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Daily Update: WWE tapings, Japan travel restrictions, Ricky Morton

DAILY UPDATE

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WON NEWSLETTER: Sweeping changes due to the coronavirus Dave Meltzer looks at how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting pro wrestling and MMA.

A detailed look at how the pro wrestling and MMA industry has changed in just one week is the subject of our in-depth lead story.

We cover:

Steps taken, made, executed, and constantly changed, from WWE, UFC, AEW and every other company. 

Which companies can afford the lockdown the best, and which companies are threatened the most.

WWE, why they chose to do WrestleMania now on tape, why the move made little sense. 

Why UFC was forced to shut down shows and the steps they took to avoid it.

What AEW said and what it actually meant. 

The dangers from doctors on doing shows right now. 

Latest ideas for WrestleMania, revenue lost by not doing the show now, just how fast decisions were changing, pro wrestling vs. MMA in an empty arena, styles vs. styles in an empty arena, what does and doesn't work, ideas to make the show more entertaining, what is and isn't finalized for WrestleMania, and update on other planned WWE events.

We also cover:

WWE training, who were brought to the WWE & AEW taping, what was said to those working there, Dana White's memo to the staff, why UFC had it harder to keep shows going than pro wrestling, UFC's economic realities, different reactions of talent about shows continuing, new dates for major shows, next shows on UFC schedule, ESPN plans, Japanese government reaction, updates on Japanese shows, XFL ending the season, how the first season leaves the XFL in its quest to make it, Bellator's reaction, MLW's reaction, Impact's reaction, NWA's reaction, Independent shows, WrestleCon, U.K. groups, Mexico and other U.S. indies.

AEW's live television show, the in and out of character remarks, Cody and Tony Khan' reactions, and show things were handled 

A look at the career of Jushin Liger, his historical status, his early career, his becoming the best wrestler in the world, his debut with the character, who was first pegged for the role, his debut with the gimmick, his U.S. arrival in WCW, his one MMA fight, and his list of credentials.

Why WWE stock hasn't collapsed, Shane McMahon's income, Michelle Wilson and George Barrios' severance packages, update on The Revival, WWE threatens small group on a frivolous case, WWE legend selling his home, last several weeks of Canadian TV ratings, Jerry Lawler talks empty arena matches, latest WWE tryout, Sonya Deville talks storyline she wanted, as well as the most-watched shows of the past week on the WWE Network.

Full coverage of the UFC's empty arena show in Brasilia, Brazil with the stories coming out of the show and match-by-match coverage.

A feature on the worst weekend in the history of the business when Chris Benoit murdered his wife and son.  We look at the Reelz television show that just came out covering the crime as well as a look at the Viceland story coming this week.  We talk about different theories, the death of Eddy Guerrero, CTE, steroids, xanax and more, WWE reaction, drug testing questions and problems and much more.

Regarding the Wednesday numbers, we've got full details, demos that each side won, how every segment did and what match ended up as the difference maker. 

Full coverage of all the WWE and AEW television shows from the past week.

In-depth looks at the 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 talking about various wrestling subjects, WWE, AEW, Japan wrestling starting back and more with Wrestling Observer Radio. We'll also be taking questions for the show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com

The WWE did tapings at Full Sail University yesterday for NXT so they will be doing new matches. Raw will be taped for the next three weeks today and tomorrow at the Performance Center.

AEW will be doing a lot of taping on Wednesday. It's a new show with Cody vs. Jimmy Havoc and Kenny Omega vs. Sammy Guevara for the AAA heavyweight title. Given the restrictions on people allowed to be together, it is impossible to do a lumberjack match as had been advertised with Wardlow vs. Luchasaurus. 

Aleister Black vs. Bobby Lashley and Street Profits defending the tag titles against Andrade & Angel Garza were announced for WrestleMania.  

Regarding talent traveling to Japan from the U.K. or U.S. or Mexico, talent can come in but they have to be quarantined for 14 days in a hotel or a home when they arrive. Davey Boy Smith Jr., for example, flies out tomorrow morning for the Champion Carnival tour and will have to stay in a hotel for 14 days. The flip side is the risk that if he goes, he may not be allowed to return. He said that he really likes Japanese culture and has friends there, so if it happens, he's okay.

Ricky Morton on his podcast noted that he had woken up on 3/17 with a bout of Bell's Palsy. He was very scared, but he can shut his eyes and talk and it is clearing up.

WWE

  • Mojo Rawley is now officially on Smackdown.  The idea is that with Rob Gronkowski on Smackdown, since he works for FOX, then Rawley should be there as well.

AEW

  • These are the matches on Dark tomorrow:
    • Jake Hager vs. Joe Alonzo
    • Colt Cabana vs Brandon Cutler
    • Dustin Rhodes & QT Marshall vs. Jon Cruz & Matt Sells
    • Kip Sabian vs. Suge D
    • Joey Janela & Sonny Kiss vs. Corey Hollis & Mike Reed
    • Frankie Kazarian & Scorpio Sky vs. Shawn Spears & Robert Anthony
  • A trailer for the movie "Power Bomb," which includes Britt Baker and Matt Cross. (thanks to Joe Puccio) 

MISCELLANEOUS

  • A confidential settlement was reached in a lawsuit filed by Hulk Hogan against Mike "Cowhead" Calta and Matt "Spiceboy" Loyd who allegedly were the ones who leaked the sex video to the National Enquirer. Stories can be found here and here. (thanks to Terry)
  • Kento Miyahara did not set the title defense record today for the Triple Crown as he lost the title to Suwama. I haven't seen the match yet but hope to do so later today. 
  • Branko Cikatic, who is best known for being the first-ever K-1 World Grand Prix champion in 1993, and fought on some early Pride shows in the late 90s, passed away today in Croatia at the age of 65.
  • For those wondering about the match I spoke of on the show with Garrett Gonzalez on Friday night involving Chris Benoit and Eddy Guerrero as a tag team and talking about eating Korean BBQ after, it was March 27, 1995 at the Tokyo City Gym, an easy ****3/4 match with Benoit & Shinjiro Otani vs. Guerrero & Koji Kanemoto. So no Liger in that match. The show was taped for television but that match never aired as far as I can recall, so it's probably not on NJPW World, but it would exist in the NJPW library.  
  • Stardom holds its one-night Cinderella tournament on Tuesday at Korakuen Hall which will air live and free on YouTube early tomorrow morning at 5:30 a.m. Eastern. It will only air live and then be put up later on the Stardom World streaming service. There will be fans at this show.
    • Momo Watanabe vs. Starlight Kid
    • Jungle Kyona vs. Giulia
    • Konami vs. AZM 
    • Syuri vs. Jamie Hayter
    • Tam Nakano vs. Saki Kashima
    • Saya Kamitani vs. Natsuko Tora
    • Maika vs. Utami Hayashishita
    • Mayu Iwatani vs. Hana Kimura
  • World Series Wrestling pushed back its Australian tour to 11/28 to 11/30 with shows in Melbourne and Sydney.  Britt Baker will not be on the new tour dates and is being replaced by Tenille Dashwood.
  • Also, the PWA show we had results in here yesterday was from Sydney, not Melbourne (thanks to Kevin Chiat)
  • Sirius Radio plays old Johnny Carson shows and reader Richard Orloski heard the one today, from April 26, 1985.  Carson took an audience question asking if he thought pro wrestling was fixed. He was very diplomatic but noted that throwing somebody into the ropes and having them bounce back at you wouldn't happen in real life. Someone in the crowd said that they do get hurt for real and the blood is definitely real. Carson didn't make fun of it.
  • A few notes regarding air travel.  From one friend who works at SFO, he said that no matter what you are told, there are flights coming in every day from all over the world.  There were people making connections who came from Taipei, Taiwan and Tokyo within minutes and there were no restrictions or quarantine going on. 
  • A Go Fund Me has been set up for a knee replacement for Koko B. Ware.
  • Regarding the Chris Benoit case that has been talked about a lot in recent days due to the Reelz and Vinceland stories, a new edition of the book CHRIS & NANCY: The True Story of the Benoit Murder-Suicide and Pro Wrestling’s Cocktail of Death is now on sale at all major ebook platforms.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13


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