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Daily Update: New Day special ratings, BJ Whitmer, MMA notes

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F4W NEWSLETTER: Figure Four Weekly: Recapping WWE TLC

When Daniel Bryan announced his emotional return to the ring, it was fairly inconceivable that he'd end up being a vicious and pompous environmentalist heel just eight months later. But the character change has revitalized Bryan and taken him to the highest points since the immediate aftermath of announcing his comeback. With Bryan completely buying into the change, "the new Daniel Bryan" has been far better in execution than it would have sounded on paper.

WON NEWSLETTER: December 24, 2018 Observer Newsletter: 7 entrants into the Hall of Fame

Our biggest issue of the year, the 2018 Hall of Fame issue of the Observer is out right now.

Read detailed bios of the seven new inductees, a voting breakdown, as well as a voting breakdown among reporters, historians, current business professionals and former business professionals as well as a breakdown of how all the top candidates did with every group.

Read the explanation of the criteria, the voting, who will be on next year's ballot, who was dropped from this year's ballot, with histories of wrestlers and wrestlers in different parts of the world in different eras.

Read full coverage of the TLC PPV, with match-by-match coverage, star ratings, poll results and business, as well as some decision making background.

Look at the changes going forward in ROH in 2019. Read about who is leaving, who is coming, the nature of the Sinclair ownership, how the changes in the industry are going to greatly affect the independent scene almost immediately, the grab for talent, ROH's key signings and who is coming in that they haven't signed, and look at the chances for AEW.

Read about the situations with Bandido and PCO, and also run down the Final Battle PPV from ROH with match-by-match coverage, star ratings and poll results.

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 Dave Meltzer, or by using PayPal directing funds to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com

Rates in the United States are $13 for 4 issues, $32 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $14.50 for 4, $35 for 12, $67 for 24, $111 for 40 and $144 or 52. In Europe, you can get the fastest delivery and best rates by sending to moonsault@mediaplusint.com. For the rest of the world, rates are $16.50 for 4, $44 for 12, $85 for 24, $141 for 40 issues and $183 for 52. If you order by mail with a check, cash or money order (P.O. Box 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228), you can get $1 off in every price range.)

If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can choose one free classic issue or two free classic issues with a 40-issue subscription.

THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE

By Joseph Currier and Bryan Rose

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WWE

  • New Day’s WWE 2018 Pancake Powered New Year Super Spectacular, an hour-long year-end special that aired on the USA Network last night, averaged 584,000 viewers. The rating in the 18-49 demo was a 0.18. Tribute to the Troops is airing on USA tonight from 9-11 p.m. Eastern time. A marathon of Miz & Mrs. season one will air after Tribute to the Troops.
  • WWE streamed an “outrageous Christmas gift exchange” with New Day and Peyton Royce & Billie Kay.
  • WWE and J SPORTS have extended their deal to air Raw and SmackDown in Japan.
  • John Cena, Hailee Steinfeld, and Make-A-Wish lit up the Empire State Building in yellow to celebrate the premiere of “Bumblebee.”
  • Wrestling DVD Network revealed the content listing for WWE’s Best of NXT TakeOver 2018 DVD.
  • The Singh Brothers wrote yesterday: “In 1996 our parents bought us the ‘Wrestlemania’ Ring. They’ve kept the ring at their house ever since. Today we gave them our 1st ever @wwe figures to put in that ring. They’re 2 proud parents & we are 2 proud sons. This is what the dream is all about for immigrant parents.”
  • Matt Riddle will be the guest on tomorrow’s episode of the Edge & Christian podcast.

Pro Wrestling

UFC/MMA

  • Here is audio from this afternoon’s UFC 232 media conference call.
  • Jon Jones talked to Sports Illustrated ahead of his fight on December 29.
  • Jones also called out Daniel Cormier on Twitter: “Fight me one more time and prove you’re actually the champ champ. I’ll donate $100,000 to a charity in San Diego if you accept. Conor McGregor was an actual double Champ, the whole world knows your claim is a freaking joke. You’re more than welcome to be my first title defense.”
  • Gegard Mousasi is out of his Bellator 214 fight against Rafael Lovato Jr. due to a back injury. It hasn’t been determined if Lovato will remain on the card.
  • Deron Winn, who defeated our own Tom Lawlor in the undercard of the Chuck Liddell/Tito Ortiz PPV, has signed with the UFC.
  • A fight between Gregor Gillespie and Yancy Medeiros will be on the first UFC on ESPN+ card on January 19.
  • A welterweight fight between Danny Roberts and Claudio Silva has been added to the UFC London event on March 16. Molly McCann vs. Priscila Cachoeira at flyweight has also been added.
  • Kent Kauppinen has signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator following his KO win over Alessio Sakara.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: TNA Final Resolution 2009

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