Steve Austin's WWE Return, McMahon/UFC, WM23, More

Steve Austin is expected to return to WWE TV very soon in order to start promoting the new WWE Films project "The Condemned" starring Austin. For those who haven't read yet, here is a description of the plot: "Jack Conrad (Stone Cold Steve Austin) is awaiting the death penalty in a corrupt Central American prison. He is "purchased" by a wealthy television producer and taken to a desolate island where he must fight to the death against nine other condemned killers from all corners of the world, with freedom going to the sole survivor. The producer films the illegal event, airing the killings live and uncensored onto the Internet."

World Wrestling Entertainment reported its 2006 transition period results today. The company covered the last eight months and compared it to the same eight months at the end of 2005. Revenues were up $247.7 million to $262.9 million, while profits were up from $29.8 million to $31.6 million. The company also released recent pay per view buyrate figures for events in November and December of 2006. Survivor Series drew 383,000 buys (up from 375,000 buys in 2005), ECW December to Dismember drew 90,000 buys (which is probably one of the lowest buyrates in a very long time for the WWE and maybe ever) and Armageddon drew 239,000 buys (down from 280,000 buys in 2006). During the Conference Call, Linda McMahon talked about a number of things. Linda stated that average live attendance and DVD sales have all increased, while WWE Films' "See No Evil" and "The Marine" have remined in line with WWE's profit projections. She added that WrestleMania 22 was the best-selling DVD in WWE history. Linda stated that WWE intends on holding 68 international events in 2007 after holding 61 last year. When asked about competition from UFC or IFL, Linda described UFC as a group that was growing and had a good product. She felt MMA didn't have an effect on WWE's PPV buy numbers and is glad to see the sport doing well.