by Brian Phelps
Well, the Survivor Series 2011 PPV buy rates are in and the result is not good. Survivor Series this year pulled in 260,000 buys... which is up only 16,000 buys from last years 244,000. This is considered a major flop as it was expected to do much more with the Rock's return to the ring for his first match in seven years. The Rock only brought in 16,000 more buyers than last year. So how come the Rock's epic in-ring return at Survivor Series didn't save the PPV numbers? Well, it's pretty easy to figure out if you think about it.
Let's call a spade a spade and break down Survivor Series in the simplest of terms. Survivor Series was The Rock or bust. That was the only selling point of the ppv. The entire rest of the card was weak. I mean c'mon look at the rest of the card. CM Punk vs Alberto Del Rio was the second biggest match on the card and while Punk is a big seller... WWE does not have any truly great heels right now. Also, we've seen these guys fight a bunch a times already. Then you have Big Show vs Mark Henry which I just can't buy into this feud since for years they have fought each other in mid-card matches with no fan fare. I saw this as no different. I didn't care about Team Barrett vs Team Orton as there wasn't any true build to this match. Next is Beth Phoenix vs Eve Torres.... match we've seen on RAW 100 times already for free. The divas division sucks. Plain and simple. That just leaves Dolph Ziggler versus John Morrison, which we all knew Morrison would lose since he was on his way out of the company anyway. So, Survivor Series was The Rock or bust.
Also, The Rock did almost NOTHING to build this match other than a cheap one night live appearance the Monday before the PPV. He showed up one time before that via satellite to give out some more idle threats from his house. John Cena did everything he could to sell this match, but when the Rock isn't around to build the match it just didn't seem special at all. We all know that The Rock is just going to go away again so what's the point of buying it? Then, the whole match seemed stupid and completely lacked continuity. How many times have we seen John Cena defeat R-Truth and the Miz? Countless times... but now all of a sudden he needs the Rock's help? It was unbelievable. Plus, it was obvious that The Rock and Cena were going to smash Miz and Truth so why would I pay 50 bucks for a squash match?
Survivor Series failure rests squarely on creative's shoulders. It was a completely lack luster line up with the only good unique match being The Rock and Cena. Survivor Series was nothing more than a glorified Vengeance PPV with The Rock thrown in. WWE basically tried to take a short cut to more PPV buys by thinking they could just throw the Rock in and have a mega hit ppv instead of actually building a great card and it showed. People are too smart for that. People have to be smart with their money in this economy, and WWE needs to learn to build a quality PPV instead of going for a cheap quick fix. The same thing happened at last year's Wrestlemania. A lot of make up to try to cover up what was nothing more than a pitiful PPV card.