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Daily Update: AEW & NXT, WWE Backstage viewership, McGregor


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F4W NEWSLETTER: Looking at three stories from a historic week Joseph Currier looks back at a huge week for pro wrestling.

The most important week in recent pro wrestling history reached strong heights before ending with an embarrassing low.

The Wednesday Night War began, with AEW Dynamite debuting on TNT opposite a stacked episode of NXT on USA. SmackDown made its move to FOX two days later and featured an appearance by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, a WWE Championship change, and the debut of Cain Velasquez. Sunday's Hell in a Cell pay-per-view looked like it was only going to be a footnote, but the main event made the show memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Here's a look at three stories that defined the week:

1. AEW wins first night of Wednesday night ratings war

Pro wrestling returned to TNT last Wednesday as the premiere of AEW Dynamite averaged 1.409 million viewers. That topped the 891,000 viewers that NXT averaged. In the 18-49 demo, AEW posted a 0.68 rating -- second for the night on cable and more than double what NXT did.

Current subscribers click here to continue reading.

WON NEWSLETTER: October 14, 2019 Observer Newsletter: SmackDown debuts on FOX, Hell in a Cell disaster

Smackdown on FOX, the ratings, what they mean, how this relates to Raw, the Velasquez vs. Lesnar and Fury vs. Strowman matches is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer. 

This week's Observer also covers: 

How FOX did with the competition, how FOX did compared to last season's premieres, how the show did in Canada, note on how the kickoff show did, match-by-match and how the ratings changed, who drew big and who didn't, the usage of legends, the story behind Velasquez's negotiations, the end of Kingston's reign, plus match-by-match coverage.

What went wrong with Hell in a Cell, the disaster of a main event, the reactions by fans, Vince McMahon's reactions to those reactions, how the match order hurt the show, plus match-by-match coverage with star ratings and poll results.

Wednesday night war with ratings, where both sides lost viewers the most, the fall from the first week on TNT, the average viewer age for AEW and NXT and how different the makeup is, how every segment on both shows did.

What segments were strong set with what age groups, and how teenage viewership both shows differs greatly.

Smackdown draft, 205 Live going forward, the plans for Saudi Arabia, why the cruiserweight distinction in NXT makes no sense anymore, new WWE signings, Mae Young Classic, WWE injuries, Goldberg and Matt Riddle situation, Hulk Hogan wants a match with Vince McMahon, former Miss America contestant signs with WWE, U.K. star moves to Florida, remake of "Badstreet USA," value of WWE stock, most-watched shows on WWE Network over the past week, plus notes on every live event by the WWE main roster and NXT this past week with business notes, results and highlights.

Jeff Hardy's recent arrest and a look back at his other issues over the years.

A full report on the UFC show from Australia, the record crowd, business  notes, and a look at Israel Adesanya.

The situation with Dragon Lee going forward as well as where WWE and AEW may fit in, his being pulled from the New Japan tour as well as a look at this year's Junior heavyweight tag team tournament that starts this coming week.

A full report on the debut of NWA Power, the new Internet television show Billy Corgan and Dave Lagana have put out, glory days of Georgia Championship Wrestling and its ratings, a look at Nick Aldis as NWA champion, business notes and economic realities regarding the company as well as what kind of Youtube numbers the different shows are doing.

Full coverage of all the WWE 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. 

ORDERING INFO: Order the print Wrestling Observer right now and get it delivered via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to or by going to directing funds to

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If you order by mail with a check, cash or money order to P.O. Box 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228, you can get $1 off in every price range.


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  • Seven months after undergoing neck surgery, Tommaso Ciampa returns to the ring on tonight’s NXT. Here’s what’s been announced for the episode: Tommaso Ciampa vs. Angel Garza Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic Pete Dunne vs. Damian Priest Tegan Nox in action
  • Ciampa tweeted a picture of his daughter and wrote “Tonight is for you.”
  • With game four of the ALCS between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees being postponed due to rain, NXT and AEW won’t face competition from playoff baseball tonight.
  • Game five of the Astros vs. Yankees series will air on FS1 on Friday. The Ohio State vs. Northwestern college football game that was scheduled for FS1 will move to the Big Ten Network, with SmackDown remaining live on FOX.
  • Last night’s WWE Backstage preview show averaged 597,000 viewers on FS1. It aired after game three of the Astros vs. Yankees series.
  • Total Divas averaged 281,000 viewers on E! last night. That was up from last week’s 261,000.
  • Bruce Prichard responded to the tweet Eric Bischoff sent yesterday: “Much love and respect to a great businessman, creator and friend. Thanks Eric” Bischoff had tweeted: “Bruce is a great producer, good friend and I am certain he is going to thrive in his position. He’s going to be working with a great team of the most dedicated and hard working people I have had the pleasure of working with and getting to know.”
  • The Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York is advertising that Seth Rollins will defend his Universal title against The Fiend in a steel cage match on November 4. Raw is taking place at the Nassau Coliseum that night, but Rollins vs. The Fiend would appear to be a dark match if it happens.
  • Daniel Bryan tweeted about wanting to face Drew Gulak: “Hmmm... I love @DrewGulak’s hard nosed mat style and have been wanting to wrestle him for years. With all the shakeups in WWE, Maybe now is our chance #GulakVsBryan #WWE #SmackdownOnFox”
  • TVInsider has an interview with Becky Lynch.
  • Episode three of WWE’s The Bump aired this morning.
  • The WWE Performance Center’s YouTube channel uploaded a video about the friendship between Candice LeRae, Dakota Kai, and Tegan Nox.
  • WWE on FOX posted a video with Triple H talking about the Pedigree and how it became his finisher.

Pro Wrestling

  • The Liacouras Center in Philadelphia is hosting episode three of AEW Dynamite tonight. Here’s what’s been announced for the episode: AEW World Champion Chris Jericho defending against Darby Allin in a Philly street fight AEW Women’s Champion Riho defending against Britt Baker Kenny Omega & Hangman Page vs. Jon Moxley & PAC AEW Tag Team title tournament first-round match: The Lucha Brothers vs. Jurassic Express AEW Tag Team title tournament first-round match: SoCal Uncensored vs. Best Friends
  • Cody Rhodes spoke to Wrestlezone about AEW putting out top five rankings for each of its divisions: “On the Friday before Full Gear, I think we’re going to put our first-ever ‘Top Fives’ and [that] should become a weekly thing. This isn’t just broadcast this is also social, just like with college football and the AP Poll, you get your Top 20. Sometimes a guy who is 5-0 is not ranked in the top three because the quality of wins, the softness of the schedule and it’s fun because in college football people argue over -- especially when we get near the playoffs -- people ‘should, should they not’ [get in]. PAC right now has these great wins over Hangman Page and Kenny Omega, he’s essentially Ohio State for us at this point. There’s gotta be a title shot in his future, and there is if he keeps winning and keeps going, but I believe before Full Gear we’ll have our Top Five for women, for tags and for singles and now that we have more and more every week it helps us so much from data.”
  • Cody and Brandi Rhodes appeared on 6 ABC in Philadelphia to promote tonight’s Dynamite episode.
  • Uproxx interviewed Darby Allin.
  • Today is Kenny Omega’s 36th birthday.
  • The NWA revealed that the name of their December 14 PPV in Atlanta is “Into the Fire.” Tickets will go on sale this Friday.
  • Lance Archer tweeted about winning the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship: “19+ yrs in wrestling. 3 major companies. (TNA,WWE,NJPW) 8+ yrs with @njpw1972 and on Oct 14th 2019 I was put in a unique position when an opportunity arose and won my first major singles title and became the 7th IWGP United States Champion! NEVER GIVE UP ON YOUR DREAM!"
  • Shota Umino wrote an open letter ahead of his excursion to the UK.
  • ROH uploaded Matt Taven vs. Rush from Death Before Dishonor to their YouTube channel. That was the match where Rush won the ROH World Championship.
  • Rampage Brown will be in action on all three nights of ROH’s Honor United UK tour later this month.
  • ROH opened fan voting to determine the matches and stipulation for The Experience in Pittsburgh on November 2.


  • Conor McGregor replied to a UFC Twitter post that wished Frankie Edgar a happy birthday: “Happy birthday Frankie, see you in December.” After Edgar responded that he said yes already and it was up to McGregor and Dana White to make the fight happen, McGregor wrote: “There you go White, make the bout. Give my purse to charity. First responders. One for All! @ProperWhiskey”
  • Jon Jones has agreed to a plea deal after being charged with disorderly conduct for an April strip club incident. Jones was given a 90-day deferred sentence and “must avoid arrest or violating the law, consume no alcohol or drugs, be under unsupervised probation, not return to the scene and pay court fees” during those 90 days.
  • Jones tweeted about Anthony “Rumble” Johnson wanting to fight him: “You better make sure you have that cardio together big fella @Anthony_Rumble. We’ve always been cool but I’ll be more than happy to choke you out if that’s what you’re looking for @Anthony_Rumble”
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov spoke about how long he plans to fight for: “I think a couple of years. Two, three -- maximum three. I think maybe two years, in my opinion, because I don’t want to fight all my life because I know it’s very hard. I know a lot of young, hungry guys are coming, and I know to always be undefeated, undisputed, is not almost impossible -- I think it’s impossible. You can watch in history. If you watch all athletes like soccer, boxing, MMA, everywhere, one day you’re going to lose. You have to know when you need to stop. I think maybe two years.”

Daily Pro Wrestling History: TNA Bound for Glory 2011