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Daily Update: WWE Payback fallout, Hogan sues Gawker again, Snuka trial

Hulk Hogan

 WWE Payback Fallout

There is no further update on Enzo Amore past what was reported last night. He suffered a severe concussion, and was knocked out at one point, but was released from the hospital.  There was no indication of any injuries past the concussion. It's impossible to say when he would be able to return to action this early. The Vaudevillains were scheduled to go over in the match last night. Unless they change direction, they'll probably do something on television to lead to New Day vs. Vaudevillains at Extreme Rules in three weeks, which takes place on 5/22 at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. They ended the show last night already confirming the rematch in the main event of Roman Reigns vs. A.J. Styles for the title in an extreme rules match.

The finish of the Natalya vs. Charlotte match was decided at least last week, if not earlier. It was done to build to a rematch, probably either a submission match or an I quit match, on Extreme rules. One would think there should be follow-up on it tonight, on Raw. 

After the record low rating last week on Raw, the show tonight should get a PPV bump. There is also the curiosity of Shane & Stephanie coexisting running Raw, which should hopefully help at least a slight amount. As far as reversing the trends, which are likely to get worse as we get deeper into the NBA & NHL playoffs, I'm skeptical. 

Regarding Chris Jericho's teasing of being gone, as best we can tell it's just him teasing. He is booked going forward and Fozzy has no dates listed for upcoming tours. Jericho usually takes time off when Fozzy is doing tours. He is booked on future shows all over the place, including tonight, and nothing has been changed as far as advertising goes. 

We're looking for your thoughts on WWE Payback from last night as well as tonight/tomorrow's New Japan Wrestling Dontaku show, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to dave@wrestlingobserver.com" target="_blank">dave@wrestlingobserver.com.

We're also looking for live reports from Raw tonight with Superstars matches, dark show matches or anything else that wouldn't be evident from the live show. Tonight is the first show of the "new era" with Shane and Stephanie McMahon both in control. 


  • Captain New Japan & Juice Robinson vs. Bad Luck Fale & Yujiro Takahashi
  • Tiger Mask & Ryusuke Taguchi & Jay White & David Finlay vs. Kazushi Sakuraba & Yoshi-Hashi & Will Ospreay & Gedo
  • Rocky Romero & Trent Baretta vs. Matt Sydal & Ricochet for IWGP jr. tag titles
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi & Michael Elgin & Yoshitatsu vs. Kenny Omega & Young Bucks for Never six man tag titles
  • Togi Makabe & Tomoaki Honma vs. Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa for IWGP tag team titles
  • Katsuyori Shibata vs. Yuji Nagata for Never title
  • Kushida vs. Jushin Liger for IWGP jr. title
  • Hirooki Goto vs. Evil
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Seiya Sanada
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Tomohiro Ishii for IWGP heavyweight title

Raw is tonight from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped on Tuesday night at the Sprint Center in Kansas City.


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Figure Four Weekly 4/25/2016: Concussion lawsuit update - All the inside information you would ever want to know about concussion lawsuits.

Wrestling Observer Newsletter

READ IT HERE: The death of Joanie "Chyna" Laurer and the saga of Conor McGregor and UFC

The life and career of Joanie "Chyna" Laurer and the saga of Conor McGregor out of UFC 200 and Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier as the new main event are the lead stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. There is also an update the TNA situation, with tons of notes on the future of TNA and Lucha Underground and one of the best wrestlers in the world joins ROH.

The lead story looks at the life of Joanie Laurer. The story examines the circumstances of her death, the publicity it received, the media coverage that never looked past the surface and was almost totally lacking context regarding her role in wrestling, and her post wrestling life. The story also looks at her start in pro wrestling, how she got into WWE, her role in the ascension of HHH to the top of the card, how she was booked, how the relationship with HHH benefited her, and just how hot pro wrestling was during that time period.

A look back at her IC title win and the back story, and why her title reign was so short along with a look at her run with Eddy Guerrero, doing Playboy, her departure from WWE, why she never lost the women's title, her most-watched match of her career and it wasn't in WWE, the attempt to make her a star in Japan, the WWE Hall of Fame and her life after wrestling, all in this issue.

This issue examines how Conor McGregor managed to get himself off the biggest UFC event of the year, how his strategy backfired, the UFC press conferences, the new Cormier vs. Jones fight, business notes for UFC 200 as well as a rundown of UFC 197, with all the business news, match-by-match coverage, pay records and poll results.

In this issue, there is a look at the upcoming Payback show, notes about the angle for power, the NXT title change, the return of John Cena, Bret Hart talks return to WWE, update on WWE Board of Directors, update on the concussion lawsuits and counter suits, WWE trying to make moves to Japan, WWE with new movie partnership, WWE wins awards and the update on the Global cruiserweight series. Finally, there is also a look at the Adam Rose suspension, a new WWE book, plus details on all the NXT shows over the past week as well as the complete WWE European tour.


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All the news from the ESPN coverage of the drug deaths in professional wrestling, and more will be in the latest back issue.
Check out the latest online Wrestling Observer BACK ISSUE: March 29, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: ESPN program on drug deaths in the pro wrestling industry, ECW Living Dangerously review, more. There is also a full break down of ECW's Living Dangerously PPV, plus tons of news and notes.


Hulk Hogan is suing Gawker a second time for leaking the contents of a sealed document, specifically allowing the racial remarks to be released, which caused his termination from WWE. 

Prosecutors in the Jimmy Snuka homicide case involving Nancy Argentino are asking the judge to force the wrestlers' lawyer to hand over a psychologist's report before a hearing next week to determine if Snuka is competent to stand trial. According to the Allentown Morning Call, Chief Deputy Attorney Charles Gallagher wrote that he has repeatedly asked attorney Robert J. Kirwan to share Dr. Frank M. Dattillo's report and that Kirwan has refused to turn it over. Kirwan told Gallagher, "No, your expert should be able to complete his evaluation without copying off my expert," according to the motion filed. Snuka is due back in court on 5/13 where Judge Kelly Banach will hear from mental health experts before deciding whether Snuka is competent to stand trial. (thanks to Richard Orloski)

Kimbo Slice had his license revoked by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulations and was fined $2,500 for his positive steroid test in his 2/19 fight with Dada 5000, when he tested positive for Nandrolone and testosterone.

Josh Thomson was injured in training over the weekend and was pulled from the 5/14 Bellator show in San Jose where he was to face Michael Chandler in one of the two big fights on that show, as noted last night. Bellator today announced two new televised fights on the show, featuring former Pride and Strikeforce fighter Sergei Kharitonov (23-5) vs. Josh Appelt (12-5) and Andre Fialho (6-0) vs. Ric Reger (7-1). That also replaces the Jordan Parsons vs. Adam Piccolotti fight that is off due to the tragic accident with Parsons from yesterday morning.

There is a Go Fund Me to help with the medical bills of Bellator's Jordan Parsons, who needed part of his leg amputated after a hit and run yesterday, and almost surely had his career ended. The Go Fund Me is at https://www.gofundme.com/jordanparsons


  • If you didn't check out Camp WWE, I think a lot of you would like it. It's the first TV-MA program on the WWE Network, produced by Seth Green, and I'm sure you've seen the commercials. The Vince McMahon character, which Vince voices over himself, is the star and it's really good.  
  • WWE has announced three NXT dates for the first weekend of June, with a 6/2 show in Evansville, IN at the Old National Events Place, 6/3 at the War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville and 6/4 at Center Stage in Atlanta, the former home of WCW Saturday night tapings. Tickets go on sale Friday.
  • There was a lot of late betting on Kalisto, The Vaudevillains, Kevin Owens, Miz, Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns in the hours before the show. The only betting favorite who lost was Baron Corbin, but a number of sports books actually took that fight off the board on Saturday due to all the money coming in on Ziggler, so it appeared people knew his finish and it was put back on with higher odds and fans started betting on Corbin. But other changes showed that on Saturday a lot of the results were not known. (thanks to David Taylor) 
  • Another note from last night's show, we were incorrect in stating Ryback was out of position for one of Kalisto's twisting dives last night. In actuality, it was Kalisto whose flight didn't hit his mark and Ryback was able to move enough to catch him and save him from getting hurt.
  • Regarding Seth Rollins, he is expected to return when he is done filming the movie "Temple." 
  • The next WWE show at the Allstate Arena in Chicago after last night will be a 9/24 house show. Tickets are on sale right now through Friday with the password WWELIVE.
  • HHH talks his WrestleMania match with Roman Reigns.


  • There will be a taped Combate Americas matches on Fight Pass tonight. This is the one week they aren't live, but they taped a few bouts last Monday night and they return to the LA Exchange with another live show next Monday.
  • UFC announced today renewing its partnership with the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation, which runs amateur events, including world championships of amateur MMA that will take place at the UFC Fan Expo at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 7/8 to 7/10 and will air live on Fight Pass.


  • Chris Sabin & Alex Shelley, as locals, facing Mark & Jay Briscoe, plus Tetsuya Naito & Jay Lethal as the IWGP & ROH singles champions forming a tag team against Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly, are the top two matches on ROH's Monday night show on 5/9 in Dearborn, MI.
  • Scott D'Amore personally donated $7,630 for medical costs for All Japan star Joe Doering who incurred severe medical bills battling brain cancer and undergoing surgery. D'Amore promised to match all donations over a several day period that ended yesterday. As of this point, halfway through the campaign, they have raised $18,595 of a goal of $40,000. For more info you can go to www.gofundme.com/joedoering
  • Sad to hear that Billy Wicks, one of the real legends of Tennessee wrestling, suffered a stroke and is currently hospitalized. Wicks was the most popular babyface in Memphis in the late 50s, before the days of Jackie Fargo, best known for his feud with Sputnik Monroe and the two held the city's attendance record outdoors at a baseball stadium that held up for decades.
  • Here is a story that indicates exercise may decrease recovery time from concussions and not increase it. 
  • Davey Richards is another one with cryptic tweets. He just sent out these two tweets. We're looking into if this is just another deal doing a tease or something more. He sent two tweets with the first saying: "Well I guess it's time...Very hard day for me today, been a long time coming.  Will update later." The second tweet a few hours later said: "I've talked it over with @Eddie Edwards and he supports my decision. Toughest thing ever."
  • One FC announced three new members of its executive team, Pithambar Gona as CFO, Kevin Sim as Head of Media Rights Sales and Kevin Matas as Head of Marketing. Gona was Managing Director at Blackstone, a huge investment firm based in Singapore which has had interest in the past in investing in MMA. Matas had worked at Red Bull and was in charge of their social media in the U.S. as well as media strategy, programming, content development, community management and analytics. Sim was Marketing Director of MP & Silva, a sports media distribution company.
  • Since I've been asked this a lot, I haven't seen the new Netflix documentary "Team Foxcatcher," put together by Nancy Schultz. I've had people tell me it's better than the 30 for 30 feature ESPN did on the same subject, which was amazing and to me far more gripping than the movie, which took some needless liberties with the truth but was also highly acclaimed.
  • Moose talks the NFL and Bill Belichick to Sports Illustrated.
  • Premier Wrestling on 7/17 in Gilroy, CA at the IFDES Lodge Portuguese Hall at 5 p.m. with Joe Graves (5-1-1) defending the Premier title against Gabriel Gallo (5-0-1) and Raze (3-2) defending the Premier Women Athletes title against former UFC fighter and Four Horsewoman Shayna Baszler (1-0). Also scheduled are Jeff "Matanza" Cobb, JR Kratos and Nicole Savoy.
  • Legacy Wrestling from Saturday night in Manheim, PA:  Facade b Gory, Dezmond Xavier b Flip Gordon, Laszlo Arpad b TJ Mathis, David Starr b Caleb Konley, Candice La Rae b Penelope Ford, Eddie Smooth b Johnny Gargano to win the Legacy title due to a low blow. The next show is 7/23 with a fans bring the leather strap lumberjack match with DJ Hyde vs. Laszlo Arpad at Spooky Nook Sports.
  • Great North Wrestling has shows on 5/6 in Ottawa, 5/7 in Kingston, ONT, 6/4 in Smiths Falls and 6/25 in Pembroke. Friday's show at the Earl Armstrong Arena is headlined by Demolition, as in Bill Eadie & Barry Darsow, vs. Jeremy Prophet & Paul Rosenberg. They also headline Saturday at the Cataraqui Community Centre.
  • Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling on 5/21 in New Westminster, BC at the Sapperton Pensioners Hall has its 20th anniversary show featuring a Battle Royal that includes Buddy Wayne. They also run 5/14 in Vancouver at the Russian Community Centre.
  • Tommy Dreamer's House of Hardcore on 5/7 in Niagara Falls, ONT at the Scotiabank Centre with Bobby Roode vs Eric Young with Jimmy Korderas as referee, Tommy Dreamer & Mickie James vs. Pepper Parks & Cherry Bomb, Sami Callihan vs. Rhino, RJ City vs. Alex Reynolds vs. Tony Nese, Moose vs. Rhino, Chris Hero vs. Colt Cabana, Bull James vs. Eddie Kingston and more.
  • Eric Young and EC3 appear on Friday night in Jamaica, NY for Amazing Red's House of Glory Wrestling. EC3 defends his HOG title against Chris Dickinson while Young faces "I'm not Norman" Smiley.
  • Legacy Fighting Championships on 6/24 in Dallas at The Bomb Factory headlined by bantamweight champion Manny Vazquez (8-1) vs. Steven Peterson (13-4) in a title match. The show airs live on AXS TV after New Japan that night.
  • Here is a tribute to the late Balls Mahoney.

Today in professional wrestling history: Curt Hennig wins AWA World Title; Chris Jericho wins WWF IC Title