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THE DIRT SHEET THREAD: THE LATEST FROM MELTZER AND MORE - 31ST JULY '20

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- Fri, 31 Jul 2020 15:50:11 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426062
File: 1596225011886.png -(155157B / 151.52KB, 369x343) Thumbnail displayed, click image for full size. THE DIRT SHEET THREAD: THE LATEST FROM MELTZER AND MORE - 31ST JULY '20
The first few posts are from this week's Wrestling Observer Newsletter. For the full newsletter and much more get a subscription at http://www.f4wonline.com/
Dave Meltzer's star ratings are now posted in their own thread, so look on the board for it.
Use this thread to post news as it comes through. Do not use the old thread for anything new, please move discussion to here instead.

> For a number of reasons, as it turns out, the pandemic was the greatest thing for WWE’s business as they posted the most profitable quarter in their history. It’s not that they overcome the pain of the pandemic. They outright benefitted from it, with more consumer product sales, higher network numbers and the real difference maker, far lower costs to produce television.

> Profits quadrupled in the quarter, blowing away all estimates, due to saving $51.6 million in media costs. The vast majority of those savings was the lower cost of producing television the way they do it now in the Performance Center, no longer running live, and taping multiple shows on successive days as opposed to live Monday, Wednesday and Friday in different parts of the country with far more wrestlers, production people and costs.

> For one, taping two weeks had a time for each show, and taping shows on successive days, saved travel costs greatly. Producing a show in a small building greatly cut down on the production budget, not to mention the fewer production people and costs that were already lower were cut almost in half from there by generally taping two shows at a time. Plus there was savings on uplinks by no longer doing any shows actually live, as even when taped the same day, they never actually went live. The second positive was a huge increase in subscribers to the WWE Network. The number was 195,000 above what would have been normally expected as of 6/30.

> There are a number of factors involved here. One is that WrestleMania had so many people subscribing for free as compared to the past few years, that many of them didn’t cancel and stayed on as paying subscribers. Another reason, arguably the most important because ESPN’s PPV numbers for UFC were so much higher than previously, and AEW also set records in PPV, is that with sports bars are closed, and people are no longer getting together in large numbers for PPV parties. Thus, if you have let’s say five people watching a WWE show together, now maybe you’d have one or two, and if the others wanted to watch, they’d buy the WWE Network when they wouldn’t have needed to in the past.

> In addition, the WWE Network changed with two other factors. The free month gimmick where you could watch the PPV, and then cancel, has been dropped. There are no more free months. While they now have a free tier, the PPV shows and a lot of the programming is not available on that free tier. Plus with that free tier, that you don’t even have to sign up for, more people are exposed to an aspect of the WWE Network. The free tier constantly promotes the paid tier, where the most attractive content resides, like the PPVs, Undertaker’s Last Ride, and other new and old footage.

> All of this has led to more people becoming new subscribers, at least short-term. Total views of at least one minute of different programming on the network were up 55 percent from last year even though the subscriber average number for the quarter was down 1.6 percent due to the gains coming late in the quarter.

> For what it’s worth, when Vince McMahon was asked about the increase, he passed to Jayar Donland, who had none of those answers aside from the new free tier. “There are a few things going on,” he said. “I am not going to touch of anything specific on the free version. But obviously, launching that is a contributor. But I just think, in general, our promotion across our platforms. We are doing new things across the digital and social ecosystem, as well as with our TV partners. You would have been able to sample content on ESPN or FS 1 driving back to the network.”

> It should be noted that the ESPN shows were before WrestleMania, and WrestleMania paid was the lowest for any WrestleMania in several years, so that has to be largely ruled out as a key factor.

> “We talked about some of the compelling content we have had, everything from Undertaker’s Last Ride, and we are an attraction business,” said Donlan. “ I think we have had some really fantastic cinematic mach attractions in our recent PPVs. And then the last piece would be, there has just been some macro industry factors, which is just a general growth in digital viewing and some that’s accelerated post-COVID.” “We didn’t hurt ourselves by going to the free as opposed to a 30-day free trial,” said Vince McMahon. “We have not hurt ourselves and that much we can definitely say.”

> But it does have to be noted when interest appears at a low point since at least 1996, that network subscriber numbers have increased so strongly over the last three months, and manly the month of June when the free month was dropped and the free tier was launched. Our own experience is when people pirated shows, they got exposed to them. It didn’t hurt numbers as much as we thought and did help exposure. When the pirating was shut down, subscriptions increased far beyond expectations. It proved the axiom that the people who pirate stuff if they couldn’t get it for free wouldn’t pay for it anyway to be far more false than we had ever believed.

> But that was a short-term boost and while those numbers stayed at that level, logically the big gains from that point on weren’t going to happen, and it was a one time surge. Doing clips gives the exposure for free without the entire show, and seems to be the happy medium everyone is doing, but every marketing gimmick has a shelf life of how long it works and then it stops working. But the key is, WWE has found a new gimmick when the old gimmick of one month free ran its course, and in literally one month, June alone, has turned around nearly two years of declines.

> Another aspect is that streaming has gotten more popular across the board during the pandemic with more people home. Then again, more people are home to watch television, and there is less sports competition, and WWE had struggled badly there. What’s notable is that the record profits came during a quarter where revenues were not only much lower than last year even with the new television deals, but were slightly down from analysts expectations.

> The general expectation was $231 million in revenues and $11.5 million to $12 million in profits. The actual numbers were $223.4 million in revenue and $43.8 million in after-tax profit, basically quadrupling expectations. Last year’s numbers which included both all the live events associated with WrestleMania and the Mania show itself, a full house show schedule, and payment for a Saudi Arabia show, none of which happened this quarter. Last year’s second quarter grossed $268.9 million in revenue and ended with a $10.4 million after-tax profit. Thanks to the current administration, the company was down to paying 20.5 percent tax, from prior levels of closer to 35 percent a few years ago. Last year with far lower profits, the tax rate was 25 percent.
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 15:51:24 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426063 Reply
>>6426062
> The stock price closed on 7/30 at $45.43 per share, giving the company a $3.517 billion market value. The quarterly numbers were not reported until after the market closed . In after hours trading after the numbers were released, shares rose to $48.16.

> It also should be noted that it was not the cost-cutting of talent salaries that led to the record profits. All main roster talent, and a number of the furloughed and fired employees, were being paid their regular salaries through 7/17. So the $4 million per month savings in that category will likely lead to $12 million more in added profits next quarter.

> The WWE Network on 6/30 had 1,690,000 subscribers, broken down as 1,229,000 in the U.S. and 461,000 outside the U.S. Three months earlier, just days before WrestleMania, the numbers were 1,083,000 in the U.S. and 412,000 outside the U.S., so the gains were 13.5 percent domestically and 11.9 percent outside the U.S. The strongest growth outside the U.S. was in India.

> For comparison, during the same three month period in 2019 there was a 0.4 percent decrease in the U.S. and 1.2 percent increase overseas. In 2018, it was a 6.9 percent increase in the U.S. and 8.3 percent increase outside the U.S. in quarter two.

> Because of the huge increase in profits, the company’s plans to buy back stock, which they had dropped in April, is potentially back on. While not official, they said that they may resume a $500 million expenditure to buy back stock with the belief the stock price will increase.

> Based on the current profit margins, the stock price is very low. The only red light regarding a strong increase to the past $60 to $80 per share range is the uncertainty that the huge rights fees, which are totally carrying the company at this point, may not be maintained in the next contract that would start in late 2024. There is a big feeling FOX way overpaid, and USA was forced to overpay because FOX really wanted Raw. WWE has already had to renew a number of international deals, including the previous No. 2 deals in the U.K., at substantially less money.

> In addition, the company has noted that profits will be down once they start touring and going back to live weekly television, particularly early on if they have to run arenas with limited capacity.

> Unlike in the past, where investors were more bullish on the prospects of 3 million to 4 million network subscribers, and growing from there, which never materialized, there is a realization that only numbers that really matter are rights fees. They’re dropping overseas, and the next round are likely to be determined by ratings in the 18-49 demo primarily, which have dropped badly in recent months. Analysts listened to Vince McMahon’s excuses, such as injuries, or needing to be patient because they have to build new stars, and now the excuse is the pandemic, but many are growing weary of excuses.

> Analyst Brandon Ross had written an article pessimistic about WWE stock long-term because of the belief the ratings declines have continued with no end in sight. His feeling was those in television will pick up on it with lower rates for U.S. renewals in 2024 and a lower company value due to it. The piece noted that some of the ratings decline were COVID related, noting that every wrestling show has declined. But they noted AEW in July was up 11 percent from April while Raw and Smackdown continued their descent, both having dropped 15 percent since April.

> They also noted Vince McMahon has promised changes multiple times, and there have been short-lived experiments, but that change really hasn’t happened. They also pointed to WWE’s inability to create new stars, and there is very little youth on the men’s side, even at the mid-level. Not mentioned is the aging out of the audience, which makes it less desirable to advertisers and that also has had no end in sight and the aging issues have grown for both NXT and Smackdown in particular, with media audiences hovering between 55 and 57 years old. And unlike baseball and golf, which appeal to older audiences than WWE, they are both high prestige sports with a much higher income fan base, making them more advertiser friendly.

> Ross also noted that when Paul Heyman was let go, the focus was put back on established older stars, and viewer declines have continued without building new stars. They noted the company has a few years to turn this around, as the next set of negotiations are likely for around 2022. They also talked about the value in selling the network programming to Disney, FOX or ESPN. Ross noted three months ago McMahon said to have patience in the ratings because they need time to build new stars, then noted the firing of Heyman, who was trying to make new stars. Ross directly asked why Heyman’s direction was abandoned and why he was fired. Vince McMahon didn’t answer either question.

> Ross did give McMahon an out as to be looking bad as he noted AEW’s ratings comeback, by pointing out NXT has come back as well, and brought up Paul Levesque’s success with NXT and whether he could be used on Raw and Smackdown creative to rebuild those numbers. The problem is that while NXT has come back at one stretch during the pandemic, it also had lows in recent weeks, and overall, even when viewers were high, it was mostly increases over 50 and that audience has continued to age and be the oldest of any wrestling show in the country.
>>
Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 15:55:32 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426066 Reply
>>6426062
> Vince McMahon said that the lack of similar declines in NXT and AEW were because they were new. “It’s something that’s new and what have you, and it’s up to us to make Raw and Smackdown feel more youthful,” he said. “That is where we are going and I just, as far as continuing on, I say what was new in building characters and you always have to build characters, constantly. And it seems to me that as far as Paul Levesque helping out on Raw and smackdown, that happens. It’s all hands on deck in terms of all that we do. As far as Paul Heyman is concerned, he did, I thought, a very, very good job in terms of creative.”

> If anything, the established shows should be hurt the least because of being an established part of people’s lives. In particular, Smackdown, which is so many homes that don’t have the competition with news and now sports that Raw, AEW and NXT have, and with the Friday night advantage of people no longer going to bars and other places in the numbers of the past should have actually increased, or at best, held the audience, far better than the other shows.

> McMahon had earlier been asked about the ratings. “As far as ratings are concerned, again, more than any other sport, surely, our audience is a part of the program,” McMahon said. “Its audience interaction that always is the plus, and again, it goes all the way back to the origination of the genre in terms of the game. So the audience is integral to our success and our television ratings, again, because of the interaction and lack thereof. “Notwithstanding that, I think that we can have more compelling characters, better storylines, new characters coming in to where we are right now and more of content that’s not necessarily in the ring, but yet one that focuses on their personalities and their story outside of the ring,.”

> What’s notable is studying minute-by-minute, and where they grow is content in the ring and where they fall off is focusing on personalities and doing things outside the ring. It’s more pronounced with the AEW and UFC fan base, but it is the same with NXT and WWE shows. With WWE, it has been similar, such as how the Viking Raiders/Street Profits out of the ring segments were death to ratings every week. The lesson of minute-by-minute is that th more non-match time, the lower the numbers. Pre-taped interview packages on pro wrestling are usually death as far as keeping numbers. While you absolutely need to develop personalities, that is not the key to growing ratings. That is the sacrifice of ratings that you make to try and make stars that pay off down the line, either in selling more tickets/PPVs/network subs, and making stars, which can mean ratings in the future. But just this statement showed how out of touch Vince is, because that stuff, and you have to do it, that he says they need more of to build ratings, actually nowadays has proven to hurt ratings.

> Steven Cahall asked about ratings declines of the past and how long it will take to get the viewers back. He was concerned that maybe the viewers are moving to streaming services and asked if it would take months or years to get the audience back. Realistically, it’s probably not bouncing back significantly until they are back to running arenas. And numbers were declining year-over-year even before that. Getting back to even January or February numbers may never happen again. It absolutely won’t happen without the creation of younger superstars, and far better creative.

> “It just takes months,” McMahon said. “I mean, again, the key here is to be in front of an audience and that’s the main thing. Certainly, getting in front of an audience, they are like a third person in the ring, so to speak, and right away, you get action and reaction. You are able to shoot the audience as we shoot the audience a lot more than any sport, because they are such an integral part of what we do, so I would like to think it’s months away.”

> There was also a blame on the declining international rights on countries being affected by COVID, but that’s ridiculous. The U.K. deal was based on declining ratings in recent years and how WWE treated Sky by giving them more of a PPV cut and then not telling them about the network killing PPV until after the deal was signed. Plus, WWE ratings plummeted in the market. Italy was similar. It was not related at all to COVID, but to high costs with low ratings returns and the station willing to give it up. Riddick said the smaller international deals are because they are challenged by COVID. He also noted that there are no major renewals coming up, which also indicates they aren’t close to a new Middle East deal.

> When asked about the purchase of Evolve and, out of left field, the company getting into MMA, Riddick said, “Evolve was a content purchase deal and very straightforward and every small in size in terms of investment. Right now, we are not looking at any MMA opportunities. Hopefully, they will come along. We are actively, we do have investments in certain new technologies in new areas and we are looking for opportunities, but there’s nothing imminent there.”

> They also noted that a return to arenas will likely hurt profits because they will likely not be able to sell the same amount of tickets with social distancing.

> Virtually all revenue this quarter came from television rights, network subs and PPV, which combined brought in $200.1 million of the $223.4 million in revenues, with the rest coming from consumer products. Last year in the quarter the number was $197.0 million, but that included $50 million in a payment from Saudi Arabia. Regarding whether the originally scheduled November date in Saudi Arabia will take place, it has not been canceled and nothing is certain, but they are not expecting it. “The decision hasn’t been made yet,” said Vince McMahon. “Although it is based on where they are in their economy, I would doubt it (will happen).”
>>
Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 15:58:56 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426068 Reply
>>6426062
> Expenses when it came to television, network and PPV were $118.5 million, down from $170.1 million for the same period last year, or a savings in the quarter alone of $51.6 million. That right there is the profit margin and then some. Everything else is almost immaterial. As far as total revenue, Network plus PPV numbers declined from $51.8 million to $49.4 million. That’s due to a decline in PPV and a slight decline in average subs during the quarter. But the end of the quarter was up from last year so that should be ahead of last year in the next quarter report. The new deals led to television rights increasing from $69.0 million last year in quarter two to $132.9 million this year. Television advertising and sponsorships fell from $18.9 million to $13.3 million.

> As far as ratings are concerned, as compared to last year, Raw in quarter two was down from 2,403,000 viewers to 1,838,000, or 23.5 percent. Keep in mind that this was mostly the Heyman period and since then, after the two weeks of nostalgia bumps, ratings have declined significantly from even that figure. USA Network declined 25.9 percent, but keep in mind most of those declines were a combination of the Raw decline and losing Smackdown. If you take both Raw and Smackdown out of the mix in quarter two last year, the USA Network averaged 699,000 viewers. If you take Raw and NXT out of the mix this year, the average is 648,000. So NXT is doing roughly the prime time average for the network. Actual comparisons to the real USA Network decline not related to WWE is 7.3 percent, so it’s not similar to the Raw decline even though WWE using honest statistics would give you the impression both declines are basically identical.

> Cable as a whole was down 0.8 percent from last year during the same quarter. If you figure that ESPN is usually the No. 1 non-news station and they had almost no live sports, as did all the other sports networks, cable would have likely been significantly up had their still been live sports. Smackdown last year on USA averaged 2,009,000 viewers in quarter two. This year on FOX it grew 4.5 percent to 2,099,000. But that’s with adding 33.7 percent more homes available and being on a far stronger platform. Any increase of less than 30 percent has to be considered a failure in the move from USA to FOX.

> The FOX Network fell four percent, but if you take out the Friday drop from last year, they’d actually be pretty much equal. Network television as a whole dropped 12 percent from the same period last year. Again, much of that decline would be the absence of things like the NCAA basketball tournament, Baseball season and the NBA playoffs. The decline sounds like less watching television due to the pandemic, and technically that is true, but it’s because of fewer first run shows and no sports.

> Last year, in a quarter that included WrestleMania, and all the Mania activities, the live event profits were $12.4 million. This year running no shows, due to various deals and money and advertising costs of shows that didn’t happen, the live events division lost $4.5 million. Profits from consumer products increased from $5.2 million in last year’s second quarter to $7.6 million.

> Licensed products, like video games, console games and mobile games saw revenue increase in the quarter from $9.4 million last year to $9.7 million, an increase seemingly having to do with people home more and playing more games. The industry as a whole has grown during the pandemic. In addition, WWE received revenue from certain WWE talent being used in other video games such as King of Fighters All-Star. The mobile games, WWE Supercard and WWE Champions, had 15 percent revenue growth over the same period last year.

> Merchandise sold through the web site increased from $6.6 million to $12.6 million, both increases being examples of the pandemic helping WWE business. A key to the increases was collectibles, notably six new championship belts, notably a Rock Brahma Bull title and a HHH signature title belt.

> The company currently has $547.9 million in cash on hand, the most it has ever had.

> Plans for a multi-tiered WWE Network, which had been talked about for years, and which would have included usage of the tape libraries of a number of independent promotions, including wXw, Evolve, ICW and Progress, that has been on-and-off for years, is back off. Regarding whether that content would be used on the paid tier, those decisions have gone back-and-forth for years and every time the decision has been made to do so, Vince McMahon in the end has changed his mind on it.

> At the 7/16 WWE shareholders meeting, when discussing the network, the company announced the free tier, which has the goal of trying to use that tier to convert viewers to becoming paid subscribers, has replaced multi-tiers and higher priced tiers giving more content and benefits in the WWE’s network strategy.

> In responding to a question from stockholders, Frank Riddick said (transcribed by Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics), “The free version of the Network was launched June 1st as a platform that was designed to effectively convert viewers to subscribers while preserving the value of our premium content. Given this was just launched in June, we have positive early results, but nothing definitive. Given where we are and we believe that, ultimately, by enhancing engagement we’ll enhance the value of the Network, as well as the economic potential we may be able to realize in a future transaction.”

> “Payment tiers at this time, we do not believe the development of a premium tiered content strategy is the optimum approach for maximizing network subscription value,” said Riddick, who had been the interim Chief Financial Officer since George Barrios was fired. “In the near term, we’re focused on leveraging the free version that we just spoke about to enable subscribers to sample our content more easily, develop local currency pricing in select international markets in global currency, as we said, and further develop our advertising capability.”

> They also noted having regionalized versions of the WWE Network for certain markets that would be broadcast in the native language and as noted above, using that country’s currency to subscribe.

> An obvious question is the return of live events, or even the question of WrestleMania 2021 in Inglewood, CA, and like everything, including a potential closing in Orlando, there are no answers. The reality is things aren’t going back to normal any time soon. A closing in Orlando is very unlikely to happen for the political reasons it opened up in the first place and the government turned a blind eye to all those tapings with no testing for months. WrestleMania is far enough in the future that perhaps there may be a vaccine, but from a timing standpoint, that’s a longshot. Many have speculated on the idea that Florida, even though it’s in bad shape, would welcome a WrestleMania more than California would, and Tampa in a sense is owed one. And ultimately, these decisions do have to be made in the next few months because if they are going to do a stadium event, they need to be able to start promoting it by the end of this year.

> “Sure, we obviously have to follow what’s going on and sometimes you think you have the answer and then, `Uh oh,’ COVID-19 makes a more severe impact than you had imagined to begin with,” said Vince McMahon. “We’re working with arenas. We have any number of tentative dates. Those tentative dates keep moving back sometimes. But again with our form of entertainment, it’s imperative that we have fans to interact with. And we continue to look forward. Pinpointing exactly when we’re going to return, it’s a whole different atmosphere than has been in the past and we’ll capitalize on it.”
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Rico - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 16:21:37 EST BgwUp47T No.6426076 Reply
1596226897072.jpg -(55580B / 54.28KB, 800x516) Thumbnail displayed, click image for full size.
Oh no is Vince going to become obsessed with streaming and he's going to have performers work it into the program and it will sound like urine fetish out of context?
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Golga - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 16:44:59 EST T5Ycresu No.6426085 Reply
Do you think when Vince finally dies they will cryogenically freeze his brain and insert it into a automaton?
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:03:27 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426091 Reply
>>6426062
> Regarding the 2021 WrestleMania and the new SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Vince McMahon said, “Again, we, it wouldn’t be fair to mention that now because we’re following the COVID-19 aspect. So many cities are obviously interested in Wrestlemania and many have bid for it, and what have you. This somewhat changes from time to time, again, depending upon the severity of COVID, but we haven’t announced anything yet.”

> Regarding a potential shutdown in Orlando, Vince McMahon said, “Let me just say there’s always a `B-plan.’ I don’t want to say right now exactly what that would be, but yes there is a `B-Plan.’”

> There are several backup plans in place. The belief is that WWE can’t be shut down in Florida due to Linda McMahon’s Super Pac agreeing to spend $18.5 million for Nick Gage’s reelection campaign in Florida, and Gov. Ron DeSantis being loyal to Nick Gage. That could mean going down with the ship because Nick Gage’s popularity numbers are so bad, but DeSantis won’t be making that decision in August.

> But according to one person who knows the situation, McMahon has DeSantis “by the balls.” If for some reason it gets so bad in Florida that there is a complete lockdown, McMahon had a study prepared and now has several different locations as backup. Among them is the television studio at their corporate offices in Stamford, CT, which was the ring they shot the John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt WrestleMania match in. It’s said they can make that setting look similar to the Performance Center, although they wouldn’t have as easy access to contracted wrestlers to be fans if they run outside Florida.

> Shooting outdoors on the beach for SummerSlam is another possibility, just for the visual differences, as noted first in PW Insider.

> As for a second Saudi Arabia show this year, the situation is the same, it’s completely out of the company’s control. McMahon has said in the past that if the show can’t happen this year, it would be tacked onto the end of the ten year deal. One of the issues with such a show are all the quarantine measures that UFC had to put in place. For UFC, they did it, but also ran four shows there over two weeks and had all kinds of infrastructure in Abu Dhabi put together including a bubble environment. Saudi Arabia may not be able to provide that, and while TV can be taped well ahead of time when a $50 million type of payment for an event is in the equation, it’s far more difficult.

> “Oh, that’s a possibility,” McMahon said about a second show this year. “ Obviously, Saudi has been going through what we in America have been going through. As far as COVID’s concerned. Right now, I think they’re doing a little bit better than we are. considerably better. So there’s a possibility that we will still get a show in before the end of the year, as was scheduled. But we’re not certain because, you know, who can be certain about what COVID-19 is going to do.”

> Vince McMahon was also asked about what the company is doing to combat the declining television ratings.

> “We have a 30-plus year track record of creating compelling characters and engaging a variety of audiences, and we obviously remain confident we can continue that with our collective ability, even in the most challenging environments with no live audience.

> “The media echo system obviously has changed. We change with it. Our engagement metrics across platforms are understandably and obviously, however, the importance of linear programming is paramount in all of our businesses. WWE consistently have seen year-over-year increases in a variety of digital metrics and engagement. And positive trends have continued, even during COVID.

> “Conversely, TV viewership trends have been negatively impacted by COVID, obviously, and the lack of a live audience. We are still nonetheless the No. 1 television show on USA and consistently the No. 1 show on Fridays among key demos.

> “We expect a combination of valuable promotional inventory from our TV partners with the return of sports events programming. And a deep roster of charismatic talent will have a positive impact on viewership over the long-term.”

> When asked about the company’s building of new stars, Vince McMahon said, “Sure, I mean you want to continue to build stars no matter what time. It is so, as Paul (Levesque) just mentioned about NXT talent. He has done an extraordinary job of creating new stars, and as they continue to evolve, they’ll continue to come up to Raw and Smackdown. So there’s this influence of new superstars coming into both Raw and Smackdown, and in addition to that, the ways that we now promote talent in a more effective way, digital and social media, as opposed to the normal way.

> “We do not have a live audience and of course that to us is paramount,” Vince McMahon continued. “They’re like the third performer in the ring, in terms of our interaction with our audience. So nonetheless it is a good time to continue with the digital and social imprint and this land grab that we have, which is substantial. We continue that. And again new stars coming up.”

> Regarding whether NXT should be categorized as a third major league brand or the WWE’s version of AAA baseball, ie, a developmental territory, Paul Levesque said, “So I think if you were to look at the NXT brand, it would be both. While it is, as Frank (Riddick) mentioned earlier, a third global brand, along with Raw and Smackdown, and our partners at USA, it is also the place where we make new stars and increase our talent and stars for the future, of both Raw and Smackdown. So that is the pipeline, and that is the, if you wanted to say, the feeder system, it is that, but it also has become its own third brand.”

> When asked about NXT ratings, he said, “I’m very happy with them, especially in the current circumstances. Everything is going well. We look at the long-term of that, not the short-term of that. And the long term is very exciting. We have a lot of stars. There are a lot of hungry young athletes, and the pipeline to bring in more as they continue to train and get better is very exciting. The future is very bright in that regard.”

> You can’t really expect for him to say anything different, but it does have to be a strong frustration that the show skews so old as far as its viewership goes. The show also does considerably worse than it’s non-prime-time lead-in, not even figuring not doing as well as AEW.

> When AEW was asked about, in particular taking some of WWE’s market share, Levesque said, “To me, there’s a moment in time when you begin something and it’s very exciting and it’s fresh and there’s some interest in it, certainly. But it’s a big world. We continue to be focused on our product, continue to be focused on the development of our stars and our performers. And as Vince said earlier, we have a very long track record of doing this incredibly successfully for many, many, many years, and we will continue to do so.”
>>
Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:06:20 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426092 Reply
>>6426062
> Levesque also answered the question regarding the safety measures the company is taking at the television tapings.

> “Obviously, as Vince mentioned earlier, the health and safety of our performers, employees, and crew are the company’s top priorities. And since the beginning of this around mid-March we have been producing content on closed sets with only essential personnel in attendance and following guidelines set forth by our medical team in conjunction with state and local officials and the CDC. The protocol for these closed sets are extraordinary and include heightened safety and sanitizing during use, long duration electrostatic and anti-microbial sprays and coatings, pandemic level cleaning, and disinfecting between and after our events.

> “As it relates to our talent, production, crew, and employees, we conduct COVID-19 testing in advance of any TV or content production, using polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, testing, which is the most statistically valid, highest level of accuracy test available today. No one is allowed to enter a WWE closed set without a negative COVID-19 test. Once on set individuals must wear masks when talent are not performing social distancing and sanitize where appropriate. In the event of a positive test result, individuals must self-quarantine for a minimum of 14 days, will not be cleared to work until they are symptom-free and test negative. Extensive contact tracing is done following any positive test. Individuals possibly exposed are identified in quarantine appropriately.

> “And this process is constantly being updated. We’re looking at this every day. Our medical staff working with state and local officials, as I mentioned, and the CDC, to reflect the most current data and medical recommendations available.”

> Riddick spoke about the effects of COVID on the financial end.

> “Our response to COVID has been highlighted by our tremendous creativity,” Riddick said. “Importantly, we adapted our business to continue to safely stage in-ring performances, produce other content for our global markets, and multiple distribution channels, as well as to market our brands. Supporting these achievements, we established extensive safety measures to protect the health and well-being of our talent and employees.

> “To mitigate the potential risk to our performers, we evaluated our operations and cost structure and developed extensive contingency plans. As a result we implemented a comprehensive mix of various short-term cost reductions and cash flow improvement actions. These included reducing executive and board member compensation, increasing operating expenses, third-party staffing, consulting, and talent costs, and reducing employee head count by way of a furlough.

> “An important outcome of our efforts is that we have been able to substantially offset the loss of live event ticket revenue and merchandise revenue with lower production costs and reduction in other expenses. To enhance liquidity we also deferred spending on our new headquarters, directly reducing 2020 capital expenditures by approximately $140 million. We temporarily suspended the repurchase of stock under our repurchase program, and withdrew $200 million from our revolving credit facility in early April. As such we believe we have sufficient liquidity, which totaled approximately $500 million at the end of the first quarter, to manage the challenges ahead.”

> Levesque was also asked about the U.K. Performance Center.

> “The London Performance Center has been inactive since March, thereabouts, due to the COVID-19 issues. We work with local and government officials they’re all the time and are monitoring constantly, and are looking forward to when talent can get back to training. I know they’re all anxious to do it, and hopefully that’ll be in the near future.

> We’re also working with our partners there on solutions and ways that we can get back to creating fresh in-ring content as soon as possible for the NXT UK brand. Again, all of that relies on us being able to do that safely, as the safety and health of our talent come first and foremost. But as soon as that is something that we can safely do, we will be back up and running.”

> Vince McMahon was also asked about a physical Hall of Fame.

> “Bricks and mortar is something that, generally speaking, we, other than office buildings and office space of course, that we’re not necessarily fond of, but nonetheless, again the interest in that continues to build and it’s still a possibility somewhere down the line.”

> Jayar Donland, the Executive Vice President of Advanced Media, talked about new ways to engage fans with no live events.

> “During these unprecedented times we’re doing more to engage our fans in an interactive manner, especially on digital and social platforms,” said Donland. “This includes everything from live interactive video with our superstars on things like Instagram to expanding our presence on platforms like Twitch or TikTok. The early results have been very positive for us. In addition to that interactive content, we’re also exploring virtual fan meetings and other unique experiences.”
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:08:24 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426093 Reply
>>6426062
> Antonio Inoki, who one can argue that along with Hulk Hogan, would be the biggest pro wrestling star of the last half-century, revealed on 7/26 that he was suffering from a rare incurable heart ailment.

> Inoki, 77, was interviewed in Weekly Sincho, talking about his battle with cardiac amyloidosis. Because Inoki was such a cultural icon, as the second biggest pro wrestling star in the history of the country behind Rikidozan, and considered one of the country’s ten biggest sports stars of the 20th century, this has become one of the most talked about topics in Japanese culture since he went public. From a cultural standpoint, Inoki in Japan would be much bigger than any pro wrestler has ever been in the U.S., perhaps LeBron James would be a comparison as he’d not be Muhammad Ali or Michael Jordan, but would probably be bigger than just about anyone else. As far as a wrestler being a cultural icon, probably only Rikidozan and El Santo would be at his level.

> The rare disease, that affects between 700 and 750 people in the entire country of Japan, has to do with an abnormal protein buildup on internal organs that interferes with their normal functions and causes heart issues. There are different types of cardiac amyloidosis, but Inoki’s type is believed to be hereditary.

> Inoki had been having severe health issues in the last few years and had been mostly in a wheelchair. It hasn’t been a secret within wrestling but he’s kept largely away from public view as he is the type of person who wouldn’t want to be seen in weakened a condition. He noted in the interview that he lives alone since his wife passed away last year. He noted that with the pandemic and his declining health, he hasn’t been able to even do rehabilitation programs and has mostly stayed at home.

> Inoki said that this past fall he went a little deaf and was hospitalized, and after tests, was diagnosed with cardiac amyloidosis. He described it as the heart having a bad membrane called amyloid. Due to that, the function of the heart deteriorates, making it difficult to send enough blood for the body to fully function. He said that at times he felt like he was suffocating, but thought it was just the effects of aging. He said that he was taking ridiculously expensive medicine called Vindaquel to combat the problem. The medicine is not a cure, as there is no cure. But it does slow down the effects of the disease.

> A press conference was held on 7/27 to announce that DDT, Pro Wrestling NOAH, Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling and Ganbare were merging into one company on 9/1, which will be called CyberFight.

> The name comes from CyberAgent, the parent company which owns both groups. Sanshiro Takagi, who has been running DDT, will head the merged company.

> At the press conference, it was said that the four pro wrestling groups will be operated as separate brands. Takagi will be the President of the new group with Naomichi Marufuji, the former NOAH President, and Akito, a DDT wrestler, as Executive Vice Presidents.

> Takagi said the merger comes from COVID-19 cutting into revenues for both groups, which rely on presentation of live events in front of fans for a large part of their income. The merger was a way to cut back on administrative costs.

> The companies were linked as NOAH shows have been added to the DDT streaming service.

> Takagi said that the long-term goal is to compete with New Japan as the No. 1 promotion in the Japanese marketplace, and to run a joint show at the Tokyo Dome. The latter seems very difficult under the best of circumstances, given one would think a joint major show would have trouble selling out a building like Budokan Hall or the Yokohama Arena.

> The separate companies were known as DDT Pro Wrestling Company Ltd., NOAH Global Entertainment Company, Ltd.

> Even before the pandemic, NOAH has been struggling badly. It’s mostly a smaller guys promotion and the key true heavyweight, GHC champion Go Shiozaki, a good worker, has no real popularity.

> It was noted that a lot of people wanting to get into pro wrestling in Japan who don’t believe they are good enough athletes for New Japan, that DDT has become “the promise land” to get in. They can wear flashy ring outfits, which New Japan doesn’t allow the first few years. They can use ring names of their choosing and are allowed to do any high spots they can come up with. A lot of people wanting in the business don’t want the New Japan system, of spending years learning basics and wearing black tights and boots and being given a limited number of moves you can do until you are a few years in.
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:11:47 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426094 Reply
>>6426062
> A group of WWE stock analysts are predicting a decline in WWE media rights unless television ratings improve after the current Raw and Smackdown deals expire in October 2024.

> The reality is that there are so many factors in play when it comes to the economy, the damage of COVID long-term to the economy, and technology that trying to predict the future right now is next to impossible.

> In a piece for the Lightshed web site by analysts Brandon Ross, Richard Greenfield and Mark Kelley, they noted analysts overall don’t realize how well WWE has cut costs during the pandemic, to the point that they believe profits for this year will be higher than they would have been had their been no pandemic due to so many costs being cut, notably in weekly television production and head counts.

> They still estimate the 2021 EBITDA will be $324 million but this was the first analysis piece worried about the creative direction and if, after the pandemic, there will be a ratings rebound. They believed that ratings bottomed out in June at pandemic levels, but ended up surprised at July having new record lows.

> They believe there will be an overall U.S. devaluation in sports rights, which, granted, people have predicted for four decades and always been wrong about. They noted the concerning factors are the ratings drop and the firing of Paul Heyman, and being surprised Raw didn’t start a bounce back at a time when there was little outside sports going on.

> They also noted that there have been no talks on a deal McMahon had talked about for quarter one, of selling the rights to the PPVs to a streaming service similar to what UFC did with ESPN. They noted that WWE had a decline in international rights fees already, particularly in the U.K. market. The question is if streaming services will try and bid for the WWE content in 2024, which would create a bidding war for the product.

> Even if WWE continues to decline, there will be few sports-like properties that do similar numbers. The big obstacle they note is that both FOX and NBCU are committed to the NFL, which will continue to demand increases. If FOX and NBCU revenues don’t stay up with the NFL’s increases, that leads to less money available to pay other programming. They noted FOX getting rid of the U.S. Open in golf, as well as dropping WWE Backstage, while NBCU is allocating less money to its cable stations.

> It noted that since the new deals went into place in October, the numbers have been disappointing for both television partners. The belief in 2018 when these deals were made is that WWE was an institution that would be somewhat-DVR proof and hold up better than television as a whole would. Granted, most evidence even in 2018 was to the contrary and both deals still got done with strong increases.

> But as more and more people watch all pro wrestling via DVR, and the audience continues to age badly for every show, there are questions. In addition with FOX, there was the idea that they had the power to take WWE to new levels of popularity and that a boom period would be on the horizon, which clearly did not materialize.

> But they noted that those companies all have issues with COVID hurting their own revenues, still have to sign increased NFL deals, and WWE content has not been doing well and they theorized that someone looking at a deal with WWE should wait to see if the company’s popularity can stabilize before committing at this time.

> They also noted that WWE touts its huge social media following, of which 80 percent is outside the U.S. But with those large numbers, the television rights and ratings outside the U.S. have gone down considerably. While those numbers sound good at meetings, the reality is those numbers seem to have no correlation at all with actually driving revenue and increasing the fan base, even if the numbers tell you differently. However, they said there are growth markets internationally. They believe more aggressive expansion outside the U.S. would be key.

> Their projections for WWE in 2020 is $912 million in gross revenue and about $113 million in profits, that 2021 (and they figure house shows back running for these estimates) would be $1.011 billion in revenue and $131.7 million in profits and 2022 would be $1.078 billion in revenue and $134 million in profits.
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Dick Murdoch - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:13:55 EST J10K+5dU No.6426095 Reply
the less popular WWE gets, the more money that make because cultists seem to pay hundreds of dollars a year to consume the product, compared to back when it was super hot and all you'd buy is a video game and maybe a stone cold tshirt.
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Kurt Angle - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:19:14 EST VYMa2VAM No.6426099 Reply
>>6426095
merch sales, videogames and network subscriptions are on a negative trend and have been for almost 5 years now, crowds are literally non existent, stop seeing cults in everything
the only profitable thing WWE has right now is TV deals
User is currently banned from all boards
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Meiko Satomura - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 17:46:23 EST 806GRzD2 No.6426108 Reply
>>6426095
This is the Scientology model.
Their numbers worldwide have too never been lower than they are today, yet they milk that pared down hardcore base for more money than ever before as they are the most hardcore true believers.
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:29:12 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426133 Reply
>>6426062
> Salvador Lutteroth, as in the third Salvador, not the second (grandson of the first) did a taped interview for the virtual San Diego Comic Con along with Rey Misterio Sr., the uncle of the WWE star. Misterio and Mauricio Limon, who runs a Lucha Libre Museum, were afraid of the future of Lucha Libre, saying that the wrestlers aren’t trained well enough, the commissions aren’t strict enough and too much flying and not enough wrestling.

I> nsert every generational change in style. With Misterio Sr., the funniest part was how wrestling is so bad now because in his day to be a pro wrestler you had to be physically strong and well built and no kids were allowed in, and it was 31 years ago when his nephew debuted at the age of 14 weighing maybe 110 or os pounds

> Lutteroth said that the success of CMLL is dependent upon developing Mexican wrestling stars. He talked about the company being 87 years old and that the future depends on developing new stars and giving the fans good matches.

> Konnan on his podcast talked about the idea of the drive-in shows. He said that they would be doing stand-alone matches rather than storylines at these shows. He said it would be a way to present unique matches and pairings that you wouldn’t expect to see, similar to Lucha Fighter. He also said that there would be a roof over the ring to protect the ring in case of rain.

> With all the matches at the first taping called Lions Break Collision having aired with the Jeff Cobb win over Karl Fredericks using Tour of the Islands match on 7/24, the company announced that in the 10 p.m. Eastern time slot on 7/31, they will air a press conference which will promote a new series of matches taped in Southern California in an empty arena called New Japan Strong, which would then start airing in that time slot on 8/7.

Tomoaki Honma and Yota Tsuji were both pulled from the Sengoku Lord show because they had appeared on a television talk show and one of the people they interacted with had tested positive for COVID-19 that week. After passing a pair of tests, they were cleared to return on 7/29

> While Raw, AEW Dynamite and Smackdown did not get Emmy nominations (they were all on the list of shows to be considered), GLOW received three Emmy nominations. Betty Gilpin (Liberty Bell) was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in a comedy series, and the series also got nominations for Outstanding Production design and Outstanding Sound Editing for a Comedy Drama show. In its first two years on Netflix, the highly-acclaimed show won three Emmys and has had 18 nominations

> Fantasma, in his role as head of the Box y Lucha commission in Mexico City, held a press conference on 7/22 announcing a distribution of pantry items to wrestlers who are currently out of work, which is basically all of them. He also distributed medicine to those in need. At the press conference, he was asked about AAA and CMLL starting back. He showed a letter from CMLL asking that same subject.

> CMLL would like to open at 50 percent capacity, which would be about 8,000 seats, which would be more than anyone has opened up in front of and Mexico is in worse shape than the U.S., even if you don’t hear that on the news. Fantasma said AAA presented him an idea three weeks ago, which would be the drive-in show idea. The reality is that in Mexico City, the government looks to be a long way of allowing events like this. Fantasma encouraged wrestlers to see if they could get other jobs until the pandemic ends

> Box y Lucha was critical of him for not allowing shows while he had agreed to be part of an autograph signing on 8/1, asking how one could be okay if the other isn’t

> There have been people who have brought up the naming of the women’s division as the Knockouts division as something behind-the-times, but the women, including Gail Kim, the division’s lead producer, defended the name. Obviously the name was that WWE used Divas, as Knockouts, was both a term from combat sports, it clearly derives that the slang that a super hot woman is a knockout, and under the latter idea of the term, it would be about looks. Basically you can take it either way, but when the name was first formulated, it absolutely was about marketing the looks of the women at a time when that’s how wrestling women were marketed.

> At the same time, because it can be taken the other way, it wasn’t the Divas term which I always thought was a negative with WWE because the term is not even a positive term really, because the connotation in slang is hot women who are self centered and hard to deal with. But culturally it later just became hot women. And that term was demeaning to have the women taken seriously. Knockouts, while using the one meaning is also like that, but it does have the dual sports meaning.

> Anyway, the Knockouts term has been around for more than a decade and never once did it occur to me it should be changed, while Divas to me was always something that stigmatizes the division as, well, exactly what it was supposed to be for most of the period the term was used. Kim wrote, “If people only knew that we have discussed this and the majority of us like it. It’s not demeaning to us at all. It’s empowering and special.”

> Rosemary was the one originally asked and wrote, “It’s not (a negative term), actually. And the roster has said many times now, `Knockouts’ makes us feel like badasses. KO’s come in all shapes and sizes and we are all badass and beautiful. It’s why I went to train.
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:38:32 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426137 Reply
1596235112886.png -(2323324B / 2.22MB, 1080x1200) Thumbnail displayed, click image for full size.
>>6426062
> Excalibur was off the 7/29 show with no explanation given. The company hasn’t said anything publicly, or privately about the matter. There was talk but not confirmed that he asked to be off the show because there had been a Twitter furor over him using the “N” word in a PWG angle 17 years ago. This incident was known about. It totally sucked, like bad, at the time, and everyone realized it and regretted it and pretty much apologized for it shortly after the time. I saw it resurface a few weeks ago but didn’t get any traction. Evidently on 7/28 people made enough of a case about it that it became an issue.

> The story, again, not confirmed, was that he didn’t want to be on the show thinking it would be the focus of the show. As it turns out, it became a much bigger issue because he wasn’t on the show. There is no word if he’ll be back next week. The 8/5 show was being taped on 7/30. He had flown to Florida for this set of tapings but he’d have flown in before the stuff got hot again.

> According to one person close to the situation, there was a promo involving Human Tornado, who is black and was at the time the top babyface, and heels Excalibur (when he was a wrestler), Disco Machine and Kevin Steen. One person was there and said that Human Tornado had often asked for heels to do racial stuff on him as a babyface and had asked people to use the N word on him. Steen argued against it but Tornado was persistent and talked him into it. We don’t know if Machine or Excalibur argued the point or just agreed to do it. I saw the video of it, and it sucked.

> There’s an issue because Tony Khan had said that Hulk Hogan, and Linda were not welcome as part of his group for racial remarks in the past. Hulk’s remark was not in an angle and part of a storyline. The fact is WWE didn’t sit Steen out because of this and they were aware of this and it was taken care of long ago. Everyone pretty much apologized after and acknowledged that it was a bad idea. Excalibur has brought it up and said he regretted it multiple times and Steen has publicly at least once in an interview. It was an angle that wasn’t a secret, that everyone knew and figured was taken care of, but the nature of Twitter is such that it became an issue this past week.

> Again, there is no defending what they did but attempts to try and ruin one person’s career (Excalibur) and not Steen because of trying to play GOTCHA with Khan and the Hogan deal is just ridiculous. I could go on forever on how ugly people using this and things like this for agendas has become. Doing so allows the real issues to be trivialized and not addressed in exchange for a victim toll, some of whom belong to be out of the business, and others who did little wrong, or in this case, did something wrong decades ago that they’ve admitted to as part of a dumb angle

> Debuting this past week from WWE were Matt Cardona, the former Zack Ryder, and Ariane Andrew, the former Cameron, who hasn’t wrestled anywhere in four years. Cardona is a real-life close friend of Cody’s and was expected to come here, while partner Brian Myers (Curt Hawkins) was going to Impact. Cardona is a tough one. You can argue he was held back and could do well here and time will tell. But you don’t want to be TNA where WWE guys who they had used up would be brought in and beat all of the TNA guys because that perception sucks and makes you a secondary promotion.

> Anyway, next week is Cody & Cardona vs. Alex Reynolds & John Silver, and Reynolds & Silver’s role is to be the Dark Order guys who put everyone over and Silver is kind of a comedy guy anyway. Andrew, who was called Ariane, will team with Nyla Rose in the women’s tag team tournament. To me, using someone who wasn’t a good wrestler in WWE, and more importantly, after being let go by WWE, didn’t wrestle anywhere for four years, isn’t a good move as there are plenty of people who have been wrestling on the indies who have proven they want it more. If she was supremely talented or a big name, that supersedes who wants it more, but I’d guess that the vast majority of people who saw Andrew on Dynamite this past week, called Ariane, had no idea who she was or that she was a former WWE performer. And really, if she’s just local and they are looking for someone to take the fall in a tag team match and little more, it’s not the end of the world

> Announcer Dasha Gonzalez, using her real name of Dasha Kuret, was on Titan Games on 7/20. She won her first two competitions but then lost to the defending champion of the show in her third. They said that she would be brought back for regional finals later in the season. Gonzalez was accompanied by Billy Gunn, who used that name, and was listed as her trainer. Gunn was pointed out, plugged as a WWE Hall of Famer and Dwayne Johnson went out to greet him. They pushed that Gonzalez was a former wrestler who became an announcer after an Achilles tendon tear.

> She was clearly a great athlete and has all the personality in the world. If ever there’s a case of someone that indicts the WWE system it’s her, because she literally had no personality whatsoever in WWE and was the opposite in AEW, and here she showed far more than in either wrestling company. They did mention she works for All Elite Wrestling and had some clips from the show which couldn’t have made Vince McMahon happy that the rival group was featured on NBC on a show hosted by Johnson
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:43:30 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426141 Reply
>>6426062
> As of early in the week, Rey Mysterio and Vince McMahon were still in negotiations for terms of a prospective new deal

> Klaudia Bermudez was announced as the new General Manager of the Latin American region, which covers Mexico, Central and South America. Bermudez will head all facets of WWE business in that region, which was strong many years ago but has waned. She will report to James Rosenstock, the WWE’s Executive Vice President of International business. Bermudez has more than 20 years experience as an executive to Hispanic television.

> She comes from NBCUniversal where she was Senior Vice President and General Manager of NBCUniversal’s International division, running their Latin American division and working with Ole Communications where she oversaw programming, marketing, digital, creative, communications, market insights, original productions, finance and revenue. She also worked 15 years for Sony Pictures as a Senior Vice President and General Manager of their three channels

> Regarding office people furloughed, the idea many were told that they would be brought back next month but now most have been extended until 8/28. A number are looking to find new jobs at this point, although this is probably the worst time in our lifetimes to be on the job market. The added time to the furloughs in the cases when you look at the profits for the quarter tells quite the story

> Sane finished up with the TV tapings on 7/20, but she did the second show that aired on 7/27 and then wrote her farewell. As noted before, the original idea was to do a career-ending injury angle which would have led to Asuka facing that person at SummerSlam, with the Natalya/Lana pairing slated at one point, Charlotte Flair under consideration at one point and Baszler was actually brought back for it more recently. It was changed multiple times, including Banks now being champion. When they did the angle, it’s Bayley who injured her. Sane is moving back to Japan. It’s unclear if she will return to Stardom or just retire. Originally she was going to return to Stardom but we haven’t heard that mentioned in some time nor has anyone else in that company.

> Sane wrote: “My time in the NXT & WWE locker rooms was incredible. Everyone was kind, funny and talented, so every day was full of happiness. Also, I was saved by the supportive staff behind the scenes. I will forever love and respect all these professionals I had the pleasure of work with. I was able to accomplish so much in the last three years, but it wasn’t because of my ability or my strength. It was because of all of the constant, warm support from the fans. I am so thankful I could meet you all. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

> It is notable that minutes after her beatdown she posted this. The company then posted a video where she talked about how happy she was with her three years with the company and Asuka talking about how lonely she was until Sane joined her on the main roster. The video just said that she was a pirate and she was going on her next voyage without giving any other reason for her departure

> The company applied to trademark the term NXT U.K. Heritage Cup, which sounds like an idea for a tournament on television

> Xavier Woods, under his videogame name of Austin Creed, went on Twitter to try and push the G-4 network to make him a show host. It was a unique way to apply for a job basically going on public twitter and writing the network, noting he’s got his own gaming channel called Up Up Down Down, that he wrestles for WWE, has degrees in both Psychology and Philosophy as well as a Master’s in Child Psychology

> With the death of Valerie Boesch, Bruce Prichard has either purchased or wound up with the entire Paul Boesch memorabilia collection which he said totaled 8,500 pounds worth of material between statues, papers and photos. I believe he purchased it because when talking about noted the money would help Joey, Paul’s son, who is blind. There is quite the irony of Paul hating Bruce at the end of his life after starting him out in the business, not being allowed at his funeral, but over the years he had made up with Valerie Boesch, and Bruce ending up with Paul’s amazing collection

> Maria del Refugio Segura, the grandmother of both Carrillo and Garza, and wife of Monterrey-based pro wrestling legend Humberto Garza Sr. (Real name Humberto Segura–Segura is the actual Garza family name), passed away on 7/25

> Regarding the sports numbers for the past week, Smackdown was No. 4 for the week among network sports shows in total viewers, trailing the Saturday night baseball game on FOX, the Saturday afternoon baseball game on FOX and the final day of the PGA tournament on CBS. It was fourth in 18-49, trailing three baseball games, but it will be beating baseball more often going forward given this week was opening week. As far as cable goes, even though it doesn’t include Raw, to be fair, we should, Raw was No. 4 for the week on cable behind three ESPN baseball games and also No. 4 in 18-49. AEW was No. 12 on cable sports for the week behind seven major league baseball games, Raw, and two NASCAR broadcasts and UFC Fight Night. In 18-49, AEW was No. 9, trailing Raw, six baseball games and UFC but beat NASCAR. NXT would have been No. 13 overall and No. 14 in 18-49

> We didn’t get the U.K. ratings last week, but did get numbers for this week from BackBodyDrop.com. The live Raw on 7/13 did 29,000 viewers. NXT live on 7/15 didn’t chart at all. Smackdown on 7/17 did 27,200 viewers. These are all low numbers but all were up considerably from the week after Speaking Out when viewership bottomed out. AEW on 7/10, which was the second week of the Great American Bash, did 96,000 viewers, while 7/17, the Fyter Fest show, did 100,000. Keep in mind AEW is on a much stronger platform so it’s given it will do more viewers and not indicative that AEW is more popular in the U.K. than WWE, just that ITV 4 reaches far more homes than BT Sports. But the last few weeks have been the lowest numbers WWE has done since moving to BT

> One of the stranger Twitter stories of the past week involved Bruce Prichard and Nick Aldis. Prichard was asked on his show about WWE and Aldis and Prichard, who worked at Impact the same time Aldis did, said that Aldis didn’t have the “it factor,” and when asked if he’d seen his recent stuff said he had and made a remark about how he comes across as him playing a role (rich considering much of the talent on the WWE main roster). I suppose prior to the All In build you could make the case for a lot of things, but if you watched that build and the end product and how the crowd reacted in the match with Cody, then pro wrestling is lost on you. The guy literally carried a company since that time with his “it factor.” Anyway, he responded saying, “Hi @bruceprichard, Your ignorant comments about me had me at an all-time low, kind of like your Raw ratings. However, there are a few hall-of-famers that seem to have a different opinion. Some of which are even featured below (showing a tape that included endorsements from Harley Race, Dory Funk Jr., and Scott Steiner)
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Pokka !!4vMEXnV5 - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:43:44 EST M1ahJWky No.6426142 Reply
>>6426137
>where WWE guys who they had used up would be brought in and beat all of the TNA guys
>WWE guys they had used up
>used up

how many times did this actually happen in TNA?
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Muscle Sakai - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:46:21 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426145 Reply
>>6426062
> Even though he wasn’t on the last two shows, Owens was at the Raw tapings on 7/20. He had been written into the original shows but with all the changes made, they decided not to use him. I think the key was that since they wanted to do injury angles with Black on both shows, the feeling was that Owens would theoretically have to do run-ins to attempt to break those up and they didn’t feel the need to sacrifice him in angles like that

> Mauro Ranallo, whose work has been limited to NXT shows being voiced over from his home studio, will be announcing Showtime boxing on 8/1 in its return after being shut down in March in a show from the Mohegan Sun Casino. Ranallo and Al Bernstein will be the announcers with Paulie Malignaggi, off the Showtime team. Malignaggi said something controversial three months ago that was taken as a negative racial remark. He wasn’t fired over the remark, but over his refusal to apologize for it

> This week was about trying to bring up ratings using title matches. For the 7/31 Smackdown show, it’s Styles vs. Gran Metalik for the IC title, Bayley vs. Cross for the women’s title and Evans vs. Naomi, plus they’re pushing the return of Otis & Mandy Rose. For Raw on 8/3, they haven’t pushed anything yet

> For the 8/5 NXT show, it’s the first match back of Kyle O’Reilly, who teams with Bobby Fish to face Marcel Barthel & Fabian Aichner for the NXT tag titles. O’Reilly hasn’t been actually at the Performance Center for a taping since the pandemic. He had done some skits with the other guys away from the building. They did a storyline that he was away in Los Angeles filming movies, which was weak given it’s not a secret that Hollywood and movie production has been shut down for months.

> O’Reilly is a diabetic so getting COVID-19 for him could be very bad. Not sure on the decision-making since Florida is in far worse shape now than it was before. Maybe he got tired of waiting for things to clear up and misses wrestling, but it’s not worth the risk in his case. Maybe he was pressured back. The reality is this speaks volumes on WWE medical because if they were really looking out for talent, even if O’Reilly was tired of waiting, they should have recommenced he stay away being in the high-risk group.

> But they didn’t do that for Reigns, Flair or Lawler so anytime you hear about health coming first from the company standpoint, those examples prove it’s bunk. Also next week is Dakota Kai vs. Rhea Ripley with the winner getting the Takeover title shot at Io Shirai, plus a three-way for a spot in the North American title ladder match with Ridge Holland debuting and joining Damien Priest and Oney Lorcan

> The most-watched shows of the past week on the WWE Network were: 1. Daniel Bryan’s best matches; 2. Raw Talk for 7/27; 3. 1997: Dawn of the Attitude; 4. The Horror Show at Extreme Rules; 5. Undertaker’s Last Ride: Tales from the Deadman; 6. WWE Break it Down: Mick Foley; 7. R-Truth Game Show
>>
Netjester !AI.skYnEt - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:46:26 EST iLikEToleARn No.6426146 Reply
>>6426145
Not to mention, his purple ladder and dodging are limited for "one certain style of wrestling, I'm sorry but it's not really saying what he would ever risk bryan vs roman.
>>
Ranjin Singh - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:49:18 EST 6lubTvqQ No.6426147 Reply
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> According to one person close to the situation, there was a promo involving Human Tornado, who is black and was at the time the top babyface, and heels Excalibur (when he was a wrestler), Disco Machine and Kevin Steen. One person was there and said that Human Tornado had often asked for heels to do racial stuff on him as a babyface and had asked people to use the N word on him. Steen argued against it but Tornado was persistent and talked him into it. We don’t know if Machine or Excalibur argued the point or just agreed to do it. I saw the video of it, and it sucked.
The video in question
>>
Kurt Angle - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:49:20 EST VYMa2VAM No.6426148 Reply
>>6426137
>Cardona is a tough one. You can argue he was held back and could do well here and time will tell. But you don’t want to be TNA where WWE guys who they had used up would be brought in and beat all of the TNA guys because that perception sucks and makes you a secondary promotion.
i'm sorry, AEW hired like 50 former WWE guys but NOW it becomes a problem if they are pushed? Cody and Moxley are the top champions and some of the most powerful wrestlers in the company, Jericho is the most prevalent part of the show, Brodie Lee has a stable of like 10 people, but fucking Zack Ryder is the one who worries him?
User is currently banned from all boards
>>
Colt Cabana - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:51:39 EST n9eKBgQH No.6426150 Reply
>>6426147
> According to one person close to the situation, there was a promo involving Human Tornado, who is black
Big if true
>>
Berlyn - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:54:14 EST G9cW5MRV No.6426152 Reply
>>6426142

Booker T, Kevin Nash, Val Venis, Victoria, Matt Hardy, RVD, Ken Anderson, Rikishi, Mick Foley, Dudley Boys, Alberto Del Rio, Christy Hemme
>>
Berlyn - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:58:41 EST G9cW5MRV No.6426155 Reply
>>6426147

Not one person is getting upset about Generico being called a beaner. He's done nothing but be a proud son of Tijuana and he has to suffer such indignities.
>>
Pokka !!4vMEXnV5 - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 18:59:54 EST M1ahJWky No.6426157 Reply
>>6426152
>Matt Hardy, Ken Anderson, Dudleys, Del Rio, Hemme

Not "used up".

RVD sure, Booker, probably, Nash debatable given his work with the X Divison is loved by everyone, Rikishi and Val Venis were barely there.
>>
Rizokahn - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 19:45:15 EST hTSUcuhc No.6426177 Reply
>>6426148
At least Zack has some novelty to him (released recently, has a popular podcast, etc). But Ariane? That's just scraping the bottom of the barrel.
>>
Lex Luger - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 20:17:27 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6426181 Reply
>>6426152
>Kevin Nash, Victoria, Ken Anderson, Mick Foley, Dudley Boys, Christy Hemme
All put over TNA originals in big ways
And RVD is doing it in his second run now.
And Del Rio, pre full coke meltdown, was still a talent worth pushing who did give Impact a ratings boost
>>
Dawn Marie - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 21:05:27 EST 806GRzD2 No.6426202 Reply
>>6426177
Ryder is on a 5 appearance deal with AEW.
He is not signed permanently like Kingston
>>
Mona - Fri, 31 Jul 2020 21:25:23 EST rqbeZnm6 No.6426204 Reply
>>6426157
Matt absolutely was a used up ex WWE guy when he was running around being fat and calling himself Cold Blooded.

He completely redeemed himself during the second run though.
>>
Sycho Sid - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 01:04:07 EST 3z9mtOnj No.6426244 Reply
I just assumed Cameron and Brandi were chummy at catering back in the day. I think they were around at the same time but can't remember. It's the only thing I can think of other than Cody being a wiseguy and realizing she'd draw buzz/heat for what a dumb decision it appears to be.

Speaking of, I thought the heat had totally died down on the Excalibur thing, so pulling him off the show would only reignite it. Especially if it's a one week thing that they don't even address.
>>
Dusty Rhodes - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 01:09:00 EST lYO6Qruk No.6426246 Reply
>>6426204
Ken Anderson was also used up, as were the Dudleyz, who needed to leave WWE to have some meaningful fresh matches. I never saw what WWE did in Anderson, he had the fancy entrance and the mic skills, kinda...but once the bell rang, it was all downhill from there.
>>
Fire Ant - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 01:29:56 EST OBoskew7 No.6426250 Reply
>>6426244
It could just be that they needed bodies for the women's tag thing and she happened to be immediately available as a jobber to keep Nyla strong.
>>
The Blue Meanie - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 01:54:41 EST msMEiaKI No.6426261 Reply
>>6426111
woop woop

>>6426181
>Del Rio pre full coke meltdown was still a talent worth pushing

nah

>>6426246
Kennedy was a perfectly cromulent in-ring guy guy for his era of WWE.
>>
Claudio Castagnoli - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 02:10:05 EST n9eKBgQH No.6426265 Reply
No Ospreay update this issue?
>>
Mima Shimoda - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 11:15:47 EST bTZFvTbr No.6426306 Reply
>>6426265
>There is no set date for Ospreay’s return but the hope is October for the G-1 Climax tournament.
>>
Heidenreich - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 18:12:11 EST Le96DzG5 No.6426434 Reply
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>>6426066

> Vince McMahon said that the lack of similar declines in NXT and AEW were because they were new.
> It’s something that’s new and what have you, and it’s up to us to make Raw and Smackdown feel more youthful,” —Vince McMahon.

>That is where we are going and I just, as far as continuing on, I say what was new in building characters and you always have to build characters, constantly.
> And it seems to me that as far as Paul Levesque helping out on Raw and smackdown, that happens.
> As far as Paul Heyman is concerned, he did, I thought, a very, very good job in terms of creative.”
>>
Big E Langston - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 20:16:00 EST 6lubTvqQ No.6426484 Reply
>Fightful.com is reporting that WWE has delayed plans for a 2020 Draft. A Draft was reportedly scheduled for June but was then pushed back to August, September, and then October. The site noted the following:
>"The original source that we heard the story from in June had noted WWE had informed some broadcast partners of both Draft plans and live event plans, the latter of which was nixed completely."

>In an interview with Sportskeeda.com, former WWE star Real1 (Enzo Amore) commented on the well-being of his tag team partner Big Cass:
>“Oh, man, he’s in the best shape of his life, bro. I saw him… I was Facetiming with him. He was in the mirror, for sure, showing me what he’s been doing. We have that type of relationship but, at the same time I’m like, ‘Come on, bro, take it easy, dude. I believe you,’ you know what I mean? ‘I know you’re putting the work in, I’m proud of you, buddy, I’m proud of you.'”
>>
Athena - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 21:04:40 EST bWZ+YR1t No.6426500 Reply
>>6426441
Happy for the guy. Didn't think he'd be someone WWE would be interested in.
>>
Josh Matthews - Sat, 01 Aug 2020 23:01:21 EST 8NnC/PqX No.6426525 Reply
>>6426441
NXT signed an upgraded version of Joey Janela, who will fair well.
>>
Ivan Koloff - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 00:23:25 EST JC9WWRCu No.6426535 Reply
>>6426534
Did not know that. Say what ya want about Janela but he pulls some fine ass somehow.
>>
John Laurinaitis - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 03:10:52 EST msMEiaKI No.6426555 Reply
>>6426434
And yet the company will continue to be overseen by the man who was out-of-touch in the mid-90s
>>
Big E Langston - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 13:46:16 EST 6lubTvqQ No.6426635 Reply
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>- Even though he hasn't been on WWE television in recent weeks, Vince McMahon is reportedly high on Brendan Vink and the belief is that the company doesn't want to push him too soon when he's not ready.

>Paul Davis of WrestlingNews.co noted the following:
>"A WWE source described Vink as the perfect wrestler who is well-spoken and he is someone, like Drew McIntyre and John Cena, who looks great on camera and would carry himself like a star when he’s booked for mainstream TV interviews."

doesn't seem like there's much dirt lately, so here's a retro dirtsheet report regarding Mike Knox and WWE
>>
Road Warrior Animal - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:20:27 EST jXqG4Qs2 No.6426664 Reply
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>During his Saturday Night Special streaming show, AEW's Chris Jericho revealed that former WWE NXT star Taynara Conti has already taped her All Elite Wrestling debut as part of the Women's Tag Team Cup tournament.

>Conti, 25, was released by WWE during their April cost-cutting. The Brazilian-born star was signed to NXT in 2017, competed in the first two Mae Young Classic tournaments and was featured on NXT TV, but never in a consistent role.

https://www.pwinsider.com/article/138399/spoiler-on-aew-debut.html?p=1
>>
LuFisto - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:32:07 EST VYMa2VAM No.6426667 Reply
>>6426664
what does AEW gain from having a Ultimate Warrior impersonator, an nxt jobber and a woman who can't even remember to pin people right pester their weekly shows? jesus fuck you don't have to sign literally everyone, why is Brian Pillman Jr wasting time on Dark while these nobodies get to stay on tv?
User is currently banned from all boards
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Lizzy Valentine - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:35:01 EST LUMg+nxK No.6426669 Reply
>>6426664
she's not even good, what does she think she's gonna get a bigger push than she would have gotten in nxt?
>>
Kid Kash - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:43:33 EST rWWSIM8P No.6426673 Reply
>>6426667
You don't know what the word "sign" means, do you? None of the people you mentioned have actually been signed by the company. Warhorse had one match and Cameron and Conti are probably just there to fill space in the women's tag tournament.
>>
LuFisto - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:44:32 EST VYMa2VAM No.6426674 Reply
>>6426673
well then get fucking better people
User is currently banned from all boards
>>
Danny Doring - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:54:41 EST rqbeZnm6 No.6426678 Reply
>>6426674
But then people would just bitch about them using good people for oneoffs and not signing them.
>>
LuFisto - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 16:57:51 EST VYMa2VAM No.6426681 Reply
>>6426678
Then use your roster of 800 people 790 of which are on Dark 24/7
User is currently banned from all boards
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Pokka !!4vMEXnV5 - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 17:06:09 EST M1ahJWky No.6426684 Reply
something that AEW are doing well is not going for the orthodoxy of having to sign people to long term contracts in order to have the appear on your show. It will help to keep the product fresh.

good on them for copying late era TNA in this
>>
Al Snow - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 18:17:37 EST OBoskew7 No.6426698 Reply
>>6426681
They don't have enough available women on their roster. That's why they're getting these people. Stop bitching for the sake of bitching.
>>
Wahoo McDaniel - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 19:53:02 EST JttfAaTu No.6426726 Reply
>>6426698
Then don't book it if you don't have the bodies for it. It's not like anyone was clamoring for a women's tag tournament. I severely doubt its gonna up ratings dramatically. Having to jump through all these hoops to make a thing no one cares about happen just gives people shit to bitch about. (See: this thread)
>>
Natalya - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 19:59:03 EST yKbMBbtH No.6426728 Reply
>>6426726
Yeah. This tag tournament seems very lazy. AEW had their women's champ on their YouTube show for a long time between main show spots.

Its gotten better, but I feel like AEW doesn't represent women right.
>>
Dutch Mantel - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 20:43:50 EST KSaI5clx No.6426743 Reply
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>>6426728
tell me more with your expert armchair analysis what you consider the correct ways are to properly "representing women" as you say they don't?

I mean, unless you're a chick then chances are Brandi's idea is more the right way to do it than whatever you have to say.
>>
Dutch Mantel - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 23:15:22 EST KSaI5clx No.6426772 Reply
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>>6426066

> the more non-match time, the lower the numbers.

> What’s notable is studying minute-by-minute ratings declines and increases and where they grow is content in the ring
> and where they fall off is focusing on personalities and doing things outside the ring.

> While you absolutely need to develop personalities, that is not the key to growing ratings. That is the sacrifice you make of ratings when you to try and make stars that pay off down the line, either in selling more tickets/PPVs/network subs, ETC.

> and making TV superstars of people can mean ratings in the future.

>But just this statement showed how out of touch Vince is, because that stuff(and you do have to do it)that he says they need more of to build ratings, actually nowadays has proven to hurt ratings.


There you have it, folks! Promos are ratings cancer and people just wanna see the fucking in-ring action whether it's UFC or Pro Wrassling enough talk just fuckin do it already.
>>
Natalya - Sun, 02 Aug 2020 23:29:01 EST EWiQh0da No.6426775 Reply
>>6426772
You mean wwe scripted promos that have been conplete turds since the mid 2000s
>>
Otto Schwanz - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 00:48:29 EST yhwaeriU No.6426785 Reply
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I honest to god wanna know what Crack Pipe Bryan was smoking when he said Talking Shop-a-Mania was a fun show despite it being purposely booked bad because it was meant to 100% be taken seriously as a joke PPV.

Even a extremely minus 5-star show can have some merits to it and I say this having watched all of the worst Impact Wrestling PPV's from the various Russo and Russo Return eras of the companies depressing history

Why even bother having a PPV? Just fucking record the Boner Yard match and say that's the whole show because all I am being treated to is midgets...and luchadors acting like a different subclass of midget

Half Print Brawlers was a better wrestling program then Talking Shop-a-Mania
>>
Leva Bates - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 00:58:35 EST eqffKnTP No.6426789 Reply
>>6426785
I think you're way too mad at something that was meant to purposely mean so little.

If that was TLR for you, eat shit mark
>>
Wataru Inoue - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 02:49:23 EST kZ/0JjSc No.6426808 Reply
>>6426785
He probably liked it because it was fun. Remember fun? It's not that complicated mate.
>>
Dutch Mantel - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 05:43:08 EST KSaI5clx No.6426828 Reply
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>>6426775
I mean, yeah, without The Rock at his prime or StoneCold cutting promos it's just not entertaining but even without those in mind it seems like even in UFC the ratings minute to minute across the board just deteriorate when promos are being aired. I like promos outside of the boring WWE bubble so I get your point but no I mean entirely, everywhere it seems.

Shocking News: People tune into Combat Sports for ACTION and not to hear people talk or bicker or acting petty like a bunch of twats...
>>
Sandman - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 07:02:06 EST 4p78Abvh No.6426832 Reply
>>6426830
Idk Starfires got that naive side that would be humorous to mess with. Like saying its an Earth tradition for females to walk around with splooge on their faces after mating
>>
Dutch Mantel - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 09:09:20 EST KSaI5clx No.6426847 Reply
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>>6426829
the bitchy passive aggressive Raven deserves it more and you're objectively wrong to choose otherwise.

https://www.pornhub.com/view_video.php?viewkey=ph5bf6e4659434e
>>
Seina - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 10:05:01 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6426856 Reply
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Dwayne "The Rock: Johnson, Redbird Capital Buy XFL for $15 Million
>Former WWE superstar Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Gerry Cardinale’s private equity investment firm RedBird Capital have teamed up to buy the XFL for $15 million, the XFL announced. The deal, which was first reported by Sportico's Scott Soshnick, comes just hours before the league was slated to be auctioned.

>According to Sportico, Johnson split the $15 million evenly with RedBird Capital.
“This is a Hollywood ending to our sale process and the start of a fantastic new beginning for the XFL with the best possible ownership group going forward,” XFL President Jeffrey Pollack said.

>The XFL shut down its operations during its inaugural season on April 10 and laid off its entire staff. The league cited the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic as its main reason and then filed for bankruptcy three days later.

>In May, Vince McMahon said that he had no plans to attempt to buy back the league. He first announced its return in 2018 and reportedly spent more than $200 million on it.

>The 2020 XFL season only made it through five of its 10 scheduled weeks. It averaged about 1.9 million viewers on FOX per game,
https://www.si.com/xfl/2020/08/03/dwyne-the-rock-johnson-buys-xfl-redbird-capital-15-million
>>
TAKA Michinoku - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 10:09:47 EST oWLdzxNc No.6426858 Reply
>>6426856
so how possible is it that vince asked his old pal dwayne to buy the XFL for him and make it popular again before selling it back to vince?
>>
Vincent J. McMahon - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 10:39:18 EST fR3hZN/N No.6426863 Reply
>>6426856
You just know WWE is going to leech off this news and act like they're involved in reviving it
>>
Jerry Lynn - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 10:59:19 EST D64Av03U No.6426866 Reply
>>6426856
>15 million
When you adjust for inflation, that's still 5 times more than WWE spent for WCW
>>
Mike Chioda - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 11:33:29 EST /YsP7rdR No.6426885 Reply
>>6426726
>up ratings
Wasnt it supposed to be a youtube show, or was dave talking put of his ass again?
>>
Ranjin Singh - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 13:36:37 EST K20kw6yS No.6426949 Reply
>>6426785
the thing I didn;t like with Bryan's take on talknshopamania was that he kept saying it was just like BTE

Yeah, if BTE featured people with charisma and was actually funny then it might be like Talk'n Shop
>>
William Regal - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 15:48:30 EST ZqsMRvxJ No.6427004 Reply
>>6426981
Oh god they're so bad. And I like BTE most weeks but Dave's reviews are like when someone tries to tell you a funny story but can't do it justice.
>>
Rachel Summerlyn - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 16:04:54 EST nKVXHule No.6427024 Reply
>>6427004
>someone tries to tell you a funny story but can't do it justice.
most bte is exactly like that though
>>
Jerry Lynn - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 16:34:01 EST D64Av03U No.6427044 Reply
Can someone please tell me the appeal of BTE? It just a group of douchebags laughing at bad in jokes
>>
Jerry Lynn - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 16:39:25 EST D64Av03U No.6427048 Reply
>>6427004
And it would be one thing is BTE got like 500k-1,000,000 views on youtube, it does less than 200k on average, but dave gives it like 20 minutes on each observer
>>
Seina - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 16:49:31 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427059 Reply
>>6427048
>>6427044
gonna be hilarious when the WOL and wooo year-end awards name the 3 best wrestling TV shows 1.) Dynamite 2.) Dark and 3.)BTE
>>
Dutch Mantel - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 17:31:01 EST KSaI5clx No.6427072 Reply
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>>6427059
stay salty homie

I absolutely totally 100% give a fuck and will change my entire opinion based on your words alone, sincerely
>>
Natalya - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 17:40:27 EST EWiQh0da No.6427080 Reply
You don't have to like BTE. It's just a dumb youtube show. It's stupid that Dave talks about it like it matters. That's like reviewing Ethan Page Impact Vlogs.
>>
Joe E. Legend - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 18:26:53 EST jEGuiRVR No.6427097 Reply
I decided to watch more BTE because I read Dave was talking about it. He definitely shouldn't be talking about it, though admitedly I don't even know what he said about it, but it actually was pretty funny. I was surprised at how funny Matt Jackson was, same with the Dark Order. Is Dave really talking about it for 20 minutes though? Like it's 90% gags, what tf is he even recapping? What tf is going on with the length too? The latest I'm watching is damn nearly half an hour long.
>>
Pokka !!4vMEXnV5 - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 18:59:56 EST M1ahJWky No.6427123 Reply
>>6427104
the user you are replying to regularly posts news here and has good insight and knowledge for the board. You, on the other hand, make these bad vibes posts that no one wants and drags the atmosphere down. I think it's clear who the worthless one is.
>>
Velvet McIntyre - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:07:44 EST RgpMBobH No.6427129 Reply
>>6427123
Bro, if he keeps making these "bad vibes" posts, just shut up & ignore him already, ya geek.
>>
Leva Bates - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:23:57 EST eqffKnTP No.6427143 Reply
So this AEW women's tag tourney is happening now on YouTube? Was this announced? Seems out of nowhere
>>
Dr. Wagner Jr. - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:32:45 EST cfOXxE22 No.6427149 Reply
>>6427044
Its entertaining, and it helps develop characters and give supporting information and background on feuds

The way its playing up Kenny's imminent heel turn and the page/FTR friendship is great

Plus the bucks and dark order are great every time they're on screen. You can see how much fun Brodie lee is having every single week
>>
Isis The Amazon - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:39:32 EST 6lubTvqQ No.6427157 Reply
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what did Bryan Alvarez really mean by this? Is he bracing himself for a cancellation? Is this meant for people mad at Ospreay? Or Scurll?
>>
Sara Del Rey - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:52:50 EST NbxmdHMb No.6427172 Reply
>>6427157
Why are you lying and making shit up? That had nothing to so with anything you're insinuating
>>6427158
Reviewing Saturday Night's Main Event and Bryan thought the previous SNME was the one Honky refused to lose to Savage but that show is later
>>
Sable - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:53:09 EST UA7X12BR No.6427173 Reply
>>6427157
Bryan and Vinny have been broadcasting for 15 years. The only thing I can fathom that would get the cancel culture mob in a tizzy is that Vinny once called a dude a faggot.
>>
Pokka !!4vMEXnV5 - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 19:54:33 EST M1ahJWky No.6427174 Reply
>>6427157
he's talking about when Meltzer rated Andre vs Hogan minus four stars
>>
R-Truth - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 22:31:20 EST 6lubTvqQ No.6427269 Reply
>>6427173
I remember Bryan calling people on the board cocksuckers, and telling them to get a life. He also said that one of the positives of Sheik appearances is that he'll call people fags. I can see some people saying that he said some "problematic" things, but I don't see him getting cancelled
>>
Dr. Wagner Jr. - Mon, 03 Aug 2020 23:04:46 EST PvOQ6M5D No.6427297 Reply
>>6427269
If you read some of his old stuff he does throw around some questionable language but then again so does Dave. I don't see it really hurting either of them.
>>
Howard Finkel - Tue, 04 Aug 2020 01:15:55 EST msMEiaKI No.6427390 Reply
>>6427152
Remember calling something "bad vibes" is fine but calling bad faith shitposting what it is ain't OK
>>
Jushin Thunder Liger - Tue, 04 Aug 2020 09:21:18 EST tAdUlvaQ No.6427469 Reply
Is there WOR for Raw?
>>
Christian - Tue, 04 Aug 2020 13:54:22 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427546 Reply
Plans changed

WWE’s social media team jumped the gun with announcement of faction coming to Raw
>When it was reported and later hyped by WWE on social media that a faction was coming to Monday’s Raw, there was a lot of speculation among fans. For at least the first night, the first glimpse of the faction was lackluster.

>WWE’s official website had teased earlier in the day that there were “rumblings” around the Performance Center that the group was set to “cause chaos” and “shake up the organization’s structure.”

>As seen on the show, there were moments where the lights were flickering and boxes were knocked over in the backstage area. The biggest moment came when there was footage from outside of the Performance Center showing a group of people wearing hoodies throwing what appeared to be Molotov cocktails at a generator.

>It appears that this will be a slow build to the faction actually making its debut.

>Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful Select reported,
“WWE’s social media team also jumped the gun on tonight’s ‘faction news,’ after word of the new team leaked on Pro Wrestling Sheet.”

>With what this report states and the wording of WWE’s announcement, they used terms that were written by Ryan Satin of Pro Wrestling Sheet in the initial report.

>WWE also taped next week’s episode of Raw on Monday night so whatever WWE has planned for the faction right now will play out the next show.
https://wrestlingnews.co/wwe-news/wwes-social-media-team-jumped-the-gun-with-announcement-of-faction-coming-to-raw/
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Vinnie Vegas - Tue, 04 Aug 2020 14:21:20 EST T5Ycresu No.6427550 Reply
>>6427469
yes, Bryan shits all over it and Dave doesn't think it was as bad as Bryan did but they both agree we are in WCW territory now
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Arachnaman - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:36:41 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427880 Reply
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Get ready for a shitshow New Jersey!

Report: WWE Planning To Hold SummerSlam 2020 In Atlantic City
>Over the past week, WWE has been looking for a new location for SummerSlam 2020. The Biggest Party Of The Summer was originally going to take place at the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts but all large gatherings in the city are prohibited until September 7.

>The company has focussed its search on the North East of the United States and while it was initially looking bleak for WWE, the wrestling behemoth's fortunes seemingly turned around yesterday as WrestleVotes reported the feeling backstage is that the pay-per-view will be taking place outside of Florida.

>They tweeted:
"I've been told by 2 different sources over the weekend that the feeling is SummerSlam will be happening outside the PC. Seems like WWE found a location... Northeastern part of the US. No word on if fans will be in attendance or not just yet."

>Dave Meltzer provided additional details on the new location on F4W Online and he revealed the plan is to hold SummerSlam 2020 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

>Fans may even be able to attend The Biggest Party Of The Summer as outdoor gatherings of up to 500 people can take place in the state.
https://cultaholic.com/posts/report-wwe-planning-to-hold-wwe-summerslam
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Roxxi Laveaux - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:41:47 EST Ybchf0OF No.6427882 Reply
>>6427880

Oh good, WWE will contribute to the USA taking longer to get back to some state of normalcy.
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Arachnaman - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:47:17 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427883 Reply
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>>6427882
WWE, GCW and Beyond potentially running shows on both ends of the same boardwalk on the same day will be a helluva deal.
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Aika Ando - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:54:56 EST 6++lb3jd No.6427886 Reply
>>6427880
Fuck WWE, there are a lot of Black people in and around AC as well as lots of older white folks. They don't need a bunch of carnies screwing things up.
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Arachnaman - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 11:58:23 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427889 Reply
>>6427886
GCW, Beyond and ICW NHB have been bringing carnies to AC since the beginning of July dawg

IF WWE goes thru with this, GCW & Beyond will add to the clusterfuck (no pun intended)
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Bobby Dempsey - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 12:00:21 EST 87DBLmM0 No.6427892 Reply
>>6427882
America will never go back to any state of normalcy, you fucking pigs will all die of covid and the rest of the world will celebrate it.
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Greg Iron - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 12:49:31 EST 35I8LAXy No.6427900 Reply
>>6427898
Literally every place that had a good covid response in march fucked it all up in the proceeding months
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Arachnaman - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 12:51:05 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6427901 Reply
>>6427898
NJ IS one of the smart states tho. And the Jersey shore has been the place where it's hardest to manage positive cases because people wanna party & vacation.

Three separate wrestling shows - including WWE's biggest event of the summer - on the same day, in the same city will actively make things worse.
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Aika Ando - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 12:58:58 EST 6++lb3jd No.6427902 Reply
>>6427889
I am aware. People in AC have been protesting the local government's insistence on opening up for tourists since before those shows.

>>6427901
Plus the Shore has a lot of white people, especially older ones, who are really into the right wing propaganda and don't believe the coronavirus is real at worst or don't believe it is deadly to anyone but the seriously ill at best.
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Akebono - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 17:19:59 EST sIK0yVzL No.6428035 Reply
>>6426856
how fucking pissed is Vince gonna be when Rocky makes this shit actually work somehow?
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George The Animal Steele - Wed, 05 Aug 2020 20:41:42 EST BgwUp47T No.6428147 Reply
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>>6427901
This almost feels like a conspiracy to kill wrestling fans
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Ashley Cartier - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 12:28:47 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6428358 Reply
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hell yeah!

>As we reported earlier this week that Scott Steiner’s Shoney’s restaurant in Acworth, Georgia was shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It had been open until this past weekend so the decision was sudden. A fan on Twitter noted they were sad about the news, especially since Steiner had memorabilia from his career displayed in the Shoney’s. That’s when Big Poppa Pump announced that he would be opening a sports bar to replace it.
https://411mania.com/wrestling/scott-steiner-reveals-plans-after-his-restaurant-closed-down/
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Monster C - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 12:42:18 EST dYhrmb6W No.6428368 Reply
>>6427900
They fucked it up because they handled it well originally. They did a good job shutting down, then people thought a lack of cases meant it was over, or it wasn't that serious, so they reopened too soon and everyone got sick. They basically just delayed their COVID spike instead of preventing it.
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Perry Saturns Hairpiece !!2yqTh/Za - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 13:21:45 EST cajoPv45 No.6428384 Reply
>>6428358
I'm dying to know what Scott's going to name this place.
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Elix Skipper - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 13:24:21 EST Ta5ItinP No.6428386 Reply
>>6428358
sad I can't go to his Shoney's

hyped that I can go to a fucking Scott Steiner sports bar some day
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C-Higgy !lfsExjBfzE - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 14:24:06 EST o+BTpfHb No.6428415 Reply
>>6428358
Well that's good. I'd totally go to a bar owned by Scott Steiner.

>>6428368
It's also because it's on a state-by-state basis as there's constitutional issues that wouldn't allow for an actual nationwide lockdown like we've seen in China and Italy. Here's a good article that goes into detail about it - https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/03/why-theres-no-national-lockdown/609127/

Not to mention there were economic factors at play that influenced states reopening. It's such a shitshow of epic proportions.

This post was edited by C_Higgy on 06-08-2020 14:25:20
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Stalker Ichikawa - Thu, 06 Aug 2020 21:31:33 EST rqbeZnm6 No.6428576 Reply
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Pillman Jr. confirmed he's trying to get released from MLW.
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Midajah - Fri, 07 Aug 2020 11:59:05 EST Nwp9fWmA No.6428733 Reply
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>WWE has confirmed the hiring of Nick Khan as its new President & Chief Revenue Officer following an initial report from John Ourand at Sports Business Journal.

>Khan had grown to become one of the most powerful agents in the sports broadcasting industry negotiating several key deals for television rights, including being part of WWE’s team in 2018 that landed their new deals with Fox and NBC Universal.

>One of Khan’s titles with WWE is President, which were the titles of both George Barrios and Michelle Wilson, who were let go earlier this year. In his roles, Khan will report directly to Vince McMahon.

>From Khan:
"I am very much looking forward to expanding my relationship with Vince McMahon and the entire team at WWE, and becoming a full-time member of the WWE family. It’s rare to have an opportunity to work at a company that is not only legendary in what it has already accomplished, but also uniquely poised to enter into an unprecedented phase of growth and expansion across all lines of business. Our collective industry experience will enable us to extract maximum value across the portfolio globally while driving long-term shareholder value."

>The announcement of Khan’s hiring coincides with the same week where Kristina Salen began her position as WWE’s new chief financial officer.

>Khan joined CAA in 2012 and became its Co-Head of Television representing various clients including Jalen Rolen, Mike Greenberg, and Colin Cowherd, and negotiating deals on behalf of the SEC and Top Rank Boxing. Prior to joining CAA, he worked at ICM and launched a sports media division within the group.

>In 2018, he was instrumental in WWE’s negotiations that transformed its business with the two largest television deals the company ever signed. The five-years deals are reportedly worth $265 million per for Raw and $205 million for Friday Night SmackDown.

>Vince McMahon was quoted in the release stating:
"Nick is a seasoned media executive with a deep understanding of our business and a proven track record of generating significant value for sports and entertainment properties. While representing WWE at CAA, he was instrumental in transforming our business model by securing domestic media rights increases of 3.6x over our previous agreements. Nick’s management style and personal demeanor are perfect for WWE’s entrepreneurial culture, and he will fit right in with our exceptional management team."

>The hiring of Khan comes as WWE’s television viewership has experienced significant declines and was one of the major areas of concern on last week’s second-quarter earnings call from analysts. WWE has addressed its television viewership at different points over the past year when they named Eric Bischoff and Paul Heyman as Executive Directors of SmackDown and Raw respectively, both have since been removed from those positions with Bruce Prichard running both shows, which are overseen by Vince McMahon.

>The hiring of Nick Khan is a huge story for WWE and sends a strong message by getting Khan from CAA as its news president and chief revenue officer. The greatest concern for a WWE shareholder is the fear of the television rights bubble bursting and therefore, the added concern over viewership declining even though the company less than one year into their five-year pacts with NBC Universal and Fox. To offset that, they have hired a major power broker when it comes to negotiating sports rights and will be in-house for the next set. On the surface, it would represent massive savings for WWE to cut out CAA and send Khan out as the chief negotiator on its behalf (assuming WWE negotiates on their own without CAA for the next round). I would suspect this can quell concerns of shareholders of falling numbers knowing Khan is a huge hire for this specific task, but nothing is a guarantee when we are looking down the road at the landscape of 2023-24. The news of Khan’s hiring was met with a 2% increase in the WWE stock price that closed at $45.26 on Wednesday. In terms of long-term stability and possibilities, this is one of the most important hires for WWE and was a massive story within the television industry on Wednesday.
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/08/05/wwe-hires-caas-nick-khan-as-new-president-chief-revenue-officer/
https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/08/05/pollocks-news-update-raws-third-hour-hiring-of-nick-khan/

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