The expectation was that ratings for Monday Night Raw would rise this week because fans would tune in to see if CM Punk would make his return or not. However, the opposite took place. WWE saw a 12 percent drop in viewership, which has to be a bit alarming since it is the time period between the Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania 30.
When Batista made his return on Monday Night Raw, WWE officials were said to be rather upset with the lackluster reaction from the audience. However, management then saw the television ratings for the segment and placed the blame on the Dayton crowd instead.
"It's ridiculous. I hate to sound like I'm attacking the WWE or (I) devalue what they did because Vince McMahon, say whatever you want -- and he's always smashing us and talking s—t about us, but I will tell you this, I was watching WWE I was a little kid and Vince was the commentator in WWE -- this guy has been kicking ass, breaking rules and doing things that people said he couldn't do over and over and over again. Now I'm older I don't get the whole thing, it doesn't work for me, but what he's able to do, the ratings he's able to pull and the things he's done ... And when I look at his model and he's basically taking everything in and devalued it. Saying everything we do is worth $10. That doesn't make sense to me," White said during a media luncheon on Monday. If he pulls in 2 million subscribers, he's crushing it. So it's a risky move, it's a crazy move, but Vince has been doing risky, crazy s—t since the beginning of time. If anybody can do it, maybe Vince can do it."
- UFC president Dana White on Vince McMahon and WWE Network
Impact Wrestling drew in one of the highest ratings that the show has seen in a couple of years this week. The belief is that WWE fans tuned in this week to see what would happen during the match between Sting and Brutus Magnus, as many are hoping that the legendary performer will end up at Wrestlemania 30 this year.
AJ Styles might have a little more leverage in his ongoing negotiations with TNA, as Impact Wrestling managed to score a dramatic increase this week. Approximately 25% more people tuned into the episode, which featured Styles's final match, than they did the previous week.
At one point, Evan Bourne was supposed to make his return to WWE at Royal Rumble 2014, but management opted against that move on Sunday night. The high flying wrestler decided to address the issue on Twitter by telling his fans to not worry about last night and that he is still working on his comeback.
Rumor has it that Evan Bourne is expected to make his return to WWE soon, and many believe that management will be making that happen at the Royal Rumble pay per view as a mystery entrant. He has recently been taking it up a notch with his workouts.
After a lengthy absence due to an injury, Evan Bourne has been waiting to make his return to WWE. The high flying performer has been teasing fans through Twitter that he could be doing that at the Royal Rumble as a mystery entrant.
Since the creative department doesn't have a story line readily available for him, the belief is that Evan Bourne will be returning to WWE as a mystery entrant during the Royal Rumble. Management is looking for some surprises at the show.
Edge won Royal Rumble 2010 by last eliminating John Cena. The other contestants in the match include Batista, Beth Phoenix, Big Show, Carlito, Chris Jericho, Chris Masters, CM Punk, Cody Rhodes, Dolph Ziggler, Drew McIntyre, Evan Bourne, Great Khali, Jack Swagger, John Morrison, JTG, Kane, Kofi Kingston, Mark Henry, Matt Hardy, MVP, R Truth, Shawn Michaels, Shelton Benjamin, Ted DiBiase, The Miz, Triple H, Yoshi Tatsu and Zack Ryder.