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SAT. UPDATE: William Regal on Liger booking, How Gawker controversy relates to Hulk Hogan, MVP done wi/ TNA, & more

By David Bixenspan | davidbix@wrestlingobserver.comFollow @davidbix

With UFC FIght Night in Glasgow out of the way, the big event for tonight is Titan FC's UFC Fight Pass debut:

Titan FC 34 at 7:00 p.m. ET live on UFC Fight Pass from Kansas City's Scottish Rite Temple:
Pat Healy vs. Marcus Edwards for vacant lightweight title
Kurt Holobaugh vs. Andre Harrison for vacant featherweight title
Brett Johns vs. Anthony Gutierrez for bantamweight title
Tim Elliott vs. Iliarde Santos for vacant flyweight title
Jose “Pele” Landi-Jons vs. Tyler Stinson
Freddy Assuncao vs. Cody Bollinger
Isaac Vallie-Flagg vs. Jason Witt
Phil Hawes vs. Lucas Rota
Vince Eazelle vs. Desmond Green
William Joplin vs. Andrew Whitney
Mike Bruno vs. Dakota Cochrane

For recognizable names, this is not bad for a regional level card. Elliott-Santos is a very good fight on paper, Vallie-Flagg is is usually fun to watch, and hey, Pele is fighting in 2015. Maybe not a card t watch live, but there might be some fun stuff to check out tomrorrow on Fight Pass. 

WWE Battleground tomorrow live from St. Louis on PPV and WWE Network with the pre-show starting at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time and the main card an hour later at 8:00 p.m. ET:

Seth Rollins (c) vs. Brock Lesnar for WWE Championship
John Cena (c) vs. Kevin Owens for the WWE U.S. Championship
Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt
Randy Orton vs. Sheamus
Prime Time Players (c) vs. New Day for the WWE Tag Team Championshp.
R-Truth vs. King Barrett in the pre-show match

No replacement match listed on to substitute for Ryback (has a staph infection) vs. Big Show vs. The Miz.

NJPW G-1 Climax Night 1 from Sapporo airs on New Japan World tomorrow night at 2:00 a.m. ET:
Yohei Komatsu & Tiger Mask & Jushin Liger & Yuji Nagata vs. Tomoaki Honma & Mascara Dorada & David Finlay & Jay White
Hirooki Goto & Captain New Japan vs. Cody Hall & Yujiro Takahashi
Shinsuke Nakamura & Yoshi-Hashi vs. Karl Anderson & Tama Tonga
Michael Elgin & Satoshi Kojima & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Kazuchika Okada & Tomohiro Ishii & Gedo

Tournament matches:
Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Doc Gallows
Togi Makabe vs. Toru Yano
Tetsuya Naito vs. Bad Luck Fale
A.J. Styles vs. Katsuyori Shibata
Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Kota Ibushi

Raw is Monday night from Kansas City with the start of the build up for SummerSlam.  Brock Lesnar is advertised on the show and there are also rumors that The Undertaker will be there or at least have his character somehow intergrated into the show. SmackDown will be Tuesday night in Lincoln, NE.

If you're attending any of the weekend's WWE house shows, please send a report to


The newest issue of Figure Four Weekly is up on the site for subscribers (subscribe here) with an extensive look at the new NWA Classics streaming service, the Houston Wrestling library, and Houston's place in wrestling history. Among the topics covered are:

* What made Houston Wrestling unique and how the town evolved.

* What's on the NWA Classics service so far and why it's awesome.

* What other libraries are still around?

And much more. Plus, as always, we have  all of the usual reviews and international news.

Also, now available for the first time on Kindle (meaning Kindle devices and anything with the Kindle app) is Fall Guys, the seminal 1937 book that has been described as being like the 1930s version of the Wrestling Observer. It was surprisingly not on Kindle already, so we put together a nice version with a full table of contents w/ chapter marks, proper formatting on everything, etc. Right now it's available from the AmericanCanadian, and Australian Amazon/Kindle stores OR you can also buy it from anywhere in the world on PayHip, who will provide you with both Kindle and ePub (every other e-reader) format files, and you can either sideload them to your device or have them email it to your Kindle. 


We've got a double issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter this week, highlighted by part two of our look at the career and life of Dusty Rhodes.  This focuses on his babyface turn in Florida, his quest for the title, his rise to national prominence, and his feuds with Terry Funk, Superstar Billy Graham and Ole Anderson.  Plus, we look at this year's G-1 Climax tournament, New Japan Dominion, lots of injury notes regarding some of WWE and TNA's biggest stars, WWE lawsuit, Beast in the East and much more.

The Latest Wrestling Observer:  July 13, 2015 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Dusty Rhodes bio part 2, back to back major shows in Japan

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

You can also order the print Observer right now and get it delivered to your door via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer

You can also order at directing funds to

Rates are:

For the United States, it is $13 for 4 issues, $32 for 12, $61 for 24, $101 for 40 and $131 for 52. In Canada and Mexico, rates are $14.50 for 4, $35 for 12, $67 for 24, $111 for 40 and $144 or 52.  In Europe, you can get the fastest delivery and best rates by sending to  For the rest of the world, rates are $16.50 for 4, $44 for 12, $85 for 24, $141 for 40 issues and $183 for 52.

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

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.

Our lead story this week looks at the babyface heyday of Dusty Rhodes as a touring attraction.  We look at how the business was in the 70s, the changes in the business in the Southeast and why, the rise of pro wrestling on cable television, his departure from World Championship Wrestling, and his first babyface run that people have forgotten.

We look at the heyday of Championship Wrestling from Florida, the work of Gordon Solie, Eddie Graham, and Rhodes arrival in Florida in 1973.  We look at the angle that changed Rhodes' career, the transition from Jack Brisco to Dusty Rhodes as the big star in Florida and how that changed the business, the Dusty Rhodes vs. Terry Funk I Quit match, the relationship between Rhodes and Funk, Dusty Rhodes' first two NWA title runs, how the NWA title changed during the 70s and why and Rhodes' quest for the title.  We also look at who Rhodes worked with, and his travels around the globe during his heyday, including some unique matches and opponents that most Americans don't realize ever took place.

We look at his Madison Square Garden feud with Superstar Billy Graham, pro wrestling at the Omni in Atlanta, Dusty Rhodes on TBS and the role pro wrestling made in the early history of cable television, as well as the famous angle where Ole Anderson & Ivan Koloff kicked off their feud with Rhodes that set cable records.

We look at the famous Ole Anderson interview after turning on Dusty Rhodes and why their angle is so fondly remembered, The last Tangle in Tampa, the night that cable television changed the history of pro wrestling, the end of Roy Shire's promotion, and the second world title run.

We also have a look at the G-1 Climax tournament for this year, including the favorites, all the matches, as well as full coverage of the Dominion show from Osaka with Kazuchika Okada beating A.J. Styles for the IWGP title.

We've got a look at WWE's latest legal action, including filing suit against four wrestlers in Connecticut.  We also look at the cases of wrestlers who are suing WWE.

We've also got complete coverage of Beast from the East, how the show came together, why Brock Lesnar was on the show, and match-by-match rundowns with star ratings and poll results.

We also have more on the NXT show in Brooklyn before SummerSlam, how it will be promoted, a scary note on how bad the Tyson Kidd injury could have been, Battleground update, Dolph Ziggler storyline notes, more WWE injury notes, thoughts on Cesaro, Big Show talks about his demotion to OVW, Thoughts on the memo from five years ago with the notes for WWE announcers and how things have changed since then, Brie Bella talks NXT women coming up as well as vague notes on Daniel Bryan's injury, thoughts on Bryan's future as well as an update on Bruno Sammartino after back surgery.

We also look at the Sports Illustrated article on pro wrestling this week, social media numbers, Ambrose movie release, why Regal was in Japan, WWE's Japan tryouts, Piper leaving Podcast One, Austin talking Piper leaving Podcast One, longtime WWE writer takes new job, notes on Randy Orton, USA Network take on Tough Enough, Jamie Noble and Becky Lynch injury updates, WWE stock, movies with WWE talent, lots of Tough Enough news, as well as notes from all the weekend live events, business notes and highlights from all the shows.

The Observer is the world's most detailed weekly pro wrestling publication, in its 32nd year of publication, and is read by the biggest names in the pro wrestling, industry, MMA industry, sports world and on Wall Street.

We also have our regular features such as the most complete look at ratings, plus results of the major house show events each week in pro wrestling and MMA, and complete inside rundowns of all the TV shows.

Also in this week's issue:

--CMLL running a free live stream this week

--Notes from the latest shows at Arena Mexico

--Controversy coming from a womens' hair vs. hair match

--Notes from this past week's AAA TV taping

--A look at the monthly Dragon Gate show at Korakuen Hall

--A look at the next two Dragon Gate iPPV shows

--A look at the last Pro Wrestling NOAH show at Korakuen Hall

--Notes on Tetsuya Naito's apparent heel turn

--New Japan's last Korakuen Hall show

--Zero-One Fire Festival notes

--Notes on the heyday of OVW

--A look at the upcoming GFW shows

--Hulk Hogan lawsuit news

--A look at the careers and lives of who are believed to be the two oldest living pro wrestlers

--A look at a former WWE star who will star in a reality show piggy backing off Total Divas

--Former AAA star has a major accident

--Notes on the next PWG show

--Wrestling returns to Royal Albert Hall in London

--Update on Lucha Underground

--NXT and ROH go head-to-head in Brooklyn and what ROH is running

--Notes on return of Austin Aries to ROH nest week

--Notes on Andy Barton leaving TNA

--Update on Kurt Angle

--Thoughts on the GFW deal

--Notes on Gilbert Melendez failing his drug test

--Dana White talks about how much Aldo would have made if he had fought McGregor

--Update on Jon Jones

--Notes on all the UFC shows this week

--Notes on the IV ban

--UFC fighter retires

--Crazy street fight story involving a former UFC fighter and a current one

--Notes on charges against the husband of Britney Palmer

--Notes on fighters cut from UFC

--Jose Aldo drug test note

--Sonnen pranks Mendes just before the fight

--Notes on Jacare Souza

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.

Click here for the most requested Wrestling Observer back issues.

Saturday Daily Update

  • If you didn't see the UFC card from Glasgow live, it was very good with a lot of finishes and a hot crowd. The main card is being reaired tonight/tomorrow morning on Fox Sports 1 at 3:00 a.m. ET, with the prelims being reaired at 7:00 a.m. n Fox Sports 2.
  • At a press conference late last night, the list of promotions that NJPW said they're exchanging talent with various promotions all over the world...but WWE wasn't one of them. ROH, GFW, NWA (not sure if that means continuing to use the champions, sending wrestlers to the flagship members, or working with all of members), CMLL, Revolution Pro, and WXW. 
  • Meanwhile, on Twitter, William Regal was characterizing the Jushin Liger NXT booking as him calling in a favor from a friend he's known for decades, tweeting a photo of a program featuring them both and writing this:

People are looking for a story where there isn't one. Sometimes just being around enough you can call a friend. It really is as simple as me making a call to a friend I've known since 1986 to come and compete for @WWENXT. Really.N ow please stop asking. A lesson-be polite,helpful,understand that a still tongue keeps a wise head and you'll earn a lot of trust and people will help when needed.

  • Hulk Hogan's lawsuit against Gawker, which was already becoming a bigger and bigger news story by the day, is getting a lt more publicity in light of Gawker posting, then pulling an article that outed a publishing executive as gay for no real reason. Gawker's public defense (and a component of their legal strategy in defending Hogan's suit) of posting an edited version of the video of Hogand and Heather Cole was that Hogan had very specifically lied about any such encounter happening.
  • Gawker founder Nick Denton had cited Gawker not posting the stolen nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities last year as an example of their line in the sand, but this story went against that. In a blog post yesterday, he wrote about the new controversy, saying "I believe this public mood reflects a growing recognition that we all have secrets, and they are not all equally worthy of exposure. I can’t defend yesterday’s story as I can our coverage of Bill O’Reilly, Hillary Clinton or Hulk Hogan."
  • Also on Twitter, John Gaburick and MVP confirmed that MVP has left TNA. With his unaired segmnents not airing due to the Hernandez contractual issues and him not returning, that means that he's already disappeared without a trace from TV.
  • Daniel Bryan's book is now in stock at Amazon, and the Kindle version will be available Tuesday. It's well worth picking up. Super honest, he has a good memory, lots of details about everything you'd want to hear about, and so on. The complete omission of AJ Lee from their run together is a bit odd, but with a book this good, it feels like a nitpick.
  • Bruce Tharpe sent out a press release announcing that NWA Classics will start uploading matches at faster than the promised one a day clip, with all of these matches showing up on the service this week:

Kerry Von Erich vs. Kamala, Rock 'n' Roll Express vs.  Dirty White Boys, Gino Hernandez vs. Nick Kozak, Rocky Johnson vs. Bruiser Brody, Hector Guerrero vs. Jose Lothario, Buddy Landell vs. Al Madril, Fantastics vs. Dutch Mantell & Bill Dundee, Dusty Rhodes & Leroy Brown vs. Gary Hart & Killer Krupp, Midnight Express & Ernie Ladd vs. Rock 'n' Rll Express & Hacksaw Jim Duggan, Dick Slater vs. Jake Roberts, Dr. Death Steve Williams vs. Mark Reagan, Ghetto Streetfight: Junkyard Dog vs. Butch Reed, Dog Collar Match: Junkyard Dog vs. Butch Reed, Hector & Chavo Guerrero vs. Jose Lothario & Al Madril, Ernie Ladd vs. Magnum TA, 20-man Bunkhouse Battle Brawl, Scaffold Match: Rock N Roll Express vs. Midnight Express (with Jim Cornette), NWA World Title Match - Ric Flair vs. Magnum TA, Gino Hernandez & Tully Blanchard vs. Junkyard Dog & Tony Atlas, Terry Gordy vs. Dick Murdoch, and Terry Taylor vs. Jake Roberts

A few are already up,  and a bunch of those weren't in the hands of collectors. I believe both Junkyard Dog vs. Butch Reed matches are new (the televised street fight was from a different city), Gino & Tully vs. JYD & Atlas is new, as is Gordy-Murdoch. Flair-Magnum is up now and required new commentary, so it never aired. Can't recommend this service enough, as what they've uploaded so far is fantastic.

Click here for the WWE Network schedule



Victory Commonwealth Wrestling "Victory Wrestling Showcase" TV (Episode 111)

Smash Wrestling TV (Episode 60)

7/18/15 NWA Smoky Mountain TV

7/3/15 Future Stars Of Wrestling "High Octane" TV

America's Most Liked Wrestling TV (Episode 19)

7/15/15 Resistance Pro HD TV


5/15/15 WWE Tough Enough Digital Extra:  Chelsea Receives Medical Attention

5/15/15 WWE Tough Enough Digital Extra:  A Royal Review Of Week 4

7/13/15 Exclusive:  Charlotte Comments On Her Match With Sasha Banks

7/16/15 WWE Smackdown "Fallout":  Cesaro Speaks After His Victory Over Rusev

7/16/15 WWE Smackdown "Fallout":  Neville Calls Stardust A Coward

7/17/15 Top 10 Smackedown Moments

5 Things:  1,000-Day WWE Champions

WWE Top 10:  Ridiculous Reversals

WWE Canvas 2 Canvas:  The Beast Incarnate F5s Onto The Canvas


Rocky Johnson on "The Apter Chat"

7/17/15 CHIKARA Event Center

The Condron Chronicles:  First

7/16/15 Thursday On The Throne

Ringside Collectibles' "Ringside Or Riot" (Season 4, Episode 33)

POWW "Inside The Ropes" (Episode 19)

AnarchyPro "Internet Beatdown" (Episode 14)


#GFWAmped:  Bollywood Boyz-Influences Getting Started In Professional Wrestling

#GFWAmped:  Brian Myers-Are You Worried About Chris Mordetzky?

#GFWAmped:  Chris Mordetzky-Do You Feel Pressure Being One of the "Known" Guys On The Roster?

#GFWAmped:  Lei'D Tapa-I'm Excited To See Where GFW Goes...The Love And Passion For Wrestling!

#GFWAmped:  PJ Black-Can He Be The Face of GFW?

#GFWAmped:  Nick Aldis-Are Having Alternate Wrestling Brands Appropriate?

#GFWAmped:  Nick Aldis-Why Should Fans Be Excited About GFW Amped on July 24?

#GFWAmped:  Nick Aldis-What is Your Mindset Going Into The GFW Global Championship Tournament?

#GFWAmped:  Reno Scum-"Knuckle Up, Boys"

#GFWAmped:  Kongo Kong-"Now Is The Time To Prove Myself"

#GFWAmped:  7 Days Away


TNA Roster Has a Mixed Reaction To Bully Ray Being In Charge

Backstage Interview With Brooke After Becoming Knockouts Champions

First Comments From Bully Ray After Taking Over

IMPACT In 60  The New "Law", Championship Matches And More


The Road To Ultima Lucha:  Vampiro's Announcement