For decades, Vince McMahon has held captained the tight ship that is the World Wrestling Entertainment, steering it with a firm hand. From earth-shattering plot twists to unforgettable wrestling bouts, his legacy is now firmly etched into WWE and its storied annals albeit the past few years haven't exactly been kind to it, resulting in him resigning from his long-time role last year. So, when McMahon made a return to the company earlier this year, speculation about his role within the creative engine room of WWE began to proliferate.
Now, renowned wrestling star Ricochet has provided valuable insight into McMahon's current involvement with the world's leading wrestling promotion, rekindling a narrative rife with high stakes and power dynamics.
After McMahon returned as executive chairman, amidst a flurry of rumors about a potential sale that later became a huge merger, the backstage scene at WWE saw a seismic shift. Yet, as Ricochet tells it, McMahon’s influence remains potent, even if his presence backstage is less consistent.
"Vince is still involved and Vince is still talked to," Ricochet emphasized in an interview with Sporf, laying to rest speculation that McMahon had fully retreated from the WWE’s creative operations.
Despite McMahon's assertion that he'd try to keep his hands off the WWE, Ricochet maintains the seasoned impresario's fingerprints are still discernible on the product. "He's still someone that everyone looks to, especially with creative. So he's got his fingers in everything too."
While the grand maestro was away, his son-in-law Paul "Triple H" Levesque took up the mantle of Chief Content Officer, managing WWE's creative vision. But with McMahon back in the wings, the stage is set for an intriguing dynamic between the two figures who have both left an indelible impact on WWE.
That said, Ricochet doesn’t hint at discord, instead painting a picture of a unified creative effort. He describes Triple H and the current creative team as committed to “bringing out the best in who they have,” working to everyone's strengths to maximize the brand’s potential. This, he affirms, is what Triple H has always done.
This commitment to player strengths can be seen in the recent trajectory of WWE, given the success of storylines such as The Bloodline, the heel run of Dominik Mysterio, and the continued draw that is Cody Rhodes as well as Gunther's all-time run as the Intercontinental Champion.
WWE's numbers are soaring, a testament to the efficacy of the current creative process, where Triple H plays a significant role while McMahon provides guidance from behind the scenes.
Ricochet himself has flourished under the new order, having lifted the SmackDown World Cup in December and enjoying a popular tag team run with Braun Strowman. His recent success speaks volumes about the creative team's ability to give its individual strengths and talent the spotlight.
Only time will tell if the WWE can continue with its current trajectory, but it's clear that what it's doing is working, which is important as we head into the Money in the Bank in London on July 1 and SummerSlam on August 5.