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MON. UPDATE: Raw tonight, Shields punished, GFW TV, WWE 2K, Bellator TV deal


By Dave Meltzer

We're looking for reports from Raw tonight from Memphis tonight with dark matches, Superstars matches and anything else that wouldn't be evident from the live TV show at Dave">  The matches announced are Nikki Bella vs. Charlotte for the Divas title, The New Day vs. Prime Time Players for the tag titles, plus Sting will be there since it's the go-home show for Night of Champions.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped Tuesday in Little Rock.

A look at next weekend, which is one of the biggest weekends of the year with Bellator and CMLL having their biggest shows, plus a WWE PPV show and an ROH PPV, is one of the lead stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.  We also have a look at the 2015 Hall of Fame ballot, tons more on the Jimmy Snuka case, An update on TNA and the future of Kurt Angle, a letter UFC sent to all its fighters about unionization, plus full coverage of UFC 191 and Battle of Los Angeles, and thoughts behind Raw & Smackdown doing record low numbers.

The latest issue of the Wrestling Observer: September 14, 2015 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Huge Weekend Preview, WWE/CMLL/ROH/Bellator

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The Wrestling Observer ranges weekly from 35,000 to 50,000 words covering pro wrestling and MMA internationally. Each issue has coverage and analysis of all the major news, plus every issue breaks major news stories before the Internet sties and has the most complete look at the pro wrestling and MMA business anywhere, plus history pieces available nowhere else.

We look at next week's big shows, including a preview of  CMLL's main event, why L.A. Park is already gone from the promotion, and a preview of  both Raw and Night of Champions.

We've got more on the Jimmy Snuka case, with a background of WWE in 1983, Vince McMahon purchasing the company from his father, what was and wasn't known in wrestling at the time, the first Snuka arrest, the decision made on Hulk Hogan being the face of the company's expansion, the role Snuka's autobiography played in his indictment, the corner saying why he felt there was no indictment and his quotes on the subject, new evidence, Buddy Rogers before his death talks about the subject, another coroner weighs in, a lawyer who investigated the case in 1983 weighs in, how Snuka handled his finances fro that point on, Snuka's run in New Japan, the famous Brody & Snuka walking out on the tag tournament finals, what Vince McMahon was doing to protect Snuka, key Allentown officials talk cover-up rumors, WWE talks those rumors and more.

We also update the Kurt Angle TNA situation and why Angle said he was leaving the company when his contract expires in January.  We look at the situation with Destination America, what talent knows and how WWE fits into all this right now.

We look at the letter sent by UFC to all of its fighters regarding unionization and our thoughts on the subject.

We've got a look at the 2005 Hall of Fame ballot, a look at the new candidates and their credentials, candidates for the future, understanding of the process, as well as how everyone on this year's ballot fared last year.

We also look back at research into the biggest draws of all-time on the ballot, as well how the candidates have done in various awards, in drawing power for their era, as well as match quality, how difficult it is to be voted in, and notes on a lot of this year's modern candidates.

We have an update on Ronda Rousey and WrestleMania, an upcoming WWE wedding, John Cena injury notes, WWE asks fans about PPV start times and thoughts, update on Amanda from Tough Enough and what appears to be her new deal, WWE pulling out all stops for next months tour of Mexico and why, Dean Ambrose talks acting, Nikki Bella as Divas champion, Eric Bischoff appearing on WWE Network, Undertaker's future, the signing of Kana and she talks coming to WWE, Zahra Schreiber talks her firing, some NXT matches, a WWE wrestler on a sabbatical, as well as the WWE business notes from the past week and highlights from all the house hows.

We look at Saturday's UFC show, the business notes on the show, where the top guys go next along with match-by-match coverage, how much everyone earned, and poll results on the show.

We also have rundowns of the major TV shows of the past week.

We also go in depth on the Battle of Los Angeles tournament with match-by-match coverage for all three nights, what is PWG, the atmosphere and more.

We also have notes on the ratings of all the major television shows, including just how badly the main shows fared, and results of the major league arena events over the past week.

We also look at the affect that Dr. Wagner Jr. and L.A. Park have on business in Mexico, what dream of L.A. Park fell through, Rey Mysterio in AAA and notes on several big shows plus names they are talking about bringing in.

We also update the Dragon Gate tag team tournament and the NOAH Jr. tag team tournament.  We also look at New Japan's next international tour, why Tenryu vs. Okada is taking place in November, what foreign stars are being discussed for New Japan, and Hiroshi Tanahashi doing the DDT show and the future of Yohei Komatsu and Sho Tanaka.

We also look at Hulk Hogan's overseas talk shows, the death of Tommy Rogers of The Fantastics, Dave Brown retires from WMC TV and how it was celebrated locally, Axl Rotten's future goals, CHIKARA King of Trios, Jeff Jarrett TV talks and the final GFW ballpark shows of the year and what is left on the schedule, Bob Backlund's autobiography, update on Batista, the death of Jerry Prater, an instrumental figure in Florida wrestling in the 70s and the heyday of wrestling programs and magazines, the Carlos Maynez tribute show this past week featuring legends from the past, a Roddy Piper movie not released and the Darrell Dawkins connection with pro wrestling.

We also update things on Lucha Underground.

We look at next week's ROH matches.

We look at a TNA wedding, lineups for the upcoming TNA shows, U.K. TNA ratings and updating Impact.

We also have Conor McGregor talking his future, McGregor vs. Faber and why it didn't happen, key UFC announcements over the pat week including new shows, new main events and new title matches, the retirement of Sam Stout, Rousey doing "Road House," next UFC TV events, update on Charles Oliveira, UFC's most popular markets, how much Rousey and McGregor are carrying things right now and former UFC star buys $2.75 million mansion from a rock star.

We also look at Alexander Shlemenko's attempt to get his steroid punishment over turned and his arguments, plus a new Bellator show was announced.

We also update Fedor Emelianenko and his situation, as well as a former WWE star debuts this week as an MMA announcer and top pro wrestling stars attending.  We also look at the results of the latest medical study on injuries suffered in boxing vs. MMA and where each is more and less dangerous than the other.  

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  • Bryan and I will be back tonight talking Raw, the Nick Diaz hearing, the huge weekend upcoming as well as taking e-mail questions that can be sent to
  • Tonight's Raw is being pushed around whether or not Nikki Bella breaks the all-time record for the Divas title longest reign, held by A.J. Lee.  She will defend against Charlotte and whatever is done is likely to set up either a rematch on Sunday or some type of title match on Sunday. 
  • Also on tonight's show, The New Day faces The Prime Time Players for the tag titles with the winners going to Night of Champions on Sunday in Houston against The Dudleys.  Given the TV buildup, it's likely The New Day, or a disputed finish to set up a three-way. 
  • If they are going to announce the third partner on the Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose team against The Wyatt Family, tonight would be the time to do it.  As noted, Randy Orton was scheduled to appear tonight and tomorrow night, but that doesn't mean they may not change their mind, nor that he's not just working a dark match.  It is possible they could claim him as injured, even though he headlined house shows the last two nights.
  • This is also the first Raw going against Monday Night Football.  There are actually two games on ESPN.  Most of Raw will go against the Philadelphia Eagles vs. Atlanta Falcons, while the last 50 minutes or so go against the 49ers and Minnesota Vikings game. 
  • Tonight's Raw is being pushed as the season premiere.  They've also added a Miz TV segment to the show and Sting is scheduled for the show.
  • Nick Diaz recieved a 5 year ban from the NSAC.  Diaz tested positive for marijuana for the Anderson Silva fight.
  • Congratulations to Vickie Guerrero, who was married over the weekend to Kris Benson. 
  • The 9/22 episode of Total Divas has a preview that mentions that the women go on vacation to Mexico where Paige announces her engagement.
  • Bellator announced a new TV deal with ESPN Deportes, which starts with Saturday night's show.  The prelims, which start at 6:30 p.m. Eastern, will stream in Spanish on ESPN 3 and ESPNDeportes+ with the main card eight fights airing starting at 9 p.m.
  • The Nevada Athletic commission today ordered Jake Shields to do 50 hours of community service for throwing a punch as Rousimar Palhares after their fight.  Shields said that he was injured by Palhares,who didn't break a Kimura after he tapped, and said both his elbow and shoulder were torn.  He also said Palhares repeatedly eye gouged him throughout the second round.  Palhares was not at the meeting but he will be facing a hearing for not breaking the hold and eye gouging next month.  He asked for his hearing to be delayed because his wife is pregnant and close to giving birth.
  • The Flipps App announced today a partnership with both TNA and ROH to stream their PPV events.  For ROH, they will stream worldwide Friday night's All-Star Extravaganza show.  They will not only stream TNA Bound for Glory, but also the One Night Only series shows.  The first two will be TNA Legends, which airs TNA footage of Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Sting, Roddy Piper, The Road Warriors, Ric Flair, Jeff Hardy, Mick Foley, Rob Van Dam, Scott Hall, Kevin Nash and Jimmy Snuka.  Not exactly the best timing to be pushing Jimmy Snuka.  The other is a World Cup PPV special taped months ago.
  • A couple of changes in Saturday's Bellator show in San Jose.  Serhiy Adamchuk (29-5) of The Ukraine will face Anvar Boynazaraov in a kickboxing match where the winner gets a shot at the Glory featherweight title and champion Gabriel Varga.  That will air on the Spike web site.  In addition, Roy Caughton (12-5) replaces Philipe Lins, in a fight with Francis Carmont, which is an alternates fight in the light heavyweight tournament.
  • For those in the area, this is the schedule for Bellator:
  • Wednesday will have open media workouts at the AKA Gym in San Jose 11 a.m. Liam McGeary and Paul Daley 11:30 a.m. Emanuel Newton and Saulo Cavalari Noon Tito Ortiz and Josh Thomson 12:30 p.m.King Mo and Fernando Gonzalez 1 p.m. Phil Davis and Kerri Taylor-Melendez 1:30 p.m. Linton Vassell and Zack Mwekassa
  • Press conference at the SAP Center in San Jose at 11 a.m.  Among those appearing at 11 a.m. are Tito Ortiz, Liam McGeary, Paul Daley, King Mo, Linton Vassell, Randy Couture and Cung Le.  At 1 p.m. will be Scott Coker, Phil Davis, Emanuel Newton, Josh Thomson, Frank Shamrock, Royce Gracie, Kazushi Sakuraba and Fedor Emelianenko.
  • At 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Randy Couture, Aaron Pico and Ed Ruth will be at the Gilroy High gym training with the wrestling team.
  • Weigh-in are Friday at 5 p.m. and will stream live at
  • The fan fest is Saturday at 7 p.m. at Dave & Buster's at the Great Mall in Milpitas with Fedor, Royce Gracie, Couture, Frank Shamrock, Cung Le and Sakuraba.
  • Kimbo Slice will be signing autographs at 3 p.m. on Saturday when the doors open to the show inside the SAP Center.  The first fight starts at 3:30 p.m. local time.
  • GFW sent out a release that they've signed an international TV distribution deal with Boulder Creek International of London, England.  The shows that have been taped in Las Vegas will be available through BCI starting in November.
  • Combate Americas sent out a press release earlier today plugging Alberto Del Rio as announcing for their MMA promotion that debuts on Thursday night at 11 p.m. on NBC Universo (formerly mun2) in  Spanish.  He was pushed as the biggest name in the promotion and as the only man to win the Royal Rumble and Money in the Bank in the same year as well as being a four-time WWE champion.
  • New names added today to the WWE 2K 16 roster are Baron Corbin, Big E, Bray Wyatt, Brian Pillman, Colin Cassady, Enzo More, Jimmy & Jey Uso, Kofi Kingston, The Ascension, Mark Henry, Mikey Whipwreck, Ricky Steamboat, Rusev, Savio Vega, Stephanie McMahon, Sting (two different Sting characters, the late 80s Sting and Crow Sting), Stunning Steve Austin from the Dangerous Alliance, American Badass Undertaker, Ministry of Darkness Undertaker, and Xavier Woods.
  • The scheduled CZW PPV show on 10/11 from Philadelphia will not be on PPV.  Instead, they will do an iPPV on 10/10 from Vorhees, NJ.
  • Jim Ross will be doing a talk show at 4 p.m. on Sunday at The Warehouse Live Ballroom, near the Toyota Center in Houston, which would be over with time to eat dinner and still attend Night of Champions.
  • Regarding Bellator billboards, one of my friends noted that on Lincoln and Moorpark in San Jose there is a really nice billboard for Saturday night's show. 
  • Brodus Clay aka Tyrus appears on 11/28 for Ultimate Championship Wrestling in Halifax.
  • Hoosier Pro Wrestling on 10/3 in Columbus, IN at the 4-H Fairgrounds featuring Jimmy Valiant in action, and a main event of Trailer Park Trash & Flash Flanagan vs. Marc Houston & TJ Kemp.
  • Premier Wrestling on Saturday at 6 p.m. at Del Mar High School in San Jose.  JR Kratos (8-2) vs. Jeff Cobb (6-2-1) for the Premier title headlines, plus Nicole Savoy & Kahmora vs. Raze & Kikyo Nakamura, Timothy Thatcher vs. Joe Graves, Gabriel Gallo vs. Dom Vitalli, Alexander Hammerstone vs. Dylan Drake, Marcus Lewis vs. Julio Pedroza  and two other matches.
  • Dr. Tom Prichard vs. Mark Reagan was added today to
  • Highlights of Friday night's All Pro Wrestling Bayshore Bash
  • Steve Sims talks the CMLL Anniversary show this Friday
  • Jeff Cobb talks about his wrestling career, competing in the Olympics including a match with Yoel Romero, as well as Lucha Underground
  • Xavier Woods talks the creation of The New Day and Tyler Breeze
  • Jesse Ventura says he's wants to be Donald Trump's running mate