WWE dropped a massive shocker on everyone this morning by announcing that the company has hired Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff to head up creative control of RAW and Smackdown respectively as Executive Directors.
Here’s the announcement WWE issued:
WWE has named Paul Heyman as Executive Director of Monday Night Raw and Eric Bischoff as Executive Director of SmackDown LIVE, newly created positions reporting directly to WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon.
In their executive roles, Heyman and Bischoff will oversee the creative development of WWE’s flagship programming and ensure integration across all platforms and lines of business. The creation of these roles further establishes WWE’s ability to continuously reinvent its global brand while providing two distinct creative processes for its flagship shows.
With more than 30 years of experience in the sports-entertainment industry, Heyman served as President of ECW from 1993 to 2001, securing pay-per-view distribution for the company as well as a national cable television deal with TNN. After his time with ECW, Heyman joined WWE’s Creative team and is widely credited with helping launch the careers of many current and former WWE Superstars.
Bischoff is a former WCW President and New York Times bestselling author. During his WCW career, Bischoff oversaw the signing of some of the biggest names in sports-entertainment and helped create and develop the nWo storyline. He was also instrumental in securing a television deal for WCW Monday Nitro on TNT and WCW Thunder on TBS. After WCW, Bischoff co-founded Bischoff-Hervey Entertainment, a production company that launched TV reality shows and mobile games.
Patriot’s Position: It’s hard not be excited about this, or at least the potential of it. This has been confirmed as a real thing; Heyman has creative control of RAW and Bischoff as creative control of Smackdown, though Vince still has final say. Their roles are to RAW and Smackdown what Triple H’s role is for NXT.
They will oversee all aspects of their respective show, so hopefully these shows start to look and feel different. Creative is extremely important, but an easier thing to help perception is a big presentation shift that WWE has definitely needed for a while.
Certainly not a headline I think anyone would have ever expected to see. With low ratings, low attendance, unhappy wrestlers, and a major threat on the horizon, WWE was clearly desperate to change things in a hurry. Here’s hoping they let these two actually have control and not have Vince want to micromanage and undermine them.