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.
Two of the hottest developmental performers in WWE are Emma and Paige, both of whom are expected to be a part of the main roster in 2014. The company is planning on featuring them heavily on the special WWE NXT live event that will be shown on the WWE Network.
Initially, it was reported that Paige was given several weeks off by WWE to deal with an undisclosed injury, but there are now reports that the developmental diva was actually taking some time off to deal with some personal issues. Paige made her return to NXT recently.
While the backstage heat on Ric Flair has subsided tremendously, Ashley Flair remains in developmental and should be there for a little while longer, as WWE is now focused on elevating Paige and Emma to the main roster.
After spending a few weeks on the shelves for an undisclosed injury, Paige is now returning to NXT this week. She confirmed on her official Instagram account that she is feeling good and looking forward to being back in the ring again.
Paige has become an underground sensation with the internet wrestling community, and many people want to see the NXT Women's Champion get called up to the main roster, but that's going to have to wait since she is currently injured and has been out of action since November.
Paige, a developmental diva under WWE, shows off her sexy Halloween costume.