WWE today released its key performance indicators for the first quarter of this year and that means preliminary buy estimates are in for the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber pay-per-view (PPV) events that took place on Jan. 27 and Feb. 19, respectively.
They represented the final two PPV shows before the launch of the WWE Network.
These are early estimates and the not final numbers, of course, but it looks like this:
The Royal Rumble featured Batista returning after four years away to last eliminate Roman Reigns, earning a shot at the WWE world heavyweight title at WrestleMania 30. Randy Orton vs. John Cena was the title match on the show with Brock Lesnar also appearing in an undercard match against Big Show. Rounding out the card was a Daniel Bryan vs. Bray Wyatt singles match.
Let's compare to the past three years.
The 2013 number was up largely due to The Rock working a WWE championship match against CM Punk. The other two are right in line with what a typical Royal Rumble show pulls in this day and age.
The Elimination Chamber show should be considered a success, all things considered. It certainly didn't feature a loaded line-up and the main event was underwhelming at best. The Shield vs. The Wyatt Family was exciting as all get out but would they really move the needle?
All told, WWE can feel good about its final two PPV events before the WWE Network changes the game forever. Now we wait and see on how WrestleMania 30 does, not to mention how many subscribers the Network has garnered so far.
Editor's update: This post has been changed to reflect updated buy numbers for the previous year's shows. The initial numbers were the preliminary estimates that were released and not the final numbers.