POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: Shinjiro Otani issues statement, Young Rock renewed

Shinjiro Otani issues statement on his condition, Young Rock renewed, Capital Collision preview, Kofi Kingston vs. Butch on SmackDown & more.


**Rewind-A-SmackDown is live at 10 p.m. ET for POST Wrestling Café members. Wai Ting and I will be live with reviews of Friday Night SmackDown, AEW Rampage, and will be taking your calls at the end. The show is available live and on-demand exclusively for POST Wrestling Café members.

**The Long & Winding Royal Road returns on Saturday with WH Park joined by Benno of The British Wrestling Experience to chat Stan Hansen vs. Vader from the Tokyo Dome in February 1990.

**On The British Wrestling Experience, Martin Bushby and Andy Ogden are joined by Will Cooling to discuss WWE’s Clash at the Castle, the state of Progress Wrestling, the upcoming Super Strong Style 16 tournament, and the latest on what’s happening in NXT 2.0 & more.


Wai Ting and I chat about:

– Tammy Sytch’s bond revoked, judge orders her back to jail
– Young Rock renewed by NBC
– Schedule in place for NXT live events next month
– AEW Dynamite ratings
– IMPACT Slammiversary main event
– NJPW Capital Collision
– Best of the Super Juniors preview
– Friday Night SmackDown tonight
– WWE Clash at the Castle poster
– AEW Rampage with an early start time
– Starrcast returns over SummerSlam weekend

Free audio version for all POST listeners today.


**Friday Night SmackDown takes place from the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania tonight. RK-Bro is set to appear on the show after announcing on Raw that they would confront Roman Reigns to try and set up a unification match with The Usos. Below are the matches announced for tonight’s episode at 8 p.m. ET on Fox:
*Women’s Tag Team Championships: Sasha Banks & Naomi (champions) vs. Natalya & Shayna Baszler
*Kofi Kingston vs. Butch

**AEW Rampage is bumped to 5:30 p.m. ET tonight, which torpedoed the audience last week and led to the show’s lowest numbers in history due to TNT’s coverage of the NHL playoffs. If the data comes out, the DVR viewership for these episodes will be an interesting barometer of interest as one would suspect they would be higher than usual. Below are the matches and segments that were taped this past Wednesday on Long Island at the UBS Arena:
*TNT Championship: Scorpio Sky (champion) vs. Frankie Kazarian
*Owen Hart Cup: Ruby Soho vs. Riho
*Shawn Spears vs. Bear Boulder
*PAC, Penta Oscuro & Rey Fenix vs. The Butcher, The Blade & Marq Quen
*The Baddies to appear

**AEW will avoid the NBA playoffs due to its early start time. SmackDown will contend with Game 6 of the Boston Celtics vs. Milwaukee Bucks. The game between Golden State and Memphis doesn’t begin until 10 p.m. ET.

**ZERO1 has issued an update on Shinjiro Otani including comments from the performer, who suffered a cervical spinal injury on April 10th during a match with Takashi Sugiura. The following statement was issued by Otani, who remains paralyzed from the neck down, according to the story on the ZERO1 site:

I’m really sorry for the inconvenience and concern caused by my injury.

Also, I am grateful to everyone for their warm feelings.

Now, I am working hard every day for treatment and rehabilitation so that I can return to everyone as soon as possible.

I will definitely return in front of you.

We look forward to your continued support of ZERO1 and professional wrestling.

ZERO1 is holding a benefit card for Otani on Saturday, June 4th at Ota Ward City Gymnasium billed as ‘ONE TEAM’ with New Japan Pro Wrestling and Pro Wrestling NOAH sending talent for the event.

**NBC issued a press release to confirm that ‘Young Rock’ has been renewed for a third season. The Tuesday night series is a co-production including Seven Bucks Productions with the ongoing season focusing on Dwayne Johnson’s transition from football to professional wrestling including his WWF tryout in Corpus Christi, Texas in March 1996 dramatized. After nine episodes this season, the show is averaging 2,148,000 and 0.37 in 18-49 and is well below the first season’s viewership average of 3,030,000 (or 2,810,000 if you exclude the series’ premiere, which did over 5.3 million viewers and skews the number). Several actual wrestlers have had small roles on the show including Colt Cabana recently portraying The Brooklyn Brawler and NXT 2.0 performer Grayson Waller (Matthew Farrelly) playing Ric Flair in the first season. One of the showrunners for the series is Nahnatchka Khan, who is the sister of WWE president Nick Khan.

**The former Kagetsu has launched a YouTube channel and will now be known as Yuu Ishino after undergoing surgery last summer to transition and identifies as he/him. In the video, he did not make an indication regarding a return to wrestling. Ishino was trained by Meiko Satomura and wrestled from 2008 until retiring in early 2020 after finishing up with Stardom. Ishino held the World of Stardom title for a year beginning in June 2018 after defeating Toni Storm. After retiring, Ishino came back last May to wrestle on the Hana Kimura Tribute Show with the two being members of Oedo Tai during their careers and winning championships together.  (Thanks to Karen Peterson)

**WWE has two house shows this weekend starting with Florence, South Carolina on Saturday where they are advertising Roman Reigns vs. Drew McIntyre, Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins, and Bianca Belair vs. Rhea Ripley vs. Liv Morgan. Sunday’s show in Roanoke, Virginia is listing Reigns vs. McIntyre, Rhodes vs. Rollins, Becky Lynch vs. Asuka, and Sasha Banks & Naomi vs. Natalya & Shayna Baszler. Monday’s episode of Raw takes place at the Norfolk Scope in Virginia with Bobby Lashley vs. Omos in a steel cage match.

**NJPW presents Capital Collision on Saturday night with WrestleTix noting on Thursday that a few hundred tickets were remaining for the 2,150 set up of the arena. This does emphasize the difference between a New Japan show featuring AEW talent compared to Forbidden Door, which is closer to a big AEW event featuring New Japan talent. No one is disputing who the “A-side” of this promotional arrangement is when it comes to the U.S. market but essentially, you have the same type of show but the AEW brand is so much stronger here. The event will stream on FITE TV at 7 p.m. ET where the sides have ensured that technical issues won’t be an issue like last month’s event that was plagued by problems and made the main event almost impossible to watch without constant frustration over the stream dying repeatedly.

For the show itself, it looks like a great show on paper with the four-way main event having the potential to be among the best of the year and a first-time meeting between Tomohiro Ishii and Eddie Kingston. Ishii is quietly putting together a great case for this year’s best wrestler award. Kingston will need to sell the fireball angle and have the makeup applied as he did on Wednesday. It would make sense for several angles to be kickstarted on this event for The Forbidden Door, although AEW has Double or Nothing and NJPW has Dominion to promote as well.

Below is the card for Saturday at 7 p.m. ET on FITE TV:
*IWGP United States Championship: Hiroshi Tanahashi (champion) vs. Jon Moxley vs. Will Ospreay vs. Juice Robinson
*Kazuchika Okada & Trent Beretta vs. Jay White & Hikuleo
*Tomohiro Ishii vs. Eddie Kingston
*Minoru Suzuki vs. Brody King
*JONAH, Shane Haste, Mikey Nicholls & Bad Dude Tito vs. Jeff Cobb, Aaron Henare & Aussie Open
*Great O-Khan vs. Chase Owens
*Fred Rosser, Tanga Loa, Yuya Uemura, David Finlay & Rocky Romero vs. Tom Lawlor, JR Kratos, Jorel Nelson, Royce Isaacs & Danny Limelight
*Ren Narita vs. Karl Fredericks
*Dark Match: Kevin Knight vs. The DKC

**On Sunday, the Best of the Super Juniors tournament kicks off in Nagoya with the A Block matches. The tournament runs over the course of 13 events climaxing with the finals on June 3rd at Budokan Hall. Below are the matches for Sunday’s opening card at 4 a.m. ET on New Japan World:
*A BLOCK: Taiji Ishimori (current IWGP junior heavyweight champion) vs. YOH
*A BLOCK: Hiromu Takahashi vs. Ryusuke Taguchi
*A BLOCK: Francesco Akira vs. SHO
*A BLOCK: Alex Zayne vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
*A BLOCK: Ace Austin vs. Clark Connors
*El Desperado, DOUKI & Taka Michinoku vs. Titan, El Lindaman & Jado
*Shingo Takagi & BUSHI vs. El Phantasmo & Dick Togo
*Wheeler Yuta, Yuto Nakashima, Kosei Fujita & Ryohei Oiwa vs. Robbie Eagles, Master Wato, Tiger Mask & Hiroyoshi Tenzan

**The B Block matches begin next Tuesday in Yamagata at 5:30 a.m. ET on New Japan World.

**MLW holds its ‘Kings of Colosseum’ event tonight at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia and tapings weeks of television. The listed matches include Alex Hammerstone vs. Richard Holliday for the MLW title, Jacob Fatu vs. Mads Krugger in a Weapons of Mass Destruction match, EJ Nduka & Calvin Tankman vs. The Von Erichs vs. 5150 for the MLW tag titles, Alex Kane vs. TBA for the National Openweight title, Holidead vs. Taya Valkyrie to determine the first MLW featherweight champion, Myron Reed vs. Arez vs. KC Navarro for the MLW middleweight title, Microman vs. Abismo Negro Jr., Los Maximos vs. TBA, nZo vs. Lince Dorado, Juicy Finau & Lance Anoa’i vs. Los Aztecas, Brittany Blake vs. Zoey Skye and appearances by Lio Rush, The Sandman, Blue Meanie, Gangrel among others.

**NXT Level Up at 10 p.m. ET tonight on the WWE Network has Trick Williams vs. Javier Bernal, Elektra Lopez vs. Thea Hail, and Sanga vs. Dante Chen.

**West Coast Pro presents ‘Ill Mannered’ tonight at 10 p.m. ET on IWTV from The State Room in San Francisco, which is sold out. The card includes Will Ospreay vs. Titus Alexander, Kevin Blackwood vs. Timothy Thatcher, Biff Busick vs. Vinnie Massaro, Reno Scum vs. Karl Fredericks & The Conglomerates, JD Drake vs. Levi Shapiro, AJ Gray vs. Robert Martyr, Bateman & Dutch vs. West Coast Wrecking Crew, and Shazza McKenzie vs. Billie Starks vs. Dark Sheik.

**C*4 Wrestling in Ottawa returns to St. Anthony’s Hall tonight at 7:30 p.m. ET with Joey Janela vs. Viking, Jeff Cobb vs. Junior Benito, Kevin Ku & Dominic Garrini vs. The Tiger and The Wolf for the promotion’s tag titles, Alec Price vs. Joshua Bishop vs. Cecil Nyx vs. Marcus Mathers, Janai Kai & M.S.P. & Alexia Nicole vs. Fight or Flight & Taylor Rising & Krystal Moon, and Scrapper James Stone vs. Professor Shayne Hawke. The C*4 shows are usually up on IWTV within several days.

**Pro Wrestling NOAH has a card on Saturday in Yokohama with Daisuke Harada vs. H.Y.O., Kaito Kiyomiya & Yuya Susumu vs. Simon Gotch & Yoshinari Ogawa, and Chris Ridgeway vs. Seiki Yoshioka in the top matches streaming on Wrestle Universe.

**Jack Evans is scheduled to return to Game Changer Wrestling against Ninja Mack on Saturday, June 18th at the Melrose Ballroom in New York City. Evans’ contract with AEW recently expired while Ninja Mack just completed his first tour of Pro Wrestling NOAH and has signed an agreement with the promotion. The card at the Melrose Ballroom will also feature The SAT (Jose, Joel & Will Maximo) taking on Gringo Loco, ASF & Drago Kid with Joey Janela, Blake Christian, Marko Stunt & AJ Gray among those advertised.

**Kevin Nash will be appearing on the Destiny Wrestling show this Sunday at 7 p.m. local time in Mississauga, Ontario at the Don Kolov Arena (4880 Tomken Road). Nash will serve as the promotion’s commissioner on the show, which features Channing Decker vs. Tarik in a Street Fight, Matt Angel vs. Kevin Blanchard for the Next Generation title, and Fuerza vs. Anton Alexiev.


**All fighters made weight for Saturday’s UFC Fight Night event at the Apex in Las Vegas. The event is headlined by a light heavyweight fight between former champion Jan Blachowicz and rising contender Aleksandar Rakic. Blachowicz lost the championship in his last fight to Glover Teixeira this past October while Rakic is 6-1 in the UFC and the winner of his last two fights. It’s a wide-open division, so a win for either fighter will place them in firm standing as a potential contender for the winner of Teixeira vs. Jiri Prochazka that goes down at UFC 275 next month. The other serious contender is Magomed Ankalaev, who has the strongest case for a title fight but currently has a fight booked with Anthony Smith for UFC 277 at the end of July.

Below is the full card and results from Friday’s weigh-ins:

MAIN CARD (10 p.m. ET on ESPN 2 & ESPN+)
*Jan Blachowicz (205.5) vs. Aleksandar Rakic (205)
*Ion Cutelaba (205) vs. Ryan Spann (206)
*Louis Smolka (136) vs. Davey Grant (135.5)
*Katlyn Chookagian (125.5) vs. Amanda Ribas (125.5)
*Frank Camacho (155) vs. Manuel Torres (155.5)
*Allan Nascimento (125.5) vs. Jake Hadley (125.5)

*Andrea Lee (125) vs. Viviane Araujo (125)
*Michael Johnson (155) vs. Alan Patrick (156)
*Angela Hill (115.5) vs. Virna Jandiroba (115)
*Tatsuro Taira (125) vs. Carlos Candelario (126)
*Andre Petroski (185) vs. Nick Maximov (184.5)

**The Global Titans Fight Series was scheduled for a big event on Saturday in Dubai involving Floyd Mayweather Jr. and former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva, which has been postponed following the death of the president of the United Arab Emirates. After the news of Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s passing, businesses across the country have been shut down which led to the event not going to take place this weekend with TMZ first reporting the story. Mayweather Jr. was scheduled for an exhibition fight with Don Moore while Silva was set for a boxing match against Bruno Machado.

Global Titans issued the following statement:

We are deeply saddened by the announcement of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE President and Ruler of Abu Dhabi’s passing away earlier this afternoon. Sheikh Khalifa was the second President of the UAE and the 16th Ruler of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. He assumed the federal constitutional authority as President of the UAE and became the ruler of the emirate of Abu Dhabi on the 3rd of November 2004, succeeding his late father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan who passed away on the 2nd of November 2004. Due to the passing of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, The United Arab Emirates will be observing an official period of mourning for the next 40 days.

Out of deepest respect and due to these unforeseen circumstances of Force Majeure, the Global Titans Dubai event which was scheduled to take place on May 14th at the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah has been postponed until further notice, with a new date to be announced very soon. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and reassure fans that this spectacular event will be staged in future. From all of the staff and partners at Global Titans Fight Series, our thoughts and prayers are with the family of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan during this difficult time, and people of the United Arab Emirates.

**Bellator 281 is currently taking place from the SSE Arena in London, England with the main card airing at 4 p.m. ET on Showtime and YouTube for Canada:
*Michael “Venom” Page vs. Logan Storley – the winner will become the interim welterweight champion
*Lyoto Machida vs. Fabian Edwards
*Denise Kielholtz vs. Kana Watanabe
*Paul Daley vs. Wendell Giacomo
*Luke Trainer vs. Simon Biyong

**This is Bellator’s last card until June 24th when Gegard Mousasi defends the 185-pound title against Johnny Eblen and the continuation of the Bantamweight World Grand Prix.

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About John Pollock 5413 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.