Prowrestling.net reader Josh Fisher attended Monday's WWE Raw in Greenville, South Carolina and sent the following report.
This was the absolute worst wrestling experience I have had in my life. When I found out about the show, I was excited and purchased a pair of tickets for me and my best friend. We had never attended a Raw show before but have attended many house shows over the years. On the seating chart, our seats appeared to be halfway between the ring and the Titan-Tron and stage in the lower bowl. We booked a hotel to stay overnight because we traveled out of state about three and a half hours to the show.
When we arrived at the arena and found our seats, we were extremely disappointed, along with everyone in our section. The arena staff informed us that earlier in the day, WWE changed the stage configuration because the arena had not sold out, and they moved the stage area and the Titan-Tron forward to compensate how the show would look on TV, and completely blocked our section of the entire stage and walkway to the ring. WWE then had a few relocation tickets that fans in the section could exchange and move to an empty seat, but there were many who were turned away, myself included. Families of five and six were so angry they left. My friend and I left after trying to find seats there we could watch the show for two hours.
Part of attending a live show is the experience and to be able to participate. If you cannot see the show, why stay? I could have stayed at home and saved some money by watching it on TV. The only way we could really see what was happening was by craning our necks upward to the arena display.
After complaining to numerous staff officials trying to get better seats, we were informed by an arena supervisor that WWE made the call that morning to push the stage forward to make the arena appear to be a "sold out crowd" on television. WWE had also given 70 people special status to be "seat fillers" for the night. If a seat filler saw an empty seat on the side being filmed, they were to immediately fill it to keep up the appearance of the "sold out jam packed arena."
They also had forbidden the arena to sell any tickets for several sections and boxes, because it would have spread the crowd out more than WWE wanted. There were three entirely empty sections on the hard camera side of the arena that could have been filled by everyone from our section that was affected by this change. Instead, WWE chose to ignore their fans to protect their take at the gate and present the illusion of a full show. I am completely disgusted.
And the best part, the arena supervisor informed me that the WWE rents the building. They also collect 100 percent or all merchandise sales, ticket sales, and they receive 50 percent of all concession sales, even though they do not provide the concessions. He explained that they can actually lose money if enough food was sold. On top of that, even though we could not see the show from our vantage point and could not be relocated, we were denied a refund. Thank you WWE for the worst wrestling experience for this lifelong fan.