WWE Test Network Exclusive Match
WWE carried out an experiment last night where they booked an exclusive RAW match to air after the USA broadcast on the WWE Network. It pitted Rusev against Sheamus for the US title, which Rusev ended up winning. While the company aren’t going to tell us whether the match drew any new subscribers, fans live in the arena report that it wasn’t enough to keep people seated.
Upwards of half the ticket holders reportedly decided to head home instead of watching the bout.
Another experiment involved Vince McMahon opening RAW to plug the free month of November. Usually his appearances are treated as a big deal, but this was clearly a rushed last minute decision. He also announced that if the Authority lose at Survivor Series they’ll be out of power.
UK Network Launch Delayed
Speaking of the Network the UK launch which was supposed to take place yesterday evening at 8pm GMT was postponed at the last minute, and so far WWE have not given a new date. The obvious speculation is that Sky who own the rights to the UK airing of the PPVs (some on a cable package and some as actual upfront PPVs) somehow caused the delay. However Sky reps said on Twitter today that it was WWE’s decision and the Network has nothing to do with them.
In truth there is probably money involved somewhere. While it may be WWE’s call, it might be that they are weighing up which route might be more profitable. Perhaps Sky which airs all of the flagship programming have threatened to give them a worse deal next time around if they go ahead with the over the top Network.
Cesaro Busted Open and Orton Concussion Angle On RAW
While Cesaro was legitimately busted open in the first match on RAW against Dean Ambrose, Randy Orton has been written out for a few weeks with a “concussion” so he can film the Condemned 2. He is also off the UK tour. It’s also possible he’s completely off Survivor Series.
As for Cesaro he required 5 staples to close up the wound on his head. During the commercial break the wound was also treated by doctors much like you would see in UFC or boxing. WWE does not allow blading these days, and real blood is to be treated seriously.
Mick Foley Joins Bulldog HOF Campaign
WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley is the latest name to join the British Bulldog Hall of Fame campaign. There’s no word on whether WWE actively don’t want him inducted, or if they’re just postponing his name for a time they see most appropriate.
Santino Cleared To Wrestle
Santino is now officially cleared to wrestle by doctors after successfully rehabbing following neck surgery. At one point he was set to retire, but now he has full intentions to return to the WWE ring, and has began working out again.
Jarrett Officially Announces NJPW PPV
GLOBAL FORCE WRESTLING TO PRESENT NEW JAPAN PRO WRESTLING’S “WRESTLE KINGDOM 9” ON PPV IN NORTH AMERICA
NASHVILLE — Global Force Wrestling is proud to announce that the first event under its banner will be in conjunction with New Japan Pro Wrestling and its Jan. 4 show from the Tokyo Dome.
“GFW Presents New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 9” will air live in North America at 2 a.m. ET on Jan. 4, which is 4 p.m. in Tokyo. The four-hour telecast also will air in primetime in North America at 7 p.m. ET on your pay-per-view provider, including DirecTV, Dish, AT&T U-verse, Comcast, Verizon Fios and all cable systems in the United States, and in Canada on Bell ExpressVu TV, Rogers, Shaw, Sasktel and Telus. Check your local listings for availability. The show also will be available on the “Flipps” app on iTunes or Android.
“Wrestle Kingdom 9” will be the 24th consecutive year for the Jan. 4 dome event, which kicks off the year in Japan and annually is the largest wrestling show in the world outside of the United States, drawing in excess of 40,000 fans.
“This is one of the great events on the wrestling calendar every year, and for GFW to have the opportunity to bring it to the American audience is an honor and a privilege,” GFW founder and CEO Jeff Jarrett said. “This event has a history that involves not only the greatest names in Japanese wrestling history but some of the greatest names in U.S. wrestling history.”
NJPW founder and wrestling icon Antonio Inoki has appeared on the Jan. 4 dome show five times. Other legends to appear include Hulk Hogan, Dusty Rhodes, Sting, the Steiner Brothers, Big Van Vader, Randy Savage, Brock Lesnar, the Great Muta, the Great Kabuki, Masahiro Chono and Riki Choshu.
This year’s card is headlined by an IGWP heavyweight title match between Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kazuchika Okada. The Bullet Club, of which Jarrett is a member along with A.J. Styles and IWGP tag team champions Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows, is expected to appear on the show as well.
The show will be available in English and in Japanese via the second audio program (SAP) button on your TV. GFW will reveal the North American announcers for the event in the near future.
Ziggler Makes Sports Illustrated List
Dolph Ziggler has made this year’s Sports Illustrated Twitter 100 list and was described as “WWE’s endlessly entertaining social media machine.”
Speaking of Sports Illustrated Daniel Bryan made the cover of the latest digital edition, which features the San Francisco Giants celebrating their World Series win with a “YES!” headline. Bryan was interviewed by SI on Monday and said the cover would be featured on RAW, but it seems like the segment was nixed for whatever reason.