We’re looking for your thoughts on Saturday night’s UFC 196, so you can leave a thumbs up, thumbs down or thumbs in the middle along with a best and worst match to dave@wrestlingobserver.com

Raw will be live tonight in Chicago.  The New Day vs. A.J. Styles & Chris Jericho for the tag titles is scheduled plus appearances by HHH, Shane McMahon and they are advertising Roman Reigns for the show.

We’re also looking for reports on Sunday’s WWE show in Kalamazoo, MI, the NXT weekend shows in Citrus Springs, FL and GFW in London and Coventry, England at newstips@wrestlingobserver.com

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


Click here for the complete weekend run down.

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Figure Four Weekly 2/22/2016: All the latest on the Hulk Hogan Lawsuit
All the latest details on the Hulk Hogan/Gawker lawsuit.

Wrestling Observer Newsletter

SUBSCRIBERS READ IT HERE:  March 7, 2016 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: TNA seeking investors, UFC 196 preview, plus tons of news
A look at TNA’s financial situation, a preview of UFC 196, a review of Ring of Honor’s 14th Anniversary PPV, plus tons of news.

The status of TNA as they are looking for more funding is the lead story in the new issue of the Wrestling Observer.  The strange situation with no announcements of future shows, the next planned TV tapings, what talent has been told, ratings, previous sales talks, what happened to the TNA fan base and where they made the wrong moves, how badly the business fell the last U.K. tour.
The build and business of UFC 196, why so many tickets are suddenly available, what is unique about the event’s promotion, Diaz vs. dos Anjos as a PPV, the value of the title, previous biggest PPV headlined by a non-title match, breaking down the McGregor vs. Diaz fight and where both would go next.

The build to WWE’s Roadblock show, a look at the attempts to build Dean Ambrose, and the state of WWE main events after WrestleMania.
The salaries of the leading corporate officers in WWE, what Vince McMahon really makes in ways that aren’t directly listed,  who owns what percentage of the company and where Shane McMahon stands corporately.  Shane McMahon’s attempts to buy sports franchises, his training for the Undertaker match.
Full coverage of Anderson Silva vs. Michael Bisping, how the middleweight division was hurt financially by the result, judging, 
Full coverage of ROH 14th anniversary show and NJPW’s plans for the U.S. market

A lengthy feature on the The Fabulous Freebirds, the latest inductees into the WWE Hall of Fame, looking back at their heyday and the careers of Terry Gordy, Buddy Roberts, Michael Hayes, Jimmy Garvin and all the other Freebirds over the course of the years.  Why The Freebirds didn’t make it in WWF, and what broke the original group up and more!  


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Click here for the most requested Wrestling Observer back issues.

Check out the latest Online Wrestling Observer BACK ISSUE: Jan 18, 1999 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Giant Baba retires, ECW Guilty as Charged review
Details on the retirement of Giant Baba, a full rundown of ECW Guilty as Charged, plus tons of news.


A big surprise is being pushed for Raw tonight.  Rumors are going around that it’s Sami Zayn, but I can’t confirm that past the point Zayn is booked for WrestleMania as well as the Montreal and Toronto shows this weekend.  The timing of him appearing on Raw would make sense to be this week or next.  John Cena tweeted about the surprise and it could also involve him.  But the surprise is scheduled at the start of the show and they’re pushing it to build the early audience.

The Friday night show in Montreal at the Bell Center has tickets available with the advertised matches being Roman Reigns vs. Sheamus, Brock Lesnar vs. Luke Harper, Kevin Owens vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Sami Zayn for the IC title and New Day vs. Usos for the tag team title.

Rizin has signed Wanderlei Silva and he’ll be fighting on their April 17th show. This despite Bellator’s press release a couple weeks stating that they had signed him to an “exclusive” deal

Want to make mention that it was today in 1989, 27 years ago, that legendary Houston promoter Paul Boesch passed away. Boesch was one of the most well liked and respected promoters of the older generation, and wrestlers would usually point to Boesch, Don Owen and Sam Muchnick as the fairest payoff men from the territorial era. 

ECW Press today announced a new book that will come out in conjunction with the 2017 WrestleMania called “NXT:  The Future Is Now: by Jon Robinson.


SummerSlam travel packages go on sale this coming Monday at Noon Eastern time for the shows in Brooklyn.  It will be three straight days, like this past year, with shows at the Barclays Center with NXT on 8/20, SummerSlam on 8/21 and Raw on 8/22.  There will also be a Breakfast with the stars on 8/21, a Reception with the stars prior to SummerSlam on Sunday and more.  There are packages priced from  $1,025 and for attendance at all events and travel from Times Square to all the events.
At one of the malls in San Jose there are large posters on the wall of Roman Reigns and Titus O’Neil  promoted by Fatherhood.gov showing them with their respective daughters and saying “Take time to be a dad today.”
The 2/3 fall Samoa Joe vs. Sami Zayn match on NXT television airs on Wednesday.
The E! TV show The Hollywood Medium with Tyler Henry aired the episode with Natalya last night where she tried to talk with the spirit of Owen Hart as well as her cousin Matt Annis (Ted Hart’s brother) who died very young.  It airs many more times this week.
NXT announced shows on 4/21 in Lowell, MA at the Memorial Auditorium, 4/22 in Kingston, RI at the Ryan Center and 4/23 in Poughkeepsie at the Mid Hudson Civic Center.
ESPN News will be airing the documentary on NXT from last year on Friday night at 7 PM. and Saturday night at 11 p.m.
WWE stock is back on a run-up, up 44 cents today to close at $18.03 per share.   
A story on yesterday’s house show in Moline


Both Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta today were talking about a prospective Robbie Lawler vs. Nate Diaz welterweight title match coming off Saturday’s show.  
The UFC did 1,000 viewers in Holland on TV on FOX (the show aired 4 a.m. to 7:15 a.m.) and Sander Schrik, the host, who also works for WWE, talked about suplex city when Ilir Latifi gave Gian Villante that German suplex.  Marloes Coenen has been getting rave reviews for her work on color, especially talking about Miesha Tate, who beat Coenen for the Strikeforce title years ago. (thanks to Hank Mulder)


IWS from Saturday night in Montreal before 600 fans:  Busto Barao & Maredes b Stew Korvus & Nico Marshall, Franky the Mobster b Benjamin Tull, Black Dynamite d White Chocolate, Shayne Hawke won over Excess, Brandon O’Connor, Steve Mainz, Frankie Milano, Beef Wellington, Matt Angel and Michael Style in an eight-man, Scott Parker b Evan Adams, TDT won over Los Cartel and Latino Connection in a three-way, Black Dynamite won four-way over Rey Mysterio Jr., Mike Bailey and Jack Evans to win the IWS title, PCP Manny & Green Phantom & Sexxxy Eddy b Viking & Hardcore Ninjas in a fans bring the weapons match (thanks to Pat Laprade)
Mick Foley appears for AAW on 3/18 in Berwyn, IL at the Eagles Club on a show headlined by Ricochet vs Sami Callihan and Jack Evans vs. Tommaso Ciampa.  Also on the show include AR Fox, Kongo Kong, Moose, Drew Gulak, Chris Hero, Silas Young, colt Cabana, Zero Gravity, Dave Crist and more.
ONE runs a show on 3/18 in Yangon, Myanmar with hometown hero Aung La N Sang vs. Mohammed Ali of Egypt in the main event.
In Your Face Wrestling on Saturday night in Albany, NY at the Polish Community Center has a convention featuring Kevin Nash, Bob Holly, Scott Norton, Marty Jannetty and Cody Deaner.  Tommy Dreamer works for the group on 4/23 in Massena, NY at Massena Central High.
There will be a wrestling play on 6/4 in Orlando at the John and Rita Shakespeare Theater called “We Don’t Play fight,” which is a play about a wrestling promotion.
Jim Duggan appeared over the weekend at the Variety Club Iowa telethon in Des Moines this past weekend.  It was the 15th consecutive year he’s appeared with the group. (thanks to Brian Henke)
Lucha Toronto on 6/4 at La Liga Indoor Soccer in Toronto.
Premier Championship Wrestling’s 14th anniversary show on 3/5 in Winnipeg:  Adrian Burton b Brett Evans, Jay Walker b Shao Ming, Mentallo & Shaun Moore b Antonio Scorpio & Bull Bodnar, Kenny Omega & Chris Stevens & General Xiou Ping b Mike Angels & Chad Tatum & Nate Hardy, Flex Appeal b London Dynasty, Jackie Lee b Scott Justice.  Next show is 4/16 (thanks to Andrew Shallcross)
The ECWA announced that former ECWA stars Ace Darling and Reckless Youth will be co-hosts of the Super 8 tournament this year on 4/23 in Woodbury Heights, NJ at the Community Center.  They also announced Tito Santana would be wrestling Eric Martin on the 3/19 show in the same building.  
Ring Wars Carolinas on 4/2 in Lumberton, NC at the Priscilla King Arena.
Carlito talks the Bruiser Brody murder at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-NUWPG_58I
WrestlePro debuted on Saturday night in Rahway, NJ:  Matt McIntosh b Pat Buck to win WrestlePro title, Anthony Bowens b Dan Maff, Mario Bokara b Johnny Clash, Heavenly Bodies & Buster Jackson b Reynolds Brothers & John Silver, Amber Gallows b Barbi Hayden with Shelly Martinez as referee, Demo b Mike Del, Taboo Crew b Team Tremendous in a tag title match, Chris Payne won four-way over Brian Myers, Fallah Bahn and Joey Ryan, Steve Scott won over Ken Broadway, Max Caster, Rex Lawless Tollan and Jake Manning, Colt Cabana b Bobby Wayland, Kevin Matthews b Bull James (Bull Dempsey), Anthony Brown won Rumble which included Sam Roberts.
Maryland Championship Wrestling on 3/19 in Frederick, MD at the Frederick Indoor Soccer Center featuring a meet and greet with Tommy Dreamer and Kip Sopp, formerly Billy Gunn.  I guess that means WWE is wanting Gunn to no longer use that name on indies.
MCW from Saturday night in Joppa, MD:  Jeremiah b Hocus, Drake Carter & Shaun Cannon b Bo Nekoda & Oakley Woods, Veda Scott b Ivory Robyn, Jimmy Starz & Sexy Steve b Kai Katana & Fenix Fury, Bruiser & Rayo & Jerry Lawler b Joe Keys & Rob Locke & Cochran, Paul Jordane & Bill Collier b Brandon Scott & Sean Studd, Lio Rush b Eddie Smooth, Drolix & Napalm Bomb & Solo & Chuck Lennox b King McBride & Ken Dixon & Eric Chapel & Dirty Money.
CZW on 3/25 at the Woodbury Heights Community Center for Dojo Wars and 3/26 for an iPPV in Voorhees, NJ headlined by Matt Tremont vs. Devon Moore in a Taipei and barbed wire boards death match, plus Sami Callihan vs. Masada, AR Fox vs. B-Boy, Mike Bailey vs. Jonathan Gresham and more.