Originally published at POLLOCK'S NEWS UPDATE: Hayashishita and Syuri have classic match
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**Our resident book reviewer Brandon Sears has his latest review on the site taking a look at “Chris Candido – No Gimmicks Needed”, which was written by his brother Jonny Candido and John Cosper.
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Tonight: Rewind-A-Raw with John & Wai (Live at 11:15 p.m. ET for Double Double+ Patrons)
Tuesday: Rewind-A-Wai #88 “The Longest Yard” (2005)
Tuesday: upNXT with Braden Herrington & Davie Portman
Wednesday: Shot in the Dark with John Siino (upNXT feed)
Thursday: The Wellness Policy with Wai Ting & Jordan Goodman (1 p.m. ET for Patrons)
Thursday: MCU L8R with Wai & WH Park (Patreon)
Friday: Rewind-A-DynaDown with John & Wai (Midnight ET for all Patrons)
Sunday: WWE Hell in a Cell POST Show (Live for Double Double, Iced Capp & Espresso Patrons)
UTAMI HAYASHISHITA VS SYURI
The match of the weekend and one of the best of 2021 took place Saturday on Stardom’s Tokyo Dream Cinderella event from Ota Ward Gymnasium. In the main event, World of Stardom Champion Utami Hayashishita and Syuri fought to a double count-out after more than 43 minutes. They initially went to a 30:00-minute time limit before they were granted an additional thirty minutes. It culminated with a giant striking exchange and both collapsing to the mat where the count of ten was made. From a physical standpoint, it was at another level than most matches this year and the sequences were breath-taking that always conveyed the struggle and war of attrition each fought as time progressed. Hayashishita is nothing short of a prodigy as she is less than three years removed from her debut and exuded the aura of a top champion that went toe-to-toe with the dangerous challenger that comes from a legitimate fighting background including competing for the UFC. The end was obviously designed to extend the rivalry and left you with the impression that Hayashishita has now found the rivalry that will take her career to the next level as the face of Stardom.
It was an exhilarating match that started with grappling and progressed with Syuri targeting the arm with several armbar attempts and Hayashishita defending while the strength of her arm worsened to the point it was unusable by the end. There were some sick apron spots including an Air Raid Crash by Hayashishita and the most vicious one with Hayashishita using a wheelbarrow to slam the back of Syuri’s neck and upper back onto the edge from the floor.
Most of all is how the drama of the match escalated because of the time limit. There were frequent updates when they were approaching the limit and the audience just grew with anticipation and excitement as the match intensified. The purpose of the overtime period demonstrated the heart by Hayashishita to defend her title rather than retain it based on the time limit. The two were left lifeless in the ring after multiple spinning back fists from Syuri and a head kick while Hayashishita hit her BT Bomb and a big lariat as her final offensive maneuvers.
The English commentary from Stewart Fulton and Sonny Gutierrez was well done as Fulton is establishing himself as one of the premier play-by-play commentators in the industry. The addition of the English commentary is going to open up the scope of this match to a larger number of fans and is a perfect gateway match for those looking to sample the Stardom product.
It was an outstanding match and in the discussion among the best of 2021.
**Here are the matches announced for tonight’s edition of WWE Raw at 8 p.m. ET on USA:
*Randy Orton & Riddle vs. Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods
*A.J. Styles vs. Drew McIntyre
*Eva Marie to appear
**Sportsnet 360 in Canada aired TakeOver live in its entirety and commercial-free on Sunday. They did run an ad promoting this during Friday Night SmackDown, although it wasn’t very well publicized and I’m sure many were unaware they could watch the show without the WWE Network. This is the second TakeOver in a row that Sportsnet 360 has aired after Stand & Deliver in April.
UPDATE: NXT TakeOver only did 24,000 viewers on Sportsnet 360. I would attribute this number more to the fact that very few people were aware it was airing on the station Sunday night.
**The internet pre-sale for SummerSlam began on Monday for the August 21st event at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer reports that “WWE moved a ton of tickets for SummerSlam today.”
**Brandon Thurston at Wrestlenomics has an update on IMPACT Wrestling’s recent viewership totals. Last Thursday’s episode averaged 124,000 viewers and 0.05 (60,000) in the 18-49 demographic. Those figures represented a decrease of 13.3 percent in overall viewers but did increase by 11 percent in the 18-49 demo. Since the show moved to Thursday nights in April, IMPACT has averaged 132,000 viewers and 57,500 in the 18-49 demo.
**Here are the matches scheduled for tonight’s edition of AEW Dark: Elevation that streams at 7 p.m. ET:
*Eddie Kingston & Penta El Zero Miedo vs. Arik Cannon & Kevin Blackwood
*Angelico vs. Mike Sydal
*Private Party vs. Carlie Bravo & Dean Alexander
*Orange Cassidy vs. Cameron Cole
*Julia Hart vs. Dani Jordyn
*Dustin Rhodes & Lee Johnson vs. VSK & Travis Titan
*Shawn Spears vs. Falco
*Scorpio Sky vs. Alex Reynolds
*Aaron Solow & QT Marshall vs. Deonn Rusman & Joe Keys
*Nyla Rose vs. Megan Bayne
*Wardlow vs. Jason Hotch
**This Friday’s edition of NJPW Strong will be headlined by Satoshi Kojima facing JR Kratos at 10 p.m. ET on New Japan World. On the June 25th edition, STRONG Openweight Champion Tom Lawlor will defend the title against Karl Fredricks.
**Fred Rosser has announced that he has signed with NJPW after competing for several months on NJPW Strong.
**Chelsea Green shared a story on her Green with Envy podcast regarding an injury scare. Green recently got back into the ring to work out with Santana Garrett and heard a pop in her left arm, which was the same one she broke last November during the debut on SmackDown. The pain was bad enough the next day that she went to the emergency room, but they learned it was not broken again. The doctors thought she may have scar tissue built up or irritated the tendon. Green added that because the injury occurred in WWE, she can use the physical therapist and rehab at the WWE Performance Center, so for the next few weeks she will be using the PC. Green was released this past April and her non-compete clause expires July 14th.
**Dark Side of the Ring will be sharing clips that didn’t make it into the previously aired episodes. Below is a story from Kim Wood about Brian Pillman’s plan to storm the field at the Super Bowl in 1996 to generate publicity at the peak of the ‘Loose Cannon’ character:
During our “off season” we’ll be sharing some bonus clips & deleted scenes.
— Dark Side of the Ring (@DarkSideOfRing) June 14, 2021
**Pro Wrestling NOAH will hold a major stipulation match on Saturday, June 26th. The company has announced that Katsuhiko Nakajima will face Masa Kitamiya in a Hair vs. Hair Steel Cage Death Match. The card will take place from the NOAH TV studios and it will be streaming for $9.99 U.S. on FITE TV.
**WWE is hosting a multi-day tryout in Las Vegas this August during the week of SummerSlam. Those wishing to participate in the tryouts can register at https://www.wweperformancecenter.com.
**Ninja Mack will replace Lio Rush on Warrior Wrestling’s next Stadium Series event on Saturday, July 15th. Ninja Mack will take on Brian Cage
**The ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’ film is being advertised as the title sponsor for New Japan’s ongoing Kizuna Road tour as well as the Summer Struggle tour that begins in July.
**After the main event of Monday’s New Japan card, Shingo Takagi stated that his pending title defense against Kota Ibushi needs to take place on ‘the biggest stage’. That likely means the Tokyo Dome card is being re-scheduled this summer with those two in a headlining position or at least that’s what is being suggested by that promo.
**Monday’s Kizuna Road tour kicked off with 347 fans attending the show at Korakuen Hall. In the main event, the LIJ contingent of Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, SANADA & BUSHI defeated Suzuki-gun’s Zack Sabre Jr., Taichi, El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru. In the two Young Lion gauntlet matches, Minoru Suzuki submitted Yuya Uemura and Hiroshi Tanahashi submitted Yota Tsuji.
**NJPW is running Korakuen Hall for the next two nights with its Kizuna Road tour. Tuesday’s card will be streaming at 5:30 a.m. ET on New Japan World:
*Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, SANADA & BUSHI vs. Kota Ibushi, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Master Wato
*Kazuchika Okada, Tomohiro Ishii, Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI vs. EVIL, Yujiro, Dick Togo & Gedo
*Roppongi 3K & Toru Yano vs. Taiji Ishimori, El Phantasmo & Jado
*Yota Tsuji vs. Taichi
*Yuya Uemura vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
**The gauntlet series involving Yuya Uemura and Yota Tsuji will be the most intriguing part of Wednesday’s show at Korakuen Hall. The two opening matches will feature Uemura vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi and Tsuji vs. Kazuchika Okada.
**The WWE stock closed at $63.44 on Monday, so the stock has been able to maintain a sizable amount of its growth from last week after the Reddit bump.
**Being the Elite Ep. 260: “You Broke My Face!”
**WWE has released a YouTube exclusive match taped before TakeOver: In Your House on Sunday night. The bonus match is a tag with Sarray & Zoey Stark vs. Jessi Kamea & Aliyah:
**UFC 263 continued the string of sold-out pay-per-view events for the promotion. Saturday’s card at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, had an announced attendance of 17,208 with a live gate of $4.2 million, so the UFC is doing phenomenal business since returning with fans. These figures will pale compared with next month’s massive card on July 10th for the third fight between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
**UFC president Dana White maintained his opinion that Colby Covington will be the next one to challenge UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman. This, despite Leon Edwards’ latest victory that extends his unbeaten streak to ten fights. On Saturday, Edwards dominated the fight with Nate Diaz until being caught by a left hand that rocked Edwards, but he survived the round to win 49-46 on all three cards. Usman holds wins over both Covington and Edwards, although the fight with Edwards was all the way back in 2015. Usman and Covington had an incredible fight in December 2019 where Usman stopped the challenger in the fifth round. For Usman, the best outcome would have been Diaz winning the fight on Saturday and leapfrogging everyone. It’s unknown if Diaz would have wanted that fight but he’s the largest name for Usman to fight and is a terrible stylistic fight for Diaz, so Usman would be heavily favored. The other welterweight contender is Stephen Thompson, who is fighting Gilbert Burns on July 10th.
**The biggest story following UFC 263 was the superstar-level reaction for Brandon Moreno, who defeated Deiveson Figueiredo to become the fourth flyweight champion in company history. Moreno is the first Mexican-born UFC champion and has the amazing story of being ranked sixteenth on the all-flyweight season of TUF in 2016 and losing in the first round to Alexandre Pantoja. Moreno was cut by the promotion in 2018 but returned the next year and worked his way to the title fight last year with Figueiredo. Now, Moreno stands poised to become a major star in Mexico and we’ll see if that can translate to a superstar level in the U.S. Suffice to say, the flyweight division seems to be a tremendous spot with the potential of the division having its first breakthrough star. The scene involving Morendo’s title victory and post-fight speech was among the most memorable of any championship wins in UFC history.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) June 13, 2021
**The UFC returns next Saturday with a Fight Night card at the UFC Apex headlined by featherweight Chan Sung Jung and Dan Ige. In two weeks, they have a card featuring a heavyweight main event between Ciryl Gane and Alexander Volkov. The big card is UFC 264 on July 10th with Poirier vs. McGregor that should be a mega event and could top the pay-per-view number the two set back in January of 1.6 million buys.
**This past Friday’s Bellator 260 show featured Yaroslav Amosov become the new Bellator welterweight champion defeating Douglas Lima by unanimous decision. It was not a great fight as Lima had no answers for the continued takedown strategy by Amosov, who did enough to win every round and it wasn’t close. It was a disappointing end to Lima’s title reign after winning the Welterweight Grand Prix in 2019. In terms of buzz between the two promotions, PFL received tons more attention for Thursday’s card featuring the debut of Claressa Shields, who overcame a lot of adversity losing the first two rounds before stopping Brittney Elkin in the third round.
**Bellator’s next card is Friday, June 25th with Timothy Johnson fighting Valentin Moldavsky for the interim heavyweight title. They are adding an interim belt because champion Ryan Bader is competing in the Light Heavyweight Grand Prix and will eventually fight the interim champion.
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