POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Overrun segment of Raw to be dropped, per report

The overrun segment of Raw is being dropped immediately by USA Network, the status of Jim Ross with AXS TV, a look at Lucha Underground's audience numbers, Henry Cejudo vs. T.J. Dillashaw expected for UFC 233 & more.

POST IT NOTES

**The latest edition of Rewind-A-Wai is available for POST Wrestling Café members. Our Espresso Executive Producer this week is Daniel Stack, who chose the WWE’s Payback 2013 show from the Allstate Arena that he attended in Chicago. The card featured a Three Stages of Hell match between WWE champion John Cena and Ryback, the return of CM Punk for a match with Chris Jericho in his hometown, Curtis Axel’s Intercontinental title win, a look at The Shield eight months into their main roster run, and tons of notes on this time period.

**On Thursday, Wai Ting and I introduced the “Café Hangout” show for Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso members. This is a live video interactive show we are testing out and the first show went well. Off the top, we tackled several news stories with a lot of MMA discussion and took a live caller, which we are looking to do more in the future with. The show is about 50 minutes and available for members of those tiers of the Café. Next Thursday, we will be live at 3 pm Eastern on the Café with Martin Bushby of the British Wrestling Experience joining us live at POST Office West.

**On Saturday, Chris Charlton has a new edition of the EGGSHELLS Podcast Companion with Super J Cast’s Joel Abraham chatting 2009 and New Japan’s third Wrestle Kingdom event. This card featured Hiroshi Tanahashi taking on Keiji Muto and a second straight year with TNA involvement on the show.

**On Sunday, we will be posting the audio of a panel discussion I was part of this discussing the business of podcasting.

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WRESTLING NEWS

**Sean Ross Sapp at Fightful broke the news this week that the WWE’s long tradition of the 11 pm overrun segment is gone, effective this Monday. The overrun was a strategy to have the most eyes on the biggest segment of the show. The idea was the program peaked for the final segment and led to a big growth period because people were tuning in for the 11 pm program on USA and you got the maximum audience for your biggest part of the show. This became an outdated model in the era of three-hour Raws where the final hour is no longer the most-watched and the third hour always featured a big drop and is the least watched hour of the three. The hope, in theory, would be that shortening the least-watched hour will artificially enhance the final hour and not drag down the overall average of the show.

**The audience figures for Lucha Underground’s two-part Ultima Lucha Cuatro finale were disappointing. This past Wednesday’s two-hour finale only averaged 60,000 viewers on the El Rey Network, a drop from 62,000 for the first part of Ultima Lucha the prior week making Ultima Lucha the second and third lowest this season. At the end of the 22-episode season, the series averaged 91,000 viewers. The most-watched episode was on July 11th with a main event between Mil Muertes and Brian Cage and the least-watched was October 3rd involving Marty “The Moth” Martinez vs. Mariposa that averaged 51,000 viewers. The final nine episodes of the season failed to hit 100,000 viewers.  The network will be airing “Man at Arms: Art of War” in the 8 pm timeslot next Wednesday.

**Joey Ryan appeared at MLW’s event in Chicago on Thursday night and announced he has suffered a torn pec. Ryan appeared with a sling and did go through with a tag match with Hornswoggle against The Dirty Blondes. Ryan is scheduled to have it diagnosed this weekend to determine the extent of the tear and how long he will be unable to wrestle. Ryan is one of the most in demand wrestlers on the independent scene and has his own themed show scheduled for WrestleMania Week in New York with Joey Ryan’s Penis Party scheduled for Friday, April 5th. Ryan has withdrawn from his scheduled shows this weekend.

**AXS TV may need to find a new English voice for the first quarter of 2019. Dave Meltzer reported in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter this week that Jim Ross will not be able to sign a new contract with AXS while under a deal to World Wrestling Entertainment through March 2019. Ross was under a deal to AXS when he signed with WWE in 2017 and returned at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando. At the end of the year, when his deal with AXS was up, WWE allowed him to sign an extension and continue his work with AXS calling New Japan Pro Wrestling. This time, it appears WWE will not allow Ross to sign a new deal, which is up at the end of the year. Ross would be free to resume his work at AXS after the expiration of his WWE deal at the end of March, but in the interim AXS TV will need to find a new voice to call the Friday night shows.

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**A report by Parks Associates ranking the top streaming services in the United States shows that the WWE Network has fallen out of the top ten services. Netflix leads the pack by a wide margin with a subscriber base of 58.5 million and are followed by Amazon, Hulu (which has a content agreement with the USA Network and airs WWE programming), HBO Now, Starz, Showtime, and CBS All Access. In the WWE’s third-quarter earnings report, they announced that the WWE Network averaged 1,664,000 paid subscribers throughout the quarter, although they are projecting a drop for the fourth quarter with an expectation of 1,560,000 paid subscribers for the fourth quarter of 2018.

**Linda McMahon’s position within President Donald Trump’s cabinet could be strengthened following reports she is under consideration for a new role. Politico reported that Trump is considering a replacement for Wilbur Ross, who serves as the Commerce Secretary. The report cited McMahon as a potential replacement and other reports have added Ray Washburne’s name to the mix of candidates. McMahon has been the head the Small Business Administration and survived lots of turnover within the Trump administration, which added outgoing Attorney General Jeff Sessions this past week.

**Thursday’s Impact Wrestling episode averaged 129,000 viewers on POP TV. It was their highest number since the time slot change and up from last week’s figure of 105,000 viewers.

**The new era of EVOLVE takes its next step this weekend with cards in Livonia, Michigan tonight and Oak Lawn, Illinois on Saturday. The makeup of the shows reflects the change in direction with a heavier focus on NXT talent that will be present on shows moving forward. Fabian Aicher, The Street Profits, Kassius Ohno, and Mustafa Ali will be part of this weekend’s events. It’s a win for the promotion as more attention will be placed on these shows with the NXT involvement, although it eats up spots for the existing roster but should be viewed as a business decision and having NXT talent that can be broadcast as opposed to dark matches should increase awareness of their product. Given the increased relationship between WWE and EVOLVE, it would be interesting to see what success EVOLVE would have if they ran a loaded show the Friday night of Royal Rumble weekend, increasing the WWE’s events from four to five and where fans draw the line. Game Changer Wrestling has found a successful formula of running the Friday night of WWE’s major shows, which they did for SummerSlam in New York and will be in Los Angeles next week over Survivor Series weekend. The other aspect is the level of promotion the WWE machine provides for EVOLVE cards with the early examples of a heightened digital push on the WWE’s website and social media outlets for the shows with Aichner and the Street Profits winning their respective titles. Tonight’s EVOLVE 115 card will stream live at 8 pm Eastern on WWNLive.com with the following matches:
*Fabian Aichner vs. Kassius Ohno for the EVOLVE title
*The Street Profits vs. JD Drake & Anthony Henry for the EVOLVE tag titles
*Mustafa Ali vs. DJZ
*Allysin Kay vs. Shotzi Blackheart for the SHINE championship
*AR Fox vs. Austin Theory
*Harlem Bravado vs. Josh Briggs vs. Jason Kincaid vs. Leon Ruff

On Saturday, EVOLVE 116 is headlined by The Street Profits vs. AR Fox & Leon Ruff and will also feature Kassius Ohno vs. Shane Strickland, Mustafa Ali vs. Darby Allin and Fabian Aichner vs. Anthony Henry in a non-title match at 7 pm Eastern.

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**The WWE’s European tour wraps up this weekend with three more events. The Raw holds their final show in Rome, Italy on Saturday. The SmackDown crew has a show Saturday in Minehead, England and finish up the tour Sunday in Glasgow at the SSE Hydro in Scotland. Monday’s episode of Raw takes place from the Sprint Center in Kansas City with Brock Lesnar and Stephanie McMahon appearing.

**Here are the matches for tonight’s MLW Fusion show at 8 pm Eastern on beIN Sports:
*Low Ki vs. Daga for the MLW world title
*MJF vs. Jimmy Yuta vs. Jason Cade in an elimination match for the MLW middleweight title
*Marko Stunt vs. Myron Reed

**Ring of Honor is in Buffalo, New York tonight for the third of four Global Wars events. The show will air at 7:30 pm Eastern on Honor Club from the Buffalo Riverworks and below is the card:
*KUSHIDA vs. Jonathan Gresham vs. Flip Gordon vs. Bushi
*Cody & Hangman Page vs. Beretta & Chuckie T. vs. The Briscoe Brothers
*Jay Lethal vs. Chris Sabin in a non-title match
*The Young Bucks vs. Tetsuya Naito & Sanada
*Jeff Cobb vs. EVIL in a non-title match
*Juice Robinson vs. Silas Young
*Dalton Castle vs. TK O’Ryan
*Matt Taven & Vinny Marseglia vs. The Boys

**The Global Wars tour wraps Sunday in Toronto at the Mattamy Athletic Centre. The card is headlined by Jay Lethal defending the ROH title against Kenny King and Cody vs. Beretta for the IWGP United States title at 7 pm Eastern.

**Northeast Wrestling has a huge show tonight from Mid-Hudson Civic Center in Poughkeepsie, New York. The card will be streaming live on the Highspots Wrestling Network if you have a subscription and below is the lineup:
*Kenny Omega vs. Fenix – One of the biggest non-WWE, New Japan matches of the year
*Pentagon Jr. vs. Darby Allin
*Brad Hollister vs. PCO for the Northeast Wrestling championship
*Jack Swagger vs. Rob Van Dam
*Jerry Lawler vs. King Brian Anthony in a No DQ match
*Karen Q vs. Katie Forbes
*Grab for the Gold Ladder match

**New Japan Pro Wrestling will hold two Lion’s Project cards this weekend in Anaheim, California at the Anaheim Convention Center. Below are the match lineups for each day featuring New Japan talent and wrestlers from the California Dojo:
*Saturday, November 10th: Hirooki Goto vs. Jeff Cobb, David Finlay & Jushin Thunder Liger vs. ACH & Clark Connors, Rocky Romero vs. Ryusuke Taguchi, Alex Coughlin vs. Karl Fredericks
*Sunday, November 11th: Kenny Omega vs. David Finlay, Hirooki Goto & Rocky Romero vs. Jeff Cobb & Ryusuke Taguchi, Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Clark Connors, ACH vs. Karl Fredericks

**The WWE stock closed at $69.57 on Friday.

**Impact Wrestling will be in Las Vegas this Sunday for the first of three straight nights of television tapings at Sam’s Town, which is the venue Ring of Honor has run frequently.

**Tuesday’s episode of WWE SmackDown averaged 2,088,000 viewers on the USA Network. While it was the third-lowest number for SmackDown in 2018, it held up better than expected against the U.S Mid-Term Election coverage and was a taped show from Manchester, England.

**Emily Pratt at Uproxx has an in-depth interview with New Japan’s president & CEO Harold Meij.

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**On Wednesday’s episode of NXT, it was officially announced that Shayna Baszler will defend the women’s title against Kairi Sane in a 2-of-3 falls match at TakeOver next Saturday at the Staples Center.

**A Cruiserweight title match between Buddy Murphy and Mustafa Ali has been added to the Survivor Series on November 18th.

**Defiant Wrestling out of the UK has announced that PAC will be wrestling for the group in Newcastle on January 5th and February 16th.

**The XFL has hired Doug Whaley to serve as the league’s Senior Vice President of Football Operations. Whaley is a former General Manager of the Buffalo Bills and is set to begin his new position on December 1st where he will work out of the XFL’s headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut. Whaley will report to XFL commissioner Oliver Luck, where the two will be setting out to hire the coaches and General Managers for the eight teams in the league. The XFL is targeting a launch date for 2020.

**MLW has announced they will be holding their February 2nd “Superfight” card from the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on the eve of the Super Bowl. Tickets for the show go on sale Monday, November 26th at 10 am at MLWgo.com.

**WWE performers Roderick Strong and Marina Shafir were married this past week. The couple has been together several years and had a child in 2017.

**Chris Jericho turns 48 years old today.

**WWE’s chief brand officer Stephanie McMahon-Levesque spoke in Portugal recently about growing global sports brands. McMahon was asked off the top about the decision to run the Crown Jewel card last Friday in Saudi Arabia:

MMA NEWS

**A Champion vs. Champion fight is in the works by the UFC, according to a report from ESPN’s Brett Okamoto. The promotion is expected to announce that bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw will cut down to 125 pounds to fight flyweight champion Henry Cejudo at UFC 233 on Saturday, January 26th at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. This decision to have Cejudo defend his title comes as the UFC appears to be preparing a shutdown of the flyweight division. Earlier this week, Jose Torres was released from his contract and stated it was because the UFC is shutting down the division. Dillashaw and Cejudo won their championships the same night at UFC 227 in August, although neither has defended since. The writing has been on the wall for the flyweight division since the release of Demetrious Johnson, which followed a decision by top contender Sergio Pettis to move up to bantamweight. The decision to have Dillashaw go for the flyweight title seems to be a last grasp at promoting a Champion vs. Champion attraction for the pay-per-view event and would likely result in the titles being unified and the division dissolved after this fight, although that hasn’t been stated.

**CM Punk (Phil Brooks) has been announced as the color commentator for the next Cage Fury Fighting Championships event on Friday, December 14th on UFC Fight Pass. Punk will join play-by-play announcer Mike Gill to call the event from Atlantic City, New Jersey. Brooks made his UFC debut in September 2016 where he was stopped by Mickey Gall and lost by unanimous decision to Mike Jackson this past June at UFC 225.

**Here are the results from the ONE Championship 83 card held Friday morning from Singapore and airing on the promotion’s app:
*Anthony Engelen def. Meas Meu by KO at 0:39 of Round 1
*Xie Bin def. Hisyam Samsudin by D’arce choke at 3:19 of Round 1
*Shuya Kamikubo def. Muhammad Aiman by unanimous decision
*Dejdamrong Sor Amnuaysirichoke def. Himanshu Kaushik by rear-naked choke at 4:45 of Round 2
*Adrian Pang def. Kota Shimoishi by TKO due to a doctor’s stoppage at the end of Round 1
*Garry Tonon def. Sung Jong Lee by guillotine choke at 2:04 of Round 2
*Tiffany Teo def. Michelle Nicolini by unanimous decision
*Christian Lee def. Kazuki Tokudome by TKO at 3:07 of Round 1
*Kevin Belingon def. Bibiano Fernandes by split decision to unify the bantamweight titles

The loss by Bibiano Fernandes was his first since December 31st, 2010 when he dropped a decision to Hiroyuki Takaya. Fernandes had won 14 straight fights since the 2010 loss and became the undisputed ONE bantamweight champion in October 2013 and added seven title defenses to his record since. Belingon and Fernandes fought before in January 2016 where Fernandes won by submission. Belingon won his next six fights, including becoming interim champion to get the rematch with Fernandes on today’s card.

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**The UFC’s 25th-anniversary card goes down Saturday night from the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado, the host city of the first UFC card in November 1993. Below is the full card and results from today’s weigh-in:

MAIN CARD (10 pm Eastern on FS 1, TSN 5 in Canada)
*Chan Sung Jung (146) vs. Yair Rodriguez (145.5)
*Donald Cerrone (170) vs. Mike Perry (170.5)
*Germaine de Randamie (136) vs. Raquel Pennington (138*)
*Beneil Dariush (155.5) vs. Thiago Moises (156)
*Maycee Barber (116.5*) vs. Hannah Cifers (115.5)
*Luis Pena (155) vs. Mike Trizano (155)

PRELIMINARY CARD (8pm on FS 1, Fight Network in Canada)
*Amanda Cooper (116) vs. Ashley Yoder (115.5)
*Chas Skelly (146) vs. Bobby Moffett (146)
*Davi Ramos (156) vs. John Gunther (155.5)
*Julian Erosa (155) vs. Devonte Smith (156)

FIGHT PASS CARD (7 pm Eastern)
*Joseph Morales (125.5) vs. Eric Shelton (126)
*Joby Sanchez (135.5) vs. Mark De La Rosa (136)

Pennington and Barber both in over the weight limit for their respective fights.

**Bellator has announced a featherweight fight between Aaron Pico and Henry Corrales for the Bellator 214 card on January 26th at The Forum in Inglewood, California. Pico has emerged as one of the brightest prospects in the sport with four straight first-round finishes after his debut submission loss to Zach Freeman in June 2017. Pico is coming his biggest win to date stopping Leandro Higo in September. After losing his first three fights with Bellator, Corrales has won his last four with wins over Cody Bollinger, Noad Lahat, Georgi Karakhanyan, and Andy Main.

**Former UFC fighter Rick “The Horror” Story has announced his retirement after fighting professionally for 11 years. Story was a collegiate wrestler and took second place at the NAIA National Championships in 2006 wrestling for Southern Oregon University. He began fighting when he was 23 years old and lost his first fight by decision. After winning six straight fights, he was signed by the UFC and debuted at UFC 99 in June 2009 with a decision loss to John Hathaway. He won his next six fights, including a decision over future welterweight champion Johny Hendricks. He fought 19 times for the UFC and left following a TKO loss to Donald Cerrone in August 2016. He joined the Professional Fighters League for the final three fights of his career with wins over Yuri Villefort and Carlton Minus before submitting to Handesson Ferreira last month. Story is planning to become a police officer and retires with a 21-10 record.

**ONE Championship announced another hiring this week with the news that former UFC women’s bantamweight champion Miesha Tate would be joining ONE and will be a Vice President for the organization. Tate will be moving to Singapore, along with her partner Johnny Nunez, who is expected to fight for the organization. Tate won the UFC bantamweight title from Holly Holm in March 2016 and dropped it to Amanda Nunes in July of the same year with her final fight taking place in November at UFC 205 at Madison Square Garden where she was defeated by Raquel Pennington.

**A flyweight fight between Joseph Benavidez and Ray Borg that was scheduled for Saturday was canceled due to an injury suffered by Borg. MMA Junkie reported that Benavidez has been moved to the TUF Finale card on November 30th to fight Alex Perez in a flyweight bout. Benavidez has won six of his last seven fights but is coming off a decision loss to Sergio Pettis this past June. Perez is 21-4 and won his last eight fights. He came off Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series and has scored wins over Carlos John de Tomas, Eric Shelton, and Jose Torres in the UFC.

**Newsday is reporting that light heavyweights Glover Teixeira and Ion Cutelaba will be fighting on the UFC’s debut card on ESPN+ on Saturday, January 19th at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Teixeira is coming off a decision loss to Corey Anderson in July and Cutelaba has won two straight over Henrique da Silva and Gadzhimurad Antigulov.

*****
REWIND-A-WAI #23: WWE Payback 2013
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE Packback 2013 featuring CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho as Punk returns to Chicago following a two-month hiatus, and John Cena vs. Ryback in a Three Stages of Hell match for the WWE Championship.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/09/rewind-a-wai-23-wwe-payback-2013/
*****
upNXT 11/8/18: BRO-LEEmian Rhapsody
Braden Herrington & Davie Portman chat this week’s episode of WWE NXT featuring Velveteen Dream vs. Lars Sullivan, a final answer as to “why” Gargano attacked Black, Matt Riddle & Keith Lee join forces, Heavy Machinery in action… and more!
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/08/upnxt-11-8-18-bro-leemian-rhapsody/
*****
DOUBLE SHOT 11/7/18: Ultima Lucha Cuatro Part 2, BTE Halloween, Total Divas
John Pollock and Wai Ting bring you the DOUBLE SHOT featuring reviews of Ultima Lucha Cuatro Part 1, Being The Elite with a Halloween-themed episode and footage from the Chris Jericho cruise, Total Divas starring the lovable Rusev and more.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/07/double-shot-11-7-18-ultima-lucha-cuatro-pt-1-bte-halloween-total-divas/
*****
RASD 11/6/18: Survivor Series teams announced, NXT star debuts, Mysterio vs. Almas
The WWE’s second night in Manchester featured the men’s and women’s Survivor Series teams being announced, Daniel Bryan & The Miz are named co-captains, two great matches with New Day vs. The Usos and Rey Mysterio vs. Andrade Cien Almas, Becky Lynch is confronted by the debuting Nikki Cross & more.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/07/rasd-11-6-18-survivor-series-teams-announced-nxt-star-debuts-mysterio-vs-almas/
*****
REWIND-A-RAW 11/5/18: Kurt Angle wrestles, Survivor Series news, Triple H set for surgery
Monday’s Raw from Manchester saw Kurt Angle have his first singles match on Raw since 2006 against Drew McIntyre, the top matches were announced for Survivor Series, plus special news from the POST Office with the launch of the POST Wrestling Store.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/06/rar-11-5-18-angle-wrestles-survivor-series-news-triple-h-set-for-surgery/
*****
UFC 230 POST SHOW
John Pollock is joined by Phil Chertok & Ziggy Cao to rundown the UFC 230 card from Madison Square Garden with Daniel Cormier vs. Derrick Lewis for the UFC heavyweight title.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2018/11/04/ufc-230-post-show-with-john-pollock-phil-chertok-ziggy-cao
*****
NJPW POWER STRUGGLE 2018 POST SHOW (Patreon)
John Pollock & Wai Ting review New Japan’s Power Struggle card from Osaka featuring Chris Jericho vs. EVIL for the IC title, Tetsuya Naito vs. Zack Sabre Jr. & Tomohiro Ishii vs. Minoru Suzuki.
https://www.patreon.com/posts/22493628
*****

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About John Pollock 5441 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.