POLLOCK'S UPDATE: B.J. Whitmer indicted, per report

Originally published at POLLOCK'S UPDATE: B.J. Whitmer indicted, per report

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**We have an interview with Gunther on the site discussing his choice to move to the U.S., his relationship working under Paul Levesque, earning more promo time on Raw, and keeping tabs on the European wrestling scene. You can watch the video version of the interview and download it on your podcast app.

**This week’s Rewind-A-Wai focuses on UFC 200 from July 2016 and an event that Wai & I covered in Las Vegas and comes with a lot of personal stories from that work trip. There was no shortage of major news that week between the UFC being sold to Endeavor, Jon Jones being pulled from the card during the week, Anderson Silva replacing Jones, Brock Lesnar’s big return to MMA and subsequent USADA violation, how WWE handled the drug test announcement, Amanda Nunes starting her dominant reign on top of the bantamweight division, and a look back at the stacked independent wrestling scene, BOLA & the Final Deletion debuts on IMPACT. This show is available now for all POST Wrestling Café members.

**Rewind-A-SmackDown is live at 10 p.m. ET with a review of SmackDown in Boston. Wai & I will go through the latest news including Ace Steel being let go by AEW, Dynamite ratings, the weekend preview, and we will take calls on any topics. Join us live if you’re a POST Wrestling Café member.

**Collision Course will be live Saturday night for POST Café members with Wai Ting & Kate from Montreal this week.

POST SCHEDULE

Tonight: Rewind-A-SmackDown with John Pollock & Wai Ting (POST Wrestling Café)
Saturday: Collision Course with Kate from Montreal & Wai Ting (POST Wrestling Café)
Monday: Rewind-A-Raw

WRESTLING NEWS

**Former AEW producer B.J. Whitmer has been indicted following two charges stemming from a June arrest for a domestic violence incident. Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful reports that Whitmer had a hearing this past Wednesday and was indicted on first-degree strangulation and second-degree burglary and both are classified as Class C felonies in the state of Kentucky. Whitmer had been with AEW since 2019 as a producer and after the domestic violence charges, he was terminated from his deal with AEW issuing the following statement this past June:

B.J. Whitmer has been terminated following his arrest on domestic violence charges. While talent and staff are ultimately responsible for their own personal actions, this behavior is intolerable within AEW. AEW has reached out to offer support to those impacted by his behavior.

**Friday Night SmackDown is in the TD Garden in Boston tonight with an expected sellout for the show with WrestleTix reporting 11,595 tickets distributed at last check with less than 500 tickets remaining for its capacity setup. Due to the show in India today, it is the only episode that John Cena will miss as he is scheduled for the next seven weeks through October 27. The following matches have been announced:
*AJ Styles vs. Jimmy Uso (Jimmy’s first match since July 2)
*IYO SKY & Bayley vs. Charlotte Flair & Shotzi
*Finn Balor & Damian Priest vs. Ridge Holland & Butch

**AEW Collision will be airing against multiple college football games on Saturday. The major ones are Texas vs. Alabama on ESPN, Oregon vs. Texas Tech on Fox, Charlotte vs. Maryland on NBC, UCLA vs. San Diego State on CBS, and Wisconsin vs. Washington State on ABC. The UFC 293 prelims are bumped to ESPNews due to football and will stream on ESPN+. AEW will be alleviated without a WWE event airing, which has proven to be a huge detriment based on Collision’s performance against SummerSlam and Payback. The quarter-hour performance of last Saturday’s show displayed a terrible pattern where viewership began at 472,000 viewers and the final dropped to 244,000 (48%) while the demo fell from 234,000 in the first quarter to 101,000 for the final one (57%). If we apply the same method to Dynamite comparing the first and final quarters, viewership dropped 26% throughout the show and the 18-49 audience fell by 14%. Saturday’s show takes place from the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in Cleveland with Jon Moxley vs. Action Andretti for the International, Bullet Club Gold in action with an appearance by Bryan Danielson, The Acclaimed will appear, Saraya speaks, and the two semi-final matches of the World Title Eliminator Tournament.

**The WWE stock closed at $98.05 on Friday, so it did not recover from last week’s sizable drop after the PFL investment by the Saudi Arabian group. The stock had been trading over $115 last week when it plummeted after the PFL news that they sold a 10% stake in the company to a group in Saudi Arabia and the stock fell under $97. There was a semi-recovery a week ago where they ended the week around $105 before decreasing again this week and have hovered below the $100 mark leaving WWE with a market cap of $8.15 billion days before the merger with UFC will be complete. Over the past month, the WWE stock is down 10% but still posting a 29% increase year-over-year.

**IMPACT Wrestling has a big weekend of shows at the Westchester County Center in White Plains, New York with Victory Road tonight and IMPACT 1000 on Saturday. On paper, it looks like a very strong show tonight from top to bottom including the delayed singles match between Josh Alexander and Steve Maclin, which was earmarked for Rebellion earlier this year and changed when Alexander tore his triceps. The best work in the lead-up has been courtesy of Tommy Dreamer who has put his career on the line against Kenny King for the Digital Media Championship. The show is happening at the building where his father took him to his first show, where he had his first WWE tryout, and where he headlined with ECW, and later performed in front of his children. POST Wrestling’s John Siino will be in attendance to cover both shows and file reports for the site on both nights. Below is the lineup for the card at 8 p.m. ET on FITE TV, IMPACT Plus & Ultimate Insiders:
*IMPACT Knockouts Championship: Trinity © vs. Alisha Edwards
*IMPACT Tag Titles: The Rascalz © vs. Motor City Machine Guns
*Josh Alexander vs. Steve Maclin
*Anything Goes Match: PCO vs. Bully Ray
*X Division Championship: Lio Rush © vs. KUSHIDA
*Deonna Purrazzo vs. Jordynne Grace
*Digital Media Championship vs. Career: Kenny King © vs. Tommy Dreamer
*Knockouts Tag Team Titles: Masha Slamovich & Killer Kelly © vs. Gisele Shaw & Savannah Evans
*Black Taurus vs. Crazzy Steve
*Pre-show: Chris Bey & Ace Austin vs. Moose & Brian Myers
*Pre-show: Alan Angels vs. TBA

**For Saturday’s IMPACT 1000 taping in the same building in White Plains they are advertising Alex Shelley vs. Trey Miguel for the IMPACT Championship, Team 3D against TBA, Trinity & Jordynne Grace & Gail Kim & Awesome Kong vs. Deonna Purrazzo & Gisele Shaw & Savannah Evans & Angelina Love, Frankie Kazarian & Traci Brooks vs. Eddie & Alisha Edwards, Jake Something vs. Dirty Dango, an Ultimate X Match, and a Feast or Fired Match.

**Below is the spoiler-free lineup for AEW Rampage tonight at 10 p.m. ET from Wednesday’s tapings in Indianapolis and airing on TNT:
*World Title Eliminator Tournament: Samoa Joe vs. Jeff Hardy
*World Title Eliminator Tournament: Jay Lethal vs. Penta El Zero M
*The Young Bucks vs. Matt Menard & Angelo Parker
*Dr. Britt Baker, Hikaru Shida & Skye Blue vs. Taya Valkyrie, Anna Jay & The Bunny
*Sammy Guevara speaks  

**NJPW’s second card in a row at Korakuen Hall is Saturday morning at 5:30 a.m. ET and streams on NJPW World. The card is headlined by a ten-man tag with Will Ospreay, Jeff Cobb, Henare, Great O-Khan & Callum Newman against Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, Yota Tsuji, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI in an Elimination Match, and a NEVER 6-Man Tag Team Championship match with Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Tomohiro Ishii defending against Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Togi Makabe & Tiger Mask. The Road to Destruction tour continues Sunday in Chiba and Monday in Ibaraki.

**Pro Wrestling NOAH has announced that broadcaster Abema will be airing five of Naomichi Marufuji’s classic matches in the days leading into his 25th Anniversary card on September 18. The following will air next week on a nightly basis:
*Tuesday: Naomichi Marufuji & KENTA vs. Jushin Thunder Liger & Takehiro Murahama (July 16, 2003)
*Wednesday: Marufuji vs. Jun Akiyama for the GHC Heavyweight Championship and Marufuji’s first title win (September 9, 2006)
*Thursday: Marufuji vs. KENTA for the GHC Heavyweight Championship (October 29, 2006)
*Friday: Marufuji vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (August 24, 2013)
*Saturday: Marufuji vs. KENTA (Marufuji’s 20th Anniversary Show on September 16, 2018, when WWE allowed KENTA to work the show)

**WWE has live events on Saturday at the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island and Sunday in Charlottesville, Virginia. Both shows are advertising Cody Rhodes vs. Finn Balor in a street fight, Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka, and AJ Styles vs. Solo Sikoa.

**GCW Crushed Up streams on Sunday at 7 p.m. ET from New York City with Speedball Mike Bailey vs. Rina Yamashita, Richard Holliday vs. Charles Mason, Tony Deppen vs. Francesco Akira, Killer Kelly vs. Maki Itoh, Joey Janela vs. Alex Coughlin, Nick Wayne & Jordan Oliver vs. Bang and Matthews, Mance Warner vs. Jacob Fatu, Effy & Allie Katch vs. Los Macizos vs. Alec Price & Cole Radrick vs. Wasted Young in a four-way tag match, and Matt Cardona & Steph De Lander & Blake Christian vs. Masha Slamovich & AKIRA & TBA.

MMA NEWS

**The ugly promotional lead-up for the Logan Paul vs. Dillon Danis boxing fight has led to a lawsuit being filed by Paul’s fiancé against Danis. Model Nina Agdal has filed a suit in New Jersey over Danis posting a sexually explicit photo of her, which she states was taken without her consent approximately ten years ago. Agdal is attempting to have Danis barred from posting more content online and is seeking a restraining order believing Danis has violated the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization and invaded her privacy. Misfits Boxing, who is promoting the October 14 fight in England threatened to call off the fight if Danis didn’t remove the sexually explicit photo, which Danis complied with. Agdal is seeking $150,000 in damages and additional monies that Danis profited from the social media posts involving her. (ESPN)

**The UFC is back in Australia with UFC 293 from the Qudos Bank Arena where the promotion is receiving a sizable fee from the Australian government. The UFC struck a three-event deal with the government of New South Wales worth $16 million as an idea of the type of site fees the UFC is pursuing and inevitably, is a level WWE aspires to with its own international events (excluding Saudi Arabia where the per show fee is exorbitantly higher). The card was booked without a main event slated and was aided by Israel Adesanya having a desire to bounce back quickly after defending the championship in April. The planned opponent was Dricus du Plessis, who fought in July but could not turn around so quickly for a fight two months later, instead, Sean Strickland got the title fight. Adesanya is a -650 favorite and this would rank among the bigger upsets in a championship fight if Strickland would pull it off. It is a very weak card for pay-per-view with the second biggest fight being Alexander Volkov against Tai Tuivasa. This one is all on Adesanya to draw and it’s not a competitive fight nor a marquee name that he’s fighting. Adesanya is angling to fight on the UFC 300 card, which is next spring and will be the show that every champion wants to be part of.

Despite the time change in Australia, they are keeping the card in the regular North American slot with the prelims beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET on Saturday and the pay-per-view at 10 p.m. The prelims will be airing on ESPNews & ESPN+ with plenty of college football games and AEW Collision airing against UFC. Unlike the last UFC pay-per-view where Chris Weidman made his return on the prelims, there are no notable names on the televised portion with the headlining prelim bout between Carlos Ulberg and Da Woon Jung.

The broadcast is noteworthy as Laura Sanko is calling the show with Jon Anik and Daniel Cormier and is the first female on commentary for a UFC pay-per-view since Kathy Long on the first card in November 1993. Sanko is an excellent analyst and has done strong work on the Contender Series and Fight Night shows as well as her work on the desk.

Jared Cannonier was on weight as the backup fighter in case there was an issue with either Israel Adesanya or Sean Strickland in the main event.

Here is the full lineup:

MAIN CARD (10 p.m. ET on pay-per-view)

*UFC Middleweight Championship: Israel Adesanya (24-2) vs. Sean Strickland (27-5)
*Tai Tuivasa (15-5) vs. Alexander Volkov (36-10) – Tuivasa was knocked out in his last two fights while Volkov has won three of his last four and beat Alexander Romanov in his last outing
*Manel Kape (18-6) vs. Felipe dos Santos (7-0) – Kape was scheduled to fight Kai Kara-France, who suffered a concussion but attended the press conference which led to an altercation between them. Dos Santos is making his UFC debut and Kape attempts to extend a three-fight winning streak
*Justin Tafa (6-3) vs. Austen Lane (12-3) – A heavyweight rematch from June after Lane delivered an accidental eye poke and Tafa could not continue
*Tyson Pedro (9-4) vs. Anton Turkalj (8-2) – Pedro returned last year after being off for three years and has gone 2-1 since the comeback but dropped a decision to Modestas Bukauskas in February

PRELIMINARY CARD (8 p.m. ET on ESPNews & ESPN+)
*Carlos Ulberg (8-1) vs. Jung Da-un (15-4-1) – Ulberg has won his last four fights
*Jack Jenkins (12-2) vs. Chepe Mariscal (14-6)
*Jamie Mullarkey (16-6) vs. John Makdessi (18-8) – Makdessi has been fighting in the UFC for thirteen years and this will be his 20th fight for the organization but has only competed six times in the last five years and this is his first fight since last September
*Nasrat Haqparast (14-5) vs. Landon Quinones (7-1-1)

EARLY PRELIMS (6:30 p.m. ET on ESPNews & ESPN+, Fight Pass)
*Blood Diamond (3-2) vs. Charlie Radtke (7-3)
*Shane Young (13-7) vs. Gabriel Miranda (16-6) – Young missed weight at 149.75 pounds and was fined 30% of his purse but the fight will go forward as a catchweight bout
*Kevin Jousset (8-2) vs. Kiefer Crosbie (10-3)

**The UFC has posted episode five of UFC Embedded for Saturday’s show.

**Former UFC Middleweight & Welterweight Champion Georges St-Pierre will be inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame on October 19 when he receives the ‘Order of Sport’. The UFC issued a press release and noted that the promotion would be sponsoring the live stream of the induction next month. St-Pierre, 42, retired in 2019 after developing colitis following the weight gain to move up to middleweight in 2017 to fight Michael Bisping and win the 185-pound title. He is regarded as among the greatest fighters in the history of the sport with only two losses throughout his career, which he avenged against Matt Hughes and Matt Serra.

**Jorge Masvidal’s Gamebred Bareknuckle MMA card is tonight beginning at 7 p.m. ET on the Gamebred YouTube & Facebook sites streaming for free. The card is headlined by an October 2008 rematch between former UFC heavyweight champions Junior dos Santos and Fabricio Werdum. It is dos Santos’ first fight since competing for Eagle FC last year and is 0-5 since June 2019 with four of those fights being stoppages and dos Santos suffered a shoulder injury and caused an ending to the fight. Werdum, 46, left the UFC in 2020 after a submission win against Alexander Gustafsson and fought once for the PFL in 2021 where he had a no-contest with Renan Ferreira.

*****
REWIND-A-WAI #138: UFC 200
John Pollock & Wai Ting review UFC 200 as Anderson Silva steps in on 3 days’ notice to replace Jon Jones in a much-hyped fight against Daniel Cormier. Plus, Brock Lesnar makes his return to the octagon and Amanda Nunes begins her legendary title reign.
*****
REWIND-A-DYNAMITE
John Pollock & Wai Ting review AEW Dynamite with MJF confronting Samoa Joe and the start of the World Title Eliminator Tournament.
*****
POLLOCK & THURSTON
John Pollock and Brandon Thurston are guestless this week and open the forum for your questions to be sent in along with the latest news & notes.
*****
upNXT
John Siino and B-Detroit return to review WWE NXT from September 5th, 2023 featuring Von Wagner vs. Bron Breakker in a No Disqualification Match.
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REWIND-A-RAW        
John Pollock and Wai Ting review WWE Raw following Payback as Gunther attempts to become the longest-reigning IC champion of all time with one final defense against Chad Gable.
*****
ALL OUT 2023 REVIEW
John Pollock and Wai Ting review AEW All Out 2023 from Chicago, IL featuring Orange Cassidy vs. Jon Moxley AEW International Championship.
*****

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