FRIDAY UPDATE: Big wrestling weekend, Mayweather/Cotto PPV numbers, Smackdown lineup, Daniel Bryan

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

LOOKING AHEAD: Bellator, TNA Evolve & ROH PPVs this weekend

We're looking for reports on tonight's Raw house show in Glens Falls, NY, tonight's Evolve show in Charlotte, tonight's TNA show in Thibodaux, LA, and tonight's Legacy Fighting Show on HDNet from Houston, as well as last night's TNA house show in New Orleans 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 .

Evolve main bouts:

- AR Fox vs. Sami Callihan
- Ricochet vs. El Generico
- Fit Finlay vs. Jon Davis
- Low Ki vs. Jigsaw

Bellator tonight at 8 p.m. on MTV 2 and Epix from Atlantic City

- Waachiim Spiritwolf (172.4) vs. Marius Zaromskis (169.8)
- Carmello Marrero (230) vs. Seth Petruzelli (225.5)
- Marcos Galvao (136) vs. Travis Markx (135.4) in bantamweight tournament semifinals
- Marlon Sandro (145.8) vs. Daniel Straus (146) in featherweight tournament final

King Mo will also be appearing at the show.

Legacy Fighting Championships at 10 p.m. on HDNet from Houston, TX

- Ryan Benoit vs. Cody Williams
- William Bush vs. Artemas Young
- Angel Huerta vs. Nelson Salas
- Lee King vs. Evan Cutts
- Mike Bronzoulis vs. Gerald Harris
- Joseph Sandoval vs. Chad Robichaux
- Clay Hantz vs. Jorge Patino for lightweight title

Saturday night features Raw in Syracuse, Smackdown in Newark, DE, plus iPPVs from both ROH and Evolve.

ROH Border Wars on iPPV
Ted Reave Arena in Toronto -- 7:30 p.m.

- Davey Richards vs. Kevin Steen for ROH title
- Roderick Strong vs. Fit Finlay for TV title
- Mark & Jay Briscoe vs. Charlie Haas & Shelton Benjamin for tag titles
- Lance Storm vs. Mike Bennett
- Eddie Edwards vs. Rhino
- Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin
- Jay Lethal vs. Tommaso Ciampa
- Kenny King & Rhett Titus & T.J. Perkins vs. Young Bucks & Mike Mondo

Saturday night's Evolve on iPPV from Concord, NC:

- Johnny Gargano defends Open the Freedom Gate title
- AR Fox vs. Jigsaw vs. Ricochet vs. Samuray del Sol, winner faces Gargano for the title in the main event
- Sami Callihan vs. El Generico
- Low Ki vs. Jon Davis

Sunday is headlined by TNA Sacrifice from Orlando:

- Bobby Roode vs. RVD in a ladder match for TNA title
- A.J. Styles vs. Kurt Angle
- Samoa Joe & Magnus vs. Christopher Daniels & Kazarian for tag titles
- Jeff Hardy vs. Mr. Anderson
- Austin Aries vs. Bully Ray
- Devon vs. Robbie E vs. Robbie T for TV title
- Gail Kim vs. Brooke Tessmacher for Knockouts title

Sunday also has Raw in Rochester, NY and Smackdown in Youngstown, OH. Monday has Raw tapings in Pittsburgh and Impact tapings in Orlando. Tuesday has a UFC live show on Fuel headlined by Dustin Poirier vs. "The Korean Zombie" Chan Sung Jung, Smackdown in Hershey, PA and Impact tapings in Orlando.

The Latest Observer: WWE Business Examined In-Depth

        Our quarterly look at every aspect of WWE business is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.  We break down why WWE had such a strong financial three months and why the stock price increased, looking at where the increases were, what it says about the long-term trends, and why WWE itself said that even with the big quarter that 2012 will end up on a cash flow basis behind 2011.
        We look at profits, losses, dividends, how much money was lost so far on "Bending the Rules," why three overseas events that only drew 5,000 people each night were so profitable, expenses on starting a new network, an update on the new network, how much money was made on WrestleMania week before Mania itself happened, international expansion and the company's forecasts for the rest of the year.
        We also look at how much the company looks to be spending on movies, as well as a look at house show business, merchandise, PPV, toys, video games, action figures, DVDs, 24/7 on demand, the magazines, the web site and more.
        We look at all numbers compared to last year, including the actual revenue the company has taken in so far on PPV for Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber this year and last and some notes on why talent payoffs for wrestlers are so far behind those of other athletes who generate less revenue.
        We look at what percentage of profits each revenue stream is for the company.
        We also have a look at the return of Paul Heyman to WWE, including how everything went down the night he returned, and his role going forward.
        We have a look at the ratings of UFC on FOX and what they mean, and why the August UFC show on FOX when it comes to long-term could be the most important show in company history.  We look at the reasons the show didn't do well, and why people with ideas for a simple fix may be missing the biggest point.  We look at the competition from boxing, as well as the history of MMA around the world and what that history has shown.  We also look at the marketability of the next show, FOX's role, why people skipped the show based no polling, as well as a rundown of the card.
        We've got match-by-match coverage, business of the show and poll results from the show.
        The issue will be up on the site shortly.  We also have a new back issue on the site that was put up late last night which previewed what at the time would be a stream of major shows, including the most attended pro wrestling match in history, and the year WrestleMania wasn't even the biggest show in wrestling on that day.
        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 29th 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 or you can order at and use the This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it address.
        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 Box 1228, Campbell, CA  95009-1228. 
        We also look at the firing of Dustin Runnels and why.  We've got an Over the Limit update, Vince McMahon's plans for political action, reaction to the You Tube prelims before Extreme Rules, HHH's funny weekend at the Mayweather fight and even funnier description of his injuries and the double standard in place.  We look at C.M. Punk on twitter getting both positive and negative reactions to a controversy this past week the new rival campaign, an apparent change at the TV tapings, an update on the career of Steve Austin after signing a new deal, WWE star in a movie, the future of top babyfaces and WWE notes from France.
        We have notes on WWE's debut in Brazil, strange weekend house shows and reports and business from all the events.
        We also have a look at a name virtually no American wrestling fans would know, but who behind the scenes was one of the most influential players in the Japanese wrestling industry over most of the last 50 years in a story on the death of Gong Magazine founder and television announcer Kosuke Takeuchi.  We look at his role in the business as well as the people he got started.
        We also have a look at this year's Champion Carnival finals, as well New Japan's PPV show this past week and where both lead.
        We also have more on the legal issues between Martha Hart and the WWE including aspects of one lawsuit being thrown out and a new lawsuit being filed.  We talk about the issues and what points she has in her favor and what points she is making that are likely not to wind up in her favor.
        We also have a story on the death of Mexican star MS 1.
        We also have our in-depth look at the ratings of the national shows, including how every segment of Raw and Impact did, what gained in audience, and what lost in audience.
        We also have our weekly features with the results from the major events held around the world over the past week, as well as reviews of the major television shows.
        Also in this week's issue:
--How the unmasking of a wrestler in recent weeks became a giant local television event
--Notes on TripleMania
--The last AAA TV tapings
--Superstars from Mexico coming to Japan later this month
--Former TNA star getting high marks outside the U.S.
--Next major All Japan matches
--New Japan copies of former WWE concept
--Return to action of one of the greatest in-ring performers of modern times
--More notes on Chief Jay Strongbow including the story on his first Madison Square Garden main event
--More on Ricky Steamboat's story told at the Cauliflower Alley Club
--Update on the Vachon brothers
--Wrestler pleads guilty to a second round of charges of sexual assault
--Former WWF and NWA star who was murdered gets honored
--Former wrestling TV announcer gets honored
--Son of former WWF wrestler gets five ear probation on assault charge
--A look at a major arena indie show that got incredible media coverage
--Hulk Hogan claims two former WWE stars are calling up looking to come in
--More on Hogan's "game-changing" ideas
--TNA plans for big shows the rest of the year
--TNA's weekend house show notes
--The Urijah Faber vs. Dominick Cruz situation, where it goes from here, if they will meet again
--Looking at the top contenders for face Faber on 7/7
--What happened to UFC in New York
--Tons of new fights and upcoming UFC and Strikeforce shows
--Plans for major events in conjunction with what UFC expects to be a huge UFC 148 event
--Upcoming Ronda Rousey fight
--Dana White says if things fall into place about plans for doing a huge show soon
--More on company drug testing
--More areas regulating MMA
--A UFC major draw appearing on iPPV while competing in a different sport
--Thoughts on the UFC/Strikeforce/Showtime relationship and what needs to be changed
--Notes on the rest of the Ultimate Fighter season
--Bellator's last and next show
--MMA promotion and pro wrestling promotion planning on working together and jointly promoting each other
--Bobby Lashley's most recent fight
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For the United States, it is $12 for 4 issues, $29 for 12, $55 for 24, $91 for 40 and $118 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $13.50 for 4, $33 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 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 $15.50 for 4, $41 for 12, $78 for 24, $126 for 40 issues and $163 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.
Friday's News, Links and Notes

-- Latest numbers for the Floyd Mayweather vs. Miguel Cotto fight are 1.5 million buys and $94 million in revenue, down from the two million that was originally projected by Golden Boy Promotions.

-- In regards to the signing of King Mo to both Strikeforce and TNA, he won't be doing Bellator shows until 2012 when the company moves to Spike TV. He's on a nine-month suspension for a drug test failure anyway and is rehabbing an injured knee and a multitude of staph infections. Dixie Carter said he should start appearing on TNA programming this summer. He'll be training with TNA wrestlers and at Ohio Valley.

Mo was going to start in WWE developmental years ago but Shad Gaspard told him that if he wanted to do MMA and pro wrestling during his lifetime he needed to do MMA first. Josh Nason and I did an interview with Mo last year talking wrestling and more that subscribers can listen to by clicking here.

-- UFC officially announced yesterday and Australia vs. UK version of Ultimate Fighter that will begin this fall. They are hoping to get the show national TV time in both countries simultaneously.

-- Here's part 2 of the MLW Radio interview with Warrior, where he talks about spending over $1 million defending himself in court versus WWE and Vince McMahon. The link is an automatic MP3 download.

-- Smackdown tonight has Sheamus & Randy Orton vs. Jericho & Alberto Del Rio, AJ vs. Kaitlyn, Big Show vs. Daniel Bryan, Ryback vs. Heath Slater, Antonio Cesaro vs. Ale Riley, Randy Orton vs. Alberto del Rio (set-up, obviously), Truth vs. Swagger, Darren Young & Titus O'Neil vs. Santino & Zack Ryder, and Sheamus vs. Chris Jericho. Yes, nine matches.

-- This is the wackiest thing ever: ten hours of Daniel Bryan saying "YES!"

-- Scott Steiner's latest rant, this time on Hulk Hogan: "Hogan did interview saying i must be unhappy in my life,FUCK U hogan Im very happy in my life,Im Not the one who went on Larry King crying like a bitch and saying that you put a gun in your mouth and Was going to pull the trigger. Quit lying bcuz nobody believes yur bullshit,you 3 assholes write the show and you decide whos on the show...The stuff with storm is bullshit too,storm and I talkd over match and the finish which i didnt change we both Went to get in gear,and as i was changing I was told I wasnt in match anymore,i went back to storm And ask him what happened and he didnt know,,,But dont take my word on it ASK storm he will say the Same thing,yur a lying piece of shit!!!! You disrespect the business and my eberybody in Tna and you think its weird that I want to knock You unconscious,FUCK U.. your day is coming motherf-cker"

-- Dustin Rhodes is available for bookings. Email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for info.

-- From Silvervision UK for those asking: We regret to inform you that anyone who ordered the following pre-order titles will be refunded in full in the next few days because these products are affected by production problems in the UK: WWE1355 - The Best of WCW Clash of the Champions DVD; WWEBD1355 - The Best of WCW Clash of the Champions Blu-ray; WWE1356 - ECW Unreleased Vol 1 DVD; WWEBD1356 - ECW Unreleased Vol 1 Blu-ray; WWE1358 - WrestleMania 28 DVD; WWEBD1358 - WrestleMania 28 Blu-ray. If you have further questions or need additional assistance with this matter, please do not hesitate to contact our Customer Services team on 0208 292 4875 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Please be assured that all other products available on are in stock and being sent out in a timely fashion as always. When we have any more news we will let you know immediately.

-- Stephen notes: On last night's telecast of the Detroit Tigers vs. Oakland Athletics baseball game, the Detroit feed showed this fun group of fans a few times. The one in the red was later seen wearing a WWE Undisputed Championship belt, which announcer Rod Allen thought was hilarious. His partner (Mario Impemba) commented that he wasn't sure what wrestler he was trying to be, if a wrestler at all. 

-- The Avengers movie's Twitter account listed Shawn Michaels and his kids as the Avengers Fans of the Day.

-- The Gracies break down UFC on FOX 3 submissions. Rener is something else.

-- Here's a Mickie James story in Newsday.

-- UFC on FUEL line-up for this coming TUESDAY:

- Dustin Poirier vs. Chan Sung Jung
- Jorge Lopez vs. Amir Sadollah
- Donald Cerrone vs. Jeremy Stephens
- Jeff Hougland vs. Yves Jabouin
- Fabio Maldonado vs. Igor Pokrajac
- Tom Lawlor vs. Jason MacDonald

-- TULALIP CHAMPIONSHIP WRESTLING 5/12/2012 Pacific Rim, Marysville, WA, Just across from Quil Ceda Creek Casino / Exit 199 7pm start - $15 at door, with anyone ages 12 and under $5

-- Pro Wrestling Syndicate will be celebrating its Five Year Anniversary on Friday June 1st and Saturday June 2nd in Rahway, New Jersey and now everyone around the world is invited to watch live as both of these blockbuster events will be broadcast live on iPPV! After a miserable first experience one year ago with an iPPV provider, PWS has opened their very own internet pay per view company which will be broadcasting this event which will be filmed with three high end high definition cameras.

-- Here's an audio interview with Nate Diaz. The MP3 will download automatically.

-- MPW Wrestling on Saturday in Simi Valley, CA Boys & Girls Club 7pm Gangrel vs. Bo Cooper Plus the Architects of Anarchy featuring Dr.Vandal (Kurt Brown) Drummond, managed by RIKI ATAKI~!

-- W.A.R. Wrestling in Lima, Ohio on June 2nd at the UAW Hall - 1440 Bellefontaine Ave. 45804.

-- Brooke Tessmacher talks about Sacrifice, which she says is the biggest match of her wrestling career.

-- Josh Barnett talks the connection between MMA and pro wrestling and I'm not just talking King Mo signing with TNA and Bellator. Here's the talk Josh Nason and I had with Barnett on similar subjects.

-- Samuray Del Sol talks EVOLVE, DGUSA and more.

Poll Results

Do you have more or less interest in Bellator than this time last year?
More 33.3%
Less 66.7%

Do you have more or less interest in TNA than this time last year?
More 16.5%
Less 83.5%

Do you have more or less interest in ROH than this time last year?
More 37.4%
Less 62.6%

Do you have more or less interest in UFC than this time last year?
More 24.9%
Less 75.1%

Do you have more or less interest in WWE than this time last year?
More 52.8%
Less 47.2%

Some depressing poll numbers there.

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?