According to PwInsider.com, WWE talent executive Mike “Simon Dean” Bucci was released today by WWE from his post in talent relations. Bucci was largely the manager for the developmental territories, leaving his career as an active wrestler to take the management position. The word among the wrestlers is that Bucci was called in for a meeting today by WWE in the wake of his name being mentioned by the The New York Daily News yesterday as being someone on the list of workers named in the Signature Pharmacy growth enhancing drug scandal.
Talk about the WWE making a move to show they are “tough on drug abuse”. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that among everyone on the list of wrestlers that got drugs from Signature, that besides Funaki, Bucci was the most expendable one on this list. This is a pathetic move by the WWE. This isn’t the first time Edge’s name has been associated with steroids, but is he going to be fired. No, he draws too much money for the company, so he will probably just get a 30 suspension without pay. But I would think the WWE would still use him on tv in a non-wrestling role without pay. Or what about Bautista, Mr. Kennedy or the returning Rey Mysterio Jr? Again they are draws for the company so look for a 30 day suspension without pay or nothing at all.
I hope congress sees through this move and takes the WWE and professional wrestling to the mat on the rampant drug abuse.
Triple H Promoted to Chief Content Officer
WWE formally announced today that Paul “Triple H” Levesque has been elevated to Chief Content Officer. Additionally, the company has promoted Frank A. Riddick III to President & Chief Financial Officer.
Triple H has had stellar reviews since taking over creative for WWE in the wake of Vince McMahon’s retirement and legal issues, with a 15% boost in viewership on Monday Night RAW and double-digit boosts in social media engagement.
Now, Levesque will oversee Creative Writing, Talent Relations, Live Events, Talent Development and Creative Services. The role will report to WWE co-CEO Nick Khan.
Here is the official statement from WWE: “WWE is one of the most prolific producers of premium content in the world and I look forward to this amazing opportunity,” said Levesque. “Having spent my entire career in this business, I’m confident that we have the right pieces in place to continue to grow our audience and deliver for our fans around the world.”
Riddick joined WWE as Chief Financial Officer last year, after serving on the company’s Board of Directors for more than 13 years and previously holding the role of interim CFO. During that time, WWE has announced annual and quarterly records for Revenue and Adjusted OIBDA. As President & CFO, Riddick will oversee Financial Planning & Analysis, Strategy, Controllership, Investor Relations, Tax, Data Analytics, Technology, Event Travel and Facilities. He will jointly report to WWE Chairwoman & co-CEO Stephanie McMahon and co-CEO Nick Khan.
“I’ve had the great fortune of working closely with the talented people at WWE in a variety of capacities over the past 15 years,” said Riddick. “Along with Steph, Nick and Paul, we look forward to executing our ambitious plans and delivering for our shareholders.”
“We are excited to announce expanded roles for Paul and Frank, which will enhance WWE’s ability to create premium content for our partners around the world and, ultimately, drive our business forward,” said McMahon and Khan.
Swerve Strickland Talks Hit Row’s Return to WWE
AEW superstar Swerve Strickland shared his thoughts on his former faction Hit Row, making their return to WWE. Since Strickland is currently in AEW, and one half of the tag team champions with Keith Lee, he is unable to join them.
“I’m happy for those guys and I’m happy they got their second chance, I really am” Strickland said during an appearance on the Grapsody podcast.
“Some people were like, ‘Are you upset about this? They’re back.’ Good, they deserve to be on TV. Now, this is their chance to be them and do what they do or however they want to do. There were times when I would discuss things and they wanted to do it this way, and I was like, ‘Okay, let’s try to mesh this together.’ It was a lot of teamwork and effort and family-type vibes to put these promos together. I don’t think I brought them up to the main roster, I think we did it together. A lot of people with these comments are trying to separate us and do the dividing thing. No, you’re not going to divide me from my friends. You’re not going to divide me from people that I was really grinding with at the PC [Performance Center] and every week on TV, trying to do something really special and being, literally, probably one of the most creative people in the entire PC because nobody was telling us what to do. We were literally coming up with it ourselves. We did that together to get to the main roster.” (quote courtesy of Fightful.com)
Braun Strowman Returns to WWE
After over a year since his release from WWE, Braun Strowman made his surprise return to the company during Monday Night RAW, during the Fatal-Four Way Number One Contenders tag team match between The New Day, Alpha Academy, Los Lotharios, and The Street Profits.
Now we have more information has come out regarding where Strowman will find himself on the main roster.
According to PWInsider, despite making his return on RAW Strowman will be a member of the SmackDown Live roster, and is slated to be used as a babyface.
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