On last night’s episode of Raw, a number of SDLive superstars appeared and got into the mix. Many people attributed that to the fact that the Smackdown house show scheduled for Monday had been canceled for some reason so a number of superstars were free to be used on Raw. Vince McMahon announced this Wildcard Rule and that any various superstars, up to three, could show up on the opposite brand. That number was bumped up to four when Lars Sullivan appeared on Raw. That four does not include Shane McMahon and Elias who also appeared on Raw.
The other running theory for this Wildcard Rule is that the ratings of Raw and SDLive have continued to plummet.
It turns out that ratings are a huge part of the implementation of this Wildcard Rule, as is serious pressure from NBCUniversal and FOX. For some reason McMahon doesn’t want to give up on the separate brands, so this was a compromise.
There has been serious pressure from NBCU and FOX to bring up the ratings and will not be happy if things stay the same. They feel that the brands, individually, don’t have enough star power to bring up the ratings. They want both Raw and SDLive storylines on Friday night SDLive. They don’t understand why Raw would give up their top superstar, Roman Reigns, to SDLive when he should be on both shows, and he’s not the only superstar they want to see on both shows.
QD – I greatly disagree with each brand not having star power. The star power is there on both shows, they just haven’t been developed. Both shows are so deep with talent, but the WWE has really dropped the ball on what they used to be best at, developing stars. It’s been a long time since the WWE has put the time and money into developing huge superstars like Hogan, Savage, Rocky, Austin, and Cena. There are superstars who could be as big as those previously mentioned, if only they were cultivated and groomed to get where they have the potential to be.
Because it’s me, I also have to state that if McMahon would stop noodling with every show and stopped trying to screw over the majority of NXT superstars who have enormous potential, I know that the shows would be leaps and bounds better. Not saying that doing so will make the ratings go up because we live in a very different world and watch TV in a very different way from when pro wrestling was in its prime during the Monday Night War.