This week’s ratings for WWE Monday Night Raw are in and the news isn’t good once again. It was actually up a bit from a week ago, but it’s not encouraging. Here’s the scoop from WrestlingObserver.com and then my thoughts to follow.

Adding Steve Austin, Brock Lesnar, Undertaker, Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair to Raw last night only bumped the number up to 3.35 million viewers, up 80,000 viewers from the non-holiday low of 3.27 million set last week.

The New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles game with the Star Wars trailer did 13.90 million viewers, up 14 percent from last week, but it was lower than the game two weeks away, on a week Raw did essentially the same audience (3.37 million viewers) as last night.  But last night also had the Kansas City Royals vs. Toronto Blue Jays playoff game, that was expected to do monster numbers in Canada.  However, that doesn’t relate to the U.S. number, as the game did less than Raw in the U.S., with 3.09 million viewers, down 47 percent from last week’s St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs game and 22 percent from the late Los Angeles Dodgers vs. New York Mets game.

The audience fell as the show went on, which should have been expected when the big guns, Austin, Undertaker, Lesnar and John Cena were all used in the first 30 minutes and none returned the rest of the show.

The three hours were

8 p.m. 3.60 million viewers

9 p.m. 3.35 million viewers

10 p.m. 3.12 million viewers

That third hour is pretty bad but it’s a bit higher than what was there a week earlier.

The rating was a 2.21, which is down from the 2.33 rating the show drew last week. As mentioned, the total number of viewers is up a bit from the previous week.

The thing is when you advertise the big names like Brock Lesnar, The Undertaker and Steve Austin on the show, then you put them on in the first 20 minutes due to no NFL competition (the game starts at 8:30pmET) then you’re basically putting on your main event segment early. It’s not a good way to retain the audience although I get why WWE does it that way.

As I have said in the past, I don’t think the average viewer or reader (that would be you) cares about the rating for Raw, but WWE cares and they aren’t going to be happy about things. They need some sort of big angle to get people more interested although they might just keep things at the status quo until January gets here and no more MNF games are there to compete with.

randy orton pose

Randy Orton Injured

It’s been a bad year for WWE with shoulder injuries. Guys like Jey Uso, Sami Zayn and Hideo Itami have missed significant time with shoulder surgeries and now former 12-time WWE Champion Randy Orton could be next.

As our news guy Mark already covered, Orton recently suffered a dislocated shoulder and he might need surgery. I know from just following the business as well as sports that often times shoulder surgery can put somebody on the shelf for up to six months. If that happens then Orton might miss WrestleMania.

Orton’s injury is a big blow for WWE since he’s a top babyface in a company that is already going to be without John Cena, who is taking two months off after Sunday’s Hell in a  Cell event. It’s an opportunity for others to step up, but WWE will miss Orton while he’s gone. All the best to him in his recovery.


In Other News

– Tyler Breeze made his WWE main roster debut at the Smackdown tapings on Tuesday. WWE sent out a tweet about it and also did an article on WWE.com although they didn’t spoil you with what he did and I won’t spoil it either. Here’s the tweet.

I’m happy for him. He’s been in developmental for five years and has a lot of talent. He’s ready for the big stage.

– The new WWE Network show Breaking Ground is actually debuting on Youtube and Facebook this Sunday. WWE sent us a press release with the details that you can read here. It will regularly air on WWE Network after that, but I think it’s smart to put it on Youtube and Facebook first.


Read Our Stuff

– New column by Ron Pasceri looking at a fan’s view of wrestling. Very interesting perspective here.

– Here’s part of a Marc Madison interview with former TNA World Champion Nick “Magnus” Aldis covering a few subjects about his career.

– My weekly WWE Raw review known as the Raw Deal is up. I thought it was a better show than what we’ve seen in the last month or two although it’s still far from being great.

– Check out episode two of the new TJRWrestling podcast with Mickie James as our guest. We talk about her career in wrestling, her music, her life and she’s a good friend, so we have some jokes in there too! Plus, Rey and I talk about current WWE stuff as well.

That’s all for now. Back tomorrow with more.