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WWE’s Vince McMahon in Trouble – For What Exactly?

WWE’s Vince McMahon in Trouble – For What Exactly?

I’ve been a fan of professional wrestling since I was a kid, watching Ohio Valley Wrestling with Jerry Lawler, Jerry Jarrett and the Interns on TV every Saturday morning.

Vince McMahon has built wrestling from a series of small town hustles into the $5 billion World Wrestling Entertainment.  It is a fantastic show that draws millions of viewers and fills arenas across the country.

Now Vince has temporarily stepped down as CEO of WWE.

Apparently, he had an affair. As the story goes, there was a paralegal hired by the WWE with whom Vince became entangled. This paralegal was highly paid at $100K per year, and then she got a raise to $200K per year.  The paralegal also became involved with John Laurinaitis, WWE’s head of talent relations.

Nobody is certain what ensued thereafter, but apparently, Vince paid her $3 million to shut up and go away.

Just speculating on this because I don’t really know what happened.  While it is certainly not a wise idea to get involved with an employee, by all accounts this was consensual.  It was not rape, there were no roofies involved, no coercion of any kind (except perhaps the monetary kind).

It seems to me the paralegal wasn’t of the best moral character. She slept with a married man, wheedled a fat raise out of it, and then slept with another WWE executive. Nothing illegal here (at least on Vince’s side), but I suspect the $3 million was her idea. And I suspect that she was determined to make Vince’s life hell if she didn’t get it. The fact of their affair would be easy to prove and the embellishments (i.e. lies and exaggerations – drugs, the shape of his manhood, his abilities or lack thereof…) would be fodder for the entertainment rags for a long time. But so far she has kept her end of the bargain.

The issue is over, right? If you can buy your way out of a problem, you don’t have a problem. This is business as usual in most personality driven corporations – protect your figurehead because he provides value to the company.

But somebody on his Board of Directors has gotten wind of it and is investigating. And of course, that investigation has led to articles in the Wall Street Journal.  All over an amount of money that comprises less than one day’s worth of WWE revenues. Do they believe an affair is going to harm WWE when Vince has LITERALLY had more salacious story lines for himself in the WWE shows?

And is this board so innocent in the ways of the world, or, more likely, more full of #metoo radicals that they would risk the financial prospects of a $5 billion corporation to damage McMahon just for having an affair? Are they so unaware of how the media works that they can’t fathom that Vince’s departure is the only result of this that would damage the WWE? These are people who should be fired from the board. These are people who don’t understand how the wrestling business works, that you don’t take down an icon, when that icon is crucial to the business. At least not for a something this trivial.

And now Vince has stepped down – that is real damage to the WWE.  

What does the Board think is going to happen here? Do they really want to dump the legendary Vince McMahon from the WWE? The man who built the company, who actually made pro wrestling into what it is today?

Do they believe they can change Vince, who has earned his privileged life after building an empire out of small town shows making $50 a night?

They are fools. This is the worst possible outcome.

Even if the paralegal had gone public and embarrassed Vince, he would have easily turned it into a gimmick and used it in the shows.  He would not have lost a single viewer. (In fact, he should hire her again to do just that…hmmmm, maybe that is what this has been from the start?).

But to lose Vince McMahon this way is just stupid.

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  1. David Dutra

    Vince will figure out a way to put a spin in this, out her in the spotlight and donut again…

    • Joe Gilbertson

      He’s a genius in that respect, always has been.

  2. Carolinadog