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Daily Update: UFC 251, UFC 4 video game, WWE notes

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WON NEWSLETTER: July 13, 2020 Observer Newsletter: COVID-19 effects on wrestling/MMA, more

COVID-19 continues to wreak havoc through wrestling/MMA plus tons of news.


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SATURDAY NEWS UPDATE

WWE

  • Roman Reigns posted a tweet congratulating Keith Lee on his NXT Championship win: “Congrats on one hell of a journey @RealKeithLee. Still a ton of work to do, which I know you already know. Keep killin it and representing. I definitely still want that one on one, Champ!” Lee then responded to Reigns: “The Grind is forever boss man. I'll most certainly look forward to it.”
  • Lee told Bleacher Report about a moment he shared with Adam Cole after their title match: "It wasn't on air, obviously, but there was just a moment after all the celebration, the pyro I wasn't expecting, the confetti and all this crazy stuff and I'm all covered. I look down and I see him still in the corner. That guy is awesome. In that moment, I had to tell him that he gained a new level of respect from me. I shook his hand and that was the first conversation I had."
  • In an interview with Screen Rant, Edge discussed the competition between WWE and AEW: “I think competition in anything is always a good thing. I think it forces people to up their game and not rest on their laurels. I think, if I'm looking at it from the performer's aspect, it's another place to be able to ply your trade, and that's amazing. That's never a bad thing. Just imagine if there was only one studio, if all there was was MGM. I like the fact that there's a bunch of different studios, and I think the same goes for wrestling. I think it ups everyone's game. As a wrestling fan, that's never a bad thing! To have, you know, a lot of different options. Now's a great time to be a wrestling fan. It's a really good time to be a performer, too. I look at it from the aspect of, I'm someone who always wants to be the best. I always want my character to stand out. That's even more so if there's more competition. Personally, I think it's a good thing. The era that I grew up, there was all kinds of different promotions. That was always fun and exciting, to go to the local variety store and pick up these wrestling magazines and see these wrestlers who I'd never seen before, but now I knew they were out there, because of these magazines. That, to me, was really fun. Then, when they'd eventually make it to the WWE, and I'd see them for the first time, I thought, ‘Oh, I kind of know this person! I know this character!’ I miss that. I think it's changed, definitely. But the point being, I think competition is good.”
  • Erik spoke about he and Sarah Logan expecting their first child: “It’s something that she and I had talked about almost since we met. We talked about having kids. We had been planning on having kids in a couple years. With Covid and all the crazy changes and all the negative that happened, she was let go from WWE earlier this year. We said, why are we waiting anymore? It worked out. I think the story of our relationship and my life is turning negatives into positives. What might be a problem that should have killed me, you turn it around and make it work for you. You make it better than you could have imagined. I feel that is what we did with her release. She started a YouTube channel that is really doing well right now. We are having a lot of fun with that.”
  • Vince McMahon wished his mother a happy 100th birthday: “Happy 100th birthday to my mom! I hope I have her genetics :)”
  • Episode 35 of Tito Ortiz Uncaged covers Ortiz’s visit to the WWE Performance Center from earlier this year.
  • The Performance Center opened on this day in 2013.
  • WWE’s YouTube channel uploaded Brock Lesnar vs. Samoa Joe from Great Balls of Fire and Cesaro & Tyson Kidd vs. The New Day from Extreme Rules 2015.

Other Wrestling

MMA

  • Dana White claimed that tonight’s UFC 251 PPV is trending higher than a Conor McGregor fight: “This is trending off the charts. This thing is trending higher than a Conor McGregor fight. The only that this fight is comparable to is Conor vs. Khabib. I'll give you an interesting stat: Our UFC store has sold more merchandise already now than we did in all of 2019. We already beat 2019 with merchandise. This thing is trending as big of a fight as I've ever seen in my entire career."
  • The UFC uploaded the final episode of Embedded for tonight’s PPV. They also released episode one of The Making of Fight Island.
  • It was revealed today that Jorge Masvidal and Israel Adesanya are the cover stars for EA Sports’ UFC 4, which will officially be released on PS4 and Xbox One on August 14. Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury are the pre-order bonus characters for the game.
  • White said Gilbert Burns is next in line for the winner of tonight’s Kamaru Usman vs. Masvidal welterweight title fight: “He’s the No. 1 contender. He’s the No. 1 ranked guy in the world. Yeah -- he’s the No. 1 guy in the world. The kid is hungry. He wants to fight. He wants to be a world champion -- and he’s No. 1. Yeah, that puts him in a pretty good spot.”
  • Burns gave his prediction for Usman vs. Masvidal: “I see Kamaru dominating, that’s what I see. I think a lot of people get a big expectation in this matchup, but it can only go two ways, or Masvidal can catch him and knock him out inside two rounds. But the way I see the fight going is Kamaru dominating. Even a boring fight, I’d say, Kamaru takes him down and smashes him on the cage. I don’t want that as a fan, but I believe it’s gonna be a boring fight, Kamaru controlling every aspect of the fight.”
  • Masvidal discussed his weight cut for tonight’s PPV: “Twenty pounds in six days. That’s all I’m gonna say. It was rough. But I did it. I get sh*t done.”
  • Paige VanZant plans to have one final surgery on her arm after UFC 251: “I think that’s the biggest reason I want to go in and have another surgery to get my plate taken out -- every punch I throw hurts. Everything that happens on my arm kind of hurts. I have the plate that runs from my wrist to my elbow. It’s something that’s in the back of my mind. I can still train 100 percent, but I can’t hold pads for anybody. I can’t help my teammates as much as I would like.”
  • White spoke about the passing of Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov: “It’s terrible. We feel horrible for Khabib and how much he loves his father and how close they were. [We’re] just giving him time to mourn and do whatever he needs to do. We’re not bothering him at all right now. We’re just leaving him alone.”
  • White addressed Mike Perry’s issues, saying he saw them coming and that Perry obviously needs help.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo and Joseph Benavidez’s vacant flyweight title fight at the UFC’s July 18 Fight Night show is in jeopardy due to Figueiredo testing positive for COVID-19. Figueiredo was set to be tested again today. His manager spoke to ESPN: "Deiveson tested positive two months ago. There is no way he tests positive again. Our position is that is a false positive. We're waiting the second test to prove that he's clear and can fly normally to fight."
  • Sean O’Malley vs. Marlon Vera is set for UFC 252 on August 15.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: Lex Luger wins NWA United States title


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