Every wrestling blogger’s favorite website Showbuzz Daily is down this weekend, which means we don’t have as much detail to the May 14 overnight numbers as usual.
But what we do have from sites like Spoiler TV tells us that SmackDown had an average of 1.8 million viewers last night. That’s down more than 16% from the May 7 overnight average of 2.12 million, and it’s the lowest number of 2021. Final figures come out next week, and almost always tick higher. But even with the typical 100K rise, WWE and FOX are still looking at their smallest audience since February.
Where did the viewers go? Well, as Brandon Thurston of Wrestlenomics reminds us, this post-WrestleMania time is typically a down one for WWE. But still...
Should note May is usually a big month for month-to-month viewership loss for Raw and Smackdown, for a variety of reasons. So a low rating wouldn't be unexpected, but SD had been doing over 2 million viewers every week but one (1.990 million on Feb 12) for 36 consecutive weeks.— Brandon Thurston (@BrandonThurston) May 15, 2021
Was it just a lack of interest in Sunday’s WrestleMania Backlash PPV? Not entirely. CBS did have the two hour season finale of their popular Blue Bloods on May 14, and the first hour went head-to-head with SmackDown. The cop family drama was the most watched show on television last night, with more than 6.5 million people tuning in to get their last new episode from Tom Selleck, Donnie Wahlberg & company for a few months.
SmackDown‘s .4 rating among 18 - 49 year olds was down from May 7 as well. But it did earn a share of second place on the night, behind Blue Bloods and the ratings machine that is ABC’s Shark Tank, both of which had a .5 rating in the demo.
We’ll see if WWE has any surprises in store for tomorrow that could help the Intercontinental title Fatal 4Way draw the viewers back next Friday.