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This column is going to give everyone just a taste of The Layfield Report. If you have never visited the website before, NOW is the time to do so! As noted above, all I ask is for a chance. Give those WWE (or my sports) articles one click. If they are terrible, by all means - never come back. However, I am confident in my abilities. One click; you'll be hooked. That being said, the following column was published yesterday at The Layfield Report...enjoy!
This past Monday night, WWE Raw drew a 3.05 television rating with an average of 4.15 million viewers. That is with all three hours of a very enjoyable show. I thought it may have been the best wrestling show in months. Hopefully, that stuff continues on week after week after week. For this column, I will do something a little different. This will pertain to viewership figures for Raw and how well (or not) each segment did with the audience. All the numbers used came from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter.
The show opened with a 3.04 rating - It is always tricky to judge how a show begins. Obviously, WWE fans were left in the dark this week as to what would kick off the program. Most weeks, the company will announce something. This week, you can't put too much stock into the first quarter hour. It was a mystery.
Wade Barrett vs. Christian lost 194,000 viewers - WWE missed the boat here. Instead of hyping up the 'big surprise' before going to commercial, they did it when the show came back from break. At that point, it was too late. Viewers already picked up the TV remote and went elsewhere. Either way, it is good to have Captain Charisma back!
Rhodes Scholars defeating Sheamus lost 164,000 more viewers - Not good. The downward spiral kept going here. I'm not sure what it is, but this feud isn't clicking anymore. It started off well enough. After Payback though? Why keep it going? Since the heels picked up the victory on Monday, it will probably last a little bit longer.
Backstage segments with the McMahon, Vickie Guerrero, Brad Maddox, Kane, and Daniel Bryan gained 226,000 viewers - Nice increase. All of the character here are talented in their own right. Doing this all backstage is two fold. On one hand, it may not connect well with the live crowd. On the other hand, you have more freedom doing what you choose without fans yelling/screaming at you.
Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan gained 248,000 viewers for a 3.13 rating - This was your typical 'top of the hour gain' for WWE Raw. Sadly, some viewers still can't commit to a full three hours each week. They will only watch two hours (or less) every Monday night. Good Bryan/Orton match.
The in-ring segment with AJ, Kaitlyn, and Stephanie McMahon gained 168,000 viewers - I am a bit shocked at this gain, Usually, the trend is to tune out after the top of the second hour. The women have a solid feud going right now, so it is very encouraging to see it rewarded.
Kane vs. Dean Ambrose plus a backstage segment with Vickie, Vince McMahon and The Shield lost 341,000 viewers - Here we go! This is where the big drop off came during the second hour. I expected it during the last segment. There was not much interest in the Kane/Ambrose rematch, and The Shield stuff backstage came out of nowhere.
William Regal vs. Antonio Cesaro gained 41,000 viewers - Nothing to note here. Regal has not been seen in months. Cesaro is going through a gimmick change, so this was hard to gauge.
The John Cena/Mark Henry segment gained 738,000 viewers for a 3.57 rating - Winner winner, chicken dinner. This was clearly the biggest gain of the evening and most watched segment from Raw. I can't say I am surprised. Henry has ALWAYS done well in the ratings when given the ball. Plus, you had his retirement tease and WWE's top star (John Cena) out there as well. That is a recipe for success. Well done!
Mark Henry backstage and Heath Slater vs. Chris Jericho lost 953,000 viewers - Say goodbye to all of those viewers. I wouldn't be too concerned with this. The main stuff with Henry/Cena was already seen inside the ring. Anything with 3MB is bound to turn off viewers. Nothing Jericho could have done there! It doesn't help that Triple H, earlier in the show, laughed off the idea of a 3MB segment...
Sin Cara vs. Curtis Axel plus backstage segments gained 112,000 viewers - It is a shame what has happened to Cara. Once Rey Mysterio left television, that left Sin Cara to fend for himself. Also, I assume most fans watching knew Axel was going to win in dominating fashion regardless. Not exact 'must see' TV.
Alberto Del Rio vs. CM Punk and Brock Lesnar's return gained 636,000 viewers for a 3.42 overrun rating - Suddenly, the viewership shoots back up. While the ADR/Punk confrontation didn't do much for me, WWE did a great job teasing involvement from Paul Heyman. Once the slime ball manager hugged Punk before the match, you had to suspect Lesnar or some other attack. Very good close to an entertaining episode!
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