John Cena Injured Overseas, Who Vince McMahon Wants To Push To The Moon, Title Change Pushed Back, Mysterio Not Ready To Retire, John Cena Takes WWE Midcarder Under His Wing; Strong Backstage Support, MVP Back To WWE?, Details On New TNA Contracts That Pay Main Event Talent Less

WWE News

- Booker T is having a procedure done on his elbow. The new WWE Hall of Famer Tweeted the following from the hospital:

- Jim Ross posted a new blog on his official website Friday afternoon ahead of this week’s Smackdown. Below is an excerpt:

Looking forward to watching Friday Night Smackdown tonight as the Undertaker takes on the Shield’s Dean Ambrose. I don’t expect to see Taker on TV that much at all in the future but what an opportunity for Ambrose and his teammates to shine with a future Hall of Famer.

I was asked recently on Twitter who I thought was one of the most underrated athletes in the WWE locker room I mentioned that an argument could be made for more than one but off the top of my head I’d go with @WWEMcGillicutty. The son of the late Curt Hennig is the complete package and is only getting better. Some of his bouts in NXT have been excellent. I like the kid a great deal and hope that he sticks with the goal of achieving his dream to follow in his dad’s footsteps and to create his own legacy.

Click here to read JR’s latest in its entirety.

- WWE held their annual shareholders meeting at Titan Towers in Stamford, Connecticut on Friday. There weren’t any major developments coming out of it as Vince McMahon answered questions as did WWE CFO George Barrios. McMahon laughed off a question when asked if The Rock was finished wrestling and everyone was confident about the launch of the WWE Network. No major network developments were announced.

- If you missed this week’s episode of Smackdown, you can watch video footage of Undertaker vs. Dean Ambrose at this link.

- Undertaker as “MARK” is featured in a commercial for the SPUR Ride & Rally Raffle. Sales end on Jun 13, 2013. You can watch the commercial on YouTube at this link.

- WWE Champion John Cena suffered a right Achilles tendon injury on the current WWE European tour while working against Ryback. According to dot com, his status for next month’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view is in question.

Dot com teased an update  [on Cena's status] for this week’s Raw and said there are no details on his expected recovery time.

I haven’t heard specially when the injury occurred but Cena teamed with Team Hell No Saturday to face Ryback, Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston at the WWE Raw live event in Lodz, Poland.

Cena is scheduled to defend the WWE title against Ryback at WWE Extreme Rules on Sunday, May 19, 2013.  This is his first title defense on pay-per-view since beating The Rock for the title earlier this month at Wrestlemania 29.

- Jim Ross posted a new blog entry on his official website. Below are the highlights:

@TheRock says that he ‘might’ have wrestled his last match. I say its not the season for ‘mights’ and that a performer/athlete like Dwayne Johnson goes out on his terms and not because of a fixable injury.

I see @RealJackSwagger stepping up his game, especially lately, and @WWEZeb deserves much of the credit. Even a pet coon goofy blind man can see that Swagger is a great athlete but there is more to becoming a star in ring performer than just athleticism of which many of us covet. It’s the intangibles such as in ring psychology that must also be in place. The veteran Zeb looks to be an excellent tutor for the former Sooner wrestling all American.

Click here to read JR’s latest in its entirety.

- We’re gathering information as quickly as possible on John Cena’s right Achilles injury, but it is a legitimate injury and not part of a storyline. The injury occurred prior to Saturday’s WWE Raw live event in Lodz, Poland as he worked on Saturday with his right Achilles wrapped.

Cena was said to be in a lot of pain and didn’t do much work in the match although he did pin Dolph Ziggler to get his team the win.  Below is how one eyewitness put it:

Below are some photos of Cena at the show, notice the higher sock on his right leg which appears to be covering some type of wrapping:

WWE first broke the story here on dot com with a vague update. They didn’t report any timetable for expected recovery but did report Cena’s status for next month’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view was in question.

- John Cena just posted his first Tweet in over a week but didn’t give more details on his right Achilles injury. The WWE Champion Tweeted:

WWE first broke the story here on dot com Sunday morning that Cena suffered a right Achilles injury while working with Ryback on the European tour. They promoted an update for this week’s Raw but were unable to provide a timetable for recovery.

While it still remains unclear when Cena was injured, we’ve learned he was limited on Saturday in Lodz, Poland with wrapping on his right ankle.

- The Rock’s latest film, Pain & Gain, also starring Mark Wahlberg, raked in $20 million at the box office over the weekend, according to studio estimates. Despite getting what the USA Today described as “roughed up” by critics, the film directed by Michael Bay, came within $5 million of its $25 million budget in its opening weekend. Rotten Tomatoes has the film with a 47% on their “tomatometer” but 65% of audience members polled liked it. Click here for their coverage. The film is based on a true story of bodybuilders caught in an extortion ring. Click here for the full chart by BoxOfficeMojo.com.

- Jim Ross updated his blog on Sunday and gave his thoughts on John Cena’s right Achilles injury. Below is an excerpt:

WWE.com reporting that WWE Champion John Cena has sustained an injury while on the European Tour. The report states that Cena has issues with his right, Achilles tendon which can be a dicey matter. Achilles injuries can be puzzling especially if they aren’t torn and don’t require surgery. In other words these types of injuries can linger if one doesn’t get the proper rest and allow the tendon to heal. The injury is legit as Cena has been suffering through this matter for several days even though he hasn’t missed any bookings. Always said the man has the work ethic and toughness of an offensive lineman which is a good thing.

You can read JR’s latest at this link.

I don’t want to get into playing doctor but from what I’ve heard regarding Cena’s injury, it doesn’t sound like a tear. A tear of the Achilles tendon requires almost immediate surgery and 6-9 months of rehabilitation. Kobe Bryant of the Los Angles Lakers recently suffered an Achilles tear and working through it was not an option.

Cena has tried to work through the injury, albeit in pain, and the fact WWE is putting a question mark on his Extreme Rules status (still three weeks away) seems to indicate that time off is going to be warranted.

- The Rock thanked fans for making Pain & Gain #1 in America on Twitter. See also - “Pain & Gain” Starring The Rock Gains Big As No. 1 At Box Office

You can view his comments below:

- John Cena is as busy as ever and seemingly in good spirits following is right Achilles injury. See also - John Cena Says He’s Banged Up But Won’t Miss Raw 

Cena is in New York City on Monday morning before heading to Columbus, Ohio for this week’s WWE Raw. The following is from Cena’s Twitter:

Cena also used his injury to poke fun at those clamoring for him to make a heel turn. The WWE Champion Tweeted:

- The top story coming out of the weekend is WWE announcing that WWE Champion John Cena suffered a right Achilles injury while working against Ryback on the most recent overseas tour. While the initial report didn’t give specifics, Cena’s status for next month’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view was put into question. Cena is currently scheduled to defend the WWE title at the show on May 19, 2013 against Ryback.

It was later learned that Cena was limited on Saturday (his most recent match) with some type of covering on his right leg. Once he returned home to the United States, Cena admitted to being banged up but confirmed he would appear on this week’s Monday Night Raw as scheduled.

Jim Ross wrote the injury is legitimate and something the WWE Champion has been suffering through for several days.

The key promotional point for this week’s Raw has shifted to Cena’s injury although he hasn’t slowed down. John was in New York City Monday morning ahead of the Raw broadcast from Columbus, Ohio.

After further investigation, and the more information we’ve received, we’ve noticed WWE switched the main event of Raw live events overseas. While the initial main event was WWE Champion John Cena defending against Ryback in a Tables Match, he later joined Team Hell No to face Ryback, Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston in a match that headlined shows.

Below is a look at the shows that featured the original Cena vs. Ryback Tables Match for the WWE title:

April 17, 2013 Rotterdam, Netherlands (results)
April 18, 2013 Belfast, Ireland (results)
April 19, 2013 Dublin, Ireland (results)
April 20, 2013 Paris, France (resutls)
April 21, 2013 Geneva, Switzerland
April 23, 2013 Nottingham, England (results)

Cena didn’t wrestle on last week’s Raw (on April 22, 2013) but worked one final Tables match against Ryback before shifting to the new main event beginning with the show in Liege, Belgium (results) on April 24, 2013.

- Stephanie McMahon confirmed on her verified Twitter account that she’s featured in an upcoming interview with RXMuscle.com. Check out the following photo with Steph’s reply:

Prime Time Players at The Ohio State University

Darren Young and Titus O’Neil, known collectively as The Prime Time Players, Touted a video where they were working out at The Ohio State University ahead of this week’s WWE Raw in Columbus. Check out the media in the Tweet embedded below:

- WWE Hall of Famer Edge knows far too well about an Achilles injury as he suffered one that sidelined him for six months. Edge commented on the injury to John Cena by saying Cena is stubborn but he will get through it. The following is from Edge’s verified Twitter account:

- John Cena was in New York City Monday morning (See also - The Rock Comments On Box Office Success, John Cena Busy As Ever) to appear on Today’s Kathie Lee & Hoda to grant eight-year-old Nick Santillo, who was born with just half a heart, his wish of meeting the WWE Champion. Monday is the Make-a-Wish Foundation’s World Wish Day.

- Edge was with Bret Hart at Sunday night’s Edmonton Oil Kings at Calgary Hitmen minor league hockey game. He Tweeted about the experience on his verified Twitter account:

- Monday’s top story in sports is Washington Wizards center Jason Collins telling Sports Illustrated that he’s gay. The Rock weighed in on Collins’ decision to come out on Twitter:

Pro wrestling is not unaffected by homophobia and I hope that people in the business see this step forward and aren’t afraid to follow suit.  It’s time to tear down the lies and end discriminatory behavior for good.

- WWE ring announcer Justin Roberts is currently battling the flu with a fever. We obviously don’t consider this “ground-breaking news” but it does give us the opportunity to tell Justin we hope he feels better.

- Mick Foley delivered an elbow drop on Chris Jericho at the 2013 WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony this year in New York City  because he promised his family he would the year prior. According to Foley at one of his comedy shows in Manchester, England, he told his family in the parking lot at the ceremony last year, if he was inducted this year, he would drop an elbow on Jericho.  Foley held true to his word.

- “Superstar” Billy Graham has been released from the hospital and is headed back to Phoenix, Arizona. Graham posted the following on his Facebook page:

“I want to thank all of mine Facebook fans for their thoughts and prayers for my recovery. I am working my way back to Phoenix where I will immediately report to the Mayo Clinic Hospital for follow up with my liver transplant team. By God’s grace I shall continue to overcome. As always thank you my Facebook fans…no looking back! Superstar”

- Jim Ross has a new blog now online on his official website. In it, JR believes the three-man both of Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler and John Layfield is now a permanent staple on WWE Raw.

Below is an excerpt from JR’s latest:

Looks as if the trio of @MichaelCole @JerryLawler @JCLayfield will be the permanent, Monday Night Raw broadcast team or so it seems. I think that’s a good idea with the flagship broadcast now being three hours long. Guest color commentators also don’t hurt the presentation as it provides talents the opportunity to expose their personalities in a different forum.

Click here to read the blog in its entirety.

The trio, who have been doing pay-per-views together, have been together on Raw in their current form since April 1, 2013.

The Smackdown commentary team is made up of Michael Cole, JBL and Josh Mathews.

While were at it, below are the commentary teams for the other WWE shows:

WWE Main Event:

Michael Cole & JBL (since April 3, 2013)

WWE Saturday Morning Slam:

Josh Mathews & a WWE wrestler (since August 25, 2012)

WWE NXT:

Jim Ross, William Regal, Tony Dawson & Tom Phillips

- There are inaccurate reports making rounds online in regards to the upcoming schedule of CM Punk. As of this writing, Punk, as we reported here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com last week, is advertised by WWE for the following upcoming episodes of Monday Night Raw:

Monday, May 27, 2013
Scotiabank Saddledome
Calgary, AB
Official event information

Monday, June 3, 2013
XL Center
Hartford, CT
Official event information

Punk is advertised for the WWE Live tour of Japan and Taiwan in July. The shows are as follows:

Thursday, July 4, 2013
Ryogoku Kokugikan
Tokyo, Japan
Official event information

Friday, July 5, 2013
Ryogoku Kokugikan
Tokyo, Japan
Official event information

Saturday, July 6, 2013
Linco Stadium
Taipei, Taiwan
Official event information

The former 434-day WWE Champion is then advertised for the following shows in Australia:

Friday, July 26, 2013
Rod Laver Arena
Melbourne, Australia
Official event information

Saturday, July 27, 2013
Allphones Arena
Sydney, Australia
Official event information

Sunday, July 28, 2013
Brisbane Entertainment Centre
Brisbane, Australia
Official event information

Monday, July 29, 2013 (live event, not Raw)
Adelaide Entertainment Centre
Adelaide, Australia
Official event information

Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Perth Arena
Perth, Australia
Official event information

Punk is not listed for any WWE pay-per-views through SummerSlam. While it’s worth noting the official WWE events page isn’t always accurate, the company usually keeps it updated.  CM Punk was advertised for this week’s WWE Raw at one point.

- WWE has a new teaser video for the upcoming “Total Divas” reality series set to air on E! this summer. You can watch the video here on dot com.

- WWE has announced an upcoming live event from the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City, Maryland on July 6th, 2013. Tickets go on sale on May 10, 2013. (Thanks to Devin Cutting)

- WWE Hall of Famer Edge is set to receive the prestigious Lou Thesz World Heavyweight Championship Award. Click here for more information.

- The official WWE website has announced that, despite his injury, John Cena will still compete tonight, teaming with Ryback against The Shield.

- Last week’s episode of WWE Smackdown did an average viewership of 2,751,000 viewers on SyFy. The show ended up with a 1.96 cable rating. Smackdown, which was taped from London, England, featured Undertaker vs. Dean Ambrose.

- WWE is teaming up with Yahoo to offer a 30-minute pre-show for Monday Night Raw.

According to a report by Variety, Yahoo will have exclusive access to WWE’s archives of historical full matches, shows, highlights and other events.  Their Internet portal will air live pre-show content for every pay-per-view event.  Additionally,  short clips from WWE TV will be available on Yahoo. Yahoo is being touted as the “premiere global video distribution partner” for WWE. The new WWE hub is set to launch this summer.  WWE has yet to issue a press release, we’ll bring it to you when they make an announcement.

- The announced attendance for this week’s WWE Raw was 14,282. The show was a legitimate sellout from the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio.

- Footage of Daniel Bryan and John Cena celebrating Kane’s birthday at the April 26th WWE Raw live event in Moscow, Russia has surfaced on YouTube at this link.

- It was announced on this week’s WWE Raw that Kofi Kingston’s child was recently born. No other details were made available but congratulations are in order.

- Ricardo Rodriguez defeated Zeb Colter & Big E Langston in a Triple Threat match on this week’s WWE Raw, allowing Alberto Del Rio to choose the stipulation for the World Heavyweight Championship match at WWE Extreme Rules. Del Rio went on to choose a ladder match as the match’s stipulation.

- Dolph Ziggler will defend the World Heavyweight Championship in a Triple Threat Ladder Match against Alberto Del Rio and Jack Swagger at Extreme Rules in three weeks. Del Rio “picked the stipulation” after Ricardo Rodriguez won a triple threat match on this week’s WWE Raw also involving Big E Langston and Zeb Colter. WWE Extreme Rules 2013 will take place Sunday, May 19, 2013 from the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri. We’ll have exclusive live play-by-play coverage here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com. Click here for full WWE Raw results.

- Wrestling News World reader Justin O’Riley sent word that WWE will tape Smackdown from the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio on Tuesday, October 8, 2013. The presale password to obtain tickets is SMACKDOWNTV.

- Stephanie McMahon and Big Show represented WWE at the Yahoo! Digital Content NewFront event in New York City on Monday. Stephanie posted the following photo on Twitter:

- Speaking of WWE and Yahoo!, dot com posted a new article with more on their deal that will make Yahoo their video distribution partner. Below is an excerpt:

* Monday Night Raw pre-show: A 30-minute, pre-show to each new Monday Night Raw will be exclusive to Yahoo!.
* Original programming: Two, weekly series of 50 episodes per year will be produced exclusively for distribution on Yahoo!.
* Premium archive: Yahoo! will have exclusive access to WWE archives of historical full matches, shows, highlights and other events.
* Additional live events: Yahoo! will air live, pre-show content for every pay-per-view event.
* Clips from current TV programming: Clips from all WWE television programs will now be available on Yahoo!.

Click here for coverage by dot com.

- Rey Mysterio and Sgt. Slaughter are representing WWE at Tuesday’s Hulu Upfront event. You can view a photo of them together below:

Backstage news from this week’s WWE Raw…

- We’re told Vince McMahon remains high up on Big E Langston and it’s been Triple H that has recommended they take things slow, letting him work off Dolph Ziggler for as long as possible.

- The matches on this week’s WWE Raw were longer than normal because of the lack of workers and “promo guys.” This is also one of the reasons why they had the tug-of-war, dance off and match involving Zeb Colter and Ricardo Rodriguez. In other words, it was filler content with nothing more than throwaway value.

-When the original plans for Ryback & John Cena vs. The Shield were blown up, there was talk about having Team Hell No drop the WWE Tag Team Championship to The Shield. While this obviously didn’t happen, it’s still expected in future plans.

-This week’s Smackdown in Detroit, Michigan has huge implications for the city. We’re told WWE will be evaluating every aspect of the show, including how it draws to give them an idea about holding major pay-per-views there. We know the city is in the running for Wrestlemania 33 and there has been talk about other “big four” pay-per-view events as well. However, there are concerns with this week’s taping going up against a sold out Detroit Tigers home game (featuring star pitcher Justin Verlander and the Red Wings playing a 2013 NHL Playoff game in Anaheim. As if that’s not enough competition, we’re told there is a sold out concert at a downtown venue.

- The Miz has been off WWE TV filming the new ABC Family movie “Christmas Bounty” in Vancouver, British Columbia, as we reported earlier this month here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com. The former WWE Champion is officially advertised for next week’s WWE Raw in Roanoke, Virginia. Click here for official show information.

- This week’s episode of “Backstage Fallout” Raw is now online at this link.

- As noted earlier here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com, Rey Mysterio did ambassador work for WWE at Hulu Upfront on Tuesday. The former WWE Champion is currently out with a left knee injury after dealing with undisclosed personal issues.

Mysterio has racked up the injuries over the past couple years, suffering a badly torn ACL in 2011 that kept him off television for nearly a year. Once he did return, after his second Wellness policy suspension, he suffered a concussion at SummerSlam 2012.

In March, Mysterio was examined by Dr. James Andrews in fear that he suffered yet another ACL tear. It turns out his knee didn’t require surgery and he’s been trying to rehab the injury wearing a Dynamic Knee Splint.  WWE had their doctors examine him backstage at WWE Raw earlier this month and Mysterio is hoping to return to the ring some time this summer.

However, we’re told Mysterio is one of four names that has been specifically mentioned as to being on the endangered species list in WWE. We have more details available at this link.

- John Cena’s injury is legitimate despite the company intertwining it with storylines on this week’s WWE Raw. The injury is nothing severe, such as an Achilles tear, and the latest word is that he will defend the WWE Championship against Ryback at Extreme Rules next month. I would expect him to continue to be limited in matches as the company will not want to jeopardize losing him for an extended period of time.

- Zeb Colter claimed on his official Twitter account that he worked this week’s WWE Raw while under the weather.

While Colter used his Tweets to further his antagonistic character, it is worth noting that Justin Roberts documented his own bout with the flu and fever at the end of the 2013 overseas tour.

Zeb’s old school mentality of working all the time is great to see. He’s certainly one of the company’s top mouth pieces right now.

- This week’s episode of WWE Monday Night Raw did an average viewing audience of 4,285,000 viewers on the USA Network. Below is the by hour breakdown:

Hour one – 4,287,000 viewers
Hour two – 4,311,000 viewers
Hour three – 4,257,000 viewers

The show ended up doing a 3.1 cable rating.

- WWE put together a video package from the company’s announcement at the Yahoo! Digital Content NewFront event in New York City on Monday and posted it on YouTube. You can watch it at this link. Under the agreement, Yahoo becomes the new “premiere global video distribution partner” for WWE (See also - Steph McMahon & Big Show Represent WWE, More On Deal With Yahoo). The biggest part of the partnership is a 30-minute pre-show to Monday Night Raw that will air on the platform each week. Additionally, WWE will provide Yahoo with original programming, a premium archive, additional live events and clips from current TV programming. The partnership is set to launch this summer.

- During Tuesday’s Smackdown tapings in Detroit, it was announced that the pre-sale password for this year’s WWE Night of Champions pay-per-view, which will take place on September 15 at Joe Louis Arena, is CHAMPION.

- Prior to the tapings, Bo Dallas defeated Curt Hawkins in a dark match. Randy Orton & Sheamus defeated Mark Henry & The Big Show in the dark match main event.

- TMZ has more photos of Stephanie McMahon looking ripped from RSMuscle.com. You can view them at this link.

- Wrestling News World reader Dustyn sent word that WWE Monday Night Raw will air live in Canada beginning next Monday, May 6, 2013 on The Score. The show has been airing on 15-minute tape delay in the country.

- Perry Saturn was at WWE NXT last week working with developmental talent in Tampa, Florida. Bill DeMott thanked him on Twitter:

CM Punk at Blackhawks Game

CM Punk was in attendance at Tuesday night’s Minnesota Wild at Chicago Blackhawks NHL playoff game. He Tweeted this photo:

- The official promotional poster for the first WWE Payback is now online at this link.

- Paul Bearer is already considered to be a lock for the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame, according to numerous online reports. The inductor seems obvious in The Undertaker although nothing has been confirmed.

Paul’s son, Daniel Moody, remembered his father on Facebook:

Sitting here thinking….. Sunday will be two months, Dad has been gone. Seems like yesterday. My dad was my best friend. It sucks he went so soon. We love and miss you so f*cking much! — with Michael Moody.

Paul addressed a possible WWE Hall of Fame induction with Chris Yanek in an interview in January. He said all he needed to know was an induction was coming – whether to was next year or the next five years.

Bearer, one of the best pro wrestling managers of all-time, tragically died on Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at the young age of 58.

- WWE filed the word mark “Crush Couture” with the United States Patent and Trademark Office on April 20, 2013 for merchandising purposes.

- The latest episode of WWE Inbox is now online. In it, WWE Superstars and Divas answer your questions, including who they would pick as their manager. You can watch it at this link.

- Below is the updated lineup for WWE Extreme Rules 2013:

WWE Championship Match
- John Cena © vs. Ryback

Triple Threat Ladder Match for the World Heavyweight Championship
- Dolph Ziggler © w/AJ Lee & Big E Langston vs. Alberto Del Rio w/Ricardo Rodriguez vs. Jack Swagger w/Zeb Colter

Steel Cage Match
- Brock Lesnar w/Paul Heyman vs. Triple H

I held off on posting this due to the uncertainly of John Cena, however, as we reported here, Cena is likely still on for the title defense. The initial fear was Cena’s injury was more severe than it actually was.

- WWE is altering the way they promote their live events.

In addition to now acknowledging WWE NXT (developmental) live events on their official Live Events page, the company is eliminating separate Raw and Smackdown shows in favor of the broader WWE Live Tour label.

This is something that has been in the works since a fan survey was issued in January (See also - WWE Eliminating Final Element Of Brand Extension?) and was confirmed last month (See also - Final Element Of WWE Brand Extension To End On May 31st).

The change goes into effect with the May 31st WWE Live event in Glens Falls, New York. However, WWE is promoting a “Raw World Tour” for Australia in July. It’s unknown as of this writing if this will change as it’s the final “separate” slate of live events listed.

Once these changes do go into effect, the brand extension will officially be over. The company has promoted shows under the brand extension concept since 2002.

- Dave Batista recently addressed his status on Twitter.

This goes along with everything we’ve reported, that Dave was open to a WWE return although we can confirm he spoke with Triple H about a deal while in Florida at the WWE NXT tapings in March.

Great Seats for WWE Raw Still Available

WWE sent out an email blast on Wednesday pushing tickets for next week’s WWE Raw in Roanoke, Virginia. The company noted it was Monday Night Raw’s return to Roanoke in 16 years and great seats are still available. Click here to purchase tickets now.

- Summer Rae, who is now working regularly as Fandango’s dancer, is featured by Sports Illustrated as their “Lovely Lady of the Day.” You can check it out at this link.

- WWE issued their 2013 first quarter results on Thursday morning (See also - Full WWE 2013 First Quarter Results – Vince McMahon Comments). In them, the official buyrate numbers for all of the pay-per-views in the quarter were reported. They were as follows:

Royal Rumble – 512,000 buys (compared to 443,000 in 2012)
Elimination Chamber – 213,000 buys (compared to 178,000 in 2012)

Both of the above shows were headlined by The Rock vs. CM Punk for the WWE Championship.  Punk was the incumbent at Rumble and the challenger at Elimination Chamber.

- For those that missed the airing of this week’s WWE Main Event, another injury update on John Cena was teased for next week’s Monday Night Raw from the Roanoke Civic Center in Roanoke, Virginia. Cena is advertised to appear live and is expected to work Extreme Rules later this month. His injury to his right Achilles was not as serious as first thought.

- John Cena will appear Thursday night at the WWE NXT tapings from the campus of Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida. Cena promised an “ass-whipping” for the NXT Superstars at this link.

- Kofi Kingston’s defense of the WWE United States Championship against Antonio Cesaro on this week’s episode of WWE Main Event is being raved about. You can watch highlights of the match at this link.

- RXMuscle.com has published their feature on Stephanie McMahon and her fitness. The article is very interesting, detailing her diet and workouts. The article makes note of Joe DeFranco training her twice a week at her house.

“I’ve done all kinds of training in my life. I started working out when I was 12 years old learning from my dad and brother. I’ve done the typical bodybuilding split with Chest/Shoulders/Triceps on day 1, Back and Biceps on Day 2, and Legs on Day 3. But I was just doing too much and found myself overtraining. I’ve been working with Joe for about 18 months. He comes out to the house and puts me through a fast paced functional workout. He likes to have me train in positions with different kinds of weight loads that keep me off balance, forcing me to really use my core.” McMahon said.

Click here to read the feature in its entirety.

- WWE held a conference call with investors to discuss their 2013 First Quarter Earnings on Thursday morning. Michael Weitz opened the call by reading a prepared statement. He handed over the call to Vince McMahon.

Vince said they had mixed results this quarter and went over the results. Rather than recapping the numbers, everything is available in the release and I’ve found it’s much clearer to check them out for yourself.

Vince put over the fact TV ratings are up for both Raw and Smackdown. He said while not in this quarter, Wrestlemania 29 was very successful and they will reap the rewards for months and years to come. He put over new deals with Yahoo and pay-per-view on Xbox. He shifted to WWE Studios where he mentioned “Dead Man Down” and the success of “The Call.” He said Facebook and Twitter followers are up 73%.

McMahon put over seven new names appearing on Wrestlemania in attempt build new stars to add to their roster. He said they’re making progress with the WWE Network and put over the new WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida. Vince handed the call over to Chief Financial Officer George Barrios.

Barrios went through the numbers like only he can.

Live events in Turkey and Qatar drew poorly, bringing down the first quarter international live attendance and sales. Shows in The U.A.E. did much better.

It was noted that WWE lost money this quarter from the WWE Studios production “Dead Man Down,” which received a 4.7 million impairment. The total loss for the studios division was $5 million but this was expected as they were changing the model. “Dead Man Down” did not perform as strong as they had hoped. “The Call” did well and WWE will profit $6 million from it, however, they have not yet received those earnings as their model benefits from profit-sharing that will come in at a later date.

Higher PPV revenue was “more than offset” due to increased production costs, including guest talent, which is detailed on page eight of the presentation.

The call went to a question and answer session.

A caller was concerned about international decline and Barrios told them not to focus too much on Turkey and Qatar.  While the shows did do less than expected, they understand the international concern.  Barrios pointed to new staff additions and the restructuring of the company’s efforts overseas with new partners. They will not be backing off international tours while they restructure as international tours are always profitable.  Barrios mentioned WWE is returning to The U.A.E. in the third quarter.

George Barrios reiterated what was said in February to a caller they are going to get out of prognosticating a timeline for the WWE Network. He said by the end of 2015, the Network could be a major driver for the company.

Barrios refused to comment on the “commercial terms” of the deal with Yahoo. It won’t be reflected until the third quarter.

Vince McMahon said the new “Total Divas” show on E! is directed to the company’s female demographic. He said it was easy for them to distribute their content on a network geared towards women. Vince put over the company’s flexibility with their content while broadening their footprint back to the WWE Network.

Barrios said “WWE Legend’s House” is still part of their WWE Network programming grid. There are not plans as of right now to distribute it elsewhere.

Michael Weitz closed the call as there were no further questions.

- We noted here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com Premium earlier in the week that Vince McMahon is very high up on Big E Langston and Triple H has reminded him to take things slow with him. Another source, speaking with me under the condition of anonymity, says that Vince is not the only strong supporter Langston has in the locker room.

We’re told John Cena has been looking out for Langston since he got called up to the main roster and has been grooming him “every step of the way.” The two of them train together on the road and our source says Cena has made it a bit of a personal project to make sure Big E is a “future headliner.”

With The Rock and CM Punk not around, Cena has more stroke than ever before and is once against “the apple of Vince’s eye.” With Cena feeling “neglected” over the last year or so, we’re told the company has been doing everything possible the last couple of weeks to keep him happy.

Between Vince and Cena, Big E Langston has more support than any new guy on the roster.

- Mike Jones (who?) interviewed Cody Rhodes on DC101 in Washington, D.C. on Thursday to promote Sunday’s WWE Smackdown live event from the Show Place Arena in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. In the interview, Rhodes discussed his match on Raw against Randy Orton, plans for next year leading up to Wrestlemania XXX and why he has to keep his mustache now. You can listen to the interview at this link.

- While wishing The Rock a happy birthday on Twitter, Vince McMahon said The People’s Champ went out at Wrestlemania a hero. The following is from McMahon’s Twitter:

- WWE is running a Raw live event this Sunday from the Charleston Civic Center in Charleston, West Virginia. Since the show is in my home state, I just received a local promotional email for it. The company is advertising WWE Champion John Cena & Sheamus vs. Mark Henry & Ryback as the main event. Tickets are still available at this link.

- WWE added MVP’s profile to the Alumni section here on dot com.

- CFO$’s single, “Charm & Beauty,” is the soundtrack for the new reality show featuring the WWE Divas called “Total Divas.” You can watch a teaser video with the music at this link. Total Divas is set to premiere this summer on E!

- HBO ordered the pilot for a new half-hour dramedy starring The Rock. Rock is also executive producing the project with Mark Wahlberg and Steve Levinson. Peter Berg will be directing and will executive produce with Rock’s manager, Dany Garcia. The project chronicles the lives of athletes living in Miami – some retired and some still active. Filming is believed to begin this fall. Deadline.com has the story at this link.

- As reported earlier here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com, MVP is now featured in the Alumni section of the official WWE website. This has once again sparked rumors that the former WWE United States Champion is heading back to the company. MVP Tweeted:

The rumors are nothing new as MVP attended the 2013 WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony and wouldn’t rule out WWE or TNA when he left New Japan Pro Wrestling.

We posted details here on WNW Premium about the precedent Triple H is trying to set with former talent trying to return to the company. Check out that article for more details.

- Alicia Fox was featured on a new episode of WWE Hangout on Thursday. You can watch it at this link.

- John Cena and Damien Sandow capped Thursday night’s WWE NXT tapings in Winter Park, Florida with “The Damien Sandow Show.” Below is a recap from our taping results:

Damien Sandow came out and said he would like to present the next step to cleasing the unwashed masses: The Damien Sandow Show! The cage lowering music plays and a table is lowered and a chair is placed for Sandow along with a red phone on the table. He said his first guest is the WWE Champion: John Cena. Sandow asked how he will deal with Ryback at Extreme Rules. The phone on the table rings. Sadie tells it says silence. It rings again. Cena answers. Sandow takes it and tells it silence. He throws it out of the ring again. Crowd chants “it’s your mom”. Sandow asks the crowd to not disgrace mother Sandow. He tells Cena he gets to hear him perform. Cena says that phone call was very important and that it was his cable company calling about his after hours PPVs. Sandow says it was documentary ppvs. It rings again and Cena made some comments until Sandow made him hang up.

You can view a photo below:

Jim Ross, who was at the taping, weighed in with his thoughts on the segment:

The next NXT taping is May 23, 2013. We’ll have full coverage here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.

- Triple H presented Full Sail University student Allison Iliev with a $10,000 scholarship from WWE prior to this week’s NXT tapings. WWE posted a video of the ceremony at this link and there is a photo on Full Sail’s Instagram page.

- This week’s episode of The JBL & Cole Show, episode 23, is now online at this link.

- Brian Soscia interviewed World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler to promote Saturday’s WWE Smackdown live event in Reading, PA. Ziggler put over Big E Langston and AJ Lee and they talked about Balls Mahoney being banned from amateur wrestling. Ziggler talked about the reaction backstage after he won the World Heavyweight Championship in East Rutherford, New Jersey. He said everyone was very receptive, looking at it if he can break through, they can too. Ziggler didn’t get to celebrate the title win as he had to drive straight to Boston. He also said he didn’t sleep with the title belt. Ziggler said he comes out with the World title belt on backwards because he wants to stand out and be different. You can listen to the interview in its entirety at this link.

- WWE is close to purchasing a new corporate jet (a 2006 Bombardier Bombardier Global 5000). We reported back in February the company was looking to replace their nearly 20-year-old aircraft (a 1998 Canadair Challenger). According to their 10-Q quarterly report filed Friday, WWE entered into a purchasing agreement for the new airplane valued at $27.5 million on April 30, 2013. If the deal closes, the final cost will go to $31-32 to cover additional improvements and taxes.

Download Our Free App

Download our FREE App! Dirt Sheet for iPhone, Android and iPad.

Connect With WNW

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn!