POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Jon Moxley on NJPW debut & more

Jon Moxley discusses his New Japan debut, Alexa Bliss on her concussion issues, title change at a wedding, Nikki Bella comments on her health, MMA cards this weekend & more.

Photo courtesy: NJPW 


**We have a special Q&A on the site with Benno of the British Wrestling Experience. In this chat, he discusses the implications of WWE’s move from Sky Sports to BT Sport after a 30-year relationship, the popularity of the company, Sky’s future with professional wrestling, the reach of BT Sport, and he also discusses the legacy of Adrian ‘Lionheart’ McCallum.

**On this week’s edition of Café Hangout, Wai Ting and I go through a lot of news from the past few days with a discussion regarding KENTA’s interview with Weekly Pro Wrestling on his time in 205 Live and decision to go to New Japan, Nikki Bella’s health update, the WWE-BT Sport announcement, and a big preview of Stomping Grounds on Sunday. Plus, we spoke with Damian Abraham about the two episodes of The Wrestlers from this past week. This week’s episodes were ‘Powerful Women of Wrestling’ and ‘The Next Wave of Mexican Luchadores’. The Café Hangout airs live each Thursday at 3 pm Eastern for Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso members of the POST Wrestling Café.

**Our monthly MCU review is available for Café members with Wai Ting and I reviewing ‘Ant-Man’ starring Paul Rudd from 2015. This will be our final MCU review until the end of the summer when we will resume our movie reviews after the G1 Climax.

**On Saturday, we will have a new edition of Cruel Summer hosted by WH Park and his guest Braden Herrington from upNXT. The two will review the finals of the 1997 G1 between Kensuke Sasaki and Hiroyoshi Tenzan. On Sunday, WH will be joined by Dylan Fox of the Eastern Lariat podcast to review the 1998 final involving Shinya Hashimoto and Kazuo Yamazaki.

**A reminder that tickets are available for the POST Wrestling LIVE in Toronto Q&A on Sunday, August 11th. The LIVE Q&A will take place from the John Candy Box Theatre at Second City in downtown Toronto.

**Braden Herrington & Davie Portman will be hosting an NXT TakeOver Tailgate Party on Saturday, August 10th at the Wide Open bar at 139A Spadina Avenue. Tickets are $7.50 and can be purchased at this link.

**Finally, Wai Ting and I return on Sunday night for the Stomping Grounds POST Show, which will be streaming LIVE for Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso members of the Café immediately after the pay-per-view. For those members, a link will be sent out during the PPV so you can watch our POST Show and call in.


**Jon Moxley was interviewed by New Japan following his debut earlier this month at Sumo Hall against Juice Robinson. Here are some of the highlights from the discussion:
-He debated whether to incorporate his Shield entrance by walking through the crowd but acknowledged it was the right call because it’s a cool entrance and felt it enhanced the feel for the match because the mood in the arena adjusted when he came through the audience
-Moxley said he always loved wrestling in Japan when he was in WWE, more so than working on television or even at WrestleMania because of the respect the fans have for the sport
-Regarding his gear, he had new ring boots to wear that didn’t fit and neither did an old pair, so he went with the wrestling shoes. He hated wrestling in jeans in WWE and did so because it separated him from everyone else but never wants to wrestle in them again.
– He also discussed his history with Juice Robinson in FCW where Robinson would ride with him and Seth Rollins and seek advice from them. Moxley was ecstatic with their match at Sumo Hall and has been following his career since he came to New Japan in 2015.

**Alexa Bliss spoke to the New York Post ahead of this Sunday’s Stomping Grounds show. She discussed her issues with several concussions that sidelined her and concerned her that it could end her career. She has been under the watch of Dr. Michael Collins out of Pittsburgh and has helped educate her on concussions and different types that eased her anxiety about the issues. It was noted that it caused her to be unable to wrestle on last October’s Evolution card and was also didn’t participate in the women’s Money in the Bank Ladder match last month. Regarding her recent trip to Saudi Arabia with Natalya and the WWE crew, she noted that “One person came up to me during the show, shook my hand and thanked us for being there and said, ‘We really hope to see you guys have a match here soon. So it’s definitely something that would be embraced, I feel”.

**WWE performer Drake Maverick married fellow wrestler Renee Michelle on Thursday with the WWE filming the ceremony and running an angle at the ceremony involving the 24/7 title. Maverick was wearing the championship and walking up the aisle after the ceremony when a referee appeared. R-Truth appeared from the pew and rolled up Maverick to win the title. It was tremendously well-done and easily, the best segment since the introduction of the title:

Maverick’s groomsmen included EC3 and Jeremy Borash and several WWE performers attended the wedding.

**The Bella Twins appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon on Wednesday night and Nikki discussed her decision to stop wrestling. She revealed another herniated disc in her neck along with inflammation around the metal from her neck surgery in 2016 and was found to have a cyst on her brain. Nikki didn’t go into further details regarding the cyst but stated the decision to retire was not hers as WWE informed her that she was done. Based on the issues concerning the brain and neck, it would seem her in-ring career with WWE would be over. Nikki has since commented and stated that the cyst is benign.

Nikki and Brie were first signed by WWE in 2007 after they tried out for the Diva Search the previous year and didn’t make it into the competition. They were trained in Florida Championship Wrestling and brought up to the main roster in 2008. While Nikki had a lengthy reign as Diva’s champion, the major impact The Bellas had was through the success of Total Divas and later Total Bellas. The series has catapulted WWE into a series of spinoffs on E! that has generated the company additional television revenue and opened a different audience to the performers.

**On that note, Total Bellas has been picked up for a fifth season by E! and will return ‘early next year’, according to the press release. The fifth season will consist of ten episodes.

**Fite TV will be carrying Fyter Fest and Fight for the Fallen for viewers in the U.K. and Ireland. The announcement was made in conjunction with ITV Box Office with the shows available for £8.99 in the U.K. and €9.99 in Ireland for each event. Fyter Fest will air next Saturday, June 29th and Fight for the Fallen Saturday, July 13th. Both shows will be free events for U.S. viewers on B/R Live and be carried on Fite TV for those without access to B/R Live.

**The Dana Brooke match with Sarah Logan aired on this week’s episode of Main Event. The match was stopped abruptly after Brooke was sent into the post from a knee strike on the edge of the apron. Brooke was cut open and they waved off the match. We were told Brooke was walking around fine backstage and required a few stitches but was alright.

**Tuesday’s New Japan card from Sendai is headlined by Zack Sabre Jr. defending the British heavyweight title against Yoshi-Hashi with an additional stipulation. If Yoshi-Hashi wins, he will take Sabre’s spot in the upcoming G1 Climax tournament that begins on July 6th. The show in Sendai will stream live on New Japan World and also features a British Cruiserweight title match with El Phantasmo defending against Ryusuke Taguchi.

**There are two Raw house shows this weekend with a card in Missoula, Montana tonight and Spokane, Washington Saturday. Seth Rollins, Becky Lynch, Baron Corbin, Sami Zayn, and Braun Strowman are the top performers advertised. The Stomping Grounds pay-per-view goes down Sunday night from the Tacoma Dome in Washington with a 6 pm Eastern start for the kickoff show. The SmackDown crew will be in Portland, Oregon on Tuesday night for the television tapings and then fly to Singapore for a card on Thursday followed by two nights at Sumo Hall in Tokyo next Friday and Saturday.

**The Stomping Grounds show has minimal buzz heading into the weekend with a combination of factors. They had a fast turnaround with only two weeks to promote the show along with a lot of matches that are retreads or just have a minimal interest, to begin with. It’s also a show without AJ Styles, Charlotte Flair, Finn Balor, Rey Mysterio, and Andrade to name a few so that affects the match quality greatly when you eliminate that core. There are currently nine matches announced, but they have not designated which match(es) will be part of the kickoff show.

**Starrcast has announced a stage show featuring Dean Malenko for the weekend of All Out in Illinois. The show will take place on Friday, August 30th in the morning at the Hyatt Regency Hotel.

**Here are the matches for tonight’s episode of Impact Wrestling at 10 pm Eastern on the Pursuit Channel and Twitch:
*Rich Swann vs. Johnny Impact vs. Michael Elgin
*Taya Valkyrie vs. Su Yung for the Knockout’s title
*Tessa Blanchard vs. Jake Crist
*Tommy Dreamer vs. Moose

**The NXT Breakout Tournament will begin airing on next week’s episode of NXT. The quarter and semi-finals were taped last week at the tapings at Full Sail University with the finals scheduled for TakeOver: Toronto on Saturday, August 10th at the Scotiabank Arena. Next week’s opening round match will feature Joaquin Wilde (DJZ) vs. Angel Garza (Garza Jr., who was said to have torn the house down last week with his matches). The other opening round matches include Jordan Myles (ACH) vs. BOA, Dexter Lumis (Sam Shaw) vs. Bronson Reed (Jonah Rock), and Isiah Scott (Shane Strickland) vs. Cameron Grimes (Trevor Lee).

**The WWE Network will be airing a new edition of ‘365’ on Alexa Bliss following the Stomping Grounds show on Sunday night.

**MLW has announced an ‘Unsanctioned match’ with Ross & Marshall Von Erich against Simon Gotch & Josef Samael of Contra Unit for the Kings of Colosseum show on Saturday, July 6th at Cicero Stadium in Illinois.

**Rocky Romero will be holding a seminar for aspiring wrestlers at the New Japan Dojo in Los Angeles on Tuesday, July 9th at 7:30 pm local time. It is open to wrestlers with minimal experience as well as intermediate wrestlers with a $50 fee and can register on their site.

**Timothy Thatcher has been added to MLW’s Never Say Never television taping on Thursday, July 25th at the Melrose Ballroom in New York City.

**The WWE stock closed at $73.49 on Friday.

**Showtime Sports has posted the full Bipolar Rock ‘N’ Roller documentary on Mauro Ranallo. The documentary is an incredibly in-depth look at Ranallo’s struggles with mental health throughout his life. I highly recommend watching it.


**While the UFC and Bellator will present cards this weekend, the most interesting show regarding the business it generates is the Bareknuckle FC card headlined by boxer Paulie Malignaggi and Artem Lobov. The promotional push for the fight has right out of Memphis Wrestling with the pull apart brawls, Malignaggi’s wild promos and attempting to draw interest off the fumes of Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregor in 2017. Malignaggi was front-and-center during the lead up to that fight because of his infamous sparring session with McGregor, where the footage was released and Malignaggi went everywhere speaking about the incident and became a big storyline ahead of the fight. Lobov has been affiliated with McGregor and SBG Ireland throughout his career and it’s a dynamic that could grab interest. The card also features former UFC star Chris Leben fighting Dakota Cochrane and Johnny Bedford taking on Reggie Barnett. The card will air on traditional pay-per-view with clearances on DirecTV, Dish Network, as well as Rogers and Bell in Canada as well as Fite TV and the Bareknuckle.tv site that lists the show for $39.99 U.S.

**The UFC lost a fight from the main card of Saturday’s show in Greenville, South Carolina. Hours before the weigh-ins, bantamweight John Lineker withdrew from his fight with Rob Font. Alex Davis, Linker’s manager spoke to ESPN and informed the outlet that his fighter has sustained a cut over his left eyebrow Thursday evening and was off Saturday’s card. The two were scheduled to fight underneath Saturday’s main event between Rentato Moicano and Chan Sung Jung.

**Here is the full card for Saturday’s UFC Fight Night event from the Bon Secours Wellness Center in Greenville, South Carolina with the results from Friday’s weigh-in:

MAIN CARD (7 pm Eastern on ESPN+, TSN 2 in Canada)

*Renato Moicano (146) vs. Chan Sung Jung (146)
*Randy Brown (170.5) vs. Bryan Barberena (170)
*Montana De La Rosa (126) vs. Andrea Lee (125)
*Kevin Holland (186) vs. Alessio Di Chirico (186)

PRELIMINARY CARD (4 pm Eastern on ESPN+, 5 pm on TSN 2 in Canada)

*Dan Ige (146) vs. Kevin Aguilar (145.5)
*Syuri Kondo (115.5) vs. Ashley Yoder (115.5)
*Luis Pena (155.5) vs. Matt Wiman (155)
*Allen Crowder (255) vs. Jair Rozenstruik (246)
*Molly McCann (126) vs. Ariane Lipski (126)
*Eric Spicely (185.5) vs. Deron Winn (185.5)
*Andre Ewell (135) vs. Anderson dos Santos (135.5)

**Bellator is holding a card on Saturday from the SSE Arena in London, England, which will be split into two shows. For those watching in North America, the Bellator European 3 card will stream at 5 pm Eastern on the Bellator app and then Bellator 223 will air on DAZN and the Paramount Network at 9 pm tomorrow night. Below are the lineups for each card and results from the weigh-ins:

Bellator Europe 3 (5 pm Eastern on the Bellator app)
*Gegard Mousasi (185) vs. Rafael Lovato Jr. (184) for the Bellator middleweight title
*Melvin Manhoef (205.6) vs. Kent Kauppinen (200)
*Aaron Chalmers (159.8) vs. Fred Freeman (160)

Bellator 223 (9 pm Eastern on DAZN & Paramount Network)
*Paul Daley (170.6) vs. Erick Silva (170.8)
*James Gallagher (139.2) vs. Jeremiah Labiano (139.6)
*Fabian Edwards (185.4) vs. Jonathan Bosuku (185.6)
*Mike Shipman (185.8) vs. Costello Van Steenis (185.4)
*Justin Moore (185.6) vs. Charlie Ward (183.2)

**A quick turnaround for UFC women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko is close to official. ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reports that the UFC is in the process of finalizing a championship fight between Shevcehnko and Liz Carmouche to meet on Saturday, August 3rd at the promotion’s debut card in Montevideo, Uruguay. The fight required some shuffling as Carmouche had been scheduled to fight Roxanne Modafferi on July 13th and has since been replaced by Jennifer Maia. Carmouche has the distinction of being one of two women to hold victories over Shevchenko alongside Amanda Nunes. The two fought in September 2010 at a card in Oklahoma, which ended with a doctor’s stoppage at the end of the second round as Carmouche was awarded the victory by TKO. Carmouche entered the UFC in a high-profile position as one half of the first female fight in company history when she fought Ronda Rousey in the main event of UFC 157 in February 2013. After a 1-3 start to her UFC career, she has since won four of her last five fights and coming off victories over Jennifer Maia and Lucie Pudilova. Shevchenko became flyweight champion last December when she defeated Joanna Jedrzejczk and defended the title earlier this month with a vicious knockout of Jessica Eye at UFC 238 in Chicago.

Café Hangout – June 20, 2019

On this week’s Hangout, John Pollock and Wai Ting chat the latest news in pro wrestling and a preview Sunday’s WWE Stomping Grounds. Damian Abraham joins us to discuss a double-header of Viceland’s The Wrestlers.

John Pollock and Wai Ting review the twelfth Marvel Cinematic Universe film, Ant-Man (2015) starring Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas.
upNXT 6/20/19: “Fish with One Eye”

Braden Herrington and Davie Portman are back with another episode of upNXT! The BDE chat all about the June 20th Edition of WWE NXT.
DOUBLE SHOT: DDT’s Pool Wrestling, Tony Khan w/ Austin, 205 Live

John Pollock & Wai Ting review Steve Austin’s interview with Tony Khan, DDT’s Pool Wrestling special, 205 Live, BTE & Road to Fyter Ep. 3.
RASD 6/18/19: Kofi Kingston Wins 4/6 Falls, New 24/7 Champ

John Pollock and Wai Ting review the final episode of WWE SmackDown leading into Stomping Grounds featuring Seth Rollins & Kofi Kingston teaming against Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn in a 2-of-3 Falls match.
RAR 6/17/19: Baron, Rollins & Chairs, G1 Climax Announcements
John Pollock and Wai Ting review the final WWE Raw leading into Stomping Grounds featuring the main event between Seth Rollins and Daniel Bryan.
John Pollock & WH Park discuss the fallout from Dominion, the arrival of KENTA to NJPW, highlights of the BOSJ, the life & career of Atsushi Aoki, Stardom, ten-years since Mitsuharu Misawa passed & more.
CRUEL SUMMER #6: Riki Choshu vs. Masahiro Chono

WH Park welcomes the co-host of the Eastern Lariat podcast, STRIGGA to discuss the finals of NJPW’s 6th G1 Climax tournament: Riki Choshu vs. Masahiro Chono from August 6, 1996.
TRMPS #VI: Southland Tales (2006)

On this edition of The Rocky Maivia Picture Show, Nate Milton welcomes Brian Mann (Keep It 2000/Complex) back into the theater to review 2006’s Southland Tales. 

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About John Pollock 5060 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.