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Daily Update: WWE press conference, NXT & AEW, NWA


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F4W NEWSLETTER: Looking at three stories from a historic week Joseph Currier looks back at a huge week for pro wrestling.

The most important week in recent pro wrestling history reached strong heights before ending with an embarrassing low.

The Wednesday Night War began, with AEW Dynamite debuting on TNT opposite a stacked episode of NXT on USA. SmackDown made its move to FOX two days later and featured an appearance by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, a WWE Championship change, and the debut of Cain Velasquez. Sunday's Hell in a Cell pay-per-view looked like it was only going to be a footnote, but the main event made the show memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Here's a look at three stories that defined the week:

1. AEW wins first night of Wednesday night ratings war

Pro wrestling returned to TNT last Wednesday as the premiere of AEW Dynamite averaged 1.409 million viewers. That topped the 891,000 viewers that NXT averaged. In the 18-49 demo, AEW posted a 0.68 rating -- second for the night on cable and more than double what NXT did.

Current subscribers click here to continue reading.

WON NEWSLETTER: October 7, 2019 Observer Newsletter: First battle in the Wednesday Night War

The Wednesday night war has started, and there's no more detailed rundown than in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer.

We've got every aspect of the business covered, including:

How every match on both shows did when it comes to viewers, head-to-head, and how different demos fared. 

What things WWE tried that worked, what didn't work, and what failed. 

The money demo, baseball competition, analyze where NXT gained and lost and what it says about AEW and competition, who had the advantage when it came to replays, was it a TNT nostalgia wrestling rating, average age for WWE and AEW shows, what audiences AEW beats WWE shows in, what AEW's success under 35 showed, comments from key people about the ratings,  and we also look at Canada ratings, the UK deal and what time slot is actually the key one for AEW in the UK.


Different tricks both companies took, who did the best job of hype, what comes next week and the non-wrestling aspects of the show.

Match-by-match coverage for both shows with star ratings.

Turmoil in CMLL, the departure of Rush and Dragon Lee, how Lee found out, the future of Mistico, Rush talks his future, as does Dragon Lee, the changes in CMLL that led to this, and all kinds of new policies that changes the world's oldest wrestling promotion. 

C.M. Punk, noting his lawsuit with Colt Cabana being settled, his screen test for a new WWE show, the latest on if he will wrestle, while Cody talks his thoughts about Punk in AEW.

Cain Velasquez in pro wrestling.  We look at the Forum card being postponed, WWE's meeting with him, what angles on Raw this week related to him, update on who has signed the most key guys of late and why Velasquez's situation is so unique.

Smackdown premier on FOX and ticket interest, Hell in a Cell, the next Saudi Arabia show, Steve Austin, Ric Flair's title reigns, update on a WWE Hall of Famer who may get cleared, Fourth generation McMahon may become a wrestler, how much Cena affected business, Dana White exchanges words with Matt Riddle, Braun Strowman's new deal, Upcoming Evolve bouts with WWE stars, WWE market value declines and why, most-watched shows on the WWE Network plus a look at all the WWE & NXT arena events of the past week with results, highlights and business notes.

Coverage of CMLL's biggest show of the year, the anniversary card, with match-by-match coverage and star ratings.

Coverage of ROH Death Before Dishonor, with match-by-match coverage, business notes, star ratings PPV numbers and more on Matt Taven's new landmark ROH deal.

Coverage on this past weekend's UFC show in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The death of Rick Bogner, look at his days as Big Tytan in Japan, the story behind the fake Razor Ramon in WWF, why his career ended, who got him into WWF but some of the guys he started out with talk about him.

Coverage of all the WWE television shows from the past week, in-depth looks at the ratings of all the major shows, the key demos for the WWE shows and what can be learned from them.

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

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 or by going to directing funds to

Rates in the United States are $14.50 for 4 issues, $35.50 for 12, $70 for 24, $116 for 40 and $149.50 for 52.

In Canada and Mexico, the rates are $16 for 4, $27 for 8, $38.50 for 12, $76 for 24, $126 for 40 and $162.50 for 52.

For the rest of the world, rates are $18 for 4, $48.50 for 12, $93 for 24, $155 for 40 and $201.50 for 52.

If you order by mail with a check, cash or money order to P.O. Box 1228, Campbell, CA 95009-1228, you can get $1 off in every price range.


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  • Week two of the NXT vs. AEW “Wednesday Night War” takes place tonight, with three matches advertised in advance for NXT: Cruiserweight Champion Drew Gulak defending against Lio Rush WWE United Kingdom Champion WALTER vs. Kushida in a non-title match NXT North American Champion Roderick Strong vs. Isaiah “Swerve” Scott in a non-title match
  • Triple H spoke to TV Insider about the USA Network’s reaction to the ratings for NXT’s September 18 premiere: “When those ratings came out after the first episode came out, I spoke to Chris McCumber [president, entertainment networks] at USA, and they were thrilled beyond what they were hoping for and expecting. Now it has become what we do, and I want to grow it bigger. I learned early in the process of NXT when someone suggested we go to Barclays Center for a TakeOver, and it was the first thing I balked at when it was thrown at me. I was almost resistant to doing it, and it sold out immediately. It made me get to thinking outside the box and thinking bigger than this."
  • WWE has announced that their press conference that’s taking place in Las Vegas on Friday will stream live on the WWE Network, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and The T-Mobile Arena is hosting the press conference at noon Pacific time, and it’s expected that Brock Lesnar vs. Cain Velasquez and Braun Strowman vs. Tyson Fury will be announced for Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia. Lesnar, Velasquez, Strowman, Fury, Paul Heyman, Rey Mysterio, and Triple H will attend the press event.
  • On what would have been his 52nd birthday, WWE posted a milestone video on Eddie Guerrero’s championship victories.
  • Last night's episode of Total Divas averaged 261,000 viewers on E!, which was up from last Tuesday's 252,000. 
  • The second episode of WWE’s The Bump aired today. On the show, WWE had Kayla Braxton read a quote from referee Rod Zapata about the finish of Seth Rollins vs. The Fiend from Hell in a Cell: “With Bray motionless, and Seth clearly doing whatever it was going to take to win that match -- I had to think of the competitor’s safety and at that moment, I did what I thought was best.”
  • Andrade told Digital Spy about being nervous when he met Ric Flair: “When we first met I was seriously so nervous -- so, so nervous. Now I'm so happy. I love Ric Flair. He's a great person with me, he talks, texts me, sometimes we have dinner. He's great with me now."
  • Alyse Zwick is the new co-host of This Week in WWE with Scott Stanford.
  • Kurt Angle is getting stem cell therapy in Colombia this week.
  • Braun Strowman appeared on Bon Apetit’s Back-to-Back Chef.
  • The Metro interviewed Goldberg at last week’s SmackDown on FOX premiere.
  • The New York Post reported that the top announce teams for the XFL will be Steve Levy, Dan Orlovsky & Pat McAfee on ESPN and Curt Menefee & Joel Klatt on FOX.
  • The Rock & Mick Foley vs. Ric Flair, Batista & Randy Orton from WrestleMania XX was uploaded to WWE’s YouTube channel.

Pro Wrestling

  • Here’s what’s been announced for tonight’s AEW Dynamite episode: Chris Jericho & Sammy Guevara vs. Hangman Page & Dustin Rhodes Jon Moxley vs. Shawn Spears Darby Allin vs. Jimmy Havoc (winner challenges for Chris Jericho's AEW World title next week) Riho & Britt Baker vs. Emi Sakura & Bea Priestley The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) vs. Private Party (Marq Quen & Isiah Kassidy) in an AEW Tag Team title tournament first-round match
  • Dynamite is scheduled to air live on both TNT and truTV tonight. If the St. Louis Cardinals vs. Atlanta Braves playoff game doesn’t end by the time the Washington Nationals vs. Los Angeles Dodgers game starts, AEW will be preempted on TNT but will continue on truTV. An AEW replay will air on TNT at 10 p.m. Eastern time.
  • Moxley cut a promo on Shawn Spears ahead of their match.
  • Last night’s AEW Dark premiere episode has 436,000 views on YouTube as of this writing, while NWA Power has 179,000.
  • Kenny Omega matched AEW wrestlers to ONE FC fighters.
  • The Rock congratulated Jim Cornette and the NWA on the premiere of NWA Power: “Congrats Jim, the boys, crew etc. Stumbled across this show last night and enjoyed it. I grew up in territories and started my career at channel 5 in Memphis so I have a lot of love/respect for small scale, crowd tv shows. Cool vintage feel. Keep working hard boys. Rock”
  • CIMA has been announced for The Crash’s eighth anniversary show. It’s taking place in Tijuana on November 1.
  • Kelly Klein vs. Lana Austin is set for ROH’s Honor United event in Newport, Wales on October 26.
  • PWG released their preview video for the DVD of night one of this year’s Battle of Los Angeles.
  • Sammy Guevara uploaded a vlog from last week’s AEW Dynamite premiere.


Daily Pro Wrestling History: Nick Bockwinkel wins AWA World title from Otto Wanz