Eric Bischoff says Raw or SmackDown needs to feel gritty for WWE brand split to survive


WWE announced today that Paul Heyman will be the Executive Director of Monday Night Raw, while Eric Bischoff will have the same role on SmackDown Live.

Bischoff is now stepping into his first full-time role with WWE since leaving the company in 2007. He's made a few appearances for the company since then, but never on a full-time basis.

Now, he reports directly to Vince McMahon as one of the main figures behind the creative team of SmackDown and will be in that role when the show moves to FOX later this year.

During a recent live show with Inside the Ropes, the new Executive Director of WWE's blue brand commented on how he would handle the WWE brand extension.

Bischoff reflected on how his own attempt of a brand extension during his time in WCW with the nWo getting their own show was the first attempt of a major promotion brand extension. It didn't succeed.

When WWE tried a brand extension during Bischoff's first run with the company, he said this was the second time a brand extension was attempted, so this current brand split is the third attempt.

The new Executive Director of SmackDown stated that the reason why brand splits don't work sometimes is that they're not made to feel different from one another. He said if they don't feel different, it won't work.


He said, via Wrestling Inc: "I think after going through my own experience and having been a part of WWE's experience, the advice that I have would be to be as disciplined as you can possibly be at keeping the brands distinct.

"If you don't make them feel completely different, it won't work. And part of that is creating stakes, part of that is, it's got to feel real, it's got to be believable or nobody's going to buy into it.

"But don't let the talent start transitioning back and forth because you dilute the concept. They won't feel like two brands, they'll just feel like two different shows, which is what they already feel like."

As you can see, if Bischoff has a strong enough say, the Wild Card rule will soon be a thing of the past if WWE wants to keep their brand split intact.

Bischoff added that the WWE brand split wouldn't last six months since Raw and SmackDown are 'almost too perfect' and 'there's no grit.'


He said: "It needs to feel a little gritty, at least one of them. They both don't have to feel gritty but one of them has to feel a little edgy, a little dangerous, like something's going to happen that you wouldn't expect on one show, because it's a little less sophisticated.

"That's the magic and if they both start feeling very well produced, almost glossy in their presentation, and the talent is jumping back and forth, I won't give it six months.

"You won't hear the term brand extension six months from now. It'll suffer the same fate that it suffered the last time they tried it because that's what happened the last time they tried it."

These comments are especially interesting now Bischoff has a significant creative role in the WWE. Perhaps he will implement what he says above into SmackDown once he officially takes over.

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