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Scott Hall/Raw, Comparing Cena To Flair, WWE Network Needs Subscribers, Daniel Bryan As An "Adulterer"

The following is today's edition of Ask WNW. Ask WNW is the most popular feature on the website where Richard Gray answers four questions daily, Monday through Friday. To submit your question for the next installment of Ask WNW, click here.
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What were your thoughts on seeing Scott Hall on this week's episode of Monday Night Raw?

I thought Scott Hall looked great on this week's episode of Monday Night Raw. On Twitter, I noted how it was Hulk Hogan that made me a wrestling fan but Scott Hall and Kevin Nash that kept me one. There are many ups and downs for a recovering addict but Monday was a good day for this business. The closing segment of this week's Raw was nostalgic but probably would have been better suited on an episode other than the go-home to SummerSlam. The problem is there were so many moving parts, it was hard to really hone in on Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena.

We explained on Tuesday how WWE is using Hogan in conjunction with the SummerSlam pay-per-view to encourage people to subscribe to the WWE Network. My other critique to the closing segment would have been to allow either Hogan or Flair to bump for Brock, as both of them pitched. That would have been a major statement from Lesnar heading into his title match against John Cena.

John Cena has earned 15 championship reigns -- a great feat -- but it was all with WWE. Ric Flair of course has 16 with various promotions. Should Cena be held in the same regard with Flair due to Flair earning his titles everywhere and not in one place.

Ric Flair's label as a 16-time world champion is the way WWE recognizes it but Flair considers himself to be a 21-time world champion. Regardless, Flair is one of the greatest of all time and history will be much kinder to John Cena. Cena gets a lot of heat -- just like Hulk Hogan got a lot of heat in his prime. However, as we've seen since Hogan's return to WWE, he's once again over like rover and beloved by marks and smarks alike. I believe this is how Cena will be viewed in 20 years and the fact he'll surpass Flair's benchmark of WWE-recognized world title reigns will only add to that.

It seems pretty clear to me that, from the announcers to the wrestlers, to even signs shown in the audience, that the company is really over-hyping the "$9.99" price of the WWE Network. Do you feel that the WWE is going into panic mode over the lack of subscribers versus the numbers they had projected up to this point?

WWE has initiated a marketing campaign around the $9.99 WWE Network price tag. Yes, they are desperate for subscribers and that's evident by this plan. The lack of Network growth has stalled plans of a proposed price increase and WWE even lowered their new monthly no commitment plan from $19.99 to $12.99. I can tell you $19.99/month is where they want to be but they're not going to go there at this time as they continue to "build" the Network's base.

Do you find it ridiculous that Daniel Bryan -- WWE's top babyface -- is now a storyline adulterer?

I believe there is more to the story of Daniel Bryan's "affair" on Brie Bella. This is WWE's way of keeping Daniel Bryan involved in the Brie vs. Stephanie McMahon program. One can only hope it will lead to the reintroduction of Bryan into storylines but that hinges completely on his health. However, to answer your question, I do not think it's ridiculous because it's "Stephanie McMahon's side of the story." It's amazing how much heat this is getting on social media, as I believe fans are failing to see the big picture. Stephanie, the heel in the program, introducing "Bryan's mistress," doesn't make it true. Remember, heels aren't known for their innate ability to tell the truth. Rather than the IWC being so quick to criticize, they should be glad to see Bryan still being associated with the program.

From the Ask WNW vault…

December 2012: Is it just me or has the return of Brock Lesnar been somewhat of a bust? He came back with so much hype, had a couple OK matches and now he has been gone for so long in between dates that I totally forgot about him until the Slammys? I know WWE wants to get the most out of his few dates but I feel they did a better job with The Rock then with Brock. - Let’s look at the numbers. Brock Lesnar has headlined two WWE pay-per-views this year – Extreme Rules (vs. John Cena) and SummerSlam (vs. Triple H). Extreme Rules did 263,000 buys (up from 209,000 the year prior and 182,000 in 2010) and SummerSlam did 350,000 buys (up from 296,000 the year prior and even with the 350,000 in 2010). WWE views these numbers as a major success and would like to retain the services of Brock Lesnar after they use him at Wrestlemania 29 next year. There was talk of Lesnar working Survivor Series or another pay-per-view in 2012 but the company ultimately decided to keep him on the shelf to preserve the dates on his contract.

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