FRIDAY UPDATE: Anthony Johnson misses weight "badly", MS-1 bio, Sweeney fundraiser, big weekend schedule, WWE and TNA head-to-head, Carano movie, Sting's future in wrestling, tons more

By Bryan Alvarez

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

We're looking for reports on last night's TNA house shows in Wallingford, CT, tonight's show in White Plains (Bobby Roode vs. Jeff Hardy, James Storm vs. Kurt Angle, A.J. Styles vs. Christopher Daniels, RVD vs Bully Ray, Gail Kim vs. Velvet Sky, Austin Aries vs. Jesse Sorensen vs. Alex Shelley) and tonight's Raw show in Yakima, WA at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tomorrow will be UFC 142 from Rio de Janeiro:

Facebook fight starting at 7 p.m. Eastern

Felipe Arantes (145) vs. Antonio Carvalho (144)

On FX at 8 p.m.

Ricardo Funch (170) vs. Mike Pyle (171)

Yuri Alcantara (145) vs. Michihiro Omigawa (146)

Gabriel Gonzaga (250) vs. Ednaldo Oliveira (229)

Sam Stout (155) vs. Thiago Tavares (155)

Live on PPV at 10 p.m.

Edson Barboza (154) vs. Terry Etim (155)

Carlo Prater (170) vs. Erick Silva (169)

Mike Massenzio (184) vs. Rousimar Palhares (186)

Vitor Belfort (186) vs. Anthony Johnson (197)

Jose Aldo Jr. (145) vs. Chad Mendes (144) for featherweight title

Saturday also has Raw in Sacramento, Smackdown in Vancouver, BC and TNA in Reading, PA.

Sunday has a Raw house show in Oakland and a Smackdown house show in Prince George, BC.

Monday is the live Raw from Las Vegas, featuring Chris Jericho not talking, Kane and John Cena continuing their terrible angle, Brodus Clay actually being there and Zack Ryder being out with a worked injury most likely.

Tuesday will be Smackdown from Las Vegas.

A note that everyone who subscribes to the site this month will get the biggest issue of the year, the 2011 Wrestling Observer Awards issue that is coming out in a few weeks.

        A look in detail at Cris Cyborg and performance enhancing drugs in women's MMA, Edge and The Four Horsemen in the WWE Hall of Fame, New Japan's annual Tokyo Dome event, plus big TNA and Strikeforce events and a WWE Network update are among the leading stories in this week's double issue of the Observer.  The issue, as well as a new back issue, is currently on the site and print copies can be ordered with information below.
        Our lead story looks at Cris Cyborg and her fall from being the biggest star in women's MMA to disgrace due to a positive steroid test.  We look at her punishment, the future of the women's 145 pound division, what Cyborg has said publicly, Gina Carano, the realities of Stanazolol in supplements, the difference between the reaction to her failing and men failing, the difference in PED's when used by women and men and realities of the issue in the sport.
        We also have comments from other women fighters in discussion of both Cyborg and the issues with drugs in the sport.
        We also look at the unique situation of Ric Flair being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame a second time, and it being the first time a performer under contract with a rival promotion was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.  We look at Edge, and have a history of the Four Horsemen and their many incarnations.
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        We also have a look at New Japan's 1/4 show at the Tokyo Dome, including a history of every New Japan Pro Wrestling event held at the Tokyo Dome in history.  We look at the main angle that didn't get over, match-by-match coverage, the stories behind the biggest matches and more.
        We also have notes on the Royal Rumble show, Punk at the next UFC on FOX, a change in the 2012 PPV schedule, scalpers report on Mania tickets, Beth Phoenix vs. Chelsea Handler, John Cena Fruity Pebbles tie-in, Legends House, WWE signs second generation wrestler, first wrestler from the recent season of Tough Enough to make the main roster, using FCW guys on the house show tours, as well as business notes from the past week and highlights from all the weekend house shows.
        We also have a feature looking back at the 30 year mark since the final show promoted by Sam Muchnick, the most powerful figure in the pro wrestling industry over a 25 year period.  We look back at the rise of Muchnick, the difference between Muchnick and Vince McMahon, a look at his last show, and Larry Matysik, who was Muchnick's protege, talks about that final night.
        We also have a look at one of the most unique pro wrestling events ever, the Bull Nakano retirement show held this past week in Tokyo, including the surprise ending to the show.
        We have a rundown of TNA's Genesis PPV, with coverage of all the matches, star ratings and poll results.
        We also have coverage of the most recent Strikeforce show, the unique position the fighters are in, why there are no bonuses at Strikeforce shows, match-by-match coverage, ratings and poll results, as well as pay records.
        We also have ratings for all the national shows for the past week, who is and isn't watching and how each segment on Raw and Impact over the past two weeks gained or lost audience.   We look at how the segments with Chris Jericho, Brodus Clay, and changing a tire during a wrestling show all did.

        We also have our regular weekly features with results of all the major arena events around the world, as well as all the major TV show
         Also in this week's issue:
--One of world's top wrestlers came close to switching promotions, find out how close
--Hall of Famer hits 33 years for his active career and still a headliner
--Issues with AAA and U.S. television
--First AAA TV taping of 2012
--Update on Abdullah the Butcher in Japan
--ROH wrestlers headed for lengthy stint in Japan
--A look at the CMLL & New Japan joint shows coming next week
--What promoter is talking about Brock Lesnar vs. Fedor, and the rules they are looking to put it under
--A look at WWC's first weekend of the year and international names coming in
--John Morrison returns to wrestling in a few weeks 
--More on the Kevin Nash/Ultimate Warrior front
--End of wrestling at the old ECW Arena
--Crazy Jesse Ventura story
--OVW sells out, what storyline does it
--Former WWE wrestler looks to start doing MMA in Japan
--The 1975 world championship discussion
--Huge match coming to TV next week
--More ROH TV outlets
--ROH TV taping notes and future storylines
--Notes on TNA taping in London
--Details of the taping schedule leading to Against All Odds
--Current Against All Odds lineup
--Jesse Neal talks about his post-military trauma issues, and leaving TNA
--Kurt Angle says different things about going to the Olympics
--Angle talks problems in TNA
--TV show character modeled after one of the most famous pro wrestlers returns in a few weeks
--Abyss talks losing his mask
--TNA new TV deals
--Notes on recent TNA house shows
--Lots of upcoming UFC notes
--UFC schedule through August
--A look at fighter pay in UFC and Lorenzo Fertitta talks to ESPN about the subject
--Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey
--Looking at the star power of women fighters
--One of the great fights in history may be rematched  if one of the fighters wins his next fight
--A look at the next UFC show
--Dana White talks Brock Lesnar and WWE
--Notes on ticket sales to upcoming shows
--UFC kicks off on Fuel
--Update on B.J. Penn
--Tons of new UFC fights
--Story behind new MMA TV show
--MMA champion gets Hall of Fame induction at his college
--What happens in Japan after New Year's Eve show
--Former UFC title contender sentenced to 42 months in prison
--Former major woman's wrestling star faces daughter of movie legend in an MMA fight in Japan
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-- As noted on the front page, Anthony Johnson not only missed weight for tomorrow's UFC 142, but he "badly" missed weight. He walks around very heavy and always had trouble making 170, where he was absolutely gigantic in the cage, and this fight was taking place at 185 to help avoid those issues. A few days ago he was 215 and claimed he'd have no problem making 185. He stepped on the scale today and was 197. He must forfeit 20% of his purse to Belfort and there will be a stipulation. He will be weighed immediately before going into the cage with Saturday night, and if he is one pound over 205 (for a 185-pound fight – welcome to MMA), the fight will be canceled live on PPV.

-- There is a big Stephanie McMahon profile in the new Entertainment Weekly.

-- The Cubsfan writes about the death of MS-1 in a car accident here.

-- Kris Zellner writes: One of the true legends of lucha libre in the 1980's & 1990's, Pablo Fuentes Reyna also known as MS-1 one of the original Infernales with Satanico & Espectro Jr. passed away today in an auto accident. MS-1 debuted under his own name on July 12, 1978 and made enough of an impact early on the indy scene that he was signed by EMLL the next March. He was given a new gimmick called MS-1 and had a partner in MS-2 but he was so good that he was soon pushed as a singles wrestler not too long after. MS-1 had a Boba Fett from Star Wars type look going on and he rose up the rudo scale feuding with the top tecnicos of the day before having a mask match with Rayo de Jalisco Jr. on 7/2/82 with Rayo coming out victorious. EMLL loved his look so they wanted to get the mask off of him to show off his facial features and he became a rudo idol figure among the ladies. MS-1 would then launch into an legendary feud with Sangre Chicana that went for over 2 years basically and they had two of the greatest hair matches of the decade on 9/23/83 & 9/21/84 with MS-1 coming out as a loser in both but the matches were so great that he was still perceived a winner by the fans. During this time period, EMLL wanted to capitalize on the emerging popularity of the trios in UWA such as the original Los Misionarios de la Muerte (Negro Navarro/El Signo/El Texano) that they grouped up MS-1, Espectro Jr., & Satanico to become Los Infernales but they didn't become legendary until Pirata Morgan took Espectro's place to form the definitive version of the faction. MS-1 still had singles success throughout this run though taking the NWA World Lt. Heavyweight Title on numerous occassions in classic matches with Ringo Mendoza, Rayo de Jalisco Jr., & Cien Caras but those matches were still overshadowed by the feud between Los Infernales & Los Brazos (El Brazo/Brazo de Oro/Brazo de Plata) over the newly created Mexican National Trios Titles over 1985 & 1986 but in October of that year, Pirata Morgan left the Infernales to form Los Bucaneros with his brothers Hombre Bala & Verdugo so he was replaced by Masakre and the Infernales kept going strong as Masakre & MS-1 tagged up together to take Mexican National Tag Titles from Cien Caras & Mascara Ano Dos Mil on 3/26/87 and held them for over a year before losing to Angel Azteca & Atlantis on 4/6/88. This was the beginning of the end of the Infernales as Satanico was becoming a singles star and Masakre & MS-1 started feuding with each other with MS-1 taking Masakre's hair on 6/17/88. The definitive Infernales would ride again though in 1991 as Pirata rejoined MS-1 & Satanico and they became the first CMLL Trios Champions beating their old foes Los Brazos on 11/22/91 and then launched into a feud with Masakre who now was a member of another great trio in Los Intocables with Jaque Mate & Pierroth for the titles for the next year. This was a newish concept as it was rudos against rudos and these teams hated each other with a passion as they had some of the bloodiest brawls of the era. Brazos & Infernales kept going though as well during this time and their matches were as fierce as ever as well and this was considered part of the golden age of trios wrestling. MS-1 stayed loyal to EMLL throughout the boom of AAA in the mid 90's as both Pirata Morgan & Satanico would cross over and comeback until 1996 when MS-1 finally left on his own terms actually joining AAA of all things under another gimmick as Kripter. His last high profile match was dropping his hair to rising star Hector Garza on 11/27/95 at Arena Puebla. MS-1 then went into a semi-retirement as he started promoting shows in Naucalpan and eventually just disappeared all together over the last decade although he has been teaching lucha libre at a school in Huamantla. MS-1's triumps included taking the scalps of El Egipcio, Herodes, Negro Navarro, & Masakre and holding the NWA World Lt. Heavyweight Title on two occassions, Distrito Federal Heavyweight Title, Mexican National Trios Titles, & CMLL Trios Titles. Descanse en Paz el Eme Ese Uno.

-- There is a fundraising page up herein memory of Alex Whybrow, aka Larry Sweeney, who commited suicide last year. Karen Van Den Hende is doing a walk to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

-- The April 3rd Impact taping at Universal Studios will go head-to-head with WWE Smackdown, which will also be taping in Orlando at the Amway Center that night.

-- The New York Times reviews Fake It So Real, a documentary about the indy group MWF.

-- Spike is counterprogramming against UFC on FX 1 next week. The FX show is headlined by Jim Miller vs. Melvin Guillard, so from 7 to midnight on Spike they'll be running, yes, a Melvin Guillard marathon.

-- Dixie Carter talks hereabout how this is likely Sting's last year as an active wrestler. Seeing as to how he's wanted to stop being an active wrestler for a few years and it's always Dixie throwing huge money at him that gets him to return, this might really be it this time.

-- Hogan claims herethat he's going to shave his beard and moustache. I'll believe it when I see it. Thanks to Pete in Maryland.

-- New JR blog up here.

-- X-Pac wanted to update on this Royal Rumble party: If you are heading to St. Louis for the Royal Rumble this month, Sean "X-Pac" Waltman and Billy Gunn are STILL hosting an after-party, immediately following the pay per view event, at the Tigin Irish Pub in downtown St. Louis (about a mile from the Scottrade Center). There have been some conflicting reports online regarding X-Pac's status for St. Louis due to the cancellation of his pre-party on that Saturday before the Rumble. Waltman found out last minute that he would not be able to make it to St. Louis until Sunday, so that effectively ended the idea of a pre-party. He will now be joining Billy Gunn on Sunday night for the after-party. Tickets are still available at General Admission is only $10 and VIP tickets are $50. There are only a handful of VIP tickets left, which guarantee you an autograph and photo with X-Pac and Billy Gunn, more face time with both wrestlers, drink specials, and more. There will also be a live Question & Answer session and a post-Rumble roundtable discussion with X-Pac, Billy Gunn and the fans in attendance. If you have any questions, please email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

-- Whitney's appearance on Glove Up or Shut Up Radio is up here. As of today, hers is the second most-listened-to episode in history behind only UFC fighter Krzysztof Soszynski. She talks jiu-jitsu, the Team Viggity diet and training experience, Mrs. Cyborg, cats and more. Her Team Viggity journey with before and after pics, a diary and more are up here.

-- Gabe Sapolsky blogs about the final-ever ECW Arena show here.

-- Story on new WWE signee Britani Knight here.

-- Story hereon the legacy of Brock Lesnar in MMA and pro-wrestling.

-- Same author hereon the death of wrestling at the old ECW Arena.

-- Interesting story on Gina Carano here, where it's noted that for Haywire they digitally altered her voice to make it lower.

-- Jim writes: Mick Foley performed at the Stardome Comedy Club in Birmingham last night. I figured with niche audience, and the fact that he's not on weekly television, that ithe show might not sell out. The venue seats 500 and I eyeballed it at 400 folks. Just the seats around the very top were empty. He did an opening bit that I think he's done at all his other shows. He comes out to his WWE entrance music and acts like it was botched and says let's do it over again. Then comes out to Kurt Angle's old "You Suck" music. He acknowledged that he once lived in Montgtomery for a few months(when he was with Continental). He told stories of people ranging from Undertaker to Bob Holly. He still enjoys cutting on Al Snow. The show was very laid back and intimate. Nothing special, but enjoyable for fans of his. Most everyone stayed after the show to get photos and/or merchandise.

-- Smackdown tonight has Daniel Bryan vs. Big Show in a no-DQ, no-countout match, Justin Gabriel vs. Heath Slater, Cody Rhodes vs. Zeke for the IC Title, Sheamus vs. Jinder Mahal, THE FUNKASAURUS vs. Tyson Kidd, David Otunga vs. Santino, Tamina vs. Natalya, and Drew McIntyre vs. Ted DiBiase in a match where Teddy Long is teasing that if Drew doesn't win he'll be fired.

-- From the promoter: New England Fights! And Nick DiSalvo Promotions are proud to announce the addition of a bantamweight bout between Portland, Maine’s Paul Gorman (8-7) and World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC)/Bellator veteran Anthony Leone (9-4) to their February 11th Fight Night mixed martial arts (MMA) event at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston, Maine.

-- Pro Wrestling Evo has their annual Evo Eight Tournament tonight 1/13 in Concord, NC at Venu 29 with Cedric Alexander, Kirby Mack, Caleb Konley, Zack Salvation & John Skyler.

-- ROH is doing a weekend sale at where you can buy three DVDs and get the fourth free, and they're also offering discounts on hoodies.

-- Who do you think should be the next person inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame?
Tito Ortiz 35.6%
Frank Shamrock 19.2%
B.J. Penn 9.7%
Brock Lesnar 6.5%
Pat Miletich 6.2%
Fedor Emelianenko 6.0%
Mirko Cro Cop 4.8%
Dan Henderson 4.0%
Forrest Griffin 2.6%
Wanderlei Silva 2.1%
Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira 2.1%
Rampage Jackson 1.2%

Which of these names most deserves to be on the Hall of Fame ballot?
Ultimate Warrior 19.4%
Kerry Von Erich 17.4%
Rick Martel 11.1%
Killer Karl Kox 9.3%
Blackjack Mulligan 8.1%
Archie "The Stomper" Gouldie 7.7%
Baron Von Raschke 6.6%
Bill Eadie 6.5%
Tiger Jeet Singh 6.2%
Chavo Guerrero Sr. 3.3%
Dick Slater 3.2%
Johnny Powers 1.3%

Which of these names deserves to be on the ballot the most?
Jake Roberts 28.2%
Barry Windham 24.0%
Rick Rude 16.1%
Davey Boy Smith 11.3%
Lex Luger 5.2%
Scott Hall 3.5%
Bam Bam Bigelow 3.4%
Adrian Adonis 2.8%
Yokozuna 2.3%
Sid Vicious 1.3%
Big Bossman 1.1%
Scott Norton 0.8%

Which of these names deserves to be on the ballot the most?
Great Sasuke 29.7%
Kevin Nash 15.2%
Ken Shamrock 13.2%
Hiro Matsuda 10.7%
Akira Taue 10.5%
Great Kabuki 8.1%
Yoshiaki Fujiwara 4.0%
Bearcat Wright 3.1%
Minoru Suzuki 2.4%
Rusher Kimura 2.0%
Toyonobori 0.6%
Michiaki Yoshimura 0.3%

Which of these teams most deserves to be on the ballot?
Steiner Brothers 35.5%
Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard 32.9%
Dudleys 12.2%
Afa & Sika 5.3%
Sheepherders 3.2%
Black Gordman & Great Goliath 2.9%
Jimmy & Johnny Valiant 2.7%
Greg Gagne & Jim Brunzell 1.7%
Brute Bernard & Skull Murphy 1.7%
The Masked Interns 0.9%
Rip Hawk & Swede Hanson 0.6%
Mike & Doc Gallagher 0.4%

-- A trailer for PWG's newest DVD release from December is up here. You can almost never go wrong with PWG DVDs.

-- Chikara's schedule for the next five months. More at

2.25.2012 - Goodwill Beneficial Assoc. in Reading, PA
2.26.2012 - NYWC Sportatorium in Long Island, NY
3.24.2012 - Trio Sportplex in Vaughan (Toronto), Ontario, Canada
3.25.2012 - Knights of Columbus Hall in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
4.14.2102 - Rahway Rec Center in Rahway, NJ
4.28.2012 - Logan Square Auditorium in Chicago, IL
4.29.2012 - The Lafayette Theater in Lafayette, IN
5.20.2012 - The Highline Ballroom in Manhattan, NY

-- RESISTANCE PRO RISE at Excalibur (632 North Dearborn Street Chicago, IL) January 13, 2012 $20 - All Ages 7pm

-- Pro Wrestling Phoenix runs tomorrow (1/14) at the National Guard Armory in Council Bluffs, IA.

-- Crossfire Entertainment, LLC Presents Crossfire LIVE! “Wrestling Revival” Fundraiser Benefiting the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Middle Tennessee LIVE THIS Saturday, January 14, 2012 Nashville Fairgrounds Sports Arena 625 Smith Ave, Nashville, TN 37203 Belltime: 7:30 PM – Doors: 6:30 PM

Who is the strongest of these Hall of Fame candidates?


What do you believe is the second most popular promotion right now in the U.S?