SUN. UPDATE: Genesis preview, SF aftermath, bigges star predictions, Jericho at house shows, White

        We're looking for your thoughts on tonight's TNA Genesis PPV as well as last night's Strikeforce show, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
        We're looking for reports on the WWE weekend shows, which include Friday night in Jackson, MS  last night in Tyler, TX and Birmingham, AL and today's shows in San Angelo, TX and Baton Rouge.
        TNA Genesis tonight from Orlando
*Rob Van Dam vs. Gunner - A late add made from the angle on TV on Thursday.  It gets Ric Flair on the show.  Gunner has looked good of late while RVD has been hit and miss.
*Gail Kim vs. Mickie James for the Knockouts title - James has been selling her leg at TV doing a minor injury angle so that may play into the story of the match.  These two are several steps above most women's matches from the major promotions, but have yet to hit with that really great match you can tell they've been trying for.
*Austin Aries vs. Jesse Sorensen vs. Zema Ion vs. Kid Kash for the X title - No doubt this will be athletically good.  Just to me the storyline dynamic with Aries, Sorensen and Kash is played out and nobody really cares about these guys past Kash being a good undercard heel and Aries being real good in his way.  Feels too same old.  That said, these four are all very talented and this should be a good match.
*Pope vs. Devon - Devon's kids should be involved in the finish in some form based on television.
*Matt Morgan & Crimson vs. Samoa Joe & Magnus for the tag titles.  I like Joe & Magnus as a team.  Magnus in particular has a lot of potential.  The match could have problems because Morgan & Crimson aren't very good at selling.
*Abyss vs. Bully Ray in a Monster's Ball match.  I think everyone knows what the match will be like and it's just a matter of if it's your cup of tea.  If Ray wins, Abyss has to join Immortal. 
*Kurt Angle vs. James Storm - Should be a good match.  Storm always beats Angle and it makes no sense with Storm being groomed for a title shot that he would lose here.  Hopefully the crowd will be more into it this month than last month.
*Bobby Roode vs. Jeff Hardy for the TNA title.  Hardy has been protected since his return in tags, multiple person matches and short matches.  However, even though he's banged up, the crowd gets into his matches more than anyone else in the promotion and Roode is a good worker.  Still, Roode and A.J. Styles had a real good match last month that the crowd wasn't that into.
        Overall it feels like a typical TNA show.  Won't do any real business.  Should be some good matches, a few so-so matches and in the end, the question is if the Orlando crowd is going to stay with it as the show goes on.
        Monday night has Raw from Corpus Christi.  You know what would be a great swerve, since they aren't advertising Brodus Clay coming in, maybe he can debut.  TNA will be taping Impact on Monday in Orlando.
        Tuesday has the Smackdown tapings in Laredo featuring Sheamus vs. Jinder Mahal.  Nevertheless, Laredo, a border town, has been one of WWE's strongest markets for many years, with very enthusiastic fans.  TNA also tapes TV in Orlando on Tuesday.
        A look back at the MMA career and the debates over Brock Lesnar, as well as details on the return of Chris Jericho, is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter that is on the site today.  We have usually six new issues per month and four back older issues as well as four or five issues per month of Figure Four Weekly on the site as well as all the radio content is part of a web site subscription.  In addition, both newsletters are available for print subscriptions.
        With Lesnar's MMA career having ended with the loss to Alistair Overeem, we look at his entire UFC career, we look at the divergent viewpoints on him, what is reality, what is silly, and more.  We look at the questions marks both he and Overeem faced going into their fight.  We look at Overeem's contract and what is shows about how much UFC main eventers actually earn, what has come out in court, why there is a court case regarding Overeem's deal and more.
        We look at Lesnar before, during the after the fight, why most are accepting Lesnar's retirement is legit even though nobody believes it when most fighters retire, Lesnar going to WWE, his prospects marketing wise, his legacy as a UFC fighter, realities of where he stands with former champions, as well as a look at the entire UFC 141 show.
        We look at what Dana White said to the fighters before the show and what materialized, how the title picture changed in a few weight classes based on results, business notes on the show, as well as early PPV numbers.
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        We have a look at the return of Chris Jericho, his previous returns to WWE, a funny reason why Eric Bischoff never pushed him in WCW, his WWE debut and his return and second return.  We look at the marketing plan for his return and whether it worked or not, the photos that surfaced of him, and the thought process behind what he did for his return.
        We also look at his Mania program and teases of his post-Mania work, when he starts back and more.
        We also look at the nine hour plus Dream and Inoki New Year's Eve show.  We look back at the debut of the New Year's Eve tradition in Japan on a show that featured a number of both pro wrestling and MMA legends and set an Osaka Dome attendance record, as well as the shoot fight between the top two finishers for Wrestler of the Year that took place on New Year's Eve many years ago.  We look at the peak of the New Year's Eve fighting tradition in Japan, and it's fall, as well as how the programming put in its place this year did.
        We have match-by-match coverage of a night of MMA, pro wrestling and kickboxing and which of the three got the best responses and what two matches stole the show.  We look at the storyline behind the matches and how they went.
        We've got more on the WWE network and 24/7 Classics on Demand.  We've also got an update on Randy Orton, what is wrong, his return and what unique status he has in WWE right now.  We've got an update on The Rock, reprising a 1998 angle very soon, the plight of Evan Bourne, PPV schedule for the year, plans for Brodus Clay, Cody vs. Dustin Rhodes feud, new name of a WWE performer, another celebrity talked with for Mania, where the ring collapsing spot in Show vs. Henry came from, shortest world title reign and a look at the return to Madison Square Garden.
        We also have a look at the week after Christmas in WWE, with business and show highlights from what is traditionally their best week of the year in the U.S. when it comes to touring.
        We also look at the pro wrestling angle regarding one of Japan's all-time biggest feuds.
        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 gained or lost audience. 

        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:
--More on the new CMLL world champion
--Angle being dropped and wrestlers getting new characters
--Identities revealed of two decade long regulars
--90s star resurfaces as a new member of Perros Del Mal
--The retirement of Abdullah the Butcher and a Japanese ceremony to take place
--90s star returns to All Japan to try and bring back their world title
--All Japan's start of the year angle involving all of their championships
--Notes on the new shooter trio
--Notes on end of the year shows in Japan
--Controversy over world jr. title name
--Notes on A-Rod and Torrie Wilson
--Reports on death of Hall of Famer are exaggerated
--More on a new movie about one of pro wrestling's biggest stars and who will and won't be involved
--Two of the most famous tag teams of the past 20 years face off later this month
--Unique pro wrestling show set for Los Angeles
--More on Kim Neilson on "Biggest Loser."
--Anniversary of the end of one of the longest running weekly TV shows in U.S. history, an it was a pro wrestling show
--Update on Barry Windham
--Update on Luke Robinson
--A look back at 70s star Buddy Colt
--Famous evangelist's father was a 60s wrestling star
--Notes on next ROH TV tapings and future matches
--Notes on the Genesis PPV
--TNA's Christmas house shows
--Test of FX as a promotional vehicle for UFC
--State of UFC's welterweight division
--Behind the return of Miguel Torres
--Updates on Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos
--Notes on ticket sales for upcoming UFC events
--Notes on this week's Showtime event
--UFC debuts in Sweden
--More on UFC's fastest fight arguments
--Notes on the UFC return to Japan and how tickets are doing
--Fighter retires on camera, and then says he has no recollection of it
--Lots of new UFC fights announced
--30-year-old solid level MMA fighter passes away tragically
--Sapp signs to face a Gracie        
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--On Observer radio last night we had Josh Gross of ESPN will a long discussion regarding Cris Cyborg and the steroid issue in MMA.  Bryan and I will be back tonight covering TNA Genesis.
--In the first show of the new year, in last night's predictions, myself, Oliver Copp, Todd Martin, Mike Sawyer and Mike Sempervive all went 4-1 and Josh Nason went 2-3.  With the exception of Oliver, everyone who went 4-1 predicted Adlan Amagov to beat Robbie Lawler.  Amagov was a huge underdog with the oddsmakers so kind of funny that almost everyone independently thought the odds were wrong, and well, we were all wrong.  
--Strikeforce press conference from last night featuring King Mo calling Gegard Mousasi "Kermit," ripping on Rampage Jackson (the two have a twitter war) and on ref Kim Winslow, who he was mad because he felt she stopped his fight way late.  The refs seemed spooked last night.  First, early real bad standups followed by overcompensating and letting the Tyron Woodley fight be boring as hell, and then a ridiculously early stoppage in Tyler Smith's loss to Gian Villante, leading to fights being stopped way late in Mo vs. Lorenz Larkin and Luke Rockhold vs. Keith Jardine.
--There is an excellent article by female fighter Dr. Rosi Sexton talking about Cris Cyborg failing her steroid test saying "Now We Can All Stop Pretending" on Bloody Elbow.

--Chris Jericho did not wrestle on last night's show in Tyler, TX, but did make a guest appearance.  Once again, he didn't talk, this time because he teased talking when David Otunga came out.  Jericho laid out Otunga.  Jericho is on the road billed as making special appearances at all the upcoming Raw shows.
--Dana White said on ESPN radio in Los Angeles that Jon Jones called him a few days ago and said that he's ready to take a fight.  He had first told him he wanted to take several months off.  Notably, he wants the fight soon enough that the 1/28 winner, scheduled to be for the shot, may not be ready.  White said they may do Jones vs. Dan Henderson first, and have the winner of that fight face the Rashad Evans vs. Phil Davis winner after or they may wait until 1/28, see what happens in that fight and what shape the winner is in, and make a decision then. 
--There will be a Raw house show a week from today in the afternoon in Oakland where they are advertising C.M. Punk vs. Dolph Ziggler for the title, John Cena vs. Kane and Jericho appearing as the big three things in the advertising.
--I was on the OVW podcast with Trent Vandrisse today.
--What do you think about Cris Cyborg and her positive steroid test?
She has been on the stuff her entire career, but would beat people clean due to skill 38.4%
Has been on stuff her entire career, her success is a fraud 31.2%
Has been on stuff her entire career, but so have her opponents so it's a non-issue 17.2%
I believe she tested positive for a tainted supplement 10.8%
I believe she used steroids for the first time before the Yamanaka fight and was clean before then 2.5%
--What do you think about MMA drug testing procedures?
They need to be strengthened, current system is a joke 72.0%
Just drop drug testing and let everyone do whatever they want 15.9%
Current system is fine 12.2%
--Who do you think will be the biggest star in 2012?
Jon Jones 22.2%
The Rock 19.4%
C.M. Punk 14.0%
Manny Pacquiao 13.5%
Floyd Mayweather 11.8%
Nick Diaz 9.3%
John Cena 3.1%
Randy Orton 2.2%
Anderson Silva 1.4%
The Miz 1.1%
Cain Velasquez 1.1%
Rey Mysterio 0.8%
--What was the biggest news story of December?
- Brock Lesnar retires 62.9%
- Daniel Bryan cashes in Money in the Bank and becomes world champion 12.1%
- GSP knee injury, needs surgery, out most of 2012 7.8%
- Survivor Series comes in at 160000 domestic buys 5.8%
- Alistair Overeem beats Brock Lesnar 4.9%
- Nevada commission hearing and the Overeem drug testing story 2.0%
- Showtime and Strikeforce make deal, Strikeforce stays alive another year 1.4%
- Kevin Nash's WWE career seems over 1.3%
- Umanosuke Ueda passes away 0.7%
- Hiroshi Tanahashi wins MVP 0.7%
- Jon Jones beat Lyoto Machida to keep UFC light heavyweight title 0.4%
--Poll on Smackdown
Excellent 15.0%
Good 51.2%
Average 18.9%
Fair 8.7%
Poor 6.3%
        31.4% of those responding didn't see the show
--UFC Personal Trainer content for Urijah Faber was listed Tuesday in a press release indicating it was free for people who purchased the game.  Unfortunately, the add-on appeared on XBox Live priced at 800 pts ($10).  With the update on Thursday, the content is free and available for download. Even if you don't own the game, you can purchase the content pack for free. (thanks to Michael Langan II)
--Dwayne Johnson's next movie "Journey 2:  The Mysterious Island" opens on 1/19 in Australia (thanks to James Stanios)
--David Otunga was briefly talked about this morning on The Today Show.  It was a piece on Jennifer Hudson, previewing a major story on Hudson they are doing for Dateline tonight.  They talked about Otunga trying to be an actor, a reality show cast member and a lawyer and showed WWE clips.  Lester Holt called him "a chiseled piece of man candy." (thanks to Charles Humphreys)
--A story on presidential candidate Rick Santorum and his background as a wrestling fan and working as a lobbyist for WWF.
--UIPW on 4/14 in Toronto has WrestleStock at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall #10 headlined by Steve Corino vs. Michael Elgin.
--NAWA Big Time Pro Wrestling from last night in Waxahachie, TX:  Joe Peace won gauntlet match over Dr. Nemo Luv, Chris Cross, Casey Kane and Justice Pain, Billy Club b Doberman, Li Fang & Russian Destroyer b Cowboy Adam & Tim Storm to win tag titles, Nobe Bryant DDQ Franco D'Angelo (Texas title held up).  Next show is 2/4 (thanks to Rob Moore).
--304 Wrestling presents The Last Stand on 1/15 in Huntington, WV at the Veterans Memorial Fieldhouse featuring Sean Casey vs. Ricky Morton.  There will also be a Rumble.  Anyone interested in working the show should contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   This will be the final wrestling show in the building that used to run in the 80s for both Georgia Championship Wrestling and Jim Crockett Promotion events.
--CWF Mid Atlantic from last night in Burlington, NC before 150 fans:  Ray Kandrack b Rudy Lewis and Vice in 3-way, Mecha Mercenary & Arrick Andrews & Court Montgomery b Joe Black & Robyn Golphyn & Terrell Givens, Chase Dakota b Nick Richards, Mikael Yamaha & Mark James & Jason Miller b Ric Converse & Trevor Lee & Ben Tyler, Donnie Dollars b Evan Banks, Arik Royal & Chiva Kid & Bobby Wohlfert & Jason Blade b Roy Wilins & Walter Eaton & Michael McAllister & Ty Dillinger, Adam Page b Ric Converse (thanks to Brad Stutts)
--Hoosier Pro Wrestling from last night in Columbus, IN before 275 fans:  Ricky Ruckus b Sabotage Styles, Cousin Cooter & Stompin Steve b Fast Eddie & Aaron Armageddon & Darren Bostic, Damien Cole b J.D. Marioni-DQ, Camron Star b Heidi, Donny Idol & Fuji Brown b Bobby Black & Nick Cutler, Flash Flanagan b Shawn Cook, High Rollers b Cruel Intentions to win HPW tag titles.  Next show is 2/4 featuring The Zombie and a women's street fight (thanks to Jerry Wilson)
--Tulalip Championship Wrestling from last night in Marysville, WA:  Eric Wright b Dave Turner, Ideal Protection #2 & Christopher Ryseck b Patrick Large & Chuck Payne, Aaron Bolo NC Damon Jones, Jonas Albert Robinson b Dash Venture in a street fight, Su Yung b M.J. Aurora, Azul Angel b Kellen Raeth.  Next show is 1/14 in Marysville at the Pacific Rim Restaurant with Su Yung (former WWE developmental wrestler and onetime girlfriend of Jerry Lawler) vs. Malia Hosaka (thanks to Charles Short)
--There is an ad for the new Scotland based ICW TV show on Sky 219 in the U.K. (thanks to Mark Dallas)
--Freakshow Wrestling, a group that combines comedy, magic, music and wrestling runs on 1/14 in Sun Valley, CA at the Knoxx Pro Arena with all seats $10

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?