Vince McMahon’s Loyalty Demands – Hypocrisy or Genius Part Two
Picking up where we left off in Vince McMahon’s Word – Hypocrisy or Genius Part One, we’re going to touch on Vince McMahon’s loyalty demands.
This is more of a mix than an outright hypocrisy or genius as he’s made some good decisions based on loyalty. Basically, of a wrestler or other employee works hard, doesn’t complain, and accepts what they’re given without complain they earn his respect and loyalty.
A perfect example of this was the Original Screwjob in ’85. Didn’t hear about it? Well, you’re in for a treat, depending on your point of view. Wendi Richter was as big as Hulk Hogan. She was the women’s champion and was a big part of the Rock ‘N’ Wrestling movement that brought greater visibility to the WWE with Cyndi Lauper in her corner as manager and a Saturday morning cartoon with the others.
Better tuck those horns in
McMahon wanted somebody to take the title off Richter, and he approached the Fabulous Moolah allegedly because she already had a severe dislike toward Richter and she could handle her if things went south in the ring.
What was Richter’s crime? She wanted to be paid fairly for what she was doing. An interesting example for this was in WrestleMania 1, the Iron Sheik was allegedly paid $50,000 while she was paid $5000.
In the end, the Fabulous Moolah was in costume as the Spider Lady and Pinned Richter for a three count despite Richter kicking out after one. Richter beat the crap out of her for it, then quit the promotion, walking out and to a cab in her wrestling gear.
The Fabulous Moolah remained in McMahon’s good graces until the day she died, while Richter eventually mended fences enough to accept her induction to the WWE Hall of Fame.
To put this in perspective what kind of ripples this caused, or didn’t as the case may be, the women’s evolution the WWE touts now would’ve happened a lot sooner had McMahon not reportedly punished Wendi Richter for wanting to be paid fairly.
On the flip side, McMahon has taken some severe hits from those he trusted and considered loyal to him. Most of the well known ones occurred during the Monday Night Wars when WWE talent like Lex Luger, Rick Rude, and others verbally agree to stay with the WWE but showed up the next night on WCW’s Monday Nitro.
McMahon has an angelic side
In a recent interview, Glenn Jacobs (formerly Kane and currently Mayor of Knox County, Tennessee) spoken about what he views is the biggest misconception about Vince McMahon.
“I think is that Vince is this heartless person that takes advantage of everyone, and uses people until they are all used up. Then discards the husk of the human being that he has pulled all of the talent and energy out of. That is frankly not the case at all. Does Vince McMahon make business decisions? Yes. One time I told him this to his face, I was like, ‘The one thing that you are bad at as a businessman is that you give people too many chances.
“’They stab you in the back and then you turn around and bring them back.’ In some cases, it’s because he feels that he can make money with them. In other cases, he just has some sort of emotional bond or something like that. It’s loyalty, it really is, almost to a fault with him. That is the biggest misconception.
“He is a business guy and has to make decisions based upon what he believes will lead to greater health of the company, whether we agree with it or not. In some cases I haven’t. He is making business decisions on that. It’s also not like some inhuman devil that just wants to take advantage of people. That is truly not the case.”
This gives us a glimpse into his character and how he does believe in loyalty on a personal level. He’s often been there for his former wrestlers when they needed him. The most recent was when, shortly before he passed away, Harley Race needed to be transferred from Atlanta to St. Louis. Medicare wouldn’t pay for the flight, so a call was made to Vince McMahon and the fight was paid for within ten minutes.10 minutes. That more than anything speaks to the kind of person Vince McMahon.
Yes, there are plenty of former superstars that will say the opposite about McMahon, and they may be justified. Each of us have our own code we follow when it comes to how we treat others, and for some it may be for a slight they don’t even know they made. An example of this is the recent loyalty demand leveled at Diamond Dallas Page I wrote about.
Like all of us, Vince McMahon is a complicated individual and does what he does as it makes sense to him. In the end, we’re often left confused and wondering whether we’ve just witnessed hypocrisy or genius.
See you in our next post, Vince McMahon’s Ban on Blading – Hypocrisy or Genius Part Three