A potential WWE return of Vince McMahon could cause major damage to WWE business, according to somebody that is considered an ally of the former Chairman.
It was on July 22nd when Vince McMahon announced his retirement from WWE following reports of hush money payments that he gave to several different women that he had affairs, which also led to former VP of Talent Relations John Laurinaitis getting fired by WWE because he was part of it. Since then, Vince has lived a life out of the public spotlight until his name popped up again.
The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week that Vince McMahon wanted to return to WWE in some capacity because he believes he was given bad advice about stepping down. Vince called it retirement at the time.
In the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter (available via subscription), Dave Meltzer talked to an ally of Vince, who had these comments about Vince potentially crippling WWE if he decided to come back.
“What if (he) decided to upend the entire Board (he has 80 percent voting stock) and is still the largest owner of common stock? The class action shareholder lawsuits would cripple the entire company. The networks would balk. FOX had to get rid of Roger Ailes. I don’t think they will be favorable to his return. NBCU is a prisoner of the deal and even they spoke up about his TV appearances when he was in the headlines and still appearing on TV. The shareholder revolt would endanger the entire organization.”
“This was a terrible shot today to the `moving forward’ `business as usual’ claim that was implemented by Stephanie, Levesque (and) Nick Khan. Now the conspiracy theories will be all about (Vince) coming back. If he comes back, it’s a scorched Earth scenario. Unless he figures a lesser role (and how can he of all people take a lesser role?), but the leak from his side is that he was given bad advice, so now he’s blaming people.”
In addition to that, this McMahon ally noted that Vince’s role in WWE could affect the TV negotiations for the next major TV deals for Raw & Smackdown that expire in October 2024.
“He stands to make so much money in a stock sale if he lets these TV negotiations go smoothly. Now the networks have to ask, `What’s going on with Vince?’”
Since leaving the everyday operations of WWE, Vince’s daughter Stephanie McMahon took over as the Chairwoman (Vince ran the company for the last 40 years) and Co-CEO along with Nick Khan, who was the former WWE President. Meanwhile, Stephanie’s husband Paul “Triple H” Levesque because the Chief Content Officer meaning he is in charge of the creative direction of WWE Raw & Smackdown programming along with Premium Live Events, which was also Vince’s role for 40 years.
As the year 2022 comes to a close over the next two weeks, the potential return of 77-year-old Vince McMahon to WWE will be one of the bigger stories to keep an eye on heading into 2023.