POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Seth Rollins on AEW & Will Ospreay

Seth Rollins speaks on AEW and Will Ospreay, list of names for the Raw Reunion, Variety piece on WWE, Jon Jones facing a battery charge & more.

POST IT NOTES

**Wai Ting and I will be back with Rewind-A-Raw tonight to review the Raw Reunion and catch up on all the latest news. We will also take feedback and questions at the end of the show.

**Our next G1 Climax review will be out Wednesday evening covering the B Block show from Hiroshima that is headlined by Tetsuya Naito vs. Tomohiro Ishii. All shows are available for members of the POST Wrestling Café.

**The British Wrestling Experience returns Wednesday with Martin Bushby and Benno hosting the show. They will chat about the end of Fighting Spirit Magazine, Will Ospreay, and Zack Sabre Jr. in the G1, the recent NXT UK tapings, New Japan’s Royal Quest card next month at the Copper Box Arena, and lots more.

POST SCHEDULE

Monday: Rewind-A-Raw with John Pollock & Wai Ting
Tuesday: Rewind-A-SmackDown
Wednesday: British Wrestling Experience with Martin Bushby & Benno
Wednesday: G1 Climax Night 8 with John & Wai (Patreon)
Thursday: upNXT with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Thursday: Café Hangout with John & Wai and guest Brandon Howard Thurston (3 pm ET for Double Double+ Patrons)
Friday: Rewind-A-Wai #41 – New Japan in Melbourne, Australia from 2/17/2018 (Patreon)
Saturday: G1 Climax Night 9 with John & Wai (Patreon)
Saturday: Cruel Summer “2007” with WH Park & Joel Abraham from Super J Cast
Saturday: The Rocky Maivia Picture Show with Nate Milton, Marcus Vanderberg & Mike Mills (Gridiron Gang)
Saturday: UFC 240 POST Show with John Pollock & Phil Chertok
Sunday: G1 Climax Night 10 with John & Wai (Patreon)

WRESTLING NEWS

**WWE presents a huge episode of Raw tonight with the Raw Reunion from the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. The most-watched episode of 2019 was the night after WrestleMania with 2,924,000 viewers and this show would be a disappointment if it doesn’t top that figure. The last reunion show was the 25th Anniversary of Raw in January 2018 and did a massive audience of 4.5 million viewers, which I cannot see this one hitting.

The show is focused on the return of Steve Austin, who will mean the most of all the names. We reported Sunday evening that John Cena is scheduled to be on the show, but he hasn’t been advertised, yet. The full list of names advertised are as follows: Austin, Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Road Dogg, Sean Waltman, Ted DiBiase, Kurt Angle, Mick Foley, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Alicia Fox, Alundra Blayze, Booker T., Eric Bischoff, Candice Michelle, Christian, D-Von Dudley, Eve Torres, Gerald Brisco, Sgt. Slaughter, The Godfather, Jillian Hall, Jimmy Hart, Jerry Lawler, Jonathan Coachman, Kaitlyn, Kelly Kelly, Lilian Garcia, Mark Henry, Melina, Pat Patterson, Rikishi, Ron Simmons, Santino Marella, The Boogeyman, Shane Helms, and more.

**They have announced that Becky Lynch will be a guest on ‘A Moment of Bliss’ tonight with Alexa Bliss.

**There is a SmackDown house show taking place from Fort Myers, Florida and they are advertising Kofi Kingston, Randy Orton, Kevin Owens, Charlotte Flair, Bayley, and Dolph Ziggler as the top talent on the show.

**Seth Rollins took part in a SummerSlam conference call on Monday with members of the media. One reporter (whose name I did not catch and apologize) asked Rollins about his recent back-and-forth with Will Ospreay along with Jon Moxley signing with AEW and I have transcribed his answers:

On his comments regarding Will Ospreay:

Well, I said it because I believe it. I work with these guys and girls day in and day out and I have for nine years, I’ve been in WWE on TV for seven of those. I know what we go through and look, no other company goes through what we go through. They don’t do it as much as we do it, they don’t have the pressure that we have, it’s a totally different ballgame. The world that Will Ospreay came off, or comes from, is the same world I came from, so I know both ends of it. Will Ospreay doesn’t know anything about what WWE does. I appreciate his talent, I appreciate his hard work, his dedication, all that. One of these days, there is going to be an opportunity for Will Ospreay to come here and there is going to be an opportunity for Seth Rollins vs. Will Ospreay and I can’t wait for that. But, until then, (muffled) whereas I understand very much, what it’s like to walk in his shoes. And I am convinced, I know firsthand that WWE is the best professional wrestling on the planet, no question.

Jon Moxley to AEW:

I was surprised by it for sure. I knew Ambrose needed some time away from WWE but the thing is, he just loves wrestling, he loves the industry, he just wanted some freedom and do his own thing and that happens, you know? And that happens for everybody and I understand his position and why he wanted to go over there and that’s on him. But, now he’s competition, now he’s the one trying to take dinner off my table so good on him but we’re going to do our best to continue to be the best here at WWE and those guys want to step up to the big leagues to give it a shot? Then by all means but we’re going to knock them dead just like we do everybody else.

**I was on the call with Rollins and got a few questions in at the end. Regarding the new roles that Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff have, Rollins didn’t indicate any major changes he has experienced at the shows and just stated there was another layer in the process with their involvement. I asked him about amalgamating some of the titles with the advent of the wild card rule, he said that if the wild card were to stay he would like to see that, but his indication is that when SmackDown goes to Fox the rosters will be more separate and title situation is likely to remain the same.

**Variety had a scathing look at WWE’s decline in television viewership ahead of Thursday’s earnings report. Reporter Gavin Bridge researched a lot of different metrics to assess the decline in the company’s popularity as they prepare to enter their new deals with NBC Universal and Fox worth $2.35 billion over the next five years. One area that Bridge studied came after Vince McMahon’s explanation this past January for their decline citing injuries and key performers being unavailable. Variety provided a chart to emphasize that the excuse didn’t hold water due to the major names returning and yet, television viewership dropped.

The biggest name was Roman Reigns, who was out from late October until early February as he battled leukemia. In the first quarter of 2019, he made five appearances on television compared to 20 appearances in the second quarter. Additionally, Becky Lynch, Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins, Alexa Bliss, and Braun Strowman had more appearances in the second quarter than the first. The notable ones with fewer appearances were Sasha Banks and Dean Ambrose.

The Variety piece reports a 20% drop for Raw over the first half of 2019 compared to the first six months of 2018 with an average of 616,000 fewer viewers per episode. The decline of SmackDown year-over-year was 17% with 446,000 fewer viewers. There was one episode of Raw in January 2019 that is abnormally low compared to the year prior with over 2 million fewer viewers, but that is compared to the Raw 25th Anniversary show in January 2018 that did 4.5 million viewers and was their most-watched Raw since 2015. The hope is that tonight’s Raw Reunion will have a similar increase, although I don’t see it hitting the number of the 25th Anniversary show.

The article also addresses the success that AEW has enjoyed without a weekly television program.

It sets the table for an interesting earning’s call this Thursday as this is the type of outlet that shareholders and investors will be reading ahead of time and have plenty of questions. The company is going to need a strong message on Thursday to curb panic, address the declines, the stock, and the roles of Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff, which carry weight within the media as the darlings of a romanticized period of pro wrestling in the late ’90s.

**Ryan Satin at Pro Wrestling Sheet reported on Monday that two WWE writers were let go last week. Satin reported that Steve Guerreri and Steve Oppenheim were released with the former serving on the Raw writing staff and the latter on SmackDown with both holding lead writer titles.

**The SmackDown & 205 Live tapings are at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida on Tuesday.

**Fite TV has released their schedule of live stage shows at Starrcast III. The entire package will be available for $39.99 with the following shows announced thus far:

Thursday, August 29:

*8 pm: ALL OUT Press Conference & Weigh-in

Friday, August 30:

*11 am: Dean Malenko
*1 pm: The Women of AEW
*3 pm: Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana
*5 pm: Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous with MJF
*7 pm: Wrestling with Stereotypes 2 with Andreas Hale & Kel Dansby
*9 pm: Jon Moxley
*11 pm: Cock of the Talk with Joey Ryan

Saturday, August 31:
*Noon: CM Punk
*11 pm: Tales of a Hardcore Legend with Mick Foley

**WWE has officially announced that The Street Profits will defend the NXT tag titles against Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish at TakeOver: Toronto on Saturday, August 10th at the Scotiabank Arena.

**On Monday’s edition of Being the Elite, they officially announced the Ladder match with The Lucha Bros. vs. The Young Bucks for the AAA tag titles at All Out on Saturday, August 31st. They also announced Dark Order vs. Best Friends for the show with the winning team receiving a bye in the first round of the tag title tournament.

**MLW has added a six-man tag to the Never Say Never tapings this Thursday at the Melrose Ballroom. Gringo Loco, Zenshi & Air Wolf will take on Myron Reed, Jordan Oliver & Kotto Brazil. They have announced 11 matches so far with the main event featuring a rematch for the MLW title with Jacob Fatu defending against Tom Lawlor.

**ICW in Scotland has announced that due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’, Jeff Jarrett will be unable to wrestle on this Saturday’s show against Jackie Polo at Shug’s Hoose Party 6 – Night 1. In his place, KUSHIDA is being sent to wrestle Polo at the O2 Academy in Glasgow.

**Impact Wrestling has announced a rematch between Tessa Blanchard and Sami Callihan at ‘Unbreakable’ on Friday, August 2nd in Santa Ana, California at the Esports Arena. The match will be for a future Impact title shot and will stream live on Impact Plus. The two headlined Impact’s Slammiversary pay-per-view earlier this month with Callihan winning and was the hottest match on the card. They have also announced that Scott Steiner, Petey Williams, and Jordynne Grace will team on the show against an unknown team.

**A new episode of Photo Shoot featuring Shane McMahon will air on the WWE Network tonight following Raw.

**Shawn Michaels turns 54 today.

**The WWE stock closed at $69.62 on Monday.

MMA NEWS

**UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones is facing a charge of battery after an alleged incident this past April in Albuquerque, New Mexico. KRQE News 13 in Albuquerque reported the news and stated Jones and his team were unaware of the charge until the news outlet contacted them. ESPN’s Marc Raimondi obtained the criminal summons from the Albuquerque Police Department that alleges Jones slapped a cocktail waitress in her genital area, pulled her down to his lap and began kissing her neck. The woman also alleges he placed her in a chokehold and continued to lift her despite her telling him to stop.

A letter was sent to Jones but bounced back and returned in June with a bench warrant issued against Jones, who did not appear at the bond arraignment. Raimondi reports that Jones paid a $300 cash bond this past Sunday, but his next court date has not been scheduled.

James Hallinan, who is a spokesman for the fighter, issued the following statement to KRQE News 13 denying the allegations made against Jones:

Today, the media told Mr. Jones about a false accusation launched against him and that paperwork had been sent to an incorrect address. However, after receiving the documents from the press, Mr. Jones immediately went to pay the small fee, and he, and multiple witnesses, stand ready to factually refute the malicious lies being told about him to the public.

Jones has also denied the allegations but tweeting:

I’m definitely not in any trouble my friend, don’t be so quick to believe everything you read on the Internet. I know there’s a whole bunch of people hoping for my downfall but there’s even more who are proud of me and love seeing me do well. And screw staying inside, I love this community.. excited to keep climbing, haters going to be mad when I win in December.

**Bellator has announced that the debuting Myles Jury will fight Benson Henderson at Bellator 227 on Friday, September 27th from Dublin, Ireland. The card will air on tape delay on the Paramount Network and will be simulcast on DAZN that night while also airing on Sky Sports in the U.K. and Ireland. Jury is 30-years old and joined the UFC after competing on the live season of TUF in 2012 and lost to Al Iaquinta on the show. He won his first six fights in the UFC, including victories over Diego Sanchez and Takanori Gomi in 2014. He suffered consecutive losses to Donald Cerrone and Charles Oliveira in 2015 and didn’t fight throughout 2016, returning in April 2017 with a pair of victories that year. His final two fights with the promotion were losses to Chad Mendes in July 2018 by TKO and a decision loss to Andre Fili this past February by decision.

G1 REVIEWS:
Night 1: https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/07/g1-climax-29-post-show-opening-night-okada-vs-tanahashi-free-preview/ (Tanahashi vs. Okada) – FREE SHOW
Night 2: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28351982 (White vs. Goto)
Night 3: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28374580 (Tanahashi vs. KENTA)
Night 4: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28403937 (Naito vs. Taichi)
Night 5: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28475091 (Ospreay vs. Ibushi)
Night 6: https://www.patreon.com/posts/28495477 (Moxley vs. Ishii)
Night 7:
 https://www.patreon.com/posts/28520429 (Okada vs. Ospreay)

*****
CRUEL SUMMER: Satoshi Kojima vs. Hiroyoshi Tenzan (2006)
WH Park is joined by a legendary figure in the Toronto wrestling broadcasting scene,  Dan “The Mouth” Lovranski. They review the finals of NJPW’s G1 Climax from August 13, 2006: Hiroyoshi Tenzan vs. Satoshi Kojima. 
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/21/cruel-summer-16-hiroyoshi-tenzan-vs-satoshi-kojima-2006-w-dan-lovranski/
*****
CRUEL SUMMER: Masahiro Chono vs. Kazuyuki Fujita (2005)
WH Park is joined by independent Australian wrestler and wrestling trainer, Davis Storm to discuss the finals of NJPW’s 15th annual G1 Climax tournament: Masahiro Chono vs. Kazuyuki Fujita from August 14, 2005
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/20/cruel-summer-15-masahiro-chono-vs-kazuyuki-fujita-2005-w-davis-storm/
*****
Café Hangout – July 18, 2019

On this week’s Café Hangout, John Pollock and Wai Ting chat news involving CM Punk appearing at Starrcast III, James Lynch from The Score discusses MMA media, Buck Gunderson chats OWE’s Canadian debut.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/19/cm-punk-at-starrcast-james-lynch-buck-gunderson-cafe-hangout/
*****
upNXT 7/18/19: Dain, Pain, and Automobiles

The BDE chat all about the July 17th edition of WWE NXT including Matt Riddle vs. Arturo Ruas, the re-debut of Killian Dain, Kushida vs. Apollo Crews, and a huge angle between Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/18/upnxt-7-18-19-dain-pain-and-automobiles/
*****
RASD 7/16/19: SmackTown Hall, Bayley’s SummerSlam Opponent

John Pollock and Wai Ting review Tuesday’s WWE SmackDown featuring Shane McMahon’s Town Hall with the SmackDown locker room.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/16/rasd-7-16-19-smacktown-hall-bayleys-summerslam-opponent/
*****

RAR 7/15/19: The Cross-Branded All-Star Top 10 Battle Royal
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE Raw featuring an All-Star Top 10 Battle Royal to determine Brock Lesnar’s opponent for the Universal title at SummerSlam.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/16/rar-7-15-19-the-cross-branded-all-star-top-10-battle-royal/
*****

WWE EXTREME RULES POST SHOW
John Pollock & Wai Ting review WWE Extreme Rules headlined by Seth Rollins & Becky Lynch defending their championships against Baron Corbin & Lacey Evans.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/07/15/wwe-extreme-rules-2019-post-show/
*****

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About John Pollock 1327 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.