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Could WWE Expand?

If you follow sports outside of wrestling, you are aware of the idea of expansion. It’s not exactly something unique to sports, but I’d rather not get into a history lesson outside of sports today. That being said, leagues expand in order to grow. Part of that-a big part-is to make more money. They do this by catering to a broader audience. To put this in perspective, the NHL has teams all over North America now. When they started, they had only 6 teams. The NFL is also constantly looking to expand revenue streams, and they’ve entered into a long-term agreement to hold several games a year in London. Many expect this deal to be the precursor to an NFL team moving to London full time.

How does that apply to WWE, you are probably asking.

Well, they run plenty of International tours, for one. Any time we debate where the next big  PPV should be held, there are always fans saying London,or Madrid, or some other overseas destination. And I think that as cool as it will be, due to the world we live in today, the odds of seeing a major WWE PPV coming at us from London, or anywhere else, are exceedingly remote. Not impossible, but the odds are undoubtedly long.

But…what if WWE expanded to Europe?

Yes, I will grant you, this is akin to a brand split again. But instead of splitting RAW and Smackdown, you would have a domestic roster and an International roster. You could re-introduce the draft show, seeing how the rosters got filled out for the next year. You could have special International PPV. And, a couple times a year, at the major PPV, you would have special “North America versus the World” matches. Like at SummerSlam, Survivor Series and WrestleMania.

You could even introduce something we haven’t seen since one of the earliest WrestleManias-broadcasting the show from more than one site on the same day. Imagine, if you will, WrestleMania 33 is taking place from Minneapolis, in their brand new stadium. But instead of arriving at say, 4pm for a 6pm bell time, fans began sitting down at noon or 1pm, because WrestleMania Europe kicked off at that time. And there would be an expanded undercard, of Euro-centric matches, with a European main event serving as the bridge between EU and NA cards. By the time the EuroMania card ended, we’d be ready to go live from Minneapolis.

And suddenly, a huge event got bigger. It would truly become a Super Bowl level event. All day programming, not just an evening. An event that already attracts tons of foreign fans, would bring in so many more because it would become that much more accessible. They would be able to watch a full Mania caliber card live in their own time zones.

And that’s just the big picture, of course. There would also be the benefit of a European version of RAW, airing locally at a more appealing time than in the wee hours of the morning. More European house shows, though the North American roster tours can still be a big deal. Vince can’t hate this, because it means more opportunities to make money.

WWE is clearly an International entity. Is it time they expanded to truly embrace it?

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  • Si Nicholls

    Would be interesting to see what happened, there is a lot of promotions over here in the UK, and only last week TNA drew almost 10000 people in London at Wembley Arena, The UK is different to the US in the way we watch programming, we in general are happy to watch WWE TNA ROH PCW FWA FCW ICW etc etc and of course not forgetting Wrestlezone up here in NE Scotland, and all female promotions like evepro and Fierce Female’s. On that note in the next 12 months look out for Xia Brookside in NXT.

  • Anon Y Mouse

    It could work with the right set of wrestlers. If you got some of the big independent fighters into the roster and the NXT lot you could easily fit a program that would work for European audience. The big thing would be having the right commentators. You would have to make sure you got people that would be gripping and actually work with the audience rather than against it. Also they’d have to realise that the mentality of the crowds here is very different. Just have to look at the UK crowds to realise that the mentality is far different than what you get in the States.

  • xXwindsofchangeXx

    They’re not expanding s^&t until they figure out how to stop guys from getting injured.

  • Damian Starr

    All day programming? Nah we prefer our events to be shorter than our attention span lasts, ever notice how our sports generally last between 1-2 hours… but the prospect of having (live) programming at a sensible time wouldn’t go a miss

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