The Selling of RAW

The Katz Files – Arnie Katz
The Selling of RAW
The Kingfish Arnie Katz explores the ramifications of this shocking storyline..

This week’s RAW, a three hour extravaganza, certainly gave fans a lot of meat along with the usual array of recaps, replays, entrances and commercials. The company has begun a strong drive to improve its already decent ratings, which resulted in one of the year’s best episodes of RAW.

The Selling of RAW
The announcement that Donald Trump had bought WWE was a surprise, yet it might also have been expected. The storyline is fairly novel, a switch from the anticipated naming of a new General Manager. Yet Vince McMahon and Donald Trump appear to be friendly and Trump enjoyed his brush with wrestling, which ended with Mr. McMahon getting his head shaved.

That’s not to say Donald Trump is the right guy for this storyline. He doesn’t completely “get” wrestling, he repeats himself every time he takes the mic and his much-discussed titanic ego might make it hard to implement a compelling story.

On the other hand, he is certainly a terrific foil for Vince McMahon, since he is even more detestable without even trying. Trump is the babyface and a commercial-free episode of RAW capped by Orton-Triple H won’t make him less popular with the fans.

They might well reverse the face-heel roles so that Vince is the babyface who is fighting to regain control of RAW. That’s where Trump’s ego and lack of wrestling savvy might present a problem. The Donald may not want to be a heel, though he has already played one on TV in his reality show.

It’s hard to know how long this plot will continue. Donald Trump obviously enjoys mucking about in pro wrestling, but he has a lot of things on his plate besides WWE. The time he can devote to this is limited, which suggests that the sale is not permanent or even long-term.

Mr. McMahon dropped the bombshell two weeks before The Bash. They could rush things toward a quick conclusion for that show, though such a huge angle really needs the extra time that a climax at SummerSlam would allow.

And how will it end? Why, with Trump and McMahon each picking a champion for a match in which as loss for Trump would force a sale f his shares back to McMahon. That booking scheme entails the problem of giving Trump a motive to put up his RAW shares in the match.

Maybe they’ll just claim that McMahon will put up the purchase price as his side of the bet. That’s pretty weak and a bet of RAW against Smackdown might stretch fans’ credulity.

One thing’s pretty certain, though. A whole lot of fans will tune in next Monday to see the next turn of the wheel.

That’s all for now. I’ll be back tomorrow with a fresh installment of the Internet’s fastest-rising pro wrestling column. I hope you’ll join me then and, please, bring your friends. You, too, Nic.

— Arnie Katz
Executive Editor
[email protected]
(6/16/09)