Did John Cena's Heavily Hyped Return At Survivor Series Draw Pay-Per-View Buys?

source: Wrestling Observer Newsletter

The early buyrate estimates are in for the 2008 Survivor Series pay-per-view, which featured the heavily hyped return of John Cena. As it turns out, Cena’s return to the ring ended up drawing the lowest domestic figure in Survivor Series history with a grand total of 205,000 buys in North America. Overall, the show drew 326,000 buys. While the numbers are not final, the first estimates for last year’s show drew 341,000 and 215,000 buys respectively, so they’re well behind pace.

From a comparison standpoint, last year’s show didn’t even feature Cena as he was injured at the time, and it still ended up outdrawing this year’s show featuring WWE’s apparent poster boy. Last year’s show featured a Hell in a Cell blow-off to the Batista vs. Undertaker feud, a match that had already headlined three pay-per-views as well as TVs during the year. The show also featured a Randy Orton vs. Shawn Michaels title match.

Survivor Series will likely end up being the fifth most watched pay-per-view of 2008, as last year’s No Way Out event featuring two Elimination Chamber matches drew an estimated 230,000 buys in North America.

The numbers for Survivor Series have to be considered a huge disappointment considering that the company pushed John Cena’s return to the ring for several weeks on all three shows with vignettes, not to mention that they tried to hotshot an Internet angle on the company website with Jeff Hardy on the day of the show.

This year’s Elimination Chamber match participants revealed (>>)