Court Bauer was a recent guest on Busted Open Radio where he spoke about the recent news regarding Ring Of Honor going on haitus as he discussed how he believes the Sinclair Broadcast Group views the company.
“Well, they’re so non-traditional in their general overall business. When I was there, they were very encouraged by the ad sales it did, they did incredibly well at the local level for the owned and operated Sinclair stations, and the hope and the opportunity on the horizon was always, let’s hope they can blow up this payroll. They were performing, we were in the black they were very prudent with how they ran the company. After I left, they did open up and expand that budget and that was great. They were able to pay great talent, sign guys like The Young Bucks, and give a lot of the young talent that had been riding that wave with them big upgrades and change their lives and they did that for 11 years.”
Bauer then discussed how he believes Sinclair could have pushed Ring Of Honor into more homes by using the regional sports networks that the company owns, likening it to a lack of synergy from when WCW was in existence.
“How did Sinclair take to them? It’s a separate entity in that sense. Joe Koff really managed the division. I think in looking at it, they supported it, but I think, you look at owning all these regional sports networks, that is such a great opportunity to fill air time and then put that property in more homes. I don’t understand how you don’t have that synergy. But, it’s not the first time. Warner Media and back then Time Warner with WCW, you should have seen crossover and synergy, they owned DC comics, yet when Scott Steiner used the Superman logo it got pushback and it was a big issue. I think they had a modest crossover with pushed stuff at a local level when they come to town.”
Despite that, Bauer does believe that Sinclair financially supported Ring Of Honor well, and stated that if they are true about bringing things back, then it does show great support.
“They certainly financially supported it a lot, you see how much they expanded their budget. I think it was a modest investment that grew over time. If they’re giving them the time and the latitude to reinvent themselves over a few months and start with a clean slate, if that’s what it is, you can’t ask for more from a support in your parent company. If that is, in fact, the case.”
However, when it comes to what should happen between now and Ring Of Honor’s return, Bauer believes that decisions cannot truly be made until the company knows exactly what the next step will be.
“Well, with releasing all the talent, I don’t know what the strategy is there. If it’s a matter of do they have X amount of cash, what do they do with that, or if they are running on a very small budget. You kind of have to remind them (the fans) of what Ring Of Honor was, but you have probably should start a campaign for what it’s going to be once you have defined what the new concept is and get the fans excited again. Viral campaigns and giveaways. I always loved the old Nine Inch Nail viral campaign that they did with these little pop-up concerts for like 100 fans in a warehouse where they had these people storm in and shut it down after only playing two songs. That kind of stuff where you can be more immersive and get the energy back, but you have to know where you’re going with it first.”
One way in which he believes that Ring Of Honor could stay connected is via social media, as he encouraged the company to tap into that in order to give fans something compelling during the downtime.
“I think fans are going to be wondering, ‘when are they going to unlock the gates and open stuff back up.’ If you can give the fans a really compelling story online as they’re waiting, trying to figure it out, and having fears about it. That might be something that you can at least bridge the gap with. I don’t think it takes a lot of money, it just takes a lot of creativity and tapping into social media.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Busted Open Radio with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.