NBA Owners' net worth (Dan Gilbert's net worth rose from $7.5 billion to $45.3 billion this year)
...After his company went public. I had to include that in the title. Maybe now he won't be such a cheap bastard with his GMs. I had no idea Gilbert was now the second richest owner in the league. Which made me wonder what other owners are worth (the title of this post was almost "why is Tilman Fertitta such a cheap bastard while Joe Lacob spends money like he thinks the shit's gonna rot?"). Which brings us to this handy Forbes list from March: 1. Steve Ballmer (Los Angeles Clippers): $51.4 billion Ballmer scored a huge win this week for his dream of building a new arena. He bought the Forum for $400 million from the Madison Square Garden Company, which tried to block a new Clippers arena near the Forum in Inglewood, California. 2. Philip Anschutz (Los Angeles Lakers): $11.2 billion Anschutz owns one-third of the Lakers, plus the arena in which they play, the Staples Center, in addition to the NHL’s Kings. \For those wondering, it's hard to find a reliable source on Jeanie's net worth but according to unreliable sources it's in the ballpark of $500 million* 3.Stanley Kroenke (Denver Nuggets): $10 billion The real estate and sports mogul owns teams in the NBA, the NHL, the NFL, MLS and the Premier League. 4.Joseph Tsai (Brooklyn Nets): $9.9 billion The cofounder of Alibaba Group completed his purchase of the Nets last year for $2.3 billion and bought the Barclays Center for an additional $1 billion. 5. Robert Pera (Memphis Grizzlies): $7.1 billion Pera owns nearly three-quarters of wireless equipment maker Ubiquiti Networks. He was the lead investor in the Grizzlies purchase in 2012. 6. Daniel Gilbert (Cleveland Cavaliers): $6.2 billion Gilbert made his first fortune from Quicken Loans, the largest online mortgage lender, which he cofounded in 1985 at 22 years old.*List is from March, before the IPO 7. Tom Gores (Detroit Pistons): $5.7 billion Gores and his brother Alec are both private equity billionaires. The Pistons opened a new $90 million headquarters and training facility in September. 8. Micky Arison (Miami Heat): $5.3 billion Arison’s net worth plummeted 33% over the past six weeks with the collapse in the stock price of Carnival Corp. The world’s largest cruise ship operator was founded by Arison’s father in 1972. 9. Tilman Fertitta (Houston Rockets): $4.4 billion Fertitta furloughed roughly 40,000 employees at his casino and restaurant empire to curb the economic impact caused by coronavirus-induced shutdowns. His fortune is derived from his ownership of the Golden Nugget Casinos and Landry’s, a Texas-based restaurant and entertainment company. 10. Mark Cuban (Dallas Mavericks): $4.3 billion Cuban was one of the first sports team owners to commit to paying hourly arena workers for games missed during the coronavirus crisis. He’s invested more than $20 million as a “shark” on ABC’s popular Shark Tank show. 11. Joshua Harris (Philadelphia 76ers): $3.7 billion Harris cofounded private equity powerhouse Apollo Global Management in 1990 with fellow billionaires Leon Black and Marc Rowan. He remains a managing director there. 12. Gayle Benson (New Orleans Pelicans): $3.2 billion Benson inherited the Pelicans and the NFL’s Saints when her husband, Tom, died in 2018. 13. Glen Taylor (Minnesota Timberwolves): $2.8 billion His printing firm, Taylor Corp., generates more than $2 billion in revenue annually. Taylor also owns stakes in Minnesota’s MLS and WNBA teams. 14. Herb Simon (Indiana Pacers): $2.6 billion The real estate mogul bought the Pacers with his since-deceased brother, Melvin, in 1983, for $10.5 million. Simon Property Group is one of the world’s largest real estate investment trusts, with 206 properties in the U.S. 15.Antony Ressler (Atlanta Hawks): $2.4 billion Ressler cofounded private equity firm Ares Management in 1997. He owns a small piece of the Milwaukee Brewers, in addition to his controlling stake in the Hawks. 16. Michael Jordan (Charlotte Hornets): $2.1 billion The NBA’s GOAT sold a minority stake in the Hornets in September in a deal that valued the team at $1.5 billion. Nike pays Jordan more than $100 million annuallybased on growing sales for the company’s Jordan Brand. 17. Marc Lasry (Milwaukee Bucks): $1.8 billion Lasry, a hedge fund titan, joined Wes Edens to buy the Bucks in 2014 for $550 million. He was born in Morocco and moved to the U.S. at age 7 with his family. 18. Gail Miller (Utah Jazz): $1.7 billion Miller transferred ownership of the Jazz in 2017 to a family legacy trust to deter her heirs from selling or moving the team. Gail and her since-deceased husband, Larry, bought the team for $22 million in 1986. 19. Jerry Reinsdorf (Chicago Bulls): $1.5 billion Reinsdorf led a group of investors who bought a controlling stake in the Bulls for $9.2 million in 1985. Good timing. It was one year after the team drafted Michael Jordan, who led the Bulls to six NBA titles. The team is now worth $3.2 billion. 20. Theodore Leonsis (Washington Wizards): $1.4 billion Leonsis initially built his fortune as a senior executive at AOL, before investing in sports teams like the Wizards and the NHL’s Capitals. *Not included on the list but googled for your edification: DeVos Family (Magic): $5.4 billion James Dolan (Knicks): $2 billion Joe Lacob (Warriors): $1.2 billion Vivek Randive (Kings): $700 million Robert Sarver (Suns): $400 million Jody Allen (Trail Blazers): The sister of Microsoft cofounder, Paul G. Allen, took control of the team after his death. At the time her brother was worth $20 billion though he intended to give most of his fortune away... Boston Basketball Partners LLC (Celtics): An American local private investment group formed to purchase the Boston Celtics Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (Raptors): The Raptors are a subsidiary of MLSE The Professional Basketball Club, LLC (Thunder): A group of OKC businessmen "who represent a wide variety of local and national business interests" owns the Thunder Spurs Sports & Entertainment LLC (Spurs): An American sports & entertainment organization, based in San Antonio, Texas owns the San Antonio Spurs
Hi everyone! I am working non-stop provide the best research and analysis regarding DraftKings (NASDAQ: DKNG). I originally posted my overall investment thesis on the company a few weeks back and now I am breaking down and analyzing the latest news and developments regarding DKNG! And no, it is not the ticker symbol for Donkey Kong. DraftKings in my opinion, is the best pure play investment if you want some exposure to the sports betting, iGaming, and daily fantasy sports space. They're founder led (3 founders to be exact) and they're invested into the company themselves right alongside all of us shareholders or potential shareholders. Within the last week, there has been some exciting developments regarding DraftKings. I will share them below: DK Gift Cards Are Live! You can buy a DK gift card as a stocking stuffer for Christmas if you want. I’m really excited to hear this news. It’s only going to increase the brand awareness of DK and that’s what we want. According to the press release on DK’s investor relations website, they’ve partnered with InComm Payments to facilitate the launching of the gift cards. InComm payments is a global leading payments technology company that has a network of retailers that DK will be able to leverage through this partnership. Convenience stores like 7-Eleven, Speedway and Dollar General are just some of the many convenience stores in Incomm Payments’ network that DK will be able to leverage. For now, the gift cards will be offered in $50 and $25 denominations. The great thing about this to me is that they’ve beat their competitors to this. That shows managements initiative and ability to get things done which I complimented when I first picked this company. As of right now, you’re not going to be seeing any “FanDuel” (boo FanDuel *thumbs down emoji*) gift cards in the stores. Tim Richardson, the Senior Vice President at InComm Payments was quoted as saying “DraftKings will benefit from having its brand present in tens of thousands of Incomm Payments’ retail partner locations across the US”. Overall, good news for DK. New York State – Getting desperate? Do they need some online sports gambling revenue? I want to make this clear before I write about this topic – sports betting is already legal in New York state. The problem is, it’s only legal in brick and mortar (retail) locations. Just under a dozen upstate casinos can operate brick and mortar sports books at the moment. In typical DK fashion, they’re already active in a casino in New York State. DK offers in person brick and mortar sports betting through the Del Lago Resort Casino in Waterloo, NY. My news update I’m sharing is that it appears New York state might be considering expanding to online sports betting too due to a budget shortfall they’re experiencing (they need more tax revenue). This news came out on Wednesday, 12/16/20 during the day time. Governor Cuomo had a press conference during the day. The press conference was primarily focused on giving an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in New York state. During the presser, the topic of New York state’s budget shortfalls came up. As a possible financial solution, Cuomo said “Are there other ways to get revenue? How about marijuana? How about sports betting?” He’s referring to the possible tax revenue that could be collected if sports betting offerings were expanded beyond just the brick and mortar offerings. What if every New Yorker could place a sports wager from the comfort of their own home on their cell phone? The battle for legalizing online sports gambling in New York has been going on for years. Governor Cuomo has always been opposed to it. One of the reasons Gov. Cuomo has cited in the past is that he thinks a constitutional amendment would need to be made to New York state law to allow for mobile sports betting in the state. However, one state representative from New York that has been pushing hard for online sports gambling begs to differ. In response to Cuomo’s comments in the presser earlier that day, State Senator Joseph Addabbo said that there would be no constitutional problem with mobile sports betting because the servers could be placed on site of grandfathered in physical casinos. Addabo said that New York state’s need for revenue is “real and immediate” This is a situation to keep a close eye on. The impacts of legalizing mobile sports betting in NY would be substantial for DK as it would open the population of 20 million people in NY state the opportunity to place wagers on the DK Sportsbook app through the comfort of their home. I imagine it wouldn’t be too difficult for DK to mobilize once they get the green light for mobile betting as they already have the standing relationship with Del Lago Resort Casino for in person betting. The Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) granted DK a provisional license to conduct online gaming and sports betting in the state of Michigan For this update I also want to be clear – retail (brick and mortar) and mobile sports betting are already legal in the state of Michigan. It’s just that there’s a lot of yellow tape for Sportsbooks like DK to navigate within a state even after sports betting has become legalized. This provisional license provided by the MGCB was provided to DK and 14 other sportsbooks (including rival FanDuel) on Thursday, December 10th last week. Now there are just a few more regulatory requirements that DK has to meet in the state of Michigan before they can go live. According to http://www.michigan.gov, “Before launch happens, the platform providers must complete additional regulatory requirements including independent testing of platforms and games and MGCB approval of their internal controls, which ensure gaming integrity. The firms also must secure occupational licenses for certain employees.” You can read the full article on Michigan’s government website here. Knowing that DK has a knack for being quick to mobilize once they’re given opportunities in respective states, I fully expect them to pass these last few tests with flying colors. The DK Sportsbook app has already been available in the state of Michigan for “free to enter” games. Once they pass the last few requirements, actual wagers will be allowed to be placed. And money will be allowed to be made! Another promising sign coming out of the state of Michigan, is that on November 30th, 2020, DK became an official sports betting partner of the Detroit Pistons, the NBA basketball team in Michigan. DK Chief Business Officer, Ezra Kucharz, was on the record after the deal closed saying “As our first professional team activation in the state of Michigan, we are thrilled to join forces with the Detroit Pistons ahead of our pending market introduction”. In my opinion, I anticipate we’ll be seeing DK online sports betting in Michigan some time in early 2021. This concludes my update and analysis on DraftKings. TL:DR
Draftkings now offers gift cards and you can buy them in convenience stores (first sports betting company to do so)
DraftKings received a provisional license to conduct sports gambling in Michigan
Governor Cuomo of NY said he would consider legalizing "mobile sports betting" to raise additional tax revenue
If you would like to read my original deep dive and analysis on DKNG, you can check it out here:
The next Detroit: The catastrophic collapse of Atlantic City
With the closure of almost half of Atlantic City's casinos, Newark set to vote on gambling and casinos or racinos in almost every state, it seems as if the reasons for the very existence of Atlantic City are in serious jeopardy. Israel Joffe Atlantic City, once a major vacation spot during the roaring 20s and 1930s, as seen on HBOs Boardwalk Empire, collapsed when cheap air fare became the norm and people had no reason to head to the many beach town resorts on the East Coast. Within a few decades, the city, known for being an ‘oasis of sin’ during the prohibition era, fell into serious decline and dilapidation. New Jersey officials felt the only way to bring Atlantic City back from the brink of disaster would be to legalize gambling. Atlantic City’s first casino, Resorts, first opened its doors in 1978. People stood shoulder to shoulder, packed into the hotel as gambling officially made its way to the East Coast. Folks in the East Coast didn't have to make a special trip all the way to Vegas in order to enjoy some craps, slots, roulette and more. As time wore on, Atlantic City became the premier gambling spots in the country. While detractors felt that the area still remained poor and dilapidated, officials were quick to point out that the casinos didn't bring the mass gentrification to Atlantic City as much as they hoped but the billions of dollars in revenue and thousands of jobs for the surrounding communities was well worth it. Atlantic City developed a reputation as more of a short-stay ‘day-cation’ type of place, yet managed to stand firm against the 'adult playground' and 'entertainment capital of the world' Las Vegas. Through-out the 1980s, Atlantic City would become an integral part of American pop culture as a place for east coast residents to gamble, watch boxing, wrestling, concerts and other sporting events. However in the late 1980s, a landmark ruling considered Native-American reservations to be sovereign entities not bound by state law. It was the first potential threat to the iron grip Atlantic City and Vegas had on the gambling and entertainment industry. Huge 'mega casinos' were built on reservations that rivaled Atlantic City and Vegas. In turn, Vegas built even more impressive casinos. Atlantic City, in an attempt to make the city more appealing to the ‘big whale’ millionaire and billionaire gamblers, and in effort to move away from its ‘seedy’ reputation, built the luxurious Borgata casino in 2003. Harrah’s created a billion dollar extension and other casinos in the area went through serious renovations and re-branded themselves. It seemed as if the bite that the Native American casinos took out of AC and Vegas’ profits was negligible and that the dominance of those two cities in the world of gambling would remain unchallenged. Then Macau, formally a colony of Portugal, was handed back to the Chinese in 1999. The gambling industry there had been operated under a government-issued monopoly license by Stanley Ho's Sociedade de Turismo e Diversões de Macau. The monopoly was ended in 2002 and several casino owners from Las Vegas attempted to enter the market. Under the one country, two systems policy, the territory remained virtually unchanged aside from mega casinos popping up everywhere. All the rich ‘whales’ from the far east had no reason anymore to go to the United States to spend their money. Then came the biggest threat. As revenue from dog and horse racing tracks around the United States dried up, government officials needed a way to bring back jobs and revitalize the surrounding communities. Slot machines in race tracks started in Iowa in 1994 but took off in 2004 when Pennsylvania introduced ‘Racinos’ in an effort to reduce property taxes for the state and to help depressed areas bounce back. As of 2013, racinos were legal in ten states: Delaware, Louisiana, Maine, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia with more expected in 2015. Tracks like Delaware Park and West Virginia's Mountaineer Park, once considered places where local degenerates bet on broken-down nags in claiming races, are now among the wealthiest tracks around, with the best races. The famous Aqueduct race track in Queens, NY, once facing an uncertain future, now possesses the most profitable casino in the United States. From June 2012 to June 2013, Aqueduct matched a quarter of Atlantic City's total gaming revenue from its dozen casinos: $729.2 million compared with A.C.'s $2.9 billion. It has taken an estimated 15 percent hit on New Jersey casino revenue and climbing. And it isn't just Aqueduct that's taking business away from them. Atlantic City's closest major city, Philadelphia, only 35-40 minutes away, and one of the largest cities in America, now has a casino that has contributed heavily to the decline in gamers visiting the area. New Jersey is the third state in the U.S. to have authorized internet gambling. However, these online casinos are owned and controlled by Atlantic City casinos in an effort to boost profits in the face of fierce competition. California, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Pennsylvania and Texas are hoping to join Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey and the U.S. Virgin Islands in offering online gambling to their residents. With this in mind, it seems the very niche that Atlantic City once offered as a gambling and entertainment hub for east coast residents is heading toward the dustbin of history. Time will tell if this city will end up like Detroit. However, the fact that they are losing their biggest industry to major competition, much like Detroit did, with depressed housing, casinos bankrupting/closing and businesses fleeing , it all makes Atlantic City’s fate seem eerily similar.
Going through old issues of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter and posting highlights in my own words, continuing in the footsteps of daprice82. For anyone interested, I highly recommend signing up for the actual site at f4wonline and checking out the full archives. • PREVIOUS • 1987 FUTURE YEARS ARCHIVE: The Complete Observer Rewind Archive by daprice82
The Bunkhouse Stampede Finals and Royal Rumble are in the books, and as a head-to-head it’s best described as a stalemate. Neither show is what Dave would consider among the best cards he’s ever seen, and from the perspective of a tv viewer they were about what you’d expect. No strong overall lineup for either, and what was delivered wasn’t spectacular either. WWF had the edge in glitz, but not as much as usual because of the live factor meaning they couldn’t rely on post-production editing tricks. Here’s a sentence that describes a typical Raw today: “The three-hour show had too many replays and looked like it may have dragged in spots if you were there live.” Dave’s gotten some word from people who were there for the Bunkhouse finals live, and all rated it terribly as a live experience. From the tv viewer perspective, though, it was better than Starrcade despite some major issues (Dave says they owe the audience an explanation for why the Rock & Roll Express and Steve Williams were absent, as well as for the lack of Mike Rotunda vs. Sting which was pushed on WTBS half an hour before the show).
Dave’s tired of writing a lot of the same complaints about NWA, but they do seem to be responding to fans. They’re going to start showing the finishes to matches that go off the air on the following week’s show and have made changes to the announce desk. Jim Ross did a great job on ppv and toned back on calling every match an all-time classic like he did at Starrcade. But there were eight no-shows among the wrestlers and on Thursday night they had a terrible show in Los Angeles. Most of the no-shows were guys they pulled from the card to save money on flights. The Bunkhouse Finals were advertised with a 7 pm start time, but many of the tickets had 8 pm printed on them, and the show itself actually started at 6:35. Pm and ended at 9 pm, so those arriving at 8 missed most of the show. Not all the no-shows can be blamed on the promotion (Mighty Wilbur got injured, Rock & Roll Express appear to have up and quit), but some kind of explanation needs to be made for the fans. Between all that, getting chants of “Refund” after the Stampede and Dusty getting booed (which fans watching on tv heard) when he won the finals, NWA has significantly hurt its position in two of the biggest markets in the country in LA and New York. They’re making changes, slowly, but some changes need to be made or they’re going to sink. NWA fans come for action, but you can’t get the kind of action the fans want with the schedule they’re running (contrast to WWF which can get by with less action because their guys are seen as stars and the fans want to see the stars). Doing cross-country double shots on weekends is killing NWA, and they need to make new stars. Turning Flair face, since he’s more popular than almost anyone else, isn’t even something to do right now because Luger’s turn is in full throttle and they don’t have a heel to take up the slack. They could turn Dusty heel and have him feud with the Road Warriors, but they won’t.
In the past few weeks, NWA has managed to lose several guys they really shouldn’t have. Terry Taylor is gone apparently because the office had it in for him because of when he left the promotion in 1985. Big Bubba Rogers had become a good worker and had a great gimmick going, but WWF poached him. Rock and Roll Express apparently quit because they were unhappy about their push (though Dave thinks despite their ability and work, they’ve been on borrowed time for nine months now). Dave gives Steve Williams 50/50 odds of coming back and just kind of gestures to UWF as explanation. Sean Royal quit, and Chris Champion, Eddie Gilbert, and Brad Armstrong are all but disappeared. And more are looking to get out. Dave hates writing all this stuff about what Crockett’s doing wrong on the front page, especially when he’s been talking about it for months, and especially because he’s a fan of the NWA. He wouldn’t classify himself as a fan of WWF, but they’ve earned his respect with what they’ve done to take the business to another level and in the next two months he expects them to blow the whole wrestling business wide open. But WWF’s success isn’t the reason for NWA’s problems. WWF doing counterprogramming has made Crockett earn less money than he would have unopposed, and Dusty probably books himself the way he does because he knows WWF won’t steal him (spoilers: WWF gets Dusty in just over a year) and it’s hard to leave the limelight, but WWF isn’t the reason for most of Crockett’s issues.
According to the newspapers this morning, Wrestlemania IV will take place in Atlantic City’s Convention Center. Capacity is 16,000. There were rumblings of Vince being close to a deal in Vegas for either UNLV Gym or Caesar’s Palace, so Atlantic City’s a surprise. Wrestlemania is going to be more focused on ppv than closed-circuit this year, apparently. But most of the audience can’t get ppv, so they’ll still need closed-circuit in major cities.
Two weeks after Wrestlemania will be the Crockett Cup. Place is to be announced, and Dave thinks it’s high time Crockett re-establishes working relationships with at least one or two other North American promotions in order to help make the Cup a big event. They just don’t have the talent roster this year to get away with doing otherwise.
A correction on Starrcade: Dave reported a 6.6 percent buy-rate, but the reality was a 3.3 percent buy-rate. Dave heard they got 20,000 buys and just assumed it was of the 300,000 homes available on cable, but forgot to factor in the 300,000 homes it was also available in via satellite. Dave’s received reports that there were 6 million potential homes for the Bunkhouse finals, but that seems high to him. Even matching the buyrate of Starrcade at that number would mean over $3 million in gross revenue, and Dave doesn’t think they were remotely close to that.
- Anyway, Dave goes through the Bunkhouse finals. An estimated 7,000 were in the arena, and the dark match was Sting and Jimmy Garvin beating the Sheepherders by DQ. Nikita Koloff retained the NWA TV title against Bobby Eaton in a 20 minute draw. -2 stars. Larry Zbyszko beat Barry Windham for the Western States Title, with the match starting slow and getting very good in the last ten minutes. 3.5 stars. Road Warrior Hawk beat Ric Flair by DQ in the NWA World Title match. 3.75 stars. Dusty Rhodes won the Bunkhouse Stampede finals. Lots of blood, a lot of guys going the distance you wouldn’t expect to have the stamina to do so (the match was 26 minutes long), and it was exactly what was promised and was good stuff. 3 stars.
- As for the Royal Rumble, the crowd appeared to be nearly sold out with almost 18,000 in attendance. Ricky Steamboat beat Rick Rude by DQ. Heavy with rest holds and stalling before the final two minutes had them trading near falls constantly and getting good heat from it. 2 stars. The Jumping Bomb Angels won the WWF Women’s Tag Titles from the Glamour Girls in a 2/3 falls match. They started behind with Judy Martin getting the first fall, then the Angels won two straight falls with each Angel pinning Judy Martin (sunset flip and double missile dropkicks, respectively). It was a good match, but not great - the Angels missed a lot of moves and seemed to be out of shape. 3 stars. Jum Duggan won the Royal Rumble, last eliminating One Man Gang. The match was much better than Dave anticipated, and the match went on roughly at the same time as the Bunkhouse finals match. Better camera work in it, and Dave notes that WWF seems to have fudged the two minute intervals after a bit. 3.5 stars. The Islanders beat the Young Stallions (Paul Roma and Jim Powers; Dave’s nickname for them is The Barbie Dolls) in two straight falls. He makes a weird joke about a submission actually working on a pushed guy (Haku submitted Roma with a Boston crab) making him go out for “Oriental food” afterwards because it was so surprising. I’m too confused to even know what to make of the line. 2.5 stars.
Outside the matches, Royal Rumble had some other stuff. Andre and Hogan had a contract signing for the Main Event, where Andre slammed Hogan’s head into the table and pushed the table onto him. Dave’s amazed people buy Hogan as a face, because there’s just something naturally dislikable about people who act the way Hogan does and he thinks Vince could probably get Lee Harvey Oswald over as a face. Dino Bravo attempted to set a world bench press record. Of course, the weights were as legit as the half a million dollars Dusty supposedly won, but Bravo’s supposedly able to bench over 600 lbs legit. Jesse Ventura helped him with “715 lbs” and then claimed he didn’t help at all (the Road Warriors are scheduled to bench on the 30th and were originally planned to use legit weights, but they’ll have to use bogus weights to keep from looking weak next to WWF’s monsters now). Anyway, now they’ll bill Bravo as unofficial bench record holder, and that should get him heat because of the obvious cheating.
Next up then for WWF is The Main Event on February 5. Dave’s told not to worry about Andre, because his back is in much better shape than last year. He and Hogan are practicing daily and have worked out the gist of the match. Dave says you can be sure to expect Ted DiBiase to interfere somehow on the 5th.
Stampede is continuing to do good business and nearly selling out all their big shows. Chris Benoit and Great Gama get 4 stars (from Trent Walters, who I guess submitted the reports for the matches in Edmonton) for their Commonwealth Title match from January 9 in Edmonton.
[Stampede] Jason the Terrible has been made an “honorary member” of Bad Company, Bruce Hart and Brian Pillman’s tag team. So now in addition to the hockey mask he’s also got sunglasses over the hockey mask and a bandana and a black leather jacket. The whole getup is hilarious.
Do you remember Central States? Mike George won the WWA World Title tournament on January 23. They had 800 fans. Match ended on blood stoppage.
Speaking of blood, Keiji Mutoh is headed to Puerto Rico.
Tatsumi Fujinami and Kengo Kimura won the IWGP World Tag Titles from Yoshiaki Fujiwara and Kazuo Yamazaki on January 18. Riki Choshu and Super Strong Machine were originally slated to face the tag champs, but Choshu injured his knee and had to miss the match. Dave expects Choshu and Machine to face Fujinami and Kimura on February 7. He then goes on about how bad Choshu’s luck has been lately. Dave thinks he was supposed to win the tournament, except the Maeda shoot happened, and he was definitely supposed to win the tag titles (the match was scheduled for his hometown and New Japan actually does nice things for wrestlers in front of their home audiences). And with all the work they’ve put into getting Choshu on tv, it’s surprising they’ve phased him down the card so much from where he was.
Lots of stuff about Vader’s look in New Japan. On December 27 he wore long tights and had Road Warrior Hawk’s hair, and it didn’t get him over at all. On January 4 he had a mask and full bodysuit to hide his size. January 11 saw him ditch the bodysuit and keep the mask. The evolution of a mastodon, I guess.
Antonio Inoki began negotiations with Fuji TV after TV Asahi scheduled NJPW tv to move to midnight Mondays, and TV Asahi caved. They’ll now be on a 5 pm Saturday time slot. It’s not as good as their old Monday evening slot, but it’s not a death slot like midnight Monday.
Akira Maeda turned down NJPW’s plan to have him go to the U.S. Also, he and NJPW are fighting over his contract. They offered him a new contract for 1988 with a 15% pay cut and he’s not willing to sign it.
There are rumors that Inoki will wrestle Koji Kitao (the sumo wrestler mentioned a few weeks back) at the Tokyo Dome in April. Kitao is 24 years old and 6’5.5”, weighing 345 lbs. The story of his exit from Sumo is he apparently lost his temper and started kicking one of his sponsors (who is 92 years old) and the knocked his stable master’s wife through a sliding door. Dave’s been told if this match does happen, it could draw very big. Kitao is denying he’s going into wrestling (nope). Kitao was made a yokozuna in 1986, just before he turned 23, because the sumo hierarchy felt they needed a new young star to create interest in the younger generation of fans. But Kitao liked the party lifestyle and didn’t care for tradition, and sumo does not tolerate that. But you can’t demote a yokozuna, and that made him controversial (it would turn out that most of this was made up because Kitao’s stablemaster didn’t like him and felt he was underperforming and wanted him out - more on Kitao’s sumo years here if you want to read it). Turns out sumo is kind of worked too, though not as much as pro wrestling.
All Japan is promoting a “Martial Arts Olympic” show on April 2 at Sumo Hall, to feature all kinds of stuff. Tiger Mask II and Giant Baba will team against some foreigners, Japan Women’s Pro Wrestling (the group running against AJW) will have two matches on the show (Miss A vs. Harley Saito and Rumi Kazama vs. Xochitl Hamada). There will be boxing, kick boxing, the original Tiger Mask Satoru Sayama’s “shooting” sport he invented, shoot boxing (boxing + wrestling with gloves), and more. The whole show is being billed as a memorial service to Ikki Kajiwara, who created the Tiger Mask cartoon and comic.
When baseball season starts, All Japan’s tv will be moved to 10:30-11:30 pm Sunday nights. Usually they get moved to Saturday afternoon during baseball season, and this shift will lose Baba lots of money and viewers.
While Crockett and McMahon ran big shows on January 24, Giant Baba met with their rivals in Las Vegas. Baba’s plan in the U.S. is to send his guys, as well as Bruiser Brody, Abdullah the Butcher, Jimmy Snuka, Stan Hansen, and Terry Gordy to smaller promotions to help them fight against the big two.
Dave finally saw Hennig vs. Tiger Mask II. Not terrible, but no heat and little action, he thinks. Meanwhile, John Tenta’s improving well, and Baba seems high on Akira Taue, though he’s so new it’s hard to guess what kind of future he has.
[AJW] Yukai Omori’s retirement show will be on February 15. This was announced after her January 15 world title match with Chigusa Nagayo, where she said if she couldn’t win the title she was ending her career. They went 32 minutes to a double count out in the ring after both collapsed.
[Memphis] Lawler vs. Hennig for the AWA Title on January 18 had Lawler’s ring on the line as well. Hennig promised to give his dad the ring if he won, and Larry Hennig was there. The Axe helped Curt win, and Curt gave him the ring, but Lalwer stole it back.
Memphis local prelim wrestler Jerry Bryant has been diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Global Wrestling in Florida somehow turned what was an awful live show on January 22 into a good tv show. They taped on Friday night and by Sunday had it polished up into a good looking product. The miracles of post-production. Issues with the live show included starting 30 minutes late, long delays between matches, the ring mic not working, and bad wrestlers. What they lack in wrestling talent, though, they make up for in knowing how to make a tv show that’s on the level of World Class and better than Crockett or AWA.
Continental (Alabama) did a bench press contest between Lord Humongous (not Sid, but Gary Nation) and Doug Furnas. They fudged the weights here, as Humongous did 645 lbs and then Furnas did it twice (his best in competition has been 600) before Humongous pushed the bar down on Furnas and “injured his ribs.”
Apparently the Observer was mentioned positively in the Detroit News by Justice B. Hill in the January 17 issue.
Since Dave started writing this issue, he’s been flooded with fans writing about the Bunkhouse finals. The reaction he’s gotten has largely been negative, with those there live being extra negative about it. Crockett really needs to reserve three hours for the next time they do ppv - going too short pisses the fans off, and ppv viewers expected the show to last past 9 pm. Another difference between WWF and NWA is that WWF always gets their hottest acts on the mic at some point during ppvs and big live specials (twice in the case of Hogan and DiBiase at Royal Rumble), while at Starrcade they didn’t have Flair, Dusty, or Cornette talk once. Instead Jim Garvin gave the worst promo of his career, Michael Hayes was quiet for the first time ever, and they shoved Steve Williams and Nikita Koloff on the mic for some reason. At the Bunkhouse Finals they had no interviews, and getting mic time for Flair or Dusty or Luger while they set up the cage would have been a big help. More of Dave wondering when Crockett will realize they’ve killed the credibility of their world champion and thus killed the drawing power of the belt.
Michael Hayes has apparently quit Crockett and everyone expects him to go back to World Class. And if Steve Williams doesn’t come back, they’ll probably just forget about the UWF Title entirely rather than doing a unification match.
A couple letters this week requesting that Dave keep up the coverage of wrestling in Japan. Another couple letters praising how good Stampede has been lately. Canada and Japan, bringing us the best in wrestling.
Another letter writer asks Dave to realize how offensive it is to refer to a wrestling match as “a total abortion” and to consider that he’s probably offended many female readers of the newsletter. Dave apologizes and says he’ll stop using the term, before doing a “well, actually” bit. It’s a kind of weird response. Judge it for yourselves.
I apologize for that one and will quit using the term. Actually the term abortion for a bad match is a business term just like jobber, mark, babyface and the rest. But there are a few business terms (mainly for ethnic wrestlers and ethnic fans) which are in bad taste that I don’t use, so I’ll add that one to the list.
Tickets for Wrestlemania IV go on sale January 30. The best 2000 seats in the Convention Center are being reserved as freebies for casino high rollers. And as a heads up, this is the location it does take place at. They called it Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino during the show, but it’s the same building. More on that as we get to Wrestlemania.
If Dave can find the space next week, he’s going to talk about whether or not “30 minute matches which ‘tell a story’” work for today’s fans. He really enjoyed the Windham/Blanchard match on tv but there was no crowd reaction, so he’s beginning to wonder if this is even a style that resonates anymore.
Everyone’s asking Dave for predictions about Hogan vs. Andre. So here’s his prediction (and he is way off on many parts of this):
DiBiase will interfere and Andre will pin Hogan on 2/5, however Jack Tunney will prove he can’t be bought and hold the title up so Ted doesn’t get the title, and order a rematch in a cage at WM4 so Ted can’t interfere (and also so Andre can lose without doing a job). Hulk will win on a fluke, and they’ll run Hulk vs. Andre over the summer in your local cities after Hulk gets back from playing Hulk Hogan in the movies.
”There was a clip in Detroit about Hogan, saying that ‘he’s nice[r] than Kirk Gibson, but not by much.’” Gibson’s reputation is of being a total asshole to fans, especially kids.
Crockett is billing FlaiAnderson vs. LugeWindham on Feb. 6 as the first time Flair goes against Lex anywhere. It’s forgivable to forget Lex’s Florida days, but they’ve got FlaiBlanchard vs. LugeRhodes booked for February 2.
Apparently Road Warrior Hawk’s neo-nazi line is just a quote from The Breakfast Club. Okay. So I guess the first letter writer was mishearing him and he’s saying “Neo-maxi-zoom dweebie”? TVtropes gives us this, from the October 3, 1987 episode of NWA World Championship Wrestling: HAWK: "WELL, Tony Schiavone, There Are Two Kinds Of People, as far as me and Animal are concerned. Clamheads and Neo-Maxi Zoom Dweebies." (the Road Warriors consider themselves the latter). And corroborating with the WWE Network, yeah, the line comes through pretty clear. Network 4 minutes in, and yeah, he’s not calling himself a neo-nazi. Definitely an error by that letter writer, and what a weird line for Hawk of all people to utter.
THURSDAY:WWF’s Big Four are born; The Main Event; Rock & Roll Express, Michael Hayes, and Steve Williams update; Tenryu wins all the awards in Japan; and more
27th January 2020 US equity futures are falling ahead of the cash open given the continued coronavirus contagion which saw the global cases reach 2700 and the deaths toll topped 80 over the weekend. Travel focussed stocks, such as United Airlines (UAL), American Airlines (AAL) and Southwestern Airlines (LUV) are trading in the red, with some holding losses of over 4% on travel disruption concerns, as is Trip.com (TCOM). Casino names like Las Vegas Sands (LVS), Wynn Resorts (WYNN) and Melco (MLCO) are facing even further pressure as the confirmed cases in Macau increased to five. Copper miner Freeport McMoran (FCX) is lower as copper prices fall to 8-week lows on global growth concerns, while gold miners (GOLD, NEM) are benefitting as the precious metal rises in a safe haven bid. China listed ADR’s (BABA, JD, BIDU) also hit as the death toll increases. This week’s Barron’s articles highlight that the Super Bowl will be a huge opportunity for sports betting names, as it focuses on expansion in mobile sports betting, highlighting that the street has been enthusiastic in the rising stock price in Diamond Eagle Acquisition (DEAC). Further on the Super Bowl, Barron’s says that advertisers like Omnicom (OMC) and Interpublic Group (IPG) hold less appeal, amid a further inflow of larger tech names partaking in the advertising space. Elsewhere the journalists highlight that largest tech companies such as Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOGL) are competing for a larger share in esports. Finally, Barron’s notes investors in HP (HPQ) are likely to benefit as it has made it clear it would prefer to lever up and buy back large amounts of shares, instead of submitting an offer to Xerox (XRX).
Apple Inc. (AAPL) Ahead of its earnings on Tuesday, Credit Suisse analyst Matthew Cabral is looking for continued improvements in iPhone revenue trends due to a strong start for the iPhone 11. However, he believes the focus is shifting to the upcoming 5G iPhone in H2 20, which should help it drive revenue growth. Elsewhere, RBC Capital analyst Muller maintains an outperform rating on the tech giant with a USD 330 PT (last closing price 318.31). The analyst states his data checks suggest its estimates for Q1 are reasonable, whilst highlighting a slight beat on consensus figures could be seen due to strength in iPhone and wearable sales. Boeing Company (BA) A Boeing jet reportedly crashed in Ghazni, Afghanistan, which was operated by Ariana Afghan. The number of casualties is currently unclear, however, separate reports state the airline denied the crash. Elsewhere, Boeing successfully staged its first flight of its 777X jet. Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM) raised its Guyana offshore estimate to above 8ln BoE as it continues to develop the Guyana oil block. Intel Corp. (INTC) has been downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Northland, with a USD 70 PT (last closing price: 68.47). Analyst Gus Richard notes that while he forecasts several both positive and negative catalysts, he is unclear what will come first. The analyst expects Intel to fix or jettison underperforming product lines, although sees headwinds which could impact the stock, perhaps as soon as Q2 2020. Gus Richard highlights structural issues, including its design flow and manufacturing.
Alphabet Inc Class A (GOOGL) US State Attorney Generals are to meet with the DoJ to collaborate information on a probe which relates to the co.’s monopolistic behaviour for online advertising which could harm consumers, according to people familiar with the matter. Kraft Heinz Co (KHC) CEO is pushing for growth, noting its aim is for fewer and bolder bets to increase its sales, according to WSJ. Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) and Yum China Holdings (YUMC) have closed all its shops and suspended delivery service in the Hubei province due to the coronavirus. T-Mobile (TMUS)/Sprint (S) are reportedly facing a potential hurdle from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), the only remaining state utilities board to not approve the deal, according to WSJ, who note the CPUC is continuing its review which threatens to further delay or even derail the USD 26bln merger.
AbbVie Inc. (ABBV) announced that China is testing an HIV drug as a treatment for the coronavirus. Elsewhere, AbbVie Inc. (ABBV) / Allergan, Plc (AGN) agreed to divest its Brazikumab and Zenpep drugs, where Nestle (NESN SW) will take ownership of Zenpep, and AstraZeneca (AZN) will acquire Brazikumab. The approval of the deals is dependent upon FTC and EC approval. Arconic Inc. (ARNC) Q4 19 (USD) Adj. EPS 0.53 (exp. 0.54), revenue 3.4bln (exp. 3.48bln). Forecasts FY20 Adj. EPS between 2.22-2.42 (exp. 2.37), revenue expected between 13.9bln – 14.2bln (exp. 14.16bln). Q1 20 Adj. EPS forecast 0.47 – 0.53 (exp. 0.53) Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) has been upgraded to Neutral from Sell at UBS, raising the PT to USD 900 from USD 690 (Last closing price USD 869.71). Where analyst Dennis Geiger is more confident in the sustainability of the company’s strong sales and earnings growth, highlighting recent performance has significantly exceeded his expectations. D. R. Horton (DHI) Q1 20 (USD): EPS 1.16 (exp. 0.92), Revenue 4.02bln (exp. 3.77bln), homes closed +13% to 12,959. CEO believes they will continue to see good demand across their markets. FY20 revenue forecast at 18.5bln to 19bln (exp. 18.82bln, prev. 18.5bln – 19.1bln) FY20 home closes expected to be between 60,000 and 61,500 (prev. 60,000 to 61,000). Expects Q2 revenue at USD 4.25 - 4.4bln (exp. 4.25bln) and Q2 home sales between 13,800 and 14,300 homes. Lilly (Eli) & Co. (LLY) and Incyte (INCY) announced its BREEZE-AD4 trial, evaluating Baricitinib in combination with Topical Corticosteroids for treatment of adults with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis met its primary endpoint. Marathon Petroleum (MPC) increased its quarterly dividend to USD 0.58, a 9.4% increase. Simon Property Group Inc (SPG) is reportedly considering teaming with Authentic Brands to look at an acquisition of Forever 21, the bankrupt teen retailer, according to people familiar with the matter. Sprint (S) Q3 19 (USD): EPS -0.03 (exp. -0.05), Revenue 8.08bln (exp. 8.22bln); wireless post-paid net additions 494,000 (prev. 309,000); wireless post-paid ARPU 42.04 (exp. 42.30). Sprint is optimistic about the necessary regulatory steps to complete merger with T-Mobile (TMUS, DTE GY) Sees Q4 EBITDA to remain flat sequentially. Capex seen around USD 1bln in Q4. Yum! Brands Inc (YUM) increased its quarterly dividend to USD 0.47 from USD 0.42/shr.
Crispr Therapeutics (CRSP) had a stake cut to 6.2% from 7.3% by Bayer Global Investments. Fiat Chrysler (FCAU) urged a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit from General Motors (GM) which accused the automaker of racketeering and bribing UAW officials to put General Motors (GM) at a multibillion-dollar labour cost disadvantage. General Motors (GM) announced a USD 2.2bln investment at its Detroit facility to produce a variety of EV trucks and SUV's, noting its first electric truck is expected to begin production in late 2021. D.R Horton (DHI) expects modest price increases this year. Starbucks (SBUX) - Guggenheim analyst Matthe DiFrisco states Starbucks has the highest exposure to China out of the restaurant stocks he covers, followed by McDonald's (MCD) and Domino's Pizza (DPZ). Adobe (ADBE) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Cleveland Research
The three Detroit casinos reported $87.9 million in aggregate revenue this September while operating at 15% capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Revenue in September fell by 22.3% to $36.1 million at MGM Grand Detroit, 17.3% to $32.2 million at MotorCity Casino Hotel and 27.2% to $19.6 million at Greektown Casino-Hotel. They paid $7.1 ... Here's how Greektown Casino might change Overall, the Detroit casinos experienced a 3.1 percent increase in revenue compared to 2017. MGM Grand was up 4.6 percent in 2018, followed by Motor City ... DETROIT – Detroit’s three casinos set a record for adjusted gross revenue last year, earning $1.454 billion. According to the state, that amount tops the record $1.444 billion set in 2018. Detroit's MGM Casino and hotel. DETROIT – The Detroit casinos reported aggregate revenue of $121.7 million during February, topping February 2019 revenue by 6.3 percent. February revenue was up ... While continuing to operate at 15 percent capacity due to COVID-19 health concerns, MGM Grand Detroit, MotorCity Casino, and Greektown Casino reported $101.4 million in monthly aggregate revenue in October. The casinos’ table games and slots revenue fell 18.9 percent compared with October 2019 results.
The Man Who Cheated Vegas Casinos For Years And Stole ...