Stone Cold Steve Austin made a much-hyped return to WWE at the Madison Square Garden this week, when he moderated the contract signing between Seth Rollins and Braun Strowman and stunned AJ Styles (twice!).
The second of those stunners was delivered in a dark segment after RAW went off the air. Stone Cold invited Styles to share a beer with him, but ended up delivering yet another Stunner to the Phenomenal One.
The second segment featuring the Rattlesnake was meant to be completely a dark segment initially, but it was later changed to take place partially in the main event and the rest after the show ended. Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful Select reports that WWE reworked the segment at the last moment.
“Some were saying that the Steve Austin Show closing segment that was closing was originally supposed to be a dark segment, but got moved up to end Raw towards the end of the show.”
Stone Cold delivered two entertaining stunners to AJ Styles, but the audiences at home could only view one of those.
Austin’s much-hyped return couldn’t help WWE maintain its ratings though, as WWE had a great fall this week due to the start of Monday Night Football. The ratings fell to 2.1 million, and it won’t be a surprise to see the show hit sub 2 million soon.
However, TV rating provider Nielsen has some good news for WWE. The Wrestling Observer Newsletter noted that Nielsen is changing the way it provides the viewership for the TV shows. The ratings will now include the viewership for public areas such as bars and offices, which are often the places to watch sports.
- Nielsen has announced that ratings will be changing next year and they will be measuring viewing outside the home, in places like bars, airports, and offices as well as other areas.
- Nielsen has been testing out doing ratings of out-of-home viewing and has found that sports events in particular, with sports bars, will increase an average of 11 percent with the added viewership.
WWE’s recent struggles with the ratings could be helped by the new system.