Wrestling Observwer News and Notes 04/12/2012
--The 1,000th episode of Raw will air on 7/23 from the Savvis Center in St. Louis and will be a three-hour live show.
Thursday's News, Notes & Links
--Kurt Angle will not be competing in the Olympic trials. I know that shocks everyone. He claimed a hamstring injury and an injured MCL. But he'll be fine to do a cage match with Jeff Hardy on Sunday. You can read his statement on twitter if you want your entertainment out of all this.
--Here is the Fuel schedule for the weekend.
Weigh-ins for Saturday's show in Stockholm are 10 a.m. Eastern tomorrow. That's 7 a.m. on the West Coast.
Coverage on Saturday starts at 2 p.m. Eastern with a pre-fight show. The regular show will be 3-6 p.m. and the post-fight show is from 6-7 p.m.
--Jay Glazer, Mark Munoz and Chael Sonnen will be doing the pre and post-fight shows. Mike Goldberg and Kenny Florian will be announcing the show. Karyn Bryant will be doing interviews on the show.
--Because there is no first-run Smackdown tomorrow (they are replaying Tuesday's show on Syfy), we won't be doing Observer radio on Friday. We will do a show Saturday covering the UFC show and Sunday covering TNA Lockdown.
--An angle was shot last night at the Revolver Golden God awards. Chris Jericho hosted the show. C.M. Punk won the award for Most Metal Athlete. Jericho then smashed the award. This will likely air on TV on Monday.
--A new organization called the IMMAF (International Mixed Martial Arts Federation) was announced earlier today which is looking to be a worldwide sanctioning body for amateur MMA events trying to have unified rules, regulations and safety measures. UFC announced its support of the IMMAF as well. It will be a Sweden-based nonprofit organization.
--Tito Ortiz in doing media in Sweden noted that he is retiring after the 7/7 fight with Forrest Griffin, and talked about hoping to get a UFC office job after he retires, or go to the WWE. At 37, with previous neck surgeries and back surgeries, I really don't see WWE being in his future. He does have a look and real charisma, but they rarely sign newcomers at that age, and I can't see them doing it with all of Ortiz's injuries, plus I can't see Ortiz's body being able to hold up to a full-time WWE schedule. I do believe ten years ago he could have done it and possibly been successful at it.
--A story on Sheamus returning to Ireland as a star is at http://www.independent.ie/lifestyle/ He noted that he used to work as security at wrestling events as well as an IT worker in Dublin and at 13 was a member of the Palestrina Choir. He studied computers at the National College of Ireland while working as a bodyguard at a bordello.
--Dixie Carter spoke with us earlier today saying there would be a lot of changes in the next few weeks as far as the presentation of the shows after her meetings yesterday with Spike TV. She wasn't specific, only saying it would play out soon and would include format changes and new elements to the show. She said the company is making a very conscious decision to focus now on young talent.
--Carter also noted that Bruce Prichard is back at work and has dropped 31 pounds. She noted it was a real scare but if he was lucky, it was that he was already in the hospital (for heart surgery) when he suffered the heart attack, as if he wasn't, things could have been a lot worse.
--GQ Magazine ran an interview with Daniel Bryan. He said the Monday after Mania was unreal. He said it was a real special moment for him. He said he thought it was the backlash because of how short his match at Mania was. He said he was also angry, saying he wanted to steal the show and he believes his wrestling is as good as anyone out there and was looking forward to having a great match, but wasn't allowed to. When asked about the conversation when he was told it was a one move match, he said "There wasn't much of a conversation. This is my job, you know? You have to do something, and even if you don't like it, that's what you do. but you go out there and do the best you can. I went out there and did the best entrance I could possibly do. You just do your best. that's all anybody can do."
--He said he'd like his wrestling character to be allowed to be more aggressive now. He mentioned C.M. Punk never talked with him before doing his "Best in the World" gimmick but said it didn't bother him at all, noting Chris Jericho had already done something similar.
--ROH Ringside Members on Saturday and Sunday will be able to see the entire two-day shows from WrestleMania weekend including the Davey Richards vs. Michael Elgin match. Members are also getting a special discount on all DVDs and merchandise for the next few days.
--The theme for the Jon Jones vs. Rashad Evans match is "Good Friends, Better Enemies."
--The stuff between the two on UFC Insiders that aired on Tuesday was taped two weeks ago.
--This is awesome department. On Smackdown every week, as Damien Sandow complains about twitter and social media as the ruination of society, WWE underneath showed his twitter handle. (thanks to Greg Marra)
--There is an attempt to get Bret Hart nominated for Canada's Walk of Fame at http://blogs.thescore.com/aftermath/2012/04/11/bret-hart-for-canadas-walk-of-fame/
--A story on the band "Our Lady Peace," a Canadian band, noted that they have retired the theme song they wrote and performed for Chris Benoit completely. They will never perform it, nor use it in any new release because of the bad memories it conjures up for people. Story is at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jon-chattman/asides-with-jon-chattman-_13_b_1418159.html
--The UFC has announced at their next Fan Expo another Grapplers Quest tournament on 7/6 and 7/7 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. The tournament is limited to 1,500 people with registration being $99. That includes two days of full access to the Fan Expo, a T-shirt by tapout, $20 off at the door pricing and free entry in a Judo Throwdown tournament. For more info go to http://on.ufc.com/lyVYg6 Admission to the Friday session for fans is $40, Saturday is $45 while you can get tickets for both days for $60.
Should Alistair Overeem be licensed in Nevada?
No, not only did he fail the test, but by terms of his temporary license, he should have his last win over rock Lesnar overturned 56.3%
No, he failed the test 35.6%
Yes, even though he tested positive, there is a legal technicality he can slide by in 6.3%
Yes, I belive his testosterone use was due to legitimate medical need 1.9%
What percentage of UFC fighters do you believe are using PEDs?
Under 20% 2.9%
80% or more 16.9%
No way of knowing 16.1%
What do you attribute Monday's Raw rating to?
Wrestling is cold and the way it's portrayed, no individual can help turn it around 39.6%
While wrestling fans will watch UFC shows to see Lesnar, UFC fans won't watch WWE to see Lesnar 18.2%
The environment with Marella and the Three Stooges makes it impossible for a Lesnar type to make a difference 14.3%
When Lesnar was put with Laurinaitis, it made him just another part of the show 14.0%
He was never going to help ratings, but will help PPVs 4.3%
Not enough people knew Lesnar was with WWE, he will help ratings down the line 3.1%
Lesnar never would have been a difference maker at any time in pro wrestling 2.3%
The right individual can make a difference, but Lesnar at this time is not that individual 2.2%
The very existence of UFC in prominence kills pro wrestling being anything but outlandish entertainment, thus it has to be a variety show where individuals don't make that much of a difference 1.9%
Poll on Smackdown
23.0% of those responding didn't see the show
--Ben Askren wrote on twitter to Ariel Helwani: "I invite you to do in a cage with me. When you do that, I will do your show. Otherwise, kiss my ass." Okay, you can put the audience in a sleeper for five rounds, you can say Canadian fans aren't good fans, you can tell people if they don't want to see ground work they can watch boxing (actually I quite enjoyed that line), but you don't tell Ariel Helwani to kiss your ass just because he said you were a boring fighter.
--Sean Oliver of Kayfabe Commentaries said that his company has not been claiming Jim Cornette would be involved in the 6/1 interview with Vince Russo. He said that any fan, worker, announcer or manager can submit questions to Russo, they did not advertise Cornette. Cornette yesterday claimed they were representing that he would be asking questions, and he said people should boycott it.
--Paul Lazenby talks Brock Lesnar and Alistair Overeem at http://paullazenby.com/PL/?p=576 He also talked with Nick Lembo about what the situation would be if Overeem was not licensed in Nevada as it pertains to fighting in New Jersey at http://paullazenby.com/PL/?p=553
--Vendetta Pro Wrestling and Traditional Championship Wrestling in conjunction with the Cauliflower Alley Club have a show on 4/16 at the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Tickets are only $5, or free if you are a member of the Cauliflower Alley Club. Among those wrestling on the show are Zach Gowen, Disco Inferno, Matt Cross, Sean Casey, A.J. Kirsch, Sinn Bodhi, Jesse Neal, Shannon Ballard plus appearances by Nigel McGuinness, Cheerleader Melissa, Michelle Star, Stacy Carter, Martin Casaus (Tough Enough), Paul Vachon, Nick Bockwinkel and Harley Race.
--Scott Hall was back last night at the Team Vision Dojo in Orlando with Larry Zbyszko and Chasyn Race leading the training class that includes Tim Zbyszko and Cody Hall.
--Raphael Davis, 35, of Lomita, CA, an MMA fighter, was arrested on Tuesday with falsifying a workers compensation claim and charged with four counts of insurance fraud. Prosecutors claim Davis filed claims that injuries prevented him from working at his job from 2008-2001, but during that period he was regularly competing in MMA fights. He was held on $35,000 bond. Davis had fought for Bellator and the IFL and was an All-American collegiate wrestler.
--Not sure this is news but Yokozuna won't be in the WWE 13 video game at http://captainstarball.com/news/no-plans-for-yokozuna-wwe-13 I never heard any talk at all that he would be. WWE 13 is going to have a nostalgia deal but the era involved isn't a period Yokozuna was part of the company. (thanks to Brian Cooper)
--A puzzle on last night's Wheel of Fortune was "DWAYNE THE ROCK JOHNSON" (thanks to Brian Henke)
--CZW on 4/14 on iPPV at HybridEnt.TV from Voorhees, NJ at 7:30 p.m. at Flyers Skate Zone with the annual Best of the Best tournament. The first round matches are MK McKinnan vs. Trent 7 vs. Sami Callihan vs. Drake Younger, Chuck Taylor vs. Johnny Gargano vs. Samuray del Sol, AR Fox vs. Lince Dorado vs. ACH and Alex Colon vs. Willie Mack vs. ?
--The New England Pro Wrestling Academy is doing a one-day fantasy camp on 5/19 for $79. The four-hour camp will teach the basics of pro wrestling, interviews and more. One person who impresses the trainers the most will get a $300 training program and others who do well will also have a shot at training at a discounted price. You have to be at least 15, but if under 18, need parents permission. For more info you can write to email@example.com or call 978-852-8534
--Steeltown Pro Wrestling on 4/26 in Arborg, Manitoba at the Rec Center, 4/27 in Winnipeg at L.A. Roadhouse (only 18 and above admitted), 8/28 in Selkirk, Manitoba at the Friendship Center and 8/29 in Winnipeg at the Royal Canadian Legion.
--Colt Cabana talks about his documentary and not working for a major company at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0mF8k92HNM Really sad that today, legitimately, NOAH probably really isn't a major company.
--Tito Santana talks about Tom Zenk, and how Scott Coker stole his Strikeforce name at http://www.youtube.com/watcdh?v=gxnnFe_tp34
--Dennis Rodman talks the state of modern pro wrestling with Greg Valentine and Ed Leslie at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3YTJDxH2wM
--In Your Face Wrestling on 5/18 in Amsterdam, NY at America's Best Value Inn with Fit Finlay & Bobby Fish vs. Bobby Ocean & Drake Evans, Val Venis vs. Fronz Roddy and Lanny Poffo also appearing.
--Perry Saturn appears for 3XW Wrestling on 4/27 in Des Moines at Baratta's Forte Center and 4/28 in Grinnell, IA at the Eagles Club. Both shows are being taped for the 3XW local TV show that airs on KWKB on Saturday's at 6 p.m. and KCWI at 1:30 a.m. on Mondays.
--Contactmusic.com ran a story today on Lars Ulrich of Metallica not remembering Hulk Hogan being asked to join the band. It would be more of a story if they could round up John Belushi and ask him about all the coke he snorted with Hulk Hogan after WrestleMania II in Los Angeles, years after his death.
--Fidel Edwards, a fast bowler from the West Indies, did the "You can't see me" hand gesture in a cricket match on Sky Sports today. This led to a long discussion between the announcers about the popularity of pro wrestling in the Caribbean.
--Pro Wrestling Blitz on 4/28 in Joliet, IL with Matt Hardy vs. Barry Ryte on top. For info go to ProWrestlingBlitz.com