All Elite Wrestling announced; bankrolled by Tony Khan, son of Jacksonville Jaguars and Fullham FC owner Shahid Khan

Crackhead_Bob

Member
Nov 1, 2017
1,245
Lots to unpack here, let me try to break it down:

"what factors separate him from Ted Turner when he purchased Crockett and decided to challenge the WWF?"
Ted Turner was a casual-at-best wrestling fan that put non-wrestling people in charge of his wrestling product while he fucked off to run the rest of his media empire. Tony Khan is a hardcore wrestling fan (he was a tape trader back in the day) who's directly involved in the day-to-day running of the promotion.

"How does AEW's talent stack up to WCW's talent led by Ric Flair? Booking, business instincts? "
I'd give Ric Flair the edge simply because the wrestling industry today is different than the territory days. Our modern indy promotions can't compare to the territory system for experience and exposure. Flair smartly surrounded himself with guys like Jim Ross and Jim Cornette, which certainly helps on the booking aspect, not that the Elite are slouches. Business-wise though, the guys Turner put in charge torpedoed any chance of WCW doing good. Guys like Herd and Scott had no business being in charge.

"How business savvy is Tony Kahn that separates him from a Dixie Carter or a Billy Corgan?"
Dixie was a money mark with no apparent wrestling knowledge, I don't know Billy Corgan's business model well enough to comment on it. Tony appears to have Dixie beat in this regard.

"And for AEW to succeed in the long term, would it demand that he be as solid a prowrestling historian as well as a savvy businessman? Afterall, for all of Ted Turner's affinity to prowrestling, I don't think he knew intimately on the precise machinations of the business in general worked."
Tony is both, he has been following the business since he was a kid. Turner had business chops, but WCW was horribly mishandled by those he put in charge and he was so hands off and not involved for his business acumen to matter.

"How much is Kahn going into this as a fan vs. a business person?
They have a business plan in place, and nothing suggests he's going into this blindly. He's hired many top talents, both on-screen and employees that will be needed to get this promotion off the ground.

And longevity wise, what has more solid long term prospects, AEW or the XFL reboot?"
The butter chicken in my slow cooker for dinner "has more solid long term prospects" than the XFL reboot. :P
A lot of good will for AEW right now. For the sake of objectivity though, what advantages and disadvantages are the WWE saddled with right now? Athletic-wise, they've probably got the most talented roster it's ever had. It certainly has a more talented pool of performers today than what they had in 1995 when Nitro began. And yet, despite it all, Vince adapted his business and went on to prevail in the Monday Night Wars. Do you see him softening his stance on delivering a PG product? Given that this is a 73 year old man who has an affinity for flatulent humor, I have a hard time believing that he wouldn't be above going back to edgy adult oriented programming if he needed to. Many people, though, are convinced that PG is here to stay.

But I think even more contentious than the PG edict, I feel that the scripted promos are an even bigger liability to their performers. I could probably take the PG if it meant no more scripted promos. Is HHH and Stephanie aware that their scripted promo format is going nowhere, or are they too insulated to even care right now?
 

thefro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,312
A lot of good will for AEW right now. For the sake of objectivity though, what advantages and disadvantages are the WWE saddled with right now? Athletic-wise, they've probably got the most talented roster it's ever had. It certainly has a more talented pool of performers today than what they had in 1995 when Nitro began. And yet, despite it all, Vince adapted his business and went on to prevail in the Monday Night Wars. Do you see him softening his stance on delivering a PG product? Given that this is a 73 year old man who has an affinity for flatulent humor, I have a hard time believing that he wouldn't be above going back to edgy adult oriented programming if he needed to. Many people, though, are convinced that PG is here to stay.

But I think even more contentious than the PG edict, I feel that the scripted promos are an even bigger liability to their performers. I could probably take the PG if it meant no more scripted promos. Is HHH and Stephanie aware that their scripted promo format is going nowhere, or are they too insulated to even care right now?
Advantages:
  • Have the most talented roster they've ever had top to bottom
  • Tons and tons of guaranteed money from TV deals and money in the bank
  • WWE Network is ahead of the game and has given them stability in their PPV business where it would have been tanking otherwise.
  • Global international TV exposure/marketing machine/social media followings
  • Global brand/name brand where marks from overseas will fly in and sell out Wrestlemania instantly.
  • Smackdown deal on Fox will get good marketing push from Fox on NFL games, etc.
  • Tons of experienced producers/agents and trainers both on the main roster and at the performance center
  • WWE front office has a lot of top notch people
  • Performance Center idea is good in theory and very well-funded
  • Production team is fantastic at promo packages and making the show look major league.
Disadvantages:
  • Vince is a 73-year old man who's losing it and changes things at the last second with no regard to continuity or telling a story
  • Way too many people involved in creative
  • Scripted promos and bad characters hurt talent and make everything feel inauthentic.
  • Not a lot of big "superstars" due to booking and the pipeline being full of indie wrestlers who may not have "it" to be a transcendent star.
  • Most of the roster already buried by bad booking and it's a big uphill climb to salvage them
  • Talent constantly forced to be a square peg going in a round hole and not booked to strengths. Everyone must cut scripted English promos in the middle of the ring to be a star.
  • NXT/Performance Center does a poor job training homegrown talent for the main roster compared to the budget/# of people signed. Wrestlers need to get out and work shows regularly but those spots are taken by indie all-stars. Most of their successes have been getting indie talent comfortable in WWE system before they get called up.
  • Overexposed product, especially with 3 hour Raws.
  • Overproduced announcers who sound like corporate shills.
  • Kevin Dunn's production quirks are annoying for long-term fans who notice them.
 

Dan

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,757
As someone once said:

"....Vince McMahon is going to make money despite himself. He’s a millionaire who should be a billionaire. You know why he’s not a billionaire? Because he surrounds himself with glad-handed, nonsensical, douchebag (censored) yes men, like John Laurinaitis, who’s going to tell him everything he wants to hear, and I’d like to think that maybe this company will be better after Vince McMahon is dead. But the fact is, it’s going to be taken over by his idiotic daughter and his doofus son-in-law and the rest of his stupid family...."
 

Nightside

Member
Oct 28, 2017
349
Advantages:
  • Have the most talented roster they've ever had top to bottom
  • Tons and tons of guaranteed money from TV deals and money in the bank
  • WWE Network is ahead of the game and has given them stability in their PPV business where it would have been tanking otherwise.
  • Global international TV exposure/marketing machine/social media followings
  • Global brand/name brand where marks from overseas will fly in and sell out Wrestlemania instantly.
  • Smackdown deal on Fox will get good marketing push from Fox on NFL games, etc.
  • Tons of experienced producers/agents and trainers both on the main roster and at the performance center
  • WWE front office has a lot of top notch people
  • Performance Center idea is good in theory and very well-funded
  • Production team is fantastic at promo packages and making the show look major league.
Disadvantages:
  • Vince is a 73-year old man who's losing it and changes things at the last second with no regard to continuity or telling a story
  • Way too many people involved in creative
  • Scripted promos and bad characters hurt talent and make everything feel inauthentic.
  • Not a lot of big "superstars" due to booking and the pipeline being full of indie wrestlers who may not have "it" to be a transcendent star.
  • Most of the roster already buried by bad booking and it's a big uphill climb to salvage them
  • Talent constantly forced to be a square peg going in a round hole and not booked to strengths. Everyone must cut scripted English promos in the middle of the ring to be a star.
  • NXT/Performance Center does a poor job training homegrown talent for the main roster compared to the budget/# of people signed. Wrestlers need to get out and work shows regularly but those spots are taken by indie all-stars. Most of their successes have been getting indie talent comfortable in WWE system before they get called up.
  • Overexposed product, especially with 3 hour Raws.
  • Overproduced announcers who sound like corporate shills.
  • Kevin Dunn's production quirks are annoying for long-term fans who notice them.
Now that I think about it, how many homegrown talent coming out of the performance center have really been successful in the main roster? Charlotte Flair and?
 

Brinbe

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
13,851
Terana
Advantages:
  • Have the most talented roster they've ever had top to bottom
  • Tons and tons of guaranteed money from TV deals and money in the bank
  • WWE Network is ahead of the game and has given them stability in their PPV business where it would have been tanking otherwise.
  • Global international TV exposure/marketing machine/social media followings
  • Global brand/name brand where marks from overseas will fly in and sell out Wrestlemania instantly.
  • Smackdown deal on Fox will get good marketing push from Fox on NFL games, etc.
  • Tons of experienced producers/agents and trainers both on the main roster and at the performance center
  • WWE front office has a lot of top notch people
  • Performance Center idea is good in theory and very well-funded
  • Production team is fantastic at promo packages and making the show look major league.
Disadvantages:
  • Vince is a 73-year old man who's losing it and changes things at the last second with no regard to continuity or telling a story
  • Way too many people involved in creative
  • Scripted promos and bad characters hurt talent and make everything feel inauthentic.
  • Not a lot of big "superstars" due to booking and the pipeline being full of indie wrestlers who may not have "it" to be a transcendent star.
  • Most of the roster already buried by bad booking and it's a big uphill climb to salvage them
  • Talent constantly forced to be a square peg going in a round hole and not booked to strengths. Everyone must cut scripted English promos in the middle of the ring to be a star.
  • NXT/Performance Center does a poor job training homegrown talent for the main roster compared to the budget/# of people signed. Wrestlers need to get out and work shows regularly but those spots are taken by indie all-stars. Most of their successes have been getting indie talent comfortable in WWE system before they get called up.
  • Overexposed product, especially with 3 hour Raws.
  • Overproduced announcers who sound like corporate shills.
  • Kevin Dunn's production quirks are annoying for long-term fans who notice them.
Great breakdown. It's like Stephanie's trying so hard to make the brand seem so clean, scripted, corporatized and advertiser friendly but underneath it all they're still the exact same hella-carny organization and family from the attitude era and way before that. Kinda exactly like Trump in every way. Right down to the father who probably wants to fuck his own daughter. 🤦‍♂️

Maybe they're fooling morons, I guess? 🤔
 

thefro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,312
Seth "Tyler Black" Rollins? Former ROH champion?

Also, doesn't Roman pre-date the performance center? He started in FCW, didn't he?
Yeah, Roman started in FCW and was really only around for the first few months of NXT before the Shield got called up. Not sure the performance center was even open yet.

It's pretty striking when you compare it to OVW having Lesnar, Cena, Orton, Batista all at once and all those guys winning world titles within a few years after starting in OVW (a couple years in the case of Lesnar). Cena and Orton had a little experience before OVW.
 

LuigiMario

Member
Oct 28, 2017
274
Seth had an indie career before going to the Performance Center.

Roman and Charlotte are basically the only main roster successes from the PC
Alexa Bliss is way over with fans despite her inring ability not being top notch. Braun Strowman was pretty over too and I'd really blame WWE Creative for ruining him more than Braun Strowman himself.

Also the PC is what, 5 years old? Feel like we need a few more years before determining it a failure.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,494
Great breakdown. It's like Stephanie's trying so hard to make the brand seem so clean, scripted, corporatized and advertiser friendly but underneath it all they're still the exact same hella-carny organization and family from the attitude era and way before that. Kinda exactly like Trump in every way. Right down to the father who probably wants to fuck his own daughter. 🤦‍♂️

Maybe they're fooling morons, I guess? 🤔
Stephanie is trying to make it seem like a CBS sitcom. It’s the most sterile it’s ever been.
 

Brinbe

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
13,851
Terana
Stephanie is trying to make it seem like a CBS sitcom. It’s the most sterile it’s ever been.
Yep, that's exactly how it seems. So tightly controlled, from the announcers to the talent, to the matches themselves. It's all one giant formula that generates this boring and stale product. I assume, like CBS sitcoms, it appeals to a certain type of similar person.

But they got that Saudi and TV money so they can afford to just coast right now even if the audience dwindles.
 

Mingoguaya

Member
Oct 30, 2017
434
These are the kind of promos that gets me interested on a wrestler. All 3 promos were amazing, especially Darby's. Now I really want to look him up online and see what he's like on the ring.
 
Oct 25, 2017
10,494
These are the kind of promos that gets me interested on a wrestler. All 3 promos were amazing, especially Darby's. Now I really want to look him up online and see what he's like on the ring.
He’s if you took Spike Dudley but made him way more talented. He’s going to be booked as the guy who gets tossed around because of his size and what he’s willing to do, but he’s actually quite good in the ring
 

Mingoguaya

Member
Oct 30, 2017
434
That feature of him on The Wrestlers from Viceland is a good introduction. It's available on their website, in the US at least.
I found it. Will take a look at it tonight. Thanks!
He’s if you took Spike Dudley but made him way more talented. He’s going to be booked as the guy who gets tossed around because of his size and what he’s willing to do, but he’s actually quite good in the ring
Say no more! I used to love Spike back in the day (I still remember when Brock totally destroyed him on his dayview with multiple nasty suplexes).
 

thefro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,312

Alicia Atout's backstage vlog from Double or Nothing. Interviews with Jimmy Havoc, Jack Evans, Sonny Kiss, Kylie Rae, Aja Kong, Michael Nakazawa
 

Crackhead_Bob

Member
Nov 1, 2017
1,245
Advantages:
  • Have the most talented roster they've ever had top to bottom
  • Tons and tons of guaranteed money from TV deals and money in the bank
  • WWE Network is ahead of the game and has given them stability in their PPV business where it would have been tanking otherwise.
  • Global international TV exposure/marketing machine/social media followings
  • Global brand/name brand where marks from overseas will fly in and sell out Wrestlemania instantly.
  • Smackdown deal on Fox will get good marketing push from Fox on NFL games, etc.
  • Tons of experienced producers/agents and trainers both on the main roster and at the performance center
  • WWE front office has a lot of top notch people
  • Performance Center idea is good in theory and very well-funded
  • Production team is fantastic at promo packages and making the show look major league.
Disadvantages:
  • Vince is a 73-year old man who's losing it and changes things at the last second with no regard to continuity or telling a story
  • Way too many people involved in creative
  • Scripted promos and bad characters hurt talent and make everything feel inauthentic.
  • Not a lot of big "superstars" due to booking and the pipeline being full of indie wrestlers who may not have "it" to be a transcendent star.
  • Most of the roster already buried by bad booking and it's a big uphill climb to salvage them
  • Talent constantly forced to be a square peg going in a round hole and not booked to strengths. Everyone must cut scripted English promos in the middle of the ring to be a star.
  • NXT/Performance Center does a poor job training homegrown talent for the main roster compared to the budget/# of people signed. Wrestlers need to get out and work shows regularly but those spots are taken by indie all-stars. Most of their successes have been getting indie talent comfortable in WWE system before they get called up.
  • Overexposed product, especially with 3 hour Raws.
  • Overproduced announcers who sound like corporate shills.
  • Kevin Dunn's production quirks are annoying for long-term fans who notice them.
WWE is here to stay regardless of AEW being a success. But let's assume that AEW gains mainstream ubiquity, how does that affect a WWE that isn't facing the same challenges that it did when it was fighting for its survival in the mid 1990's?

Would you say that HHH and Stephanie are aware of this or are they either too insulated to care or do they recognize their current rout but are constrained by Vince McMahon's stubborn direction?

I remember Mick Foley mentioned in his first book that Vince had an epiphany that allowed people like HHH, Bob Holly, Billy Gunn and others to shed their lame pre-Attitude Era gimmicks and repackage themselves.

What existential threat does a successful AEW pose for WWE even if they're not directly taking jabs at them on the air like Eric Bischoff did?

And do you expect any "Billionaire Tony" skits in the next few years?