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Daily Update: Royal Rumble Fallout, UFC 196 cursed, Tanahashi injury

Roman Reigns vs. HHH appears to be the Wrestlemania 32 main event

WWE Royal Rumble Recap

by Dan Velten

If you missed last night's Royal Rumble, you can check out Dave Meltzer's coverage here. Spoilers: As expected, HHH won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship after entering at number 30 and tossing out DEAN AMBROSE last. Roman Reigns was eliminated 28th by HHH, so we can assume that is the Wrestlemania main event.

Reigns actually lasted 59:50, nearly catching Rey Mysterio's longest time record of 62:15. Jericho entered 6th and lasted 50:50 before being eliminated by Ambrose. Braun Strowman eliminated the most men with five total. The big surprise of the match was AJ STYLES entering at number 3. The fans went nuts for styles, who lasted 27:53 until being eliminated by Owens. Sami Zayn was also a surprise entrant at number 20. 

The only other title change was Kalisto beating Del Rio for the United States Championship. The preshow match was won by Mark Henry and Jack Swagger after Henry unexplainably splashed Bubba Ray and then pinned Viktor. So Henry and Swagger got to enter the Rumble at numbers 22 and 24 respectively. 

We're looking for your thoughts on all three nights of Fantastica Mania as well as the Royal Rumble show, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to Dave Meltzer

We're also looking for reports from Raw tonight in Miami, with the Superstars matches, dark matches and anything else that wouldn't be evident from the live show.  WWE is teasing a major return on the show.  Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman are not scheduled for the show.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped Tuesday in Tampa.

We're looking for your thoughts on all three nights of Fantastica Mania as well as the Royal Rumble show, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to Dave Meltzer

If you've ever wanted to WATCH our radio shows here on the site, check out our new Youtube page! No full video shows, but lots of video clips, full free audio shows that you can tell your friends about, and much more to come! Make sure you subscribe today!    Our latest show posted to youtube is WOR featuring Jim Ross!

Figure Four Weekly

Figure Four Weekly 1/18/2016: Gawker's motion to dismiss Hulk Hogan lawsuit denied
Gawker's motion to dismiss the Hulk Hogan sex tape lawsuit is denied, plus news and notes

Wrestling Observer Newsletter

The Latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter: January 25, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: 2015 Observer Awards Issue

The 2015 Observer awards issue, the traditional biggest issue of the year,is up on the web site now.  The issue not only has the awards winners in more than 40 different categories, but all the top place winners, as well as a history with all the awards winners dating back to 1980, as well as my comments on the placing for many of the awards.

The categories are:

Lou Thesz/Ric Flair Award (Wrestler of the Year), MMA MVP, Most Outstanding Wrestler, Most Outstanding MMA Fighter, Best Box Office Draw, Feud of the Year, Tag Team of the Year, Most Improved, Best on Interviews, Most Charismatic, Best Technical Wrestler, Bruiser Brody Memorial Award (Best Brawler), Best Flying Wrestler, Most Overrated, Most Underrated, Promotion of the Year, Best Weekly TV show, Pro Wrestling Match of the Year, MMA Match of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Best Non-Wrestler, Best Television Announcer, Worst Television Announcer, Best Major Wrestling show, Worst Major Wrestling Show, Best Wrestling Maneuver, Most Disgusting Promotional Tactic, Worst Television Show, Worst Match of the Year, Worst Feud of the Year, Worst Promotion of the Year, Best Booker, Promoter of the Year, Best Gimmick, Worst Gimmick, Best Pro Wrestling Book and Best Pro Wrestling DVD

Update on the Royal Rumble and Rumble weekend, full coverage of Dominick Cruz's UFC bantamweight title win and the records set on Sunday's show and details on the New Japan/Jim Ross announcing deal as well as a look at how this came about and Jim Ross' overall career.

2017 Wrestlemania, how Smackdown has affected overall ratings for the USA Network, update on A.J. Styles with WWE, WWE injury updates, Daniel Bryan update, more on Mauro Ranallo and Smackdown, Chris Jericho talks his return, new season of Total Divas, How talent is broken down in NXT, the heat on Josh from Tough Enough, new dates for Brock Lesnar, plus notes from the big NXT tour and all the shows, the NXT Florida shows, as well as the WWE shows in India and the WWE weekend domestic shows and all the business notes.


You can also order the print Observer right now and get it delivered to your door via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer

You can also order print issues at directing funds to

Rates are:

For the United States, it is $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  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 get one free classic issue of your choice sent to you today.  With a 40 issue subscription, you can get two free classic issues sent to you today. 

Click here for the most requested Wrestling Observer back issues.

Check out the latest Online Wrestling Observer BACK ISSUE: Dec 14, 1998 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: 2 biographies in the works about Jesse Ventura
NBC and ABC working on biographies on Jesse Ventura, a look at the end of year events for New Japan and All Japan, plus tons of news and notes.


Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer radio, covering Raw tonight, the latest fallout from the Rumble, and the rest of the pro wrestling and MMA news.  You can send questions to the show to

UFC 196 is officially cursed.  Fabricio Werdum pulled out of the fight today due to injuries.  So there will be no title match nor main event.  Cain Velasquez had pulled out yesterday.  Here is the story.  Ariel Helwani on Twitter wrote that there was still a chance Werdum will fight as he's going to see a doctor, but it's not looking good.  It was weird that he said he wouldn't have pulled out if it was Velasquez, who had been training hard, but would beacuse it's Miocic, who had basically one week to get in shape for five rounds.  It is a different style matchup at the last minute.

Federal Judge Kimba Wood today denied UFC's attempt to get a federal injunction that would bar the New York State attorney general's office from stopping the proposed 4/23 show in Madison Square Garden.  If the injunction was granted, the show would be on.  Without it, they would need approval from the attorney general's office that the show would be allowed, which is difficult with the laws as they are in place and the new bill to legalize professional MMA in New York not yet being passed.  The court said that UFC has the right to sue over whether the law should be legal as it is, but the judge would not issue an injunction to allow the show with the current law in place.  

Nikki Bella will be undergoing neck surgery on Wednesday, saying to E! that she has a pretty bad herniated disc, and said it's more difficult than most with the same injury.  "We're gonna pray that the doctors can get the piece behind my vertebrae with just a bone fusion."  She said she's been hurting since July and in October, looked into it, and after getting an MRI, had stopped working.  She said she'll probably know after surgery if she'll be able to return at some point and will have an idea of when six months later.

There is nothing new on the Hiroshi Tanahashi injury. He was expected to see a doctor today regarding the shoulder he dislocated in a six-man tag team match yesterday.  As noted last night on the radio show, this injury came at a time New Japan can least afford it.  Tanahashi & Hirooki Goto & Katsuyori Shibata were to face Shinsuke Nakamura & Kazuchika Okada & Tomohiro Ishii in the All-Star match on 1/30 at Korakuen Hall  in Tokyo which is a major show in Japan because it's Nakamura's last bout with the promotion.  So it appears the last Tanahashi vs. Nakamura confrontation was last night.

Dwayne Johnson announced an endorsement deal with Under Armour and work with them to create a range of footwear, apparel and accessories and support the company's fitness initiatives.  They will also develop products based on movies Johnson is working on, including a Rock backpack and duffel bag that will hit stores in a few weeks. 


  • Ryan Satin has a story on A.J. Styles signing with WWE and maintaining his name.
  • WWE announced a partnership today with the Boys & Girls Club of America.  It was a multi-year deal focusing on bully prevention and the Be a Star alliance.  The WWE performers will participate in anti-bullying rallies in local clubs across the country and distribute Be a Star resources and materials.
  • Stardust tweeted out today that "Stardust is coming to an end."  I believe he later deleted it.
  • For those who asked, Chris Jericho didn't suffer a broken nose in the Rumble, but did get a bloody nose shortly after he got in the match.
  • WWE stock was up 55 cents per share to  $17.29 today. 
  • The premiere of the new WWE Network show "Ride Along," will air tonight after Raw.
  • As far as the John Cena movies go, Daddy's Home was No. 8 for the weekend at $5.27 million and Sisters was No. 11 at $3.5 million.  In Australia, Sisters was No. 6 and Daddy's Home was No. 8 (thanks to James Stanios)
  • HHH has been added to the advertising at some upcoming RAW shows. 
  • The WWE is once again doing the WrestleMania reading challenge to win free tickets to WrestleMania in Dallas. 


  • Anthony Perosh, who may have been the oldest fighter on the UFC roster with the exception of Dan Henderson, announced his retirement yesterday.  Perosh was a ground specialist who was featured when UFC ran in Australia.


  • ROH sent out a Tweet with The Young Bucks, Karl Anderson, Doc Gallows and A.J. Styles posed together with a message saying how "now everyone will find out how phenomenal he really is," which was a classy way to do things.
  • C4 Wrestling on Saturday night in Ottawa before a turn away crowd of 420:  Deeno Benjamin b Marc Mercer, Cuts n Guts & Sebastian Suave b Fight or Flight &Kevin Dunn, Velvet Jones b Decker Lockhart, Twiggy & Space Monkey b Michael Von Payton & Vanessa Kraven, Evil Uno b Jaka, Joey Janela b Viking, Cecil Nyx and Evan Adams in a four-way, Buxx Belmar & Thomas Dubois b Pinkie Sanchez & Chris Dickinson, Stuff Grayson won three-way over 2 Cold Scorpio and Brent Banks, Mathieu St. Jacques b Speedball Mike Bailey.  Next show is 2/26 (thanks to Patric Laprade)
  • Classic Championship Wrestling in Chatham, ONT on 3/6 at 2 p.m. at the WISH Centre.
  • CWE on 3/11 in Winnipeg at Rookie's Sports Bar.
  • Metro Pro Wrestling on 1/30 in Kansas City, KS at the Turner Rec Center with Jeremy Wyatt vs. The Beer City Bruiser for the Metro Pro title and Tracy Smothers vs. Math Magician.
  • IWF Winter Warfare on 1/30 at the IWF Centre in Nutley, NJ.
  • Pure Wrestling Alliance on 3/6 in Kitchener, ONT at the Registry Theater.

Ed Loredo has set up a bus for WrestleMania weekend for readers going to Dallas.  The first bus sold out immediately so there may be a second bus added.  For more info contact him at

ON THIS DAY IN WORLD PRO WRESTLING HISTORY: Daily pro wrestling history (01/25): Royal Rumble winners, Steiner Brothers win WCW World Tag Team Titles