Two-for-Tuesday update day today… I had an incredibly frustrating network outage last night that left me without the ability to update the Sandwich or watch the Austin/Heyman interview last night. You were this close to getting petitioned, Comcast!
So we’re covering a couple of days worth of updates below.
We have a Wrestling Observer Radio recap up by new Sandwich correspondent IFeelLikeAMark, that you can check out here.
Our very own Hugh Little tells the tale here of a recent PW Torch signup debacle made right by editor Wade Keller that ended up changing the Torch VIP signup page, too.
You can listen to Hugh and I on our latest episode of Talking Sheet this past weekend, talking all the news from the past couple of weeks, plus Hugh’s very popular BOARD~! Power Rankings, and a Rear View recap of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter from February 2nd, 1987 here.
Tuesday News Update
** Big couple of days for the PW Torch. Between last night and tonight they’ve had a couple of major wins. First of all, they were first to break the story (good job, Sean Radican) that Samoa Joe had been signed to a full time, exclusive contract to WWE.
** F4Wonline was one of the first to repost the news, however they initially cited the wrong author, attributing the story to Wade Keller until Radican himself corrected them.
@WONF4W it was me that reported it, not Wade
** Author Kenneth Nida, (the amazingly helpful customer service rep, Barrock on the BOARD~!) who penned the story, quickly updated it to correctly cite Radican as the reporter of record
** The confusing was probably because the PW Torch article itself, posted here, has a Wade Keller byline, despite the story saying “trusted insider sources tell PWTorch columnist Sean Radican…” so it was definitely an easy mistake to make. Not sure why Radican doesn’t have access to post stories on PWTorch.com.
** Lots of sources, including the Radican article, and PWInsider, attributed the change in Joe’s contract status to his impressive merchandising sales (t-shirts mainly) convinced them to bring him in full time.
** Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s Dave Meltzer dismissed this claim completely and said this was fully to do with the recent developments of Ring Of Honor being signed to appear on Destination America, and about WWE not wanting a talent they work with to appear on a national cable outlet (regardless of how small it is) for a group that isn’t them.
** The PWInsider article by Mike Johnson hedges slightly and also mentions that
Joe’s existing NXT contract featured a clause that would allow the company to sign him to a full-fledged deal. WWE opted to execute that clause this past Thursday on the heels of ROH announcing their national TV cable deal and both sides agreed to an addendum to the original deal that brings Joe into WWE full-time, making him the first former TNA champion to receive his initial national exposure before then going on to become a full-time member of WWE.
** PWInsider also posted an update looking at Joe’s status with Ring of Honor here
** Another one here
** And a post about what Joe’s status will be in WWE (hint, a focal point of NXT, and not a Raw/Smackdown performer) here.
** Our very own Hugh Little (@HughLittleSheet on Twitter) passed this note along to me in reaction to an article from earlier today on Voices of Wrestling posted by Rich Kraetch talking about how Kevin Owens is WWE’s most realistic and human character for the wrestling promotion in years. Worth a read here.
This column really got me thinking how I do see KO [Kevin Owens] as more human than character. To take it even further I’ve actually been enjoying Ryback more ever since they’ve been telling his story. When he did that promo a few months back talking about who he was and his surgery and what it took to get back—that’s when I was like, ‘finally I can care about someone!’
So this Kevin Owens piece was awesome, and I think more and more fans are starting to think like this. Sure, all the guys that follow the Indy scene know all this, but to the casual like me we need more of it.
** PWInsider has re-posted a couple of tweets by Triple H announcing the signing of two Indian wrestlers to NXT. One of them is named Lovepreet—which isn’t all that noteworthy, except for the fact that I’d never forgive myself if I had the chance to write “Lovepreet” in an update and passed it up behind a link.
** WrestleZone has a recap of a recent Bill Goldberg interview with Sports Illustrated in which the former wrestler claims to have talked recently with Triple H, and was given the impression that there is nothing for him in WWE.
** Raj Girl from WrestlingInc. has part two (must have totally missed part one) of her recent interview with PJ Black (the former Justin Gabriel) talking among other things why he left WWE.
** Of course every site also had coverage of last night’s Steve Austin interview with Paul Heyman, which included an apparent teaser for Austin vs Brock Lesnar at next year’s WrestleMania in Dallas, TX which is tracking toward becoming the largest pro wrestling show of all time.
** On his Wrestling Observer Radio show last night, Dave Meltzer indicated that there is no way that Heyman or Austin would even entertain the idea of talking about this thing as they did last night if there wasn’t at least some smoke there.
** PW Torch’s editor Wade Keller, on his VIP audio show last night, seemed to agree with this idea, and claimed he would try to pin Austin down on his take when he appears on his podcast sometime soon (perhaps later this week) to do an Elimination Chamber review.
** Major site coverage links:
** Ratings DoomWatch™ was postponed this week due to WWE Raw numbers being better than the recent trends:
** Monday’s F4W News vs Plugs – News: 1227 Plugs: 3297
** Tuesday’s F4W News vs Plugs – News: 1033 Plugs: 3297
** Interesting to note that, on both days, the Figure Four Weakly plugs are actually plugging a content for LAST week’s issue (the entrance music one) and not the current issue, which actually has a lead story looking at the intertwined history of ROH and TNA. You’d think they could at least plug
current stuf… oh, never mind… forgot that endless shilling of old, best-selling Observers that make up 80% of the plugs for a second.