POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Lashley vs. Miz on Raw, Tony Khan chats PPV

Lashley vs. Miz added to Raw, Tony Khan reacts to the PPV, new details on Peacock/WWE Network, Joey Mercury files suit, Dana White on UFC 259, Triller details, Jay Reso to AEW & more.

Photo Courtesy: WWE

POST IT NOTES

**If you missed it, we have our AEW Revolution POST Show with a near two-hour review of the pay-per-view, the low note the show ended on, the arrival of Christian and Ethan Page, the matches that worked, and didn’t, plus your calls and feedback.

**We have an interview posted with Evan Husney from Dark Side of the Ring discussing their new talk show that premieres Tuesday night at 9 pm ET on Vice TV. During the chat, we touched on season three, the official topics confirmed, where they shot Dark Side of the Ring: Confidential, shooting the latest during the pandemic, how the show has grown, and Vice TV introducing spin-offs covering football and the ‘90s. Dark Side of the Ring: Confidential premieres Tuesday night at 9 pm ET on Vice TV.

**Wai Ting and I are LIVE tonight at 11:15 pm ET for Rewind-A-Raw with Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso Café members having access to the live stream. We will also discuss the fallout from AEW Revolution, the WWE-Peacock announcements today about the launch, and take your feedback.

**On Tuesday, it’s our ASK-A-WAI Mailbag Show for the month of March. You can still submit questions on the POST Wrestling Forum.

**Today is the last day for our Patron sale on the POST Wrestling Store. All Patrons receive a 15 percent discount on our Marvel-inspired t-shirt that ends at Midnight ET tonight.

POST SCHEDULE

Tonight: Rewind-A-Raw (LIVE at 11:15 pm ET for Double Double+ Patrons)
Tuesday: ASK-A-WAI Mailbag Show with John & Wai (Patreon)
Tuesday: DEEP IMPACT with Davie Portman (upNXT feed)
Wednesday: Rewind-A-Dynamite (LIVE at 10:15 pm ET for Dbl Dbl+ Patrons)
Wednesday: upNXT with Davie Portman & Braden Herrington
Wednesday: Shot in the Dark with John Siino (upNXT feed)
Thursday: The British Wrestling Experience with Martin Bushby & Benno with Wai Ting
Friday: Rewind-A-SmackDown (LIVE at 10:15 pm ET for all Patrons)
Saturday: The Long & Winding Royal Road with WH Park & Brandon Thurston (Misawa & Akiyama vs. Kawada & Taue, Dec. 1996)
Sunday: Rewand-A-Vision with Wai Ting & WH Park (Assembled: The Making of WandaVision doc)

WRESTLING NEWS

**Tonight’s episode of WWE Raw will feature a championship celebration for Bobby Lashley with The Hurt Business. Later in the afternoon, they announced that Bobby Lashley will defend the championship against The Miz in an immediate rematch. There will also be a segment where Braun Strowman asks Shane McMahon for an apology.

**Friday Night SmackDown did its best figures in a month this past week. The show finished with 2,252,000 viewers and a 0.60 in the 18-49 demographic and were their best numbers since February 5th following the Royal Rumble. They were second among network programs behind ABC’s Shark Tank but were the top network show in adults 18-34 with a 0.37. In Canada, the show finished with 155,200 viewers and 99,200 in the 25-54 demo on Sportsnet 360. The main sports competition in Canada was the Brier Curling tournament on TSN and a Washington Capitals vs. Boston Bruins game on Sportsnet.

**AEW officially announced that the Double or Nothing pay-per-view will take place from Daily’s Place on Sunday, May 30th, which is Memorial Day weekend in the United States.

**Jay Reso, 47, made his debut for AEW on Sunday during the Revolution pay-per-view. Despite his appearance at the Royal Rumble in January, he was not under a WWE talent contract and reached out to AEW and struck a deal. It’s surprising given how well his return came off at the Rumble as one of the key moments on the show and a natural follow-up to team with Edge at least once. Even if he was not slotted for a major role, the story of Christian being the one to challenge Roman Reigns at Fastlane with a month’s worth of promos where Christian vows to win the title to headline WrestleMania with his best friend would be a compelling one. It would place more heat on Reigns when he crushed Christian’s hopes and then adds stakes to the showdown with Edge at WrestleMania.

On his own, I think Reso’s addition to AEW would be welcome but it’s a series of signings that harken back to misfires by TNA scooping every name talent that became available from WWE. The combination of so many recent additions dilutes their effectiveness if there was one big legend instead of multiples while also justifying their signings with ample television time in a company that has way more talent than they can showcase on TNT weekly. Eventually, there will be the added hour on TNT, which helps, and post-pandemic it’s a strong argument for more talent sharing where talent can be sent off for a few months to work and improve and come back fresh. To have a weekly show where Christian, Matt Hardy, Sting, and Paul Wight are featured adds up quickly. I don’t put Chris Jericho in this category even though he’s a parallel as his stories have been deeply engrained to the show, has re-invented himself from his WWE persona, and he’s a major player that still holds great value while being the core of the Inner Circle. After the Street Fight, it’s best to have Sting disappear for a few months and re-introduce him when it’s time for his next story because weekly appearances lessen his effectiveness.

It will always be a balancing act of established names to grow the base, so you have more eyes to create new stars but can also become a trap of feeling the need to outdo yourselves with a new surprise every few months and loading up on names that over time, change the identity you are forging.

**During his post-show media call, Tony Khan spoke about the show, and below are some notes from the call:
*On the finish of the Exploding Barbed-Wire Death Match, he is pivoting to the story that Kenny Omega built a bad bomb and it’s not his forte.
*Jay Reso contacted Khan about wrestling in AEW on a regular basis and has been friends with him for seven years
*He said it came up in the past few weeks with Reso, he returned at the Royal Rumble and wasn’t aware he didn’t have a contract at WWE and was kicking himself for not getting him when he saw him return in January
*There have been zero known transmissions from running shows with fans at Daily’s Place, he wants to slowly increase capacity but not put the pods too close together
*The Young Bucks vs. PAC & Rey Fenix tag title match will be in the next several weeks and definitely before Double or Nothing in May
*He said Red Velvet’s full-time contract “is coming” and made it sound like a formality
*Khan feels the women will headline an episode of Dynamite “very soon”
*On Ethan Page, he wanted more depth on the heel side noting they were a bit thin after the entire Dark Order went babyface
*Big Swole has been out of action due to Crohn’s disease and was the reason she was not in the Eliminator Tournament

**Khan added during the call that the preliminary streaming numbers for Revolution are a record high and this could be one of the most purchased AEW pay-per-views ever.

**The Verge has additional details on the WWE Network’s move to Peacock for U.S. subscribers. The outlet adds that in addition to the news that past pay-per-view events prior to 2020 won’t be immediately available (except WrestleMania, which will have all versions available on the launch date), Peacock is also getting rid of the match markers within the files and at least at the launch, and the search function won’t be as effective as the current one for the network. Earlier today, Peacock and WWE issued a release noting that the launch will occur on 3/18 and that the standalone WWE Network app will be shut down in the U.S. on 4/4 with users having to join Peacock by 4/4 to continue watching the network.

**WrestleZone was the first to report that former agent Joey Mercury (Adam Birch) filed a lawsuit against Ring of Honor and Sinclair Broadcasting claiming he was misclassified as an independent contractor and should have been recognized as an employee. Birch worked for the company for a year-and-a-half ending his tenure in October 2019. Birch outlines he was forced to leave after he said the company showed a complete lack of concern for the talent along with increased responsibilities without a proper increase in compensation. Regarding the misclassification, the following is what is alleged in the suit:

The Agreement clearly misclassifies Birch as an independent contractor when he was, in fact, an employee. Sinclair and ROH retained the right to control every aspect of Birch’s performance of services and overrode his independent judgment regarding the best manner in which to perform his services. Sinclair and ROH also retained the right to prohibit Birch from performing services for other entities without consent. Sinclair and ROH retained the right to terminate Birch’s performance of services for Sinclair and ROH, but denied Birch the right to terminate his provision of services during the first six months of the Agreement. Sinclair and ROH retained the right to terminate the relationship for cause and imposed a restrictive covenant.

Birch is seeking to claim a breach of contract if the misclassification is ruled in his favor and seeks royalties that he is due while arguing he is entitled to compensatory damages due to the termination of his relationship with ROH and Sinclair.

**The WWE stock increased by 4 percent on Monday closing at $56.75.

**Variety has a feature on the WWE’s escalating rights fees despite viewership decline. According to its internal data, they believe that WWE’s existing domestic rights deals for Raw, SmackDown, and NXT coupled with the new deal with Peacock total $748.8 million in annual revenue compared to $150 million in 2018. They broke down the annual figures with Raw listed at $265 million per year, SmackDown at $205 million, the Peacock deal at $205 million, and NXT at $30 million. They added that compared with 2015 numbers, Raw is down 54.5 percent or 2.2 million viewers while SmackDown is down 16.1 percent or 418,000 viewers. The SmackDown comparison is a bit misleading as SmackDown was airing as a taped show on Thursday nights on Syfy (prior to moving to the USA Network) and now they’re a live show on Fox and available in millions of more homes. Variety suggests that if the Peacock deal with WWE is a success that they should expect to see WarnerMedia strike a similar deal to get AEW events on its HBO Max platform.

**WWE has announced the signing of broadcaster Kevin Egan, who will be going by the name Kevin Patrick in his new role. Egan will become the new host of Raw Talk on the WWE Network and serve as an announcer for WWE Main Event and a backstage correspondent for Raw. Egan has previously worked with RTE in Ireland, the Big Ten Network, beIN Sports, CNN International, and SiriusXM.

**The ROH 19th Anniversary pay-per-view on 3/26 will be headlined by Rush defending the ROH Championship against Jay Lethal. The match was set-up on this past weekend’s episode where Jay Lethal defeated Matt Taven, EC3, and Jay Briscoe in a Four-Corner Survival Match.

**Roman Reigns speaks with Complex about his sneaker collection, his return in 2019 to announce his leukemia was in remission, and evolving from Roman Reigns to Joe Anoa’i during his speech on Raw.

**AEW has announced the following matches and segments for Wednesday’s edition of Dynamite:
*TNT Championship: Darby Allin (champion) vs. Scorpio Sky
*Matt Jackson vs. Rey Fenix
*Hikaru Shida, Thunder Rosa & Ryo Mizunami vs. Britt Baker, Nyla Rose & Maki Itoh (Rose replaces Rebel in the match)
*The Inner Circle’s “War Council”

**MLW has added a match between Gino Medina and Gringo Loco for Wednesday’s edition of Fusion.

**Being the Elite Ep. 246: Revolution 2021.

**Jon Moxley’s post-show promo in the ring after the show went off the air:

MMA NEWS

**At the post-fight press conference, UFC President Dana White made the following comments:
*He didn’t agree with any of the 10-8 scores in the main event between Jan Blachowicz and Israel Adesanya and called it “insane”. Judges Derek Cleary and Junichiro Kamijo both scored the fifth round 10-8 for Blachowicz, which was borderline but not insane. I had the fight 48-47 for Blachowicz with him winning Rounds 2, 4, and 5. You can’t get too bent out of shape over how many points Blachowicz won the fight by, he was the clear-cut winner.
*White said Glover Teixiera is the number one contender for Blachowicz, although the champion has since stated he needs a minimum of six months off.
*He wants to turn Amanda Nunes around quickly for a bantamweight title defense after running through Megan Anderson in 2:03 of their featherweight title fight. White added they will keep the women’s featherweight division going as long as Nunes wants to defend her title.
*White said they run back Aljamain Sterling and Petr Yan “as soon as possible”
*The new Venum deal goes into effect with the April 10th card headlined by Darren Till vs. Marvin Vettori
*Said the construction of the UFC Apex prior to the pandemic was one of their smartest moves over the past twenty years since Zuffa bought the UFC
*He is having dinner with Khabib Nurmagomedov later this week and asked him about September as a possibility, and Nurmagomedov just laughed

**Dana White indicated that they won’t be going to Texas that soon after expressing an interest to do so with the state opening up. White said the Governor is fine with it, but the Mayors of the cities are less inclined to have the UFC come to host a big card in an indoor building. White had said he would have been willing to move UFC 260 later this month but that doesn’t appear likely.

**The Triller event on April 17th featuring Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren and Antonio Tarver vs. Frank Mir in boxing fights has a venue and price point. The event is scheduled to air on pay-per-view from Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia with no tickets being put on sale but there will be a limited number of fans and guests selected to attend. The pay-per-view will have a suggested price tag of $49.99 U.S. on InDemand and internationally on FITE TV (where it is currently listed at $39.99). It will be a four-hour broadcast beginning at 8 pm ET with the pay-per-view portion kicking off at 9. The full card will be announced in the next few days.

*****
POST INTERVIEW: Evan Husney, Dark Side of the Ring: Confidential
John Pollock is joined by Dark Side of the Ring Executive Producer & Co-Creator Evan Husney to discuss a new spinoff talk show.
*****
AEW REVOLUTION 2021 POST SHOW
John Pollock & Wai Ting review AEW Revolution 2021 featuring Kenny Omega vs. Jon Moxley in an Exploding Barbed Wire Death Match for the AEW World Championship.
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UFC 259 POST Show: Blachowicz vs. Adesanya
John Pollock and Phil Chertok present the UFC 259 POST Show with a review of Saturday’s card featuring three championship fights.
*****
REWAND-A-VISION: Episode 9 “The Series Finale” (w/ Nate Milton)
Wai Ting & WH Park welcome Nate Milton to review WandaVision Ep. 9 “The Series Finale” as we finally learn the fates of Wanda, Vision, The Twins, Agatha Harkness, and the residents of Westview. Did Marvel’s much-hyped series stick its superhero-landing?
*****
REWIND-A-SMACKDOWN 3/5/21: Bryan vs. Uso Steel Cage, Apollo Crews
Wai Ting welcomes Kate from Montreal to review tonight’s WWE SmackDown as Daniel Bryan faces Jey Uso in a steel cage for a shot at Roman Reigns’ Universal title. Andrew Thompson drops by to deliver the news and we take your calls about the week in wrestling.
*****
BEST DEATH MATCH EVER
Braden Herrington and Davie Portman are joined by friend of the show Damian Abraham to chat all about his hand-selected list of the BEST Death Matches Ever!
*****
REWIND-A-DYNAMITE 3/3/21: Shaq, Revolution Go-Home, Jim Crockett Jr.
John Pollock & Wai Ting review AEW Dynamite featuring Shaquille O’Neal on the go-home edition for Revolution, plus we discuss the passing of Jim Crockett Jr.
*****

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About John Pollock 4100 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.