Ready to place your bets ... on scripted events?
WWE is in talks with Colorado and Michigan gambling regulators to legalize betting on its matches, CNBC reports. This would be despite the fact that the outcomes of the company's wrestling matches are predetermined by writers, much like a scripted drama series.
But the report says WWE has compared this to betting on the Academy Awards, the winners of which are known before the Oscars, though they're voted on, not scripted. One potential issue this raises is the risk of the match outcomes leaking, but CNBC says WWE is talking with the accounting firm Ernst & Young, which has worked with the Oscars, "to secure scripted match results in hopes it will convince regulators there's no chance" of the results getting out.
But this would change the way WWE matches are produced, CNBC notes, as executives have reportedly discussed having match results locked into place months in advance, with the wrestlers not knowing the outcome until moments ahead of time to prevent leaks. This would seemingly leave WWE's writers with no wiggle room to adjust their plans along the way.
The proposal comes after Vince McMahon returned to WWE after stepping down as CEO and announced he would explore a possible sale. On F4WOnline's Wrestling Observer Radio, wrestling reporter Dave Meltzer speculated WWE may be making this proposal because "they feel that this will raise the price" of the company, as "they can tell the people who they are selling it to that we are going to have a big increase in popularity because gambling will now be allowed," per WrestlingNews.co. But Meltzer added that "people are just kind of rolling their eyes" at the idea.