In early August, Vince McMahon went on the record in an earnings call and stated he’s not worried about AEW as a viable rival in the pro wrestling sphere, but not everyone believes him. I don't just mean fans, though there are plenty of those, but rather former WWE referee Mike Chioda, who recently shared his thoughts on what McMahon’s true feelings probably are, going by his personal history with the WWE CEO.
Mike Chioda fielded questions from wrestling fans on the Monday Mailbag podcast from AdFreeShows, which is where he addressed AEW’s upward momentum. When asked if he believed Vince McMahon is worried about the growing success of WWE’s latest rival organization, Chioda confirmed he is very much of that belief, and explained his reasoning (via Ringsidenews.com)
Nothing said here is controversial. AEW's major signings of superstars, its growth in ratings, and its ability to sell out arenas should be concerning to WWE, even if the budding organization still isn’t at the financial level of Vince McMahon’s organization. These growing successes show that AEW could, in time, stand on equal footing to WWE if it wants to, which presents a level of competition the organization hasn’t seen since the days of the WCW.
And yet, Vince McMahon didn’t welcome any comparison to WCW in the much-talked-about earnings call comment about AEW (via Ringsidenews.)
In the time since that earnings call, the WWE gave Big E the WWE Championship live on Monday Night Raw, launched a rebrand of NXT, and signed Olympic Gold Medalist Gable Steveson to a contract. Regardless of whether or not Vince McMahon will ever publicly admit he’s worried about AEW, these moves may indicate WWE is willing to pull out all the stops to compete with its rival.
As AEW and WWE wage war, there’s no denying pro wrestling fans are the winners in this situation. For the latest example of that, read up on what’s happening with Bray Wyatt and where the soon-to-be free agent may land in the coming weeks.
Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.
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