According to a new report, WWE chairman Vince McMahon does not appear to be a big fan of Monday Night Raw superstar Keith Lee, who was called up to the main roster earlier this year after a successful stint on the NXT roster.
On Saturday, Ringside News wrote about the situation with Lee, citing sources familiar with the situation who said that McMahon “doesn’t see it in him” when it comes to his potential as a future main-event performer. As explained, the chairman relies mainly on his gut feel when judging young and/or promising talents and also bases his decisions on feedback from trusted executives such as Bruce Prichard and Kevin Dunn. The outlet stressed that these individuals appear to have told McMahon that Lee “needs work.”
The publication went on to note that Lee might have had a much better reception from officials had WWE been able to hold weekly shows and monthly pay-per-views in front of actual fans. However, with the promotion making use of the ThunderDome virtual fan experience to simulate live crowds, McMahon reportedly does not realize that the super-heavyweight has become a fan-favorite with Raw viewers.
“WWE fans are no longer a factor during live shows. Vince McMahon and Kevin Dunn control the audience’s reaction through the ThunderDome. If they want someone to come out with crickets as their ovation, then that is what will happen. The biggest pops are reserved for those who they want to get over.”
As reported on Friday by The Inquisitr, Lee was one of several big men who were sent to the Performance Center for additional training due to McMahon’s dissatisfaction with their progress. This group of wrestlers also included Otis, Dabba-Kato, Mace (formerly Dio Maddin), and Omos (formerly Jordan Omogbehin), and as further noted, they have been working closely with wrestlers such as Drew Gulak to improve their in-ring skills on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
According to Ringside News, the initial feedback from Lee’s colleagues was that he accidentally got categorized with a group of workers who are perceived as below average in the ring. However, it now seems that McMahon knowingly included the “Limitless” grappler in the list of larger performers who need more seasoning.
The new developments with Lee contradict what was reported about him shortly after his call-up to the main roster. Following his victory over 14-time world champion Randy Orton at the Payback pay-per-view in August, it was rumored that McMahon wanted to push Lee “to the moon” and had plans to one day give him a run with a world title.