If you expected anything other than the 3-hour Saturday morning cartoon that WWE tried to pass off as an episode of RAW this week, then I envy your naivety. With the brand split, and subsequent brand draft, only 9 days away WWE is understandably reluctant on moving more than the bare minimum of storylines forward – if there ever were a time to skip out on RAW, it’s been the past two weeks.
A massive talking point for a slow wrestling week was just how low ratings were for Monday Night RAW, and they were terrible; like 1996 terrible.
Viewership dipped below 2 million for the first time in 20-years and this episode was one of the three worst rated in the shows venerable 1,200+ episode history. Even with all the factors that contribute to today’s low ratings like Hulu’s next day stream, the prevalence of DVR, WWE chopping the show up into little bit sized pieces and uploading it to YouTube in real time, and the fact that this particular episode aired on the evening of July 4th, this has to finally raise some major alarms with WWE’s higher-ups.
In the past year RAW has hit new “post-attitude era” ratings low’s three times – once on October 19, 2015 when Seth Rollins was champion, again on June 19 when Roman Reigns was champion, and again this past Monday when Dean Ambrose was champion. One of those three have been involved in every Heavyweight Title match for the past 18 months – so it’s clear how much the WWE sees them as future stars – but clearly casual audiences do not. The numbers speak for themselves.
Brock Lesnar defeated Mark Hunt by unanimous decision at UFC 200 on Saturday Night, proving he is one of the best combat athletes in history. Brock has WWE over the proverbial barrel when it comes to his contract and his schedule, he’s going to do whatever he wants; and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him step into the octagon again within a year. WWE announced that his opponent at Summerslam will be Randy Orton; someone he surprisingly hasn’t faced off with in about a decade.
— Mat Men Podcast (@Matmenpodcast) July 10, 2016
This week TNA aired its long awaited “Final Deletion” match between Broken Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy, a.k.a Brother Nero. I don’t follow TNA, I’ve never watched a full episode TNA Impact, and can only count on one hand the number of TNA matches I’ve watched. But, I can spot ironic self-awareness from a mile away and that’s what the Final Deletion was – a 17-minute wrestling match where tongue was firmly in cheek the entire time. It won’t be good enough to save TNA from their financial troubles, but it was an insanely fun match to watch.