WWE Takes Issue with ‘Nightline’ Report

By Alex Weprin 

World Wrestling Entertainment is taking issue with a report that aired Monday night on ABC’s “Nightline” about former WWE CEO (and current U.S. Senate candidate) Linda McMahon.

New “Nightline” anchor Bill Weir conducted the interview, which touched upon McMahon’s career and political credentials. It also addressed some of the more controversial elements during her time at the WWE, including wrestler deaths, steroid abuse and over the top storylines:


A spokesperson for the WWE tells TVNewser that the segment declined to mention the company’s talent wellness program, which he says includes a “very extensive drug program.”

While that is true, the program is briefly mentioned by McMahon when pressed about it by Weir, though she does not elaborate on its details

The WWE also says that any injuries sustained in the ring, or during a rehearsal or training session, is covered fully by the company, and that was not made clear in the segment. The segment mentions that the wrestlers are “independent contractors” and technically not employees of the company, so they do not receive health insurance benefits.

However, as the Orlando Sentinel notes, the wrestlers make an average of $550,000 a year, so basic health coverage is well within their price range.

For its part, ABC News says that they vet all of the pieces they produce thoroughly, and that every claim made in the interview was backed by evidence. The network also says it reached out to the WWE before the segment aired, and did not hear back.

Either way, the segment didn’t seem to bother McMahon, who appeared this morning on another ABC News program, “Good Morning America.”