POST IT NOTES
**On Friday, Wai Ting and I return with Rewind-A-Wai and it’s a double review with a trip back to July 13th, 1998. Espresso Executive Producer Daniel Holmes has chosen the episodes of WWF Raw is War and WCW Monday Nitro from that date. Wai will be reviewing Raw and I’ll tackle Nitro as we compare notes, go through an insane period where both promotions are on fire, Bill Goldberg’s rise to the top of WCW, the Bash at the Beach pay-per-view the night prior, the WWF’s summer direction with Steve Austin and The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels brief stint on commentary, Brawl for All, and so much more. This show will be available Friday for members of the POST Wrestling Café.
**Today’s edition of upNXT is hosted by Braden Herrington and I joined him for the entire show to review this week’s NXT, chat WrestleMania week, Tommaso Ciampa and the recent NXT call ups, and concerts we have attended.
**POST Wrestling is running a New Japan Cup bracketology contest where you can pick all the matches in the tournament. The winner will be announced after the finals on March 24th and it is free to enter.
**On Saturday, we will have a new edition of POST Puroresu with WH Park and a UFC 235 POST Show with Phil Chertok joining me.
**Ronda Rousey and Becky Lynch continued their feud on Twitter throughout the day. It started with Rousey calling her a “ginger crutch ninja” and mocking the “fake prison photos in the hallway” that the WWE is marketing as a t-shirt to play on the arrest angle. Lynch responded telling Rousey to get better at this business instead of trying to remain above it, prompting Rousey to mock her fake armbar that doesn’t work and comparing it to “the dick you wish you had”. So, Lynch photoshopped a picture of Travis Browne and it concludes with Rousey calling Becky by her legit name and “I don’t care what the script says, I’m beating the living shit out of you the next time I see you.”
The two are trying to take this feud to a personal level and by trading these tweets for the audience intended to consume it, the goal is to make the fanbase question if one side is going too far to convey a sense of legitimate hatred. Twitter is not a scripted environment for the performers, for a 2019 grudge program, this is the cost of doing business when talent must figure out where the line is and dance on it without crossing it. This same type of promo verbalized on television about fake moves and not following the script would be garbage, but that isn’t the medium. They are playing this out on Twitter, the same outlet where Stephanie McMahon’s bio reads “TV villain” as the WWE dances with reality and story through social media.
**Tommaso Ciampa is dealing with an injury with Mike Johnson at PWinsider.com reporting it to be a neck issue. We were told that Ciampa had been dealing with the issue prior to Monday and the hope was he could work through WrestleMania and then get it taken care of.
Obviously, if Ciampa requires surgery it would throw certain plans out the window with Ciampa holding the NXT title. It is also tough to write Ciampa off Raw and SmackDown with an injury when he still has matches that will be airing on NXT over the next few weeks as part of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. In Johnson’s report, he stated that Ciampa and Gargano were scheduled for a four-way tag match on Raw, which was changed to The Revival vs. Aleister Black and Ricochet after Ciampa was removed from a physical role on the show.
**We were told by one person in the WWE that the decision to make the switch involving Kofi Kingston and Kevin Owens for the Fastlane title match was made last week. If Kofi Kingston does, in fact, get the title match at WrestleMania it is going to be a unique set of circumstances that led to that match. It stemmed from a concussion that Mustafa Ali sustained earlier this month at a house show and the momentum Kingston gained going into Elimination Chamber.
**PWinsider.com was the first to report that Madison Rayne has been granted her release from Ring of Honor. The report cites creative differences regarding her direction, and she is free to work anywhere.
**Tuesday’s episode of SmackDown saw a 5% drop week-over-week with 2,150,000 viewers on the USA Network. Despite the minor drop, it was still the show’s second-highest viewership total of 2019 and can partially be attributed to the news coming out of Raw, led by the return of Roman Reigns and the show’s highest viewership since last summer.
**Mustafa Ali was being evaluated this past week at the television tapings. On Thursday, Ali tweeted out a message that said, “Put me back in, Coach”.
**Impact will be holding a television taping in Toronto on Monday, April 29th at the Rebel Entertainment Complex the night after the Rebellion pay-per-view at the same venue. It is the promotion’s first time back in Toronto since last August.
**The WWE has put together an oral history of the Nation of Domination faction from 1996-98. The feature includes interviews with Ron Simmons, Mark Henry, D-Lo Brown, and The Godfather.
**New Japan Pro Wrestling has announced that tickets for the opening night of the G1 Climax at the American Airlines Center in Dallas will go on sale March 13th at 1 pm Eastern. It is by far the largest U.S. arena the promotion has run with tickets priced from $50 to $300 (U.S.). The card will take place Saturday, July 6th with the remainder of the G1 taking place in Japan and concluding with three straight nights at Budokan Hall. This will be a major test for the popularity of the product as they are bringing a loaded card and is a proper G1 tournament.
**On Thursday, Impact Wrestling announced they have signed Rosemary to a new two-year contract. This was their tease regarding a former Impact champion returning.
**Tanga Loa was interviewed on the “Art of Wrestling” podcast by Colt Cabana and mentioned that he is not under contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling despite holding the IWGP tag titles with Tama Tonga.
**The WWE is no longer listing Axxess as part of the SummerSlam travel package for Toronto next August. The company originally announced Axxess would take place during the week at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, which has also removed the event from their site. We have reached out to the WWE and are awaiting confirmation regarding the official status.
**MLW will have a two-hour live special on beIN Sports on Friday, April 5th when the promotion runs their second card of WrestleMania week from the Melrose Ballroom in Queens, New York. The second night will feature the 40-man Battle Riot battle royal. A timeslot has not been announced for the special but will likely go up against TakeOver from the Barclays Center.
**On the latest edition of “The Road to Double or Nothing”, All Elite Wrestling announced the signing of Bea Priestley. The U.K. star will debut in July at the “Fight for the Fallen” event in Jacksonville, Florida, which has not been given a date or venue yet. It will be the second event that AEW will hold after Double or Nothing in May.
**Impact Wrestling has announced a tag match with LAX taking on Low Ki and Ricky Martinez on Thursday, April 4th at the United We Stand card from Rahway, New Jersey. The event will be streaming on Fite TV at 11 pm Eastern that night.
**New Japan Pro Wrestling has announced that the Japanese talent has received their visas to work in the U.S. over WrestleMania weekend. In addition to the G1 Supercard at Madison Square Garden, there will also be New Japan talent on the Rev Pro card on Friday, April 5th.
**A unification match between Progress world champion WALTER and Atlas champion Trent Seven has been announced for Day 2 of the Super Strong Style 16 weekend on May 5th. The card will take place from Alexandra Palace in London, England.
**The WWE stock closed at $83.70 on Thursday.
**The Nevada Athletic Commission has released the drug test results for Jon Jones leading into Saturday’s fight with Anthony Smith. Two tests administered on February 14th and 15th to Jones came back with trace amounts of the same metabolite for oral Turinabol. The first test showed 40 picograms per milliliter of the metabolite and the February 15th test showed 20 picograms per milliliter. The results will not affect Jones’ ability to fight this weekend and there is no evidence that Jones re-administered a banned substance and they believe this is traced to the initial findings in his July 2017 drug test, which Jones was fined and suspended over and had a win over Daniel Cormier changed to a no contest. In MMA Fighting’s story, reporter Marc Raimondi added that the California State Athletic Commission has tested Jones nine times since UFC 232 in December. Of those nine tests, five have come back clean and four has shown the presence of the M3 long-term metabolite.
**Matt Hughes has released a statement in response to the allegations made against the former welterweight champion his wife Audra and brother Mark. Both family members had filed for and been granted orders of protection from Hughes citing alleged incidents of abuse from Matt towards Audra and Mark’s 15-year old son.
Since my train accident in June of 2017, my life has been changed forever. Some days have been absolute hell. The challenges and battles that I have faced have been far greater than anything I ever took on in a cage. I am not the same person since my accident, even though, everyday I continue to try to be as normal as someone with a brain injury can be.
I understand that it is not fun to teach a grown man to learn to do everything all over again. I understand that I am a burden to those around me. I understand that I am an inconvenience to my family.
Unfortunately, my marriage was not perfect long before the accident, but NEVER, NEVER, NEVER would I, or have I, physically hurt those who I care about most.
I do not resent those who are trying to hurt me and paint me out to be a monster through these false accusations. I understand now that they are just doing what they need to do in order to rid me of their lives forever so theirs can return to normalcy. I feel awful that my accident turned their world upside-down also.
To those of you who have helped me, supported me, cared for me, and prayed for me- I truly cannot thank you enough. To my supporters who defended me and never believed these untrue, disgraceful reports for a second- thank you.
If there is one silver lining that this accident has revealed, it is the ability to see who my true friends are. To know who are faithful and have never given up on me even when I am at my lowest. Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I do not know where I would be without you. Please keep the prayers coming. God knows I need them.
**The UFC is holding a press conference on Friday at 6 pm Eastern with Max Holloway, Dustin Poirier, Israel Adesanya, and Kelvin Gastelum to promote UFC 236 on April 13th in Atlanta.
**Below is the latest edition of UFC Embedded for this Saturday’s pay-per-view:
upNXT 2/28/19: The Bray D & JoPo
Braden Herrington is joined by POST Wrestling’s John Pollock to review this week’s edition of WWE NXT including a huge match from Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic, Shayna Baszler vs. Mia Yim, and DIY are “officially” back together.
DOUBLE SHOT 2/27/19: “Fighting with My Family”, Being the Elite, Total Bellas
John Pollock and Wai Ting review the Paige-inspired film “Fighting with My Family” starring Florence Pugh and Vince Vaughn, The Young Bucks return to Chicago on Being The Elite, and after injuring Liv Morgan, Brie Bella struggles with self and public criticism on this week’s Total Bellas.
RASD 2/26/19: KO-Fi’d, New Fastlane Main Event, Hardys reunite
Tuesday’s episode of SmackDown featured the announcement by Vince McMahon that Kofi Kingston would not be challenging Daniel Bryan for the WWE title at Fastlane, Kevin Owens is back, Matt Hardy reunited with his brother as The Hardys took on The Bar, Charlotte Flair is coming to Raw, R-Truth resurrects the U.S. title Open Challenge and lots more on a busy episode.
REWIND-A-RAW 2/25/19: Roman Reigns is back, Batista attacks Ric Flair
On a huge episode of Raw, Roman Reigns made his first appearance since October to announce his cancer is in remission. The show built to Ric Flair’s birthday celebration and a huge angle to end the show involving the return of Dave Batista.
Café Hangout: Ariel Helwani on GSP’s Retirement
John Pollock and Wai Ting are joined by ESPN’s Ariel Helwani to discuss the retirement of Georges St-Pierre. We also take your calls and discuss this week’s news including Tye Dillinger requesting his WWE release.
ASK-A-WAI: Ask Us Anything! (March 2019)
John Pollock and Wai Ting cover over 50 questions in this 95 min podcast, discussing their favorite announcers, Weezer, Pedro Morales, NXT call-ups, AEW, Tyron Woodley, AJ Styles, Dean Ambrose, factions, Chris Benoit, Impact and more in the March 2019 edition of Ask-A-Wai.
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