Pro Wrestling: 5 Reasons Vince McMahon Should Sell WWE
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It is well known how powerful Vince McMahon has become not just in wrestling, but in entertainment. Many of his ventures, short of the XFL, have resulted in financial success for the McMahon family.
McMahon became a pioneer in the wrestling industry, and many promoters since the mid-1980s have tried to emulate his style, only to come up short. At the start of the 2000s, the last main competitor to the World Wrestling Federation (now World Wrestling Entertainment), World Championship Wrestling, finally succumbed to the financial measures needed to maintain credibility within the circles of wrestling.
Once McMahon bought WCW, much of the flair and rivalry of competing brands seemed to disappear. Sure, it was nice to see WCW stars appear on Monday Night Raw, but that story line could only last so long. The "invasion" angle infused a little bit of life into our wrestling, but as the WCW stars slowly made their way to TNA or any other promotion, we got back to the regular brand of WWE superstars.
As I read the stories being written across the Internet about wrestling lacking that spark, it makes me wonder if Vince would ever sell the company that has been attached to his family for so many years. As I write this, I know that he is lining up the company so that he can one day hand it over to his daughter, Stephanie, and her husband, Triple H.
But, what if he did sell? Would these reasons be legitimate in the eyes of Vincent Kennedy McMahon?
5. He Has Taken the Company as Far as It Can Go
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There comes a time in someone's life when they feel that they have done all they can do at their current job. Is it giving up? Probably not, but just a realization that there is a ceiling for every person in their current position. Sometimes it needs a new voice or a new perspective to get the momentum going again. McMahon has now been doing this across four decades. There are not too many people who stay in the business for that long when the demands of the schedule are as grueling as his.
He has poured every ounce of energy into the WWE and has seen in grow not just in the United States, but around the world. Events sell out within hours globally, and WWE superstars are treated as just that when they wrestle at international locations. However, once he has established the company as an international brand, what else is there for him to pursue? He has achieved moderate success in the film industry, but has not given full attention to that.
Wrestling was at its peak in the mid to late 1990's and probably will never see those heights again. Yes, wrestling is cyclical, but those shows had a rabid fanbase, and the wrestlers became a part of mainstream American culture. Vince McMahon should look at his company and see if it has reached its ceiling under his watch.
4. The Product Has Become Predicatble
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Any fan that has watched wrestling over the last one or two years knows there is a good chance that John Cena will be champion for an extended period of time. Cena is the face of the WWE, and his merchandise is some of the most popular items, especially in the minds of the younger fans of WWE.
However, one of the things that made the late 90s run so memorable is that as you watched, you never knew what might happen. As good ole' Jim Ross would scream each week, you never know what might happen in the WWE. He was right, as millions of fans tuned in each week to see which Superstar would shine that particular night.
The product that is on the television right now continues to be predictable in many ways. We know that Cena and Randy Orton will continue their reign as WWE champs, and we know that when a bad guy wins, it will usually be as a result of some interference, thus resulting in a rematch for the ensuing three weeks.
Unpredictability is what gets the fans excited. Did you notice the buzz created last week after CM Punk's promo at the end of Raw? Fans didn't expect that. The wrestling websites didn't predict that. It was new, fresh and on the edge. What happened this week? Cena does his best to stand up for the rights of Punk, and now we see that all is well within the WWE.
3. Selling Would Create Major Headlines
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If Vince did choose to sell the company, he would garner headlines from all news outlets. Someone that has built this company into a global presence selling the business would create speculation on both sides of the fence. Wrestling fans across the world would pay attention to the person(s) that bought WWE and wait with eagerness at the effect the new owners would have on the product.
Vince has long tried his best to get his company in the headlines. Sometimes he has done it intentionally (XFL, celebrity appearances at Wrestlemanias), and other times, they have found him (Owen Hart, Eddie Guerrero). Selling the company now would create the buzz that wrestling might need in order to get out of this current funk that it is in, where fanbases and ratings seem to slowly decline.
2. It Gives Him the Power to Decide If/When He Returns to Wrestling
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The opportunity to sell would give other promotions a chance to offer their product to a wider fan base. Do you think organizations such as TNA and Ring of Honor wouldn't jump at the chance to move one rung up the wrestling ladder? With McMahon no longer at the helm of WWE, there would be a struggle among other promotions to enhance their wrestlers, giving them the chance to succeed.
As these organizations are fighting for the top spot among the wrestling promotions, McMahon could sit back and wait to decide if he wants to continue this business that he has known his entire life. Remember the shock through the wrestling world when Eric Bischoff showed up on Monday Night Raw? Imagine the look on people's faces the night McMahon returns to wrestling, letting the fans know he just bought their favorite promotion.
Or if he wanted another challenge, why not start a new wrestling organization and build it from the ground up? There would be hundreds of young wrestlers that would jump at the chance to work for a wrestling legend.
1. Wrestling Is a Dying Industry
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As I sit here today and think back 15 years ago to when Hulk Hogan shocked the wrestling world by joining the nWo, I realize that we are not at that place in our culture anymore where wrestling is considered to be "must-see TV." Go to any wrestling event, either a major promotion or your local organization down the road, and watch the people. The excitement is no longer there in most people's eyes.
Sure, wrestling still matters to some people, but it is not talked about the following day like it used to be. Kids and adults tuned in to see what would happen, and most talked about it the following day. Now the only people that are fully into it are the diehard fans, and they are not going anywhere.
Nonetheless, it still is about making money, and if the demand is no longer there, the money supply will be smaller as well. Merchandise sales, ticket sales and PPV buys all reflect this trend in our society, so it is time for McMahon to examine the entire business, not just the WWE, and speculate on what wrestling will be like in 2015.
McMahon selling the WWE will never happen, but these are a few of the ideas that I believe would be enough to create a conversation about the possibility. Feel free to comment.