POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: ESPN to air past WrestleMania shows

ESPN to re-air WrestleMania shows, terminology being used to promote WrestleMania, the WRP sees the light of day, Stardom opening show to fans & more.

POST IT NOTES

**We will have a new edition of Rewind-A-SmackDown posted tonight on the POST Wrestling Café with a review of the show at the Performance Center and taking your feedback at the end.

**Braden Herrington and Davie Portman have a new edition of ‘Best Match Ever’ on their Patreon covering the best opening matches in the history of WrestleMania.

**We have reached out to several independent wrestling promoters to share the ongoing issues they are facing amidst the global pandemic. In the first Q&A, we spoke with C*4 Wrestling’s Mark Pollesel on the effects he is seeing on his company and other ways to support them. We will have another Q&A with Matt Farmer from DEFY Wrestling

**On Saturday, Nate Milton will be joined by his former co-host Brian Mann on The Rocky Maivia Picture Show. The two will be doing a double bill as they chat ‘The Other Guys’ and ‘Pain and Gain’ starring Dwayne Johnson.

**This Sunday, WH Park is joined by Case Lowe from the Open the Voice Gate podcast to review Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Eita from the Super J-Cup in 2016 on Thunderstruck. WH will also be with me Sunday night on a new POST Puroresu.

**The Double Shot returns this Monday for members of the POST Wrestling Café. Wai Ting and I will discuss the recent FCW documentary and Broken Skull Sessions with Steve Austin and Bret Hart.

**Today’s edition of the British Wrestling Experience covers the impact the crisis is having on the European scene as Martin Bushby, Jamesie & Benno share their thoughts. The three discussed this past week’s WrestleTalk event with Will Ospreay vs. Bea Priestley, a rundown of the 16 Carat Gold weekend that wXw put on, David Starr’s departure from the company, Daniel Makabe’s Ambition tournament win, and Martin’s recent trip to Sheffield for RevPro’s Risky Business card.

**Wai Ting hosted the Café Hangout on Thursday and was joined by Matt Knicks of Freelance Wrestling to discuss this weekend’s Warehouse Wars empty arena show that Freelance is putting on. Knicks discussed the name change they had to undergo for the card, some pushback they have received moving forward with it, and Knicks revealed the card on the show. From there, long-time listener and photoshopper Ahmad Butt made an ultra-rare appearance. Ahmad is a licensed professional counselor and spoke about the mental health aspect of the ongoing crisis.

WRESTLING NEWS

**WWE and ESPN are working together with the sports network airing three past WrestleMania events over the next three weekends. This Sunday at 7 pm Eastern, ESPN will air a replay of WrestleMania 30 from April 2014, on March 29th at 7 pm they will air WrestleMania 32 from AT&T Stadium in April 2016, and on April 5th at 3 pm they will air last year’s show from MetLife Stadium. In a press release to the media, they advertised this year’s WrestleMania as ‘streaming live’, although on the WWE website story it omitted the term ‘live’. We have reached out to WWE seeking clarification.

**WWE has yet to comment on the status of whether WrestleMania is being taped next week, which we have inquired about. However, POST Wrestling learned on Friday that a message has been circulated within the company regarding how to promote WrestleMania on the WWE Network. It is being said to avoid tag lines such as “streaming live” and/or “live on WWE Network” and instead to promote the show as “Too Big for One Night”. This is not confirmation that WrestleMania is being taped but it is notable that they were omitting the term “live”. There is a preview of The Undertaker vs. AJ Styles on the website that has also been changed from “streaming live” to “streaming” when promoting the WrestleMania broadcast.

**Tonight’s episode of Friday Night SmackDown will feature an appearance by WrestleMania host Rob Gronkowski and a contract signing between Universal champion Bill Goldberg and Roman Reigns ahead of WrestleMania. As of this writing, nothing else has been announced for the show. With the recent airing of the men’s Elimination Chamber and Royal Rumble matches, it would seem like a wise idea to run another lengthy match to fill time on the show. The early results have been positive that audiences are not tuning out for older matches with both SmackDown and Raw seeing increases in viewership over the last week.

**As we reported on Thursday, the company is going ahead with several tapings over the next week to get ahead leading into WrestleMania. It is expected that they will tape additional SmackDown content on Saturday, and Raw episodes on Monday and Tuesday. If you can get the performers to Orlando, it would be the best option to tape everything because it’s a risk if the pandemic worsens and flights are grounded, or people are required to stay home. Multiple trips to Orlando should be avoided wherever possible.

As mentioned above, they can have confidence in re-airing older footage to fill time on these upcoming television episodes to reduce the amount of in-ring matches necessary and keep physicality to a minimum. After the success of the men’s Royal Rumble on Monday, I would go ahead with the women’s match this Monday on Raw and advertise it ahead of time. There is no shortage of classic matches from Edge to build up his return and countless others on the card for WrestleMania.

**California Governor Gavin Newsom is ordering residents of California to stay indoors excluding essential trips. Those trips would include going to the grocery store, pharmacy, and gas stations and restaurants limited to takeout and delivery.

**Stardom has announced that the opening rounds of its annual Cinderella tournament will stream free on YouTube this Tuesday. The matches will take place from Korakuen Hall and air Tuesday morning at 5:30 am Eastern. The show will be open for fans to attend with Stardom announcing the following protocol:

Fans will be allowed entry to the show, but will undergo a physical check, with their temperature taken. No entry will be allowed if temp is over 37°C (98.6°F). Masks will be distributed for free.

Stardom has released the opening round matches for the Cinderella tournament that takes place Tuesday:
*Momo Watanabe vs. Starlight Kid
*Jungle Kyona vs. Giulia
*AZM vs. Konami
*Syuri vs. Jamie Hayter
*Tam Nakano vs. Saki Kashima
*Saya Kamitani vs. Natsuko Tora
*Utami Hayashashita vs. Maika
*Mayu Iwatani vs. Hana Kimura

**David Bixenspan has a story on the latest suit filed against WWE regarding patent infringement by the Rothschild Broadcast Distribution Systems over a software the latter has the patent to.

**On Friday, a name and project I did not expect to be hearing about were ‘Jeff Katz’ and ‘Wrestling Retribution Project’. For those unfamiliar, Katz was a Hollywood executive that had ties to the pro wrestling industry working from WCW beginning in 1994. He did a tremendous campaign in 2011 where he appeared on numerous wrestling radio shows and podcasts, including with yours truly, and launched a Kickstarter campaign for the Wrestling Retribution Project. They shot the series in October 2011 utilizing both established and undiscovered names throughout the industry with unique characters for each.

There was a decent amount of anticipation for this series because of Katz’s selling repeatedly but then he went dormant and there was no finished product throughout the years. The lack of a follow-up given the Kickstarter element left a bad taste with many and Katz issued an apology on Friday along with the clips and segments he is in the process of uploading to YouTube. The lengthy statement from Katz can be read on Twitter and below is a portion of that statement:

While my original aim was to surprise you tonight with the clean, HD/graphics version featuring the amazing commentary work of Nigel McGuinness (as Vyvyan ‘Vyv’ Edmondson), today’s new statewide lockdown means we can’t even get into editorial to upload it. So, instead of just sitting here wasting yet another month, I’m uploading everything to my local hard drive from the shoot – i.e., the original full slate of WRP matches in their initial cuts – with the final HD & Nigel/Vyv version to follow as soon as possible under California law. Matches will be uploaded in sets over the next few days, so you’ll see them all in the order they were intended to appear. While it’s small consolation for my inexcusable handling of this project over the years, I hope this gives you a little escape in these unpredictable times. At the very minimum, it’s a chance to appreciate the amazing in-ring talents of the men who walked that aisle all those years ago.

To that end, I want to take a quick moment and both give my thanks and apologies to the tremendous wrestling talent who worked with me on this. You were amazing, went above and beyond and you all deserved far better from me. At the same time, I want to specifically thank MVP, Samoa Joe, Chris Daniels, Mick Foley, Kevin Nash, Dallas Page, Tommy Dreamer, and Shane Helms. They never stopped being there for me at my absolute lowest and I will always appreciate them for it. Most importantly, Chris Jericho deserves far more from me than a public apology, as we both know all too well. I let him down more than anyone, and while it’s ultimately on me to make that right, letting down remains the greatest regret of my professional career. Beyond his obvious excellence in this medium, he was a great friend to me and I completely and utterly let him down. To say I’m sorry for that is the understatement of the century.

Footage from the 2011 tapings is being added by Katz on their YouTube channel. The 2011 campaign on Kickstarter aimed to raise $100,000 with the project’s Wikipedia page stating they hit the goal with 187 pledges.

**Matt Hardy is the guest on Talk is Jericho today and spoke about his decision to join AEW. He noted how the plan was for himself and Brodie Lee to debut in Rochester, New York as a double surprise. Jericho added that due to restrictions, they would not have been allowed to fly Vanguard 1 into the arena in Rochester, but they could at the empty Daily’s Place. Hardy reiterated that WWE made him a good offer to stay but felt he would be minimalized and wants to enjoy everything he is doing for the last 3-4 years of his in-ring career.

**AEW Dynamite averaged 932,000 viewers on Wednesday night for the empty arena show in Jacksonville, Florida with a 0.35 in the 18-49 demo. The program was 20th for the night among cable programs. Conversely, NXT, which did not feature any in-ring matches, averaged 542,000 viewers on the USA Network and was 82nd among cable programs.

**Impact Wrestling will be airing a one-hour special on Tuesday, March 31st that will be presented as a TNA-branded event. The show was taped earlier this month at the Coca-Cola Roxy in Atlanta, Georgia.

**Louis Dangoor at WrestleTalk recently spoke with Marty Scurll about his decision to remain in Ring of Honor, his new role within the company, changes that been made, and included this response regarding ROH and New Japan working closer together:

I’ve always had an awesome relationship with New Japan. One of my first acts in my new role was to make sure we worked with New Japan more, and, why not? They have some of the best talent in the world. I love working for them, and working with them has been exciting, meaning I’ve been able to put together some mouth-watering cards, much like Supercard of Honor which was set for April. Then, we have Yuji Nagata, Ren Narita and Rocky Romero booked for the Pure Tournament. Not forgetting the War of the Worlds tour we had booked for May featuring many New Japan talent. At the end of the day, the fans win, being able to see many first time matches and talent they maybe haven’t seen before. It’s certainly an exciting future.

**Fite TV issued a press release noting they are offering more free and low-cost content during this period. They are also applying 50-80% discounts on past pay-per-view events on the streaming service. They will also allow for a free trial of AEW Plus in all available territories to new subscribers. Below is a portion of the release:

Starting today, we are offering a free trial on the AEW Plus subscription package in all available territories to new subscribers, and a free linear combat sports channel called FITE 24/7 across all FITE platforms globally, for all users. In the next few weeks we’ll announce distribution news bringing additional access to FITE programming to more fans, as well as more initiatives to offer free content. Many thanks to all our partners for making this possible.

**The Freelance Wrestling ‘Warehouse Wars’ card will stream free on IndependentWrestling.tv on Saturday night at 8 pm Eastern from the Pro Wrestling Tees warehouse. Proceeds from the show will go towards the wrestlers with Freelance’s Matt Knicks revealing the full card on Thursday’s Café Hangout:
*Kylie Rae vs. Isaias Velasquez
*Jake Something vs. Manders
*Craig Mitchell vs. Alex Ohlson
*The Besties in the World vs. Benjamin Carter & Jesus Bryce
*Jay Raves vs. Elayna Black
*Hosted remotely by Ethan Page from Canada

**Here are the matches for MLW Fusion on Saturday night at 9 pm Eastern on beIN Sports from the tapings in Philadelphia in February:
*Ross & Marshall Von Erich, Killer Kross & Davey Boy Smith Jr. vs. Tom Lawlor, Erick Stevens, Dominic Garrini & Kit Osbourne
*El Lindaman vs. Zenshi
*Richard Holliday vs. TBA

**Newsday has a story on Mick Foley and his family selling their home in Smithtown, New York. In the article, Foley noted the cold winters as a factor in deciding to sell the home, which is listed for $1.25 million. It’s a five-bedroom, 3 ½ bathroom home and the family has lived there for the past decade.

**Jeff Hardy was guest on WWE’s ‘The Bump’ Friday and stated his old WWE them ‘No More Words’ will be returning.

**AAW in Chicago has posted the full Windy City Classic XI show from November 28, 2015. The card featured Ethan Page vs. Trevor Lee vs. Eddie Kingston in the main event, Chris Hero vs. Pentagon Jr., Rey Fenix vs. Tommaso Ciampa, Louis Lyndon vs. Alex Shelley, and more.

**ESPN is running an 11-hour marathon of UFC fights on Saturday beginning at Noon Eastern. The marathon will include the rematch between Demetrious Johnson and Henry Cejudo in August 2018, Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz I & II, Jon Jones vs. Alexander Gustafsson from UFC 165 in September 2013, Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua vs. Dan Henderson from UFC 139 in November 2011, Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Conor McGregor from UFC 229 in October 2018, and Jorge Masvidal vs. Nate Diaz from last November at Madison Square Garden.

**Here is a trailer for the upcoming documentary on David Arquette:

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BRITISH WRESTLING EXPERIENCE

Martin, Benno & Jamesie talk about the implications of the COVID-19 crisis on Euro Wrestling. Plus reviews of WrestleTalk Showcase and wXw 16 Carat.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/20/british-wrestling-experience-covid-19-crisis-in-euro-wrestling-wxw-16-carat-gold-wrestletalk-showcase/
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Café Hangout: Your Calls, Matt Knicks, Ahmad Butt

Join Wai Ting for a special, self-isolated Café Hangout as he takes your calls right from his home. Matt Knicks talks Freelance’s Warehouse Wars fundraiser event, professional counselor Ahmad Butt discusses COVID-19’s mental health implications.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/19/cafe-hangout-your-calls-warehouse-wars-mental-health-covid-19/
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REWIND-A-DYNAMITE

John Pollock and Wai Ting review AEW Dynamite from an empty Daily’s Place in Jacksonville, Florida highlighted by the debut of Matt Hardy.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/19/rewind-a-dynamite-3-18-20-social-enclosure/
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upNXT 3/18/20: “QuarantinXT”

Braden Herrington and Davie Portman review the March 18th edition of WWE NXT from WWE HQ in Stamford, Connecticut… while under quarantine.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/19/upnxt-3-18-20-quarantinxt/
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POST INTERVIEW: Michael Bochicchio

Highspots owner Michael Bochicchio speaks with John Pollock on the fallout from the cancellation of WrestleCon and the impact the ongoing crisis is having.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/18/post-interview-michael-bochicchio-of-highspots/
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REWIND-A-WAI #57: Jay Lethal Retrospective

John Pollock and Wai Ting review a special selection of matches from the career of Jay Lethal, as well as his infamous promo segment with Ric Flair.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/17/rewind-a-wai-57-jay-lethal-retrospective/
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POST BONUS: WrestleMania 36, Highspots vs. Marriott, UFC

WrestleMania 36 has moved locations, three doctors weigh in on how safe this is for the wrestlers, Highspots vs. Marriott, UFC calls off three shows.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/17/post-bonus-wrestlemania-36-highspots-vs-marriott-ufc/
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REWIND-A-RAW 3/16/20: WrestleMania moved to the WWE PC

John Pollock and Wai Ting review an empty-arena WWE Raw from the WWE Performance Center. We discuss WrestleMania 36 moving to the WWE PC and the latest event cancellations/postponements.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/17/rewind-a-raw-3-16-20-wrestlemania-moved-to-the-wwe-pc/
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POST Roundtable: Handling of the COVID-19 Crisis
John Pollock & Wai Ting are joined by Andrew Thompson and Nate Milton for a roundtable chat about the latest news and developments regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and the wrestling industry’s response.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/03/15/post-roundtable-handling-of-the-covid-19-crisis/
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About John Pollock 1743 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling.He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.