Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2019/06/27/wwe-names-paul-heyman-eric-bischoff-as-executive-directors/
World Wrestling Entertainment has made changes to their television programming with the naming of Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff as Executive Directors.
In a story first posted by SI.com prior to a formal press release from WWE, Paul Heyman has been assigned as the Executive Director of Raw while Eric Bischoff will serve the same role on SmackDown Live. Both are said to report directly to company chairman Vince McMahon.
Heyman returned to WWE in 2012 strictly as an on-air performer to work with Brock Lesnar and later expanded his role and was paired with CM Punk, Cesaro, and Curtis Axel. He began to be more involved with creative, specifically working with Ronda Rousey. In an interview with Richard Deitsch this past April, Heyman confirmed working with Rousey and added that he was ‘working in an official capacity’.
Bischoff has not held a full-time position with a wrestling company since his contract with Impact Wrestling ended in 2014. He has done projects with WWE since then, including a DVD release and inducting Diamond Dallas Page into the Hall of Fame in March 2017. Currently, Bischoff co-hosts the 83 Weeks podcast with Conrad Thompson. He is also one of the producers on the upcoming Netflix biopic on Hulk Hogan.
The SI story added that Bischoff will be working with executives at Fox in anticipation of the show’s launch on the network this October.
We can also report that as of Thursday, Bischoff will continue with the 83 Weeks podcast.
I think this is a step in the right direction (not necessarily the specific people hired, but the roles created) … But at the end of the day - they’re still reporting to Vince McMahon - and as long as he has the final say on things, we’re not getting any real changes.
Also, I love both what Heyman and Bischoff have offered to wrestling in the past… but I am not sure they (Bischoff especially) have a tremendous amount to offer to creating professional wrestling programming in 2019. He certainly didn’t show much 10 years ago when Impact brought him in for the same type role.
I’d also say this is a direct response to them attempting to step up their game in a response to AEW buzz - and really gives an idea that WWE is taking them as serious competition. That said, as I’ve said about AEW, the idea of going twenty years in the past to build up the future is the wrong way to go. Just as I don’t believe the idea of a 20 year removed lapsed fan returning to watch wrestling suddenly due to TNT having wrestling - I don’t think hiring the top people from 20 years ago in a major creative role in 2019 is the right idea either. I think people are excited for AEW because by and large, the creative team behind it are new and fresh minds.
My first reaction was literally .
But after that I came to the conclusion that Raw cannot get any worse. So why not try and throw Heyman at the problem. My bigger concern is Smackdown with Bischoff in charge. He hasn’t been a part of a successful wrestling show in two decades.
I wonder what this means for the future of the 83 Weeks podcast. Conrad now has 2 podcasts with people officially employed by WWE, one podcast with someone who is employed by AEW, and another by someone who is loosely employed by MLW.
Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Scott Steiner, and Buff Bagwell are waiting for a phone call…
Also, you have to love that Bischoff, who by and large, WWE revisionist history has painted as a big loser who drove WCW out of business - is now being lauded as a big hire for them, and want fans to get excited.
I just don’t even think this is a story. Vince still has final say, so who knows what the role will even be.
But what I don’t get is - what new fans will this apparent move attract? And how will it make any sense to younger fans? Heyman has been Lesnar’s advocate for like seven years now. Bischoff hasn’t been a focus of WWE for like 14 years. I’m not sure how either “hire” is going to make a difference at all.
People who remember what they did in the 90s are probably still fans or have moved on. Having them work under Vince (which is exactly what already happened in 2003) won’t move the needle.
Not expecting to see sweeping and immediate changes across the board, but change was needed and this can’t be a bad thing for WWE programming. Not that it will necessarily be a good thing, but I don’t think it can hurt.
And not to make everything about AEW, but Heyman and Bischoff are two guys that I don’t think Vince wants to be in competition with. Heyman because he’s a genius, and Bischoff because he’s as cutthroat as Vince. Even if very little changes on screen, having them under contract is probably better than not in the boss’s eyes.
Heyman maybe, but Bischoff as a wrestling mind is so done. He had every opportunity to do something with TNA and flopped. No one is hiring Bischoff to do anything wrestling related, so I dont understand the desire to put him in “power” (whatever that even means)
I know nothing about Bischoff’s TNA run. But it’s TNA, so I can only assume it wasn’t great.
Does it mean they will be on screen GM’s ?
This could be fascinating…
Hope so! Will be tuning back in to see what they can do, that’s for sure
But think about this. Would either of them come back when they know that’s what Vince is like? Do you think Heyman and Bischoff, who both have other projects, would come back under those circumstances?
I think not, especially Heyman.
Heyman is there basically every week anyways, what difference is it to add another title to his job description.
As for Bischoff, I dont think he has a lot going on. He has a podcast, and he’s already milked Scott Baio or whoever for his reality show crap.
I’m sure both guys are making significant money so I guess it’s worth it. Plus, it gives Vince/Stephanie someone to fire on-screen when the ratings continue tanking.
Vince keeps going after Conrad Thompson guys,god bless that chubster.Give it 3 minutes and Shiavone will be managing 205 live.
It’s funny. One would think that the shows need modernity and yet, he keeps on hiring veterans.
What’s kind of mind boggling to me is that Vince already has one of the best bookers in the business in the company.
Why not just promote Paul Levesque (HHH) from NXT and give him Raw or Smackdown? NXT over the last five years has consistently been the best wrestling product in North America. I would trust that either show by Triple H would be way better than Eric Bischoffs.
Triple H already has a prominent role in WWE. If you want the NXT vibe on Raw and Smackdown you would need Triple H AND his NXT team. Triple H on his own can’t do much.