Apparently WWE’s tour of Japan wasn’t nearly as successful as it appeared. While WWE announced attendance figures for their two shows at Sumo Hall of 6,176 and more than 12,000 (which is impossible because the building only seats 11,066) and also announced 6,048 for the Osaka show, the actual inside-the-building totals were closer to 5,000, 11,000 and 5,000, with the latter two shows including Hulk Hogan. The shows in Japan were said to be heavily papered, which is not unusual for wrestling in Japan.
On WWE’s business website, which is prepared for stockholders and investors who follow the business, and where they report the real numbers, it came out this past week that the three shows in Japan did a combined total of approximately 14,000 paid attendance, or just over half of what WWE actually announced.
If the percentage/exaggeration/papering was close to consistent, it would mean that the actual paid attendance for the three dates would be closer to 3,670 for the first Sumo Hall show, 7,140 for the full house that they claimed and 3,600 for the event in Osaka.
So while it appeared based on what WWE originally claimed as far as attendance for their latest Japanese tour that they beat what New Japan Pro Wrestling does in those same venues, the reality is that they couldn’t even beat what some smaller Japanese-based promotions do, and barely did half of what New Japan does.
(Credit: Wrestling Observer Newsletter)