WWE Hall of Famer 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin is slated to make another appearance on the Sept. 9 episode of Monday Night Raw at Madison Square Garden.
Austin also made a special appearance on the July 22 Raw reunion episode, closing it out with celebratory drinks alongside many other wrestling legends. So why is WWE bringing back "The Texas Rattlesnake" less than two months later?
According to Mike Johnson of PW Insider Elite (h/t Ringside News), WWE is bringing back Austin because of the low ticket sales for the MSG show. Citing the seating maps, Johnson said that the Raw show is only "half sold out," while the SmackDown show is "less than half sold out ."
Johnson also pointed out that Madison Square Garden is the site of many legendary moments from Austin's WWE career. This is where he first executed the 'Stone Cold Stunner on Vince McMahon - and where Austin went up against The Undertaker at SummerSlam 1998.
In the end, Austin will be there "as a special attraction," per Johnson, and he's unlikely to receive "any bumps." WWE is simply bringing him back in hopes of sparking ticket sales and providing more entertainment for a show inside the world's most famous arena.
WWE has had numerous problems with ticket sales in 2019, including their Stomping Grounds pay-per-view in Tacoma, Washington. It got to a point where WWE had to run a two-for-one ticket promotion in order to fix sales.
The company also came to Toronto for NXT TakeOver: SummerSlam and the following episodes of Raw and SmackDown. But WWE struggled to sell tickets for those events, and it led to ridiculously cheap ticket prices. Now, they can only hope that Austin's appearance will lead to a sold out crowd at MSG in two weeks.
What This Means
Austin is arguably the greatest, most beloved and admired superstar in the history of WWE. It's always a special treat for fans when he returns, so hopefully his appearance can lead to better ticket sales. After all, this is a big show that takes place just six days before Clash of Champions - inside the legendary Madison Square Garden.