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Daily Update: Balor teases draft, G-1 Climax begins, WWE signees

F. Balor

Even though Finn Balor has been teasing going to the main roster nearly every weekend on the NXT shows and in social media, he was bowing to the crowd and doing good byes at the weekend shows and the crowds were chanting "See you Tuesday." Balor and Nia Jax are among those who, at least as of last week, were scheduled to be brought up. Last night Balor said that "I can feel a bit of a draft in the room." He also talked about how it's everyone's goal to be on the main roster. 

Regarding the story about WWE signing Kota Ibushi, multiple sources have stated that but WWE hasn't confirmed it. Mascara Dorada apparently signed on Thursday.

We're looking for your thoughts on tonight's New Japan G-1 Climax show in Sapporo, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to

We're also  looking  for reports on these shows:

  • ROH TV tapings from last night in Philadelphia
  • WWE house show last night in Bangor, ME
  • WWE today in Glens Falls, NY (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, John Cena, A.J. Styles, Chris Jericho, Neville, New Day, Wyatts)
  • WWE today in Augusta, ME (Miz, Cesaro, Sami Zayn, Big show, Kane, Vaudevillains, Darren Young, Charlotte, Sasha Banks, Enzo, Cass, Dudleys).
  • Evolve tonight from Melrose, MA


WWE is in Glens Falls, NY (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, John Cena, A.J. Styles, Chris Jericho, Neville, New Day, Wyatts) and Augusta, ME (Miz, Cesaro, Sami Zayn, Big show, Kane, Vaudevillains, Darren Young, Charlotte, Sasha Banks, Enzo, Cass, Dudleys).


  • Timothy Thatcher vs. TJP for Evolve title
  • Drew Galloway vs. Johnny Gargano
  • Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Tony Nese
  • Tommaso Ciampa vs. Cedric Alexander
  • Marty Scurll vs. Matt Riddle



  • Katsuyori Shibata & Manabu Nakanishi & Jushin Liger & Tiger Mask vs. Tomoaki Honma & Kushida & Ryusuke Taguchi & Captain New Japan
  • Katsuhiko Nakajima & Toru Yano vs. Juice Robinson & Satoshi Kojima 
  • Yoshi-Hashi & Gedo vs. Kenny Omega & Yujiro Takahashi
  • Yuji Nagata & Michael Elgin & David Finlay vs. Tetsuya Naito & Evil & Bushi
  • Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Tomohiro Ishii
  • Togi Makabe vs. Tama Tonga
  • Hirooki Goto vs. Bad Luck Fale
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Seiya Sanada
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Naomichi Marufuji

Raw will be in Providence, RI. Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins for the WWE title will headline, plus they will announce the General Managers of Raw and Smackdown.


The WWE draft and the beginning of split brands takes place from Worcester, MA. 



  • Matt Sydal vs. Kaji Tomato
  • Gurukun Mask vs. Kenou
  • Yuma Aoyagi vs. Taichi
  • Jushin Liger vs. Eita
  • Titan vs. Will Ospreay
  • Bushi vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
  • Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Daisuke Harada
  • Kushida vs. Taiji Ishimori


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Wrestling Observer Newsletter

READ IT HERE: July 18, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: UFC sold for 4 billion dollars, UFC 200 review, notes on the WWE draft, more - Details on the sale of UFC for 4 billion dollars, recap of UFC 200, notes on the WWE draft, plus tons more.

The most detailed look at how the UFC got sold and the business ramifications of the sale is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Also inside, a look at the Brock Lesnar deal, where things stand going forward with Lesnar, a lot of updated thoughts on the WWE draft, the future of John Cena and notes on how that affects WWE business, Battle of Los Angeles, and coverage of all the UFC shows.  

This issue contains a copy of the letter that all the UFC fighters were sent by management and what they were told about the sale.  

An in depth look at how the original partners came together and the 2001 sale of the UFC to Dana White & The Fertittas, how much money White and the Fertittas probably got in the sale, plus a lot of things about the sale that haven't gone public yet. There’s also a look at White's new contract with the company, and the company's business numbers for 2015.  

Inside, examine how things are likely to change, where Lorenzo Fertitta is likely to go, the new owners and where their money came from, other bidders, and how the deal almost fell through. Plus, take a look at Lorenzo Fertitta & Dana White's role in the company going forward, how the source of the money to buy the company changed in recent weeks, why they were able to get $4 billion and what rivalry outside sports is key in them increasing revenue.  

Finally, this issue considers where Lesnar stands coming off his win over Mark Hunt, how the deal with Lesnar was first made, a look at a clause in every WWE contract and what it specifically says about MMA, and a look at why C.M. Punk was able to get out of the clause. Plus, take a look at future MMA prospects with Lesnar, how much money he really got from the show, how he changed a lot of the criticism of his career, and why he's more valuable now than before.  

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READ IT HERE: June 7, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Fallout from the death of Owen Hart - Details on the funeral of Owen Hart, how the media covered the story, and more.


Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer radio covering weekend news, with more on Brock Lesnar. We'll also be taking questions for the show, and in particular if you've got any questions on the Lesnar situation send them to

The G-1 Climax tournament starts tonight in Sapporo. Unlike original plans, there will be no English language commentary for tonight's show on New Japan World. Since Kevin Kelly and Steve Corino had to be in Philadelphia last night for the ROH TV tapings, it ended up being impossible to get a flight that would get them in Sapporo in time for tonight's show. Kelly and Corino are scheduled to broadcast the last three nights of G-1 live on New Japan World from 8/12 to 8/14.

Evangelista Cyborg Santos suffered a very serious fracture of the forehead in last night's fight on the Bellator show in London at the O2 Arena against Michael Venum Page. The knee fractured Santos' skull which racked above the right eye in one of the most gruesome injuries you'll see. Jimmy Smith said that one of the EMTs told him they'd only seen an injury like that in a severe car crash. Cris Cyborg asked fans to say a prayer for her ex-husband. He's hospitalized in the UK and may not be able to fly for a while. He hasn't had the surgery and they are afraid of possiible complications

As was promoted on his appearance on our show on Thursday, which was quite entertaining, Chael Sonnen promoted a show that sold out in advance for tonight in Portland, OR at the Roseland Theater for the debut of his Submission Underground promotion. Sonnen said as far as he knows they're the first submission event to sell out an arena of that size. Vinny Magalhaes vs Ronny Markes in a battle of former UFC fighters who are BJJ experts is the main event. Former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodrigues faces Fabiano Scherner in another fight. The show airs live on

ROH announced tickets on sale for Final Battle on 12/2 at the company's return to the Manhattan Center's Hammerstein Ballroom (1,800 capacity) and will also be doing a show 12/4 at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia. Tickets go on sale on Wednesday for ROH Ringside members at 10 a.m. Tickets go on sale to the public on 7/22 at 10 a.m.   


  • Pro Wrestling Sheet reported that Ric Flair got engaged to longtime girlfriend Wendy Barlow (who was Fifi the Maid in WCW in the 90s). Flair bought her an engagement ring this past week.  
  • Heath Slater was busted open near the right eye at last night's house show in Bangor, ME. I believe that he bonked heads with Titus O'Neil in their singles match. Slater was bleeding so badly that the doctor stopped the match, which is very rare. Slater wasn't happy at all. He cut was so deep you could see the bone and needed 18 sutures to close it.
  • With almost all the talent in MSG, and tonight in Glens Falls, the B show was headlined by Rusev vs. Kalisto vs. Sami Zayn vs. Cesaro for the U.S. title.
  • For whatever this is worth, on social media, Sasha Banks has said that it's not Bayley who will be her tag team partner at Battleground a week from today against Charlotte & Dana Brooke.
  • With all the other news, between the draft and the Lesnar situation, Raw tomorrow is the go-home show for Battleground along with the announcement of the new General Managers for Raw & Smackdown. It was teased that Vince McMahon would be on the show to announce General Managers if Shane & Stephanie don't pick them, but in advertising for the show, Vince is not listed.
  • Ballers, Dwayne Johnson's HBO TV show, begins season two at 10 p.m. tonight. They had a red carpet open in Miami to promote the start of the season. 
  • As noted here in the Friday update, Brock Lesnar, who was advertised at one point for the draft show, is no longer advertised for it.
  • Linda McMahon was a participant in the Republican Rules Committee meeting that took place on Thursday and aired on C-Span. It was a major meeting because it was about the attempt by the "Never Trump" people to make a last ditch effort to prevent Donald Trump from being nominated. (thanks to Matt Johnson)


  • A name from wrestling history, Jamie Kellner, who was chairman and CEO of TBS and made the call to cancel wrestling, has put their 20 acre property which includes the Cent'anni winery for sale in Santa Ynez Valley for $5.49 million. 
  • Benson Henderson vs. Patricio Pitbull Freire with Henderson moving back to 155 and Freire moving up will headline an 8/26 Bellator show at the Honda Center in Anaheim. Spike is doing a dual promotion weekend with a Friday night Bellator show and a Saturday night Premier boxing show both from the same arena. The boxing show will be headlined by Robert Guerrero vs. David Peralta and Alfredo Angulo vs. Freddy Hernandez.
  • There is a big OklaMania show today in Oklahoma City and we're looking for reports on the show. The card features a 20 man Danny Hodge Battle Royal with the winner getting a title shot in the main event with Damien Sandow, Lance Archer, Abyss, Donovan Dijak, Marshall & Ross Von Erich (Kevin's sons), Jim Duggan and a ton of area wrestles, plus Dalton Castle vs. Roderick Strong, Amber Gallows vs. Nikki Knight vs. Angelina Love vs. Mickie James for the NWA women's title, Ethan Carter III vs. Moose, Ky-ote vs. Chavo Guerrero Jr., Matt & Jeff Hardy vs. War Machine managed by Jim Cornette, Jerry Lawler vs. Jeff Jarrett and Cambridge defending the IWR title against the Battle Royal winner. Sting will also be appearing on the show doing a promo.
  • If you are in the San Jose area today, Premier Wrestling runs at 5 p.m. at the IFDES Portugese Hall in Gilroy, CA featuring Jeff Cobb, JR Kratos and Raze vs. Shayna Baszler for the Premier Athletes title.
  • Kimbo Slice was inducted into the Bare Knuckle Boxing Hall of Fame last week.  He had been selected for the Hall of Fame five months before his tragic death.  His mother, daughter and publicist went to Belfast, NY, where the Hall of Fame is located.  Most of the inductees are 19th century boxers before modern boxing rules were formulated.  
  • There is a lot of talk about the Rush vs. L.A. Park match from Thursday night because they went into business for themselves at the end.
  • Southern Illinois Championship Wrestling last night in East Carondelet, IL before 280 fans: Moondog Rover b Flaming Freddy Fury, Bobby D NC Daniel Gunner, Dave Vaughn b Johnny Blade, Jim Hoffarth b Curtis, Waco DDQ Sean  Vincent, Brandon Espinosa b Brian Rogers, Ken Kasa won a 30 minute iron man match over Chris Harges and then beat manager Travis Cook in a five minute match, Atilla Khan & Kahagas & Vic the Bruiser b Ron Powers & Gary Jackson & Bob Orton Jr. (as in the famous one, Randy's father, now 65 years old) in a 2/3 fall match (thanks to Larry Matysik)
  • Dynamo Pro Wrestling from last night in  Glen Carbon, IL: Brandon Espinosa b Paco Gonzalez, Ric Maverick b Matt Kenway, Ozzie Gallagher b Jackal, The Snitch b C.J. Shine, Mike Outlaw b Billy McNeil, Makaze b Jayson Khaos, Jack Gamble & Jon Webb b Shawn Santel & Mauler McDarby (thanks to Patrick Brandmeyer)
  • I Believe in Wrestling from last night in Orlando: Johnny Vandal & CT Brown b Chico Adams & Tyranus, Santana Garrett b Raegan Fire, Brandon Scherer b Rey Xion, Aaron Epic b Josh Rayne, Thea Trinidad b Raquel, Mike Reed & Josh Hess b Braydon Knight &  Alex Todd, Rhett Giddins b JD Amazing in a alls count anywhere match.  Next show is 8/6 with a Super 6 Survival match (thanks to Al Haft)

Daily Pro Wrestling History (07/17): CM Punk wins WWE title at Money in the Bank 2011