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Loaded show helps SmackDown’s numbers rebound against NBA

As is the case for most shows this time of year, the May 12 SmackDown was faced with stiff competition from the NBA and NHL Playoffs. To counter, WWE ran their World Heavyweight championship tournament, and trotted out Roman Reigns to announce his match for the next premium live event.

It didn’t hurt. Last Friday’s episode had an audience of 2,149,000, which is about a 4% improvement over the previous week. The .56 rating among 18-49 year olds was up more than 7.5%.

While those are still among the blue show’s lowest numbers of the year, they were good enough to finish first on broadcast in the demo. SmackDown was fifth on all of television, with only ESPN’s coverage of the two NBA games, and their pre and post game shows scoring better 18-49 ratings. LeBron James & the Los Angeles Lakers closing out Steph Curry & the Golden State Warriors won the night with 8.64 million viewers and a 3.15 rating. That game aired after WWE was off the air, but the Miami Heat’s series-clinching win over the New York Knicks went head-to-head with SmackDown and had an overall audience of 5.4 million with a 1.83 rating.

Next Friday WWE will square off with the Heat and Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals. We’ll see what they counter with beyond the already announced AJ Styles/Grayson Waller segment and trio of tag matches, and how they fare.

In the meantine, here’s a rundown of the past year’s worth of SmackDown’s numbers:

* Aired on FS1

For complete results and this week’s SmackDown live blog click here. To read a recap & review of the night’s events click here. For video highlights of the show click here.

Numbers via Showbuzz Daily

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