FRI UPDATE: Big-time weekend schedule, tons of shows, SummerSlam update, Brock and Paul, Rousey threatens death or dismemberment, Santos vs. Cain odds, TIFFANY~!, WWE cut, tons more

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

There are two big shows this weekend, check that, one big show and one big match on another show, but it's otherwise quiet.

We're looking for reports on tonight's TNA house show in Spencer, IA at the Clay County Regional Events Center featuring A.J. Styles vs. Rob Van Dam in the Bound for Glory series.

Also tonight, AXS TV at 10 p.m. Eastern has the Legacy Fighting Championships from the Dallas Convention Center. We're looking for reports on both shows.

Tonight's Legacy lineup:

*Ryan Benoit vs. Randy Villareal
*Hayward Charles vs. Russell Brewer
*Steven Peterson vs. Matt Hobar
*Clayton Robinson vs. Donnie Bell
*Chris Tickle (from the last season of TUF) vs. Doug Frey
*Evan Cutts vs. Sean Spencer
*Jared Rosholt vs. Derrick Lewis to create the heavyweight champion

Saturday has Strikeforce from the Valley View Casino Center in San Diego.

At 8 p.m. Eastern on Sho Extreme

*Germaine de Randamie vs. Hiroko Yamanaka
*Adlan Amagov vs. Keith Berry
*Bobby Green vs. Matt Ricehouse
*Miesha Tate vs. Julie Kedzie (yes, this is on the prelims)

At 10 p.m. on Showtime

*T.J. Cook vs. Ovince St. Preux
*Anthony Smith vs. Lumumba Sayres
*Roger Bowling vs. Tarec Saffiedine
*Jacare Souza vs. Derek Brunson
*Ronda Rousey vs. Sarah Kaufman for the women's bantamweight title

TNA also run Saturday night in Ottumwa, IA at the Bridge View Censer with Austin Aries, Bobby Roode, Kurt Angle, James Storm, A.J. Styles, Rob Van Dam and Jeff Hardy booked.

Sunday is SummerSlam from the Staples Center in Los Angeles

*Santino Marella vs Antonio Cesaro for U.S. title at 7:30 p.m. on Facebook/YouTube
*Kofi Kingston & R-Truth vs. Titus O'Neil & Darren Young for tag titles
*The Miz vs. Rey Mysterio for IC title
*Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler
*Kane vs. Daniel Bryan
*Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio for world title
*C.M. Punk vs. John Cena vs. Big Show for WWE title
*HHH vs. Brock Lesnar

Monday will be Raw from the Save Mart Center in Fresno. Smackdown will be taped on Tuesday in Bakersfield, CA.

THE LATEST OBSERVER: Red Bastien, UFC news/notes, tons more

We've got a new double issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that will be up today on the web site.  The issue looks back at the out of the ring life of Red Bastien, one of pro wrestling's greatest characters and workers of the 60s and 70s, has a full recap of UFC 150 including the Benson Henderson vs. Frankie Edgar decision, the business of the show, a look at the two big December UFC shows that have been announced and the heavyweight title picture, a huge story on this year's G-1 Climax tournament, TNA Hardcore Justice and a breakdown of a ton of recent WWE signings and backgrounds of the guys.

        Our lead story on Bastien talks about his in-ring trademarks, his training of Sting and Ultimate Warrior, how he had a hand in the start of Roddy Piper's career, his thoughts on Ray Stevens, story telling, Bryan Danielson, how he started his career, the car crash and more.
        We also look at the judging of Benson Henderson vs. Frankie Edgar round-by-round, a look at what UFC should do with the top lightweight contenders and where Edgar should fit in, the business of the show, why people did and didn't order the show as well as match-by-match coverage.
        We also look at UFC's big December plans with a FOX special and the year-end PPV.  We also look at the Alistair Overeem situation, why Cain Velasquez is getting the next title shot and Overeem's television explanation of his issues.
        We look at Kazuchika Okada's win of the G-1 Climax tournament, Karl Anderson going to the finals, the booking of the tournament, New Japan vs. WWE in Sumo Hall this past week, how Hiroshi Tanahashi is viewed in Japan, a look at the signings of Katsuyori Shibata and Kazushi Sakuraba, how Sakuraba became such a big star in Japan and how he fell from the top, the Royce Gracie vs. Sakuraba background, as well as full coverage of Sunday's Sumo Hall G-1 finals and a history of the New Japan annual heavyweight tournament dating back to Antonio Inoki in 1974.  We also have coverage of every G-1 match of the final week of the tour.
        We also look at TNA's Hardcore Justice, the build to Bound for Glory, the Bound for Glory series update as well as match-by-match coverage with star ratings.
        We also look at ROH's Boiling Point iPPV show as well as the attempts to rebuild the iPPV business after the three disasters in a row.
        We also have a look at the many new signings by WWE from recent tryout camps, a look at who the people are, their backgrounds, why the company is so hot on going after former college football players and more.
        We also look at Linda McMahon's senate race, what the current polls say after her primary win, what the other candidates say, her new strategy and how it involves wrestling, as well as notes from the McMahon family 2011 tax returns, how much the family made last year and how much tax they paid as well as charitable contributions.  We also look at the new WWE television shows, plans for hyping next year's WrestleMania, thoughts on televised Countdown shows, new major WWE executive hires, firing of Brian Jossie, What wrestler was scared to death of media last week, cutting of Sofia Cortez, C.M. Punk DVD ones, 2013 Half of Fame, and what was the third most profitable WWE movie release of the past decade and the answer will fool most.
        We also have notes on the meeting before Raw SummerSlam thoughts, will Shawn Michaels wrestle again, Who HHH is high on, WWE celebrity notes, more on Kharma firing, WWE/NBC contract, changes in developmental and the latest developmental tapings, DVD viewership of Raw 1,000, Ziggler talks SummerSlam and a look at the WWE's latest overseas tour with all the business numbers. 
        We also have Olympic games coverage of U.S. wrestling, Kyoko Hamaguchi's last stand, Kayla Harrison and more.
        We also have a feature on several other former Olympic athletes who went into pro wrestling over the years.
        The issue is up on the site today if you are a web site member.  We also have a new back issue on the site from 1995 just put up talking about the announcement that WCW would go head-to-head with WWF on Monday night's and the beginning of the Monday Night Wars.
        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
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        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 have a look at the ratings of all the major shows and complete details on how every segment of Raw and Impact this past week did.  We look at what segments gained and lost viewers
        We also have results from all the major league arena events over the past week as well as a look at all the major television shows.
Also in this week's issue:
--New Japan stars heading to Mexico
--Update on the new Mistico
--CMLL's tournament of champions over the next few weeks
--More on TripleMania and who the fans reacted to the biggest
--First TV after TripleMania and where the angles are going
--All Japan jr. title change and where it's going
--Pro Wrestling NOAH jr. tag title tournament, who was to win, what changed it and who is in each block
--Major pro wrestling wedding in Japan
--New Japan's next PPV show
--More on New Japan doing iPPV shows
--More on Alex Shelley's return to New Japan
--New Japan starts talks with an Olympic gold medalist
--Upcoming New Japan big matches
--Lots more on next year's WrestleMania week
--Gathering of the Juggalos report
--ICP threatens to sue the FBI and why
--More on Kamala, Wrestlers Rescue and background
--ROH may be facing some TV issues
--Davey Richards issues an apology
--Something to look out for in TNA
--C.M. Punk says something that gets under Kurt Angle's skin
--Who is Claire Lynch, background
--Brooke Hogan
--Eric Bischoff's new TV project
--Jon Jones Nike deal
--Catching up on a lot of UFC business
--More on the arrest of Mayhem Miller
--Cris Cyborg talks Ronda Rousey
--Viability of that match taking place
--Dana White talks middleweight division
--Hector Lombard explains his poor performance
--Anderson Silva making 174 or so
--Thoughts on a 115 pound weight class
--Josh Koscheck's problems with Javier Mendez chronicled on TV show
--Roy Nelson getting in Dana White's hair
--Update on Diego Sanchez
--Injury postpones Bellator featherweight title fight one more time
--Major Bellator signing
--Notes on MMA death
--Tim Sylvia vs. Andrei Arlovski
--Arrest of Frank Trigg

Rates are:
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        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.

Today's News, Notes and Links

-- Paul Heyman on Sunday's PPV: This whole deal has been a surprise. A surprise for you. A surprise for my kids. A surprise for the WWE Universe. A surprise for ME, too. ... Enjoy the ride. Watch it unfold. See what happens. For the first time in forever, we have people GUESSING what comes next. ... If for no other reason but THAT, there's nothing 2 discuss. You know there's a heavily-promoted match this Sunday at @WWE #SummerSlam ... You've seen @ShawnMichaels, Stephanie McMahon, all our CHILDREN be a part of this main event. ... Now it comes down to Brock Lesnar vs HHH. If we've sold you on buying the ppv, I bet you get your money's worth on this match alone. ... If we haven't sold you on the ppv yet, then thank you for your time, and I hope something else has captured your attention or imagination. ... Brock and I are "all-in" for this Sunday. ... And just based on what his future holds, HHH is "all-in," too. This is a match everyone wants you to remember ... So ... I'm not addressing any more rumors. I'm not confirming. I'm not denying. I'm focused on this Sunday ... ... and I'm looking forward to watching Brock and HHH live up to, and indeed EXCEED everyone's expectations. ... Is this hype? Yes. But it's Hype routed in TRUTH. Is this a rant? A diatribe? A long-winded TwitSpeech? Absolutely! Hope you liked it. ... @WWE #SummerSlam #BrockLesnar vs #HHH #ThePerfectStorm Has Hit L.A.! Just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in!

-- Impact next week has the return of Hulk Hogan to confront Aces and Eights, TNA Open Fight Night, Gutcheck with a man who we know more about than a lot of guys on the roster with the exception of his actual name, and more Bound for Glory Series matches.

-- Series standings after last night:
James Storm -- 66 points
2. Samoa Joe -- 61 points
3. Rob Van Dam -- 55 points
4. Kurt Angle -- 48 points
4. Bully Ray -- 48 points
6. A.J. Styles -- 43 points
7. Jeff Hardy -- 42 points
8. Mr. Anderson -- 40 points
9. Christopher Daniels -- 33 points (13 matches) 10. Magnus -- 21 points
11. D'Angelo Dinero -- 7 points
12. Robbie E -- 5 points

-- Ronda Rousey on her fight tomorrow: "If I get her in an armbar, I'm going to try to rip it off and throw it at her corner. If I get her in a choke, I'm going to hold onto it until she's actually dead. And if I get a knockout, I'm going to go all the way. I'm going to try to pound her face into the ground and she's depending on the competence of the California Athletic Commission to walk out of that cage alive." Trying to kill her, Kaufman noted, "is kind of mean."

-- Scott Coker said that if Jacare Souza beats Derek Brunson on Saturday night, which he is heavily favored to do, he'll likely get the next shot at Luke Rockhold's title. Rockhold wants the fight, not happy with the manner in which he won the first time.

-- USA Today has a story on tomorrow's show herewith the comments from Rousey about her plans to kill Kaufman.

-- Very early odds have Junior Dos Santos the favorite over Cain Velasquez -150 vs. +120.

-- Tarryn Terrell on Impact last night was, in fact, legendary former ECW GM Tiffany. If you miss her in the old role, fear not, she speaks on the Impact post-game show which is up on our front page right now.

-- Caylee Turner, aka Cristina Crawford, younger sister of Alicia Fox, was released yesterday. Surprising given she was the current FCW (well, now NXT) Women's champion.

-- Speaking of FCW/NXT, CM Punk will be a special guest at the August 23 taping at Full Sail University.

-- Mark notes: 53 Years ago tonite in Memphis, TN. Aug 17, 1959. Sputnik Monroe vs Bill Wicks for the state title. Special referee Rocky Marciano. They had to move the card to a Russwood ballfield and sold out with 13,000 tickets sold. The 4,000 fans who didn't get in got mad and broke thru the ballfield's fence. Though unofficial, I've talked to people there that night and they are sure there were over 17,000 people there in attendance. Biggest crowd in Memphis Wrestling history.

-- Smackdown tonight has Chris Jericho vs. Alberto Del Rio, Rey & Sin Cara as a team vs. Cody Rhodes & Miz, Eve vs. Kaitlyn with the winner becoming Booker T's assistant, Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton, and Antonio Cesaro vs. Zack Ryder.

-- talks to CM Punk here, who claims Abraham Washington deserved to be fired for the rape remarks he made on Raw.

-- WWE released their first official app today, details of which are on their site. It can be downloaded from the iTunes Store as well.

-- Interview with Miz in the LA Times promoting SummerSlam and more here. Not a whole lot to it. He thinks he'll be the best guy to play the Marine yet.

-- Steve Mongo McMichael plans to run for mayor. He currently owns a sports bar in town and his customers encouraged him to run.

-- Lucha notes from Kris Zellner:

Axel stated on Tuesday that the courts have ruled in his favor regarding the name Nieto del Santo and he is now able to use it without Hijo del Santo trying to stop him. Axel said that Santo falsified records trying to show that he owned the name but the courts ruled that those documents were fake and that any son or grandson of Santo could use the name which could bring some confusion soon. Hijo del Santo's own son has been training lately as Santo Jr.

EMLL had a mini press conference yesterday where they announced that Tiffany was going to work for REINA in Japan for a month starting on 8/22 which is a way for her to work while growing her hair back out. They also announced that Titan was getting a new look which should guarantee a push but who knows. The big story though is that Jose Luis Feliciano announced the Generacion 2012 list which is a group of young guys they bring to the forefront every year and they are the following:

Oro Jr.
Akuma 3:16 (Demus' brother)
Espanto Jr. (yet another one but this is the son of the original Espanto Jr.)
Guerrero Negro Jr.
Herodes Jr.

Kevin Kleinrock at Masked Republic announced yesterday that Triplemania XX would be streaming for the next three Sunday afternoons at 2 PM on which coincidentally is the same time their show airs on Televisa.

LEGEND Promociones which announced Chris Masters would be working their show on 9/30 at Arena Lopez Mateos announced yesterday that Alex Koslov & Rocky Romero would also be making their return to Mexico on that show. The theme of this show is Mexico vs. The World.

Sangre Azteca had some surgery done on his knee that he injured on his yearly France trip and will be out of action for about a month.

-- Crossfire Wrestling runs in McMinnville, Tennessee, on 9/1 at the Civic Center at 500 Garfield Street.

Who do you expect to win this fight?
Benson Henderson 62.6%
Nate Diaz 37.4%

Will the UFC on FOX in December top a 2.0 rating?
Yes 47.9%
No 35.4%
Right at 2.0 16.7%

What do you consider the real SummerSlam main event?
HHH vs. Lesnar 81.4%
Punk vs. Cena vs. Show 14.0%
Del Rio vs. Sheamus 4.6%

Will Jones vs. Henderson top 550,000 buys?
Yes 41.9%
No 58.1%

What should be the leading qualification for the wrestling Hall of Fame?
Longevity as a real main eventer 29.1%
How much you drew 22.4%
Being in legendary matches 13.1%
How your peers considered you as a worker 10.8%
How strong a worker fans perceived you as 8.3%
Being on top in a lot of different places 7.1%
Holding world titles that mattered 3.7%
How much you broke through out of wrestling with mainstream fans 2.3%
Being a local legend whose fame stayed long after they retired 2.3%
Headlining WrestleMania 0.7%

-- RVD is happy to be in TNA.

-- Over the Top Radio talks SummerSlam with Ed and his carny crew tonight.

-- Here's a very good article on Mike Tenay up here.

What was the best match of the weekend in G-1?


Who was g-1 MVP


Whcih show are you most interested in?