Vince McMahon Discusses WWE Persevering Through The Pandemic And Listening To The Audience

Vince McMahon was determined not to miss a beat, pandemic be damned.

In mid-March 2020, live events were halted as the number of COVID-19 cases proliferated around the world. WWE, however, never missed a show, moving their operations to the Performance Center where their programming emanated for the next five months. In August 2020 they would unveil the ThunderDome, where they would stay until July 2021.

Noam Dar Says He Might Not Be In WWE If He Didn't Move To NXT UK, Reflects On Formation Of Meta-Four

Appearing on The Pat McAfee Show, Vince McMahon discussed his commitment to keeping the show running when everything else was shutting down, specifically praising the performers for their commitment. He also detailed the difficulty of working in an empty arena and the challenges it presented.

"I like to do our own thing. Everything is different. Whatever the guys in the NFL do, they are a little higher profile and so forth, I get it. I was determined, even with this COVID stuff, that we weren't going to miss a beat. Couldn't have an audience, but we never missed a show. That's a credit to our performers as well. They are so gifted and work hard at what they do in terms of their skills and so many different directions. That's why they are superstars and not wrestlers. They have this thirst for everything they can possibly do to make them a better performer and quite frankly become a better human being. I decided it was, we had this training facility, and it would keep us in kind of a cocoon. We tested everything imaginable for people coming in, our people and others, to make sure it was safe. We put on a show, every week, brand new programming, with no audience. That was difficult because as a performer, you have to go, 'I just got the shit knocked out of me. 1...2...3, they are reacting,' and then come back. You have to listen to that in your head instead of going through the motions. If they are there, it's easy to listen to them. When they're not, it's far more difficult and hurts more. We have a focus group every night. It doesn't matter what I want. If I think something is going to work and you present it and there is no reaction, 'Wrong Vince.' You immediately know whether or not something is going to work. You don't know how well it's going to work, but you immediately know. It's a focus group, they tell you," he said.

Continuing on with the topic of fan feedback, Vince said that you listen to your audience no matter where it comes from. That said, he believes a portion of the internet audience can be a bit biased and harsh and prefers not to listen to that.

"Pretty much, you could tell in terms of what was happening. When you've been in the business for so many years, you can see in the ring whether someone is working or not. you listen to your audience, no matter where it's from, but sometimes the internet audience, a portion of them, can be relatively biased and a bit harsh. I don't listen to any of those. Anything you do is for your audience," McMahon explained.

Elsewhere during the interview, Vince spoke about Brock Lesnar, WWE's partnership with Saudi Arabia, as well as how he'll be inducting The Undertaker into the WWE Hall of Fame, among other things.

If you use the quotes above, please credit the original source with a h/t and link back to Fightful for the transcription.

Get exclusive pro wrestling content on Fightful Select, our premium news service! Click here to learn more.