- WWE filed trademarks for “Ivy Nile”, “Odyssey Jones”, “Piper Niven”, and “The Build To” for wrestling and entertainment-related purposes on December 6th to the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
- As noted before, Johnny Gargano and Kyle O’Reilly’s WWE contracts expired this past Friday. Gargano recently announced on Twitter that he has relaunched her merchandise store at Pro Wrestling Tees and will also be launching official YouTube and Twitch channels.
- PWInsider reported that WWE is currently offering a sale on tickets for next year’s WrestleMania 38 on April 2-3, 2022 in Dallas, Texas. Dave Scherer reported that the company recently sent an email to Peacock subscribers offering a special sale where if someone buys three tickets for WrestleMania 38, they would get an additional ticket for free. Scherer reported that this likely the first time ever that WWE has offered free tickets for a WrestleMania event this far away in time from the event itself.
- Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that the decision to hold a Day One themed event on January 1st was made by WWE President Nick Khan. Meltzer reported that Khan came up with the idea for the company to hold an annual New Year’s Day event as a way to replace their traditional December month pay-per-view event that usually performs poorly in terms of interest due to stiff competition from the NFL season. Khan and other WWE officials reportedly are hoping that Day One eventually becomes a major annual event to give the company a Big Six set of shows to promote yearly alongside Money in the Bank, Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam, and Survivor Series.
- As noted before, this past Monday’s episode of WWE RAW drew the lowest ever key demographic rating in RAW history. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that besides the lowest ever overall key demographic rating, this past Monday’s episode also drew the lowest ever overall 18-34 rating, lowest ever Teenagers rating, and the ninth lowest ever overall viewership for a RAW show in RAW history. Meltzer reported that due to the huge drop in younger demographic viewers, this past Monday’s episode also skewed the oldest ever for a RAW show at 57 years old.
- WWE reportedly generated an attendance of 6,700 (5,500 paid) for their December 3rd SmackDown show in San Antonio, 4,391 for their December 4th house show event in Edinburg, 3,237 for their December 5th house show event in Corpus Christi, TX, 400 for their December 5th NXT WarGames 2021 event in Orlando, 5,500 (4,200 paid) for their December 6th RAW show in Memphis, TN, and 280 for their December 7th NXT show in Orlando, FL, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- WWE reportedly has sold around 3,211 tickets for their December 12th house show event in Grand Rapids, MI, around 4.627 tickets for their December 13th RAW show in St. Paul, MN, around 7,762 tickets for their December 17th SmackDown show in Chicago, around 3,098 tickets for their December 18th house show event in Rockford, IL, around 3,308 tickets for their December 19th house show event in Des Moines, IA, around 3,175 tickets for their December 20th RAW show in Milwaukee, WI, around 5,609 for their December 26th house show event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY, around 6,828 tickets for their December 29th house show event in Toronto, around 5,845 tickets for their December 30th house show event in Laval, Canada, around 6,769 tickets for their January 1, 2022 Day One event in Atlanta, GA, and around 24,751 tickets for their January 29th Royal Rumble 2022 event in St. Louis, MO as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that since the return to live weekly touring this past July, WWE has been averaging around 5,600 for ticket sales for their RAW shows, around 6,600 for their SmackDown shows, and around 5,000 for their house show events. For some comparisons, Meltzer reported that AEW has been averaging around 6,100 for their Dynamite shows and around 6,300 for their Ramage shows. Meltzer also reported that these figures are based on “total tickets distributed data and usual free ticket numbers (WWE being higher than AEW) to estimate.”
- Dave Meltzer also reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that WWE’s current plans for their SmackDown television tapings for the rest of December is to tape two episodes of Friday Night SmackDown on December 17th in Chicago with the first to be a live episode and the latter to be taped to air on December 24th. As part of their current plans to air a taped “Best of” SmackDown episode on December 31st, WWE recently cancelled their scheduled show at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina and have rescheduled it to a new date of March 18, 2022.
- WWE reportedly recently rescheduled their planned February 4, 2022 SmackDown show in Seattle, Washington to a new date of September 9, 2022, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. The official reason for the schedule change was not stated.
- FOX reportedly will no longer be airing WWE pay-per-view events on the Star Premium network in Mexico starting on February 1, 2022, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Dave Meltzer reported that the official reason for the decision is due to FOX shutting down their Star Premium network on January 31, 2022 and moving WWE events to their FOX Sports Mexico channel instead.
- Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that the reason for the recent lack of Lashing Out talk show segments on NXT is due to WWE officials recently made changes to their creative plans and direction for Lash Legend.
- During this past Friday’s episode of SmackDown, WWE announced that hip-hop group Migos will be making an appearance at their Day One event on January 1, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. It was also announced that “Straightenin” by the Migos is the official theme song for their upcoming Day One event.
- PWInsider reported that WWE’s original plans for this past Monday’s episode of RAW did not feature the RAW Women’s Championship being the main event match. Mike Johnson reported that WWE originally had planned for the steel cage match between Kevin Owens and Big E to close out the show. The RAW Women’s title match between Liv Morgan and Becky Lynch reportedly was originally planned to take place at the top of the show’s second hour. Several WWE officials reportedly had pushed for that match to main event instead due to the show taking place on the same day as the 17th anniversary of the famous Trish Stratus vs. Lita match that headlined the December 6, 2004 episode of RAW.
- Taz recently reflected on Twitter about the in-ring debut of his son Hook during this past Friday’s episode of AEW Rampage and thanked fans for all of the support they have shown. Taz stated “Folks, I really need to say THANK YOU to all of you for the tons of tweets toward me about the kind words about @730hook – it’s just too many to reply to lol!! And yes, it was SO special for me to call his first worldwide TV match. •Tazmission is now – ‘REDRUM“
- During a recent interview with Pitchfork, Hook stated that he wanted to have “The Chairman’s Intent” by rapper Action Bronson be his official entrance theme in AEW due to being a big fan of the singer. Hook stated “I’ve been an Action Bronson fan since I was in sixth grade. I would hear him shout out all these old school wrestlers, old school strong man shit, and all these old athletes. With that and the New York vibe, I had a feeling that my dad would fuck with it as well. When I showed him, he loved it.”
- During the same interview, Action Bronson gave his thoughts about one of his songs being used as an entrance theme in AEW. Bronson stated “Recently Taz hit me up saying that Hook was making his debut and they wanted to use that song. I was like, ‘Absolutely.’“
- As noted before, Fozzy recently cancelled a concert that had been scheduled to take place this past Friday in Swansea, Wales due to Chris Jericho falling sick with a non-COVID-19 illness. Jericho provided a health update on Twitter on Saturday stating that he was released from the hospital following a brief stay over his illness.
- Chris Jericho filed a trademark for the design of his Painmaker character for wrestling and entertainment-related purposes on December 6th to the USPTO.
- AEW reportedly generated an attendance of 200 and 325 for their December 3rd AEW Dark set of tapings in Orlando, FL and 9,800 (9,300 paid) for their December 8th AEW Dynamite show at the UBS Arena in Long Island, New York, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- AEW reportedly has sold around 5,688 tickets for their December 15th Dynamite Winter Is Coming II show in Garland, TX, around 4,504 tickets for their December 22nd Dynamite show in Greensboro, NC, around 1,989 tickets for their December 29th Dynamite show in Jacksonville, FL, around 7,209 tickets for their January 5, 2022 Dynamite show in Newark, NJ, and around 4,055 tickets for their January 8th Battle of the Belts event in Charlotte, NC as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- As noted before, AEW announced that they will be holding next year’s Revolution event at the Addition Financial Arena in Orlando, Florida. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that AEW officials originally wanted to hold next year’s Revolution event at the Amway Center but were unable to get the three days of March 4-6, 2022 that they wanted for Revolution weekend festivities at the venue. Meltzer reported that AEW had made the decision to hold that week’s episode of Rampage, Revolution 2022 Fan Fest, and Revolution 2022 event itself at the same venue as a way to cut down on travel and associated costs for their planned Revolution 2022 event.
- PWInsider reported that former ECW talent Joel Gertner and Northeast Wrestling promoter Mike Lombardi were in attendance backstage at this past Wednesday’s episode of AEW Dynamite in Long Island, New York.
- A recent episode of the Rasslin with Brandon F. Walker podcast had Adam Cole as the guest and one of the topics discussed included Cole’s thoughts on constantly tweaking his wrestling style throughout his career. Cole stated “I felt this way in NXT, Ring of Honor, and PWG; I feel like I’m constantly tweaking my style in some capacity. A long time ago, I made the decision that I don’t want there to necessarily be a formula to an Adam Cole match, promo, or segment. A lot of times, I like to do stuff based on what my opponent likes to do because that keeps what I’m doing fresh and different in a lot ways so people can’t necessarily predict where we’re going. If I’m working with one guy who maybe likes to do more high-flying stuff, I like to do that. If someone likes to brawl a bit more, I like to do that. If I’m working with someone who likes to throw comedy in there, I do that as well. I definitely want to be someone who constantly changes based on who I’m in there with. In that sense, have there been some small changes? Yes, but that largely depends on who I’m in there with.“
- Cole also gave his thoughts on the online criticisms by some over his usage of comedy in his matches in AEW. Cole stated “They [AEW] very much know their audience and know what they look for and they’ve been able to entertain that audience because they do understand the tongue-in-cheek style comedy. It’s not for everybody, some people maybe don’t like it or enjoy it and that’s okay. People are allowed to not enjoy it or like it. If we’re doing a certain thing and the live audience, if you can feel in the building that everyone is having the time of their life, and if you look at the crowd and people have huge smile’s on their faces, then it worked. It’s exactly what we were going for. The beautiful thing about pro wrestling is that there are so many different styles and ways to approach things. Again, if you buy a ticket or watch the product. you’re allowed to feel how you want to feel.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
- During a recent virtual signing event for K & S WrestleFest, Luchasaurus gave an update regarding Marko Stunt’s recent absence from Jurassic Express. Luchasaurus stated “No [Marko Stunt’s not moving away from Jurassic Express]. I know he’s had a few injury issues. I really don’t have any more information than that honestly. He’s done more stuff with the Vlog, with Sammy Guevara’s Vlog and they had him and Fuego [Del Sol] team on [AEW] Dark. I think it’s just a timing thing right now, because Christian’s helping me and Jungle Boy do some stuff but there’s been no discussion at all about anything changing.” (Transcript h/t: PostWrestling.com)
Indies & Other Wrestling
- Ring of Honor’s Final Battle 2021 event this past Saturday in Baltimore, Maryland featured several surprise appearances from former ROH talent and talent from other companies. In regards to AEW, Hangman Page, CM Punk, The Young Bucks, Adam Cole, and Bryan Danielson made video appearances while FTR made a surprise appearance attacking the Briscoe Brothers after their ROH World Tag Team Championship match. In regards to NJPW, Rocky Romero made an appearance and competed in the 8-Man Tag Team match on the show. In regards to Impact Wrestling, Eddie Edwards made a video appearance while Deonna Purrazzo made a surprise appearance challenging Rok-C to a winner take all match for the Impact Knockouts and ROH Women’s Championships. In regards to free agents, former WWE talents Braun Strowman and Wesley Blake made a surprise appearance aligning with EC3 and his new stable.
- Following ROH’s Final Battle 2021 event, Jonathan Gresham gave a speech to the crowd in attendance stating “Somebody that couldn’t make it here tonight once said ‘Anything is possible.’ That man was Bandido. I wish him a speedy recovery with the one promise that I will keep to him which is keeping the idea alive that anything is possible. I stand before you as proof. A man that’s very important to this company’s history once said that this championship represents professional wrestling freedom. This pro wrestling freedom gives me the opportunity to become the best wrestler in the world. Like I told Bandido, to be the best in the world, you must defeat someone with the style, the style that represents the very essence of this company. For Bandido, that man was me. But for me, that man was Jay Lethal. Jay, thank you for everything that you have done for this company. Thank you for everything you’ve done for me. Most of all, thank you for being my friend. At one time, this championship meant that you were the best professional wrestler in the world, period. But to be honest, for that to be true again I must step in the ring with two men. Two men that are very important to this company’s history. But in time those matches will happen, I promise you. But until then, in preparation, I will defend this championship against all who come for it. Only under pure professional wrestling rules will this be defended. As of tonight, this championship has been purified. Pure wrestlers, we have won. Ring of Honor is now pure. In closing, I’ll tell you a story, a very short story so bear with me. Another man very important to this company’s history once said, ‘Isn’t this the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen?’ He’s standing before you here right now and I completely understand what he meant. For so many years I believed in this company. Blindly. I believed that this company cared. But it wasn’t until a global pandemic hit that I realized that they do not. I realized that they were forced to use us for pure technical wrestling. I realized that they did not care about honor. So, as long as I am champion, I will not allow this company to get back on its feet and abandon us again. I will not allow it. I will take the heart and soul of this company and the essence of this company and I will take it with me to TERMINUS. In TERMINUS, the pure professional wrestler, the pure style will be valued. We will not be treated like a last resort. We are the essence, we are the lifeblood, we are the future of professional wrestling. I know this because I am The Foundation.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
- Major League Wrestling recently announced a new match for the card of their Blood & Thunder event on January 21, 2022 in Dallas Texas. This will be a MLW World Tag Team Championship Texas Tornado match of The Von Erichs (Marshall & Ross Von Erich) vs. 5150 (Danny Rivera and Slice Boogie) (c)
- MLW and The Crash reportedly generated an attendance of around 4,000 for their co-promoted MLW Azteca x The Crash event on December 3rd in Tijuana, Mexico, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that MLW recently pulled out of their agreement with the 2033 Arena officials to make the venue their new home base for MLW Fusion tapngs. Meltzer reported that MLW is currently planning on rotating venues for television tapings with a return to the 2300 Arena in Phildalphis currently scheduled to take place in late Spring of 2022 and are planning on holding tapings in South Florida at some point next year.
- New Japan Pro Wrestling reportedly generated a paid attendance of 628 for their December 3rd Best of the Super Juniors 2021 event in Saitama, 840 for their December 4th World Tag League 2021 event in Yamanashi, 756 for their December 5th Best of the Super Juniors 2021 event in Shizuoka, 1,043 for their December 7th World Tag League 2021 event in Okayama, 518 for their December 8th Best of the Super Juniors 2021 in Ehime, and 688 for their December 9th World Tag League 2021 event in Ehime, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that the current speculation regarding Katsuyori Shibata’s big announcement at this Wednesday’s Best of the Super Juniors & World Tag League 2021 Finals event is that he will be doing something very important at one of NJPW’s upcoming Wrestle Kingdom 16 events next month.
- NJPW recently announced a new match for the card of Night 2 of their Wrestle Kingdom 16 event on January 5, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan. This will be a Stardom exhibition tag team match of Mayu Iwatani & Starlight Kid vs. Tam Nakano & Saya Kamitani.
- During a recent interview with Tokyo Sports, NJPW President Takami Obari stated that the company is currently planing on holding around ten matches for each night of their upcoming Wrestle Kingdom 16 event. (English translation via F4WOnline.com)
- During a recent interview with the Lehigh Valley with Love podcast, ROH announcer Ian Riccaboni stated that he will be appearing at NJPW’s upcoming NJPW Strong New Beginning USA event on January 15, 2022 in Seattle, Washington. Riccaboni stated that he will be working in the commentary booth as the play-by-play announcer as part of a tryout by NJPW. Dave Meltzer reported in Sunday’s Daily Update that the reason for Riccaboni’s involvement at the show is due Kevin Kelly will be staying in Japan for the next few months to provide English commentary for NJPW’s upcoming events.
- The National Wrestling Alliance reportedly generated an attendance of 65 for their television tapings on December 3rd in Atlanta, Georgia, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- All Japan Pro Wrestling reportedly generated a paid attendance of 715 for their December 5th Real World Tag League 2021 Finals in Tokyo, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- Game Changer Wrestling recently announced that Dr. Wagner Jr. will be making an appearance for the company at their If I Die First event on February 5, 2022 in Dallas, Texas.
- Kidnapping and sexual assault charges against Alberto El Patron reportedly were dismissed this past Friday, according to PWInsider. Mike Johnson reported that recent updated court documents revealed that El Patron’s upcoming criminal trial and charges were dropped due to a missing witness who had been scheduled to appear in court for a hearing. Prior to the case’s dismissal, El Patron was facing the possibility of up to life in prison if convicted of the charges against him.
- Former WWE head writer Brian Gewitz is currently working on a new book based on his time in WWE. The book is currently titled “Heels and Heroes: Writers Rooms, Metal Chairs, and Other Shocking-but-True Stories from the WWE” and is currently scheduled to be released on August 16, 2022.
- Lucha Libre AAA reportedly generated an attendance of 13,500 for their Triplemania Regia II event on December 4th in Monterrey, Mexico, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
- Lucha Blog reported that despite AAA airing their Triplemania Regia II event live in the United States, the lawsuit against the company by Lucha Libre FMV is still in effect. It was reported that FMV recently filed paperwork to the court arguing why their lawsuit should to be continued and not be dismissed.