THE ROUND-UP

THE LATEST NEWS

WWE suspends Enzo Amore following rape allegation
Pre-WWE Raw 25 notes: Media, Manhattan Center, Ric Flair
Kota Ibushi officially announced for ROH Supercard of Honor XII

THE LATEST AUDIO

WOL: RAW 25, Royal Rumble, Daniel Bryan, Mixed Match Challenge, more! 1/22
B&V: NWA World Championship Wrestling from 1987 plus GOOFY’S GONE! 1/21

We’re looking for reports from tonight’s Raw show as far as any dark matches or post-Raw matches, and also reports from last night’s 205 Live show in Poughkeepsie, NY to newstips@wrestlingobserver.com.

We’re also taking polls this weekend on five different shows:

Friday’s Fantastics Mania
Sunday’s Fantastica Mania
Monday’s Fantastica Mania
Bellator on Saturday
UFC on Saturday

        We’re looking for a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to dave@wrestlingobserver.com.

Raw is tonight from both the Barclays Center and the Manhattan Center for the 25th Raw with a giant list of former stars, Smackdown stars, and pretty much everyone being there with Roman Reigns vs. The Miz for the IC title as the main event.

Smackdown, Mixed Match Challenge and 205 Live will be taped in Washington, DC on Tuesday. Big E & Carmella vs. The Miz & Asuka is the mixed match challenge match.


​F4W NEWSLETTER: Figure Four Weekly 1//15/2018: Looking at WWE’s latest Performance Center class

While it’s hard to predict whether someone will or won’t have success on the main roster, the class that’s scheduled to report to the WWE Performance Center this week includes some potentially game-changing talent. Ricochet, Candice LeRae, War Machine (Ray Rowe & Hanson), Kavita Devi, Kacy Catanzaro, Rinku Singh, Shadia Bseiso, Nasser Alruwayeh, Nicolai Salchow, and Saurav Gurjar have been reported as the latest names to sign with WWE.


WON NEWSLETTER: January 22, 2018 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Paige’s in-ring career with WWE over, Reigns steroid allegations, more

A look at the career of Paige and the injuries that appeared to end it is one of the lead stories in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer. Read about her career, the movie on her life that is forthcoming, how the movie affected the last few years, details of the injury, how this compares to Bryan Danielson, how the movie got started, her life before WWE and her role in the changes in the WWE women’s division.

Look at the situation with Conor McGregor, as well as a huge show UFC is looking at doing in the fall.

Read comments on the Roman Reigns allegations and the WWE background on how different allegations have been handled.

There are changes in plans of the rumble show, an update on a lot of talent talking with WWE, many coming into WWE, history of why Bobby Lashley left WWE, former TNA star talks wanting to move to WWE, Jey Uso’s DWI arrest, notes on a lot of new talent starting at the Performance Center, Cena projects on Nickelodeon, who is coming in for 25th Raw, who isn’t coming to the 25th Raw and why, and a complete scheduled for Mixed Match Challenge.

Check out how house show plans changed with the Samoa Joe injury, WWE injury notes, WWE signs new giant, UFC star’s name talked about for WWE, Cena and Rock move notes, WWE stock price value and most-watched shows for the week on the WWE Network. Look at the WWE and NXT arena events over the past week with results, highlights and business notes.

Look at the head-to-head battle with UFC and Bellator this week, the hoped for stardom of Francis Ngannou, Sonnen vs. Rampage, Cormier vs. Oezdemir and more.

Read about the UFC show in St. Louis and the most emotional moment in UFC television history. Plus, look at the unique nature of how the television audience changed and why the ratings were so high.


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WON BACK ISSUE: January 1, 2001 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Candidates for Wrestler of the Year, Sakuraba defeats another Gracie, more 

For a year that, with the exception of the success of the WWF, was hardly a banner year for the business, there is actually no shortage of candidates for Wrestler of the Year. The Observer awards balloting results will be announced here in two weeks, but before hand, I wanted to run down a list of the top qualifiers with my own comments on them.


MONDAY NEWS UPDATE

There is a story up on the Enzo Amore situation, but he has been suspended indefinitely by WWE over a rape allegation from a woman in Phoenix who went on social media. The story was first reported by Pro Wrestling Sheet and WWE has confirmed the suspension and released a statement on it. Amore was in Phoenix the night of the incident attending a concert between wrestling dates. Fightful spoke to the woman who is accusing Amore.

Bryan and I will be back tonight covering Raw, Fantastica Mania and all the latest pro wrestling news late tonight with Wrestling Observer Radio. We’re also taking questions for the show to mailbag@wrestlingobserver.com.

The 25th anniversary of Raw show, which is expected to be the most-watched episode of the show in several years, takes place tonight with an endless supply of guest stars coming in led by Steve Austin, Undertaker, Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels. There has been a ton of media about the 25 years the show has been on the air and WWE has promoted this show much harder than the Royal Rumble itself this coming Sunday. It is expected that at least one if not more WrestleMania angles will be shot tonight. most notably the Undertaker angle for Mania and/or Rumble.

John Cena and Brock Lesnar are on the show, which doubles as the go-home show for Royal Rumble. They will be going back-and-forth between retro stuff at the Manhattan Center with Jerry Lawler and Jim Ross announcing along with other people from the 90s and stuff at the Barlcays Center with the regular crew. Randy Orton’s wife noted that he will not be on the show and she didn’t seem happy about it. There’s only so much time and they probably went overboard with guests.

Bellator sent out a release confirming what was already announced Saturday night that the Fedor Emelianenko vs. Frank Mir first round match in the heavyweight tournament will take place on 4/28 at the Allstate Arena in Chicago. There will be an on-line presale starting tomorrow and continuing Thursday with tickets going on sale to the public on Friday. The lowest ticket price will be $30.

Congratulations to Brian Cage and Melissa Santos are expecting to be parents of a girl. As of a bit ago, the girl was not yet born but they went to the hospital yesterday.

WWE

Newsweek ran a story on Jim Johnstone’s comments about WWE’s current music and his no longer being with the company: “But what’s being produced just feels too homogenous. It’s just music that plays—it doesn’t feel like each guy is really themed. All the women have a dance music kind of thing. And it’s lots and lots of loud sound effects.”
Asuka posted photos on Twitter with videos of her wresting in Japan against men, including Kenny Omega and Minoru Suzuki. It’s kind of surprising since WWE frowns on intergender wrestling. But she is doing it to build up her mixed tag team match on the Mixed Match Challenge show tomorrow night. (thanks to Jake Koch)  
Two different WWE Network documentaries are being shot tonight plus they are no doubt loading up on interviews with so many stars from the past in town for feature documentaries and shows.
For what it’s worth, as of this writing, nothing related to Raw or Enzo has been listed in Google search trending numbers, although I expect that to change by the end of the night.
Forbes on tonight’s show. That story mistakenly credits Raw as the longest lasting episodic show on television. A falsehood repeated over and over doesn’t make it true.

UFC
Daniel Cormier was on the MMA Hour today and said he would be retiring on his 40th birthday, which he hinted at a few days ago. The date of that is March 20, 2019.
MISCELLANEOUS

A story on Celeste Bonin (formerly known as Kaitlyn in WWE), talking drug addiction issues, her divorce and drinking problems.
Dynamo Pro Wrestling from Saturday night in St. Louis: Orion Creed b Roy Lewis, The Snitch b Jon Webb, Brandon Espinosa b CJ Shine, Rahne Victoria & ? b Savanna Stone & Tottie Lynn Ramsey, Mike Outlaw b Hollis Giroux, Viktor Von Stein & Xavier Shadowz b Edvin Kudic & Ricky Rodriguez, Brandon Aarons b Adrian Surge, Makaze b Keon Option. (thanks to Patrick Brandmeyer)
Jessie Godderz appeared on the KTLA morning show in Los Angeles on Sunday to take about the upcoming season of Celebrity Big Brother, pro wrestling and the second season of Tainted Dreams on Amazon which he stars on.
Chelsea Green vs Priscilla Kelly has been added to the 2/8 MLW show in Orlando at Gilt Nightclub. They shot an angle at the last show to set up this match. Other matches announced for that show are first round matches in the heavyweight title tournament with MVP vs. Tom Lawlor, Matt Riddle vs. Jeff Cobb, Shane Strickland vs. Brody King and Jimmy Havoc vs. Maxwell Jacob Freidman. Also appearing are Low Ki, Darby Allin, Seth Petruzelli, Jason Cade, Mike Parrow and others.
Toni Storm has been announced to be making her Shimmer debut on 4/7 in New Orleans against Nicole Matthews.
PWA on 2/24 in Kitchener, ONT at the Alpine Club.
Dixie Carter attended the ROH TV tapings yesterday in Nashville.
Niebla Roja was injured yesterday but worked through it both yesterday and today at the Fantastica Mania shows.
Superkick’d on 2/16 in Toronto at the Great Hall.
Alpha 1 Wrestling on 2/18 in Hamilton ONT at 222 Queenston Rd.
Defy Wrestling on 2/2 in Seattle, WA at Washington Hall headlined by Shane Strickland vs. Matt Sydal for the Defy title. Joey Janela debuts with the group facing Randy Myers while Nicole Matthews faces Hawlee Layen.
A story on ROH wrestlers visiting a hospital on the Nashville news.
A story on John Evans (Reginald Love of the Love Brothers), who passed away recently.

Today in Professional Wrestling History: WWF Royal Rumble 1994


WRESTLING OBSERVER / F4W – WRESTLEMANIA 34 in NEW ORLEANS

Here we go again! It’s back to New Orleans for Wrestlemania 34 and a huge weekend of spectacular professional wrestling related fun and wackiness. EdinSanAntonio Productions along with the Wrestling Observer / Figure Four Empire~! is proud to present the annual Wrestlemania weekend trip details. This huge weekend includes a number of website “members only” events. Below are the two events currently scheduled. Click here for full event details. 

WOR Podcast Taping: Purchase TICKETS for the Wrestling Observer Radio LIVE MAILBAG~!

WHAT: Wrestling Observer Radio LIVE Podcast Recording with Dave Meltzer and Bryan Alvarez
WHEN: Friday, April 6th, 2018 – 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. (Doors open at 8:45 a.m. for VIP ticket holders and at 9:15 a.m. for general admission)
WHERE: The Bourbon Room, Royal St. Charles Hotel in downtown New Orleans; 135 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans, LA 70130

WO/F4W Brunch: Purchase TICKETS for the Wrestling Oberver BRUNCH~!

WHAT: All you care to eat brunch buffet on the morning of Wrestlemania 
WHEN: Sunday, April 8th, 2018 – T11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
WHERE: The Court of Two Sisters restaurant in downtown New Orleans; 613 Royal St., New Orleans, LA 70130


CONTACT INFORMATION

Poll opinions: dave@wrestlingobserver.com
​Feedback: feedback@wrestlingobserver.com
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