Weekend Roundup: Dragon Lee, Mick Foley, AEW Revolution 2023, Bandio AEW Update, MLW, CWfF Revival Update, Indies


  • This past Friday’s WWE Friday Night SmackDown drew a preliminary viewership of 2,136,000 viewers on FOX, according to SpoilerTV.
  • Dragon Lee made his official in-ring debut for WWE at their NXT house show event on Saturday in St. Petersburg, Florida. Lee faced off against Eddy Thorpe, former Karl Fredericks, in a singles match at the event.
  • During a recent interview with Bashwood, Visual Concepts’ Senior Narrative Designer Andrea Listenberger stated that everyone who wrote for the MyRise story mode in the upcoming WWE 2K23 video game were all writers from WWE. Listenberger stated “All of the writers for MyRise worked at WWE, and as you know, WWE may be famous for having swerves, surprises, twists, and turns; and we follow the product. We write to the product. So when you play MyRise, you’re going to have swerves, twists, and turns. You might be able to create a few of your own as your character.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
  • As noted before, WWE is currently in talks with gambling regulators in three states to have legalized gambling approved for WWE matches. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that those spoken to within WWE stated that they felt that this was a “mind-blowing” thing being openly talked about within the company due to the issues that would be caused by it. Meltzer reported that should WWE be successful with their attempt, then they would lose flexibility with their booking due to match results would need to be made well ahead in advance and would not be allowed to be changed nor take advantage if someone were to suddenly become an unplanned hot star for the company. Meltzer also reported that something like WWE’s current very hot Bloodline storyline would have been impacted a lot due to Roman Reigns and others involved in its creative would not be allowed to know the results and direction of the storyline ahead of time. Meltzer also reported that matches involving celebrities such as Bad Bunny and Logan Paul would also be affected due to WWE usually having those people work out their entire match with the results known well ahead of time.
  • WWE reportedly generated an attendance of 13,475 (12,000 paid) for their March 3rd SmackDown show in Washington, D.C., 7,177 for their March 4th house show event in Toronto, Canada, 5,395 for their March 4th house show event in Syracuse, NY, 5,044 for their March 5th house show event in Kitchener, Canada, 6,805 for their March 5th house show event in Trenton, NJ, and 13,143 (12,500 paid) for their March 6th RAW show in Boston, MA, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • WWE reportedly has sold around 6,594 tickets for their March 13th RAW show in Providence, RI, 6,734 tickets for their March 17th SmackDown show in Kansas City, MO, 4,468 tickets for their March 18th house show event in Fargo, ND, 4,204 tickets for their March 18th house show event in Milwaukee, WI, 2,619 tickets for their March 19th house show event in Sioux Falls, SD, 2,671 tickets for their March 19th house show event in Springfield, IL, 8,925 tickets for their March 20th RAW show in St. Louis, MO, 9,261 tickets for their March 24th SmackDown show in Las Vegas, NV, 3,540 tickets for their March 25th house show event in Salt Lake City, UT, 7,246 tickets for their March 26th house show event in Denver, CO, 8,247 tickets for their March 27th RAW show in Phoenix, AZ, 54,482 tickets for their April 1st WrestleMania 39 Night 1 event in Inglewood, and 55,366 tickets for their April 2nd WrestleMania 39 Night 2 event in Inglewood, CA as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that WWE officials currently have plans for this year’s Hall of Fame ceremony to be shorter in runtime length than past ceremonies.
  • John Cena reportedly recently finished his filming commitments for the upcoming comedy film Ricky Stanicky and is currently expected to be available for WWE television for the next several weeks for his WrestleMania 39 build with Austin Theory, according to PWInsider.
  • PWInsider’s Mike Johnson reported that his sources stated that A&E is currently scheduled to be airing two episodes of their WWE Legends Biography episodes on March 26th. Johnson reported that these two episodes will be based on Charlotte Flair and Yokozuna.
  • Fightful’s Robert Defelice reported that The Usos recently became the first tag team ever in WWE history to have a Tag Team Championship title reign surpass 600 days as of this past Friday.
  • As noted before, Endeavor held an investor’s meeting earlier this month discussing a variety of topics including them being less likely now to purchase WWE due to its recent higher asking price. In a recent Morgan Stanely investor’s conference, Endeavor CEO Ari Emanuel stated that his company still remains focused on reducing their current level of debt and will not be using their stock to help make big new purchases. Emanuel stated “Here’s what I would say to you, I don’t talk about M&A, We have taken the company (Endeavor) from eight times levered to below four, I am sleeping, because of that, four hours to eight hours. I’d sleep a lot more if I got it lower… We are going to take it a lot lower this year.” Deleveraging “is very high on the list” of priorities. Right now, we’re not going to use our equity for a transaction. As relates to the WWE, I think it’s an incredible asset. We’ve been in business with Vince for over two decades. He’s as good as it gets. He created one of the great assets of all times.”
  • In a recent episode of the Foley Is Pod podcast, host Mick Foley revealed that he was recently contacted by WWE to induct someone into their Hall of Fame for this year’s ceremony. Foley stated “I received a text message from someone I’ve had no contract with in awhile, years and years, asking if I would induct them into the WWE Hall of Fame. As this plays out, we’ll see, there is always a chance that request will be denied, but I know this person responded back to WWE that I was in. As of this moment, I’m counting on being there at the Hall of Fame to induct this person. I’m not going to tell you who it is, but we will all find out together or if it’s ixnayed, I’ll let you know at that juncture in time. I’ll let you know after the Hall of Fame who it was that asked me, but it was a day maker for sure, someone who had many different options but asked me. I was really flattered, readily accepted, we will see if that comes to pass.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
  • Logan Paul vs. Seth Rollins match reportedly is currently scheduled to take place on Night 1 of WrestleMania 39 on April 1st, according to PWInsider.
  • As noted before, WWE Hall of Famer Jerry “The King” Lawler suffered a stroke this past February at his home in Fort Myers, Florida and was released from the hospital after a brief stay. The Cauliflower Alley Club recently stated on Twitter that King recently was able to return to his home in Memphis, Tennessee and is currently recovering from his recent stroke incident.
  • During a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, UFC President Dana White stated that he currently does not believe that Brock Lesnar will make a return to UFC nor resume his MMA career in the future. White stated “Brock and I have a great relationship, and we always have, but I don’t think Brock wants to fight any more. Brock’s made a lot of money. He came into the UFC and won the heavyweight title. He’s got nothing left to prove. I don’t think he’d want to do it.”


  • During a recent episode of the FTR with Dax Harwood and Matt Koon podcast, co-host Dax Harwood revealed that several members of The Pinncale had made a push for Britt Baker or Serene Deeb to be a potential member of the group. Harwood stated “We really wanted Britt, and there were talks of Britt being in the group, but Britt is a standalone star, no one needs to mess with her, she’s great. The other one that I really wanted and talk to Tony (Khan) about, he was pretty excited and had the idea, was Serena Deeb. Up until that point, she had been a babyface, but I thought she really fit what the Pinnacle was, especially Cash and myself, just an incredible wrestler who is considered a badass among the women. Those are the two, and the closest was probably Serena Deeb.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
  • AEW reportedly grossed around $120,000 to $125,000 from movie theater ticket sales for their Revolution 2023 event this past weekend, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Dave Meltzer reported that AEW had sold around 5,000 tickets from around 300 theaters that aired their event. Meltzer reported that Revolution 2023’s theater revenue was slightly down to at least equal while the number of theaters airing the event was down compared to this past November’s Full Gear 2022 event, which generated $125,000 in revenues from 450 theaters.
  • In regards to live gate revenues, Meltzer reported that Revolution 2023 generated around $800,000 for the event’s live gate. Meltzer reported that AEW’s attendance of over 9,000 for the event broke the record for largest ever attendance for a wrestling event in San Fransisco, previously held by an event in 1952 that drew 8,100.
  • The March 17th AEW Rampage show reportedly is currently scheduled to be pre-empted to a later starting time of 11:30PM EST on TNT due to TNT’s upcoming commitments with the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • As noted before, AEW originally had plans for El Hijo Del Vikingo to make his official debut for the company at their March 1st Dynamite show in Daly City, California. Those plans were dropped due to issues with Lucha Libre AAA resulting in Komander being his replacement for the Face of the Revolution 2023 Ladder match on the show. Dave Meltzer reported that his sources stated that the reason why AAA refused AEW’s request to book El Hijo Del Vikingo was due to schedule-related issues. AEW officials reportedly contacted Komander immediately afterwards and were able to secure a booking for him for their show.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that WWE’s current interest in Komander is mainly due to him recently working for AEW and them trying to snag him before he could sign a potential deal with AEW. WWE reportedly did not have Komander on their radar until after he was booked for AEW’s Dynamite show earlier this month.
  • Bandido reportedly is currently dealing with work-related visa issues as the reason for his recent lack of appearances in AEW, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • AEW reportedly generated an attendance of 3,100 (2,800 paid) for their March 3rd Rampage show in San Francisco, CA and 5,700 (5,400 paid) for their March 8th Dynamite show in Sacramento, CA, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • AEW reportedly has sold around 7,079 tickets for their March 15th Dynamite show in Winnipeg, Canada, 3,238 tickets for their March 22nd Dynamite show in Independence, MO, 2,569 tickets for their March 29th Dynamite show in St. Louis, MO, 4,696 tickets for their April 5th Dynamite show in Long Island, NY, 2,253 tickets for their April 7th Rampage and Battle of the Belts VI shows in Kingston, RI, 2,524 tickets for their April 12th Dynamite show in Milwaukee, WI, 3,740 tickets for their April 19th Dynamite show in Pittsburgh, PA, 3,006 tickets for their April 26th Dynamite show in Sunrise, FL, 3,060 tickets for their May 3rd Dynamite show in Baltimore, MD, 4,703 tickets for their May 10th Dynamite show in Detroit, MI, and 2,916 tickets for their May 17th Dynamite show in Austin, TX as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • During a recent interview with The Sessions with Renee Paquette podcast, Chris Jericho gave his thoughts on his growing backstage duties in AEW and how himself, Jon Moxley, and Bryan Danielson have taken on a leadership role in AEW’s locker room. Jericho stated “Now that we’re three and a half years in (from start of TV), I have a lot of responsibilities in AEW. It’s not just in the ring, it’s a lot out of the ring. Just being Chris Jericho backstage. I have the most experience out of anybody in the company with the exception of Dustin Rhodes, but also because I came in as kind of the flagship guy. When AEW first started, it was on my back. Backstage, there is a lot of advice given out, a lot of listening, a lot of bartender listening, ‘I have a problem with this, I have a problem with that.’ There is a lot of working closely with Tony Khan. A lot of locker room leading, especially over the last six months or so when he had to take the reigns back when there was a lot of bad publicity and uncertainty in the dressing room. [Jon Moxley], (Bryan) Danielson, and myself kind of had to take charge because we were going to lose the dressing room and if you lose the dressing room, you’re fucked. There is a lot of that sort of thing going on. Basically, everything. It’s almost like a real general. Tony Khan probably has a lot right hand men, but I’m probably one of them. Also, helping out the locker room. I produce probably half the backstage promos that you see. Trying to help as much as I can.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)
  • Ring of Honor reportedly has sold around 3,236 tickets for their March 31st Supercard of Honor 2023 event in Los Angeles, CA as of this past Thursday, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • In a recent interview with the Busted Open Radio podcast, Willow Nightingale gave her thoughts on main eventing the second episode of ROH TV’s revival this past Thursday. Nightingale stated “Being part of Ring of Honor has been really rewarding to see the way it’s been rebooted. When I first started working there was when Maria Kanellis and Bobby Cruise really launched a women’s division. Cary Silkin pulled me and a few other girls aside and was like, ‘You guys are awesome. We’ve had a lot of great women walk through the doors, but we’ve never had a division like this before.’ For me, all about women’s empowerment and feminism, ‘Hell yeah, I love to hear that.’ I was a little crushed when we were told we weren’t continuing on with Ring of Honor. To be part of the new regime is exciting, it’s a fresh take on it, we’ve featured women and had two women’s matches on each show and [Thursday], Athena and I main evented, which is awesome. Not only two women, but two black women main eventing the second show ever. For some people, that doesn’t matter, but for people who grew up like me and didn’t see stuff like that, we’ve come a long way.” (Transcript h/t: Fightful.com)

Indies & Misc. Wrestling

  • As noted before, Lucha Libre AAA talent Cuatrero was recently issued a Gender Violence complaint following an assault incident with Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre talent Stephanie Vaquer. The
    Mexico City Attorney General’s Office recently announced that Cuatrero was arrested for attempted femicide on Saturday in Mexico City, Mexico. (English translation via Fightful.com)
  • As noted before, AAA recently suspended Chessman over an assault incident at their NWA vs. AAA: World Is A Vampire event this past weekend in Mexico City, Mexico. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that Chessman’s assault incident is currently believed to have been a work and not a legit assault. Meltzer reported that the victim of the incident is known to have the habit of riling up people to get a reaction from them as part of his gimmick on social media. Despite this, many within AAA reportedly are currently treating the incident as if it was real due to the person’s recent threat of a lawsuit over it.
  • Stardom reportedly generated a paid attendance of 1,919 for their March 4th Triangle Derby Finals in Tokyo, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that his sources stated that the reason why the World of Stardom Championship match between Maya Yukihi and champion Giulia ended in a double countout was due to backstage political issues. Meltzer reported that Yukihi and Giulia have not been on friendly terms with each other since their days in Ice Ribbon and Stardom officials made the decision for the double countout finish due to the backstage issues between the two. Despite them not being friends, Yukihi and Giulia reportedly were professional enough to accept Stardom’s plans for them to work together for the title match but on the condition of a non-finish result being booked for the match.
  • This past Wednesday’s episode of Power Slap drew 220,000 viewers and a 0.05 key demographic rating on TBS, according to ShowBuzz Daily. This was down compared to last week’s 277,000 viewers and a 0.09 key demographic rating. This was also the final episode to air on TBS with the future of the series television status currently unknown.
  • As noted before, Major League Wrestling’s television contract with REELZ Channel is currently believed to be expiring next month. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that his sources stated that MLW officials have yet to get a confirmation from REELZ if their current television contract will actually end next month. MLW reportedly has also yet to be given any public vote of confidence from REELZ to indicate a long-term working relationship. Meltzer reported that one interesting aspect of MLW’s TV deal with REELZ is that it contains an exclusivity clause allowing REELZ to be the only major television network to air MLW programming. Meltzer reported that this means that MLW will not be able to engage in talks with other networks until after their current deal expires or are given permission beforehand by REELZ.
  • Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that this past Tuesday’s MLW Underground show drew a combined 68,000 viewers on REELZ Channel for their East and West Coast airings. The viewership breakdown nor key demographic viewership for last week’s show was not given. Meltzer reported that due to the terms of REELZ’s recent streaming deal with NBC’s Peacock, they have cut back a lot on the promotion of MLW’s weekly series on their network.
  • As noted before, the February 28th MLW Underground show on REELZ Channel drew 68,000 combined overall viewers and 23,000 combined key demographic viewers. Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that MLW’s show that week actually drew a combined key demographic viewership of 16,000 based on updated numbers.
  • MLW recently announced that Willie Mack and Shigehiro Irie are the first two official competitors for the Battle Riot match at their Battle Riot V event on April 8th in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  • Dragon Gate reportedly generated a paid attendance of 455 for their March 4th Champions Gate 2023 event in Osaka and 528 for their March 5th Champions Gate 2023 event in Osaka, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Pro Wrestling NOAH reportedly generated a paid attendance of 1,310 for their March 9th Star Navigation 2023 event in Tokyo, Japan. This event was notable for featuring Daisuke Harada’s official retirement match against Atsushi Kotoge.
  • New Japan Pro Wrestling reportedly generated a paid attendance of 1,371 for their March 5th New Japan Cup 2023 event in Tokyo, 2,020 for their March 6th 51st Anniversary Event in Tokyo, and 720 for their March 8th New Japan Cup 2023 event in Fukushima, Japan, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
  • Josh Barnett recently announced a new match for the card of Game Changer Wrestling’s Josh Barnett’s Bloodsport 9 event on March 30th in Los Angeles, California. This will be a singles match of Jeff Cobb vs. Bad Dude Tito.
  • Impact Wrestling recently announced a new match for the card of their co-promoted Impact x NJPW Multiverse United event with New Japan Pro Wrestling on March 30th in Los Angeles, California. This is an Impact World Tag Team Championship Four-way match of Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis) vs. TMDK (Bad Dude Tito & Shane Haste) vs. Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin) vs. Bullet Club (Chris Bey & Ace Austin) (c).
  • Over The Top Wrestling recently announced two new matches for the card of their Scrappermania 7 event on March 18th in Dublin, Ireland. These are a singles match of PAC vs. Davey Richards and a singles match of Leon Slater vs. Robbie X.
  • As noted before, Coastal Championship Wrestling has been working on plans to revive classic wrestling promotion Championship Wrestling from Florida. CCW recently announced that they have officially started pre-production for the relaunch of CWfF and confirmed that the first tapings for its revival will be taking place this May. It was also announced that new events for the revival of CWfF will be taking place starting this July.
  • Sunday’s 16 Carat Gold 2023 event for Westside Xtreme Wrestling featured Shigehiro Irie defeating Axel Tischer to be crowned the winner of this year’s 16 Carat Gold tournament and also the new wXw Unified World Wrestling Champion.
  • Western Hockey League team Calgary Hitmen held a banner raising ceremony on Saturday honoring WWE Hall of Famer Bret “The Hitman” Hart prior to the start of their game at the Saddledome in Calgary, Canada.