Vince McMahon has been running things for so long that we have come to believe he may be immortal, but sadly, he won’t always be around to run WWE. Love him or hate him, you have to give credit where it’s due and there is not a single more important figure in wrestling history. He has been the mastermind for decades and brought the industry into the mainstream. Not only is WWE popular in the United States, it has become a global company with shows airing in different languages on every continent.
If that’s not a testament to what he has offered, you can also credit him to some of your favorite characters and storylines throughout the years as he’s been the main creative force for quite some time. Most matters in WWE are still run by Vince and he has the final word to this day. As you could expect, not everyone has a favorable opinion of the chairman, as plenty of fans believe that he is currently out of touch and the company would benefit from his absence.
It’s difficult to determine whether that’s true until the day comes where Vince steps down or passes away. At 72 years old, he’s still in incredible shape and taking bumps, as seen recently on SmackDown with Kevin Owens. We wish Vince a long healthy life and hope that he will be around for years to come, but of course, we have to wonder what the company is going to be like when he’s no longer around to run things. Today, we look at 15 things that could happen when Vince McMahon dies.
15. Power Struggle Between Stephanie/Triple H And Shane
Up until a few years ago, we all thought that Shane McMahon would follow in his father’s footsteps and run the company once he retires or passes away. But Shane decided to leave the company for his own business ventures while Vince’s daughter Stephanie McMahon and her husband, Triple H, were left next in the hierarchy.
Shane returned recently and supposedly requested a high position with creative control, and much to his disappointment, he was turned down. By the time he came back, Triple H and Stephanie were already assisting in running the company and representing the WWE at public events.
However, Shane stuck around for a role on the show, acting as the general manager of SmackDown. Shane has mostly kept a low profile over the years and stays away from controversy, the fans love him for that as well as for his in-ring antics. When the time comes for someone to take over the reigns, you can bet there will be a power struggle between the two McMahon siblings.
14. No Nostalgia Acts
For years, we have witnessed the return of older wrestlers that fans hadn’t seen for a while. It’s always great to see old timers but not when they start headlining shows at the expense of younger talents. Unfortunately, that’s almost always the case. Last year, we saw Goldberg return after a 12-year hiatus to squash Kevin Owens and win the WWE Universal Title.
Upon his return, fans were more than happy to see him, but they quickly got sick of him when he started headlining pay-per-views. With Vince McMahon gone, these nostalgia acts will fade away and won’t occur nearly as much as they do now. They will probably return for a one time appearance rather than a part time run. Nostalgia acts can bring in money at present time, but WWE needs to build for the future as they have started running out of stars to bring back.
13. Less “Larger Than Life” Characters
If there’s anything Vince McMahon is known to love, it’s those larger than life characters who appear to be intimidating. For every Brock Lesnar, there are 10 failed prospects who end up going to waste. Back in the day, wrestlers had to look a certain way since people genuinely didn’t know it was scripted, so wrestlers had to be tall with plenty of muscles.
Although times have changed, Vince hasn’t really adjusted for the most part. In 2004, Eddie Guerrero became the first relatively short wrestler to win the WWE title and a few others have been given the chance since then. But Vince still prefers large-sized wrestlers, and looks down on the shorter ones.
His ideal look is that of a Roman Reigns type rather than a Sami Zayn, but fans of today have a different mentality than those of 30 years ago. When Vince is no longer around, we believe that everyone will be given an opportunity to main event, regardless of their height.
12. No More Superman Gimmicks
Since the days of Hulk Hogan, Vince has been trying to recreate that same type of dominant character time and time again. Back in the day, fans were into the whole heel-versus-face dynamic with the latter overcoming all odds to come out on top.
The Attitude Era changed that for a brief time with the introduction of wrestlers like Stone Cold Steve Austin. Years later, Vince insisted on turning John Cena into another Hogan, which didn’t exactly go well with the fans, who turned on him and started booing him.
To be fair, Cena still had plenty of fans and he was usually receiving mixed reactions from the crowd. With Cena getting older, it was time for a new face of the WWE, which brought Roman Reigns to the spotlight who gets booed out of the building every single week. With Stephanie or Shane running the company, we suspect that we will no longer see any other untouchable type of character.
11. Influx Of Independent Talents
We have already started witnessing an influx of independent talents in the past few years, thanks to Triple H who has taken on more responsibilities outside of the ring with a vision that is different than that of Vince McMahon.
He has signed multiple talents from the indies whom fans wanted to see on the big stage, and they have been introduced through Triple H’s very own creation: NXT. Vince is still not completely sold and prefers WWE to cooperate on its own rather than recruit talents from the outside world.
If Triple H or Shane takes over, there is no doubt that many more wrestlers from the indies will be bringing their talents to the WWE. It will surely help the company and satisfy those fans who have petitioned to see these new faces make their way to Vince’s kingdom.
10. More Wrestling, Less Entertainment
You can always tell which segment was Vince McMahon’s creation by its sense of humor. He has created some of the most legendary and memorable moments in wrestling history, but also some that will make you cringe. What Vince finds funny isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, his humor is pretty weird and even sick at times.
Over the years, WWE has gone overboard with some segments and characters, continuously beating a dead horse that fans couldn’t care less about. For instance, Hornswoggle was intriguing at first, but Vince managed to make him so unlikeable by having him involved in major storylines, and even winning the WWE Cruiserweight Championship.
These goofy segments will likely be replaced with more wrestling once Vince is no longer the creative force behind the product. It doesn’t mean that WWE will abandon the entertainment factor, but rather become a more wrestling driven show than it was under Vince’s reign.
9. Staff Change
When Vince McMahon passes away, many of his employees will be hearing his famous catchphrase except that it will be delivered by either Triple H or Stephanie. Vince has his own favorites whom he has trusted and worked with for years, but many of them don’t exactly get along with other authority figures.
Their clock will be ticking when new management comes in, as Triple H will probably bring in new faces in charge to officially begin a new era. One particular name who has been around for decades is Kevin Dunn, he currently serves as head producer of WWE television. Despite being loved by Vince, that feeling isn’t shared with the boss’s daughter or Triple H, and he will be likely the first name to be replaced. He’s generally disliked by other staff members as well, so no one should be surprised when he’s gone.
8. WWE Against The World? Not Anymore
If it was up to Vince McMahon, WWE would be the only wrestling company in the world. We can’t blame him for having that mentality, every businessman wants to dominate his industry, but it’s simply not realistic in wrestling. Until very recently, every other wrestling company was considered an enemy of the WWE, but with more influence from Stephanie and Triple H, Vince has slightly changed his policies.
In the 2000s, WWE always acted as if no other wrestling company existed, completely ignoring TNA for so long and refusing to acknowledge it. Many of TNA’s top stars are now in the WWE, and it’s very likely that when Vince is no longer around, you will hear more mentions of their days before they made the jump.
WWE would likely collaborate with more wrestling promos and potentially even allow its performers to make some appearances from time to time, which is something that Vince has always been very strict on since the rise of WCW.
7. WWE Programming Stays PG
If you’re expecting the Attitude Era to return when Vince leaves, you’re in for a disappointment. Those days are long gone and fans need to accept it now as WWE will never be as edgy as it used to be in the late 90s. In fact, you shouldn’t even hope for another Ruthless Aggression era.
Times have changed and society is significantly different today compared to 20 years ago; WWE has to remain politically correct or it will be heavily criticized by mainstream media. There would probably be movements to boycott the company across social media if they were to have similar content as they did before. Not to mention, they would lose many of their sponsors who wouldn’t approve of non-PG segments and characters. TV channels wouldn’t hesitate to drop WWE programs if the content is deemed too risky for its audience.
6. Return Of The Blackballed Figures
When you’re a figure as powerful as Vince McMahon, you’re bound to make enemies over the years. Many stars have burned bridges with the WWE due to having heat with Vince, who’s known to be extremely stubborn.
Just look at the way he treated Randy Savage for more than 15 years before he passed away, Vince held a grudge against him and still does towards other legendary figures. In some cases, it may be warranted, but Vince can be a bit difficult to deal with.
Hogan already had a bad relationship with Vince prior to his racist rant from the leaked tape which got him fired from the company. If Hogan outlives the chairman, he’s likely going to be brought back at some point due to his popularity. He’s not the only figure that you will likely see on TV screens, although we wouldn’t bet on CM Punk.
5. An Improved Women’s Division
WWE has been promoting the Women’s Revolution in the past couple of years, recruiting many talents who actually have in-ring talent as opposed to just being eye candy. For decades, Vince McMahon preferred to have bikini contests instead of women’s wrestling matches; it took significant influence from Stephanie McMahon and Triple H to somewhat change his ways.
When Vince passes away, the Women’s Revolution will truly be in full effect and you can expect to see many more talented wrestlers recruited to the WWE. They are probably going to be the main event more often and potentially have their own show at one point. You won’t see the likes of Ashley Massaro or Christy Hemme, who have no wrestling talent and relied on their looks and sex appeal to make it.
4. Everybody Loves Vince
While Vince has enemies from wrestlers to companies to political figures, his death would change all that. When you’re no longer around, people tend to forget the bitter past and only remember the fond memories that they have of you. That will definitely be the case with him, and all fans who want him gone are going to suddenly find new appreciation for the man. Whenever an important wrestling figure passes away, WWE holds a tribute show on Monday Night Raw. Vince will probably have one hell of a show to honor his memory and his contributions to the wrestling world.
It’s easy to complain about Vince being in charge, but the alternative could be much worse, he’s proven to be a great owner, and the industry will never be the same. As for his enemies, you won’t find them bashing Vince anymore; their tone will change and they will be full of praise.
3. Influx Of International Stars
Not only has Triple H brought in independent wrestlers to the WWE ever since he took a role in management, he has also recruited several international stars. Although Vince has always had characters from all over the world, they were usually one-dimensional heels who portrayed the same character and pretty much always hated America.
From Russian to Arab characters, Vince loved presenting his international stars as villains that may seem threatening at first, but eventually would lose to the likes of Hulk Hogan. In today’s age, WWE has a fan base all over the world and American fans aren’t as patriotic anymore; they loved seeing Shinsuke Nakamura on the big stage, for instance.
2. Less Scripted Promos
At the peak of WWE’s popularity, wrestlers had more freedom in their work, from developing their own characters to delivering promos. These days, everything you see is scripted, for the most part; promos are already written for wrestlers and they basically just read off the script.
Of course, some figures like John Cena are free to improvise and break the rules, they can engage the crowd as they see fit, but not everyone has that privilege. Vince McMahon also controls what the commentators say, he’s always in their ear telling them how to react. He has even created a list of banned words that wrestlers aren’t allowed to use, and it’s pretty ridiculous, to say the least. When Vince is no longer running things, you can bet that wrestlers will have more freedom to work with especially when it comes to delivering promos.
1. Bye Bye Celebrities
For all his faults, Vince McMahon is a genius who knows the wrestling business like no one else. His vision was always to elevate WWE to mainstream levels, and he successfully did so. During the 80s and 90s, WWE was extremely popular with fans of all ages and reached new audiences they previously only dreamed of.
Superstars like Stone Cold Steve Austin were showing up at mainstream award shows, and in return, you had the likes of Mike Tyson compete in WWE. Since then, WWE has lost its popularity with mainstream media but Vince insists on bringing celebrities in order to appeal to non-wrestling fans. From Snooki to Rob Gronkowski, a few names are guaranteed to show up every single year.
In 2010, WWE introduced a concept where a celebrity would be the manager of Monday Night Raw for one night. Needless to say, the fans got sick of it pretty quickly. With a new sheriff in town, WWE is likely going to distance itself from these random celebrities who add nothing to the show.
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