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Daily Update: WWE notes, ROH Tag Wars, Bellator

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F4W NEWSLETTER: Figure Four Weekly: AEW roster starts to take shape

Plans for All Elite Wrestling started to come into focus at a rally in Jacksonville, Florida last Tuesday. A surprise appearance by Chris Jericho closed the event, with Jericho instantly becoming the highest profile signing AEW has made in its brief history. "I'm Chris Jericho, and I am all in with All Elite Wrestling," Jericho said to begin his speech. "Surprise -- I think we just took things to a different level, didn't we?" Jericho said he's not here with AEW for the money -- he's here because he believes in doing something new and different. 

WON NEWSLETTER: January 28, 2019 Observer Newsletter: Future of Ronda Rousey, Royal Rumble preview, more

Our lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer talks about Ronda Rousey and her WWE schedule including how long a time frame of when she has talked of stepping away.

Also, look at the top of the WrestleMania card and what major star isn't scheduled, and what other major star may be having his match changed.

Read the full preview of the Royal Rumble, with notes on ticket expectation, how the market is for all four WWE arena events in Phoenix this week, and the situation with John Cena.

Also, look at UFC's first show on ESPN, the Dillashaw vs. Cejudo aftermath, the Greg Hardy debut, the business notes on the show and what record was set as well as how streaming sign-ups destroyed any combat sport event in history, and match-by-match coverage.

Break down the latest Jon Jones drug test failure and why failing the test actually gives more credence to his story than if he had passed all of his tests.

Examine a fourth generation wrestler training at the Performance Center, what happened with The Revival, lots of WWE contract news, XFL President announced, XFL TV talks, and injury updates.

Look at the major hearing next week in Nevada, California's reaction and UFC's reaction to Jones' test failure.

This issue has a rundown of the final three nights of the Fantastica Mania tour, including why the third night was such an entertaining show, as well as an update on the talent in CMLL and the unique match that came from a movie.

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@wrestlingobserver.com or by going to www.paypal.com directing funds to dave@wrestlingobserver.com.

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SUNDAY NEWS UPDATE

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WWE

  • Royal Rumble 2019 takes place at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona tonight. The two-hour pre-show begins on the WWE Network at 5 p.m. Eastern time, with the main card starting at 7 p.m. Eastern. Here’s the full lineup: Universal Champion Brock Lesnar defending against Finn Balor WWE Champion Daniel Bryan defending against AJ Styles Men’s Royal Rumble match Women’s Royal Rumble match Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey defending against Sasha Banks SmackDown Women’s Champion Asuka defending against Becky Lynch SmackDown Tag Team Champions Cesaro & Sheamus defending against The Miz & Shane McMahon United States Champion Rusev defending against Shinsuke Nakamura (pre-show) Cruiserweight Champion Buddy Murphy defending against Kalisto, Akira Tozawa, and Hideo Itami in a fatal four-way match (pre-show)
  • Kurt Angle tweeted a picture from Chase Field before the Royal Rumble.
  • Dolph Ziggler told Chris Van Vliet that he’s “on a hiatus” from WWE for now. Ziggler said that he isn’t interested in being a producer at this point in his career. Ziggler, who has a comedy show in Phoenix after tonight’s PPV, also said he isn’t scheduled to be at the Royal Rumble.
  • WWE uploaded video of the brawl between Velveteen Dream, Aleister Black & Ricochet and Tommaso Ciampa, Johnny Gargano & Adam Cole that took place after TakeOver: Phoenix went off the air.
  • WWE also has a post-TakeOver promo from Bianca Belair, with her telling Sam Roberts to “kiss my ass” after he said on the pre-show that she didn’t deserve to be on TakeOver.
  • WWE.com posted an article congratulating Jake Hager (Jack Swagger) on winning his MMA debut against J.W. Kiser at Bellator 214.
  • R-Truth performed during Hager’s entrance last night.
  • WALTER faced Kassius Ohno at Royal Rumble Axxess today. WALTER vs. Danny Burch also took place at Axxess yesterday.
  • Seven Bucks Productions’ Hiram Garcia tweeted that production has officially wrapped up on the Fast and the Furious spinoff “Hobbs & Shaw,” which stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jason Statham and features Roman Reigns playing the brother of The Rock’s character.
  • Bleacher Report has a feature story on Nia Jax.
  • Kofi Kingston spoke to The Sun about his annual Royal Rumble saves.

Pro Wrestling

  • Villain Enterprises (PCO & Brody King) defeated Juice Robinson & David Finlay in the finals of ROH’s Tag Wars tournament at Road to G1 Supercard: San Antonio last night. PCO & King will get an ROH Tag Team title shot at ROH’s 17th Anniversary PPV on March 15 and a spot in the Crockett Cup tournament on April 27. The Briscoes are the current ROH Tag Team Champions.
  • NJPW president Harold Meij said about potentially partnering with All Elite Wrestling: “AEW is a new organization to start from now and I do not know what kind of relationship we would make. I think that it is necessary to figure out what policy they would develop on pro wrestling.”
  • Will Ospreay tweeted that he broke his toe taking an arm drag.
  • ACH thanked AAW after finishing up with them last night.
  • Mike Mooneyham wrote about All Elite Wrestling in his latest column for the Charleston Post and Courier.

UFC/MMA

  • Ryan Bader became the Bellator heavyweight champion by knocking out Fedor Emelianenko in 35 seconds at Bellator 214. Bader won with the first punch of the fight.
  • Scott Coker discussed Bader defending both the heavyweight and light heavyweight title: “That’s going to be up to Ryan as long as we don’t have the light heavyweight (title picture) being jammed up. If Gegard (Mousasi) -- because he told me he wants to move up and Lyoto (Machida) might want to move up at some point and fight Bader at 205. As long as those fights aren’t right down the road for him, we’re going to give him a little bit of leeway to say, ‘Hey, if you want to defend the heavyweight, then you can do it.’ Then he’ll go back-and-forth. But I think eventually there will be a bottleneck at some point, and then we’ll all make a business decision.”
  • Coker confirmed that Fedor’s contract with Bellator is up and spoke about whether or not he’ll fight again: “That’s really up to him. That’s really up to Fedor. I think that we had a relationship that lasted for many years, and he fought for me back in Strikeforce. And Fedor, he doesn’t have to fight again. He’s already done it all. He’s already the greatest heavyweight of all time. He’s had such a great run. But, really, it’s going to be up to him whether he decides to really put it to rest.
  • MMA Fighting has video of Jake Hager’s post-fight press conference from Bellator 214.

Daily Pro Wrestling History: John Cena wins 2008 and 2013 Royal Rumbles

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