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Daily Update: WWE talent meeting, Crown Jewel fallout, ROH

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F4W NEWSLETTER: Figure Four Weekly: AEW's non-wrestling segment balancing act Joseph Currier looks at AEW's balance of matches and talking segments over its first four weeks on TNT.

Four weeks into the promotion's existence on weekly television, one of AEW's biggest strengths has also been a bit of a balancing act for them.

Alternatives to WWE have long tried to present themselves as having "less talk, more action." While WWE is still too reliant on a TV format that was carried by Steve Austin and The Rock and struggles without stars of that caliber, there was a time when that was a more valid criticism than it currently is. The days of WWE programming always opening up with a monotonous 20-minute promo segment from a heel authority figure are gone for now. This decade has seen WWE totally overhaul its hiring practices, bringing the level of the company's in-ring action higher than it's ever been.

Finding the right balance between non-wrestling segments and matches is vital. But while WWE has had problems with finding the right mix, the biggest issue is that their talking segments too often just haven't been very good. They're overly scripted and rarely accomplish their goal of getting fans more interested in the match they're supposed to be building. Tons of the most iconic moments in pro wrestling history happened outside of matches. People don't dislike promos -- they dislike bad ones.

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WON NEWSLETTER: November 4, 2019 Observer Newsletter: WWE financials, Crown Jewel, more 

In a crazy week, we've got the most detailed look at the business of pro wrestling in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
 
Our lead story updates the WWE business with the key notes from the quarter, why the stock took a big plunge even though profits were above expectations, the key things the market is worried about with the company, and the very different key things regarding brand popularity that I see as major warning signs. 

We cover in-depth the consumer business, tickets, WWE Network, merchandise and more, good news on television ratings, why we know house shows are down but it's hard to fairly gauge how much, the decline of NXT live and how every other consumer spending category is doing.

The new issue also covers: 
 
Crown Jewel, the women's match and its ramifications and why it went the way it did, why Lesnar vs. Velasquez went the way it did, look at the key stories coming out of the show, plus match-by-match coverage with star ratings.
 
The build for Nate Diaz vs. Jorge Masvidal and on UFC 244 and the ramifications of the key fights, the ticket demand for the show and more on Dwayne Johnson at the show.
 
John Cena's philanthropy, changes in Survivor Series plans, original plan for Tyson Fury and why it was changed, Xavier Woods update, HHH looks at how the way they do call-ups from NXT has changed and how it works now, Seth Rollins complains about the fans and what is and isn't legit, WWE reaction to Smackdown ratings, notes on ticket sales for the five shows in Chicago at the end of the month including AEW television and the demand, DVR viewership for Raw, Hulu viewership for WWE shows, WrestleMania tickets, notes on the next Takeover show, WWE Backstage notes, WWE international TV notes, notes on Carolina on Raw and her long-term role, coach quits PC and new coach hired, all-women's house show, DVD changes, new name for giant, value of WWE stock and the most-watched shows on the WWE Network, and all the WWE arena events over the past week with results, highlights and business notes.
 
Kenny Omega entrance video and the Sans connection that appeared on AEW television this week.  It's a look at what it is and what it isn't.
 
Albert Hardie Jr., situation with WWE, the T-shirt, and far more about the situation including his comments, WWE's comments and much more about it.
 
Television business and 18-49 demos and look at the expense and future value of the different wrestling television shows, the platform, the night, the rights fees and more for UFC, WWE and AEW.
 
UFC show from Singapore.
 
WWE and AEW television shows from the past week.
 
Ratings of all the major shows, the key demos and quarters for AEW and WWE, what happened head-to-head and what can be learned from them.
 
Results of all the major pro wrestling events around the world over the past week. 


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MONDAY NEWS UPDATE

Bryan and I will be back tonight covering Raw, Power Struggle, talking Saudi Arabia deal, next Tokyo Dome and much more. You can send questions to the show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com.

There was a meeting at about 3 p.m. today at NYCB Live with Vince McMahon and the Raw crew.  We don't have details of what transpired at this time but these are some things we've been told. The company blamed talent speculation for causing a problem, the talent was told the flight issues were all mechanical and nothing more, and Seth Rollins attempted to do a rah-rah speech while telling people to keep things like this off social media in the future. 

The company said that the delay in airing Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia was not over a dispute over a technical issue. Vince McMahon had flown out long before ever knowing there were any problems with the other talent flying out. McMahon's flight left at about 12:40 a.m. local time, about two hours before the talent was to board their plane that never took off.

WWE announced an extension of their deal with Saudi Arabia to guarantee two shows a year going forward. The prior deal was one show but the first two years of the deal they had two shows.  They timing of this announcement being today was imperative because the stock price declined over the uncertainty and they needed something quickly to stop the decline. In addition, there have been some business articles out today, and more were coming, talking about the uncertainty of the deal in publications that could have also negatively affected the stock price. 

Sinclair announced that ROH would start airing on its regional sports networks starting this week on a Friday at midnight time slot. We had reported that a few weeks ago in the Observer.  This was 21 new regional channels across the country, the channels that formerly made up the old Fox Sports Network.

For those who may have seen the nasty bump that Mayu Iwatani took earlier today in her match with Bea Priestley where she won the World of Stardom title, she was okay after the show. She was icing her shoulder after but did not appear to be significantly injured. Iwatani was doing a top rope hurricanrana and Priestley slipped on the top rope and thus didn't go over, and Iwatani looked like she landed on her head.

WWE

  • Shotzi Blackheart was scheduled to report to the PC this week.

UFC

  • The doctor who stopped the Jorge Masvidal vs. Nate Diaz fight on Saturday has said he's getting badly harassed.

MISCELLANEOUS

  • Stardom from today at Korakuen Hall: Zoe Lucas won three-way over Rina and Hina, Hana Kmura & Bobbi Tyler won a three-way over Tam Nakano & Saki Kashima and Session Moth Martina & Natsu Sumire, Saya Iida & Saya Kamitani b Kagetsu & Andras Miyagi, Hazuki & Natsuko Tora b Jungle Kyona & Konami, Momo Watanabe & AZM b Riho & Starlight Kid, Arisa Hoshiki b Jamie Hayter to retain the Wonder of Stardom title, Mayu Iwatani b Bea Priestley to win the World of Stardom title. Iwatani vs. Kagetsu for the title will take place on 12/24 at Korakuen Hall.  Hoshiki next faces Konami. 
  • For those traveling to Japan in early January, Stardom will have evening shows at Shinkiba First Ring on 1/2 and 1/3, plus they are running ten minutes from the Tokyo Dome with a Noon show at KFC Hall in Tokyo on 1/4 which will be over in plenty of time to attend the New Japan show.  They did big business last year for the tourist shows that week. (thanks to Shannon Walsh at wrestlingwithdemons.net)
  • Ken Hoffman talks about a new videotape collection of Houston wrestling that Jim Cornette is selling. In a trivia note, the late Scott Williams picked out the matches for these DVDs.
  • ICW Fear and Loathing night two from yesterday in Glasgow, Scotland before 700 fans: Aivil b Kasey to win the women's title, Andy Wild b Mark Coffey 2/3 falls, The Purge b Kings of Catch in a death match, Noam Dar won three-way over Keiran Kelly and Leighton Buzzard in what was said to be a fantastic match, Kev Evans b Ilja Dragunov, Iestyn Rees b Scotty Davis, Stevie Boy b Joe Coffey to keep the ICW title.  (thanks to Jordan Clark)
  • Hoosier Pro Wrestling from Saturday in Columbus, IN: Guy Lombardo b Ace Jackson, Duke the Nuke b Bubbie James, Lighting Bolt b Dodo Brown, Shiloh Jonze & Allie Parker b Randall Floyd &N Jaylee, Buck Sexton b Butcher Manson, Brutus Dylan & Adrion b Drax O'Brien & Dawson, Firefighter Ben Noblitt b Sign Guy in an arm wrestling match, Scarecrow b Cooter street fight.  Next show is 12/7.
  • CWE on 11/12 in Eston, Saskatchewan at the AGT Arena with Juventud Guerrera and Jimmy Jacobs.
  • Colbey Northcutt, the sister of Sage, debuts for One on 11/22 at the show at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. 
  • Shine on Saturday in Queens, NY with Allysin Kay & Marti Belle & Jayme Jameson vs Shotzi Blackheart & Aja Perera & Aerial Monroe, Brandi Lauren vs.Alex Gracia, Natlia Markova vs. Double D-Rose, Ashley Vox & Delmi Exo vs Avery Taylor & Brittany Blake and more.
  • CWA on 1/18 in North Little Rock, AR at the Maumelle Event Center.   The main event has Jerry Lawler vowing to retire if he doesn't beat Matt Riviera for his Arkansas title.
  • The Cincinnati arena that is the only one to have hosted a WWE, WCW and TNA PPV has changed its name to the Heritage Bank Center (thanks to Brian Henke)
  • The reason Saudi Arabia couldn't afford any bad news out this week.
  • Hugo Savinovich on his take on the Saudi Arabia situation in English.
  • Anthony Garrett claims the referee didn't give him the full five minutes to resume his fight with Jake Hager.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: Dean Malenko wins ECW TV title


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