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Daily Update: Buddy Matthews, Saraya, WWE SmackDown fast nationals

Dave Meltzer wraps up the weekend with news on Buddy Matthews, Saraya, and the big WWE SmackDown numbers.

Daily Update

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This Week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter:

AEW Grand Slam report, the business, the future angles coming out of the show, ideas for the show for next year, angles, Saraya, Great Muta, business notes, highest TV gates in U.S history including inflation adjusted and warning signs.
Behind the Roman Reigns vs. Logan Paul idea and why it's reasons for happening are very different than a traditional PPV main event
CMLL's 89th anniversary show. A report on the major show this year with the hottest crowd and some of the best action and booking.
Updates on Extreme Rules
The U.S. team wins the men's world team championship and places second with women, how the team members did and an 18-year old capturing a world championship
Jose Aldo, the featherweight great, his career and how he helped get featherweights into the UFC
WWE & AEW business over the past two months. What categories are up and down and by how much. Also comparisons to May & June numbers and the most unique note about attendance increases and decrease
Complete coverage of last week's UFC show
Kento Miyahara, All Japan returns to Budokan Hall for its 50th anniversary, and first time since 2004
Dangerous Gate 2002 from Dragon Gate
TV ratings including how each segment on the major shows did
Former WWE wrestler talks about going to CMLL and wants to be in next year's Anniversary main event
Legend from TV boom returns to Arena Mexico
Notes on next week's CMLL Night of Champions fan voting show
Stardom Five Star Grand Prix update
Last match of the Great Muta
Fantastica Mania may be back
Former WWE announcers television show canceled
Former WCW announcer now a network radio news anchor
Former WWE star open movie company
Kurt Angle talks about a return after double knee replacement but notes it probably won't happen
MLW TV taping news
Things is another promotion affect world title
Next questions about WBD long-term
MJF talks his return and future AEW Revolution 2023
Streaming numbers
International TV ratings
The second biggest PPV match of all-time may be rematched in 2023
White Rabbit
NXT changes
Hulu and WWE update
Young Rock update

This Week's Retro Observer Newsletter:

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Sunday News Update

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Bryan and I will be back tonight talking the weekend news. We have a show with me and Garrett up on the site right now talking a lot of different subjects from AEW Revolution in the Bay Area, the WWE & AEW trends from the newsletter and business, Hall of Fame and much more.

Regarding Buddy Matthews, AEW has made no comment on the situation. It appears to be a situation similar to Malakai Black but there is nothing on his getting a release at this point. He did an independent show for Fight Life Pro last night and said basically the same thing Black said, that he is going away for a while, needs to recalibrate and it's not good bye, it's see you later. In this case, there is no confirmation of a release although just about everyone figures he's got a long-term deal, wants to go back to WWE and has to work something out to do so. We were also told Tony Khan is not hot on releasing people to go to WWE so we'll have to see how this plays out. But there is a feeling he and Black are done in AEW, and for certain, both are gone for now, meaning Brody King is likely a single with Julia Hart.

Saraya will be making a statement on Wednesday which would likely talk about her AEW direction. If she will wrestle or not would depend on Dr. Michael Sampson and his ruling about what she can and can't do physically. 

We don't usually talk about fast nationals only because for Smackdown, the real number comes out tomorrow anyway and the demo number is still the most important. But fast nationals were huge for Smackdown at 2.38 million viewers. As a general rule, the final number is well above the fast national number for the show, meaning it could reasonably top 2.5 million and could be the most watched episode of the show this year. The only thing that would have taken the show out of "normal" range is the White Rabbit teases, so as far as ratings for Friday, the social angle it a huge success. They teased more for Edmonton tomorrow for Raw so we'll see if that holds up. We did generally get people disappointed with nothing stronger on Friday but that doesn't mean people will give up on the angle after one show either. 

As noted earlier today, Drew McIntyre missed last night's WWE show in Stockton, CA and will be off today's show in Fresno, CA due to food poisoning. He got very sick, but did do television as scheduled, was hooked up to an IV and avoided eating on Friday and flew right home that night after Salt Lake City. His condition is said to have improved today to a degree, as it was said to be a really nasty case of food poisoning but he didn't opt to go to the hospital. The hope is that he'll be able to do his scheduled media stuff this week in San Antonio for Royal Rumble and be back for TV and the house shows this coming weekend. He wasn't booked for Raw in Edmonton tomorrow. Braun Strowman replaced him last night and is scheduled for Fresno today as well.

Veer Mahaan has been sent down to NXT and has reformed the team Indu Sher with Sanga.

We're looking for reports from last night's WWE show in Stockton and today's show on Fresno, as well as the NXT shows in Fort Pierce, FL and Citrus Springs, FL to dave@wrestlingobserver.com We're looking for results, finishes and highlights.

We're also looking for your thoughts on today's NJPW show in Kobe, thumbs up, down or middle, best and worst match to dave@wrestlingobserver.com

A.J. Styles vs. Sami Zayn has been added to tomorrow's Raw show that also includes Bianca Belair vs. Iyo Sky, Rey Mysterio vs Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens & Johnny Gargano vs. Chad Gable & Otis and Matt Riddle vs. Damian Priest. There is also scheduled to be another White Rabbit clue. 

Longtime ROH booker Hunter Johnston worked backstage a producers at the Impact shows over the weekend. Bobby Fish started as well but has not signed a deal there, but will be working future shows. Delirious wrestled at the tapings.

The WWE content that was to be pulled from Hulu yesterday is still up. It is now scheduled to be pulled tomorrow. Usually when these things happen it is part of contract negotiations and it means discussions for WWE to stay with Hulu must be still ongoing.

On the Google trends this week, nothing related to wrestling or MMA made the list, nor boxing as of yesterday. UFC didn't have a show yesterday. Floyd Mayweather was in the top 20 earlier today but has fallen out of it. Mayweather beat Japanese MMA fighter Mikuru Asakura under boxing rules on today's Rizin show at the Saitama Super Arena via second round knockout.

On today's NOAH show in Nagoya, Kaito Kiyomiya won the GHC title from Kenou and Satoshi Kojima & Takashi Sugiura won the tag team titles from Timothy Thacher & Hideki Suzuki.

I haven't seen this match yet, but have gotten a number of people telling me to make sure to watch the Konosuke Takeshita challenge to Kazusada Higuchi for the KO-D title on today's DDT show. Takeshita was cut open, it was wrestled at what was said to be an incredible pace and the crowd being allowed to cheer and boo helped out as well. Takeshita had vowed to win and take the KO-D title with him to the U.S., but that didn't happen.

WWE in Vancouver last night:

      • Street Profits b Chad Gable & Otis
      • Nikki ASH b Dana Brooke to win the 24/7 title, a referee pinned Nikki to win the title, Nikki won it back and Brooke beat Nikki to win it back
      • White Rabbit segment
      • Iyo Sky & Dakota Kai b Asuka & Alexa Bliss to keep the tag titles
      • Kevin Owens b Austin Theory
      • Matt Riddle b The Miz
      • Finn Balor b Rey Mysterio with help from Dominik
      • Roman Reigns b A.J. Styles with a spear to keep the title
      • This drew one of the biggest house show crowds of the year

UFC

Chris Curtis vs. Joaquin Buckley has been added to the 12/10 PPV show in Las Vegas

Other Notes

Stardom in Showcase PPV from earlier today:

      • Hanan b Saya Iida in the Grand Prix tournament
      • Suzu Suzuki b Starlight Kid in the Grand prix tournament (said to be one of the best bouts of the tournament so far)
      • Saya Iida won the Stardom bodybuilding contest (said to be good since it wasn't taken seriously and everyone had fun with making it comedy)
      • AZM and Mayu Iwatani and Ram Kaichow won over Maika in a falls count anywhere match that was said be be something similar to the original Stadium Stampede show
      • Cosmic rules (wet t-shirt/bikini contest) saw Unagi Sayaka DQ'd, lots of water gun usage. It was ruled that Tam Nakano, Natsupoi, Mina Shirakawa, Saki and Hikari Shimizu all won
      • Giulia & Rina Yamashita b Momo Watanabe & Ruaka in a hardcore match (said to be safe hardcore match except for some head shots and head-butts),
      • Yuu & Nanae Takahashi & Yuna Manase b Syuri & Utami Hayashishita & Lady C. Yuu & Nanae Takahashi are going to be a team in the upcoming tag team tournament and then a video of Alpha Female played and she is aligning with Yuu & Takahashi to try and take Stardom away from Rossy Ogawa as well as destroy Mayu Iwatani, doing an NWO type angle. They are calling their group the NSA (Neo Stardom Army). 
      • (thanks to David Popper)

Bob Backlund's autobiography, which is a very good book if you've never read it, will be released as a paperback edition on Tuesday.

A story on Crowbar Devon Storm being back in the ring more often (thanks to Mike Kuzmuk)

GOUGE from yesterday in Raleigh, NC: 

      • Seymour Snott b Mecha Mercenary
      • Chet Sterling b Bobby Wohlfert
      • Snooty Fox b Glamor Boy Khan
      • Inuit Joe DCOR 
      • TKO TIM b Waylon Blaze
      • Chet Sterling b Snooty Fox
      • Chet Sterling b Seymour Snott to win the 1984 All Valley Wrestling Classic tournament
      • Next show is 10/8 in Chapel Hill,NC at the Rebus Works.

Naomichi Marufuji and Katsuhiko Nakajima from NOAH will be wrestling on 11/12 in Elmhurst, NY at the Queensborough Elks Lodge for New Evolution Wrestling.

PWA from Coogee Bay in Sydney, Australia:

      • Robbie Eagles The Velocities b Back Pain
      • Jack Bonza b Shazza McKenzie-DQ
      • Big Brother Billy won over Will Keidis, Victor Langaz and Big Fudgein
      • Kai Drake & Michael Spencer b Frankie B & Nikki Van Blair to keep the tag titles
      • Jimmy Townsend b Rhys Angel in a street fight 
      • Ricky South b Unsocial Jordan to keep the PWA title
      • Cherry Stephens b Mick Moretti to win the Soul of PWA title

PWA & Melbourne City Wrestling have a Colosseum tournament on 10/7 an 1/8 in Thornbury, Victoria with Eagles, Charli Evans, Adam Brooks, Caveman Ugg, Jessica Troy, AJ Istria and Tommy Knight.

Shingo Takagi will be wrestling for Pro Wrestling Australia on 10/21. (thanks to Paul Robinson)

Donnie B has a show on 12/3 in Toms River NJ with a fan fest from 4-7 p.m. and an 8 p.m. show. It's a benefit show for the 200 Club of Ocean County,NJ. Announced as appearing at the fan fest are Sting, Jerry Lawler, Sgt Slaughter, Tommy Dreamer, Nova, Frankie Kazarian, Brian Myers, Matt Cardona, Pat Buck, Aron Stevens, Rik Ratchet, Anthony Greene, Francine, Eddie Edwards, Davey Richards, SATs and Frankie Edgar.

Pro Wrestling NOAH will be holding trouts on 11/17 in San Jose, CA at the Pro Wrestling Revolution Academy. Naomichi Marufuji and Katsuhiko Nakajima will be scouting talent and they are looking for talent to tour Japan with the group.