THURS. UPDATE: Brisco, GSP updates, Hall feature, WWE drops announcer, TV show looks to be canceled
Thursday, 20 October 2011 12:53
Impact tonight on Spike TV:
*Tara & Brooke Tessmacher vs. Angelina Love & Winter for the Knockouts tag team title
*Abyss vs. Gunner
*Kurt Angle vs. James Storm for TNA title
The show tonight is mostly built around Hulk Hogan's new feud with Eric Bischoff, as well as a new role for Sting.
The annual Hall of Fame issue of the Observer is up on the sight today. It is a double issue, our traditional most talked about issue of the year.
We look at the three new entrants to the Hall of Fame with extensive biographies on former U.K. wrestling announcer Kent Walton, Curtis Iaukea and Steve "Dr. Death" Williams. These go into detail on all of their careers, and lives before and after pro wrestling. With Williams we've got an extensive overview of his life, from his high school and college days, his career in the U.S. and Japan, his battle with cancer, drug issues, and legacy. We also talk about the high period of Mid South Wrestling, All Japan Pro Wrestling, and the politics in Jim Crockett Promotions and WCW, and what match cost him likely $1 million in future payoffs and why.
With Walton, we talk about the voice of wrestling in a country for 33 years, his background, as well as the history of U.K. wrestling on television, and with Iaukea, we talk extensively about the glory days of pro wrestling in places like Hawaii and Australia, plus his runs all over North America, his life after wrestling, the story of how he got into a Three Stooges movie, the day he quit the Oakland Raiders with an all-pro player in the middle of training camp, and how he got over first in Japan and made his name for two decades there as a main event star.
We look at the voting including not only the complete voting breakdown, how one gets in, who has been eliminated from the ballot and what huge names debut on the ballot next year which will make it the most interesting Hall of Fame election in years. We also have a breakdown of the voting by group, from active wrestlers, retired wrestlers, reporters and historians and who did well in what group.
For all the wrestlers who came close, we look at where their voting support came from and why they didn't get in.
We also have a rundown on the injury to Georges St. Pierre, how this changes UFC 137, business notes including an estimate on how much UFC revenues for the show will decrease by losing the main event. We look at this as a comparison of The Rock missing WrestleMania.
We also have a first estimate on the UFC 136 buy rate and the story that it tells. We look at the power of title matches on UFC purchases, fan reaction vs. selling, what matches were promoted and where UFC looks to be strongest. We also have more on the change in UFC start times. We also have a lot more on Chael Sonnen, licensing, and the second aspect of Sonnen being licensed. We look at Sonnen withdrawing his loser leaves town stipulation and likely why he said it in the first place.
We also have a lot of news regarding the WWE network and plans to launch it even sooner than you think. We look at ideas for new shows, a new concept when it comes to WWE and the PPV business, plus an update on Vengeance, more on Brock Lesnar in the WWE video game, next combined Raw & Smackdown taping for Smackdown, next live Smackdown, and more details on this year's Tribute to the Troops show.
We also look at two WWE executives profiled, behind the new nickname for John Laurinaitis, suspension of Heath Slater, what wrestler is getting strong reviews for his recent work, new concept of running angles off television, Vince's love/hate relationship with the divas on television, WWE going to Japan, the son of a Hall of Famer who just debuted with WWE, something the company did nice for its talent over the past week, Bret Hart talks more about his thoughts and what he says different from in the Hart vs. Michaels DVD, plus all the business notes and highlights from the house shows in Mexico.
We also look at two movies coming out based on UFC stars, one that will be in theaters in a few weeks.
We've also got full coverage of TNA's Bound for Glory show, including a look at Hogan stealing the show, the value of Hogan stealing the show, early business notes on the show regarding attendance and the debut of TNA as a theater product and comparisons to UFC's debut in the same marketplace.
We also have full details regarding what went down with the decision by Hulk Hogan to not have Bobby Roode win the title. We look at Roode vs. Storm, the prospective feud, having the title change on free television, the injury to Kurt Angle, the backstage reaction, why Hogan was able to make the call and the real decision making power in TNA right now no matter who tries to claim otherwise.
We've also got match-by-match coverage of the show, star ratings and poll results on the show.
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Also in this week's issue:
--Lots of wrestlers trying out for WWE spots this week
--Famous wrestler eliminate from reality show
--A look at the turns of La Parka and Octagon
--Major stip match involving brothers vs. brothers feud
--What former WWE star is now using the name of one of the most famous overseas wrestling stars
--Title change in Japan
--The next NOAH major show takes shape with two new matches
--NOAH's major singles tournament
--Thoughts on the Scott Hall E:60 piece
--Hall's past in rehab
--What Hall was telling his friends just this past week about his plans
--Lots of details on the Wrestling Revolution Project
--Why Prince Devitt wasn't there
--Characters and the idea behind the 13-week series
--Different wrestlers as their new ring names
--A look at some of the best matches that were taped
--Shakeup at Spike TV and where that stands for TNA wrestling
--Spike makes first hint at future in MMA
--Notes on the hiring of David Lagana by TNA
--A look at TNA's outside projects
--Why Eric Bischoff has so much power in TNA
--Kurt Angle inducted into yet another Hall of Fame
--Jeff Hardy talks about being sent home and his return
--TNA working with another promotion on a promotion vs. promotion angle
--Sting talks about Jeff hardy
--More on the case of John Graziano
--More thoughts on Hogan's burial of A.J. Styles and Bobby Roode
--New TNA front office exec hired
--Hogan video game reviews
--MMA names contacted by TNA
--Notes on upcoming TNA TV shows
--Surprising UFC cut
--Notes on the final Strikeforce show of the year
--Update on Gina Carano
--New UFC matches and new UFC injuries
--Bellator upcoming matches including what could be the most interesting of the season
--More on the end of an era, one of the biggest annual events of the year is no more
--Floyd Mayweather numbers update
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*August 1, 1994 (the most detailed coverage anywhere of the Vince McMahon steroid trial, an issue praised in numerous newspaper article
and Sex, Lies and Headlocks)
*March 26, 2001 (death of WCW and history of pro wrestling on the Turner networks)
*October 22, 2001 (why the adult audience has left pro wrestling in such great numbers and what needed to have been done to save them)
*July 8, 1991 (Ric Flair leaves WCW as world champion/Zahorian steroid trial)
*February 8, 1993 (the life and times of Andre the Giant)
*May 13, 2002 (the life story of the most incredible pro wrestling career ever, a look at Lou Thesz, in one of the largest issues of our
*January 27, 2003 (part one of the two-part series covering the career and life of The Sheik)
*February 3, 2003 (Part two on The Sheik including thoughts from people who worked with him and where he stands historically)
*March 24, 2003 (history of the WWWF title, inside behind the Sammartino, Backlund and Backlund era)
*April 21, 2003 (history of WWF continues with the expansion nationally, the death of the regional territories and the rise of Hulk
*May 12, 2003 (The life and death of Elizabeth, and the rise of fall of Lex Luger)
*June 9, 2003 (Part 1 of history of WWF vs. WCW wars and what many say was the greatest year in U.S. wrestling; plus a look at Fred Blassie)
*June 16, 2003 (Freddie Blassie through the eyes of his biggest rivals and friends)
*July 28, 2003 (Part 2 of the history of the WWF vs. WCW war and the plans to make new superstars in the early 90s, what happened, and the night where the three biggest wrestling companies in the world combined for a joint show and what happened)
*August 25, 2003 (2003 Hall of Fame issue with huge profiles on the controversial career of Shawn Michaels, Chris Benoit as well as
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*September 22, 2003 (Part 3 of the history of the WWF vs WCW war with the seeds that caused the collapse of the industry in the 90s,
Zahorian trial, Gulf War controversy, Flair leaves WCW while holding world title and much more)
*October 27, 2003 (The fascinating life of Stu Hart plus the story of Road Warrior Hawk)
*January 19, 2004 (2003 Awards issue)
*February 2, 2004 (History of Toronto wrestling, Jack Tunney life story, Royal Rumble and Battle Royal history)
*February 23, 2004 (History of Guerrero family with Eddy's win over Brock Lesnar)
*March 1, 2004 (History of WWF continues with the period that brought the company down in early 1992, the mistakes, the real stories and how the business changed)
*March 8, 2004 (History of Wrestlemania, its greatest matches and best and worst shows as voted both by wrestlers and non-wrestlers and
Wrestlemania history books)
*July 5, 2004 (A look behind the scenes and Ric Flair's book and his background with Eric Bischoff and Hulk Hogan)
*July 12, 2004 (A look at more on Ric Flair's book and his comments on Bruno Sammartino, Bret Hart and Mick Foley)
*August 16, 2004 (History of the Olympians in pro wrestling)
*August 23, 2004 (2004 Hall of Fame issue and biggest issue of the year with huge profiles on Kazushi Sakuraba, Undertaker, Bob Backlund,
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*October 4, 2004 (the life and times of Big Bossman; as well as details of the life and times of one of the most influential men world
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*November 15, 2004 (the full story of what happened between Kurt Angle and Daniel Puder, plus coverage of the most important week in the
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*March 14, 2005 (the 50 biggest money players in the history of WWF and a look at their Hall of Fame)
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*November 27, 2006 (History of WCW part three, When Bischoff challenged McMahon to fight; Truth and fiction around Bret Hart
signing with WCW and why it didn't click)
*December 6, 2006 (details behind Pride's offers to sell promotion and Part four of History of WCW part four, Hogan-Goldberg match and why there was no rematch, WCW loses NBC network deal in 1999 and the real reasons the company fell apart)
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*August 15, 2007 (The legend of the God of Japanese wrestling and his influence on MMA, Karl Gotch)
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*August 11, 2008 (Ric Flair leaves WWE; Updated history of pro wrestlers and MMA fighters who went to the Olympics)
* September 8, 2008 (2008 Hall of Fame double issue, $7 on its own, $8 overseas; part one of Killer Kowalski bio)
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--The only update we have right now on Gerald Brisco, is that the stroke he suffered last night was mild.
--Georges St. Pierre was on Sportsnet.ca last night saying that he actually suffered two injuries, not one, that led to him having to pull out of UFC 137. He said the knee injury took place on Saturday, which was when he sprawled in practice and suffered a strain of his MCL. He continued training and was going to fight, but then, he believes due to overcompensating for his bad knee, his suffered a hamstring injury which was serious enough that he had to pull out. He's targeting February for his return.
--UFC will return to movie theaters, but this time in 3-D, with the 2/4 show from Las Vegas. The show will air in about 120 theaters around the country and they are scheduled for four shows next year. I think the 3-D aspect will draw the first time, but after that point, it goes back to the power of the product.
--Spike TV announced that Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, of Jersey Shore Fame, would be appearing on two episodes of Impact, which will be both shows that are taped on 10/26 in Macon and air on 11/3 and 11/10.
--On the ESPN E:60 piece on Scott Hall, which is worth going out of your way to see, Cody Hall debuted doing the Razor's Edge on the 7/16 I Believe in Wrestling show. The dark shots from the piece were down from that school. The shots of Cody were doing at Scott's house in Chuluota, FL, as were the shots of the squirrels, the lake which is down the road from his house) and the working out.
--The piece last night did a 0.72 metered market rating. The show averages 0.65 for a first run episode.
--Hugo Savinovich, who has been part of WWE's Spanish language announce team forever, has been let go by the company after 14 years. Savinovich wrote that he was told a few weeks ago by WWE about it and he was said, but wanted to thank the McMahon family for giving him a second chance after he was put in jail on drug charges.
--The cable guides are listing this coming Saturday morning's Lucha Libre USA show as the "season finale." We had heard rumors in the last few days that the show would be canceled imminently. It only lasted a few weeks on its second time around. It was doing 0.1 ratings, but given the 10 a.m. Saturday morning slot on MTV 2, that's no less than could be expected.
--The UFC will be holding a press conference next Thursday, open to the public, for the UFC 137 show. The press conference takes place at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino at 1 p.m. local time. Dana White, B.J. Penn, Nick Diaz, Cheick Kongo and Matt Mitrione are all expected to appear.
--On Observer radio, when a question was asked about champions who died while holding titles, a name that didn't come up was Hercules Cortez, who died in an auto accident in 1971 when he held the AWA world tag team titles with Red Bastien. The two were traveling together. When Bastien returned, he chose Crusher as his partner and they lost to Ray Stevens & Nick Bockwinkel in the first run of Stevens & Bockwinkel as champions. In regard to the mention of Moondog Mayne, he was both U.S. champion and Americas' champion at the time he passed away in an auto accident. I had mentioned I knew he was U.S. champion and thought he was Americas' champion but didn't know for sure. Mayne was the first and only man in history to hold both titles at the same time when he passed away. (thanks to Brian Hoops)
--We will be back with our annual Hall of Fame show on Observer radio later today with Bruce Mitchell. If you've got any Hall of Fame questions, regarding voting or anything else, anyone else, why someone should or shouldn't be on the ballot, you can send them today to
--Dorian Roldan of AAA was on twitter saying he had successful meetings with Jeff Jarrett this week in Orlando and to expect big things for TNA and AAA. Part of this is storyline but they did have business meetings this week.
--Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy, RVD, Jeff Jarrett and Beer Money are announced as the headliners on the upcoming TNA West Coast tour which runs 10/27 in San Francisco at Kezar Pavilion and 10/28 in Sacramento at the Memorial Auditorium.
--There is a story here based on something I wrote a few days ago, but in a lot more detail.
--What night would be best for Bellator to be on television
--Who is the best wrestler of the current world champions?
Davey Richards 44.4%
Mark Henry 16.3%
Hiroshi Tanahashi 12.3%
James Storm 9.3%
Alberto Del Rio 7.5%
Jeff Jarrett 3.4%
Go Shiozaki 1.8%
Masaaki Mochizuki 1.8%
Hector Garza 0.8%
Well, that's quite embarrassing
What are your thoughts regarding watching UFC 137
Was never interested in watching the show 31.3%
Will watch at a bar 8.5%
Will watch at a friends house 3.6%
Will watch illegally 20.2%
Would have bought but without GSP will not 16.0%
Would have watched illegally but now won't 3.9%
Would have watched at a bar but now won't 2.6%
Would have watched at a friends house but now won't 2.3%
What do you think is the best starting time for a PPV show
8 p.m. Eastern 49.6%
7 p.m. Eastern 23.0%
9 p.m. Eastern 17.2%
10 p.m. Eastern 8.7%
11 p.m. Eastern 1.5%
--Gail Kim did an interview with the Sun talking about all the constraints the women were under. "We just didn't understand. They did everything in their power, it seemed, to take away everything to give us a good match, for the heels to get any heat. It was no kicking one week, or no punching the next. No this, no that. It was at the point where I was asking whether we could do anything at all."
--Davey Richards vs. Michael Elgin in a non-title match was announced for the 11/5 ROH TV tapings at the Davis Arena in Louisville.
--The movie "Foxcatcher" that was mentioned yesterday, about the John du Pont murder of David Schultz, had been on the prestigious Black List, which was a list of the best unproduced movie scripts as voted by agents and Hollywood insiders. It's a list of movies that are considered essentially too good to get mainstream financing. One person who saw the original script told us, "it was taut and well written, but in no way a Hollywood movie. It was a psychological case study more than a blockbuster, and the idea of career teen girl idol Channing Tatum cast as the main character as written in the script is very, very odd."
--Chuck Langerman's daily trivia has a story today. In 1998, the late independent wrestling promoter Dennis Coraluzzo booked Ahmed Johnson on two shows in New Jersey. Dennis sent referee Fred Rubenstein to pick Johnson up at the hotel. Fred was driving his new Nissan Altima and when Johnson saw the vehicle he said, "You expect me to ride in this?" He then demanded they get him a limousine. Coraluzzo turned down that demand and Johnson refused to leave the hotel and come to the show. When the show started, Coraluzzo got on the mic and told the fans the story, and also claimed Johnson said, "Fuck the fans" to him, which may have not been an accurate quote. Coraluzzo then told the fans the phone number to Johnson's hotel room, told fans to write it down and call him and tell him what you think about his no-showing. He later had a ring card girl walk through the crowd with a giant sign with Johnson's phone number. There was a lie of fans at the pay phone in the lobby of the venue calling Johnson and yelling at him for no-showing. The next day, Johnson called up Coraluzzo and was furious, saying his phone kept ringing all night, well past 3 a.m., and that he couldn't get any sleep. The big question is why Johnson just didn't tell the front desk to block all calls to his room.
--Harry Smith was on TSN's Off he Record on Tuesday to plug his 11/6 match with Fit Finlay in Barrie, ONT.
--Justin Greskiewicz vs. Eddie Martinez is the main event of a Muay Thai show on Saturday night in Bally's Grand Ballroom in Atlantic City and on iPPV through GoFightLive.com
--IWL on Sunday in Chilpan, Mexico: Abuelito & Juan el Ranchero & Big Mama b Centinela & Maravilla Negra & Maverick, Latin Star won three way over Kansuke and Ojo Diabolico Jr., Freelance & Turbo b Black Thunder & Perico, Epidemia & Peligro & Pesadilla b Cereber Maligno & Epitafio & Heavy Boy, Dolar & Fuerza Guerrera & Tony Rivera b Scorpio Jr. & Veneno & Zumbido, ATM & Gigante Warrior b Naruto & Ninja de Fuego & Tribal, Juventud Guerrera & Davey Richards b Micke Segura & Super Crazy, Mad Man Pondo & Necro Butcher & 2 Tuff Tony won three-way over Angel o Demonio & Leon Negro & Overt and Cerebro Negro & Fantasma de la Opera & Sepuloterero
--AAA TV tapings tomorrow night in Xalapa features Dr. Wagner Jr. & Drago & Zorro vs. Perro Aguayo Jr & Chessman & L.A. Park plus Jack Evans & Fenix & La Parka vs. Billy el Malo & Cibernetico & Dark Escoria, plus La Parka will do his first interview since turning heel. (thanks to Kris Zellner)
--CWE on 11/11 in Winnipeg at the Polish Fraternal Hall with a 50 man Battle Royal
--New England Championship Wrestling on 11/13 in Malden, MA at the YMCA at 3 p.m. featuring the Iron 8 tournament. This will feature four singles matches, leading to the four winners in a 45 minute Iron man match with the most pins or submissions won becoming the Iron 8 champion. Entered this year are Eddie Edwards, Matt Taven, Kevin Matthews, Taka Suzuki, Julian Starr, Justin Corino, Nunzio and Jerry Lynn.
--IWC on Saturday night in Elizabeth, PA at the Court Time Sports Center with John McChesney vs. Raymond Rowe for the IWC title in an I Quit match, Shiima Xion & Jimmy DeMarco vs. Bubba the Bulldog & Mystery partner in fans bring the weapons, plus a special announcement from Norm Connors.
--Daniel Puder is promoting an anti-bullying event on Saturday at 3 p.m. in Burbank, CA at the AMC-16 at the Burbank Promenade with celebrities, a live DJ, product sampling, games, contests and a red carpet feature.
--NWA Ring Warriors on 12/14 in Fort Lauderdale at the National Guard Armory has a tournament for the NWA Ring Warriors title. First four names announced are Francisco Ciatso, Steve Madison, Cassidy Riley and Vordell Walker.
--GOUGE on 10/29 in Wake Forest, NC at the MVP Sports Factory Gym
--Steeltown Pro Wrestling on Friday night in Morden, Manitoba at the Access Event Centre (formerly the Morden Community Centre)
--Pro Wrestling Phoenix on Saturday in Council Bluffs, IA at the National Guard Armory.,