Eric Bischoff is a veteran in the pro wrestling business and is undoubtedly one of the greatest minds to have ever worked in it. He is well aware of the changing landscape of pro wrestling as well. For the past few months, WWE has been releasing several talents from their contracts, which began with the likes of Mickie James and Chelsea Green being released back in April.

The company released even more NXT Superstars in their latest batch of releases, including the likes of Bronson Reed and Bobby Fish. In total, WWE has released 52 Superstars so far this year, and that doesn’t include backstage workers.

While speaking on his 83 weeks podcast, Eric Bischoff talked about the recent WWE releases. Bischoff then went on to explain how WWE is handing AEW Rampage a golden opportunity.

“I was supportive of the Friday night opportunity for AEW. Yes, it does pose risk. Everything poses a risk people! Everything, and there are risks with creating an additional hour, particularly on a major cable network. What are those risks? You can dilute your talent pool. You can create a situation where your must-see programming, in AEW’s case on Wednesday night, becomes not quite as must-see because well, you can pick it up on Friday night or a version thereof. That’s a risk. The upside is they’re making more money.


You got to balance that, but now, with at least the potential of some of these key players coming over from WWE to AEW, you talk about a way to draft that WWE audience. They are in such a great position. Of course, in AEW’s case, they’re gonna have to deliver. You can only ride the anticipation horse so long before, ‘Okay, we’re done being excited about what could happen. Let’s show us what is going to happen,’ but right now, I don’t want to say what AEW is doing is flawless, certainly not flawless. I don’t know that anything can be, but this is about as close to it as you can get, and they’re getting a huge assist from WWE, for whatever reasons known or unknown to all of us who are not in the office, so to speak.

WWE is handing Rampage a golden opportunity because you have to assume SmackDown averages about two million viewers a week, give or take. AEW right now is probably around 900,000 because they got a couple back-to-back weeks of a million plus, and if that trend continues, I suspect it will, now you’re getting into the point of being legitimate competition, regardless of what Vince McMahon has to say. You have to assume, though, looking at those numbers, that there is a large percentage of the WWE audience who has not yet sampled, or if they have sampled, haven’t become a regular AEW viewer. The numbers just tell you that. You got two million over here. You got one million over here. Well, there’s a million people floating around out there that haven’t committed yet. They’re ambivalent, at this point, to AEW, for whatever reason. Well, now there’s a reason not to be ambivalent. Now, there’s a reason to go, ‘Hey, this shows on right after SmackDown. Let’s at least see what’s going on.’ We’ve talked ad nauseum about getting people to sample your product. I always use the restaurant analogy, give people a reason to try your menu. It’s incumbent upon you then once they do to deliver, but once you do, now, you’ve got a loyal customer.”

With AEW Rampage set to debut on August 13, we will have to wait and see how it will fare on its own. Easy E should know a thing or two about pro wrestling wars, and he led WCW through the Monday Night Wars. Only time will tell if his theory is correct in this instance, because a lot of things have changed in the pro wrestling world since he led Ted Turner’s company.

h)t to Wrestling Inc for the quotes.

Subhojeet Mukherjee

Subhojeet, a professional wrestling fan for over 20+ years, found his passion during the Monday Night Wars. With expertise honed over decades and a broad spectrum of interests including TV, movies, anime, novels, and music, he offers insightful analysis and coverage. Respected in the industry, Subhojeet keeps fans informed and engaged with his knowledge and perspective.

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