This Week in ‘E – Linda Loses, A Losing 3rd Quarter and a NXT Loss

WWE releases the latest quarterly earnings, another lady goes from NXT and Linda loses here election bid…

Opening Witty Banter
I got a whole lot of nothing right now. As of this writing I’m coming off a four day bender on another rough patch of life. Let’s do this so we can all move on, have fun and kick ass.

Let’s take some ‘E…

The News of the Week
Because it’s that time of year and I feel like it’s my job here’s some boring numbers from the recent third quarter results:

STAMFORD, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE) — World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:WWE – News) today announced financial results for its third quarter ended September 30, 2010. Revenues totaled $109.6 million as compared to $111.3 million in the prior year quarter. Operating income was $20.3 million as compared to $14.5 million in the prior year quarter. Net income was $14.3 million, or $0.19 per share, as compared to $8.9 million, or $0.12 per share, in the prior year quarter. Impacting comparability to the prior year quarter are production tax credits recorded in both current and prior year quarters. Excluding the impact of these credits, Adjusted Operating income was $14.2 million as compared to $12.0 million in the prior year quarter. Adjusted Net income was $10.3 million, or $0.14 per share, as compared to $7.4 million, or $0.10 per share.

Overall revenue was down, TV was down, live events were down (due to less events), PPVs were down, magazines were down, wwe.com was down.

Look the sky is falling! It’s not even close to 1995 levels so there is no need for any sort of panic mode and the infrastructure has changed so much since then that the company is on some solid, solid ground.

WWE bragged about the success of WrestleMania XXVI via this press release:

WrestleMania(R) Makes $45 Million for Host City

STAMFORD, Conn., Nov 04, 2010 (BUSINESS WIRE) — World Wrestling Entertainment(R) announced today that WrestleMania XXVI generated $45.1 million in economic impact for the greater Glendale/Phoenix area, according to a study conducted by the Enigma Research Corporation. WrestleMania also generated close to $5 million in local, state and county taxes.

Over the past three years, WrestleMania has generated nearly $150 million in cumulative economic impact for its host cities and states, this despite the country experiencing one of the worst economic periods in decades.

“WWE(R)’s premiere event was an important addition to Glendale’s tourism industry and position as a leading sports and entertainment destination,” said Glendale Mayor Elaine Scruggs. “The $45 million boost to our region created by WWE’s fantastic fans makes WrestleMania a valuable economic attraction for every community host. We look forward to WWE returning to Glendale soon.”

A capacity crowd of 72,219 fans from all 50 states and 26 countries attended WWE’s pop culture extravaganza this past March. Key highlights from the study included:

$45.1 million of direct, indirect and induced impact derived from spending by non-locals visiting specifically for WrestleMania XXVI. The economic impact derived from WrestleMania Week equated to the creation of 510 full-time jobs for the area. 63% of fans that attended WrestleMania were from outside the Phoenix Metropolitan Area, with 53% staying three nights or more. 60% of fans that came from out of state were from California and Nevada. 58% of fans that attended WrestleMania were between the ages of 20 and 40, and 23% were between the ages of 5 and 19.

“We are very pleased that WrestleMania has once again produced a significant economic windfall for its host city. This is an incredible result in the face of a challenging economy, and one that illustrates the size and scope of WrestleMania Week,” said John P. Saboor, Senior Vice President of Special Events for World Wrestling Entertainment. “Our public and private sector partners within the Glendale/Phoenix area were exceptional hosts for the WWE Universe.”

Next year, WrestleMania XXVII will take place Sunday, April 3 from the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, GA. Tickets go on sale Saturday, November 13 at 10 AM EST through the Georgia Dome box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. The event will be broadcast on pay-per-view, and viewed in more than 100 countries.

I’ve been saying for three years I’d make it to WrestleMania and I felt like next year’s show in the ATL would be my ticket there, but we’ll see…

The rumor going around right now is that Survivor Series will only have about a 20% chance of actually having a traditional classic Survivor Series style elimination matches.

Wow is that stupid. Nothing like having a pay per view a month before based entirely on the concept of an elimination based brand match and then barely reviving the Survivor Series concept, a brand that has been running for over twenty years. Survivor Series should be one of the company’s major tent pole shows, but now it’s just another in a long line of meaningless events. While having beers with my good friend Randall last night we lamented over the fact that guys (no better or worse then me) were booking WWE while Michael Hayes and Stephanie McMahon ruled over the show. Remember when Vince McMahon booked the show by himself and things were simple, logical, easy to follow and built to the next big show?

CM Punk will be out of WWE rings for the next three months to take care of a hip injury. While Punk will not be in the ring wrestling and working, the WWE creative team has been told to keep Punk out of physical storylines but come up with ideas to keep him on television in a non-wrestling show. It is expected that Punk will be having surgery soon to heal the injury. Apparently the injury isn’t severe enough that he could still work in the ring. But WWE management wants him to get healed before the injury gets worse. Strangely enough it is being reported that the injury came about after a taking a bad bump from an Edge DDT back at Bragging Rights.

Thankfully Punk has unlimited charisma and potential behind the microphone as a commentator and cutting promos. He stole the show during a recent appearance as a guest commentator on NXT season 3, and long-time Punk fans will know of his skills behind the microphone thanks to his early work in Ring of Honor. Regardless, as long as Punk is still allowed to be on television he will remain an integral part of the company and remain relevant with fans.

Linda McMahon has lost her bid for a United States Senate race in the state of Connecticut. According to CNN.com, McMahon, the Republican candidate, lost to Richard Blumenthal, the Democratic Attorney General for the State of Connecticut, by a margin of 46% to 53% with 62% of votes counted as of 11:30 PM CST.

McMahon gave her concession speech late Tuesdy night and introduced her entire family, including extended family and various in-laws as she conceded. McMahon said the race was one of the “most unbelievable” years of her life.

She said, “no matter what, I consider this a victory.”

To her credit Linda sent out this message to her supporters:

“Dear Friend,

It has been my honor and pleasure to have had the opportunity to run for the United States Senate here in Connecticut.

I couldn’t have done it without you. Your faith and trust in me during the past 13 months has meant so very much.

I have thoroughly enjoyed traveling around our beautiful state from the northwest corner, to the quiet corner down along the shoreline and into Fairfield county with points in between. We racked up 52,000 miles on the campaign vehicle but the journey has been a joy.

I am also very proud of the campaign that we have run. Our ground game was tremendous: hardworking volunteers like you knocked on 100,000 doors, made more than 400,000 phone calls and proudly placed countless yard signs in front of your homes and businesses.

My campaign’s focus was on economic recovery and job creation, and today, that same focus must remain the top priority of our newly elected officials. Let us all make sure they have our support for the good of our state and our country.

The United States is the best place to live in and I truly believe we as American’s have a strength and resolve that will pull us through these next few unpredictable years. We must look ahead and bring ourselves to remember as President Ronald Reagan once said, “If you’re afraid of the future, then get out of the way, stand aside. The people of this country are ready to move again.”

Thank you all for your heartfelt support and encouragement. Sincerely,

Linda McMahon”

Thank God that is over. Not that I lived in Connecticut or am a Republican but as a WWE fan I was awfully tired of the pandering to WWE fans and seeing shots of Linda kicking Jim Ross in the nuts on basic cable television shows. I know TV-PG isn’t going to end, as it didn’t start because of Linda’s campaign, but maybe we can focus on the wrestling again?

Maxine was the second Rookie Diva eliminated from WWE NXT, season three, on November 2. Her elimination was the last part of the evening and she gave a basic departure elimination speech. Her elimination was not a big surprise as she was the truest “villain” of the five Divas left.

However the episode was easily the best of NXT, season three, and had a recurring storyline throughout, thanks to the wedding of Goldust and his Rookie Diva Aksana.

The show opened with a Kissing Contest for the final Divas. Originally Hornswoggle would be the one the ladies would kiss, but “Dashing” Cody Rhodes interrupted and became the test subject. Rhodes picked AJ as the winner after she jumped in Cody’s arms and knocked him to the ring mat.

Backstage, AJ and Primo try to talk in private but they found Dusty Rhodes with The Bella Twins in the room they enter.

Kelly Kelly pinned Alicia Fox after the K2.

After the break, Primo and AJ find Maxine and her supposed archrival Hornswoggle making out.

Then they do a Wedding Gift Scramble for the remaining Divas in another challenge, which Kaitlyn won quickly.

Once again in the back, AJ and Primo try to find a spot to talk only to run into a moving crate that has Dolph Ziggler and Kaitlyn making out inside. Vickie Guerrero, Dolph’s girlfriend and Kaitlyn’s trainer, saw this on the TitanTron and ran backstage to confront them. Naturally Vickie ran into the wedding cake prepared for the Goldust-Aksana wedding because it wouldn’t be a pro wrestling wedding without a cake to the face and some shenanigans.

But the real story of this episode of NXT was the wedding between Goldust and his Rookie Diva, Aksana, who was in danger of being exported back to Lithuania. But like any good pro wrestling wedding, things did not go as planned. Both Dusty Dusty Rhodes (Goldust’s father) and Cody Rhodes (Goldust’s little brother) were on hand to serve as Goldust’s attendants while The Bella Twins Naturally Goldust and Aksana’s rivals, Ted DiBiase, Jr. and Maryse interrupted the wedding and paid off the minister to stop the wedding.

However, Dusty Rhodes interrupted and said he figured this would happen and brought out “The Million $ Man” Ted DiBiase to be the official for the wedding. DiBiase married hem without incident. Before the Kiss the Bride segment Dusty snuck in and kissed Aksana first. However Aksana then Aksana kissed Goldust and ran off like an evil gold digger.

This episode of NXT was incredibly absurd in all the right ways. The announcers, Michael Cole and Josh Matthews, acted like they were in on the absurdist humor, and they responded in kind. While not a great wrestling show per say, it was fun in an over the top entertainment way.

The Road To…Survivor Series
WWE Championship Match w/ John Cena as special guest referee
Randy Orton (c) v. Wade Barrett

World Heavyweight Championship
Edge v. Kane (c)

WWE Unified Divas Championship
Natalya Neidhart v. one member of LayCool (c)

Wrestler of the Week
Week of November 1 – 7: Edge
Edge had a rock star Friday night on SmackDown. He opened the show with a solid match against Alberto Del Rio and then helped Team SmackDown take down The Nexus’ b-team in a big ten-man tag match. He pinned David Otunga to get the scoringt pinfall and gained more momentum heading into his World Title match against Kane at Survivor Series. Why does Edge always seem to flounder on RAW but always absolutely flourish on SmackDown?

RAW’s On Tonight!
RAW is actually running on tape delay from Manchester, England tonight so spoilers should surely be out by the time you read this. But with a taped, foreign show there should be plenty of the status quo as Survivor Series is on the horizon shortly. Expect plenty in regards to the Wade Barrett-John Cena-Nexus-Randy Orton storyline, the one about John Morrison and Sheamus and the Million $ Championship saga featuring Goldust, Ted DiBiase, Aksana and Maryse. And maybe, pretty please, the announcement of a classic Survivor Series elimination match or two?

On Last Week’s Episode…
Do you know your enemy? your enemy?

I’m feeling invincible tonight!

Now get the guns,
the drugs from my generation…

How They Rated
Superstars (10.28.10) – .53

SmackDown! (10.29.10) – 1.68

A.M. RAW (10.31.10) – 1.04

RAW (11.1.10) – 3.26

This is Boring, What Else is There to Read?
Logan is awesome…

so is Ditch…

Mark has been a columnist for Pulse Wrestling for over three years now, evolving from his original “Historically Speaking” commentary-style column into his current Monday morning powerhouse known as “This Week in ‘E.” He also contributes to other ventures, outside of IP, most notably as the National Pro Wrestling Examiner for Examiner.com and a contributor for The Wrestling Press. Follow me on Twitter here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,