The Latest from the F4W Staff
WWE Q1 financials: Network subscribers up from last year
WWE NXT results: Women’s battle royal; Itami returns to the ring
UFC announces a fourth women’s division
SmackDown again posts lowest ratings of 2017
NJPW reveals 2017 Best of the Super Juniors lineup
WOR: Cauliflower Alley, Smackdown, ratings, New Japan, tons more! 5/4
WOL: FSM’s Will Cooling on WWE, the UK scene and Anthony Joshua 5/3
F4D: Live from Vegas with Smackdown, Impact, Geek of the Week and more! 5/3
B&V&C: Retro Raw and Nitro from 19 years ago this week! 5/2
FIGURE FOUR WEEKLY: 5/1/2017: The rise of Braun Strowman
It was somewhat fitting that Braun Strowman’s win against Roman Reigns in the main event of Payback came after the conclusion of a dreadful House of Horrors match between Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton. At the very least, it was a reminder of how far Strowman has come since splitting from the Wyatt Family last July. He has seamlessly transitioned out of the group and gradually become the most compelling character on Raw in less than a year.
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WRESTLING OBSERVER NEWSLETTER: May 1, 2017: Vince McMahon movie in development, Mauro Ranallo/WWE situation, more
The idea of a Vince McMahon movie is actually going to happen and we’ve got some early details on it as the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter; an update on the situation involving WWE and Mauro Ranallo, a look at the next two WWE PPV shows, a guy who in ten months went from an opening round loser on Ultimate Fighter to a viable title contender, a look at the Hall of Fame career of Maurice Smith and the latest from PWG.
Find out who was behind the McMahon movie and how that has changed, as well as the Ranallo situation, what happened and the repercussions and the overall situation, and look at the lineups for the next two WWE PPV shows and the main angles.
Coverage of the weekend UFC show inside.
Check out Dwayne Johnson movie news, new characters being pushed in WWE and why, interesting business dichotomy involving the Indian market, WWE looking for new stars from India, Mick Foley surgery news, A.J. Styles talks his attempting to wrestle Shawn Michaels, Shaquille O’Neal talks why his match with Big Show never happened, Injury updates, wedding update with Dean Ambrose and Renee Young, WWE wrestler leaves for Japan, new gimmicks to existing wrestlers, Shane McMahon and UFC story, WWE with a Japanese icon.
There is more on WWE releases, WWE booking, WWE stock market value, most watched shows on WWE Network, and highlights of all the major TV shows and of the arena matches over the past week.
Look at the career of Maurice Smith, what makes it noteworthy, how he molded MMA, kickboxing and pro wrestling into a long career and one of the most landmark matches in UFC history as well as twice headlining stadium shows as a pro wrestler and holding a kickboxing world title for nearly a decade.
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ORDERING INFO: Order the print Wrestling Observer right now and get it delivered via mail, by sending your name, address, Visa or Master Card number and an expiration date to Dave Meltzer, or by using PayPal directing funds to Dave@WrestlingObserver.com.
Rates in the United States are $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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.)
If you are a new subscriber ordering 24 or more issues, you can choose one free classic issue, or two free classic issues with a 40-issue subscription.
WON BACK ISSUE: April 10, 2000: Wrestlemania 16 reviewed, NBC buys into the XFL, more
Wrestlemania XVI, the first Wrestlemania that seemed to take on almost Super Bowl or Final Four level proportions as an American institution, turned out like many Super Bowls, with a flat crowd, a been there, done that main event finish ending a disappointing match, and with the exception of a ladder match, which was an amazing stunt show, it was probably not as good as an average episode of Raw. The show ended with Hunter Hearst Helmsley retaining the title when Vince McMahon, instead of Mick Foley, was the one to make the heel turn screwing The Rock at the end.
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THURSDAY NEWS UPDATE
Asuka defending her NXT Women’s Championship against Ember Moon, Ruby Riot, and Nikki Cross in a fatal four-way is the first match officially announced for NXT TakeOver: Chicago. The show will take place on May 20th.
The second part of the “Who is Roderick Strong?” video series aired on NXT TV last night. It focused on Strong’s road to WWE, his relationship with Marina Shafir, and the birth of their son.
Charlotte Flair posted a statement on Twitter about nude photos of her that have been leaked online: “Private photos of mine were stolen and shared publicly without my consent. These images must be removed from the Internet immediately.”
Chris Jericho wrote a message on Instagram saying that he’ll be seeing WWE fans again after his tour with Fozzy.
While in the United Arab Emirates, Stephanie McMahon spoke to The National about WWE’s presence in Dubai, the women’s division, and getting to work with Kurt Angle again. She said about Angle, “I can’t wait to work with Kurt. Kurt is so entertaining. He is really funny. I think it is going to be so much and hopefully having that interaction and this time the situation is a little bit different as I am the boss.”
WWE.com has an interview with NXT wrestler and former Marine Lacey Evans after her appearance in last night’s battle royal.
Mark Henry showed up at last night’s San Antonio Spurs vs. Houston Rockets playoff game and took part in a segment where he laid out the Rockets’ mascot with a steel chair.
Former WWE writer Kevin Eck wrote about five storylines that he pitched that were rejected while he was with the company.
Dave Bautista posted a picture with Shane McMahon at a screening of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in New York City.
The Dallas Observer has a story on Sting living in the area.
WWE.com reimagined Star Wars characters as pro wrestlers for Star Wars Day.
Aleister Black picked eight bands to watch at Download Festival this summer, which NXT will also be part of again.
Tonight’s episode of Impact has Eddie Edwards vs. Matt Sydal, Christina Von Eerie vs. Sienna for the Global Force Wrestling Women’s Championship, and it’s advertised that EC3 will be in action.
Sean Waltman discussed his arrest in detail on the latest episode of his AfterBuzz TV show, again denying that he had relapsed and offering an explanation for the incident.
In an interview with Memorabilia Guy, Jack Swagger said that his wrestling name outside of WWE will be “Formerly Known as Jack Swagger.”
Matt Riddle will face Tyler Bate at PROGRESS Wrestling’s show in Manchester on May 14th. The main event is Pete Dunne defending the PROGRESS title against Mark Haskins and Mark Andrews in a triple threat match.
Jimmy Havoc is the sixth confirmed entrant for PROGRESS’ Super Strong Style 16 tournament.
EVOLVE announced Lio Rush vs. Austin Theory for their show in the Chicago area on May 20th and Keith Lee vs. Fred Yehi for their show in the Detroit area the next day.
Ethan Page cut a promo about his EVOLVE title match against Zack Sabre Jr. on the 20th.
This week’s episode of Killing the Town with Lance Storm and Cyrus was a tribute to the life of Chris Candito on the 12th anniversary of his passing. Jim Cornette, Tom Prichard, Joey Styles, Tommy Dreamer, and Christopher Daniels were guests on the show.
Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko have reportedly come to terms to face each other in a women’s bantamweight title fight at UFC 213 on July 8th.
The UFC officially confirmed Robbie Lawler vs. Cowboy Cerrone and Anthony Pettis vs. Jim Miller for UFC 213. Pettis will return to lightweight for that fight.
After Nate Diaz’s appearance on the MMA Hour yesterday, Dana White told TMZ that the UFC offers the Diaz brothers fights all of the time and said that he doesn’t know if they’ll ever fight again because they keep turning them down.
Tony Ferguson went off on Nate Diaz in an interview with Submission Radio.
The next season of The Ultimate Fighter being built around the introduction of the women’s flyweight division isn’t yet official despite the UFC putting out a press release about it. Dana White told Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports that the release being sent out was an error and that things aren’t confirmed yet.
Ariel Helwani tweeted that the UFC will be holding a press conference in Dallas next Friday with all of the big names that will be featured on cards this summer.
ESPN has a story on Las Vegas sportsbooks already taking bets on the potential Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather boxing match.
Today in Professional Wrestling History (5/4): WWE Extreme Rules 2014
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