This isn’t news. It’s just a reminder. There’s always a lot of discussion about the state of WWE’s ratings, and some of it is even interesting & insightful!
Raw and SmackDown could do things differently, and those changes might result in more viewers and demographic shares. Or the numbers might be worse. While we debate that, though, we should remember that getting two million-ish people to tune in two different 2 - 3 hour variety shows every week is impressive.
USA Network, the long-time home of Raw (and now NXT, plus WWE-adjacent shows like Miz & Mrs. and Straight Up Steve Austin) remembers. Because those shows are the reason they can make claims like this:
USA Network is the #1 cable network in 2019 for the 14th year in a row. Thank you all for watching!— USA Network (@USA_Network) January 6, 2020
It’s not just a picture of Bobby Lashley, either. The shows I listed above are all over the accompanying press release from USA:
- “Several key series boosted the network to the top spot. WWE Monday Night Raw was the #1 Cable Entertainment Program on Mondays, as well as the #1 Most Social Primetime Series in all of television.”
- “Straight Up Steve Austin [was] the #1 New Unscripted Cable Series for Men (18-49, 25-54)”
- “Miz & Mrs did an absolutely awesome job as its #1 Returning Unscripted series”
Should the numbers be better? Are the existing ones worth a quarter of a billion dollars annually?
I’m not a television executive, so I don’t have to know. But even as an interested observer, I can tell that USA probably isn’t touting their 14th year as the most watched cabler without WWE.