Skip to main content

Daily Update: WWE Raw, ratings, Francis Ngannou

Dave talks Raw, NBA Playoffs hurting wrestling ratings, and Francis Ngannou's UFC status.

Daily Update


Latest News:

Latest Audio:

Latest Free YouTube Video:

This Week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter: AEW & NJPW announce joint show, Windy City Riot review

  • The new issue of the Observer has these stories:
  • Forbidden Door PPV and the history of NJPW and AEW going from a cold relationship to running a joint show
  • Match of the Week/Performer of the Week
  • What people thought of NJPW Windy City Riot
  • Part one of looking at February & March business and comparisons with one year ago
  • Windy City Riot, the good, the bad and the technical issues
  • WrestleMania Backlash and early notes on WWE's summer stadium shows
  • Saturday's UFC show
  • What arena has had more great matches than any other and its 60th anniversary
  • Television wrestling viewing over the past week, including comparisons with other sports, head-to-head competition, who watches
  • CMLL Universal title tournament
  • Stardom Cinderella tournament
  • All Japan Champion Carnival tournament
  • Update on Kota Ibushi
  • Are streaming services plateauing?
  • Notes on the biggest indie shows of the past week
  • AEW video game news
  • Ticket updates and sales for WWE & AEW shows over the next month plus
  • International TV ratings
  • Dana White talking major fight this summer he's working on
  • Coverage of Bellator's biggest show of the year and this week' doubleheader
  • How much fighters actually weigh getting into the cage vs. weigh-ins
  • Fight of the year talk
  • Notes on Kushida leaving WWE
  • How WWE first came up with the developmental system and the idea behind it
  • Paul Levesque talks developmental
  • Steve Austin talks doing future big shows
  • Streaming numbers

This Week's Retro Observer Newsletter: March 21, 2005 Observer Newsletter: Raw leaving Spike TV, TNA Destination X review

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.

Monday News Update

  • Bryan and I will be back tonight talking all the news from Raw, as well as the rest of the news. You can also send questions for tonight's show to
  • Raw tonight features the return of Becky Lynch. There have been reports of Lynch vs. Asuka imminently. They are also doing the 20th anniversary of Randy Orton on the main roster as a theme to the show and Bianca Belair vs. Sonya Deville for the women's title in Belair's home city of Knoxville. There were 5,200 tickets out for the show as of last night. They are heavily pushing this one everywhere with quotes from all the heavy hitters. Obviously the competition tonight is very tough.
  • For those in Canada, because of the NBA, Baseball and NHL playoffs, Raw will not air on Sportsnet 360 the next three weeks. Raw will air on OLN in Canada. This comes at a time when Raw is doing its best numbers in Canada in a long time.
  • As noted and will be noted for the next two months, the NBA will be taking a chunk out of wrestling numbers. There are three NBA playoff games tonight against Raw, for the most part two will be going against the show at the same time. Boston vs. Brooklyn and Philadelphia vs. Toronto are the earlier games and Jazz vs. Mavericks is the 10 p.m. game. NXT tomorrow goes against both Atlanta vs. Miami and Minnesota vs. Memphis. AEW on Wednesday goes against Bulls vs. Bucks (and Chicago is one of AEW's best rated cities) and Brooklyn vs. Boston. If there is a break, the Warriors vs. Nuggets on Wednesday starts at 10 p.m., so only goes against AEW on the West Coast, but last season a late night Warrior-Laker game only going against AEW on the West Coast led to an 0.28 rating for AEW, so it will so it will still have impact.
  • Regarding the Friday numbers, it was insane the sports competition. Smackdown went against NBA on ABC and ESPN, and the ESPN game did big numbers. Smackdown on network wouldn't be hurt as much by cable, although obviously when you've got two NBA games you'll be hurt. Rampage actually went against two games, Bellator, baseball, USFL and Mexican league soccer and beat all sports on cable except the NBA on ESPN.
  • Francis Ngannou was on the MMA Hour today and said UFC has tried to clear the air with him. He noted he had dinner with Hunter Campbell last week and said it went great, but they didn't talk business. He said there is no chance of him signing a new deal with UFC unless they allow him to box Tyson Fury. "If that's not part of the discussion now, it will never be." He said after he fights Fury, he still wants to fight in UFC and do fights with Jon Jones and Stipe Miocic. Ngannou said there is nothing contractually UFC can do to stop the fight from happening next year.
  • Henry Cejudo's manager, Ali Abdelaziz, posted a photo of Cejudo meeting wit Hunter Campbell and Sean Shelby. Cejudo said she's shifted his target from Alexander Volkanovski to bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling.
  • Thanks to Myron Kittle, Gene Restaino,Dagan Broad, David Gould and Sean Dowling for the weekend show reports.
  • We got a tweet from someone who shot the clock during the Eddie Kingston vs. Daniel Garcia match and said only four minutes, not ten minutes, was edited out of the match when it aired on television Friday.
  • Josh Alexander vs. Tomohiro Ishii will headline the next Impact PPV show, under Siege, on 5/6, which goes head-to-head with a UFC PPV show.
  • Jorge Masvidal was on Logan Paul's podcast and said he was open to a boxing match with Jake Paul.

Other Notes

  • David Taylor, the 2021 Olympic gold medalist, has been added to the 6/8 Beat the Streets wrestling event at the Hulu Theater inside of Madison Square Garden. Taylor was second in the most recent world championships. He joins Jordan Burroughs and Helen Maroulis, also gold medalists, on that event. 
  • Defy announced that its show on Saturday will air for free on Pluto TV Ch. 732 at 11 pm. Eastern time and 8 p.m. Pacific. It'll be the first live televised Defy event with Jon Moxley vs. Tom Lawlor as the main event.
  • There are three major weekend events that will be airing in English. NOAH has 4/49 and 4/30 at Sumo Hall on Wrestle Universe with Stewart Fulton and Mark Pickering announcing. The big show is 4/30 headlined by Kazuyuki Fujita vs. Go Shizoaki for the GHC title and starts at 2 a.m. Eastern early Saturday morning, or 11 p.m. Pacific late Friday night, actually right after the West Coast feed of Rampage ends. 
  • TripleMania from the baseball stadium in Monterrey, with Young Bucks vs. Fenix (who I'm told will be returning from his injury) & El Hijo del Vikingo plus the first round with four matches with Mexican masked legends (Canek vs. Psycho Clown, Blue Demon Jr. vs. Rayo de Jalisco Jr., Ultimo Dragon vs. Pentagon Jr. and L.A. Park vs. Villano IV) starts at 9 p.m. Saturday night. There will be English commentary on FITE with Joe Dombrowski and Larry Dallas.
  • The Fukuoka PayPay Dome show starts at 4 a.m. Eastern on New Japan World. This is one of the company's biggest shows of the year, headlined by Kazuchika Okada vs. Tetsuya Naito for the IWGP world title and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Will Ospreay for the U.S. title.
  • Pro Wrestling Phoenix runs Wednesday night in Omaha, NE at the Waiting Room Lounge.
  • WAR on 5/21 in Lima, OH at the Empowered Sports Center.