanie McMahon-Levesque will be on Bloomberg Enterprises on Bloomberg TV on Wednesday at 9 p.m.
--Dana White at last night's press conference noted he was with Steelers coach Mike Tomlin (who was shown on the show).
--WWE returns to Puerto Rico in early September with the major show on the tour being on 9/2 at the Jose Miguel Agrelot Coliseum (thanks to Devin Cutting)
--Bellator sent out a press release announcing Ricco Rodriguez vs. Seth Petruzelli on 8/20 at the Mohegan Sun Casino. That show will also feature the finals of the featherweight tournament that opened on Saturday night.
--Jack Evans from AAA will be at the TNA tapings this week, or at least as of last week he was scheduled. I presume he'll be part of the X Division challenge thing that Austin Aries was in.
--A story on Gian Villante trying to continue his career after two straight losses in Strikeforce, including to Lorenz Larkin on Friday night, is at http://www.newsday.com/sports/columnists/mark-la-monica/villante-loses/but-grows-as-fighter-1.2984844
--Platinum Championship Wrestling on Friday night in Avondale Estates GA at the Academy theater
--NWA Chattanooga from Friday night in Soddy-Daisy, TN (where Terry Gordy came from) before 150 fans: Adam Roberts b Micah Hughes, Shaun Tempers b Adam Jacobs, Kyle Matthews over Corey Hollis, Patrick Bentley and Chrisjen Hayme, Jessco Blue & Tobin Davidson (the principal at the school they were running at) b Dany Only & Strykyn, Ace Rockwell b Andrew Alexander in an I Quit match, Tank b Jimmy Rave. (thanks to Larry Goodman)
--Great North Wrestling from Smiths Falls, ONT on Friday night before 1,000 fans: Roy Sniper b Chaz Lovely, Jack The Mountie b Doink Jr., Spoiler b Dave Titan, Anastasia Ivy b Serphantia, Hannibal (Devon Nicholson) b Soa Amin, Jeremy Prophet & Sexxy Eddy b MVP & Rahim Ali, Preseton Perry b Buck Gunderson and D-Man, Greg Valentine b The Bruiser
--CWE on Friday night in Gillam, Manitoba: Zack Mercury b Ariya Daivari (Shawn's brother), A.J. Sanchez b Brian Rich, Mentallo b Jess Youngblood, Danny Duggan b Tommy Lee Curtis-DQ, Danny Duggan & Carlito b Supreme Adonna's. Next show is 7/24 in Winnipeg and 4Play Sports Bar with Raven.
--An interesting note in the Cee-Lo Green video in Glastonbury, CT that was on the site. The guitarist in the piece is the brother of a U.K. wrestler, R.J. Singh. Singh was featured on the BBC Asian Network not long ago in a feature on British Asians in wrestling and was in the TNA Gut Check in London in January (thanks to Dean Ayass)
--FEW on Sunday in Fort Wayne: Steele b Jaron Shalka, Camron Starr b Trash Cassidy, Mr. Old School b Mr. Main Event, Mitchell Taylor & Mangler b Donnie Swenson & Max Morrison, Jacob & Donatello Hallows b Bad Karma Inc., Keith Creme b Mad Dragon, Justin Dillinger b Jake Omen, Jimmy Shalwin b Jack Verville (thanks to Damon Moorman)
--NAWA on 7/2 in Waxahachie, TX at the NWA Killertorium.
--IWF on Saturday night in Woodland Park, NJ: Donte Arcade b Absolutely Edwin, Travis Blake b Joey Golden, Kraig Stagg b Karson Slade, Austin Williams b Jarrett Foster, Aaron Stride b Steven Sterling, Flex Freeman & Kevin Knight b Franciz & Chris Steeler
--Slam Wrestling has a story on Johnny Starr at http://www.slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/2011/06/15/18285836.html Starr was a manager in the WWA in Indiana after Bobby Heenan left the promotion.
--Tuff N Uff on Friday night at the Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas the night before UFC 132. With a future stars of MMA theme, the main event is Brandon Browning vs. Carl Postma for the inaugural Randy Couture Tuff N Uff heavyweight championship. They will also be honoring Couture at the show.
--DOA on Sunday in Portland, OR: Wade Hess & Thunder b Eric Right & Jonas Albert Robinson, Kellen Raeth b Dash Venture, Ricky Gibson & Demarcus James & Patrick Large b Draven Vargas & Nate Andrews & Wesley Todd, Mike Santiago b C.J. Edwards, Quiz b Ethan HD in a cage match, J-Sin Sullivan & Big Ugly b Blanchards and Dr. Kliever in a three-way cage match fans bring the weapons. Next show is 7/24 in Portland with Quiz vs. Ethan in a loser leaves town lumberjack match. (thanks to Mike Sweetser)
--Kevin Nash & Doug Gibson (promoter Doug Ward) face Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson in the main event on 10/15 in Fisherville, VA. They are playing off a shoot interview Morton did knocking Nash about ten years ago and acting as if this is going to turn into a real fight. Having said that, the interviews for this match have been very effective.