10 shocking moments from WWF (WWE) 1992
- A look back at some of the more shocking moments of 1992. A year in which the big transition would begin.
#2 A Quarter of WrestleMania 8 tickets were given away for free to fill the arena
Whenever the WWE announce their attendance numbers for WrestleMania, the smarter fans among us know better. While it is a truly phenomenal achievement to get 90-100,000 people inside the same arena to watch professional wrestling, there is always more to the story that the surface level figure suggests.
Take WrestleMania 3, for example. A significant part of the 93,000 fans in attendance probably didn’t pay a single dime for their ticket. Some observers have even questioned the number of tickets sold in the first place, putting the number closer to the 80,000 mark,
This is not unique to the WWE, however. Big sporting occasions like The Superbowl or World Cup Final will claim to have had a certain number of people attend the show, but many of those tickets are corporate giveaways. Sometimes, when an event is so big, you don’t even need to be interested in the sport in order to attend. Just being a part of that massive number of people does wonders for your reputation, especially if you’re a celebrity or a high-flyer in business.
WrestleMania 8 is a particularly strange case. It is estimated that about a quarter of tickets for that event were given away for free, and not just by corporations. In an attempt to fill the 60,000 seat arena, about 15,000 tickets had to be given to very fortunate wrestling fans. After all, what you lose in potential ticket sales will be nothing in terms of the PR disaster that would inevitably come from seeing so many empty seats around the building for your biggest show of the year.
WrestleMania 8 was, in itself, a very passable show, but when you look back at the recordings, you can definitely notice a distinct absence of people during the first few matches. Shawn Michael's first singles match against Tito Santana, for example, was performed in front of a near half-empty building.
Despite the crowd eventually filling up as the night progressed, it had to be nerve racking for Vince and the team to witness such an obvious lack of people in attendance, knowing there were millions of people at home watching on cable TV.
If you were a WWF fan back in 1992, and you wanted to watch a WrestleMania from the stands, you might just as well have hung around the arena before the show in the hope somebody would give you a free ticket!