POLLOCK'S NEWS UPDATE: WWE promoting Lesnar's cash-in on Rollins

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/06/03/pollocks-news-update-wwe-promoting-lesnars-cash-in-on-rollins/

Photo courtesy: WWE


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**This Wednesday, we will be posting the 30-minute interview I conducted with former Live Audio Wrestling co-host Jeff Marek, who is now a hockey analyst with Rogers Sportsnet.

**Wai Ting and I are back with Rewind-A-Raw tonight to review the show from Austin, Texas. We will also discuss today’s news, and we have a special announcement for SummerSlam weekend in Toronto.

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**Tonight’s episode of Raw takes place from the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas with the show centered around Friday’s Super Showdown card in Saudi Arabia. They have announced the following for tonight’s episode:
*Roman Reigns & The Usos vs. Drew McIntyre & The Revival
*Brock Lesnar cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase on Seth Rollins
*An appearance by The Undertaker
*Rey Mysterio relinquishing the United States title

**They should be hopeful of a stronger audience tonight without NBA competition, although they will face going against Game 4 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Next week’s episode of Raw will be hurt badly going against Game 5 of the Golden State Warriors vs. Toronto Raptors final, although it’s the final Monday they will go against the NBA this season.

**There is no SmackDown live event tonight with a previously scheduled show in Corpus Christi canceled last week. The television tapings are in Laredo, Texas on Tuesday night with Bill Goldberg advertised to appear. They have also announced a Moment of Bliss segment with Bayley and an interview with Lars Sullivan for SmackDown.

**WWE filmed a segment involving R-Truth and Jinder Mahal on a golf course where Mahal won the 24/7 title, and Truth quickly won it back. The segment was posted on Sunday and has surpassed 4 million views worldwide.

**Taiji Ishimori missed Monday’s show in Okayama due to a shoulder injury. New Japan put out an update stating that Ishimori injured his shoulder in his match against Shingo Takagi last Friday. He was scheduled for a six-man tag on today’s show.

**MLW is going to Dallas, Texas with the news that they are holding a television taping at the NYTEX Sports Center on Saturday, September 7th. The show is being promoted around a match called “War Chamber,” which is the name they will be used in place of War Games, which WWE now has the rights to. The tapings will feature Marshall & Ross Von Erich, who recently signed with the company and debuted for MLW over the weekend in Milwaukee. Tickets for the show in Dallas will go on sale next Monday.

**The WWE stock closed at $72.76 on Monday.


**Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal has announced that due to mounting injuries, he has decided to retire at the age of 38. Citing issues with his hip, knees, and elbows, Lawal has decided to step away from the sport with a record of 21-9 and one no contest. He began his career fighting for the Sengoku group in Japan and later went to M-1 and eventually Strikeforce and started his career 7-0. He defeated Gegard Mousasi in April 2010 on CBS to become the Strikeforce light heavyweight champion but lost it to Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante in his next fight in August that year.

He left Strikeforce and signed with Bellator in 2012, where he spent the remainder of his career while also being loaned out to Rizin for several fights. In 2015, he won the Rizin Heavyweight Grand Prix defeating Brett McDermott in the opening round and came back two nights later to defeat Teodoras Aukstuolis and Jiri Prochazka in the same night.

When Lawal signed with Bellator, he signed a dual contract with Impact Wrestling as both properties were on Spike TV at the time. Lawal was hopeful of splitting his time but only made a handful of appearances for Impact over the next three years. He returned to Impact briefly in 2017 where he was in Bobby Lashley’s corner, who was a teammate of Lawal’s at American Top Team.

Lawal headlined Bellator’s first event on pay-per-view in May 2014 where he lost by unanimous decision to Quinton Jackson. In March 2017, they had a rematch that Lawal won by unanimous decision. In a funny story, the night after the rematch, I was at ROH’s Supercard of Honor show in Florida over WrestleMania weekend and realized that Lawal was sitting right in front of me. He had beaten Jackson and then got onto a plane from Chicago to Florida to make it for the event.

The rematch with Jackson was his last victory and had suffered three stoppage losses to Ryan Bader, Liam McGeary, and Jiri Prochazka in his final fights. The loss to Prochazka took place this past April for Rizin for the light heavyweight championship in Tokyo.

**The Athletic has announced their lineup of MMA journalists they have hired as they launch their coverage of the sport on the subscription-based site. Dann Stupp, who was the founder of MMA Junkie (originally UFC Junkie) will serve as managing editor on the site and will consist of writers Shaheen Al-Shatti (coming over from MMA Fighting), Ben Fowlkes (from MMA Junkie), Josh Gross, Chad Dundas, Fernanda Prates (who is with MMA Junkie and will begin with the site July 1st), and Chuck Mindenhall (from MMA Fighting). The mission statement is to deliver more long-form stories and content without being reliant on advertising dollars.

It’s a unique time for MMA reporting with lots of names in the space switching homes and new establishments entering the space. Leading the way is ESPN, that has bolstered a strong presence through the hiring of Ariel Helwani with his radio show, that is the go-to hub for fighters when they want to speak publicly and promote their upcoming fights. In terms of breaking news, Helwani and Brett Okamoto have a strong hold on that side of the industry and have recently hired Marc Raimondi, who I feel is one of the best reporters in the industry.

The addition of The Athletic means more jobs for MMA reporters and I’m exceptionally happy for Josh Gross that he can cover the sport full-time. Gross has been a reporter since April 2000 and faced a lot of obstacles through his issues with UFC and not being credentialed for events, which has limited his opportunities with major outlets until now. In this climate, the ability to have a credential is great, but not imperative, and Gross is a fantastic reporter. Gross will also host his podcast “Gross Point Blank” for The Athletic, and there will be a separate show hosted by Al-Shatti and Mindenhall.

In other MMA media stories, Damon Martin has been hired by MMA Fighting and has been covering the sport for 16 years dating back to his work with MMA Weekly. Jordan Breen has also begun writing for Bloody Elbow with a review of Saturday’s card from Stockholm.

**Anthony Smith sent an x-ray of his broken left hand to Ariel Helwani. Smith believes that he broke his hand during the second round of his fight against Alexander Gustafsson on Saturday night in Sweden. Prior to Saturday’s fight, Smith said he had promised his children he would not fight again this year and is taking a break after back-to-back fights with Jon Jones and Gustafsson this year. Smith submitted Gustafsson in the fourth round of their light heavyweight main event in Stockholm.

**After the announcement of Alexander Gustafsson’s retirement, UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier issued the following statement:

Alex, you will forever be one of the biggest players in my journey. We’ve agreed, we have argued and bickered, but ultimately you made me better. You made the sport better. You are a warrior and will be truly missed!

Cormier defeated Gustafsson by split decision in a classic fight at UFC 192 in October 2015.

**Here is the first episode of this week’s UFC Embedded series ahead of UFC 238 this Saturday in Chicago:

Cruel Summer #2: Masahiro Chono vs. Rick Rude (1992)
WH Park welcomes Matt McEwen to discuss the finals of NJPW’s second G1 Climax tournament: Masahiro Chono vs. Ravishing Rick Rude from August 12, 1992.
NXT TakeOver: XXV POST Show
Braden Herrington and Davie Portman review NXT TakeOver: XXV from Bridgeport featuring Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole for the NXT title in the main event.
Cruel Summer #1: Keiji Mutoh vs. Masahiro Chono (1991) w/ John Pollock
WH Park welcomes John Pollock to discuss the finals of NJPW’s inaugural G1 Climax tournament: Keiji Mutoh vs. Masahiro Chono from August 11, 1991.
Café Hangout feat. Andreas Hale, Sebastian Suave & Damian Abraham

Andreas Hale talks minority representation in wrestling, Sebastian Suave on OWE coming to Toronto, and Damian Abraham talks MVP on The Wrestlers in this week’s Café Hangout.
Rewind-A-Wai #37: Thunder in Paradise (1993)
John Pollock and Wai Ting review the 1993 straight-to-video feature film, Thunder In Paradise starring Terry “Hulk” Hogan.
upNXT 5/29/19: The Road to Bridgeport
Braden Herrington and Davie Portman review this week’s edition of WWE NXT featuring Kushida vs. Drew Gulak, Bianca Bel Air vs. Mia Yim, plus all the build & predictions for this Saturday’s TakeOver: XXV.
DOUBLE SHOT: Jon Moxley on Talk is Jericho, Starrcast panels, Being the Elite

John Pollock & Wai Ting review Jon Moxley’s interview on Talk is Jericho, Starrcast panels (Young Bucks & Cody, Dustin Rhodes, Bret Hart & Tom Magee, Arn Anderson), Being the Elite & more.
BWE 5/29/19: Dunne vs. Walter 2, AEW on ITV, WWE on BT Sports
With Martin away, Benno and Jamesie discuss the last two weeks of NXT UK with Pete Dunne vs. Walter 2 and look at the British involvement at AEW Double or Nothing.
POST PROFILE BONUS: Jason King (Full Interview)

John Pollock speaks with award-winning sportswriter Jason King, who was in attendance at Kemper Arena on the night Owen Hart passed away.

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I feel like WWE’s phrasing has been very specific… “cashing In” doesn’t mean the match will actually happen tonight, right?

Then again, WWE’s phrasing is always painstakingly specific, so who knows…

The chances of this not happening are high.