Live Audio Wrestling
|Other names||Fight Network Radio|
|Running time||60 minutes (until Fall 2000)
120 minutes (Fall 2000-present)
180 minutes (special post-WrestleMania editions)
|Syndicates||See #Fight Network Radio (July 2006 - January 2009)|
|Starring||Notorious T.I.D. Chris Tidwell(1997-1999)
Big Daddy Donnie Abreu (1997-2000)
Gentleman Jeff Marek (1997-2003)
Trish Stratus (1999)
|Editor(s)||John Pollock (2003-2005)|
|Producer(s)||Dan Lovranski (1998-2000)
Jason Agnew (1999-2003)
John Pollock (2005-present)
|Recording studio||Toronto, Ontario|
|Air dates||since May 13, 1997|
|Audio format||Monaural sound (May 1997 - January 2009, October 2011-present)
Stereophonic sound (January 2009 - October 2011)
|Ending theme||I Fought the Law by Green Day|
Live Audio Wrestling (also known as The LAW) is a Canadian sports radio talk show hosted by "The Mouth" Dan Lovranski and Jason Agnew. The program primarily covers news and events surrounding professional wrestling (such as WWE) and mixed martial arts. First premiering in May 1997 as an internet radio show, The LAW later shifted to conventional radio on several stations in the Toronto area, and moving to its current flagship station CHUM in 2011, where it currently airs live at 11:00 PM ET on Sunday nights.
- 1 History
- 2 Fight Network Radio
- 3 Former Hosts
- 4 Popularity
- 5 End of Year Awards
- 6 Spinoff Series
- 7 External links
- 8 References
Live Audio Wrestling started in May 23, 1997 as an internet radio show through Virtually Canadian. The first guest of The LAW was Faarooq. The show aired online for a year and a half before moving to CJCL, The Fan 590—however, it was still only broadcast online, since the show was broadcast as replacement programming due to NBA policies prohibiting the station's online feed from airing Toronto Raptors games. In an effort to obtain studio time, the show would be taped early in the morning. Due to popular demand and viewer support, The LAW soon became part of The Fan's normal lineup, airing in the early afternoon on Saturdays. The show later expanded to include a two-hour late-night program on Sunday nights from 1:00 to 3:00 a.m., later moved to Saturdays at 11:00 p.m. in late 1999, while the afternoon edition moved to 5:00 p.m. In February 1999, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter began a weekly segment during the program.
Move to CFYI
The LAW aired on The Fan 590 until September 2000 when it moved to rival station CFYI Talk 640 as a companion to the station's recently acquired radio broadcasts of Toronto Maple Leafs games. The evening broadcast was moved from Saturdays to Sundays. In April 2001, the afternoon edition of The LAW was dropped during the station's re-launch under the Mojo Radio format, while The LAW remained on the station through 2006
In January 2005, Fight Network purchased a majority stake in The LAW and in February of that same year they announced that they had secured an agreement with Broadcast News for national distribution the program, via Fight Network Radio.
Move to CFRB
In July 2006, The LAW moved to CFRB and retained its 11pm time-slot. In the fall of 2006, Live Audio Wrestling announced that in the future, the show would begin to air a simulcast of the show on Fight Network, however the announcement never came to fruition.
Live Audio Xtra
Starting in the winter of 2007, John Pollock began to host an extended, online edition of The LAW called Live Audio Xtra. The segment is available to those who listen to the archived edition of the show on The LAW website, as an add-on to the original radio production. Shortly after its launch, Dan Lovranski began to co-host the segment, answering e-mail questions. Starting with the January 20th 2008 edition, Live Audio Xtra began to take call-in questions from listeners who were unable to get on the air during the radio portion of the program. This segment of the show was discontinued for a brief period of time, but returned to The LAW in 2011.
Move to satellite radio, interim podcast
The LAW aired its final edition on CFRB on January 11, 2009, moving to the Sirius Satellite Radio channel Hardcore Sports Radio (later known as The Score Satellite Radio), maintaining its Sunday night timeslot, and still being produced from CFRB's studios. Despite no longer being aired on conventional radio, the program was still billed as being a part of Fight Network Radio. After the closure of The Score Satellite Radio in August 2011, The LAW briefly became a podcast on the Fight Network website, using the same format as the radio versions (but without call-in segments).
Move to CHUM
Fight Network Radio
During the CFYI and CFRB era, The LAW was also syndicated to several other radio stations in Canada through a network known as Fight Network Radio. Former affiliates of the group (aside from its flagship Toronto stations) included:
Former co-hosts of the show include:
- Trish Stratus - 1999
- Notorious T.I.D. Chris Tidwell - 1997-1999
- Big Daddy Donnie Abreu - 1997-2000
- Gentleman Jeff Marek - 1997-2003
The show is ranked No. 1 in the demographic of male, on talk radio in the Toronto market, in its time slot. In April 2006, The Bureau of Broadcast Measurement released their spring ratings with The LAW ranking No. 1 among Males 25 - 49 on Sunday nights with an 18.7 share and also scoring a 17.8 share among Males 18 – 34.
End of Year Awards
Awards are given over the course of two episodes: the Best of episode, typically the last episode of the year under consideration or the first episode of the following year, and the Worst of episode, awarded the first week without a pay-per-view event after the Best of episode. Each host of the show nominates a pick in each category, and may also name ties and "honourable mentions" in each category.
Both Wai Ting and Braden Herrington have officially joined the other three hosts to hand out their Best of Awards & Worst of Awards. Ting in both 2012 and 2013, & Herrington in 2014.
Unofficial picks may also be given by other members of the LAW's associated podcasts, picks from these restricted in scope to the wrestling, but are otherwise identical in scope. Wai Ting (Review-A-Raw, Review-A-Wai), Braden Herrington (whtsNXT), Brain Mann (Keep It 100), Nate Milton (Keep It 100), Chris Charlton (Japanese Audio Wrestling), and WH Park (Japanese Audio Wrestling).
|Best of Awards|
This award is given to the wrestler or mixed martial artist who is the most natural at cutting promos or otherwise conversing on the microphone.
This award is given to the wrestling or mixed martial arts announcer, whether play-by-play or colour commentary.
This award is given to the best performer in the world of wrestling that does not participate in matches, such as managers and valets.
This award is given to the wrestler or fighter who has improved the most in terms of their skills development.
This award is given to the wrestler or fighter who has maintained their form after a long absence from wrestling or fighting.
This award is given to the best character or character trait in wrestling or mixed martial arts. First awarded in 2008 as a last-minute addition to the list of awards.
This award is given to the best wrestling match of the year.
This award is given to the best protracted storyline, typically between wrestlers, but the award is not strictly restricted to wrestling.
This award is given to the best individual moment or plot device (typically in professional wrestling, though noteworthy mixed martial arts events may also be nominated) in the past year.
Originally there was a single award covering both wrestling and mixed martial arts pay-per-view events. In 2010, this category was split to two separate awards for wrestling events and mixed martial arts events.
In 2014 the wrestling event category expanded to include Network Events and was no longer restricted to just pay-per-view events.
In 2011 the mixed martial arts event category expanded to include Fight Cards and was no longer restricted to just pay-per-view events.
This award is given to the best wrestling or mixed martial arts organization in the past year.
Jason Agnew did not make a pick for 2011, as he did not watch The Ultimate Fighter: Team Bisping vs. Team Miller, which he otherwise felt as the best TV show.
This award is given to the best book relating to wrestling or mixed martial arts. Jason Agnew does not normally give an award due to his commitments for other shows precluding him from reading too many candidates.
This award is given to the best compilation or documentary on wrestling or mixed martial arts in the past year which have been released on DVD. Originally "Best DVD" until 2015 when this category was expanded to include non in-ring programing.
This award is given to the best single match on a mixed martial arts card in the past year.
This award was only given in 2008 to the best individual wrestling or mixed martial arts moment in the past year.
This award was only given in 2009 due to the use of guest hosts for WWE Raw.
This award is given to the best interview segment that aired on the LAW or an associated podcast in the past year. It was first awarded in 2010.
|Worst of Awards|
|Worst Male Wrestler
Worst Female Wrestler
Worst Tag Team
Worst on the Mic
Worst Non-Wrestling Performer
Worst Raw Guest Host
Most Underutilized Performer
They Really Dropped the Ball On...
Worst Feud of the Year
Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View
Worst Mixed Martial Arts Supercard
Worst TV Show
Worst DVD/Original Programming
Worst Fight of the Year
WTF Moment of the Year
Over the years, there have been several radio shows and podcasts that have complimented the LAW.
Ask-A-Wai / Bite Network Radio
Ask-A-Wai was an add-on to the end of each LAW broadcast starting in September 2008, and starred John Pollock and Wai Ting, then call screener on the LAW. It was taped immediately following Live Audio Xtra, and was a general discussion podcast and generally unrelated to wrestling. In late 2009, Jason Agnew joined Ask-A-Wai as a co-host, though retaining the same format as before.
Ask-A-Wai ended with the move of the LAW from CFRB to Hardcore Sports Radio, though the Ask-A-Wai format would be succeeded with the Bite Network Radio podcast. Bite Network Radio itself would be hosted by Jason Agnew and John Pollock, retaining the format of Ask-A-Wai, and occasionally featuring Wai Ting and other members from their circle of friends. Like Ask-A-Wai, Bite Network Radio was taped immediately following the LAW.
Bite Network Radio ended with the move of the LAW to TSN Radio, as the studios at TSN could no longer accommodate all of the regular hosts. Though The Late Shift, a radio show hosted by Jason Agnew on CFRB, is touted as the spiritual successor of Bite Network Radio, it follows a different format and has no formal association to the LAW.
Review-A-Wai is a weekly review podcast starring John Pollock and Wai Ting, which was originally presented immediately following the archived episode of the LAW and was later made available separately. The first episode was posted on September 13, 2009.
The two primarily review older wrestling pay-per-view events from the mid to late 1990s, but have since branched out to other media relating to wrestling and mixed martial arts. Notably, in a homage to an early Ask-a-Wai episode where John and Wai reviewed a wrestling-related pornographic film, the second and third anniversary shows had John and Wai review a wrestling-related pornographic film; the visible discomfort of Wai reviewing the film has led them to discontinue reviewing wrestling-related pornographic films. Reviews of classic events often contain audio clips from the show(s) they are reviewing; at the end of the show, John and Wai also respond to listener feedback after the review. On occasion, they air relevant clips from previous interviews conducted with various wrestling personalities and/or interview people involved with the event being reviewed, including clips from past Live Audio Wrestling shows. Each episode also ends with a piece of music specifically selected by one of the co-hosts, often relating to the show being reviewed.
On occasion, when either co-host is unavailable, a substitute co-host has joined the other co-host; most notably, Arda Ocal has been a guest reviewer on Review-A-Wai on several occasions during the years that the LAW and Aftermath (The Score Television Network's wrestling analysis show, co-hosted by Arda Ocal) were promoted together. Damian Abraham has also been a frequent guest reviewer, especially if the review contains a punk rock element.
The show ceased to be an add-on to the archived episode of the LAW in 2010 when the Review-A-Wai portion became as long as the archived episode of the LAW itself. Review-A-Wai was moved to a Wednesday release schedule following its second anniversary show, and later to late Tuesdays following the debut of whtsNXT so as to avoid multiple LAW podcasts being released on the same day. With the launch of Review-A-SmackDown as a regular weekly series, Review-A-Wai became a biweekly series posted on Fridays, alternating with Bauer & Pollock.
As a spinoff of Review-A-Wai, John Pollock and Wai Ting also review each week's edition of WWE Raw in a separate podcast series. As with Review-A-Wai, each episode John Pollock and Wai Ting run down the previous episode of WWE Raw and end by reading listener feedback. The first episode of Review-A-Raw was posted on July 6, 2010. For a time in 2011, Review-A-Raw was available as a live podcast, airing over the internet via Stickam immediately following WWE Raw, but it reverted to a taped format over technical issues resulting in one or both hosts being knocked off of the air.
As announced during a live Review-A-Wai podcast held immediately prior to WrestleMania 31, the Review-A-Raw name expanded to also encompass a television series broadcast on Fight Network, with John Pollock and Wai Ting as co-hosts. The televised version of Review-A-Raw is effectively a televised recording session of the podcast, with the actual WWE Raw review content identical in both versions. However, some segments have been modified to suit the television audience, such as the omission of listener feedback and a shorter banter portion at the start of the show that more directly relates to the co-hosts' positions at Fight Network. As both the podcast and televised shows are produced in the same sitting, there may be segments omitted from the televised portion; a selection of segments from the podcast version may be, at their discretion, posted to the Fight Network's YouTube page as Review-A-Raw Extra; the first Review-A-Raw Extra segment was dedicated to a contest selecting the televised series' theme music. As the podcast version takes precedence, the television edition of the show is likely to be pre-empted in the event of other Fight Network commitments by either host; this first occurred on July 5, 2016, where Jason Agnew would host an audio-only edition in lieu of the televised show, due to John and Wai covering UFC 200 for Fight Network. The final "podcast-only" episode of Review-A-Raw was posted March 31, 2015, with the first episode of the televised series aired on Fight Network on April 7, 2015.
In January 2016, John Pollock and Wai Ting have also produced an additional televised segment, Raw in 3 Minutes, co-branded with Fight Network's Fight News Now branding; both the full televised version and Raw in 3 Minutes is available from the Live Audio Wrestling YouTube channel..
Originally hosted by John Pollock and Wai Ting as a counterpart to Review-a-Raw, the first episode of Review-An-Impact was posted on November 5, 2010. Since September 2011, Nate Milton (nicknamed "The Godfather, TNAte" in the LAW community) has been featured in a recurring segment on Review-An-Impact where he provides separate analysis of the episode; this was often in the form of an interview with one of the co-hosts. In the event that either host was unavailable, Nate takes on the role of co-host for the entire podcast in place of the segment. In late 2014, due to Wai Ting's other commitments, Nate Milton became a co-host on a more full-time basis, though the arrangement lasted for only a few weeks due to the termination of Impact Wrestling on Spike TV; Wai Ting's final episode of Review-An-Impact was on October 23, 2014.
With the relaunch of Impact Wrestling on Destination America, Review-An-Impact was revamped with Brian Mann as the lead host, initially with John Pollock as co-host in the pilot episode on January 8, 2015, and with Nate Milton as co-host on a full-time basis on the following episode. Due to being the first "all-American podcast" in the LAW family, and with neither co-host hosting another LAW podcast, Review-An-Impact also expanded their scope to include their commentary on general wrestling news, diversity issues in professional wrestling, pop culture (largely as a result of Brian later joining Yahoo! Movies), and politics in general.
With the declining relevance of TNA in North American professional wrestling in 2015 (and the impending end of the TNA/Destination America partnership), Live Audio Wrestling decided to terminate coverage of TNA following the 2015 Bound for Glory event; the final regular episode of Review-an-Impact (an episode dedicated to counting down the "Top 10 moments in Impact Wrestling history") aired on October 3, 2015.
Keep It 100
Billed as "the realest show about being fake", Keep it 100 is a podcast that serves as a spiritual successor to Review-An-Impact, hosted by Brian Mann and Nate Milton. The idea behind the show came from the viewer feedback segments from Review-an-Impact, where general questions regarding the co-hosts' opinions started to dominate the discourse as opposed to feedback related to episodes of the episodes of Impact Wrestling being reviewed. With Live Audio Wrestling deciding to terminate coverage of TNA, it was agreed that the viewer feedback segment would effectively be expanded to cover the entire show.
The concept of this podcast, where the co-hosts must answer every question asked of them with absolute truth, was largely inspired by the segment of the same name on The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore. Similar to its predecessor, topics covered by the show are primarily focused on general wrestling news, diversity in professional wrestling, wrestling as it relates to pop culture, with a slight nod to politics. The first episode aired on October 9, 2015.
Due to the hosts' other commitments, Keep It 100 aired for only seven weeks as a weekly series, though various special shows have been posted on an irregular basis, including those dedicated to covering TNA special events. In 2016, Brian and Nate revived the Review-A-Merica podcast (once used by John and Wai for a one-off show discussing the 2012 United States presidential election from the perspective of two Canadians) for a series of shows covering the 2016 United States presidential election from a "wrestling with democracy" perspective.
On selected weeks with a live episode of WWE SmackDown, a third LAW podcast starring John Pollock and Wai Ting is also available for download on Wednesdays. Like Review-A-Raw and Review-An-Impact, Review-A-SmackDown reviews the previous episode of WWE SmackDown, ending with listener feedback. The first episode of Review-A-SmackDown was posted on August 31, 2011, with Jason Agnew filling in for Wai Ting; the first episode with Wai Ting was posted on December 1, 2011. Up until the second WWE brand extension, Review-A-SmackDown would be produced only on a show-by-show basis, and not every live episode of WWE SmackDown would be reviewed.
Review-A-SmackDown would become a weekly podcast with the second WWE brand extension, complementing Review-A-Raw. Unlike Review-A-Raw, however, Review-A-SmackDown is intended to remain an audio-only podcast, and not a show that is meant to air on Fight Network. The first regular episode of Review-A-SmackDown was posted on July 19, 2016, covering the WWE draft that kicked off the second WWE brand extension.
Ask-A-Wai Video Podcast
The Ask-A-Wai name would later be reused for a video podcast series featuring John Pollock and Wai Ting in late 2011, as a complement to Review-A-Wai, where John Pollock and Wai Ting answered questions submitted by Review-A-Wai fans regarding pro wrestling and mixed martial arts. Though originally filmed in the "Review-A-Wai studios" at Fight Network, later entries were filmed in various locations in and around downtown Toronto. A short-lived revival of Ask-A-Wai was also posted as a YouTube series on the Live Audio Wrestling YouTube channel in 2015.
UFC Post Fight Show on TSN Radio
|Running time||60, 90 or 120 minutes (dependent on host stations other programming commitments)|
|Home station||CHUM (December 2011 - present)|
|Starring||John Pollock (2011-present)
Jason Agnew (2011-present)
|Creator(s)||Jason Agnew , John Pollock|
|Producer(s)||John Pollock (2011-present)|
|Recording studio||Toronto, Ontario|
|Air dates||since December 10, 2011|
|No. of episodes||10 (as of June 24, 2012)|
|Audio format||Monaural sound (December 2011-present)|
|Sponsor(s)||Live Audio Wrestling|
Starting in 2011 with UFC 140, The LAW started to present a UFC post fight show on TSN Radio 1050. The show airs after the conclusion of the most recent Ultimate Fighting Championship event and provides results and opinions from callers and MMA journalists. Though originally branded as a LAW show, since the launch of The MMA Report the show has used the latter show's branding.
The MMA Report with John Pollock
The MMA Report with John Pollock is a radio show hosted by John Pollock on TSN Radio, first airing on July 5, 2012. It airs Friday at midnight on TSN Radio (though the show itself is available as a podcast on the LAW podcast feed one day before), and is touted as "the third hour" of the LAW as repeats of the show air immediately after the LAW on weeks without a Ultimate Fighting Championship pay-per-view (when The UFC Post Fight Show airs in its place instead). As with the LAW, it is also broadcast in the Vancouver market (formerly CFTE and presently CKST) since 2013.
The show is also considered to be a spiritual successor to Fight Network Radio, due to John Pollock's past and present connections.
Japanese Audio Wrestling
Japanese Audio Wrestling is a monthly podcast hosted by Chris Charlton and WH Park, both having previously contributed to various LAW-related shows and podcasts, focusing in on Japanese wrestling. The first episode was posted on August 1, 2012.
Related to Japanese Audio Wrestling is the LAW's daily coverage of the G1 Climax tournament each year, with John Pollock recapping most days of the tournament and Chris Charlton and WH Park recapping the remaining days of the tournament.
Bauer & Pollock
Bauer & Pollock is a co-production between Live Audio Wrestling and Major League Wrestling, where John Pollock and Court Bauer discuss the business of professional wrestling and mixed martial arts. Although initially designed to be a biweekly series, it was moved to a weekly format soon after, available on both the MLW and LAW podcast feeds. The show was originally posted on Fridays, but was moved to late Wednesdays to avoid having multiple LAW podcasts being posted on the same day. With the launch of Review-A-SmackDown as a weekly series, Bauer & Pollock became a biweekly series posted on Fridays, alternating with Review-A-Wai.
whtsNXT (pronounced as "what's next") is a podcast hosted by Jason Agnew and technical producer Braden Herrington, focusing on WWE NXT, while incorporating elements from Bite Network Radio. The name was chosen to not only reflect the product being reviewed (a show based on developmental wrestling), but also the fact that this was Braden's first foray into radio broadcasting (having joined shortly after the LAW debuted on TSN Radio as one of his first industry jobs), and a turning point in Agnew's television career (having left Bite TV since the LAW debuted on TSN Radio, leaving him with no permanent work in television aside from Splatalot). It is seen as continuing in the "rite of passage" of LAW hosts moving up the ranks (Dan Lovranski, Jason Agnew, John Pollock, and Wai Ting were all, at one point, technical producers on The LAW), with the veteran Agnew guiding the rookie Braden, akin to NXT itself. The first episode was posted on October 7, 2013 as an addition to the LAW's podcast, but thereafter was separately posted on Thursdays thereafter.
In 2016, a separate show, CWCeen, was added to the end of whtsNXT, covering the WWE Cruiserweight Classic. This show was hosted by Braden Herrington and Wai Ting, and includes banter on their common love of hip-hop, as well as the fact that Braden Herrington had joined Fight Network after leaving TSN Radio.
- "Twitter". Live Audio Wrestling. Retrieved 24 May 2012.
- "The LAW moves to Talk640". Canoe. Retrieved 13 January 2011.
- "LIVE AUDIO WRESTLING TO DEBUT ON TSN RADIO 1050". TSN. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
- "Laying down The LAW on radio". Canoe. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "Jeff Marek chat". Canoe. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "The LAW unbroken after 15 years". Canoe. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "LAW May 13 Update - Dick 'The Destroyer' Beyer on The LAW". Fight Network. Retrieved 13 May 2012.