POST IT NOTES
**Wai Ting and I did a 90-minute NJPW Dominion POST Show on Sunday night for members of the POST Wrestling Café. We reviewed the entire card, discussed the news coming out, the arrival of KENTA, the G1 announcements, the many problems we had with Kota Ibushi vs. Tetsuya Naito, how the main event came across, the angle involving Chris Jericho and Hiroshi Tanahashi, and lots more on the show.
**The final interview from our Owen Hart documentary has been released for POST Wrestling Café members. Earlier today, we posted the interview with Treigh Lindstrom, who spent Owen’s final day with him after driving him from the airport to Kemper Arena and hanging out with him all day. All six interviews with Lindstrom, Jimmy Korderas, Jeff Marek, Jason King, Paul Lazenby, and Heath McCoy are available to Patrons.
**Braden Herrington and Davie Portman will be making an announcement on upNXT this week about something they are planning.
**Wai Ting and I will be back later tonight with Rewind-A-Raw to discuss the show from San Jose, go through all of the day’s news, and take your questions & feedback.
POST WRESTLING SCHEDULE
*Tonight: Rewind-A-Raw with John Pollock & Wai Ting
*Wednesday: British Wrestling Experience with Martin Bushby, Benno & Jamesie
*Wednesday: The Double Shot (Patreon)
*Thursday: upNXT with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
*Thursday: Café Hangout with John Pollock & Wai Ting, guests Damian Abraham & Anthony Kingdom James (3 pm Eastern for Double Double+ Patrons)
*Friday: Rewind-A-Wai #38 – WWE Backlash 2004 (Patreon)
*Saturday: Cruel Summer “1995” with WH Park & Martin Bushby
*Saturday: The Rocky Maivia Picture Show “Southland Tales” with Nate Milton & Brian Mann
*Sunday: Cruel Summer “1996” with WH Park & STRIGGA
*Sunday: POST Puroresu with John Pollock & WH Park
**The major discussion after Dominion was not the G1, KENTA coming to New Japan, the angle with Chris Jericho and Hiroshi Tanahashi, or even the Dragon Lee vs. Will Ospreay match that stole the show. Instead, it was the bar being raised to a frightening level by Kota Ibushi and Tetsuya Naito in a display that turned more people off and took them out of the match, the opposite of the intended goal.
On Saturday night, I witnessed one of the more brutal knockouts in recent memory when Valentina Shevchenko put Jessica Eye to sleep with a violent head kick that landed as clean as possible. It was frightening to watch Eye separate from consciousness and going through several long minutes before she regained it. I didn’t expect to see something eerily similar hours later but that was my reaction witnessing Naito’s German suplex delivered to Ibushi, whose head crashed on the edge of the apron and landed on the floor. The slow-motion replay of Ibushi’s head twisting on the edge is a visual I won’t soon forget and my mental checkout from the match. Yes, wrestling is a physical story that can often elicit the most dramatic beats when tiptoeing past simulated violence into actual but this far exceeded the general spectators’ threshold for the danger quotient expected or desired.
Don Callis openly called for a referee stoppage, likely reflecting his honest reaction as Ibushi landed inches in front of him from the suplex.
The match continued with numerous attacks to the head and neck, including an errant head butt that caused enormous swelling above Ibushi’s left eye. He suffered a concussion this past January during his match with Will Ospreay and it would be stunning if he didn’t receive another one this contest.
I am not holding my breath for these performers to wake up and suddenly realize their limitations, but I do hope a better protocol is introduced. On Friday, we witnessed Bill Goldberg try to finish a match he had no business continuing and I felt the same way during Dominion.
Ibushi posted a photo of his swollen eye on Monday with the following message:
Now there are the next series too! It’s the first time someone who wrestles for 15 years and comes to a head. I will give it back if I can do it. Or are your eyes, mouth and teeth good? Don’t run away ♪ head thrust explosion
**On Sunday, New Japan Pro Wrestling announced the return of the Super J Cup tournament, which will take place in the United States this August after the G1 Climax concludes. The tournament will be spread out over three shows with the following dates announced:
*Thursday, August 22nd at the Temple Theatre in Tacoma, Washington
*Saturday, August 24th at the San Francisco State University Student Life Event Center in San Francisco
*Sunday, August 25th at the Walter Pyramid in Long Beach, California.
The tournament was first conceived in 1994 with New Japan hosting that year’s tournament, which became a must-have for tape traders and grew in its legend as one of the greatest shows of all time led by the performances from The Great Sasuke on the show, who lost in the final to Chris Benoit. It returned the following year with WAR promoting the event where Jushin Thunder Liger won his first Super J Cup. The 1995 show also featured an exhibition between Rey Mysterio Jr. and Psicosis, which wasn’t part of the tournament but featured Mysterio on a high-profile event with his best opponent. They shelved the tournament until 2000 with additional tournaments in 2004 and 2009 but didn’t have the same attention that the first two received. New Japan Pro Wrestling brought it back in 2016 where KUSHIDA won. The 2016 show included talent from NJPW, NOAH, Dragon Gate, Ring of Honor, CMLL, All Japan, Kaientai Dojo, and Ryukyu Dragon Pro Wrestling.
Participants have not been announced but Liger has been announced as the one producing the tournament and it makes all the sense in the world for him to be the sentimental favorite prior to his retirement in January. For his own sake, I hope Will Ospreay is not involved as he’s going from one intense tournament with the Best of the Super Juniors into the G1 Climax and this is one tournament he can afford to skip.
**NJPW will be announcing all the G1 Climax participants and blocks at this Sunday’s Kizuna Road card at Korakuen Hall. The major matches of the tournament will be announced the following day’s show at Korakuen Hall. Thus far, they have promoted Jon Moxley, Shingo Takagi, and KENTA as participants. Since 2015, they have gone with 20 participants and went as high as 22 in 2014. This year, there are several that won’t be returning with Michael Elgin, Kenny Omega, Hangman Page, and Tama Tonga not expected. I could also see this year being the one where they take Togi Makabe out of the lineup and could open a spot for either Jeff Cobb or Brody King, both of whom I’d love to see added.
**Tonight’s episode of Raw takes place from the SAP Center in San Jose, California. They need to shoot the key angles this week for Stomping Grounds with two weeks to build up that show. They have announced the following for tonight’s episode:
*Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins vs. The Revival vs. The Usos for the Raw tag titles
*Miz TV with Samoa Joe
*A celebration segment involving Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre
**The SmackDown crew has a rare Monday night house show in Reno, Nevada tonight and therefore, it’s a limited pool they can draw from for the wild card rule.
**AEW has released the seating chart for “All Out” at the Sears Center on August 31st in Chicago. The cheapest tickets are listed at $30 and go as high as $190, which don’t include the added fees that will be charged. Tickets will go on sale this Friday at Noon Eastern and I’m expecting another immediate sellout. When it comes to the big shows from AEW, the demand has been enormous, while shows like Fyter Fest and Fight for the Fallen don’t appear to be ones where people are going to hold to the same level. Of the tickets available on Ticketmaster for Fyter Fest, there are 184 remaining with most of the sections sold out. Fight for the Fallen is on July 13th and there are lots of tickets still available at Daily’s Place in Jacksonville.
**On Monday’s edition of Being the Elite, they announced a four-way match with Hangman Page vs. Jungle Boy vs. MJF vs. Jimmy Havoc for Fyter Fest on Saturday, June 29th in Daytona Beach, Florida.
**Akira Tozawa will be wrestling for EVOLVE on Saturday, July 13th at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia.
**House of Glory has announced that The Young Bucks will be wrestling on their High Intensity 8 event on Friday, August 9th in Queens, New York at the NYC Arena. The Bucks are teasing that this could be their final independent show ever. HOG has not announced their opponents for the show.
**The Super Smash Brothers will now go by the name Dark Order in All Elite Wrestling. The two had gotten away from the former and been marketing themselves as SSB but even that was going to be a grey area, so with a national platform, it made sense to make the wholesale change at this point. I wish they had the name locked in and decided upon for their debut so they could have identified the team on the broadcast. Instead, it didn’t work for the live crowd and it didn’t work for the audience at home that may not have known who they were.
**The WWE has announced that Triple H will be going to Japan later this month to work one of the two events at Sumo Hall. On June 28th, the show will feature Triple H teaming with AJ Styles, Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson against Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley, Baron Corbin & Samoa Joe. That card is headlined by Seth Rollins vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the Universal title. There is a second night at the venue on June 29th, but Triple H is not listed for that show.
**Writer Yaz Jung has written a piece defending the WWE’s position in their dealings with the General Sports Authority of Saudi Arabia.
**I was told to make sure to watch the match between Laredo Kid and El Hijo Del Vikingo from Sunday’s AAA card at Arena Coliseo. The match aired on AAA’s Twitch channel with Laredo Kid defending the AAA Cruiserweight title.
**A new episode of Table for 3 will air tonight after Raw featuring Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan, and Liv Morgan on the WWE Network.
**The WWE stock closed at $71.51 on Monday.
**The attendance for Saturday’s UFC 238 card was 16,083 and a gate of $2,034,387.49. This wasn’t at the same level that last year’s UFC 225 show did in the same arena with 18,117 and $2,550,000. Last year’s card also featured two title fights with Robert Whittaker defeating Yoel Romero to retain the middleweight title and was my pick for Fight of the Year, along with Colby Covington, who defeated Rafael dos Anjos to become the Interim welterweight champion, which meant nothing. The one notable difference was last year’s show had CM Punk in his second pro fight where he lost to Mike Jackson and probably made a difference for the Chicago market even if the bloom was off the rose regarding the interest in seeing Punk fight on a national level.
**The Fight of the Night bonus went to Tony Ferguson and Donald Cerrone and the Performance of the Night bonuses to Henry Cejudo and Valentina Shevchenko. Each received $50,000 for the bonus. Shevchenko scored one of the scariest knockouts in a long time with Jessica Eye knocked unconscious and didn’t come to for several minutes. On the broadcast, they kept the cameras off Eye, although Joe Rogan and Daniel Cormier were providing commentary on Eye’s status and were not avoiding it with both doing a great job of keeping the viewer alerted to her status.
**The big show of the week is the Bellator 222 event from Madison Square Garden featuring the semi-finals of the Welterweight Grand Prix tournament as Rory MacDonald defends his title against Neiman Gracie in the main event. MacDonald is coming back quickly after a tough fight with Jon Fitch where MacDonald was openly questioning his future in the sport in his post-fight interview but accepted the fight with Gracie and should be a big favorite to win and fight Douglas Lima in the final. Marquee wise, the main event is Chael Sonnen fighting Lyoto Machida, although it doesn’t feel like a big fight, especially for that market. The promotion throughout this week will be on the shoulders of Sonnen as you know what to expect from Machida and it won’t be a two-way street with the hype.
On the undercard, they have some interesting fights. Aaron Pico was knocked out badly by Henry Corrales in his last fight and faces Adam Borics on the preliminary portion. He has yet to get out of the first round of his pro career as he walks in with a 4-2 record. He is only 22 years old and has enormous potential but has displayed flaws and will always have a big spotlight on him because of the hype surrounding him. Heather Hardy is also fighting on the prelims against Taylor Turner in her fourth MMA fight. Hardy is 2-1 and hasn’t fought since February 2018 when she defeated Ana Julaton but had a pair of boxing wins since her last time fighting for Bellator.
Here is the full main card for Friday’s show, which streams on DAZN at 10 pm Eastern:
*Rory MacDonald vs. Neiman Gracie in the semi-finals of the Welterweight Grand Prix
*Lyoto Machida vs. Chael Sonnen
*Darrion Caldwell vs. Kyoji Horiguchi for the Bellator bantamweight title
*Ricky Bandejas vs. Patrick Mix
*Eduardo Dantas vs. Juan Archuleta
*Dillon Danis vs. Max Humphrey
POST Profile Bonus: Treigh Lindstrom
John Pollock speaks with Treigh Lindstrom, a fan that spent the day with Owen Hart prior to his passing on May 23, 1999, in Kansas City, MO.
NJPW Dominion 2019 POST Show
John Pollock & Wai Ting review NJPW Dominion 2019 featuring Kazuchika Okada vs. Chris Jericho, the debut of KENTA, and one of the most sickening neck bumps we’ve ever seen.
Cruel Summer #4: 1994
WH Park welcomes New Japan English commentator, Mavs Gillis to discuss the finals of NJPW’s 4th G1 Climax tournament: Masahiro Chono vs. Power Warrior from August 7, 1994.
UFC 238 POST Show: Henry Cejudo vs. Marlon Moraes
John Pollock and Phil Chertok are back to review Saturday’s UFC 238 pay-per-view from Chicago with Henry Cejudo vs. Marlon Moraes and Valentina Shevchenko vs. Jessica Eye.
Cruel Summer #3: 1993
WH Park welcomes Damon MacDonald of the Super J-Cast show to discuss the finals of NJPW’s 3rd entry of the G1 Climax tournament: Hiroshi Hase vs. Tatsumi Fujinami from August 7, 1993.
WWE Super Showdown POST Show
John Pollock & Wai Ting review WWE Super Showdown and welcome guests for a discussion about WWE’s ongoing relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Café Hangout w/ Damian Abraham in-studio
John Pollock & Wai Ting are joined in-studio by Damian Abraham on this week’s Café Hangout discussing rumors of Alexa Bliss & Natalya possibly wrestling in Saudi Arabia on Friday. Plus, The Wrestlers profiles Stardom.
John Pollock and Wai Ting answer their patrons’ questions from the POST Wrestling Forum in the June 2019 edition of Ask-A-Wai.
upNXT 6/6/19: HangOver VI
Braden Herrington and Davie Portman chat all about the fallout from NXT TakeOver: XXV, plus Bianca Belair vs. Mia Yim and Keith Lee vs. Kona Reeves.
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