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Daily Update: NXT, Okada, DeAngelo Williams

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FIGURE FOUR WEEKLY: Figure Four Weekly 7/3/2017: Looking at NJPW's weekend in the US 

When New Japan Pro Wrestling's weekend in Long Beach was over, Kenny Omega had been crowned as the inaugural IWGP US Heavyweight Champion and the most pressing question was what's next for the company in the United States. Omega was, as expected, the star of the two G1 Specials.

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WRESTLING OBSERVER NEWSLETTER: July 3, 2017 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Summerslam plans change, Cody Rhodes wins ROH World title, more

A look at changes in WWE booking leading to SummerSlam, including a main event change and how this likely effects the WrestleMania plans for New Orleans is the lead item in the new double issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.

Look at SummerSlam, Great Balls of Fire, Battleground and the Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe program and how it's viewed.

There is a feature on Cody Rhodes winning the ROH title, interpromotional champion vs. champion matches in the last 30 years and how rare they are, the last time one person won a major world title from two organizations at the same time, the last match of this type in the U.S. and how it came without any hype and its purpose was very different, plus different reactions to Cody Rhodes, the trickiness of the finish, the ticket demand for Long Beach, what show last year exceeded it, and father and son combos who both held world heavyweight titles.

This issue features the 2017 G-1 Climax tournament, including all tournament matches, the broadcast plans and times, key matches to look out for and more.

Check out the NXT Takeover card for 8/19 in Brooklyn, an idea floated for Asuka's booking, the arrival of Bobby Fish, more teases regarding Daniel Bryan wrestling again, more on how WWE has changed from a medical standpoint over the years, WWE TV in India, a new TV commercial regarding John Cena, WWE looking to find out why people have canceled network or don't watch the programming anymore, Mike Bennett talks his WWE signing, Raw guys on Smackdown shows and Smackdown guys on Raw shows this summer, an update on Io Shirai coming to WWE and her injury situation, an update on the Mae Young Classic and broadcast plans, the promotion of the Mae Young name and lots of new wrestlers in the tournament.

Look at T.J. Wilson's new role, the most-watched shows on the WWE Network, the company's worth, NXT television for the month of July, as well as notes on all the WWE & NXT house shows from the past week, highlights of the shows and business notes on the shows.

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ORDERING INFO: Order the print Wrestling Observer right now and get it delivered via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer, or by using PayPal directing funds to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com
 
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WON BACK ISSUE: June 12, 2000 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Paul Heyman meets with ECW talent, PRIDE 9 results, more

Paul Heyman, who hadn't appeared at an ECW event since the Hardcore Heaven PPV, surprisingly, after missing the TV taping on 6/2 in New Orleans, flew to Pensacola, FL for the house show for a lengthy ECW team meeting.

The one hour long meeting was largely a pep talk, since most of the wrestlers hadn't even spoken to Heyman in a month, and with smaller crowds, slightly declining ratings and late checks, morale had hit a new low.

Heyman went through a story about where he saw the wrestling business in the U.S. headed. The theory he had was that WWF and USA Network would settle their lawsuit before going to trial because both have so much dirt on the other that would come out in court that both sides stock prices would drop and suffer public embarrassment. At that point he figured USA Network would get a strong settlement and WWF would go to CBS Viacom, moving Raw to TNN on Monday nights. He talked about the chance that ECW would get on USA Network or possibly FOX.

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WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE

WWE

  • Tonight's episode of NXT is the 400th edition of the show. It will have Bobby Roode vs. Roderick Strong for the NXT Championship and Hideo Itami & Kassius Ohno vs. Killian Dain & Alexander Wolfe. Our JJ Williams called Roode vs. Strong "worthy of a TakeOver main event" in his report from the tapings.
  • WWE uploaded video of an angle where SAnitY attacked Drew McIntyre as he was leaving Full Sail University.
  • Kazuchika Okada was again backstage at a WWE show for last night's episode of SmackDown. Rapper Mega Ran wrote that Okada was at gorilla position all show and talked to people before and after their matches. Okada has been to WWE shows to visit friends in the past and he was relatively close to the shows in Phoenix, Arizona with NJPW having been in Long Beach over the weekend.
  • Last night's dark match after SmackDown and 205 Live was John Cena teaming with Shinsuke Nakamura to beat Rusev & Baron Corbin.
  • WWE unveiled a new logo for the upcoming Mae Young Classic.
  • Mary Kate (who was formerly Andrea on the indies before signing with WWE) changed her name on Twitter to Sage Beckett. She had previously briefly changed it to Sage Miller. Demi Bennett (who is an Australian wrestler that recently signed) also got a new in-ring name, with her changing her name on Twitter to Rhea Ripley.
  • Gamespot has an article on new features in the WWE 2K18 video game, including changes to the My Career mode and better visuals.
  • Kurt Angle tweeted that the fireworks that The Hardys got for their WrestleMania return were originally intended for when he was introduced as a member of the Hall of Fame class at the show.
  • Bryan Alvarez talks to Lance Storm about WWE creative and the problems they have making babyfaces on this week's episode of "Killing the Town."
  • Paste Magazine posted a story about Aleister Black conveying legitimacy in his work in NXT.

Pro Wrestling

  • Bret Hart thanked everyone for the messages they've sent about the passing of Smith Hart. Bret also reflected on Smith's life and his passing.
  • As they've done before to promote the service, the first night of the G1 Climax will air for free on New Japan World on July 17th. That show will be headlined by Tetsuya Naito vs. Kota Ibushi and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
  • Starting at 4:20 p.m. ET on Friday, AXS TV will be replaying the first night of NJPW's G1 Special in Long Beach. That will be the lead-in to them showing the second night for the first time. AXS TV Fights CEO Andrew Simon called the events a "huge success across the board."
  • Katsuyori Shibata wrote that he may be able to make a positive announcement on his blog next week. He's been posting updates about his health on the blog since his injury at Sakura Genesis.
  • DeAngelo Williams told ESPN's Adam Schefter that his match at Slammiversary was a one-time deal and said that he definitely wants to continue playing in the NFL.
  • PROGRESS Wrestling confirmed that the main event of their big show at Alexandra Palace on September 10th will be Pete Dunne defending his PROGRESS Championship against Travis Banks.
  • Smash Wrestling announced that they'll be airing on the Fight Network after Impact on Thursdays starting on July 20th. The Fight Network's John Pollock tweeted that wrestlers from Impact will be able to appear on Smash's TV shows.
  • Ring of Honor is moving from Comet TV to CHARGE, with back-to-back episodes airing at 10 p.m. ET on Sunday nights. Like Comet, CHARGE is owned by Sinclair Broadcasting and its availability is similarly limited to digital channels. CHARGE is in less homes than Comet.
  • Adam Cole turned 28 years old today.
  • The Metro interviewed Matt Riddle about wrestling in the UK, potentially going to WWE in the future, and not being a fan of Dana White.
  • The Tampa Bay Times has a story on a 60-year-old father who is training to be a pro wrestler to help his son cope with his mother's death.
  • Bleacher Report profiled Hyan, a pro wrestler who works a day job at Geico while chasing her dream.

UFC/MMA

  • Aaron Rajman, who was an MMA fighter and trained with American Top Team, was shot and killed during a home invasion. He was only 25 years old and passed away on Tuesday.
  • Conor McGregor's coach said that he's training "four times more" for his boxing match against Floyd Mayweather than he normally would for a UFC fight.
  • Holly Holm thinks that McGregor has a chance against Mayweather and claimed that only those who don't fight think that the matchup is a joke.
  • Cris Cyborg hopes that she'll have a better relationship with the UFC after Dana White admitted that the company has made mistakes in their handling of her.
  • Two suspects were arrested for a robbery at Ronda Rousey and Travis Browne's house in April. 
  • The UFC uploaded the first and second episodes of Embedded for UFC 214. They also posted the full Countdown special for the pay-per-view.
  • Malki Kawa, who is the agent for Jon Jones and a lot of other MMA fighters, announced that he's now representing Demetrious Johnson.
  • Megan Anderson appeared on this week's episode of Sean, Funky, and the Baddest Man podcast.

Today in Pro Wrestling History: Williams & Gordy win WCW tag titles

F4W Online / Wrestling Observer Vegas Convention Event Info

August 17-21; All times are TBA; Full information on the group Facebook page; Activities subject to change 

  • Thursday: Meet at the High Roller for Bowling at the Link; Party at Carnival Court at Hurrah's
  • Friday: Kiss Mini Golf tournament at the Rio; Dinner at Texas de Brazil; Suite party (location TBA)
  • Saturday: Burgers with Granny for lunch; Future Stars of Wrestling show featuring Stephan Bonnar & Phil Baron, and co-main events: 3-way match with Leva Bates vs. Mia Yim vs. Hudson Envy, and "Filthy" Tom Lawlor vs. Thomas Santell (f.k.a. Antonio "The Promise" Thomas); NXT viewing party at the Sci-Fi Center
  • Sunday: SUPER CHINA BUFFET DAY at the Wicked Spoon Buffet at 1pm; SummerSlam viewing party at the Sci-Fi Center
  • Monday: Goodbye lunch at Chen Chen at NY NY
  • All website members will also receive a 15% discount on any purchases from the Las Vegas Fight Shop for the entirety of the convention

Texas de Brazil, Wicked Spoon, NXT and Summer Slam will all be sign up and pre-paid events, prices and collection begin in mid July~!

Pro Wrestling Tees is now carrying our latest line of F4W shirts. Support the Empire~! Grab yours today!


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