POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: WWE stock soars, NXT viewers in Canada

WWE stock soars, NXT viewership in Canada, NWA going to St. Louis, OTT issues statement on future, Lio Rush retires, Omega-Okada on this date.


**Today, we have a chat posted with Nate Milton discussing the Nubian Wrestling Advocates podcast that is debuting on POST Wrestling this Sunday. In this show, the two of us discuss the impetus behind the show, the impact of the past year, diversity among wrestling media, as well as current news events including WWE’s hiring of Jamie Horowitz, the NWA’s pay-per-view announcements, the state of NXT and more.

**On Thursday, MCU L8R returns with hosts Wai Ting and WH Park chatting about the first episode of the new Loki series that has launched on Disney+. This will be a weekly podcast for members of the POST Wrestling Café reviewing each week’s episode. You can leave feedback and questions on the POST Wrestling Forum.

**Martin Bushby & Benno are back on Thursday with The British Wrestling Experience to discuss the recent match between Cody Rhodes and Anthony Ogogo, Will Ospreay’s pending announcement regarding the RevPro title, WALTER returning to NXT UK, Kay Lee Ray vs. Meiko Satomura & more.

**This month’s ASK-A-WAI Mailbag Show is available for all POST Wrestling Café members covering tons of topics. Among the questions asked, we covered why the third of Raw isn’t going anywhere, the role Nick Khan holds in WWE, Jeff Jarrett’s matches, seven years of Bellator under Scott Coker, commenting on male and female physiques, how we got director Bryan Fogel for an interview, tips for Jiu-Jitsu beginners, and more.

**We will also have a UFC 263 Preview Show out Friday as I’ll be chatting about the card with Phil Chertok and Eric Marcotte. The UFC 263 POST Show will be live immediately after Saturday’s pay-per-view on the POST YouTube channel.

**If you missed it, this month’s edition of The Long & Winding Royal Road is a terrific career retrospective on Kenta Kobashi, hosted by WH Park & guest Case Lowe from Voices of Wrestling.


Thursday: MCU L8R with Wai Ting & WH Park reviewing “Loki” (Patreon)
Thursday: The British Wrestling Experience with Martin Bushby & Benno
Friday: UFC 263 Preview Show with John Pollock, Phil Chertok & Eric Marcotte
Friday: Rewind-A-DynaDown with Wai & Kate from MTL (LIVE at Midnight ET for all Patrons)
Saturday: UFC 263 POST Show with John Pollock & Phil Chertok
Sunday: NXT TakeOver: In Your House POST Show with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Sunday: The Nubian Wrestling Advocates with Nate Milton, Kris Ealy & Andrew Thompson


**After a widely circulated thread on the WWE stock in the Wall Street Bets subreddit, the WWE stock soared on Wednesday trading as high as $70.72 before it settled and closed at $64.48. Wednesday’s closing price represented an increase of almost 11 percent jumping over $6 in value and closed at its highest mark since January 2020 (just before the news of George Barrios and Michelle Wilson being relieved as company co-presidents and led to the stock taking a major hit). The post on Reddit included catalysts cited as live events resuming next month with fans, the video game sector is seen as a growth area, and included the potential of the company being acquired (which has largely been theories presented based on recent moves and consolidation among departments and not anything concrete).

**From Yahoo! Finance on today’s WWE stock soaring:

WWE stock’s jump is just the latest example of a so-called meme stocks rally. The exact identities of the traders pushing prices higher are not clear. But the Reddit board WallStreetBets has largely been credited with launching an effort to upend short sellers who had bet those stocks would fall.

MarketSmith data shows that headed into Wednesday’s action, it would take 11.5 times the stock’s average daily volume for short sellers to cover their positions in WWE stock. In other words, short interest is elevated in the midcap growth stock.

**NXT only averaged 26,000 viewers on Sportsnet 360 on Tuesday night in Canada. Sports competition in the country included the NHL playoff games with the Colorado Avalanche vs. Las Vegas Golden Knights and Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Carolina Hurricanes, as well as the Toronto Blue Jays vs. Chicago White Sox and an NBA playoff game between Atlanta and Philadelphia.

**PW Torch reports that in the U.S., NXT averaged 669,000 viewers and 0.20 in the 18-49 demographic on Tuesday night.

**Monday’s episode of Raw in Canada averaged 189,300 viewers and 85,800 in the 25-54 demo. The episode went against the NHL playoff game between Montreal and Winnipeg.

**The NWA has revealed that they will be holding two pay-per-view events in late August from the Khorassan Ballroom at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel in St. Louis, which was the famous home of Wrestling at the Chase. The NWA will be running the venue from August 28th to 31st including a women’s pay-per-view on August 28th and the NWA’s 73rd Anniversary event on August 29th.

The Khorassan Ballroom was where Sam Muchnick taped television for KPLR, which was the territory’s long-time television partner. Wrestling at the Chase was a local institution in the city that often drew over 100,000 viewers. Directors of the show included Ted Koplar and Jim Herd, who would later ascend to a major position within Turner Sports to overseeing WCW with Wrestling at the Chase serving as his experience in the pro wrestling industry. It was a great deal between the promotion and the station where KPLR paid Muchnick $1,500 per taping along with covering the production expenses in exchange for the ad revenue and 5 percent of the net from the big shows staged at Kiel Auditorium and the Checkerdome.

After Muchnick’s retirement in January 1982, the territory was run by Verne Gagne, Harley Race, Bob Geigel, Pat O’Connor, and Muchnick’s protégé Larry Matysik. Matysik, who had been the voice of the show since 1972, would eventually leave and briefly ran an oppositional company. Wrestling at the Chase ended in 1984 when Vince McMahon paid for the television time and worked with Larry Matysik at the request of KPLR president and CEO Ted Koplar.

**Mickie James spoke on the NWA Powerrr Post Show regarding her new role as Executive Producer of ‘Empowerrr’ that launches this August. She said she has no intentions of wrestling on the show on August 28th but teased the idea of doing something on the NWA show.

**On Tuesday night, Lio Rush surprisingly announced his retirement from pro wrestling despite having a deal with New Japan and indicated he was on the verge of signing a separate deal with AEW. Rush noted he was injured during the Casino Battle Royale when he separated his AC. Rush said that due to contractual obligations with NJPW, he would be making his final appearances once his injury is healed. AEW president Tony Khan issued the following:

Lio Rush reached out to me today, and he shared that he’d planned to announce his retirement from pro wrestling tonight. While this news was unexpected, I’m glad that he’s made a choice that he’s confident will make him and his family happy.

Lio is a great talent, and I enjoyed briefly working with him, and I absolutely wish him the best.

Rush previously worked for MLW where he held the promotion’s middleweight title. MLW CEO Court Bauer issued the following reaction to the news:

Lio is a brilliant athlete who made a difficult decision but one that I admire for his commitment to putting family first. I along with everyone at Major League Wrestling wish Lio continued success with the next chapter of his life and thank him for sharing his extraordinary talent with the world.

**AEW has added a match between Nyla Rose and Leyla Hirsch for this Friday’s edition of Dynamite airing on TNT. Last week’s episode featured Britt Baker’s Championship Celebration that was cut short by Nyla Rose dumping the plate of hamburgers and suggests Rose will be challenging Baker.

**OTT promoter Joe Cabray has issued a lengthy statement regarding its plans to return to live events considering the pandemic and Speaking Out Movement over the past year. Of note, is that any complaints will be handled by an independent head of talent relations and when criminality is alleged “investigations will be referred to the relevant authorities” and “Any performer who has been subject to allegations and is subsequently deemed fit to return will be announced publicly before the event via social media and our ticketing site”. The promotion adds that it will not comment publicly on any ongoing investigations if they arise. The return to live events will also have a COVID-19 policy in effect that includes public health guidelines, social distancing measures, ventilation at buildings, hand hygiene, and mask-wearing that will be enforced for both performers and fans.

**Stardom is running a big show this Saturday at Ota Ward Gymnasium featuring Utami Hayashishita defending the World of Stardom Championship against Syuri in the main event. The card will also feature the semi-finals and final of the Cinderella tournament, which has been delayed due to the state of emergency advisories in Japan. In the two semi-final matches, Maika faces Unagi Sayaka and Saya Kamitani will face Himeka with the two winners squaring off.

**Kyle O’Reilly was interviewed by Steven Muehlhausen of DAZN to promote TakeOver this Sunday. O’Reilly shared his feelings on who he feels is the top wrestler in the industry right now:

I think Finn Balor is. He’s a guy who’s done everything. (He’s) a former Universal champion. For whatever reason, he came back to NXT and has just helped elevate every single guy that he’s wrestled in NXT. He’s helped elevate the brand of NXT just by him being here and by him putting everything into his work, delivering, and busting his ass when he certainly didn’t have to. I think his work definitely speaks for itself because everything he’s done has just been top-notch. I know myself, I’ve learned a lot getting to wrestle Finn. For my money, I’d say Finn Balor is at the top of that list right now.

**New Japan Pro Wrestling released its Kizuna Road line-ups beginning next Monday through the show on June 23rd. They are using an old tradition of taking two Young Lions and running them through the gauntlet of established stars in singles matches. Yuya Uemura and Yota Tsuji will be featured in the opening matches on several of the Kizuna Road cards with the big one being June 16th at Korakuen Hall where Uemura will face Hiroshi Tanahashi and Tsuji faces Kazuchika Okada. Essentially, the Young Lions will lose every one of these matches but it’s a chance to show their abilities and toughness against top stars and advance their standing and perception among the fans.

**Sasha Banks is a guest on Just Women’s Sports with Kelley O’Hara discussing her entry into professional wrestling and becoming a fan at 13 years of age and her increased fandom before getting involved.

**NXT has its go-home episode on Tuesday night prior to TakeOver: In Your House. Sunday’s event has five matches listed including the addition of a Ladder Match between Cameron Grimes and LA Knight for the Million Dollar Championship, and a ‘Winner Take All’ six-man tag as North American Champion Bronson Reed & NXT Tag Team Champions MSK put their titles on the line against Legado del Fantasma. Those matches join the previously announced matches with the five-way for the NXT Championship between Karrion Kross, Pete Dunne, Kyle O’Reilly, Johnny Gargano, and Adam Cole, the NXT Women’s Championship between Raquel Gonzalez and Ember Moon, and a singles match with Xia Li taking on Mercedes Martinez. As always, the TakeOver shows tend to deliver as NXT is still going through a transitional period with a lot of new acts introduced and coming off the Wednesday night era that did affect the brand.

**Thursday’s edition of NXT UK features the NXT UK Women’s Championship match between Kay Lee Ray and Meiko Satomura.

**Below is the line-up for Thursday’s edition of IMPACT Wrestling at 8 p.m. ET on AXS TV going into the ‘Against All Odds’ show this Saturday:
*IMPACT/AEW Summit with Tony Khan, Don Callis, and Scott D’Amore
*Eddie Edwards vs. Joe Doering
*Havok vs. Rosemary
*No Disqualifications: W. Morrissey vs. Willie Mack
*Tasha Steelz vs. Kimber Lee

**AEW performer Tay Conti and NXT referee Aja Smith have birthdays today.

**Kenny Omega defeated Kazuchika Okada on this date in 2018 at Dominion. The match is considered one of the greatest of all time with some pegging it as the greatest ever. It was their fourth and final singles match together after the classic at Wrestle Kingdom 11 in January 2017, a 60-minute draw at Dominion in June 2017, and Omega finally beating Okada during the G-1 Climax in 2017. The June 2018 match represented Omega’s ascension to the top of the promotion by winning the IWGP heavyweight championship in a 2-of-3 Falls Match with no time limit. In later interviews, Omega revealed that had he stayed with New Japan in 2019, the plan was for Omega to face Okada when the company ran Madison Square Garden in April 2019, which was a co-promoted event with Ring of Honor.


**ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reported that Alistair Overeem has signed a multi-fight deal with the Glory kickboxing promotion. Overeem left the UFC after his most recent fight against Alexander Volkov in February where he suffered a TKO loss after wins against Walt Harris and Augusto Saki last year. Overeem, 41, has a kickboxing history including competing for K-1 but has not fought since December 2010 when he won the World Grand Prix defeating Tyrone Spong, Gokhan Saki, and Peter Aerts on the same night. Overeem left Strikeforce in 2011 to join the UFC and beat Brock Lesnar in his promotional debut and would go 12-8 during his UFC career including one championship fight where he was defeated by Stipe Miocic in September 2016 at UFC 203.

**MMA Junkie’s Mike Bohn reports that the commentary team for UFC 263 will feature Jon Anik, Joe Rogan, and Paul Felder.

**Episode 2  and Episode 3 of UFC Embedded heading into UFC 263 this weekend in Glendale, Arizona.

**Showtime has launched a four-part documentary series “The Kings” chronicling the legendary fights involving “Sugar” Ray Leonard, Roberto Duran, Thomas “Hitman” Hearns, and Marvin Hagler throughout the ’80s. The first episode gave an introduction to the four fighters and their respective backgrounds with the lion’s share focusing on Leonard as a crossover star from boxing into the mainstream through his endorsements and fame from winning the gold medal at the Summer Olympics in Montreal in 1976 before turning pro. The episode climaxes with the first fight between Leonard and Duran from Montreal in June 1980 and Duran’s enormous victory that was followed by an utterly stunning reception when he got home to Panama. The two would fight twice more in their careers including later that year with their most famous fight in New Orleans in November 1980.



POST INTERVIEW: Nate Milton, The Nubian Wrestling Advocates
John Pollock catches up with Nate Milton to discuss The Nubian Wrestling Advocates podcast coming to POST Wrestling beginning this Sunday.
John Siino reviews this week’s editions of AEW Dark, AEW Dark: Elevation, NXT UK, NWA Powerrr, 205 Live, NJPW Strong, Ring of Honor, and Main Event in under 15 minutes on Shot In The Dark.
upNXT 6/8/21: “I’m Your Poppy”
Braden Herrington and Davie Portman review the June 8th, 2021 edition of WWE NXT: The go-home show for TakeOver: In Your House this Sunday!
ASK-A-WAI: Ask Us Anything (June 2021)
John Pollock and Wai Ting answer their patrons’ questions from the POST Wrestling Forum in the June 2021 edition of Ask-A-Wai.
REWIND-A-RAW 6/7/21: Baszler vs. Doll, Bret Hart A&E Biography
John Pollock & Wai Ting review WWE Raw featuring the latest worst segment of all-time involving Shayna Baszler & Lilly, and a review of the A&E Biography on Bret Hart.
John Pollock & Wai Ting review NJPW Dominion 2021 featuring Kazuchika Okada vs. Shingo Takagi to determine the new holder of Will Ospreay’s vacated IWGP Heavyweight Championship.
L&WRR: Kenta Kobashi Biography
The Long & Winding Royal Road continues as WH Park is joined by co-host of the Open The Voice Gate podcast, Case Lowe for a spotlight on “Orange Crush” Kenta Kobashi!

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About John Pollock 5518 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.