Royal Rumble ’97

James Dixon: This event is an example of an arena needing a show rather than a show needing an arena, as the WWF presents the card from the enormous Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. The live attendance is a remarkable 60,525, making it one of the largest crowds in WWF or WWE history. There is an addendum attached to that of course, because ticket prices for this were astronomically low by standards at the time (around $10 each for some seats) and the building was heavily papered. In reality the event made less money from the gate than a house show later in the year at MSG in front of a quarter of the audience, where prices are somewhat higher. That shouldn’t be seen as too much of a knock though, because the company undoubtedly got asses into the building, where they would almost certainly go on to purchase WWF merchandise. There is also a good chance that casuals can be converted to long term fans if they like what they see. No pressure then. As for why Vince McMahon decided to run the show at such a huge building when there was nothing going on in the company at the time that warranted it? Who knows with Vince. He probably just wanted the WWF to go back to being perceived as the big time wrestling company to those who didn’t know any better. WCW was demolishing them at this point, so Vince wanted to fight back and be seen to be successful again.

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