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Daily Update: SmackDown changes, Chimaev-Edwards, Abadon

DAILY UPDATE

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WON NEWSLETTER: October 26, 2020 Observer Newsletter: Ibushi wins NJPW G1 Climax 30

We've got a G1 special on the Observer with the deepest look at the tournament anywhere. G1 MVP, G1 best match, G1 history notes, polls on the last three nights, the story behind Kota Ibushi's win and much more in a new double issue of the Observer.

The business decline that was unavoidable, the difference in wrestling with fans who are not supposed to cheer and boo and who does the best with it, the ups and downs of the different wrestlers, who improved the most from last year, lots of G1 records, Power Struggle notes, a breakdown of every wrestler in the tournament and how they did in the ring this year as compared to last year, who were the best at carrying opponents, who had the best matches, how this year's match quality compared to last year, just how great this year's A block shows were, New Japan's U.S. popularity and which wrestlers have had the best in-ring tournaments in recent years.

Also in this issue:

Harold Meij's final day in charge of New Japan and key issues with his legacy, Tokyo Dome updates, and how the last days went down.

Things going on behind-the-scenes with President Trump that may be done that would help Vince McMahon and Dana White, Andrew Yang talks wrestlers as independent contractors and what he plans to do  about it, Orange County Department of Health looking at COVID spreading in buildings that house WWE and MLW, and WWE's statement. 

What is and isn't misleading and looking at WWE COVID numbers, we preview Hell in a Cell, note a mandatory conference all WWE talent has to attend this week, WWE getting an award looked at, WWE signing, why the plight of independent wrestlers is so different from before, WWE Network November theme, WWE star nominated for a movie award and new WWE Network deals. 

Wrestling ratings compared to other sports, Canadian & U.K. ratings, Mike Bennett talks the problems in communication in WWE, Sami Zayn talks the ladder match, WWE market value and the most watched shows last week on the WWE Network.

Brian Ortega vs. The Korean Zombie with full coverage of Saturday's UFC event,.

The surprising thing that matters far more than most gave it credit for when it comes to viewing wrestling shows.

Ratings breakdowns in every segment for Wednesdays and every category for other shows, looking at stats not available elsewhere to get the deepest read into how shows are doing, what categories are doing well and how shows compare with previous weeks and one year ago.  

Results of all the major pro wrestling events around the world over the past week. 


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FRIDAY NEWS UPDATE

We will have shows the next four nights, with a show tonight with Garrett Gonzalez, Saturday covering UFC's biggest show in a long time with Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje, Sunday covering Hell in a Cell and Monday covering Raw.

So many things have changed of late with WWE. Smackdown is on FS 1 tonight. Originally the plan was Smackdown, followed by a one hour Talking Smack and then replaying Smackdown for the West Coast viewers for prime time since FS1 doesn't have a staggered feed and FOX does. Then FOX decided to do a special episode of WWE Backstage in that time slot. Now it's back to Talking Smack with Kayla Braxton, Booker T and Montez Ford as hosts.

The reason nothing was advertised for Smackdown until today is because they were rewriting the show last night. They do have a show written and why today they didn't announce matches earlier is a different question. The Otis trial which airs tonight is the reason everything went into chaos. That became the top concern and everything ended up delayed because of it. Nobody can understand why so much was devoted to a show that is expected to have a small audience tonight. Roman Reigns also will reveal the consequences of the I Quit Hell i a Cell match on Sunday. Paul Levesque was brought in to help with tonight's show as he did for last week's show. 

Khamzat Chimaev vs. Leon Edwards was announced as the main event for a 12/19 UFC show. Edwards had been removed from the rankings (he was No. 3), supposedly due to turning down opponents. Edwards then said he would face Chimaev, and Chimaev agreed. And UFC put the fight together. This is a huge fight because Chimaev has looked like a monster thus far but this is a huge step up in opponents.

UFC 254 is at a new time tomorrow from Abu Dhabi with prelims starting at 11 a.m. Eastern and 8 a.m. Pacific:

ESPN+ at 11 a.m. Eastern

  • Joel Alvarez (159.5) vs. Alexander Yakovlev (155.5)
  • Liana Jojua (126) vs. Miranda Maverick (126)

ESPN 2 at noon:

  • Da Un Jung (206) vs. Sam Alvey (206)
  • Alex Oliveira (173) vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov (171)
  • Nathaniel Wood (140) vs. Casey Kenney (140)
  • Stefan Struve (265) vs. Tai Tuivasa (265)

PPV at 2 p.m.

  • Magomed Ankalaev (205.5) vs. Ion Cutelaba (205.5)
  • Lauren Murphy (126) vs. Lilya Shakirova (126)
  • Jacob Malkoun (186) vs. Phil Hawes (186)
  • Alexander Volkov (265) vs. Walt Harris (254)
  • Robert Whittaker (186) vs. Jared Cannonier (185)
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov (155) vs. Justin Gaethje (155) for the lightweight title

Alvarez and Oliveira both missed weight, but both fights are on.

AAA will have a press conference on Monday which is believed to be to announce TripleMania plans.

Abadon was injured last night and hospitalized in her match with Tay Conti. We don't have full details but it was serious and she is expected to make a complete recovery.

WWE

  • 205 Live matches that were taped on Wednesday for tonight were Tony Nese vs. Curt Stallion and Bran Kendrick vs. Mansoor. 
  • These are the www.BatOnline.ag odds for Hell in a Cell:
    • Sasha Banks -225 vs. Bayley +160
    • Drew McIntyre -200 vs. Randy Orton +150
    • Roman Reigns -2600 vs. Jey Uso +900
    • Elias -150 vs. Jeff Hardy +110
  • Thaddeus Bullard (Titus O'Neil) was announced as the grand marshal of this weekend's Firestone Grand Prix in St. Petersburg, FL, the season finale for the NTT Indycar series. 
  • NXT UK wrestlers dressed up like James Bond characters. (thanks to Mike Kuzmuk)

UFC

  • Khabib Nurmagomedov as of mid-week was a -300 favorite to beat Justin Gaethje. He's also a -260 favorite if a fight with GSP is to happen at lightweight, but GSP is a big favorite if it was to happen at welterweight.

AEW

  • Dynamite for 10/28 was taped last night. As noted elsewhere, Rey Fenix was pulled by Dr. Michael Sampson from the match with Kenny Omega due to the neck injury suffered on Wednesday. Fenix was ready to go and tell friends he was okay, but okay in his mind is a very different word than okay in most people's mind. Penta instead faced Omega. Right now there is a plan for a Fenix vs. Penta match down the line, and more likely than not, an Omega vs. Fenix match as well, just not this week.
  • The Jericho/MJF song and dance routine peaked Wednesday night at just under 800,000 viewers.  However, the biggest thing on either show was Penta vs. Fenix.

MISCELLANEOUS

  • Today was Harold Meij's last day in charge of New Japan Pro Wrestling. The new issue details what he's been working on before leaving office.  
  • Dwayne Johnson's new TV show "Young Rock" where different actors play Johnson at 10, 15 and 20, with scenes from growing up in different parts of the world, has started filming in Australia. The show will air on NBC in early 2021.
  • Dezmond Xavier & Zachary Wentz vs. Cody Deaner & Cousin Jake will be on the one-hour preshow at 7 p.m. on AXS prior to Bound for Glory, which is a PPV that starts at 8 p.m. 
  • The Impact + streaming service will be free all weekend.
  • Kevin Eck's weekly ROH news column.
  • Pro Wrestling Tees just passed selling its 2,000,000th item. In honor of it they are doing a 20 percent off sale for everything until midnight Central time tonight wit the code 2MIL
  • IWTV and FITE have reached a distribution agreement where FITE will distribute IWTV's original series The Masked Wrestler.  The first episodes are up on the FITE service.  The seven episode season is an eight-man single elimination tournament with the winner getting an IWTV title match of their choosing.  There are also judges looking to guess the identity of the wrestlers.
  • FITETV has won exclusive iPPV rights for the Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr. exhibition fight and will also be airing TysonOnTriller to build up the fight.
  • AAW on 10/29 at 115 Bourbon Street in Merrionette Park, IL on Fite TV with Mance Warner & Jake Something vs. Hakim Zane & Karam, Ace Austin & Mad Man Fulton vs. Air Wolf & Angel Dorado, Matt Justice vs. Jake Crist, Trey Miguel vs. Stephen Wolf, Sky Blue vs. Sierra plus ACH, Fred Yehi and more.
  • EPW on 11/7 in Perth, Western Australia has a members only show.
  • CWE tonight in Red Deer, Alberta at the Quality Inn with Johnny Devine vs. Jude Dawkins as the main event.
  • CWE results from last night in Calgary:  Tyler Adams b Rich King, Shaun Martens b Slammer, Travis Cole b Sydney Steele, AJ Sanchez & Kevin O'Doyle b Danny Duggan & Mentallo to keep the tag titles, Johnny Devine b Cody Mac.
  • Tony Capone and his NAWA announced Jingle Brawl on 12/19 in Daytona Beach, FL at the Ocean Center as a PPV show.
  • There is a new Go Fund Me for Tracy Smothers who has accumulated heavy medical bills fighting cancer.
  • A Vice piece on Washington Heights, a drag queen who says she is disowned by father New Jack.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: WCW Halloween Havoc 1994


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