Mark Cuban looks to stake his claim in the world of Japanese professional wrestling

Marc Cuban looks to get in the ring against WWE with a new professional wrestling league from Japan: but can they compete with the big dogs?


January 8, 2018

The full-time billionaire, part-time co-panelist on NBC’s Shark Tank owns businesses, a basketball team, and even a TV Network — and now he’s looking to get in the ring with the world’s number one “sports entertainment” company: the WWE.

Cuban’s TV Network AXS TV acquired the rights to broadcast a Japanese professional wrestling league called New Japan Professional Wrestling back in 2015. And reportedly, it’s the “[fastest] growing wrestling company in the world.”

So, how does it stack up against WWE?

According to Business Insider, AXS TV Fights CEO Andrew Simon declined to show hard numbers but said the network’s seen “double-digit growth every year since launching the series in 2015.”

And they definitely don’t lack in sexy character names, like “Switchblade” Jay White, Kazuchika Okada, and, of course, their current posterboy Kenny Omega.

That said, WWE is still an entertainment behemoth: ‘Monday Night Raw’ and ‘Smackdown’ are pulling in 3m+ viewers, making it the #1 show on Monday night cable by viewership.

Put simply, the WWE is tough to beat in terms of eyeballs.

But the Cubez has hopes it will grow

While WWE’s owner Vince McMahon claims to be unshaken by the competition, Cuban thinks New Japan (as it’s commonly known) has a real shot to compete in the space.

“[McMahon] thinks we’re little sh*ts,” he said. “People here aren’t going to connect as directly [because of the language], but if you really love wrestling, then it’s a no-brainer.”

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