The Wall Street Journal dropped a second report on Vince McMahon on Friday, this time revealing via uncovered nondisclosure agreements that he had allegedly paid $12 million to four former employees in order to keep his sexual misconduct quiet. After the WSJ's initial report, which only confirmed one of McMahon's alleged affairs, McMahon opted to temporarily step down as CEO and Chairman but continued to operate as Head of Creative at WWE television tapings. Reports of him defiantly yelling "F— em!" backstage after making a brief appearance on SmackDown the same day he stepped down as CEO recently popped up.
As for how he handled the latest report, McMahon's behavior was reportedly unchanged. According to PWInsider, the latest episode of Friday Night SmackDown was "100%" dictated by McMahon, including the decision to scrap previously-announced matches for the Blue Brand.
"We are also told that McMahon, who arrived later than usual, did not address 'or sell' the latest Wall Street Journal article about him, his NDAs, etc," Mike Johnson wrote. "It was described, once again, as the elephant in the room that was being ignored."
As for what happens next for the WWE, it's unclear. McMahon has never publicly addressed the accusations, WWE has declined to comment in any official capacity beyond confirming that the company will fully comply with the Board of Directors' ongoing investigation, John Laurinaitis (who was also implicated in the initial report) has been placed on administrative leave and Stephanie has not said anything beyond her initial statement of stepping into her interim roles.
"I love this company and am committed to working with the Independent Directors to strengthen our culture and our Company; it is extremely important to me that we have a safe and collaborative workplace," Stephanie said in her announcement. "I have committed to doing everything in my power to help the Special Committee complete its work, including marshaling the cooperation of the entire company to assist in the completion of the investigation and to implement its findings."
WWE returns to pay-per-view on July 30 with the SummerSlam event at Nissan Stadium in Nashville. The show will be headlined by a Last Man Standing match between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship.