Dear WWE Creative,
ShowBuzzDaily revealed this week that Monday Night RAW’s ratings once again dropped on April 29th, averaging 2,158,000 within the WWE Universe tuning in, which was the lowest non-holiday rating for the program in history; with the past all-time low recently occurring this past December 10th when RAW averaged 2,193,000 viewers. This marks a 9 percent decrease from last week, that saw 2,374,000, amongst some solid post-Wrestlemania RAWs that had fans reeling.
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The Wrestlemania season honeymoon is clearly over, and perhaps the promise of a new day in the WWE that Vince McMahon and crew vowed late last year. I could list the multiple things that could have been improved on both Monday Night RAW and SmackDown LIVE this week (that SD LIVE open filled with Michael Cole, Kofi Kingston and 10 minutes of video montage recaps was horrible); however, I’ll just focus on the Money in the Bank (MITB) participants reveal.
Simply put, it was lazy booking on your part, WWE Creative. The only solid or somewhat surprising reveal was Alexa Bliss, and most could still see that coming from a mile away. Simply announcing participants for the MITB match instead rolling out a tournament of sorts to determine the challengers for both matches seems head-scratching as well. The storyline could have dominated both shows; instead, we got some lame mish-mashed segments with little direction, and some not-so-memorable matches.
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Plus, I’m not overly enthused by those participating. I mean, there are some solid talents in there, and then there are some questionable ones on both sides.
First off, I love Finn Balor’s, and on some levels it’s great he’s in the mix, but let’s face it: he’s the Intercontinental Champion! While, yes, the WWE title is more prestigious than that of the IC, placing Balor in the match just sheds an additional spotlight on this. As IC champion, Balor should have a one-on-one match on the pay-per-view (PPV), where the title hits center stage within a program, not a side thought in a MITB that should be drawing number one contenders for the Universal and WWE title. It’s little things like that devalue the second-tier titles, and makes me as a fan and journalist of wrestling frustrated, because it feels like I’m on a roller coaster ride with you, Creative: one moment you are working hard to elevate these championships, the next you pull a move like this that brings them down a notch or two.
Another issue I have is the fact that the Miz is missing from the bout; only to be booked in something with Shane McMahon for the PPV (again) … makes zero sense. Wasn’t this feud done and over with after Wrestlemania? Isn’t Shane involved in a program with Roman Reigns and Elias over at SmackDown? It’s time to move on, and Miz should’ve been included in MITB if not winning that briefcase at this point. Additionally, I feel it’s too soon to see Ricochet in the MITB mix, while I’m over seeing Baron Corbin get opportunities like these when it’ll do nothing for his character evolvement or career in the long run. Although I will say its nice to see Ali and Orton in that match; has an old and new feel with a rookie and veteran in the mix.
When Shane McMahon gets two huge feuds on #Raw (Miz) and #SDLive (Roman Reigns) but then WWE wonders why guys are asking for releases every other week because they’re not being used. pic.twitter.com/31AulYWMhr
— WWE Critics (@WWECritics) April 30, 2019
Speaking of moving on, on to the ladies. One major thing I do question as I look at the women’s MITB match is why someone like Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan, Sarah Logan, and Sonya DeVille aren’t in the bout. DeVille may cost Mandy her opportunity at the PPV, as there was a little tease of this when she “gave up” her spot for Rose this past Tuesday (so to speak); however, as disappointing as it was to see the Riott Squad break up during the brand draft, it’s been far MORE disappointing not seeing them on television or being used at all, as you clearly having nothing for them. It was a nice surprise to see Bliss added, I did think she’d be in there, but with the fact that she hadn’t wrestled in weeks, I wasn’t sure.
— LIV Morgan ?? (@YaOnlyLivvOnce) May 1, 2019
Call it lazy booking, call it undetermined direction, but RAW and SmackDown will continue to plummet in the ratings if not thought is put into what excites fans, and what truly helps to build a PPV.