Tonight: Rewind-A-Raw with John Pollock & Wai Ting (Live link)
Tuesday: The Wellness Policy – “Music Vol. 2”
Tuesday: upNXT with Davie Portman & Braden Herrington
Thursday: ASK-A-WAI Mailbag Show (POST Wrestling Café)
Friday: Rewind-A-SmackDown (POST Wrestling Café)
Saturday: WWE Survivor Series
Sunday: Collision Course with John Siino & Kate (POST Wrestling Café)
John Pollock’s Audio News Update for Monday, November 20:
– AEW signs Will Ospreay
– PFL acquires Bellator MMA
– Stardom vacates titles
– NJPW World Tag League begins
– @RobViper live recaps of West Coast Pro, Full Gear
John Pollock’s audio updates are available throughout the week for Double Double & Espresso members of the POST Wrestling Café.
**WWE and AEW aired 5.5 hours of programming on Friday night with SmackDown dominating viewership and seeing an increase despite the head-to-head competition from Collision. SmackDown averaged 2,206,000 viewers and 815,000 (0.62) in the 18-49 demographic, which were up 1% and 8% respectively. SmackDown gained among female viewers with 18-49 (237,000 to 287,000), 18-34 (80,000 to 112,000), and 35-49 (157,000 to 175,000). The only category they declined was among males 18-34, which fell from 193,000 to 169,000. In Canada, SmackDown averaged 203,800 viewers and 59,200 in the 25-54 demographic on Sportsnet 360 and ranked #4 among sports on Friday behind the Toronto Raptors vs. Boston Celtics, Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Detroit Red Wings, and Buffalo Sabres vs. Winnipeg Jets. (Wrestlenomics)
**AEW Collision on the unfamiliar night on Friday averaged 270,000 viewers and 111,000 (0.08) in the 18-49 demographic. There was an increase in female viewers among the key demos on Friday compared with the previous week`s episode on Saturday. Males saw declines of 40% in 18-49, 30% in 18-34, and 45% in 35-49. It was the lowest figure in the history of the show but aired on an unfamiliar night and against SmackDown. Collision and SmackDown aired against the Sacramento Kings vs. San Antonio Spurs, which averaged 1,370,000 viewers and 0.45 in the demo on ESPN.
**AEW Rampage following Collision on Friday averaged 280,000 viewers and 121,000 (0.09), which were decreases of 13% and 22% from the previous week. In the 18-49 demo, females dropped from 52,000 to 38,000 and males declined from 103,000 to 83,000. Adults 18-34 dropped by 35% and 35-49 fell by 14% this week. Rampage aired against the Phoenix Suns vs. Utah Jazz (1,301,000 viewers and 0.46) and a college game between Colorado and Washington State (727,000 and 0.20).
**The Countdown to Full Gear averaged 139,000 viewers and 58,000 (0.04) in the 18-49 demographic. It ties the Countdown to WrestleDream as the least-watched Countdown special ever and was the lowest 18-49 audience ever. The 30-minute special aired on TNT immediately following Rampage.
**WWE Raw is at the Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Michigan for the go-home Raw before Survivor Series. The final push centers around who the fifth member of the team will be against Judgment Day. On SmackDown, it was heavily teased that LA Knight would be added with reports stating Randy Orton is expected to be on the team. They could have Orton return prior to Saturday or remove someone from the team tonight and leave one spot open even if Knight is added. There is logic to having SmackDown allow Knight to participate in the men’s War Games with Becky Lynch as part of the women’s match. Below are the matches and segments announced:
*Advantage Match for the men’s War Games (a 1-on-1 match)
*Becky Lynch vs. Xia Li
*Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Chad Gable
*Raquel Rodriguez vs. Nia Jax
*Drew McIntyre kicks off the show
**WWE will stage Friday Night SmackDown from the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin, Germany on August 30. It is the night before the Bash in Berlin card at the same arena and the first time SmackDown has been held in Germany.
**Regarding Bash in Berlin, Gunther spoke with Justin Barrasso of SI.com and commented on why he cannot leave the U.S. right now but is hopeful of wrestling at the event next August:
I’m applying for my green card. During that process, you can’t leave the country for a little bit. But the PLE is in August. It should be over by then.
**NJPW’s World Tag League continues Tuesday at Korakuen Hall with the first B Block matches of the tournament. The show streams live at 4 a.m. ET on New Japan World with the following card:
*B BLOCK: Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI vs. Hikuleo & El Phantasmo (IWGP tag champions against NJPW STRONG tag champs)
*B BLOCK: Taichi & Yuya Uemura vs. Yota Tsuji & Zandokan Jr.
*B BLOCK: Lance Archer & Alex Zayne vs. Bad Luck Fale & Jack Bonza
*B BLOCK: Minoru Suzuki & Yuji Nagata vs. Atlantis Jr. & Soberano Jr.
*EVIL, Yujiro & Dick Togo vs. Shane Haste, Mikey Nicholls & Kosei Fujita
*Shota Umino, Ren Narita, Master Wato & Tiger Mask vs. Gabe Kidd, Alex Coughlin, Taiji Ishimori & Gedo
*Great O-Khan, HENARE & Callum Newman vs. Kaito Kiyomiya, Ryohei Oiwa & Oleg Boltin
*Gates of Agony vs. Tomoaki Honma & Oskar Leube
*Yuto Nakashima vs. Katsuya Murashima (Murashima’s debut)
**The Texas Deathmatch between Swerve Strickland and Hangman Page has a 9.65 rating on Cagematch, which is the second highest ranking for any AEW match in history behind the Page & Kenny Omega vs. Young Bucks match from Revolution 2020 and ahead of Bryan Danielson vs. ZSJ, Danielson vs. MJF, and Kenny Omega vs. Will Ospreay. Four of the top-rated matches in AEW history have taken place this year.
**TMZ covered the Texas Deathmatch between Swerve Strickland and Hangman Page from Full Gear.
**Miyu Yamashita will defend the TJPW Princess of Princess Championship against Delmi Exo at MLW’s One Shot event on December 7 at the Melrose Ballroom. The card will stream live on FITE+ and includes Alex Kane vs. Matt Cardona for the MLW World Heavyweight title and Tom Lawlor vs. Satoshi Kojima.
**NXT has a taped episode airing on Tuesday night on the USA Network. The show was taped last Tuesday and will feature Carmelo Hayes vs. Josh Briggs and Blair Davenport vs. Thea Hail in the Iron Survivor Challenge Qualifying matches, Lyra Valkyria vs. Xia Li for the NXT Women’s title, Noam Dar vs. Chad Gable for the Heritage Cup, Eddy Thorpe vs. Charlie Dempsey, and Humberto & Angel vs. Edris Enofe & Malik Blade.
**Eddie Kingston has been added to the Mystery Wrestling 5 card on December 7 in Gatineau, Quebec.
**Greektown Wrestling in Toronto has announced Mike Santana vs. Channing Decker with Jerry Lynn as the special referee on December 26 at 310 Danforth Avenue.
**Donn Davis was on The MMA Hour on Monday to discuss the acquisition of Bellator MMA. Davis said they first contacted Paramount in January 2023 and PFL needed “more and better athletes” to get on equal footing with the UFC with the belief they weren’t getting there fast enough. He called the negotiations “slow” but was completed on Saturday with a stock deal (no cash) and Paramount holding onto a small percentage. There is no television done for Bellator, but Davis said they are aiming to have a separate broadcast agreement for Bellator while the PFL is set to announce its next television deal two weeks after this week’s PFL Championship. He said that Bellator has 210 fighters and 21 employees and the employees will all have an opportunity to join the PFL. They would like to stage a Champions vs. Champions card in February but that is not set in stone.
**The TKO stock took a hit that coincided with the PFL-Bellator announcement. The stock fell about 2% when the news was made to $77.04 but would close at $77.85.
**TKO President and Chief Operating Officer Mark Shapiro will take part in the UBS Global Media and Communications Conference on December 4 at 12:45 p.m. ET.
**The PFL stages its second pay-per-view this Friday with the finals of its six tournaments with $1 million to each winner. In a non-tournament fight, Kayla Harrison returns one year after her loss to Larissa Pacheco as she fights Aspen Ladd on the pay-per-view. The main card includes tournament finals with Olivier Aubin-Mercier vs. Clay Collard (lightweight), Renan Ferreira vs. Denis Goltsov (heavyweight), Larissa Pacheco vs. Marina Mokhnatkina (women’s featherweight), Sadibou Sy vs. Magomed Magomedkerimov (welterweight), Impa Kasanganay vs. Josh Silveira (light heavyweight) with the pay-per-view priced at $49.99 on ESPN+.
**Brendan Allen overcame a submission threat from a deep calf slicer by Paul Craig to submit the middleweight in the third round of their middleweight main event at the UFC Fight Night card on Saturday. Allen (23-5) has won six fights in a row including five since returning to middleweight. Craig (17-7-1) has now lost three of his last four and 1-1 since moving down from light heavyweight. Here are the results from Saturday:
*Brendan Allen def. Paul Craig by rear-naked choke at 0:38 of Round 3
*Michael Morales def. Jake Matthews by unanimous decision (30-27, 29-28, 29-28)
*Chase Hooper def. Jordan Leavitt by rear-naked choke at 2:58 of Round 1
*Payton Talbott def. Nick Aguirre by rear-naked choke at 0:58 of Round 3
*Amanda Ribas def. Luana Pinheiro by TKO at 3:53 of Round 3
*Myktybek Orolbai def Uroš Medić by submission at 4:12 of Round 2
*Joanderson Brito def. Jonathan Pearce by submission at 3:54 of Round 2
*Jose Johnson def. Chad Anheliger by rear-naked choke at 4:49 of Round 3
*Christian Leroy Duncan def. Caio Machado by unanimous decision (29-28 all)
*Jeka Saragih def. Lucas Alexander by KO at 1:31 of Round 1
* Ailín Pérez def. Lucie Pudilová by unanimous decision (29-27, 29-28, 29-28)
*Trey Ogden vs. Nikolas Motta was ruled a no-contest due to a premature stoppage at 3:11 of Round 3
*Rafael Estevam def. Charles Johnson by unanimous decision (29-28 all)
**The Performance of the Night bonuses were awarded to Brendan Allen, Amanda Ribas, Joanderson Brito, and Jeka Saragih for $50,000 each. There was no Fight of the Night bonus.
THE N.W.A. PODCAST
Nate, Kris and Andrew are joined by Ray Williams & Chinyere Okafor to react to AEW Full Gear and talk about the biggest stories of the month.
AEW FULL GEAR REVIEW
John Pollock and Wai Ting review AEW Full Gear 2023 from featuring MJF vs. Jay White for the AEW Championship. Plus, your feedback to the show.
THE MARVELS SPOILER REVIEW | MCU L8R
Rich Fann and WH Park are joined by Andrew Greenidge (co-owner of Iman Vellani’s fav comic shop, Heroes World) to review The Marvels.
John Siino and Kate From MTL review special Friday editions of AEW Collision & Rampage less than 24 hours before Full Gear. Plus, additional matches are announced for the PPV.
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE SmackDown and discuss this year’s WON Hall of Fame inductees and results.
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