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TUES. UPDATE: Brooke Hogan & Gawker President speak out, Chyna update, MMA champion stripped, & more

by David Bixenspan | davidbix@wrestlingobserver.comFollow @davidbix

Major event and TV notes for tonight:

Tough Enough airs at 8:00 p.m. ET on USA Network with a new episode titled "Spinning a Yarn." It sems likely that the episode will be built around footage of ZZ ducking out of training and an overall push to get ZZ eliminated. Also: Things heat up on WWE Tough Enough tonight on USA Network when WWE Tag Team The Prime Time Players visit the competitors to set up this week’s challenge.

Total Divas airs at 9:00 p.m. ET on E! with a new episode titled "Tea Mode."Alicia wants to confess her love to her ex-boyfriend when she suspects he may be single again soon, Paige is offended by Nikki’s classy take on her home turf, and Eva Marie continues to train with Brian Kendrick.

NJPW G1 Climax Day 11 airs live from Iwate at 5:30 a.m. ET tonight/tomorrow morning on NJPW World:

Non-Tournament Matches:
1. Satoshi Kojima, Yuji Nagata, Tiger Mask IV & Yohei Komatsu vs. Hirooki Goto, Michael Elgin, Mascara Dorada & David Finlay Jr.
2. Tomoaki Honma & Jay White vs. Karl Anderson & Cody Hall
3. Shinsuke Nakamura & Tomohiro Ishii vs. Yujiro Takahashi & Tama Tonga
4. KUSHIDA, Ryusuke Taguchi & Captain New Japan vs. Kazuchika Okada, YOSHI-HASHI & Gedo
G1 Climax A Block Matches:
5. Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Bad Luck Fale
6. Katsuyori Shibata vs. Toru Yano
7. Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Doc Gallows
8. AJ Styles vs. Togi Makabe
9. Kota Ibushi vs. Tetsuya Naito

SmackDown and Main Event are being taped tonight in Sacramento, California. We welcome any and all spoiler reports at


FREE THIS WEEK: The newest issue of Figure Four Weekly (subscribe to th site here and get access to Figure Four, the Observer, tons of audio, and our) is up with a look at the crazy story of why Gawker thinks the FBI may have helped Hulk Hogan cover up his racist and homophobic comments. A judge has ordered the FBI to turn over the records of their investigation, and what Gawker is saying in court about what has and hasn't been turned over paints a very interesting picture. 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. 


The Latest Wrestling Observer: August 3, 2015 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Hulk Hogan fired by WWE over leaked hate speech, Daniel Bryan update

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The ups and downs of Hulk Hogan is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.  We look at his rise to fame, steroids in pro wrestling, Hogan as a fan, the Zahorian trial and why Hogan wasn't involved, the first time Vince McMahon sent Hulk Hogan away, the McMahon trial, and his career post-wrestling.  We look at Hogan Knows Best and how that plays into his latest problems, Bubba the Love Sponge, when Hogan's racist rant was first reported and how three years ago, the story behind the tapes, what was said, , Hogan's apology, the Gawker threat and how it plays into his lawsuit, WWE's reaction and how this is different from his other historical issues.  We look at how fiction vs. reality is Hogan's friend, fan reaction, and more.  This is the most detailed look at not just Hogan's latest situation, but life after wrestling over 25 plus years.

We also look at Daniel Bryan's current situation, his concussion issues, his wanting to wrestle again and WWE not clearing him, his wife's reaction to his wrestling again, how his neck is holding up, what could have gotten him to TNA and his different views of the 2014 and 2015 Royal Rumble.

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Tuesday Daily Update

  • Reminder: The new Figure Four Weekly is FREE for everyone this week with a huge, detailed cover feature on the crazy story of why Gawker thinks the FBI has tried to help Hulk hogan cover up the racist and homophoic comments he made that ended up being leaked a week ago. This is some weird, fascinating stuff.
  • Brooke Hogan talked to Entertainment Tonight and defended her dad; not defending the comments, but more showing sympathy for the situation with the comments (well, his initial comments; the ones to Nick in jail were public record where he knew he was being recorded) being made in private. She makes a reference to the tape being shot at "the lowest point in his life," which is how Hulk described getting roped into sleeping with his friend's wife, but it's not clear why. Yes, his marriage was falling apart and as good as over, but that's the type of language he previously used to describe the period after the divorce and the car accident that put John Graziano in a vegetative state. He said this before all of that happened. 
  • Gawker President and General Counsel Heather Dietrick talked to Fortune about the Hogan lawsuit. Interesting excerpt (they didn't directly quote her in this part) about why Gawker had to publsh clips of the video itself: Dietrick’s answer is that the video serves to prove Gawker’s source material. Without it, Hogan could have continued to refute the tape’s very existence. Indeed, that’s what occurred when Gawker, in another of its major exposés, revealed that the former mayor of Toronto liked to smoke crack; the mayor denied the charge, and threatened to sue Gawker until the police confirmed existence of the tape.
  • WSOF President Ray Sefo announced on the MMA Hour that he's stripping Rousimar Palhares of their welterweight title as well as suspending him from the promotion after he not only did his usual thing and didn't release a submisssion hold immediately when the referee stepped in, but also repeatedly raked and gouged Jake Shields' eyes during the fight. If you didn't see the fight, this wasn't your usual MMA eye poke that happns standing; he was very clearly, purposefully thumbing Shields' eyes on the ground while referee Steve Mazzagatti never went past a warning. The Nevada State Athletic Commission is witholding Palhares' win bonus for the time being.
  • Meanwhile, Joe Lauzon has an excellent YouTube video comparing the reaction time of Palhares letting go of submissions to how he's reacted in his own fights. A lot of people have defended Palhares by saying that he rarely cranks the hold for more than about a second extra, but as Lauzon explains, that's the problem.
  • Chyna's manager, Anthony Anzaldo, posted a video of him calling what sounds like the main WWE switchboard to ask who he can talk to to make sure her royalty checks were properly dealt with while she was living in Japan, as none were forwarded to her. After he's put on hold, the operator tells him she was told not to forward any calls from/about Chyna. While there's probably someone they should have tried to call directly and Chyna does clearly have some issues, if she really wasn't sent the checks she was owed or they were sent to an old address and she never deposited them, calling WWE to get them reiussed is absolutely the right thing to do. You can see why WWE would refuse to talk to her, but she's not necessarily in the wrong in this situation unless it's a made-up story.
  • Mike Tenay announced on Taz's Human Podcast Machine show that he's starting a new podcast on CBS's network called "Professor Vegas" about sports betting.
  • The new English AAA YouTube channel has a 15 minute countdown special for this Sunday's TripleMania XXIII pay-per-view card.
  • Rey Mysterio is doing the media rounds to promote TripleMania. Rolling Stone has an interview up with him, and I did one that's up at WrestlingInc: Part 1, Part 2.
  • Triple H tweeted a video of WWE honoring a young fan last night in San Jose because he had sent in a Tough Enough audition reel.
  • Dave has two UFC 189 stories up at MMAFighting: One is about early PPV buy indicators. The other is his "Fortunes Changed for Five" postmortem.
  • For episode #2 of Between The Sheets, Kris Zellner and I are joined by Joe Gagne to talk about all of the wrestling news that happened between July 27 and August 3, 1990.
  • — WWE officially announced the book launch event featuring Dana Warrior for “Ultimate Warrior; A Life Lived Forever,” which will take place on Saturday, August 22, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. It will be open to the first 300 fans (well, it reads like the first 300 fans to show up and buy the book, but the press release is a little confusing) at The POWERHOUSE Arena (a popular location in the DUMBO section of Brooklyn for book signing events) at 37 Main Street, Brooklyn, NY, 11210.