I enjoyed the point made in McMahon about how the lack of competition in wrestling has hurt the business in general, so I just wanted to expand on that a little further.
The WWE was red-hot from 1998-2000, right around the time it took the lead from WCW in the Monday Night War and never looked back. Most older teenagers will say that this is the era that got them hooked into wrestling, if they're still hooked today. This era was the Hogan era of the new generation of wrestling fans and is the one most younger people fall back on. I believe Vince was at his personal best around this time period, where practically every storyline was hot and every championship had a meaningful feud behind it. And he couldn't afford to be anything less than his best since his company was on the line.
But soon after the buyout of WCW, the effects of not having any real competition started to show. Vince said once he didn't want to insult the intelligence of his fans, but I could recall too many a time when he did insult my intelligence and that of my fellow fans as well. But post-WCW, it seemed as though he got into this comfort zone mentality that since he was the only game in town, people would have to watch his crap and be forced to like it since there was no other alternative. With the influx of WCW and then ECW guys that joined, I have to say that the roster Vince had around 2001-2003ish was amazing. In fact, he had so many guys that he didn't know what to do with, he opted to split the brands to give more guys a chance to get showcased (more bang for his buck) - and also perhaps to create his own competition.
I say perhaps because although the idea was definitely interesting and got the fans drawn in at first, there never really seemed to develop this competition between the brands. Yes, around Survivor Series something would come up where they'd start feuding, but I can't think of another time where they went that way. The exception of course was the renewal of the ECW brand, which sometimes doesn't seem to quite be the success Vince probably would've hoped for it to be. But with vampires trotting out in storylines, you were once again reminded that Vince was the only show in town - if you didn't like it, you didn't get wrestling at all unless you turned to the indy scene.
But then there was TNA.
When I first saw them, they were only on PPV and hadn't hit a TV deal yet. My first thought was that Vince could squash these guys like a bug, but it never happened. Now they're on Spike, they've moved up the chains a bit and are featuring two hot ex-WWE guys in Christian Cage, the Dudleyz and Kurt Angle, while housing Jeff Hardy for a while as well. Besides attacking them with lawsuits over trademarks and the like, it doesn't seem as though Vince is paying TNA much attention.
Is this a mistake? For anyone who's watched TNA, you know that they're not quite ready to compete with the giant WWE, who's still the #1 game in town. But their situation almost reminds me of pre-Bischoff WCW. They're there, they've got the talent, but they're just missing that special something. That something could be the in the form of someone like Bischoff stepping up and injecting new life into it, giving it enough to push it over the edge - or it could just take one more big defection (what would happen if a disgruntled Rob Van Dam said screw it and joined the competition, kicking off a feud with AJ Styles?). It seems as though the company is chugging along and is one push away from giving Vince a run for his money once again, and Vince is more or less ignoring it until it does get to that point.
Or maybe, he sees what every fan sees and wants TNA to get bigger in name and in value. That way he could have legitimate competition, and being the driven egomaniac that he is, he could then attempt to destroy them and beat them out as well. Wrestling in general seems back on the upswing after dropping off with the buyout of WCW, and maybe he sees that.
Maybe he sees that TNA succeeding is just what the business needs.