Wednesday, May 29, 2019

WWE Untold - The failed relaunch of WCW

On Sunday after the WWE Performance Center Combine broadcast on the WWE Network, I watched a 20 minute documentary featuring Eric Bischoff, Booker T, Shane Helms, Jeremy Borash, and Brian Bedol talking about a potential relaunch of World Championship Wrestling. The basic point of the documentary is about Bischoff who had been WCW President was trying to purchase the company from Turner Broadcasting with Bedol who was part of this company called Fusient Media Ventures. If it had worked, it would've meant that WCW wouldn't have been bought by the World Wrestling Federation as had actually happened by March 2001 just before WrestleMania that year.

By 2001, I likely has stopped watching WCW as it was increasingly trying to outdo the creative of WWF at the time. As Bischoff admitted in this documentary behind the scenes the situation was a messs and he wanted to buy WCW from Turner Broadcasting who at that point had been bought about AOL Time Warner. With Bischoff as head of a new WCW purchased from Turner he would've attempted to pull off a relaunch of WCW with a PPV known as The Big Bang.

With this said, I likely found out about the potential deal on a website known as which in the days before social media - and I currently get most of my wrestling news from YouTube and this was four years before that site's creation - was how I got most of my wrestling news. Unfortunately there are no archives from before 2006, however, I'm sure there were items about Fusient and an apparent deal made between Fusient & Turner. I'm also sure there were items about the deal being undone by Turner's cancellation of WCW on TNT and TBS which effectively killed that deal. Thus the door was opened for the WWF err sorry WWE to purchase the company that briefly won the Monday night wars.

Little did I know in 2001 that the pro-wrestling or sport entertainment universe was changing. As WCW was going through their dying days, Extreme Championship Wrestling was going bankrupt. In 2000, ECW had their own primetime Saturday night program The Nashville Network until WWF moved to that network to become The National Network (eventually Spike TV or The Paramount Network much later). ECW soldiered on with their syndicated programming until they ran out of money to produce more programming.

So before WWF eventually bought WCW the big three top wrestling promotions of the nation was cut down to two and then eventually WWF errr WWE reigned supreme. And as happens while there have been other companies who tried to compete with WWE it's been said that wrestling is bigger than ever today. While WWE is experiencing some ratings decline recently that company has largely reigned supreme since 2001.

The latest company to emerge to challenge WWE is All Elite Wrestling which had their recently PPV on Saturday with Double or Nothing (and another called All Out at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois) time will tell if AEW can compete. What can be said for them now is that in the fall they will have a weekly program on the former network home of WCW Monday Nitro on TNT. And they put on a good show with the recent Double or Nothing. As stated the future of wrestling seems to be bigger than ever now!

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