Would Shane McMahon in UFC be good or evil?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Rumors recently surfaced about Shane McMahon’s interest in entering Mixed Martial Arts. He was spotted at UFC headquarters, causing Dana White to comment “No comment” something he did without using a curse word. All this has led to speculation abotu whether it would be good to have a McMahon in MMA?

McMahon should mix it up
Will he or won’t he? After resigning from the WWE, Shane McMahon might enter the MMA.

It makes business sense for Shane McMahon to enter the MMA

Shockwaves were felt in the sports entertainment industry in October. Shane McMahon, the heir to the McMahon family empire, abruptly resigned from his duties as executive vice president of Global Media for World Wrestling Entertainment. His resignation will become official on January 1, 2010.

McMahon has long been considered the eyes and ears behind WWE’s digital media branch. He successfully made the company’s website, wwe.com, into a huge revenue stream for WWE products and services, and has long had the support of the company’s pro wrestlers. However, over the past few years a combination of factors have led many to suggest that McMahon is growing disinterested in pro wrestling and the business his father, Vince McMahon, turned into one of the more profitable sports entertainment entities of the past 25 years.

Over the past four years, Mixed Martial Arts, under companies such as PRIDE and Ultimate Fighting Championship, are experiencing an increase in popularity and viewership. Gone are the days when people would fork out $44 to watch a monthly WWE Pay Per View. These days, the same customers fork out $55 or more for a monthly UFC PPV. It’s a booming business despite the economic climate.

With all the success that former WWE World Champion Brock Lesnar has had in the UFC, one has to wonder if a well-known pro wrestling business executive and part-time on-air character like Shane McMahon would enter the MMA.

Something tells me that McMahon will eventually join the UFC. However, he won’t join as a competitor, as it’s hard to imagine Shane O Mac—one of his most popular monikers—going into the octagon to take on a competitor like Dan Henderson or Forrest Griffin and be voluntarily ripped to shreds.

Since mid 2005, McMahon has been longing to do something with MMA. In 2008, he was in talks with billionaire Mark Cuban to potentially start up his own MMA company to compete with UFC. However, talks fell through and nothing further transpired.

McMahon has attended a fair number of recent UFC Pay Per View’s live events over the past few months. At the moment, UFC President Dana White hasn’t commented one way or another if he would welcome McMahon with open arms to his company or if he would slam the door on him. White’s silence has led many to believe that McMahon will be joining the UFC in a business executive capacity.

As a long-time fan of both pro-wrestling and MMA, I feel that McMahon would help make a strong brand like UFC even stronger than it is today, helping it increase its revenue profits. When he was in WWE, he helped make the monthly pay per view business a huge moneymaker. UFC doesn’t need the assistance in the pay per view area right now, but McMahon can help create a television show to potentially compete with WWE Monday Night RAW or WWE Smackdown! or TNA Impact!. UFC currently runs highly successful programs such as Ultimate Fighter on SpikeTV, and UFC All Access, syndicated on stations throughout the world. Nonetheless, if McMahon were to come up with a two-hour weekly program, showcasing UFC fighters in straight matches to find out who has the strength needed to advance to a UFC PPV, it could bring in a lot of dough. As an MMA fan, imagine seeing tournaments held each week for the up-and-coming rookies in the UFC to gain a spot for an upcoming UFC card. Right now, Ultimate Fighter is the closest thing to this concept, but they only make the winner of the program go on to face an opponent at the Pay Per View.

The bottom line is that Shane McMahon joining UFC makes business sense and is something Dana White and ownership at UFC simply can’t turn down. In the MMA world like everywhere else, it’s all about making the most money possible, and Shane O Mac would get the job done.