Ever heard of the phrase "working yourself into a shoot?" Well, People Magazine apparently haven't heard about it, or the definition of kayfabe.
All over social media was the clip of Shane McMahon's drop from the top of the Hell in a Cell cage against "longtime rival" Kevin Owens at the recent Hell in a Cell pay-per-view. While many people were anxiously watching the match and hoping neither Shane nor Owens seriously gets hurt. From the looks of things, no one got badly injured when it was all said and done, but that didn't stop People Magazine from running an article and doing deep investigative journalism and checking on the SmackDown Live Commissioner.
People Magazine actually contacted a WWE insider to ask about Shane's condition only to be told what just about every wrestling who's ever gone to a wrestling news site knows: it was all a work.
“Shane was in fact not severely injured and not in the hospital,” the insider tells People. “This is all part of the storyline.”
What's this? A professional wrestling company working fans?
But WWE posted an update on their official website saying that Shane was severely injured. What's next? That Vince McMahon truly did bleed profusely from one Kevin Owens headbutt and did not pre-blade before the segment went on the air on SmackDown?
Apparently, due to the mainstream coverage, WWE had to update the article, saying nothing is confirmed and that WWE will continue to monitor Shane's condition. One other thing to note from the article is its mentioning of how Shane is a minority owner of WWE, whereas Fightful's own Brandon Howard reported late last year that Shane had "little or no company stock."
Social media couldn't resist a chance to make fun of the magazine's apparent lack of knowledge of the how the business is essentially one giant work.
One particular Twitter user remarked on People's lack of coverage for when Shane did the exact same spot at last year's WrestleMania where he had to face The Undertaker.
Regardless, this does represent an increased amount of coverage from such publications in the past few years, whereas to the point that even ESPN and CBS now provides WWE coverage.