Eric Bischoff Discusses Whether Endeavor Deal Will Change WWE, Possibility Of UFC Talent Crossover

Eric Bischoff does not believe Endeavor's acquisition of WWE will set off wholesale changes to WWE's day-to-day operations, at least not imminently.  

"There's always going to be a change, right? I don't think we're gonna see anything over the next six months to a year — that will be noticeable to us," Bischoff told TMZ Sports in a recent interview. "There may be some announcements along the way, but, for the most part, I think it's going to be business as usual." 

Bischoff, who was WCW President during the merger between Time Warner and AOL in the year 2000, stressed that he did not "notice the cultural impact" of the merger until "a year or 18 months after the fact." Speaking from his first-hand experience, Bischoff reiterated that WWE management is unlikely to "notice differences" at least until late next year.

Upon purchasing WWE, Endeavor announced the merger of WWE and UFC to create a company worth a combined $21 billion in assets. While fans and wrestlers alike are excited about potential crossover scenarios involving WWE superstars and octagon fighters, Bischoff downplayed the value of such crossovers, pointing out the fans have already seen fighters cross over to the squared circle, and vice-versa. 

"If it makes business sense, I guess we can see it," Bischoff said. "I think the tangible benefits are going to be synergies [of the assets]. If you look at the WWE and UFC business models, they are completely different. One is fictional storytelling, the other is a sport. 

"That said, there are a lot of parallels in their business plans — live events, arena events, pay-per-view, streaming, ad sales, global TV rights, licensing and merchandise. UFC could benefit from the maturity WWE has in those businesses. UFC is relatively new, and WWE has been around for decades. I think UFC stands to benefit a lot from the relationship."

The WWE-UFC merger is not expected to be finalized until the second half of 2023, per reports. Endeavor President Mark Shapiro has announced the company plans to "use the UFC playbook" with WWE