Weekend Roundup: Maven, Roman Reigns on Potential Acting Career, Riho, Austin Gunn Controversy, KENTA’s NOAH Return, Indies


  • Fightful Select reported that Shane Helms and Kenn Doane were the producers of the Jeff Hardy & Drew McIntyre vs. Happy Corbin & Madcap Moss match at this past Friday’s episode of SmackDown in Greensboro, North Carolina. Adam Pearce reportedly was the producer of the Ridge Holland vs. Cesaro match. D-Von Dudley and Jimmy Wang Yang were the producers of the Rick Boogs vs. Angel Garza match. Tyson Kidd reportedly was the producer of the Charlotte Flair & Toni Storm promo segment and the Naomi & Sasha Banks vs. Shayna Baszler & Natalya match. Michael Hayes and Petey Williams reportedly were the producers of the Black Friday Invitational Battle Royal match.
  • During a recent interview with the That 90’s Wrestling Podcast, former WWE wrestler Maven revealed that prior to the start of the coronavirus pandemic, he had met with Triple H and Matt Bloom over the potential of him working as an announcer for WWE’s NXT brand. Maven stated “Before the world was shut down, before the pandemic, I actually travelled to Orlando and met with Hunter, met with Albert, who’s running the developmental down there now. I was talking to them about maybe doing some announcing stuff. I went there on March 11 of 2020, and if you remember, in America, that’s the day that everything got shut down. I never want to turn my back or say it will never happen because I don’t know. I still and will always have wrestling in my blood. I still have wrestling dreams every week. I still have the dream where I’m either putting my boots on or I’m in the ring or I’m getting ready to wrestle somebody. My love for the business is never going to leave. I tell people all the time, the WWE is like the girl who broke up with me but I wasn’t done with. It’s kind of hard to see her. She’s moved on and is dating a better-looking guy now. I would definitely entertain any opportunity to be back in wrestling in any capacity and so my return to the ring is just me scratching that itch a little bit.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
  • WWE recently announced that their upcoming animated film, titled Rumble, will be premiering exclusively on the Paramount+ streaming service on December 15th. This film was co-produced by both WWE Studios and Paramount Pictures and had been originally scheduled for a theatrical release in summer of 2020 before being delayed multiple times due to coronavirus pandemic-related issues. This upcoming film features voice acting work by Roman Reigns and Becky Lynch.
  • WWE reportedly generated an attendance of 8,700 (7,500 paid) for their November 19th SmackDown show in Hartford, CT, 3,443 for their November 20th house show event in Syracuse, 12,646 (10,500 paid) for their November 21st Survivor Series 2021 event in Brooklyn, 5,500 (4,000 paid) for their November 22nd RAW show in Brooklyn, NY, and 200 for their November 23rd NXT show in Orlando, FL, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • WWE also reportedly has sold around 2,596 tickets for their November 28th house show event in Charleston, WV, around 4,849 for their November 29th RAW show at the UBS Arena in Long Island, NY, around 4,752 tickets for their December 3rd SmackDown show in San Antonio, TX, around 8,868 tickets for their December 10th SmackDown show in Los Angeles, CA, around 5,569 for their January 1, 2022 Day One event in Atlanta, GA, around 6,200 tickets for their January 21, 2022 SmackDown show in Winnipeg, Canada, around 23,319 tickets for their January 29, 2022 Royal Rumble 2022 event in St. Louis, MO, and around 3,620 tickets for their February 4, 2022 SmackDown show in Seattle, WA as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that his sources at the AT&T Stadium stated that WWE’s sales for their upcoming WrestleMania 38 event on April 2-3, 2022 were higher than what the company had previously announced last week. Meltzer reported that WWE’s announcement of 75,000 for both nights and 37,500 per show were actually much lower than what stadium officials had for their sales, which were around 57,311 for Night 1 on April 2nd and around 51,875 for Night 2 on April 3rd. In an interesting note, Meltzer reported that WWE recently took out insurance for the upcoming event that has a coverage cap at 80,000 people per show. Meltzer reported that regardless if WWE hits that number or goes higher, the company would still very likely inflate their attendance numbers and claim 100,000 per night.
  • WWE revealed in a recent filing to the SEC that they will be giving $413,000 as a cash payout for forfeited company stocks and an additional $431,200 as a bonus to their former CFO Kristian Salen as compensation for her departure from the company earlier this month. Prior to her departure, Salen had been WWE’s CFO from August 2020 to November 2021.
  • Kofi Kingston announced that his wife recently gave birth to their third child this past Tuesday. The Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer reported that this was the reason why Kingston has been absent from WWE programming these past few weeks.
  • During recent interview with The Michael Kay Show radio show, Roman Reigns gave his thoughts about his potential plans to transition into a full-time Hollywood acting career after wrestling. Reigns stated “We’ll have to see. I think there’s going to be some moves made here pretty soon. There’s always these speculations, these contract talks. All that pushing, that’s my business. People who can dive deep enough, I’m sure they can uncover enough stones to figure out the time frame, but that’s something I definitely want to dabble in, I want to gain more experience, and I want to use these tools that I’ve learned. WWE has done so right by me. They’ve given me so much, and placed so many great blessings and opportunities in front of me. I just had to capture them. I just had to grab that ball and run with it. I like to think that along the way, I just picked up so many skills and experienced so many different things that are going to help me because at the end of the day, we all know how this works. This is a young man’s game. You can’t fall down your whole life. You have to get to a point where you can transition, where you can connect and create new, fresh, evolved content for your fan base and your supporters. I think I have the ability to do that. At the end of the day, it’s about getting into that game, being thrown into that fire and seeing how you do. I have a pretty good track record with being thrown in the deep end, and if that’s what happens in Hollywood, I’m looking to swim.” (Transcript h/t: WrestlingNews.co)


  • During a recent episode of the Busted Open Radio podcast, co-host Mark Henry gave his thoughts about the MJF and CM Punk promo segment from this past Wednesday’s episode of AEW Dynamite. Henry stated “I was so unbelievably amazed. I started off at the monitor. I’m sitting at the monitor. There’s 30 wrestlers sitting around that area, and everybody is popping. If you’re popping wrestlers, you’ve done something in your life. You won. I had to get up, walk out to the crowd to feel it because that’s why people go to wrestling. People go to wrestling because of how you feel, not because you just want to be entertained. There is true to life, emotional investment. You want to feel it. That’s one of the reasons why AEW is so popular right now is because the crowd feels like they have a role in what they’re seeing, and they do. They absolutely do. I got to go out there. It felt like electricity moving my clothes one zinger to another one, one zinger back and forth. The city of Chicago, everybody that was there, will get to tell people for the rest of their lives, ‘I was at that show where CM Punk and MJF went toe to toe, a battle of wits, over 20 minutes, and not one punch connected.’ It was arguably the best verbal jousting that I’ve ever seen. I’ve watched segments of Wild ‘N Out. I’ve watched all of the rap battles back and forth. 8 Mile didn’t have anything on that on Wednesday. You can’t tell me that you’ve ever seen two human beings go back and forth like we saw.” (Transcript h/t: WrestlingNews.co)
  • Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson recently tweeted a message of support to Jim Ross following Ross’ announcement that he will be stepping away from AEW for the time being to undergo radiation treatments for his skin cancer. Johnson stated “Stay strong, JR! U got this. No steak eaters.”
  • AEW Live Events & Touring Director Rafael Morffi stated on Twitter that he recently spent the Thanksgiving holiday weekend with Jim Ross in Jacksonville, Florida and mentioned that Ross is currently feeling strong ahead of his upcoming radiation treatments for skin cancer on Monday.
  • This past Wednesday’s episode of AEW Dynamite featured a Friendsgiving segment involving the announcement of Riho vs. Britt Baker match for this past Friday’s episode of Rampage. Tony Schiavone explained that this match and a future AEW Women’s World Championship title shot being on the line would be taking place due to Riho was never eliminated during the Women’s Casino Battle Royale match from this past September’s All Out 2021 event. Fightful Select reported that their sources stated that Riho was seen visibly “disappointed” and “emotional” backstage during AEW’s All Out event over the announcement of her elimination despite her not actually being eliminated. It was reported that there was no heat placed on anyone for the accidental mistake and AEW officials decided to turn the mistake into a storyline for future use.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that the reason why Billy Gunn recently has been looking more muscular and ripped than usual is due to him currently training and dieting for an upcoming bodybuilding contest.
  • AEW reportedly sold 7,100 tickets for their November 24th Dynamite show in Chicago, IL, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • AEW reportedly has sold around 5,838 tickets for their December 1st Dynamite show in Duluth, GA, around 8,573 tickets for their December 8th Dynamite show at the UBS Arena in Long Island, NY, around 4,367 tickets for their December 15th Dynamite Winter is Coming II show in Garland, TX, around 3,937 tickets for their December 22nd Dynamite show in Greensboro, NC, around 6,452 tickets for their January 5, 2022 Dynamite show in Newark, NJ, and around 2,661 tickets for their January 12, 2022 Dynamite show in Raleigh, NC as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • AEW recently announced that they will be making their return to Chicago for AEW Dynamite and AEW Rampage television tapings on February 2, 2022 at the Wintrust Arena. Tickets for this set of tapings was announced to have gone on sale starting this past Saturday.
  • AEW talent Austin Gunn, real name Austin Sopp, recently issued an official statement on Twitter apologizing for offensive tweets made by him from 2013 that contained derogatory and racial slurs. Sopp stated “Extremely insensitive tweets/replies I made when I was 17 years old in 2013 have been brought to my attention. I don’t have the words to describe how I’m feeling right now. There is no excuse for it, and I am deeply sorry. I majored in Elementary Education in college, and throughout that process, I took multiple meetings dealing with sensitivity, how to treat others, and to understand the severity of actions and words (which cannot be un-done once they happen). All I ask is that you do not judge me based solely on these tweets, but on the man I’ve become and that I am trying to constantly get better. I am someone that always wants to maintain a positive energy, support any/everyone, and not judge them based off the color of their skin, or any other proxy. I’m addressing this mistake because it’s important to point out things that you learn from and to take ownership of your failings. And, I am learning everyday. I know the term “people make mistakes” gets thrown out without any meaning truly behind it. I am trying to become a better version of myself. For that reason, and to make progress towards being the man I want to be, I apologize to anyone I’ve hurt with these tweets. To the wrestlers in the back, to the fans around the world, to everyone, I am so sorry. AEW regularly provides excellent sensitivity programs that I have attended multiple times. I want to continue to learn from my mistakes, improve my view on the world, and strive to be a person my parents would be proud of. I was not raised this way, I do not condone this behavior or the use of these words, and I am extremely sorry. Thank you for reading this.

Indies & Other Wrestling

  • Konnan recently thanked AEW, Game Changer Wrestling, and Ring of Honor for their help with lending some of their talent for Lucha Libre AAA’s upcoming Triplemania Regia II event on December 4th in Monterrey, Mexico.
  • As noted before, FITE TV recently announced that they will be airing AAA’s upcoming Triplemania Regia II event live on their service on December 4th. TheCubsFan.com reported that FITE is currently scheduled to only air four of the matches from the event live on their service. It was reported that these four matches currently are La Facción Ingobernable (Dragon Lee & Dralístico) vs. Laredo Kid & TBA, AAA World Tag Team Championship match, Psycho Clown, Pagano, & Cain Velasquez vs. L.A. Park & Los Mercenarios (Rey Escorpión & Taurus), and the AAA Mega Championship Five-Way match. It was also reported that his sources have not confirmed that Matt Striker and Carlos Oacho will be the English commentary team for the event, which was originally reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • New Japan Pro Wrestling recently announced four new matches for the card of their NJPW Strong themed Nemesis event on December 9th in Los Angeles, California. They are Juice Robinson vs. Bad Dude Tito, Alex Coughlin vs. JR Kratos, Clark Connor & Jordan Clearwater vs. Chris Bey & Hikuleo, and Royce Isaacs vs. Lucas Riley.
  • NJPW reportedly generated a paid attendance of 683 for their November 19th World Tag League 2021 event in Nagano, 1,735 for their November 21st Best of the Super Juniors 2021 event in Nagoya, 715 for their November 23rd World Tag League 2021 event in Kanagawa, and 673 for their November 24th Best of the Super Juniors 2021 event in Tokyo, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • NJPW announced that their first set of NJPW Strong tapings in 2022 will be taking place on January 15th at the Washington Hall in Seattle, Washington. It was also announced that these tapings will be titled the The New Beginning USA 2022. It was also announced that tickets for this upcoming tapings will officially go on sale starting this Monday.
  • Game Changer Wrestling announced that they have pulled Bandido from the card of their upcoming So Alive event on December 4th in Dallas, Texas due to scheduling conflict issues. It was also announced that Demonic Flamita will be Bandido’s replacement for his match against Tony Deppen at the event. Bandido is currently scheduled to work for AAA at their Triplemania Regia II event that same night.
  • Major League Wrestling reportedly recently shelved their plans for the continuation of the CONTRA stable storyline for the foreseeable future, according to Fightful Select. It was also reported that MLW officials are currently planning for the Alex Kane vs. Calvin Tankman feud to be a major storyline for the company for the first half of 2022. It was also reported that MLW officials are also currently very high on Kane as a potential big star for the company which was stated by their sources to be the reason why he was booked to win the MLW National Openweight Championship this past September.
  • Rockstar Spudd, former Drake Maverick in WWE, recently announced on Twitter that he has re-opened his store on Pro Wrestling Tees’ website and is currently selling a limited edition “Get Up” shirt with all proceeds generated from now until the end of the year going towards the National Alliance on Mental Illness charity.
  • Ring of Honor reportedly has sold around 1,124 tickets for their Final Battle 2021 event on December 11th in Baltimore, Maryland as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Dave Meltzer reported that the reason why Dalton Castle defeated Dragon Lee for the ROH World Television Championship on the November 21st episode of ROH TV is due to ROH officials are currently under the belief that Lee will no longer be available for the company after their upcoming Final Battle 2021 event.
  • DEFY Wrestling reportedly generated an attendance of 800 for their Brutalist event on November 20th in Seattle, Washington, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Dave Meltzer reported that AEW’s Jon Moxley had been originally scheduled to appear at this event prior to him taking a break from wrestling for alcoholism treatment rehab reasons.
  • Pro Wrestling Guerilla reportedly generated an attendance of 650 for their It’s A Long Way To The Top event on November 21st in Los Angeles, California, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that Japanese-based promotion Ehime Pro Wrestling held a two-day event on November 21-22 that included what might have been the longest ever continuous match in wrestling history. Meltzer reported that one match at the event lasted for around 21 hours, 44 minutes, and 34 seconds and involved multiple wrestlers rotating in and out during it.
  • Jonathan Gresham announced that Moose will be making an appearance for Terminus at their debut event on January 16, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Pro Wrestling NOAH announced that KENTA will be making an appearance for the company at their The New Year 2022 event on January 1, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan. This will be KENTA’s first appearance for NOAH since January of 2018.