WWF Canada not worried about WCW
By GREG OLIVER --
It was a daunting challenge, but SLAM! Wrestling was up for it.
Somehow, get WWF Canada president Carl De Marco to talk about
something other than the WWF RAW Is WAR coming to Toronto's SkyDome on
De Marco was at TSN on Friday, taping an edition of Off The
Record with WWF superstar Sable and The
's Jeff Marek.
First up, is the WWF's Canadian arm worried about WCW
coming to Canada in late March, with shows in Toronto and
"I wish them the best of luck," said De Marco. "I think
competition is going to benefit the fans ... if fans go see it, they're
going to realize how great of a job the WWF does with the live events.
"The fact of the matter is that WWF is clearly number one in
Canada. Our fans are so loyal to us. We really appreciate them. ... I'm
not worried whatsoever."
WWF RAW clobbers Monday Night Nitro in the ratings on TSN,
and is one of the highest-rated shows on TSN, but it is hardly a level
playing field. RAW is aired live, or later on Monday night, while Nitro
airs two days later on Wednesday.
Simply put, WCW has very little presence in Canada.
"In Canada, it's like comparing NHL hockey, which is WWF, to
pee-wee hockey, which is WCW," said De Marco.
The plan for WCW shows on NBC, which unlike Nitro, will
actually be seen live in Canada, does not worry De Marco either.
"Honestly, I think they should worry about concentrating on
their current shows right now," he said. "They're not beating us in
ratings in the U.S. and I think they should get that taken care of
His shot at the sinking WCW ratings done, De Marco did admit
that any exposure for pro wrestling on network television is good for
the whole industry, and that everyone from the big leagues to the
On the domestic front, De Marco answered to the diminishing
number of WWF Canadian shows. The most recent example is that the
traditional Toronto - Montreal swing for the company has bitten the
dust, and the WWF won't be back in Montreal likely until May, six months
after their last show there.
"We're going to go there [Montreal]," said De Marco. "The
thing is we're re-evaluating how many cities we do. There's only so many
dates a year. The big part of it is just the way the touring schedule is
done. We have to watch our costs, so we don't fly too far out of way to
do a certain city."
And finally, back to RAW for Toronto.
"It's going to be huge," he said. Without any matches being
announced, over 25,000 tickets to SkyDome have been sold. It will
certainly be one of the biggest RAW gates ever, but the question has to
be asked -- if it doesn't air live on the USA Network (because of the
annual Westminster Dog Show), does it ever matter.
De Marco scoffed at that suggestion, and insisted that, even
though nothing has been announced yet, there are plans for a mid-week
WWF special on USA Network to replace RAW.