Wrestling Globe Newsletter for 11/5

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WRESTLING GLOBE NEWSLETTER
Thursday November 5, 2009
 
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Wrestling Globe Newsletter by Mike Aldren – All the latest professional wrestling news, gossip and occasional opinion direct to your mailbox.
WGN is read by industry power players, many top wrestlers and thousands of fans from all around the world.

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WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT NEWS

11/5 Raw house show results from Glasgow, Scotland: Evan Bourne pinned Chavo Guerrero; Jack Swagger pinned Santino; Paul Burchill pinned The Hurricane; Sheamus pinned Primo; Mark Henry pinned Chris Masters; Melina pinned Alicia Fox;  The Miz beat MVP and Kofi Kingston in a three-way; and John Cena & DX over Randy Orton & Legacy.

We’re looking for reader reports from the Smackdown/ECW show tonight in Frankfurt, Germany to you2us@wrestlingglobe.com.

Superstars tonight on WGN has Finlay vs. Chris Jericho; Paul Burchill vs. Tyler Reks; Santino Marella vs. Chavo Guerrero; and Jack Swagger vs.
Primo.

***

WWE today announced financial results for it’s third quarter ended September 30, 2009. Revenues totaled $111.3 million and profit was $8.9 million, up from $5.3 million during the same period in 2008. This was more to do increased television rights fees ($3.9 million) and cost cutting than anything else. PPV buys were down 22 percent with SummerSlam losing 108,000 buys from 2008. Consumer products declined 14 percent mainly due to drops in licensing and magazine publishing revenue. Home Video showed a gain of $200,000 but that was mostly due to promotional offers and a 20 percent reduction in DVD prices. As with the last few quarters the profit didn’t cover the dividend but they are sitting on healthy cash reserves of approximately $230 million with virtually no debt.

During the investors conference call Vince McMahon said he thought the company had a good quarter. He pointed to an increase in average attendance at live events (5,800 vs. 5,300) and television ratings as his barometer. However, that doesn’t stand up too well when you consider they’ve run more overseas events with lower ticket prices comparable to the last quarter, and also added the Superstars show on WGN, which attributes to the overall increase in ratings. The Q&A portion of the call mostly featured softball questions from analysts, to the point you would think it’s scripted, asking about utilizing archive footage from the 70s and 80s, and WWE’s partnership with The National Guard.

Vince did talk about Linda and Shane leaving the company. He said:
“We’ve lost Linda in terms of her CEO role of course which I have assumed, she still sits on the Board. The other aspect of family, some people perceive this to be a family business, which I do not. But nonetheless, my son Shane as well has decided to pursue other opportunities in the marketplace. Nonetheless, I have mentioned before that the strength of our management team is stronger now than it has ever been. And if your last name is McMahon or not, decisions are always made on your abilities in terms of whatever position you hold now and/or will in the future and be judged on your performance, not because your last name is McMahon.”

Vince also talked about a “revised film philosophy and practice” with regards to WWE Studios, and confirmed launching a cable television channel in the future, although he admitted they are very early in that process. He said the new film philosophy was to concentrate on movies with a $5 million budget and roll them out quickly direct-to-video rather than produce big budget theatrical releases. In the financial report it was hinted at that 12 Rounds with John Cena broke even but they didn’t post any revenue. During the call, WWE Chief Financial Officer George Barrios mentioned The Marine 2 was coming out in December and said they project WWE’s future direct-to-video releases will surpass breakeven profits.

WWE also revised it’s business outlook, targeting average annual earnings growth between 15 to 20 percent over the next three years. The stock market reacted favorably to the results with the stock price jumping 7.2 percent to $14.51 by the close of play. 

“We believe we can achieve meaningful growth by strengthening our global expansion and television distribution, leveraging our new partnership with Mattel and continuing to improve operating efficiency,” said Vince McMahon in a press release. “Through disciplined cost management, we expect our operating leverage to deliver outstanding earnings growth with even moderate increases in revenue.”

***

Maryse and Sgt. Slaughter were studio guests this morning on KiiM-FM radio in Tucson, AZ. They were in town as part of WWE’s kids reading challenge and promoting live events in the area. Maryse said she hopes to return for and be back in the ring at Survivor Series, which is two weeks away.

Chris Jericho made TMZ today for not very PG comments two weeks ago during the screening of his movie Albino Farm at the Sacramento Horror Film Festival. He made a few jokes and referred to the moderator as “Hadji” which apparently is perceived a racial slur against Middle Easterners. Jericho has now apologised and TMZ has him quoted as saying, “After seeing the video I realize some inappropriate comments were made and I apologize if I offended anybody… Just know that everyone on stage was having a blast and we all shared a drink and a laugh after!
The good news is I got my wish of being posted on TMZ.” Story is at http://tinyurl.com/yjvj644.

GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) jumped on the story, because Jericho also said the word “fag”, and released this ridiculous
statement: “Just three months ago, Chris Jericho’s boss and WWE Chairman Vince McMahon acknowledged to GLAAD that words matter. There is no time, context or occasion in which it is acceptable to utter racist and anti-gay slurs. Jericho’s hollow apology `if offended anyone’ is a template used by many and is insincere and worn.” How this group can determine the sincerity of an apology when they haven’t heard it is beyond me.

A correction from yesterday. Jeff Hardy’s next court date is actually December 2, not November 14. When we called the court house yesterday afternoon we were mistakenly given the date of a hearing for a different person also named Hardy.

Mark Henry was good to go tonight in Scotland although he is having some knee issues.

Already announced for ECW next week in England is Christian vs. William Regal for the ECW title; and Paul Burchill vs. Hurricane. If Burchill loses, he and Katie Lea must depart ECW, and if Hurricane loses he must remove his mask.

Jerry Lawler is scheduled to appear at the Texas Motor Speedway this Saturday.

TOTAL NONSTOP ACTION WRESTLING NEWS

Impact tonight on Spike has AJ Styles vs. Christopher Daniels with Samoa
Joe as the special referee; Bobby Lashley vs. Homicide; Madison Rayne
vs. Taylor Wilde; Team 3D vs. Matt Morgan & Hernandez; Tara vs. Hamada;
and Beer Money vs. Eric Young & Rob Terry. They will also be airing
footage of a meeting Dixie Carter held with talent at the tapings this
past week, and also, so I am told, hyping a interview with Sting to
discuss his future with the company.

TNA are back on the road this weekend. They run in Murray, KY on Friday
and Jackson, TN on Saturday. There is also a special charity event on
Monday at the Wildhorse Saloon to benefit The Boys and Girls Clubs of
Middle Tennessee. More info on that at www.tnawrestling.com.

***

Hulk Hogan has been claiming at booking signings this week that he was
going to introduce Rob Van Dam to Dixie Carter and bring him to TNA. You
know, the same guy who recently met Dixie at Bound For Glory. On a
related note, RVD did an interview with The Monday Night Mayhem radio
show. Regarding Hogan signing with TNA, he thought it was a good for the
business but wasn’t too sure that Hogan should have any booking power.
You can listen in at www.mondaynightmayhem.com.

Hogan was interviewed today on Good Day LA in Los Angeles. He was having
difficulty walking and had to be helped onto the set. He first plugged
his book and then plugged TNA saying he would be running the company and
giving everyone a choice.

Hogan’s book made No. 14 on the Publishers Weekly Best-Sellers list.

Kevin Nash released the following statement regarding his suspension:
“Thought I would clear up some internet bulls**t. The reason I did not
receive a letter from T.N.A was because this matter was discussed
between President Dixie Carter and myself. I promise you it cost me
money not a paid vacation at my beach home. I understand Dixie’s reason
for the action she has taken but stand by my reaction to what at the
time appeared a serious neck injury to Josh [meaning Josh Harter aka
Chris Sabin].”

The latest TNA Today webshow is online with Desmond Wolfe at
http://tinyurl.com/ygjvggh. Also, Hermie’s Hotseat with Madison Rayne at
http://tinyurl.com/yguxd8g.

OTHER WRESTLING NEWS

Today’s Diva of the Day is Alissa Flash at http://tinyurl.com/yfw9egd.

Highspots.com released the following statement on Wednesday regarding
the sale of Ric Flair’s NWA title belt: ‘It has been accurately reported
that, Highspots is one of two companies that Ric Flair pledged his NWA
belt to for outstanding amounts owed. To ensure that the eventual buyer
has no potential issues, Highspots has continued to work with the other
holder of the lien on the title belt at issue. After speaking with our
counsel, Combraco, Inc. has informed us that they decided to give Mr.
Flair an additional six months in which to repay the more than $300,000
that he owes to them. While we are disappointed by the delay, we respect
the legal process and continue to work to resolve the issues with Mr.
Flair’s other creditors to protect the interest of our customers. In
the unlikely event Mr. Flair pays these funds owed, we will be the only
remaining lien holder on the belt and will place it back for sale. If he
does not, we anticipate working with Combraco after the period ends to
reach a final agreement to facilitate the sale. Again, we are sorry for
the delay, but Highspots is a long standing and respected company that
values its integrity and respect for the legal process. We will continue
to hold the belt and will update the situation and contact all
individuals who submitted bids again this spring.’

Who’s Slamming Who at www.WhosSlammingWho.podomatic.com has brand new
content with audio from Jim Cornette, Lanny Poffo, Evan Ginzburg, Bill
Behrens, and some jabroni called Kenny Bolin. Cornette talks Hulk Hogan,
Vince Russo, and more.

Michele Mupo is handling indy/convention bookings for a number of Divas
including Candice Michelle, Tara f.k.a. Victoria, Sunny, Karen Angle,
Dawn Marie, Jackie Haas, Traci Brooks, Christy Hemme, Kristal Marshall,
Terri Runnels, and many others. For a full client list you can call
732-236-1987 or email to mutanentertainment@yahoo.com.

Lillian Garcia is not taking any new convention bookings and is going to
be concentrating on her music.

Brock Lesnar confirmed he is suffering from mononucleosis [kissing
disease]. His doctor told him not to train for a month so the idea of
fighting Shane Carwin at UFC 108 on January 2 is off the table. Carwin
wrote on his website: “I hope Brock gets well soon. I highly suggest he
get into a Max Muscle store because they have the best advice and
supplements to support that advice. It really is the only way to make it
through the grueling weather and training we live through.” It’s
believed that Brock won’t be ready to fight until March.

National Wrestling Superstars has a double shot this weekend in
Belleville and Dunellen, NJ with 7-foot-7 Giant Silva and Tammy “Sunny”
Sytch. More info at www.nwswrestling.com.

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