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Daily Update: NXT, Covington and Werdum, WM on-sale party

THE ROUND-UP

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The Latest from the F4W Staff

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FIGURE FOUR WEEKLY:Figure Four Weekly 11/13/2017: AJ Styles becomes a two-time WWE Champion

Adding another accomplishment to his already phenomenal career, AJ Styles became a two-time WWE Champion at last week's SmackDown tapings in Manchester, England. Styles defeated Jinder Mahal to win the title, putting an abrupt end to a reign that seemed destined to go longer. The switch came less than two weeks before Mahal's planned non-title champion vs. champion match against Brock Lesnar at Survivor Series

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WRESTLING OBSERVER NEWSLETTER:November 20, 2017 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Survivor Series card changes, McGregor incident, more

A preview and an update on Survivor Series is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, looking at that show and the Takeover show.

Look at Conor McGregor's behavior at the Bellator show in Dublin, and the tricky position punishing him is from all sides because of the money he generates. Also look at the fight out of left field for McGregor that people are already knocking heavily but would do gigantic business, how this may have already cost UFC a major main event.

The renewal of Lucha Underground, what is expected to change, notes no decreasing costs, and why some talent is happy but a lot of talent is less happy about this news. Also look at the Arolucha promotion, who is involved, when it's scheduled to tape, and how the renewal of Lucha Underground greatly impacts them.

WWE is in India, what the show cancellation and Jinder Mahal title loss means, the business in India, and claim of biggest match ever in India.

Read about Daniel Bryan's statements about returning to wrestling next year, and more on CTE. Take a look in depth at the economics of WrestleMania, how many tourists came to the show, how much tourists spent in Orlando and just how much more important WrestleMania is for a locale than even a few years ago. 

Examine the James Ellsworth cut, lots more on the Ric Flair 30 for 30, John Cena movie, update on WWE U.K., Chris Jericho cruise and 2018 schedule, the Randy Orton/Kevin Owens twitter back-and-forth, reaction to Owens & Zayn being sent home, Starrcade notes, Notes on indie asking price of a WWE wrestler just cut, injury updates, the next U.K. TV tapings, former WWE star talks coming out of retirement, as well as the current company value and most watched shows on the WWE Network.

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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.

WON BACK ISSUE: October 30, 2000 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Death of Yokozuna, Bret Hart leaves WCW, more

Rodney Anoia, who was the heaviest superstar in the history of pro wrestling and a two-time WWF champion under the name Yokozuna, passed away suddenly on 10/23 in a Liverpool, England hotel room a few weeks after his 34th birthday. Anoia was the most successful of the huge Samoan clan of wrestlers started by Afa & Sika Anoia, his uncles, when they began wrestling in the early 1970s. He was one of the biggest stars in the business around the world during his WWF run, which lasted from late 1992 through 1996.

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THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE

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Paul Levesque did a media call earlier today. Not a lot of major news but he did say the changes in War Games are to modernize it, such as no roof on the cage allows people to come off the cage. He didn't talk about the entrances coming in a more frequent manner but that's likely to speed up the match. He also indicated the move of the NXT tapings to Center Stage in Atlanta was temporary and Full Sail is still their home, and said it was date availability issues that led to them do the first 13 or so weeks of television in 2018 away from Orlando.

Colby Covington has pressed charges against Fabricio Werdum for Werdum throwing a boomerang at his face. The story has gotten mainstream pub in Australia, where Werdum faces Marcin Tybura in the main event on a show that airs on Saturday night in the U.S., but will be Sunday morning in Australia. Werdum claimed he was walking past Covington who called him a filthy Brazilian. He said he slapped a phone out of Covington's hand and Covington kicked him. Covington claimed Werdum punched him but Werdum denied that. The UFC is investigating the situation. Covington put up an interview on Instagram after it happened claiming to have been punched and called Werdum a gay slur. Werdum has been charged with common assault and is expected to appear in court on 12/13.

The WrestleMania launch party takes place inside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome tonight with The Hardys, Mickie James, Mark Henry, Heath Slater and Rhyno. The party is free and Hideo Itami will be among those competing on an NXT show as part of the party.

Simone Garcia Johnson, the 16-year-old daughter of Dwayne Johnson, was announced today as the Golden Globes Ambassador. That has been a role for teenage daughters of famous celebrities. The Globe Awards will be on 1/7 from the Beverly Hilton on NBC. In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter Johnson said that she wants to study business at NYU and then pursue pro wrestling and eventually get into talent management.

WWE

  • The Rams are using Ric Flair's name to call audibles. (thanks to Steve Te Tai) 
  • This is not the final odds you can get on, but oddsmaker Jimmy Murphy for sportsbettingexperts.com is listing these numbers for Saturday: Enzo Amore -350 Kalisto +300 The Miz -350 Baron Corbin +300 Cesaro & Sheamus +130 Usos -150 The Shield -210 New Day +180 Alexa Bliss -150 Charlotte Flair +130 Brock Lesnar -350 A.J. Styles +300 Team Raw Men +210 Team Smackdown Men -250 Team Raw Women +110 Team Smackdown Women -130
  • His predicted star ratings are: Enzo vs. Kalisto **1/2 Miz vs. Corbin **1/2 Usos vs. Sheamus & Cesaro ***1/2 New Day vs. Shield ***1/2 Alexa Bliss vs. Charlotte *** A.J. Styles vs. Brock Lesnar **** Men's elimination match ***1/2 Women's elimination match ***
  • WWE SuperCard season four is available for free download on iOS and Andoid Devices. 

UFC

  • Ariel Helwani reported that UFC and Stipe Miocic are talking contract and his camp is optimistic he'll be back fighting in the first quarter of 2018. Miocic was holding out for a contract restructuring, which had put the heavyweight title on ice. Helwani also reported today that talks are back on for a Cris Cyborg vs. Holly Holm featherweight title fight. 
  • UFC television personality Megan Olivi will be one of the judges for the Miss Universe pageant from Las Vegas which airs on FOX on 11/26.
  • UFC is doing a Top Female Athletes in Combat Sports week from 12/1 to 12/6. 12/1 will be a live Friday night show with Fight Pass prelims that will feature fighters on the current women's flyweight season of Ultimate Fighter. 12/2 will have both prelims before the PPV show in Detroit, as well as Glory kickboxing featuring Tiffany van Soest. 12/3 will have the Eddie Bravo Invitational 14, which will feature a four-women winner-take-all submission rules match. 12/8 will be Invicta from Kansas City, an all-women's MMA event featuring the Invicta debut of Mackenzie Dern.

MISCELLANEOUS

  • New Japan opens its tag team tournament on Saturday morning with a live show from Korakuen Hall on New Japan World. There will also be shows on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday that will be put up on tape delay later those afternoons but with only the tournament matches. The complete lineups for each day is in the 11/13 issue of the Wrestling Observer.
  • Bellator weigh-ins for today's show in Tel Aviv, Israel that airs at 9 p.m. Eastern tomorrow night on Spike: Noad Lahat (146) vs. Jeremiah Labiano (146) Haim Gozali (169.5) vs. Arsen Faitovich (170.05) John Salter (186) vs. Jason Radcliffe (186) Denise Kielhotz (125) vs. Jessica Middleton (125)
  • Bellator will be giving away Kimbo Slice bobbleheads to the first 5,000 fans who come to the 1/20 show at the Forum in Los Angeles. 
  • The 11/25 WrestleCade show in Winston, Salem, NC will stream live on FITE TV headland by Eli Drake vs. Jack Swagger vs. Johnny Impact and Ivelisse vs. Taya Valkyrie. 
  • A story on Conrad Thompson.
  • A look at the days of Mid Atlantic wrestling. (thanks to Mike Kuzmuk)
  • Stand up comedian Bill Burr recorded a live podcast "praising" the documentary and Flair.
  • Combat Zone Wrestling's biggest show of the year, the annual Cage of Death card will be on 12/9 at the Rastellis' Complex in Sewell, NJ. Announced is Rickey Shane Page vs. Shane Strickland vs. Joe Gacy in a cage of death and Jimmy Lloyd vs. Matt Tremont in a 10,000 thumbtacks its match.
  • MCW on 12/1 in Joppa, MD will include a meet and greet with Sgt. Slaughter.
  • Powerbomb.TV on 11/25 presents Wazzup from Philadelphia headlined by Jonathan Gresham vs. Jody Fleisch streaming live.
  • Mike Davidson of Winnipeg got back into the wrestling promoting game and was set to debut a new promotion called Wrestling Supercard with shows on 11/23 in Thunder Bay, ONT, 11/24 in Winnipeg and 11/25 in Thompson using Santino Marella, Ken Anderson, Eugene and Shawn Daivari. On Tuesday, Davidson announced the shows were canceled due to low ticket sales.
  • AAW on 11/25 in Chicago at the Logan Square Auditorium has Rey Fenix vs. Jimmy Jacobs for the AAW title, Penta 0M vs. Zema Ion for the AAW Heritage title, David Starr & Trevor Lee vs. Eddie Kingston & AR Fox, Shane Strickland vs. Fred Yehi and Dave & Jake Crist vs. Trey Miguel & Stephen Wolf, plus Flip Gordon, Sammy Guevara, and more. They also run 12/2 in LaSalle, IL with the crowning of a first women's champion (Ivelisse vs. Rachael Ellering vs. either Jessicka Havok or Candie LeRae), Mat Fitchett & Davey Vega vs. Shane Strickland & Keith Lee and Hurricane Helms vs. Trevor Lee, plus Jimmy Jacobs, David Starr, AR Fox, ACH, Sammy Guevara, Dave & Jake Crist, Matt Riddle, Zero Gravity and more.
  • Chaotic Wrestling tomorrow night in Woburn, MA headlined by Elia Markopoulos vs. Chase Del Monte. 
  • Tickets are available now for ringside members for the ROH TV tapings on 1/20 in Nashville at the Municipal Auditorium,
  • Hoosier Pro Wrestling on 12/2 in Columbus, IN at the 4-H Fairgrounds
  • Glory 48 comes to Madison Square Garden at the Theater on 12/1 with Tiffany Van Soest defending her title against Anissa Meksen.  
  • There will be a November to Remember Fanfest from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia featuring a lot of former ECW stars as well as Vader and Austin Aries.
  • A trailer for a Teddy Hart interview.

Today in Professional Wrestling History: WWE Survivor Series 2003

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