- WWE reportedly planning Asuka's return
- Rules set for Taichi vs. Shingo NJPW KOPW 2022 title match
- Tony D'Angelo vs. Xyon Quinn set for WWE NXT
- Minoru Suzuki, Konosuke Takeshita part of eight-match AEW Dark: Elevation lineup
- WWE Main Event results: Tommaso Ciampa vs. Cedric Alexander
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This Week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter: AEW & NJPW announce joint show, Windy City Riot review
- The new issue of the Observer has these stories:
- Forbidden Door PPV and the history of NJPW and AEW going from a cold relationship to running a joint show
- Match of the Week/Performer of the Week
- What people thought of NJPW Windy City Riot
- Part one of looking at February & March business and comparisons with one year ago
- Windy City Riot, the good, the bad and the technical issues
- WrestleMania Backlash and early notes on WWE's summer stadium shows
- Saturday's UFC show
- What arena has had more great matches than any other and its 60th anniversary
- Television wrestling viewing over the past week, including comparisons with other sports, head-to-head competition, who watches
- CMLL Universal title tournament
- Stardom Cinderella tournament
- All Japan Champion Carnival tournament
- Update on Kota Ibushi
- Are streaming services plateauing?
- Notes on the biggest indie shows of the past week
- AEW video game news
- Ticket updates and sales for WWE & AEW shows over the next month plus
- International TV ratings
- Dana White talking major fight this summer he's working on
- Coverage of Bellator's biggest show of the year and this week' doubleheader
- How much fighters actually weigh getting into the cage vs. weigh-ins
- Fight of the year talk
- Notes on Kushida leaving WWE
- How WWE first came up with the developmental system and the idea behind it
- Paul Levesque talks developmental
- Steve Austin talks doing future big shows
- Streaming numbers
This Week's Retro Observer Newsletter: March 21, 2005 Observer Newsletter: Raw leaving Spike TV, TNA Destination X review
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Sunday News Update
- Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer Radio talking the weekend shows, previewing the week, and lots of other news. You can send questions to the show to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Rampage will be bounced around the schedule in May due to TNT's coverage of the NBA and NHL playoffs. Because it depends on who is playing when, there is no set time past this coming Friday is scheduled at the regular 10 p.m. time. May 6 right now is scheduled for 6 p.m. Eastern and 3 p.m. Pacific but that could change. That's going to happen every year at this time.
- An update from yesterday's show regarding tickets for Nashville for SummerSlam on 7/30 at Nissan Stadium. Tickets went on sale to the public on Friday. They had opened up 23,000 tickets in the pre-sale. Now they have opened up 35,000 and about 19,000 are out (paid and some comps). I would call that very good considering it's only four weeks after a stadium show in Las Vegas that's also doing well.
- I was discussing this morning on Sunday Night's Main Event regarding Chicago. So they had a PPV show from New Japan last weekend. WWE is running a PPV at the Allstate Arena on June 5. AEW is running the New Japan vs. AEW show at the United Center on June 26. While not confirmed, Chicago also has the AEW tradition of Labor Day at the NOW Arena for Labor Day. That's a lot for one market. The WWE show isn't sold out, but should be sold out or close to it. The United Center tickets go on sale on 5/6 and this will be very interesting only because the way New Japan works with Dominion in June and title matches there. It's an experiment both live and PPV.
- For Google searches this week, nothing wrestling or MMA related cracked the top 20 any day this past week, which means nothing from yesterday's UFC show and nothing from the two Bellator shows. The only stuff boxing related was Tyson Fury had 1 million searches for his win over Dillan Whyte at Wembley Stadium, and on Thursday, Mike Tyson had one million searches regarding the obnoxious guy harassing him on the plane who he allegedly hit.
- Regarding Fury, after his win he spoke about potential matches with Drew McIntyre and Francis Ngannou. He specifically talked about SummerSlam or the Cardiff, Wales show on 9/3. As noted many times, Fury vs. McIntyre was set before COVID hit and then it just didn't make sense to do it. Regarding Ngannou, he targeted early 2013 when the belief is Ngannou will be out of his UFC contract. Fury said they could do it boxing style, in a cage, with boxing gloves or MMA gloves. The key is the rules are going to be boxing rules and not MMA rules, and Fury is the best heavyweight boxer of this era and Ngannou has never competed at a high level in boxing even though he can punch very hard. Fury was talking retirement after the fight, but boxers talk that all the time.
- A story on Fury, retirement, etc. (thanks to Lee Wall)
- Two of the biggest wrestling legends in history were born on this day. Lou Thesz was born on this day in 1916 and Blue Demon was born on this day in 1922, so today would have been his 100th birthday. Thesz was one of the most notable world champions in history. Demon was a movie star and wrestler, a household name to this day in Mexico and the second biggest star behind El Santo in the history of Lucha Libre.
- Today is also the 30th anniversary of the first pro wrestling show ever held at the Tokyo Dome, promoted by New Japan Pro Wrestling. The story behind it was something as it was the first time Russian amateur athletes, even before the NHL, went into a professional sport. Hiroshi Hase and Masa Saito trained them. The uranage (rock bottom) move came from that show as Shota Chochoshvili, an Olympic medalist in judo, used the move to beat Antonio Inoki in a no ropes main event. The show was also the debut of Keiichi Yamada using the Jushin Liger character. Another debut on that show was Russian amateur Victor Zangiev, who became the person the famed street fighter video game character Zangief was named for.
- We are looking for reports on these shows to email@example.com
- WWE last night in Montgomery, AL
- Warrior Wrestling last night in South Bend, IN
- WWE tonight in Binghamton, NY
- WWE tonight in Augusta, GA
- Impact tapings tonight in Poughkeepsie, NY
- Liz Carmouche, best known as the opponent of Ronda Rousey in the first UFC women's fight ever in 2013, won her first MMA world title on Friday night taking the Bellator title from Juliana Velasquez. Velasquez was clearly winning going into round four, when Carmouche took her down and threw elbows to the forehead on the ground with Velasquez trapped in the crucifix position before ref Mike Beltran stopped the fight. I watched it and thought it was a fair stoppage, and really at the exact point I felt it should be stopped, Beltran stopped it. However John McCarthy (who i greatly respect) doing commentary was very negative thinking it was stopped early and that led to it being controversial. Scott Coker last night talked about running it back in a rematch.
- Two weekend bouts we've heard raves about were Moose vs. Josh Alexander at last night's Impact show in Poughkeepsie, NY and the Will Ospreay vs. Blake Christian match in South Bend, IN. Impact had done a strong job in building that match in recent weeks and really it's the culmination of a push dating back a year.
- Raw will have a 20th anniversary celebration of Randy Orton's 2002 debut on the main roster. Also announced is Becky Lynch's first appearance on Raw since WrestleMania and Bianca Belair vs, Sonya Deville for the women's title in Belair's home city of Knoxville. The new thing they are doing these days is bringing in wrestlers from the other brand for a dark match, so New Day vs. Sheamus & Ridge Holland is advertised as the main event.
- Bellator results from last night in Honolulu:
- Yancy Medeiros b Emmanuel Sanchez via decision 29-28, 30-27, 30-27
- Patchy Mix b Kyoji Horiguchi 48-47, 48-47, 48-47 in an upset in the bantamweight Grand Prix first round
- Justine Kish b Ilima-Lei Macfarlane on scores of 30-27, 29-28 and 29-28. Macfarlane's reaction was like watching 1983 Von Erichs at the Sportatorium in Dallas. But she lost
- Raufeon Stots b Juan Archuleta to win the interim bantamweight title via knockout at :16 of round three in the Grand Prix first round
- Cris Cyborg b Arlene Blencowe 49-45, 49-45 49-45 to retain the women's featherweight title. Blencowe got a lot of raves for hanging in there five rounds.
- Jake Lee won the A block of the Champion Carnival tournament with a win today at Korakuen Hall over T-Hawk. The B block has Yuma Aoyagi, Kento Miyahara, Suwama and Takuya Nomura all mathematically alive. Aoyagi vs. Miyahara takes place e 4/29 in Nagoya and the winner would face Lee in the finals. In the event of a draw, or a no contest, that's where Suwama or Nomura have a chance.
- Nothing major on the house shows but the Raw main event is Bianca Belair vs. Becky Lynch vs. Liv Morgan on last night's show and the Smackdown main event was Roman Reigns over Drew McIntyre for the Universal title. which, based on an angle shot for next week's Smackdown, looks to be the WrestleMania Backlash main event for 5/8 in Providence, RI.
- The 5/11 show at the UBS Arena in Long Island, which will include first round matches in The Owen Hart tournament, has passed 6,200 tickets out. At last look it was slightly ahead of WWE's Nassau Coliseum show, but it will likely end up short of WWE's last Barclays Center and MSG show.
- Reports from those live were that the Eddie Kingston vs Daniel Garcia match on Friday's Rampage show was heavily edited. You could see the show was basically forcing as much in the hour because segments didn't have time to breathe to give you as much match time as possible. Kingston vs. Garcia was 22:00 live but about nine minutes less on television (thanks to Jack Murphy)
- Jon Moxley will be appearing for Pro Wrestling Revolver on 6/11 at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton, OH at the Calumet Center.
- Will Ospreay vs. Davey Richards and Jeff Cobb vs. Jonah have been announced for the debut of Warrior Wrestling on 5/28 in St. Louis. Results from last night in South Bend: Sam Adonis b Aramis to keep the Lucha Libre title, Karl Fredericks b Clark Connors, Storm Grayson b Alex Zayne with help from Frank the Clown, Swerve Strickland b Adam Brooks, Dante Martin & Dante Leon b Brian Cage & KC Navarro, Athena (Ember Moon) won three-way over Shazza McKenzie and Skye Blue to win the vacant Warrior women's title (Thunder Rosa vacated the title after winning the AEW title), Ospreay b Blake Christian to keep the Warrior title.
- The annual Beat the Street amateur wrestling show takes place on 6/8 at the Hulu Theater in Madison Square Garden. Two of the country's biggest amateur stars of the past decade, gold medalists Helen Maroulis and Jordan Burroughs will be wresting on the show. Maroulis is 6-0 in Beat the Street shows competing between 2012 and 2018
- Sebastian Przybysz (10-2) retained the KSW bantamweight title beating Wertlieson Martins (16-5) via chke at 2:07 of round five.
- CWE announced shows on 5/13 in Winnipeg and 5/14 in Morden, Manitoba featuring Big Vito, competing in CWE for the first time in 12 years.