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WWE News: Raw TV ratings are in for Monday's show featuring The Rock - how did Raw compare to The Draft?

May 3, 2011 - 5:23:08 PM
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By James Caldwell, Torch assistant editor

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WWE Raw on Monday, May 2 scored a 3.45 rating featuring The Rock's birthday, fall-out from Extreme Rules, and John Cena vs. The Miz for the WWE Title.

Raw was essentially flat compared to last week's Draft episode, which scored a 3.47 rating.

TV viewership was also very close. This week's Raw averaged 5.22 million viewers compared to 5.20 million viewers for the Draft episode.

-- The interesting aspect of this week's Raw is the first hour outdrew the second hour by a significant margin.

Raw scored a 3.6 first hour rating and averaged 5.41 million viewers. In the second hour, Raw scored a 3.3 rating and averaged 5.03 million viewers.

Average viewership in the first hour was slightly below first hour viewership for the April 4 Raw the night after WrestleMania 27 and the March 28 episode leading into Mania.

The second hour's average viewing audience of 5.03 million viewers was five percent below the 2011 average for the second hour.

Caldwell's Analysis: The first hour was likely boosted by nearly 30 minutes of uninterrupted television to start the show featuring part 1 of The Rock's birthday celebration. That looks like an artificial boost and the second hour looks more in-line with an expected viewership level post-Draft (3.3 rating/5.0 million viewers), even with the WWE Title match between Cena and Miz mixed into the start of the second hour.

Without Rock on Raw each week, there should be some concern about Raw lacking momentum with the full-time players they have going forward. And they already played the Draft card for an artificial ratings pop. Now, they have to take a long-term approach to building stars and be willing to take a ratings hit in the process.


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