POLLOCK’S NEWS UPDATE: NXT falls, Khan teases ROH news, Helwani vs. Pimblett

Photo Courtesy: WWE

POST IT NOTES

**Rewind-A-Dynamite is live at 10 p.m. ET with Wai Ting & John Pollock streaming at YouTube.com/POSTwrestling. The two of us will discuss Tony Khan’s media call from earlier today, the confirmation that William Regal is leaving AEW, Raw’s number from Monday and the final hour of the show, plus a big review of Dynamite heading into Final Battle weekend.

**Rewind-A-Wai #121 is out covering the May 30, 1992, edition of WWF Superstars, which was selected by Espresso Executive Producer Robert Brockie and featuring:
– The debut of Nailz and his attack on Big Bossman
– The Ultimate Warrior deals with a “curse” from Papa Shango
– Sgt. Slaughter recovers from super shock stick electrocution
– The Legion of Sissies
– An analysis of the Repo Man character
– News from that week in 1992
– Bill Watts’ “ten commandments” in WCW
– Don Owen shuts down Portland territory
– The early feedback on the Razor Ramon character
– “Freckles”
– SummerSlam confirmed for Wembley Stadium
– Hawk covers dinner for the locker room & more

**On Thursday, MMA analyst Cody Saftic is going to join me for a chat about the UFC betting scandal and the card this Saturday in Las Vegas.

POST SCHEDULE

Tonight
: Rewind-A-Dynamite with John Pollock & Wai Ting (10 p.m. ET)
Thursday: UFC betting scandal & UFC 282 chat with MMA analyst Cody Saftic
Friday: Rewind-A-SmackDown with John & Wai (11 p.m. ET for Patrons)
Saturday: NXT Deadline POST Show with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Saturday: ROH Final POST Show with Wai Ting & Kate from Montreal (Patreon)
Sunday: UFC 282 POST Show with John Pollock & Eric Marcotte (1 p.m. ET)
Sunday: Wrestlenomics Radio

WRESTLING NEWS

**NXT ranked #36 among cable originals on Tuesday airing against the midterm election runoff coverage in Georgia. The show averaged 534,000 viewers and approximately 170,000 (0.13) in the 18-49 demographic. It was tied for the second-lowest viewership of the year for the program (the lowest was 533,000 on May 10th, so it’s a negligible difference).

The show lost significant viewership among adults 50+, which dropped 26% from last week and would be evidence of the election coverage affecting NXT with one of the lowest audiences the show has ever done in that demo. Overall viewership dropped by 17% while the 18-49 audience only fell by 3%. Females 18-49 were up by 23% but that’s coming off a terrible number last week. Adults 18-34 were up by 11% and adults 35-49 dropped by 12%. NXT also aired against the Lakers vs. Cavs, which was the top show on cable with 1.37 million viewers and 0.46 in the demo, and a college basketball game that ranked fourth. (Data from Showbuzz Daily and Wrestlenomics)

In Canada, NXT averaged 55,000 viewers and 28,000 in the 25-54 demographic on Sportsnet 360 in Canada. It did not rank among the top ten sports programs in the country, which few wrestling shows have throughout the World Cup. NXT did similar numbers last week with 50,000 and 24,000 in the demo.

**Tony Khan held a call with the media on Wednesday to promote Final Battle. Khan spoke about the issues his mother went through over the past few months including suffering two strokes and requiring heart surgery but is said to be doing much better. His mother’s health problems began in September after All Out, so Khan was dealing with a personal crisis on top of a major professional one regarding the incident at the pay-per-view and the loss of four key talents during that stretch. Khan also confirmed that William Regal will be leaving AEW after this year and returning for a backstage role in WWE. Khan made it seem that this was a major exception to his usual tact of not allowing talent out of their deals with Regal having an option for 2023 and he requested that AEW not exercise it. Khan said due to the health problems with his mother, he gave it extra thought and didn’t want to prevent Regal from working with his son Bailey in NXT. When asked later in the call, he said it was conditional on Regal not appearing on-screen for WWE next year. We will discuss all of the news coming out of the call on Rewind-A-Dynamite tonight.

**Khan also hinted at a potential announcement regarding Ring of Honor’s broadcasting situation for 2023, which he said he would address on Saturday after Final Battle. Khan noted that he expects to have less focus on ROH on AEW programming after this week and getting through the pay-per-view.

**Tonight’s edition of AEW Dynamite takes place from the H-E-B Center in Cedar Park, Texas with the following matches and segments announced:
*AEW Tag Team Championship: The Acclaimed (champions) vs. FTR
*TNT Championship: Samoa Joe (champion) vs. Darby Allin
*Dynamite Dozen Battle Royale (Feat. Ricky Starks, Matt Hardy, Jungle Boy, Ethan Page, Brian Cage, Shawn Dean & Dalton Castle)
*Daniel Garcia & Jake Hager vs. Claudio Castagnoli & Wheeler Yuta
*Jade Cargill, Leila Grey & Red Velvet vs. Kiera Hogan, Madison Rayne & Skye Blue
*MJF to appear
*Jon Moxley to appear
*Tony Schiavone interviews Jamie Hayter

**WrestleTix reports that nearly 3,200 tickets have been distributed for tonight’s Dynamite & Rampage taping.

**Wrestlenomics has the quarter hours from WWE Raw, which saw a major decline throughout the second and third hours. The show peaked in the third quarter in hour one with 1,889,000 viewers for the backstage segment with The Judgment Day and Bayley being confronted by Becky Lynch inside the arena. The show fell as low as 1,185,000 viewers for the penultimate quarter, which featured the first half of the Becky Lynch vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Nikki Cross with a small increase for the final fifteen minutes of the show to 1,210,000. The third hour was the least-watched hour of Raw in the show’s history of the data available.

**WWE is holding tryouts this week at the Performance Center and POST Wrestling can confirm that Kylie Rae and Vincent (Vinny Marseglia) are at the tryouts. Other names reported this week include K.C. Navarro and Dutch. Vincent and Dutch were visible in the crowd at the Performance Center on Tuesday night during NXT but not identified on camera.

**John Skyler revealed on The Angle Podcast that he has re-joined IMPACT Wrestling after his initial deal ended earlier this year. After leaving IMPACT earlier this year, Skyler worked with various independents and recently returned to wrestle as “Biff Knuckles” at IMPACT’s Throwback Throwdown III special that was taped on 11/25.

**WWE is partnering with Exos for its athlete training and performance with NIL talent having the ability to train at Exos facilities. From the press release:

While working with Exos professionals, WWE NIL athletes will be introduced to the Exos Athlete Experience Program and its many sports science and data partners. The athlete intake process will see athletes go through rigorous performance, body composition, nutrition, and physical therapy testing. The baseline developed for the athletes will enable customized and fully integrated plans to ensure a foundation for optimized training.

**Sports Business Journal has a profile on WWE NIL signing Joe Spivak, who will be performing as Tank Ledger. Spivak played defensive tackle for at Northwestern University from 2017 until 2021, signing with WWE as part of its Next in Line program one year ago.

**Hall of Fame boxing referee Mills Lane died on Tuesday at the age of 85. Lane made a couple of professional wrestling appearances in the late ‘90s. He had a cameo on the November 16, 1998, episode of Raw is War from Kentucky where he made a ruling on Steve Austin’s contract that gave Austin a title match with The Rock that night. In 1999, he appeared as a special referee for a boxing match between Roddy Piper and Buff Bagwell at Bash at the Beach. Lane was the official for many high-profile fights including the infamous “Bite Fight” between Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis in June 1997, which led to Tyson’s suspension by the Nevada commission and in a roundabout way, opened the door for Tyson to get booked at WrestleMania the next year in one of the most important celebrity crossovers the WWF ever had. Lane’s trademark “Let’s get it on” was later adopted by “Big” John McCarthy when he began officiating at UFC 2, although McCarthy has stated it was a line he just used and was not thinking about Lane when he first used it. Lane was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame and Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame in 2013.

**The World Tag League continues Friday with a show in Kochi and streaming on New Japan World at 5 a.m. ET.

**Denise Salcedo of Instinct Culture will be part of the NXT Deadline pre-show this Saturday with McKenzie Mitchell and Sam Roberts.

**GCW has released its calendar of events for the end of 2022 and the first three months of the new year. They have shows on 12/16 in L.A. at the Ukrainian Cultural Center and 12/31 at The Showboat in Atlantic City. On 1/1, they run the second night at The Showboat and follow with 1/7 in Chicago, 1/20 in Charlotte, 1/21 in Huntsville, 1/22 in Florence, 2/11 in Jersey City, 2/18 in L.A., 3/4 and 3/5 at The Showboat, 3/11 in Montreal at L’Olympia, 3/19 in Toronto at the Opera House, and 3/30 to 4/1 at the Ukrainian Cultural Center over WrestleMania 39 weekend.

**IMPACT Wrestling has announced the following for Thursday’s episode at 8 p.m. ET on AXS TV:
*Josh Alexander appears for the first time after the attack by Bully Ray
*IMPACT Tag Team Championship: Heath & Rhino (champions) vs. Motor City Machine Guns
*Savannah Evans vs. Taya Valkyrie
*Before the Impact: Trey Miguel vs. Jason Hotch

**The WWE stock closed at $77.27 on Wednesday.

MMA NEWS

**UFC 286 will take place from the O2 Arena in London, England on March 16th. The card was officially announced by the promotion, although no fights have been confirmed yet. The UFC was talking about booking a stadium for the rematch between Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman for the welterweight title. It will be the first pay-per-view event in the U.K. since UFC 204 in October 2016 when Michael Bisping fought Dan Henderson for the 185-pound title. Tickets for UFC 286 will go on sale to the general public on January 27th.

**Paddy Pimblett had Dana White on his podcast and the most discussed portion of the interview was Pimblett’s rant about journalist Ariel Helwani. Pimblett argued that fighters should be paid for doing interviews citing reporters and content creators make money from these interviews (for the record, Helwani has stated he is paid by Vox Media for his work at MMA Fighting but doesn’t make any additional money from the YouTube content regardless of how many people watch his interviews, so it’s a moot point. Helwani does have a personal YouTube channel but rarely features fighters on that platform). Pimblett also defended the fighter pay issue while calling Helwani biased with his argument being that Helwani makes money in the sport. You could tear apart this interview point by point, but it was ludicrous to argue any of these points. The conflict of interest in paying a subject for an interview is immense and would strike any ounce of credibility if one were paying for interviews. Helwani is the most well-known reporter in the business and you can argue his platform does much more for the fighter than for Helwani himself. Pimblett mentioned the money fighters make in the PFL noting his friend Brendan Loughnane just won the $1 million tournament but countered that figure by citing how many more Instagram followers he has than Loughnane. I would love to survey every UFC fighter and ask which option they would prefer. If nothing else, it was an amusing rant that has essentially no basis with Pimblett and White using Helwani as a punching bag for a segment on the show, which will get the most attention of anything on the show. You can have whatever opinion you want of Helwani, good or bad, but he’s been a huge advocate for fighters regarding the pay structure. White blatantly lied about ESPN getting rid of Helwani when the truth is, Helwani was offered a new contract but wasn’t happy there and opted to leave.

**Helwani addressed the comments by Pimblett on White on The MMA Hour today.

**Dustin Poirier has been battling a severe case of staph infection, which led to the fighter being hospitalized for several days. On Tuesday, he provided an update that his body finally started responding to the antibiotics and was expected to be released on Wednesday from the hospital.

**Episode 2 and Episode 3 of UFC Embedded going into Saturday’s card.

ON THIS DATE

Johnny Gargano’s final NXT appearance from one year ago. He would return to WWE nine months later as part of the main roster:

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REWIND-A-WAI #121: WWF Superstars (May 30, 1992)
John Pollock & Wai Ting review the May 30, 1992, edition of WWF Superstars featuring the arrival of Nailz in an impromptu attack on the Big Bossman. Plus, the latest regarding Papa Shango’s “curse” on the Ultimate Warrior.
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REWIND-A-RAW
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE Raw featuring The Usos defending the tag titles. Plus, they chat about the latest involving William Regal, AEW Rampage’s low viewership & more.
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WRESTLENOMICS: WWE might buy international wrestling companies
Brandon Thurston is joined by Chris Gullo and Jesse Collings to talk about WWE possibly acquiring smaller international wrestling promotions.
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THE N.W.A. PODCAST: The 2022 Rap-Up!
Nate, Andrew, & Kris discuss the biggest stories of the year, hand out some awards, and play another round of “Who All G’on Be There?”
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REWIND-A-SMACKDOWN
John Pollock & Wai Ting are back to review Friday Night SmackDown & AEW Rampage. Plus, Nick Khan & Stephanie McMahon speak, Kota Ibushi’s future, CM Punk, the UFC betting scandal & more.
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Wai Ting & WH Park are joined by John Pollock to discuss Christmas movies, Dave Bautista and Kevin Bacon in our spoiler review of The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special. Plus, their reactions to the Guardians of the Galaxy 3 trailer.
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About John Pollock 4434 Articles
Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.