It is being said that WWE did not expect the amount of controversy that The Hulk Hogan reinstatement created and basically “misread” what many of their modern wrestlers took from The Hogan story.
While the company expected some minor media backlash that would be critical of the move, they did not count on or expect that there would be so much controversy from within the locker room especially because wrestlers generally never publicly “second guess” these types of decisions.
WWE officials were reportedly of the thinking that all or at least most of the wrestlers would sympathize with Hulk Hogan since he was taped without his knowledge and because he is Hulk Hogan, an icon a lot of them grew up watching. Instead, a lot of wrestlers felt Hogan wasn’t sincere in his apology and that his speech was more conveying a message that he was a victim who embarrassed the company by being filmed without his knowledge.
Source: Wrestling Observer Newsletter