Jim Crockett recalls a business decision that made Ted Turner very upset.
In the mid-to-late 1980s, the wrestling business was changing. Live events and the occasional closed-circuit event were starting to give way to the advent of pay-per-view. Jim Crockett Promotions and the WWF became entangled in a race to dominate the pay-per-view market with each competitor pulling no punches to try and hurt the other.
In 1987, Vince McMahon invented the Survivor Series in an attempt to circumvent Starrcade from making it onto pay-per-view on Thanksgiving day. Today, that pay-per-view is still going strong and the 33rd annual event will take place on Sunday, November 24.
During his Starrcast stage show, Jim Crockett opened up about the early days of the WCW/WWF war, including why the decision to run the first Clash Of The Champions event head-to-head with WrestleMania upset Ted Turner.
"Pay-per-view was the way to go, of course, and we did that. Of course, then Vince does his first pay-per-view and I had come up with the bright idea let's try to hurt his pay-per-view," he said. "So, we did a two-hour live special from Greensborough. No commercials during the matches. The next day, we did great, great ratings, matches were great. [Then,] Ted Turner calls, 'I want to see you.' Well, his partners for his business, were the cable companies. Cable companies make a lot of money off [of] pay-per-view. And we hurt the pay-per-view badly. And [Ted Turner] said, 'you will never, ever do that again.'"
What's old is new again as WWE has a new competitor in AEW, and they compete head-to-head in the ratings every Wednesday night.
If you use any of the above quotes, please credit Starrcast, with a h/t to Fightful for the quotes.