WWE fans have been in shock ever since Vince McMahon’s return as Executive Chairman of the Board and the subsequent surprise resignation of his daughter and former co-CEO, Stephanie McMahon. Prior to her resignation, Stephanie had been serving as co-CEO of WWE alongside Nick Khan for the last six months, and the announcement of her departure came amidst the company making some major internal changes.
In the recently released statement, which she shared to her social media accounts, Stephanie McMahon reassured wrestling fans that WWE was in good hands, saying that she was “confident in the future of the company and the leadership team.” However, the spotlight is now well and truly beaming down on the world of WWE, and the company has hit the headlines in the last several weeks.
Vince McMahon, the longtime force behind WWE at the corporate and creative levels, had made a shocking return to the company in January, nearly six months after announcing his retirement. McMahon was alleged to have used company funds to pay millions to multiple women in order to cover up infidelity and allegations of sexual misconduct.
But over a series of just a few days last week, McMahon engineered his return to the company’s board of directors, reshaped it by forcing out some members, replaced them with his own allies, and used that new boardroom power to install himself in his old job as executive chairman. His own daughter – the heir apparent to the company who had appeared groomed to take the job for years -shockingly resigned.
Following Stephanie’s departure, The Wrestling Observer Newsletter noted: “It was conceded that Stephanie and Vince McMahon did have issues in working together as family members. Nick Khan was a buffer who kept things smooth between them, as well as between Vince and Triple H.”
Triple H And Stephanie McMahon To Launch New Promotion?
Rumors have since been swirling that Stephanie McMahon could form her own promotion to rival WWE alongside her husband (and current WWE creative force) Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque. Dave Scherer of PWInsider responded to a question from a wrestling fan about the possibility of Stephanie starting her own company, stating that it was highly unlikely but noted that if Vince does sell WWE to the Saudi PIF, Triple H and Stephanie could try to pitch a new promotion to NBC Universal:
“I would say no chance in hell, because well you know, but I try not to speak in absolutes. Whatever the longest of longshots is, that is the answer here. With that said, if Vince really does the most heinous thing I can think of and sell to the Saudis, which would make the company a leper here in the US, I could definitely see Steph and HHH going to NBC Universal and pitch starting a company for them.”
With the vast majority of company revenue coming from TV rights, instead of fans spending money on tickets or pay-per-view events, the need to give the people what they want has been replaced by content production. As a result, many longtime followers of the company are concerned about what the future of WWE might look like. It’s been a remarkable story thus far, but Stephanie forming her own WWE rival company could be the most remarkable story of all.