This is quite the newsworthy day and with more to come given we still may have the announcement of a UFC light heavyweight title fight, or at least a fight with the champion, before long. The betting line is that Daniel Cormier will face Gegard Mousasi, although Combate, which is UFC's broadcast partner in Brazil just reported it would be Anderson Silva, believe it or not, which would be the best choice possibly even including Michael Bisping. We'll have to wait and see.
Mousasi was to face Thiago Santos on Saturday so he's peaked and ready, but he was preparing for 185. He did immediately say he was willing to fight. As noted, Dana White earlier today nixed the idea of Michael Bisping fighting Cormier, which would have been the best salvation of the show from a marketing and storyline standpoint, feeling Bisping isn't ready to fight. I would strongly favor Cormier against Mousasi, particularly because his wrestling isn't that good, but after all the emotions Cormier has gone through in the past 24 hours, if ever there was a time to beat him when he's off his game mentally, this would be that time.
If Bisping isn't in condition to fight, kudos to UFC for not booking it even though it's the fight that would save the show more than any other. But for whatever it's worth, Bisping was one of the first people who publicly said he wanted the fight.
Brock Lesnar was scheduled for a public workout this morning. He came, didn't work out, and talked to media. He said he didn't care that he was now in the main event but said Jon Jones was unprofessional. If Lesnar was fighting on a percentage, and he most likely was, Jones hurt him in the pocketbook as he did with all the headliners getting a percentage. Video of Lesnar from earlier today
WWE has been promoting the fight now on its YouTube channel with a number of UFC videos. Unless something has changed and they re-edit the show, which virtually never happens, not only is the fight not mentioned on Smackdown tonight (I'd almost be sure it won't be), but all the push about Lesnar's opponent may not be as well. It is possible they held it off the Canadian show last night so it wouldn't get out, and forgot to tell the Aftermath crew not to announce it. I guess we'll find out soon.
For those of you who heard that Bruce Buffer was injured in a Lip Sync battle, he was hurt but will be ring announcing all three shows this week.
UFC FIGHT NIGHT TODAY AT 6:30 P.M. EASTERN TIME ON FIGHT PASS FROM THE MGM GRAND GARDEN ARENA
Alvaro Herrera (9-3, 171) vs. Vicente Luque (8-5-1, 170)
Marco Beltran (7-3, 136) vs. Reginaldo Vieira (13-3, 134.5)
Gilbert Burns (10-1, 155) vs. Lukasz Sajeweski (13-1, 156)
Felipe Arantes (17-7-1, 136) vs. Jerrod Sanders (15-2, 136)
Russell Doane (14-5, 135.5) vs. Pedro Munhoz (11-2, 135)
Anthony Birchak (12-3, 135.5) vs. Dileno Lopes (18-2, 135)
Mehdi Baghdad (11-4, 155.5) vs. John Makdessi (13-5, 155)
Alberto Mina (12-0, 171) vs. Mike Pyle (27-11-1, 170.5)
Mitch Clarke (11-3, 155.5) vs. Joe Duffy (14-2, 155.5)
Alan Jouban (13-4, 170) vs. Belal Muhammad (9-0, 170)
Derrick Lewis (15-4, 265.5) vs. Roy Nelson (21-12, 263)
Rafael dos Anjos (25-7, 155) vs. Eddie Alvarez (27-4, 155) for the UFC lightweight title
SMACKDOWN TONIGHT AT 8 P.M. ON USA NETWORK
Jey Uso vs. Seth Rollins
Zack Ryder vs Sheamus
Enzo Amore vs. A.J. Styles
The Miz vs. Kalisto
Sami Zayn vs. Chris Jericho
- Brock Lesnar vs. Randy Orton confirmed for WWE SummerSlam
- UFC 200 shocker: Jon Jones flagged by USADA; Brock Lesnar vs. Mark Hunt new main event
- WWE Smackdown results: Chris Jericho vs. Sami Zayn; AJ Styles vs. Enzo Amore
- UFC Fight Night 90 DFS Playbook: value picks, who to avoid
The 10th annual Wrestling Observer/F4W convention in Las Vegas takes place during UFC's International Fight Week from July 7 - 11. Stay up to date on all the latest wackiness by following Ed in San Antonio on Facebook. Plus, follow us on @WONF4W or @BryanAlvarez. We will be live tweeting from all the events. Use #F4WVegas to get in on the fun.
If you've ever wanted to WATCH our radio shows here on the site, check out our 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!
Figure Four Weekly
READ IT HERE: Figure Four Weekly 6/27/2016: WWE concussion lawsuit update, more - The latest information in WWE's concussion lawsuit.
Wrestling Observer Newsletter
READ IT HERE: July 11, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Preview for massive UFC weekend, including UFC 200, plus tons of news - A full preview of UFC's massive weekend including UFC 200, plus tons of news and notes.
We look at the biggest week in UFC history and update where sale talks are as the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. We also have a look at the WWE brand split from a business standpoint and update changes since the original plans were made, cover the return of Shinsuke Nakamura to Japan as a WWE star, Final Deletion and a history of pro wrestling on July 4th.
UFC's record numbers they are hoping to beat, the role of Brock Lesnar, the difference between Lesnar in UFC in 2008 and 2016, price changes, the prior record gate, Lesnar vs. Hunt, wrestlers vs. strikers as they age, what happens if Lesnar wins, what WWE did get from UFC, advertising Lesnar to the WWE audience, looking at the different fights and the card.
The WWE draft, the changes in the WWE audience, doing additional PPV and the economics of it, what we should look at to determine if the brand split has worked and why the moves have been made. The WWE tour this past week going to Hawaii for the first time in six years, and Shinsuke Nakamura returns to Japan as the star of the tour.
What Stephanie McMahon said about Lesnar and his response, Stephanie McMahon honored, Hideo Itami's return, update on Jerry Lawler, A.J. Styles, Hiroshi Tanahashi talks Styles and his ring psychology, Battleground, new programs planned, Dr. Chris Amann vs. C.M. Punk lawsuit update, Nike opposing WWE in trademark case, and another group of names WWE has shown some interest in.
WWE company worth, new deal for comic books, more on the cruiserweight classic tournament, Jericho's plans for 2017, new WWE TV deal and the most watched shows on the network.
A big history piece on pro wrestling on July 4th, dating back 136 years, including one of the most legendary matches from 100 years ago, and the big July 4th events of the 80s. Why July 4th hasn't had a lot of major shows, but there have been some major historical events on the day as well as why for more than three decades no super shows were held on the day. The last year's of the regional era and the beginning of the national era with the WWF vs. Jim Crockett Promotions.
New Japan's last big show before the G-1 Climax tournament and update the biggest shows in G-1 with angle and match changes. We've got match-by-match coverage with star ratings for the Kizuna Road show. The first round of the 2016 Super J Cup that starts on 7/20. CMLL World Grand Prix show from Arena Mexico featuring a great hair match and stars from New Japan. The death of CMLL star Luke Fordward, Thunder at the age of 34.
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.
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Wrestling Observer Newsletter BACK ISSUE
READ IT HERE: May 31, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Death of Owen Hart - The life and death of Owen Hart, details on WWF Over the Edge, plus tons of news.
THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE
Bryan and I will be back late tonight talking about all the UFC and pro wrestling news, and there is a ton of it. We will also have a show on Friday night covering the UFC show, and of course Saturday night.
Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz had a press conference earlier today to promote UFC 202. McGregor said that it's the real UFC 200. He claimed he was the reason UFC was worth $4.2 billion and that he carried the record-breaking 2015 year on his back. He claimed that he's going to beat the PPV record and that he already beat it once with UFC 196. He also said that he would be making 145 again and defend his title there. He said that because he lost at 170, he wanted to avenge that loss by winning at 170 against the same opponent. Nate Diaz was asked about Jon Jones and just said that everyone is on steroids.
Sad to report the death of Major Duke George, who was the manager of The Valiant Brothers and Ox Baker, among others, as they feuded with Dick the Bruiser in the WWA in Indiana during the 70s. (thank to Jerry Wiseman)
TNA has announced a move to the Thursday at 8 p.m. time slot formerly occupied by Smackdown starting on 7/21, which would be the first Thursday without Smackdown on USA.
- Nick Nemeth, better known as Dolph Ziggler, will be inducted into the Kent State University Varsity K Hall of Fame on 9/17 at 10 a.m. Nemeth was a three-time Mid-American conference champion in wrestling in 2001, 2002 and 2003 at 165 pounds.
- A story on Brock Lesnar and WWE in Metro regarding Saturday's fight by Dennis Gorman
- A story about fan reactions to the cancer of former WWWF television announcer Bill Cardille of Pittsburgh, a close friend of Bruno Sammartino
- A reminder that if you are in Las Vegas this weekend and go to the Las Vegas Fight Shop (which has tons of pro wrestling & MMA merchandise) and mention the Wrestling Observer/Figure Four convention and you can get 20 percent all merchandise as well as a VIP line pass for signings with Randy Couture tomorrow night from 6-8 p.m. and Nate Diaz on Saturday from Noon to 2 p.m.
- Daniel Cormier's reaction right after getting the news Jon Jones was out of the fight
- An interview with Mark Hunt earlier today
- This is tomorrow's schedule of UFC activities. The Fan Expo will be open at the Las Vegas Convention Center from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Weigh-ins for UFC 200 will be at 3 p.m. at the T Mobile Arena. The live show at the MGM Grand Garden Arena starts at 4 p.m. local time.
- On Saturday, Fan Expo is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m..and it will also be open Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Hall of Fame ceremony will be at Noon on Sunday. I expect Don Frye to be the star of the ceremony.
- Chael Sonnen claims that PED users "know our own" and said "When a guy takes his shirt off I can tell you what he's on and how long he's been doing it and my first reaction was simply, `What took them so long?'" He also said that if a guy is using cocaine, a substance that can hurt him, a reasonable person would say that he's probably also taking substances that will help him. But he also said it's all speculation.
- Derrick Lewis talks Brock Lesnar
- Eddie Alvarez talks tonight's fight with Rafael dos Anjos
- The team of Fabio Maldonado has filed an appeal of the result of his 7/17 fight with Fedor Emelianenko in Saint Petersburg, Russia. He is clamming a conflict of interest because all of the judges were employed by the Russian MMA Union. The President of the Russian MMA Union is Fedor Emelianenko. Well, it was kind of telling that the announcer kept talking about how Fedor was losing the fight, and then, before the decision was read, said that of course Fedor would be winning the decision. They are asking for an independent international judging committee to watch to footage and render a fair decision. WMMAA president Vadmin Finkelchtein did temporarily suspend head judge Radmir Gabdullin and they are going to listen to the appeal.
- ROH has announced a return to England with shows on 11/18, 11/19 and 11/20. No other details have been announced.
- An analysis of Final Deletion
- CMLL from Monday night in Puebla: Astro & Centella Roja & Paris b Guerrero Especial & Mini Jocker & Sauron, Black Tiger & King Jaguar & Oro Jr. b Ares & Inquisidor & Policeman, Okumura & Virus & Bobby Z b Esfinge & Guerrero May Jr. & Rey Cometa, Michael Elgin & Kushida & Mascara Dorada b Felino & Tama Tonga & Tanga Roa-DQ, Mistico & Negro Casas & Shocker b La Mascara & Mephisto & Sharly Rockstar. Mistico pinned Mephisto to set up a shot at the CMLL welterweight title (thanks to Kris Zellner)
- Bob Backlund and the Iron Sheik, who had a couple of matches in Madison Square Garden, most notable being when Sheik beat Backlund for the WWF title in 1983, will be doing a podcast together on 7/22 at 2:30 p.m. from the Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center in Waterloo, IA. Both will be inducted into the Tragos/Thesz Hall of Fame together with Joe Blanchard, Chael Sonnen, JJ Dillon and myself that weekend.
- Ron Garvin talks about the street fight he had in the 70s with Randy Savage
SUMMER EVENTS CALENDAR
- July 7-11 The 10th annual Wrestling Observer/F4W convention in Las Vegas, EdinSanAntonio has information up on Facebook, or email him F4Wfan@hotmail.com. Keep up with all the action on Twitter by following @WONF4W, @BryanAlvarez, @DaveMeltzerWON, @FO_VVerhei, @EdinSanAntonio, @PaulAceFontaine, @FilthyTomLawlor or @PeachMachine. Use #F4WVegas or search for our group FaceBook page. You can also follow Granny's adventures.
- TONIGHT - Rock Solid Wrestling runs in Sudbury, ON.
- TONIGHT - World Womens' Wrestling tomorrow night in Brockton, MA at the Brockton Fair. It's an all-womens' show free with fair admission.
- TONIGHT - UFC Fight Night Las Vegas at MGM Grand. Rafael Dos Anjos vs Eddie Alvarez for the UFC lightweight title
- FRIDAY - The Ultimate Fighter 23 Finale at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Joanna Jedrzejczyk vs Claudia Gadelha for the UFC strawweight title
- SATURDAY - UFC 200 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Jon Jones vs Daniel Cormier for the UFC light heavyweight title; Brock Lesnar vs Mark Hunt; Miesha Tate vs Amanda Nunes for the UFC women’s bantamweight title; Jose Aldo vs Frankie Edgar for the interim UFC featherweight title
- SATURDAY - Pure Wrestling Association in Kitchener, ONT at the Alpine Club.
- SATURDAY - New England Championship Wrestling presents World Women's Wrestling at The Brockton Fair, 600 Belmont St, Brockton, MA
- SATURDAY - Pure Wrestling Association "Summer Assault” 11 Year Anniversary - Alpine Club, 464 Maple Avenue, Kitchener, Ontario
- SATURDAY - All Pro Wrestling + Fit of Mind present: #MalaceInThePalace from the Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco, CA.
- SATURDAY - Upstate Pro Wrestling in Rochester, NY, features Ethan Page, HC Loc, a triple threat match main event, and more.
- SATURDAY - Acclaim Pro Wrestling presents: Star-Mageddon 6!
- SATURDAY - Smash Wrestling in Fort Erie, ONT at the Native Friendship Center. Chris Hero will headline this fundraising event.
- SUNDAY - CCW in Essex, ONT at 26 Fairview Ave. with Cody Deaner headlining.
- July 13 - UFC Fight Night in Sioux Falls, SD. Michael McDonald vs John Lineker
- July 15 - NWA Texoma in Sherman, TX headlined by Rob Conway & Matt Riviera defending the NWA world tag team titles plus Greg Valentine making an appearance.
- July 16 - In Your Face Wrestling Presents: “Malicious Intent” - Polish Community Center, 225 Washington Avenue Extension, Albany, NYwww.iyfwrestling.com
- July 16 - Bellator 158 : London featuring Paul Daley vs Douglas Lima, Michael Venom Page, Linton Vassell and Matt Mitrione
- July 17 - Lucha by the Water ft Blue Demon Jr! - Harbourfront Centre Theatre, 231 Queens Quay West, Toronto, Ontario M5J 2G8, 3-6 pm. Tickets here.
- July 17 - Premier Wrestling at the IFDES Lodge and Portuguese Hall in Gilroy, CA with Joe Graves vs. Gabriel Gallo for the Premier. Tickets at www.premierwrestle.com.
- July 22 - Ignite Wrestling in Fort Pierce, FL at the National Guard Armory on a show with Lince Dorado, Mr. 450 Hammet, Lio Rush, Martin Stone, Los Ben Dejos, and more
- July 22 - AIW runs on 7/22 in Cleveland, OH, with Ethan Page vs. Josh Prohibition vs. Josh Alexander, and Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae vs. Ethan Carter III & Karlee Perez
- July 22 - The Lou Thesz Hall of Fame weekend show in Waterloo, IA, featuring Ricochet vs. Sami Callihan, Wes Brisco, B. Brian Blair, Jessika Havok, Tessa Blanchard, a steel cage match and more - This is the weekend Dave Meltzer will be honored.
- July 22 - Bellator 159 from Mulvane, KS. Darrion Caldwell vs Joe Taimanglo. Melvin Guillard vs David “Caveman” Rickells
- July 22 - National Fighting Championships in Kennesaw, GA at the Electric Cowboy with Chazz Walton (6-0 vs. Warren Smith (5-4) for the Georgia lightweight title.
- July 22 - Absolute Intense Wrestling in Cleveland at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel features Dutch Mantell, plus Ethan Page vs. Josh Prohibition vs. Josh Alexander for the Absolute title, Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae vs. Ethan Carter III & Karlee Perez (Catrina in Lucha Underground), Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Louis Lyndon, Skayde Jr. & Steve Pain & Gringo Loko vs. DJZ & Laredo Kid & Bandolero, Ray Rowe vs. Tim Donst plus B.J. Whitmer and Cedric Alexander.
- July 23 – Live Pro Wrestling, Glengarry Sports Palace, 170 McDonald Blvd. Alexandria, Ontario
- July 23 - Battle Arts will be taping television on at Santino Marella's Battle Arts Academy in Mississauaga, ONT. The taping begins at 7 p.m.
- July 23 - UFC on FOX from Chicago - Holly Holm vs Valentina Shevchenko.
- July 23 - Chikara Pro announced a doubleheader event at Toronto’s Franklin Horner Community Center.
- July 23 - AAW in Merrionnette Park, IL, with Sami Callihan vs. Pentagon Jr., Zack Sabre Jr., Marty Scurll; Tommaso Ciampa; Fenix; Johnny Gargano, and plenty more. Here’s what you missed on their last show.
- July 23 - Masters of Ring Entertainment in Wilmington, NC, as part of Pro Wrestling Fan Expo 3 will feature Jeff Jarrett vs. ECIII vs. James Storm, announced by Jarrett in this video.
- Merritton Community Centre 7 Park Ave St. Catharines, ON
- July 24 - Crossfire Wrestling - Merritton Community Centre, 7 Park Avenue St. Catharines ON, for our 5 year Anniversary show "BRING THE HEAT V"
- July 24 - PWEclipse - Summer Surrender, Oshawa, Ontario
- July 24 - Fenix vs. Pentagon Jr. headlines for Lucha Libre New York at Club LaBoom in Queens, NY
- July 29 - Pro Wrestling Phoenix in Omaha at the Waiting Room Lounge features Sonjay Dutt vs. Hype Gotti.
- July 30 - WSOF 32: Moraes vs. Hill 2 - Live on NBCSN from Everett, Washington. Also featuring Ben “Phoenix Jones” Fodor vs Caros Fodor in a brother vs brother fight
- July 30 - Smash Wrestling - Oshawa Music Hall, 39 King St E, Oshawa, Ontario L1H 1B2
- July 31 - BATTLEWAR 36; Les Foufounes Électriques, 87 Sainte-Catherine Street East
- Montreal, QC
- Aug 21 - Chavo Guerrero Jr. will appear for Smash Wrestling on in Pickering, Ontario at Super Showdown lV.