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WWE’s new big drug scandal

By Zach Arnold | August 30, 2007

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Dave Meltzer sets up the table of information here and here and here.

Now, here are the media reports referenced by Meltzer: Sports Illustrated | ESPN | The New York Daily News

TJ Quinn became one of Barry Bonds’ worst media enemies for covering the steroids beat, and he could very well become McMahon’s biggest nightmare as far as investigative media writers go.

Reviews and updates: 411 Mania | The New York Daily News | The Sun

Update: The top story on Friday’s ESPN First Take show was the SI report that 14 wrestlers from WWE receiving steroids and HGH. The entire list of wrestlers who are customers were printed on-screen.

Update II: WWE’s stock price has gone up today.

Topics: Media, Pro-Wrestling, WWE, Zach Arnold | 9 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

9 Responses to “WWE’s new big drug scandal”

  1. Ivan Trembow says:

    Hopefully, the big MMA companies and the athletic commissions are paying attention so that these kinds of problems do not continue to spread in MMA.

  2. Ivan Trembow says:

    Also, I actually think today in particular has actually been one of the better “PR days” that WWE has had because mass suspensions at least create the illusion that things are really changing and that WWE really wants to rid the company of steroids.

    If you look at the mainstream coverage of this on television, take the ESPN report (re-aired on ESPNews).

    There was no mention in the ESPN TV report of the Benoit murders/suicide.

    There was no mention in the ESPN TV report of three now-decased wrestlers (Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero, and Brian Adams) being among the wrestlers on the Signature Pharmacy list of clients.

    There was no mention in the ESPN TV report of pro wrestling having a larger drug problem than any other sport or entertainment entity, or of the dozens and dozens of drug-related deaths over the years.

    If anything, the implication was almost like, “Look, they suspeneded ten wrestlers, so it must mean they’re getting things all cleaned up over there.” That was never said, but it was the subtext based on what they said and what they didn’t say.

    In terms of the mainstream coverage in general and in terms of the suspensions that WWE is going to point to when the Congressional hearings take place, I think these mass suspensions are already working for WWE and will continue to work.

    McDevitt and Co. were already saying, “What more could we possibly do?” before they even had these suspensions. Now that they are actually suspending a decent number of people (even if they had no choice because of the New York prosecutor’s office), they can always point to these mass suspensions when the drug questions come up and the response from most people in the media will be, “Hmm, it looks like they’re cleaning it up… there’s not much else they can do if the athletes still want to take steroids.”

    How many people in the mainstream media know enough about pro wrestling and the culture of pro wrestling to say, “This doesn’t really change much of anything if Vince McMahon continues to push the roided-up freaks to top-level positions on a regular basis?”

    The answer: Very few or none. And the “very few” certainly don’t know enough to be able to intelligently respond when WWE says, “What are you talking about? We don’t tolerate steroid abuse.” (and they almost always say “steroid abuse” instead of “steroid use,” because steroid use is just fine and dandy with them if you have a note from a readily-available mark doctor)

    PS: How many people in the maintream media are even aware enough of the basic facts to ask the obvious question, “Wait, doesn’t this mean that WWE’s entire Wellness Policy has been a joke since it was implemented if over a dozen wrestlers can buy and take all these banned steroids and still pass your ‘independent’ WWE drug tests?”

  3. Rohan says:

    As a publically traded company I’d say they are on the verge of a very nasty situation. They also have congressional hearings coming up which could lead to some interesting testimonies (I want to see kennedy try and work people on oath). They’re going to get whipped like a Government mule.

  4. Jeremy (not that Jeremy) says:


    I think ESPN is covering this because it’s about steroids, not because it’s about WWE. Basically, the WWE/steroids story is color and background for the story of steroids in major sports from their perspective. They don’t care about the wrestlers, their families, the deaths, etc. They care about how they can use this story of suspensions to contrast with what MLB or NFL or cycling is doing (and I’m not sure they care about cycling either).

  5. Zack says:

    How long until the suspended names leak?

  6. nicklovesmma says:

    Nothing is more boring, or more mentally draining, than constantly reading about steroid use in EVERY facet of professional sports. I hope everyone who does steroids, or who writes about them, falls off the face of the planet so I never have to hear about this bullshit again.

  7. bero says:

    WWE isn’t a sport, so why are they making such a big deal about steroids???

  8. nicklovesmma says:

    In this instance the problem with steroids isn’t that it brokers an unfair advantage in determining the outcome, but because steriods are against the law, and it is a popular viewpoint that roid rage drove Benoit to kill his family. Not to mention all the steroid related deaths over the years

  9. Ivan Trembow says:

    “WWE isn’t a sport, so why are they making such a big deal about steroids???”

    Because there have been well over 100 premature deaths over the past 15 years among pro wrestlers and because their lives aren’t any more or less valuable than those in any other entertainment entity.


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