Daily Update: Smackdown revived, Cena's effect on business, Rhodes to ROH

The WWE NEW Era: Week 1 – Smackdown beats Raw

As discussed yesterday, after all was said and done in regards to the WWE draft, Smackdown has in fact been positioned as the number two show… for now. However, for the time being, Smackdown has indeed bested Raw in terms of ratings for at least week one. Smackdown did a 2.3 rating up from a 2.0 the previous week, but more importantly, the actual number of viewers was 3.17 million, which is slightly ahead of what Raw did the night prior with 3.13 million viewers. It’s a good sign for Smackdown, but as always, the rating on night one isn’t as important as it will be in a month. 

[Dan Velten]


Cody Rhodes teases Ring of Honor debut 
WWE Raw and SmackDown live rosters
Brock Lesnar fails second, in-competition drug test 
ROH Philadelphia, PA, TV taping results: Jay Lethal vs. Colt Cabana 
NJPW G1 Climax 26: What wrestler & match are we excited to see?

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Figure Four Weekly

READ IT HERE: Figure Four Weekly 7/18/2016: Does WWE policy apply to Brock Lesnar? – The latest big pro wrestling/mixed martial arts hybrid story involving Brock Lesnar saw him flagged by the United States Anti-Doping Association (USADA) for a potential anti-doping violation in an out of competition test collected on June 28. The results came in on the evening of July 14th and the UFC was notified the following day.

Subscribers click here to continue reading.

Wrestling Observer Newsletter

READ IT HERE: July 18, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: UFC sold for 4 billion dollars, UFC 200 review, notes on the WWE draft, more – Details on the sale of UFC for 4 billion dollars, recap of UFC 200, notes on the WWE draft, plus tons more.

The most detailed look at how the UFC got sold and the business ramifications of the sale is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Also inside, a look at the Brock Lesnar deal, where things stand going forward with Lesnar, a lot of updated thoughts on the WWE draft, the future of John Cena and notes on how that affects WWE business, Battle of Los Angeles, and coverage of all the UFC shows.  

This issue contains a copy of the letter that all the UFC fighters were sent by management and what they were told about the sale.  

An in depth look at how the original partners came together and the 2001 sale of the UFC to Dana White & The Fertittas, how much money White and the Fertittas probably got in the sale, plus a lot of things about the sale that haven’t gone public yet. There’s also a look at White’s new contract with the company, and the company’s business numbers for 2015.  

Inside, examine how things are likely to change, where Lorenzo Fertitta is likely to go, the new owners and where their money came from, other bidders, and how the deal almost fell through. Plus, take a look at Lorenzo Fertitta & Dana White’s role in the company going forward, how the source of the money to buy the company changed in recent weeks, why they were able to get $4 billion and what rivalry outside sports is key in them increasing revenue.  

Finally, this issue considers where Lesnar stands coming off his win over Mark Hunt, how the deal with Lesnar was first made, a look at a clause in every WWE contract and what it specifically says about MMA, and a look at why C.M. Punk was able to get out of the clause. Plus, take a look at future MMA prospects with Lesnar, how much money he really got from the show, how he changed a lot of the criticism of his career, and why he’s more valuable now than before.  

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Wrestling Observer Newsletter BACK ISSUE

READ IT HERE: June 14, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Sable sues WWF for $140M, Martha Hart upset with WWE  – Pro wrestling’s latest spill into the national headlines came with Rena Mero’s $140 million lawsuit filed on 6/3 against Titan Sports and her subsequent quitting of the company.


Will John Cena being off house shows hurt WWE? Brandon Thurston has two very interesting articles on the topic. The first article concludes that his departure from house shows will not significantly effect profit. The next article is a market-to-market analysis that shows John Cena made an average positive difference of 27% to house shows in the U.S. and Canada from 2011 through June 2016. Counter-intuitively, though, he estimated the annual cost to WWE even if he’s absent from all house shows would be about $3.5 million in live event revenue, and an additional estimated $658,300 in venue merchandise, for a total of $4.2 million. That’s just 0.6% of WWE’s 2015 overall revenue ($658.8 million). The full spreadsheet with all the relevant data is here. House show attendance data was sourced from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter and Cagematch.net. (thanks to Brandon Thurston)

WWE/Pro Wrestling

Veteran referee James Beard talks about the WWE concussion lawsuit in news story from a TV station in Tyler, TX.
It’s official. Cody Rhodes has signed to compete at ROH’s Final Battle PPV, Friday December 2. ROH Matchmaker Nigel McGuinness confirmed the signing of Rhodes for what promises to be the biggest event of 2016 in Ring of Honor. Tickets are already on sale for Ringside members, and will be for sale to the public this Friday, July 22 at 10 am.
Here is an article about TJ Perkins and his most recent foray into the WWE’s Cruiserweight Classic tournament, and why it was the correct choice for his career.
A little late, but in this article, the Miz explains why he should be the number one overall draft pick. Well, he wasn’t. In fact, Becky Lynch was picked before the IC champion, the Miz.


In the latest issue of Mitchell Hamline’s Cybaris journal (an Intellectual Property Law Review) there’s an article: “What’s in a Name, Brother—Profit or Publicity: An Analysis of Trade marking Ring Names in Professional Wrestling”. (thanks to Chris Harrington)
The latest Creative Control podcast features probably their most decorated guest yet, as they have on a UFC Hall Of Famer, UFC Triple Crown Champion, and former two-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion, Dan Severn.
Former WWE wrestler Nick Eugene Dinsmore takes on KDLT Meteorologist Brandon Spinner in a “Sharp Dressed Man” Tuxedo Match as a part of a Midwest All Pro Wrestling event. The event is Tonight, at 7 p.m. in the Sioux Falls Coliseum.
Ontario-based wrestlers Beautiful Beaa and Robb McCombs were married on Saturday. Congrats to the happy couple. Piledrivers all around!
August 27, LuchaTO teams up with Benelife Fitness to deliver a cultural experience like no other!
Experience a one-of-a-kind event featuring LIVE! high flying Lucha Libre action, delicious Latin American food, and the best Latino music. Scheduled for this event: WWE Cruiserweight Classic participant, Lince Dorado

The Summer Slam Events Calendar

TOMORROW – TNA IMPACT WRESTLING moving to Thursday nights on Fight Network
July 22 – NWX presents A New Beginning at the CWF Wrestling School on 20 Hartzel Rd in St. Catharines, ON
July 22 – Ignite Wrestling in Fort Pierce, FL at the National Guard Armory on a show with Lince Dorado, Mr. 450 Hammet, Lio Rush, Martin Stone, Los Ben Dejos, and more
July 22 – AIW runs on 7/22 in Cleveland, OH, with Ethan Page vs. Josh Prohibition vs. Josh Alexander, and Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae vs. Ethan Carter III & Karlee Perez
July 22 – The Lou Thesz Hall of Fame weekend show in Waterloo, IA, featuring Ricochet vs. Sami Callihan, Wes Brisco, B. Brian Blair, Jessika Havok, Tessa Blanchard, a steel cage match and more – This is the weekend Dave Meltzer will be honored.
July 22 – Bellator 159 from Mulvane, KS. Darrion Caldwell vs Joe Taimanglo. Melvin Guillard vs David “Caveman” Rickells
July 23 – ECWA returns to Woodbury Heights, NJ; ECWA Champion Sean Carr vs. Greek God Papadon in the Main Event
July 23 – Live Pro Wrestling, Glengarry Sports Palace, 170 McDonald Blvd. Alexandria, Ontario
July 23 – UFC on FOX from Chicago – Holly Holm vs Valentina Shevchenko.          
July 23 – Chikara Pro announced a doubleheader event at Toronto’s Franklin Horner Community Center.
July 23 – AAW  in Merrionnette Park, IL, with Sami Callihan vs. Pentagon Jr., Zack Sabre Jr., Marty Scurll; Tommaso Ciampa; Fenix; Johnny Gargano, and plenty more. Here’s what you missed on their last show.  
July 23 – Masters of Ring Entertainment in Wilmington, NC, as part of Pro Wrestling Fan Expo 3 will feature Jeff Jarrett vs. ECIII vs. James Storm, announced by Jarrett, at the Merritton Community Centre 7 Park Ave St. Catharines, ON
July 24 – WWE presents Battle Ground PPV at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. It will be the fourth event under the Battleground chronology, and the first event under the newly reinstated WWE brand extension.
July 24 – Crossfire Wrestling – Merritton Community Centre, 7 Park Avenue St. Catharines ON, for our 5 year Anniversary show “BRING THE HEAT V”
July 24 – PWEclipse – Summer Surrender, Oshawa, Ontario
July 24 – Fenix vs. Pentagon Jr. headlines for Lucha Libre New York at Club LaBoom in Queens, NY
July 29, 30, 31 – ECCW returns to the Agrifair 2016 Abbortsford, BC with three shows per day. Friday and Saturday shows start at 12:00PM – 3:00PM – 8:00PM. Saturday July 30 will feature “The Mouth of the South” Jimmy Hart. Sunday’s shows start at 11:00AM – 2PM and 5PM
July 30 – UFC 201 – LAWLER VS. WOODLEY from Atlanta, GA
July 30 – WSOF 32: Moraes vs. Hill 2 – Live on NBCSN from Everett, Washington. Also featuring Ben “Phoenix Jones” Fodor vs Caros Fodor in a brother vs brother fight
July 30 – Smash Wrestling – Oshawa Music Hall, 39 King St E, Oshawa, Ontario L1H 1B2
July 31 – BATTLEWAR 36; Les Foufounes Électriques, 87 Sainte-Catherine Street East, Montreal, QC
Aug 4-6 –  !BANG! TV – Professional Wrestling Spectacular, 3 charity shows in 3 days. – More information.
Aug 5 – NEF Presents Dana White: Looking for a Fight. More info here.
August 6 – Absolute Intense Wrestling Girls Night Out in Cleveland at Our Lady of Mt Carmel with Crazy Mary Dobson, Allysin “Sienna” Kay, Veda Scott, Shayna Baszler, Annie Social, Kelly Klein, Heidi Lovelace, Lufisto, Nicole Savoy and more.
Aug 12 – Live Professional Wrestling, downtown Toronto at the Tranzac! 292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto, ON M5S 2M7, Canada – All proceeds go to the Autism Ontario group.
Aug 12 – BIG WEST WRESTLING presents BOWLING, BODYSLAMS & BBQ, Lake City Bowling & Billiards: Kelowna, BC
Aug 12 – Zack Sabre Jr. vs.. Jeff Cobb has been added to the Revolution Pro show in London at York Hall in Bethnal Green.
Aug 13 – World Women’s Wrestling’s 2016 IRON MAIDEN Championship at the Americal Civic Center in Wakefield, MA
Aug 13 – wXw NOW – The End (Tommy End’s final show in Germany, booked by The Sumerian Death Squad)
Aug 13 – NWA Mid South Wrestling in Dyresburg, TN at the Herb Welch Wrestle Plex headlined by Matt Riviera vs. Jeremy Moore.
Aug 19 – Superkick’d Pro Wrestling Rock Show – Blazed The Great Hall, 1087 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H3
Aug 19 – The Hardys, Drew Galloway, Ethan Carter III and Mickie James appear for House of Glory Wrestling in Jamaica, NY.  That’s the Friday before SummerSlam.
Aug 20 – UFC 202 – DIAZ VS MCGREGOR 2, from Las Vegas, NV
Aug 21 – WWE Presents THE SummerSlam PPV event at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. It will be the twenty-ninth event under the SummerSlam chronology and the second consecutive SummerSlam to be hosted in the Barclays Center.
Aug 21 – Chavo Guerrero Jr. will appear for Smash Wrestling on in Pickering, Ontario at Super Showdown lV.
Aug 21 – Octagon & Tinieblas Jr. vs. Fuerza Guerrera & Pirata Morgan headlines in Houston at the Arena Theater.  
Aug 26 – Absolute Intense Wrestling – Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, 1355 W. 70th St. Cleveland, OH
Aug 26 – CONFLICT Wrestling: “Black or White”
Aug 26 – Bellator 160 from the Pond in Anaheim and live on Spike TV. Benson Henderson vs Patricio Pitbull Freire
Aug 27 – UFC FIGHT NIGHT – TBA VS TBD from Vancouver, BC. I’m already pumped.
Aug 28 – Destiny wrestling proudly presents “SUMMER HEAT”.

Signing schedule for the San Diego Comic Con

Wednesday Konnan from 7-9 p.m. 
Thursday Thunder Rosa aka Kobra Moon 11 a.m to 1 p.m.
Thursday Lisa Varon aka Victoria/Tara 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Thursday Jeff Cobb aka Matanza Cueto 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Thursday Rey Horus aka Dragon Azteca Jr. 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Friday Pentagon Jr. 10 a.m. to Noon
Friday Fenix 10 a.m. to Noon
Friday Joey Ryan & Laura James 12:15 p.m. to 2 p.m.
Friday Famous B 2:15 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday Brian Cage 10 a.m. to Noon
Saturday Melissa Santos 10 a,.m. to Noon
Saturday Johnny Mundo 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Saturday Taya 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Saturday Frankie Kazarian 3:15 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday Christopher Daniels 3:15 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday Lisa Varon 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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