POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Kevin Dunn comments on ThunderDome

Kevin Dunn speaks on WWE ThunderDome, Sonya Deville thanks Sheriff's office, Live+3 viewers, KOPW options, rare action figure sold & more.

POST IT NOTES

**Rewind-A-Raw is back tonight with Wai Ting and I reviewing WWE Raw, discussing the news from the past few days, the WWE ThunderDome & taking your questions and feedback at the end of the show. Plus, a look at a packed week coming up.

**Our UFC 252 POST Show is up on the site with Phil Chertok and I reviewing the entire card from Saturday night and breaking down the main event between Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier.

**The latest edition of The Rocky Maivia Picture Show is up on the site with Nate Milton joined by Stephen Gutteridge and MJ from NJ to chat the pilot of “Ballers” starring Dwayne Johnson. The podcast version is available on the main POST Wrestling feed.

**On Tuesday, Rewind-A-Wai #67 will be released as Wai & I review the WWF’s Royal Rumble 2001 event from New Orleans. This was voted on by our listeners after Espresso Executive Producer Ian Kushner threw it out to a vote. Feedback to this show can be left on the POST Wrestling Forum to be read at the end of the show. Rewind-A-Wai will be available Tuesday evening for all members of the POST Wrestling Café.

**Historian and author John Lister will be on the British Wrestling Experience this Thursday with Martin Bushby and Benno to discuss the recent passing of Mark “Rollerball” Rocco. Lister has written several books including Turning the Tables on the history of ECW and Have a Good Week…Till Next Week on the history of British wrestling.

**Braden Herrington & Davie Portman have a review of WWE SummerSlam 2005 featuring Hulk Hogan vs. Shawn Michaels on the upNXT Patreon feed.

POST SCHEDULE

Tonight: Rewind-A-Raw with John Pollock & Wai Ting
Tuesday: Rewind-A-Wai #67: WWF Royal Rumble 2001 (Patreon)
Wednesday: upNXT with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Thursday: The British Wrestling Experience with Martin Bushby & Benno with guest John Lister
Friday: Rewind-A-SmackDown (LIVE at 10:15 pm Eastern for all Patrons)
Saturday: Rewind-A-Dynamite – Special Saturday Night Edition
Saturday: NXT TakeOver XXX POST Show with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Sunday: WWE SummerSlam POST Show with John & Wai (LIVE for Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso Patrons)

WRESTLING NEWS

**WWE unveiled its plans to introduce their WWE ThunderDome production structure beginning with Friday Night SmackDown this week. Friday’s show will begin WWE’s residency at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida that will be the home to Raw, SmackDown, and pay-per-views for the foreseeable future. NXT will remain at Full Sail University including this Saturday’s TakeOver card. I do expect the novelty of the new production structure to be there for the first few weeks in terms of viewership increases. I don’t feel going live means anything as there’s no difference and if you quizzed most people, I don’t think the majority would even though that these shows are being taped. If being live or close to live meant anything, we would have seen it with AEW and NXT.

Kevin Dunn spoke with Justin Barrasso at SI.com. about the ThunderDome concept and revealed several other details:

Like the NBA, we’re doing virtual fans, but we’re also creating an arena-type atmosphere

We won’t have a flat board, we’ll have rows and rows and rows of fans. We’ll have almost 1,000 LED boards, and it will recreate the arena experience you’re used to seeing with WWE. The atmosphere will be night and day from the Performance Center. This is going to let us have a WrestleMania-level production value, and that’s what our audience expects from us. We are also going to put arena audio into the broadcast, similar to baseball, but our audio will be mixed with the virtual fans. So when fans start chants, we’ll hear them.

We start on Friday on SmackDown, and it will be a learning experience. We have two days of testing, and we’re going to practice like hell, then we’re off to the races. We may have fans for certain entrances, standing up and cheering for the typical babyfaces. But someone like Bray Wyatt, who is so character-driven, the entire Amway Arena will be one big Fiend-dom. That’s our opportunity to be different from sports, where we can present these larger-than-life characters uniquely. This will be great for people watching at home across the globe, as well as the ones participating.

Dunn acknowledged in the interview that the shows they have been producing have not been what they would like and that the loss of fans has hurt.

**Sonya Deville (Daria Berenato) issued the following statement after a frightening story this past weekend where a man broke into her residency and is facing multiple charges including stalking and attempted armed kidnapping:

Thank you everyone for your love and concern. A very frightening experience but thankfully everyone is safe. A special thank you to Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office for their response and assistance.

The suspect arrested was 24-year old Phillip Thomas, who had clearly plotted out this plan and according to the detectives, he had planned to take the owner of the home hostage. Phillips entered the home and later, set off the house alarm allowing Berenato and her guest to spot the intruder and left the home while contacting authorities who arrived quickly. Phillips was discovered with a knife, plastic zip ties, duct tape, mace, and other personal items. He is facing charges of aggravated stalking, armed burglary of a dwelling, attempted armed robbery, and criminal mischief.

**WWE presents its final episode of Monday Night Raw before SummerSlam and its final television taping (for now) at the WWE Performance Center. This show was taped last Thursday with the following advertised:
*Shawn Michaels appearing to react to Randy Orton’s attack on Ric Flair
*A tease of Rey Mysterio appearing to confront Seth Rollins, which would be his first appearance since Extreme Rules
*Natalya vs. Mickie James – this would be James’ first match since June 2019

**TSN2 in Canada is airing AEW Dynamite this Saturday night at 10 pm Eastern.

**WWE is advertisings a start time of 5 pm Eastern for the kickoff show of SummerSlam with the main show beginning at 7 pm on the WWE Network.

**New Japan has revealed the stipulation options for the KOPW tournament that will see four matches take place on Wednesday, August 26th. Below are the matches and what the options will be that fans get to vote on:
*Kazuchika Okada vs. Yujiro – Okada wants a 3-on-1 handicap match against Yujiro, Gedo & Jado while Yujiro proposes a lumberjack strap match
*SHO vs. SANADA – Both have agreed to a submission match
*Toru Yano vs. BUSHI – Yano’s stipulation is that BUSHI can win with a two-count, BUSHI’s option is that Yano can lose on the count of five outside the ring (instead of twenty)
*Satoshi Kojima vs. El Desperado – Kojima’s option is the winner has to use their finisher with Kojima’s lariat or Desperado’s Pinche Loco. Desperado’s option is that both finishers are banned.

The voting ends in five days and as of Monday, the polls have Yujiro ahead of Okada with 57%, Yano over BUSHI with 59%, and Desperado ahead of Kojima with 65% of the votes.

**The semi-finals of the AEW Women’s Tag Team Cup tournament take place tonight with the show streaming at 7 pm Eastern. Below are the semi-finals pairings with the finals airing this Saturday on TNT:
*Ivelisse & Diamante vs. Tay Conti & Anna Jay
*Big & Lil’ Swole vs. Brandi Rhodes & Allie

**Several people were raving about the eight-man tag from Saturday’s Dragon Gate card in Kobe. The match featured veterans Naruki Doi, Don Fujii, Shuji Kondo & Susumu Yokosuka against the rookies Takeo Kamei, Sora Fujikawa, Kento Kobune & Madoka Kikuta.

**Below is the match listing for AEW Dark on Tuesday night at 7 pm Eastern on their YouTube channel:
*Billy (Gunn) vs. Alan Angels
*Lance Archer vs. Jon Cruz & Jessy Sorensen
*Colt Cabana, John Silver & Alex Reynolds vs. D3, Ryzin & Faboo Andre
*Sonny Kiss & Joey Janela vs. Shawn Dean & Frank Stone
*Shawn Spears vs. Will Hobbs
*Michael Nakazawa vs. Kip Sabian
*Private Party, Christopher Daniels & Frankie Kazarian vs. The Butcher, The Blade, Pentagon Jr. & Rey Fenix
*Red Velvet vs. Abadon
*Ricky Starks vs. Lee Johnson
*Santana & Ortiz vs. Baron Black & Tony Donati
*Jack Evans & Angelico vs. Brandon Cutler & Peter Avalon

**The WWE stock closed at $44.89 on Monday.

**ROH has revealed the following names for the Pure Title tournament at the upcoming tapings: PJ Black, Tony Deppen, David Finlay, Jonathan Gresham, Jay Lethal, Rocky Romero, Matt Sydal, Tracy Williams, Josh Woods, and Wheeler Yuta. They have six remaining slots to announce. On the site, they have listed the rules of the tournament.

**Justin Kendall has a story on the recent sale of the rare Greg Valentine Rhythm ‘n’ Blues figures designed by Hasbro. A collector from Wales named Marc Reynolds recently purchased one of the three known figures of Valentine from Mark Bushey. Reynolds didn’t reveal the purchase price for the figure but noted that it topped his previous high mark of $13,000 for a figure while falling under the eBay price listing of $30,000 for the Valentine figure. Of the three known figures of Valentine, Matt Cardona owns one of them and detailed the history of this rare figure on The Major Wrestling Figure Podcast.

**Impact Wrestling will begin its two-week “Emergence” set of shows this Tuesday with the following matches advertised for AXS TV at 8 pm Eastern:
*The Motor City Machine Guns vs. The North for the Impact tag titles
*Karl Anderson & Doc Gallows vs. Ace Austin & Madman Fulton
*Moose vs. Trey Miguel for the TNA championship
*Chris Bey vs. Rohit Raju vs. TJP for the X Division title

**Alex Shelley posted a photo with independent wrestlers Benjamin Carter, Tre LaMar, and Lee Moriarty stating they would be appearing on future episodes of Impact’s Xplosion series.

**This Friday on NJPW Strong, the finals of the tournament will take place with KENTA taking on David Finlay. They are also advertising that Jay White will be on the show at 10 pm Eastern on New Japan World. This past Friday, Kevin Kelly noted that after the tournament they will start the “Road to Fighting Spirit Unleashed”.

**Jerry Lawler has announced that his 50th Anniversary Celebration will take place on Saturday, September 26th in Jackson, Tennessee with Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs will be at the show. The event will take place at The Ballpark in Jackson.

**The latest Being the Elite features The Young Bucks seeking out their action figures at Wal-Mart and the tease of Scotty Gold, Man.

**Lana (CJ Perry) and husband Miroslav have announced they will be buying a home in Los Angeles but are also going to keep their existing one in Nashville.

**Paige (Saraya-Jade Bevis) turns 28 years old today.

TELEVISION VIEWERS

**Friday Night SmackDown finished with 2,002,000 viewers this past Friday on Fox. They also did a 0.6 rating in the 18-49 demographic. It was their best overall number since June 26th and their best 18-49 rating since April 17th. The show performed well with SmackDown #1 among all network programming in the  18-49 and 18-34 demos and tied for first in the 25-54 demo.

**Programming Insider has updated Live +3 data for several wrestling programs.

The August 3rd edition of WWE Raw saw increases with its 18-49 demographic adding 95,000 (up 20%) in the first hour, 104,000 (up 19%) in the second hour, and 95,000 (up 18%) in the third hour for the first week of Raw Underground.

The August 5th edition of AEW Dynamite added 92,000 viewers in the 18-49 demographic, which is an increase of 26%.

The August 7th episode of Friday Night SmackDown added 134,000 viewers in 18-49 viewers and 336,000 total viewers. That’s an increase of 25% in 18-49 viewers and 17% in total viewers with Live +3 numbers.

**Back Body Drop out of the UK reports that the August 3rd edition of Raw did 53,300 viewers, the August 5th episode of NXT did not chart nor did the August 7th episode of Friday Night SmackDown. The August 7th airing of AEW Dynamite (airing two days earlier on AEW Plus in the UK) did 145,000 viewers up significantly from 83,000 the week before.

ON THIS DATE

 

 

*****
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About John Pollock 5653 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.