After a controversial call ended the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers game, Twitter exploded with angry and frustrated tweets from fans, players and journalists. The replacement referees' shoddy officiating had many people comparing Monday Night Football to WWE.
WWE CEO Vince McMahon had to be beaming when his name, WWE and Raw were all trending after the game.
The ending of the Seattle versus Green Bay game did feel like the kind of story you'd see told in a WWE ring. If that happened in pro wrestling, though, Golden Tate and M.D. Jennings would have later settled their differences in a steel cage match.
In reality, NFL fans just have to live with that sinking feeling in their gut. The NFL had an WWE air about it, but without the inevitable muscle-bound hero making things right in the end.
Many of the Twitter references to WWE were potshots at the wrestling company.
Skip Bayless of ESPN's First Take, for example, said this:
If that doesn't end the owners' lockout of the real refs, I don't know what will. The NFL looks like the WWE.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) September 25, 2012
The NFL also received comparisons to Vince McMahon's XFL. This is not exactly what Roger Goodell wants people talking about after a big game.
Rob Parker echoed that thought with a frustrated Tweet of his own.
Can't sleep. The NFL turned into the WWE right before my eyes. #thathadtobefake— Rob Parker (@RobParkerESPN) September 25, 2012
Linda Cohn compared WWE and the NFL's integrity.
— Linda Cohn (@lindacohn) September 25, 2012
WWE wisely anticipated this and used Raw to make fun of the NFL's refereeing situation. WWE refs were highlighted during the show after a controversial call cost CM Punk a victory in the previous episode.
At one point, Paul Heyman held a sleep mask with an NFL patch on it and Punk asked if the referee was wearing it during the match.
WWE employees weighed in as well. Former WWE and ECW announcer Joey Styles works closely with WWE's social media. He simply stated:
— Joey Styles (@JoeyStyles) September 25, 2012
Packers fans may agree with him right now.
WWE Hall of Fame announcer Jim Ross made a reference to WWE's most controversial moment, the Montreal Screwjob. It's never good when an NFL game gets compared to Bret Hart's phantom loss.
Even in the face of this controversy, the NFL will still rake in big-time ratings every week. Still, McMahon and company must have loved to have seen the Internet aflutter with comments like this:
Grande (@SeanGrandePBP) September 18, 2012