From the day Triple H and Stephanie McMahon tied the knot for real back in 2003, fans of World Wrestling Entertainment have believed the two of them would one day inherit the company from Steph’s father, Vince. Given the high profile ambition of The Game, many of them have also decided to pretty much cut Stephanie out of the equation, assuming Triple H alone as the heir apparent to the biggest promotion in sports entertainment.
Quite frankly, no one has any real evidence that this is the plan, but it’s still worth considering what could happen if the scenario comes true if only because of how many people blindly believe it will. Regardless of how one feels about Triple H as a wrestler and performer, his skills as a businessman and promoter are still largely untested, making this move and extremely risky and controversial one for the McMahon family to make. At this point, there are simply too many unanswered questions to determine if the transfer of power could pay off.
Will HHH’s friendships and alliances with his fellow wrestlers give him a unique connection with talent, and will this be good or bad if it does? Will his ego get in the way, or will it somehow embolden him to change the business for the better, the same way Vince’s did in the past? Hell, does the guy even know the first thing about running a business? No on knows yet. For our best predictions, keep reading and find 8 reasons Triple H could run WWE better than Vince McMahon, along with 7 reasons he might still fail.
15 COULD BE BETTER: Change Is Always Good
Before we even get into the specifics of what exactly Triple H would do differently than Vince McMahon, let’s take a second and evaluate the job McMahon has been doing in recent years. To put it bluntly, WWE has been flying off the rails for quite some time now, and most critics would agree this is mostly due to McMahon’s legendary stubbornness and indecisiveness. He’s been throwing out writer ideas at the last second and replacing them with whatever random matches come to mind for way too long, with the only constants on Raw and SmackDown unwanted super-pushes for Roman Reigns and Randy Orton. Literally any change in this formula has potential to be a good thing, as it's not like fans can reject what they’re seeing any louder than they already are. Is Triple H necessarily the best choice to replace Vince available? Maybe not. At this point, though, anyone different deserves a shot.
14 COULD STILL FAIL: He’s Still A McMahon
Sure, it may look like the times they are a-changing in the WWE Universe, but are they really? After all, Triple H is technically a McMahon, having fully ingratiated himself to the family well before he and Stephanie even got married. Triple H has been studying under Vince from the day he signed with the company, openly admitting he had great interest in the business aspect of the industry. The two fast became friends, a status that they hold to this day, and the fact Triple H is now Vince’s son-in-law doesn’t seem to have anything to do with it. Quite simply, the two are outrageously similar people, and Vince has been slowly crafting Triple H to be even more similar to him for the past 20 years. Throw in Stephanie at Triple H’s side demanding he stick to tradition and do her daddy proud, and it’s possible there won’t be much of a chance if or when Triple H takes over, after all.
13 COULD BE BETTER: He Acknowledges The World Outside WWE
In just about every way, Vince McMahon has been at the absolute peak of the wrestling industry since the mid 1980s, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he knows anything about the sport outside of his own WWE Universe. To the contrary, Vince has always been described as having little or no interest in what’s actually going on with his competition, aside from simply wanting to crush them and absorb their market share. Triple H may well share that desire in the long run, but even so, he at least takes the time to watch and learn from other companies around the world, namely the history of the NWA and the current events in New Japan Pro Wrestling. When scouting talent for NXT, Triple H is also getting a firsthand look at dozens of smaller indie companies around the world, something Vince never once took the time to do.
12 COULD STILL FAIL: Stephanie Is A Wild Card
As the introduction to this article already pointed out, one thing most fans seem to be overlooking or ignoring in the discussion about Triple H taking control of WWE from Vince McMahon is that The Game’s wife has just as good a chance of being the new boss as he does, if not a better one. By and large, people seem to assume HHH will do the job alone either due to the man’s noted ambition or because he’s a man and Steph is a woman, the latter of which is hardly valid in modern society. Well, those two reasons and the fact Stephanie is significantly less popular than her husband as a performer and executive, such to the extent there’s a legitimate chance the company could crumble in her hands. Steph’s gender has absolutely nothing to do with it, as the real problem is her questionable track record as a writer and her history as a PR nightmare whenever she speaks or Tweets without thinking. Even with HHH in charge, Steph could still mess things up by being at his side.
11 COULD BE BETTER: He (Might) Be Less Of A Control Freak
From the very beginning, a huge part of Vince McMahon’s business strategy has been maintaining borderline obsessive control over every single aspect of his company. The trend has only gotten worse in recent years, with some reports now claiming Vince demands reshoots on backstage segments if wrestlers go off script for a single word. Obviously, this doesn’t sit well with wrestling fans who feel unpredictability is one of the industry’s greatest strengths. One of the very few performers who actually gets carte blanche to say what he wants is none other than Triple H, and there’s no doubt he knows how beneficial that is to him as a performer. If he really understands what’s best for business, Triple H will extend wrestlers’ freedoms across the board, allowing everyone to be unique individuals and hopefully turning them into stars because of it.
10 COULD STILL FAIL: Wrestlers May Not Respect Him
For as long as anyone still in the business has been around, Vince McMahon was and still is the most respected man in wrestling. Even people who never worked for him, or wanted to, are well aware of his unrivaled success and can acknowledge he forever changed the industry a dozen times over. Thanks to this reputation, just about every aspiring wrestler in the universe fantasizes about one day getting to work for WWE, but the idea of someone other than Vince running the show might cause that dream to die immediately. Wrestlers are already walking out on WWE en masse and considering careers elsewhere, and one can only imagine even more would do so if not out of loyalty to the McMahon name. It’s totally possible wrestlers just won’t want to work for Triple H, which would spell a speedy disaster for WWE if it happens to be the case.
9 COULD BE BETTER: He Actually Respects Women
Having made out with about half dozen of his female employees on camera, it’s amazing Vince McMahon hasn’t been caught up in a sexual harassment scandal in almost two decades. In contrast to McMahon flaunting his power and libido on a weekly basis, the only woman Triple H has seen being particularly intimate with has been his wife Stephanie, and this seems to be the case behind the scenes, as well. More important than that, Triple H has been a huge champion of females in wrestling, with many in the industry crediting him as the driving force behind the so-called women’s revolution. Through HHH’s influence, WWE has already been treating women better than ever before, even allowing the best females on the roster to main event Pay-Per-Views and WWE Network events. Things would presumably just keep getting better for the ladies if Triple H takes over, making pro wrestling a more respectable, gender-equal industry overall in the process.
8 COULD STILL FAIL: Accusations Of Racism
The mere fact Triple H is making things better for women in wrestling alone doesn’t mean the guy is entirely free of his prejudices. All one needs to do is watch a certainly highly celebrated segment featuring D-Generation X mocking the Nation of Domination to know his take on race relations isn’t entirely current, and as it would turn out, wearing modern day blackface is the least of his problems. According to former WWE employees Alberto Del Rio, Ricardo Rodriguez, and the original Sin Cara, Triple H has shown a pattern of disrespect towards his Latin American performers that they feel borders on racism. Rodriguez was most specific, claiming that Triple H never once referred to him by his real name, instead referring to Del Rio’s former manager as “bumblebee,” as in the Spanish language comedian from The Simpsons. Obviously, Vince is quietly supporting this from on high by doing nothing about it, but if Triple H is really the culprit, his actions could only get worse with more power.
7 COULD BE BETTER: His Sense of Humor Isn’t Totally Insane
For better or worst, Vince McMahon is the only business executive on the planet with even a 1% chance of allowing a man who once humped a mannequin in a casket of being his replacement. Of course, said man only humped said mannequin in said casket because Vince McMahon thought it would be hilarious, so this should come as no surprise. Although it was Triple H who climbed into the final resting place of a fake cheerleader, The Game has also been open about how it was the dumbest moment of his career and perhaps WWE in general. Ideally, this means that if Triple H is put in charge of the company, fans won’t be seeing anymore bats*** crazy nonsense like the Katie Vick incident. Or that time Mae Young gave birth to a hand, or the moment a giant turkey popped out of an egg and danced with Gene Okerlund. These were the awful, absurd jokes only Vince McMahon would laugh at, and with a man publicly denouncing them coming to power would mean could rest assured nothing like them would happen again.
6 COULD STILL FAIL: He’s An Egomaniac
The second Triple H started dating Stephanie McMahon, fans accused him of only having asked her out because of the career benefits would bring. After all, once they tied the knot, Triple H remained in the main event scene for an additional 17 years, a significantly longer span than the average wrestler. Of course, this overlooks the fact HHH’s first two WWE Championship reigns came before they even hooked up on screen. On the other hand, the fact his 14th such prize was won, as we said, 17 years later, suggests he might not be done winning them. If HHH could abuse his power as the boss’s daughter’s boyfriend, the potential for his self-promotion to run wild would literally become boundless if he became the boss. Even without the WWE Championship, Triple H could easily keep booking himself as the most important part of the show for decades, whether or not he deserves that status.
5 COULD BE BETTER: He’s Friends With The Wrestlers
While the jury is still out on whether or not the wrestling community at large will necessarily respect Triple H as a businessman, he can nonetheless remain pretty confident that his friends will remain his friends. Especially since the inception of NXT, Triple H has maintained incredibly close relationships with virtually everyone on the WWE roster, with many newcomers of the past five years or so owing him their career in one way or another. Triple H is also a pretty affable guy behind the scenes, at least most of the time, making him generally popular to those around him. These relationships might help him take over the business, because his allies would be happy to see him succeed and want to help him do so by all means necessary. On the other hand, this pro could also be a con if left entirely unchecked.
4 COULD STILL FAIL: He’s Friends With The Wrestlers
To a wrestling promoter, and perhaps any business owner, there is no double-edged sword sharper than becoming close friends with their employees. Obviously, it’s great to have their loyalty and to know everyone has the same interests in mind re: putting on a great show and making big money together. However, it’s only human nature that if a friend of ours happens to have all the power in the world, we might feel so inclined to ask them for a thing or two. Vince McMahon certainly felt this sting, with every main event wrestler to also become his friend inevitably getting into an argument about winning or losing one match or another. McMahon always put business first in the end, but knowing Triple H’s penchant for putting himself on top, he might extend that privilege to whatever close friend is bold enough to ask for it.
3 COULD BE BETTER: He’s Studied The Game His Whole Life
Regardless of everything this list has said so far, the truth is, we’ll never know what a Triple H-owned WWE Universe would be like unless or until it becomes a reality. How exactly he would choose to run things is entirely up in the air, but what we do know is that he would genuinely try his best to make the best professional wrestling show he’s capable of making. When HHH boasts about being “The Game,” he’s not just talking about his skills in the ring. This is a man who has studied the entire wrestling business from his childhood on, fully expecting to one day control the industry by hook or by crook. Quite frankly, it would be almost impossible to find a candidate more prepared to rule the world of wrestling than Triple H, but whether or not that preparation will actually pay off remains to be seen.
2 COULD STILL FAIL: He Has No Real Business Experience
Ultimately, most of the uncertainty about Triple H running the WWE Universe comes down to the fact he has very little experience as a wrestling promoter. Sure, there’s NXT, but that developmental league has existed for all of five years and under Vince McMahon’s watchful eye. HHH hasn’t ever actually run a business of his own and doesn’t have a degree in business, let alone has he taken a single class on the subject. No matter how optimistic someone is that Triple H will know exactly what he’s doing in regards to putting a great show on television, there’s absolutely no guarantee whatsoever he knows how to book an arena, arrange everyone’s travel, accurately handle the accounting, promote shows on both a local and national level, or any of the other countless executive duties he’d suddenly take on as the leader of WWE. In fact, Vince McMahon is the only living human we know who has the knowledge and multitasking ability to do it all.
1 COULD BE BETTER: He Knows How To Write Wrestling
Not knowing anything about business is going to be a pretty big hurdle for Triple H to leap over should he take the reigns of WWE, but at least the Game knows a whole lot about wrestling. More importantly than that, there’s also significant proof HHH could put on a pretty good wrestling show by way of the 400+ great episodes of NXT he played an integral role in writing. Even if Triple H turns out to be a total nightmare behind the scenes, fans will get to experience at least a handful of Raws and SmackDowns that make a whole lot more sense than they have been making lately. There could be continuity, logical motivations, and planning that lasts longer than a few short weeks. So long as everyone agrees to play along with his plans, that is, and the WWE Universe is willing to play the game.