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"Vince McMahon Out of Excuses" - Variety

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Vince McMahon Out of Excuses for WWE Woes
Opinion: CEO needs to address on Q2 call what he's doing to fix creative on Fox, USA shows


When World Wrestling Entertainment reported its sluggish first-quarter performance in April, CEO Vince McMahon blamed it on “superstar absences,” the temporary sidelining of many of his star grapplers due to injuries accumulated in 2018 and early 2019.

But now that WWE is on the verge of releasing its second-quarter numbers on July 25, McMahon is going to have to come up with a new excuse if his company’s Q2 results remain soft.

A Variety analysis indicates that although nearly all of the injured wrestlers McMahon referenced returned to the ring in the first half of 2019, ratings for WWE’s flagship TV properties, “Raw” and “SmackDown,” sunk significantly compared with the same period last year.

Without “superstar absences” to blame, it will be interesting at the end of Q2 to see how McMahon explains the worrisome decline. He may have to do just that if he addresses high-profile new hires he made last month to oversee his ailing shows.

McMahon will also have to offer some kind of hope to investors given how badly WWE stock has been slumping since Q1, closing Friday 29% down against the 2019 high of $99. The company’s TV partners, NBCUniversal and Fox, are also reportedly getting anxious about the state of the WWE, having paid a combined $2.35 billion earlier this year to keep “Raw” and “SmackDown” on the air for five more years.

The networks haven’t said anything publicly expressing concern, but the data demonstrates they have every right to be worried.

McMahon first blamed the WWE’s ratings woes on a talent shortage on the Q4 call in January, naming 13 specific wrestlers whose injuries had impacted the product. “While engagement metrics over the past two quarters were impacted by superstar absences, we believe they will improve as our talent return and we launch our new season following a successful WrestleMania,” he said, citing WWE’s most popular annual event.

WWE Co-President George Barrios echoed McMahon on the Q1 call, referring to the list of specific wrestlers as examples of the “superstar absences.” But the list wasn’t quite accurate; seven of them weren’t off TV for very long and another three who were out with long-term injuries could barely be classified as superstar attractions in the league (a WWE rep declined comment).


Usually don't see bigger tabloids like this joining in on the shit on WWE wagon, but here we are:


https://variety.com/2019/tv/opinion/vince-mcmahon-wwe-woes-1203273548/
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Vince McMahon Out of Excuses for WWE Woes
Opinion: CEO needs to address on Q2 call what he's doing to fix creative on Fox, USA shows


When World Wrestling Entertainment reported its sluggish first-quarter performance in April, CEO Vince McMahon blamed it on “superstar absences,” the temporary sidelining of many of his star grapplers due to injuries accumulated in 2018 and early 2019.

But now that WWE is on the verge of releasing its second-quarter numbers on July 25, McMahon...
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· You need to be yourself, you can't be no-one else.
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The company’s TV partners, NBCUniversal and Fox, are also reportedly getting anxious about the state of the WWE, having paid a combined $2.35 billion earlier this year to keep “Raw” and “SmackDown” on the air for five more years

meh, tough nipples. You were fucking idiots for paying those sums of cash for a product that is on its way down and has been doing so for many years. These problems arnt recent.
 

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The Q2 Earnings report is this Thursday. :mj

Should be interesting. I expect an increase due to the TV deals from FOX and USA but it'll be great to see the mental gymnastics Vince, HHH, and Barrios do to explain the record low ratings, attendance, and popularity.
 

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The Q2 Earnings report is this Thursday. :mj

Should be interesting. I expect an increase due to the TV deals from FOX and USA but it'll be great to see the mental gymnastics Vince, HHH, and Barrios do to explain the record low ratings, attendance, and popularity.
I don't think Triple H will have much to explain, because all of these decisions that have caused the product to crater have been Vince decisions. NXT still sells out wherever they go. Hell, they move more tickets than RAW and Smackdown does these days for Takeovers...which are held in the same arena that RAW and SD are in that same week.
 

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I don't think Triple H will have much to explain, because all of these decisions that have caused the product to crater have been Vince decisions. NXT still sells out wherever they go. Hell, they move more tickets than RAW and Smackdown does these days for Takeovers...which are held in the same arena that RAW and SD are in that same week.
While still being a money loser, regardless. Doesn't matter if the goal is to build the "superstars of the future", even though they don't make stars anymore regardless. Having that on your portfolio is not a good look for the future heir apparent of the day to day operation of WWE.

It's the same reason why he wasn't put in the position that Heyman and Bischoff occupy now. Can't have that blemish early before taking over and worrying investors even further down the road.
 

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The Q2 Earnings report is this Thursday. :mj

Should be interesting. I expect an increase due to the TV deals from FOX and USA but it'll be great to see the mental gymnastics Vince, HHH, and Barrios do to explain the record low ratings, attendance, and popularity.
Triple HGH is an uneducated fool with all but no understanding of the position that he's in and Vince doesn't have any more excuses. They will let Barrios do the talking.

I don't think Triple H will have much to explain, because all of these decisions that have caused the product to crater have been Vince decisions. NXT still sells out wherever they go. Hell, they move more tickets than RAW and Smackdown does these days for Takeovers...which are held in the same arena that RAW and SD are in that same week.
And yet NXT has yet to turn any kind of discernable profit; the kind that can boost a company's growth.

@UniversalGleam is right, if you as a company are dumb enough to get conned by Barrios (I don't buy for a second that Vince or Triple HGH are smart enough to pull it off) into signing such a dubious deal, then you deserve what happens to you i,e you get what you pay for.
 

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While still being a money loser, regardless. Doesn't matter if the goal is to build the "superstars of the future", even though they don't make stars anymore regardless. Having that on your portfolio is not a good look for the future heir apparent of the day to day operation of WWE.

It's the same reason why he wasn't put in the position that Heyman and Bischoff occupy now. Can't have that blemish early before taking over and worrying investors even further down the road.
NXT at Full Sail is a money loser because its built that way. It's called being a loss leader. A ton of corporations do it in order to make returns on other investments. And NXT house show are basically ways for talent to get more acclimated to the WWE house show schedule and such. AEW has been looking into a developmental brand/branch as well, and they also know they won't be making money from it.

Takeovers are actually profitable.

And you can't fault Triple H for NXT stars not doing well on the main roster when Vince either forgets about them after being called up or completely mishandles them. Without fail.
 

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The company’s TV partners, NBCUniversal and Fox, are also reportedly getting anxious about the state of the WWE, having paid a combined $2.35 billion earlier this year to keep “Raw” and “SmackDown” on the air for five more years

meh, tough nipples. You were fucking idiots for paying those sums of a cash for a product that is on its way down and has been doing so for many years. These problems arnt recent.
Do they have out clauses if they're not getting the ratings? Could they walk away? Do they have the ability to exert more creative control if not meeting goals etc?

They're not doubt paying a lot of money BUT relatively I suspect they could write it off and move on. Especially if "pro-rasslin" is hurting their overall brand while providing shit ratings.

Would be interesting if Fox or NBCUniversal could move their respective show to a different time slot or day or it's locked in on Mondays at 8pm.

Paying that kind of money - Vince didn't have they by their short and curlies here. Vince is the small fish in this deal.
 

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Do they have out clauses if they're not getting the ratings? Could they walk away? Do they have the ability to exert more creative control if not meeting goals etc?

They're not doubt paying a lot of money BUT relatively I suspect they could write it off and move on. Especially if "pro-rasslin" is hurting their overall brand while providing shit ratings.

Would be interesting if Fox or NBCUniversal could move their respective show to a different time slot or day or it's locked in on Mondays at 8pm.

Paying that kind of money - Vince didn't have they by their short and curlies here. Vince is the small fish in this deal.
You've got to assume a company of Fox'/NBCUniversal size would be smart enough for an out clause.
 

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Do they have out clauses if they're not getting the ratings? Could they walk away? Do they have the ability to exert more creative control if not meeting goals etc?

They're not doubt paying a lot of money BUT relatively I suspect they could write it off and move on. Especially if "pro-rasslin" is hurting their overall brand while providing shit ratings.

Would be interesting if Fox or NBCUniversal could move their respective show to a different time slot or day or it's locked in on Mondays at 8pm.

Paying that kind of money - Vince didn't have they by their short and curlies here. Vince is the small fish in this deal.
Dave has said he has heard of no out clauses in these contracts. I know the guy who originally broke the story said the same thing as well. It's live TV. And RAW is still one of USA's highest drawing programs right now. As for FOX, they need live TV desperately ever since UFC left them.

But yes, I imagine they have some creative pressure they can leverage considering the 24/7 title was a USA Network idea, and its constantly one of the most viewed segments and talked about segments on social media.
 

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Do they have out clauses if they're not getting the ratings? Could they walk away? Do they have the ability to exert more creative control if not meeting goals etc?

They're not doubt paying a lot of money BUT relatively I suspect they could write it off and move on. Especially if "pro-rasslin" is hurting their overall brand while providing shit ratings.

Would be interesting if Fox or NBCUniversal could move their respective show to a different time slot or day or it's locked in on Mondays at 8pm.

Paying that kind of money - Vince didn't have they by their short and curlies here. Vince is the small fish in this deal.
Its almost if modern TV execs are kind of stupid. Ok stupider.
 

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Fox should of did some research before spending all that money. Anybody that's watched WWE for the last 20 years could of told them how bad the product is getting. I'm curious as to what they'll do if the ratings continue to tank.
 

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What will be interesting will be the pull of the two networks at wanting the better content. If Raw is delivering better than SDL, Fox will be all over Vince as to why SDL doesn't have those wrestlers/storylines.

Usually a star is connected to one show at a time - it will be weird for Fox to be promoting a wrestler who also appears on a rival network. And vice versa.

I just don't see how Raw's cable rating will be able to match up against network competition. Fox seemingly just wants mindless filler though - put it on Friday night and forget about it.
 

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a wise man once said "it's the cool thing to bash wwe"

but seriously wwe really does have the potential to be better than it is.
 
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