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WWE Couple Suspended, McMahon Talks To Undertaker, Cena’s Part-Time Status, Smackdown Viewership

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Shane McMahon & Undertaker

- WWE announced on Wednesday that both Alberto Del Rio and Paige have been suspended for 30-days for violating the company Wellness Policy for the first time. We do not have confirmation as to what triggered both of their failures, we don’t even know if it was the same substance, but there is a backstory to this. We reported here in our Members content on July 29, 2016 that one of the reasons Triple H used to justify splitting up Del Rio (to Smackdown) and Paige (to Raw) even though they are an item in real life is because Hunter feels Del Rio is a bad influence on Paige. At the time, it was seen as a way for Hunter to punish Del Rio, who Triple H feels is always disrespecting him. Triple H has also been in Vince McMahon’s ear that Del Rio parties too hard and is a liability. While Vince wanted to heat back up on Del Rio, primarily due to the large downside they are paying him, Triple H wanted them to proceed with caution. Hunter won out and we reported earlier this month in our Members Content Del Rio, whose contract is up in October, is not expected to re-sign. Given his Wellness suspension it’ll be interesting to see if Del Rio is brought back at all or if WWE just has him sit out the remainder of his contract. Adding insult to injury, today is Paige’s 24th birthday.

- Shane McMahon hung out with The Undertaker at a bar in Texas on Monday. Photos of the two have surfaced online and made rounds on social media. Pro Wrestling Sheet spoke with one employee at the bar — which was the Clive Bar in Austin — who said they came in around midnight on Monday night and stayed a little over an hour. Shane picked up the tab and tipped the bartender $100. It’s unknown what was discussed but it could have very well been Shane re-opening lines of communication with Undertaker for WWE. We have been told and reported there has not been communication recently. Below is one of the photos circulating:

- After this week’s WWE Smackdown went off the air, Dolph Ziggler, dressed as Colonel Sanders, took down The Miz, dressed as a chicken. Apparently this had something to do with WWE’s sponsorship deal with KFC. As for the dark match main event, Roman Reigns beat Seth Rollins.

- On last night’s episode of Talking Smack with Daniel Bryan and Renee Young, John Cena drew some attention for saying he’s openly waiting for someone to step up and take his spot. He’s waiting for someone after 14 years to show up all the time and deliver. And not for someone to just do it once but consistently better. While the comments will be written off by some people as kayfabe, keep in mind John Cena is essentially now part-time talent. He’s working fewer live event dates and is not working the full WWE schedule for the remainder of 2016.

- Last night’s episode of WWE Smackdown did 2,471,000 viewers on the USA Network. That’s up +16,000 viewers from the week prior.

2016 WWE Smackdown Viewership Archive

January 7, 2016 – 2,757,000 viewers (USA Network premiere)
January 14, 2016 – 2,332,000 viewers
January 21, 2016 – 2,757,000 viewers
January 28, 2016 – 2,720,000 viewers
February 4, 2016 – 2,664,000 viewers
February 11, 2016 – 2,414,000 viewers
February 18, 2016 – 2,458,000 viewers
February 25, 2016 – 2,395,000 viewers
March 3, 2016 – 2,491,000 viewers
March 10, 2016 – 2,186,000 viewers
March 17, 2016 – 2,260,000 viewers
March 24, 2016 – 2,501,000 viewers
March 31, 2016 – 2,328,000 viewers
April 7, 2016 – 2,444,000 viewers
April 14, 2016 – 2,355,000 viewers
April 21, 2016 – 2,431,000 viewers
April 28, 2016 – 2,109,000 viewers
Mary 5, 2016 – 2,346,000 viewers
May 12, 2016 – 2,262,000 viewers
May 19, 2016 – 2,295,000 viewers
May 26, 2016 – 2,112,000 viewers
June 2, 2016 – 2,169,000 viewers
June 9, 2016 – 1,996,000 viewers
June 16, 2016 – 2,073,000 viewers
June 23, 2016 – 2,145,000 viewers
June 30, 2016 - 2,080,000 viewers
July 7, 2016 - 2,241,000 viewers
July 14, 2016 - 2,068,000 viewers
July 19, 2016 - 3,170,000 viewers (Smackdown Live Premiere w/2016 WWE Draft)
July 26, 2016 - 2,743,000 viewers
August 2, 2016 - 2,681,000 viewers
August 9, 2016 - 2,455,000 viewers
August 16, 2016 - 2,471,000 viewers

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