PWI Weekly for June 10, 2021

Nick Gage & PWI, Shingo Takagi, Kenny Omega Interview, Bruno vs. Sheik, and More

Welcome to the Latest PWI Weekly

Last night, the @OfficialPWI account tweeted about the unlikely indie feud between Matt Cardona (the former Zack Ryder) and Game Changer Wrestling champion Nick Gage. Our tweet was picked up by longtime GCW staple (and current AEW star) Joey Janela, who asked us how many retweets it would take to get Nick Gage on the cover of Pro Wrestling Illustrated.

Our answer? One million. Or maybe 750,000.

The truth is, even with PWI increasing its publication schedule from six issues per year to nine, the cover of the magazine remains coveted real estate. Given the importance of newsstand sales—to our print publication or any other—it’s much more likely that the cover space will go to a recognizable WWE, AEW, or New Japan star than to an independent talent.

Plus, our staff remains somewhat divided about “The King” Nick Gage. Yours truly is certainly a fan, as is Mike Bessler, who interviewed him for a feature article in our October 2020 issue. But a couple of our other staffers have been, uhh … let’s say reluctant to join the ol’ MDK Gang.

Ultimately, it’s about what our readers want. If Game Changer Wrestling became the undeniable cultural force ECW once was, then its champ would surely make the cover at some point. As it stands now, Gage is unquestionably one of the most popular acts on the independents. Only time will tell how the rest shakes out.

Who do YOU want to see on the cover of PWI? I’m all ears. —KM

Wrestler Of The Week

It was a career-making moment for Shingo Takagi, the former NEVER openweight champion who, just this week, captured his very first world heavyweight title. On June 7’s Dominion Event, Takagi defeated no less than Kazuchika Okada to claim the vacant IWGP World heavyweight championship. The former Dragon Gate standout has been turning heads all year long with stellar outings and memorable, hard-hitting singles outings. His high-profile victory over Okada shows a tremendous deal of faith in him by New Japan Pro-Wrestling management.

This Week In Headlines

From The Vault

Going back a bit further than usual this week, we were excited to share this photo of Bruno Sammartino battling The Sheik inside a steel cage at the Boston Garden. This bout, which took place in March 1969, marked the “Living Legend’s” 87th defense of the WWWF title during his historic 2803-day reign.

PWI Podcast With Kenny Omega

On the latest episode of The PWI Podcast, Al Castle shares audio from his interview with AEW/Impact World champ Kenny Omega (available in the new issue of Pro Wrestling Illustrated, in stores now). Before that, Al and co-host Brian Solomon share their thoughts on the latest round of WWE releases, the competing Ultimate Warrior docs on Vice and A&E, and more.


IN STORES NOW: Pick Up Your Copy Today!

The August 2021 issue of Pro Wrestling Illustrated is now available for purchase through our website (print and digital editions). As the cover states, the issue features conversations with four of the sport’s hottest stars:

  • Hotseat Interview with Kenny Omega

  • Feature Stories on Bobby LashleyLio Rush, and Maki Itoh

Plus: A 12-month, data-driven analysis of pro wrestling during the pandemic, feature stories on A-Kid and RJ City, and much, much more.

Still Available: Find our June 2021 issue on newsstands now, or order a copy from

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