Early-Morning News EXPLOSION!

Some random newsbits to start off the week:

– The word “Smackdown” has been added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary.

– The July 5 TNA did a 1.1 cable rating; July 9 RAW did a 3.4 (hours of 3.0 and 3.7, and the lowest non-Holiday rating in almost two years); the July 10 ECW did a 1.4; and the July 12 TNA did a 1.01 rating (1.2 million viewers), according to Nielsen Media Research.

– Ken Kennedy was on Fox News Friday discussing the Benoit tragedy, basically echoing his latest blog. Penny Durham, Shawn Stasiak and others continue to appear on cable news shows. While we have discontinued daily Benoit updates, there’s been plenty of discussion of these appearances and any new developments in our reader forums.

– Paul Burchill recently worked Smackdown house shows, teaming with fellow Brit Dave Taylor; meanwhile, Mike Knox was recently seen backstage at ECW, possibly getting ready to make a return.

– Ric Flair is suffering from ear problems and wasn’t on TV last week because of it.

– WWE signed Nick “Original Sinn” Cvjetkovich to a developmental deal (he’s been working in OVW recently).

– WWE released referee Chris Kay a few weeks ago.

– TNA released Jess Ward, former WWF Tough Enough contestant, who was in the production department at TNA. She had been suspended following the leaking of videos of her (the Leticia Cline promos) being put on YouTube.

Credit: PWInsider, WrestlingObserver.com, PWTorch.com, other sources

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