WWE Raw's trust in Shawn Michaels, Triple H and The Undertaker is bound to be counterproductive

adminOctober 9, 2018



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WWE Raw feels like a trip down the path of memory, a journey back in time to the Age of Attitude, when The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Kane and Triple H reigned.

Shawn Michaels is coming out of retirement after more than eight years away from the ring.Credit: WWE.com

It's been 20 years since "The Boyfriend," "The Phenomenon" and "The Game" helped revolutionize the business of professional wrestling with an era of sports entertainment that was based on stories of wonder and wonder that pushed the envelope and launched the star races of the mainstream such as The Rock and "Cold Stone" Steve Austin. But it's two decades later, and you would not know it by tuning in an episode of & nbsp;Monday night raw, The emblematic WWE program that once again has Triple H, The Undertaker, Kane and Michaels as its core events.

Michaels is back in the fold as part of a supposedly great business& nbsp; for a team of couples facing him and Triple H against Taker and Kane at Crown Jewel, a surprising development for a man who once resisted a retirement game with AJ Styles& nbsp; but it's back both because of the story that is told& nbsp; and because your bank account will grow substantially because of it. Likewise, we know that Triple H is paid generously& nbsp; for a limited role as an interpreter in the ring, while The Undertaker has been established as one of the best paid stars in WWE& nbsp; despite what can best be described as the easiest schedule for any fighter that roams the earth today.

WWE now has what appear to be unlimited funds at its disposal due to substantial increases in revenues resulting from large money programs like Greatest Royal Rumble, Super Show-Down and Crown Jewel which, according to F4WOnline.com, they are the money makers bigger than WrestleMania. Therefore, the company's new pot of gold has prompted Vince McMahon to delve into his bag of tricks and pull as many new toys as he can. Well, should we say old toys?

In fact, WWE has put new guys on the block like Finn Balor in the backburner, while the narrative continues that & nbsp; the story that involves & nbsp; the return of DX and the Brothers of Destruction & nbsp; With the perennial gold child Roman Reigns. But it is not paying off. Not for a moment.

Raw has been & nbsp; built largely around a & nbsp; quartet of superstars that combined have been alive for more than two centuries and have collectively been on WWE programming for at least a century, but fans do not seem to mind. Just in the last month, Raw's audience has sunk to a minimum of 25 years twice, which did so much for the episodes of September 24 as for October 1, which presented developments in the ongoing saga of HHH / Taker / Michaels and the latter of them attracted just over two million viewers during a third hour that was built around a publicized appearance of HBK.

Some have blamed the increase in television competition and / or cable cut by the sudden fall of the WWE audience, but if the product is good, fans will tune it.

The same week that Raw's audience reached an all-time low, the stellar game between the Kansas Chiefs and the Denver Broncos in & nbsp;Monday night football & nbsp;attracted More than 13 million viewers., an increase of more than one million viewers compared to the previous week and the best number of the program in almost a year. Similarly, the episode of the 25th anniversary of Raw in January. Average of more than 4.5 million viewers., its biggest average audience in three years and a telltale sign that fans will see the product when WWE gives them an interesting hook to lure them.

Clearly, Michaels, Taker, Triple H and Kane have not been doing the job in that regard, which makes fans wonder if what is likely to be a massive financial investment in four half-time stars is really worth it.

In fact, a look at WWE key performance indicators& nbsp; tells us that WWE fans are creatures of habit, whose audience patterns tend to fluctuate based almost exclusively on the time of year instead of any particular story or the presence of certain stars. During the WWE Network era that began in 2014, both the television audience and the number of WWE Network subscribers peaks around WrestleMania at the end of March and the beginning of April, only to fall back into reality by the rest of the year.

Nothing has changed that, either. No Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar in Survivor Series in November 2016. No John Cena vs. Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman vs. Lesnar in the same pay per view, No Mercy, in September 2017. And based on what we know of the story and what we've already seen with the descending audience of Raw, The Undertaker, Kane, Michaels and Triple H, none of which is considered a tie at the level of Dinner or Lesnar, will reverse that trend and will suddenly or constantly increase the audience of the WWE.

In any case, the overwhelming presence of four part-time legends has been a big change for WWE fans, who want to see how the current range of the company's artists are pushed, and even for some occasional fans, how have not even been watching WWE when Michaels last worked for the company. Meanwhile, Michaels, who is often called the best performer in the ring of all time, is also well known as a disappointing draw& nbsp; who never compared names like Hulk Hogan or Austin in that sense.

Now, Michaels has been out of his last game for almost a decade and gets entangled in a fight with The Undertaker, who has already passed his best moment at a time when fans prioritize work in the ring more than ever. That, of course, makes you wonder if the WWE that uses two aging stars that do not necessarily have a history of substantial needle movements and that are also occupying valuable time on television is the best strategy for the short or future future. long-term WWE.

But you do not have to be a genius to discover the answer: no, it is not.

Because WWE is paying a ton of money for a dispute, this will cause Raw to recover and leave the company officials wondering why their current stars really can not get over it.

Blake Oestriecher is an elementary school teacher by day and a sports writer by night. He is a contributor to& nbsp;@ForbesSports, where he mainly covers WWE. You can follow him on Twitter.& nbsp;@BOestriecher

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WWE Raw feels like a trip down the path of memory, a journey back in time to the Age of Attitude, when The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Kane and Triple H reigned.

Shawn Michaels is coming out of retirement after more than eight years away from the ring.Credit: WWE.com

Twenty years ago, "The Heartbreak Kid," "The Phenom" and "The Game" helped revolutionize the professional wrestling business with an era of sports entertainment that was based on stories of awe and awe that drove the envelope and launched the races. of mainstream stars such as The Rock and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin. But it's two decades later, and you would not know it when you tune in to an episode of Monday night raw, The emblematic WWE program that once again has Triple H, The Undertaker, Kane and Michaels as its core events.

Michaels is back in the fold as part of an alleged large-money deal for a team game that pitts him and Triple H against Taker and Kane in Crown Jewel, a shocking development for a man who once resisted a party that comes from his retirement. with AJ Styles, but he's back both because of the story that is told and because his bank account will grow substantially thanks to it. Similarly, we know that Triple H is being paid generously for a limited role as an interpreter in the ring, while The Undertaker has established itself as one of the WWE's highest paid stars, despite what can be described as the program Easiest of any fighter fighter. the earth today

WWE now has what appear to be unlimited funds at its disposal due to substantial increases in revenue resulting from large money programs like Greatest Royal Rumble, Super Show-Down and Crown Jewel which, according to F4WOnline.com, are sources of money larger than WrestleMania. Therefore, the company's new pot of gold has prompted Vince McMahon to delve into his bag of tricks and pull as many new toys as he can. Well, should we say old toys?

In fact, WWE has put the new children in the block as Finn Balor in the background, while driving the narrative that the story about the return of the DX and the Brothers of Destruction is the most important thing in Raw, even more than anything that happens in the perennial Golden Child reign reigns. But it is not paying off. Not for a moment.

Raw has been built largely around a quartet of superstars that have been living together for more than two centuries and have collectively been on WWE programming for at least a century, but fans do not seem to mind. In the last month, the audience of Raw has sunk to a minimum of 25 years on two occasions, which did so for the episodes of September 24 as for October 1, which presented developments in the current saga HHH / Taker / Michaels and the last one that attracted just over two million viewers during a third hour that was built around a publicized appearance of HBK.

Some have blamed the increase in television competition and / or cable cut by the sudden fall of the WWE audience, but if the product is good, fans will tune it.

The same week that Raw's audience reached an all-time low, the stellar game between the Kansas Chiefs and the Denver Broncos in Monday night soccer It attracted more than 13 million viewers, an increase of more than one million viewers compared to the previous week and the best number of the program in almost a year. Similarly, the episode of Raw's 25th anniversary in January averaged more than 4.5 million viewers, its largest average audience in three years and a tell-tale sign that fans will see the product when WWE gives them an interesting hook to attract them.

Clearly, Michaels, Taker, Triple H and Kane have not been doing the job in that regard, which makes fans wonder if what is likely to be a massive financial investment in four half-time stars is really worth it.

In fact, a look at the WWE Key Performance Indicators tells us that WWE fans are creatures of habit, whose audience patterns tend to fluctuate based almost exclusively on the time of year rather than on any particular story or story. presence of certain stars. During the WWE Network era that began in 2014, both the television audience and the number of WWE Network subscribers peaks around WrestleMania at the end of March and the beginning of April, only to fall back into reality by the rest of the year.

Nothing has changed that, either. No Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar in Survivor Series in November 2016. No John Cena vs. Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman vs. Lesnar in the same pay per view, No Mercy, in September 2017. And based on what we know of the story and what we've already seen with the descending audience of Raw, The Undertaker, Kane, Michaels and Triple H, none of which is considered a tie at the level of Dinner or Lesnar, will reverse that trend and will suddenly or constantly increase the audience of the WWE.

In any case, the overwhelming presence of four part-time legends has been a big change for WWE fans, who want to see how the current range of the company's artists are pushed, and even for some occasional fans, how have not even been watching WWE when Michaels last worked for the company. Meanwhile, Michaels, who is often called the best performer in the ring of all time, is also known as a disappointing draw that was never compared to names like Hulk Hogan or Austin in that regard.

Now, Michaels has been out of his last game for almost a decade and gets entangled in a fight with The Undertaker, who has already passed his best moment at a time when fans prioritize work in the ring more than ever. That, of course, makes you wonder if the WWE that uses two aging stars that do not necessarily have a history of substantial needle movements and that are also occupying valuable time on television is the best strategy for the short or future future. long-term WWE.

But you do not have to be a genius to discover the answer: no, it is not.

Because WWE is paying a lot of money for a dispute that will stop Raw and leave company officials wondering why their current stars really can not beat.

Blake Oestriecher is an elementary school teacher by day and a sports writer by night. He is a contributor to @ForbesSports, where he mainly covers WWE. You can follow him on Twitter. @BOestriecher

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