FRI. UPDATE: Weekend preview, Mulligan, Bellator on West Coast, TNA loses Australia TV, Rhodes, Odds for tonight

By dave@wrestlingobserver.com”>Dave Meltzer

We’re doing polls this weekend on tonight’s ROH and Bellator shows, , so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match for both shows to dave@wrestlingobserver.com”>dave@wrestlingobserver.com

We’re also looking for reports on tonight’s WWE show in Saginaw, MI (John Cena vs. Kane, Dolph Ziggler vs. King Barrett, New Day vs. Prime Time Players) and NXT in Jacksonville.

ROH Best in the World from Terminal 5 in New York at 8 p.m. Eastern on PPV

Mark Briscoe vs. Donovan Dijak

ACH & Matt Sydal vs. Adam Page & B.J. Whitmer

Dalton Castle vs. Silas Young

Caprice Coleman & Cedric Alexander vs. Hanson & Ray Rowe

Michael Elgin vs. Moose vs. Roderick Strong for the No. 1 contender position for the ROH title

A.J. Styles & Young Bucks vs. Adam Cole & Michael Bennett & Matt Taven

Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian vs. Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish for the ROH tag titles

Jay Briscoe vs. Jay Lethal for the ROH & ROH TV titles

BELLATOR from St. Louis tonight

Spike.com at 7:45 p.m. Eastern

Dan O’Connor (115.3) vs. Miles McDonald (115.3)

Eric Irvin (155.2) vs. Hugh Pulley (155.6)

Adam Cella (170.3) vs. Kyle Kurtz (171)

Garrett Gross (155.2) vs. Chris Heatherly (160)

Steve Mann (169.8) vs. Justin Guthrie (170.3)

Justin Lawrence (145.7) vs. Sean Wilson (145.8)

Rashard Lovelace (160.6) vs. Demagio Smith (164.8)

Kain Royer (184.6) vs. Enrique Watson (185.8)

A.J. Siscoe (135.5) vs. Garrett Mueller (135.6)

Spike TV at 9 p.m. Eastern

Michael Chandler (155.6) vs. Derek Campos (152.8)

Daniel Straus (144.4) vs. Henry Corrales (144.9)

Bobby Lashley (239) vs. Dan Charles (228)

Patricio Pitbull Freire (144.9) vs. Daniel Weichel (144.5) for the featherweight title

Kimbo Slice (232) vs. Ken Shamrock (204.4)

New Japan World Pro Wrestling is pre-empted tonight due to a music festival.  It returns this coming Friday with the 2014 G-1 Climax tournament.

We’re looking for reports Saturday on ROH’s TV tapings in New York (Samoa Joe & A.J. Styles vs. Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian, Young Bucks vs. Hanson & Rowe, Dalton Castle vs. Takaaki Watanabe), as well as the WWE house shows in Grand Rapids, MI (John Cena, Kane, Dolph Ziggler, King Barrett, New Day, Prime Time Players), Las Vegas (Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt, Big Show, Ryback), GFW in Jackson, MS and NXT in Lakeland, FL.

UFC from Berlin, Germany on Fightpass starting at Noon Eastern time Saturday

Taylor Lapilus (135) vs. Ulka Sasaki (135)

Piotr Hallman (154) vs. Magomed Mustafaev (155)

Scott Askham (185) vs. Antonio Dos Santos (185)

Nicklas Backstrom (146) vs. Noad Lahat (145)

Alan Omer (146) vs. Arnold Allen (144)

Mairbek Taisumov (155) vs. Alan Patrick (154)

Makwan Amirkhani (145) vs. Masio Fullen (145)

Nick Hein (155) vs. Lukasz Sajewski (155)

Peter Sobotta (171) vs. Steve Kennedy (170)

Dennis Siver (145) vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri (246)

Joanna Jedrzejczyk (114) vs. Jessica Penne (114) for the women’s strawweight title  

Sunday has WWE house shows in Kalamazoo, MI (John Cena, Kane, Dolph Ziggler, King Barrett, Prime Time Players, New Day) and Fort Wayne, IN (Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt, Big Show, Ryback), plus GFW in Bowling Green, KY.

Raw will be live on Monday in Indianapolis.  Brock Lesnar and John Cena will both be appearing on the show.

Smackdown and Main Event will be taped on Tuesday in Toledo.

Part one of the life and career of Dusty Rhodes is the feature in the new double issue of the Wrestling Observer.  We also look at WWE coming out of the Money in the Bank PPV and where things are going next, UFC in Mexico City and the Fabricio Werdum win over Cain Velasquez, more on how Mayweather & Pacquiao set PPV records and who was buying, the debut of Global Force Wrestling, Tough Enough and Verano de Escandalo are also covered.  

The Latest Wrestling Observer: June 22, 2015 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Part 1 of giant Dusty Rhodes obituary, GFW’s 1st shows

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The Wrestling Observer ranges weekly from 35,000 to 50,000 words covering pro wrestling and MMA internationally. Each issue has coverage and analysis of all the major news, plus every issue breaks major news stories before the Internet sties and has the most complete look at the pro wrestling and MMA business anywhere, plus history pieces available nowhere else.

The lead story covers the life and early career of Dusty Rhodes.  We have a lot of his career records.  We look at fact vs. fiction about his life before wrestling, and his road to the top in wrestling.  We have an overview of the key points of his career, as well as rundown his early territories and the build to his babyface persona.  We’ve got comments by many people most associated with him during his career.  We look at health issues, the outpouring of emotion, an eerie thing written by Rhodes just ten day before his death where exactly what he didn’t want to be most remembered for was brought up.  We look at the WWF character and the real reasons behind it. 

We also look at the rise and fall of Jim Crockett Promotions, the fall of the UWF, the last year of JCP, the TBS purchase, why Rhodes was fired from the company and how Rhodes ended up back in WCW.  We also look at why he retired from the ring, and the irony of what he said about who could and couldn’t book wrestling in the late 90s. 

We look at Rhodes mentions on spots shows this past week,  and his role in helping talent currently on the main roster. 

We look at the original Dusty Rhodes, his doing backyard wrestling, his college days going to matches, West Texas State football and how he got into pro wrestling.  We look at his early territorial work, his first pushes and his rise to prominence.

We look back at the Texas Outlaws tag team with Dick Murdoch, how they got publicity as the top tag team of 1970 with two world tag team titles at the same time, his first run in Florida and how big he was put over on the first TV show there, his brief time in Australia as world tag team champion and who his manager was.  We look at why the run was so short, his working for Bill Watts as a single star, the Crusher vs. Dusty Rhodes dynamic, the first taste of Rhodes as a babyface, who Dusty pitched to Eddie Graham about bringing in as his younger brother, why Dusty was able to be a much better promo in Florida than he could in the AWA, Rhodes vs. Lou Thesz, Rhodes vs. Jack Brisco, the American Dream turns babyface and the quest for the NWA title achieved.

We also look at the direction for Battleground and full coverage of Money in the Bank.

We also look at the stories behind UFC 188 and have full coverage of the show.

We also look at the upcoming Hogan lawsuit, more dates booked for Brock Lesnar, wrestler who was on Raw last year trying out for Tough Enough, Kevin Owens talks John Cena, Dwayne Johnson movie notes, more notes from the WWE camp, More NXT road dates, WWE stock notes and network predictions, Chyna at WWE headquarters, plus more notes on the last NXT tour and a rundown of the business and weekend house shows and an interesting note about that business.

We look at why bought Mayweather-Pacquiao and what can be learned from it.

We look at the debut of Global Force Wrestling and the problems facing the promotion, its first weekend of shows, second weekend and first television tapings.

We also look at AAA’s Verano de Escandalo show.

We look at the finalists for this season of Tough Enough, who they were and where they came from.

We also have an interesting look at DVR usage during pro wrestling shows and what it says about the various products.

The Observer is the world’s most detailed weekly pro wrestling publication, in its 32nd year of publication, and is read by the biggest names in the pro wrestling, industry, MMA industry, sports world and on Wall Street.
 
We also have our regular features such as the most complete look at ratings, plus results of the major house show events each week in pro wrestling and MMA, and complete inside rundowns of all the TV shows.
 
Also in this week’s issue:

–First notes on the annual Universal champion of champions tournament

–An interesting result where a major promotion’s top star put over an indie wrestler clean

–The Busca en un Idolo tournament

–What CMLL show drew the biggest crowd of the week and it was outside of Mexico City

–Update on Negro Casas concussion

–Latest from Arena Mexico

–Former world champion boxer marries pro wrestling star

–International stars coming to PWG

–Wrestle-One comes to the U.S. and Philadelphia show notes

–Dragon Gate changes several championships and a look at the next two big shows

–What U.S. stars are headed to Dragon Gate shortly

–Mitsuharu Misawa Tribute week in NOAH and what legends attended the big show

–GHC title match with neither wrestler being associated with the NOAH brand

–Update on Takeshi Morishima retirement match

–Notes on G-1 Climax ticket sales

–Update on Yoshitatsu

–Shinya Hashimoto Memorial show lineup

–A note on the Hashimoto legacy

–Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Roderick Strong rematch and how it came to be

–New Japan stars headed back to England and a look at their most recent England appearance

–New Japan stars headed back to ROH soon

–Current MMA world champion headlines IGF pro wrestling event

–King of DDT tournament notes

–Notes from the Championship Wrestling from Florida tribute event this past week

–Update on Blackjack Mulligan

–Details on Josh Alexander and his upcoming neck surgery

–Former WWE developmental talent on a CBS reality show

–Former wrestlers drop lawsuit against WWE

–How rules in New York affect indie groups and what rule in the books isn’t enforced at all

–What are the biggest expenses

–Major movie with Kevin Nash coming out soon

–New promotion debuts on national TV in July

–80s star writing an autobiography

–Notes on some stadium shows coming this summer

–Case reopened on the murder of an 80s pro wrestler

–Notes on Ultima Lucha

–Two wrestlers under consideration for season two of Lucha Underground

–Notes on the New York ROH shows and complete lineup

–Notes on ROH on Destination America

–TNA makes big play for former WWE major star

–Changes in the TNA PPV show

–Return of King of the Mountain

–Update on Jeff Hardy

–More on Slammiversary

–Problems with weight cutting

–Details behind drug test controversy with Jose Aldo in Brazil

–This week’s UFC show

–More on UFC deal with Titan Fighting Championships

–UFC debuts in Saskatchewan with action main event

–Future of Johny Hendricks

–Update on C.M. Punk and his UFC debut

–Lots of new UFC fights

–Kimbo/Shamrock notes

–Kimbo and Shamrock favor allowing PEDs in MMA

–Looking at the Bellator show

–Retirement of Peter Aerts and his legacy

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FRIDAY’S NEWS UPDATE

Bryan and I will be back late tonight talking Bellator and ROH, and also have a show on Saturday talking UFC.  You can send questions to both shows to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com
Blackjack Mulligan (Robert Windham) was back home as of yesterday after suffering a serious heart attack earlier in the week.  As of last night, he needed several issues to be taken care of but the fear was if they put him under given his condition, it was too risky.  A video with Mulligan was posted of the Championship Wrestling from Florida Archives Facebook page yesterday.
On tonight’s Bellator show, if you live on the West Coast, the show will air at 9 p.m. on the usual staggered feed, not live.  Spike is looking to maximize ratings.  
TNA has lost its TV in Australia.  The deal with the station Main Event expires on 6/30 so they will all Impact next week and Slamboree.
According to a report to Guilherme Cruz at MMAFighting.com, due to visa issues, there are a lot of changes to the 6/27 UFC show in Hollywood, FL.  There were issues at the U.S. visa office that held up issuance of visas.  The finals of TUF Brazil, scheduled for 6/27, have been moved to 8/1 in Rio de Janeiro.  Right now it’s down to Dileno Lopez against either Reginaldo Vieira or Bruno Rodrigues at bantamweight and Glaico Franca vs. either Nazareno Melagarie or Fernando Bruno at lightweight.  Also, the Erick Silva vs. Rick Story fight, scheduled as the co-main event, has been moved as well.  Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Nikita Krylov may also be off the show.  Two new fights have been added, with Alex Oliveira vs. Joe Merritt (debuting in UFC) and Leandro Silva vs. Lewis Gonzalez.  The main event of Lyoto Machida vs. Yoel Romero is basically a one-match show.
Robbie E vs. Jessie Godderz has been added to the Slamboree PPV on 6/28.
The WWE Network will be airing Tough Talk (Sawyer, didn’t you register that name?) every Tuesday at 9 p.m., right after each episode of Tough Enough.  The 30 minute show will feature The Miz interviewing the eliminated competitors and the judges and coaches.
ESPN anchors talk Dusty Rhodes
Scott Coker talks Bellator and its future
For Twitter tweets as of this writing for today, the top MMA or pro wrestling ones were:

Jessica Penne 3,465

Bellator 3,249

Dana White 1,179

NXT Jacksonville 157

Google searches for today:

UFC is the No. 2 searched for item today

Bellator is No. 9

Odds for tonight

Ken Shamrock +245

Kimbo Slice -265

Daniel Weichel +255

Patricio Pitbull Freire -280

Bobby Lashley -600

Dan Charles +450

Daniel Straus -430

Henry Corrales +380

Derek Campos +485

Michael Chandler -575

For tomorrow

Jessica Penne +550

Joanna Jedrzejczyk -800

Denis Siver -175

Tatsuya Kawajiri +150

Former Pride star Sergei Kharitonov vs. Kenny Garner will headline the M-1 Challenge show on 7/3 in Astana, Kazakhstan.  Kharitonov beat Garner on 11/25 in a show in Beijing, China and this is the rematch.  The show is available on iPPV at www.M1Global.tv
Bibiano Fernandes defends his One bantamweight Championship against Toni Tauru of Finland on 7/18 in Yangno, Myanmar at Thuwunna Stadium.  Fernandes is unbeaten since he signed with One in 2012, while Tauru is the Cage Warrior champion in that division with a ten fight winning streak.
Raymond Rowe of ROH will be working for Chilanga Mask on 7/19 in Coacalco, Mexico.
David Bautista, The Bella Twins and Eva Marie are scheduled for today at 3 p.m. at the Sacramento Comic Con and Eva Marie will also be there tomorrow at 10 a.m. (thanks to Neil Hager)
The Fight Network will be airing tomorrow’s UFC from 3-5 p.m. Eastern.  In the U.S.,this show is a Fight Pass Exclusive.  They will air a pregame show at 2 p.m. and replays tomorrow at 9 p.m. and Sunday at 6 p.m.  The Fight Network also airs the legendary Ronda Rousey vs. Liz Carmouche UFC 157 show on Sunday at 9 p.m.
The Young Bucks appear at the Headlocked Booth on 7/9 at the San Diego Comic Con from Noon to 4 p.m.
Samantha Sage, who was the last person cut from Tough Enough, is going to be auditioned for a spot on the Diva Search that starts filming in the fall.
Johnny Gargano is still under contract to WWN, so his appearing on the NXT tapings in a dark match is part of a working agreement between the companies.  He hasn’t been signed by WWE.
Evolve has an iPPV on 7/11 at 7 p.m. from Orlando’s Barnett Park Gym

Drew Galloway vs. Trent Baretta for the Evolve title

Chris Hero vs. Timothy Thatcher

Davey Richards vs. Biff Busick

TJ Perkins vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

Anthony Nese vs. Trevor Lee

Caleb Konley vs. Andrew Everett

Smash Wrestling on 7/29 in Toronto at the Franklin Horner Community Centre has Matt Cross vs. Tarik in an I Quit match, Chris Hero vs. Rich Swann, Johnny Gargano vs. Scotty O’Shea and the Overdogs vs. Drew Gulak & Biff Busick.
House of Hardcore on 7/18 in Toronto has announced Team 3-D vs. Young Bucks and Matt Taven & Michael Bennett vs. Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian (IWGP tag champs vs. ROH champs) plus Johnny Mundo, Rhino, Chris Hero, Tommy Dreamer, Tony Nese, Eddie Kingston, Thea Trinidad, Tomasso Ciampa and Traci Brooks.
Pro Wrestling Phoenix tomorrow in Council Bluffs, IA at the National Guard Armory.
A Dusty Rhodes sketch

ON THIS DAY IN PRO WRESTLING HISTORY INTERNATIONAL (thanks to Graeme Cameron)

1970 – Kurt & Karl Von Steiger beat Mark Lewin & Antonio Pugliese in Sydney to win the IWA tag titles

1986 – Antonio Inoki beat Dick Murdoch in Tokyo to win the IWGP heavyweight tournament

1994 – Combat Toyoda beat Megumi Kudo in Tokyo to win the WWA Independent womens’ title

2005 – Shuji Kondo & Yasshi beat Tomoaki Honma & Katsuhiko Nakajima to win the vacant All-Asia tag title in a tournament final

2005 – Tiger Mask beat Gedo in Tokyo to win the New Japan Super Juniors tournament

2009 – Atlantis beat El Texano Jr. in a tournament final to become the CMLL Universal Champion of Champions

2010 – Giant Bernard (Matt Bloom) & Karl Anderson won a three-way over Wataru Inoue & Yuji Nagata and Tetsuya Naito & Yujiro Takahashi in Osaka to win the IWGP tag titles, and Prince Devitt (Finn Balor) beat Naomichi Marufuji to win the IWGP jr. title

2011 – Keiji Muto & Kenso beat Akebono & Taiyo Kea in Tokyo to win the All Japan tag title and Manabu Soya & Seiya Sanada beat Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi to win the All-Asia tag title, and Kai beat Shuji Kondo to win the jr. title.

2011 – Dragon Kid & Pac (Neville) beat Genki Horiguchi & Ryo Saito in Fukuoka to win the Open the Twin Gate tag titles

TOMORROW’S WWE NETWORK SCHEDULE (thanks to Bert Duckwall)

12:00 AM ET
WWE BEYOND THE RING Packed with never before seen footage, this program profiles Triple H’s entire career as well as his current executive role with the WWE.

2:00 AM ET
WWE NXT The future is here. Witness the entertainers, the leading men and women, the Superstars of tomorrow — this is NXT!

3:00 AM ET
WWE SUPERSTARS WWE Superstars features the best of the best, in matches you’ll have to see to believe. You never know what to expect, so expect everything.

4:00 AM ET
TOTAL DIVAS Ariane’s plan to hire Nikki as her real estate agent backfires, and Nattie and TJ face the harsh realities of getting a divorce.

5:00 AM ET
WCW MONDAY NITRO ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage puts the WCW World Heavyweight Championship on the line against Lex Luger. Sting and many more are featured.

6:00 AM ET
WWE MONEY IN THE BANK 2015 A WWE Championship opportunity hangs in the balance as WWE Superstars try to climb the ladder of success at Money in the Bank.

9:00 AM ET
TOTAL DIVAS Ariane’s plan to hire Nikki as her real estate agent backfires, and Nattie and TJ face the harsh realities of getting a divorce.

10:00 AM ET
WWE BEYOND THE RING Packed with never before seen footage, this program profiles Triple H’s entire career as well as his current executive role with the WWE.

12:00 PM ET
TOUGH ENOUGH 40 finalists face a 3-day tryout to determine which 13 will earn the right to prove they are TOUGH ENOUGH.

1:00 PM ET
WWE COUNTDOWN Counting down the Top Ten Strangest Bedfellows of all time!

2:00 PM ET
THIS WEEK IN WWE Get caught up on all the highlights from Raw and SmackDown with This Week in WWE.

2:30 PM ET
WWE QUICK HITS WWE Quick Hits brings you some of the most unique, entertaining, and sometimes outrageous clips, unearthed from the depths of WWE Network.

3:00 PM ET
SATURDAY NIGHTS MAIN EVENT Edge Defends the WWE Championship against John Cena. Batista, Rey Mysterio and Bobby Lashley battle Mark Henry, Finlay, and King Booker.

4:30 PM ET
WARRIOR: THE ULTIMATE LEGEND Examine the most outspoken and intense superstar of all time in this revealing look about the career and final days of The Ultimate Warrior.

5:30 PM ET
THIS WEEK IN WWE Get caught up on all the highlights from Raw and SmackDown with This Week in WWE.

6:00 PM ET
WWE COUNTDOWN Counting down the Top Ten Strangest Bedfellows of all time!

7:00 PM ET
MONDAY NIGHT WAR Backstage politics, corporate mergers, and questionable decisions would doom sports entertainment’s former powerhouse.

8:00 PM ET
SATURDAY NIGHTS MAIN EVENT Edge Defends the WWE Championship against John Cena. Batista, Rey Mysterio and Bobby Lashley battle Mark Henry, Finlay, and King Booker.

9:30 PM ET
WARRIOR: THE ULTIMATE LEGEND Examine the most outspoken and intense superstar of all time in this revealing look about the career and final days of The Ultimate Warrior.

10:30 PM ET
THIS WEEK IN WWE Get caught up on all the highlights from Raw and SmackDown with This Week in WWE.

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11:00 PM ET
SATURDAY NIGHTS MAIN EVENT Edge Defends the WWE Championship against John Cena. Batista, Rey Mysterio and Bobby Lashley battle Mark Henry, Finlay, and King Booker.

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