Thursday 12/24 Torch Today – Punk in UFC video game, Paige on Divas vs. Women’s Title, A.J. Lee update, Ziggler’s brother talks working together at stand-up, NOAH runs big angle, Great Muta wrestling again, more

By James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor


TORCH TODAY – Thursday, December 24, 2015

– NEWSLETTER ALERT: The latest PWTorch Newsletter has been published for VIP members with a cover story on NXT Takeover, plus Slammys coverage, columns, and Wade Keller’s 2015 overview. (BECOME A VIP SUBSCRIBER TO ACCESS)

– Tonight on TV, Syfy is airing a replay of the Super Smackdown live special and WWE Network is running a “Swerved” marathon. (Full Weekend Events Center)

– Read a full recap of the “Steve Austin Show” with guest Shawn Michaels from WWE Network earlier this month that was released on Austin’s podcast this week. (

– Gamers might be able to play the UFC version of C.M. Punk before Punk sets fight in an octagon. According to an early review of “UFC 2,” Punk is included as a playable fighter in the video game, which is due out in Spring 2016. It remains to be seen when Punk has his first UFC fight after recovering from a shoulder injury. UFC’s top draws and mainstream stars, Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor, are on the video game cover. (Review at

– WWE star Paige offered WWE’s argument for why they’re keeping their women’s title the “Divas Title” in an interview with Sports Illustrated. “Everyone wants it to be the Women’s Championship but I like the fact its called Divas because it separates us from the rest of the crowd. If someone says, ‘Hey, you’re a Diva,’ people instantly know you’re in WWE. At first, I was all about Women’s Championship, but I like the fact it’s just us. This is our baby. This is our brand,” Paige told reporter Andy Gray.

A.J. Lee is keeping busy with projects and may not return to WWE, according to Paige in the SI interview. “We haven’t spoke in a while. She’s so busy now so we haven’t had time to catch up. But when I’m in LA, we’ll meet for coffee or something,” A.J. said. Asked if she will return to WWE, Paige replied, “I don’t know. I hope so. Sometimes people just want to have a family and be a wife.”

– L.A. Weekly examined pro wrestlers trying their hand at stand-up comedy and improv, including current WWE star Dolph Ziggler, his brother Ryan Nemeth, and John Morrison.

Ryan said of working with Ziggler on-stage: “All of my favorite moments in comedy and in wrestling have been with him, funny enough. I was always against him when we would encounter each other in the ring, but to me I was working with him to entertain the crowd. Performing comedy with him is always fun because we’ll tell stories about our family and growing up together. Of course, people love to hear what Dolph Ziggler was like as a kid.” (Full Article at

– NOAH ran a big angle this week. After Naomichi Marufuji captured the GHC Hvt. Title, Takashi Sugiuira turned on him, then was removed from his positions in NOAH, and is now set to challenge Marufuji for the title on “Great Voyage 2016” on January 31 in Yokohama, Japan. Plus, New Japan’s “Suzukigun” faction is still part of the mix, Go Shiozaki is returning to NOAH, and Lance Archer & Davey Boy Smith, Jr. are set to defend the GHC Tag Titles on Jan. 31. (Detailed Explanation of what’s happening in NOAH via

– Plus, in Wrestle-1, Great Muta announced that he is wrestling again. Muta said he is teaming with Sanada and Akebono in a tag match on January 10. Muta also announced a big show on August 11, 2016. Also from Thursday’s show, Ultimo Dragon competed in a six-man tag match and Manabu Soya retained the Wrestle-1 Title in the main event. (Full Results at

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