MLW Files Antitrust Lawsuit Against WWE

MLW VICE TV

Major League Wrestling informed via a press release today that the promotion filed an antitrust lawsuit against World Wrestling Entertainment. According to the official press release, MLW states that it is based on “WWE’s ongoing attempts to undermine competition” and “monopolize the professional wrestling market by interfering with MLW’s contracts and business prospects.”

WWE is also accused of putting pressure on other third parties to withdraw from contracts and put an end to their relationship with MLW, disrupting MLW’s business operations including a fallen through of a major streaming deal that ‘would have been transformative for the company.’

What’s more, after the announcement of a deal between MLW and VICE TV, a WWE executive issued a warning to the latter that Vince McMahon is ‘pissed’ with them doing business with Court Bauer’s wrestling promotion. In response, a VICE TV executive told that person that this kind of conduct is illegal and in violation of antitrust law. The aforementioned WWE executive apparently responded that McMahon is outside of their control.  

You can read the official press release on the matter of the lawsuit below: 

Professional wrestling company Major League Wrestling (MLW) (MLW Media LLC), filed a lawsuit today against World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (WWE). The federal court antitrust lawsuit is based on WWE’s ongoing attempts to undermine competition in and monopolize the professional wrestling market by interfering with MLW’s contracts and business prospects.

As described in the complaint, WWE pressured third parties to abandon contracts and prospective relationships with MLW. WWE’s misconduct included disrupting every level of MLW’s business, including a major streaming deal for MLW which would have been transformative for the company.

MLW also allege in the complaint that in early 2021, after MLW announced that it was in talks with VICE TV to air MLW programs on VICE TV, a then-WWE executive warned VICE TV that WWE owner Vince McMahon was “pissed” that VICE TV was airing MLW programs, and that VICE TV should stop working with MLW, the VICE TV executive responded that WWE’s conduct was illegal and an antitrust violation, with the WWE executive responding that she could not control McMahon.

WWE has been wrongfully depriving its competitors of critical opportunities for many years, but its latest conduct has been even more unconscionable,” said MLW CEO Court Bauer. “I think we speak for the rest of the professional wrestling world when we say that this anti-competitive behavior has to stop.

WWE issued a statement about these allegations: 

WWE believes these claims have no merit and intends to vigorously defend itself against them.

Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.