THE LATEST NEWS
WOR: The Bruno Sammartino interviews
WWE SmackDown ratings down from last year’s Superstar Shakeup
Number one contender’s gauntlet match set for WWE 205 Live
GLOW’s second season premiering on Netflix in June
Styles vs. Nakamura official for WWE Greatest Royal Rumble
Bruno Sammartino passes away at 82
WWE SmackDown video highlights: Superstar Shakeup night two
WWE 205 Live results: Lucha House Party vs. Itami & Tozawa
Full list of WWE Superstar Shakeup changes
THE LATEST AUDIO
WOL: The life and times of Bruno Sammartino 4/18
Big Audio Nightmare: AJPW Champion Carnival, Minoru Suzuki mea culpa 4/18
WOR: Superstar Shakeup Smackdown edition, ratings, UFC TV deal, more! 4/18
B&V&C: Retro Raw and Nitro from 19 years ago this week! 4/17
F4W NEWSLETTER: Figure Four Weekly: Looking ahead to the Greatest Royal Rumble
With WrestleMania 34 just barely in the rearview mirror, WWE’s second stadium show of the month is already under two weeks away. The Greatest Royal Rumble will take place at King Abdullah Sports City Stadium in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on Friday, April 27th and air live on the WWE Network at noon Eastern time. The card already has seven matches confirmed: a 50-man Royal Rumble, Brock Lesnar defending the Universal Championship against Roman Reigns in a steel cage, John Cena vs. Triple H, The Undertaker vs. Chris Jericho in a casket match, Intercontinental Champion Seth Rollins defending against The Miz, Finn Balor, and Samoa Joe in a ladder match, The Usos challenging for The Bludgeon Brothers’ SmackDown Tag Team titles, and a match to decide the new Raw Tag Team Champions. The WWE, United States, and Cruiserweight Championships will also be on the line.
WON NEWSLETTER: April 16, 2018 Wrestling Observer Newsletter: Historic Wrestlemania 34 weekend reviewed, more
This issue contains complete coverage of WrestleMania, NXT Takeover, ROH Supercard of Honor and UFC 223, with match-by-match coverage, poll results and star ratings.
Look at WWE’s future direction after WrestleMania, exactly how everything went down with the decision to change the finish and have Brock Lesnar win and the current Lesnar contract, his UFC talks and more. Look at why this will be going down the same way very shortly.
Have a look at who did and didn’t know about Reigns losing, what the script said, what and when the referee was told, what happened backstage after the match, why Lesnar gets special privileges and what happens next with the title.
Read why Cena vs. Undertaker went down the way they did, the return of Chris Jericho, update on Rey Mysterio’s contract, and what is next for the Greatest Royal Rumble and Backlash shows.
Check out the WWE Network numbers and what we can learn from them, and WWE’s business projections for the year and for the next quarter. Find out the viewing patterns on the network and how much it was up per person and what that means, plus an update on network plans.
Read about the live business in New Orleans and what it really was the last time compared to what was announced.
This issue has full details on what happened with Conor McGregor, as well as all the different things that went into Khabib Nurmagomedov facing Al Iaquinta. Look at Floyd Mayweather in MMA, what is next for McGregor, what happened with McGregor that hasn’t gotten out yet, and the story behind the New York not calling it a title match.
Check out the coverage of Impact vs. Lucha Underground, Progress, Revolution Pro, House of Hardcore, Evolve, the Super Shows and all the major activities in New Orleans over WrestleMania week.
Read more on the death of Johnny Valiant, the end, at least for now, of Being the Elite, why WWE is back in the U.K. game and where the ITV project stands.
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WEDNESDAY NEWS UPDATE
WWE honored Bruno Sammartino with a 10-bell salute at Raw’s house show in South Africa today.The company also has an obituary for Sammartino on their website and gathered some of the social media tributes to him.
Vince McMahon’s Twitter posted a message about Sammartino: “One of the finest men I knew, in life and in business. Bruno Sammartino proved that hard work can overcome even the most difficult of circumstances. He will be missed. #RIPLivingLegend”
Triple H also tweeted about Sammartino: “Devastated to hear the passing of a true icon, legend, great, honest and wonderful man…A true friend…and one of the toughest people I’ve ever met. My thoughts are with his entire family. #RIPBrunoSammartino #AmericanDream”
The New York Times, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times all ran obituaries for Sammartino.
In addition to the media coverage it’s received in Pittsburgh, the mayor of the city and the Steelers and Penguins have all issued statements about Sammartino’s passing.
WWE re-uploaded a video where wrestlers explained why Sammartino was such a legend. They also posted a clip of Sammartino’s cage match against Larry Zbyszko from Showdown at Shea.
Madison Square Garden’s social media accounts issued a statement honoring Sammartino: “Today is a sad day for wrestling and sports fans. Simply put, Bruno Sammartino was one of the biggest stars in the long and storied history of Madison Square Garden, a legend in every way. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family today and always.”
Rey Mysterio is one of the wrestlers pictured in an advertisement for the Greatest Royal Rumble on the WWE Network’s website, seemingly confirming him for the show. Shane McMahon, Mark Henry, and The Great Khali are also included on the image.
AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura both cut brief promos about their WWE Championship match at the Greatest Royal Rumble.
Early photos of the set design for the Greatest Royal Rumble have started to appear online.
WWE posted a preview clip of the premiere of Something Else to Wrestle with Bruce Prichard, which covers WrestleMania 14. The episode is just under two hours long and is now available in the on-demand section of the Network.
Tommaso Ciampa will be wrestling at this week’s NXT house shows in Washington, DC, Bethlehem, PA, Bel Air, MD, and Johnstown, PA.
Killian Dain and Alexander Wolfe are wrestling in Fort Pierce, FL on Saturday.
Randy Orton defeated Nakamura by disqualification in last night’s post-205 Live dark match. Nakamura hit a low blow on Orton for the DQ, with Styles coming out and chasing Nakamura off. Tye Dillinger beat Primo Colon before SmackDown went on the air.
TMZ reported that Orton’s tattoo artist is suing WWE and 2K Games for allegedly using her designs in WWE 2K18 without permission.
Ric Flair appeared with Offset and Metro Boomin on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon while they were performing their song “Ric Flair Drip,”
Wrestling DVD Network has a sneak peek of The Hardys’ upcoming DVD and some screenshots of the Impact Wrestling footage that is featured in it.
Camping World Stadium in Orlando, which hosted WrestleMania 33 last year, is continuing their push for the event to be held their again.
While it hasn’t been confirmed that the show is being uploaded, a category for Sunday Night Heat (with no episodes currently there) has appeared on the WWE Network.
ROH uploaded video of the ceremony where they honored Bruno Sammartino in New York City in 2006.
After its 100th episode, The Young Bucks told the Sporting News that they’re not sure if Being the Elite will return.
Following a brief return to the company,, Tyrus revealed that he’s leaving Impact Wrestling again. He wrote that both sides didn’t see eye-to-eye on anything creatively.
MLW announced Rey Fenix vs. ACH for their TV tapings in Orlando on May 3rd.
David Bixenspan has an article for Deadspin on the success of Joey Janela’s Spring Break II.
Daniel Cormier said he’d be interested in being a broadcaster for WWE but learning to wrestle would be “crazy” at this point.
Mike Jackson thinks Vince McMahon couldn’t have written a better storyline than him beating CM Punk at UFC 225.
The Nevada Athletic Commission suspended Canelo Alvarez for six months following his two drug test failures for clenbuterol from February. Alvarez blamed the trace amounts of clenbuterol on contaminated meat.
Nate Diaz took a shot at Conor McGregor after his bus attack, saying the Diaz brothers “started this G sh*t.”
Mirko Cro Cop passed his first out-of-competition drug test ahead of facing Roy Nelson at Bellator 200.
Ben Askren told Rory MacDonald to “tell his boss” after MacDonald said he’d be fine with fighting him. MacDonald then responded: “i have asked @ScottCoker about getting you in bellator for a fight, i guesse you need to do your part.”
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