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Brock Lesnar Title Match Headlines Busy Wrestling Weekend

WWE holds its Elimination Chamber pay-per-view, but this week also features exciting cards in New Japan Pro-Wrestling, AAA and Impact Wrestling.

The upcoming weekend in wrestling is packed with significant shows.

In a rare afternoon start, WWE holds its Elimination Chamber pay-per-view in Saudi Arabia, with a broadcast beginning at noon ET. A highlight will be Lita's return to the ring for her first singles match in a decade, which she will do in memorable fashion against Becky Lynch. The show also features the men’s and women’s Elimination Chamber matches, which will help define the top matches at WrestleMania 38.

Brock Lesnar_courtesy WWE

New Japan Pro-Wrestling, AAA and Impact Wrestling are all also active this weekend. Kazuchika Okada defends the IWGP world heavyweight championship in Sapporo, Japan, on Sunday against Tetsuya Naito at New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s two-night New Year’s Golden Series show, which also includes Sanada challenging Hiroshi Tanahashi for the IWGP United States champion on Saturday.

AAA’s Rey de Reyes show marks a major title match for El Hijo del Vikingo, who wrestles former WWE star John Morrison–back now as John Hennigan–on Saturday in Veracruz, Mexico at the Estadio Universitario Beto Avila baseball stadium. And there is also Impact’s No Surrender card, which quietly has the potential to be a standout card, especially the Jonah-Taurus match.

Here are some news and notes as we approach the weekend:

1. Brock Lesnar is expected to leave Saudi Arabia as WWE champion. Part of the men’s Elimination Chamber match, Lesnar will face off against current champ Bobby Lashley, Seth Rollins, AJ Styles, Matt Riddle and Austin Theory.

While the company envisions Theory as its future champion, the present time belongs to Lesnar. With the win, it will set up a champion vs. champion match in the main event of WrestleMania 38, likely on the second night (with Charlotte Flair-Ronda Rousey currently scheduled to close out the first night).

2. WWE announced earlier today that The Undertaker will be inducted into its Hall of Fame during WrestleMania 38 weekend.

One of the all-time greats, it will be interesting to see who introduces Taker into the HOF. Although he is an unlikely choice, Kevin Nash would make sense—or, for that matter, Shawn Michaels or Triple H.

Per sources within WWE, The Undertaker is not currently scheduled to work a match at this year’s WrestleMania.

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3. AAA’s Rey de Reyes show is an opportunity for El Hijo del Vikingo to further cement himself as one of the most electric performers in the world.

The show will be broadcast live on FITE TV, allowing an even wider audience to see Vikingo’s brilliance, especially against as talented a performer as John Hennigan. Under-utilized in WWE as John Morrison, Hennigan will look to reclaim his spot as a main-eventer beginning with this match. These are two of the most creative wrestlers in the world, and seeing what kind of magic they can create should be a joy to watch.

Rey de Reyes should have a little of everything. This is not American wrestling; it is lucha libre. It has its own psychology and rules: heel ref, intergender matches, tagging in and out isn’t as common. The show will have people in the stands, and it is expected to be a very hot crowd. This card should fully capture the AAA experience. There is a lumberjack match, a comedy match, a hardcore match, and their biggest stars—including Psycho Clown, Pagano, Vikingo, and Pentagon—are on the card.

There will be a surprise entrant in the five-man Rey de Reyes match, which would steal the show if Vikingo-Hennigan wasn’t also on the card. With Fenix still out due to injury, the Lucha Bros. tag match is likely instead to be changed to a singles match pitting Pentagon against Dralistico, who is the former Mistico.

Led by Vikingo, Saturday has the potential to be an outstanding night for AAA.

4. There is going to be a new season of Uncharted Territory on IWTV, Sports Illustrated has learned.

Beginning Monday, May 9, Uncharted Territory will return for its fourth season, but this time, it will run out of Chattanooga, Tenn. Beyond founder Drew Cordeiro will serve as a consultant, and this will be Southeast First Uncharted Territory, as IWTV uses its platform to spotlight different parts of the country.

The Discovery Gauntlet will be returning in a singles match capacity, and some of the wrestlers scheduled to be involved include reigning IWTV Independent Wrestling champion AC Mack, Violence is Forever’s Kevin Ku and Dom Garrini, Ashton Starr, Adam Priest and Tony Deppen.

Uncharted Territory will be built around the initial story of talent from the northeast attempting to wrestle the title away from Mack, who is defending the belt in the southeast. It is currently scheduled to run into August, airing a two-hour block every Monday.

Justin Barrasso can be reached at JBarrasso@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @JustinBarrasso.

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