POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE 2/2 – Kenny Omega vs. Cody announced for Supercard of Honor

Ring of Honor has confirmed that Kenny Omega will face Cody over WrestleMania weekend in New Orleans, television reviews of NXT, Impact Wrestling, and Ring of Honor, Total Divas audience for season seven, main event of the UFC card in London, latest on Anderson Silva's drug test failure, POST Wrestling news, and more.

POST IT NOTES

**Our Patreon bonus show this week is a review of the season finale of Total Divas from this past Wednesday. Wai Ting and I watched the two-part finale and go through all the storylines to conclude the season, including Maryse finding out she is pregnant, Nikki Bella on Dancing with the Stars, a road trip with Bryan and Brie, Rusev’s barbequing, and more. Patreon members can access the show at https://www.patreon.com/posts/total-divas-7-16751383.

**This week we featured the launch of KEEP IT 2000 on POST Wrestling. On their first show back, Brian Mann and Nate Milton welcomed our good friend Damian Abraham to review the June 5th, 2000 episode of WCW Monday Nitro. Brian attended this Nitro episode and can be seen throughout the show facing the hard camera. The show can be downloaded at https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/02/01/keep-it-2000-ep-23-the-red-liquid-with-damian-abraham-june-5-2000/ and you can also subscribe to Keep it 2000’s individual feed to receive their entire library on any device at https://www.postwrestling.com/subscribe/.

**For our “Double Double” members and above, Wai Ting and I have added a POST Production video taking you behind-the-scenes of the past week at POST Wrestling. In these videos, we are not so much chatting regular news but instead, taking a look at our own work on the site, what is working, what we are tinkering with, upcoming ideas, using the videos as a forum to share our own thoughts on the site and what ideas we have planned.

**There is also a “Double Double” video for those interested in watching Wai Ting appear on stage and do improv comedy from last Friday’s Rumble Strikes at Comedy Bar.

**On Sunday, we will have the first “Ask-A-Wai” video out for everyone with Wai Ting and I answering your questions for about an hour. This will be released on the POST Wrestling feed.

WRESTLING NEWS

**Ring of Honor has officially announced that Kenny Omega vs. Cody will take place at Supercard of Honor on Saturday, April 7th in New Orleans, Louisiana at the UNO Lakefront Center.  The tease of the match goes back to last summer between the two with the major angle shot last weekend at New Beginning. Following Jay White’s upset win over Omega, Hangman Page confronted White prior to Omega taking the title away from Page and handing it to White. This prompted Cody to get involved, stating that Omega was ruining Page’s “moment” as he was set to challenge White for the next title match. Omega and Cody got into a shoving match that ended with Omega shoving down Matt Jackson in the heat of the moment. As the ring cleared, Cody and Omega remained and then shook hands before Cody attacked him from behind with Cross Rhodes, leading to Kota Ibushi running in to save his former partner, Omega. Ibushi is also scheduled for Supercard of Honor. The promotion will be attempting to break their all-time paid attendance record of 3,500 that was set last year over WrestleMania weekend in Orlando for the Supercard of Honor event headlined by The Hardys vs. The Young Bucks in a ladder match.

**During Wednesday’s season finale of Total Divas, one of the main stories was the announcement that The Miz and Maryse were expecting their first child. On the show, it was explained that they would make the announcement in the ring and turn it into a storyline. The re-aired the segment with Miz announcing the pregnancy in the ring and then addressing Maryse. That’s where the Total Divas segment ended. On the actual Raw version, this set up Enzo interrupting the two as Miz went to read a poem to the crowd.

**Thursday’s episode of Impact Wrestling continued to see the show make modest gains following the end of the NFL season. This week’s episode averaged 319,000 viewers on POP TV, which is up from 310,000 viewers last week and their highest average since last August. The show was built around the return of Austin Aries in the main event segment regaining the Impact title.

**Wednesday night’s season finale of Total Divas averaged the second highest number of the season with 665,000 viewers on E! The number was up 9.2% from last week’s episode and it was the second-best number of the season, trailing the January 3rd episode that averaged 684,000 viewers. The 12-episode season averaged 581,750 viewers.

**On Friday’s NOAH card, Kenoh defeated Yuko Miyamoto retain the GHC championship in the main event at Korakuen Hall. A challenge was made by Takashi Sugiura after the match with Kenoh set to defend the title against Sugiura in the main event of the March 11th Great Voyage card in Yokohama. The following title matches have been announced for the Great Voyage card:
*Kenoh vs. Takashi Sugiura for the GHC championship
*Muhammad Yone and Quiet Storm vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima and Masa Kitamiya for the GHC tag titles
*Daisuke Harada vs. Hayata for the GHC junior heavyweight title
*Taiji Ishimori and Hi69 vs. Minoru Tanaka and Yoshinari Ogawa for the GHC junior heavyweight tag titles

**All Japan Pro Wrestling has a big show in Kanagawa early Saturday morning with the following lineup:
*Joe Doering vs. Kai for the Triple Crown title
*Suwama and Shuji Ishikawa vs. Kento Miyahara and Yoshitatsu for the tag titles
*Tajiri vs. Atsushi Aoki for the junior heavyweight title
*Jun Akiyama and Yuji Nagata vs. Ryoji Sai and Naoya Nomura for the Asia tag championship
*Koji Iwamoto, Kotaro Suzuki, Hikaru Sato, and Yohei Nakajima vs. Keiichi Sato, Yusuke Okada, Shuji Kondo, and Atsushi Maruyama
*Ultimo Dragon and Tsuyoshi Kikuchi vs. Masanobu Fuchi and Sushi
*Zeus, The Bodyguard, and Yutaka Yoshie vs. Black Tiger, Osamu Nishimura, and Masakado

**NXT will be taping television for the second straight night at Center Stage in Atlanta tonight. Tonight’s tapings will feature the opening round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament.

**The Raw crew has a live event in Salina, Kansas tonight. On Saturday night, the Raw crew will be in Lincoln, Nebraska. Both the Raw and SmackDown Live crews will have afternoon shows on Sunday so that they end in time for the Super Bowl.

**Monday’s episode of Raw takes place from Des Moines, Iowa.

**New Japan Pro Wrestling continues their New Beginning tour hosting back-to-back nights at Korakuen Hall on Monday and Tuesday with both scheduled to stream on New Japan World. Monday’s card is headlined by a 10-man elimination tag match with Kazuchika Okada, Will Ospreay, Hirooki Goto, Yoshi-Hashi, and Gedo vs. Tetsuya Naito, Hiromu Takahashi, EVIL, Sanada, and Bushi. Tuesday’s card is headlined by an IWGP tag title match with EVIL and Sanada defending the titles against Kazuchika Okada and Hirooki Goto.

**Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will be a guest on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” this Sunday night on NBC following the Super Bowl, which is airing on NBC, meaning Fallon will be following the most-watched television event of the year.

**Kevin Matthews a.k.a. KM in Impact Wrestling will be featured in a “Jack in the Box” commercial during the Super Bowl on Sunday night.

**The WWE stock experienced a drop on Friday with a close at $34.52 after opening at $35.25.

TELEVISION REVIEWS

Impact Wrestling (Feb. 1st)
-This was the first episode from the most recent of tapings in Orlando and the first since Don Callis and Scott D’Amore were named Executive Vice Presidents of the company working under Ed Nordholm.
-There wasn’t a large issue made of the change in command, which at this point is a good thing because there have been so many reboots for Impact that another emphasis on the company starting anew is not going to resonate.
-The aesthetics were the main point of separation from the prior regime with a move back to the four-sided ring and an elimination of the green ropes in favour of the much more television-friendly blue ropes.
-As a show, it was centred around the arrival of “mystery man” Austin Aries, who entered the arena at the start of the show with his face hidden. He confronted Eli Drake in the final segment, set up the impromptu match and won the title for the crowd to react to the title change. Both Aries and Drake came off as top-level promos, which they are, and I liked the ending to the show.
-The Grand championship (which is not long for this world) has abandoned the rounds and judges in favour of a straight-up match as Matt Sydal retained over Fallah Bahh. Sydal has begun his heel turn with reference to a “spiritual advisor” that will be revealed over the course of the next few weeks.
-There was a lengthy tag match with Moose and Johnny Impact defeating Alberto El Patron and EC3 with Moose pinning El Patron (interesting that he took the fall). The tag match was well worked and clearly, three of the four will be heavily utilized in the main event scene as they move ahead.
-A promo aired to hype the arrival of Brian Cage.
-Lashley, who is a babyface after the Dan Lambert table spot, said he will continue to pursue pro wrestling and MMA, teased a match with Eddie Edwards backstage.
-LAX and OVE had a segment inside the ring with Konnan and Sami Callihan cutting promos on one another, Konnan confronted them on the ramp and this led to Caleb Konley and Trevor Lee jumping Santana and Ortiz in the ring as the next tag program.
-The rest of the show had the regular issues, it’s a long show to get through, the atmosphere doesn’t typically enhance the matches at the Impact Zone and it’s going to be a long process to establish the show as a priority for those that have tuned out.

NXT (Jan. 31st)
-This show was a collection of matches taped prior to Takeover at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia last Saturday.
-Roderick Strong and Tyler Bate had a strong match together and it was Bate’s second strong performance on WWE television this week. As I watched this match, it only underscored my feeling that the finals of the Cruiserweight title tournament would be so much better served on the Takeover card on WrestleMania weekend rather than lost in the ‘Mania card shuffle, likely on the kickoff show. Bate is a tremendous performer and the most under-utilized on the roster with no defined role, yet he gets over incredibly every time out.
-TM61 received a very positive response from the Philadelphia audience, which has to be attributed to the two-weeks of vignettes on NXT television. Those features were a godsend for these two, who lacked an identity. They were so well-received in those pieces and their chemistry and friendship came through effectively.
-As I watched this show, it hits the viewer over the head how much the atmosphere makes these performers feel like stars as they reacted to everyone on the show. It’s a major issue with 205 Live and it’s not as if they would have audiences like Philadelphia every week, but the experiment of taping after SmackDown Live has been a failure. If Tyler Bate and TJ Perkins had the exact same match in front of this crowd, it would have been one of the standout matches of the weekend. Instead, it was contained to the smaller audience that watched 205 Live.

Ring of Honor (Jan. 28th)
-The major segment on this show was Bully Ray’s retirement in the ring. He came out carrying his wrestling boots and thanked the audience in Philadelphia (where this was taped). He said he was born in New York, but as a wrestler, he was born in Philadelphia. He stated that “Final Battle was my final battle” and the locker room emptied to thank Bully. Jay Lethal spoke on behalf of the locker room that they were skeptical when he entered the company because of the stories that have followed Bully, but he took a leadership role and was a model member of the roster. The two hugged to end the segment, which was the best non-wrestling segment of the week involving any company. The timing of this segment coincided with the WWE announcing The Dudley Boyz for the Hall of Fame on the Monday following the syndication airing of Ring of Honor over the weekend.

MMA NEWS

**The Combate outlet in Brazil has reported that the two substances Anderson Silva tested positive for last November were methyltestosterone and an unspecified diuretic. Silva failed an out-of-competition drug test prior to his bout with Kelvin Gastelum in November and was removed from the fight. Silva failed a pre and post-fight drug test in connection with his January 2015 fight with Nick Diaz and was suspended for one-year and fined $380,000. Silva’s career could be over depending on the length of the suspension, which his side is arguing should be treated as a first-time offence because the 2015 failures occurred prior to the UFC implementing USADA’s testing procedures.

**Three fighters missed weight on Friday morning for the UFC’s Fight Night card in Belem, Brazil. Eryk Anders, who is headlining the card against Lyoto Machida, came in at 187.9 pounds for his middleweight fight with Lyoto Machida. Guilherme Cruz of MMA Fighting reported that Anders was provided an additional hour to make the weight after a physician provided approval that it was safe to do so and cited an issue with the hot water at the fighter hotel. On his second attempt, Anders weighed 186 pounds and the fight was official. Machida’s camp also agreed to allow Anders the additional one-hour allowance to continue to cut weight. Michel Prazeres missed weight again for his lightweight fight against Desmond Green with Prazeres coming in at 161 pounds. The commission in Brazil will require him to move up a weight class for his next bout. The final fighter missing the mark was Pedro Munhoz, who weighed 140 pounds for his bantamweight fight against John Dodson. MMA Fighting has reported that the fight between Prazeres and Green is on, but they are still evaluating the status of the Munhoz vs. Dodson fight. Below is the full fight card and weigh-in results:

MAIN CARD (10 pm Eastern on FS1)
*Lyoto Machida (186) vs. Eryk Anders (186)
*John Dodson (135) vs. Pedro Munhoz (140)
*Valentina Shevchenko (125) vs. Priscila Cachoeira (126)
*Desmond Green (156) vs. Michel Prazeres (161)
*Timothy Johnson (263) vs. Marcelo Golm (247)
*Thiago Santos (185) vs. Anthony Smith (186)

PRELIMINARY CARDS (8 pm Eastern on FS1)
*Tim Means (171) vs. Sergio Moraes (171)
*Alan Patrick (156) vs. Damir Hadzovic (156)
*Douglas de Andrade (135) vs. Marlon Vera (136)
*Joe Soto (135) vs. Iuri Alcantara (136)

FIGHT PASS CARD (7 pm Eastern)
*Deiveson Figueiredo (126) vs. Joseph Morales (126)
*Maia Stevenson (116) vs. Polyana Viana (116)

**With tickets going on sale this week for the UFC’s return to London, England, a main event has officially been announced. The UFC confirmed on Thursday that a heavyweight bout between Fabricio Werdum and Alexander Volkov will headline the March 17th UFC Fight Night event from the O2 Arena. The former heavyweight champion Werdum is coming off wins over Walt Harris and Marcin Tybura while Volkov has won five straights fights, including wins over Timothy Johnson, Roy Nelson, and Stefan Struve in the UFC.

**The UFC has added a heavyweight bout between Arjan Bhullar and Adam Wieczorek to the UFC on FOX card on Saturday, April 14th in Glendale, Arizona. The FOX card will be headlined by a great action fight on paper between Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje and will also feature Matt Brown returning from a short retirement to fight Carlos Condit.

**The UFC will be returning to Atlantic City, New Jersey for a Fight Night card on Saturday, April 21st at Boardwalk Hall.

*****
TOTAL DIVAS SEASON 7 FINALE REVIEW WITH JOHN POLLOCK & WAI TING (Patreon bonus show)
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/02/01/total-divas-season-7-finale/
*****
KEEP IT 2000: Ep. 23 – “The Red Liquid” with Damian Abraham (June 5, 2000)
https://keepit2000.podbean.com/mf/download/kycidg/Keep-It-2000-June-5-2000.mp3
*****
REWIND-A-SMACKDOWN 1/30/18: Owens & Zayn dissension, New 205 Live GM, Braun & Alexa, Jeremy Borash, WWE 24 review
https://postwrestling.podbean.com/mf/download/9xx9en/180130_RASD.mp3
*****
REWIND-A-RAW 1/29/18: Asuka vs. Sasha, Elimination Chamber Qualifiers
https://postwrestling.podbean.com/mf/download/isiufi/180129_RAR2.mp3
*****
NEW BEGINNING REVIEWS WITH JOHN POLLOCK (Patreon show)
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/01/29/new-beginning-in-sapporo-reviews-with-john-pollock/
*****
ROYAL RUMBLE POST SHOW WITH JOHN POLLOCK, WAI TING, AND JASON AGNEW
https://postwrestling.podbean.com/mf/download/md6p3n/WWE-Royal-Rumble-Post-Show.mp3
*****
NXT TAKEOVER POST SHOW WITH JOHN POLLOCK, BRADEN HERRINGTON, AND BARTENDER DAVE
https://postwrestling.podbean.com/mf/download/69djg6/NXT-Takeover-Philadelphia-Post-Show.mp3
*****

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About John Pollock 997 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.