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Daily Update: WWE airing live in Japan, Superstar Shakeup, Shibata

THE ROUND-UP

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The Latest from the F4W Staff

NEWS

AUDIO

We're doing two polls this weekend, one for UFC 210 and the other for New Japan Sakura Genesis, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to dave@wrestlingobserver.com.

We're looking for live reports from Raw tonight at the Nassau Coliseum with any dark matches or Main Event matches or anything else not on the live show to newstips@wrestlingobserver.com.

Raw is tonight from the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, NY. Nothing has been announced for the show other than the Superstar shake up. That will also continue on Tuesday in Boston.

FIGURE FOUR WEEKLY: 4/3/2017: Memorable moments make Wrestlemania 33

Despite the match quality and show length being similar, WrestleMania 33 was much better than its predecessor. That's largely due to just having more memorable moments than WrestleMania 32. The Undertaker's retirement is what will define this year's show, even if he clearly held on too long. Jim Ross' return to the WWE broadcast booth was a nice touch and necessary to stress the magnitude of Undertaker's final match. The Hardys coming back brought genuine excitement while making the Raw tag team title ladder match feel like a big deal. And John Cena proposing to Nikki Bella at least gave reason for what was a nothing mixed tag after such a great build.

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WRESTLING OBSERVER NEWSLETTER: April 10, 2017 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Wrestlemania 33 review, WWE financials, more

Our annual WrestleMania double-issue of the Observer is out today, covering not only the big show, but also the entire week in Orlando with NXT, ROH, the top indie shows and even the NXT tapings.

Stories on New Japan's quick sellouts and plans for their first U.S. shows, behind-the-scenes bullying in WWE and what's next in WWE, in this issue.

Plus, look at all of the business numbers for WrestleMania, how to analyze the network number and what numbers need to be out before fully getting a picture of everything, the gain of subscribers this year as compared to the past two years and how much time the average subscriber spends during Mania week watching the network. Also, look at the live gate, what aspects of the show were the most talked about, general public reaction compared to big UFC events, and television ratings for the prelims.

Undertaker's retirement, the Cena proposal, return of the Hardys sans gimmick, Goldberg vs. Lesnar, ring psychology, length of matches, as well as when the finishes were finalized and the gambling money came in, inside.

This issue also has match-by-match coverage with star ratings and poll results for WrestleMania, NXT Takeover and ROH Supercard of Honor.

Read about the returns to WWE of Jim Ross and Drew Galloway and the backgrounds of everything as well as the unique Ross/New Japan/WWE dynamic that under normal circumstances would be unheard of, and also look at how the situation with Galloway went down.

Also, look at the dynamic of the Takeover show and why decisions were made the way they were.

This issue goes through the plans for the New Japan shows in Long Beach, what will be on the shows and goals of the shows.

Finally look at the highlight matches during the week from smaller promotions in Orlando.

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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

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WON BACK ISSUE: March 13, 2000: Beyond the Mat controversy, New York Daily News stories on wrestling deaths and drugs, more

The controversy over the movie "Beyond the Mat" grew this past week when pressure tactics from the WWF caused the USA Network, UPN and Cris Craft Communications to all ban any advertising on any of their programs for the film. While some were surprised at the lengths Vince McMahon would go to attempt to bury the movie, it has been clear for some time by anyone who understands the "with us or against us" and no in between philosophy of McMahon, that he felt the movie wasn't "with us."

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MONDAY NEWS UPDATE

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Bryan and I will be back covering Raw as well as the latest wrestling news. You can send questions for tonight's show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com.

WWE and DAZN in Japan have reached a deal where both Raw & Smackdown will air live in Japan with Japanese commentary for the first time on a streaming service. Raw airs in Tokyo at 9 a.m. Tuesday morning and Smackdown airs at 9 a.m. Wednesday morning. Part of the timing of this deal is Shinsuke Nakamura being on the main roster. DAZN will also pick up the weekly WWE Experience, WWE Bottomline and WWE This Week shows at some point. DAZN in a sports streaming service available in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Japan, but only the Japanese version will have WWE right now.  

Regarding the situation with Katsuyori Shibata and surgery that was reported on the New Japan web site for a subdural hematoma suffered in the match with Kazuchika Okada, that may be storyline to put over the brutality of the match.

There were two WWE bullying stories I've seen in the mainstream press. The Huffington Post has one, and Vice has another.

Tonight is the first part of the "Superstar Shakeup" which continues tomorrow. Apollo Crews has already been announced as moving to Raw. For what it's worth, those who are backstage include Crews, Mickie James, Rhyno and Elias Samson. Almost the entire crew is booked to be in Boston tomorrow. There is talent that has been told where they are going and other talent that will be finding out the moment it happens.  

For fans of old Mid South Wrestling, the WWE Network has added more new shows this week and now every show from December 1981 through January 1983 is up, in order, so it actually can be watched as is. That was some of the best episodic television of its era, or really, any era. That would be the Junkyard Dog heyday but before the real boom in 1984. (thanks to Chris Aiken)       

WWE

  • Glenn Jacobs (Kane) is expected to announce tomorrow at 2 p.m. at Sweet P's BBQ and Soul House at 3725 Maryville Pike in Knoxville that he's running for mayor of Knox County.
  • The latest in the monster Fast & Furious franchise, "Fate of the Furious," opens on Friday with Dwayne Johnson and Vin Diesel as stars. This will be one of the biggest movies of the year, if not all-time as their last one was among the highest grossing movies in history.
  • WWE Studios filed a lawsuit against BitTorrent in a copyright infringement claim in U.S. District Court in Connecticut on Thursday alleging they distributed their movie "Eliminators." They are asking for $150,000 per infringement plus court costs in a jury trail.
  • Several news outlets including USA Today, the Indianapolis Star and Pro Wrestling Sheet have reported that Ric Flair was kicked out of a bar, the Deck at the Gas House in Fort Wayne, or calling a bartender a "fat ass," when she poured a new drink into his old drink. This was caught by someone's camera phone and because of Flair's celebrity status got covered in a lot of places. The Indianapolis star reported that Flair was only there for a few minutes before being kicked out.
  • Nia Jax got positive points for posing in a bathing suit on The Today Show web site.

UFC

  • Chris Weidman will be protesting the handling of his match with Gegard Mousasi to the New York State Athletic Commission. It was a really weird situation. It was really the first case of the new two hands down needed instead of one down needed played a part in a major fight, and it just led to a terribly confusing thing. Plus, in New York, the rules are that you are not allowed to use replays to change a referee's decision, but in fact, people who looked at the replay did play a part in changing Dan Miragliotta's decision. Anyway, one thing clear is that every state should allow referees to immediately look at replays when it comes to close calls like that. The doctor took heat, but you can't blame the doctor. There was a possibility that Weidman suffered a concussion from the key knee, and whether he wanted to continue to fight, the doctor can't risk the idea that someone who may have had a concussion should be able to continue.
  • Conor McGregor causing a commotion by pretending to be Okada was covered in the Mirror. 

MISCELLANEOUS

  • All Pro Wrestling announced today that for their show headlined by a Rumble Battle Royal and the first California based promotion to run at the Cow Palace on 5/6, that Pat Patterson will be the special guest. Patterson created the Royal Rumble and also won the final Roy Shire Cow Palace Battle Royal in the building in 1981. He was the area's biggest star from 1972-77 and one of the three or four biggest stars in the history of Northern California territorial wrestling.
  • The TV show "Strange Inheritance" on the Fox Business Channel tonight at 9 p.m. and Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. has a show regarding Roller Derby superstar Ann Calvello in her will giving all of her memorabilia to Jim Fitzpatrick, a former skater. It's a 30 minute show that is two years in the making.
  • CWA from Saturday night in North Little, Rock, AR before 440 fans: Barrett Brown b Matt Taylor, Michael Barry b Roosevelt, OMGs b Greg Anthony & Dale Wylde, Tim Storm b Matt Riviera, Americas & Jim Duggan b Genetic Perfection. All net profits went to a family with six children in the area who lost everything they owned in a house fire.
  • NWL from last night in St. Louis: Maverick b Cornell Douglas, Tommy Flagg b Party Crasher Spike, Marcellus Gaines b Jay Lutz, Davey Gibson & Matthew Grundy b Jet & Jax Royal, Buddy Shepherd & Skyler Beckett b Adam Ryan & Jackie Lee Bosch, Christian Adonis b Neon Iverson, Todd Letterman b Maverick to become the first NWL St. Louis champion. (thanks to Patrick Brandtmeyer)
  • The TV show "Billions" last night had a scene where one of the characters was given a 1998 Hell in a Cell poster signed by Undertaker and Mankind. When trying to find out who gave it to him, another character on the show said, "Everything after Sammartino vs. Zbyszko is bullsh*t." The first character protested and said how Macho Man was great and then brought up Stan Stasiak and the heart punch. (thanks to Joe Puccio)
  • NCW Collision Course on 4/15 in Ste-Therese, Quebec.
  • On Saturday night, Vickie Guerrero returned to pro wrestling as the manager of The Brooklyn Brawler in a match for Ultimate Championship Wrestling in Bay City, MI: She was there to counteract TK Parker, the manager of Gavin Quinn, who wrestled Brawler. Results were: Black Bushido won over Sheldon Jean and Kurt Hendrix, Soultaker b Harlem Jackson, Jon E. Bravo b Aaron Orion, Lawrence Jeter & Fabio Morocco b Chuck Wagon & Jay Maynard, Palmer Cruise & Xavier Walker b Joe Coleman & Idris Abraham, Ingrid Isley b KC Spinelli, Jake Something b Hakim Zane to win heavyweight title, Gavin Quinn b Brooklyn Brawler. (thanks to Leonard Brand)
  • Total Combat Wrestling from last night in Milano, Italy: Marieddu b Antonino  Bellavita, Apollo b Joker & Jacob, Fenice Rossa b Pain, Rocco Gioello b Claudio Campari, Scandalo I & II Marchese b Darkness II & II Prescelto. (thanks to Alessio Gabini)
  • Great North Wrestling Cage Wars on 5/13 in Smiths Falls, ONT at the Memorial Center with all cage matches featuring Hannibal vs. Wes Brisco and Davey Boy Smith Jr. vs. Jeremy Prophet.
  • A correction from yesterday. PW Eclipse runs 5/20 in Oshawa, ONT at the Harmony Creek Community Centre.
  • Best in the West TV results from yesterday in Fresno: Diablo Azteca b Daniel Torch, JR Kratos b Jody Kristofferson, Funny Bone b Lio Rush. They are taping again on 4/15 in Merced, CA at 6 p.m at the American Legion Post.
  • Arrick Andrews won the NWA Jr. heavyweight title from John Saxon on Saturday night in Gallatin, TN at the Mid South Arena. He will be defending on Friday night in Franklin, KY at the New South Arena and returns to Gallatin on 4/29 at the Tennessee National Guard Armory to defend against Toby Farley.
  • Impact Wrestling has as new One Night Only PPV show on Friday night.
  • Bully Ray and Devon announced a second Team 3D Wrestling Academy would be opening in Danbury, CT (the first is in Kissimmee, FL) this week. There will be a grand opening tomorrow with Bully Ray, Tommy Dreamer and Velvet Sky appearing.
  • A review of the movie "Cagefighter" is here.

Today in Professional Wrestling History (4/10): Jeff Hardy wins WWF IC title

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