WWE has always been able to count on drawing ratings for certain shows, like for episodes of Monday Night Raw coming just one evening after a pay-per-view. This has been true even in the WWE Network era.
But that’s slowly changing.
Look at this trend (as pointed out by the Wrestling Observer) over the past few years in regards to viewership for the post-Royal Rumble episode of Monday Night Raw:
2016: 4.10 million
2017: 3.62 million
2018: 3.40 million
2019: 2.71 million
2020: 2.40 million
WWE promoted Charlotte Flair and Drew McIntyre making their decision on who they would challenge for a title at WrestleMania 36 (even if they didn’t follow through on that, in Flair’s case), and it didn’t make much difference at all. They also promoted Edge returning to the show to make clear he’s back and will be wrestling some more. That didn’t make much difference at all.
It’s starting to feel like nothing will. Pro wrestling, and WWE more specificially, just ain’t what it used to be.