A former WWE official has noted that he was paid a bonus by Vince McMahon for counting a fall during a match that was not meant to be the finish.
On the 9th of January 2012 edition of Monday Night Raw CM Punk faced Jack Swagger in a one-on-one match. While the match may be overlooked in the annals of time, it does stand out because of its finish when Swagger was counted out for the pinfall loss even though he apparently got his shoulder up before the three count – just.
Speaking on the Unskripted podcast, the referee for that bout, Jack Doan, revealed that he had been instructed by then-WWE Chairman Vince McMahon to count stars out if they failed to kick out in time and even got a bonus for doing so despite it not being the intended finish of the match:
“There was a big span there where Vince really got tired of the guys, I mean basically, you’re doing your three-count and we’re basically stopping ourselves before the three. The guys are trying to make it too close.”
“We went through where guys were just, like, waiting way too long, and Vince was like, ‘Start counting them out.’ So, of course, I got bonused for it and Vince was happy, but it was actually CM Punk and [Jack] Swagger, and if you actually go back and look at it, he kicked out in time and that was not the finish.”