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Daily Update: Raw, NJPW, Adam Cole-Pat McAfee


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WON NEWSLETTER: July 27, 2020 Observer Newsletter: Extreme Rules review, Good Brothers podcast, more

A look at the very good, and the very bad, of Extreme Rules is the lead story in the new double issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. We also have a back-of-the-book feature on Carlton Haselrig, one of the greatest American heavyweight wrestlers in the history of the sport of wrestling.

The new issue also covers:

Interest levels in Extreme Rules and with the rating the next day, the lesson that tells us about certain types of angles, the background of Seth Rollins vs. Rey Mysterio, along with match-by-match coverage, star ratings and poll results on the show.

An examination of all facets of the Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson departure from WWE, including what makes sense, what doesn't, why, how come they were signed, how come they were given such a strong offer to stay, their release, A.J. Styles, angles set up for them in New Japan and AEW last year, the booking of Raw under Paul Heyman and much more.  This is a very detailed look not only at Gallows &  Anderson, but the roles of a number of different people and how Raw fell off the creative tracks

Impact Slammiversary with match-by-match coverage with star ratings and poll results on the show.

Stephanie McMahon's interview in Ad Age covering wrestling during the pandemic, testing and what changes look to be permanent, as well as race relations.

The current plan for WrestleMania and how it has shifted, the new WWE Board of Directors, next week's Raw show, NXT North American title thoughts, notes on the next Takeover, update on Wendy Barlow and COVID, WWE producer let go, WWE loses major international deal and how it went down, WWE TV personality get bullied by fans, idea nixed for Raw this past week and all the different changes to the show, Adam Cole-Pat McAfee angel, Bellas update, sports ratings and Canadian TV ratings for the past week, another example of WWE marketing that ha led to the situation they are in, market value of WWE and the most-watched shows of the past week on the WWE Network.

This past weekend's UFC show.

A feature on Haselrig, a Pennsylvania sports legend who could have been an Olympic medalist or an all-time great NFL player, but drugs curtailed his career, but not before he set a heavyweight record that may never be beat and another record that almost surely will never be beat.

Ratings of all the major shows, the key demos and quarters for AEW and WWE, what happened head-to-head and what can be learned from them.

Results of all the major pro wrestling events around the world over the past week. 

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Bryan and I will be back tonight talking Raw, BTE, and the rest of the pro wrestling and MMA news with Wrestling Observer Radio. You can send questions to for the show.

Some notes on tonight's Raw which was taped last week:

  • Drew McIntyre vs. Dolph Ziggler with stips to be announced at ringside
  • Asuka vs. Sasha Banks for the Raw women's title
  • Angel Garza & Andrade vs. Viking Raiders vs. Ricochet & Cedric Alexander for a shot at the Street Profits tag title
  • Dominick Mysterio confronts Seth Rollins
  • Randy Orton opens the show saying who his next victim will be. The original idea was Drew McIntyre
  • Follow-up regarding Kairi Sane
  • Nia Jax returns (according to PWInsider)

New Japan has a press conference at 4 a.m. tonight to announce the 8/29 Tokyo Jingu Stadium card, which looks to be headlined by Evil vs. Tetsuya Naito for both titles.

Today is the 98th birthday of Joe D'Orazio, the oldest living pro wrestler. Joe was the co-promoter of MatSports wth George Kidd, as well as a wrestler, referee and trainer after his in-ring career ended.  He was also a wrestling writer and at one point was known as "the guy who knows everything about the business" in the U.K. 

Hong Kong, Japan and Australia, three places where COVID-19 was thought to be under control, have rebounded with higher numbers. This is not good news as far as eradicating the disease any time soon. 

They are teasing that the Adam Cole-Pat McAfee angle will continue as Triple H invited McAfee to NXT. “Look Pat, I’ll open it up to you,” he told McAfee during his show today (h/t Cageside Seats). “I don’t know if Florida is on your plans any time soon - I know you get down there sometimes. So any time you’re around, come on the show, I’ll promote your show, I’ll promote you, just like we’ve done before. But, you know, for you guys... and if you don’t want to do it that way, if you just want to just you and him sit in a room with nothing else around it and no promotion, not the show or anything like that, I’m fine with that too. This is you and him, man to man. But if you want to do that separately and because you’re in Florida, whatever that is, jump on the show - cool with that too. If he wants to come up and be on your show, we can do it however you want. But I do think the two of you should sit in a room.” 


  • Paul Levesque turns 51 today.  Dolph Ziggler also turns 40 and Adam Page turns 29.


  • Chris Jericho announced he would be releasing a record book in October covering every one of his matches.  He and Alex Marvez have traced down every match in his career and want to release it in conjunction with the 30th anniversary of his debut.
  • Jericho will also be one of the stars of a movie called "Kilroy Was Here," a horror movie that was announced over the weekend at the San Diego Comic Con. (thanks to Joe Puccio)
  • Wednesday's AEW lineup: Jericho & Jake Hager & Sammy Guevara & Ortiz & Santana vs. Jungle Boy & Luchasaurus & Orange Cassidy & Chuck Taylor & Trent Kenny Omega & Adam Page vs. Stu Grayson & Evil Uno for the tag titles Jon Moxley & Darby Allin vs. Brian Cage & Ricky Starks in a tornado match Cody vs. Warhorse for the TV title Hikaru Shida vs. Diamante non-title MJF State of the Union address


  • Impact on Tuesday night on AXS Eddie Edwards vs. Trey for Impact title Deonna Purrazzo vs. Kimber Lee Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson vs. Reno Scum
  • This is a news story from a few months back regarding Pro Wrestling Revolucion in San Jose marketing COVID masks with Lucha Libre designs. What I can tell you is my kids love these masks.
  • MLW announced a distribution deal with Digital Original Entertainment (DOE), a streaming network that will launch on Pluto TV starting in the fall.  MLW Fusion will air on the platform starting in September.
  • OVW announced that their weekly television shows will be available on Amazon Prime in more than 200 countries.
  • Ashley Cummins (7-5) vs. Alesha Zappitella (7-2) will fight for the vacant Invicta atomweight (105 pound) title on 9/17 in Kansas City.   The co-main event will be a bantamweight fight as former title challenger Lisa Verzosa (5-1) faces Raquel Canuto (6-6).
  • Former WWE wrestler, model and actress Natalie Eva Marie announced she would be hosting a new show about women's wrestling on Now the News, called "Faces and Heels," following seven women.  The first episode will air on 7/30 on her Facebook page.  
  • Gordon Solie passed away 20 years ago today at the age of 71.  Gordon Solie, Lance Russell and Larry Matysik were considered the top three wrestling announcers of the 70s although with Solie's CWF show airing outside Florida and later Georgia Championship Wrestling going national, he was the one who got the most publicity as being the Dean of Wrestling announcers.  Actually Russell started before Solie but Solie was the voice of wrestling in the Southeast to a generation.
  • Paradigm Pro Wrestling Heavy Hitters 2 before 125 fans (sold out) in Sellersburg, IN on IWTV:  Freddie Hudson b Cole Radrick to wim PPW title, Tom Lawlor b Calvin Tankman under UWFI rules, Bobby Beverly b Ron Mathis under street fight rules, Mo Atlas b Devantes under UWFI rules, Nolan Edwards b Kevin Ka under street fight rules, Dominik Garrini b Gary Jay under UWFI rules, Aaron Williams b AJ Gray under UWFI rules, Brett Ison b Bradley Prescott IV under street fight rules, Erick Stevens b Big Perc under UWFI rules, Flash Thompson b Justin Kyle under UWFI rules, Chris Dickinson b Lee Moriarty under UWFI rules, Matt Justice b Stephan Bonnar under street fight rules, Bobby Beverly won elimination match to win the Heavy Hitters title over Williams, Isom, Dickinson, Garrini Stevens Thompson, Justice, Atlas, Edwards and Lawlor.  They also did angles to set up Lawlor vs.; Bonnar in a UWFI rules street fight. (thanks to Gary Wilson)
  • A story on Limitless Wrestling in Maine taping shows for paid streaming on a closed set to try and stay in business. (thanks to Mike Kuzmuk)
  • USA Championship Wrestling features an angle with Jerry Lawler and Matt Riviera.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: Kurt Angle wins WWE title at Vengeance 2003