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Daily Update: WWE Global Cruiserweight begins, EC3 apologizes

WWE Global Cruiserweight title

WWE Global Cruiserweight locations announced

Progress Wrestling will be hosting two qualifying matches for WWE's new Global Cruiserweight promotion. April 24th will be the date of the tapings. These matches will begin the qualifying matches for the Global Cruiserweight tournament, designed to showcase lighter weight wrestlers and high flyers that are not necessarily already under contract to WWE. No names were announced for the matches, but names like Zack Sabre Jr., Will Ospreay and Marty Scurll immediately come to mind. Many former WWE performers that meet the cruiserweight limit (205 lbs) have also been contacted. No one is quite sure what the end product will look like but many wrestlers are chomping at the bit for this opportunity. 

Ethan Carter III explains his appearance cancelations

Ethan Carter III (Michael Hutter) gave an explanation today on this Facebook page that the cancelation of his appearance at the Southside Wrestling and Preston City Wrestling shows in England was his choice, and not TNA's. He did not state specifically what the conflict was, but wrote, "Unfortunately, due to a previously unforeseen opportunity to continue building a rapport between TNA Wrestling and one our of television network partners, I was forced to cancel my appearances with both Southside and Preston City Wrestling April 2-3. Canceling is not something I take lightly." EC3 promised to make it up to the fans and the promotions. Perhaps, he would start by selling his foam fingers that he had specifically made for this trip at a discounted rate, but that's purely speculation.

[Dan Velten]

We're looking for reports on today's WWE house show in Washington, DC, as well as yesterday and today's Lucha Underground tapings to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com

The final WWE show before WrestleMania will be tomorrow's tapings at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, which are sold out. They will be taping both Raw and Smackdown, with Smackdown being taped first at 6:30 p.m. Everyone who is wrestling at WrestleMania, as well as Vince and Stephanie McMahon, are scheduled for the show. We'll be looking for reports on the non-Raw stuff.


Countdown clock to WrestleMania 32 and F4W MANIA~! 

Click here for the complete run down. Bus seats are still available for the WrestleMania bus ride, but dinner is now sold out.

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Figure Four Weekly 3/21/2016: Hulk Hogan awarded $115 million (sort of) by jury

Hulk Hogan is awarded $115 million by jury over the Gawker sex tape lawsuit. Will he collect?



Wrestling Observer Newsletter

READ IT HERE: March 28, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Hogan wins Gawker lawsuit, MMA legalized in NY, Wrestlemania weekend preview, more  

Well before the Hulk Hogan vs. Gawker Media trial began, it was not a secret that Gawker believed they would lose the case before a jury, but believed they would win it on appeal.

But in a trial that got worldwide attention, as much for the questions of what constitutes legitimate news versus invasion of privacy, as the fact Hogan was involved, Gawker never saw what was coming.

A St. Petersburg jury of six people awarded Hogan $140.1 million, even more than the $100 million he was asking for, with one juror making it clear the figure was because they wanted to send a message to the company.

Current subscribers click here to continue reading.

PLUS MUCH MORE! CLICK HERE FOR A FULL WRESTLING OBSERVER PREVIEW


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If you wanted to know just how big Giant Baba was to people who grew up in the 60s and 70s, the latest back issue will explain.
Check out the latest Online Wrestling Observer BACK ISSUE: February 15, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Reaction to the death of Giant Baba, 2 wrestlers have heart scares, plus tons more  A look at the surprising public reaction to the death of Giant Baba, 2 wrestlers have heart attack scares, plus tons of news and notes.

SUNDAY NEWS UPDATE

Bryan and I will be back tonight with our weekend show talking the latest pro wrestling and MMA news. You can send questions to the show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com

One of the best TV shows of the year, maybe the best, was Friday night's New Japan World Pro Wrestling Returns show on AXS TV. As great as the Kushida vs. Kyle O'Reilly match was when I saw it last year when it took place, there are so many small things that both did that make the match far better on repeat viewings, plus the overall presentation with the interviews, including O'Reilly's post-match promo, and the announcing by Jim Ross and Josh Barnett, made it an epic television show. As much as Aztec Warfare was great on Wednesday, the wrestling and announcing here were on a completely different plane. 

If you're into wrestling history, you'll really like this coming week's Observer. I've also got an MMA Fighting article on when the Governor signed the bill to legalize MMA in New York, which is a trick introduction, but an absolutely fascinating story when you look at it with perspective. 

John Cena will be guest hosting "The Today Show" tomorrow morning. He'll be plugging WrestleMania, at which no doubt he'll make some kind of an appearance. He'll be on during the 9 a.m. hour.

Stephanie McMahon was on CBS this morning.

Angelina Love, who just gave birth, noted that her TNA contract expired while she was pregnant and she is now a free agent. She said she will return to the ring and be taking independent bookings staring in June.

David Bixenspan has yet another news story on Hogan, this one regarding the claims he beat up four members of the Coast Guard years ago. 

Sami Callihan and AR Fox started at this weekend's tapings with Lucha Underground

WWE

MISCELLANEOUS

  • Texas Mania on 4/3 at St. Jude Hall in Arlington, TX will have a party after the show with Jake Roberts, Joey Ryan, Johnny Gargano, Sami Callihan, Candice LaRae, Lance Archer, Davey Boy Smith Jr., Ray Rowe and others.
  • Glory kickboxing is tonight on ESPN 2 headlined in Paris, France by Ric Verhoeven defending his heavyweight title.
  • Traditional Championship Wrestling has started the TCW Classics Network at www.tcwwrestling.pivotshare.com for $4.99 per month. Subscribers will have access to the company's tape library.
  • Al Snow is opening the Al Snow Wrestling Academy in London in conjunction with TNA.
  • WWC from last night in Bayamon: Angel Cotto b Tommy Diablo to keep jr. title, Super Gladiator b ?, Gilbert b Chicano in a strap match, Thunder & Lightning b Joe Bravo & Peter the Bad romance, Angel Fashion b Sensacional Carlitos to win the Puerto Rican title in a match where Fashion put up his hair in, Sensacional Carlitos b Angel Fashion to regain the title, Carlito b Mr. 450 Hammett to retain the Universal title in an extreme rules match, Cuervo & Mike Mendoza b Revolucion I & II to retain the held up WWC tag team titles.  The scheduled Ray Gonzalez vs. El Hijo de Dos Caras didn't happen with no explanation.
  • Here is a story on the wedding with former NHL player Sheldon Souray and former WWE performer Barbie Blank (Kelly Kelly).
  • Fusion Wrestling on 5/28 in Warsaw, VA at Rappahannock High School featuring Ricky Steamboat, Ricky Morton, Jimmy Valiant and MVP with a 5 p.m. meet and greet and 7 p.m. show.
  • Combat Zone Wrestling from last night in Voorhees, NJ:  Kit Osbourne b Dan O'Hare-DQ, Aaron Williams b Alexander James, Tim Donst b Neiko Sozio, Dezmond Xavier & Zachary Wentz b Lucky 13 & Conor Claxton, Greg Excellent b Joe Gacy, Lio Rush won over Joey Janela, Dave Crist and David Starr to win the CZW Wired title, Mike Draztik & Angel Ortiz b Drew & Rory Gulak, Jonathan Gresham b B-Boy, Matt Tremont b Devon Moore to keep the CZW title in a Taipei and Barbed wire Boards Death match.  Major bloodbath. Both had to be cut out of barbed wire and tables. Greg Excellent challenged Tremont for the title. 
  • Big Time Wrestling from last night in Bristol, TN before 700 fans:  Ray Idol & Samuel Shaw & Ted Goodz b John Skylar & Harlem Bravado & ?, Buff Bagwell (managed by Kevin Nash) b Jake Manning, Mr. TA b Todo Loco, Jeff Tankersly b Bunkhouse Buck in a bullrope match, Jeff Hardy b Danny Miles, Flex Armstrong b Gangrel, Ricky Morton & Robert Gibson b Warlord & Barbarian (managed by Jim Cornette and Bobby Eaton). Morton bled heavy. Match only went 5:00 (thanks to Jamie Combs)
  • CZW on Friday in Dallas at Eddie Deen's Ranch with Matt Tremont vs. Masada for the CZW title, Cherry Bomb vs. Jessicka Havok for the WSU women's title, Nation of Intoxication vs. Gulaks & Chuck Taylor, Sami Callihan vs. Bull James, Lio  Rush vs. Joey Janela, Joe Gacy vs. Tim Donst plus AR Fox appears. 
  • CZW on 4/9 in Voorhees, NJ at Flyers Skate Zane for the Best of the Best 15 with Dezmond Xaiver, Dave Crist, Lio Rush, Joey Janela, Dave Starr, Jonathan Gresham, Rayan Galeone, Anthony Henry, Ethan Page, Rickey Shane Page and Shane Strickland.  There will also be a scramble match for the final spot.
  • Southern Illinois Championship Wrestling before a near sellout of 280 fans in East Carondelet, IL:  Bobby D b Troll-DQ, Osby Tomlin b Jimmy D, Britton Tucker d Dillon Bass, Brandon Espinosa & Chris Hargas b Daniel Gunner & Ron Powers, Jason Vaughn b Jeff Blair, Gary Jackson b Waco-DQ, Sean Vincent & Big Jim Hoffarth b Ax & Dave Vaughan, Flash Flanagan b Ken Kasa-COR.  Next show is 4/15 with Terry Funk appearing for a meet and greet, as well as watching a Terry Funk tournament where the winner gets the next SICW title shot.  Funk also appears on 4/16 in Cape Girardeau. Bob Orton will wrestle on that show.
  • Pro Wrestling Sheet reported that former WWE wrestler Zach Gowen has been booked for the TV show "American Ninja Warrior" and will be competing during filming on 4/27 in Indianapolis. 
  • Paul Daley has teased he will have a major fight on Bellator's debut show in London. I know they've been building his return match with Josh Koscheck, so we'll see. 
  • Dynamo Pro Wrestling on Saturday night in Fenton, MO at the Startford Bar and Grill, with Ricky Cortez and Jake Dirden.
  • World 1 Wrestling on 4/9 in Morganville, NJ at the Bull Pen.  Justin Credible will be wrestling on the show.
  • Grand Slam Wrestling on 4/9 in Moosic, PA for the annual Aggro Cup at the Moosic Youth Center headlined by Sonjay Dutt.
  • NWA Smoky Mountain Wrestling on 4/16 in Kingsport, TN at the Civic Auditorium headlined by Jason Kincaid vs. Lio Rush as part of the first round of the 2016 NWA Smoky Mountain Cup. 
  • Dynamo Pro Wrestling from last night in Wood River, IL:  Mike Outlaw b CJ Shine, Brandon Espinosa b Paco Gonzalzez, Keon Option & Justin D'Air b Alexandre Rudolph & Jake Parnell, Adam Rich b Shane Fury, The Snitch b Danny Adams, Evan Morris & Shawn Santel & Mauler McDarby b Eric Allen & Brandon Aarons & Chris Logan, Outtkast b Jayson Khaos (thanks to Patrick Brandmeyer)
  • Vendetta Pro Wrestling on 4/8 in Santa Maria,. CA at the Raddison Hotel.  They also run in conjunction with the Cauliflower Alley Club on 4/10 and 4/11 at the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
  • Dynasty Pro Wrestling from last night in Albany, NY:  Kyle Brad b Mike Verna, Wolfgar b Scotty Kiss, Amazing Graysons b World Class Gentlemen and South Philly's Finest, Hoss b Mark Hart, Travis Gordon b Tyler Venice, Travis Dorian won three-way over Captain Wayno and ?, Chuck Deep & Brute Van Slyke b Southern Boys, Storm b two women, Dalton Castle b Mike Orlando.  Next show is 5/7 in Troy, NY (thanks to Jacob Gilbert)
  • Ignite Wrestling from Friday night in Central Florida:  Damian James b Gabriel Black, Santana Garrett b Angel Rose, JB Cool b Mark Silva, Lio Rush b Dezmond Xavier, Chico Adams & Braydon Knight b James Anthony & Victor Andrews, Jesus (Ricardo) Rodriguez & Lince Dorado b Jon Cruz & Jay Rios and Ace Andrews & Rex Bacchus (thanks to Kim Artlip)

Today in professional wrestling history: Randy Savage wins WWF World Title

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