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March 1, 2004 Observer Newsletter: Optimism for WWE business, early '90s scandals

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After the first weekend where there were signs that business is coming up, there is a lot of optimism leading into Wrestlemania.

The packed house of 14,572 and somewhere in the$400,000 range for Raw on 2/23 in Omaha, the biggest Raw crowd in months, topped off a weekend with two Smackdown house shows that sold out in advance. This made, including Stockton on 2/16, every house show a sellout since the title change to Eddy Guerrero. Of course, they were all small buildings with less than 2,500 in paid attendance, but WWE only sold out a few house shows in all of 2003.

While it’s too early to say house show business has turned a corner, by standards of the last few months, this was a very successful weekend. Raw drew the second biggest live crowd of the year (behind Rumble) in Omaha. Some of that was due to it being one of the first events in the new Quest Arena, but if you’ve got a dead product, just being an early event won’t save you.

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