What's the latest on the potential return of The Rock? Do you think he will return to wrestle at Wrestlemania next year?
WWE has been operating under the assumption that The Rock is not working Wrestlemania XXX next year. Rock made it clear following this year's pay-per-view that he had fulfilled his commitment and wasn't obligating himself to any further dates. At one point there were plans for him to appear on television to promote WWE 2K14, in which he graces the cover, but I haven't heard if that will happen. When WWE released the promotional information for Wrestlemania XXX it did not include Rock, which only helped confirm what we've been hearing behind-the-scenes. Should The Rock change his mind and decide to wrestle, WWE will look for a main event level program for him.
There is no way that John Cena is even close to 100%, so why does WWE risk John's long-term health by bringing him back way too soon?
The only people that truly know the health of John Cena are the people in John's inner circle and his doctors. A lot of people were surprised to hear Cena was coming back for WWE Hell in a Cell and I'm sure I'll have more information as I have more time to work the phones. Cena is returning two months early from the 4-6 month timetable that was laid out for his return from a torn triceps. From the outside, it appears WWE is getting Cena back early in the midst of a horrendous viewership slide. I worry about Cena's long-term health as he's clearly been overworked the past five years but it's tough to keep him away. Cena wants to be working and WWE needs him to be working. If he gets medical clearance, he's working.
As inappropriate and uncalled for as was Battleground's ending, do you think its intentions were to direct viewers attention to the fallout on Raw and this way to raise their abysmal audience from the past few weeks?
WWE can't use a pay-per-view to promote free television. For one, far-less people watch pay-per-views than weekly TVs, even with viewership down. The ending of WWE Battleground was done to bridge to Hell in a Cell but it was poorly executed and resulted in the worst show of the year.
What are your thoughts on the Hell in a Cell lineup? Is WWE trying to make up for the loss of ratings by bringing back these big names like John Cena and Shawn Michaels?
Last week's episode of Monday Night Raw posted an abysmal viewership and we saw a strong reaction this week. There has been talk about bringing Shawn Michaels in for an angle with Daniel Bryan since early August and it was recently eluded too on a public platform, so this was happening despite the abysmal numbers. However, it is likely the bad numbers caused the plans to be moved up. It certainly looks like John Cena is returning early because of the slide and WWE wanted to make sure they had as much time as possible to promote him. I also want to make sure people understand that Michaels is under WWE contract and is used when needed. Every time Shawn returns I get tons of questions about him returning to the ring. While anything in this business is possible, this isn't the case here. He's answering the call for his contract and is delivering WWE a bump when they need it.
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