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Daily Update: Gawker bankrupt, Stone Cold Podcast with AJ, Smackdown ratings

Gawker

Gawker Files for Bankruptcy

Gawker Media filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today in New York court, with bankruptcy preceding a sale to Ziff Davis. Davis, who owns IGN and Ask Men has reportedly bid about $100 million for Gawker. Nick Denton, the owner, who is also expected to file for bankruptcy due to the $140 million award to Hulk Hogan, said, "We have been forced by this litigation to give up our long standing independence, but our writers remain committed to telling the true stories that underpin credibility with our millions of readers. With stronger backing and disentangled from litigation, they can perform their vital work on more platforms and in different forms."

We're looking for reports tonight on the WWE house show in Waco, TX (Dean Ambrose, Kevin Owens, Rusev, Enzo, Cass, Kane, Big Show, Braun Strowman, Erick Rowan, Sami Zayn, Dudleys, Lana, Sasha Banks) and NXT in Gainesville, FL to NewsTips@WrestlingObserver.com.

We're looking for your thoughts on both Wednesday night's NXT Takeover show and Tuesday's New Japan Best of the Super Junior tournament finals so you can send a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match for each show to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com.

NEW JAPAN WORLD PRO WRESTLING AT 8 P.M. TONIGHT ON AXS

  • Satoshi Kojima vs. Yujiro Takahashi
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Hirooki Goto

Both matches are from the 2015 G-1 Climax tournament

EVOLVE TONIGHT AT www.wwnlive.com at 9 p.m. EASTERN FROM YBOR CITY, FL

  • Ethan Page vs. Darby Allin
  • Anthony Nese vs. Fred Yehi
  • Matt Riddle vs. Cedric Alexander
  • Johnny Gargano & TJP vs. Drew Galloway & Ethan Carter III
  • Drew Gulak & Tracy Williams vs. Bravado Brothers for Evolve tag titles
  • Timothy Thatcher vs. Chris Hero for Evolve title

CMLL LIVE FROM ARENA MEXICO TONIGHT AT 9:30 P.M. EASTERN TIME AT www.clarosports.com/en-vivo02/

  • Robin & Star Jr. vs. Akuma & Metalico
  • Pegasso & Soberano & Stigma vs. Disturbio & Escandalo & Virus
  • Lluvia & Princesa Sugei & Vaquerita vs. Dallys & Tiffany & Zeuxis
  • El Terrible & La Mascara & Shocker vs. Kraneo & Pierroth & Rey Escorpion
  • Cavernario vs. Rey Cometa for the Mexican national welterweight title
  • Mistico & Valiente & Volador Jr. vs. Euforia & Ultimo Guerrero & Gran Guerrero 

CES MMA AT 9 P.M. TONIGHT ON AXS FROM LINCOLN, RI

Saturday we're looking for reports from WWE in College Station, TX (Dean Ambrose, Kevin Owens, Rusev, Lana, Sheamus, Enzo, Cass, Kane, Big Show, Braun Strowman, Erick Rowan, Sami Zayn, Dudleys, Lana, Sasha Banks) and Jackson, MS (Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, A.J. Styles, Sheamus, Dolph Ziggler, Charlotte, Alberto Del Rio, Natalya, Luke Gallows, Karl Anderson, Usos, New Day), NXT in Derby, UK and ROH in Hopkins, MN (Adam Cole vs. Chris Sabin, Michael Elgin vs. Kamaitachi, plus the first night of tag wars with Jay Lethal & Roderick Strong vs. Jay & Mark Briscoe vs. Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly, Silas Young & Beer City Bruiser vs. Lio Rush & Moose vs. War Machine; and Rhett Titus & Kenny King vs. Rocky Romero & Baretta vs. Young Bucks).

TNA SLAMMIVERSARY PPV FROM UNIVERSAL IN ORLANDO AT 8 P.M.

  • Bobby Lashley vs. Drew Galloway for the TNA title - match can only be won via knockout or submission
  • Jeff Hardy vs. Matt Hardy full metal mayhem
  • Jade vs. Sienna for Knockouts title
  • Abyss & Crazzy Steve vs. Jessie Godderz & Robbie E for tag titles
  • Trevor Lee vs. Eddie Edwards vs. DJ Zema Ion vs. Andre Everett for X title
  • Eli Drake vs. Bram for King of the Mountain title
  • Ethan Carter III vs. Mike Bennett
  • Grado & Mahabali Shera vs. The Tribunal

Sunday we're looking for reports from WWE in Baton Rouge (Dean Ambrose, Kevin Owens, Rusev, Enzo, Cass, Kane, Big Show, Braun Strowman, Erick Rowan, Sami Zayn, Dudleys, Lane, Sasha Banks), Lake Charles, LA (Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, A.J. Styles, Sheamus, Dolph  Ziggler, Charlotte, Alberto Del Rio,Natalya, Luke Gallows, Karl Anderson, Usos, New Day), NXT in Darby, UK and ROH in Milwaukee at the Turner Hall Ballroom (Adam Cole vs Colt Cabana, Christopher Daniels vs. Kamaitachi plus the finals of Tag Wars).

Raw will be Monday in New Orleans including the return of Shane McMahon. It'll be the go-home show for Money in the Bank. NXT also runs in Belfast, Northern Ireland. There are also TNA tapings in Orlando.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped Tuesday in Biloxi, MS and NXT runs in Dublin, Ireland. There is also an almost live Impact in Orlando as well as the taping for the following week's show.

TNA tapings will continue on Wednesday in Orlando. NXT will be in Liverpool, England.

THE ROUND-UP


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Figure Four Weekly 6/9/2016: Will Christopher Nowinski testify in WWE concussion lawsuit? - The latest battleground in the WWE concussion litigation is whether or not Christopher Nowinski can be compelled to testify. Issues cited in a WWE opposition to the plaintiffs' effort are included in the lawsuit.



Wrestling Observer Newsletter

READ IT HERE: June 13, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Deaths of Muhammad Ali and Kimbo Slice, Brock Lesnar returning to UFC, more 

A look at the lives and careers of Muhammad Ali and Kimbo Slice, the return of Brock Lesnar to UFC and the story behind it and coverage of the Best of the Super Juniors tournament are the lead stories in this week's issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.

Our Ali story talks about the changes in public opinion on him going through the years, his place in culture, the Ali-Frazier fight, the Ali-Liston fights, his being banned from boxing, the creation of different world titles, the Ali-Foreman fight, the Thrilla in Manila, the inspiration of the movie Rocky, what Ali took from pro wrestling, Gorgeous George and Fred Blassie, and what he gave back to pro wrestling, the Ali vs. Inoki story, Ali's appearances in relation to pro wrestling, Ali's pro wrestling matches that are often forgotten, Ali working the first WrestleMania and the Superdome in New Orleans for Bill Watts, the sad ending of his career and the fraud on the public that was the Larry Holmes fight.

The death of Kimbo Slice is also covered. Read about the circumstances leading to the death, how he became famous, his real background, what he did between football and MMA, the Sean Gannon fight, Elite XC, his television ratings records, the crazy night that was supposed to be the Ken Shamrock fight, the death of Elite XC and how media a misunderstanding ended the promotion, Kimbo's days in UFC, the highest rated season of Ultimate Fighter, and sustaining the drawing power.  Plus, a look at Kimbo Slice and pro wrestling and why it was about to happen, and how it fell apart, is covered. There's also look at Slice in boxing, and the Dada 5000 fight.

Finally, read about the Brock Lesnar to UFC deal, what Lesnar said about why he's coming back should it be believed, the choice of Mark Hunt as the opponent, why the deal took so long to be announced, how this affects pro wrestling, Lesnar's regrets about re-signing with WWE but why you can question that, the drug testing issue and the Ariel Helwani issue that reporting the story first turned into.

CLICK HERE FOR A FULL PREVIEW.

Current subscribers click here to continue reading.


You can also order the print Observer right now and get it delivered to your door via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer.

You can also order print issues at www.paypal.com directing funds to dave@wrestlingobserver.com.
 
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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.

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. 

Check out the latest online Wrestling Observer BACK ISSUE: May 3, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Death of Rick Rude, WWF Backlash review, more. A look at the life and career of Rick Rude, a review of WWF Backlash, plus tons more.

FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE

Thanks to everyone for all the nice words on this week's issue and the Ali story. I really appreciate it. 

Maria Kanellis was announced as being pulled from Sunday's Slammiversary show due to a broken hand. She was scheduled against Gail Kim. 

If you're around a computer around 11 p.m. Eastern tonight so you check out the last two matches on tonight's Arena Mexico show. For atmosphere, it's the closest thing to old school wrestling and the guys in those matches, if anything, do far too much to entertain the audience. Some of the trios matches of late have been beyond anything seen here as far as eye opening babyface comebacks go.  

The next Stone Cold Podcast on the WWE network will be on 6/20 with A.J. Styles.

Smackdown did its lowest numbers to date on USA last night with 1,996,000 viewers going against the Stanley Cup playoffs game five which did 5.01 million viewers.

Take a look at the Ethan Carter III & Drew Galloway angle that culminates in matches this weekend in Evolve here.

WWE

  • WWE is promoting a Bill Goldberg collection of matches on the WWE network this month.
  • Paul Heyman has formed a partnership with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas to promote the Rehab Bikini International. He's currently in Las Vegas doing viral promotions for the event. More on that here.
  • Bryan Danielson was backstage at last night's NXT tapings. It was the first WWE show he's attended since his retirement show in Seattle.
  • WWE Network has added a number of Nitro episodes from 1999 and 2000.
  • John Cena and Stephanie McMahon will be guest speakers at the Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity on 6/23 in France talking about the history of WWE and how it garners its fan base.
  • The stock dropped 32 cents per share today to $17.59. 
  • Big Show will be signing free autographs on 6/18 at the Wizard World Comic Con in Sacramento at 11 a.m. at the Sacramento Convention Center.

UFC

  • Tim Means and USADA have settled on a six-month suspension for a drug test failure which Means claimed was caused by a tainted supplement. Means tested positive for Ostarine, a member of the SARMS group which has become popular with some pro wrestlers who are drug tested.
  • Michael Bisping post UFC 199 talking his next title defense here.

MISCELLANEOUS

  • The Ali vs. Inoki fight will be talked about tonight on Inside MMA with Josh Gross at about 11:30 p.m. Eastern time. In Japan, that fight is considered the birth of MMA. It really shouldn't be, but it is still quite the story that it actually happened after a century of teases like all the Strangler Lewis vs. Jack Dempsey and Lou Thesz vs. Rocky Marciano talk in their eras.
  • Another Ali vs. Inoki story as well as more on his work in pro wrestling is here.
  • Jim Ross talks his experience with Ali when Ali was being used to manage The Snowman to try and get him over. 
  • Here is a story on the death of 50s, 60s and 70s star Dan Miller.
  • Jim Ross announces Knockout Night at the D at 11 p.m. tonight on CBS Sports with Sean Wheelock. Little known fact. Sean Wheelock growing up wanted to be a pro wrestling announcer. 
  • For those coming to our convention 7/7 to 7/10 in Las Vegas, the people at The Las Vegas Fight Shop, who have been subscribers for probably 25 years, have a special to those coming. They have a Friday night from 6-8 p.m. signing with Randy Couture and a Saturday from Noon to 2 p.m. signing with Nate Diaz. The signings require the purchase of an Affliction shirt, but anyone from the site can get 20% off a shirt and VIP treatment to cut down the line. Also, anyone from the site who comes to the store can get 20 percent off anything all weekend.
  • Cody Rhodes will be appearing at the Heroes and Villains Fan Fest on 7/2 and 7/3 at the Meadowlands Expo Center in East Rutherford, NJ and for them on 11/19 and 11/10 in Atlanta at the Georgia World Congress Center.
  • The NFC MMA show tomorrow night at Center Stage in Atlanta is sold out, and has been for more than a week. The 7/22 NFC show headlined by Chazz Walton vs. Warren Smith for the Georgia lightweight title at the Electric Company has tickets available.
  • AAW on 6/17 in Merrionette Park, IL at 115 Bourbon Street has few tickets remaining. Top matches are Sami Callihan & Dave Crist vs. Eddie Kingston & Homicide, Davey Vega & Mat Fitchett defend the tag titles against Devin & Mason Cutter, Chris Hero vs. Drago, Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Johnny "Gargano, Tommaso Ciampa vs. ?, AR Fox vs. Aerostar, Trevor Lee vs. Andrew Everett vs. Cedric Alexander vs. Moose, Drew Gulak vs. Silas Young plus Candice LaRae, Heidi Lovelace, Jessicka Havok, Kimber Lee and Kongo Kong.
  • Baja Stars USA on 6/18 in San Diego at Parque de la Ala with Valiente and Psicosis.
  • Caristico headlines a 6/26 show in Westminster, CO at the Imperium Events Center.
  • Solar vs. Negro Navarro headlines 6/26 in Chicago at Chi-Town Football.
  • Chidi Njokuani vs. Thiago Jambo Goncalves was announced as the No. 2 bout for next week's Bellator show on 6/17 in Fresno. Goncalves is replacing Douglas Lima, who was moved to the 7/16 show in London at the O2 Arena. 
  • Announced for the August Mid Atlantic Fan Fest in Charlotte is a Jim Ross one man show plus Ross will host a roast for Ole Anderson. Tony Schiavone, Magnum T.A., Arn Anderson and Austin Idol have been announced.
  • Jeff Jarrett and his GFW will be doing a joint show with Wrestle Pro in Keyport, NJ tomorrow night.
  • Acclaim Pro Wrestling on Saturday night at the SPK Dom Polski Polish Combatants Centre in Ottawa.
  • An interview with Zach Gowen talking his appearance on American Ninja Warriors is here.