Even against the dominant BCS Championship game between Alabama and Notre Dame, RAW rode the return of The Rock and a heavily-hyped main-event to score its best viewership in months.
RAW delivered an impressive 1.6 adults 18-49 rating with 4.42 million viewers. Even if calculations omit the past two holiday RAW episodes from consideration, this represents a sizable increase from what the show had been delivering throughout the NFL season. And it posted the increase against a BCS game that drew more than twenty six million viewers, which is a much larger audience than that which tuned into even the most successful Monday Night Football games.
The entire show performed well, but particular success came in the third hour, which featured The Rock’s return and the CM Punk vs. Ryback match. Compared to a 1.5 rating for both the 8PM and 9PM hours, the 10PM segment drew a 1.8 rating.
That segment was certainly aided by the blowout nature of the BCS game, which saw its audience decline significantly in the second half, but it still indicates that the right combination of content and promotion will fuel RAW to strong numbers.