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MON UPDATE: Sting, ROH TV deals, Jon Jones plea, Nitro week, Kevin Owens

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By Dave Meltzer

We're looking for your thoughts on last night's WWE Night of Champions, Saturday night's Bellator, Friday night's CMLL and Friday night's ROH with a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match from each show to Dave Meltzer

Raw is tonight in Laredo, TX, which is a traditionally hot market for WWE, particularly for Hispanic wrestlers.  It's a mid-sized market that usually sells out or comes close even for house shows.  They'll start the build for Night of Champions.  Nothing has been announced ahead of time but one would think they'll follow up in some form with Chris Jericho.   

We're also looking for reports from these shows:

*WWE Saturday night in Waco, TX

*WWE Saturday night in Beaumont, TX

*NXT Saturday night in San Antonio

Smackdown will be taped Tuesday in Corpus Christi with Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Sheamus as the top advertised stars.

New Japan Destruction in Okayama PPV on Tuesday night at 11 p.m. Pacific and 2 a.m. Eastern on New Japan World

Sho Tanaka & Yohei Komatsu & Yuji Nagata & Katsuyori Shibata vs. Jay White & David Finlay & Manabu Nakanishi & Tetsuya Naito

Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly vs. Jushin Liger & Mascara Dorada non-title

Steve Anthony vs. Tiger Mask for NWA jr. title

Hiroshi Tanahashi & Matt Sydal vs. Bad Luck Fale & Tama Tonga

Doc Gallows & Karl Anderson vs. Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan for IWGP tag titles

Hirooki Goto & Tomoaki Honma & Captain New Japan & Ryusuke Taguchi & Alex Shelley vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & Tomohiro Ishii & Yoshi-Hashi & Rocky Romero & Baretta

Kazuchika Okada & Toru Yano vs. A.J. Styles & Cody Hall

Kushida vs. Kenny Omega for IWGP jr. title

Togi Makabe vs. Kota Ibushi for Never Open weight title

We've got a look at WWE right now with the issues that have led to ratings setting record lows as well as an update on TNA, New Japan, GFW, ROH and everyone else in the battle for No. 2, as the lead stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.  This issue also has a detailed look at the Nick Diaz situation and why it is far more complicated than most are making it out to be, Atlantis vs. La Sombra in one of the year's biggest matches, a history of the CMLL anniversary shows, a look at Thomas Hauser's article on USADA, an update on Dr. Christopher Amann's lawsuit against C.M. Punk and Colt Cabana, what led to the Mayweather flop on PPV and New Japan builds for two PPVs this month.

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

Web site subscriptions, which include access to both current and older newsletters as well as every audio show in the history of the site.  Sign up here for as low as $9.99 per month!

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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.

The lead story looks at what is and isn't misleading about the record low ratings for Raw and Smackdown over the past two weeks, the rate of decline, the future of Smackdown, and why wrestling even with lower ratings may be far more valuable to the USA Network when the current contract is over.  We look at the problems that are inherent, those that can be addressed and those that can't.  We look at why this past week's Raw rating was far more sobering than the week before as well as how wrestling and every combat sport is changing from an economic situation worldwide.  We look at interviews, finishes, making stars and dropping the ball on stars.  We also look at Night of Champions.

We update the TNA television situation, what promotion had a strong growth year, and the future of No. 2, as well as an update on all of TNA's TV deals.

We go in depth on Nick Diaz, and what are the key elements of the story, why he got a five year suspension, how Diaz has blown his prime years in fighting, the commissioners discuss the suspension and the deliberations leading to it.  We talk about why comparisons to Anderson Silva and Jon Jones aren't valid in this case, detail the controversies over the test results, the legal issues involved, and Diaz talks about what happened in childhood that led him to where he is.

We also look at the situation with Jake Shields and the commission ruling on his post-match punch to Rousimar Palhares, as well as his comments on what happened.

We also look at what contracted talent was told about Hulk Hogan, as well as a double standard that is too obvious, the next Takeover special, Update on Lana, Dwayne Johnson makes former WWE writer a major executive in his company, what happened at the recent NXT talent meeting, Daniel Bryan talks about creating new stars, and his health situation as well as PPV matches he wants.

We look at plans for the November European tour, WWE performers and Twitter, Paige talks in detail about her incident with Alicia Fox that turned into a fight of sorts with two other women and how it all went down.  Jimmy Noonan talks issues with WWE security including a story when a fan kicked the ass of a main event wrestler inside the ring one night and how that fan ended up as a wrestler.

We look at another sports star that WWE is bringing in for a tryout, four cast members from Tough Enough who have now signed contracts, this week's NXT shows, and the father of a WWE wrestler who is an all-time legend in slow-pitch softball.

We've got notes on the WWE TV shows as well as the next month of NXT shows, as well as reports on WWE business over the past week, and highlights from all the house shows.

We look at the Atlantis vs La Sombra match, the build to the match, why the match is so big, the last angle and what happened with Dr. Wagner Jr. an L.A. Park.  We also look at a history of the CMLL Anniversary shows, with the big names that have appeared on them and the most famous matches over the years.

We look at Thomas Hauser's article on USADA and how it related to Floyd Mayweather, what about the article had validity and what was a stretch.  We look at USADA's drug testing in UFC and what the results so far say, the concept of retroactive TUE's, a scary aspect of a contract Manny Pacquiao was given and wouldn't sign, rumors of Mayweather positive tests, and the story behind Erik Morales failing four tests before a fight for Clenbuterol and still fighting.

We update the situation with Dr. Christopher Amann's lawsuit against C.M. Punk.  We look at the response to the suit filed by Punk and Colt Cabana, WWE's response and what the key issues in the suit are.

We've got notes on the Floyd Mayweather-Andre Berto PPV number and lessons that it has taught.

We also run down this past week's New Japan show at Korakuen Hall and how it builds the next two PPV shows.

We've also got ratings from all the television shows this past week along with results from all the major arena events.

We also update on the last two AAA TV tapings, Genichiro Tenryu's last match at Korakuen Hall, the Dragon Gate Summer Adventure tag team tournament, the All Japan Open singles tournament, the NOAH jr. heavyweight tournament, New Japan talks about their relationship with WWE and more.

We look at the Japanese female wrestler who broke her record for most world championships, and a new Hall of Fame mixed tag team.

We've got notes on Hulk Hogan's latest media and what he said that simple time lines can disprove, notes on Jimmy Snuka including why there will be a lot more coverage of his story coming up, as well as why his hearing this week was canceled.  We look at the U.S. gold medalists in the world wrestling championships and what wrestler looks like a great UFC or WWE prospect.  We also update GFW and where television stands, look at a star indie wrestler sent to prison, Podcasts involving wrestling personalities, two pro wrestlers at the 1980 Olympic team reunion, an update on House of Hardcore, an update on Kelly Kelly, whatever happened to Chuck Palumbo, former UFC star getting a pro wrestling break, a wrestling show uncovered by a historian that drew 80,000 fans in 1936, the daughter of a WWE Hall of Famer starting wrestling training, and a well known pro wrestler competing under another name in pseudo MMA combat.

We also look at some significant negotiations going on with ROH and a look at the weekend events.

We also look at the Jarrett/Dixie Carter deal, Earl Hebner into the TNA Hall of Fame and his background, an update on Bram and Kurt Angle and Angle's wrestling schedule.

We look at ticket sales for UFC 194 and how early sales have been, more big fights announced, a UFC signee who will start after competing in the 2016 Olympics, Ronda Rousey in the ESPN poll of the greatest female athlete of all-time, as well as lots of new UFC fights.

We also look at a new Bellator deal, and Scott Coker's hopes for this week's show.

We also look at a proposed Chael Sonnen vs. Josh Barnett grappling match, and the return of Ben Askren.

If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can get one free classic issue of your choice sent to you today.  With a 40 issue subscription, you can get two free classic issues sent to you today.

New subscribers ordering 24 or 40 issues have to let us know what major stories of the past 11 years you are most interested in and we'll send the issue with the best coverage of that story. We've got coverage of every major PPV event and world wide spectacular, every major star switching promotions, histories of companies like FMW, Rings and New Japan, retirement and obit issues of every major star who fits into those descriptions over the past 11 years, as well as our biggest issue every year, the annual awards issue, and our most controversial issue of every year, the Hall of Fame issue.

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MONDAY'S NEWS UPDATE

  • Bryan and I will be back tonight with Wrestling Observer radio, covering Raw as well as the rest of the wrestling and MMA news.  You can send in e-mail questions to the show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com
  • We don't have any update on Sting past he suffered a significant neck injury last night.  It was definitely during the buckle bomb spot.  For those asking, the finish they did was the planned finish, although they immediately went to it when Sting basically insisted on finishing the match.  WWE has acknowledged the injury but not the nature of the injury.  Sting was hospitalized for testing.  TMZ reported that the resutls of the testing were no fractures.
  • Sting was booked on tonight's Raw, but TMZ reported that he is at home today so that would seem he's not at the show.
  • This is from Steve Martinez, a rep for Sting: "As many of you may already know, Sting is undergoing treatment for the injuries he sustained in last night’s match with Seth Rollins. Doctors will continue to evaluate his condition, but he is a man of remarkable health and resiliency, especially at his age and with all he’s endured throughout his stellar career. Therefore, we are optimistic he will have a speedy recovery and return to full health soon. Sting has kept his body in excellent shape, due largely to the guidance he’s received from his personal trainer Jeff Cavaliere (ATHLEAN-X), and we trust this will prove beneficial to the recovery process. As a side note, we later learned the greatest damage to his body took place before the match was over, but being the true professional he is and among the hardest workers to ever step foot in the ring, he insisted to see the match through to the end." -Steve Martinez
  • ROH made the official announcement today of a six-month TV deal with L'Equipe 21, a sports channel in France.  They also announced that they would be starting shortly on WNCN in Philadelphia, WMYD in Detroit and WMCN in Charlotte.
  • Tonight's Raw goes against the Jets-Colts game with an 8:30 p.m. kickoff.  Raw is coming off the two least watched non-major holiday episodes, and Smackdown numbers have been way down the past three weeks, but in theory the day after a PPV show and with some angles shot last night should boost the numbers tonight. 
  • WWE was the 7th most searched for item on Google yesterday with 500,000 searches, again well above the usual levels for a PPV show.  Not bad considering the NFL & Emmys last night.
  • On Saturday, Tito Ortiz was the 8th most searched item, but that was only 50,000 searches.
  • Jon Jones is scheduled to enter a plea on 9/29 on his leaving the scene of an accident charge.
  • Heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (34-0, 33 knockouts) vs. Johann Duhaupas (32-2, 20 knockouts) headlines the first prime time heavyweight title fight on NBC in 30 years, which airs on Saturday night.  That will go head-to-head with the UFC prelims from Japan on FS 1 and the early part of the main card..
  • The company has announced Monday Nitro week on the network.  The new shows will be a John Layfield interview with Eric Bischoff after Raw tonight, on Tuesday at 10 p.m. will be DDP hosting a countdown of the ten biggest matches in Nitro history; Wednesday at 10 p.m. will be Bischoff announcing the ten biggest moments of his career, Part two of the Layfield interview with Bischoff will air at 10 p.m. Thursday after Smackdown, and they have added 100 new hours of Nitro to the network.
  • C.M. Punk and A.J. Lee (using the name A.J. Brooks) will be starring in a movie called "Hellstorm" that will start filming in November.  The story is that after the collapse of the world's financial system and a devastating world war, a group of mismatched survivors band together to battle unexplainable and horrific beasts that show up.    
  • Stardust uses the name "The Queens Crossbow" as the new name for Crossroads because Stephen Amell's character in Arrow is named Oliver Queen. (thanks to Michael O'Brien and many others).
  • In Montreal, where there is a different mentality regarding coverage of pro wrestling in the media (it has gotten sports coverage there since the beginning of time), Kevin Owens title win got a lot of play.  The Journal de Montreal, the biggest newspaper in town, had Owens coverage on Thursday and Saturday talking about his match in Montreal and yesterday and today about his winning the IC title.  The Thursday, Saturday and Sunday features got a full page.  So much media was interested in his return to Montreal that he couldn't do it all.  In just one week, he got more press in the city than Sylvain Grenier and Maryse Ouellet got in their entire careers.  It's been nearly 20 years since an active WWE pro wrestler has gotten the kind of coverage Owens got this past week.  Every major area sports web site covered both the Friday night house show and the title win.  (thanks to Patric Laprade)
  • Tomorrow's episode of Total Divas will cover the women getting the news that Dusty Rhodes had passed away.
  • The new issue of the National Enquirer has a story on Jimmy Snuka. 
  • Tickets for the Ultimate Fighter Finale and the Chad Mendes vs. Frankie Edgar fight on 12/11 at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas are priced at $350, $250 and $150 and go on sale to Fight Club members on Wednesday at 10 a.m., newsletter subscribers on Thursday at 10 a.m. and to the public on Friday at 10 a.m.  With only 1,500 seats and with so many tourists in town for the Jose Aldo vs. Conor McGregor, I expect this to be a quick sellout.
  • For the 12/10 Fight Pass show, in the same location, headlined by Paige VanZant vs. Joanne Calderwood, tickets go on sale at noon Wednesday to Fight Club members, noon Thursday for a password pre-sale and to the public on Friday.
  • Justin Credible (Pete Polaco) on Twitter announced that he plans to retire from wrestling in November.  He said his final match would be 11/20 against Tommy Dreamer for PWS in Rahway, NJ.
  • Scott Norton was backstage at the Night of Champions last night, as was Scott Hall and Wale..
  • Road Warrior Animal will be appearing for In Your Face Wrestling on 11/7 in Delanson, NY at the Duanesburg Area Community Center doing a Q&A and Meet and Greet.  They also have a show on 10/10 in Albany, NY at the Polish Community Center.
  • Was told lots of Balor Club  T-shirts in Houston last night at the PPV.
  • Absolute Intense Wrestling on 10/3 in Cleveland at the Mt. Carmel Church at 3 p.m. with a Girls Night Out show and 7:30 p.m with a men's show.
  • NWA Smoky Mountain Wrestling on 10/3 in Kingsport, TN at the Civic Auditorium with Jax Dane vs. Travis Lee for the NWA title.  Also on the show is Jason Kincaid, Rob Conway, Kid Kash and E.Z. Money.
  • A John Cena story about his charity work
  • A movie about the deaths of La Parkita and Espectrito Jr., two Mexican minis who had worked with WWE in the 90s under other names and were murdered by prostitutes
  • Josh Reddick of the Oakland A's talks his favorite wrestlers and how HHH made him a fan

ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY INTERNATIONAL (thanks to Graeme Cameron)

1950 - Sugi Sito beat Tarzan Lopez to win the NWA middleweight title

1977 - Mario Valenzuela beat Firma Azul in Acapulco to win the Mexican national light heavyweight title

1979 - Tiger Jeet Singh beat Seiji Sakaguchi in Sendai to win the North American title

1989 - Fuerza Guerrera beat Aguila Solitaria in Puebla to win the NWA middleweight title

2001 - Felino beat Nosawa in Mexico City to win the CMLL welterweight title

2008 - Low Ki beat Tiger Mask in Kobe to win the IWGP jr. title

2009 - Kensuke Sasaki & Takeshi Morishima beat Akitoshi Saito & Bison Smith to win the GHC tag titles in Nagoya

2009 - Manami Toyota beat Aja Kong in Sapporo to win the Oz Academy title

2014 - Shinsuke Nakamura beat Bad Luck Fale to win the IC title