The pro wrestling post: Lesnar’s contract, Spike TV’s renews show and WWE Films’ mistake
April 7, 2012
MMA Payout provides your Easter weekend with some pro wrestling business headlines including Lesnar’s contract, Spike TV reups with TNA and the US Marines call in a favor.
Lesnar’s impact and contract
Finally…Brock Lesnar has returned back to the WWE. He made his appearance on Monday Night Raw the night after Wrestlemania. Although a brief cameo at the end of the program (where he F5’d Jon Cena), the Wrestlemania bump and the Lesnar rumors had RAW draw a 2.0 rating (according to TV By Numbers) for the second hour of Raw which was up from the prior week among adults 18-49. The programming ran up against CBS and the National Championship Title Game which is pretty good considering March Madness had been impacting MMA ratings.
As for Lesnar’s contract, it’s being reported that his 1 year deal is worth around 5 million dollars (via CageSide Seats). The deal runs through next year’s Wrestlemania which will be held at Met Life Stadium in New Jersey which we may presume Lesnar will be in the main event. Lesnar will not be on the road full time but will appear twice a month with more frequency running up to Wrestlemania.
Spike TV and TNA Wrestling agree to extension
TNA Wrestling has agreed to a multi-year extension with Spike TV. TNA’s “Impact Wrestling” show on Thursday nights has been drawing an average of 1.7 million viewers in 2012. Financial terms were not disclosed however there is speculation that TNA will be involved in additional projects with the network in addition to its weekly show. I was surprised to know that TNA is drawing so well. Its interesting compared to the TUF ratings from past seasons on the network.
Wrestler Randy Orton pulled from WWE film
The WWE has pulled Randy Orton from a starring role in its film studios’ ongoing feature film Marine 3. The “Marine” series put on by WWE Films is the longest running and most notable of its film franchises (which may explain why the WWE film division is in its current state). Orton, a real US Marine in the 1990s was dishonorably discharged from the Corps after two AWOLs and a disobyeing a command from a superior officer (h/t Cage Side Seats via TMZ Sports). The WWE indicated that it “demonstrated poor judgment” in casting Orton in the role even though it knew of his past.
One does not usually see the WWE concede fault but the fact is the WWE is a staunch supporter of the Armed Forces (as shown by its annual holiday shows in the Middle East) and the Marines rely on the support of the WWE as it can tap into the young male demo. Here, it made sense for the WWE to pull Orton off of the film as it would have heaped a lot of bad press on the WWE further impacting the issues the film division has right now.