In an update on Paul Heyman no longer being the Creative Director of WWE RAW, Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com is reporting that Vince McMahon has been “very upset” and “openly frustrated” with the state of the brand. Heyman had been attempting to push new stars but RAW’s television viewership reached record-lows during the Covid-19 pandemic and McMahon felt changes needed to be made. With no fans in attendance, it has been difficult for WWE to determine which new acts are getting over and which aren’t.
Johnson noted the following about McMahon’s attitude:
“Vince McMahon, with far more time to focus on WWE with the XFL having already shut down, just wasn’t going to continue to just take a wait and see attitude and allow that to continue to happen with the current state of the world, so he changed things up.”
A source noted the following to Paul Davis of WrestlingNews.co:
“McMahon is more involved with RAW than Smackdown and that made Heyman’s job much harder as he had to try to pushhis ideas while trying to keep McMahon happy.”
Dave Meltzer of F4WOnline.com noted that Heyman’s departure wasn’t seen as a big surprise to some because McMahon has often fired people from creative roles over the years including Bruce Prichard on two occasions. One frontoffice person noted the following to Meltzer: “I am shocked it took this long. Everyone knew it was coming. Vince did not like Paul.”
Except for Randy Orton vs. Edge which was already taped, the creative directions for the matches at WWE Backlash could end up changing with Prichard now in control of RAW. Regarding the fate of RAW stars, McMahon is reportedly high on Drew McIntyre and the Street Profits but there is doubt about everyone else.
Meltzer added that there could be a “roster consolidation” which has been done in the past when ratings have declined.
Davis noted that McMahon is also said to be unhappy with NXT’s ratings but no creative changes are expected to be made other than more RAW and Smackdown stars appearing on the show.