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News notes: Nikki Bella gets engaged, 205 Live matches, more


WWE --

- Nikki Bella revealed today that she and her boyfriend Artem Chigvintsev got engaged back in November: “Excited for 2020 and the next decade with you @theartemc I said yes in France in November! We have been trying to keep it a secret but really wanted to share our excitement for the New Year!”

- Giant Bomb’s Dan Ryckert announced that he’s leaving his position with them to become a producer for WWE’s podcasts: “Throughout my life, my two biggest passions have always been video games and wrestling. I was so fortunate to make a living working in one of those industries, and now it's time to try the other. Starting Monday, I'll be producing podcasts both in-house and on the road for WWE. So if you want to follow my work (albeit in a behind the scenes role this time), subscribe to After the Bell and The New Day: Feel the Power. Can't wait to get to Stamford and get started!”

- PWInsider reported that John Morrison is in Memphis, Tennessee today. SmackDown is taking place at the city’s FedExForum tonight.

- NXT Cruiserweight Champion Angel Garza vs. Tony Nese in a non-title match and Danny Burch vs. Ariya Daivari are set for tonight’s 205 Live.

- WWE streamed their top 10 matches of 2019 on YouTube.

- WWE’s YouTube channel also uploaded Edge vs. Rey Mysterio from Royal Rumble 2008.

- NXT’s Adam Cole, Roderick Strong, and Dominik Dijakovic will be available for meet and greets at EVOLVE 143 in Ybor City, Florida on January 17, while Cole, Strong, Kyle O'Reilly, Rhea Ripley, Johnny Gargano, Candice LeRae, Dijakovic, and Cameron Grimes are doing meet and greets at EVOLVE 144 in Orlando the next night.

- EVOLVE announced their year-end awards for 2019: 

  • Wrestler of the Year: Austin Theory
  • Tag Team of the Year: AR Fox & Leon Ruff
  • Breakout Star of the Year: Shotzi Blackheart
  • Match of the Year: WALTER vs. JD Drake from EVOLVE 135
  • Stipulation Match of the Year: Shotzi Blackheart vs. Brandi Lauren from EVOLVE 134
  • Show of the Year: EVOLVE 131 (10th anniversary event)
  • Moment of the Year: Josh Briggs wins the EVOLVE Championship at EVOLVE 139
  • "Did I Just See That?!?!?" Award: Velveteen Dream vs. Orange Cassidy at EVOLVE 123
  • Rivalry of the Year: Austin Theory vs. Undisputed Era
  • EVOLVE 2019 MVP: AR Fox


- NJPW’s English-language website has interviews with Kazuchika Okada and Tetsuya Naito ahead of Wrestle Kingdom 14.

- AEW World Champion Chris Jericho spoke to Sports Illustrated about his status with NJPW and who he’d like to wrestle if he appears for them again: “I came to work with Omega, Naito, Okada, and Tanahashi. Will I come back after the Tana match? I don’t know. I’d love to work with Ospreay and Ibushi. It might be mission accomplished after this, it might not, but it’s really cool to go back as a main event heavyweight after being a junior heavyweight.”

- AEW sent out a tweet congratulating Jushin Thunder Liger on his legendary career.

- PWG’s Twitter account wrote about Liger: “The greatest junior heavyweight wrestler of all time. He had a huge influence on my wrestling career, and it was truly an honor to have him wrestle for PWG. Thank you Jushin 'Thunder’ Liger!"

- ROH's YouTube channel uploaded Liger vs. Bryan Danielson from 2004.

ROH --

- ROH announced that Shane Taylor will address his future at their Saturday Night at Center Stage show in Atlanta on January 11.

- Jay Lethal, Jonathan Gresham, Jeff Cobb & Dan Maff vs. Silas Young, Josh Woods, Beer City Bruiser & Brawler Milonas has been added to ROH Honor Reigns Supreme in Concord, North Carolina on January 12.

- ROH ambassador Cary Silkin is launching a podcast with Ian Riccaboni called “Last Stop Penn Station.” Silkin wrote: “We talk about my stories hustling tickets on the character filled streets of NYC in the 80s my lifelong love affair with Wrestling,rock n roll and so much more!!”

Other --

- For the first time in four years, Ariane Andrew (formerly known as Cameron in WWE) is returning to the ring. She’ll be in action at Effy’s Big Gay Brunch at The Cuban Club in Tampa on Saturday, April 4. The show is part of GCW’s The Collective during WrestleMania week.